AUSTIN (Texas Association of Realtors) – Demand for existing homes in Texas surged again in second quarter 2013, and the median price hit another all-time high.
According to the Texas Quarterly Housing Report, released yesterday by the Texas Association of Realtors (TAR), 79,760 single-family homes were sold in the second quarter — 17.8 percent more than the same quarter last year and the most homes sold in a single quarter since TAR began issuing its quarterly housing report four years ago. The surge in demand was widespread, with 43 of the 47 markets included in the report showing an increase in sales compared with last year.
“The first half of the summer selling season has been very busy for Texas real estate,” said TAR Chairman Shad Bogany. “Demand for homes steadily increased throughout the state, which has prompted competition for properties and is boosting prices.”
The median price in the second quarter was $177,300, up about 10 percent from the previous year. The average price increased 10.4 percent from last year to $235,075. Those are the highest figures for median and average price ever seen in Texas real estate, TAR reports.
“Nationally, home values are increasing at around 10 percent, which is similar to Texas,” said Real Estate Center Research Economist Dr. Jim Gaines. “However, that national trend is being driven primarily by markets that dropped significantly in value during the downturn, so it’s really an ‘echo-boom.’ We didn’t have those big price drops in Texas, so to see 10 percent price increases on top of properties that held more value in recent years means we’re seeing even more significant growth in Texas.”
In the wake of these increases in demand and price, the inventory of Texas homes continued to shrink. The state had 4.1 months of inventory in the second quarter, 30.5 percent less than the same quarter of last year, when inventory was 5.9 months.
“With inventory shrinking so rapidly for several quarters now, you’d expect to see more dramatic increases in price,” Gaines said. “However, I think we may be seeing a situation where Texas has ‘just-in-time’ housing inventory. Competition for properties is so fierce that homes are selling within days, or even hours, so they’re never recorded as ‘inventory’ but rather are immediately recorded as a sale.”