Homes sales in the Austin-area have declined for consecutive months in August 2014 as home prices rose and affordability issues continue to affect the Austin-area housing market. According to information pulled using the the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) that was released by the Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR), Austin-area home sales were down a total of four percent year-over-year to 2,835 single-family home sales in August 2014.
Bill Evans, 2014 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS®, explained,
“A majority of Austin-area homes are now priced out of an affordable range for first-time and first-time move up homebuyers, where a significant portion of home sales volume occurs. We need a regulatory environment that supports the development of affordable housing stock for the future stability of our Austin housing market. As we prepare for the new districted Austin City Council this November, ABoR encourages voters to seek leaders that will address our housing and development challenges. The Austin Land Development Code basically needs to be overhauled.”
The report stated that median price for single-family homes went up 11 percent year-over-year to a total of $247,500 and average price jumped nine percent year-over-year to $311,414. Single-family homes continued to sell quickly; with a mere average of 42 days on the market. That number is one day fewer than the previous year.
Monthly housing inventory increased by 0.2 months from the year prior up to 3.0 months. This number is still well below the balanced housing inventory level of 6.5 months. There is potential for Austin-area housing inventory levels to continue rising as listings enter the market.
Active listings jumped 10 percent year-over-year in August 2014 to 6,707 listings. New listings were four percent when compared to the same time frame last year, up to 3,310. Additionally, pending single-family home sales increased one percent to 2,430.
Evans ended with,
“An increase in new and active listings is giving the market some much needed breathing room, but Austin’s housing inventory is still very low and has few affordable options. The new Land Development Code will be a crucial catalyst to sustainable market growth in 2015 and years to come, but it must be heavily revised in order to create housing options throughout the city that are affordable for all of Austin’s homebuyers.”