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Real Estate Market

Houston Texas Real Estate Market Update


HOUSTON — (March 11, 2015) — Falling oil prices and related layoffs, limited housing inventory, and rising home prices contributed to the first decline in home sales the Houston market has seen in six months. Sales of single-family homes dropped 5.8 percent year-over-year in February, led largely by faltering activity among homes priced above $500,000, which, until now, had been one of the market’s strongest and steadiest segments.
According to the latest monthly report prepared by the Houston Association of Realtors (HAR), February single-family home sales totaled 4,521 units compared to 4,798 a year earlier. Months of inventory, the estimated time it would take to deplete the current active housing inventory based on the previous 12 months of sales, edged up slightly to a 2.7-months supply. That is still well below the current national supply of 4.7 months of inventory.
Home prices achieved record highs for a February. The average price of a single-family home rose 4.5 percent year-over-year to $259,293. The median price—the figure at which half the homes sold for more and half for less—jumped 7.9 percent to $199,400.
February sales of all property types totaled 5,564 units, down 4.7 percent compared to the same month last year. Total dollar volume dipped 1.7 percent to $1.3 billion versus $1.4 billion a year earlier.
“We are witnessing the start of exactly what economists predicted would create a more ‘normalized’ Houston real estate market: declining sales volume, increasing prices, and improvement in housing inventory levels,” said HAR Chair Nancy Furst with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Anderson Properties. “While some local energy jobs have gone away, the Texas Workforce Commission just declared 2014 one of the best years for job creation in Houston, with almost 105,000 jobs added and continued hiring expected this year, albeit at lower levels. No one knows for sure where oil prices will go in the months ahead, but the diversity of Houston’s economy should help our housing market hold its own during this transition.”

February Monthly Market Comparison

With the exception of home prices, which rose, indicators for the Houston real estate market entered negative territory in February, with single-family home sales volume, total property sales volume, and total dollar volume all down compared to February 2014.
Month-end pending sales for all property types totaled 3,719. That is down 1.5 percent compared to last year and suggests the possibility of another dip in sales activity when the March numbers are tallied. Active listings, or the number of available properties, at the end of February was 27,990, up 0.7 percent from last year.
Houston’s housing inventory grew slightly in February to a 2.7-months supply versus the 2.6-months supply of a year earlier. According to the National Association of Realtors, the current supply of homes for the U.S stands at a 4.7-months supply.

Houston Association of Realtors Chart -1
* Months inventory estimates the number of months it will take to deplete current active inventory based on the prior 12 months sales activity. This figure is representative of the single-family homes market.

Single-Family Homes Update
Houston Association of Realtors Chart -2
Single Family
February single-family home sales totaled 4,521, down 5.8 percent from February 2014. The last drop in sales volume took place in July 2014, and was a 1.0 percent year-over-year decline.
Home prices reached record highs for a February in Houston. The single-family average price increased 4.5 percent from last year to $259,293 and the median price climbed 7.9 percent year-over-year to $199,400. The number of days it took a home to sell¬, or Days on Market, was 59 versus 64 last February. In July 2014, it reached an historic low of 45 days.
Broken out by housing segment, February sales performed as follows:
$1 – $79,999: decreased 36.1 percent
$80,000 – $149,999: decreased 17.2 percent
$150,000 – $249,999: increased 5.5 percent
$250,000 – $499,999: increased 4.1 percent
$500,000 and above: decreased 1.4 percent

Single Family Average Home Price
Houston Association of Realtors Chart -3
HAR also breaks out the sales figures for existing single-family homes. In February, existing home sales totaled 3,786. That is down 4.7 percent from the same month last year. The average sales price climbed 3.0 percent year-over-year to $238,379 while the median sales price rose 7.1 percent to $182,000.

Townhouse/Condominium Update
After suffering a year-over-year decline of 20.9 percent last month, sales of townhouses and condominiums rose 10.6 percent in February. A total of 489 units sold last month compared to 442 properties in February 2014. The average price soared 12.2 percent to $200,191 and the median price rose 4.2 percent to $145,000. Both prices represented record highs for a February. Inventory was flat at a 2.6-months supply.
Townhouse/Condominium Sales
Houston Association of Realtors Chart -4
Lease Property Update
Demand for lease properties rose slightly in February. Single-family home rentals edged up a fractional 0.4 percent compared to February 2014, while year-over-year townhouse/condominium rentals increased 1.4 percent. The average rent for a single-family home was up 5.4 percent to $1,676 and the average rent for a townhouse/condominium rose 2.0 percent to $1,509.
Houston Real Estate Milestones in February
At $199,400, the single-family home median price achieved a record high for a February;
At $259,293, the single-family home average price also reached a February high;
Days on Market for single-family homes was 59 days versus 64 days a year earlier;
Townhouse/condominium sales rose 10.6 percent versus February 2014;
At $145,000, the townhouse/condominium median price hit a record high for a February;
At $200,191, the townhouse/condominium average price also reached a record high for a February.

Visit Michele Flory for detailed information on The Woodlands real estate market.

Data Source: HAR

Community Creekside Park New Neighborhood Updates

Darling Homes In The Woodlands Timarron Lakes

the woodlands creekside park

Darling Homes recently announced that they have acquired premium home sites in new neighborhoods in The Woodlands Village of Creekside Park. Darling will introduce a new selection of 60’ patio home designs and continue to sell their award-winning 65’ patio homes in the gated enclave of Timarron Lakes.

Darling will also be featuring larger, 80’ home designs in the neighborhood of Pondera Point. Home sites in Pondera Point will include lake view opportunities are limited and will be reserved on a first-come, first-served basis.

Within Creekside Park, Darling Homes continually offers a variety of luxury home design options each with high-end interior finishes including hardwood floors, archways and exotic granite surfaces. Elevations range from brick and stone to Mediterranean architectural influence with tile roofs.
Darling Homes has showcases models in the neighborhoods of Bacopa Bay (priced from the $460’s), Paloma Grove (priced from the $670’s) and Lake Voyageur (priced from the $440’s), all in The Woodlands Village of Creekside Park.

For a customized tour of all Darling Homes neighborhoods in The Woodlands, contact us.

Community Real Estate Market

The Woodlands Real Estate – Realtors Enhanced Value

Inventory of homes for sale in The Woodlands real estate market is at record lows.

While inventory continues to decline in The Woodlands real estate market, sales are not declining at the same rate. Why?

There are 600+ Realtors in The Woodlands. The top 25 Realtors based in The Woodlands generate 85% of the listings and sales activity in the woodlands. As the inventory of homes for sale began to shrink, this group of 25 began sharing information on pocket listings to meet their buyer needs.

A pocket listing is defined as a home not yet listed in the multiple listing service, but available for sale. The sellers are reluctant to officially list their home for sale due to timing issues or prefer to sell their home via word-of-mouth through the local Realtor community versus the inconvenience of the traditional showings process.

A Realtor based outside The Woodlands lacks access to this localized information; a major disadvantage for a buyer seeking to purchase a home in the super-active real estate market in The Woodlands.

Since January of this year, I have sold three custom home pocket listings in the $1.3MM, $900M, and $700M price ranges. We currently have a $699M custom home pocket listing that I have shared with the other 24 key Realtors in The Woodlands.

Pocket listing sales are easy to spot in the email home search program. They are the homes listed and the status is changed to sold on the same day…..disappearing from your search immediately! A visual indicator is a new yard sign with the SOLD rider already attached.

One of the pocket listings that I found for my buyers from the UK created an unexpected response from another potential buyer of the same property. When the listing agent placed the yard sign with the SOLD rider in the front yard, he immediately received a phone call from an irate individual stating that he had “watched” this neighborhood for months waiting for a home to be listed for sale. He was upset that he didn’t know about this home being listed and unable to submit an offer.

Serious about buying a home in The Woodlands? Contact us. Visit www.MicheleFlory.com for more information.