While single-family home sales have jumped across the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) in May 2016, we saw the biggest jump in Williamson County. The Austin Board of Realtors (ABoR) recently released their real estate market statistics, citing huge gains in the area.

Williamson County’s population is less than half that of Travis County, yet only 424 more single-family homes were sold in Travis in May 2016. Home sales in Williamson County rose 19.5 percent year-over-year to just over 1,000 homes sold.

The number of people moving to Williamson County is likely due to the continually rising costs of homes in Austin-proper. Homebuyers, especially those looking for a price point of under $500 thousand, are moving outwards to the surrounding cities in the metro. Williamson County’s highly rated schools and proximity to major employment hubs in North Austin make it the perfect spot for those who don’t mind living a little farther out in exchange for ample space and affordability. Williamson county’s median housing price rose 5.2 percent annually but still sits at around $262k.

Austin’s booming tech scene has led to the lowest unemployment rate in 16 years, according to 360 Real Estate Analytics. Giants like 3M, Apple Inc, Hewlett-Packard, Google, Facebook, AMD, Applied Materials, Cirrus Logic, Cisco Systems, eBay/PayPal, Bioware, Intel Corporation, National Instruments, and Samsung Group are just a few of the major companies that call Austin home. Many of these, are in decent proximity to Williamson County. It makes sense that people are flocking there in droves.

Within Austin proper, home prices continue to rise, up two percent in May 2016 to $355k. There was virtually no change in home sold year over year, meaning the market there may be beginning to level out as more people look outside the city for options. Homes spent an average of 34 days on the market, which is five days more than the same time last year. However, inventory remains critically low at 1.9 months, rising only .2 percent year over year.

Central Texas as a whole, however, continues to see rising home prices but at a slower pace. In the five-county MSA, the median home price increased by 4.8 % to just over $288k. The number of single-family homes sold surged 10% to 2,909 homes as the population in the area continues to rise. The Austin Business Journal recently reported that the housing boom is not slowing down anytime soon. We cracked 2 million residents in 2016, and Georgetown, San Marcos, New Braunfels, and Pflugerville ranked among the fastest growing cities in the nation (with Georgetown taking number one)! They concluded that as a region, Central Texas added 157.2 new residents (including births, deaths, and migration) per DAY last year. 52.4 of those new daily residents landed inside the actual city limits.

The MSA’s inventory was unchanged in May 2016, sitting pretty at 2.4 months. This is well below the 6.5 months that is considered a balanced market. Homes spent an average of 40 days on the market, although that might seem hard to believe if you’ve been looking to purchase a home. It’s common for homes in desirable areas and price points to sell in one to two days, or even before they hit the market, many with multiple offers.

All in all, the area saw a 12% increase in total dollar volume sales, with just over $1 billion worth of homes sold last month. The moral of the story being: people are continuing to move here, live here, and buy here, but many are doing so outside of the actual city limits.