COVID-19 Exacerbates Inventory Shortage In Central Texas; Home Sales Drop

AUSTIN, Texas — Central Texas and the Greater Austin area continued to feel the stark effects of COVID-19, as?housing?inventory dropped to critically low levels of less than two months of inventory in Austin, Travis County, and Williamson County, according to the Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR) latest Central Texas Housing Market Report (see PFD report below).

Compared to May 2019, residential sales in the five-county Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) decreased 29.2% to 2,697 sales, while?sales dollar volume dropped 30.8% to $1,092,374,935. At the same time,?the median sales price?increased 0.7% to $329,893 and homes spent three fewer days on the market—an average of 47 days.

“We’re seeing home sales drop because we simply don’t have enough inventory on the market,” Romeo Manzanilla, 2020 ABoR president, said. “We recognize there’s still an element of discomfort with listing one’s home during the pandemic and Austin REALTORS® are taking every precaution to ensure safe and efficient practices across the market. There’s a lot of opportunity for sellers who are ready—new listings?have increased visibility and homes are spending less time on the market.”

Mark Sprague, state director of information capital at Independence Title, said that although real estate was deemed essential, it was significantly impacted by the?slowing economy.

“If you compare Austin’s home sales to the majority of large cities in the U.S., you’ll find Austin’s market has remained strong,” Sprague said. “But,?because sales numbers have a?one-to-three-month lag time, it was no surprise?May?sales declined and we’ll likely see the same in June and July.?The solution is increased housing stock. Until more homes are put on the market, we won’t see home sales recover anytime soon.”

In the Austin-Round Rock MSA, an?18.8%?decline to 6,086 active listings pushed?housing inventory down?further?to 2 months, 0.6?months lower?than May 2019. During the same period, new listings declined 15.8% to 4,151 listings, while pending sales jumped 14.2% to 4,287 sales.

“Pending sales growth is the first sign of recovery, so the strong gains in May pending home sales throughout the MSA is encouraging,” concluded Manzanilla. “With continued population growth and pent-up demand for housing, our region’s housing market will ultimately rebound.”

Hays County

In Hays County, May residential sales fell?19.1% to?340?sales,?and sales dollar volume decreased by?20.5% to $115,545,478. The median price for residential homes declined by?0.8% to $265,900. During the same period, new listings?slightly decreased by?0.4% to?528?listings, and?active listings?decreased?8% to 890 listings. Pending sales?jumped 44% to 583?pending sales. Housing inventory decreased by 0.5?months to 2.6?months of inventory.?

City of Austin

In the city of Austin, continued demand and limited inventory drove home prices up, as sales dropped due to fewer listings. The median price for residential homes increased 10.7% year over year to $424,050. Residential sales?decreased?36.6% to?826?sales,?and sales?dollar volume?decreased?32.5% to $418,410,453.?During the same period, new listings fell?18.7% to?1,348?listings,?active listings?decreased?13.5% to 1,684?listings?and?pending sales declined 4.9% to?1,216?pending sales. Monthly housing inventory decreased 0.2?months?year over year to 1.7 months of inventory.?

Travis County

At the county level, residential sales?declined 33.8% to 1,319?sales,?and sales dollar volume?dropped?35% to $644,917,945. The median price for residential homes increased?4.7% year over year to $398,345. During the same period, new listings decreased?17.1% to 2,162?listings, while active listings declined?19.7% to?2,959?listings.?Pending?sales?slightly increased by 1.1% to 2,016?pending sales. Monthly housing inventory decreased 0.5?months year over year to 1.9?months of inventory.?

Williamson County

In Williamson County,?May?residential sales?decreased by 27.1% to 914?sales, and sales dollar volume?decreased by?26.4% to $297,560,285. The median price?fell 2.7% to $290,000. New listings dropped 20.1% to?1,269?listings, while active listings?slightly?decreased?23.7% to?1,826?listings. Pending sales?jumped 23.6% to 1,497?pending sales. Housing inventory declined 0.7?months year over year to?1.8?months of inventory.?

Bastrop County

In May,?Bastrop County’s residential sales?fell?13% to?100?sales,?while?sales dollar volume?decreased by?10.1% to $28,723,638. The median price for residential homes increased by 9.3% to $260,000. During the same period, new listings?decreased?5.6% to?152?listings,?active listings?decreased 8.5% to 323?listings while pending sales?jumped 29.1% to 151?pending sales. Housing inventory decreased by 0.6?months to 3.5?months of inventory.??

Caldwell County

In Caldwell County,?May residential sales?decreased by?14.3% to?24?sales,?and sales dollar volume?decreased by 13.5%?to $5,077,774. The median home price dropped?12.1% year over year to $179,900. During the same period, new listings?fell 7% to?40?listings,?active listings?decreased?14.6% to 88?listings while pending sales?jumped?42.9% to?40?pending sales. Housing inventory?decreased by?0.7?months to 3.5?months of inventory.??

For more information?or?to download the?May 2020 Central Texas Housing Market Report, visit

Central Texas Real Estate Stats for May 2020

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