Luxury home sales boom in Texas

But will oil’s drop bring that to a halt?

Strong growth in luxury home sales continued in 2014 throughout Texas’ largest markets, according to the 2015 Texas Luxury Home Sales Report released today by the Texas Association of Realtors.

The report cited sales volume increases from 9% up to more than 25% for homes sold at $1 million or more in markets including Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio.

“The attributes that have driven growth in Texas’ real estate market in recent years – job growth and population growth – are also driving the luxury market,” said  Scott Kesner, chairman of the Texas Association of Realtors. “We’re seeing more demand for luxury properties from Texans whose incomes are increasing, enabling them to ‘move up,’ and from those moving to our state from elsewhere in the country.”

Texas continues to be the most sought-after location for moving, gaining more residents than any other state from places like California, Florida, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Illinois.

“The overall economic growth and prosperity in Texas have contributed heavily to the luxury market, making it one of the strongest segments of housing in Texas in 2014,” said Jim Gaines, Ph.D., economist at the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University. “We also saw a lot of people moving to Texas from places like California, where a modest two-bedroom condo can be valued upwards of $1 million. Those people sell their home in California, move to Texas and realize their money goes much further in our market. Thus, even if they don’t have an income typical of a luxury homeowner, they have assets to purchase luxury homes and are stimulating that market.”

It’s notable that oil’s rapid decline in price in the last quarter of 2014 wasn’t a factor at the time, but with oil now brushing up against a low of $50 a barrel, that could surely affect the Texas real estate boom, in terms of both traditional oil and the state’s extensive fracking operations. 

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3d rendering of a row of luxury townhouses along a street

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