Each month, Realtor.com compiles listing information across 146 markets. The numbers provide a good blood pressure check of what's going on in the industry based purely on consumer behavior. As investors, we have to keep our eye on economic indicators relevant to our market. The July figures indicate several positive trends I want to highlight.

First, sales of existing homes are up. That's always a good sign. People buy when they have confidence in their financial position as it relates to the broader economy. Especially as we enter the presidential election season, the fact that buyers are willing to take on a mortgage -- and that they can qualify for that financing -- is an indicator of national economic recovery. (We also have to remember that interest rates are currently at historic lows.)

Additionally, inventory is going down across the boards. Only two of the surveyed markets saw a year-over-year increase in number of homes listed. Everywhere else, the inventory was shrinking. The percentage decrease nationwide is around 19 percent. In 67 markets, the drop was 20 percent.

So, how does Austin shake out in all these statistics?

●      Out of the 146 markets, we're in 38th rank for median price increase to $242,500.

●      With a year-over-year price increase of 7.82 percent, we stand at 27th nationally.

●      But for decrease in inventory, we're ranked 100th, meaning there are plenty of good deals to be had, with more opening up.

I know I say it a lot, but I'm going to keep on saying it. This is a great time for investors to buy!

Right now, properties in Austin are staying on the market on average 61 days, which is 21st on the list. And the sales are happening a lot faster than they were a year ago -- 20 percent faster.

So, round it all up and we have:

●      low inventory
●      rising prices
●      low market times

Every one of those factors points to nationwide economic improvement. Coupled with low interest rates and internal migration trends relative to Baby Boomer retirement and a relocating workforce, we're seeing every sign that the local real estate market will continue to thrive.

For us as investors, that means better purchases now, long-term potential for cash flow from rentals, and a profit when it comes time to sell.


Posted by Monte Davis on
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