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®
August 1999 Sales
Existing Home Sales, Prices Continue To Soar
Total Home Sales, Median Price Reach All-Time Highs for August
 
HOUSTON (September 15, 1999) – Existing home sales figures for the month of August continued to set records, according to statistics released today by the Houston Association of Realtors. Total sales topped out at 5,462 and the median price for single-family homes rose to $106,900, both figures establishing new records for the month of August.

For the second consecutive month, single-family homes stayed on the market for only 66 days, indicating that the high median prices have not deterred buyers in the least.

"It truly is incredible how quickly houses continue to sell with prices still rising," said Mark Woodroof, chairman of the Houston Association of Realtors. "This month’s figures once again directly reflect the positive economic conditions Houston is experiencing, while showing no indication of slowing down. Houstonians are excited about where this city is headed and the real estate market mirrors their excitement."

August home sales were up 8.3 percent over last year’s total of 5,045, while the median price of $106,900 was 5.1 percent higher than last August’s $101,700. The total dollar volume closed last month was $752,665,096 indicating an increase of 18.2 percent compared to last August’s total of $636,604,270. Buyers opened 3,932 contracts in August, a small increase over August 1998. Open contracts, also referred to as pending sales, are a traditional indicator of closed sales 30 to 60 days ahead.

Available inventory rose to 23,862 last month, up slightly over 23,713 in July. However, this represents a nearly two percent dip in active listings compared to 24,312 for the same month last year. Compared to last August’s 77 days, single-family existing homes sold this August spent 11 fewer days on the market at only 66 days.

MLS also showed a dramatic increase in the median price for high rise properties for August, jumping up to $221,000. This is an increase of 41.8 percent from last year’s $157,000. Country homes also increased slightly in median price rising four percent from $130,000 last August to $135,240 this year.

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

Area 5 (Brazoria County) – from $105,700 in 1998 to $120,000 this year;
Area 16 (Central) – from $225,000 to $261,750;
Area 17 (Southwest) – from $251,700 to $324,100;
Area 22 (Central West) – from $260,700 to $350,000;
Area 23 (Memorial) – from $262,500 to $303,250;
Area 30 (Fort Bend Southwest) –from $121,200 to $140,000;
Area 31 (West) – from $120,000 to $135,000;
Area 37 (Fort Bend West) – from $90,000 to $104,250; and
Area 39 (Montgomery County Northwest) – from $135,000 to $150,000.
 
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.