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Texas home-sales volume increases as prices hold steady in third quarter

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Texas Association of REALTORS® releases 2011-Q3 edition of the Texas Quarterly Housing Report

CONTACT: Stacy Armijo - Pierpont Communications, 512-448-4950

Nov 01 2011 — AUSTIN

According to the most recent version of the Texas Quarterly Housing Report, Texas homes continued to hold their value as sales jumped up in the third quarter of 2011.

For the period of July through September 2011, the volume of single-family home sales in Texas was 58,019, nearly 18% more than the same quarter in 2010.  Real estate prices remained flat in the third quarter with the median price statically unchanged from Q3-2010 at $151,800 and the average price down less than 1% to $197,833.

"We expected a significant jump in sales this quarter because, this time last year, sales were artificially low due to the homebuyer tax credit that pushed demand into the second quarter.  Overall, we are thrilled by the performance of the market this quarter and believe these results illustrate the strength of Texas' housing economy," said Dwight Hale, chairman of the Texas Association of REALTORS®.

Jim Gaines, Ph.D., an economist with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University, also commented, "The market is starting to look like it did before the real estate boom and bust. Sales this quarter are comparable to levels in 2002 and 2003, indicating the market is returning to a more normal sales pace."

Gaines continued, "Despite being behind the first half of the year, we expect the second half of 2011 to outperform last year, ending the year slightly higher than 2010."

In addition, Texas had 7.4 months of inventory in the third quarter of 2011 compared to 8 months in Q3-2010. That figure, driven down by the decrease in the number of listings, is considered to be the high point of a balanced market by the Real Estate Center.

"Listings were down in part due to fewer distressed properties on the market as Texas' foreclosure rates declined in recent months," Gaines explained. "While Texas does not have the backlog of foreclosures seen in many other states, we do still have some pending.   As these distressed properties hit the market, we will probably see a fluctuation in inventory in the coming months."

Chairman Hale concluded, "It's encouraging to see the Texas real estate market returning to pre-recession levels. Looking ahead, it will be important to maintain the affordability, access to natural resources and quality of life that have drawn so many homebuyers to Texas, which is the continual focus of the Texas Association of REALTORS®."

The Texas Quarterly Housing Report is issued four times per year by the Texas Association of REALTORS® with multiple listing service data compiled and analyzed by the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.  To view the report for 2011-Q3 in its entirety, visit TexasRealEstate.com.

About the Texas Quarterly Housing Report

Data for the Texas Quarterly Housing Report is provided by the Data Relevance Project, a partnership among local REALTOR® associations and their MLSs, the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University, and the Texas Association of REALTORS®. The report provides quarterly real estate sales data from a statewide perspective and for 25 metropolitan statistical areas in Texas. It is scheduled for release by the Texas Association of REALTORS® on the following dates each year (or the next business day): Feb. 1, May 1, Aug. 1, and Nov. 1. To view the report in its entirety, visit texasrealestate.com.

About the Texas Association of REALTORS®

With more than 110,000 members, the Texas Association of REALTORS® is a professional membership organization that represents all aspects of real estate in Texas. We advocate on behalf of Texas REALTORS® and private-property owners to keep homeownership affordable, protect private-property rights, and promote public policies that benefit homeowners. Visit texasrealestate.com to learn more.

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