Allandale homes for sale October 2010 [Email address: allandalereporter #AT# yahoo.com - replace #AT# with @ ] Tom Linehan

Driving around the neighborhood these days it appears there are an unusual number of houses up for sale. I was wondering if this is indeed the case. Are there more homes for sale in Allandale today than two or three years ago before the economy went bad? What about home values in the area? Are they holding up? We know it’s a tough real estate market nationwide, but what is happening with real estate in our neighborhood?

I turned to some local realtors to get the story. Terry Echols, realtor with Keller Williams Realty, says, “there are currently 26 listings on the market in the Gullett portion of Allandale. Of those, 6 are under contract. This is a higher number of listings on the market than, say, 6 or 7 years ago, when folks planned to stay in their homes a long time. That mentality is changing.”

Terry added: “What you’ll see is that Allandale experienced a market slow-down beginning in 2007, based on price [going down] and Days on Market [going up]. Another factor affecting the median price is that, for a while, buyers were looking for smaller properties. But in early 2010, all these trends began to reverse, not sharply, but slowly.”

Lee Albright, a realtor with Coldwell Banker, sums up as follows: “Home sales in Allandale have slowed, although not drastically. You are seeing homes take longer to sell and sellers often having to reduce their price along the way. This said, well-priced Allandale homes in good condition are still selling well. With historically low interest rates (around 4.25 % for a 30 yr fixed rate loan) I would expect home sales to stay steady in the near future.”

Realtor Sibyl Dyke with Avenue One Properties agrees. “Things have slowed a bit since school started and the demand fostered by the federal government’s tax credit program ended; however, Allandale is still quite active. Of the homes that are on the market now, the average number of days they have been active is approximately 90. This is a shorter amount of time than the overall Austin market and is considered to be fairly short in terms of national averages. If an Allandale property is in good condition and is priced right, it will likely sell very quickly. Those that have fallen into this category have sold in around 7 to 14 days.”

With regard to prices, Sibyl said, “Prices in the area have remained stable, and although fewer homes have sold this year to date, the price per square foot has increased slightly. This holds true for many areas ‘inside the loop’ although other areas and some ‘high end’ homes have not fared as well.”

Ruth Vela, realtor with Avenue One Properties, provided me with 5 years of statistics for the area and offered this analysis. “Looking closely at the numbers of sales in Allandale during the same time periods for the last 5 years, it is interesting to note that our prices have not dropped drastically. Between the years 2008 to 2009 the sales price drop was a little over $11,000. This year compared to last year it’s right under $11,000. The days on the market has increased by about 14 days on average, and the average price has dropped slightly by just under $3.00 per square foot.

Allandale Neighborhood Real Estate History

Year Sold

Average Price

Average

Sq Ft

Average Price per

Sq Ft

Average Days on Market

Total Sold

2010

$285,594

1731

$171.70

62

56

2009

$296,587

1731

$174.67

48

61

2008

$307,631

1755

$177.27

53

73

2007

$314,325

1769

$181.43

27

56

2006

$260,573

1697

$158.65

24

87

2005

$242,381

1740

$142.40

35

82

“Working in real estate these days is challenging and interesting, and the media seems to have done Austin an injustice. Looking at our Allandale neighborhood alone, you can see that we don’t quite fit the norm. Yes, there seems to be a high inventory of homes for sale, but the days on the market and the average prices have not dramatically changed in comparison to other major metro areas in the nation.

“Allandale will always be considered central, and as things get tighter in demand and our highways are more congested we might expect more people to move into town instead of hassling with traffic. I think the demand and prices in Allandale are probably one of the steadiest in town. It is a great neighborhood due to its location and amenities that are close by. As the graph shows, it has been quietly keeping pace without too many drastic swings in either direction.”