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Lake Travis Real Estate News

U.S. Market Data Review

Note: October data below is the most recent published by the National Association of Realtors®.

Data from the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) shows sales of existing homes grew in October to the briskest pace since early summer, but an ongoing lack of supply resulted in fewer closings for a second straight month.

Nationally, total sales of existing homes (counts completed transactions for single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops) bumped up 2.0% to 5.48 million in October from 5.37 million in September. Despite the uptick in velocity, sales remain 0.9% lower than one year ago.

 Existing Home Sales By Region
NAR's chief economist, Lawrence Yun, indicated that October's sales activity picked up for the second consecutive month, with increases across all four major regions. "Job growth in most of the country continues to carry on at a robust level and is starting to slowly push up wages, which is in turn giving households added assurance that now is a good time to buy a home" Yun said. He added that "While the housing market gained a little more momentum last month, sales are still below year ago levels because low inventory is limiting choices for prospective buyers and keeping price growth elevated."

Housing Data Takeaways

  • The median existing-home price (all housing types) in October was $247,000, up 5.5% from October 2016 ($234,100). October's price increase marks 68th months in a row of year-over-year gains.
     
  • On average U.S. properties stayed on the market for 34 days in October, unchanged from September and down from 41 days a year ago. Forty-seven percent of homes sold in October were on the market for less than a month.
     
  • Mortgage data from Freddie Mac shows the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage rose to 3.90% in October  from 3.81% in September. For all of 2016, the average commitment rate was 3.65%.
     
  • Nationally, first-time buyers drove 32% of October's sales, up from 29% in September but a drop from 33% one year ago.

Investing in Real Estate

Today's low interest rates and stabilized home prices have created some great investment opportunities!

Investing in real estate has unique advantages over other types of investments. Of course, wise investors may have various instruments in their portfolio, but real estate has a long-term track record of proving its worth.

Here are some of real estate investing's advantages:

  • Interest in mortgage loans are tax-deductible. Investors can lower their tax liability while increasing their equity.
  • Renters pay down your mortgage loan. Investors reap the benefits of rental income, which offsets your mortgage cost and build equity.
  • Real Estate values increase over the long term. Real Estate is limited and will always be in demand. 
  • 1031 exchanges are available to defer taxable income when you are ready to sell.

Many investors are taking advantage of these great market conditions. Have questions? Give us a call. We are happy to help!

Release Holiday Stress in a Relaxing Austin B&B

​Here comes the holidays, and yes, a bit of stress.  Do you need to unwind and relax this holiday season? If so, Austin has the ideal B&Bs to let you unwind and refresh yourself.  Here's a few that will fit the bill.

Looking for Romantic. Maybe feeling a little disconnected from your partner? Give the Olivia Mansion a try. This 120-year-old historical beauty has been turned into a Bed & Breakfast. It features many of it’s original features, such as original stained-glass windows, amazing fireplaces and spectacular chandeliers. It is also antique, time-period furnishings, but with all modern amenities available. This beautiful and historical Bed & Breakfast is only and hour outside Austin, Texas.

Looking for Quiet and Serene. Maybe you’re just looking for a change of pace, and some quite surroundings. Then Mt. Gainor Inn is the place for you. This tranquil Texan getaway is a quiet retreat with acres of hilltop scenarios is the perfect place to get away from the crazy of a big city.

Family Getaway. Sure. The kids can get on your nerves, but they may just need a break too. The Prow’d House would be perfect for the family with its welcoming and warm Inn quality. This place has everything to help you and your family dialed down. They offer comfortable accommodations, from standard guest rooms with queen-sized beds, private bathrooms, TV, mini fridges and sheltered patios with swinging chairs. Included is a communal room with a grand stone fireplace, an ornate cathedral ceiling and a sunny dining area where a completely home- cooked breakfast is available every morning. If the kids are still feeling restless, the Inn is within walking distance of popular attractions such as Wimberley Shopping on the Square and more.

For more romantic, quiet and kid friendly weekend getaways, check out this link. Get away and relax in the beautiful Texas countryside. You know you need it.