Real Estate

Home prices and sales down in February

Illustration of an upside-down house forming a downward-pointing arrow.

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

House sales continued to decline in February — marking the 11th straight month of declines — as single-family home prices fell for the first time since spring 2020.

Driving the news: February single-family home sales decreased by 25%, from 9,349 sales in 2022 to 6,981 sales in 2023, per a new report from the Houston Association of Realtors.

Houston homes are more expensive than last year

A for sale sign sits in front of a white house

Photo: Brandon Bell/Getty Images

Houston homes were more expensive in January than a year ago, but our home prices are still below the national average.

Why it matters: Any relief from sky-high home prices is welcome, especially as mortgage rates creep up.

Houston rents are still high, for now

Data: Moody's Analytics; Table: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

In the fourth quarter of 2022, the average asking rent in Houston was $1,268, up 7.6% from a year earlier, per economic research firm Moody's Analytics.

Why it matters: Affordability concerns are starting to weigh down the booming rental market.

Houston housing market is improving

Illustration of a zombie's hand emerging from a grave, clutching keys.

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

The housing market is showing signs of life after veering into a dead zone late last year.

Driving the news: Pending home sales were up 3% nationwide in December, according to Redfin's proprietary measure.

Houston's real estate market will relax in 2023

graphic of 2022 becoming 2023 with a keyhole as the "0"

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Local experts predict 2023 will bring more normalcy to the Houston-area housing market.

The big picture: As the hype and fear over a real estate crash subsides, homebuyers and -sellers will resume buying and selling at a pace that was common before the pandemic, forecasts Jennifer Wauhob, the 2022 chair of the Houston Association of Realtors (HAR).

Houston renters can't afford starter homes

Data: Point2Homes; Map: Tory Lysik/Axios Visuals

Houston renters earned 69% of the income they would need to afford a starter home in October, according to an analysis by real estate website Point2Homes.

  • Researchers considered "starter homes" properties valued in the lower third of all available homes for sale.

Explore Houston-area home price changes

Note: "Typical" refers to the average home value in the middle 30% of estimated home values in a region — and typical home prices are rounded; Data: Zillow; Map: Erin Davis/Axios Visuals

The housing market appears to be cooling off slightly in Houston, but home prices are still climbing, especially in towns that were once considered to be way out in the boonies, per an Axios analysis of Zillow data.

Driving the news: Home prices are expected to increase in the greater Houston area anywhere between 0.9% and 4.5% over the next year, based on competing predictions from Zillow and

Houston homebuying is finally easier, but not cheaper

Data: Freddie Mac; Chart: Madison Dong/Axios Visuals

The Houston metro area's real estate market is starting to level off, according to the latest data from Redfin/MLS.

Why it matters: After two-plus years of plummeting inventory and sky-high home prices, buyers have waited a long time for a little relief.


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