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®
March 2003 Sales
March Home Sales Remain Firm Despite War
First Quarter Home Sales Up
 
HOUSTON (April 17, 2003) - Houston home sales in March remained stable despite economic concerns that the war with Iraq could adversely affect the nation's economy and local home sales. According to the Houston Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service, total sales for March 2003, consisting of single-family homes, townhomes, multifamily, country homes, high-rise properties, lots and new homes listed on the MLS, remained stable at 4,973. Last year's total sales for March 2002 reached 4,901.

"People typically close on their home at the end of the month to avoid paying interest fees. We watched the market carefully to see if consumers would pull out of the market at the end of March, since the war began mid-month," said HAR Chairman Dovie Morgan. "Looks like consumers were confident enough in the country's actions to go ahead and close on their homes."
March Market Comparison (all categories)
March 2002 March 2003 Percent Change
Total home sales 4,901 4,973 +1.5%
Total dollar volume $790,950,085 $790,521,814 +/-0%
Active listings 28,630 35,288 +23.3%
Pending sales 3,548 3,762 +6%

1st Quarter Comparison
All Classes 1st Quarter 2002 1st Quarter 2003 Percent Change
Total home sales 12,726 12,831 +1%
Total dollar volume $ 1,955,605,343 $ 1,975,466,432 +1%
Avg. active listings per month 28,181 34,633 +22.9%
Total contracts opened 10,034 10,242 +2.1
 
"The rise in inventory we're seeing does not have the same characteristics of the late 1980s. While the inventory continues to increase, so do sales," Morgan said. "For example, during the last quarter, the real-estate industry still pumped close to $2 billion into Houston's economy."

March single-family homes update
Total sales for single-family homes increased by 3 percent to 4,081 from last year's 3,964. The median price of single-family homes of $128,500 was slightly lower than last March's $129,900.

Houston real estate milestone
  • Highest amount of inventory since March 1993
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    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.