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Houston Home Sales Running 2 Percent Ahead of Last Year’s Pace

Mario A. Arriaga, the 2016 Chairman Houston Association of Realtors.

Mario A. Arriaga, the 2016 Chairman Houston Association of Realtors.

HOUSTON – The Houston real estate market is off to a good start despite instability in the energy industry. On a year-to-date basis, home sales are 1.6 percent ahead of last year’s pace during the first four months of the year, says the Houston Association of Realtors.

“There is little to complain about in the April HAR sales report, especially when you take into account the fact that we are comparing current home sales to the Houston housing market’s record 2015 performance,” said HAR Chairman Mario Arriaga with First Group. “Indicators continue to point to more sustainable market conditions, as mid-range homes sell well and consumers find that they have more homes from which to choose than they did at this time last year.”

Single-family home sales declined a fractional 0.6 percent versus April 2015, with a total of 6,310 sales compared to 6,349 a year earlier – only 39 fewer home sales, according to the latest monthly report prepared by HAR

Home prices delivered mixed readings in April. The single-family home average price declined 1.0 percent to $278,544. The median price—the figure at which half of the homes sold for more and half sold for less—rose 3.3 percent to $217,000, the highest price ever for an April.

The upper-end of the housing market, perhaps more prone to damage from the upstream energy downturn, is slower. Lower priced homes are doing well. The eastside of the Houston area, where there is exceptional strength in the petrochemical and refining, with $50 billion in chemical plant construction, is strong.

Last year was one of the strongest years on record for existing home sales in Houston. With year-to-date sales running ahead of last year’s pace, Houston housing – and the economy – is showing that Houston is not a one-trick pony. Although the energy sector is off, there are still plenty of pistons firing and economic cylinders churning.

May 12, 2016

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