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Portland housing market continuing strong growth signs

Housing market strong in Portland
Posted at 10:03 AM, Jan 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-30 13:02:47-05

PORTLAND, Texas — Texas ended the summer selling season with continued growth in home sales and median price in most of the major markets.

The housing market remains healthy despite a shortage of homes.

The Portland housing market shows continued signs of growth. Sales rose in 2019 to 564 units, up 18.5 percent from 2018.

“I think with all the current industry going on, the Exxon project, the steel project over in Sinton, these are all bringing solid high-paying jobs into the area that are appealing,” real estate broker John Thomas said.

Lower mortgage interest rates in the recent months are also impacting local buyers.

“I have been in the business over 45 years, and I have never seen rates like this, and actually, there hasn’t been any since World War II in the 3’s (percent interest). It is just crazy,” said Thomas.

Sales are increasing but so is inventory so prices are flat. Low inventory is a challenge in many markets, setting off concerns that prices are rising faster than buyers can afford.

“Portland is heavy in higher properties," Thomas said. "Our average list price in Portland is $295,000, and we only have 24 properties under $200,000 on the market and none under $100,000,” said Thomas.

As far as the builders, they are keeping up with the demand, but they are having a tough time making money.

“It is very difficult for builders to make any money unless the house is over $200,000. So that limits the market. The hot market would be in the $180,000 range, but the builder can’t make any money building a $180,000 house, it is very difficult anyway,” said Thomas.

Home sales rose in 2019 to 564 units, up 18.5 percent from 2018's 475 units and 26 percent from 2015.

But the median sales price of $186,000 rose only 3 percent since 2015 and was off 2 percent from 2018.

Price was flat as inventory rose 6 percent just since 2018 and a whopping 22.5 percent since 2015.

Inventory throughout the county also rose 5 percent since 2018 and 1 percent since 2015.

“Affordability is not a growing concern right now in Portland. Buyers and sellers can expect steady growth in price and sales as inventory is closer to nine months where in many markets it is closer to four months. Ample inventory keeps price appreciation at a steady pace, avoiding a boom-bust scenario," said Taylor Oldroyd, President/CEO of the Corpus Christi Association of Realtors.