Dallas- Ft Worth will recover over the next six months
The end is in sight for the US housing market's troubles, according to Goldman Sachs. Strategists at the US bank said this week that easing mortgage rates are likely to help the market find a floor within six months – with prices likely to have fallen around 6% from their peak when housing bottoms out.
"The sharpest declines for the US housing market are now behind us," a team led by Goldman Sachs' chief economist Jan Hatzius said in a research note.
Low interest rates, stagnating supply and generous fiscal policies fueled something of a house price bubble in the two years after the coronavirus pandemic hit the US in March 2020. But that was followed by the Federal Reserve's most aggressive monetary tightening campaign since the 1980s, with the central bank raising interest rates from near-zero to around 4.5% last year in a bid to crush soaring inflation. That pushed up mortgage rates to multi-year highs, leading to a slowdown in housing demand.
Thirty-year mortgage rates peaked at 7.24% in November but have slid by nearly one percentage point since, with cooling inflation sparking hopes the Fed may be nearing the end of its rate-hike cycle.
The retreat in mortgage rates should eventually filter through into the market by making it cheaper to borrow to buy a house, which Goldman Sachs believe will eventually halt the slide in prices.
"Since reaching 20-year highs of over 7% in October, mortgage rates have fallen by a percentage point, causing our housing affordability index to recover very slightly," they said.
House prices could fall more sharply on the US west coast because there's greater excess supply than in the more crowded mid-Atlantic and Midwest regions, the strategists added.
Goldman Sachs named Austin, San Francisco, San Diego, Phoenix, and Denver as the five US cities likely to see steeper price declines of over 10% from their peaks.
"On a regional basis, we project larger declines across the Pacific Coast and Southwest regions – which have seen the largest increases in inventory on average – and more modest declines across the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest – which have maintained greater affordability over the past couple years," Hatzius' team said.
But the bank's view that the market is only set for a minor correction isn't echoed by ordinary people.
Two-thirds of Americans believe that a housing market crash is "imminent in the next three years", according to a NerdWatch survey that sought to gauge views about the current slowdown.
U.S. single-family homebuilding rebounded in December, but the increase was likely temporary as permits for future construction continued to decline amid higher mortgage rates. Single-family housing starts, which account for the bulk of homebuilding, increased 11.3% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 909,000 units last month, the highest level since August, the Commerce Department reported on Thursday.
While higher mortgage rates have driven many buyers out of the North Texas housing market, home prices still soared in June more than in other red-hot U.S. metros. The median home price in Dallas-Fort Worth reached $426,000 in June, up 29.3% from $329,500 in June 2021, according to REMAX's just-released national housing report.
U.S. home prices were up 11% from a year ago. D-FW saw the largest year-over-year increase in median sale price among the 53 metro areas analyzed by the brokerage. Some major markets, such as Austin, are not included in the report. Home sales were down 11.8% in the metro area, with nearly 10,000 transactions, according to RE/MAX. Home inventory has nearly doubled from a year ago to 14,404 properties. Even with the sharp increase year over year, prices were down slightly from May.
Dallas-Fort Worth home prices still soaring
Of all 53 metro areas RE/MAX analyzed, the company found Dallas-Fort Worth's median home price grew the most from June 2021 to June 2022.
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Las Vegas, NV
Table: Mitchell Parton/DMN Source: Re/Max National Housing Report
Mark Wolfe, owner of RE/MAX DFW Associates, said homes are still selling over list price, especially in places like Collin County and Denton County. Some offers will even come in as much as $60,000 over list price when they are the only offer, a carryover from the busier market when buyers had to offer above the asking price if they wanted to get a home.
People relocating from California have no problem paying $50,000 to $100,000 over list price to make sure they get the home they want, and they will still see it as a good deal, Wolfe said. "Especially in the northern suburbs, we have a tremendous amount of California homebuyers," he said. "They're flushed with cash."
Nationally, home sales dropped 17.6% since last June and inventory grew for a third consecutive month, up 34.1% from May. "The market is moving toward greater balance, especially with inventory gains and the slowing of price appreciation. The past few years have been one of the most competitive times ever for buyers — and we're finally seeing conditions ease up," Nick Bailey, president and CEO of RE/MAX, said in a statement.
Wolfe said that a quarter of all listings on the market in D-FW are now seeing price reductions, as homes aren't selling as quickly as sellers and agents expect. Homes seeing price drops were likely overpriced to begin with, he said. The number of showings per listing at Wolfe's offices are down from eight each week last year to an average of three now. Homes are taking weeks instead of days to sell, and more inventory is available. "But three showings a week is really still a good market," Wolfe said. "It's a little bit more of a normal market than the boom we've had for the last two years."
Home prices in Dallas-Fort Worth rose a record 30.7% year over year in March, according to the latest report from the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Index
Rapid Home price growth in North Texas and in cities nationwide continued to break records at the start of the year, but economists expect the market could change its tune in the months ahead. Home prices in Dallas-Fort Worth rose a record 30.7% year over year in March while national prices grew 20.6%, according to the latest report from the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Index. "Demand for homes has stubbornly kept ahead of supply this spring, even in the face of rapidly rising costs," said Dan Handy, an economic data analyst for Zillow. "This imbalance between supply and demand for homes this spring has been the key driver in home price growth that continues to set records month after month." The index compares sales price changes of specific properties over time. Case-Shiller's price estimate is considered more accurate than MLS home sales data which can be influenced by the type of properties that are selling each month.
Economists predict the rapid price growth could finally begin to slow in the coming months as buyer demand is softened by affordability challenges. "Mortgage costs are more than 50% higher than they were a year ago, and prospective buyers will likely start to rethink what they can afford," Handy said. "Sellers may already be responding, with the rate of price cuts now on the rise, to meet buyers where they are. Price growth will likely begin to come back towards earth as many buyers are priced out and inventory rises." Dallas-Fort Worth home showings were down 9% year over year in April and 11% since March, according to ShowingTime.
Nearly one in five sellers dropped prices during the four week period ended May 22, Redfin Corp. said in a report Thursday. Other measures of how hot the market is, including a house's time on market and the percentage of homes selling above listing price, have also plateaued. Consumers are contending with some of the highest mortgage rates in years, despite the dip in those figures in the past two weeks. Higher rates, coupled with economic uncertainty, are raising questions about whether the US housing boom has met its limit with signs emerging that the once-intense pace of the market could be decelerating.
Price drops are "becoming increasingly common" in some of the most popular housing markets across the United States. According to a new Redfin data. More than 20% of home sellers dropped their price in May in some of the best markets in the nation. "When mortgage rates were at or belw 3%, both local and out-of-town homebuyers were more than willing to tolerate high prices, but at more than 5%, many are now priced out," redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather said in a statement. "A home's price is driven by the balance of supply and demand, and when demand drops off and supply increases like it is now, rapid price increases evaporate quickly." Areas that saw a huge surge in migration and sharp increases in home prices over the past two years are now seeing "an abrupt drop-off in demand," which is forcing sellers to "drop their prices with increasing frequency," Fairweather said.
Housing Prices in DFW and Austin Have Surged Dramatically
The last time the national housing bubble burst, Dallas-Fort Worth and the state of Texas emerged comparatively unscathed from the massive 2008 home price corrections and foreclosure wave that slammed most of the country, including other Sunbelt markets like San Diego, Miami, Phoenix and Las Vegas.
A big reason was that home prices in the Lone Star State didn't skyrocket in the early 2000s preceding the subprime-mortgage-induced smackdown by nearly as much as prices in California, Florida, Arizona, and Nevada. Texas hadn't partied as hard as its Sunbelt compadres heading into the crash, so its hangover wasn't as bad.
This time, Texas — DFW and Austin especially — may not be so lucky if the national housing boom is a bubble and a popping ensues, a new study suggests. This time, housing prices in DFW and Austin, and to a lesser degree Houston and San Antonio, have surged, driven in large part by population and jobs growth spurred by companies large and small relocating to the state.
As of April 30, Austin was the second most overpriced housing market in the nation, and DFW was the 18th most overpriced, according to research by Florida Atlantic University. The recent heavy demand for homes put buyers at a "major disadvantage," said Ken H. Johnson, an economist in FAU's College of Business. To have an offer accepted, buyers had to outbid multiple competitors, he points out. Soaring prices fueled by the onset of the pandemic in 2020 and near-record-low mortgage rates have pushed the national housing market into a "crisis stage," and a reckoning is due, the Florida Atlantic researchers' latest report says.
On one hand, the reckoning will likely hit the areas of the country with the biggest run-ups the hardest. On the other hand, areas of the country with persistent inventory shortages and increases in population, such as Texas, Florida and parts of the Northwest, likely won't see as steep of declines in home values, the researchers say.
Quickly rising mortgage rates, high home prices and a persistent inventory shortage aren't enough to sideline Dallas-Fort Worth house shoppers, judging by new data on the number of showings per listing. DFW remains solidly in double-digit territory and among the nation's leaders in the number of showings per home, according to an index by Showing Time, a home touring technology and data firm. The ratio of showings to listings of DFW homes in March was 16.1. That's the same as it was in March 2021 and down an almost most meaningless 2% from February. DFW's showings ratio is well above the U.S rate of 9.3 showings per home. Nationwide, the number of markets seeing double-digit showings per listing jumped 46% in the past two months as buyer demand continues to outpace slightly rising inventory, according to the Showing Index. In hard numbers, that's 83 markets with double-digit showings in January of this year, 109 in February and 121 markets in March of this year. The ShowingTime Showing Index is compiled using data from more than 6 million home showings scheduled across the country each month on listings using ShowingTime products and services. It tracks the average number of appointments received on active listings during the month.
Collin, Denton, Ellis and Kaufman counties
As home costs soar across the state, four counties in Dallas-Fort Worth saw especially significant growth over the last year. The median sale price for single-family homes increased nearly 27% in Collin, Denton, Ellis and Kaufman counties in February compared with a year prior, according to the latest numbers from the MetroTex Association of Realtors. Collin County holds the highest median sale price at $475,000. Tarrant County led in sales, with 1,812 homes changing hands. The sale price for local single-family homes sold by real estate agents across North Texas reached a record median of $365,000 in February, up 21% from a year earlier, according to the latest data from the Texas Real Estate Research Center at Texas A&M University and North Texas Real Estate Information Systems. It shot up $15,000 from January to February, a 4% increase.
"Everyone is hoping for a spring inventory influx, but it's unlikely it will be nearly enough to balance this market," Marissa Benat, president of the Collin County Association of Realtors, said in a statement. "We are getting buyers ready to make competitive offers so they can get moved into their home sooner than later."
Inventory is not keeping up with the high demand, and building permits are down as builders face supply chain and labor challenges.
U.S. home sales unexpectedly increased in January, but investors paying in cash are squeezing out first-time buyers from the housing market amid record low inventory and higher prices. Existing home sales surged 6.7% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 6.50 million units last month. Sales rose in all four regions, with strong gains in the Midwest, the most affordable region. Sales jumped 9.3% in the densely populated South, which is experiencing an influx of residents from other regions as companies embrace remote work.
First-time buyers accounted for 27% of sales last month, compared to 33% a year ago. Rising mortgage rates could make home buying even less affordable for this group. Individual investors or second-home buyers, who make up many cash sales, bought 22% of homes, up from 15% a year ago. Investors are renovating, and either reselling or renting the homes to take advantage of the hot housing market. All-cash sales made up 27% of transactions compared to 19% last January.
The U.S. housing market shifted into overdrive during the pandemic, with more than 6 million homes selling in 2021 despite skyrocketing prices in many cities. The median selling price for a home in November, $416,900, was nearly 25% more than it was in February 2020. In the early weeks of 2022, there's no sign that cutthroat bidding and rising prices won't continue. The total inventory of homes on the market dipped below 300,000 nationwide in early January — less than half of the inventory available before the pandemic. "It's uniquely challenging for first-time buyers, since they're not benefitting from the increase in home prices," said Realtor.com chief economist Danielle Hale, who predicts more record-high home prices this year. "We don't have prices decreasing in any area of our housing forecast, calling into attention that many of these issues are nationwide."
Homebuyers got crushed last year as home prices soared at their highest clip on record. Housing economists saw that price growth—which peaked at a year-over-year rate of 20% last year—as simply unsustainable. Their economic models agreed: Among the seven forecast models reviewed by Fortune heading into 2022, every single one predicted home price growth would slow significantly this year.
But over the past few weeks, that consensus is no longer so unified. Now, more industry insiders are throwing out their previous forecasts and replacing them with more bullish short-term outlooks. Indeed, some experts say the 2022 spring housing market might go down as one of the most competitive on record.
Look no further than Zillow. Back in December, the home listing site predicted that U.S. home values would climb 11% this year. Economists at Zillow now say that forecast is too conservative. Their latest forecast finds home prices are set to spike 16.4% between December 2021 and December 2022. If it comes to fruition, it would mark another brutal year for home shoppers.
Rising mortgage rates and last-year's record-breaking runup in home prices are expected to price many would-be homebuyers out of the market this year, denting sales of existing homes but bringing home price appreciation back down to more sustainable levels, Fannie Mae economists say.
"We expect the narrative around housing this year to shift from one of extremely limited inventories leading to hypercompetitive bidding wars to one in which increasingly more would-be homebuyers are priced out of the market," Fannie Mae economists said in commentary accompanying their latest monthly forecast.
Source: Fannie Mae Economic and Housing Outlook, January 2022.
Fannie Mae economists see sales of existing homes falling by 3.2 percent this year, to 5.945 million, which would still be the second-best year since 2006. Sales of new homes are projected to grow by 14.9 percent, to 885,000, as builders start putting homes now under construction on the market. Even with the projected increase in new home sales, total home sales are expected to fall from 6.91 million in 2021 to 6.83 million this year.
But that forecast could prove to be overly optimistic, Fannie Mae economists warn, if mortgage rates continue to rise as the Federal Reserve winds down its purchases of government debt and mortgages and starts raising short-term interest rates.
"The Fed has accelerated the pace at which it intends to reduce monetary accommodation, as inflation appears more resilient than initially expected," said Fannie Mae Chief Economist Doug Duncan, in a statement. "Currently, we expect inflation to run above the Fed's two-percent target through 2023, and for the Fed to respond by tightening over that period. The resultant rise in interest rates will likely put additional stress on housing affordability measures vis-à-vis higher mortgage rates for consumers and the continued, though decelerating, rise in home prices."
The Fed is in the process of winding down an emergency program implemented during the pandemic, in which it was purchasing $120 billion in Treasurys and mortgage-backed securities every month to keep interest rates low. When it's done tapering, Fannie Mae economists expect the Fed to start raising the short-term federal funds rate in March, and implement three rate increases this year.
Fannie Mae economists project mortgage rates will rise only gradually, hitting 3.4 percent by the end of this year before leveling off at 3.5 percent in 2023. Economists at the Mortgage Bankers Association are predicting a more abrupt rise in rates, to 4 percent by the end of 2022 and 4.3 percent next year.
But both projections were made before minutes of the Fed's December meeting were released, which revealed that after tapering its asset purchases, the Fed was contemplating shrinking its balance sheet.
That news prompted a runup in 10-year Treasurys and mortgage rates, which pose an "upside risk to our published interest rate forecast," Fannie Mae economists said. Based on more recent data, Fannie Mae estimates that mortgage rates could go up by two-tenths of a percentage point more than currently forecast.
The latest survey from the Mortgage Bankers Association shows rates on 30-year fixed-rate loans averaged 3.64 percent during the week ending January 14. The Optimal Blue Mortgage Market Indices, which track daily changes in mortgage rates, show rates on 30-year fixed-rate conforming mortgages hit 3.78 percent on Tuesday.
Looking at recent history, a 100-basis point change in the 30-year mortgage rate over the course of a year can dent home sales by 8 percent, with a one-to-two quarter time lag, Fannie Mae economists noted. "As such, we could expect home sales to be about 1 to 2 percent lower than our published forecast over this next year if the recent rate increase holds."
However, the same forces pushing interest rates higher — consumer and investor confidence in continued economic growth — could also support home purchases, "partially mitigating any negative effects on sales from higher rates," Fannie Mae economists said. But if interest rates are readjusting "due to new expectations over long-run inflation or a shift in monetary policy, then the effect could be larger. Our next forecast will of course incorporate formally any recent interest rate changes."
The forecast assumes that in the near term, the Omicron surge "will have only modest and temporary economic impacts. The severity of the variant appears to be lesser than prior waves, and most high frequency economic indicators suggest a smaller change in consumer behavior compared to the 2020-2021 winter wave of COVID."
Source: Fannie Mae Economic and Housing Outlook, January 2022.
Fannie Mae economists expect that national home price growth "will remain strong but decelerate" in 2022, and that worsening affordability will slow home price growth from a peak of 18.5 percent during the third quarter of 2021, to 7.6 percent by the end of the year.
"Our expectation of 7.6 percent growth in 2022 is still considerably higher than the average pace of 5.4 from 2012 to 2019," Fannie Mae economists said. "However, this represents a large deceleration from 2021's expected record house price growth of 17.3 percent."
Fannie Mae economists are keeping a close eye on recent increases in the average back-end debt-to-income (DTI) ratios of borrowers, particularly for first-time homebuyers, as an indicator of growing affordability issues.
"This measure is likely soon to meet or eclipse the recent high recorded in 2018, which precipitated a notable slowing in home sales following a rise in mortgage rates," they said. "For now, there appears to be ample prospective homebuyers engaging in bids to facilitate sales even as some drop out of the market completely, but the amount will likely lessen as the year unfolds."
However, Fannie Mae economists see a risk that some metro areas "have overheated and will experience at least modest price declines over the next year or two," singling out Boise City and Austin as examples "where there may be declines."
Source: Fannie Mae Economic and Housing Outlook, January 2022.
While a modest dip in home sales is expected this year, Fannie Mae economists see rising home prices driving a 10 percent increase in purchase mortgage originations, which are projected to hit $2.049 trillion this year. But rising mortgage rates are expected to gut the pandemic-fueled refinancing boom, with refi originations falling by 50 percent, to $1.289 trillion.
But if recent increases in mortgage rates hold, Fannie Mae economists say purchase mortgage volumes could be $33 billion lower in 2022 than they're currently forecasting, and that 2022 refinance volumes could be about 10 to 15 percent lower than forecasted.
Home sales in North Texas are slowing. But buyers aren't getting a price break. Almost 54% of the homes sold in the Dallas-Fort Worth area through September went for more than the asking price. That's higher than the nationwide average of properties that are pulling in more dough than the sellers are asking, according to a new report by Porch Group, a home sellers service firm. "In most years before the pandemic, the percentage of homes selling above asking hovered around 20% during off-peak times and around 25% during the busy summer season," analysts at Porch.com said. "In 2020 and 2021, however, the share has remained much higher than usual. Throughout 2020 and 2021, the market has seen steep increases in home prices as a growing number of buyers compete for a limited inventory of homes," the new report said. "These conditions have required bidders to be aggressive in their offers to beat out competitors, often offering amounts significantly above sellers' asking price."
DFW homes are selling for an average of 102% of asking price through the first three quarters of this year. "The latest rankings show that prices in some metro areas, such as Atlanta and Dallas, are rising rapidly, producing market premiums much greater than the last housing run-up about 15 years ago," the new Florida report says. Dallas-area home prices were up 25% year-over-year in the latest S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Home Price Index.
North Texas home sales by real estate agents have been down from a year ago in each of the last four months because of the shortage of properties on the market and growing affordability challenges.
Today's real estate market remains hot, hot, hot, with sellers enjoying high prices, while buyers are facing a highly competitive market that has made it difficult for some to land the home they're longing for. This is especially true for those selling homes in Dallas/Fort Worth or shopping for Dallas homes for sale and Fort Worth homes for sale.
It's easy to get distracted during the buying or selling process by certain widespread real estate myths. Our real estate agents help many families in the area find their dream home and advise them to not fall for misconceptions they might hear from well-meaning friends and family members.
Read on about some common real estate myths you should not fall for.
Need more help navigating today's real estate market? Contact us today.
Dallas-Fort Worth is cooking up a record year for home sales and prices, but there are signs that the residential market is cooling from a boil to a simmer. "On a macro level, the market is definitely cooling down, but we're talking about going from extreme hotness to, like, still hotness," DFW Opendoor General Manager Sharon Brown said in an interview with the Dallas Business Journal. "Relative to last the last few months, the market is cooler," Brown said. "But relative to last year, the year before and the years before that, it's still super hot. Even though it's cooling down, that doesn't mean that it's a cool market."
The DFW market is cooling because more inventory is coming on the market and the volume of homes sold has decreased over the last three months, Brown said. Sales prices are also declining a tad, she said. "It's still pricey," she said. "It's still a seller's market, but because of the inventory lift, because there's more supply on the market, the price is slowly coming down — not tremendously, but slightly.
Home prices in DFW have risen roughly 17% in 2021, and they're likely to rise another 4% to 5% in 2022, James Gaines, economist for the Texas Real Estate Research Center at Texas A&M University, said in a virtual meeting of the MetroTex Association of Realtors. Gaines forecast total existing home sales for DFW to increase by 3% in 2022.
The average DFW home down payment is now $40,000
With home prices soaring, buyers must spend more up front to put a roof over their heads. Dallas-Fort Worth-area homebuyers on average are forking over almost $40,000 in down payments when they purchase a property, according to a study by LendingTree. That's an all-time high, but D-FW down payments are less than the $46,283 nationwide average in the 50 largest metro areas. "While there are signs that the housing market is beginning to cool somewhat, home prices are still significantly higher in many parts of the U.S. than they were before the coronavirus pandemic," LendingTree's Jacob Channel said in the report. "One of the side effects of these higher home prices is higher down payments." "If you are a first-time homebuyer, that means the nest egg you need to save up is basically 16% larger than it was a year ago because home prices have gone up," said Frank Nothaft, CoreLogic's chief economist. "The first-time homebuyers are having sticker shock right now. "That's why we are seeing in some of the latest statistics maybe there's a bit of a slowdown in homebuying toward the end of the summer."
Dallas Morning News, September 8, 2021
Dallas area home prices soared by more than 21% in the latest nationwide comparison. The surge in local home costs set a year-over-year record gain for the Dallas area in the closely watched S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Home Price Index. Nationwide prices rose by 18.6% in June compared with a year earlier. The nationwide jump was the largest in the Case-Shiller report in more than 30 years, according to S&P's Craig J. Lazzara.
"June 2021 is the third consecutive month in which the growth rate of housing prices set a record," Lazzara said in the report. "The last several months have been extraordinary, not only in the level of price gains but in the consistency of gains across the country. Dallas-area home prices have more than doubled in the last decade in the Case-Shiller report.
Texas home sales by y real estate agents declined 17% in July from a year earlier due to the lack of properties for sale and some buyers pulling out of the market because of home prices. But demand for homes in the Dallas area remains very high.
"Demand for housing continues to far outweigh the supply of homes for sale," Zillow economist Matthew Speakman said in a statement. "But despite the enduring market competition, more recent data indicate that the scalding hot housing market may have cooled slightly in recent weeks.
Dallas Morning News, August 31, 2021
Home sales will likely plunge this spring in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, but bounce back by the end of next year, according to a new forecast from real estate search site Zillow. Sales will likely plummet by up to 60% in some markets, as stay-at-home mandates and overall worries about the economy take the steam out of what was previously expected to be a robust spring home-buying season, according to Zillow's economists and analysts.
But prices will likely experience a much slighter slide, and a quicker recovery. Zillow expects prices to drop no more than 3% by the end of this year, and then creep back up throughout 2021.
Home sales should also increase by roughly 10% a month through 2021, according to the forecast. "Much uncertainty still exists, particularly with some states beginning to reopen and experts warning of a possible second wave of the coronavirus in the fall,'' Svenja Gudell, Zillow's chief economist said in a statement. "However, housing fundamentals are strong, much more so than they were leading into the Great Recession, and that bodes well for housing in general."
"Despite the difficulties, we're seeing several signs that there is still a good amount of demand for housing and buyers, sellers and agents are growing more comfortable moving transactions forward where possible,'' Gudell says.
Paige Shipp, regional director with housing analyst MetroStudy Inc. fears home sales might slow next year in the ramp up to presidential and congressional elections. "We typically have much slower selling seasons right before an election," she said. "After that happens, the flood gates open and people come out. It's not a matter of who wins." Worries about a recession may also impact the home market. "We spent the better part of the last decade still looking over our shoulder," said George Ratiu, senior economist with Realtor.com. "The last recession was so bad that we are still carrying some of the scars from that." However, Dr. James Gaines, chief economist with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University states that Texas economy is still expanding. "And we are extremely unlikely to be in a recession by the end of this calendar year," he said. "We are probably pretty safe through the first six months of next year."
The number of homes listed for sale with North Texas real estate agents has risen by about 15% this year. But they aren't in the price range most buyers want. "The inventory is increasing at the upper end — $750,000 and above," Dr. James Gaines, chief economist with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University said. "If you have a well-located $300,000 house, you can sell it tomorrow. We are seeing evidence of price fatigue in the market." D-FW home prices are up only about 3% so far in 2019 — nothing like the double-digit percentage home price gains of a couple of years ago. "The recent spike in mortgage rates did expose how price sensitive the market is," said Paige Shipp, regional director with housing analyst MetroStudy Inc. "Things are not quite as rosy as they seem in terms of what people can afford." Many home sellers haven't gotten the message, she said. "They want to list their house for more than their neighbors sold for and sell it overnight." D-FW has an undersupply of homes priced below $250.000.
After several years of ever-increasing sales, there are signs that North Texas' million-dollar home market has hit a ceiling. Sales of high-priced Dallas-area homes have shot up in recent years, rising at a much greater rate than the overall housing market. There are now more than a dozen Dallas-area mansions on the market with price tags of more than $10 million, according to Realtor.com. While demand for low- and moderate-priced houses is still rising in North Texas, the latest sales numbers show that purchases of million-dollar properties have leveled off. For the last few years, million-dollar home sales in the Dallas-Fort Worth area have grown at double-digit percentage rates. Housing analysts say that the inventory is rising while more moderate-priced properties are in short supply. "The inventory is mostly at the upper end," said George Ratiu, senior economist with Realtor.com. "That's not where the most demand is."
Dallas is one of the U.S. metro areas where rising home prices have hurt homeownership the most. Dallas, Denver and Houston were identified as the markets where there is the most downward pressure on homeownership, according to a new report by Florida Atlantic University and Florida International University faculty. The study ranked areas where the markets have tilted in favor of renting over buying homes. Researchers traced housing conditions in 23 markets for the report. Dallas was the most unfavorable for homeownership among the cities surveyed. "Of the metros in our index, Dallas is the highest and exhibiting the greatest downward pressure on the demand for homeownership," said Ken Johnson, real estate economist in FAU's College of Business. "The extraordinary appreciation in the area is a major driver of this score." Dallas' housing market has taken off since the Great Recession, with soaring prices.
The latest North Texas housing market numbers are not very encouraging, to say the least. Home sales were down in many Dallas-Fort Worth neighborhoods in February, and median home sales prices dropped for the first time since 2008-2009 in both Dallas and Rockwall counties. Dallas County home sales prices fell 2.5 percent in February from a year ago, according to the latest figures from the MetroTex Association of Realtors. Median sales prices slid 4.5 percent in Rockwall County. Collin and Denton counties eked out tiny year-over-year home price gains last month — less that 1 percent ahead of February 2018. The only solid home price gain in the region came in Tarrant County, where houses are still relatively affordable. Lower and moderate-priced house sales are still strong while purchases of expensive properties have lagged.
Once the most expensive listing in the US, the Bel Air mega-mansion was incorrectly listed as sold multiple times. The seller of one of the nation's most expensive real estate listings is suing real estate giant Zillow Group for $60 million in damages, alleging the company was negligent when it allowed a "troll" to falsely claim they were the homeowner of the listing on Zillow and then posted inaccurate information about the property.
The listing, 924 Bel Air Road in Los Angeles, was first listed for $250 million in 2017 and cut to $188 million last year before coming back on the market at a $150 million price in January.
In a lawsuit filed on Feb. 24, the plaintiff, a company owned by Makowsky, alleged Zillow published false information about the property that was uploaded by someone claiming to be the listing's owner. This included claims that the home had sold on Feb. 9, 2019 for $110 million, that there was an open house for the property on Feb. 8, 2019 from 1-4 p.m., that the property sold on Feb. 9, 2019 for $90.54 million, and that the property sold on Feb. 9, 2019 for $93.4 million.
"Zillow is disseminating misleading, false, and inaccurate information that has a large prominence because of Zillow's market power," attorneys for the plaintiff wrote in the complaint.The plaintiff's attorneys alleged that it took Zillow more than a week to take down the false information and false claims of ownership, despite Zillow acknowledging it was "aware of the issue."
Homebuilders are starting off 2019 with hopes of another increase in U.S. sales, especially newly built houses. But the building industry also sees an upcoming drop nationally in purchases of preowned homes because of rising affordability issues. "2019 looks like a year of solid, if not spectacular, growth," said Robert Dietz, chief economist of the National Association of Home Builders. "I think new-home sales will be up a tad and existing home sales down." The building industry forecasts a 2 percent rise in nationwide home starts in 2019, making it the best year since the Great Recession. That's the most positive sign in this year's outlook. "We actually have existing home sales declining year-over-year in 2019," Dietz said at the industry's annual meeting this week in Las Vegas. The drop in existing home sales is likely to be between 2 percent and 4 percent this year, according to the latest industry outlook. Preowned home sales in Dallas-Fort Worth fell slightly in 2018 after several years of increases. The decline continued into the new year. Higher mortgage rates and record prices are blamed for the slowdown.
By Brandon Cornett | January 18, 2019 | © HBI,
Recent forecasts for the real estate market in Dallas, Texas suggest that home prices in the area could rise faster than the national average in 2019. A separate forecast from Zillow ranked Dallas as one of the top ten "hottest" housing markets of 2019.
Bold Outlook for Dallas Housing Market in 2019
At the start of 2019, the median home value for Dallas, Texas was around $201,000. (The median for the broader DFW metro area was a bit higher.) That was a gain of more than 13% from a year earlier, according to data collected by Zillow.
Predictions from housing analysts point to continued home-price growth throughout 2019. In fact, the Dallas real estate market is expected to outperform the nation this year, in terms of annual home-value appreciation. Given the current rate of appreciation, it would not be surprising to see the median house price in Dallas rise somewhere between 7% and 10% over the next year.
Zillow's research team recently predicted that the median value in Dallas would climb by 11.2% over the next 12 months. That was a much bolder forecast than the one they issued for the nation as a whole, which predicted 6.4% growth.
Housing Supply on the Rise
Inventory is another important trend that could shape the Dallas-area housing market in 2019. This year, home buyers across the metro area could have more properties to choose from. At the end of 2018, the Dallas real estate market had more than a 4-month supply of homes for sale. That was a higher level of inventory than most metro areas across the U.S., and also higher than the national average during that same timeframe.
The key takeaway here is that housing inventory in Dallas (i.e., the number of homes listed for sale) increased during the latter part of 2018. As a result, buyers who enter the market this year should have more options when it comes to choosing a property.
Dallas Makes Zillow's "Hottest" List
In January, Zillow published a forecast that included what they felt would be the ten "hottest U.S. housing markets for 2019." Dallas was ranked at number seven on that list. To create their "hot list," Zillow examined a number of factors for the nation's 50 largest metro areas. They then combined these variables to create a "hotness" score. They looked for metro areas with strong income growth, growing populations, and low unemployment — among other factors.
A Cooling Trend Could Prevent Affordability Issues
The Dallas real estate market is something of a paradox right now, as we move into 2019. Home prices in the area continue to rise faster than the national average. At the same, however, there is clearly a cooling trend taking place.
Paige Shipp, regional director at MetroStudy, recently told The Dallas Morning News: "Dallas-Fort Worth, the nation's top new home market, is slowing from a frenzied, overheated pace to a more stable, normalized market. Builders and developers are hard at work delivering product to meet the strong demand for affordable new homes."
Dallas currently leads the nation in terms of new-home construction, according to MetroStudy and other sources. There were nearly 35,000 housing starts in the DFW area during the third quarter of 2018, more than any other metro. (A "housing start" is the beginning of construction for a house.)
If inventory continues to grow in this market — as expected — it will likely lead to smaller home-price gains in the future. And that's probably a good thing. When house prices rise at a much faster pace than local wages and income, it can create affordability problems. So a cooling trend could actually be beneficial at this point.
Disclaimer: This article includes housing market predictions for the Dallas-Forth Worth metro area in 2019. They were provided by third parties not associated with the Home Buying Institute. Real estate forecasts are the equivalent of an educated and are far from certain.
Dallas-area home price gains slightly outperformed the national average in 2018.Dallas home prices rose 5.3 percent from 2017 levels while the U.S. price increase was 5.1 percent, CoreLogic reports. CoreLogic is forecasting that nationwide home prices will grow less than 5 percent in the year ahead."The rise in mortgage rates has dampened buyer demand and slowed home-price growth," Dr. Frank Nothaft, chief economist for CoreLogic, said in the report. "These higher rates and home prices have reduced buyer affordability," he said. "Home sellers are responding by lowering their asking price, which is reflected in the slowing growth of the CoreLogic Home Price Index." Along with Dallas' 5.3 percent year-over-year home price gain, CoreLogic found that prices were up 6.9 percent annually in the Fort Worth area and were 5.8 percent higher in San Antonio. Houston prices rose by just under 4 percent from a year ago. And prices in the Austin area were only 3.4 percent higher than in November 2017.
Homeowners that CoreLogic surveyed attributed the growing home values as part of a strong national and local economy. "A strong economy helps homeowners feel confident about the value of their property," said Frank Martell, president and CEO of CoreLogic. "If recent declines in the stock market shake consumer confidence in the national economy, we may see homeowners' perception of home values change and a subsequent buyers' market emerge in 2019." Even with the declines in the rate of home appreciation, Dallas-Fort Worth home prices are at record levels and have risen more than 40 percent in the last five years.
The declines in D-FW home sales and slower price appreciation are having a bigger impact on consumers' attitudes than their pocketbooks, analysts said. "I am more concerned about the psychological impact of not-so-rosy housing news than I am about the actual underlying fundamentals of the housing market in the Dallas-Fort Worth market," said Daren Blomquist, top economist with Attom Data Solutions. "Certainly the data shows that the market has gotten somewhat overheated and is due for a slowdown, but that slowdown should just be a chance for the market to catch its breath rather than a trigger a panic attack. "Jobs and people are still moving to the Dallas-Fort Worth area in large numbers, which ultimately should keep demand for housing solid," Blomquist said. "But the psychology of the market is more of a wild card and could result in a bigger slowdown or correction."
North Texas home sales would be higher if there were more moderately priced properties up for grabs, Paige Shipp of housing analyst Metrostudy Inc. said. "I believe the 1 percent decrease in sales this year is due to the lack of homes on the market below $200,000, not a lack of buyers," Shipp said. "D-FW has strong job and population growth, which equates to demand for homes. "However, the increasing interest rates have exposed the fact that D-FW buyers cannot all afford homes priced above $400,000, she said.
Dallas-area home prices grew less than 5 percent in August from a year earlier, according to the latest nationwide comparison. It was the first time in almost six years that Dallas-area home appreciation has been at such a low level in the closely-watched Standard & Poor's Case-Shiller Home Price Index. "Following reports that home sales are flat to down, price gains are beginning to moderate," S&P's David M. Blitzer said in the report. "The seasonally adjusted monthly data show that 10 cities experienced declining prices. Other housing data tell a similar story: prices and sales of new single family homes are weakening, housing starts are mixed and residential fixed investment is down in the last three quarters."
Home prices in North Texas have cooled in 2018 after years of double-digit percentage annual gains. Still, Dallas-area prices are about 45 percent higher than a decade ago, before the economic downturn and housing crash. "There are no signs that the current weakness will become a repeat of the crisis," Blitzer said. "Without a collapse in housing finance like the one seen 12 years ago, a crash in home prices is unlikely."
The slowdown in home price growth may be good news for potential buyers who have struggled to find homes they can afford. "It's more welcome news for would-be homebuyers, who must be breathing a collective sigh of relief that home price growth finally has slowed," Skylar Olsen, Zillow's director of economic research, said in a statement. "Softening appreciation after the rapid growth of just a few months earlier is a sign that fierce competition is dying down. Potential buyers who were intimidated during the heat of the market may find the breathing space now to make a calm, considered decision about whether to lock in a mortgage before rates rise further."
Dallas Morning News, October 18, 2018
Dallas-Fort Worth was the only major Texas market that saw a decline in third quarter home sales. D-FW preowned homes sales fell 2.3 percent from third quarter 2017, according to a new report by the Texas Association of Realtors. Statewide sales were 4.4 percent higher than in the previous year. Among the big metro areas, the largest sales increase was in Houston were real estate agents sold 11.6 percent more houses than they did in third quarter 2017.
"Our market remains extremely strong but is still slowly moving toward normalization," Dr. James Gaines, chief economist with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University, said in the report. "Median home prices and home sales are up, but the rate of increase statewide is beginning to slow compared to prior years."
Even with the year-over-year sales decline, D-FW had the largest number of preowned property sales in the state with 27,660 properties changing hands, according to the Realtors association. The Houston-area was second with 24,028 home sales. Median home sales prices rose 4.4 percent in the third quarter from the previous year to $235,000. In D-FW, prices were up 3.9 percent to a median of $265,034.
Residential appreciation in North Texas has slowed this year after median home values grew by more than 40 percent during the last five years. D-FW had the largest inventory increase of any of the major metros - up 14.5 percent from third quarter 2017. "At the current rate that home sales and active listings are increasing, we are trending towards another record-breaking year in Texas real estate," Kaki Lybbert, chairman of the Texas Association of Realtors, said.
The latest forecast from CoreLogic calls for only about 2.7 percent home price growth in D-FW in the next 12 months.
- Dallas Morning News, October 15, 2018
Don't look for Dallas-Fort Worth on the list of cities economists expect to have the biggest home price gains in the year ahead. Nationwide prices are expected to rise by less than 5 percent in the year ahead, according Veros, a risk management and valuation firm. "Our latest VeroForecast indicates that on average, for the top 100 most populated metro areas, we expect 4.5 percent appreciation over the next 12 months," Eric Fox, vice president of statistical and economic modeling at Veros, said in the report. "We are forecasting that the overwhelming number of metros across the nation, approximately 97 percent, will appreciate, with just three percent depreciating during this period."
"The days of easy 10 percent price gains in one year are over," Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, told real estate agents. For sure that is so in Dallas-Fort Worth. Median sales prices in North Texas were up 9 percent last year, and rose 10 percent in 2016 and 2015 and were 11 percent higher in 2014. Through the first nine months of 2018, median sales prices of houses sold by local real estate agents are just 5 percent greater than the same period last year.
A forecast for the next 12 months sees 2.1 percent home price growth in the D-FW area, according to CoreLogic. That's much less than their U.S. 1-year price forecast rise of 4.7 percent. After several years of double-digit percentage home appreciation in North Texas, the latest price forecasts may seem dismal. But a slowdown in home price gains is just what the D-FW area needs at this point in the cycle. The best way to prevent another housing bubble is to let a little air out of the market before things get too overvalued.
Dallas-area home prices are rated as less likely to fall in a new risk assessment study. The Dallas area ranks as "low" in risk of a price meltdown in a new study by Arch Mortgage Insurance. That translates to about a 12 percent chance of seeing a price decrease by 24 months from now, according to the North Carolina-based company. Texas is still considered the country's most overheated housing market. Arch Mortgage estimates that home values in the state are more than 30 percent greater than they should be based on market fundamentals. "Texas is likely to become riskier going forward since affordability continues to deteriorate at a rapid rate and it is easier to build there than in most states," the report said. "Among larger metros, Houston (22 percent) was the riskiest." Dallas-area home prices are currently at record levels. But the rate of home price appreciation has slowed significantly this year. Through the first eight months of 2018, median North Texas home sales prices are up about 5 percent. Even with the higher prices, Arch Mortgage in its quarterly report ranked Fort Worth as the best market in the country for millennials to buy houses and get jobs. But they'd better not wait too long, the analysts said.
The number of "For Sale" signs is growing in North Texas' housing market. The Dallas-Fort Worth area has had one of the biggest increases in the country in the number of homes listed for sale, according to Realtor.com. D-FW ranked eighth among the 10 major U.S. markets with the greatest increase in home listings in September, up 14 percent from the same period a year ago, according to Realtor.com. Local real estate market numbers show that almost 26,000 preowned single-family homes were listed for sale in August with North Texas real estate agents. That's the highest volume in six years. Nationwide, home inventories are at a 5-year high, according to Realtor.com. "After years of record-breaking inventory declines, September's almost flat inventory signals a big change in the real estate market," Danielle Hale, chief economist for Realtor.com, said in the report. "Would-be buyers who had been waiting for a bigger selection of homes for sale may finally see more listings materialize.
Homebuyers are getting a double whammy. "Home prices are up and mortgage rates are up," said Frank Nothaft, chief economist with CoreLogic. Nationwide home prices are almost 7 percent higher than a year ago. And the average long-term mortgage cost has risen by seven tenths of a percentage point interest compared with this time in 2017, according to CoreLogic. "That translates into a 16 percent increase in the monthly principal and interest payments to buy the same house," Nothaft said. For the first-time homebuyer there is a 19 percent increase from one year ago. "Average wages around the country are up only 2.5 percent to 3 percent from a year ago. Each passing month as prices rise and mortgage rates rise, it's increasingly challenging for home buyers, especially entry-level homebuyers," he said. "The pinch it takes out of their monthly budget starts to affect more and more buyers across the country." Dallas-Fort Worth is one of the markets with record-high home costs. While overall median home prices in North Texas are up about 5 percent so far in 2018, prices for the most affordable houses — under $200,000 — are rising at almost twice that rate. CoreLogic is forecasting further increases in home prices and interest rates in the year ahead.
by Seth Fowler
(This article appeared in Candy's Dirt. It is specific to the Ft Worth side of the Metroplex, but the facts are the same for all of North Texas.)
Some will agree, and some won't, but data doesn't lie — we are heading into a real estate slowdown.
First of all…R-E-L-A-X. No, we are not heading toward a recession. No, the housing market isn't crumbling. No, it's not time to sell your home, stock up on canned beans, ammo, and get off the grid. But the real estate market is changing … dare we call it a slowdown?
How Can You Say It's a Slowdown?
How can I say this? We are in the midst of an historical real estate boom like we've never seen before and everything we hear and read says the market is hot, hotter, hottest! Please hear me: the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex is still by far the absolute best place in the world to live, work, play, and own real estate. The daily, weekly, monthly growth that is happening to this part of the state is still out of this world.
But the market is experiencing a slowdown. Interest rates are rising . Municipalities are getting more and more greedy with property taxes. Home values are increasing at a rapid pace. New home construction is increasingly expensive and not meeting demand. Wages aren't increasing as quickly as prices and that's causing a slowdown in the real estate market.
In Part One we will look at those factors and how they combine to cause this slowdown. In Part Two next week, we will discuss whether or not an actual slowdown in the real estate market is a good thing, a precursor to doom-and-gloom (again, R-E-L-A-X), and what it means for buyers and sellers in this brave new world.
Just The Facts Ma'am
According to the Fort Worth Housing Report distributed by the Greater Fort Worth Association of Realtors, the median sales price of homes is going up, up, and up. Up 9.7 percent from February 2017 to 2018 at $214,000. Up 9.3 percent from March 2017 to 2018 at $219,750. Up 7.3 percent from April 2017 to 2018 at $220,000. We see that the overall price continues to increase, but the percentage from year-to-year is falling a little bit. Across the country home prices increased 8.7 percent over the past year according to a recent Zillow report. Increases like this simply are not sustainable in the long run for a stable economy. While sellers enjoy their large return on their investment, fewer and fewer buyers are able or willing to pay these steep increases.
Active Listings And Days on Market
From same reports active listings were up 3.4 percent from February 2017 to 2018 at 1,668 homes. Up 6.4 percent from March 2017 to 2018 at 1,851. Up 17.1 percent from April 2017 to 2018 at 2,105. The more listings the better right? Well, yes and no is the answer. Yes more listings on the market the better for buyers. But that's only if they are good listings that are priced correctly. Days on market has also increased. Homes sat for one day longer in February 2018 than 2017 at 43 days. Seven days longer in March 2018 than 2017 at 44 days. Seven days longer in April 2018 than 2017 at 37 days.
No — not time to panic — but numbers don't lie. Buyers are gaining some control.
Word on The Street
While considering this article over the past month or more, I have talked to many agents, lenders, and title company officers in the D/FW area and 100 percent of them have mentioned how it appears that the buyers are finally pushing back at the skyrocketing prices. Sellers have been in control for a number of years when it comes to asking price. Depending on the range, sellers have tended toward higher asking prices and buyers have very little recourse. If a buyer wants a house then they'll meet asking price … or go higher. As inventory increases (albeit slightly) we are seeing buyers be a little pickier and price conscious. It's not as if buyers are offering 50 cents on the dollar, but more than ever in the past year we are seeing lower offers as homes sit longer on the market. Of course there are variables like price range and location and condition of homes — I know that — so these stats might not apply for all homes universally.
We have been living in the longest real estate boom in the history of ever. It's not going away, it's just not booming like it was, and I contest that it will not boom like that again. A slowdown is happening and will continue to happen. While this might cause panic for some, it could also be just what our overall economy needs — balance. Come back next week and see what else I have to say. If you disagree with this article — or if you agree — hit me up, let me know, I'd love to hear YOUR perspective.
Well that's all from Tarrant County this week Dirty Readers. Thanks for reading and following and sharing! As always, if you have questions, comments or great ideas for a blog … hit me up!
Seth Fowler is a licensed Real Estate Sales Professional for Williams Trew Real Estate in Fort Worth, TX. Statements and opinions are his and his alone. Seth has been involved with the home sales and real estate industry in the Fort Worth area since 2004. He and his family have lived in the area for over 15 years. Seth also loves bowties! You can reach Seth at: 817.980.6636 or email@example.com.
A new look at the prices sellers are asking for their homes is another sign of a shift in the North Texas housing market. Dallas-Fort Worth made it onto a list of 10 major cities that are seeing declines or just tiny increases in the asking prices for houses up for sale.
Researchers at property market firm Trulia compared major home market to see where list prices for homes were rising and where they were falling. All four of Texas' major home markets made the ranks of places where home value increases are stalling. That's obviously nowhere near the double-digit percentage annual home price gains North Texas recently saw. Trulia estimates that the median price of homes up for sale in D-FW was $356,999 in March. In March, homes listed for sale in North Texas traded for 98 percent of what they were listed for, according to local real estate data. Trulia's report that D-FW sellers aren't jacking up their asking prices as quickly this year is another indication that the home market dynamic is changing in the area.