Austin

Articles that we've written that are especially relevant to the Austin, TX area.

January 2017 housing market statistics

It looks like Austin’s surrounding areas have caught up to the cities low inventory levels, with Williamson County at 1.8 months of inventory and Hays at 2.5. Not surprisingly, the city of Austin itself sits at the lowest inventory of 1.4 months, making the whole Austin-area an average of around two months. What does this mean for potential homebuyers? It means that even if you’re looking outside of Austin proper, the market is going to be competitive!

First time home buyers searching for homes for sale in Austin might have to expand their search to the south or east where inventory is a bit higher, and prices are a bit lower. There are still great houses available near the city center, but they will cost you. The median home price in Austin right

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advice from a real estate tax expert

It’s tax time again, which means that most people are gathering their documentation and counting their deductions. However, many people, homeowners, and investment property owners especially, don’t realize that they could be saving much more money than they are currently. Property owners are afforded all sorts of tax breaks and incentives that can sometimes be overlooked by those who are not 'in the know.' In many cases, employing the help of a CPA rather than doing your taxes yourself can garner a much larger tax return. We caught up with Brandon Hall from The Real Estate CPA to learn a little bit more about homeowner tax advantages, investor tax incentives, and why employing a CPA is a smart move. 

 

Now, you might be wondering, why are there

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January 2017 Austin Market Statistics

Surprise, surprise, it looks like our Austin housing market is showing signs of normalization. In fact, many economists predict that our market will begin to correct itself sometime in 2017. The Austin Board of Realtors, in its monthly market statistics press release, reported another record-breaking year for Central Texas home sales in 2017, but concurred that the market is steadying.

 

"The Central Texas housing market is slowly beginning to align with long-term historical trends. Homes are spending more time on the market and the pace of both home sales and price growth is slowing,” said Brandy Guthrie, 2017 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS­®. “This normalization does not necessarily mean a weakening housing market, but a return to

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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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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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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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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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Home prices continued to climb last quarter to levels not seen since late 2006. Throughout all of this, however, home sales are remaining level and affordability hasn’t suffered too much - thanks to lower mortgage rates. According to TheMortgageReports.com, “Last quarter, more than six in 10 U.S. homes were ‘affordable’ to households earning the national median income, assuming that household used a 30-year conventional mortgage to finance the home, made a modest down payment on the property, and carried good credit scores.”

However, some sources are warning that homes may become too expensive for many first time home buyers as time goes on. Due to unexpected election results, mortgage rates are rising to new 7-month highs, and economists fear they

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 Austin October 2016 Housing Market Update

Home sales in the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) are on the rise, however, inside Austin’s official city limits, it’s a different story. The Austin Board of Realtors (ABoR) recently released their market statistics that show less than one in three central Texas homes were sold in the Austin-Round Rock MSA, and less than one in five homes sold in the Central Texas region were actually sold within the city.

Inside the city of Austin, single-family home sales decreased 4.5 percent in September 2016 to 746 home sales. The Austin-Round Rock MSA shows an increase of 1.3 percent year over year to 2,576 homes sold. Across Central Texas, the number of homes sold rose 6.1 percent.

This shows that people are moving to central Texas,

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