January is typically the coldest month of the year, but the Houston real estate market doesn't need a winter coat this year. The Houston Association of Realtors (HAR) reports January single-family home sales rose by 14.3 percent from a year earlier, marking the seventh consecutive month of growth. Sales of all properties were up 15.2 percent from a year ago, with total sales dollar volume up 17.1 percent. "The single-family home median price is up 4.5 percent, and the single-family average home price is up 4.6 percent, so we're moving along," says John Nugent, HAR board chairman.
Nugent tells KTRH home sales are humming no matter where you look in the Greater Houston area, thanks to a strong economy and continued growth. "The entire suburban area of Houston is exploding and growing, from the Woodlands, to Cypress, to Katy and the west part of town, down to Sugar Land and Rosenberg," he says.
There are several factors driving the positive housing numbers. "Interest rates are really down, and that's spurring a lot of people on," says Nugent. "The economy is good, companies are still hiring, and I think the consumer feels really good about where we are right now."
The only number in the housing market that's down is inventory, which makes it a continued seller's market. "A six month supply of homes is considered a balanced market," says Nugent. "And right now we're down to about 3.5 months of inventory, but people are out there looking...I think we'll have a good year this year."