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Realtors see Austin-area market make a healthier shift with price drops and inventory increase

"Some are getting a little more aggressive and dropping their price $25,000, $50,000, $100,000," said Realtor Ian Grossman.

AUSTIN, Texas — As Austin-area housing inventory rises, Realtors are seeing signs of the market cooling off a bit. 

Driving around Grayrock Ridge in the Circle C community, you'll find a rare sight these days – for-sale sign after for-sale sign.

"When inventory was at its lowest on any given weekend, you might see maybe five houses on the market in all the Circle C as the spring went on, maybe closer to 10," said Ian Grossman, Realtor with Fenton Grossman Group at Douglas Elliman Real Estate. "As of today, we have about 40 homes on the market,"

Grossman said that, for the most part, over the past two years, there's been less than a month of housing inventory on the market. Grossman said now he is seeing closer to three months' worth.

His viral TikTok videos once focused on the painful market for buyers but he has transitioned to sellers getting wake-up calls.

That's in part because of recession fears and higher interest rates slowing buyers down.

"So just the same home that they could purchase in January, you know, is costing them way much, much more," said Grossman. 

He said homes went from selling in a couple of days to sitting on the market for a couple of weeks or even over a month, which he said was normal pre-pandemic, but it's making sellers nervous.

"Some sellers are doing more moderate price drops," said Grossman. "Some are getting a little more aggressive and dropping their price $25,000, $50,000, $100,000 just to attract more interest."

Buyers offering 20% to 30% over the asking price aren't so common anymore. 

"You might have to go a few thousand over to lock up the home," said Grossman. "We're mostly seeing multiple offers after a major price drop from sellers." 

Before the pandemic, in 2019, the median home price in the Austin metro area was around $325,000. In ABoR's most recent report for May, the median sales price for the entire Austin-Round Rock MSA was $550,000. 

Even though inventory and listing periods are close to what we saw in 2019, Grossman said prices won't follow the trend.

"I don't see prices going back down to those pre-pandemic levels," said Grossman. "We might see a stabilization, maybe a trend closer to around the $500,000 mark or maybe a little lower." 

So while it's still a seller's market, buyers at least have options.

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