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11/01/2013

Homes for sale in Texas reach historical lows, report shows

The inventory of homes for sale in Texas has reached an all-time low and is down to a four-month supply, says the Texas Association of Realtors in a quarterly market report. 

At the same time, home prices and sales reached their highest level ever in the third quarter, the report said. Home sales in the third quarter surged 18.9 percent from a year ago and the median price increased by 10 percent, the association said. 

According to the Texas Quarterly Housing Report, 80,105 single-family homes were sold in Texas in the third quarter.  

This high demand has shrunk the inventory of homes to a four-month supply, which is nearly 28 percent less than the same quarter a year ago. At that time, the state had a 5.5-month supply, the report said. 

“We usually see a drop off in the volume of homes sold between the second and third quarter of the year, as homeowners settle in for the school year,” said Jim Gaines, an economist with Texas A&M University’s Real Estate Center “We did not see that this quarter, even despite a slight increase in mortgage interest rates during that timeframe.” 

In Fort Worth, home sales volume was up nearly 19 percent in the third quarter compared to a year ago. The median price in Fort Worth was $137,000, up 12.3 percent. Fort Worth’s inventory was down 24.5 percent, to a 3.7-month supply. 

In Arlington, home sales were up 15.1 percent. The median price was $148,700, up 9.5 percent from a year ago. The inventory of homes was down 32.4 percent, to a 2.5-month supply. 

 In Northeast Tarrant County, home sales were up 16.5 percent. The median price was $194,000, up 7.3 percent. The inventory in Northeast Tarrant County was down 36.1 percent, to a 2.3-month supply. 

“In the fall, Texas Realtors usually start to catch their breath as the summer selling season draws to a close, but not this year,” said Shad Bogany, chairman of the Texas Association of Realtors. “Demand for Texas homes remains strong, keeping buyers and sellers in the market, and Texas Realtors, busy.”

 _ Sandra Baker

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