Remodel & Renovate in 78702>Question Details

Forrest, Home Buyer in Austin, TX

I own an old house near the lake in the Chicon neighborhood and would like to tear it down & re-build a brand new home on the lot. Where do I?

Asked by Forrest, Austin, TX Tue Dec 20, 2011

start? I purchased my house 2 years ago and it's a great home but the value is really in the land. It's a nice lot 2 blocks from Lake LBJ. The house is almost 100 years old so rather than renovate it, I would like to tear it down and build a brand new home. I have never done such a project so I would appreciate any guidance I can get on where to start.

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you can put in an application for a demolition permit, it requires your notarized signature and a tax certificate showing the taxes have been paid, the tax cert costs $10 and it should take the City anywhere from 5-30 days to decide if they will let you tear it down.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 22, 2011
You will need a permit to tear it down. That permit application gets reviewed by city historic officer first. If it's OK to demo, you want to be sure what's buildable there. You can go by the development assistance center for Austin on S. 1st at Barton Springs Rd. They can answer a bunch of questions for you. Take a long a lot survey if you have it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 22, 2011
Judy, If you finance and design the projects I would strongly suggest that you register with reoprep as a vendor. That is very rare and your ability to do that would help many investor requests.
If you want to contact / register with a discount (less than 10.00 a month) email and ask for Brian Richards. We would like to have you:)
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 22, 2011

no one can handle the entire process, from demo to design, from finance to finish, like NEWCASTLE HOMES! we are currently working on several projects like this in the area and would be an excellent resource and offer tremendous value.

thanks, and good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 21, 2011
Forrest, one thing I would add is to check with local authorities to make 100% SURE you can tear down the structure completely and re-build. I would get any "opinions", etc. in writing too. Some zoning does NOT allow that, especially if your home is deemed "historic". If you can't tear it down completely, usually you can leave up 1 wall, for example, and expand upon that. I know of a buyer who bought a home on Lake Austin for ~$1,000,000, tore down the existing structure, only to learn AFTER that he could not re-build anything due to zoning restrictions. He now has a somewhat useless $1M lot!!! DO YOUR RESEARCH THOROUGHLY IN ADVANCE!! Good luck, Joe
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 20, 2011
I have worked with friend for the last 10 years;
who is a contractor. He specializes in tear downs; additions and would be able to help you. He has several references and concentrates in the central Austin area. You can email me and I would be glad to give you his contact info. Liz Zepeda/RE/MAX. my email is
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 20, 2011
Feel free to email for a list of "certified" contractors in your area. You could also use the REO Prep vendor site to search out individual vendors so you can sub out tasks as you need them.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 20, 2011
I would start by looking at the survey and the title policy and design a new home footprint making sure you stay within the building setback lines. You would have to get a demolition permit from the City first to tear it down. Hopefully there is no historical value so that none of the neighbors will object to the teardwon. that's the process. Good luck. Tim Sweeney Realtor 512-266-5898
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 20, 2011
Contact Jeff Mills at River Rock Builders. He specializes in that area and has done a lot of great work out there.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 20, 2011
You may be able to use HUD 203(k) Loan where you can roll all your costs into one loan.

If interested email me at: FHA
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 20, 2011
Don't forget to engage an architect before you get started. There are numerous entitlement issues that need to be researched. I will be glad to meet with you to discuss these issues as I have designed several projects of this scope.

Feel free to contact me.

Charles Fisk AIA, NCARB
512.422.1337 mobile
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 20, 2011
Is it going to be a rental property or resale, or do you plan to occupy yourself? Answers to these questions could dicate what type of dwelling ( house, duplex, townhouse, etc ) and how much money you need to be prepared to spend. Also, you will have to check the zoning ordinances as well as make sure permits are in place before you start the project. The house being over 100 years old will most definatley have to abide by all the new EPA rules and regulations when tearing down, especially if there is presence of lead based paint or asbestos in the dwelling.

I have a very reputable contact when it comes to the tear down and build and between he and I we could handle of the permits, zoning and project planning. Hope this helps and let me know if you need any further assisatnce with your project.

Good luck to you!

Jeremy K. Boos/Broker
Central Austin Realty Group
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 20, 2011
Get an architect first and make sure he explains the whole process from applying for permits, blue prints, designing your home etc. He should also be able to recommend a contractor or two. Get a real estate attorney to help you crunch the numbers and make sure all the paperwork is proper, then if you need financing, go to a mortgage banker and see if you can qualify for a construction loan.
But first thing first, talk to an architect and a general contractor.
Good Luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 20, 2011
Hello Forest,

I would start talking with a reputable homebuilder in the area. Also make sure you have your financing and/or cash in order. They can give you the details for a teardown-rebuild.

If financing, I would speak to Cindy Swannack, President CS Mortgage about a construction loan. Her number is 512 483-6093.

Let me know if you need my assistance locating a builder in your area.

All the best!

Jeffrey Nyland, REALTOR®, GRI, SRS, ABR
The Nyland Team
Prudential Texas Realty
512-626-8552 (Direct)
512-267-3640 (Fax)
Jeffrey Nyland TX AUC# 16644
Exceeding Expectations!
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 20, 2011
I'm a Real Estate agent and I have a residential construction company. Call me at 512-814-5079. I would be happy to discuss with you.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 20, 2011
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