Top Five Areas with the Hottest Real Estate Traffic

This is a new feature — a top five list of some aspect of the AEC (architectural, engineering, construction) community. This time we spotlight the Top Five Markets for Real Estate Traffic, as measured by the Credit Suisse Monthly Survey of Real Estate Agents for August 2012. This survey measures how much traffic real estate agents experienced compared to their expectations. Thus the survey doesn’t really measure the number of interested buyers, but rather whether the number of interested buyers exceeded expectations. Nevertheless, this is an interesting measure of real estate activity. Here are the top five:

San Antonio – With a measure of 88, real estate traffic in this area greatly exceeded expectations (any measure over 50 means expectations were exceeded). Real estate agents responding to the survey said job growth has been great lately — evidently due to shale oil developments in the area — so more people have been seeking houses.

Minneapolis – Yes, a northern area with growth! The survey reported a measure of 74 in August, the seventh consecutive month of growth. Agents in Minneapolis said low inventories and rising prices are compelling buyers to pull the trigger rather than wait around, as they had been.

Austin – This Texas community had a measure of 68 in August, and agents said increasing rents played a role. One agent said, “Rents are getting downright cruel and people are looking to owning to find some relief.”

Atlanta – This area measured 65 on the index, a big uptick from 47 in July. Agents said people feel prices have bottomed out and inventory is starting to tighten up, both of which are driving buyers.

Seattle – The coffee capital of the country also reported an index of 65 in August. Agents responding to the survey said the number of non-distressed properties on the market is rapidly shrinking, compelling buyers who don’t want the risks of buying a foreclosure to close deals. “It is not unusual to see multiple offers on properties,” one agent reported.

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