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January 2013

There are 10 blog entries for January 2013.

19 Months of Home Sales Increases in Austin

Thursday, January 24th, 2013 at 3:29pm. 2,130 Views

Austin real estate pricesDecember 2012 was the 19th straight month of existing home sales volume increases, according to a recent report released by the Austin Board of Realtors®. The report indicated total dollar volume of sold single-family properties was $513 million, 35 percent higher than December 2011.

According to ABoR, 1,828 single-family area homes were sold in December 2012, an increase of 17 percent from December 2011 – and, noticeably - the most home sales in December since 2006. The report speculated that Austin real estate momentum will continue in 2013.

“What I found particularly remarkable is that Austin’s real estate inventory is now the lowest in a decade,” said Regent Property Group Founder Brian Talley. “With only 2.7 months’ worth of homes available, we

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Regent Agents Named 2013 Austin Platinum Top 50 Semi-finalists

Saturday, January 19th, 2013 at 4:53pm. 2,686 Views

Austin Platinum realtor Regent Property Group Founder Brian Talley and Regent Property Group agent Kay Lawley have been named semi-finalists in the 2013 Platinum Top 50 Awards Program in Austin. The program honors residential REALTORS® for outstanding achievements in sales, education, industry participation, and civic leadership.

Winners exemplify initiative, involvement, success, and philanthropy and are successful professionals and community leaders. Known to honor those REALTORS® who are both successful and well-rounded, the program uses a point system with four qualifiers:

  • Sales Production – 25%
  • Closed Sides – 25%
  • Education and Industry Involvement – 25% (including designation/certification, membership, committee involvement, and officer/chairman position)

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Austin Natural & Organic Grocery Stores

Saturday, January 19th, 2013 at 4:01pm. 3,511 Views

Central Market organic foods AustinThe presence of grocery stores may seem like a given in any modern city, but the quality of stores and range of products available as natural or organic can vary greatly depending on the company and the quality of the food. Thankfully, Austin neighborhoods are well stocked with specialty grocery stores that carry homegrown products and produce, as well as imported specialty goods from around the world. Renowned natural foods retailer Whole Foods was founded in Austin, and Sprouts and Central Market also are high caliber stores specializing in natural and organic foods.

Central Market

Central Market, part of the HEB grocery store company, sends their product buyers across the globe to bring back artisan cheeses, thousands of wines, acres of produce,

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Upscale Austin: Luxury Homes on an Upward Trend in Austin, Texas

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013 at 3:56pm. 3,482 Views

Austin luxury properties

From waterfront homes along Lake Austin to tree-covered estates in Westlake, it is apparent Austin has a sizeable luxury property market. Whether it’s the result of trendy tech or startup success, the wealth of Austin appears here to stay – blended, of course, with our lifestyle-centric living.

As lakefront properties, hill country views, and prime downtown locales abound, there are ample opportunities for those who would like to invest in Upscale Austin. Enjoy this snapshot of the Austin luxury property market:

* For the purposes of this report, luxury homes are defined as homes sold and listed for $1 million and above within the City of Austin.

Yearly Comparison

For the entire year of 2012, 287 luxury homes were sold, with a high price of

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Austin Gift Company: Supporting Local Artists and Keeping South Austin Weird since 2000

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013 at 12:27pm. 5,505 Views

local austin giftsLooking for the perfect gift or souvenir in Austin, Texas? Ditch the big box store. Go local, support local artists, and keep Austin weird: head to Austin Gift Company! Deep in the heart of South Austin’s 78704, this locally-owned and operated business has supported hundreds of local artisans by selling wares since the turn of the century.

“What we have to offer is not what you will find at the mall. I guarantee you that if you visit us once, you will be back! We host over 125 vendor booths, seven days a week,” says owner Mike Lopez.

Shoppers never know what they will find at Austin Gift Company, with everything from handmade jewelry to garden art, wind chimes, and Elvis memorabilia available. “It's like visiting Fredericksburg and Wimberley without

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Austin, Texas Real Estate Market Update and Statistics January 2013

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013 at 11:29am. 2,710 Views

west austin home eanesAustin’s winter weather may feel cold, but the Austin housing market is hot! December 2012 marked a 4% increase in sold prices per square foot, a 14% increase in homes sold, and a 28.95% decrease in days on the market, and home inventory remained low, with a 29% decrease in homes for sale, comparing December 2012 to December 2011. For the year 2012, home prices increased 5%, with 18% more homes sold and a 27% decrease in days on the market.

Interest rates remain at an average of 3.4% for a 30 year conventional loan today with 0.7 fees/points down per freddiemac.com. The Austin unemployment rate (Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos) reduced slightly from 5.3% in October 2012 to 4.9% in November 2012, which is a healthy unemployment rate.

With low inventory,

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January Gardening Tips from Southwest Austin’s Natural Gardener

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013 at 12:00pm. 2,754 Views

Austin winter gardeningCrisp winter weather has blown into Austin, Texas! In this coldest part of the year, enjoy these useful January gardening tips, from Southwest Austin’s home for gardening, the Natural Gardener.

Gardening To Do List for January

- Sow Vegetable Seeds: Asian Greens, Lettuce, Radish, and Spinach. LATE JANUARY: Beets, Bok Choy, Carrots, Collards, Kale, Kohlrabi, Mustard, Peas (English, Sugar, Snap), Rutabaga, and Turnip.

- Start Indoor Transplants: Tomato and Pepper seeds.

- Plant Annuals: Alyssum, Coneflower, Delphinium, Gaillardia, Gayfeather, Hollyhock, Larkspur, Phlox, Petunia, and Snapdragon. LATE JANUARY: Poppies and Sweet Pea.

- Plant Vegetable Plants: Artichoke Crowns, Asian Greens, Asparagus Crowns, Bok Choy, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts,

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Austin Farmers’ Markets

Thursday, January 10th, 2013 at 3:56pm. 3,083 Views

Barton Creek farmers marketAustin has plentiful fresh, organic produce for residents to enjoy year round. From our flagship Whole Foods grocery store to the expansive selection of farm fresh fare at almost any grocery store in the city, there is ample opportunity for every Austinite to get five servings of fruits and veggies every day. In addition to brick and mortar stores, Austinites love farmers’ markets, and everyone from freshmen in college to Austin luxury home residents frequent the market stalls. They can be found throughout the city, offering everything from handpicked peaches, to canned dill pickles, to fresh cheeses. Below are a few of the larger farmers’ markets found in Austin:

Sustainable Food Center’s Austin Farmers’ Markets

Known as the SFC Farmers’ Market, the

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Home Buying Resolutions for 2013

Wednesday, January 9th, 2013 at 4:36pm. 1,527 Views

amenities for homes in Avery RanchTopping the list of many Austinite’s New Year’s Resolutions may be securing healthier bodies and healthier financial lives. One major step towards financial security is investing in smart home buying with the help of an Austin REALTOR. Planning out each step of the home buying process can make achieving the goal of home ownership in 2013 easier and stress free. Follow the steps below, inspired by Realtor.com, to make financial health and home ownership a realized goal:

Resolution #1: Map What You Want

Just like planning a diet and exercise strategy, it is important to pre-determine what you want in and from a home. This can include deciding what features are most desirable, the location of a home (would you prefer an Austin home on a lake or an easy

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Circuit of The Americas Announces Inaugural Marketing Partners, Including Blue-chip Brands and Regional Powerhouses

Monday, January 7th, 2013 at 9:07am. 4,587 Views

Circuit of the Americas SponsorsCircuit of The Americas recently announced inaugural corporate partners for its new motorsports and entertainment facility here in Austin, and names include national brands like Anheuser-Busch and Best Buy, plus local favorites such as Bazaarvoice, Salt Lick Bar-B-Q, and Gatti’s Pizza.  

The Circuit hosted the 2012 Formula 1 United States Grand Prix in November, which became the second-most-attended Formula 1 race of the season, with more than 117,000 fans attending the race itself and 265,000 spectators visiting the Circuit over those three days.

“There is no other facility like Circuit of The Americas in the United States,” said Circuit Chief Sales Officer Ben Cahalane. “This uniqueness, combined with our event diversity and global reach, is

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