Can Houston's housing market maintain its strong pace in 2016?
Especially after a strong 2014 and 2015
Houston rose to the challenge in 2015 and managed to record the second-highest sales volume of all time, albeit it still came in second to 2014, a report from the Multiple Listing Service of the Houston Association of Realtors.
The oil-driven housing market faced a lot of challenges going into the year, dealing with plunging oil prices and the resulting layoffs. This is in addition to persistently low levels of housing inventory.
But despite this, Houston was able to overcome the grim situation and finish the year off strong, with its total number of 2015 single-family home sales as well as sales of all property types pulling in the second-highest levels of all time, behind 2014.
However, the biggest struggles in 2015 happened at the end of the year, once again paving a tough road for 2016.
The report noted that the more substantial single-digit declines in sales volume occurred during the fourth quarter, including December.
Although, this doesn't necessarily mean bad news for the housing market going into 2016. "With oil dropping to levels around $30 a barrel, I think it’s fair to say that the Houston housing market is going to remain cooler for at least a little while,” said HAR Chairman Mario Arriaga with First Group.
“The good news is the local economy is vastly more diversified than it was during the oil bust of the 80s and other industries are continuing to hire, so it really is going to come down to consumer confidence," said Arriaga.