2011 Recap of Downtown Austin Condo Sales

2011 Recap of Downtown Austin Condo Sales

Challenged to articulate a narrative around 2011 downtown Austin real estate data, I’ve been keeping this post under wraps for a couple of weeks.  Data is useful to me and my clients, but these numbers have little meaning without context and history.

How do I convey that the best news is no news at all?

Stability in the downtown condo market continues to be the story. Stability attracts the timid buyers from the sidelines. Those additional buyers embolden timid sellers to enter the market.

What forces are creating stability downtown? Low interest rates, shrinking inventory, and multi-generational demand for urban lifestyle. We can see the outcome of stability in the chart below: the gradually upward sloping trend line.

downtown austin condos - 10 years of resale data

downtown austin condos - 10 years of resale data

In 2011, if you were a seller in downtown Austin, then you did slightly better than sellers in 2010.  If you were a buyer in downtown Austin in 2011, then you were more focused on lifestyle and proximity, rather than the post-bust discount pricing found in 2008-2009.

Highlights

Looking back on the downtown Austin condo market in 2011, we see $77,688,824 in total resales over 200 resale transactions.  Combined with an estimated $120,000,000 in downtown new construction sales from another 200 transactions, 2011 reflects a healthy real estate market, gradually trending up. [Read more…]

Crossing The Chasm: A Perspective On New Construction

Crossing The Chasm: A Perspective On New Construction

Because I’m a real estate geek, I’m continuously looking at sales metrics, updating my databases, and endeavoring to uncover useful information.  In this post, I’m attempting two things: 1) offer some perspective on sales in downtown Austin’s high profile buildings, and 2) predict when those buildings will approach being completely sold.  If you just want the data then skip to the end.

One of my mentors shared with me an insight: the first buyers are innovators – early adopters that fill up the bandwagon and help throttle the acceptance of something new.  It applies to new real estate development, as much as it does to new technologies.

Now that the cranes are long gone, where are the new construction projects in their sales cycles? [Read more…]

Downtown Austin Condo Sales Remain Strong In May

Downtown Austin Condo Sales Remain Strong In May

For the first time since the bubble burst, the average price per square foot of a downtown Austin condo has increased four months in a row. Last month, downtown Austin closed 62 condos* with 29 more pending!

Highlights

In May, we counted 41 closings of new-construction condos from the Four Seasons Residences, W Hotel, Austonian, Spring Condos, and Barton Place.  The W takes the cake with 15 closings in May.

On the other hand, the number of resales comes in at 21 units closed – a strong showing – averaging a price of $334 per square foot. We also count 29 resales pending as of May 31st!  So, we can expect next month’s closing count to be similarly strong.

[Read more…]

Is Austin Bicycle Theft On The Rise?

Is Austin Bicycle Theft On The Rise?

There were more bike thefts reported in the heart of downtown Austin during the first five months of 2011, compared to 2010, according to city police records I compiled. However, reports are down in the South Congress area.

I know this because I decided to do my best Council Member Chris Riley impression — sans silver hair — and work on reducing my car usage in favor of pedal power to commute to the Capitol area. I bought a bike over the weekend, did some research and promptly shelled out another $200 for accessories, aimed mostly at anti-theft.

[Read more…]

Downtown Austin Condo Transaction Report For April (And March, Sort Of)

Downtown Austin Condo Transaction Report For April (And March, Sort Of)

In April, I didn’t publish a transaction summary covering March’s downtown deals.

I had assembled all the info, drafted the post, and it was ready to publish.  Some of you noticed that I never got around to posting it, and I’m sorry for not getting it out there (here’s to you John K.).

Jude, why u no post March data?

First and fortunately, I was at the tipping point of having more business than I could handle.  Springtime is always busy for me.  Combine that with opening the RE/MAX Downtown Austin office and I got distracted, operating on little sleep.

Secondly, I couldn’t come up with a headline for March!  March’s data didn’t seem to have a compelling story.  March’s data seemed too predictable.  That spooked me – what was I going to write about?  DAB readers have built up filters to exaggerated headlines, but readers do expect a story.  You should expect some insight.  What’s the story?

[Read more…]