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Flash sale craze alters Austin real estate market: City among tops in nation in new trend

Flash sale craze forever alters local real estate market

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See a "For Sale" sign in front of the house of your dreams? You'd better act fast. Picasa

See a "For Sale" sign in front of the house of your dreams? You'd better act fast — a new report says that Austin has one of the fastest housing markets in the United States.

The data comes from Seattle-based real estate firm Redfin, which has coined the term "Real Estate Flash Sales" for homes that go under contact within only hours of listing. Austin ranks No. 5 on the nationwide list, counting 163 flash sales within the past five months. 

Dallas and Houston pulled ahead, at Nos. 4 and 3 in the ranking, with 184 and 188 flash sales during the five-month time period.

 Austin ranks No. 5 on the nationwide list, counting 163 flash sales within the past five months.  

"Metropolitan areas in Texas and non-coastal regions are the best places to find a real estate bargain," states a new study. 

ZipRealty, an online real estate broker, compared median home sale prices to median household income to determine that Texas metro areas are the best places to find a real estate bargain.

Dallas-Fort Worth ranks No. 1 on its list of the Most Affordable Housing Markets of 2013, followed by Houston at No. 2 and Austin at No. 7. 

In DFW, where the median household income is $47,418 and the median home price is $249,950, the ratio is 5.27; in Houston, it's 5.43 (considering a $44,761 median income and a $243,000 median home price). Austin's median household income is $48,950, and a median home price is $300,000, yielding a 6.13 ratio.