December 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report

Austin-Round Rock MSA closes year with record-breaking  $17B housing market 

Housing demand across Central Texas soars to all-time high 

AUSTIN, Texas – The Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) closed 2020 by breaking records as housing demand across the region reached unprecedented levels. According to the December 2020 and Year-End Central Texas Housing Market Report released by the Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR), a record-breaking 40,165 homes totaling $17,579,802,503 in sales volume were sold across the Austin area last year.  

In December alone, residential home sales across the five-county MSA jumped 16.2% year over year to 3,626 sales, a record for the month of December, and the median price increased by 15.8% to 370,000, an all-time record for the MSA. Sales dollar volume in December also increased 41.1% to $1,784,023,513 and pending sales increased 40.8% to 3,114. Housing inventory declined 1.1 months to a record-low 0.6 months of inventory for the entire MSA. Homes spent an average of 36 days on market, 25 fewer than December 2019. 

“This is a historical and unprecedented time for our housing market,” Susan Horton, 2021 ABoR president, said. “The pandemic only increased demand for all types of housing across the region, pushing inventory to near-zero levels and creating the strongest sellers’ market REALTORS® have ever seen. That said, if you are ready to buy a home, now is the time to take advantage of low interest rates that boost your buying power and plant roots in Central Texas.”   

Dr. James Gaines, former chief economist for the Texas Real Estate Research Center, attributes Austin’s record-high housing demand to a perfect storm of economic growth and increased consumer buying power. 

“The Austin-area real estate market is experiencing extraordinarily high demand fueled by years of high population growth and employment gains, lifestyle changes following the pandemic and record-low interest rates,” Gaines said. “The pandemic fostered an environment where many families increased personal savings helping some transition from renting to ownership while others needed to ‘move up’ for more space while working from home. Despite a steep slowdown during shelter-in-place orders this spring, the market came roaring back in the summer with no drop-off at the end of the calendar year.”  

Gaines added that the outlook for the 2021 housing market was very good, noting that Austin’s demand-driven market will continue to show strength and homes will keep selling quickly.  

In 2020, the median sales price in the Austin-Round Rock MSA rose 9.2% to $344,000. During this year, new listings decreased 0.4% to 43,816 listings, while active listings declined 34.2% to 4,556 listings. However, pending sales jumped 13.1% to 42,371 pending sales. Pending sales are now outpacing new listings, indicating that homes are selling faster than new ones can hit the market.  

“The Central Texas housing market is incredibly competitive and moving at lightning speed right now,” Horton added. “The complexity of a home sale is at an all-time high as it has become commonplace for homes to receive multiple offers well over list price. Whether you’re a homebuyer or a home seller, it is more important than ever to work with a REALTOR® who deeply understands your local area and can navigate the near-zero inventory market on your behalf.” 

City of Austin 

In 2020, residential home sales in the City of Austin increased 1.7% to 12,745 sales, an all-time record, while sales dollar volume jumped 16.3% to $6,746,602,345. The median sales price for residential homes rose 12% year over year to 420,000 this past year, also an all-time record. New listings slightly increased 1.1% to 14,735 listings while active listings dropped 23.8% to 1,332 listings, and pending sales increased 3.8% to 13,062 pending sales.  

In December 2020, the median sales price in the city of Austin rose 18.7% to $461,000, an all-time monthly record. Residential sales increased 16.4% to 1,191 sales, a record for the month of December in any year, as sales dollar volume jumped 43.1% to $711,984,698. During the same period, new listings jumped 31.3% to 755 listings, while active listings decreased 33.6% to 753 listings, and pending sales jumped 31.1% to 928 pending sales. Monthly housing inventory decreased 0.4 months year over year to 0.7 months of inventory. The City of Austin now has a higher inventory than surrounding markets like Williamson County, which is historically not the case.  

Travis County

During 2020, residential home sales increased 4.3% to 20,081 sales, while sales dollar volume rose 19% to $10,663,700,312. The median price for residential homes increased 12% year over year to $405,000. This past year, new listings declined 1% to 22,744 listings and active listings dropped 32.6% to 2,226 listings. However, pending sales increased 8.1% to 20,986 pending sales.  

In December, residential home sales increased 18.1% to 1,885 as sales dollar volume in Travis County spiked 46.5% to $1,137,805,715.  Additionally, the median price rose 20.2% year over year to $435,000. During the same period, new listings jumped 29.5% to 1,216 listings while active listings dropped 54.9% to 1,038 listings, and pending sales increased 38.6% to 1,537 pending sales. Monthly housing inventory fell 0.8 months year over year to 0.6 months of inventory.  

Williamson County

In 2020 in Williamson County, home sales increased 9.1% to 13,523 sales, and sales dollar volume rose 17.7% to $4,603,742,735. The median price for homes increased 7.7% to $307,000. New listings dropped 2.9% to 13,794 and active listings fell 41.4% to 1,322 listings in 2020. However, pending sales increased 12.6% to 14,158 pending sales. 

During the month of December, residential sales in Williamson County increased 4.1% to 1,152 sales, and sales dollar volume jumped 20.4% to $424,133,483. The median price increased 14.3% to $326,650. In December, new listings jumped 15.6% to 784 listings, while active listings tumbled 77.8% to 405 listings. Pending sales increased 24.9% to 987 pending sales. Housing inventory declined 1.4 months year over year to 0.4 months of inventory, which is the lowest inventory in the MSA.  

Hays County

During 2020, Hays County home sales increased 21.9% to 4,864 sales, and sales dollar volume rose 36.8% to $1,833,669,611. The median price for homes increased 10.9% to $295,000. This past year, new listings increased 6.6% to 5,220 listings, while active listings fell 30.3% to 657 listings compared to 2019. Pending sales increased 31.7% to 5,330 pending sales.  

December 2020 home sales in Hays County increased 35.6% to 423 sales, and sales dollar volume spiked 60% to $170,517,335. The median price for homes increased 17.5% to $314,900. During the same period, new listings increased 11.6% to 279 listings, while active listings dropped 64.8% to 297 listings. However, pending sales soared 73.5% to 399 pending sales. Housing inventory decreased by 1.8 months to 0.7 months of inventory.  

Bastrop County

In 2020 in Bastrop County, home sales increased 20.8% to 1,350 sales, and sales dollar volume rose 35.1% to $395,575,892. The median price for homes increased 10% to $263,000. New listings increased 9.3% to 1,654 listings while active listings fell 15.3% to 272 listings. However, pending sales jumped 34.6% to 1,524.  

In December, Bastrop County home sales climbed 57.5% to 137 sales, and sales dollar volume soared 72.4% to $42,432,735. The median price for residential homes increased 13.5% to $269,000. During the same period, new listings jumped 58.1% to 117 listings, while active listings dropped 44.9% to 163 listings. Pending sales skyrocketed 126.9% to 152 pending sales. Housing inventory decreased by 1.8 months to 1.4 months of inventory.  

Caldwell County

Last year in Caldwell County, the median price increased 7.1% year over year to $212,500. Residential home sales increased 15.7% to 347 sales, and sales dollar volume jumped 23.9% to $82,877,777. New listings slightly dropped 1.9% to 404 listings and active listings decreased 20.4% to 78 listings. At the same time, pending sales jumped 24.3% to 373 pending sales in 2020.  

In Caldwell County, December home sales increased 61.1% to 29 sales as sales dollar volume increased 58.3% to $7,325,243. The median home price increased 3.8% year over year to $212,850. During the same period, new listings climbed 47.1% to 25 listings, while active listings dropped 45.7% to 51 listings. Pending sales soared 160% to 39 pending sales. Housing inventory decreased 2.0 months to 1.8 months of inventory.   

For more information or to download the December 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report, visit ABoR.com/MarketStatistics. All information taken from the Austin Board of Realtors December 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report.

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September 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report

Central Texas housing market continues to soar despite low inventory

According to the latest Central Texas Housing Market Report released by the Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR), the Central Texas housing market continues to exhibit strength despite economic challenges and shrinking housing inventory. In September, home sales across the Austin-Round Rock MSA soared 31.5% year over year to 3,892 sales. Historically this time of year home sales are slower, but because of decreased activity during the shelter-in-place orders due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the summer selling season extended into September.

The market’s strength was evident across the five-county MSA as sales dollar volume jumped 51.7% to $1,779,067,529, and the median price rose 12.1% to $355,000. New listings increased 5.0% to 3,539 listings, and pending sales jumped 28.2% to 3,767. At the same time, active listings dropped 49.9% to 3,708 listings.

September 2020 Austin Real Estate Market Statistics“The housing market is pumping billions of dollars into our region’s economy at a time it’s greatly needed, but we also need to be cognizant of the impact such rapid activity is having on record-low inventory levels and rising home prices,” Romeo Manzanilla, 2020 ABoR president said. “Austin’s suburban markets have historically offered housing stock at lower price points that created opportunity for people when buying or renting inside Austin city limits was not an option. Now, these markets are showing the same gains in prices and declines in inventory as we’re used to seeing inside Austin, putting pressure on the market as a whole.”

Homes across the MSA spent an average of 37 days on the market, 14 fewer days than September 2019, and housing inventory decreased 1.3 months to 1.2 months of inventory.

Vaike O’Grady, Austin regional director for Zonda (formerly Metrostudy), said the city of Austin has a limited number of residential lots. This is forcing developers to move to the suburbs where land is more available and less expensive. When it comes to construction in suburban markets, homes simply can’t be put on the ground fast enough to meet demand.

“We need to remove the barriers to new construction and open up more building opportunities across the region to create more inventory for buyers,” O’Grady said. “Austin’s economy is bouncing back better than most cities, allowing more people to make a move to a home that meets their needs. To solve Austin’s housing supply and affordability challenges, we need to commit to streamlined review and approval processes for new construction.”

“The Austin area needs more housing supply at all price points in order to stabilize home price growth and help make homeownership accessible, especially for first-time homebuyers,” Manzanilla said. “REALTORS® will continue working aggressively to navigate a competitive, fast-moving housing market on behalf of their clients.”

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City of Austin

Low levels of inventory in the city of Austin drove the median home price up 8.7% year over year to $415,500. Residential sales increased 20.7% to 1,248 sales, as sales dollar volume spiked 39.2% to $678,062,256. During the same period, new listings increased 16.4% to 1,273 listings, active listings decreased 24% to 1,390 listings, and pending sales increased 16.6% to 1,164 pending sales. Monthly housing inventory decreased 0.4 months year over year to 1.4 months of inventory.

Travis County

At the county level, residential sales increased 27.1% to 1,930 sales, while sales dollar volume jumped 50% to $1,081,018,324. The median price for residential homes increased 13.8% year over year to $420,000. During the same period, new listings increased 8.4% to 1,863 listings, while active listings declined 41.8% to 2,039 listings. At the same time, pending sales rose 18.4% to 1,836 pending sales. Monthly housing inventory fell .9 months year over year to 1.3 months of inventory.

Williamson County

In Williamson County, September residential sales increased 29.4% to 1,306 sales, and sales dollar volume jumped 43.8% to $461,491,699. The median price rose 9% to $318,050. During the same period, new listings dropped 10.2% to 1,035 listings, and active listings tumbled 66.5% to 816 listings. Pending sales jumped 33.7% to 1,266 pending sales. Housing inventory declined 1.6 months year over year to .8 months of inventory.

Hays County

September home sales spiked 50.3% to 487 sales, and sales dollar volume increased 78% to $184,817,195 in Hays County. The median price for homes increased 15.1% to $310,000. During the same period, new listings jumped 40.6% to 485 listings, and active listings tumbled 43.1% to 558 listings. At the same time, pending sales increased 42.9% to 480 pending sales. Housing inventory dropped by 1.5 months to 1.5 months of inventory.

Bastrop County

In September, Bastrop County home sales spiked 69.5% to 139 sales, and sales dollar volume skyrocketed 96.6% to $42,855,211. The median price for residential homes increased 8% to $270,000. During the same period, new listings increased 4.7% to 133 listings, while active listings declined 36.4% to 227 listings. Pending sales rose 84% to 149 pending sales. Housing inventory decreased by 1.7 months to 2.2 months of inventory.

Caldwell County

In Caldwell County, September home sales increased 15.4% to 30 sales, and sales dollar volume increased by 18.3% to $7,000,759. The median home price increased 5.1% year over year to $217,500. During the same period, new listings decreased 17.9% to 23 listings, while active listings decreased 39.3% to 68 listings. Pending sales rose 50% to 36 pending sales. Housing inventory decreased 2.1 months to 2.5 months of inventory. 

For more information or to download the September 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report, visit ABoR.com/MarketStatistics. All information taken from the Austin Board of Realtors September 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report.

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August 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report

Austin-area housing market remains undeterred amid ongoing pandemic

AUSTIN, Texas—As the summer-selling season comes to a close, the Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR) latest Central Texas Housing Market Report indicates the Austin-area housing market continues to exhibit strength, despite economic setbacks amid the ongoing pandemic. The Austin-Round Rock MSA posted robust gains this August, as home sales experienced a double-digit increase of 12.9% year over year to 4,019 sales. 

In addition to an increase in home sales across the five-county MSA, sales dollar volume jumped 35.3% to $1,889,382,006, and the median price rose 11.3% to $355,000. New listings slightly increased 1% to 3,862 listings, and pending sales soared 40.1% to 4,533. At the same time, active listings dropped 44.9% to 4,257 listings. 

“The pandemic has put our market in a unique situation. As more people are working from home and have the opportunity to relocate, Austin-area homes are selling faster now than ever before,” Romeo Manzanilla, 2020 ABoR president, said. “Austin’s popularity has left the market with critically low levels of housing supply, which continues to drive home prices up. While home prices are rising, historically low interest rates are giving buyers increased power to meet the increases. Buyers should be aware of just how competitive this market has become, and would benefit enlisting the help of a REALTOR® who can help every step of the way during the homebuying process.”

Homes across the MSA spent an average of 42 days on the market, 10 days fewer days than August 2019, and housing inventory decreased 1.2 months to 1.4 months of inventory, well below the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University’s benchmark of 6.0 months to maintain a balanced housing market. 

Mark Sprague, state director of information capital at Independence Title, said that although Austin-area home sales dipped in the early Spring, the region’s real estate market as a whole has endured. 

“It’s safe to say that August numbers solidify that Austin’s housing market has fully rebounded,” Sprague said. “And, as long as we continue to see more job creation, we’ll likely see strong home sales throughout the remainder of the year. However, we started this year with a lack of inventory, and we’re going to end this year with a lack of inventory. Inadequate housing stock is going to be the main issue that holds the market back.” 

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City of Austin

In the city of Austin, critically low levels of inventory drove the median home price up 14.9% year over year to $435,000—an all-time high for any month on record. Residential sales barely increased 2.4% to 1,240 sales, as sales dollar volume jumped 19.9% to $682,748,453. During the same period, new listings increased 4.8% to 1,318 listings, active listings decreased 26.6% to 1,468 listings, and pending sales increased 20.6% to 1,314 pending sales. Monthly housing inventory decreased 0.5 months year over year to 1.5 months of inventory. 

Travis County

At the county level, residential sales increased 9.2% to 2,015 sales, while sales dollar volume spiked 39.9% to $1,182,976,984. The median price for residential homes increased 19.2% year over year to $430,000. During the same period, new listings slightly increased 1% to 2,046 listings, while active listings declined 41% to 2,253 listings. At the same time, pending sales rose 34.6% to 2,229 pending sales. Monthly housing inventory decreased 1.1 months year over year to 1.4 months of inventory. 

Williamson County

In Williamson County, August residential sales increased 13.5% to 1,343 sales, and sales dollar volume increased 23.1% to $467,254,216. The median price rose 5.7% to $307,500. During the same period, new listings decreased 6.3% to 1,154 listings, and active listings dropped 54% to 1,111 listings. Pending sales jumped 33.7% to 1,487 pending sales. Housing inventory declined 1.4 months year over year to 1.1 months of inventory. 

Hays County

In Hays County, August home sales spiked 31.7% to 499 sales, and sales dollar volume increased 45% to $192,109,298. The median price for homes increased 16.9% to $308,500. During the same period, new listings increased 12.6% to 475 listings, and active listings tumbled 46.4% to 556 listings. At the same time, pending sales skyrocketed 69.7% to 577 pending sales. Housing inventory decreased 1.7 months to 1.5 months of inventory. 

Bastrop County

In August, Bastrop County home sales increased 4.1% to 126 sales, and sales dollar volume increased 23.8% to $38,193,673. The median price for residential homes increased 16% to $278,500. During the same period, new listings jumped 29.7% to 144 listings, while active listings declined 24.4% to 260 listings. Pending sales spiked 98% to 200 pending sales. Housing inventory decreased by 1.0 months to 2.7 months of inventory.  

Caldwell County

In Caldwell County, August home sales increased 16.1% to 36 sales, and sales dollar volume increased by 7.4% to $8,392,577. The median home price dropped 1.7% year over year to $212,900. During the same period, new listings increased 19.4% to 43 listings, while active listings decreased 27.4% to 77 listings. Pending sales rose 53.9% to 40 pending sales. Housing inventory decreased 1.5 months to 2.9 months of inventory.  

For more information or to download the August 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report, visit https://www.abor.com/statsaug20/. All information taken from the Austin Board of Realtors August 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report,

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July 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report

Housing market continues to bounce back; real estate is vital to early economic recovery

AUSTIN, Texas—According to the latest Central Texas Housing Market Report released by the Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR), the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) continues to exhibit resiliency in the face of COVID-19. The MSA posted its second consecutive month of strong home sales numbers with a 21.5% increase in July sales year over year. The robust increase demonstrates the vital role real estate will play as the region begins its economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

In addition to the 21.5% jump to 4,537 home sales across the five-county MSA, the median price increased 10.7% to $353,000 and sales dollar volume also soared 36.7% to $2,037,152,035. Pending sales climbed 32.2% to 4,607 as new listings increased 13% to 4,767, while active listings dropped 32.4% to 5,309 due to demand. 

“July was a very encouraging month for the Central Texas housing market,” Romeo Manzanilla, 2020 ABoR president, said. “Strong home sales, combined with an increase in new listings and pending sales, are important benchmarks when analyzing the health of our market. A healthy housing marketing is vital to the overall economic recovery in the region, and with two consecutive months of positive numbers, we are growing more confident that this is sustainable and can help be the spark that gets our economy back on track.” 

Homes across the MSA spent an average of 44 days on the market, three fewer days than July 2019, and housing inventory fell by a full month to 1.7 months of inventory. Manzanilla also noted that this extremely low level of inventory, when paired with continued demand across the region, has led to rising home prices, creating a very strong seller’s market. As inventory falls, REALTORS® will continue to work aggressively to research the market and find the properties needed to meet their client’s demands. Prospective buyers should seek out a REALTOR® to work with who can put a strategic offer together in this competitive market. 

“Our market is now ultra-competitive because of our dangerously low inventory and that is cause for concern over the long-term. Homeowners thinking of listing their home need to understand the opportunities in the market and our elected leaders should focus on promoting policies that create increased housing capacity. The jobs pipeline into Austin continues to create new economic opportunities and a double-digit percentage gain in new listings in July, coupled with buyers continuing to take advantage of historically low interest rates, allows us to be cautiously optimistic about the remainder of 2020.” 

The Austin Chamber of Commerce is also optimistic about the region’s attractiveness and is encouraged by recent corporate relocation and expansion announcements. 

“Even amidst the pandemic, Austin still shines as a magnet for companies that appreciate our robust business climate and abundant talent pool,” Laura Huffman, president and CEO of the Austin Chamber of Commerce, said. “Recent economic development successes in the region—notably from Tesla and BAE Systems—will bring thousands of jobs to the region and contribute to our ongoing population growth. Our region has a long way to go in its recovery from the brunt of this pandemic, but economic indicators show the Central Texas economy will weather this storm.” 

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City of Austin

In the city of Austin, there was a 21.4% increase to 1,470 home sales which resulted in $793,610,174 in sales dollar volume, a 41.8% increase. The median price for residential homes increased 11.3% year over year to $423,000. During the same period, new listings jumped  20.4% to 1,676 listings, active listings decreased by 19.1% to 1,653 listings and pending sales rose 25% to 1,413 pending sales. Monthly housing inventory decreased 0.3 months year over year to 1.7 months of inventory.  

Travis County

Travis County saw residential sales increase by 17% to 2,258 sales, and sales dollar volume climbed 34.2% to $1,233,588,708. The median price for residential homes increased 10.3% year over year to $411,412. During the same period, new listings also increased 13.7% to 2,503 listings, while active listings declined 29.6% to 2,697 listings. Pending sales grew by 27.3% to 2,277 pending sales. Monthly housing inventory decreased 0.8 months year over year to 1.7 months of inventory.  

Williamson County

In July, Williamson County residential sales increased by 24.5% to 1,530 sales, and sales dollar volume climbed 34.6% to $523,478,727. The median price increased 10.5% to $314,995. New listings were up 6.5% to 1,450 listings, while active listings fell by 39.1% to 1,524 listings. Pending sales jumped 29.5% to 1,518 pending sales. Housing inventory declined 1.1 months year over year to 1.5 months of inventory. 

Hays County

July residential sales soared 32.8% to 555 sales, and sales dollar volume skyrocketed 59.3% to $224,313,232. The median price for residential homes increased by 18.1% to $310,000. During the same period, new listings experienced a 24.9% increase to 587 listings, and active listings fell 35% to 683 listings. Pending sales jumped 66.5% to 621 pending sales. Housing inventory decreased 1.4 months to 1.9 months of inventory. 

Bastrop County

Bastrop County residential sales increased 28% to 160 sales, while sales dollar volume increased 40.7% to $47,797,443. The median price for residential homes climbed 6.2% to $265,500. During the same period, new listings jumped 31.5% to 192 listings; active listings decreased 10.1% to 329 listings; while pending sales increased 23.5% to 147 pending sales. Housing inventory decreased 0.6 months to 3.4 months of inventory.  

Caldwell County

In July, Caldwell County residential sales increased 3% to 34 sales, and sales dollar volume slightly increased by 1.7% to $7,701,000. The median home price increased 7.3% year over year to $205,000. During the same period, new listings fell 7.9% to 35 listings; active listings decreased 27.6% to 76 listings; while pending sales jumped 33.3% to 44 pending sales. Housing inventory decreased 1.3 months to 2.9 months of inventory.  

For more information or to download the July 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report, visit http://www.abor.com/statsjul20All information taken from the Austin Board of Realtors May 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report,