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A Hot June for Houston Home Sales

John Daugherty

HOUSTON – (By Michelle Leigh Smith for Realty News Report) – The Houston Association of Realtors reported 8,097 single-family homes were sold in June, as the Houston housing market continued to outpace the record sales of last year.

On a year-to-date basis, however, single-family home sales are running 1.4 percent ahead of 2018’s record pace.

“June was a busy month for our buyer representation side,” says Susan Brock, owner of Brock & Foster. “Hottest desired areas for buyers relocating to Houston were Pearland and Sugar Land, both of which were recently voted as top destinations to live in Texas. The leasing market was extremely tight, with not much inventory. Listing inventory is up and buyers appear to have their pick of what home they’d like to buy, especially in close-in neighborhoods of Houston like Westbury, Bellaire and Montrose where we are seeing higher days on market and more frequent price reductions.”

Houston’s median home price reached an all-time high of $252,000, up 2.9 percent from June 2018. The average price rose 2 percent to $321,973, the highest ever for a June.

Although home sales were strong in June with 8,097 sales, that represented a 3.4 percent decrease from the 8,385 sold in June 2018. Last June (2018) had the highest sales monthly total of any month in the history of Houston real estate.

“June was my best month of the year for total dollar volume closings,” says Jamie Barrere with Heritage Properties. “However, it was not a good month for pending new contracts.

“I think it’s the stage of life that many of my clients are in,” observes Barrere. “They want to downsize, which is not easy, so reluctant to make the decision, but yet we go to look at possibilities. I’m not seeing as many relocating corporate buyers and sellers as I did this time last year, which has always been another important portion of my business.

“Home sales were very steady, owners that are not getting their homes shown, should listen to what the market is telling them,” says John Daugherty, Jr., CEO of John Daugherty, Realtors.  “We are in a very healthy Houston economy. “

Single-family homes inventory grew to a 4.4-months supply in June. That is up from 4.1 months a year earlier and restores a supply level that prevailed before Hurricane Harvey affected the region in August of 2017.

Marlena Berger, Realtor with Better Homes & Gardens Gary Greene says, “I can tell you that it is not a seller’s market (of course it depends on the area and inventory), but it’s more of a buyer’s market and the buyers are pretty selective.”

 “We have had a ton of activity at our high-rise condominium tower downtown; The Marlowe, at 1211 Caroline,” says Neal Hamil, president of Carnan Properties.

“We put four units into contract last month and with our current sales velocity, anticipate putting another four into contract this month,” says Tommy Kanarellis, top producer with Carnan for 2018. “We’ve seen a huge uptick in activity and interest in the building and I attribute this to Marlowe being the only new construction for sale downtown, we are nearing close out on the building and rates took a dip that have pushed a lot of renters in the downtown market off the fence to buy.  We only have 14 units left to sell and they range in price from $375,000 to $1.2 million.  We anticipate being sold out early fourth quarter.”

Vicki Chu, a Broker Associate with Roger Martin Properties, says “Flooding is a real concern in the Gulf Coast area. I highly recommend that a homeowner pay for an elevation certificate. The cost is only $300 and this reduces any anxiety regarding flooding.  As we enter another hurricane season, this diffuses any doubt about whether a house is high enough.

“Anytime a house is well-priced, well-maintained and updated, there will be multiple offers,” says Chu.  “There are a lot of buyers out there.”

July 10, 2019 Realty News Report Copyright 2019

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