Real Estate Trends

Texas home sales are slipping a bit in this category

Texas home sales are slipping a bit in this category

Condo on McKinnon in Dallas
Dallas home prices are soaring, but not quite as much for condos according to the 2015 Texas Condominium Mid-Year Sales Report.  Photo courtesy of Dave Perry-Miller & Associates

A new report shows that home sales in one particular category have slowed — to the tune of an overall decrease (gasp) in the state of Texas. According to the 2015 Texas Condominium Mid-Year Sales Report, the state's four major markets (Austin, Dallas, Houston and San Antonio) experienced an average 1 percent decrease in condo sales between January and May 2015 when compared to the same time period in 2014.

Why? Well, Austin is dragging us all down. There only 1,178 condos and townhomes were sold — a 12 percent decrease from the same time period in 2014. The median condo price, however, increased 4 percent year-over-year from $214,480 to $222,000.

But in Dallas, 2,454 condos and townhomes were sold between January and May 2015, for a modest 3 percent increase over 2014. The median condo price increased 7 percent year-over-year to $171,020.

Condo sales in Houston dipped slightly, decreasing 1 percent, while condo prices remained unchanged at $145,000. Like Dallas, San Antonio saw an increase in sales and prices. In fact, prices there rose 9 percent to $189,900, and sales increased 6 percent. But that equates to only 288 units sold.

Experts stated that part of that is due to the high cost of new units.

"The land and development costs for condominiums in Texas' metro areas are so high that new condos being built today are priced outside of an affordable price range," said Dr. Jim Gaines, an economist with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University. "Existing condos, by comparison, are priced significantly less than new condos and therefore have a much higher demand and tighter inventory."

As is the story with the Dallas real estate market in general, affordability is a growing concern for condos. Higher prices "could be impacting some Texas homebuyers' ability to afford condos, especially in our state's metro areas," said Scott Kesner of the Texas Association of Realtors.