Industry News

Real estate records break in Houston

Local economy makes gains

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Home sales in the Houston metropolitan area grew 0.9 percent in October from a year ago, posting a record-high for the month, according to statistics released by the Houston Association of Realtors. Total property sales for October reached 5,624, compared to 5,574 sales in October 2003. Additionally, year-to-date existing-home sales continue to rise ahead of last year's record-setting pace, with 60,334 listings sold so far this year, a gain of more than 9 percent from the same period last year. "The continuation of highly favorable interest rates coupled with a net gain of 24,600 new jobs in the past 12-months in Houston resulted in an all-time record for housing sales for October," said HAR Chairman and Stewart Title Chief Economist Ted C. Jones, Ph.D. "Last week, 30-year residential mortgage rates were more than a quarter of percent less that the same week in 2003, portending continued strength in the housing sector. Depending on the price range and area, however, there are some...