Austin has the second-most stable housing market in the U.S., according to the latest Multi-Indicator Market Index — a proprietary survey created by Freddie Mac, a quasi-governmental residential mortgage capital source.
The four data sets analyzed in each market include the number of purchase applications to secure conventional loans as a proportion of total housing stock, loan payments as a proportion of income, number of delinquent home loans within the area and employment rate.
Austin’s composite score is 96.6 — second to Fresno, California, which has a 99.4 score.
The healthy range in the MIMI survey is 80 to 120 as a composite and as each of the analyzed categories. Freddie Mac also detects which way each score is trending and whether the market is in danger of elevating to a bubble or declining.
In every category, Austin is improving and there is nothing to indicate a change in those trends.
Austin’s weakest score is in the category of purchase applications, posting 71.3 — below the benchmark of 80, which is considered healthy. That may indicate there is not enough inventory for buyers, particularly in the price range they can afford. Austin’s affordability has been lamented by the Austin Board of Realtors in recent months as average and median home prices continue to escalate without a commensurate increase in household incomes.
Austin’s highest score, not surprisingly is employment, posting a 108.9 score.
Freddie Mac surveys 100 metro areas for the MIMI survey but only 47 of them ranked in the stable range. The most stable markets other than Fresno and Austin are Honolulu, Salt Lake City and Los Angeles.
The historical data for the MIMI dates back to the 1990s.
Austin reached its highest values in June 2006, which is when the composite national score also was at its apex — just before the subprime mortgage meltdown.