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Austin-Area Home Sales Surge Higher Heading Into 2021

A home for sale in Austin's North Loop neighborhood on Aug. 6.
A home for sale in Austin's North Loop neighborhood on Aug. 6.

The Austin metro area is on track to break a record for the number of homes sold in a single calendar year. Market analysts say the trend appears likely to continue at least into early 2021 as rock-bottom interest rates translate to lower monthly mortgage payments and more buying power for consumers.

But the extreme scarcity of homes for sale – the metro area would sell out in less than a month, all things being equal – is pushing prices to all-time highs.

People bought 3,397 homes across the five-county Austin area in November, according to the most recent monthly report from the Austin Board of Realtors. That was an increase of 23.8% over November 2019. The median sales price in the metro area rose by 19.7% last month to $365,000, the highest ever for the month of November.

Austin remains the most expensive place to buy a home in Texas. Within city limits, the median sales price last month was $433,493, an increase of 10% over one year.

Eldon Rude with the market research company 360 Real Estate Analytics expects more of the same in early 2021.

"There are a lot of people that are still looking that did not find what they were looking for in terms of a home in 2020 that will renew their search in 2021," Rude says.

Low supply and high demand has Vaike O'Grady, with the real estate market research firm , expecting a continued increase in home construction next year.

"For several years we've had over 10,000 units of housing either under construction as model homes or finished and available for purchase," O'Grady says. "I don't expect it to slow down anytime soon."

Got a tip? Email Nathan Bernier at nbernier@kut.org. Follow him on Twitter @KUTnathan.

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