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MLS Press Release

Media Contacts

Public Relations Manager
3693 Southwest Freeway
Houston, TX. 77027
Phone: 713-629-1900 x258
E-mail: david.mendel@har.com
Chief Communications Officer
3693 Southwest Freeway
Houston, TX. 77027
Phone: 713-629-1900 x155
E-mail: matt@har.com
Multiple Listing Service of the Houston Association of REALTORS® includes residential properties and new homes listed by 36,000 REALTORS®
February 2000 Sales
Existing Home Sales, Prices Shatter Records as Home-Buying Season Begins
Median Price Reaches All-Time High
 
HOUSTON (March 9, 2000) – Houston’s home-buying season jumped out to an early start as the median price of single-family existing homes reached the highest amount ever recorded, according to statistics released today by the Houston Association of Realtors’ Multiple Listing Service. The median price of single-family homes soared to $114,250 as existing home sales figures for the month of February set new records.

Total sales topped out at 3,866 also establishing a new record for the month of February. As a result, the total dollar volume closed last month was $553,096,447, an increase of 25.7 percent compared to last February’s total of $439,954,494. This marks the second consecutive month that an increase of more than 25 percent has been reported regarding total dollar volume. Despite the high prices, single-family existing homes spent only 81 days on the market, establishing another new record for February.

"The home-buying season truly is off to a tremendous start," said Frankie Jefferson, madam chairman of the Houston Association of Realtors. "The fact that existing homes are spending fewer days on the market, even with higher prices, indicates that Houston’s real estate market is extremely active and moving quickly. Anyone considering selling property is encouraged to do so, since the market is extremely favorable for a swift and substantial return."

February existing home sales were significantly higher than last year’s total of 3,513, an increase of 10 percent, while the median price of $114,250 was 16.6 percent higher than last February’s $98,000. Buyers opened 3,548 contracts in February, a small increase over February 1999. Open contracts, also referred to as pending sales, are a traditional indicator of closed sales 30 to 60 days ahead.

Compared to last February’s 87 days, single-family existing homes sold this February spent six fewer days on the market.

Available inventory rose to 23,524 last month, up slightly over 23,274 in January. This also represents an 8.2 percent increase in active listings compared to 21,732 for the same month last year.
 
February Comparison
  February 1999 February 2000 Percent Change
Total property sales 3,513 3,866 +10.0%
Total dollar volume $440,000,000 $553,000,000 +25.7%
Median price, single-family home $98,000 $114,250 +16.6%
Days on market 87 81 -6.9%
Active Listings 21,732 23,524 +8.2%
 
High Rise Properties, Townhouse/Condo and Country Homes Update

HARMLS reported a tremendous increase in the median price for high rise properties for February, jumping 123 percent to $262,000 from last year’s $117,500. High rise sales also increased to 30 last month compared to 21 in the same month last year.

Townhouse/condominium figures also rose significantly last month with 392 sales and a median price of $79,250 compared to February 1999’s totals of 318 and $66,000, respectively. Country homes dropped in median price more than 14 percent from $120,000 last February to $103,000 this year, however sales increased from 24 last February to 35 this year.

Top MLS Areas in February

Among the MLS areas experiencing significant increases in median price in February over last year were:

Area 14 (Far Northwest) – from $79,900 in 1999 to $104,500 this year;
Area 17 (Southwest) – from $245,000 to $355,250;
Area 22 (Central West) – from $219,000 to $260,000;
Area 24 (Spring Branch) – from $91,380 to $116,500;
Area 31 (West) –from $121,250 to $150,000;
Area 33 (Galveston County) – from $88,000 to $115,500;
Area 38 (Fort Bend East) – from $77,250 to $108,650 and;
Area 40 (Montgomery County Southeast) – from $58,700 to $102,750.
 
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 http://www.HAR.com.

Media Contacts

Public Relations Manager
3693 Southwest Freeway
Houston, TX. 77027
Phone: 713-629-1900 x258
E-mail: david.mendel@har.com
Chief Communications Officer
3693 Southwest Freeway
Houston, TX. 77027
Phone: 713-629-1900 x155
E-mail: matt@har.com