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Austin area housing market continues to sizzle

Austin area housing market continues to sizzle

Sales up 37 percent in October, biggest year-over-year jump in 3 years

Central Texas’ housing market posted another strong month in October, with home sales soaring 37 percent — the highest year-over-year percentage gain in three years, according to the Austin Board of Realtors in November.

Our region’s job and population growth, low interest rates on mortgage loans and rising rents continue to propel housing demand, even as the supply of homes on the market continues to shrink.We are seeing multiple offers on our listings, even in the multimillion dollar price range.

The Austin Board of Realtors reported Tuesday that 1,960 homes were sold in October compared with 1,427 in October 2011. It was the biggest year-over-year percentage increase since November 2009, when sales spiked 58 percent compared with November 2008.

The median home price also was up, rising to $199,320 — 5 percent higher than in October 2011.“The last time our market saw increases of this size was in 2009,  just prior to the expiration of federal homebuyer tax credits, To see these results now without those types of external factors stimulating the market is very encouraging.

Across the country, sales of existing homes increased in October 2012, even with some regional impact from Superstorm Sandy, the National Association of Realtors said Tuesday. U.S. home prices also continued to rise due to lower levels of inventory.

The continued improvement in the local Austin housing market suggests that consumers are feeling more confident in the economy.

The Austin area has been added jobs at a very strong pace this year, in addition, historically low interest rates and an uptick in prices are likely triggering buyers who were waiting for a sure sign of a housing market recovery.

The Austin metro area had job growth at a 3.5 percent annual rate in October, according to the Texas Workforce Commission, the fourth consecutive month of expansion at 3 percent or greater. The market had a 3.4-month supply of homes for sale in October, the lowest inventory figure seen in the Austin area in the past decade and our rental market is up over 97% occupancy.

Active listings were down 20 percent from October 2011, while pending sales were up 19 percent, pointing to another month of healthy sales for November. Homes spent an average of 68 days on the market, 15 fewer than a year ago October.The market is really moving, Michelle and I sold five listings over the past couple of weeks alone.

With nearly 4,000 fewer homes for sale than there were two years ago, Sellers should jump in and get it on the market immediately, to take advantage of the lack of competition and high sales volume this time of year. Don’t wait until there are thousands of additional homes to compete against.

The Short Story is, if you have been waiting to sell your home the time is here, and if you have been thinking of buying you had better hurry or face higher prices across the board by this time next year.

It's a great time to be in the real estate business in Austin, Texas! We love what we do...Call us if you are interested in buying or selling in the next 6 months for valuable advice based on your situation.

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