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Downtown(ish) San Antonio Living

As the cost of real estate in the city’s urban core continues to rise, many are looking to other areas that are still in  close proximity  while still maintaining affordability.  Does this still sound like real estate unicorn? There are still downtownish options! Consider these neighborhoods that are located just south and east of King William and Dignowity Hill : Denver Heights and Highland Park.  These two neighborhoods are located in San Antonio ISD and  though not located in designated historic districts; still have many desired, historic features such as hardwood floors, high ceilings and covered, front porches.  The charm of these older homes is nearly impossible to replicate. They are also a short commute (or bike ride) to downtownish amenities like our beautiful Mission River Reach and Southtown hot spots such as the Blue Star Arts Complex.

In May 2017, King William had an average sold price/sq ft of $214.44 with Dignowity Hill averaging $135.76.  Compared to Highland Park’s $103.97 and Denver’s Heights’ $53.42, the difference in affordability is huge.

Google Map of King William, Dignowity (Dignowty? 😉 Hill) , Denver Heights & Highland Park
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FHA Mortgage Insurance Premium Cut Suspended

Last week, the Department of Housing Urban Development announced a reduction in Mortgage Insurance Premium (MIP).  This reduction has just been suspended by the Trump Administration resulting in the affordability to many first time home buyers.

 

For more information about how much home you can qualify, contact your local loan officer.

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City of San Antonio Increases HIP Limits!

For a first time home buyer, there are many down payment assistance programs that are available. It is important for a buyer to select a loan officer and a REALTOR® who are knowledgeable in these programs so that a buyer can participate if eligible.  Most of these programs do have income, credit and family size criteria and you usually will have to take a home buyer education course (either online or in person). The City of San Antonio’s Department of Planning & Community Development has a great Housing Incentive Program (HIP). They have just announced the maximum sales price for a pre-existing home has been increased to $150,000 and a new construction’s sales price has been increased up to $200,000! The home must be located in the City of San Antonio and meet some condition requirements.  A buyer can get up to $12,000 in assistance!

Be sure to check with your lender or REALTOR® about qualification guidelines as program requirements and/or sales prices may change. For more info on HIP and other city funded programs, check out the City of San Antonio’s Affordable Housing Policy

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2015 Texas Associations of REALTORS® Conference

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Ft Worth Convention Center
As a real estate broker licensed for 14 years (15 in January!), I love that our industry IMG_1648[1]continuously changes. I am the type of person who enjoys learning new things and visiting places I haven’t been before. This is why I LOVE conferences.  You get a chance to meet other professionals with a thirst for education who strive to be the best version of themselves AND you get to play tourist in your down time. I just came back from my first Texas Associations of REALTOR® conference in Ft. Worth.

IMG_1654There were a lot of highlights on this conference including the kickoff of the new Texas Young Professional Network! I have been a part of the Greater San Antonio Young Professional Network over the last couple of years so it’s pretty exciting to take our efforts to the next level. Keynote speaker, Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger, delivered a very inspiring account of the “Miracle on the Hudson”.  My daily problems just didn’t seem so important after listening to him and what he went through. The Governmental Affairs meetings reminded how our Association works to protect homeowner’s rights.  There was a lot of talk about the upcoming vote on Proposition 1 which would increase the homestead exemption and add a constitutional ban on a real estate transfer tax.

Yeehaw
Yeehaw!

Downtown Ft. Worth was beautiful with water features, IMG_1655picturesque, white lights outlining the buildings and a newly, designed Sundance Square.  Eating dinner on a rooftop is always fun too and the weather couldn’t have been better. I got a quick tour on the free Molly Trolley. I think San Antonio is on the right track with their free E Service.

 

Overall, I thought it was nice conference.  I think that if you serve on a TAR committee, you will definitely get more out of the whole experience.

 

Did you attend this conference? What did you think?

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The Peanut Factory Lofts

Peanut Factory LoftsI got a chance to tour the recently redeveloped Peanut Factory Lofts located just west of downtown with the Urban Land Institute (ULI). This is the first major redevelopment on the west side since our “decade of downtown” has begun.  I can’t even recall when we have had a project of this magnitude on this part of town. The construction is still ongoing but there are already a few tenants in place.

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Graffiti Art
This 102 unit complex varies in prices but the average rental is going for $1.60-$1.80 with a contemporary finish out. One of the units I saw was a 2 story with 2 bedrooms, 2 baths and a 2 car garage for $2400.  My favorite part of the tour was walking up the flights of stars in the still ongoing renovation of the century-old peanut processing plant.

 

The Processing Plant
The Processing Plant

The units in the silos are going to be really unique with circular floor plan. I really liked the graffiti and most of the tour group was asking if it was going to preserved as sort of artwork in these units.  Our tour guide said it would probably depend on the tenant’s wishes.

Up at the top of the processing plant lies the Penthouse at just over 3000 sq ft with a price tag of approximately $4659

Beautiful San Antonio
Beautiful San Antonio

per month.It’s going to be an awesome space complete with an outdoor kitchen and panoramic views. Our beautiful city’s skyline is awesome!

Lounging Poolside
Lounging Poolside

Amenities for the complex include a pool, 2 bark parks, fitness center, controlled access gates and a courtyard with grill area. Crossing busy S. Frio may affect the Peanut Factory’s walkability but it is a short car ride away. It was mentioned that students would be getting a 5% discount off market rents. UTSA’s downtown campus is a few blocks away.

 

Fiesta Medal
Fiesta Medal

 

Kudos Peanut Factory Lofts for the 2015 Fiesta Medal.

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King William Historic District Market Update-March 2015

Pioneer Bakery
Pioneer Bakery

Wow, the King William Historic District homes for sale market is really heating up! Like most of San Antonio, King William’s inventory is low.  The average list price is $443,625 with the average sales price being $538,000.  Last March, the average sales price was $287,500.   These figures are based off only a handful of properties. With all the recent attention on our city’s urban core, we are seeing buyers and investors are really take note of this neighborhood.

Contact Sara Gerrish for more info. 210.639.8151

Data from San Antonio Board of REALTORS®

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Are You Able to Sell Your Manufactured Home?

Over the course of my real estate career, I have had many people ask to put their manufactured home on the market for sale.  As a REALTOR®, I certainly can help you with this as long as we have one main requirement: the manufactured home must be PERMANENTLY attached to the land you are selling it with.

If you are unsure if your manufactured home is retrofitted, you can determine this with the following questions:

1.  Do you have a FHA/Conventional loan? Or is it eligible for one of these loans?

2. Do you have 1 tax record for both the land and home?

3.  Does your home have permanent skirting made of material such as brick, stone or concrete?

If you answered NO to any of these questions, your home probably needs to be retrofitted.  You may be asking yourself “What’s the big deal? Why do I need to figure this out”?  Here are a couple of reasons to consider. In order to sell and issue a title policy, the home must be permanently anchored.  Title wise, the land and home must also be tied together. If not, the home is considered “personal property” as opposed to real estate. For the home to be eligible to sell to a buyer with a traditional mortgage (i.e. FHA or Conventional), it must also meet these requirements.  The lender does not want to have the risk of the home being able to be moved  from the property and lose its collateral value for the mortgage.

If you are purchasing a manufactured home directly from the company itself to place on your lot, make sure the conversation of retrofitting or permanently attaching the home comes up.  Although this is not a requirement when buying directly (whether paying cash or through the mobile home’s own financing), it is important to know that if you ever to choose to sell in the future, retrofitting must be done.  It may even be less expensive for the manufacturer home company to retrofit while they are doing the installation.

If you find yourself in a situation where you are needing to get the home retrofitted on your own.  It may be best to go through a reputable retrofit company.  They will be able remove any axles that may still be present, install a permanent skirting and anchor it to the land.  Lastly, a structural engineer should be able to issue a certificate of retrofit once these items have been complete.

Hope this is helpful!

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Homestead Exemption

It’s that time of the year again. File your homestead exemption! If you purchased a property and have occupied it as of January 1st, you are eligible for this exemption.  You may be getting correspondences in the mail offering to file for you. This exemption is FREE to file yourself. The deadline is April 30th of the year you are filing for.  The exemption form may be found at Bexar County Appraisal District’s link below. Other exemptions that you may qualify for are also listed on the form.

Let me know if you have any questions, I would be happy to help.

http://www.bcad.org/data/_uploaded/file/PDFs/50-114.pdf