According to the Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR) February Central Texas Housing Report, closed listings increased 11.3% year over year to 2,581 sales across the Austin-Round Rock MSA last month. Combined with a new record median price, which rose 27.9% year over year to an all-time high of $499,995, 2022 is shaping up to be a big year for the MSA’s housing market. 

“February was a very active month for our housing market as sales price records continue to be broken,” Cord Shiflet, 2022 ABoR president, said. “We’re hearing from economists that last month’s numbers are a potential harbinger of a big year ahead even as our market continues to deal with insufficient supply compared to demand resulting in the steady cycle of home price increases.” 

Across the MSA in February, sales dollar volume increased 34% year over year to $1,564,737,417 while new listings increased 10.4% to 2,834. At the same time, active listings decreased 4.1% year over year to 1,240 listings, while pending sales increased 20.3% to 2,967 across the MSA. This jump in pending sales indicate that March home sales growth could be equally strong as February. 

Housing inventory across the five-county area increased 0.1 months year over year to 0.4 months of inventory and homes spent an average of 28 days on the market, down 4 days when compared to February 2021.  

Mark Sprague, state director of information capital at Independence Title, explained how the recent global unrest might impact housing affordability and the economy both nationally and locally. 

“The uncertainty in eastern Europe has stalled rising interest rates and contributed to keeping mortgage rates domestically below 4%, which is historically low. Ultimately, however, the already accelerated rate of inflation is expected to rise even further—hurting renters, buyers and builders who continue to grapple with fast-rising construction costs.” 

Sprague added that the conflict in eastern Europe will ultimately have an impact on the construction supply chain, as Ukraine sits on several material reserves such as iron ore, but notes it’s better to be in Texas than anywhere else.  

“Material and labor costs are on pace to rise from 4% to 5% monthly through 2023 and potentially further. Although the possibility that housing inventory will continue to fall is now even more likely, strong housing demand and Austin’s diverse economy will ensure the housing market’s economic impact remains steady. This places our region in a better place than most globally.”

As the market continues to take national stage as one of the most dynamic and complex housing markets in the U.S., Shiflet points to the importance of working with a REALTOR® whether buying, selling, or renting a home. 

“Navigating our market can be a daunting and intimidating process, which is why it’s critical to work with a REALTOR® who can be a trusted advisor and help you make quick, confident decisions. With access to the market’s most complete and up to-date market data – the MLS – a REALTOR® can help you identify potential purchase options, shape a competitive offer and most importantly, negotiate tirelessly on your behalf throughout the transaction.” 

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