The Austin-Round Rock MSA housing market continued to trend towards more normal and sustainable levels in July, according to the Austin Board of REALTORS® July 2022 Central Texas Housing Market Report. Median price grew by only 8% year over year to $515,000, a record for the month of July but the first-time home price growth has been in the single digits since June 2020. The region’s housing inventory reached 2.7 months — the highest level of inventory since November 2018.

“In every aspect of our market REALTORS® are seeing positive signs that Austin’s housing market continues to normalize,” Cord Shiflet, 2022 ABoR president, said. “On top of rising housing inventory, home price growth is much closer to the 4-5% annual growth that is typical for a healthy market. In addition, homes sold slightly below list price for the first time since December 2020, proving that buyers are gaining negotiating power in the market.”

In July, residential home sales declined 28.3% year over year to 2,849 closed sales, sales dollar volume declined 21.9.% to $1,837,933,383, and new listings remained consistent with a 0.2% decline to 5,142 listings. The average close to list price for residential homes was 98.8% in July 2022, a significant change from the average 104.1% close to list price for the first half of the year.

Homes spent an average of 22 days on the market, 10 days more than July 2021 and active listings skyrocketed 167.9% to 8,709 listings. At the same time, pending sales declined 25.9% to 2,774 pending sales.

Ryan Leahy, regional president for Austin mortgage lending company HomeTown Texas and an ABoR Affiliate member, sees corresponding levels of activity occurring on the lending side of real estate transactions.

“The Austin real estate market’s inventory and mortgage interest rates have returned to pre-pandemic levels in recent months. It’s not the intense sellers’ market it was a few months ago and sellers should reset their expectations. For the first time in a long time, buyers have more flexibility and leverage in the transaction.”

Leahy emphasized the importance of clients learning as much about the offer process as possible.

“We prioritize educating both our agents and borrowers on how to structure offers so both buyers and sellers win. We’re able to explore creative financing options with our clients that make homeownership accessible, such as all-cash financing and seller buy-downs of interest rates, that can result in win-win scenarios for both buyers and sellers. This strategy is timely, and REALTORS® tell us it is game changing.”

Shiflet added that while increased inventory and slower price growth are positive, this does not mean policy makers and elected officials should back away from prioritizing housing.

“Our position at the Austin Board of REALTORS® hasn’t changed: there is a lot of work to be done to address both the present and future of housing in our region. We need elected officials who will prioritize housing, and our community needs to work together to find solutions so that anyone that wants to buy a home in Austin can do so within their budget.”

Read the full original article here.