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Commercial Real Estate

Solid Starter Home Sales Mean Good News for Dallas Real Estate

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If you’re a real estate consumer, you’re probably paranoid and on information overload. We keep hearing that prices are lower than ever. Then we hear that prices might get lower. Some people say things are getting better; talk to someone else, and you’ll hear warnings of inflation thanks to all the spending in Washington. About this time last year, I sat in New York, trembling at the feet of the Real Estate Gods. Robert Shiller, one-half of the famous Case-Shiller Report, was talking the future—and past. Among his many admonishments—we were wrong to have gotten excited about housing as an investment, we were living and spending irrationally—this quote stood out: “Look to the starter homes. When the starter home prices get reasonable and sell, you’ll see an uptick in that market, and that will be a positive sign.” To that end, November sales were up 31 percent over the same month in 2008. Starter home sales are like the star in the east, a sign that, if not a blip, could mean life springing back into the market. A little more good news: the average Dallas County home price was $205,000 third quarter versus $204,200 at the end of this year’s second quarter.

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