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The Best October in Houston Real Estate History, Realtors Say

Mortgage rates will remain low in 2020, said NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun, speaking at the NAR conference in San Francisco last week. Photo credit: Ralph Bivins, Realty News Report.

HOUSTON – (Realty News Report) – Houston home sales continued their Fall surge in October as 7,231 homes were sold, an 8.1 percent increase over October of last year.

October of 2019 was the best October ever for Houston Realtors. And it followed the strongest September on record.

It’s a lock: 2019 will be the strongest year ever for  Houston home sales. Year-to-date through October, home sales are running 4.2 percent ahead of last year’s pace.

“Consumers continue to take advantage of attractive buying conditions, between low interest rates, a healthy supply of homes on the market and a strong overall Houston economy,” said HAR Chair Shannon Cobb Evans with Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Gary Greene.

Mortgage rates were at 3.69 percent in the most recent Freddie Mac survey of 30-year, fixed-rate loans. It was a major improvement over the 4.94 percent rate a year ago.

Last week, at a news conference attended by Realty News Report at the National Association of Realtors annual conference in San Francisco, NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun predicted mortgage rates will remain below 4 percent in 2020.

Scott Durkin of Douglas Elliman Real Estate, moderates a panel Wednesday at the Post Oak Hotel. Photo credit: Ralph Bivins of Realty News Report.

The immediate future for home sales remains strong. HAR reported pending home sales were up 19.7 percent at the end of October, which guarantees that November will be surging.

“Houston is an amazing market for us,” said Scott Durkin, president of Douglas Elliman Real Estate, which recently entered the Houston market. Durkin made the remark at a Douglas Elliman event and its “The Wealth Report” presentation at the Post Oak Hotel Wednesday evening.

Houston home prices continue to rise. The median price (the figure at which half of the homes sold for more and half sold for less) increased 2.1 percent to $239,900, HAR said.

In addition to the incentive that lower mortgage rates create, buyers benefited from a slightly larger supply of homes on the market with housing inventory up to a 4.0-months supply in October versus 3.9 months in 2018. In recent years, the inventory of homes for sale in Houston has been exceptionally tight at times, making it more difficult for buyers to find the right home in the right neighborhood at the right price.

Nov. 14, 2019 Realty News Report Copyright 2019

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