2 0 2 1 R E A L E S T A T E E D I T I O N
Surrounding cities median Sales price
hot Market April
In the Greater Austin area, a combination of relatively steady home sales and diminished days on market have strengthened the market for sellers.
2016 median sales price
2021 year-to-date as of May median sales price
TRAVIS COUNTY Austin
of entry-level households to purchase homes.” While Parolek agrees that single-family homes are the most abundant option for homebuyers, he said his research has shown that they are not necessarily the most popular option. He added that 60% of all U.S. housing will need to be missing middle housing by 2040 in order to keep up with demand. “I think there will continue to be a demand for single-family detached [homes], but I think more and more, there is a growing demand that is not being met for these missing middle housing types,” he said. “I’m not saying there is not a demand for single-family, but historically that is all we’ve been delivering, and the industry is having a hard time sort of adjusting and shifting quickly enough to meet the demand.” Smaller cities see big growth When Robin Sheppard sold her Austin home of 35 years in December, she did not anticipate that she would still be searching for a house more than six months later. Increasing taxes, heavy trac and rapid growth within Austin played a key role in Sheppard’s deci- sion to leave the capital and move to San Marcos. She would still be close enough to visit friends but in a less crowded city, she said. “I had lived in Houston for many years and I left there to come to Austin because Austin was a lot smaller and had a wonderful feel to it,” Sheppard said. “This is not the Austin I came to.” Within two and a half days of listing her home, Sheppard received seven bids and accepted an oer that was $50,000 over asking and included a
SOURCE: AUSTIN BOARD OF REALTORSCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER
contingency that allowed her to live in her home rent- free for thirty days after closing. “I just thought, ‘Wow this is great, now I can go and buy myself a house and have extra left over to travel,’ … but that wasn’t the way it was,” Sheppard said. By June, Sheppard had placed bids on more than six properties that met her requirement for an accessory dwelling unit she plans to rent for a low cost to an elderly friend. Despite oering $42,000 over asking on one property, she has been outbid every time. Manywhoplan tomove farther fromthe city core to one of the smaller cities along the I-35 corridor expect to nd more availability at a lower price point than in larger metro areas, said Patricia Fernandez, 2021 board president for Four Rivers Association of Real- tors, which covers the suburban corridor between San Antonio and Austin. “You can pick any town in this corridor and it’s the same story,” she said. “That whole middle market [is] just now getting wiped out of the playing eld.” She added that buyers who qualied at one point for a house worth $350,000, for example, may have to place bids for homes listed in the high $200,000 range with the expectation of paying signicantly more. The same goes for buyers trying to nd a home north of Austin. First-time homebuyer Imelda Rodriguez said she was initially looking for a place to live in Williamson County before settling on a home in Burnet County.
She said houses were going for $300,000-$400,000 and, withher budget of $260,000, she knewshe could not aord the area where she was looking. Even nd- ing a house in Burnet County was dicult, as prop- erties were selling well above asking price, she said. Besides location, Rodriguez said she had to com- promise on her commute—living in Burnet County, she will be 30 minutes away from her job and her family. However, she said the distance is better than having to wait a year, save money and hope the market will change. For rst-time homebuyers last year, $250,000- $300,000 was a normal budget within Williamson County, Fox said. Now, she said those same homes are selling for $375,000-$400,000. Comparing it to the housing market in California, Fox said she predicts real estate in Central Texas will eventually level o, but added she is doubtful prices will decrease. “I expect it to be this way for the rest of the year, and I think it’s going to be dependent on the builders being able to open up lots and start selling homes regularly again instead of having huge wait- lists,” she said. “Once they are able to sell a whole lot of homes, then that opens up more inventory.” Megan Cardona contributed to this story.
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GEORGETOWN EDITION • JULY 2021
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