Geckos & Summer Housing- July Newsletter
It’s that time of year when the heat can really begin to bother you. Many parts of the country have been experiencing a heatwave. I am so very thankful to Willis Carrier, inventor of the modern-day air conditioner. I have lived in Texas my entire life but could not do it without AC! That being said, last week our AC stopped working. Yikes! Not when the heat index is over 100 degrees! Fortunately, the repairman was able to come quickly and get it up and running again. What was the culprit? What caused my AC to stop cooling? A gecko! I guess because of the more than usual rainfall we’ve had, there has been an abundance of geckos at our place. Four or five every night on our porch. Evidently, three of them decided to crawl into our outside unit and one of them crawled into a space that shorted out the system as well as himself. In fact, there were three gecko casualties found in our unit.
Just as that gecko caused problems with our AC, there are factors causing the North Texas markets to shift. The sizzling markets of rapid price appreciation, low supply and short marketing times are cooling with supply and marketing times on the rise.
What is impacting our markets? Mortgage rates are certainly not causing them to slow. Mortgage rates decreased all of throughout the month of June. But what about affordability? The demand in our area brought about by immense population growth has caused prices to rise at a pace faster than the wages have risen. A recent study reveals that only around half of Americans can afford an entry-level home. Affordability inTexas has historically been greater than the US. However, the gap has been closing in. Affordability is becoming more of an issue in many areas of Texas and especially in the DFW metroplex. Homes are beginning to stay on the market a bit longer, which is increasing the supply of homes available for buyers and in turn in bringing prices down. Sellers can no longer price to the sky and expect any and all to be able to afford it.
Today when I look at a snap snot of this area, the largest number is not the number of new listings or pendings but the number of price decreases. This means that sellers are having to come down a bit to meet the buyer. The slowing down of our markets do not indicate a crash but perhaps a more balanced market. Prices will need to match what buyers can afford.
So in our markets, median sales prices have increased nominally or are flat. Supply has increased as well as marketing times. Volume has decreased. All signs of a cooling market. Is affordability the “gecko” that is slowing down the markets? Take a look at this month’s numbers:
Feel free to click on all of the charts and get the numbers. You can see the changes that are occurring. They are not big, they are not drastic but they are enough to dampen the blazing markets that we have experienced the last five years. Of note, the Texas economy is very strong. Foreclosure rates are very minimal. People are staying in their homes longer than ever. We continue to grow as more jobs, homes, and people are headed our way. So, just maybe there is no “gecko” shorting out the system and making it unfunctional. Perhaps, home prices need to slow down and let wages catch up.
So I hope that your geckos are not shorting out your AC units and that you are able to find some great ways to cool off in the summer heat. In the meantime, if you have questions about our local real estate markets or appraisal services- reach out to us at www.dwslaterco.com
About The Author
Shannon is a Certified Residential Real Estate Appraiser and serves as the Vice President of the DW Slater Company. She joined David at the DW Slater Company in 2006. Shannon graduated Cum Laude from the University of North Texas with a BA degree. Prior to joining the DW Slater Company, she was an Elementary School Teacher for the Pilot Point Independent School District. Shannon is an FHA Certified Appraiser. Shannon is a designated member of the National Association of Appraisers and a member of the Association of Texas Appraisers. In her free time, Shannon enjoys spending time with her family, singing in a local church choir, and tandem cycling with her husband.
Thanks, Ryan! Our AC is working hard, keeping us cool and is currently “gecko-free”. Yes, it is always surprising to me to see the similarities between our markets. Our demand has been created by population growth with so many jobs and people relocating to the area. Affordability has really begun to slow down how fast prices are increasing.Reply
I love the gecko analogy. It’s so good. And I’m thankful to hear your AC is now working. Great job as always. I think I see some similarities with your market vs mine in Sacramento.