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

MLS Report for November 2015
MLS Report for May 2016

Growing inventory helps meet increased buyer demand; pricing eases

HOUSTON (June 15, 2016) Steady growth in the supply of homes provided the fuel needed to help boost to the Houston real estate market in May, with single-family home sales up 10 percent year-over-year. As the market has seen for several months, the greatest concentration of home buying continued to take place among mid-range housing—homes priced between $150,000 and $500,000. The average and median price remained virtually the same as May of 2015.

According to the latest monthly report prepared by the Houston Association of Realtors (HAR), a total of 7,343 homes sold in May compared to 6,678 a year earlier. On a year-to-date basis, home sales rose 3.6 percent versus May of 2015. New listings buoyed inventory levels from a 3.0-months supply to 3.6 months.

"We are seeing more normal market conditions for this time of year and that is the direct result of more plentiful housing inventory for buyers,” said HAR Chairman Mario Arriaga with First Group. “A year ago, the supply of homes was historically low, which increased buyer-side demand and pushed up pricing. These are the fundamental forces of supply and demand, and with more available housing and an easing of prices, we look forward to a healthy pace of sales throughout the summer."

The single-family home average price declined a fractional 0.5 percent in May to $290,931. The median price—the figure at which half of the homes sold for more and half sold for less—held steady at $225,000.

May sales of all property types in Houston totaled 8,703, up 7.1 percent from the same month last year. Total dollar volume for properties sold in May rose 7.3 percent to $2.4 billion.

May Monthly Market Comparison

The Houston real estate market gauges held to positive territory in May compared to those from a year earlier and continue to reflect what are widely considered sustainable market conditions. On a year-over-year basis, single-family homes sales and total dollar volume were up, inventory grew and prices were statistically flat.

Month-end pending sales for single-family homes totaled 8,246, an increase of 14.6 percent compared to last year which portends the likelihood of more positive sales when the June numbers are tallied. Total active listings, or the total number of available properties, at the end of May climbed 17.4 percent from May 2015 to 35,416.

An increase in new listings in May boosted single-family homes inventory, with levels climbing from a 3.0-months supply to 3.6 months. For perspective, housing inventory across the U.S. currently stands at a 4.7-months supply, according to the latest report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

Total property sales 8,123 8,703 7.1%
Total dollar volume $2,229,902,866 $2,392,124,785 7.3%
Total active listings 30,162 35,416 17.4%
Single-family home sales 6,678 7,343 10.0%
Single-family average sales price $292,258 $290,931 -0.5%
Single-family median sales price $224,900 $225,000 0.0%
Single-family months inventory* 3.0 3.6 20.9%
Single-family pending sales** 7,167 8,246 14.6%
* Months inventory estimates the number of months it will take to deplete current active inventory based on the prior 12 months sales activity. This figure is representative of the single-family homes market.
** Effective May 2015, in an effort to be consistent with industry standards, the Houston MLS is now including all categories of pending sales in its reporting. Previously, the Houston MLS did not include “option pending” and “pending continue to show” listings in its reporting of pending sales. The new methodology is now all-inclusive for listings that went under contract during the month.

Single-Family Homes Update

Single Family

Single-family home sales totaled 7,343 in May, up 10.0 percent from May 2015.

The average price was statistically unchanged at $290,931 and the median price was also unchanged at $225,000. Days on Market (DOM), or the number of days it took the average home to sell, edged up to 52 days versus 49 last year.

Broken out by housing segment, May sales performed as follows:

  • $1 - $79,999: decreased 29.6 percent
  • $80,000 - $149,999: decreased 10.3 percent
  • $150,000 - $249,999: increased 20.0 percent
  • $250,000 - $499,999: increased 15.4 percent
  • $500,000 and above: decreased 6.5 percent
  • Single Family Average Home Price

    HAR also breaks out the sales figures for existing single-family homes. Existing home sales totaled 6,190 in May, up 9.1 percent versus the same month last year. The average sales price edged up 1.6 percent year-over-year to $277,957 while the median sales price rose 2.4 percent to $211,000.

    Townhouse/Condominium Update

    Townhome and condominium sales were unchanged with 621 units selling in both May of 2016 and 2015. The average price declined 2.6 percent to $198,411 while the median price climbed 7.6 percent to $163,000. Inventory grew from a 2.6-months supply to 3.4 months.

    Townhouse/Condominium Sales

    Lease Property Update

    Renters were out in force in May. Single-family home leases rose 4.1 percent, while townhome/condominium leases jumped 10.7 percent. The average rent for single-family homes held steady at $1,866 and the average rent for townhomes/condominiums also remained unchanged at $1,666.

    Houston Real Estate Highlights in May
    • Single-family home sales rose 10 percent compared to last May;
    • On a year-to-date basis, single-family home sales are up 3.4 percent;
    • Total property sales jumped 7.1 percent to 8,703 units;
    • Total dollar volume rose 7.3 percent to $2.4 billion;
    • At $290,931, the single-family home average price was statistically unchanged from last year;
    • The single-family home median price was also flat at $225,000;
    • Single-family homes months of inventory climbed to a 3.6-months supply versus 3.0 months a year earlier;
    • Townhome/condominium sales were unchanged with the average price down 2.6 percent to $198,411 and the median price up 7.6 percent to $163,000;
    • Leases of single-family homes were up 4.1 percent with rents unchanged at $1,866;
    • Leases of townhomes/condominiums soared 10.7 percent with rents unchanged at $1,666.
    The computerized Multiple Listing Service of the Houston Association of REALTORS® includes residential properties and new homes listed by 32,000 REALTORS® throughout Harris, Fort Bend and Montgomery counties, as well as parts of Brazoria, Galveston, Waller and Wharton counties. Residential home sales statistics as well as listing information for more than 50,000 properties may be found on the Internet at

    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 includes 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.)

    Founded in 1918, the Houston Association of REALTORS® (HAR) is a 32,000-member organization of real estate professionals engaged in every aspect of the industry, including residential and commercial sales and leasing, appraisal, property management and counseling. It is the largest individual dues-paying membership trade association in Houston as well as the second largest local association/board of REALTORS® in the United States.