Dallas-Fort Worth Builders Sell Record Number of Homes in Spring

Builders saw strong buyer traffic at the start of the year and are picking up the pace on more construction.

Dallas-Fort Worth builders sold a record number of new homes in the spring, seeing better-than-expected traffic as buyers faced a lack of other options on the market.

Local builders closed 14,397 home sales from April through June, up 4.7% from the same period a year ago, according to Residential Strategies, a Dallas-based housing market research firm that tracks primarily single-family home construction.

Following a slowdown in buyer demand late last year as higher mortgage rates sent many buyers to the sidelines, builders in the spring sold many of the homes they had since accumulated, said Ted Wilson, principal of Residential Strategies.

“Everybody’s had to rev up their start machine again to replace that inventory,” Wilson said.

At the end of 2022, builders pulled back on starting new construction at the fastest pace since 2009 in response to the slower market spurred by higher interest rates.

They have since put their foot back on the pedal, beginning construction of 14,795 homes last quarter, approaching the number of homes started a year before, according to Residential Strategies.

A low level of existing inventory on the market, plus discounts and incentives from builders such as interest-rate buydowns, may have pushed some buyers toward new construction.

“The market just is amazingly strong right now,” Wilson said.

Real estate agent Anthony Cedano of Rogers Healy and Associates said he has seen his clients gravitate toward new homes, not finding enough pre-owned options.

“What’s available on the [pre-owned] market, it’s just nothing that’s super attractive,” Cedano said, adding that with builders, buyers don’t have to worry about competing bids.

Scott Dettmer, Dallas-Fort Worth division manager for William Ryan Homes — a Chicago-based builder that recently relaunched its presence in the region after exiting the area in 2009 — said he has seen buyer traffic return to more traditional spring and summer norms.

“Obviously, there was a bit of a pullback at the end of last year and the early part of this year,” Dettmer said. “I think a lot of people were waiting to see if the other shoe drops, and you know, it really hasn’t.”

Between new starts and ongoing builds, about 14,000 fewer homes were under construction in the second quarter than a year prior. Because of that, builders have reported shorter construction times and leveled-out costs, according to Residential Strategies.

“Being able to tell somebody, when they buy or purchase a home from you, a good target of when that home will be complete and having confidence that you’re going to hit it, that’s a big thing we didn’t have for a while there,” Dettmer said. “That is nice to have back.”

Source: Dallas Morning News