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What’s a house worth in Austin? It depends …

This data shows why the average price of about $278,000 in “Austin” is not especially helpful in more specific discussions of property values. You can also see why my answer to “What’s the price per square foot in Austin?” is always, “It depends.” Continue reading

What’s underneath the home price rise?

All of the proportional sales growth in this market over the past 10 years has happened above $250,000, and the fastest growth was above $400,000 — even though the median price remained below $200,000 until last year. Pay attention to the difference between average price growth and actual value appreciation. Continue reading

2012 In Review

In Austin, there are no mixed signals. Living and working here, you can feel the growth. The pace of the real estate market feels like 2006 again, and maybe even a little more frenetic! My Austin Market Dashboard helps to explain 2012, and gives us a glimpse into 2013. Continue reading

Capitol Water Forum — comments from H2O4Texas

The “Financing The Solution” water forum at the Texas Capitol yesterday drew an overflow crowd and enthusiastic response. I have written hear before about water and this forum. It will prove to be an important step toward getting the Texas Water Plan funded in this legislative session. Continue reading

Welcome the rain, but don’t forget the drought!

The Texas legislature only meets every two years. With two years or less of our water in storage at this point, this Legislative session is the time for action. Please attend next week’s Water Forum if you can, and help to spread the word on this issue and this Forum. Continue reading

Water — this is a non-partisan issue

What if Apple and Samsung had decided in recent months and years that they couldn’t trust Central Texas to provide the infrastructure necessary to support their growth? What if the next AMD or Motorola or GM makes that decision and moves somewhere else instead? What if growth continues, but builders can’t get building permits? Those are all real possibilities unless we take action now, during this Legislative session. Continue reading

About the “fiscal cliff” bill

The National Association of REALTORS® has done a good job reporting the effect on the housing industry of the American Taxpayer Relief Act passed by Congress this week.  Beyond the change in personal income tax rates that have filled virtually all news accounts, the Act also extends mortgage cancellation relief that has made short sale a … Continue reading

We’ve had quite enough help, thank you!

The recent housing crisis was in very large part caused by our government and quasi-governmental agencies (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) creating incentives for mortgage lenders to make loans that they would not have made otherwise.  I’ll be happy to discuss this, but in my opinion it’s incontrovertible. In response to the crisis it created, … Continue reading