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Austin Real Estate Statistics for February

The stats are out for February for the Austin real estate market. Let’s get two things out of the way first, because you might see this in the paper or with developers touting the market. Sales are up and average prices are up. So is the Austin market doing well? In a word no. January and February of 2009 were absolutely horrible. They were two of the worst months in over 10 years. This February we only saw slightly more sales than February 2009 (1145 in Feb 2010 vs 1106 in Feb 2009). So all in all sales numbers are pretty low. Below are the sales stats for the last few years

Yr Month Sales % 1 Yr Change % 2 Yr Change Average Price % Price Change Median Price % Price Change Active Listings % Change Pending Sales Sold to List Price Months of Inventory
08 Jan 1,312 $245,305 $187,000 8,727 1,935 95.4% 6.651
08 Feb 1,547 $233,945 $180,090 9,127 1,803 96.1% 5.899
08 Mar 1,829 $239,777 $188,000 9,638 2,063 95.9% 5.269
08 Apr 1,944 $240,592 $186,950 10,034 2,109 96.5% 5.161
08 May 2,108 $261,580 $195,000 10,577 2,146 96.9% 5.017
08 Jun 2,222 $259,114 $199,940 10,886 1,996 96.4% 4.899
08 Jul 2,068 $256,526 $195,000 10,913 2,032 96.7% 5.277
08 Aug 1,994 $256,345 $196,740 10,348 1,792 96.2% 5.189
08 Sep 1,673 $241,881 $182,000 10,217 1,520 96.2% 6.106
08 Oct 1,322 $243,364 $192,460 9,944 1,234 95.4% 7.521
08 Nov 997 $234,444 $182,000 9,243 1,147 94.9% 9.27
08 Dec 1,305 $247,025 $182,500 8,520 1,114 94.2% 6.528
09 Jan 840 -0.36 $231,006 -0.06 $176,750 -0.05 8,738 0 1,327 94.3% 10.402
09 Feb 1,106 -0.29 $241,262 0.03 $189,900 0.05 9,373 0.03 1,406 94.7% 8.474
09 Mar 1,404 -0.23 $230,931 -0.04 $180,000 -0.04 9,704 0.01 1,846 95.1% 6.911
09 Apr 1,577 -0.19 $232,569 -0.03 $189,900 0.02 9,889 -0.01 1,919 95.6% 6.27
09 May 1,689 -0.2 $252,524 -0.03 $193,000 -0.01 9,939 -0.06 2,132 95.7% 5.884
09 Jun 2,085 -0.06 $251,066 -0.03 $199,500 0 10,107 -0.07 2,084 95.9% 4.847
09 Jul 2,050 -0.01 $245,004 -0.04 $192,740 -0.01 9,988 -0.08 1,996 96.3% 4.872
09 Aug 1,770 -0.11 $243,505 -0.05 $189,000 -0.04 9,555 -0.08 1,980 96.2% 5.398
09 Sep 1,758 0.05 $240,728 0 $186,780 0.03 9,148 -0.1 1,886 95.7% 5.203
09 Oct 1,787 0.35 $237,126 -0.03 $180,000 -0.06 8,948 -0.1 1,811 95.9% 5.007
09 Nov 1,567 0.57 $237,207 0.01 $176,910 -0.03 8,551 -0.07 1,232 95.8% 5.456
09 Dec 1,360 0.04 $258,505 0.05 $191,500 0.05 8,079 -0.05 1,073 95.6% 5.94
10 Jan 853 0.02 -0.35 $243,465 0.05 $178,000 0.01 8,569 -0.02 1,417 95.4% 10.045
10 Feb 1,145 0.04 -0.26 $244,348 0.01 $189,500 0 9,335 0 1,738 95.3% 8.152
Yr Month Sales % 1 Yr Change % 2 Yr Change Average Price % Price Change Median Price % Price Change Active Listings % Change Pending Sales Sold to List Price Months of Inventory

So where does that leave the Austin market. In October, November, and December, we were seeing signs of steady improvement. Then starting in January the market has pulled back. The question of course is the market steadily improving and January and February were bumps in the road, or is the recovery off track. At this point it seems we are somewhat in a holding pattern. February seems slightly better than January but overall the market is certainly not improving but it doesn’t seem to be actively getting worse. It’s almost like it’s uncertain of which way to turn.

Enough about the general market. Let's dive into some more details and Austin real estate submarkets. The commercial market continues to be very weak. I had lunch with someone a few weeks ago who had a job recruiting commercial lenders. They said it was almost like they had a year long vacation because the commercial market was a ghost town. It’s extremely difficult to get commercial loans which has put the skids on commercial activity not just in Austin but most of the country. The commercial deals we are seeing are smaller in size as well.

The market for multifamily properties has been very very weak for the last 2 years. Not much has changed. Loans continue to be difficult for investors. Additionally, most of the recent government programs are targeted for individuals looking to buy and live in single family homes not people looking to buy and rent out multifamily properties. One thing that is interesting with the multifamily market is that although sales are down, listings are down as well.

The market for vacant lots is starting to improve. For the last 4 months we have seen 20+ more sales when compared to this time a year ago. Now the market for lots was probably the worst of the different Austin submarkets this time last year, but still it’s without a doubt showing signs of improvement.

So for a preview of next month I imagine we are going to see an increased number of sales for March. Now you might see some ink from realtors that the market is recovering and offer March sales number as proof. Basically what is happening is the tax credit is ending and so buyers are rushing to buy before it ends. We are going to have to wait until April numbers are released to see whether the market is going up or down.

As always if you have any questions about the market in general or a property in particular, feel free to contact us. If you want to search for properties on the market, here is our Austin MLS search.

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