The pace of homes sales in Austin slowed in July as median prices climbed, according to the Austin Board of Realtor’s monthly housing report.
Only 870 homes sold in the city, marking a 7.3 percent decrease from July 2015. That came as the median price of a property in Austin climbed by 4.6 percent to $345,000.
Similar trends were reflected across the broader Central Texas region in July as single-family home sales fell 3.1 percent and median prices rose by 6.1 percent to $260,000. Meanwhile, sales fell by 4.9 percent in the five-county Austin metro area as prices rose by 6 percent to $285,000.
Housing experts saw the slowdown in sales as a normal cooling after 2015’s record-setting figures, but saw the increase in prices as a possible warning.
“When it comes to sales volume, we’ve grown very used to seeing year-over-year increases every single month, but it’s important to remember that 2015 had the strongest summer selling season in the region’s history,” Aaron Farmer, 2016 President of the Austin Board of Realtors, said. “The value of Central Texas real estate has continued to increase, which is good news for homeowners. But those rising prices could start to have a cooling effect on sales volume in the market amidst growing affordability challenges.”
The affordability issues are particularly pronounced, as the number of lower-priced homes available continues to shrink as demand continues to power quick sales. There’s less than one month of inventory of homes between $100,000 and $200,000 in the metro area. Meanwhile, the supply of $400,000-plus homes is strong, with more than four-month’s worth in the area.
“Home prices are at their highest level in history in the Austin-Round Rock MSA, and as a result more existing homeowners have been putting their homes on the market this year,” said Jonathan Smoke, chief economist at realtor.com. “But by contrast, the Austin-Round Rock MSA remains hot relative to the U.S. In July, listings in Austin moved 20 days faster than the US overall and received 39 percent more views compared to the U.S. average on realtor.com.”
Here are a few Austin area housing market stats from the report
- Total dollar volume of single-family properties sold in July: $1.03 billion
- Number of single-family homes sold in July: 2,900
- Average number of days homes spent on the market: 40
- New listings: 3,709 (down 7 percent from July 2015)
- Pending sales: 2,864 (up 6 percent from July 2015)
- Median price of a single-family home: $285,000