Although Austin has been ranked by Forbes.com as the city that is most likely to experience the fastest economic turnaround, it doesn't mean the city is quite ready to proclaim that all is well. In fact, home sales still remain down year-over-year, but they are showing improvement when compared to earlier this year.
According to the Austin Board of Realtors, a little more than 1,700 homes were sold in May 2009, which is down by 19% when compared to May of 2008. In addition, the median price for single-family homes declined by 1% when compared to one year ago, resulting in a median price of $193,000. At the same time, there are signs that sales and prices are picking up when compared to the beginning of the year. In terms of volume, the number of homes being sold has increased when compared to January. Furthermore, the median home price has gone up.
Although there are a number of factors involved with the city's apparent recovery, its healthy inventory and its low mortgage rates are likely to be the two biggest reasons.
"While we still aren't completely out of the water, we're starting to dry off," said Jay Gohill, who is the chairman of the Austin Board of Realtors. "Factors such as the local economy and job growth are promising for both sellers and buyers. In this market, it's all about finding what's best for you."