NewsTalk Texas

Houston: deep dive into searchable neighborhood home prices 

(4/24/2015 11:00:00 AM)

HOUSTON - Take a deep dive into the Houston area's neighborhoods with the Home Price Survey provided by HAR's searchable database. Search by county, region, market area or value and get a detailed view of the Bayou City and its suburbs.

The searchable database include home data, interactive maps of the real estate landscape and more.

The chart below shows the results from searching "Northeast Harris County" and then clicking on the details for the "Atascocita North" market area.

Houston 2015 Home Price Survey
Region Northeast
Harris County
Market Area Atascocita North
Transactions 2014 257
Median sales price 2014 $170,000
Price change 2010-2014 30.77%
Price change 2013-2014 19.30%
Median price per sf $67.03
Price per sf change 2010-2014 12.45%
Price per sf change 2013-2014 6.77%
Sales change 2010-2014 44.38%
Sales change 2013-2014 2.39%

Here's your interactive map and no advertising at Houston Chronicle.

Longview apartment market overview Mar. 2015 

(4/24/2015 9:15:00 AM)

LONGVIEW - Apartment MarketData Research Services LLC has released March 2015 data. The multifamily market data represent three months trailing (Jan.–Mar. 2015).

As a rule these represent all properties except those that are leased but not occupied units.

Multihousing Market Condition Comparison Jan.–March 2015
Longview Texas
Units Occ. Rate Size Units Occ. Rate Size
< 1970 599 99.5% $0.701 847 115,216 96.1% $0.875 834
1970's 3,404 95.9% $0.772 822 355,392 95.8% $0.850 819
1980's 2,451 95.7% $0.834 744 468,033 96.6% $0.943 782
1990's 274 98.9% $0.946 863 192,525 97.0% $1.146 926
2000's 216 96.8% $1.121 867 259,916 96.6% $1.179 959
2010's 216 99.1% $1.028 1,002 58,242 95.8% $1.351 928
Totals* 7,160 96.4% $0.813 805 1,449,324 96.4% $1.011 852

Rate: Rental Rate is the average market rate expressed as ($/SF/month).
Size: The average size of each unit expressed as (SF/unit).
*Totals include four-bedroom units.

No ads, no interruptions! Click March 2015 Longview Multihousing Market Conditions Report, It's more than you ever thought.

Source: Apartment MarketData Research Services LLC, San Antonio

Take a look at Longview Market Research.

NAI Partners: Houston office outlook 1Q 2015 

(4/24/2015 9:12:00 AM)

HOUSTON - NAI Partners has released its first quarter 2015 Houston office market outlook report.

The performance of Houston’s economy is strongly tied to the national economy and Texas rig counts, the latter a key indicator of our regional oil industry.
The national economy continues to show strength and growth in key areas, including jobs, ending of the government’s fiscal inputs, housing market picking up, bank credit flowing more freely, and yes, less expensive oil.
On the other hand, while reductions in Texas rig counts are slowing, they are nonetheless down from 877 a year ago to 456 in April.
Overall, the positive national economic outlook — combined with Houston’s boom in downstream refining, petrochemical business and construction — will counterbalance pullbacks in oil.

Demand for office space softened in first quarter 2015 to 1.6 million sf of total net absorption, down 35.5 percent year-over-year.

Office supply, as measured by availability and vacancy, increased in 1Q 2015.

Office 1Q 2015 Key Market Indicators
  1Q 2015 Y-O-Y
Asking rent: Class A $34.88 1.2%
Asking rent: Class B $21.48 3.3%
Net absorption (sf) 1,597,616 -35.5%
Leasing activity (sf) 2,666,025 -49.9%
Vacancy (%) 11.98 4.2%
Deliveries (sf) 4,240,504 61.9%
Construction (sf) 15,429,374 -7.1%
Inventory (sf) 257,240,982 4.3%
Inventory (# of bldgs.) 3,670 3.1%

Source: NAI Partners

No advertising, no wait time! Click 1Q 2015 Houston Office Market Outlook.

Lots of free research at Houston Research.

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CVE HQ calls home to Allen's Enterprise Business Park 

(4/24/2015 9:00:00 AM)

ALLEN - CVE Technology Group, Inc., one of the fastest-growing high-tech after-market service providers for cellular handsets and consumer electronics, has relocated its headquarters from Riverdale, New Jersey to Enterprise Business Park in Allen.

According to CVE officials, 300 employees currently occupy about 40 percent of the 196,000-sf flex-space facility at 915 Enterprise Blvd., which also serves as a service center.

The company is averaging 20 new hires weekly in response to new and expanded contracts with cell phone carriers.

At the Allen location, CVE expects to employ 1,200 by the end of 2015.

“We relocated the headquarters here because the Metroplex is the epicenter of cell phone growth and activity,” said CVE Vice President Ruben Alvarado.

“All of the top carriers along with all of the top OEMs are here in the DFW Metroplex. Even if their headquarters are located elsewhere, their hubs and inventory most definitely are here,” Alvarado said.

Although CVE maintains a national receiving center in Plano and service centers in Fort Worth and New Jersey, Alvarado said the key factor in site selection was Allen’s competitive lease rates for spaces that were ready to move in immediately.

Allen’s Enterprise Business Park afforded less than 30-minute commutes to DFW International Airport and Dallas Love Field, and many dining and retail options within minutes at the nearby Watters Creek and Village at Allen centers.

Enterprise Business Park has attracted several large employers in addition to CVE, including Experian Information Solutions, Frontier Communications and Jack Henry & Associates. Combined, the four companies currently employ over 2,500 people.

Read more at Business Facilities.

Chemical industry, housing still strong amid oil layoffs 

(4/24/2015 9:00:00 AM)

HOUSTON - Gas prices keep edging up while layoffs continue in the oil services industry. No word how many jobs have been cut in the Houston area, but industry analyst Daniel Flynn say it may take a few months to right the ship.

“With the layoffs, we're not going to see the jobs come back as fast as we lost them, unfortunately,” says Flynn.

A rebound depends on numerous factors around the world.

Not all is lost, according to Bob Mitchell with the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership.

“The specialty chemicals industry is really booming down here,” says Mitchell. “Its unfortunate the west side is sort of struggling, but the east side of town is really doing quite well.”

Mitchell believes that will help weather the storm.

“The energy corridor is suffering, but the specialty chemicals industry downstream is booming because of the cost of natural gas,” he says.

Houston's medical district, shipping port and other industries have helped fill the gap of years past. That diversity has kept the local housing market strong.

“At $208,000, the single family home median price achieved a record high for March,” says Nancy Furst, chair of the board at the Houston Association of Realtors.

“Our total property sales in March were up 3.6 percent year-over-year.”

Source:  iHeartMedia KTRH

1Q 2015: Dallas housing shortage; home prices soar 

(4/24/2015 8:45:00 AM)

DALLAS - A shortage of properties kept the lid on Dallas-area home sales in first quarter 2015.

That lack of inventory caused prices to soar — up 13 percent from 1Q 2014, according to a comparison of Dallas-area neighborhoods.

Some of the biggest jumps in prices were in southern Dallas County — where there’s an acute shortage of affordable homes to purchase.

Median home sales prices rose 42 percent in Oak Cliff, 24 percent in DeSoto and 19 percent in Southern Dallas.

There were also big first-quarter median price increases in North Dallas, where prices were up 20 percent. Even if mortgage costs creep up later this year as analysts predict, don’t expect a softening in housing demand.

“I think a slight increase won’t make much difference, and that is the most likely result,” said James Gaines of the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University. “Any increase will have a short-term psychological effect, but it shouldn’t amount to much.”

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Dallas climbing in sales of million-dollar homes 

(4/24/2015 8:30:00 AM)

DALLAS - Luxury home sales in Dallas — like home sales throughout other price ranges — climbed last year, with 750 homes priced at a million dollars or more sold during 2014.

Wealthy young professionals, a demographic group the Dallas business community has been working to attract, is one reason behind the jump in luxury homes sales, according to the 2015 Coldwell Banker Previews International Luxury Market Report.

"Younger buyers are already an important group because a vast majority of wealthy millennials have immediate purchase interest," according to the report.

Here's an age breakdown of those interested in buying a home:

•  73 percent of those under 35 say they expect to buy a home in the next 12 months
•  49 percent of those between the ages of 35 to 44 say they plan to buy a home in the next year
•  11 percent of millionaires age 65 and older say they are planning to buy a home in the next 12 months

Dallas has yet to break into the top echelon of cities with the largest portion of million-dollar home sales. San Francisco is leading the pack with 2,802 home sales in 2014.

Los Angeles and New York are second and third for million dollar home sales behind San Francisco with 2,573 and 1,639, respectively. Houston ranked No. five on the list in 2014 with 1,045 million dollar home sales, according to the report.

While more Dallas luxury homes sold in 2014 than in previous years, there were fewer luxury homes put on the market than two years ago. This could have builders looking to fill market demand for high-end digs by building new homes for homebuyers.

Read more at the Dallas Business Journal or see the 2015 Coldwell Banker Previews International Luxury Market Report.

Islander Way leads to Momentum at TAMU-Corpus Christi 


CORPUS CHRISTI - Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi officially opened the Islander Way roadway, which will serve as the entrance and exit for Momentum Village.

Momentum Village is a three-building housing complex for upperclassmen students. It will offer fully furnished rooms for 482 students, mostly in four bedroom-four bath combinations.

American Campus Communities is the developer for the $26 million Momentum Village. It is scheduled for completion by July 2015.

Rooms at Momentum Village will range from $649 to $764 per month.

While the roadway will serve as a way to move students in and out of the village, the infrastructure below the road will allow the university to grow.

That infrastructure includes Internet and electrical connections and power and water lines that will allow the university to build additional structures as needed.

Read more at the Corpus Christi Caller-Times.

See Market Research Corpus Christi, NewsTalk Corpus Christi.

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Midland: make way on the course for 48,830-SF retail center 


MIDLAND - The Borgata, a five-building retail center, is taking the place of an old miniature golf course in the growing northwest part of Midland.

Construction of the 48,830-sf facility is 70 percent complete.

Located at 3415 N. Loop 250 W., The Borgata is anticipated to have a partial opening in July.

The remaining buildings are expected to open by the late part of summer.

Tenants thus far include Little Woodrow’s, Fresh Fit Meals, Total Nutrition, Stadium Sports, a nail salon, a hair salon and spa and two undisclosed tenants.

Tenants have signed on for at least 70 percent of the space.

The Borgata’s architectural design will resemble an Italian village.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Country Inn and Suites new look for West El Paso 


EL PASO - The new owners of the Country Inn and Suites by Carlson in West El Paso celebrated the former Holiday Inn's new brand and ongoing $3.1 million renovation.

TVO North America bought the 176-room hotel at 900 Sunland Park in a foreclosure sale in December and rebranded it.

TVO did not disclose the sales price, but the El Paso Central Appraisal District valued the hotel property at $8.9 million last year.

The hotel has remained in operation during the ownership change and renovations.

Remodeling of the lobby, restaurant and ballrooms into modern spaces have been completed.

Renovations are expected to be completed by early fall.

Read more at the El Paso Times.

Klabzuba sells 190,000-SF Riverbend Center in Fort Worth 


FORT WORTH - The 188,355-sf Riverbend Center at 2301-2435 Gravel Dr. and 7401-7445 Pebble Dr. has been sold.

Riverbend Center was 90 percent occupied at the time of the sale. The property includes about 5,000 sf of excess land to provide an expanded parking site.Riverbend Complex LLC purchased the industrial property from Fort Worth-based Klabzuba Oil & Gas Inc.

Read more at the Dallas Business Journal.

Preliminary: Williamson County home values jump 12.7 percent 


WILLAMSON COUNTY - Preliminary figures for 2015 show home values increasing 12.7 percent in Williamson County — a hot market where housing demand continues to outstrip supply and push prices higher, according to Williamson County Chief Appraiser Alvin Lankford.

The average market value of Williamson County homes increased to $241,860 from $214,682 last year, according to preliminary figures from the Williamson County Appraisal District.

The taxable value of homes — the market value minus exemptions — jumped 9.7 percent on average, to $229,687 from $209,402.

Last year, the average market value and average taxable value rose 10.6 percent and 11.5 percent, respectively.

“The same market factors that increased values before are still happening this year,” Lankford said.

“Williamson County is one of the fastest-growing areas within Texas and the demand for housing has outpaced supply for the last three years.”

Williamson County Market Values
  Average Market
Average Taxable
2015 2014 Chg. 2015 2014 Chg.
City of Cedar Park* $260,437 $233,030 11.76% $250,285 $225,889 10.80%
City of Leander* $209,823 $184,114 13.96% $201,040 $178,041 12.92%
City of Round Rock* $226,177 $205,959 9.82% $217,815 $202,163 7.74%
City of Georgetown $251,986 $227,025 10.99% $232,436 $221,723 4.83%
City of Hutto $164,745 $150,670 9.34% $159,982 $147,122 8.74%
City of Taylor $112,659 $100,300 12.32% $103,726 $97,800 6.05%
Willamson County $241,860 $214,682 12.66% $229,687 $209,402 9.69%

*Williamson County portion only

Read more at the Austin American-Statesman.

The Woodlands' Amazing Spaces — 103,000 SF and 98,000 SF  

(4/23/2015 3:00:00 PM)

THE WOODLANDS - Amazing Spaces Storage Centers, a self-storage operator with four existing facilities in Texas, is building a 103,000-sf storage facility at FM 2978 and Research Forest Dr. as well as a 98,000-sf facility just south of the city, about a mile from the new Exxon Mobile corporate campus.

The larger property is slated to open March 2016 and will be built in accordance with green-friendly building standards, according to the company press release.

It will also serve as a GREENspot DROPoff for the recycling of electronics including computers, monitors, DVD players, laptops and televisions.

Amenities will include climate control, conference rooms with free Wi-Fi, drive-through loading/unloading zones, individually monitored unit alarms, video cameras, wine storage, and a retail center that offers packing and moving supplies.

The smaller facility is scheduled to open fall 2016.

Open since 1998, Amazing Spaces has two locations in Houston as well as facilities in Spring and The Woodlands, Texas. In addition to traditional self-storage units, the facilities offer boat/RV storage, wine storage and more.

Read more at Inside Self Storage.

Houston NewsTalk Texas, Houston Market Research

Savills Studley: DFW office sector 1Q 2015 

(4/23/2015 10:00:00 AM)

DALLAS-FORT WORTH - Savills Studley has released its first quarter 2015 DFW office sector report, highlighting the Metroplex’s economical growth that puts it in the top quartile of cities around the world.

The regional average Class A rent rose by 1.5 percent to $24.70 and has jumped by 5.2 percent year-on-year, with particularly sharp annual growth in Las Colinas, the Dallas CBD and Uptown.

With all of the news about relocating firms and business expansion, a steady increase in availability has been overlooked.

Quarterly leasing volume fell below 3.0 million sf for the first time since 4Q 2012.

Slower leasing, coupled with mounting construction activity, appears to be pushing availability higher. The overall availability rate rose for the fourth quarter in a row, jumping from 21.7 percent to 22.3 percent. The Class A rate grew by to 23.6 percent.

Rental Rate Comparison*
US Index $33.15
Preston Center $31.63
Uptown $30.54
Fort Worth CBD $26.44
Central Expressway $23.89
North Dallas Corridor $23.72

*Chart represents top five submarkets by average rental rate

Source: Savills Studley.

No commercials, no waiting but do yourself a favor and get the full picture here 1Q 2015 Dallas Office Report by Savills Studley.

Need other data? See Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington Market Research.

What's happening in DFW office NewsTalk?

Austin home prices, sales volume hit all-time highs 

(4/23/2015 9:00:00 AM)

AUSTIN - Central Texas home prices and sales volume hit an all-time high in March 2015, according to the Austin Board of Realtors.

“The Austin-area housing market is the least affordable it has ever been,” said ABOR President Barb Cooper.

FitchRatings recently raised the ire of local economists and real estate professionals by reporting that Austin homes were collectively overvalued by 20 percent — the highest in the country.

ABOR’s new statistics peg the median price for Austin-area single-family homes as increasing 10 percent year-over-year to $255,000 in March 2015. The average price increased 13 percent to $334,758 during the same time.

This is the highest Austin-area home prices have ever been, and only three in ten single-family homes sold locally in March were priced less than $200,000.

Home sales increased 13 percent year-over-year to 2,440 home sales in March, a new volume record for that month.

In March, more than half of the homes sold in the Austin area were outside of Austin’s city limits.

Most out-of-Austin sales occurred in Round Rock, Pflugerville, Georgetown, Cedar Park, Leander, Kyle and Buda.

Austin’s monthly housing inventory was statistically unchanged from March 2014 at 2.2 months, a figure still well below the 6.5-month level the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University estimates as a balanced housing market.

Read more at the Austin Business Journal.

See Austin NewsTalk, Austin Market Research

Fort Worth: 450,000-SF Parc North under construction 

(4/23/2015 9:00:00 AM)

FORT WORTH - Dallas-based Jackson-Shaw Co. and Denver-based Amstar have broken ground on Parc North, a 31-acre speculative industrial development at the corner of I-35 and Loop 820.

Featuring four light industrial buildings totaling almost 450,000 sf, the development is expected to reach completion in third quarter 2015.

Parc North will offer Class A industrial space near Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, Fort Worth Alliance Airport and downtown Fort Worth.

“The Northern Crossing area, where Parc North is located, continues to be an industrial magnet,” said Jason Nunley, vice president of development with Jackson-Shaw.

Parc North marks Amstar’s third industrial development to break ground in the North Texas market in the past year.

Construction on DFW North Distribution Center and Riverpark 1000 began in 2014. Both are nearing completion. The buildings are 100 percent leased on a long-term basis.

Read more at Fort Worth Business Press.

NewsTalk industrial DFW, Market Research

Houston: Neighborhoods by the Numbers 2015 

(4/23/2015 8:55:00 AM)

HOUSTON - Houstonia Magazine has released a comprehensive chart with everything you need to know about 150 of Houston’s neighborhoods. The Houston Association of Realtors (HAR) provided the list of 150 neighborhoods.

The real estate data — including median home prices, percentage growth, and average days on the market — also came from HAR.

Percentage of owner-occupied homes and percentage of home mortgages that are fully paid off comes from the 2010 United States Census.

Other data includes neighborhood population, median income, and lifestyle data like percentage of residents with bachelor’s degrees. The chart below shows a few neighborhoods included in the chart.

Neighborhoods by the Numbers 2015
Market Area Zip Code 2014 Median
Home Price
% Growth
Population Median
Mean Travel to
1960/Cypress 77065 $150,000 21.95% 37,344 33.4 27.07 27.28%
Heights/Greater Heights 77008 $435,000 40.37% 30,807 35.9 21.73 54.92%
The Woodlands 77380 $355,000 24.56% 24,771 36.3 25.76 41.02%

No ads, no waiting, just click to see Neighborhoods by the Numbers 2015 with all 150 neighborhoods.

To see more — such as percentage of residents below the poverty line, grades for schools, walkability scores and parks per ZIP code — see the full Houstonia Magazine article.

Waco: eat 'til the cows come home at Heitmiller's 

(4/23/2015 8:30:00 AM)

WACO - Heitmiller’s Steakhouse at Legends Crossing will open in three to four weeks.

Seating capacity will approach 300 people, which is slightly fewer than the other Heitmiller's location on I-35 in Lacy Lakeview.

Land clearing has also begun for a Saltgrass Steak House at the development near SH 6 and I-35.

The 7,600-sf Waco store will accommodate about 250 guests and will likely open in six months.

The only other restaurant at Legends Crossing is Chuy’s, a popular Mexican food establishment.

Read more at the Waco Tribune-Herald.

NewsTalk Waco, Market Research

120,000-SF Mesa Oaks grow in SW Austin 

(4/23/2015 7:30:00 AM)

AUSTIN - Mesa Oaks, a new 120,000-sf office development in the southwest submarket, is taking off.

Located at 5920 William Cannon Drive, the Class A building offers lease or purchase for office, professional and medical-user opportunities.

The first of six buildings within the project recently delivered totaling 38,000 sf.

The first phase will welcome tenants such as Texas Association of School Business Officials, S. Kanetzky Engineering and the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented.

The Texas Association of School Business Officials will relocate from a building off South Congress to occupy the entire 12,000-sf top floor of Building 1.

The project boasts unique environmental features including solar panels throughout the site, along with energy-efficient HVAC systems. In addition, the development is within a park-like setting, with trees every 20 feet along the walking paths between the buildings.


Lake Jackson 80,000-SF Four Corners Center sold on This Way 


LAKE JACKSON - Stream Realty Partners has purchased the 80,000-sf Four Corners Shopping Center at SH 288 and This Way St. near Dow Chemical’s new research and development center.

The center, anchored by Aaron’s, Goodwill and Dollar General, is undergoing a renovation with completion planned in May.

Lake Jackson, a town of 30,000 about an hour south of Houston, has been experiencing growth in petrochemical projects, residential developments and population. Companies are investing billions of dollars in industrial projects in the Brazosport area.

Lake Jackson serves as a retail hub for smaller markets in the area, according to Stream. Also, the City of Lake Jackson is planning a $26 million downtown revitalization to attract new shops, restaurants and bars.

Read more at the Houston Chronicle and Citybizlist.

Amazon fulfillment center seeks 200 plus employees 


SCHERTZ, BEXAR COUNTY - Amazon's 1.25 million-sf fulfillment center now has nearly 500 full-time employees and is looking to hire more workers.

The facility uses robotics and an advanced tracking system to fill its orders to ship out retail products to customers. The Schertz facility is one of three Amazon shipping centers in Texas.

The Schertz facility shipped out its first package in September 2013 but the company installed its proprietary “Robo-Stow” system onsite in late 2014. Robo-Stow is a six-ton robotic arm that does much of the heavy lifting in the facility.

Amazon currently has more than 200 job listings for positions at the facility on

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

NewsTalk, Market Research

Ahoy! Bayside at Waterman's heading to Galveston's West End 


GALVESTON - Bayside at Waterman’s, a 21-acre, 162-lot development between the Galveston Country Club and Galveston Island State Park, is underway.

The master-planned development will include high-end houses and the restoration of the old Stewart Mansion on the island’s West End by developers Todd and Lori Edwards.

Stewart Mansion will be restored as a community center. Other amenities at the development will include a resort-style pool, lazy river and boardwalk along Lake Como.

The $9 million in privately funded amenities will be built in parallel to the public infrastructure.

The development’s first phase includes 11 waterfront townhouses, a second-level private deck and swimming pool, and 67 covered boat slips.

Existing amenities include Waterman’s Restaurant, a marina, elevated viewing decks and a boat launch.

When development is complete, the property will have taxable value of $160 million, according to estimates.

Read more at the Galveston Daily News.

NerdWallet: Austin No. 13 for 'green' U.S. cities 


AUSTIN - San Francisco-based NerdWallet Inc. has released a list of the U.S.’ most environmentally friendly cities, with Austin coming in at No. 13.

Based on nine factors such as walking commuters, Austin generated a score of 53.5 compared with the No. 1 city, Honolulu, Hawaii, which scored 83.6. No. 2, Washington, D.C., scored 64.3, and No. 3, Arlington, Virginia, scored 62.8.

Irving, the only other Texas city in the top 25, generated an overall score of 51.2 and a ranking of No. 20.

Ten percent of Austin’s commuters carpool and just 3 percent of them walk to work versus Honolulu carpoolers of 13 percent and walking commuters of 9 percent, according to the report.

The number of Austin residential buildings with solar heating per 10,000 was listed as 2.8 compared with 101.9 in Honolulu.

Read more at the Austin Business Journal or see the full ranking at NerdWallet.

NewsTalk Austin, Market Research Austin

Affordable housing cost skyrockets in Corpus Christi 

(4/22/2015 10:00:00 AM)

CORPUS CHRISTI - The local housing market is pushing the ceiling for affordable home prices higher, experts say — some seeing as much as a 32 percent increase.

New guidelines issued by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) show the highest price point for affordable, newly constructed single-family homes at $200,000 — up from the 2014 limit of $151,905.

The highest price point for existing affordable homes increased by nearly 13 percent, from an upper limit of $134,000 to $151,000.

Those prices were determined by Federal Housing Administration mortgage data, and are intended to reflect 95 percent of median purchase prices in Corpus Christi, according to HUD.

Meanwhile, income limits for low-income households — those that earn 80 percent of the area median income, and would be eligible for affordable housing homebuyer programs — increased by nearly 6 percent, across the board.

A family of four earning $42,100 would be considered at the top of the low-income threshold last year; this year, that figure increases to $44,500.

The new guidelines would apply for homebuyer programs administered by the City of Corpus Christi, which have traditionally offered $20,000 as a deferred, forgivable, zero-interest loan for a down payment for eligible, low-income applicants purchasing a home within the HUD-defined ranges.

2015 New HUD Income Limits
Family Size 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Jan. 2014 29,500 33,700 37,900 42,100 45,500 48,850 52,250 55,600
March 9, 2015 31,200 35,650 40,100 44,500 48,150 51,700 55,250 58,850

Read more at the Corpus Christi Caller-Times.

Rural doctors' delight! Hat Trick MOB to Dripping Springs 

(4/22/2015 9:45:00 AM)

DRIPPING SPRINGS - Hat Trick Development of Austin has broken ground on a 37,000-sf medical office building that gives tenant physicians and other service providers a share of equity in the project.

Construction on the 4.5-acre site began in mid-April and is expected to be completed in spring 2016.

The Medical Towers at Sawyer Ranch project is located at US 290 and Sawyer Ranch Rd., across from the Polo Tennis and Fitness Club, and will be anchored by Lewis Family Medicine & Urgent Care.

Other tenants will include Dripping Springs Eye Associates, Kethley Physical Therapy, Solutions Pharmacy, Austin Dermatology Associates & Aesthetics and an imaging center and cardiac catheter lab.

“Our analysis concluded this is another underserved market, medically-speaking, where residents drive to Austin for a considerable portion of their health care needs,” said Eric Perardi, co-founder of Hat Trick Development.

Hat Trick has been an active developer in the medical office sector, recently completing Mueller Plaza Medical in Austin, Cypress Creek Medical Plaza in Cedar Park and Medical Towers at Riverplace in Northwest Austin. 

Read more at the Austin Business Journal.

Olympus lifts 75,000-SF NBC complex in Irving 

(4/22/2015 9:00:00 AM)

IRVING - The regional headquarters building of NBC Universal and the home of KXAS/Channel 5 has been sold. The Class A 75,000-sf broadcast facility is south DFW International Airport

Olympus Ventures bought the building at 4805 Amon Carter Blvd., which is leased to NBC Universal Media.

NBC’s regional headquarters is in the CenterPort development south of SH 183.

NBC Universal Regional Headquarters presented investors with an exceptional opportunity to acquire a recently constructed, state-of-the-art office asset with a stable income stream that is backed by the long-term commitment of one of the world’s leading media and entertainment companies,” said CBRE’s Eric Mackey.

Developer KDC, which completed the facility in 2013, was the seller.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Victoria home sales March 2015: Swearingen 

(4/22/2015 8:30:00 AM)

VICTORIA - The Swearingen Report for residential homes has been released for the 12 months ending March 2015 by Coldwell Banker The Ron Brown Company.

The average sales price for residential homes was $182,829, up 8.6 percent versus March 2014 when it was $168,352.

The median price of residential homes was $169,500, up 10.8 percent versus March 2014 when it was $153,000.

Total sales of residential homes in Victoria MLS for March 2015 was 897, 3.3 percent (31 homes) less than March 2014.

The average Days on Market for residential homes for March 2015 was 84, 8.7 percent shorter than the same period last year.

Total building permits for Victoria city limits for March 2015 were 164, up 42.6 percent compared to March 2014 when the number of permits was 115.

Victoria MLS Residential Home Sales Mar. 2015
All Categories* 12 Months Ending
Mar. 2014
12 Months Ending
  Mar. 2015
Residential property sales 928 897 -3.3%
Residential total dollar volume $156,231,019 $163,997,749 5.0%
Average residential sales price $168,352 $182,829 8.6%
Median residential sales price $153,000 $169,500 10.8%
Total active listings end of month 207 249 20.3%
Months inventory** 3.3 4.2 27.3%

*Figures refer to the residential homes market.
**Six (6) months of inventory is considered a balanced market.

See the full report at Coldwell Banker The Ron Brown Company.

Labor pools 13,000 insurance jobs in North Texas  

(4/22/2015 8:00:00 AM)

PLANO, RICHARDSON - Any way you slice it, 13,000 jobs is substantial. That’s how many combined insurance industry positions are being created in Plano and Richardson by Boston-based Liberty Mutual and Illinois-based State Farm.

Both companies are in the process of moving major operations into North Texas.

So, why are big companies like State Farm and Liberty Mutual choosing North Texas?

That’s where the workforce is, according to Roger Meiners, chairman of the Department of Economics at the University of Texas at Arlington.

“For a large employer they want a big city,” Meiners said.

Read more at the Dallas Business Journal.

Sam's Club opens 134,000-SF store in Austin 

(4/22/2015 7:00:00 AM)

AUSTIN - Sam’s Club opened its fifth location at 10901 Lakeline Mall Dr. The company has three other sites in Austin and one in Round Rock.

The 134,464-sf store has 175 employees — 25 transferees from other stores and 150 new hires from Austin, Cedar Park, Leander and Round Rock, according to Store Manager Maurice May.

Sam's Club, a division of Walmart, features groceries, clothing, electronic goods, furniture, books and health items, with many in bulk, as well as medical care options to its member businesses and individuals.

As part of its grand opening, Sam's Club made donations to several nonprofit organizations such as the Cedar Park Public Library, Meals on Wheels of Williamson Burnet County and Texas Humane Heroes.

Read more at Community Impact Newspaper.

Baytown: 129-unit Remington Park sold 


BAYTOWN - Remington Park at Baytown, a 129-unit, independent and assisted-living community located at 901 West Baker Rd., has been sold.

Expanded in 2008, the facility is across the street from Houston Methodist San Jacinto Hospital and offers nearby access to I-10 and SH Spur 330. The 95 percent occupied property has a mix of nine independent living cottages and 120 assisted-living units.

The property was acquired by Capital Senior Living.

Read more at Multi-Housing News.

Northwest Corners' 466 units purchased by Omninet 


HOUSTON - Omninet Capital has purchased Northwest Corners, a 466-unit complex in the Spring Branch area.

The property, along Hempstead Hwy., has a mix of studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments with an average size of 765 sf.

The Beverly Hills, Calif.-based company purchased the complex from Salt Lake City-based Cottonwood Capital Property Management.

Omninet Capital has been expanding its holdings in Houston since it purchased the Southwest Corporate Center, a 525,580-sf office complex at 9700 Bissonnet last year.

Most recently, it made its first local apartment purchase with the acquisition of the Hartford Park Apartments near the Westpark Tollway and Synott Rd.

Read more at the Houston Chronicle.

Rockport home sales March up in 2015: Swearingen 


ROCKPORT - The Swearingen Report for residential homes has been released for the 12 months ending March 2015 by Coldwell Banker The Ron Brown Company.

The average sales price for residential homes was $252,270, up 0.1 percent versus March 2014 when it was $252,083.

The median price of residential homes was $190,000, versus March 2014 when it was $185,000, an increase of 2.7 percent.

Total sales of residential homes for Rockport MLS for March 2015 was 524, a decrease of 0.6 percent (3 homes) versus March 2014.

The average Days on Market for residential homes for March 2015 was 173, 7.5 percent shorter than the same period last year.

Months inventory estimates the number of months it will take to deplete current active inventory based on the prior three months sales activity. This figure is representative of the single-family and condo/townhouse market. Six (6) months of inventory is considered a balanced market.

Rockport MLS Residential Home Sales Mar. 2015
All Categories* 12 Months Ending
  Mar. 2014
12 Months Ending
Mar. 2015
Residential property sales 527 524 -0.6%
Residential total dollar volume $132,847,522 $132,189,380 -0.5%
Average residential sales price $252,083 $252,270 0.1%
Median residential sales price $185,000 $190,000 2.7%
Total active listings end of month 389 338 -13.1%
Months inventory** 10.3 10.0 -2.9%

*Figures refer to the single-family and condo/townhome market.
**Six (6) months of inventory is considered a balanced market.

See the full report at Coldwell Banker The Ron Brown Company.

Shopping center sold in Far North San Antonio 


SAN ANTONIO - Berry Oaks Shopping Center has been sold. The property is located in Far North San Antonio near the intersection of Hwy. 46 and US 281.

It may be easy to write off the 19,000-sf shopping center in the Singing Hills area as the middle of nowhere given that it is a healthy distance from San Antonio's retail hotspots.

However, in the past couple of years, the combination of overall population growth, people moving out beyond Loop 1604, and the development of a new Walmart have sparked the neighborhood's retail environment.

At the time of the sale, the five-year old Berry Oaks was 100 percent leased with a mix of local and regional tenants.

This one sale will not spark a flurry of investment activity for the area, but it does point to San Antonio's expanding footprint.

More people are rooting themselves in suburban areas such as Boerne, Seguin and New Braunfels, and indications are that Hwy. 46, which arcs through those cities, will play a vital role in the city's continued outward expansion.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

NewsTalk San Antonio, Market Research

El Paso: Conn's HomePlus adds second store 


EL PASO - Conn's HomePlus, a Texas-based, regional appliance, furniture and electronics retailer, has opened its second El Paso store.

The 40,000-sf store opened the first week of April. It is located at 1971 Zaragoza, next to JCPenney.

The first Conn's HomePlus store opened in El Paso in late 2012 in Bassett Place in East Central El Paso.

Read more at the El Paso Times.

Building flurry along Hwy. 71 from Hwy. 290 to Bee Cave 


BEE CAVE - The Hwy. 71 corridor from Hwy. 290 to the City of Bee Cave is home to several projects that are under construction or almost finished.

Developer Oden Hughes is scheduled to finish work on the 240-unit Landmark Conservancy apartments in April, according to Managing Director Mac McElwrath.

Local church LifeAustin expects to finish work on its outdoor amphitheater by mid-May and open the worship center this summer, according to Business Pastor John Capezzuti.

The amphitheater will primarily serve as an outdoor worship center, he said. However, the church hopes to host occasional charitable and civic events there as well. The church considers the amphitheater “integral to our outreach in the community,” Capezzuti said.

Nearby, developer Bill Schultz is working on Covered Bridge Village, a mixed-use project that will include retail, office and restaurant uses, he said. Construction on the three commercial buildings will begin in June or July.

The Texas Department of Transportation is working on a $15.9 million project to add turn lanes and shoulders to Hwy. 71 from Thomas Springs Rd. to Covered Bridge Dr.

Read more at Community Impact Newspaper.

San Antonio apartment overview 1Q 2015 

(4/21/2015 9:00:00 AM)

SAN ANTONIO - Apartment MarketData Research Services LLC has released March 2015 data. The multifamily market data represent three months trailing (Jan.–March 2015).

As a rule these represent all properties except those that are leased but not occupied units.

Multihousing Market Condition Comparison Jan.–Mar. 2015
San Antonio Texas
Units Occ. Rate Size Units Occ. Rate Size
< 1970 8,951 91.8% $0.856 800 115,216 96.1% $0.875 834
1970's 22,973 92.9% $0.888 778 355,392 95.8% $0.850 819
1980's 41,020 94.0% $0.966 762 468,033 96.6% $0.943 782
1990's 10,694 94.6% $1.088 932 192,525 97.0% $1.146 926
2000's 28,290 94.4% $1.122 926 259,916 96.6% $1.179 959
2010's 7,432 91.6% $1.362 893 58,242 95.8% $1.351 928
Totals* 119,360 93.6% $1.024 830 1,449,324 96.4% $1.011 852

Rate: Rental Rate is the average market rate expressed as ($/SF/month).
Size: The average size of each unit expressed as (SF/unit).
*Totals include four-bedroom units.

Find more! March 2015 San Antonio Multihousing Market Conditions Report.

Source: Apartment MarketData Research Services LLC, San Antonio

Find more on Multifamily and more at San Antonio Market Research and San Antonio NewsTalk Texas.

PMRG: Dallas office market 1Q 2015 

(4/21/2015 8:01:00 AM)

DALLAS-FORT WORTH - North Texas added 132,400 jobs in the 12 months ending February 2015.

That represented an annual increase of 4.1 percent in employment, according to PM Realty Group’s (PMRG) 1Q 2015 Office Market at a Glance.

As a result of the job growth, the area’s unemployment rate has dropped 120 basis points to 4.4 percent over the prior 12 months and remains below the national average of 5.5 percent.

Driven by build-to-suit construction deliveries, the DFW office market recorded 1,528,516 sf of direct net absorption during 1Q 2015, increasing its trailing 12-month absorption count to nearly 4.7 million sf — the largest 12-month gain since 1Q 2001.

The office construction pipeline has increased 8.5 percent within the past year to nearly 6.0 million sf to continue its surge experienced since 2013. Only about 48 percent of this space has been preleased.

Largest Submarkets Ranked by Total SF
Submarket Inventory
SF (Total)
Direct SF
Occ. Under
Class A
Asking Rent
(per SF)
Class B
Asking Rent
(per SF)
Las Colinas 28,239,660 6,661,091 82.1% 0 $25.53 $19.88
Dallas CBD 27,234,493 8,376,156 75.4% 450,000 $22.85 $19.33
Quorum/Bent Tree 19,050,238 3,366,389 84.4% 0 $26.39 $18.10
East LBJ        15,813,226 4,641,886 74.3% 0 $22.87 $17.23
Upper Tollway/West Plano 15,321,715 2,565,623 87.7% 1,228,239 $28.93 $24.95
Richardson 14,173,043 2,587,728 86.2% 990,000 $21.96 $17.63
Central Expy. 11,553,748 2,261,201 81.6% 149,510 $25.07 $19.55
Total* 221,585,656 47,052,899 82.5% 5,960,285 $25.12 $18.83

*Includes all DFW submarkets.

One click, does the trick! PMRG 1Q 2015 Office Report.

See available 1Q 2015 office reports under DFW Market Research.

See Dallas office NewsTalk Texas.

Raise the roof! Wichita Falls 1Q home sales 

(4/21/2015 7:55:00 AM)

WICHITA FALLS - First-time homebuyers likely contributed to an impressive jump in existing home sales in the Wichita Falls Multiple Listing Service during first quarter 2015.

According to information released by the Wichita Falls Association of Realtors, 323 existing homes were sold January through March, compared to 284 the first three months of 2014.

“With a nearly 50 percent increase in units sold over March 2014, our first quarter sales transactions are up by 13 percent over the same time period last year, while the total volume of sales is up 3 percent,” said Danny Steed of Hirschi Realtors.

“With a lower average sales price for the year of $110,000 versus $122,000 last year, more first-time homebuyers are entering the market, and more low end sales are taking place.”

Data show 152 existing home sales were closed in March 2015 versus 102 in March 2014.

The total volume through March 2015 is $35.9 million, and was $35.8 million first quarter 2014.

The last time more than 300 existing homes sold in the first quarter was in 2013 when 339 were bought, according to the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.

Read more at Wichita Falls Times Record News.

CBRE: El Paso + Cd. Juarez industrial data 1Q 2015 


EL PASO - The industrial real estate market in El Paso reports a fourth consecutive quarter of positive net absorption in first quarter 2015.

This is the first time since 2011 that the local industrial market has started on a positive note.

El Paso Industrial Market 1Q 2015
Market Rentable
Area (SF)
Vacancy Net
 Lease Rates
West 7,304,124 7.0% 0 $4.78
Northeast 8,763,856 14.2% 472 $3.39
Central 13,654,541 5.1% 40,000 $2.99
East 18,269,922 12.6% 138,502 $3.85
Lower Valley 6,252,230 26.9% 153,851 $4.04
Total 54,244,673 11.8% 332,825 $3.77

Since third quarter 2012, the Ciudad Juárez industrial market has managed to produce ten consecutive quarters of positive net absorption.

Since 2007, first quarter 2015 recorded the largest net absorption in a first quarter signaling a strong start to 2015.

Ciudad Juárez Industrial Market 1Q 2015
Market Rentable
Area (SF)
Vacancy Net
 Lease Rates
North 13,773,657 8.7% 170,261 $4.27
West 10,145,268 13.1% -67,031 $4.05
Southeast 22,224,433 6.7% 356,576 $4.59
Total 62,522,003 8.6% 703,084 $4.31

Source: CBRE Research 1Q 2015

See El Paso CBRE’s Industrial 1Q 2015 report.

See Ciudad Juárez Industrial 1Q 2015

See El Paso Market Research including Spring 2015: Paso Del Norte Economic Indicator Review (PDF).

JLL: Dallas Office Insight to statistics 1Q 2015 


DALLAS - JLL has released its first quarter 2015 Office Insight for the Dallas market. Job growth has accelerated over recent months, resulting in near record-high absorption in early 2015.

Like much of the country, there was a notable uptick in job growth in the early part of 2015, with Dallas recording an annual 140,800 net job gain.

As a result of job growth, strong absorption moved the total vacancy rate to 19.0 percent, extremely low by historical standards. As vacancy declines, upward pressure on rates has continued, with average asking rates rising more than 5.0 percent over the past year.

A majority of the 1.9 million sf of positive net absorption in 1Q 2015 was driven by the completion of State Farm’s and the Richard Group’s built-to-suit projects.

Of the current 7.2 million-sf construction pipeline, there are significant additional built-to-suits, including Toyota, FedEx, seven-Eleven and Raytheon.

Despite higher rates and rate increases, tenants have been willing to lease and expand within Class A product. With the robust construction pipeline underway, this concentration on Class A space is expected to continue for at least the next two years.

See vacancy, absorption, inventory, direct vacancy, YTD completion and historic statistics for

  • CBD
  • Uptown/Oak Lawn
  • Downtown
  • Far North Dalla
  • Las Colinas
  • LBJ Freeway
  • North Central Expressway
  • Preston Center
  • Richardson/Plano
  • Stemmons Freeway
JLL Office Insight 1Q 2015
1Q 2015
Net absorption
Y-O-Y Rent
Total under
19.0% 1,855,788 SF 5.1% 7,177,086 SF 59.4%

Here's 1Q 2015 JLL's Dallas Office Insight and Stats

For more 1Q 2015 reports see DFW Market Research.

See 1Q 2015 JLL's Houston Office Insight and Statistics under Houston Research.

New industrial park to spark in north Houston 


HOUSTON - The Dallas office of New York-based KTR Capital Partners is gearing up to break ground on the first phase of an industrial development on I-45 and Airtex Blvd.

The initial building, an 86,608-sf rear-load light industrial facility, will front I-45. The first building is expected to be complete by fourth quarter 2015. From there, development on a second phase will begin.

No tenants have yet been signed, according to Mace McClatchy, a vice president at KTR in the Dallas office.

"We've got just shy of 28 acres that will allow us to put three buildings on the site," McClatchy said. Plans for the two other buildings entail a 226,460-sf cross-dock facility and a 116,550-sf front-load building.

KTR, which deals exclusively in industrial real estate, currently has 1.3 million sf of industrial space in Houston.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

San Antonio 64,000-SF Windemere at Westover Hills underway 


SAN ANTONIO - A major new medical facility near the Christus Santa Rosa Hospital-Westover Hills campus has broken ground.

The Windemere at Westover Hills skilled nursing center will span 63,956 sf and house 96 private occupancy suites.

The new facility will provide post-acute, transitional and rehabilitative care services in the rapidly growing far west side community.

Cantex Continuing Care Network will own the Windemere facility. Christus Santa Rosa Health Care previously owned the land where the project will be constructed.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

Victoria ranked top Texas city to find employment 


VICTORIA - With an average salary of $54,000 and an unemployment rate of 4 percent, Victoria ranked number four on a list of top places in Texas to find a job., an online career network for job seekers and employers, compared the number of job postings on its website with the Texas Workforce Commission's labor force for the month of February to determine the top five places to land a job in Texas.

The other cities listed by Beyond as the top places to find a job were San Antonio ranked first; Waco, Dallas and Austin ranked fifth.

The data showed Victoria's top job-creating industries as health care and medical, transportation and logistics, merchandising, and purchasing and retail.

The top job titles employers are needing to fill, according to the research, are truck drivers, occupational therapists and registered nurses.

All areas of health care from maintenance to physical therapists are available. The purchasing and retail industries also have been growing steadily as more companies come to Victoria.

Read more at the Victoria Advocate.

For more employment data, visit the Texas Workforce Commission.

Houston's Galleria-area site's unrestricted height, density 

(4/20/2015 9:30:00 AM)

HOUSTON - An affiliate of Dallas-based multifamily developer Trammell Crow Residential has purchased a prime site next to the Galleria mall.

The site Trammell Crow Residential purchased is unrestricted in terms of zoning, use, height and density, according to HFF.

A Trammell Crow representative confirmed it will be the Alexan 5151 project listed on the company's website.

The four-story project is expected to break ground in June, deliver its first units in December 2016 and be complete in September 2017. Plans call for 397 units averaging nearly 962 sf.

The 3.86-acre site, within the Lakes on Post Oak office and residential complex, is directly across Hidalgo St. from the Nordstrom at the Galleria.

HFF marketed the property for the sellers, a joint venture between an affiliate of Connecticut-based Five Mile Capital Partners LLC and Florida-based Crocker Partners.

They acquired the 1.2 million-sf Lakes on Post Oak complex in 2011, and last year they sold three of the office buildings in the complex.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

Houston NewsTalk

CBRE: Houston 2014 industrial market exceptionally strong  

(4/20/2015 9:00:00 AM)

HOUSTON - Eighty-five industrial buildings, totaling 8.9 million sf, are under construction in the Greater Houston industrial market, according to CBRE.

Last year was exceptionally strong for construction of warehouses and industrial buildings. Some 12 million sf of new space was completed in 2014, the highest annual total since 2008, CBRE reported.

The strength in the market is powered by exceptional job growth and a surge in the petrochemical industry.

Despite the addition of new space, the Houston industrial vacancy rate dipped to 4.9 percent in the first quarter of 2015, the lowest vacancy rate in more than a decade, CBRE said.

The submarkets with the largest concentration of development are the Northwest with 28 projects totaling 3.4 million sf, the North with 36 projects totaling 2.3 million sf, and the Southeast with eight projects totaling 1.8 million sf.

The largest project under construction is Fallbrook Pines Business Park, by Trammell Crow Co. and joint venture partner Clarion Partners in northwest Houston. The first phase, scheduled for completion 1Q 2015, will include four concrete, tilt-wall office/warehouse buildings totaling 709,045 sf.

Cresa is developing the Lower Kirby District, scheduled to break ground this summer. The 500,000-sf industrial Class A park planned for 32 acres off SH 288. The initial phase of the project will be an 181,000-sf building fronting Kirby Dr. and Airport Blvd. that is 60 percent preleased.

Read more at Realty News Report. Here's the full Houston CBRE 1Q 2015 Industrial Report.

Big changes! See what's happening in San Angelo housing 

(4/20/2015 9:00:00 AM)

SAN ANGELO - The Texas Association of Realtors (TAR) has released local market trend numbers for March 2015.

San Angelo March 2014–2015 Market Trends
Category Mar. 2014 Mar. 2015 Change
Median sold price $250,000 $191,500 -23.40%
New listings 1 6 500.00%
Average days on market 39 82 110.26%
Closed sales 1 10 900.00%
Under contract 2 10 400.00%
Months supply of inventory 9.00 1.10 -87.78%

See San Angelo Housing Trends March 2014–March 2015.

For more market trends, please visit the Texas Association of Realtors.

tags: San Angelo Market Research, San Angelo NewsTalk

Cushman & Wakefield: Austin office 1Q 2015 

(4/20/2015 8:45:00 AM)

AUSTIN - The latest quarterly report from Cushman & Wakefield | Oxford Commercial shows that the occupancy rate for Class A office space rose to 91 percent by the end of March, up from 90 percent in March 2014.

The information in the report is summarized in an article by the Austin American-Statesman, including graphs.

Full story: Cushman & Wakefield | Oxford Commercial

Special thanks to Spencer Hayes; Jeff Graves and Richard Whiteley.

Blame it on the rain! Austin area home building pace slows 

(4/20/2015 8:00:00 AM)

AUSTIN - Central Texas home building is off to a slow start in 2015, according to Residential Strategies Inc.

The 2,717 housing starts marked a 12.3 percent decline from the 3,099 homes that builders started in first quarter 2014. The annual starts rate through March was 11,967, slightly lower than the 12,349 annual pace posted in 2014.

Residential Strategies cited a higher-than-average amount of rain, particularly in January, for the lower-than-anticipated number of housing starts.

The Austin area continues to have healthy job growth, the main driver for new home demand. The Texas Workforce Commission said the region added 22,800 new jobs during the 12 months ended in March, a 2.5 percent growth rate.

New home closings increased 13.4 percent in 1Q 2015, with buyers moving into 2,542 new homes. The pace of closings continues to push higher and now stands at 10,330 for the annual total through March.

New home inventory rose 28 percent over the last year for a total of 7,454 homes at the end of 1Q 2015, a supply of 8.7 months.

However, most of that inventory — 4,914 houses — is in the “under construction” category. Builders are continuing to increase their model homes as new communities open across Central Texas.

Read more at the Austin American-Statesman.

Austin NewsTalk, Austin Market Research

'Golden Crescent' expected see growth across industry 

(4/20/2015 7:45:00 AM)

VICTORIA - Construction and real estate activities in the Victoria area are expected to continue growing by as much as 33 percent through the next decade, according to industry projections from the Texas Workforce Commission.

The report shows which industries across the state are expected to surge and which could see some shrinkage.

The estimates project change in industry and occupation employment according to industry growth or decline, technology and changing business practices, based on Texas Labor Market Information.

The Golden Crescent area includes Victoria, Calhoun, DeWitt, Goliad, Gonzales, Jackson and Lavaca counties.

Golden Crescent Industry Outlook
Industry Golden
Automotive Equipment Rental and Leasing 100% 21%
Computer Systems Design and Related Services 67% 32%
Agriculture Chemical Manufacturing 33% 15%
Chemical Merchant Wholesalers 33% 24%
Activities Related to Credit Intermediation 33% 25%
Acitivities Related to Real Estate 33% 20%
Bakeries and Tortilla Manufacturing 33% 14%
Alcoholic Beverage Merchant Wholesalers 29% 23%
Buliding Equipment Contractors 29% 24%
Industries on the Decline
Dry Cleaning and Laundry Services -10% 5%
Furniture and Home Furnishings Stores -10% 15%
Cement and Concrete Product Manufacturing -12% 19%

Read more at the Victoria Advocate. For more information, visit the Texas Workforce Commission.

Costco to Pearland with 150,000-SF store  

(4/20/2015 7:00:00 AM)

PEARLAND - Costco will open a 150,000-sf facility with an attached tire center and also a fueling station at the northwest corner of Hwy. 288 and CR 59 in starting in October.

Pearland City Council approved a pair of agreements with Costco, which include the city refunding 50 percent of the 1 percent of Costco’s sales tax revenue collected for a period no longer than ten years or an amount greater than $750,000 total.

Costco requested the agreements because of Pearland’s trade area size, business density count and the associated cost of construction.

The final stipulation involved the Pearland Economic Development Corporation (PEDC) reimbursing Costco for the needed infrastructure improvements associated with the site on Business Center Dr.

The PEDC agreed to pay Costco $246,827 when the business invests $30 million, receives a certificate of occupancy and creates 153 jobs at the Pearland location. The PEDC has been trying to attract Costco since late 2013, officials said.

The store will create approximately 150 jobs, with an estimated total investment of $33.7 million.

The membership-based warehouse store sells a variety of goods, including appliances, furniture and groceries. Costco is the second largest retailer in the United States — and third biggest in the world — as of 2014, according to Pearland officials.

Read more at Community Impact Newspaper.

Tight fittin'? San Antonio tightest housing market in decade 


SAN ANTONIO - A limited supply of homes for sale is creating a lopsided sellers’ market. San Antonio’s inventory has remained steady at 3.6 months since December.

It is the lowest mark since the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University began keeping track in 1990.

Even when inventory dipped below four months in the years leading up to the financial crisis of 2007–08, it only reached 3.8 months, and that was only for one month, December 2005.

Most of the action is in the $200,000-and-under range, which accounted for 55.7 percent of existing home sales in February, data compiled by the San Antonio Board of Realtors (SABOR) show.

The median price of existing homes in February was $185,800, a 9.4 percent increase from February 2014. Yet, year-over-year sales for the same month were up considerably, from 1,509 to 1,724 — a 14.2 percent increase.

Mark Dotzour, Chief Economist at the Texas A&M Real Estate Center, and other experts attribute the low inventory of existing homes to a flat market in home construction.

Earlier this year, a leading San Antonio analyst of the new home market calculated San Antonio would see some 9,200 homes being built, about the same delivered in 2014 — there were 25,543 existing home sales in 2014.

In short, builders say, constructing new homes is becoming more expensive. The number of starter homes is dwindling — in San Antonio in 2014, fewer than 500 homes priced at $150,000 were built. Builders say they cannot make a profit at that price.

Read more from the San Antonio Express-News.

See March 2015 home sales from SABOR.

David Weekley homes to West Dallas' Trinity Green 


DALLAS - Home builder David Weekley has purchased five acres in West Dallas’ Trinity Green project.

The 25-acre Trinity Green project will add single-family housing with the David Weekley sale.

The Houston-based home builder will build high-density, three-story homes near a one-acre park in the project.

Along with David Weekley’s single-family homes, StreetLights Residential will build a 371-unit apartment development in the Trinity Green project this summer.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Lubbock AT&T wants your number for 200 new jobs 


LUBBOCK - AT&T will add 200 new technical assistance jobs at its North Lubbock facility.

Rachel Ennis, AT&T customer service director, said 150 of those new jobs will be bilingual positions.

Starting salaries will range from $12.84 to $15.06 per hour.

AT&T’s facility is at University Ave. and North Loop 289.

Interested in the job? Apply here!

Read more at the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal.

Harper's Preserve spreading 216 homes in Montgomery County 


MONTGOMERY COUNTY - Home builders are preparing to start construction on a new section of Harper's Preserve, an 884-acre gated community about a mile east of I-45 and south of SH 242.

The new phase, in a part of the project called East Village, will have 216 single-family homes priced from the $290,000s to the $600,000s.

Amenities will align with the community's nature theme, said developer Sam Yager III. They will include a lake designed around fly fishing and walking trails.

In West Village, the first section of Harper's Preserve to be developed, there's a bowling green, horseshoe pits and a bocce court. In that village, 366 homes have been sold out of 378 lots.

Harper's Preserve is expected to have 1,733 homes when completed.

In addition to the new homes, land has been purchased for the development of two apartment complexes. A retail site has been acquired as well.

The Exxon Mobil campus, the expansion of the Grand Pkwy., construction of the Texas Children's and Methodist hospital campuses and The Woodlands Town Center has been driving demand, Yager said.

Read more at the Houston Chronicle.

FBC Grapevine sells 27 acres to auto executive 


GRAPEVINE - The First Baptist Church of Grapevine has sold a 26.8-acre tract along William D. Tate Ave. to the chief executive of a San Antonio-based auto dealership.

The land is north of Prospect Pkwy. and north of Classic Chevrolet. According to deed records, the land was sold in mid-February to Abigail G. Kampmann, who is CEO of Principle Auto in San Antonio, which operates Porsche, BMW, Volvo and Mini Cooper dealerships.

The land is also near where Dallas-based car dealer Sam Pack bought land for a Subaru dealership.

The Tarrant Appraisal District values the land at $5.2 million.

Read more Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

San Antonio’s unemployment fell to 3.7 percent in March 


SAN ANTONIO - Unemployment in the San Antonio-New Braunfels metropolitan area dropped to 3.7 percent during the month of March, according to data from the Texas Workforce Commission.

This is down from San Antonio’s 3.8 percent unemployment rate in February and down from 4.9 percent during March 2014.

Statewide, Texas’ unemployment rate fell to 4.2 percent in March — its lowest level since July 2007. This is down from 4.3 percent in February and down from 5.4 percent in March 2014.

Total nonfarm seasonally adjusted employment actually decreased by a net 25,400 jobs in March.

However, the state added 327,500 jobs over the past 12 months for an overall growth rate of 2.9 percent. Texas outperformed the nation, which had a growth rate of 2.3 percent.

The Mining and Logging industry, which includes oil and gas employment, lost some 2,800 jobs statewide. Meanwhile, the Education and Health Services industry added 3,400 jobs in March — Financial Activities added 3,400 positions.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

For more employment data, visit the Texas Workforce Commission.

Burlington to open 60,000-SF store in southwest Houston 


HOUSTON - Burlington will open a 60,000-sf store this fall located at 9751 South Post Oak Rd. in Meyer Park. The shopping center is located near the southwest corner of Loop 610 and is anchored by Kohl’s.

The store will bring 50 to 100 jobs to Houston, the company said. The store will sell ladies apparel, accessories, menswear, family footwear, children’s clothing, furniture and accessories for baby at Baby Depot, home décor and gifts.

It will be one of 55 Burlington stores in Texas and more than 540 companywide. The national chain offers merchandise up to 65 percent off department store prices.

Read more at the Houston Chronicle.

Austin apartments stay hot, but landlords in control 

(4/17/2015 8:00:00 AM)

AUSTIN - The Central Texas apartment market’s hot streak isn’t over yet. The market saw about 4,400 net new units leased during first quarter 2015, bumping the annual total through March to 12,940 units, according to MPF Research.

Only three metro areas — Houston, Miami and Boston — saw stronger first-quarter demand, while Austin’s annual total was the fifth-highest level nationwide.

The local occupancy rate is 95 percent, down from the 95.1 percent rate in early 2014. With all the new supply, rent growth — while still healthy — is slowing a bit. Overall, rents are now averaging $1,088 a month, and for the new properties just coming to market, $1,433 a month.

On average, rents rose 3.3 percent during the 12 months that ended in March, offering renters some relief from the annual hikes of 4.5 percent a year ago and 6 percent to 7 percent back in 2011-2012, according to MPF Vice President Greg Willett.

Although some Austin complexes are offering special deals — generally about one month’s free rent in some areas where lots of new luxury units are opening, like along South Lamar Blvd. — landlords remain in the driver’s seat, leasing agents say.

Austin’s strong first quarter mirrors the national picture, where demand is continuing to rise and the rapid leasing pace is pushing up occupancies and rents. Apartment demand was up 55 percent in 1Q 2015 year-over-year.

Read more at the Austin American-Statesman.

Austin apartment NewsTalk; Austin Market Research

CBRE: DFW Office MarketView 1Q 2015 

(4/17/2015 7:55:00 AM)

DALLAS-FORT WORTH - The DFW office market experienced its 19th consecutive quarter of favorable leasing fundamentals in 1Q 2015 and appears poised for a strong first half of 2015. 2014 yielded the most net absorption in a single year since 2006, coming in at 3.2 mission sf.

Q1 2015 surpassed the deliveries of 4Q 2014 with 1.5 million sf coming online. Pre-leasing among delivered construction is currently 52.2 percent; this figure includes State Farm, who is phasing into CityLine in stages.

Demand was strong among certain submarkets in 1Q 2015, especially in Richardson/Plano and Far North Dallas. State Farm is largely responsible for the absorption within Richardson/Plano.

Q1 2014 was the first time the market had seen sub-18 percent vacancy since 2008, when vacancy reached its prerecession low.

Since Q1 2014, there have been substantial deliveries in the DFW office market that were not leased prior to completion, contributing to the increase in vacancy since early 2014.

Gross asking rents continued to experience growth. Class A rates increased at an especially strong pace, rising from $26.62 per sf to $27.00 per sf.

In 1Q 2015, the total office square footage under construction registered 6.3 million sf, down from 4Q 2014 to 1Q 2015. Construction starts for 1Q 2015 totaled 649,674 sf.

DFW Market Snapshot by Vacancy
Submarket Net
Rentable SF
1Q 2015
Total Net
North Fort Worth 1,286,830 3.8% $19.08 -4,488
South Fort Worth 6,756,657 7.2% $20.55 44,918
Preston Center 3,890,337 9.5% $32.53 -7,568
Southwest Dallas 1,665,033 10.8% $15.22 -13,050
Uptown/Turtle Creek 10,394,060 11.9% $34.81 47,621
Northeast Fort Worth 2,506,456 12.9% $16.98 18,737
Dallas total 182,591,188 17.7 21.29 1,079,810
Fort Worth total 35,677,691 15.4 19.42 136,588
DFW Total 218,268,879 18.3 20.70 1,216,398

Source: CBRE Research

See CBRE's 1Q 2015 Office Report. Need more office? See DFW Market Research for free data.

And we mean "no" ads, surveys, "20 seconds and your story starts."

El Paso: 2015 Paso Del Norte's industrial US-Mexico border 

(4/17/2015 7:40:00 AM)

EL PASO - Strong population and trade growth in El Paso, Las Cruces and Juárez, coupled with Juárez's strong manufacturing industry, should provide continued economic development and employment opportunities for the Paso del Norte region — comprising West Texas, New Mexico and Chihuahua.

The report produced by the Hunt Institute at the University of Texas at El Paso shows

•  the longtime problem of low wages in the manufacturing sector in Juárez
•  a list of top manufacturing employers in Juárez that confirms its role as a center of automotive and electronics production
•  population growth in El Paso, Las Cruces and Juárez in the last two decades that has outpaced national growth rates in the United States and Mexico

Production workers at Juárez manufacturing plants, known as maquiladoras, had the second-lowest monthly wages among nine border cities in Mexico at the end of last year at an average $422 per month.

The lowest wages were in Acuña, across from Del Rio, Texas, with an average $401 per month.

However, monthly wages of Juárez's factory management personnel were the highest among Mexico border cities at $2,238 per month.

The "Paso Del Norte Economic Indicator Review" is the first of Hunt's quarterly economic snapshots with data gathered from both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border to help policy makers and community leaders in this binational region plan economic development initiatives and industry recruitment.

It focuses on economic development-related research for this international region.

The institute also will soon release a report on the regional aerospace industry, followed by other industry cluster reports in the future. It also will be releasing maps of regional work-force training and education resources tied to the various clusters.

The report contains a list of Juárez's top ten maquila operators by number of employees. Those factories make automotive, electronics and medical devices, and employ about 75,000 workers, which the report says, is a third of all export-oriented manufacturing employment in Juárez.

The El Paso, Las Cruces and Juárez area has about 2.5 million people and is projected to grow to 3.4 million people in the next 15 years.

Read more at the El Paso Times.

See Spring 2015 Paso Del Norte Economic Indicator Review

Want a better view? See the map! It's all on El Paso Market Research.

What's the trend on the plains? Lubbock local housing market 

(4/17/2015 7:30:00 AM)

LUBBOCK - The Texas Association of Realtors (TAR) has released local market trend numbers for March 2015.

Lubbock March 2015 Market Trends
Category Mar. 2014 Mar. 2015 Change
Median sold price $132,000 $135,000 2.27%
New listings 411 437 6.33%
Average days on market 61 84 37.70%
Closed sales 251 320 27.49%
Under contract 346 394 13.87%
Months supply of inventory 5.20 2.50 -51.92%

Lubbock Housing Sales, Inventory, DOM March 2015 (PDF)
under Lubbock Market Research.

For more market trends, please visit the Texas Association of Realtors.

tags: Lubbock Market Research, Lubbock NewsTalk

San Angelo housing stats 4Q 2014 Coldwell Banker 

(4/17/2015 7:00:00 AM)

SAN ANGELO - Coldwell Banker Patterson has released its fourth quarter 2014 San Angelo housing report.

Consistent with seasonal trends, closings dropped from the prior quarter. Year-over-year, closings were relatively strong, advancing by 27 percent over the same quarter last year.

Similarly, inventory declined from the prior quarter but was also up on a year-over-year basis.

Pricing remains dynamic, with mixed positive and negative changes from last quarter.

Last quarter, the average home was newer and larger, while this quarter the average home was about nine years older and about 73 sf smaller.

For the past two years, San Angelo has been a strong market with a vibrant upward trend.

San Angelo Key Stats
  4Q 2014 4Q 2013 Change
Average sales price $173,172 $163,593 5.9%
Average $/SF $94 $89 5.3%
Median sales price $153,250 $145,000 5.7%
DOM 108 85 27.7%
Sale % of list 96.9% 96.1% 0.8%
# of sales 362 285 27.0%
Listed inventory 484 400 21.0%

Prepared by Coldwell Banker Premier Realty, Market IQ & Coldwell Banker Patterson.

Link: Coldwell Banker Patterson's full housing report

Source: Coldwell Banker Patterson

tag: San Angelo NewsTalk Texas, San Angelo Market Research

TAR: Corpus Christi housing sales, DOM March 2015 


CORPUS CHRISTI - The Texas Association of Realtors (TAR) has released local market trend numbers for March 2015.

Year-to-date, the median sold price in Corpus Christi was $165,000 — up from $161,000 one year ago. This year, 1,213 homes have hit the market, up 92 listings from the 1,122 reported one year ago.

The number of homes under contract year-to-date 2015 is 937. The 2014 total was 859 homes.

Year-over-year numbers are in the chart below.

TAR: Corpus Christi housing stats March 2015
Corpus Christi Mar.
Chg. % Chg.
Median Sold
$161,000 $169,950 $8,950 5.56%
New Listings 404 419 15 3.71%
Avg. Days on
128 116 -12 -9.38%
Closed Sales 272 264 -8 -2.94%
Under Contract 338 411 73 21.60%
Months Supply
of Inventory
4.40 4.10 -0.3 -6.82%

Here's the report: Corpus Christi March 2014–March 2015

For more market trends from other cities, visit the Texas Association of Realtors.

Here's more data at Corpus Christi Market Research.

Austin's 249-unit Capitol Village sold to West Coast buyer 


AUSTIN - The 249-unit Capitol Village Apartments at 6855 E. Hwy. 290 has been sold.

Built in 1969, the community offers studio units and one-, two- and three-bedroom layouts. Units range from 400 sf to 1,380 sf and rent varies from $599 to $1,299.

Capitol Village is 96 percent occupied and offers community amenities such as a swimming pool, clubhouse, playground fitness center and business center.

A San Francisco-based private investor purchased the property from Los Angeles-based InterGroup Corp. Berkadia handled the sale.


Two-tower project to add 300 units to Dallas' Victory Park 


DALLAS - Greystar plans to break ground this summer on a two-tower residential project at Victory Park. The Ascent apartment high-rises will have more than 300 luxury rental units just east of American Airlines Center.

The 21-story and 23-story apartment towers will each have a rooftop deck and fitness center with views of Uptown, downtown and the Trinity River corridor.

Greystar is one of a handful of apartment developers looking at new projects at Victory Park — the 75-acre development on the northwestern edge of downtown.

Greystar’s Victory Park project will have about 3,500 sf of retail space on Houston St. Apartments will average 975 sf and rent for an average of $2,850.

Greystar is one of the largest apartment operators and owners in North Texas. The South Carolina-based company is building the Elan City Lights apartments just east of downtown Dallas on Live Oak St.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

220-Unit apartment underway in downtown Houston 


HOUSTON - Leon Capital Group has broken ground on a five-story, 220-unit apartment building on city block 365, which is bounded by Austin, Caroline, Jefferson and Pease Streets.

The unnamed Class A project is expected to be completed in late 2016, according to Central Houston’s quarterly downtown real estate report.

Leon Capital’s project was approved for the City of Houston’s Downtown Living Initiative, which offers developers $15,000 in tax breaks for each unit built in a multifamily complex built downtown.

Since launched, nine apartment projects have broken ground, with nine more planned for downtown Houston. These 18 projects will add 4,408 new multifamily units downtown.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

Alert Logic expands office in Houston Galleria area 


HOUSTON - Houston-based Alert Logic Inc. plans to grow its footprint with an almost 20,000-sf expansion in its current office building at 1776 Yorktown near the Galleria. Currently, it occupies roughly 55,000 sf.

The reason for the new space is to facilitate several expanded operation facilities, including security, network and support centers, Gray Hall, CEO of Alert Logic.

The company's revenue for first quarter was $18.2 million, according to an earnings report. On its current trajectory of growth, Alert Logic could hit the $100 million revenue benchmark by year end, Hall said.

In addition to the expansion, Alert Logic expects to hire 50 to 75 employees for a variety of roles in its Houston office.

Over the past couple of years, Alert Logic’s success has been tied to the implementation of the cloud in a wide variety of industries and the consequential need to make sure data is protected.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

192,000-SF spec industrial SW Dallas' Mountain Creek 

(4/16/2015 10:00:00 AM)

DALLAS - Construction has begun on a 192,260-sf speculative project at the Mountain Creek Business Park.

Courtland Development is building the warehouse project in I-20 and Mountain Creek Pkwy., just west of Spur 408.

The Mountain Creek 5 building is the latest addition to the 500-acre Mountain Creek project. The project will open in November.

Mountain Creek already has warehouse and distribution operations for companies including Nestle Waters, Niagara, Costco, American Leather, Strategic Partners, Jack in the Box and Cummins Southwest.

Four other large distribution centers are under construction in the industrial park, where more than 2,000 employees work.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Allen's $85M convention center heads to Watters Creek 

(4/16/2015 9:00:00 AM)

ALLEN - The City of Allen’s tourism industry will get a bump in January 2017, with 290 new guest rooms, a 64,500-sf convention center and 1,000-car parking garage.

The Allen City Council has approved a partnership with TCH Altera LLC to construct The Convention Center at Watters Creek, a full-service, four-star facility with a development bill of $85 million.

Set to rival North Texas’ other hotel/meeting spaces such as the Gaylord Texan Resort, Hilton Anatole and Sheraton Dallas Hotel, the project will be built on seven acres at Bethany Dr. and N. Central Expy., next to Allen’s Watters Creek apartment and shopping center.

The center is being developed to ease the demand for business and recreation space in the city as Allen undergoes corporate office and retail growth.

That demand has also spurred the development of the Watters Creek Office Park, which will encompass 860,000 sf in five or six buildings constructed next to the convention center.

According to a study by HVS Global Hospitality Services, the convention center will bring in $3.6 million in revenue annually by its fourth full year of operation.

Developer TCH Altera has worked on other prominent hotels, including the Mandarin Oriental in Las Vegas and The Knickerbocker in New York City’s Times Square.

The company said it has already secured financing for the project and will be ready to break ground by the end of the summer.

Read more at the Dallas Business Journal.

Appetite for Downtown living on El Paso's menu 


EL PASO - A new apartment project in Downtown El Paso, the Savoy Loft Apartments is underway at 116 S. Stanton.

Plans call for 27 studio apartments, and construction is expected to finish a year from now.

The purchase price has not been disclosed, but rents will run from $560 to $950 a month for units that range in size from 550 sf to 820 sf.

Savoy Loft Apartments will be located a block west of the El Paso County Courthouse on the top three floors of the old Hotel Savoy. The century-old building is located at the corner of Stanton and Overland,

Construction is expected to finish a year from now.

Read more at El Paso Inc. and Bearing Development.

TSTC, American Airlines partnership creates job pipeline 


WACO - A new partnership between American Airlines and Texas State Technical College aims to put more of the college’s flight training graduates in the cockpit of the company’s planes.

“We like to partner with somebody that we can put our name (with) and be proud of and we want to be part of, and that’s with TSTC,” said Nick Brice, director of pilot recruitment for Envoy.

The college signed a pipeline agreement with Envoy Airlines, a subsidiary of American Airlines Group that flies under the American Eagle brand.

Through the arrangement, Envoy personnel will directly mentor and recruit aircraft pilot training students to enter the company’s pipeline instructor program, which could lead to direct hiring opportunities with American Airlines.

TSTC graduates about 20 students from the aircraft pilot training associate’s degree program each year.

The partnership is an effort to address an expected shortage of pilots in the next few years because of retirements — the airline industry projects a shortage of 6,000 to 8,000 pilots by 2018.

Envoy estimates that it could be down 600 pilots in the next few years based on the 20 pilots per month who transition to American Airlines.

The partnership will target students who have graduated and are beginning work as flight instructors at TSTC.

Read more at the Waco Tribune-Herald.

Moviehouse & Eatery tickets McKinney's Craig Ranch 


McKINNEY - The Craig Ranch development is set to receive a 40,000-sf Moviehouse & Eatery.

The theater and dining chain has purchased almost seven acres near the northeast corner of Custer Rd. and SH 121 with plans to build a ten-screen facility on the property.

The new theater will open in about a year and will be Moviehouse & Eatery’s third DFW location.

The 2,200-acre Craig Ranch community has about 9,000 residents.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Dallas Cinepolis 44,000-SF International cinema to 'show' up 


DALLAS - The biggest motion picture chain in Latin America is coming to Texas with a complex at Victory Park.

Mexico City-based Cinepolis will locate an eight-screen theater in a new residential high-rise. The 44,000-sf luxury theater will be in the lower levels of an apartment tower to be constructed by Lennar Multifamily Communities.

The theater and high-rise are scheduled to open in 2017, with construction starting later in 2015.

Cinepolis is the fourth-largest cinema operator in the world. It has locations throughout Latin America, in India and now the United States, including Florida, California and now Texas.

The theater would be the biggest retail addition to Victory Park since the 75-acre development was built.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Austin office market stays hot in 1Q 2015 


AUSTIN - Driven by the city’s thriving tech sector, Austin’s office market remained strong in first quarter 2015, with occupancy rates and average rents rise rising compared to 1Q 2014, according to Cushman & Wakefield | Oxford Commercial.

The report shows that the occupancy rate for the highest-quality, or Class A, office space rose to 91 percent, up from 90 percent a year ago.

The average rent for Class A space averaged $35.60 per sf, up from $32.70 in 1Q 2014.

Even with more than 3.5 million sf of office space currently under construction, “there aren’t enough new construction projects underway as the majority of office space coming online this year has been preleased,” said Jason Steinberg with Equitable Commercial Realty in Austin.

Austin’s tech sector is boosting demand for top-tier office space. With a 25.6 percent growth in tech talent from 2010-2013, CBRE ranked Austin ninth among 50 markets for attracting and growing tech talent.

Erin Morales with CBRE in Austin said that downtown Austin has seen “an incredible transformation of culture in the last decade,” primarily due to tech companies that want to locate downtown because it helps them recruit and retain top talent.

Read more at the Austin American-Statesman.

58,000-SF MOB underway in Irving 


IRVING - The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) has broken ground on a new headquarters building at 1950 W. Royal Lane.

The 58,000-sf office is near Freeport Pkwy. and north of SH 114 near DFW International Airport.

About 150 of the ACEP’s employees will be housed in the building when it opens in 2016. It is the oldest and largest national medical specialty organization representing physicians who practice emergency medicine.

Cawley Partners is developing the building for ACEP, which is currently based in Las Colinas.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Quest ventures to The Colony with 36,000-SF office 


THE COLONY - Billingsley Co. has started construction on a 36,000-sf building at its Austin Ranch project near SH 121.

The office building on Plano Pkwy. will house the headquarters of Quest Resource Management Group, an environmental and waste management firm.

The building, which is near the new Nebraska Furniture Mart, will open in September.

It’s the second of three buildings planned for a site called Old Oak Pond, where Billingsley is also building a new regional headquarters for the Japanese electronics company Sanyo.

“We saw great opportunity for our client at Austin Ranch,” said Steve Wentz of Cushman & Wakefield, who represented Quest in the deal. “This is truly a hot spot for development in DFW and this location was a great fit for Quest to boost their corporate image and get a great space for future growth.”

Austin Ranch is a 1,700-acre development located south of SH 121 that office, industrial, retail and residential properties.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News and D Magazine.

HAR: Houston area cities' home sales March 2015 

(4/15/2015 9:30:00 AM)

HOUSTON - Houston Association of Realtors (HAR) released home sales data for March 2015. Some quick facts include:

•  The median price of existing single-family homes increased to $210,000 — up 5.0 percent from February 2015.
•  Existing single-family home sales increased 33.0 percent from February 2015 for a March 2015 total of 5,939 units sold.
•  Condos decreased in price to $155,600 — down 0.9 percent from February 2015.
•  Existing condo sales increased 20.1 percent in March 2015 versus February 2015 for a total of 639 units sold.

Select region cities are represented below along with statistics from the HAR MLS area as a whole. Release date was April 10, 2015.

HAR March 2015 Regional Sales and Price Activity
MLS Wide Median Price
  Mar. 2015
Price Chg.
vs. Mar. 2014
Units Sold
  Mar. 2015
Sales Chg.
vs. Mar. 2014
$210,000 8.9% 5,939 -0.6%
HAR (condo) $155,600 -6.5% 639 4.1%
Region Cities*        
Houston $198,000 10.0% 1,714 -6.9%
Spring $200,000 3.4% 447 -5.3%
Katy $250,000 8.7% 417 -1.9%
Cypress $242,855 13.0% 230 -2.1%
Humble $177,575 7.4% 216 0.0%
Richmond $253,250 11.1% 212 5.5%
Pearland $253,302 12.3% 194 7.2%
Sugar Land $320,000 -2.9% 161 -7.5%

*Region Cities' data include single-family only and represent eight cities sorted by number of units sold.

See Housing under Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown Market Research or see the full report from Houston Association of Realtors.

ABoR: Austin area home sales March 2015 

(4/15/2015 9:00:00 AM)

AUSTIN - The Austin Board of Realtors has released home sales facts for March 2015. Below is a sample of the entire report released April 10, 2015.

• The median price of existing single-family homes increased to $255,000, up 3.2 percent from February 2015.
• Existing single-family home sales increased 30.9 percent from February 2015 with 1,999 sold units.
• Condos increased in price to $219,950, up 14.4 percent from February 2015.
• Existing condo sales increased 20.6 percent in March 2015 over February 2015 with 234 sold units.

Austin Region Sales and Price Activity by Units Sold
MLS Wide Median Price
Mar. 2015
Price Chg.
Mar. 2014
Units Sold
Mar. 2015 
Sale Chg.
Mar. 2014
ACTRIS* (single-family) $255,000 10.9% 1,999 8.3%
ACTRIS (condo) $219,950 3.9% 234 -1.7%
Region Cities**        
Austin $315,000 5.7% 787 5.1%
Round Rock $240,000 15.3% 201 -1.5%
Pflugerville $204,800 19.8% 131 37.9%
Georgetown $261,750 -3.1% 130 9.2%
Cedar Park $256,739 1.2% 112 3.7%
Leander $210,000 9.7% 103 22.6%
Kyle $185,000 18.8% 53 1.9%
Buda $228,968 9.6% 50 35.1%

*Austin/Central Texas Realty Information Service
**Data include single-family only and represent select region cities that sold 50 or more units during March 2014.

See the full report from the Austin Board of Realtors.

San Antonio apartment market will soften, continue to climb 

(4/15/2015 8:00:00 AM)

SAN ANTONIO - San Antonio's apartment market will not be immune to the drop in oil prices, but continued increases in employment, construction and rents will bolster its long-term health.

According to Marcus & Millichap's First Quarter 2015 Apartment Research market report, the city's job growth and accelerating interest among investors will be the top drivers for the rental market throughout this year.

Particularly in the north and northwest areas of the city, apartment development will accelerate due to the thousands of professional jobs being created in those regions.

The report found that young professionals are moving into the metro as job openings and hiring's continue to climb, resulting in an increased demand for nearby rental housing.

While rent growth is expected to slow this month, the softening is expected to be temporary — as the pace of deliveries declines toward the end of the year. Once the development pipeline begins to empty, demand will have a chance to catch up with the influx of new supply.

Here are some other highlights from the report:

  • Construction will climb slightly, as builders bring 6,500 apartments to the market this year, following last year's 6,300.
  • Vacancy will rise to 7.9 percent as construction remains elevated this year.
  • Average rent growth will slow from last year's 4.6 percent increase, rising 3.8 percent to nearly $900 a month.
  • Builders completed 2,100 apartment units throughout the first quarter of 2015, and combined, developers have brought 6,400 units into stock over the past 12 months, equating to a 4 percent rise in inventory.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

Click here for access to the full report from Marcus & Millichap.

Dozer alert! Little Elm's Holt Cat celebrates in $14M digs  


LITTLE ELM, DENTON COUNTY - Holt Caterpillar's new 61,000-sf, full-service facility is now open.

The new $14 million facility gives Holt Cat nine locations in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

“Little Elm is one of the fastest-growing cities in Texas and investments in construction and infrastructure here are driving an ever-increasing demand for Cat heavy equipment and services,” said Dave Harris, Holt Cat president and chief operating officer.

Read more at Rental Equipment Register.

What's the trend? College Station-Bryan local housing market 


COLLEGE STATION-BRYAN - The Texas Association of Realtors (TAR) has released local market trend numbers for March 2015.

College Station-Bryan March 2015 Market Trends
  College Station Bryan
Category Mar. 2014 Mar. 2015 Change Mar. 2014 Mar. 2015 Change
Median sold price $166,750 $204,900 22.88% $134,900 $151,530 12.33%
New listings 254 205 -19.29% 151 83 -45.03%
Average days on market 65 43 -33.85% 86 57 -33.72%
Closed sales 154 140 -9.09% 97 100 3.09%
Under contract 238 201 -15.55% 113 110 -2.65%
Months supply of inventory 3.70 1.80 -51.35% 3.80 1.80 -52.63%

For more market trends, please visit the Texas Association of Realtors.

tags: College Station-Bryan Market Research, College Station-Bryan NewsTalk

DFW Airport opens next-generation $54M HQ 


IRVING - DFW International Airport has opened a three-story, 154,000-sf building that is the airport’s new administrative offices.

The energy-efficient headquarters has opened at the airport’s Southgate Plaza development, and the airport board held its first monthly meeting at the facility in early April.

“We’ve been able to create a much more open environment, so you’ll see less offices,” Sean Donohue, the airport’s chief executive, said about the new headquarters. “I think it will generate better collaboration and better communication.”

The building features coffee bars on the second and third floors along with a large break room called “The Hangar,” which has lounge chairs, couches and tables for employees to use for impromptu meetings or lunches.

The airport board, which spent $54 million on the facility, decided three years ago that the 1970s-era headquarters building on Airfield Dr. was outdated.

Staff members have been spread out over ten buildings at the airport, but with the new headquarters, most of the airport’s administrative departments will be consolidated.

Earlier this year, the airport board approved a 60-year lease with a Dallas commercial real estate firm to manage the old headquarters and two other office buildings at the airport. That deal has helped offset the cost of the debt payments on the new headquarters, Donohue said.

Read more at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Naphthalene now flowing from Reynosa to Brownsville 


BROWNSVILLE - A key component of gasoline is now flowing in a cross-border pipeline built by San Antonio-based NuStar Energy linking a production facility in Mexico with the Port of Brownsville.

Mexico's national oil company Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX) reported that naphthalene started flowing on April 1 from their production facility in Reynosa to a terminal in the Port of Brownsville.

PEMEX subsidiary PMI and NuStar signed a ten-year joint venture deal last year to build the cross-border pipeline.

Under the deal, NuStar built a terminal facility on the American side of the border in Edinburg, which then connects via pipeline to a Transmontaigne Partners LP facility in the Port of Brownsville.

PEMEX officials reported that NuStar's planned construction of a second terminal in Edinburg would allow for even greater volumes.

The cross-border pipeline deal is part of Mexico's historic energy reforms, which have allowed for foreign investment for the first time in more than 70 years.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

Apartments near SMU in Dallas switching to condos 


DALLAS - The 55-unit Shelby Apartments on SMU Blvd. near N. Central Expy. will be converted into condo units.

The five-story complex was built in 2008. It will sell the units starting at $185,000.

The urban-style apartment project — which includes ground-floor retail space — was built on the site of a garage once used by automotive designer and racer Carroll Shelby.

The rental community has been popular with SMU students. Owner Marquis Group will open the units to sell later in April.

“With just 55 homes available, the development represents an amazing opportunity to own in one of the hottest markets in the country,” said Brent Halvorson, Vice President of Marquis Group.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Corpus Christi steps up to The Cosmopolitan 


CORPUS CHRISTI - The Cosmopolitan — a $23.7 million mixed-use complex that will include retail space on its lowest floor and apartments in the four stories above — continues to take shape.

The Cosmopolitan will offer 165 units. Of those, 123 one-bedroom and 42 two-bedroom.

One-bedrooms are starting at $1,190 and two-bedrooms for $1,550.

Realtex, an Austin-based company, is developing the downtown, luxury units on the 400 block of North Chaparral St.

It is expected that the leasing office will open next month.

Roland Broussard, vice president of management at Realtex, believes they will also be able to open the first 88 apartments in late May, and complete the project in July.

Read more at the Corpus Christi Caller-Times.

KB Home acquires 57 acre in Far Northwest San Antonio 


SAN ANTONIO - KB Home has purchased 57 acres along the Highway 16 corridor for a new community called The Ridge at Bandera, where the builder plans to construct 128 new homes in the foothills of the Texas Hill Country.

Development is scheduled to begin this summer, with an official grand opening anticipated in early 2016. The Ridge at Bandera marks KB Home’s second new development in San Antonio’s Far Northwest in two years.

The Ridge at Bandera is the latest in a series of land acquisitions by KB Home in San Antonio, underscoring the builder’s growth in the area.

So far in 2015, KB Home has opened new home communities at Cross Creek, The Reserve at Southton Ranch and West Village at Creekside.

Three additional communities, Falcon Landing, Miller Ranch and Mirabel, are expected to open for sale later this spring.

Read more at MarketWatch.

DFW ALN apartment report March 2015  

(4/14/2015 9:00:00 AM)

DALLAS-FORT WORTH - In what appears to be a common thread in large Texas Metro areas, the DFW apartment market saw strong absorption in first quarter 2015 while price increases were modest.

The Metroplex gained over 4,300 net rented units in 1Q 2015. On an annual basis, over 14,000 more units are rented than 1Q 2014.

Effective rents over the last 12 months have risen a respectable 7.1 percent but 1Q 2015 only accounted for 1.2 percent growth in that figure.

2015 is starting out nice for the DFW market and the introduction of new supply will finally taper towards the end of 2015.

The one caveat seems to be that about 1,500 of the net rented units in 1Q 2015 came outside the core submarkets of the Metroplex. Outside areas like Sherman-Denison, Forney and Greenville are seeing strong rental growth.

With lower lower rental rates, we might be seeing a greater exodus to the outlying regions in many large metro areas over the next few quarters.

Dallas-Fort Worth Quarterly Multifamily Market
  Occupancy   Effective Rent
Submarket* Nov-14 Feb-15 Chg. Abs.** Nov-14 Feb-15 Chg.
Far North Dallas-Tollway West 95.7% 95.6% -0.1% -15 $845 $852 0.8%
Far North Dallas-Tollway East 95.6% 93.6% -2.1% -70 $924 $930 0.7%
Farmer’s Branch / Addison 94.5% 93.9% -0.6% -198 $1,027 $1,025 -0.2%
Bachman Lake / Webb Chapel 95.6% 94.3% -1.4% -134 $668 $680 1.8%
Skillman / Audelia / 635 91.6% 91.9% 0.4% 226 $668 $680 1.7%
Park Ln / Greenville / Midtown East 91.5% 91.7% 0.2% 58 $940 $953 1.4%
White Rock East / Buckner / Ferguson Rd 90.3% 93.1% 3.1% 331 $710 $722 1.6%
Totals*** 92.3% 92.2% -0.1% 4,353 $917 $928 1.2%

*Selected submarkets by occupancy
***Totals include data from all submarkets.

Here's the entire U.S. plus Texas apartment report at ALN March 2015.

Read more at ALN Market News.

El Paso housing stats 4Q 2014 Coldwell Banker 

(4/14/2015 8:55:00 AM)

EL PASO - Coldwell Banker de Wetter Hovious Inc. has released its fourth quarter 2014 El Paso housing report. Median sales prices moved up slightly from last quarter and mildly from 4Q 2013, pointing towards a level trend.

El Paso remains one of the most stable Texas residential markets in terms of price and sales volume.

Sales rates were strong when measured on a year-over-year basis, with an increase of nearly 11 percent over 4Q 2013. Listing levels remained largely flat year-over-year while levels declined from 3Q 2014.

Sales-to-list price ratios did jump rather abruptly, as sellers captured all but 1 percent of their asking price, on average.

El Paso Key Stats
  4Q 2014 4Q 2013 Change
Average sales price $154,620 $159,070 -2.8%
Average $/SF $83 $85 -1.9%
Median sales price $143,475 $142,250 0.9%
DOM 108 95 13.1%
Sale % of list 99.0% 98.7% 0.3%
# of sales 1,520 1,367 11.2%
Listed inventory 3,845 3,784 1.6%

Link: Coldwell Banker de Wetter Hovious's full housing report (includes historical)

Source: Coldwell Banker de Wetter Hovious (quarterly report on lower left bottom)

tag: housing

Do you have El Paso quarterly reports for industrial, office, multifamily or more? Then send it to the Real Estate Center's Market Research and NewsTalk Texas and watch El Paso viewers rise with more coverage. And it's free.

Viewer traffic increased in the 3Q Coldwell Banker de Wetter Hovious report last week. The Real Estate Center listened and here's the 4Q update for those nationwide viewers.

Transwestern: Houston multifamily MarketWatch March 2015 

(4/14/2015 8:50:00 AM)

HOUSTON - Transwesten released the March 2015 MarketWatch for Houston multifamily. The report also contains recent sales, sales statistics and submarket overviews. The chart below shows monthly statistics for the Houston MSA.

Monthly Multifamily Statistics Houston
Category Feb. 2015
Occupancy 91.2%
Price ($/Mo) $933
Rental rate ($/SF/Mo) $106.4
Average size (SF) 877
Number of communities 2,557
Number of units 590,879
Under construction (units) 28,212
Units absorbed (past 12 months) 15,912
% Offering concessions 25%
Average concession package 5.3%

Source: Apartment Data Services Inc.

Click to see Transwestern's full report.

For more Multifamily statistics, see Houston Market Research.

Cool! Daikin heats up $417M Waller campus 

(4/14/2015 8:45:00 AM)

WALLER - Construction is underway at Daikin Industries’ campus in Waller, which will consolidate many of the company’s operations for its Daikin, Goodman and Amana heating and cooling products in Texas and Tennessee.

Daikin will employ up to 4,000 people at the campus, which will open mid-2016.

The campus will contain 3 million to 4 million sf of space.

The campus will house engineering, logistics, procurement, manufacturing and marketing operations. It is being built on 90 acres just north of US 290, about three miles west of the Grand Pkwy.

The campus represents a $417 million investment for the Japanese company, which gained a foothold in the U.S. with the purchase of Houston-based Goodman Manufacturing Co. several years ago.

Read more at the Houston Chronicle.

Austin ALN apartment report March 2015 

(4/14/2015 8:40:00 AM)

AUSTIN - In the apartment market, Austin stumbled a bit in 2014, yet, like San Antonio, it looks like Austin also had a good winter.

The market absorbed almost 1,400 net rented units in the last three months. Consequently, average occupancy dropped a modest 0.5 percent to 90.2 percent.

Rent growth, though, has slowed considerably in this market. Effective rents rose to $1,098 per unit, a mere 0.7 percent growth from November 2014. Compared to a year ago, however, effective rents were up 7.3 percent.

About half of the 23 submarkets saw average occupancy drop since November yet that was due more to the introduction of new units than loss of rented units.

About a quarter of the submarkets saw rents drop in the last 90 days though all of the submarkets had rent increases from a year ago.

The chart below represents the top seven submarkets ranked by occupancy.

Austin Quarterly Multifamily Market
  Occupancy   Effective Rent
Submarket* Nov-14 Feb-15 Chg. Abs.** Nov-14 Feb-15 Chg.
Elgin-Bastrop 97.5% 96.8% -0.7% -3 $830 $931 12.1%
North Central 95.8% 96.2% 0.3% 18 $888 $913 2.8%
Rundberg-N. Lamar-
35 North
95.2% 95.2% 0.0% 6 $820 $832 1.4%
San Marcos-Buda-
94.6% 94.9% 0.2% 11 $916 $940 2.6%
620-Anderson Mill-2222 95.3% 94.8% -0.5% -29 $989 $993 0.3%
East Parmer-Dessau-
Tech Ridge
95.2% 94.5% -0.8% -36 $960 $968 0.8%
West Parmer-North Mopac-
McNeil Rd
94.5% 94.3% -0.2% -26 $1,054 $1,052 -0.1%
Totals*** 90.6% 90.2% -0.5% 1,398 $1,090 $1,098 0.7%

*Selected submarkets by occupancy
***Totals include data from all submarkets.

See the entire U.S. plus Texas apartment report at ALN March 2015.

Read more at ALN Market News.

North Texas 2015 home sales March forward 

(4/14/2015 8:30:00 AM)

DALLAS-FORT WORTH - North Texas Real Estate Information Systems home sales are available from March. Here's a peek at data you can find released April 10, 2015.

• The median price of existing single-family homes increased to $189,500, up 4.8 percent from February 2015.
• Existing single-family home sales increased 32.2 percent from February 2015, with 6,497 sold units.
• Condos increased in price to $169,950, up 3.3 percent from February 2015.
• Existing condo sales increased 23.9 percent in March 2015 over February 2015 with 462 sold units.

Dallas-Fort Worth Region Sales and Price Activity by Units Sold
MLS Wide Median Price
March 2015
Price Chg.
March 2014
Units Sold
March 2015
Sale Chg.
NTREIS* (single-family) $189,500 8.3% 6,497 1.7%
NTREIS (condo) $169,950 11.1% 462 1.1%
Region Cities**        
Fort Worth $159,900 6.7% 757 8.3%
Dallas $289,250 11.3% 694 -3.9%
Arlington $159,000 9.7% 250 -12.9%
Plano $295,000 18.0% 203 -12.5%
Frisco $354,999 12.7% 199 1.0%
Garland $138,950 11.2% 152 3.4%
Grand Prairie $169,900 10.8% 135 23.9%
Abilene*** $139,000 11.3% 123 26.8%
Mesquite $127,300 10.8% 109 -10.7%

*North Texas Real Estate Information Systems
**Data include single-family only and represent select region cities that sold more than 100 units during March 2015.
***Abilene is part of the over 50 counties NTREIS covers.

See the full report from NTREIS.

See farms and ranche sales, commercial land and condo sales in the chart NTREIS March 2015 Report.

Click here for the full story North Texas March home sales bring strong 1Q

Beaumont: 128-unit Providence aimed at 55-plus renters 


BEAUMONT - Providence, a new apartment development specifically for people 55 years of age or older, could be open for leasing by early May.

The development on Major Dr. will have 128 total units with 116 in the main three-story, elevator-served building and 12 bungalow units. The bungalows, six units apiece, will have their own garages.

Chris Akbari is the developer of the $14 million development. The property occupies more than nine acres of what was once pasture land on the south side of Boys Haven.

Nine of the bungalow units will be fully accessible for people with disabilities, featuring extra-wide doors, walk-in tubs and accessible kitchens.

A single-bedroom apartment, about 700 sf, could cost anywhere from $300 to $600 in monthly rent for a 55-year-old or older whose earnings are a percentage of the area's median income.

The main building will feature an activities room, a fitness room, a beauty salon, business center and mailbox room. The property will be fenced and gated.

Akbari said Providence already is working with King's Pharmacy across the street because Providence residents are likely to use the pharmacy.

Akbari said its presence also could stimulate development of a retail strip along the east side of Major Dr. across from the apartments.

Read more at the Beaumont Enterprise.

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Remaking El Paso public housing starts with $250M 


EL PASO - A $250 million financing package has been completed to pay for the first phase of the El Paso Housing Authority's five-year renovation.

Renovations will include more than 30 public housing complexes with 6,100 housing units.

The five-year project will cost an estimated $600 million to as much as $1 billion.

The project is expected to create more than 1,000 jobs.

The first phase will renovate almost 1,600 units at 13 housing projects across El Paso.

The renovations are expected to begin in several weeks at the Kennedy Brothers housing complex in the Lower Valley and the Eisenhower housing complex in Northeast El Paso after residents are relocated.

The housing authority will seek to place residents in vacant properties during construction and move residents back to the newly refurbished buildings after the work is completed.

Read more at the El Paso Times.

Colliers: Houston significant office sales 1Q 2015 


HOUSTON - According to Colliers International, office investment sales activity included 20 transactions in 1Q 2015, with an average price per sf of $236 and an average cap rate of 7.2 percent.

Listed below are a few significant transactions that closed in 1Q 2015.

Houston: Significant Sales Transactions 1Q 2015
Building Name Submarket RBA* (SF) Year Built Buyer Seller Sale Price $/SF Closed
C&J Energy Services -3990 Rogerdale Westchase 125,000 2014 American Realty Capital Global Trust, Inc. InSite Commercial Real Estate $34.3M $275 3/2015
Honeywell – 1250 W Sam Houston Pky Westchase 155,314 1985 Klein Family Parkway Properties $28M $180 2/2015
Westgate 2 & 3 – 17320 Katy Fwy Katy Freeway 411,500 2014 Griffin Capital Miller Global Properties $135M $328 3/2015

*Rentable Building Area

Click here for the full 1Q 2015 Houston Office Report (PDF) plus historical.

Source: Colliers International

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