Signs of Change : D-FW is Shifting Towards a Home Buyers' Market
Is Dallas-Fort Worth becoming a buyers' market?
For the last several years, home sellers in North Texas have had the upper hand. But with more properties on the market and sales beginning to slow, things are starting to change. Half of the country's largest housing markets — including D-FW — are shifting, according to a new study by Trulia. "Dallas has started to shift towards a buyers' market in the past year," Trulia researchers say in the just released report. "As of January 2019, 78.9% of all ZIP codes in Dallas have shown signs of shifting in favor of buyers." For the first three months of 2019, home sales by real estate agents in North Texas have fallen 3% from first-quarter 2018 numbers. And the number of houses listed for sale in the area has jumped 24% from a year ago. About 18% of houses on the local market have had at least one price cut, Trulia says. The average time it takes to sell in North Texas is 14% higher than last spring, and median home prices are up only 1% year-over-year.
Even with the slowdown in home price growth, D-FW home costs are at an all-time high and are more than 50% ahead of where they were before the recession. Trulia's study found that the biggest market shifts toward buyers' advantages are in cities that have seen big price jumps in the last few years. "A market is shifting in favor of buyers if more homes take longer to sell, price cuts are increasingly common and more homes sell below their original list price," the report said. "However, most metro areas remain tilted heavily in sellers' favor as these shifting conditions are largely just early indicators of change." Among big city markets, some of the biggest changes are occurring in San Francisco and Las Vegas, where sellers have reigned for years with super high home prices. "Markets including Denver and Dallas — both often destinations for those moving away from the West Coast — have also shifted in favor of buyers over the past year, though less dramatically," Trulia said in the report. It's too early to say how significant the change in North Texas housing dynamics really is, said Trulia economist Felipe Chacon. "Dallas has seen more than six years of steady home value appreciation and worsening affordability," Chacon said. "It may be beginning to cool, but it's not a foregone conclusion that Dallas, or any individual market, will transition solidly into a buyers' market once these indicators start to shift." Still, Chacon said, there are real signs that buyers are gaining traction in the D-FW housing sector. "A market can be shifting in favor of buyers when homes take longer to sell, price cuts are increasingly common, and more homes sell below their original list price," he said. "Based on those three metrics, two are moving in favor of buyers in Dallas — days on market and share of price cuts. "This will likely be a gradual shift on the ground but an important one for people shopping for homes there this spring," Chacon said. "As homes take longer to sell, they pile up and bump up inventory, which benefits buyers but also tells us buyers are less enthusiastic about buying up what is available than they were a year ago...