The Great Recession hit hard and fought dirty. Now homebuyers ‒‒ particularly those looking for high-end homes ‒‒ are hitting back, and they’re swinging with all they’ve got.
Luxury Sales Up
As the Great Recession ebbs deeper into history, the home sales market finds better footing every day. At most price levels, sales have slowed this past year ‒‒ by some sources, sales of moderately priced homes have shrunk by as much as 25 percent, and the Dallas Morning News recently reported that sales of pre-owned homes in DFW are flat compared to last year.
None of which has stopped the Dallas luxury market from experiencing a mini-boom. According to the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University and the North Texas Real Estate Information Systems, luxury home sales in 2014 are up by more than 53 percent over last year, and the Morning News reports that there have been more than 100 closings of properties worth $1 million or higher sine the beginning of the year.
What’s for Sale?
Real estate listing sites such as viprealestate.com show page after page (after page) of homes selling for $1 million or more. VIP Realty’s pages alone show 100s of such properties ‒‒ from single-family homes in various Dallas neighborhoods to high-end condos in the city’s trendiest districts. The Real Estate Center claims more than 850 such properties, though the date looks at houses in the DFW area in general, rather than just Dallas.
Cash or Credit?
According to the Dallas Morning news, investors stung by the Wall Street cave-in at the end of 2008 are investing in their own homes instead of the stock market. Surprisingly or not, many luxury buyers are purchasing their homes with cash or very little financing. Those buying with mortgages are, despite tightened regulations, finding financing opportunities plentiful, as banks look to court high-value buyers who represent less risk.
According to the Texas Association of Realtors, though luxury home sales in Dallas and the surrounding Metroplex are up again ‒‒ they rose 22 percent in 2013, compared to 2012 ‒‒ they made up only about 1 percent of total home sales in the area.
Still, a steady availability of $1 million-plus homes means it’s a great time to invest in high-end real estate in Big D. “Million-dollar homes are playing an increasingly important role in the Texas housing market,” said Dan Hatfield, chairman of the Texas Association of Realtors. “The housing slump is behind us and as Texas’ economy and population continue to accelerate, we’re going to see increasing development and demand in larger, higher-priced homes with luxury amenities.”