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What do Austin's decreasing home sales mean for the future?

For those who follow Austin’s home real estate market, it will come as no surprise that the market has continued to decline. The Austin Board of Realtors has released its most recent report detailing the ins and outs of the city's real estate market, and it does not have great news for potential sellers. According to the report, sales for single-family homes within the city limits have declined for the third month in a row.

 November home sales showed a citywide decrease of 3.3 percent. In the metro area, however, sales increased by 3.7 percent. Sales also decreased during previous fall months. In September of this year, home sales fell 4.1 percent in Austin and 4.3 percent in the metro area. In October, they fell 1.7 percent in Austin but increased by 2.2 percent in the metro. Nonetheless, real estate professionals say that the decrease in home sales is not necessarily a cause for concern: The volume of home sales in Austin and the metro area is still comparable to that of 2016.

Buyers may be deterred by the hefty price tag on Austin's  homes. The median price of single-family houses in Austin saw an increase of 6.8 percent, bringing the city’s median home prices up to $360,000. Median prices in the metro area increased about 3 percent to $296,500. It is possible that buyers prefer to move farther out of the city limits for a less expensive house.

So what market trends can prospective buyers expect next year? There are three major factors that could influence home sales in 2018: The slow job growth in Central Texas, the increased prices of building materials and development costs due to Hurricane Harvey and the country’s tax overhaul. Ultimately, though, professionals believe that the housing market in the Austin area is likely to resemble the years 2016 and 2017: Slow, but still showing strong activity.

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William T. Peckham
1104 Nueces Street, Suite 104
Austin, TX 78701
Phone: 512-487-7604
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