The December & Year-End 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report released today by Austin Board of REALTORS® reported 2016 as another record-breaking year for Central Texas home sales, while also showing signs that the housing market could begin to normalize in 2017.
“The Central Texas housing market is slowly beginning to align with long-term historical trends. Homes are spending more time on the market and the pace of both home sales and price growth is slowing,” said Brandy Guthrie, 2017 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS®. “This normalization does not necessarily mean a weakening housing market, but a return to less aggressive market conditions.”
Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)
More than 29,000 (29,569) single-family homes were sold in the five-county MSA in 2016, a 3.9 percent increase from 2015 and an all-time high for annual home sales volume. The median price for single-family homes rose 7.2 percent from 2015 to $284,000, while home sales dollar volume jumped 9.1 percent from 2015 to $10,456,084,996. Homes spent an average of 50 days on the market in 2016, an increase of two days from 2015.
Housing inventory levels remained unchanged from year-end 2015 to year-end 2016, ending December 2016 at 2.0 months of inventory. This is two-thirds less than the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University’s benchmark of 6.5 months as a balanced housing market. In December 2016, single-family home sales rose 1.9 percent year-over-year to 2,373 home sales, while the median price rose 6.9 percent to $290,000.
“While the region’s job growth have slowed over the last few years, overall the Central Texas economy and housing market continue to be strong,” said Mark Sprague, State Director of Information Capital for Independence Title. “The 2017 housing market will likely outpace last year’s levels, but at a less robust margin. Recent increases in mortgage rates could continue the current pace of home sales growth into the first part of the year.”
City of Austin
Austin single-family home sales volume grew slightly in 2016, increasing 1.7 percent from 2015 to 9,049 home sales. Austin home prices rose at a more moderate pace than in years prior, with median price increasing 5.8 percent to $340,000 during the same time frame. Active listings jumped 16.5 percent annually to 1,461 listings and homes spent five more days on the market in 2016 than in 2015, or an average of 41 days.
In December 2016, the city of Austin home sales declined 7.8 percent to 705 single-family home sales, while the median price rose 9.2 percent to $355,000. Monthly housing inventory increased 0.1 months year-over-year to 1.6 months of inventory. Homes spent an average of 50 days on the market in December 2016, an increase of five days from December 2015.
Guthrie concluded: “The local market areas with critically low housing inventory levels have grown dramatically over the last year, and our region’s housing market will never be balanced until there is a greater influx of housing stock of all types and price points. It will take time to rebuild Central Texas’ low inventory levels, and identify smarter housing development policies for CodeNEXT in 2017 is the first step to generating more housing inventory in the years to come.”
Single-family home sales volume in Travis County increased 3.3 percent in 2016 to 14,621 home sales, while the median price increased 6.5 percent from 2015 to $330,000. Homes spent an average of 49 days on the market in 2016, three days more than in 2015. In December 2016, housing inventory increased 0.1 months year-over-year to 2.0 months. In the same month, single-family home sales declined 2.4 percent year-over-year to 1,160 home sales and the median price increased 6.4 percent year-over-year to $335,000.
Single-family home sales volume in Williamson County increased 2.5 percent in 2016 to 10,102 home sales, while the median price increased 6.2 percent from 2015 to $260,000. Homes spent the same amount of time on the market in 2016 as in 2015, or an average of 48 days. In December 2016, housing inventory remained unchanged from December 2015 at 1.8 months. Single-family home sales increased 1.7 percent year-over-year in December 2016 to 791 home sales, while the median price rose 5.1 percent year-over-year to $265,000.
Single-family home sales volume in Hays County increased 7.3 percent in 2016 to 3,485 home sales, while the median price increased 5.2 percent from 2015 to $243,000. Homes spent an average of 56 days on the market in 2016, one day less than in 2015. Monthly housing inventory remained unchanged from the year prior at 2.3 months in December 2016. During the same time frame, single-family home sales jumped 12.9 percent year-over-year to 306 home sales and the median price rose 3.9 percent year-over-year to $253,000.