Homecity blog

   

2016 was a roller coaster of a year, and 2017 is likely to have some surprises in store as well. There are already changes being felt since Donald Trump won the presidential election, and while this change is unlikely to alter the fundamentals of real estate in the US, we expect there will be more. 

There has already been a slight jump in mortgage rates, although many predictions don’t see them rising above five percent. Even so, that increase in percentage points could mean the difference between being able to afford a home and not – especially for millennials and first-time home buyers. Supreme Lending’s John McClellan, in his 2017 Mortgage Forecast, showed how even a couple mortgage points could add hundreds to a monthly payment.

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It’s that time of year again! Time for new homeowners to file for their homestead exemption! If you bought a home in Texas in 2016, you have until April 30th to file for a residential homestead exemption. A homestead exemption refers to exemptions from property tax that homeowners can claim. Homestead exemptions remove part of your home’s value from taxation, so they lower your taxes. For example, if your home is appraised at $35,000, and you qualify for a $15,000 exemption, you will pay taxes on the home as if it was worth only $20,000.

As a homeowner, you may apply for a homestead exemption on your principal residence ONLY. This means the home's owner must live at the home as of January 1st of the tax year, and be an individual (not a corporation or

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It’s that time of year again! Time for new homeowners to file for their homestead exemption! If you bought a home in Texas in 2016, you have until April 30th to file for a residential homestead exemption. A homestead exemption refers to exemptions from property tax that homeowners can claim. Homestead exemptions remove part of your home’s value from taxation, so they lower your taxes. For example, if your home is appraised at $35,000, and you qualify for a $15,000 exemption, you will pay taxes on the home as if it was worth only $20,000.

As a homeowner, you may apply for a homestead exemption on your principal residence ONLY. This means the home's owner must live at the home as of January 1st of the tax year, and be an individual (not a corporation or

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dallas housing market stats december 2016

Most people who live in the DFW area know that the North Texas real estate market was hot in 2016. With home sales breaking records, up 13.5 percent from the year prior, this was not your typical November. What you might not know, however, is that several North Texas areas topped Realtor.com’s list of most searched zip codes this year. In fact, every single one of the top ten searched zip codes were in Texas! 

While the very top four searched were in the Waco area (blame the hit cable TV show Fixer Upper for that), the rest were in the DFW Area. Carrollton, Hurst, Bedford, Plano, Dallas, and Arlington rounded out the list, and we can’t say we’re surprised. North Texas Real Estate Information Systems (NTREIS) recently released their latest market

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The winter months are typically the slowest time of the year for real estate sales. However, November 2016 broke the mold. Single family home sales experienced double-digit growth across the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), in an unusual end of the year surge. 

The Austin area's growth doesn’t seem to be slowing down for the holidays, and this growth is fueling home sales throughout the region. Single-family home sales throughout the MSA jumped 15.8 percent year-over-year to 2,055 homes sold in November 2016. As for Austin-proper, home sales jumped 13.7 percent to 656 homes sold. Hayes, Travis, and Williamson counties also saw annual growth in the double digits as well.

Mark Sprague, State Director of Information Capital

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As affordability becomes more of an issue in the Austin area, the city is working to make more affordable housing options. These homes are reserved for people at 80% or below the median income level and are usually just as beautiful as their fully priced counterparts. These housing and financial empowerment programs are designed to assist Austin’s moderate and low-income residents and families.

Affordable housing developments include all kinds of homes for people from all walks of life. This includes more than 1,400 new houses, condos, and apartments that are reserved specifically for those with lower incomes. The aim is to keep people's housing costs at no more than 30% of the household’s gross income. If the housing costs are kept at a

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New Years Eve in Dallas
Last year DFW was voted one of the worst places to spend New Year's Eve by WalletHub, but we are confident this year’s offerings will redeem us. There’s something for everyone with events ranging from black tie affairs to comic conventions and comedy shows to drink specials and dive bars. Whether you want to splurge on a fancy night out or simply drink and say sayonara to 2016, we’ve picked some of our favorite event offerings for New Year's Eve in Dallas.  


1. Lights All Night: For those of you that are into Electronic Dance Music, Lights All Night has a lineup that is sure to please. In its sixth year, promoters stacked the bill with favorites like Above&Beyond, Deadmau5, RL Grime, and Zedd. The two-night electronic festival attracts around 40,000

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Austenites definitely get into the holiday spirit, even though the weather can be warm and there is no snow on the ground. There are tons of new things to do each year, and there are many comprehensive lists online. However, there are some holiday traditions that are practically rites of passage for a new Austin resident. These are the events that have been happening for years, yet can't be missed. Some of them are quirky, and all of them are fun. Check out some of our favorite Austin holiday traditions!

1. Visit 37th street to look at the holiday Christmas lights. Seeing this street's spectacle is unique, awe-inspiring, and a required holiday activity. The tradition started over twenty years ago with one festive neighbor, and as the years have gone by

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Market conditions have remained predictable in 2016, with not a whole lot changing since the year began. Low unemployment levels, as well as low mortgage rates, have kept the market active despite a lack of homes on the market. However, lack of inventory has been one of the major factors inhibiting market growth. Due to the growing popularity of the DFW area, it doesn’t look like it will rise anytime soon. 

North Texas Real Estate Information Systems (NTREIS) recently released their latest market statistics (October stats released in November) that backed up this prediction. New listings were down 0.3 percent in the DFW area, sitting at 10,610. Inventory shrank 8.9 percent to 24,545 homes for sale. Closed sales were down 2.7 percent in October 2016

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Austin Housing Market Update November 2016

New home sales are up 38% in the City of Austin, providing some much-needed supply into our low-inventory housing market. Even so, demand remains high for already built homes inside Austin proper, despite much lower prices in the surrounding areas. Single-family home sales jumped 7.5 percent in October 2016, despite remaining relatively the same throughout much of early 2016. 

Median sales prices continue to increase in Austin, as is to be expected with such high demand, jumping 6.5 percent year over year to $332,250. However, the median price remains much lower in areas like Hays County at $249,945 and Williamson County at $255,000. In the entire Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), prices rose 9.3 percent to $279,000.

Despite

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