Houston Area Has Sixth Straight Sales Gain

Existing home sales were up in November for the sixth straight month in the huge Houston area market.

Sales of single-family houses were up 11.4% from a year ago, according to the latest monthly figures posted by the Houston Association of Realtors. Compared to the previous month, sales rose 4.1%.

A total of 3,973 detached units changed hands in November versus 3,568 a year ago. Also, 322 townhouses and condominium apartments were sold in the month, up from 317 in November 2010.

All price tiers recorded gains except for the luxury $500,000-and-above segment, where activity was down 5.9% and pulled the average price paid for single-family detached units down 4.8%. Still, at $206,969, the average was the second highest ever for a November in the region.

 The number of attached homes sold rose 1.6% compared to a year ago, marking November as the fifth straight monthly sales increase in that category. The average price for townhomes and condos climbed 8.4%, to $172,658.

HAR also reported that month-end pending sales for November totaled 3,013. That’s a 16.6% increase from last year and suggests a seventh positive month in a row when the December figures are tallied.

Another indication of an improving market, the number of active listings, declined 13% at the end of November, to 45,113. The inventory of single-family homes dropped to 6.2 months at the current sales pace, its lowest level in almost a year. The figure is significantly better than the national inventory of single-family homes of eight months as reported by the National Association of Realtors.

The Houston area is “wrapping up 2011 on solid footing,” said HAR Chairman Carlos Bujosa, who works for Transwestern. And noting that the region is expecting to add 84,000 new jobs in 2012, Bujosa added that “further strengthening” can be expected in the coming months.

Foreclosure sales accounted for 20.2% of all deals in November, an increase of 9% from 12 months earlier. The median price of foreclosures ticked up 0.8% to $80,000.

Daily Briefing | Friday, December 23, 2011

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Article source: http://www.nationalmortgagenews.com/dailybriefing/2010_503/houston-home-sales-gain-1028000-1.html

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