Real Estate News: DHA Announces New Hires, DFW Home Prices Continue to Rise

home pricesThe Dallas Housing Authority announced two key hires last week, we have average Dallas-Fort Worth and state home prices for August, employment forecasts for the state of Texas, and a look at Compass’s latest expansion plans in this week’s roundup of real estate news.

DHA ANNOUNCES NEW HIRES FOR LEADERSHIP ROLES

The Dallas Housing Authority announced two new key hires last week — LaShonne Watts and Myriam Igoufe. Watts is the agency’s new Director of Resident Services, and Igoufe is the new Director of Housing Services for DHA’s Housing Choice Voucher program.

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Myriam Igoufe, left, and LaShonne Watts, right.

Watts was previously with the city of Dallas’ GrowSouth/Neighbor Up initiative, serving as general manager of the Red Bird area for Neighbor Up, working on community revitalization and economic development. Prior to that, she was an assistant city attorney and Southeast community prosecutor for the city of Dallas. She has a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University and a Juris Doctor from the University of California, Berkeley.  In her new position, she will be responsible for planning, coordinating and implementing services that will help residents become economically self-sufficient.

Igoufe joins DHA from the University of Arlington North Texas Regional Housing Assessment research team. In her new position, she will be responsible for making sure the agency works with property owners, landlords, and community resources to enhance affordable housing options in the neighborhoods DHA serves.

Igoufe is a recent UTA doctoral graduate in urban planning and public policy. She led the North Texas Regional Housing Assessment analysis, and has received the Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Fellowship from the U.S. Department of Transportation two years in a row. She also serves on the Equity sub-committee and Technical Advisory team for Smart Growth Dallas.

In addition to her doctorate, she holds a bachelor’s degree in political science, government and international law and a master’s degree in public administration from Lamar University.

“We are thrilled to have Ms. Watts and Dr. Igoufe join the DHA team,” says David Zappasodi, DHA’s chief operating officer. “They are bringing the next generation of insights, experience and ideas to the agency to help us continue providing much needed affordable housing resources across North Texas. We look forward to leveraging their talent as we implement innovative solutions for resident services and fair housing.”

NEW HOME SALES REMAIN STABLE IN DALLAS-FORT WORTH

New home sales in the area remained stable last month with the average new home price rising, according to the most recent HomesUSA.com New Home Sales Index. The index measures the number of Days on Market it takes to sell a new home.

For the Dallas-Fort Worth region, the DOM was relatively flat, up from 114.71 days in July to 115.15 days in August.

“Overall, Dallas-Ft. Worth new home sales numbers remain solid,” said Ben Caballero, owner of HomesUSA.com. “While Dallas-Ft. Worth shows a slightly slower sales pace, and total average monthly home sales that were flat over the last month, it remains the state’s and the nation’s number-one new home sales market.”

Statewide, the Days on Market (DOM) for new home sales remained almost unchanged at 112.97 days in August versus 112.70 days in July.

The rolling average total new home sales in the four largest markets — Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, Austin, and San Antonio — was 3,790, the highest level for the year, and an increase from the previous high of 3,743 in the prior month.

New home sales in Dallas-Fort Worth were flat in August, hitting 1,333 in both July and August.

Average new home prices statewide rose from $352,409 in July to $353,668 in August. Dallas-Fort Worth saw the biggest increase of the four major metro areas, with the average new home price jumping from $364,552 in July to $369,283 in August.

STATE EMPLOYMENT FORECAST SHOWS CONTINUED GROWTH

Texas employment will increase 2.8 percent this year with an 80 percent confidence band of 2.3 to 3.3 percent, the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas’ Texas Employment Forecast revealed.

Based on the forecast, 340,600 jobs will be added in the state this year, and employment in December 2018 will be 12.7 million.

“After incorporating recently released data from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages, Texas job growth for the first quarter of 2018 was revised down from 3.6 to 2.8 percent,” said Keith R. Phillips, Dallas Fed assistant vice president and senior economist. “Even with the downward revision, Texas jobs grew at a strong 3.1 percent annualized pace in the first half of the year. Over the past two months, jobs have decelerated slightly, growing at a pace of 2.8 percent.”

COMPASS ANNOUNCES $400M IN FUNDING, TEXAS EXPANSION PLANS

Real estate juggernaut Compass announced that it had secured $400 million in Series F financing that will allow the company to continue to expand and grow, as well as increase its investment in technology, the company announced last week.

The round of funding was led by the increasingly ubiquitous Softbank Vision Fund and Qatar Investment Authority and will bring the total capital raised by Compass to nearly $1.2 billion.

“Real estate is the largest asset class in the world, and we are excited to bring Compass technology to international markets,” said Ori Allon, Founder and Executive Chairman of Compass. “Our incredible track record of growth in the U.S. validates our vision and sets us up for the global stage. The support of our investors will strengthen the Compass mission to help everyone find their place in the world by advancing our national and global expansion and continue building our agent productivity platform through technology and innovation.”

“Compass’s continued growth is being driven by their commitment to empowering agents with best-in-class technology that helps them expand their business and better serve consumers,” said Justin Wilson, SoftBank Investment Adviser’s board representative. “We’re excited to continue to support Compass as they further invest in their data and technology capabilities to create a next generation platform for home transactions and ownership.”

The company also plans to launch in Austin, Houston, and Nashville before the end of 2018, and says its on track to reach more than $34 billion in sales volume this year, doubling their 2017 number of $14.8 billion.