Austin-Round Rock Metro Area On Verge Of Housing Crisis: Report

Website 24/7 Wall St. included Austin-Round Rock in list of 15 U.S. cities that could soon experience a housing crisis. (Shutterstock )

AUSTIN, TX — The Austin-Round Rock metro area is on the verge of a housing crisis, according to a new study.

The website 24/7 Wall St. has compiled a list of 15 U.S. cities designated as being in a housing crisis as determined by an analysis of median home prices. Given that reckoning, the region was found to have experienced a 62 percent spike in home prices as compared to the period before the U.S. recession. The median household for the region was found to be $73,800, with the 10-year population growth at 32.8 percent.

The upshot: Current median home price in Austin-Round Rock now hovers at $302,000 versus $186,250 before the American recession. While price upticks can be healthy, analysts noted, exponential growth can lead to market instability. Interest rates, delinquency rates and other factors also play a role in this slide into instability, according to researchers.

"Reviewing quarterly median home price data for 123 metropolitan statistical areas from real estate data firm ATTOM Data Solutions, 24/7 Wall St. identified 15 U.S. metropolitan areas where home prices are at least 20% higher than at their nearest pre-recession peak," researchers wrote in their report. "In several of these cities, prices are over 50 percent above that level."

But there is some good news on the horizon: The Austin Board of Realtors found home prices are beginning to stabilize. "In the first quarter of the year, the median price of a single-family home in the Austin-Round Rock MSA increased by just 0.2 percent, which is a much smaller margin compared to previous years. Between 2012 and 2015, we saw price increases as high as 9 percent," Kevin P. Scanlan, current ABR president, said in a prepared statement.


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