A local blog sponsored by the real estate firm Urban Space claims sales of condominiums in Austin increased by a whopping 50 percent in 2010.
AustinTowers.net delved into MLS listings and said sales increased from 112 condos in 2009 to 168 in 2010. The average price increased from $330,344 in 2009 to $343,983 last year, a gain of four percent.
But the gain is apparently not reflective of citywide trends. The Austin Board of Realtors says single-family home sales dropped 5 percent in 2010.
In 2010, 17,905 homes were sold in the Austin area, five percent fewer than in 2009; the median price in Austin was $193,520, up two percent from 2009; homes spent an average of 77 days on the market, two percent less than 2009; and active listings were 10,158, nine percent more than in 2009.
The national housing market is still in somewhat of a slump, according a 20-city index released by Standard & Poors. Austin is not among the cities counted in the report.
The S&P/Case-Shiller index reports nine cities reached new lows in November 2010.
Atlanta, Charlotte, Chicago, Detroit, Las Vegas, Miami, Portland (OR), Seattle and Tampa hit their lowest levels since home prices peaked in 2006 and 2007, meaning that average home prices in those markets have fallen even further than the lows set in the spring of 2009.
Bloomberg News reports that increasing foreclosures are likely to weigh down housing prices well into 2011.
The lack of a sustained housing rebound and unemployment above 9 percent are among reasons the Federal Reserve may announce this week it’ll complete a second round of stimulus that will pump $600 billion into the economy by June.
“The housing market is in a state of hibernation,” said Zach Pandl, an economist at Nomura Securities International Inc. in New York. “We have a very severe foreclosure problem. Prices are going to keep weakening this year. Weakness in the housing market is likely to keep the Fed relatively cautious in its statement tomorrow.”