Houston’s home buying frenzy showed no signs of decline despite low inventories and increases in home prices, the Houston Association of Realtors® (HAR) reported. According to HAR’s latest MLS Report, April marked the 23rd consecutive month of positive sales. Home sales climbed 27.2 percent from last year’s numbers, while housing inventory reached an all-time low of 3.4 months; the lowest in 13 years, HAR indicated.
Despite April’s slow growth, Houston’s housing market positively trailed along. Median single-family prices increased 14.5 percent to $184,900, while 6,482 contracts closed within the month; the largest one-month sales volume since August 2007, according to HAR.
Positive sales seem to be credited to Houston’s “robust economic conditions,” a thriving job market and low interest rates, said HAR Chairman Danny Frank with Prudential Anderson Properties.
Although April’s sales soared through the roof, there’s no telling when these trends will end. In an interview with Houston Agent Magazine, Tom Plant, a broker associate with Greenwood King Properties implied that a low housing inventory might pose a threat in the near future.
“Houston has had a steadily decreasing inventory for the past two years. It is difficult to see how the sales trend can continue without an increase in inventory,” stated Plant.
Furthermore, NAR’s chief economist, Lawrence Yun indicated that despite the limited inventory and tight lending standards, home sales are trending forward.
“The robust housing market recovery is occurring in spite of tight access to credit and limited inventory. Without these frictions, existing-home sales easily would be well above the five-million unit pace, “ Yun stated. “Buyer traffic is 31 percent stronger than a year ago, but sales are running only about 10 percent higher.”
Overall, April’s sales brought positive results for the Houston housing market. Month-end pending sales rose 23.3 percent from last year’s numbers, while sales of all property types increased 28.8 percent over the same month last year.