Price increases abating? Home inventory up?
It all sounds good to many Fort Worth area Realtors, who are ready for a more stable housing market.
““We just finished going through a crazy 18 months or so where we had less than three quarters of a month of inventory, which is just crazy,” said Bart Calahan, a Realtor with Coldwell Banker Realty and the 2023 president of the Greater Fort Worth Association of Realtors. “It’s hard to sell when there’s nothing to sell.”
In January, the median price of a home in Fort Worth was $320,000, down $20,000 from December. What is up, notes Calahan, is the housing inventory. Those are good signs for Realtors and for buyers, he said.
“From my viewpoint, the market is stabilizing, which hopefully means the volatility is behind us,” said Calahan.
Although prices are similar to what they were a year earlier, inventory is higher. In January 2022, inventory was 0.7 months supply. It is now 2.1 months. That’s still low, but for Calahan and other Realtors that’s something that gives them an opportunity to sell.
More homes are coming on the market. The Walsh Ranch development on the west side of Fort Worth is adding 224 new homes, its largest residential phase since 2020.
“We’re excited to deliver this many homesites in a new neighborhood at Walsh as we know this will bring interested buyers much-needed choice in what has been a very tight home market for Fort Worth and Tarrant and Parker County in recent months,” said Jim Henry, senior vice president of community operations and Republic Property Group.
The delivery of homesites at the Brook Hollow neighborhood will represent completion of about 35% of the initial Walsh residential phases planned since opening in 2018 and the largest residential phase in Walsh since 2020. The 1,600-acre residential development at Walsh is currently home to 2,500 residents.
More homes are likely on the way for Fort Worth as well.
In January, the City Plan Commission approved a project that will bring more than 1,600 homes on 495 acres as part of a project called Lone Star at Liberty Trails. The project from Arlington-based homebuilder DR Horton is located west of Texas Motor Speedway, north of Texas 114 and south of Sam Reynolds Road.
Also approved by the commission was an addition to the Ventana project located south of Joplin Blues Lane and west of Jeffrey Dunn Parkway in southwest Fort Worth. That project, Ventana Phases 6-8, totals about 204 acres and would add 538 single-family homes to the area.
John Laudenslager, a commercial Realtor with Northern Crain who does some residential work, said many builders are offering interest rate “buydowns” to help customers afford a new home. A temporary buydown reduces the buyer’s monthly payments for the first year or so when a seller or builder subsidizes the interest rate the borrower pays. It was widely used in the 1980s when mortgage rates were also high.
“I’ve seen that happen quite a bit because it doesn’t impact the value of the home,” he said.
even as the housing market returns to some sort of normalcy, Laudenslager expects some homebuilders here to offer some different options to make homes more affordable, he said.
“I’ve worked with some builders down in the Hill Country who are doing these build-to-rent homes,” he said. Affordability has become a key topic among Realtors, he said.
“How we do that is a key question going forward,” he said.
Bob Francis is business editor for the Fort Worth Report. Contact him at email@example.com. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.
At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.
This article first appeared on Fort Worth Report and is republished here under a Creative Commons license.