Every week, we ask a Houston real estate professional for their thoughts on the top three stories from the week before. This week, we featured Jacob Sudhoff, CEO of Sudhoff Properties in Houston. Since earning a real estate license at 18, Jacob turned his passion of real estate into a full-service, real estate marketing firm. Launched in August of 2011, Sudhoff Properties’ provides comprehensive sales and marketing support to new residential construction.
Houston Agent (HA): Are you finding the Houston market more competitive and buyers more aggressive because inventory is low?
Jacob Sudhoff (JS): Yes, in today’s market the buyers have to be aggressive to be able to get a home. Our company specializes most in the inner city homes and right now there is less than 15 days of inventory, and in some areas there is less than a weeks supply. I know a lot of buyers need to court sellers, but we deal more with new homes, and it’s really about the buyer getting in at the beginning of a new home construction project – that’s where they will secure the best price. When we launch a new town home community or condominium, prices are lowest at the beginning and by the end, when the inventory is low, we raise prices dramatically. Most buyers are not aware of how that works.
HA: What markets in Houston are attracting more buyers?
JS: The market off I-10 is becoming more and more desirable. According to the city, the intersection of I-10 and Beltway 8 is going to be the center of Houston by 2025. We are seeing that trend happening right now, with thousands of homes being built along I-10 corridor. Montrose is also on fire, with the velocity of growth happening there from new town homes, condominiums, and new retailers. The inner city, Rice Village and The Heights is also booming.
HA: Residential Construction jumped 13 percent in Houston back in February. What factors have led to that rise in construction?
JS: Demand. Our problem is we can’t build fast enough. We have 48 new projects launching soon. It is a massive issue and the city is overwhelmed. The engineers, the surveyors, all of our infrastructure as a city are at maximum to handle new construction right now. We are lacking sub contractors who moved onto other careers in the energy sector when the recession hit. We’ve been in a ramped-up mode in the past couple of years, and no one thought it would ramp-up this fast. Demand is continuing to increase, as more people continue to move here, and who would rather live urban than suburban. We just can’t put enough product on the ground.