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What's wrong with East Austin??

by Young Cho last modified Dec 19, 2005 11:05 PM
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What's wrong with East Austin??

Posted by Young Cho at December 13. 2005

Hi everyone!

I'm new to this site and I love it! Anyhow, I'm in the process of looking to buy an investment home in Austin, specifically East Austin. I found a new development of homes that are being built called The Villas at Sendero Hills which is located off of Sendero Hills and FM 949. I haven't been to the exact area yet and I am not from Austin. Supposedly this new subdivision is right next to the new Agave development. Anyhow, I am having some mixed feelings about this area (East Austin). I heard that East Austin is currently under some major renovation and improvments, but I also heard that East Austin is not a desirable area to live in. As I had mentioned earlier, I am looking to rent this new home out and I don't want to run into problems of people not wanting to rent it out because of its location. But I heard that East Austin is supposed to be the next hot spot of Austin. I'm looking for a long term investment in this home. They told me that the home is 6 miles from downtown and about 4 miles from the University? I have investment properties throughout the United States and I heard Austin is a pretty promising area because of all the high tech companies moving out there and such.

Can anyone give me some insite on East Austin, specifically the area that I am looking to buy this home in. From where I'm from, 6 miles is not a long distance for travel to get to downtown, but that may be different for people in Austin. Also, I see that there is local prison located pretty close to The Villas subdivision which kind of worries me.

Any thoughts and/or opinions would be greatly appreciated! Thank you all!

Re: What's wrong with East Austin??

Posted by Robert M. Carnochan at December 13. 2005

There are some un-attractive things near Agave - jail and water treatment plant. But some of the houses are REALLY going to be cool and the price point is OUTSTANDING. They have at least 3 maybe as many as 5 houses already under contract and I and my family (wife and two small kids) are REALLY excited about the prospect - we're waiting for some of the larger homes on the top lots to be released.

There is a new charter school (the Discovery School) that is .5 miles east of Agave on MLK that has GREAT promise - it's run by the folks that run one of the most popular day care/preschools in Austin.

Based on what I've seen and the fact that all the houses that are on the books, not even built, are under contract - I'd say it's a safe bet for investment.

Re: What's wrong with East Austin??

Posted by carl schuelke at December 14. 2005

Unfortunately, Austin is still fairly segregated, at least in terms of housing, and I35 has more or less been the dividing line. From the historical segregation, East Austin has a reputation for being the poorer, rougher side of town. The schools are also not as well thought of as those in west Austin (and this from a guy whose mom taught at Houston Elementary on the east side). There is a lot of gentrification going on, particularly just east of I35 where the lots are the only ones left that are affordable and close to downtown, but it may be years before you see any real dividends with that. I'm not exactly sure where Sendero is, but you may even be out of the AISD and in Del Valle school district, another factor in your decision.

If you're looking to rent out the property, I'm guessing that it's easier to rent out a home that is closer to downtown or in better areas. If you're looking to hold the house for appreciation, you should know that there are a lot of new subdivisions going up in East Austin/Del Valle area and it may be a while before the supply of new houses is exhausted and you really see appreciation. But I'm not a realtor or real estate investor, so what do I know?

Re: What's wrong with East Austin??

Posted by Mark Meyer at December 16. 2005

I'm goig to choose to disagree with the above comment re: it may be years before you see any real dividends with that as pertains to lots on the NEAR East-Side. There is SOOOOOOOO much new construction and deveopment going on the East-Side, some of it fairly modern, that it is definitley the new HOT-SPOT for developers in town. I'vw seen prices jump exponentially over the past few years, and I can only imagine it to continue for the foreseeable future, as it is the only place so near downtown that has a LOT of available properties.

Once you get far enough East to pass Airport Blvd. I think the above statement will hold true, but anything West of Airport is sure to see a fair amount of appreciation, even if it is juts buying up raw land to hold.


Re: What's wrong with East Austin??

Posted by Jamie Hayes at December 20. 2005

i actually drove out there today to look at the agave development. the actual villas at sendero hills homes are very nice but right behind them are very shady homes. the drive from I 35 down MLK is a little rough as well. not the safest area. i do not live in austin but i have heard differing things about the growth potential of this area. it is about a ten minute drive to downtown +/- 5 minutes. i am very split because the homes and price are very attractive. not sure i want to wait for the years it will take to completely upgrade the area to one suitable for families. also i think the property values on these new homes are going to be complete statistical outliers for the area. my guess is mostly 75 to 100K homes with these new ones in the 160 to 300K range. not good for resale.

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