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Multiple Listing Service of the Houston Association of REALTORS® includes residential properties and new homes listed by 47,000 REALTORS®

Septembe 1999 Sales
Third-Quarter Home Sales Mmaintain Year's Rrcord-Setting Pace
Houston Association of Realtors Reports Nearly 42,500 Sales To Date; September Figures Reach All-Time
HOUSTON (October 13, 1999) — According to statistics released today by the Houston Association of Realtors’ Multiple Listing Service (HARMLS), existing home sales figures and median price established new records with the highest postings ever in the month of September. With 4,495 sales closed in September, and 42,491 closed for the year-to-date, 1999 total existing home sales already are 10.9 percent ahead of last year’s record-breaking figure.

"With the third quarter coming to a close, figures seem to indicate that the real estate industry in Houston has yet to finish its incredible upward climb," said Mark Woodroof, 1999 chairman of the Houston Association of Realtors board of directors. "Even though total sales fell below the 5,000 mark for the first time in more than five months, median prices are remaining well above $100,000, attesting to the community’s strong economy and continuing seller’s market. It’s nearly impossible to predict how the market will fare over the next three months, however all indications seem to point to another record-setting year."

The Houston Association of Realtors reported that 15,566 homes were sold in the third quarter of 1999 resulting in a total dollar volume of more than $2.1 billion. This marks a 6.6 percent increase over third quarter 1998 in the number of homes sold, as well as a 14.4 percent increase in dollar volume.

During the third quarter of 1999, the median price of single-family homes dipped 2.7 percent from $109,000 in July to $106,000 in September. However, September’s figure is the highest ever recorded for that month and July’s figure is still the second- highest median price ever recorded. The median price means that half the homes sold for more, half for less.

Inventory increased only slightly from July to September, while the average number of days on the market for single-family homes rose from 66 days to 70 days. By contrast, in 1995, when the current record-high home sales and record-low inventory trend was beginning, homes were spending 100-110 days on the market.
3rd Quarter Comparison
  3rd Quarter 1998 3rd Quarter 1999 Percent Change
Total property sales 14,595 15,556 +6.6%
Total dollar volume $1,864,118,778 $2,131,704,594 +14.4%
Active listings 24,222 23,834 -1.6%
Pending sales 11,110 11,494 +3.5%
Average days on market 81.5 67.3 -17.4%
September Home Sales Continue Record-Setting Trend

The 4,495 homes sold in September, the highest total ever recorded for the month, represent a 3.8 percent increase over last September, which saw 4,332 total sales. September sales contributed $604,542,565 to the total dollar volume for the quarter.

Buyers opened 3,338 contracts in September, the second highest number ever recorded for the month. The previous high had been set in September 1997, at 3,520. Open contracts, also referred to as pending sales, are a traditional indicator of closed sales 30 to 60 days ahead, although the pace of today’s market means many homes are listed and sold within a single 30-day cycle, never being recorded as pending sales.

Available inventory in September rose to 23,926, up slightly over August’s 23,862, and represents a 1.1 percent increase in active listings compared to 23,657 for September 1998. This marks the first time available inventory rose in comparison to the previous year since September 1994.

September Comparison
  September 1998 September 1999 Percent Change
Total property sales 4,332 4,495 +3.8%
Total dollar volume $533,031,894 $604,542,565 +13.4%
Active listings 23,657 23,926 +1.1%
Pending sales 3,248 3,338 +2.8%
Average days on market 77 70 -9.1%
MLS also reported a dramatic increase in the median price for townhomes and condominiums in the Houston area. During September the median price was $69,000, up 26.8 percent over last September’s mark of $54,400. The median price for high rise.

properties at $187,500, posted an increase of 25 percent over last September’s $150,000. Single-family statistics for September also showed a 6.4-month or less inventory of homes in all price ranges under $250,000. Available inventory for homes priced between $250,000 and $400,000 was seven months or less.
The computerized Multiple Listing Service of the Houston Association of Realtors includes residential properties and new homes listed by more than 17,000 Realtors throughout Harris, Fort Bend and Montgomery counties, as well as parts of Brazoria, Galveston, Waller and Wharton counties. For specific questions regarding a certain area, contact your Realtor. The information published and disseminated to the HAR Multiple Listing Services is communicated verbatim, without change by Multiple Listing Services, as filed by MLS participants. The MLS does not verify the information provided and disclaims any responsibility for its accuracy. All data is preliminary and subject to change. Monthly sales figures reported since November 1998 include a statistical estimation to account for late entries. Twelve-month totals may vary from actual end-of-year figures. (Single-family detached homes were broken out separately in monthly figures beginning February 1988.)

The Houston Association of Realtors is the largest trade association in Houston and the largest local Realtor association in the nation. Residential home sales statistics as well as listing information for more than 34,000 listings can be found on the Internet at