Central Texas Housing Report - 2023 Year End

If you are looking to buy or sell a home, contact me via email or at 512-650-7300. If you prefer to read instead of watch, here are the chart and transcript.

Welcome to the 2023 Year End edition of "How's the Market in Central Texas.”  

The stats I’m providing are resale homes only in Travis and Williamson Counties.  More about the stats at the end.

In 2023, 16,871 resale homes closed in Travis & Williamson Counties which was down 20.4% from 2022. The median price of a resale home decreased 11.1% to $480,000, the average price decreased 7.7%. to $620,967, and the average price per square foot decreased 10.8% to $298. In real estate, the bellwether measurement for home prices is the median price so when we talk about the price of homes in Central Texas for 2023, we’ll say that the prices decreased about 11%.  But that doesn’t really tell the story, does it?

I mentioned that the number of sales was down over 20%. In order to find a lower number of sales, we need to go all the way back to 2011 – of course, Austin was quite a bit smaller then so the comparison isn’t exactly apples to apples.  Part of the reason for the drop is that fewer homes were listed for sale – 16.6% less to be exact. But why were fewer homes listed? The biggest reason is the mortgage rates. Most people have mortgages somewhere around 3 or 3.5%.  If they moved to a different house, they’d need to get a new mortgage that is likely twice that interest rate.  Most people who sold in 2023 had a compelling reason to sell – a new job out of town, divorce, a death, or something like that. Of course, those who own their house outright and would pay cash are can move without worrying about rates.  In addition, because of the 10% cap we have with the homestead exemption, many of us are paying property taxes on values much lower than market.  If you move, you’ll also see your property taxes get reset to the market value which also raises the monthly costs.  That’s why many people weren’t looking to sell.  I expect that we’ll see a similar effect continue through this year.

Last year, the sale prices ranged from a low of $90,000 to a high of $12,850,000. The average sales price to list price ratio was 97.5%.  That is the lowest since 2011 when we hit 96.8%. For homes that closed in 2023, the average days on market was 55, almost double from 31 last year. 

Ultimately, the question is whether or not now is a good time to buy or sell in Central Texas. My answer to this is always the same regardless of the type of market we are in – it depends upon your situation. Some people should buy now. Some should sell now.  Some should wait a while for either. Your circumstances are unique and I would need more information to provide a proper answer.  So if you are wondering, just reach out to me and we can have a conversation.

So what do I think will happen in 2024?  I think we’ll sell more houses and that prices will increase.  By how much will depend upon what happens with interest rates, which has been the driving force since May of 2022. How did I do with last year’s prediction?  I expected a decline of 7% in the number of sales, so I missed that by quite a bit. I also said the median price would decline by 5% and it fell by 11%.  So I was correct in the direction of both, just not the amounts.

If you have any real estate related questions, please don’t hesitate to call or text me at 512-650-7300 or email me at [email protected].  Thanks for watching “How’s The Market in Central Texas.”

The stats I’ve cited are resale homes only in Travis and Williamson County classified as single family residential, condominium, or townhouse.  This is different than the stats released by the Austin Board of Realtors which include all types of homes and also include Hays, Bastrop, and Caldwell Counties.  Plus, their numbers include any new construction homes listed in the MLS.

Statistics based upon information from Unlock MLS for the periods cited.

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