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Texas Housing Construction Permits Reach Pre-Recession Levels

published on January 31, 2018

Following a low-momentum period, Texas single-family housing construction permits jumped 17.2 percent in November 2017 to reach pre-recession levels, according to the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University. In Austin, construction permits were up 24.9 percent, with Dallas permits increasing 13.9 percent. Additionally, the Texas Residential Construction Leading Index reached its highest level since April 2017, which indicates likely improvements in residential construction through the end of the year, according to the report. Texas housing starts increased for the second straight month, with a year over year increase of 11 percent.  

Overall home sales in Texas increased 6.6 percent in November 2017, despite challenges in available inventory for homes under $300,000. The report theorized that supply conditions could improve starting in mid-2018 if permits and housing starts continue to increase. Austin had the largest increase in home sales at 8.5 percent, followed by Dallas at 8.2 percent.

Supply constraints continued to push prices higher and away from the lowest price bracket of under $200,000. While homes under $200,000 accounted for 71 percent of sales in 2011, home sales in this range made up 39 percent of total home sales in November 2017. The largest increase in home sales was a 9.2 percent increase in sales of homes in the $200,000 to $300,000 range.

Home prices increased five percent to a median of $227,318. All the major metros reached record levels for prices, with Austin leading the pack with a median sold price of $298,617. Dallas reached $275,700, Fort Worth reached $217,622, Houston reached $223,340, and San Antonio reached $207,882. In price per square foot, Austin led the way for new and resale homes, with prices reaching $138.20 per square foot and $146.54 per square foot, respectively.

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