March 2017 was another strong month for the Austin area's real estate market. According to the Austin Board of Real Estate (ABOR), single-family home prices increased by 6% to $295,767.
In addition, the months of inventory homes available increased by .2 months, which is great news for our currently unbalanced market. A balanced market would have 6.5 months of inventory available, and Austin is now up to 2.4 months. This sounds drastically low, but the number is improving incrementally since last year.
As explained by Dr. Jim Gaines, Chief Economist for The Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University, “As population grows and residents seek to live in closer proximity to key activities, demand is created for greater density. Without more housing, homebuyers and developers are forced to look outward; but there are often many ways that existing residential neighborhoods can be zoned to allow for greater infill. Central Texas, especially Austin, is rapidly approaching a critical mass of population growth when city leaders may be forced to create imaginative, higher-density options to accommodate popular demand.”
Fortunately, Austin-area new and active listings increased 16 and 15 percent respectively, offering up more homes for those moving into town.