Is the Austin Market Soft?

I spoke to a prospective client today who told me "The Austin market is really soft; I know a bunch of Realtors think otherwise, but I have been watching it for a couple of years and it is soft."

I study the numbers for Austin, various communities and various parts of the Greater Austin market continuously, and my first reaction was to say--well, you can think what you will, but Austin is really doing pretty well. Prices are stable and in many communities prices are going up again. Houses are selling, and nice houses are not only selling fast, but may have multiple offers at or above the listing price. On top of that, people are still moving into the Austin area which means resell and new homes alike are still moving up and to the right on the charts. However...

As I spoke more to this gentleman, I began to discover that he had been looking at one specific part of the Austin market--Condos. And you know what? He was right. Condos (in general) have been very soft and even declining in value in many complexes and areas across Greater Austin over the past 2 years. He was watching several developments and condo conversions over the past couple of years, and these complexes had lost value during that period of time. In as much as what he was looking at--he was dead on correct. However...

The big mistake here is in semantics, or maybe a more fatal mistake--over-generalization. There is no such thing as "The Market". It is a misnomer. "The Market" only exists when you are talking about financial statistics, not when you are talking about buying or selling a specific home. You see, you can't buy "the market", so it is easy to talk about what is happening on a large scale, but when it comes to buying and selling a home, you have to come down from your satellite viewing station, and look at a school district, a community, a street and a specific seller's property. The things that really affect market value of a given home are those things that you can see from standing on the front porch. The further you get away from the house (measured in blocks, not miles), the less important the information you gather will play into the market value of that specific home.

So, the next time you hear someone talk about "the market", stop long enough to ask them "which market" and "what part of the Austin market are you talking about when you say that?". Real Estate is local. Very local. If you are not looking at what has transpired on your street, and in your community during the past 6 months, you probably need to talk to me so we can come to a determination about buyer's behaviors that continually create those things that we call market value for your home.

If you need a Realtor ®, I would be honored to assist you in your home purchase, search or selling your Austin area home.


Tim Thornton, Realtor ®
Top Producer 2010, 2009, 2008
Century Club member

Zip Realty, Inc.
Austin, Texas
(512) 914.4665  mobile


  1. Tim,
    I referred a few clients to your blog today when they heard the Austin market had gone "soft" ... Thanks for the info and enjoyed your perspective.

    Jeremy Smith
    Gold Star Mortgage


Post a Comment

Please feel free to comment on Austin Real Estate Secrets!

Popular posts from this blog

Hardwood Flooring vs. Engineered Hardwood vs. Laminate Flooring--How to Tell the Difference

It May Be Time to Fire Your HOA Management Company