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 2004 Sales
Houston Home Sales Fly Off the Charts in March
First Quarter Home Sales Up With Highest Number of Pending Home Sales Ever Recorded In A Single Month
 
HOUSTON (April 13, 2004) – Houston home sales in March reached an all-time high, increasing by almost 24 percent this March versus last March. According to the Houston Association of REALTORSҮ Multiple Listing Service, total property sales in March, consisting of single-family homes, town homes, multi-family homes, country homes, high-rise properties and lots listed by Realtors®, topped out at 6,146, representing the highest number of total sales ever recorded during the month of March.

In addition, Houston’s 2004 first quarter sales surpassed 2003 first quarter sales by 13.8 percent.

“Houston’s residential real estate market continues to perform month after month; this is great news for Houston’s economy,” said HAR Chairman and Stewart Title Chief Economist Ted C. Jones, Ph.D. “However, consumers should keep in mind that the MLS system serves as an aggregate for all of Houston as well as its surrounding counties. Sales may be brisk in one area and not necessarily the other.”

Jones adds, “Those looking for statistics on a particular area should consult their Realtor®.”

Available inventory in the greater-Houston area also escalated. Realtors listed approximately 12.4 percent more properties in the MLS system last month when compared to March 2003. Currently there are 39,662 Realtor listings in the system, with 4,519 sales slated to close during the next month.

“High inventory is sometimes an indicator of slowing sales, however, this is obviously not the case with a record number of homes sold in March, as well as a record number slated to close in April,” said Jones. “I believe some of the rise in inventory may be attributed to the increase in popularity of Houston’s online MLS system. New home builders and traditional do-it-yourselfers are now realizing the value of a Realtor to market their properties on HAR.com. In addition, we are beginning to see an increase in the number of listings of properties located in the far outlying areas of Houston.”

All listing categories combined, Houston’s overall market showed an increase across the board including sales, available inventory, pending sales – those listings expected to close within the next 30 days – and the overall total dollar volume.
March Market Comparison (all categories)
All Classes March 2003 March 2004 Percent Change
Total property sales 4,973 6,146 +23.6%
Total dollar volume $790,521,814 $999,876,798 +26.5%
Active listings 35,288 39,662 +12.4%
Pending sales 3,762 4,519 +20.1%
Months inventory* 7.2 7.1 -1.4/%

First Quarter Comparison (all categories)
All Classes 1st Quarter 2003 1st Quarter 2004 Percent Change
Total property sales 12,831 14,598 +13.8%
Total dollar volume $1,975,466,432 $2,340,592,409 +18.5%
Active listings 34,633 38,307 +10.6%
Pending sales 10,242 11,576 +13.0%
* Months inventory estimates the number of months it will take to deplete current active inventory based on the prior twelve months sales activity. This figure is representative of the single-family homes market.
 
March Single-family Homes Update

Total sales for single-family homes increased 23.9 percent to 5,057 from last year’s 4,081. The median price of single-family homes grew to $130,430 in March, compared to $128,500 last March.

Houston Real Estate Milestones
  • The highest number of pending sales ever recorded in a single month.
  • The highest amount of available inventory in the Houston market since April 1988.
  • The most homes ever sold in the month of March.
  • The highest single-family median price ever recorded in the month of March.
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    The computerized Multiple Listing Service of the Houston Association of Realtors includes residential properties and new homes listed by 18,000 Realtors throughout Harris, Fort Bend and Montgomery counties, as well as parts of Brazoria, Galveston, Waller and Wharton counties. The Houston Association of Realtors is the largest trade association in Houston and the second largest local Realtor association in the nation. Residential home sales statistics as well as listing information for more than 35,000 listings can be found on the Internet at http://www.HAR.com.

    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.)