Homebuilders started work on a record number of Dallas-Fort Worth homes in the second quarter as buyer demand rose by 18% from a year ago. North Texas saw 15,346 single-family home starts in the three months ending with June — the most ever for a single quarter, according to the latest data from Dallas-based housing analyst Residential Strategies. "As expected, it was another huge quarter for start activity," said Residential Strategies principal Ted Wilson. "Builders established large backlogs of new home orders in the initial months of 2021," Wilson said. North Texas builders are starting houses as fast as they can, but production obstacles are restraining construction. Wilson said for many builders, buyer demand for new homes is far outpacing their capacity to construct homes. Only 2,921 finished unsold new homes were available in the area at midyear, which amounts to an all-time-low months supply at current sales rates.
Redfin reported the bidding environment in June was less competitive as home inventory saw a modest bounce back. The brokerage said 65% of its agents' home offers faced competition last month, down from 72% the month before. Some agents see another possible factor contributing to the cooldown: buyer fatigue. With more properties to bid on and more buyers possibly dropping out of the race, the market may be shifting a bit away from its recent seller-friendly extremes.
Although it's still expected to favor sellers for the foreseeable future, several key indicators suggest the wild housing market may soon start to cool off. At least a little bit. Recent data from Seattle-based Redfin Corp. found the number of homes newly listed for sale surpassed 2019 levels during the four weeks that ended July 4. That's the first time this year that's happened. Homebuying demand has also recently — somewhat — tapered off. Realtor.com found similar indications in its June housing market report. Newly listed homes were up 5.5% nationally year over year, and 11.7% higher in large metros in that same time period. Although pending home sales were up 17% year over year, Redfin says it was the smallest increase in almost a year, since the four-week period ending July 19, 2020. Pending sales were down 6% from the four-week period ending May 30, compared to a 3% decrease in the same period in 2019.
Daryl Fairweather, chief economist at Redfin, said, "It seems that we're at a turning point in the housing market, where prices have gone up so much that buyers are backing off and home sales are starting to get sluggish," Fairweather said. "Sellers are noticing this and are wanting to sell at the top — they feel like this is as good as it gets."