MLS Press Release
Multiple Listing Service of the Houston Association of REALTORS® includes residential properties and new homes listed by 24,000 REALTORS®


Year/Month
April 2007 Sales
Houston Real Estate Sales Bounce Back
Market Regains Stability After Brief Decline in March
 
HOUSTON — (May 10, 2007) – Single-family home sales in April rose compared to April of last year, reversing the first decline in more than three years. Prices last month also continued to show strength, as both the average and median sales prices increased in line with trends seen during the last few years. Perhaps signaling statistical validation of experts’ suggestions that tighter subprime lending standards will have a negative impact on home sales, the primary price range of homes showing sales weakness has been those homes priced at $140,000 or less, according to statistics released by the Houston ssociation of REALTORS®. At the same time, homes in the $400,000-plus range have seen tremendous strength in sales.

Total property sales for the month registered 7,275, which was a 2.7 percent increase over April 2006. Properties sold during the month reached a total of more than $1.4 billion, an 8.5 percent increase compared to last year’s more than $1.3 billion in April sales. Additionally, the median home price for a single-family home reached a monthly record for April of $150,000, and the average single-family home price came in at $205,511, increases from last year of 2.0 and 4.8 percent, respectively.

“It’s encouraging to know that last month’s decline did not set a trend. We continue to watch and learn from our unique market which stands apart, again, from the nation in increasing sales and sales prices,” said Rob Cook, HAR Chairman and broker/owner of Robert D. Cook Properties. “All things considered we expect this summer to prove profitable for buyers and sellers. Our modest gains continue to bring a win-win market in which consumers can realize success in their real estate transactions.”

April Monthly Market Comparison

All listing categories combined, Houston’s overall housing market in April saw consistent results, with increases across the board in average and median sales prices, pending sales, months inventory, total property sales and dollar volume on a year-over-year basis.

The number of available homes (active listings) at the end of April was 49,946 properties, which was an increase of 17.6 percent versus last April and the tenth month with a year-over-year increase, after 10 consecutive previous declines. The figure was an increase of more than 2,000 properties from last month, which is not unusual for the spring as more homes are listed for sale. It is still a figure to watch though to see if inventory of available homes rises faster than sales, which could place downward pressure on prices as well.

Month-end pending sales – those listings expected to close within the next 30 days – reached 5,460, which was up 8.3 percent from last year, and signals an initial expectation for at least a moderate increase in May sales.  The months inventory of single-family homes for April came in at 5.8 months, which is the second year-over-year decline and does signal that new listings are outpacing sales, but does still signal more of a seller's market.
All Categories April 2006 April 2007 Percent Change
Total property sales 7,087 7,275 +2.7%
Total dollar volume $1,309,804,513 $1,421,158,135 +8.5%
Average single-family sales price $196,155 $205,511 +4.8%
Median single-family sales price $147,000 $150,000 +2.0%
Active listings 42,480 49,946 +17.6%
Pending sales 5,043 5,460 +8.3%
Months inventory* 5.3 5.8 +9.4%
* Months inventory estimates the number of months it will take to deplete current active inventory based on the prior 12 months sales activity. This figure is representative of the single-family homes market.
 
Single-family Homes Update

The overall median price of single-family homes of $150,000 was a record for the month of April and an increase of 2.0 percent compared to the prior year. The average sales price for single-family homes was $205,511 during April, which was up 4.8 percent versus the same period last year. The median is a typical market price where half of the homes sold for more and half sold for less than that figure.

Houston’s current median price of $150,590, while another monthly record for the Houston market, is 28.7 percent less than the national median price, which reached $211,100 in February, according to statistics released by the National Association of REALTORS®. These data continue to show the tremendous value and lower cost of living afforded to Houstonians.

Additionally, total sales for single-family homes in Houston in April came in at 5,962, which reversed the aberrant March sales figures, reflecting a 3.6 percent increase versus the same month last year. This was still a slight decline in single-family home sales from March to April.

HAR also reports existing home statistics for the single-family home segment of the real estate market. For the month of April 2007, existing single-family home sales totaled 5,086, which was a 5.9 percent increase from April 2006. The median sales price for existing homes in the Houston area was $142,000, an increase of 1.8 percent compared to the same period last year. The average sales price for the month of $193,930 was an increase of 6.4 percent from last year’s level.

Townhouse/Condo Update

The overall median price in the townhouse/condo segment in Houston was up 1.9 percent for April, with the median sales price for the month being $120,000. The average sales price for which a townhouse or condo sold in the greater Houston area was $159,940 in April 2007, which was an 9.8 percent increase from the same month last year.

Additionally, the number of townhouses and condos that sold in April increased compared to the previous year’s sales, halting a two-month decline, which was the first time that had happened since early 2003. In the greater Houston area, 702 units were sold last month, versus 684 properties in April 2006, or a 2.6 percent increase in year-over-year sales.

Houston Real Estate Milestones in April
  • Highest average sales price for the month of April
  • Highest ever number of single-family homes listed for sale
  • Highest median sales price for the month of April and the fifth highest in Houston history
  • Highest median townhouse/condo sales price for the month of April
  • Highest average townhouse/condo sales price for the month of April
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    The computerized Multiple Listing Service of the Houston Association of REALTORS® includes residential properties and new homes listed by 25,000 REALTORS throughout Harris, Fort Bend and Montgomery counties, as well as parts of Brazoria, Galveston, Waller and Wharton counties. Residential home sales statistics as well as listing information for more than 50,000 properties may be found on the Internet at http://www.har.com.

    The information published and disseminated to the HAR Multiple Listing Services is communicated verbatim, without change by Multiple Listing Services, as filed by MLS participants.

    The MLS does not verify the information provided and disclaims any responsibility for its accuracy. All data is preliminary and subject to change. Monthly sales figures reported since November 1998 includes a statistical estimation to account for late entries. Twelve-month totals may vary from actual end-of-year figures. (Single-family detached homes were broken out separately in monthly figures beginning February 1988.)

    Founded in 1918, the Houston Association of REALTORS® (HAR) is a 26,000-member organization of real estate professionals engaged in every aspect of the industry, including residential and commercial sales and leasing, appraisal, property management and counseling. It is the largest individual membership trade association in Houston, as well as the second largest local association/board of REALTORS® in the United States.