on the other hand, when i see the occasional cleared piece of land, there are NO trees at all. looking for a happy medium with the tree and pasture balance!
Definitely, sell your home first. Unless your independently wealthy (and even then it can be a bad idea), never have the burden of possibly getting stuck with 2 homes. Leasing with pets is not an issue, leasing with horses is a little bit more of a challenge, but still, I would recommend against leasing something here until you sell your home there, unless your circumstances require you to be in Austin urgently.
Our market is still good enough that offers with contingency to sell another home are almost non-existant. And in any market, you will pay more for the home you're buying because of the contingency, than a buyer who doesn't have a contingency.
Selling my house so I can buy a home 2,000 miles away is going to be a good trick. Not impossible, as people manage to do it, but logistically it's much harder with animals. There's my dog and cat in addition to the horses. Renting or leasing while looking to buy doesn't seem like an option. I just spent a week in Austin in April, and it wasn't long enough to really look around. A month would be better.
And then there's the fact that most sellers probably don't want to tie up selling their house contingent upon me selling my house.
I may give you a call.
Many of the larger lots in that area (over an acre) that are not in a defined HOA allow horses, and even a few HOAs allow them. There are a few boarding stables in that area, but I agree, the cost is pretty expensive and it's just not the same having the horses "somewhere" else instead of right next door. I've seen lots of different requirements in deed restrictions that carry with the land, but 1 horse per acre is common. A client of mine just purchased an older home that they plan to fix up (it was in good condition, just not decorated the way they wanted it). The house on 1 acre was $260,000 and the adjoining 2 acres they purchased for an additional $55,000. They were allowed 3 horses and a barn, which they plan to build. That was really hard to find, took about 3 months. I can put you in contact with them to get a perspective on the Southwest part of town and what they found, since it seems you might have a lot in common with them. They were able to find this home further North, off 290 just West of Oak Hill, but they had to move fast once the home came on the market. They bought last year when things were still pretty hot, but things have cooled quite a bit here (still a seller's market, just not as hot as it has been in the last 2 years). I think the market is more balanced and you probably have more options at more reasonable pricing.
My daughter is not sure if she wants to start college right after high school. She may want to take a year off in between. So on or off campus is up in the air right now.
I do like the Driftwood area quite a bit. My search would be easier if i didn't have horses, but boarding is very expensive (plus we like having them around to jump on and ride when we want to). Maybe I should start a small boarding stable, then I wouldn't have to commute anywhere!
Your friend is correct. Throughout Austin's history, the homes West of IH-35, have held their value considerably better than homes East of IH-35. The land to the East is also, generally, much more unstable, clay type soils, which has lead to a large number of foundation problems, even in new developments. The land East of IH-35 also tends to be much flatter and easier to build on. Remember, where it's easiest to build, in general, home values tend to appreciate below the market average.
While I-130 is a big improvement, the typical sentiment is that the vast majority of the growth along that corridor will be commercial.
If your daughter will be going to UT, I would need to know if you have seriously considered having her stay on campus. It's right downtown, and getting there from anywhere outside of Austin is going to be a significant commute. With I-45 running to 1826 on the Southwest part of town, you could consider homes in that area. To hit your price target you would have to probably go down to Driftwood, but the commute is doable. I have clients who live off Onion Creek in that area and they drive into town every day. They like the rolling hills and feeling of the hill country.
Give me a call if you'd like to discuss. Thanks so much!
A friend of mine who has lived in austin all their life said i should definitely stay west of austin. But land and homes seem much pricier in the driftwood, dripping springs, wimberley area for what i am looking for. Also, east and southeast of austin seems to be more what i consider horse country (coming from the east coast). It's flatter, and seems greener and less rocky.
The area is generally flat, but has trees and a more rural feeling to it. Someplace definitely you should check out. It is very close to Austin - approximatley 15 - 20 minutes depending on where you are wanting to go.
Let me know if I can help you with this area or others.
Ritch Haenke, Realtor (R)
Coldwell Banker, United Realtors