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Home    Education    Legislative    Publications    Calendar    Sunbelt Builders Show    Resources Nov. 21, 2013

TAB News Briefs
Nov. 21, 2013
TAB Quick Links >    Home     Education     Legislative     Publications     Calendar     Sunbelt Builders Show     Resources

Interactive: American Community Survey home values by county
The Texas Tribune    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Only three large counties in the nation saw significant growth in home values from 2007 to 2012, according to a U.S. Census Bureau report released this month, and two of those counties — Bexar and Travis — were in Texas. The Census Bureau analyzes three-year periods of American Community Survey data and found that the median home value in the United States in 2010-12 was $174,600, which was $17,300 less than in 2007-09. Of the 50 most populous counties in the country, two of the five with the lowest median home values were in Texas: Bexar and Dallas. More

Toll's Yearley says home builder has room to raise prices
Bloomberg    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Toll Brothers Inc., the largest U.S. luxury-home builder, has room to raise prices on its houses as the real estate market extends its recovery, Chief Executive Officer Douglas Yearley Jr. said. Buyers are purchasing properties "sight unseen" in New York and demand is strong on the coasts, Texas and in suburban Detroit, Yearley said at The Year Ahead: 2014, a two-day conference in Chicago sponsored by Bloomberg LP. More

Rayburn toll road brings Dallas area latest construction boom
The Dallas Morning News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Slicing diagonally through Collin and Denton counties, tucked neatly between the old stop-and-go lanes of State Highway 121, the Sam Rayburn Tollway fuels the latest spurt of growth in the Dallas region. Construction crews work along the edges of the highway in McKinney and Plano and at the booming intersection of the Sam Rayburn and the Dallas North Tollway. Nowhere is the change more evident than in The Colony. More


Experts: Houston facing housing shortage
KTRK-TV    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
You've heard us say before, and we'll say it again: The Bayou City is booming. A growing Houston economy means a growing need for housing. But as many prospective home buyers are finding out, the housing market is not growing quite as fast the demand. "We don't find many houses we like. But when we do, we don't get them," prospective home buyer Jennifer Jackson said. More

Austin brewing perfect storm of age diversity
Austin Business Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Austin — a veritable magnet for young people — ranks No. 6 among U.S. cities for senior migration. At the same time Austin ranks No. 5 for the number of Millenials planning to call it home. From a real estate standpoint, this means Austin needs a wide variety of housing to appeal to households all across the demographic spectrum. Developers, many of them very young compared to other more established metro areas, need to be mindful of the housing and retail trends for all age brackets. Affordability, especially for the middle class and even the upwardly mobile middle class who generally are closed out of subsidized benefits, will be a pivotal issue. More

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Track boosts interest in east Austin real estate
KXAN-TV    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Circuit of the Americas is bring more than hot cars to eastern Travis County. It's bringing higher land values to properties around the track. "I had no idea in the years gone by anything like this would ever happen out here," said Arthur Creed, 76, who lives near the track. He and his wife Lorraine bought a modest home on 5.5 acres in Elroy in 1968. It sits right along FM 812. It also sits next to the COTA track. He borrowed the $7,500 to pay for it. Now that COTA has moved in, he's asking for $4 million to move out. More

Dallas-Fort Worth home foreclosure filings hit lowest in a decade
The Dallas Morning News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The number of homes posted for foreclosure in the Dallas-Fort Worth area has fallen to the lowest level in a decade. The booming North Texas economy, rising home prices and lenders' changes in handling troubled properties contributed to the improved numbers, economists say. For all of 2013, fewer than 28,500 homes were posted for foreclosure in Dallas, Tarrant, Collin and Denton counties. More

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Home builders seek legislative fix for soaring flood insurance premium rates
National Association of Home Builders    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
he National Association of Home Builders called on Congress today to take steps to resolve unintended consequences of the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Act that are resulting in huge premium spikes for many home owners and impacting the sale, construction and remodeling of homes across the nation. Testifying before the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Insurance and Housing, Barry Rutenberg, immediate past chairman of NAHB and a home builder from Gainesville, Fla., said a key concern of the law is that it requires properties that had subsidized rates under the National More

Home builder goes solar as it expands in DFW
Dallas Business Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
As Austin-based PSW Real Estate expands in Dallas-Fort Worth with two residential projects near White Rock Lake, the builder announced it will offer solar-powered homes. The developer and homebuilder has partnered with SolarCity for the solar panels, which could potentially lower homeowner's utility bills by hundreds of dollars each year. More

Salinization of groundwater resources in Texas is a growing concern    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Degrading potable groundwater quality is a growing concern in Texas, as about 15 percent of all domestic wells in the state are at risk due to high salinity, according to a recent Texas A&M AgriLife Research study. The work of Dr. Srinivasulu Ale, AgriLife Research geospatial hydrology assistant professor, and Dr. Sriroop Chaudhuri, his post-doctoral research associate, both in Vernon, has been accepted for publication in the Science of the Total Environment journal. More

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JPMorgan's settlement: A win for communities hit hard by housing crisis
The Washington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Justice Department scored a colossal victory in its record $13 billion settlement with JPMorgan Chase, and some communities devastated by the housing crisis could also walk away with a big win. The landmark agreement, which resolves a myriad of government probes into the bank's sale of defective mortgage securities, carves out more than $4 billion to help struggling homeowners and neighborhoods riddled with abandoned or foreclosed houses. More

The future of home affordability
Mortgage Rates & Trends    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The National Association of Realtors projects that home prices and sales will continue rising in the coming new year. Unfortunately for us, if rates also continue to rise at the rate they are, affordability will fall and it will become less and less practical to own a home. For the sixth consecutive month, housing affordability has fallen. The drop is in response to rising home prices and interest rates. Potential home buyers are worried that interest rates along with home prices have risen too far recently and that they should wait for a possible decline. Regardless of the right time to purchase a home The Federal Savings Bank encourages prospective lien holders to get approved for a mortgage now. More

New Nobel laureate: Fears of housing bubble are overblown
The Dallas Morning News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
With home prices soaring in many U.S. metropolitan areas, there’s already talk of another home price bubble. Just last week, researchers at Trulia Inc. identified more than a dozen markets around the country where home prices are slightly ahead of fundamentals — including the Dallas area. Most economists say that new worries about the recent rate of U.S. home price appreciation are overblown. And that’s the view of probably the foremost expert on housing bubbles, Robert Shiller. More

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Guilt-free consumption: The new trend in luxury
By Michael J. Berens    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
According to recent market studies, consumers are struggling with more than their wallets these days. Affluent shoppers in particular are feeling conflicted between their desire to spend and their aspiration to do the right thing, say the market researchers at They are looking for products and services that will deliver value and quality while, at the same time, provide reassurance that they do no harm. Even the wealthiest consumers have become more conscientious about their buying habits. More

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Texans look beneath the surface for water
The Texas Tribune    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
From farmers to the oil and gas industry to gubernatorial candidate and Attorney General Greg Abbott, Texans are looking beneath their land to make up the state's growing water deficit. Unlike surface water, which is owned and allocated by the state, groundwater belongs to the landowner and is regulated by nearly 100 different conservation districts across Texas, all of which set their own rules. The recent drought, along with major court decisions, has led to what some say is the most uncertain time in state history for those who depend on and manage groundwater in Texas. More

Learn by doing: Social media in commercial real estate
Houston Business Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Commercial real estate is one of Houston's most booming industries, and to stay ahead of trends, firms have to differentiate themselves. Houston-based Transwestern hired Stefanie Lewis about two years ago as its national marketing coordinator, and part of her job is leading the firm's social media efforts and integrating social media into Transwestern's marketing mix. She said her company is staying ahead of the curve in terms of what the company is using social media for. More

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Are solar panels facing the wrong direction?
Greentech Media    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
West-facing rooftop solar panels produced 49 percent more electricity during peak demand compared to south-facing panels, according to a new study from Pecan Street Research Institute. The research is the first of its kind to evaluate the energy production of solar panels oriented in different directions. Pecan Street analyzed 50 homes in the Austin, Texas area. Some had only south-facing panels, others had west-facing panels, and some had both. More
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