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Property Management Blog

Houston Real Estate Market Update for December 2015

The Houston market continues to decline as the price of oil causes both layoffs and less relocation to Houston. Month’s inventory for sale came down to 3.2 from the 3.5 months available this summer and fall, and compares to 5.1 months nationally. The total number of sales was down 9.9% from December 2014, and the dollar volume down 10.9%. Pending sales closings are also down, pointing to a continuing slow down as the year unfolds. The supply of homes for sale is up 18.7% from a year ago, with 30,651 active listings compared to 25,821 a year ago.

Sales declined at the lower price segments due to a lack of entry level inventory. Houses priced at $150,000 or less receive multiple offers in excess of likely appraisal values as both first time and investor buyers try to acquire starter homes. The $150K to 250K and 250KL to 500K price ranges remain unchanged in number of sales, while the 500K + property sales declined 17.2%. My personal feeling is that the market above 250K has ground to a halt as a result of less relocation to Houston and fear of job loss amongst current owners looking to move up. This is giving 250K +buyers the chance to negotiate price and terms and to be more selective. Despite slowing sales, the December 2015 median price reached $212,000, up 6.5% from the $199,000 median price a year ago.

Sales of townhomes and condos fell 2.9% from a year ago. The number of rentals going through the MLS was up 2.9% compared to a year ago, but the rents were stable, remaining at an average of $1710 for properties leased through This marks the third month that rents have not increased from the same month a year ago in many years.