street-with-homes1-225x300This year has gotten off to quite an exciting start in the world of real estate. After years of falling home prices, distressed values, negative equity and high vacancy rates, it seems the national market is making its way toward higher ground. When it comes to regional success, many states have seen dramatic improvements in their respective housing markets. But one state, however, shines above the rest – the great state of Texas. Yes, it seems the Lone Star State is leading the charge when it comes to building a healthy, robust housing market.

Houston, the fourth-largest city in the U.S. and the largest city in the state of Texas, was recently hailed as the healthiest housing market in the United States by financial website 24/7 Wall Street, which cited Houston’s growing job market, low vacancy rate and affordable home prices. According to the site, Houston’s job growth rate jumped 3.6% year-over-year – higher than any other major housing market. The vacancy rate for “Space City” was recorded at 3.0%, which is higher than many of the other markets studied, but is still impressive. Other factors that contributed to Houston’s coveted rank included a booming commercial real estate market and strong construction activity.

When it comes to distressed properties, Texas remains one of the states with the highest numbers of completed foreclosures. CoreLogic reported recently that there were 58,000 completed Texas foreclosures as of November 2012 and 24/7 Wall Street reports that with 7.7 foreclosures out of every 1,000 housing units, Houston alone had a larger foreclosure inventory than many of the other contenders. Nevertheless, Houston’s market continues to thrive, unlike many other markets that are burdened by foreclosures, which oftentimes end up stagnant with high DOM stats and fewer homeowners willing to sell due to depressed values.

All the aforementioned market traits combined with affordable home prices may be Houston’s golden ticket to a sustainable recovery. According to 24/7 Wall Street, asking prices for Houston remained fairly low, despite growing demand. The median asking price for a home in Houston was reported to be only $86.03 per square foot.

Although Houston earned the top rank in the list of healthiest housing markets, a number of other Texas cities also placed. San Antonio earned the number 4 spot, Austin came in fifth and Fort Worth came in ninth. Visit 24/7 Wall St.??online to see the full list.

If you’re considering a home purchase or refinance in any of these Texas markets, let The Decker Group help you find the right mortgage program for your needs. With current interest rates remaining near record lows, it’s still a great time to buy! Call our office at 972-591-3097 to learn more.