DFW Home Construction and Sales Will Head Higher in 2020
Next year we could set records for North Texas housing — but not by much. Dallas-Fort Worth home sales and construction totals are expected to rise only modestly in 2020, analysts say, but the expected increases could still be enough to push area home numbers to new highs.
“We are looking for you guys to have a good year in 2020,” said James Gaines, chief economist with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University. “Housing construction permits we are forecasting to be up somewhere between 8% and 9% in D-FW. “Home sales by Realtors will probably see a 4% increase," Gaines said.
Through the first 11 months of 2019, North Texas real estate agents have sold almost 99,500 single-family homes — about 2% more than for the same period last year. And median home sales prices are about 3% higher. Gaines is forecasting that D-FW home prices may be up as much as 5% in 2020, as long as mortgage rates stay low. “Low interest rates give people purchasing power to go buy a house,” he said. I’ve got a feeling that the general populace is beginning to feel like the period of relatively low interest rates and still relatively low housing costs won’t last long.”
Most forecast that mortgage rates will stay near current levels in 2020 or rise slightly. The drop in home financing costs this year helped bring in more North Texas buyers for both real estate agents and builders. “The new home market has been very good in the fourth quarter,” said Ted Wilson, a principal with Dallas-based Residential Strategies Inc. “Several builders we have talked to have said their strongest months of the year have been October and November. “That bodes well for us to have a good spring market.”
There’s been a surge of homebuying in the last few months after a slowdown earlier in the year when mortgage costs were higher. And rising construction costs caused single-family home starts to drifter lower this year. Residential Strategies is anticipating about 34,500 D-FW single-family starts for 2019 — down from more than 35,000 last year...