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The Austin Housing Market is Hot! - 01/24/13

It's back. The Austin housing market that is. It's not that it ever left us but it had been a little weak the last few years.

Of course, it's all how you define "weak." Weak in the sense that homes were selling a lot slower than they were before 2008. And the price people were getting was certainly much lower than say the good years of 2005 and 2006. Yet we were still so much better off than the rest of the country. Houses continued to sell and we didn't see anywhere near the amount of foreclosures that other major cities did.

We are blessed to live in an area with strong economic growth. Once again Forbes is touting Austin as the fastest growing city in America. Businesses pay attention to that and so do people who want to live here because of job opportunities and lifestyle.

Forbes says our projected economic growth rate from 2011-2016 will be 6.1%. Our population growth rate stands at 2.8 percent and we currently have a 1.8 million people living in the Austin metropolitan area. The median income is now $56,613. Very good in all aspects.

According to various reports, 175 people move to Austin every day. That's a lot of people.  Plus they all need a place to stay and that can move real estate.

How hot is the market now? In mid-2012, I listed my house and had two offers the first day. Sold! I wanted to downsize so I started looking around for a new place to live. I found two properties I really liked. Both had multiple offers on the first day they went on the market. I offered way above asking price and I was still overbid. Darn! But as people say, it wasn't meant to be. OK, I'll buy that.

Thanksgiving weekend, I woke up at four in the morning and checked my email. Low and behold a new house was going on the market that day. The pictures of it looked amazing. The two I lost out on didn't hold a candle in comparison. This place was special. I knew it would go fast. I put in an offer and as I predicted, so did someone else.

I waited four days for an answer. But I had learned something after the two previous experiences. Don't worry and don't hold your breath. If I didn't get the house, it happened for a reason (another saying I believe in.)

My patience paid off.  I got the wonderful news that my offer had been accepted. The owners of the home were so gracious and they even told me, it was meant to be. They just hadn't expected the house to sell so fast.

This story can probably be repeated a thousand times over across the Austin area. It's a hot market and will continue to be.

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