For the first time in twelve years, the Houston real estate market is making a HUGE rebound. Of course, nestled here in our sweet little neighborhood, we never felt much of a decline, anyway. We sat back and watched the national news spout doom and gloom over real estate investors going bankrupt and California’s housing prices falling into the ocean while we quietly (and somewhat smugly) thanked our lucky stars that Houston wasn’t part of the “housing bubble.”
Let me assure you, though, some of our suburban neighbors weren’t so fortunate.
Back home in the Heights, we merely felt a tremble at the rest of the world’s quake. We buckled our seatbelts, experienced a moderate market, and prepared for better days like a squirrel collecting nuts for the winter.
Now that Spring has come to the real estate world, the Heights is reaping the rewards. In the past 90 days (and, Dear Reader, I’m writing this article in February), we’ve seen some pretty incredible tightening of the proverbial belt. Our number of single family sales has dropped by 40%, while the average number of days on market has also fallen by 28% to a mere 42 days, and the average price per square foot has jumped by 8%.
That’s a lot of numbers, but what does it mean? It means that inventory is at a severe low, causing prices to rise and time on market to plummet. A year ago, if we were helping a client sell their house and then buy another one, we’d advise them to put their house on the market, and once it went under contract, we’d have plenty of homes to choose from during the next 30-45 days. Now, we’re advising our sellers to find a house first, get it under contract (many times at full price or over–due to multiple offers), and then put their house on the market, knowing we can sell it within a week or so. Whereas we used to be able to “get back to you later this afternoon” during the offer process, now statuses can change in a matter of a half hour. Land is often getting four or more offers within 24 hours of it going on the market.
As a Realtor with an established business, what this means is that buyers are literally waiting for houses to come up for sale. It’s like a feeding frenzy out there, and we need properties! We’ve got some clients who have actually sold their houses quicker than they can find something else, and they’ve been forced into a rental situation. If you know anyone who is considering taking advantage of this booming market, give me a call. We might be able to sell your house without even putting it on the Multiple Listing Service.