Good news/bad news for Houstonians: Bill Gilmer, director of the Institute for Regional Forecasting at the University of Houston, predicted that the single-family home market will not be hurt by the lower oil prices, as there is a shortage of homes and many families still seeking homes. This unmet demand in the residential real estate market have pushed average home prices up and made Houston less affordable than previously compared to other markets nationally.
However, in recent years, it has still been more cost effective to own a home than to rent one. This may change soon, as 2014 saw a peak in multifamily construction. For 2014, Gilmer said the city should permit 22,000 units, but by third quarter the city has already permitted 9,000 more units to come. Gilmer feels that is the first clear signal that the market is getting ahead of itself.