After years of planning the culmination of a dream is beginning here in Aggieland. It will cause big changes in Bryan and College Station Real Estate. The announcement that the biomedical corridor of Research Valley will be one of three areas that are funded for the production and distribution of vaccines in cases of bioterrorism or epidemics is a true game changer.
Though no one knows the full impact yet of this deal it is the largest single grant source to come to Texas since NASA and it's in our own College Station back yard. Amazing to think of! The grant itself should create about 1000 new jobs for our area. In addition to that many other companies are indicating that they would like to come here to work in collaberation with the vaccine center and A&M's Health Science Center. Imagine the amount of new jobs that this whole deal can create. These new jobs will create new demand for College Station and Bryan real estate. Everything from luxury real estate to low end condominiums will be affected as all job levels including new supporting area jobs will be affected.
Eventually because of the scarcity of new home starts in the last few years, we should even have a housing shortage. Your real estate values will be going up quite a bit in all likelihood. What this means immediatly is that those who have been planning on upgrading their current housing situation should pursue that plan sooner as opposed to later. If you can keep your current home and rent it out that is an optimal solution as both your current College Station home and your new College Station home will increase in value. That is the best of both worlds! Even if not, taking advantage of todays interest rates, todays values and todays situation with appraisals that is holding back the growth of real estate in College Station will almost certainly pay off.
Another word to the wise is that anyone who is wanting to venture into investment property in College Station should do it now as opposed to later. Again, the current interest rates, low values and the economic situation around the country will come into play in your favor. With investment properties do keep in mind that is it very hard to have more than 4 mortgages as many banks won't allow it and usually 25% down is required.
For more Bryan and College Station real estate advice call your College Station Real Estate Agent, Chris Tesch! I'll be happy to have a complimentary consultation with you to point out ways that you can optimize your real estate position!
Stop by and see me at my new office right off Earl Rudder Freeway (Highway 6)! I moved effective May 25th and am proudly associated with the Bryan REMAX office, REMAX Select. Offering a refreshing glass of cold ice tea or cup of coffee anytime, always with a smile and Bryan and College Station Real Estate advice! Who knows, maybe you'll even find your new College Station home for sale!
I'm definately looking forward to a new office with our internet cafe for a pleasant chat, or even seeing some of my previous clients and friends for lunch!
I've stayed at the same phone number so 979-574-1084 is still relevent. Same, if not better, service, and beautiful new office with amenities my last office didn't offer.
The new address here is 161 N. Earl Rudder Freeway, in between Briarcrest exit and University. If coming from College Station exit Briarcrest off highway 6 and at Briarcrest double back around on the feeder. We will be on the right about the same area the University Drive exit is in.
Chris Tesch, RE/MAX Select, 161 N. Earl Rudder Freeway, Bryan, Texas 77802. Cell number 979-574-1084 and fax number 979-393-0344.
Buying homes and renting them are such distinctly separate aspects of College Stations real estate scene that we tend to pay attention only to the sector we are most involved with. We pretty much ignore the other. Renters and real estate investors watch trends in residential rentals, while homeowners and soon-to-be homeowners check on prices and activity in the local home market.
All of which means that it’s easy to overlook how trends in one sector have major impacts on the other. And any sort of residential construction activity – new building or remodeling – has a direct and positive impact on College Stations economy as a whole.
So here’s some good news: this year, rental construction is expected to reach its highest level since 2005. Somehow that may not seem like such a big deal, but despite the way it looks, 2005 is SEVEN years ago (time flies, doesn’t it?)! Those have been seven painful years for most of the construction folks we know, so the change comes as welcome news. It’s also possible that a turnaround could mean that other turnarounds in different areas of the economy may be in the wind.
The apartment experts at NMHC just published something that most of us already suspected. They found that nationally, apartment vacancy rates fell to a decade low of 4.9%. We have already written about how asking rents continue to rise (in March, up .5% from the previous month). The same experts noted that some empty-nesters seem to be increasingly likely to opt for the convenience of apartment living -- even those who could easily afford to buy.
It explains why more College Station investors are stepping up to order the building of new rental homes even as many older apartments and rental homes are being renovated. Add to that recent government moves to encourage lenders to become at least temporary landlords, and the result is real activity. Budgets have been tight for families in recent years, which may have caused them to decide to choose rental homes that were older, hence less expensive. If the economy continues to strengthen, these same families may later be able to afford to look at one of the new rental homes now under construction. It’s likely that many tenants would choose to live in a place that is a product of new construction, or in a complex that has been recently renovated.
All that increased building activity is another sign that the College Station housing market as a whole is waking up. In the longer range, since newer rentals generally cost more money, more would-be tenants will ultimately reconsider the prospect of owning a home – in turn increasing demand for first-time or entry level homes.
Wherever your family falls in the College Station real estate mix, don’t hesitate to call our office when you have a question about the buyer's market and what is available for you. We’re standing by!
For those who are just about ready to list their College Station or Bryan house for sale this Mayseveral simple yet cost-effective projects can be sure-fire buyer-pleasers. I am often asked to help my clients identify areas in their home that will benefit from improvements. I like to point to some simple changes that materially help a property’s ability to compete with any other house for sale in our area without breaking the bank.
Here are my three favorite inexpensive equity builders:
1. Painting walls in pale neutral colors. Freshly painted walls erase years of wear from any room. They send prospective buyers two subtle messages: First this is a home that has been well maintained and is in great shape! Secondly, here is a home where your family can create your own memories. Neutral tones are important, too. While you may personally prefer rich or bright colors, potential buyers likely won't. Beyond ensuring that rooms look as big, bright and airy as possible, you want potential buyers to picture spaces where their furnishings will fit in without redecorating. Pale beige or grey rooms work with furnishings of all colors, and wind up appealing to the greatest number of potential buyers. There are some newer nuetrals that aren't out of the spectrum but before you start with the roller please call your College Station real estate agent to find out if it's truly a good shade and if it is what we are seeing in many homes.
2. Clearing clutter. Clear kitchen and bathroom countertops, consign heavy furniture to storage, and stow the teens clutter neatly out of sight. The object is to emphasize the impression of adequate or abundant space. When buyers visit any house for sale, they are most drawn to those where it’s easy to picture all of their furniture fitting in easily – and that takes space.
3. Keeping your cool. You want buyers to be comfortable as they walk through your house for sale, and at the same time want to signal that heating and cooling are in great shape and are not going to be problematic. Have your heating and air conditioning systems serviced so that they are in efficient working order. In our hot summers always be willing to crank up the AC!
Whenever you list a house for sale, it's important that you put yourself in the buyers’ shoes. Ask what are the key factors you would look for, and be sure your home reflects the answers. For any and all other questions you might have about selling your local home, I’m here to help!
Does this month find you looking for a home to call your own? In College Stations current bargain-rich real estate market, you’ll find that you’re not alone! If it’s been a while since you last house-hunted (or if it’s your first time out), it’s important to go over some basics.
A real estate agent or broker who lists a property is usually working for the seller. Since it takes a buyer to make anything happen, there are also buyer’s agents. Although anyone is free to buy or sell on their own, there are good reasons why most buyers decide to enlist a buyer’s agent to represent their interests exclusively.
A Buyer’s Agent Protects You
Let’s say you stop by a weekend open house, and there it is -- your dream home! The listing agent is very nice and wants to help you to write up an offer to purchase through her. This is called a “dual agency,” and is not necessarily a great idea (some brokerages even forbid it). The problem is that the seller's agent rightly wants to get the highest price for the property because she represents the owner. If I were working with you as your buyer’s agent, my job would be to represent your interests, so an offer I wrote could look quite a bit better from your prospective. That’s why it is prudent to find a College Station real estate agent to represent you before even starting your search.
Loose Lips Sink Ships
Whenever you are house hunting, be careful of what you say to the seller's agent. Resist the temptation to discuss financial matters or to mention that you are in a rush to buy: either could damage your chances of getting the home you want on terms you want. Always bear in mind that the agent is working for the seller, not for you.
Consider Signing a Contract
As soon as you sign a contract with a local buyer’s agent or broker, you put a real estate professional to work for you. It is a legally binding agreement in writing that obligates the agent to work to get you the best deal possible. You may also sign an exclusive contract with your buyer’s agent, which gives the agent an extra assurance that his or her work is likely to accomplish what you both want -- a deal that puts you in your new home. Worth noting: except in extremely rare cases, you as a buyer should never have to pay a commission. If an agent asks you for a fee upfront, that’s your signal to run the other way! It’s part of the MLS listing agreement that fees and commissions belong on the seller's side.
Finding an experienced College Station buyer’s agent for your side – one you feel comfortable with, who listens to your needs and who offers expert suggestions and advice – will be well worth the time it takes. But it doesn’t even have to take much time: I’m right here!
This is usually the time of year when College Station and Bryan residents have gotten through tax season, heaved a sign of relief, and gone back to working on more important matters – like earning enough to make reducing taxes a goal worth pursuing.
This year, the latter part of April may be a little different. Because this is an election year, tax matters are already being widely debated, and changes that could affect everyone are more possible than usual. I am bringing these topics up for discussion with the firm caveat that your own planning (including College Station home buying decisions) should always be made after consultation with the financial experts you trust. Currently, federal and state rules carry tax benefits that can greatly reduce a homeowner’s tax liability. They are very unlikely to be eliminated, but you may want to keep your ear tuned whenever you hear these topics under discussion, because seemingly minor changes can have major impacts.
Mortgage Interest and Points
Many renters found that they were able to use the standard deduction tables to simplify their federal filings. Homeowners, on the other hand, were usually better off using itemized deductions because of the welcome mortgage interest deduction. Qualifying points paid to obtain a mortgage can also generally be deducted in the year they are paid.
Everyone with a standard Individual Retirement Account has heard about the penalties for withdrawing funds before retirement age. But currently there is an exception in some home buying situations. Generally, some IRA funds can be applied to home buying (or building) a first home without those tax penalties. The catch is that you can only withdraw up to $10,000 over your entire lifetime (not annually). Those with Roth IRAs may find additional tax advantages, too.
Real Estate Taxes
Qualifying Bryan and College Station property taxes can amount to sizeable deductions. If, in the home buying process, you reimbursed a seller for prepaid property taxes, that amount can qualify, too.
As in all financial planning, you should consult your accountant or other tax professional before making any important decisions. And whenever buying or selling a College Station property makes sense for your family, I’m standing by to answer all of your College Station real estate questions.
Is buying a College Station duplex a good investment? I have that question quite frequently through the year. It can be an excellent investment. Especially considering what you get for your money and what's comparable in College Station Real Estate.
Let's take a look at what's sold throughout the year. In the last 12 months we have had 57 duplexes sold in College Station. These ranged from a simple duplex on Pine Ridge that was a 2 bedroom 1 bath on each side listed for $114,900 (especially low price as most will sell for around 140K) and sold for $113,000 after 156 days on the market. The top price returned on duplexes in the last year was at Oldenburg. These 2007 built 3 bedroom 3 bath College Station duplexes list for around $250K. In this case the property listed for $245K and sold for $242,015 after only 49 days on the market.
Consider what you will pay for College Station homes that are comparable in size. Inexpensive homes that are just over 1000 square feet typically sell for at least 100K. A 3 bedroom, 3 bath with around 1300 square feet will sell for at least 140K. With these purchases you get the benefit of the extra bedrooms without the attendant prices.
Available now are 36 College Station duplexes. Fourteen of these are primarily investment properties located on one street in College Station. Take those out and we have 22 properties active. These range from another Pine Ridge duplex listed at $109,977 since 5/18/10 to a new 3 bedroom 3 bath brand new duplex listed for $235K.
If you are looking for an affordable investment we currently have a rare 2 bedroom, 2 bath located on San Benito priced at $139,900. This duplex offers close shuttle routes and park and ride as well as being close to restaurants and other amenities. Call today for your private showing.
Make no bones about it, last year was a challenging year for College Station real estate. It started strong with the first time homebuyer tax credit fueling a last minute surge in inexpensive homes. When that wrapped up April 30th (the day buyers had to have their College Station home under contract) the real estate offices in College Station became virtual ghost towns. There were a few buyers out there looking and the few that were immediately sensed their advantage and got some excellent deals.
Before last year we were safe in our little cocoon sheltered from the world of declining real estate values and angst over sales at least in the 200K and below market. The 300K and above market has been tough for some time. April 30th heralded in a long summer with few sales and more inventory than ever.
If you want to place your College Station home for sale you need to remember that the competition is fierce. Good no longer suffices as far as condition. Great takes the day...Great homes in College Station still sell fast and for very good prices. Good condition means that your property will be on the market for quite some time and you will most likely get a very low offer on it.
If you are a seller don't despair. We are starting to see an upsurge in buyers finally. Once this takes hold we should see a declining inventory and more of a balanced market. If you are a buyer the take away on this one is that if you want to save the maximum amount of money on your new College Station home you need to move now.
for more information call or email me today!
Many parents last year, because the stock market wasn't performing as well as in the past, would simply pay cash for their College Station condos or homes. This year credit is king. Many parents want to put the least amount down that they can achieve. That would be an FHA loan. To achieve this 3.5% down FHA loan the College Station home must be owner occupied so your student will have to be co-borrower. Your student doesn't need income to be the co-borrower as you can guarantee the income, but they must have credit.
How, you might ask, is a kid straight out of high school going to have credit in order to buy a home in College Station? With advanced planning it can be simple. It must be 3 lines of credit and they must have a 12 month history of on time payments. Here is a partial list of things that would qualify.
Cell phone bills
Car Insurance (If paid monthly)
Credit Cards with your student as co-borrower NOT authorized user.
personal loans (again with the student as a co-borrower)
With a little planning you can make your dreams of a low down payment on your College Station home a reality. Even taking a loan against a CD or other asset that you have with your student should qualify. Again, it's extremely important that it be paid monthly and on time.
Many of our properties are in the 150K and below range for a downpayment of $5250 and at times rollling in the closing cost can minimizing your cash investment as well.
In addition to the obvious benefits of improving your students credit and achieving a low down payment you would also be eligable then to claim a homestead exemption for the property in your students name. It wouldn't save you a ton, but it would be about an extra $250 every year.
For more information on College Station Homes for sale contact me!
With record low interest rates and large inventory of available homes in Bryan and College Station, where are the buyers? That's been the question of the month for sellers and for any housing market followers for several months in a row.
Many (especially in the media) are bemoaning the crash of College Stations real estate market. There have even been many people that are publically outspoken and say that they will NEVER buy a home (Thank heavens my mother taught me to never say never....). Much like the Samuel Clemens quote "the reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated", so has the reports of the death of the Bryan and College Station housing market.
With a phenominal growth rate and the promise of many a company moving in to take advantage of our researchers and facilities the Bryan real estate market has only to go up! Bryan is the center of most of the growth, however it will spill into the College Station real estate market as well. Lynntech with its new facilities out on Highway 6 (the old Westinghouse facilities) in and of itself has pledged to bring in 30 new jobs in addition to maintaining their current 120 job workforce. The salaries are pledged to average 75K and that's just one of the companies situating themselves in Bryan and College Station
Let's look at the facts. Bryan and College Station, because of the Texas A&M University as well as Blinn College, always have a steady influx of new people whether they be students, associate professors, service professionals or professionals. Add to that the new jobs that are coming into town with the Research Valley initiative and it equates to a vibrant housing market with more competion for talent and the promise of average salaries going upward as well! Add to that fact the additional information about the so called "Texas Triangle" the triangular portion of Texas between San Antonio, Dallas and Houston that encompasses several other cities and currently is home to 75% of the states population. Bryan and College Station is situated almost in the center of all the large regions and is predicted to have a much better growth rate than average.
Texas, in and of itself, is one of the highest growth states in the country with low cost of living, availability of housing bargains and no state income tax being three of the driving forces.
All this paints a very rosy picture for College Station homes for sale and Bryan homes for sale!