Every week, we ask a Houston real estate professional for their thoughts on the top three stories from the week before.
This week, we talked with Ashton Martini, a broker associate with Martha Turner Properties in The Heights and Inner Loop of Houston. Martini is a recipient of the Houston Association of Realtors’ “20 Under 40” rising stars in real estate award for this year, and was No. 1 in listing and buyers and a Circle of Excellence member for Martha Turner last year. He is the founder/team captain of the Martha Turner MS150 Team, a cycling team for charity, and donates a portion of every closing to the MS150, in addition to donating to other charities as well.
Houston Agent (HA): In your opinion, can agents live without the MLS? Why or why not?
Ashton Martini (AM): No. There’s so much information, and it’s our only real link to the general public. It is accessible anywhere in the world. Houston’s MLS is one of the best sites in the nation, and it contains elements that other MLSs don’t have. It is very user-friendly and geared towards the consumer.
HA: Do you see Houston’s housing market returning to its pre-recession level in the near future? Why or why not?
AM: Yes. Houston’s housing market is very, very strong and probably past the pre-recession levels. Pretty much every aspect of the market is strong, specifically single-family homes. The inventory is so low and the demand is so high that the market is incredible throughout the city. We are seeing tons of multiple offers and a lot of bidding wars. They have died down a little bit, but we’ve had houses with 20 offers of more within 24 hours. Because these factors are so strong, I really don’t see an end to what’s going on here in the near future.
HA: Are you seeing many foreclosures in your area? Why do you think that is?
AM: No, I haven’t seen any. The markets that I work in (downtown and inside the Loop) are very stable and there are a lot of executives in the areas. As we head to the next quarter, I predict that the housing market will remain stable, especially with the bidding wars and low inventory – I believe the entire city has 3.2 months of inventory right now. It is definitely a seller’s market.