This page will be updated monthly. Check back later for updates on home value trends in the Houston area.
The pandemic has created a real estate boom in Houston that, while showing signs of a mild slowdown, hasn’t stopped prices from continuing to climb in 2022.
Metrowide, the typical value of a home is nearly $58,000 more than a year ago, a 23% increase, according to data from real estate firm Zillow. For context, between 2010 and 2020, the average annual increase in home values was 3.6%. Zillow’s home value data tracks both on- and off-market home values.
Rising home values could give existing Houston homeowners more equity as they look to trade in or buy their next property – but even those buyers have struggled to find deals in a frenetic market at over the past two years.
The market remains solid, with average home sales prices approaching the $450,000 mark. Average home sales prices in Houston in May 2022 reached about $440,670, according to the Houston Association of Realtors, a jump of 14.3% from the same period last year.
Rapidly rising house prices are making the dream of home ownership less accessible to more Houstonians. A recent report from the Houston Association of Realtors found that nearly half of Houston residents cannot afford the typical cost of a home in the city. This is an increase from last year, when home ownership was out of reach for just over 40% of Houstonians.
Although the affordability crisis continues to worsen in Houston, compared to other cities in Texas and very large cities nationwide, it remains one of the most affordable places to buy a home.
According to monthly data from Zillow last year, Austin had the sixth-largest year-over-year percentage increase in home values among metro areas with populations over 1 million. Dallas Fort-Worth came in 10th and San Antonio 16th. Houston is ranked 20th.
But not all areas of Houston are as affordable as others. Neighborhoods like Sugar Land and Friendswood to the south and The Woodlands to the north have typical home values more than $100,000 above the Houston metro average. In hot markets like these, bidding wars are common.
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Areas like Galveston and Richmond are experiencing annual growth rates of almost 30%. In Galveston, a typical home is worth $88,000 more today than it was last year, according to Zillow. In Richmond, you’ll be paying about $90,000 more for a typical home this year than last year.
Increase in average home value by city in the Houston area
The present isn’t great for Houston-area renters looking to buy, and the future doesn’t look much brighter.
Strong demand for homes has drained the market from a balanced 6 month supply to a tight 1.6 month supply.
And building new affordable housing doesn’t get any easier. Permit delays, soaring diesel and wood prices, and supply chain disruptions are slowing construction time and increasing end costs. As supply chain shortages become more manageable in 2022, homebuilders are still saying it takes months longer to complete a home than before the pandemic.
While rising mortgage rates are discouraging some buyers, it could also help cool demand slightly, helping the market catch up on inventory. Average rates on a 30-year fixed mortgage were around 5.23% for the week ending June 10, down from 2.96% a year earlier, according to government-sponsored financial firm Freddie Mac . For a $320,000 loan, that could add about $420 to the potential buyer’s monthly payment.
While higher mortgage rates could weed out some first-time buyers, builders say they’re still seeing healthy demand. Instead of backing out of home buying altogether, many buyers are simply reducing their purchases to fit their budget, noted Lawrence Dean of housing data firm Zonda.
“I’m hearing builders say there’s been a little more resistance from buyers as interest rates have gone up. And the mainstream narrative doesn’t quite agree that that now is the best time to buy a house,” Dean said. In fact, a June survey by The Houston Association of Realtors found that 71% of Houston consumers think it’s “a bad time to buy a house”. This changing narrative could give buyers more leeway to push back on prices, Dean said.
Jennifer Wauhob, president of HAR and agent for Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Gary Greene, said an increase in inventory in May could also help alleviate some of the competition for homebuyers.
“Hopefully we can start to see signs of normality in terms of supply, demand and price in the coming months,” Wauhob said.
The housing value data comes from one of the Zillow Home Value Indexes. The listed value is based on single family homes, condos and co-ops with a home value between the 35th and 65th percentile in a market. Values are adjusted for short-term seasonal fluctuations. The data is updated on the third Thursday of each month with the values of the previous month.
Zillow’s Home Value Index data represents an estimate of the typical home value in a given geographic area, such as a state or zip code. The data on this page is intended to compare regions and illustrate trends over time – it is not necessarily an indication of the value of a single-detached home.
Texas is a non-disclosure state, which means buyers, sellers, landlords, and real estate agents are not required to disclose the price of a property once it is sold. This makes calculating exact house prices and values trickier for members of the public who do not have a real estate license and cannot access local Multiple Listing Services (MLS) data.
Zillow is a member of various local MLSs throughout the state of Texas, which allows the company to access some of the same data available to real estate agents.
Zillow uses MLS pricing data in combination with other data points such as square footage, location, number of bathrooms, photographs, comparable homes, days on market, trends market, seasonal changes, and publicly available records of tax assessments to create a property level home value estimate for the business calls a Zestimate.
Estimates are tracked over time across zip codes, metro areas, and states to create the Zillow Home Value Index (ZHVI) data used in this article. For the Houston area, Zillow reports that its median error rate for Zestimates on listed properties is 1.9%. The median error rate increases by 5.6% for Houston properties not listed.
Many real estate professionals have criticized Zillow’s Zestimate because values can sometimes be several thousand dollars higher or lower than the eventual sale price of a specific property. Problems with Zestimates have been partially blamed the company finally ended its home buying program.
However, ZHVI data aggregates thousands of Zestimates across zip codes and metros, which means errors on an individual property will have less impact on area-wide home value estimates. .
In Texas, it is always recommended that homeowners work directly with real estate appraisers and real estate agents to get the most accurate picture of single-detached home values.