We’re nearing the end of September, and the Austin Board of Realtors (ABOR) has recently released August’s market statistics. August showed continued growth in Austin increasing eight percent to 2,943 home sales, as compared to August 2014. The median price for Austin-area homes increased 8% year-over-year to $265,000, which is a record for the month of August! The average price jumped 6% to $329,620. As homes in Austin continue to increase in value, certain parts of the city are becoming inaccessible to people with lower incomes.

ABoR recently cited data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics which shows that “approximately 65 percent of Austin-area professionals made less than $50,000 in 2014. Additionally, the City of Austin’s 2014 Comprehensive Housing Market Analysis cited that affordable housing costs should be less than 30 percent of gross monthly income.”

“What does this mean?” said Seth Thompson, Broker and Sales Director at HomeCity Real Estate. “Trying to stay below 30 percent of $50,000 annually places many Austin residents, price range below the median home price. Home values are continuing to rise, and this may place many first time home buyers and lower income families outside of the more desirable areas of the city.”

It’s not only homebuyers that are getting priced out of many areas, but leasing tenants are feeling the pressure too. The median price for Austin-area leases in August 2015 was $1,600, and leased homes days on market was down four days. With more and more people moving to the Austin area every day, housing affordability is becoming a challenge.

“On the flip side, Austin’s affordability index is still one of the best in the nation,” said Thompson. “While first-time homebuyers may see the city as being overly expensive, people more established in their careers still find it very affordable. People moving to Austin for its tech jobs, or people use to living in big cities will also find Austin affordable.”

The 8% rise in August home sales proves this to be true. The Austin-area monthly housing inventory was 2.9 months in August 2015, 0.1 month less than August 2014. While inventory is no longer dropping rapidly, we are still well below the 6.5-month inventory level the Texas Real Estate Center cites as a balanced market.

Homes spent about the same amount of time on the market as this time in 2014, 42 days. This means most sellers are continuing to receive multiple offers on their homes, often within a homes’ first day or two on the market.

Finally, the total dollar volume of single-family homes reached $970,071,660. This is 15% more than the same time last year and demonstrates that August is one of real estate's busiest months.

Austin-Area August 2015 Quick Stats:

  • 2,943 – Single-family homes sold

  • 2.9 - Months of inventory

  • $265,000 – Median price for single-family homes

  • $329,620 – Average price for single-family homes

  • 42 – Average D.O.M. (Days on Market).

  • $970,071,660 – Total dollar volume of single-family properties sold