NewsTalk Texas


Best places to retire? Three Texas cities make the cut 


TEXAS - The Lone Star State came in 23rd on’s list of best states to retire, just ahead of North Carolina and ahead the state of Washington.

Wyoming is the best state to retire to, according to the report, followed by Colorado.

If you're trying to identify a specific city, Forbes recently released a list of 25 cities that are prime spots to kick back and enjoy the golden years.

Three Texas cities are on the list:

•  Abilene — Cost of living 17 percent below national average, average home price of $142,000, and population 120,000.

•  San Angelo — Cost of living 17 percent below national average, median home price of $189,000, and population 97,000.

•  San Marcos — Cost of living 8 percent below national average, typical home price of $198,000, and population 54,000.

Read more at the Dallas Business Journal.

For the rankings, see and Forbes.

Coldwell Banker: Texas markets among best in U.S. 

(2/5/2015 6:15:00 AM)

TEXAS - It wouldn't be a real estate report if there wasn't a ranking, which is why Coldwell Banker Commercial Affiliates has examined more than 80 markets to come up with the best of the best markets in the country in 2014.

The U.S. commercial real estate industry continues to improve steadily in 2015, which is especially true outside core cities such as Boston, Los Angeles, New York and Chicago, said Coldwell President and COO Fred Schmidt.

The country's secondary and tertiary markets, such as Dallas, Denver, Houston, Phoenix, take the top spots in this year's ranked and are strong candidates for continued growth this year.

Here are the report’s top ten markets, which include all four of Texas largest metro areas:

2014 Coldwell Banker Commercial Market Comparison Report
Market Final
Denver, Colo. 1 8 4 28 11 1
San Francisco, Calif. 2 1 1 17 35 23
Houston, Tex. 3 26 13 2 8 30
Dallas, Tex. 4 16 11 13 4 39
San Jose, Calif. 5 2 6 1 60 22
Phoenix, Ariz. 6 20 5 11 12 50
San Antonio, Tex. 7 21 27 41 6 20
Las Vegas, Nev. 8 59 18 25 7 7
Austin, Tex. 9 10 26 55 1 31
Orange County, Calif. 10 5 23 16 40 43


Source: Coldwell Banker Commercial

Read more at the Dallas Business Journal and PR Newswire.

See the full report at Coldwell Banker Commercial.

TAR: 4Q 2014 Texas Quarterly Housing Report 

(2/2/2015 10:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Real estate agents sold 66,664 homes in the Lone Star State during fourth quarter 2014, according to the Texas Association of Realtors (TAR). For all of last year, more than 284,000 houses in the state changed hands.

Texas home sales prices were up 7.8 percent in 4Q 2014 compared to 4Q 2013, with a median price of $185,900.

Despite the strong 4Q 2014 home sales across the state, the total number of properties sold by real estate agents was slightly below the record volume in 2013.

“Texas home sales in the first half of 2015 are expected to be similar to what we’ve seen in 2014, but continued increases in home prices and record-low inventory levels should still continue,” said Dr. Jim Gaines, economist with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.

“Continued housing demand, especially in Texas’ metro areas, will be critical to sustaining our market’s strong housing development in 2015.”

Texas Quarterly Housing Report
Statistic 4Q 2014 4Q 2013
Sales (units) 66,664 61,463
Median Price 185,900 172,500
Avg. Price 240,976 225,217
Mo. Inventory 3.3 3.6

Source: Texas Association of Realtors

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

See how your area performed at the 4Q 2014 Texas Quarterly Housing Report from the Texas Association of Realtors.

Texas regains No. 1 spot for job creation in 2014 

(1/28/2015 7:30:00 AM)

TEXAS - The Lone Star State generated 457,900 jobs in 2014 — the most ever created in Texas. The growth put Texas back in the No. 1 spot after trailing California in 2012 and 2013, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Overall, employment increased in all 50 states and Washington, D.C., in 2014 for the first time since 2004.

“Texas’ growth rate of 4 percent was double the national average” in 2014, said Cheryl Abbot, a Dallas regional economist for the BLS. “We’re seeing a very healthy growth rate virtually across every industry sector.”

Whether Texas can maintain its employment lead for 2015 is uncertain. Most economists expect the state to see much slower job growth this year as the plunge in oil prices takes a toll.

Texas’ oil and gas industry accounts for only about 3 percent of total employment, but it’s still a larger share than in many other states, Abbot said.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Find more employment stats at the Texas Workforce Commission.

How apartments fared in small Texas Metros: ALN Dec. 2014 

(1/16/2015 9:45:00 AM)

TEXAS, U.S. - Overall market occupancy of smaller cities and states nationally is available for Dec. 2014 from ALN Apartment Data.

Links in the chart lead to the full page showing U.S. Metro Aug. data, including previous months.

Texas Market Occupancy Dec. vs.
Oct. 2014*
Market Dec. 2014
Oct. 2014
Beaumont 91.9% 92.2%
College Station 96.2% 95.6%
El Paso 88.0% 88.3%
Harlingen 93.1% 92.6%
Killeen-Temple** 90.0% 89.6%
Laredo 92.7% 93.5%
Longview-Tyler 91.6% 91.5%
Lufkin*** 93.0% 93.7%
Midland-Odessa 93.0% 89.9%
San Angelo 94.9% 96.8%
Texarkana 94.9% 86.7%
Victoria 89.9% 90.7%
Wichita Falls 85.1% 87.3%

*excludes student, senior, income-restricted properties
**Central Texas
***See Longview Market Data Sources for Lufkin.

Source: ALN Apartment Data

Need more multifamily data? See Market Data Sources and pick your Metro.

Forbes: Texas dominates 'Best Buy Cities' for 2015 


TEXAS - Forbes has released Best Buy Cities: Where to Invest in Housing in 2015, a report dominated by Texas housing markets.

Forbes worked with Local Market Monitor, a data company that looks at home prices and economic factors in 300 housing markets across the nation, and determined that these cities are safe bets to invest — whether for rentals or first-time buyers — because of strong job and population growth, diversified economies, and relatively low housing prices.

Four of the cities have reached the point where prices are a slight bit overheated — Austin was the only Texas city — but given their fundamentals, they’re still a safe bet.

Houston’s housing market is still underpriced by 7 percent, with an average home price of $214,049, and the area’s job growth is exploding at 4.1 percent annually.

Dallas is underpriced by 9 percent, with an average home price of $197,159, and a slightly lower job growth of 3.8 percent.

Here are the Texas cities included in the Top ten spots on Forbes’ list:

1. Austin
3. Houston
5. Dallas
6. San Antonio
10. Fort Worth

Texas had the most cities on the list. For Texas cities, home prices have been growing between 7 and 12 percent, which indicates that even though flipping houses might be harder as the market continues to strengthen, the investment for long-term ownership is good in Texas.

See the full ranking at Forbes.

Dr. Jim Gaines: 2015 Housing market to start strong in Texas 

(1/7/2015 7:28:00 AM)

TEXAS - The Texas housing market had a record year in 2014, and much like its predecessor, 2015 is set to start off strong.

Jim Gaines of the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University, said the drop in oil prices, however, could take a toll on the market.

“There is no doubt there will be an impact there, and it will be generally downward,” he said.

Gaines did say there are some offsetting factors such as growth in healthcare and technology services.

Source: WTAW

Texas holds'em with one of three U.S. jobs 

(1/6/2015 7:15:00 AM)

TEXAS - The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) announced that the Lone Star State added 441,200 positions in 2014 — about a third of all jobs added in the U.S.

"We certainly have created business-friendly policies," said Hope Andrade, of the TWC.

"You may have heard is that more people are coming to Texas every day and businesses are locating to Texas. We have a high quality of life and a low cost of living. Most importantly, we have the workforce."

Texas, North Dakota and Utah are being hailed as the fastest-growing job markets of 2014, with each posting employment gains of more than 3 percent.

Texas' nonfarm employment has risen 3.7 percent, with Utah seeing a 3.8 percent gain and North Dakota seeing a 5 percent rise.

In November, TWC reported the state's unemployment rate was 5.5 percent, down from 6.6 percent in November 2013. In comparison, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported in December that the national unemployment rate is still hovering at 5.8 percent.

Sectors leading the way in Texas job expansion include trade, transportation and utilities, which added 89,600 positions in the last 12 months.

TWC attributed a significant chunk of those gains to the North Texas region, where relocating businesses such as Toyota and State Farm are bringing in new opportunities. Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington's unemployment rate is lower than the state's, at 4.6 percent in November.

Andrade is optimistic that job growth will continue into 2015 in Dallas and Texas as a whole.

Read more at the Dallas Business Journal.

For more employment stats, see the Texas Workforce Commission.

2014: New neighbors Texas bound says Atlas Van Lines 

(1/5/2015 7:55:00 AM)

TEXAS - For the third straight year, Texas was one of three states with the highest number of moves, according to the new 2014 report from Atlas Van Lines.

California was first with 13,967 moves, followed by Texas with 13,137 moves and Florida with 10,226 moves.

The moving company has conducted the study since 1993 to track interstate moving patterns reflected in moves handled by Evansville, Ind.-based Atlas.

The following chart shows how the number of inbound and outbound moves in Texas over the past ten years.

Texas Migration Since 2005
Year Inbound Outbound
2014 7,801 5,336
2013 7,856 5,647
2012 7,120 5,585
2011 7,861 5,663
2010 7,248 5,322
2009 6,833 4,773
2008 8,629 6,442
2007 8,831 6,665
2006 9,714 6,812
2005 9,525 7,210

See Atlas Van Lines for more North American moves.

Dallas Fed: Texas single-family housing to regain momentum 

(1/5/2015 6:55:00 AM)

TEXAS - Apartment construction in Texas will likely moderate, while the state’s single-family housing market may regain traction in 2015, according to the latest issue of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas’ Southwest Economy.

The market for single-family housing in Texas lost some momentum in 2014, with record-high prices, depleted existing-home inventories and declining affordability contributing to relatively slow growth in sales, according to Dallas Fed economist Laila Assanie.

Improved access to credit and an expanding supply of new homes for first-time and lower-income buyers will be essential for the state’s housing market to strengthen in 2015, Assanie notes.

Entry-level buyers have been squeezed in recent years by rising home prices and difficult-to-obtain mortgages, and builders have moved away from constructing entry-level homes in favor of higher-priced move-up products.

However, new guidelines from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac that took effect on Dec. 1 revise lending standards, including the elimination of a requirement that a borrower put 20 percent down.

Rapidly rising home prices in Texas could pose a threat to Texas economic growth, making the state less competitive for business, according to Mark Dotzour, chief economist and director of research at the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.

“I feel that this is one of Texas’ most pressing economic development issues,” said Dotzour. “We need to build more homes to keep the supply high enough to prevent prices from getting so expensive that new workers choose not to relocate to Texas.”

Read more at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and at Housing Wire.

Group grabs 1,650 apartment units in Texas  

(12/18/2014 9:02:00 AM)

DALLAS - Presidium Group LLC has acquired more than 1,650 apartment units throughout the state in a series of acquisitions over the last two months. The value of the portfolio exceeds $75 million.

The properties include:

•  Dallas: Plaza on Harvest Hill, a 404-unit complex;
•  Dallas: Spring Hill Apartments, a 606-unit complex;
•  Houston: 3737 Hillcroft Apartments, a 381-unit complex;
•  Houston: Colonial Woods, a 112-unit complex; and
•  San Antonio: Cenizo Flats, a 150-unit complex.

Dallas-based Presidium Group will implement a repositioning program for each property that will revitalize the assets to compete within each submarket.

The plans include various levels of unit interior renovations, resident amenity enhancements and common-area upgrades. Presidium will also rebrand the properties within the next few months.


Tag: apartments

Mapping cost of living across 32 Texas cities 

(12/16/2014 7:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Home affordability rankings for 32 large and midsize Texas cities have been released by fixr, according to Texas Monthly.

Cities are grouped into affordability brackets — based on annual household income and realistic cost of living — and then sorted by discretionary income, which is the yearly amount remaining from earnings after covered expenses.

Annual household income draws on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the realistic cost of living derives from our formula of seven factors — housing, food, utilities, child care, taxes, health care and transportation. The full methodology is available here.

Below are the top three cities for a working class family, middle class couple, and upper middle class family.

Working Class Family
  (seeking 1,500 sf with three or four bedrooms)
City Income Expenses Discretionary
Killeen $60,200 $57,468 $2,733
Wichita Falls $60,200 $57,952 $2,249
Abilene $60,200 $58,327 $1,874


Middle Class Couple
  (seeking 1,700 sf with two or three bedrooms)
City Income Expenses Discretionary
Killeen $87,701 $54,768 $32,934
Mesquite $90,540 $58,731 $31,810
Fort Worth $90,513 $58,794 $31,719


Upper Middle Class Family
  (seeking 2,100 sf with three or four bedrooms)
City Income Expenses Discretionary
Houston $233,553 $160,017 $73,537
Pasadena $232,411 $159,332 $73,080
Beaumont $216,700 $147,376 $69,325

See more categories, cities and full rankings with explanations at fixr.

ALN: Austin, Atlanta, DFW, Houston, Tampa, San Antonio 

(12/15/2014 7:15:00 AM)

AUSTIN, DFW, HOUSTON, SAN ANTONIO - ALN Apartment Data released the November 2014 review of occupancy, effective rent and more for Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), Houston and San Antonio.

For reference, Atlanta, Ga., and Tampa, Fla., are shown. The general overview includes properties in initial lease-up.

General Overview Nov. 2014
Markets Austin DFW Houston San
Atlanta Tampa
Occupancy rate 91.8 92.5 91.6 89.5 92.4 92.6
Units added 6,041 8,391 11,818 3,757 5,193 4,683
Units absorbed (annual) 4,219 7,871 9,292 1,937 6,014 4,398
Average size (SF) 852 859 874 838 1,014 922
Asking rent $1,100 $927 $963 $867 $936 $948
Effective rent $1,091 $918 $951 $850 $930 $943
Effective rent per SF $1.28 $1.07 $1.09 $1.01 $0.92 $1.02
Offering concessions 14% 25% 22% 38% 21% 16%
Avg. concession package 5.1% 4.4% 5.3% 4.8% 3.8% 3.4%

Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

tag: apartment

Texas housing sales boom to second best year ever 


TEXAS - Sales this year for existing homes are expected to be the second best ever statewide, according to the Texas A&M Real Estate Center.

Housing sales are soaring across the state of Texas. There were 242,422 existing homes sold across the state from January to October.

Dr. Jim Gaines, research economist with Texas A&M Real Estate Center, says the state's booming economy is helping housing sales.

Gaines expects interest rates to stay steady for the coming months, but it's the higher end homes driving up sales volume. Home sales under $200,000 as well as new construction of more affordable homes is down.

Gaines adds that while housing prices are going up, incomes are not keeping up with the pace, so affordability will continue to be a problem for some homebuyers.

Read more at KBTX.

High schoolers: 'Find Your Future' in less than ten 

(12/12/2014 6:02:00 AM)

TEXAS - While Texas leads the nation in the creation of good jobs, many of the state's employers say they cannot find workers with the skills they need. is a free resource that high school counselors and college advisors are using to showcase the value of career and technical education and to help students explore career options.

The website's "Find Your Future" career assessment takes less than 10 minutes to complete.

Among five recommendations, the Texas Comptroller's office suggests that Texas needs to do a better job of broadcasting the positive outcomes of career and technical education.

According to the Association of Career and Technical Education, these programs prepare students for a range of high-wage and high-demand careers, as well as further educational opportunities.

Offered by high schools, community colleges and technical schools, these programs equip students with employability skills and job-specific technical skills as well as core academic skills.

Read more at the Victoria Advocate.

Walmart cuts new path to small Texas towns 


TEXAS - Walmart is rediscovering small-town Texas, opening 37 stores in the state from November through the end of January.

The smaller Walmart Neighborhood Markets in two sizes: a 40,000-sf traditional grocery store and its newer 12,000-sf store, which sells an abbreviated selection of fresh produce, meats and groceries and has a pharmacy and fuel pumps.

About half of the new Neighborhood Market stores in Texas are in cities such as Amarillo, Mission and San Antonio. Others are in suburbs, including Sachse, Wylie, DeSoto and Lancaster.

The 12,000-sf stores are in rural markets including Leonard, Hughes Springs, Anson, Whitewright and Merkel.

The Texas expansion accounts for 20 percent of the 170 Neighborhood Markets Walmart is opening in fourth quarter 2014.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News. Is your town one of the 37 getting a new Walmart? Find out at the Dallas Morning News

Texas shopping: retail sales flat across state in Nov. 


TEXAS - November retail sales across Texas remained flat while prices increased, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

In a recent retail outlook survey, the Dallas Fed found that early November sales across Texas increased at 16.7 percent, the same rate as they grew in October. The selling prices index, the average cost for goods, increased by 1 percent last month.

Although statewide sale increases remained marginal, the Dallas Fed reported that retail sector activity increased in anticipation of the holiday shopping season.

Retail jobs increased by 10.8 percent in November. Despite increases in payroll, actual hours worked by retail employees dropped 2.9 percent last month.

The 246 Texas business executives surveyed by the bank reported that retail wages increased by 3.2 percent across the state last month.

Read more at the Temple Daily Telegram.

For more data, see the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
Texas real estate news

TAR's 2014 Texas Annual Housing Report 


TEXAS - Texas continued to be a national leader in economic, population, and housing market growth in 2014, yielding significant growth in all areas of Texas real estate over the last year, according to the 2014 Texas Annual Housing Report released by the Texas Association of REALTORS® (TAR).

Texas currently gains more out-of-state residents than any other state and is a leader in home sales from international buyers.

September’s 2014 Texas International Homebuyers Report showed that home purchases by international homebuyers reached its highest level in five years, contributing more than $11 billion to the Texas economy in a 12-month period.

The 2014 Texas Homebuyers and Sellers Report released in March reported that Texans’ median household incomes rose significantly in 2013, increasing 9.6 percent year-over-year to $91,700. This is nearly double the nationwide increase of 5.6 percent to $83,000 during the same time frame.

Luxury home sales surged to become one of the fastest growing price classes ($1 million or more) within the Texas housing market. January’s 2014 Texas Luxury Home Sales Report reported an average 35 percent year-over-year increase for luxury home sales in Texas’s four major metros in 2013.

Housing development picked up significantly over the last year, with new home sales in Texas outpacing those nationally by more than half according to the 2014 Texas Homebuyers and Sellers Report released in March.

Low inventory levels drove Texas condominium and townhome sales to be the fastest-growing segment of the housing market, increasing an average 10.5 percent in Texas’s four major metros in the first half of 2014.

Dan Hatfield, chairman of TAR concluded, “The Texas housing market will likely continue to be highly competitive in 2015. This has been a glowing year for Texas real estate, and 2015 is on-pace to be just as bright.”

Click here to see the full 2014 Texas Annual Housing Report from TAR.
Texas real estate news

Study trumpets Texas State Parks’ economic benefit 

(12/1/2014 9:14:00 AM)

TEXAS - The Texas State Park system’s more than 90 sites generate $774 million in retail sales annually, contributing $351 million in economic benefits and creating 5,800 jobs statewide, according to a Texas A&M University study.

A survey of park visitors and their spending habits was conducted at 30 state parks between March 2014 and June 2014 by a team led by Dr. John Crompton, a distinguished A&M professor in the Recreation, Parks and Tourism Sciences Department.

“The take-away message from this study should be that the state park system is an important contributor to the Texas economy, particularly in rural areas and that the state’s net investment in parks is returned many times over as visitors travel to enjoy the outdoors and leave their dollars behind,” said Dr. Crompton.

Spending by Bastrop State Park visitors added nearly $1.7 million to the Bastrop County economy and led to the creation of 35.6 jobs.

Similarly, in the Panhandle, Palo Duro Canyon visitors added more than $3.7 million to the coffers of Armstrong and Randall counties that supported 86 jobs in the local area.

Even remote Big Bend Ranch State Park in far West Texas contributed significant economic benefits to Presidio County by adding $1.9 million in sales and roughly 27 jobs.

The study further revealed that state park spending increased all Texans’ income by $202 million and generated 5,871 jobs paying an average annual salary of $34,000.

Local economic impacts varied by park, depending on the number of visitors and their spending habits. Some of the findings include:

•  Balmorhea — $2.3 million in value added; 50.3 jobs

•  Cedar Hill — $3.1 million in value added; 41.7 jobs

•  Garner — $6.9 million in value added; 16.1 jobs

•  McKinney Falls — $883,146 in value added; 16.1 jobs

•  Pedernales Falls — $1.7 million in value added; 41.1 jobs

Read more at the Cypress Creek Mirror.

View the entire study here.

Texas drilling permits fall 50 percent in November 


TEXAS - In November 2014, there were 1,473 new Texas drilling permits, down from 2,947 in October 2014.

This is a sign that oil companies are holding back from boring into their sweetest spots while crude prices linger below $70 a barrel.

The 50 percent fall marks the first time in the past year that the number of new Texas drilling permits has declined; permits rose as much as 24 percent in September 2014, according to Drillinginfo.

For now, it is not necessarily a signal that shale oil producers have found their breakeven point, but it shows oil companies don’t want to drill up good spots in what could be a temporary low-price environment, said Drillinginfo CEO Allen Gilmer.

“Given the faster decline of unconventional wells, more of your economics are dependent on your year-forward production,” said Gilmer. “Essentially, people are drilling locations that hold acreage.”

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Job, rent growth: a matched pair 


TEXAS - Nationally, monthly employment growth has exceeded 200,000 jobs for the past nine months.

Locally, the progress has been more variable, and one indicator of this is the correlation between job growth and rent growth, which dovetail 83 percent of the time, according to Dallas-based Axiometrics.

When these two statistics don't jibe, a market experiences “high job growth and low effective rent growth or vice versa, according to Axiometrics, which examined the top 54 apartment markets to see how each fared.

Unsurprisingly, the Texas trinity of strong job growth markets — Dallas, Houston and Austin — were part of the group that had growth in both indicators.

These cities had high 3Q job growth (3.8 percent in Dallas, 4.0 percent in Houston and 3.8 percent in Austin, as well as above-average effective rent growth: 4.4 percent, 5.2 percent and 4.6 percent, respectively).

While supply is continuing to increase across the U.S., the most recent Emerging Trends forecast from the Urban Land Institute and PricewaterhouseCoopers notes “a disproportionate share of new construction is at the high end. This makes sense when urban high-rise property in the gateway markets is priced at 20 percent to 30 percent more than the cost to construct.”

ULI’s report notes that multifamily’s real strength is that “it is not dependent upon just one demand segment. As local economies grow and the number of jobs rises, rental housing is required.”


More international homebuyers calling Texas home 

(11/14/2014 7:59:00 AM)

TEXAS - In 2014, U.S. real estate agents expect to sell more than $92 billion in homes to international buyers, a 35 percent increase from 2013.

Texas now accounts for about 11 percent of total international home purchases, according to data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Only Florida and California have more foreign buyers.

About 30 percent of U.S. real estate agents now say they are working with offshore clients.

The biggest growth has been in buyers from China. NAR estimates total international sales from Chinese buyers rose to $22 billion in the 12 months that ended in March 2014, up from $12.8 billion in the previous 12 months.

Canadians spent almost $14 billion, and Mexican buyers spent about $4.5 billion.

In Texas, almost 60 percent of international home purchases were by Latin Americans, with second-place Asian buyers accounting for 18 percent.

“Among the foreigners coming in, the Canadians are buying and the Chinese are buying,” said Lawrence Yun, chief economist with the National Association of Realtors. “They are going to Florida, California, Arizona and Texas.”

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Texas tradin’: ITA ranks lone star metro export values 


TEXAS - The International Trade Administration (ITA) ranked 400 metro areas by measuring 2013 export values. Ten Texas metros were ranked in the top 60 MSAs with their statistics listed below.

Texas MSA Export Values
MSA 2012 (full year)
Export Value
2013 (full year)
Export Value
1 Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land* $110,297,753,116 $114,962,566,720 4.23%
9 Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington $27,820,946,540 $27,595,985,143 -0.81%
16 San Antonio-New Braunfels $14,010,234,128 $19,287,645,505 37.67%
22 El Paso $12,796,863,134 $14,359,748,977 12.21%
37 Austin-Round Rock $8,976,611,543 $8,870,843,552 -1.18%
39 Beaumont-Port Arthur $5,448,117,396 $8,243,740,130 51.31%
50 Laredo $5,236,472,957 $5,569,272,628 6.36%
54 McAllen-Edinburg-Mission $5,198,545,660 $5,265,488,806 1.29%
56 Corpus Christi $5,809,394,716 $5,144,752,585 -11.44%
58 Brownsville-Harlingen $4,577,001,315 $4,621,741,351 0.98%

*Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land is the newest name for the Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA).

See the full ITA report here.

Coldwell Banker Texas average home price rankings 


TEXAS - The average listing price of a four-bedroom, two-bathroom home in Texas is $205,656, according to the Coldwell Banker Home Listing Report.

The average home price rankings for similar-sized four-bedroom, two-bathroom homes in various Texas markets are listed below.

Texas Market Average Home Price Rankings
Market State
Boerne 1 $378,154
Austin 2 $369,510
La Vernia 3 $299,089
Grapevine 4 $287,270
Keller 5 $285,912
The Woodlands 6 $279,764
Midland 7 $278,774
Flower Mound 8 $272,343
Robinson 9 $266,727
Cedar Park 10 $265,844
New Braunfels 11 $264,706
Tuscola 12 $260,960
Georgetown 13 $255,833
Sugar Land 14 $249,353
Pittsburg 15 $249,164

See the entire rankings list at Coldwell Banker.

Dreaming of dollars: Texas hotel occupancy 3Q 2014 


TEXAS - In third quarter 2014, 12 areas exceeded the state occupancy average, and 22 of the 27 areas showed increased occupancy versus 2013.

The table below is sorted by 3Q 2014 occupancy, and clearly shows the continuing, positive affect of oil and gas exploration and production activity.

In all oil and gas counties statewide, 3Q 2014 occupancy averaged 67.4 percent, up 2.5 points from 64.9 percent in 2013.

Top 12 Metros Ranked by Occupancy 3Q 2014
  2013 Total 3Q 2014
Metro Area


$ Rev.
Occ. % Chg. % $ Rev.
Midland 81.9 1.7% 84.4 9.4 44.8%
College Station-Bryan 66.7 18.3% 78.7 7.7 21.7%
Odessa 77.0 -0.9% 78.6 6.4 24.3%
San Angelo 82.9 36.7% 77.3 -8.4 -4.1%
Amarillo 61.1 10.3% 71.8 1.9 3.9%
Waco 61.7 10.4% 71.6 6.3 14.9%
Austin-Round Rock 72.5 13.9% 71.3 3.1 14.7%
Lubbock 66.8 9.4% 70.2 -0.6 4.4%
Laredo 67.5 -5.2% 69.4 2.0 4.7%
Houston-Sugar Land-
66.4 12.8% 68.7 2.2 9.8%
San Antonio 62.5 5.5% 68.4 3.8 10.9%
Victoria 64.1 -6.0% 67.4 3.2 13.4%
State average 63.6 8.6% 66.4 2.6 11.3%

See the full report at the Office of the Governor, Economic Development & Tourism.

For more stats on all counties and MSAs, see Hotel under Market Data Sources.

Texas forecast: best state for future job growth 


TEXAS - The Lone Star State ranked first for economic climate and future job growth and sixth on “The Best and Worst States for Business 2014” list, according to Forbes Magazine.

Texas added 2.1 million jobs since 2000, more than twice as many as any other state. Texas is expected to have an annual job growth rate of 2.7 percent over the next five years — the fastest in the nation — according to Moody's Analytics.

"Texas has done well primarily because it is an energy center. You really can't get around that," said Edward Friedman, an economist who tracks Texas for Moody's Analytics.

"Every major energy and oil company has realized over the last 15 years that the only place to be is Houston."

The Texas economy have benefited from growth from the Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas, which pumped an estimated $87 billion into the state's economy in 2013 and supported 115,000 jobs.

In addition to Texas' impressive job growth, it also is expected to have the second-fastest economic growth rate over the next five years: 4.1 percent annually.

Texas Categories
List Rank
Economic climate 1
Growth Prospects 1
Best states for business 6
Labor supply 11
Business costs 13
Regulatory environment 16
Quality of fife 33

Read more at Forbes and the San Antonio Business Journal.

Veterans, military installations impact Texans 

(11/11/2014 10:00:00 AM)

Texas - The United States Military provides nearly $150 billion in economic impact while also employing approximately 900,000 Texans. Overall, the military creates about 6 percent of Texas economic activity.

Texas has the most working veterans in the nation, and its unemployment rate for all veterans is in the bottom third. Annual averages for 2013 are the most recent data available by state.

Furthermore, the military pours money into local communities by purchasing everything from houses to groceries, which increases local and state tax revenue.

For a full picture of Military economic impact, see the Texas Military Might infographic provided by the Dallas Morning News.

Military Times rankings salute Texas Universities 

(11/11/2014 8:15:00 AM)

TEXAS - The Military Times has released its Best for Vets Career & Technical Colleges rankings for 2015. A list of Texas Universities included in the rankings is listed below.

In order to decide which schools made the list and where they should be ranked, the Military Times compared not only schools' survey responses, but also data compiled by the U.S. Education Department, including academic success measures.

Best for Vets: Colleges 2015
Rank School 2014 Military
7 Texas A&M University 648
16 Texas State University 1,118
19 Texas Tech University 768
26 The University of Texas at El Paso 1,940
31 Angelo State University 408
36 University of Texas at Arlington 1,584

Read more at the Military Times.

Texas leads nation in oil field job growth 


TEXAS - The Lone Star State led the nation in the number of new oil and gas production jobs in 2013, adding 19,000 private positions, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

Furthermore, the numbers do not take into account the new jobs created in the corporate headquarters of oil and gas companies in Houston and other cities far removed from the shale plays.

Texas’ numbers were nearly six times the number added in New Mexico, which had the second highest job creation rate in the nation. Between 2003 and 2008, the U.S. added 183,510 oil-and-gas production jobs, a 63 percent increase.

The average oil field worker earned $108,000 in 2013, more than twice the average private sector. Since 2009, oil and gas production wages increased by 12 percent, outpacing the private sector.

Texas is home to some of the nation’s most prolific shale plays, including much of the Permian Basin in West Texas and Haynesville formation in East Texas as well as all of the Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Economist: Commercial property investment forecast in 2015 


UNITED STATES - A forecast from Lawrence Yun, chief economist with the National Association of Realtors, predicts commercial property investments in the U.S. will reach $420 billion in 2015.

However, the property market has a ways to go to get back to the $571 billion in annual investments made in 2007 before the recession hit.

“We turned the corner about 12 to 18 months ago,” said Yun. “For 2014 we anticipate about $400 billion of commercial real estate activity — still short of 2006 or 2007 levels.”

The economic downturn sharply reduced commercial property market investments to only about $67 billion in 2009.

“When the great recession occurred, credit froze,” Yun said. “There was a bout a 90 percent reduction in business activity for the commercial sector.”

Now the market is recovering with commercial property activity and prices getting back closer to previous peak levels as the overall economy grows, according to Yun.

States with the biggest employment increases are seeing the best commercial real estate activity.

“Some states are doing much better than others,” Yun said. “The state of Texas is consistently in the top five.”

Read more at the Dallas Morning News. to drop 'Houston' from name, launch new features 

(11/4/2014 1:00:00 PM)

HOUSTON -, a popular home listing database which formerly focused predominately on the Houston area, will be rebranded from the Houston Association of Realtors to Homes and Realtors (HAR).

Launched in 1997, the Houston Association of Realtor's website has grown over the years to become the No. 1 Multiple Listing Service (MLS) portal in the Bayou City, according to the professional organization.

In March 2014, expanded its listings to include 11 major markets statewide. The new will have a database of over 100,000 active listings and 8.2 million properties, and connect users to nearly 80,000 agents across Texas.

Along with the name change comes a slew of new-fangled features. Here are a few notable changes:

•  "Drive Time" will allow consumers to search for properties by how long they want their commutes to be. Users can input their office address and desired commute time, and the new will create a map and a list of active home listings within the desired commute time.

•  Mobile users can receive push notifications on their GPS-enabled phones for new home listings and search for nearby open houses. A new app feature lets Realtors provide audio tours of homes for homebuyers to listen to.

•  Realtors can fill out profile pages introducing their services to potential homebuyers. Using their profile, they can participate in discussion boards and share expert advice on a variety of topics, from schools and neighborhood amenities to the home buying process.

•  Homebuyers can rate Realtors on their profiles, read reviews of neighborhood schools and share homes they liked with Realtors more easily, which can cut down on the volume of emails and text messages between the agent and buyer.

The beta version, which launched in spring, can be accessed at

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

Gaines: Texas housing on track for second-best year ever 

(11/3/2014 10:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Economists with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University are forecasting that 2014 will end as the second-best year ever for the Texas housing market.

“Last year was the second-best year ever in the state of Texas for home sales volume,” said research economist Dr. Jim Gaines.

“It was second only to 2006, which was at the height of the housing boom and all the easy financing. And 2013 wasn’t that far off from that. This is going to become the new second-best year ever. We are having a really terrific year.”

At the end of September, 217,690 homes had been sold in Texas, a 1 percent gain from the same period in 2013, according to Gaines' report from the Center.

“We’re getting exactly what we thought we were going to get, and that’s a slowdown in the rate of increase,” Gaines said.

“Last year sales went up about 16 percent. It was a big, big jump. This year it’s a little jump. Home prices are doing a very similar kind of thing. There’s been a step-up in prices the last five years, and we’re still seeing that step up. But the rise of the step isn’t quite as high,” said Gaines.

Read more at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and listen to Podcast 232Housing Market Update with Jim Gaines from October 22, 2014.

USAA: military vets best Texas cities to retire, work 


TEXAS - San Antonio and Austin are the No. 1 and No. 2 destination for military retirees, according to a study commissioned by USAA and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

"Best Places for Veterans" identifies ten U.S. metros in three categories: Starting Out, Mid-Career and Military Retirement.

The Military Retirement category looks at metros that offer more opportunities to maximize military retiree benefits and offer employment that aligns with military skills.

The Starting Out category measures local unemployment rates, the presence of higher education facilities, in order to identify cities where military veterans might have the best chance to get jobs. Austin also ranked No. 2 using that measurement, while College Station ranked No. 9.

The third study ranking looked at Mid-Career measurements such as job growth in the top local industries that employ veterans, veteran wage growth and certification/license transfers.

Houston ranked No. 1 in that category. San Antonio was No. 2. Austin ranked No. 5 and Fort Worth was No. 9.

Read more at the Austin Business Journal.

Check out the full rankings at USAA (must have cookies enabled in your browser).

American Campus student housing 4Q 2014 occupancy 


TEXAS - American Campus Communities (ACC) has released fourth quarter 2014 statistics for their student housing properties across the U.S.

The chart below shows Texas properties with a final fall 2013 occupancy of 98 percent or greater.

4Q 2014 Same Store Properties with Final Fall 2013
Occupancy of 98% or Greater
      Physical Occ. Sept. 30
2014 2013
Vintage and Texan West Campus, Austin 124 311 99.4% 98.7%
26 West, Austin 367 1,026 99.4% 99.5%
The Callaway House Austin &
The Penthouse at Callaway, Austin
219 753 99.5% 99.5%
U Club Townhomes on Marion Pugh,
College Station
160 640 99.4% 99.4%
The Callaway House, College Station 173 538 104.1% 103.9%
City Parc at Fry Street, Denton 136 418 98.3% 98.3%
Villas on Sycamore-Huntsville 170 680 99.4% 99.4%
University View, Prairie View 96 336 100.0% 100.0%
University Village Northwest,
Prairie View
36 144 100.0% 100.0%
Aggie Station, Bryan 156 450 100.0% 100.0%
Campus Edge on UTA Boulevard,
128 488 100.0% 99.6%
Callaway Villas, College Station 236 704 99.3% 99.7%
Sanctuary Lofts, San Marcos 201 487 93.4% 98.2%
Union, Waco 54 120 97.5% 98.3%
The Outpost, San Marcos 162 486 95.9% 99.2%

*Design beds include beds for staff accommodations.

See the PDF at American Campus Properties Sept. 2014.

See American Campus Communities for more information.

Baby boomers wanting to downsize could face housing shortage 

(10/27/2014 10:30:00 AM)

TEXAS - Baby boomers trying to downsize or move closer to the urban core might see a housing deficit in some U.S. markets, a Metrostudy report concluded. Houston and Dallas-Fort Worth topped the list.

The baby-boom generation, now 55 years old and older and nearing retirement, will create a demand for more housing in the next five years, leaving some without the ability to move into the type of home or location they want.

Metrostudy found that 52 percent of all new home purchases within the next five to ten years will be made by adults 55 and older.

The potential housing gap is more than 260,000 in the top ten ranked markets. The top ten metro areas with the largest housing deficits are:

1. Dallas-Fort Worth
2. Houston
3. District of Columbia
4. Atlanta
5. Miami
6. Denver
7. Seattle
8. Phoenix
9. Austin
10. Minneapolis-St. Paul

Read more at the Houston Chronicle.

Metros that top Texas employment rankings Sept. 2014 

(10/24/2014 6:45:00 AM)

TEXAS - The Texas Workforce Commission released Total Nonagricultural Employment rankings for September 2014. Rankings are by Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). Numbers are preliminary and subject to revision.

Top Texas MSA Rankings Sept. 2014*
Unemployment Rate Monthly Job Growth Rate Actual Annual Job Growth Rate Actual
1. Midland 2.6% 1. College Station-Bryan 4.2% 4,300 1. Midland 6.4% 5,500
2. Odessa 3.1% 2. McAllen-Edinburg-Mission 1.5% 3,500 2. Odessa 5.1% 3,700
3. Amarillo 3.6% 2. Odessa 1.5% 1,100 3. Houston-Sugar Land-
4.3% 119,400
4. Lubbock 3.8% 4. Texarkana 1.3% 700 4. Longview 3.9% 3,900
5. San Angelo 3.9% 5. Midland 1.2% 1,100 4. Victoria 3.9% 2,100
5. College Station-Bryan 3.9% 6. Laredo 1.1% 1,100 6. Austin-Round Rock-
    San Marcos
3.6% 31,400

*total nonagricultural employment
"Yes, Virginia, we know we have the same number twice in some places. Those are cities that tied."

Source: Texas Workforce Commission

To see the full report, click MSA Monthly Rankings under MSA Profiles.

Texas No. 1 business climate, new survey says 


TEXAS - For the sixth consecutive time Texas took the top spot on Development Counsellors International's (DCI) "Winning Strategies in Economic Development Marketing" survey.

The survey, published every three years since 1996, tracks trends in economic development. DCI specializes in economic development and tourism marketing.

Of the 356 respondents in 2014 49.7 percent said Texas has the most favorable business climate.

Florida ranks a distant second, with 18.1 percent, and Georgia and North Carolina tied for third with 17.6 percent each.

The survey also listed Houston among the best cities for economic development.

Corporate executive respondents cited Texas' tax climate (54 percent), "pro-business environment" (47 percent) and incentives/financial assistance (18 percent) as reasons for ranking the state so highly.

Site selection consultants who participated also ranked the Texas Governor's Office of Economic Development the No. 2 "best in class" state-level economic development agency.

Texas has received a number of such accolades, including Site Selection magazine's Governor's Cup for 2013, the fifth time the Lone Star State received that honor over the past decade.

Read more at the Austin Business Journal.

Texas: How apartments fared in small Metros: ALN Aug. 2014 

(10/14/2014 8:00:00 AM)

TEXAS, U.S. - Overall market occupancy of smaller cities and states nationally is available for Aug. 2014 from ALN Apartment Data.

Links in the chart lead to the full page showing U.S. Metro Aug. data, including previous months.

Texas Market Occupancy Aug. v. June 2014*
Market Aug. 2014
June 2014
Beaumont 91.8% 90.9%
College Station 94.6% 92.9%
El Paso 91.1% 91.5%
Harlingen 95.4% 95.7%
Killeen-Temple** 89.9% 91.2%
Laredo 94.3% 93.8%
Longview-Tyler 92.0% 91.0%
Lufkin*** 89.9% 88.3%
Midland-Odessa 96.1% 94.6%
San Angelo 97.3% 96.4%
Texarkana 90.2% 91.9%
Victoria 97.0% 95.6%
Wichita Falls 87.3% 87.7%

*excludes student, senior, income-restricted properties
**Central Texas
***See Longview Market Data Sources for Lufkin.

Source: ALN Apartment Data

Need more multifamily data? See Market Data Sources and pick your Metro.

Daddy, don’t sell the farm! 


TEXAS - The vast majority of Texas land — 83 percent — is part of a farm, ranch or forest. Texas, however, is losing rural land more than any other state because of the exploding growth of metropolitan areas, according to the latest Texas A&M Institute of Renewable Natural Resources survey.

Texas lost about 1 million acres of open space lands between 1997 and 2012, and a majority of the land loss happened in the growing urban areas around Austin, San Antonio, Dallas and Houston.

Scientists say the trend has serious implications for Texas' water supply because such acreage, known as "working lands" or "open space" lands, helps the state retain water resources by letting rain infiltrate the ground and circulate into aquifers.

At the same time, the market value of land is increasing in almost every Texas county, but it is increasing the most in the booming metropolitan areas. Travis County, for example, lost almost a quarter of its open space while land gained an average of $8,297 per acre in value between 1997 and 2012.

In Texas, where more than 95 percent of land is privately owned, there are unique challenges for the conservation of open space lands. As land gets more expensive, those who own open spaces will have more of an incentive to sell their acres to developers.

Read more and check out the maps at the Texas Tribune.

Forbes: 12 Texas ZIP codes rank as most expensive 


TEXAS - Forbes has released its annual list of America’s Most Expensive Zip Codes for 2014, with Texas claiming 12 of the 500 most expensive ZIP codes in the nation.

For this ranking, California-based real estate firm Altos Research calculated the median home prices for more than 28,500 U.S. ZIP codes (covering 95 percent of the U.S. population) using asking prices for single-family homes and condominiums listed for sale.

Houston had five ZIP codes crack the list, with Austin posting four and Dallas recording three.

Texas’ most expensive ZIP code is 77024, which has a median asking price of $1.6 million. For comparison, the Silicon Valley ZIP code of 94027 in Atherton, California, tops Forbes' list with a median price of $9 million.

Below is a chart of the 12 Texas ZIP codes to crack the list.

Most Expensive Zip Codes in Texas
Rank* City ZIP Median Price
153 Houston 77024 $1,585,346
164 Dallas 75205 $1,516,840
183 Austin 78735 $1,455,108
185 Houston 77056 $1,431,464
195 Austin 78746 $1,410,092
250 Houston 77005 $1,280,130
274 Dallas 75225 $1,238,037
377 Houston 77027 $1,037,568
389 Bellaire 77401 $1,016,683
444 Dallas 75220 $953,856
489 Austin 78703 $904,444
498 Austin 78733 $895,314

*Rank is out of the top 500 ZIP codes on Forbes' list.

Read more at Forbes.

For more on each city’s most expensive ZIP codes, check out the Austin Business Journal, the Dallas Business Journal and the Houston Business Journal.

Maquiladoras evolve, fuel Texas job growth 


TEXAS - Mexico's maquiladora industry is evolving from simple assembly into the production of sophisticated technology and other high-value goods, creating higher-paying jobs and generating more business and employment for Texas border cities.

The maquiladora industry began in the mid-1960s, by allowing American companies to set up manufacturing facilities in Mexico — and to import the machines and materials needed for their operations duty-free — in exchange for employing Mexican nationals.

"Most of the manufacturing takes place in Mexico, but Texas Border cities such as McAllen, El Paso, Brownsville and Laredo have grown significant service-based economies," said Roberto Coronado, assistant vice president and senior economist at the El Paso branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

Modern maquiladoras manufacture auto parts, computers and servers, televisions, refrigerators, mobile devices and medical instruments. In the last ten years, the number of trucks importing goods into the U.S. has remained relatively stable, but the value of those goods is two to three times higher than before.

McAllen's job count rises by 6.6 percent for each 10 percent production increase in Reynosa, according to the Dallas Federal Reserve.

El Paso employment rises by 2.8 percent for a similar increase in production in Ciudad Juárez. Equivalent figures for Laredo and Brownsville are 4.6 percent and 2.2 percent, respectively.

Today, the transportation, personal service and business service sectors are the fastest-growing sectors in Texas Border cities, and the influx of jobs has led to significant increases in per capita income.

"The gap that has always existed between U.S. and Border per capita income levels has been closing up," said Coronado. In 2010, for instance, El Paso's per capita income rose to $28,365, 71 percent of the U.S. level — reflecting a considerably narrower gap than 2000's 62 percent.

Read more at the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.

See the Maquiladora Production & Texas Jobs map in the article provided by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

ALN: Austin, Atlanta, DFW, Houston, Tucson, San Antonio 

(10/10/2014 6:50:00 AM)

AUSTIN, DFW, HOUSTON, SAN ANTONIO - ALN Apartment Data released the September 2014 review of occupancy, effective rent and more for Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), Houston and San Antonio.

For reference, Atlanta, Ga., and Tampa, Fla., are shown. The general overview includes properties in initial lease-up.

General Overview Sept. 2014
Markets Austin DFW Houston San
Atlanta Tampa
Occupancy rate 93.5 93.5 92.3 91.5 92.9 93.6
Units added 7,178 9,618 12,858 3,194 4,851 4,145
Units absorbed (annual) 5,679 12,249 10,686 2,462 6,970 4,174
Average size (SF) 852 860 873 837 1,014 920
Asking rent $1,091 $923 $958 $863 $931 $943
Effective rent $1,084 $913 $946 $848 $925 $937
Effective rent per SF $1.27 $1.06 $1.08 $1.01 $0.91 $1.02
Offering concessions 12% 26% 23% 39% 21% 17%
Avg. concession package 4.8% 4.1% 5.0% 4.4% 4.1% 3.7%

Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

2014 Fastest-growing cities: Texas takes 11 of top 20 spots 

(10/10/2014 5:25:00 AM)

TEXAS - Of the top 20 fastest-growing cities in the U.S. between 2008 and 2013, Texas cities claimed 11 spots, according to WalletHub analysis using ten key metrics including population growth rate and unemployment rate decrease.

WalletHub analyzed a veritable raft of demographic data to determine the cities that have grown the most rapidly in socio-economic terms between 2008 and 2013.

Fastest Growing Texas Cities in the U.S. 2008-2013
1 Mission
2 Irving
5 Edinburg
8 Austin
9 Pharr
12 San Angelo
14 Fort Worth
16 League City
17 Grand Prairie
18 Killeen
20 Frisco

Read more at Value Walk.

Texas' smaller cities may win out for raising young families 

(10/8/2014 9:28:00 AM)

TEXAS - Everything may be bigger in Texas, but when it comes to raising a family, the smaller cities may win out. 

Texas ranks as the fastest-growing state for job growth, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, but to raise kids well, education and affordable housing also carry weight.

NerdWallet crunched the data for 111 places in Texas with populations over 25,000 to find the best places for young families in Texas by analyzing the following factors:

• Public school excellence made up 33.3 percent of the score. GreatSchools compares students’ test scores to the state average on a one to ten scale, with ten as the highest.

• Median home values were 16.7 percent of the score. The information is from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2012 ACS, data set DP04.

• Monthly homeowner costs were 16.7 percent of the score. The figures are from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2012 ACS, data set DP04. Places with more affordable homes had higher scores.

• Median household incomes were 16.7 percent of the score. We used the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2012 ACS, data set DP03.

• Income change from 1999 to 2012 was 16.7 percent of the score. The information is from the U.S. Census Bureau data sets P053 and DP03.

Best Places for Young Families in Texas
City GreatSchools
Median Home
Value in 2012
Costs 2012
1999 to
Frisco 10 $249,000 $2,213 $108,428 36.99% 69.6
Friendswood 9 $220,500 $2,082 $102,811 48.18% 69.1
Allen 9 $197,400 $1,915 $101,966 29.20% 65.7
Burleson 8 $122,800 $1,431 $68,528 35.88% 64.9
Mansfield 8 $179,700 $1,892 $92,208 38.11% 63.1
Sugar Land 9 $253,700 $2,211 $107,149 31.04% 62.9
Keller 9 $272,400 $2,366 $115,374 33.79% 62.9
Wylie 8 $156,700 $1,657 $78,132 33.80% 62.7

Read more at NerdWallet.

Texas exports lead nation; record-breaking 2013 


TEXAS - Texas led the nation in exports last year, selling a record-breaking $279.5 billion worth of goods abroad, according to U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman.

That marked a 183 percent increase over the Lone Star State's export sales in 2003. It also beat Texas' previous export record of $264.7 billion in 2012.

“More than 1 million Texas jobs are supported by trade,” Froman said. “Our job is to open more markets to exporters. Ninety-five percent of the world's consumers live outside the United States.”

Texas' largest trade partner was Mexico. The state's manufacturers posted $100.9 billion in merchandise sales in Mexico in 2013, representing 36.1 percent of the state's total merchandise exports.

Mexico was followed by Canada at $26.1 billion, Brazil at $10.9 billion, China at $10.8 billion and the Netherlands at $9.5 billion.

The state's largest manufacturing export category was petroleum and coal products, which accounted for $60.6 billion of Texas' total goods exports in 2013. Oil refiners have been helped by cheaper crude oil flowing in from the Eagle Ford Shale and the Permian Basin.

Other top manufacturing exports were electronic products at $48.2 billion, chemicals at $47.9 billion, machinery at $30 billion and transportation equipment at $24.4 billion.

Read more at the San Antonio Express-News.

Texas cities benefiting from the economic recovery 


TEXAS - The current U.S. economic recovery has been concentrated in a handful of regions, and per capita growth in the energy states has been impressive. Forbes has compiled a list of cities that are benefiting the most from the economic recovery

Placing first on the list is Houston-The Woodlands-Sugarland, where per capita GDP rose 13.2 percent from 2010 to 2013, a major achievement in a region whose population continues to grow rapidly.

Including all 381 MSAs, no places come close to the two oil towns that rank first and second overall. Midland, with 38.8 percent growth since 2010, and Odessa, with 34.1 percent growth over the same period.

Also notable, the town of Victoria clocked over 21 percent growth.

Among the largest metro areas, energy hubs also did well. Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington ranked 13th with 6.5 percent growth and the San Antonio area ranked 16th due to a gusher in the Eagle Ford Shale play, which has pumped $87 billion into the south Texas economy.


Texas wants you anyway! 

(10/7/2014 7:15:00 AM)

TEXAS - Companies seeking a location for their next distribution facility are being welcomed to Texas with open arms, relatively low costs and a favorable tax environment.

When businesses choose a location they concentrate on such factors as geography, transportation infrastructure, labor supply and costs and business environment.

"The great thing about Texas is you can check off almost every box,” said Tom Sanderson, CEO of Transplace.

Texas's central location makes it easy to reach consumer markets all across the country, and the state has six of the country's 20 most populous cities: Houston, San Antonio, Dallas, Austin, Fort Worth and El Paso.

There is land available for greenfield distribution sites near major cities, and land costs and occupancy costs are reasonable compared with prices in metropolitan areas of a similar size.

Border towns of Laredo and El Paso have become hotbeds of logistics and distribution center activity.

Growth in trade with Mexico has sparked a boom in the distribution center market in Dallas-Fort Worth, as the metropolis has proved to be an attractive consolidation point for Mexican-made goods heading north on I-20 or east/west on I-35.

Texas is the country's top exporting state, with more than $297.7 billion in exports, according to the state's Office for Economic Development & Tourism. Principal exports include petroleum and coal, chemicals, computers, nonelectrical machinery and transportation equipment.

Texas has over 3,000 miles of highways, more than any other state. "We do not have, like a lot of other markets, heavy-haul corridors, and as result of that, trucks are welcome on all major thoroughfares," said Will Condrey of Cushman & Wakefield.

Texas is also home to the second-longest rail system in the country and is served by three Class I railroads: the Union Pacific, the Kansas City Southern, and the Fort Worth-based BNSF Railway. The rail system connects Texas to both coasts as well as to Mexico.

For oceangoing freight, the state is home to the 12th-busiest port in the world: the Port of Houston. The state also provides excellent air cargo service, with the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) alone handling more than $50 billion worth of cargo annually.

Texas also has a strong supply of labor, with a civilian work force of more than 13 million people, the second largest (and one of the youngest) in the country.

Read more at DC Velocity.

Texas forest sector: $30B to economy, supports 130,600 jobs 

(10/6/2014 9:00:00 AM)

TEXAS -  Texas A&M Forest Service has completed a new study (August 2014) of the economic contribution provided by forestry-driven, wood-based industries in Texas. The report analyzes data collected from 2012, the most current available and released August 2014.

The Texas forest sector has an economic contribution of $30.3 billion in industry output, supports over 130,600 jobs and is one of the top ten manufacturing sectors in the state.

“With the economy improving and the housing market getting better and better, we should continue to see the forest industry’s economic contribution to Texas increase,” said Dr. Omkar Joshi, Forest Economist with the Texas A&M Forest Service.

In 2012, the 43-county region of East Texas produced $5.7 billion worth of goods and services, directly supporting more than 18,900 jobs.

This region is home to over 80 percent of Texas’ timberland, and is the main producer of primary forest products such as lumber, structural panels, paper and pulp.

Manufacturing of secondary forest products like windows, doors and engineered wood products that use wood along with other materials, contributed over two-thirds of the Texas forest sector’s total industry output and employed 72 percent of the forest sector workforce.

Texas forest products firms exported more than $1.8 billion worth of forest products to foreign countries in 2012. East Texas was the largest contributor to exports accounting for about 42 percent of the total value of Texas forest products foreign exports.

Read more at Big Country Homepage.

See the full report here.

CBRE: Texas demographics, labor market, business conditions 


TEXAS - CBRE has released a special report — Impact of Corporate Expansions and Relocations on Major Texas Office Markets — that highlights the significant role of corporate expansions and relocations in the recovery of the Texas office market since 2010.

Below is an excerpt of the full report.

Key Workforce & Business Statistics for the Five Largest U.S. States
  Demographics Labor Market Business Conditions
State Total
(2013, Mil.)
Labor Force
(July-14, 000s)
Payroll Jobs
(July-14, 000s)
Best States
For Business
(Rank, 2014)
State Business
Tax Climate
(Rank, 2014)
Small Business
Policy Index
(Rank, 2014)
California 38.332 18,579.8 7.4% 15,492.5 50 48 50
Texas 26.448 12,979.5 5.1% 11,607.8 1 11 3
New York 19.651 9,599.5 6.6% 9,042.2 49 50 47
Florida 19.552 9,611.2 6.2% 7,795.9 2 5 5
Illinois 12.882 6,512.8 6.8% 5,824.5 48 31 35
U.S. 316.128 156,023 6.2% 139,004 N/A N/A N/A

Sources: Census Bureau, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Fortune, Tax Foundation, Chief Executive Magazine, Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council, CBRE Research, September 2014

Click here to see CBRE's full report.

For more information, see Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston or San Antonio Market Data Sources.

NAR's nine Texas metros 2Q housing stats 


TEXAS - The National Association of Realtors released its 2Q housing statistics for nine metros areas it traditionally covers. As a bonus, previous quarters are included.

The metro regions include:

Abilene (PDF)
Amarillo (PDF)
Austin-Round Rock (PDF)
Beaumont-Port Arthur (PDF)
Corpus Christi (PDF)
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington (PDF)
El Paso (PDF)
Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown (PDF)
San Antonio (PDF)

Source: National Association of Realtors, courtesy of Prudential Ada Realtors.

Texas' military bases more valuable than you think? 


TEXAS - Texas is home to several major military bases and installations serving all branches of the United States military.

Projects on bases and surrounding communities help bring jobs, investments and opportunities for health care, education and real estate to Texans.

Additionally, more retired military men and women make Texas their home after their years of service than any other state.

Texas' military installations

•  provide an economic impact of more than $148 billion to the Texas economy;
•  account for 6 percent of the state's economic activity; and
•  employ more than 255,000 military and defense-related civilian personnel.

For an interactive map of Texas' military bases check out

Scroll down to mid-page and click on a 'star' for more data.

ALN: Austin, Atlanta, DFW, Houston, Tucson, San Antonio 

(9/15/2014 7:15:00 AM)

AUSTIN, DFW, HOUSTON, SAN ANTONIO - ALN Apartment Data released the August 2014 review of occupancy, effective rent and more for Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), Houston and San Antonio.

For reference, Atlanta, Ga., and Tucson, Ariz., are shown. The general overview includes properties in initial lease-up.

General Overview Aug. 2014
Markets Austin DFW Houston San
Atlanta Tucson
Occupancy rate 93.4 93.5 92.7 91.3 92.9 90.1
Units added 6,721 9,479 12,702 3,225 4,852 331
Units absorbed (annual) 4,704 12,814 14,385 2,104 7,193 -67
Average size (SF) 851 860 873 838 1,014 731
Asking rent $1,083 $919 $950 $861 $923 $641
Effective rent $1,077 $909 $939 $846 $917 $616
Effective rent per SF $1.26 $1.06 $1.07 $1.01 $0.90 $0.84
Offering concessions 12% 28% 24% 40% 22% 61%
Avg. concession package 4.2% 4.1% 4.9% 4.3% 3.9% 6.5%

Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

Metrostudy: Texas' home lot production leads U.S. 

(9/11/2014 6:58:00 AM)

TEXAS - Metrostudy has released second quarter 2014 data on housing lot starts and deliveries.

Here are the Top Ten states for lot production in 2Q 2014:

Top Ten States, Home Lot Production
State 2Q 2014
2Q 2014
Texas 19,714 18,931
Florida 12,416 10,974
California 10,050 10,219
North Carolina 4,866 3,168
Georgia 4,489 1,270
Colorado 3,985 3,276
Arizona 3,519 4,596
Maryland 2,436 2,122
Utah 2,328 2,498
Virginia 2,198 1,850

Read more at Metrostudy.

TAR: International homebuyers spent $11B in Texas in 2013 

(9/4/2014 6:15:00 AM)

TEXAS - When it comes to finding a home in the U.S., Texas remains a top spot among international buyers. These buyers accounted for $92 billion worth of home sales in the U.S. between March 2013 and March 2014.

Of that $92 billion, 12 percent, or $11 billion, was spent on homes in Texas, according to the 2014 Texas International Homebuyers Report by the Texas Association of Realtors (TAR).

Florida had the No. one spot — capturing 23 percent of the international market. California was second, with 14 percent of the market, TAR reports.

“The Texas housing market is not only strong in sales volume, but in its diversity,” says TAR Chairman Dan Hatfield. “International homebuyers increasingly view Texas homes as a good investment, and as our economy has grown, so has the number of international homebuyers in our state.”

Of those international homebuyers who are investing in Texas, 59 percent are from Latin America or the Caribbean. Many of these buyers are likely from Mexico — given that more than 65 percent of U.S. homes purchased by Mexican homebuyers were located in Texas, TAR states.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

Click here to see the full 2014 Texas International Homebuyers Report by the Texas Association of Realtors (TAR).

DFW, Houston lead U.S. in job growth over past year 


TEXAS - The DFW and Houston areas rank among the nation’s top three metropolitan areas for job growth over the last 12 months, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The New York area was No. 1 with 155,400 new jobs from July 2013 to July 2014. The DFW area was No. 2 (120,800 jobs), and the Houston area was No. 3 (112,200 jobs).

Overall, year-over-year employment rose in 327 U.S. metros, fell in 41 areas and was unchanged in four areas. The nation has 372 major metro areas.

Here are the top ten Texas metropolitan statistical areas ranked by number of jobs added during the past year:

Top Ten Texas MSAs by Jobs Added, July 2013 – July 2014
MSA Jobs
2 Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington 120,800 7.4%
3 Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown 112,200 7.0%
19 Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos 32,600 4.4%
31 San Antonio-New Braunfels 20,800 3.7%
60 College Station-Bryan 6,700 3.0%
70 McAllen-Edinburg-Mission 6,000 2.8%
79 Midland 5,300 2.8%
81 Corpus Christi 5,200 2.8%
84 El Paso 4,900 2.7%
97 Lubbock 4,200 2.5%

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

For more stats on employment and more, check out any MSA's Market Data Sources.

Sweet dreams in Texas: hotel occupancy 2Q 2014 

(8/27/2014 7:10:00 AM)

TEXAS - In second quarter 2014, ten areas exceeded the state hotel occupancy average. Meanwhile, 19 of 27 Texas areas showed increased occupancy compared to 2013, according to Source Strategies Inc.

The table below is sorted by 2Q 2014 occupancy, and clearly shows the continuing, positive affect of oil and gas exploration and production activity.

In all oil and gas counties statewide, 2Q 2014 occupancy averaged 68.9 percent, up 1.7 points from 67.2 percent in 2013.

Top Ten Metros Ranked by Occupancy 2Q 2014
  2013 Total 2Q 2014
Metro Area


$ Rev.
Occ. % Chg. % $ Rev.
Midland 81.9 1.7% 84.7 0.9 31.4%
Odessa 77.0 -0.9% 79.6 -1.4 8.8%
San Angelo 82.9 36.7% 78.4 -3.8 -3.6%
College Station-Bryan 66.7 18.3% 77.7 6.2 26.9%
Austin-Round Rock 72.5 13.9% 75.9 0.3 8.3%
Lubbock 66.8 9.4% 72.7 1.1 7.3%
Houston-Sugar Land-
66.4 12.8% 71.9 3.2 11.6%
Dallas-Plano-Irving 65.4 10.2% 71.7 4.0 11.2%
Waco 61.7 10.4% 68.8 1.6 5.6%
Victoria 64.1 -6.0% 68.1 -0.5 8.6%
State average 63.6 8.6% 67.8 1.8 9.1%

See the full report at Source Strategies Inc. or the Office of the Governor, Economic Development & Tourism.

For more stats on all counties and MSAs, see Hotel under Market Data Sources.

Forecast 2022: West Texas Energy Consortium booms 


WEST TEXAS - The Center for Community and Business Research at The University of Texas of San Antonio’s Institute for Economic Development has determined the economic impact of oil and gas activities in the West Texas Energy Consortium (WTXEC).

WTXEC is organized by workforce solutions boards in the Concho Valley, West Central Texas, and the Permian Basin.

The ten-county core study area includes Fisher, Glasscock, Howard, Irion, Martin, Mitchell, Nolan, Reagan, Scurry, and Sterling counties. In 2012, the oil and gas industry in the ten core counties is estimated to have had a total impact of $14.5 billion, supported 21,450 full-time-equivalent (FTE) jobs, generated revenues of $446 million for the local governments and $472 million for the state government.

The total impact of oil and gas industry activity in the ten core counties in 2022 is forecast to be more than $20 billion in the moderate scenario, with 30,540 jobs anticipated, and revenues of $664 million for the local governments and $701 million for the state government.

Additionally, a secondary study was conducted on Brown, Coke, Coleman, Runnels, Taylor, and Tom Green counties, which neighbor the core study area.

The economic output of the six neighboring counties are forecast to grow significantly over the period between 2012 and 2022. Forecasts show that Tom Green ($148.5 million), Taylor ($80.8 million), and Runnels County ($12.9 million) will continue to have the largest economic output in 2022.

See the Center for Community and Business Research’s full report.

Texas adds 46,600 jobs in July 


TEXAS - Texas added 46,600 seasonally adjusted jobs in July, according to data the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) reported August 15.

The state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held at 5.1 percent for the month, more than a percentage point lower than the nation’s at 6.2 percent. The number is a reflection of the 396,200 jobs the state has added over the past year.

Leading the job growth charge was the Midland Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), which boasted the lowest unemployment rate for the month at 2.9 percent.

Taking second was the Odessa MSA at 3.6 percent, and taking third was the Amarillo MSA at 4.1 percent.

However, all metropolitan rates reported by the TWC are not adjusted for seasonal employment trends, such as students looking for summer jobs. For comparison, Texas recorded a 5.6 percent unemployment rate, not adjusted, up from 5.5 percent in June and down from 6.7 percent a year ago.

Source: Texas Workforce Commission

For the full August 2014 report, see Texas Labor Market Review (TLMR). Go to page 10 of the report to see unemployment rates and rankings for all MSAs.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

Affordable housing draws middle class to inland cities 


TEXAS - Rising rents and the difficulty of securing a mortgage on the coasts have proved a boon to inland cities that offer the middle class a firmer footing and an easier life.

The country’s fastest-growing cities are now those where housing is more affordable than average, a decisive reversal from the early years of the millennium, when easy credit allowed cities to grow without regard to housing cost.

Among people who have moved long distances, the number of those who cite housing as their primary motivation for doing so has more than doubled since 2007.

Since the start of the recession, of those who moved more than 500 miles, the share who said they were chiefly motivated by housing has risen from 8 percent in 2007 to 18 percent in 2014.

During the housing bubble, when even people with modest salaries could get loans to buy staggeringly expensive homes, the cost of housing was less of a concern.

Now that getting a mortgage has become harder, the wage stagnation that has hobbled the middle class for years has deeper consequences.

“People have no choice,” said Glenn Kelman, the chief executive of real estate services firm Redfin. “They can’t move across the street; they have to move across the country.”

Here are the U.S. cities ranked in the highest "most affordable" category by Redfin:

•  San Antonio, TX
•  McAllen, TX
•  El Paso, TX
•  Fort Worth, TX
•  Dallas, TX
•  Houston, TX
•  Oklahoma City, OK
•  Wichita, KS
•  Syracuse, NY
•  Gary, IN

Read the full article at the New York TimesFor a summary, see Beyond the Headlines.

CBRE 2Q 2014: Texas multifamily big four metros 


TEXAS - Amid strong job and population growth, the apartment market remains strong across all four of Texas’ major metro areas, according to CBRE’s 2Q 2014 Texas Multifamily MarketView.

Texas remains one of the nation’s leaders in new apartment construction. Almost 9,000 new units were delivered in 2Q 2014 across the four major metros and 59,916 units remain under construction.

The combined occupancy rate for Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio was 91.6 percent, an increase of 20 basis points from 1Q 2014.

Increased apartment demand has driven up occupancy levels in Class A properties across all markets. Class B and Class C properties are also experiencing higher occupancy levels as rising rents are beginning to challenge affordability and price renters out of Class A properties.

On a statewide level, 2Q 2014 rents grew 6.2 percent year-over-year. Austin leads the state in average rent per sf at $1.21.

Quick Stats Multifamily 2Q 2014
Market Vacancy Absorption
Austin 8.7% 1,594 $1,023
Dallas 7.5% 4,571 $862
Houston 9.0% 5,521 $878
San Antonio 9.4% 2,156 $806

For the full report, click here.

For more multifamily, check out Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston or San Antonio Market Data Sources.

Texas cities ranked among the 'cool' towns in U.S. 


TEXAS - Forbes magazine has ranked Dallas, Houston, Austin and San Antonio among America’s Coolest Cities in 2014. All four metros ranked inside the top 15.

Austin came in at No. 3, Houston at No. 4, DFW at No. 10 and San Antonio at No. 15.

The ranking looked at the 60 largest metropolitan statistical areas using six equally rated factors: recreation, entertainment, foodie culture, age of residents, diversity and population growth, including net migration.

Washington, D.C., topped the list followed by Seattle.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

See Forbes for the full report.

TAR: Texas housing inventory sees rare increase in 2Q 2014 

(8/7/2014 10:57:00 AM)

TEXAS - The Texas housing market showed quarterly gains in housing inventory for the first time in three years in second quarter 2014, allowing home sales to keep pace with 2013’s strong levels while home prices continue to increase from high demand.

The 2Q 2014 Texas Quarterly Housing Report released by the Texas Association of Realtors (TAR) shows monthly housing inventory increased from an all-time low of 3.4 months in 1Q 2014 to 3.6 months in 2Q 2014.

“The statewide housing inventory shortage to date in 2014 has prevented Texas from seeing the double-digit increases in home sales growth that we saw last year, so this new increase in inventory is promising,” said Dan Hatfield, chairman of the TAR.

“However, home sales volume continues to keep pace with 2013 — the second-best year ever for Texas real estate — showing that housing demand continues to be very strong throughout the state. While this figure is still a year-over-year decrease of 12.2 percent from 2Q 2013, it is the first time since 2011 that housing inventory has increased on a quarterly basis," Hatfield said.

This gain in housing inventory led to a strong start for the 2014 summer selling season. In 2Q 2014, Texas home sales increased 46.7 percent from the 1Q 2014 and 1.1 percent year-over-year to 81,272 homes sales. 

In the same time frame, the median price for homes increased 5.9 percent from 2Q 2013 to $187,300 and average price increased 5.3 percent year-over-year to $246,209.

“Texas is facing an inventory shortage. A steady, ongoing supply of new housing stock — particularly in the first-time and move-up buyer market, where a majority of home sales volume occurs — will be crucial to Texas housing market growth in the second half of 2014 and in the future,” said Dr. Jim Gaines, economist at the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.

Read more at the Texas Association of Realtors.

How apartments fared in small Metros: ALN Midyear 2014 


TEXAS, U.S. - Overall market occupancy of smaller cities and states nationally is available from the midyear 2014 report from ALN Apartment Data.

Links in the chart lead to the full page showing U.S. Metro June data, including previous months.

Texas Market Occupancy June 2014*
Market Occ.
Beaumont 90.9%
College Station 92.9%
El Paso 91.5%
Harlingen 95.7%
Killeen-Temple** 91.2%
Laredo 93.8%
Longview-Tyler 91.0%
Lufkin*** 88.3%
Midland-Odessa 94.6%
San Angelo 96.4%
Texarkana 91.9%
Victoria 95.6%
Wichita Falls 87.7%

*excludes student, senior, income-restricted properties
**Central Texas
***See Longview Market Data Sources for Lufkin.

Source: ALN Apartment Data

Need more multifamily data? See Market Data Sources and pick your Metro.

Three Texas cities make top five fastest-moving markets 


TEXAS - ZipRealty just released new data analyzing the fastest-moving housing markets. The median days on market among 25 major metro areas was 29 days, compared to 27 days as of June 2013. The fastest-moving markets at the end of the second quarter were:

1. Austin — 10 days
2. Washington, D.C./Northern Virginia — 14 days
3. Dallas, Portland and Denver (tied) — 15 days
4. Houston and Seattle (tied) — 17 days
5. Sacramento and Boston (tied) — 19 days

Read more at ZipRealty and the Houston Chronicle.

Texas oil drilling falls in June, production still rising 


TEXAS - Drilling activity for the state fell in June 2014 compared with the previous year, according to data released by the Texas Railroad Commission.

The state’s oil and gas regulator reported 1,739 new oil wells were drilled in June, a 5 percent drop from a year ago.

Although drilling slowed, oil production continues to grow with average May 2014 production of 2.1 million barrels a day, up from 1.7 million in June 2013.

Almost 618 million Mcf of natural gas was produced in May 2014, an 11 percent increase over the last 12 months.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Texas tops U.S. in new home sales 


TEXAS - According to a new report by Metrostudy Inc., builders have sold 33,177 new houses in Texas for the 12-month period ending June 2014. This ranks Texas first in the United States for new home sales.

Florida was second with 19,416 sales followed by California at 14,280 sales.

Dallas-Fort Worth new home sales were up about 7 percent in second quarter 2014. For the first six months of 2014, new home sales in the area were up about 10 percent from 2013.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

$225M buy includes seven Texas senior living communities 


TEXAS - Orlando-based CNL Healthcare Properties has acquired seven senior housing communities in Texas and one in Illinois from developer South Bay Partners, Ltd., for $187.2 million.

It is also expanding through a ninth community that will be developed through a joint venture between CNL and South Bay Partners.

The Texas facilities include:
•  Watercrest at Mansfield — Mansfield
•  Isle at Watercrest — Mansfield
•  Watercrest at Bryan — Bryan
•  Watercrest — Bryan
•  Isle at Cedar Ridge — Cedar Ridge
•  Legacy Ranch Alzheimer’s Special Care Center — Midland
•  The Springs Alzheimer’s Special Care Center — San Angelo

CNL will also develop a $38.2 million independent living community in Katy through a joint venture with South Bay Partners. Through the acquisitions and development, the REIT is investing a total of $225 million in the sector.

Read more at Senior Housing News.

Texas tops country in commercial building 

(7/23/2014 10:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Texas is leading the country in the rebound of commercial building activity.

But developers have a long way to go to get back to where construction totals were before the recession, according to a new report by the National Association of Industrial and Office Parks (NAIOP).

Texas is the top market for most types of commercial construction, including office, warehouse and retail.

Last year there was almost $5.8 billion in nonresidential building across the state. The largest share was office construction at $2.7 billion, followed by retail at $1.6 billion and warehouse at $1.1 billion.

A study by the NAIOP found that hard costs for construction of projects including office, warehouse and retail buildings totaled $61.6 billion nationwide in 2013. This was a 25.2 percent rise from 2012.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

What's driving Texas? Oil/gas manufacturing spurs jobs 


TEXAS - Industrial employment grew 2.5 percent in Texas from May 2013 to May 2014, marking the third straight year the Lone Star State gained manufacturing jobs, according to data from Manufacturers' News Inc.

Texas added 31,198 industrial jobs during that period, meaning the state is now home to 22,567 manufacturers employing more than 1.2 million workers.

The oil-and-gas extraction industry led Texas' industrial job growth with a 10.7 percent increase. With hiring driven by robust activity in the Eagle Ford Shale and Permian Basin energy basins, the industry now accounts for 133,448 jobs.

Industrial machinery and equipment — the state’s largest sector by employment with 186,490 jobs — grew 4.3 since May 2013. The fabricated metals sector grew jobs by 2.4 percent, bringing its total employment to 123,617.

Houston had the largest gain in manufacturing employment among Texas cities, adding 261,900 workers for a 4.7 increase this year.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

Texas school construction cost data 2007-2013 


TEXAS - The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts has released a database containing construction data for public school campuses built between 2007 and 2013.

Since no single publicly accessible database contains all Texas public school construction data, the Comptroller’s office submitted a public information request to every Texas public school district and charter operator to gather data on schools built from 2007 through 2013.

The responses have been compiled into a School Construction Lookup Tool. The Comptroller’s plans to release an analysis of new school construction expenditures later this year.

Read more at Texas Transparency. For more on education and other sectors, see any MSA's Market Data Sources.

How $121B U.S. natural gas projects may impact Texas 

(7/14/2014 8:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - A new study from the University of Texas’ Center for Energy Economics found 144 natural gas-intensive industrial projects on the drawing board for the United States that could be built by the end of the decade.

Taken together, the projects could total $121 billion in investment and add 26 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas demand.

The Texas projections are significantly higher than what the U.S. Energy Information Administration has predicted.

The sudden surge of major projects is a direct result of the shale gas revolution. Flush with cheap gas, major plastics and fertilizer companies are rushing to build new facilities that use natural gas as a feedstock for their products.

Many of the facilities — such as ExxonMobil’s ethane cracker in Houston and BASF’s ammonia plant in Freeport — will be constructed near the Gulf Coast to take advantage of cheap gas and existing industrial infrastructure. As of July 2014, natural gas prices are at a six-month low, falling to $4.22 per million Btu (MMBtu).

More importantly, natural gas futures remain steady. Contracts as far out as 2017 are priced below $5/MMBtu, an indication that the shale revolution will continue to churn out record levels of natural gas even as the country consumes more of it.

The 19 to 31 percent increase in natural gas demand could significantly affect prices. If prices rise much more than anticipated, many of the planned industrial projects could be unprofitable.

Read more at OilPrice.

Texas $62M woo companies; $68M leftover 

(7/11/2014 6:58:00 AM)

TEXAS - The Texas Enterprise Fund has spent nearly $62 million this year alone to lure companies and jobs to the state. More than $68 million remains in the fund to bring in additional business.

The incentive money promised so far will bring 6,415 jobs and $400 million in capital investment by companies headed to Texas from across the U.S. or expanding existing operations here, according to figures from Gov. Rick Perry’s office.

The figures account for projects announced through July 8.

The Legislature created the TEF in 2003 and reauthorized funding in 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2013 to fuel growth of Texas businesses and create jobs statewide. TEF projects must be approved by the governor, lieutenant governor and speaker of the House.

To date, the TEF has invested more than $560 million and closed the deal on projects generating about 74,800 new jobs and more than $24 billion in capital investment in the state.

Texas Enterprise Fund Projects in 2014 Under Contract*
Company City Jobs
TEF award
Toyota Motor North America Inc. Plano 3,650 $40 million
Active Network LLC Dallas 1,000 $8.6 million
Athenahealth Austin 607 $5 million
Dropbox Austin 170 $1.5 million
Websense Austin 445 $4.5 million
Prudential Insurance and HGS El Paso 300 $1.2 million
Maverick Arms Eagle Pass 50 $300,000

*ranked by amount of TEF award

Read more at the Austin Business Journal and Dallas Business Journal.

Dallas Fed: June's service-sector growth spurs optimism 


TEXAS - Texas service sector activity picked up pace in June, to the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas’ Texas Service Sector Outlook Survey. The revenue index, a key measure of state service sector conditions, rose from 13.1 in May to 16.9 in June.

Labor market indicators also improved as the employment index edged up from 13.8 in May to 16.5 in June. The hours worked index rose slightly from 4.9 to 7.3.

Perceptions of broader economic conditions reflected more optimism in June. The general business activity index surged more than 10 points to 21.1.

The company outlook index advanced from 8.7 to 17, with 23 percent of respondents reporting that their outlook improved from May and 6 percent noting it worsened.

Respondents’ expectations regarding future business conditions reflected more optimism in June, as the index of future general business activity moved up almost 5 points to 28.7.

Read more at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

Condo sales lead Texas housing growth in first half 2014 


TEXAS - Condominiums and townhomes were the fastest-growing segment of the Texas housing market during the first half of 2014, according to the 2014 Texas Condominium Mid-Year Sales Report.

Austin, Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio experienced an average 10.5 percent jump in condo sales between January and May 2014.

The resurgence of the urban centers of Texas’ largest cities has led to an increase in condo development across the state.

“There is little available land for housing development in Texas’s major metro areas, particularly in its urban centers where housing demand is strongest. Condo sales will likely be a strong driver in the Texas housing market for the rest of 2014,” said Dr. Jim Gaines, economist with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.

Here’s how the major metro areas measured up from January - May 2014, compared with the same period in 2013:

Condo/Townhome Sales; January-May 2014
  Austin Dallas Houston San Antonio
Category Jan.-May
Chg. from
Chg. from
Chg. from
Chg. from
Homes sold 1,349 14% 2,383 4% 2,678 6% 271 18%
Median price $214,480 11% $160,000 4% $145,000 6% $105,300 9%
Average price $365,820 9% $207,157 5% $194,009 7% $140,273 5%
Avg. days on market 47 -24% 62 -15% 55 -16% 95 -15%

Read more at the Texas Association of Realtors. For more information on Texas real estate, check out any MSA's Market Data Sources.

Texas manufacturing jumps into June 2014 


TEXAS - The state of Texas saw a 5 point increase in manufacturing activity for June.

Data from the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas showed activity climbing from 11 to 15.5 on the Fed’s production index, reflecting faster output growth than that of May 2014.

The Fed report also conveyed the increase in the general business activity index from 8 to 11.4 for June 2014.

Other figures from the report included stronger employment growth, longer workweeks among Texas employees and increased prices for raw materials.

Read more at the Dallas Business Journal and Dallas Morning News.

ALN May: How apartments fared in small Metros 


TEXAS, U.S. - ALN Apartment Data has released the May 2014 overall market occupancy by smaller cities and states nationally.

Links in the chart lead to Market Data Sources for each city under Multifamily.

Texas Market Occupancy*
Market Occ.
  May 2014
Beaumont 90.1%
College Station 95.1%
El Paso 91.4%
Harlingen 95.3%
Killeen-Temple** 89.6%
Laredo 93.6%
Longview-Tyler 91.4%
Lufkin*** 90.5%
Midland-Odessa 95.9%
San Angelo 96.6%
Texarkana 93.6%
Victoria 95.1%
Wichita Falls 87.1%

*excludes student, senior, income-restricted properties
**Central Texas
***See Longview Market Data Sources for Lufkin.

Source: ALN Apartment Data from May ALN Monthly Newsletter - Spotlight on: Phoenix, Tucson & Las Vegas.

ALN: Austin, Atlanta, DFW, Houston, Tucson, San Antonio 

(6/18/2014 6:56:00 AM)

AUSTIN, DFW, HOUSTON, SAN ANTONIO - ALN Apartment Data released the May 2014 review of occupancy, effective rent and more for Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), Houston and San Antonio.

For reference, Atlanta, Ga., and Tucson, Ariz., are shown. The general overview includes properties in initial lease-up.

General Overview May 2014
Markets Austin DFW Houston San
Atlanta Tucson
Occupancy rate 92.3 92.7 92.1 91.4 92.4 90.7
Units added 6,736 9,101 13,060 2,499 4,372 315
Units absorbed (annual) 3,497 8,428 12,931 2,054 7,575 299
Average size (SF) 850 859 873 836 1,015 729
Asking rent $1,053 $898 $930 $847 $894 $643
Effective rent $1,047 $887 $918 $830 $887 $617
Effective rent per SF $1.23 $1.03 $1.05 $0.99 $0.87 $0.85
Offering concessions 11% 31% 28% 41% 26% 63%
Avg. concession package 4.3% 4.2% 4.6% 4.5% 3.9% 6.7%

Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

Hiring 100,000 veterans — AGC building a better America 

(6/17/2014 6:45:00 AM)

TEXAS - The Associated General Contractors of America has joined the national Hiring Our Heroes program as part of a construction industry effort to hire at least 100,000 veterans in five years.

Association chief executive officer Stephen E. Sandherr said today that many construction companies report having a hard time identifying military personnel who are ready to leave active duty and enter the private labor force.

The action comes as many construction companies report having difficulty finding skilled workers and identifying military personnel who are ready to leave active duty and enter the private labor force.

Although Texas companies experienced steady hiring increases from April to late May, some noted continued difficulty in finding skilled workers, according to a Federal Reserve survey of economic conditions in the Dallas district.

The partnership with Hiring Our Heroes will be a key part of Associated General Contractors’ Workforce Development Plan.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

CBRE 1Q 2014: Texas multifamily big four metros 


TEXAS - Texas apartment market fundamentals remained strong in first quarter 2014, according CBRE's MarketView report.

San Antonio's Downtown/Trinity University submarket occupancy has grown 5.7 percent in the last 12 months. Consequently, the submarket is growing quickly and accounts for 24.3 percent of the units under construction throughout the metropolitan area.

Houston’s downtown core has over 900 units under construction. The city’s Downtown Living Initiative program offers developers a $15,000 per unit subsidy in hopes of spurring downtown population growth. Today, there are over 2,600 housing units in downtown, but the city hopes to grow that number to nearly 10,000.

Dallas-Fort Worth's rent growth remains strong. Year-over-year growth was 4.2 percent in 1Q 2014. Rent growth was most significant in the Northeast Fort Worth and North Dallas submarkets, with an average year-over-year growth posted at 5.9 percent and 4.9 percent, respectively.

Austin's year-over-year average rental rates climbed 7.6 percent. Austin leads the state in average rent per sf at $1.18.

Quick Stats Multifamily 1Q 2014
Market Vacancy Absorption
Austin 8.4% 1,395 $1,023
Dallas 7.8% 3,750 $862
Houston 9.1% 5,538 $878
San Antonio 9.7% 1,296 $806

Source: CBRE Research 1Q 2014.

For CBRE's report, see Texas Multifamily: Big Four Metros MarketView 1Q 2014 under Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston or San Antonio Market Data Sources.

Mini-Suites aren't in a box 


TEXAS - Source Strategies Inc. has released the first quarter report 2014 on hotel activity in Texas.

In the product category, all segments improved revenues in 1Q 2014, with Mini-suites exceeding 10 percent on the strength of supply additions.

The largest segments, Upscales and Limited Service, gained at lower rates. Independents continued to rise on the strength of unbranded new lodging in oil and gas production areas. 

Texas Hotels by Product Category
Segments Hotels Rooms
Change* Occupancy
Luxury 9 3.8 64,641 9.0% 71.3%
Upscale 95 41.1 447,180 5.2% 72.9%
Suites 186 24.5 224,010 9.9% 74.4%
Mid/Upscales 276 48.7 367,184 9.3% 70.2%
Mini-Suites 275 23.8 131,942 13.1% 67.1%
L.S./Midscales 1,049 84.4 476,635 6.7% 67.5%
Extended Stay 197 25.8 73,440 9.0% 71.4%
Budget 958 68.7 185,667 8.6% 60.0%
Total Brands 3,045 320.8 1,970,699 7.9% 68.0%
Total Independents 1,593 85.5 329,617 11.2% 57.1%
Total Market 4,638 406.3 2,300,316 8.4% 65.7%

*Change is the percent change in revenue versus 1Q 2013.

See the full report at Source Strategies Inc.

'Get away from it all' drives Texas small land sales 

(6/5/2014 7:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Last year was a good year for those brokers specializing in land deals, according to a new report released by the Texas Association of Realtors (TAR) — the 2014 Texas Small Land Sales Report.

In particular, the desire to find land to “get away from it all” accounted for most of the land deals in South Texas. Statewide, 4,189 small-land deals closed in 2013, according to the report.

Across Texas, three factors were the drivers for these deals — individual buyers, investors and industry.

In region six, the region that encompasses South Texas — including the cities of Laredo, Corpus Christi, McAllen, Brownsville and San Antonio, there were 437 land sales.

These transactions accounted for 10.4 percent of all small-land sales statewide. The average price per acre was $7,159 — the second-highest price per acre in the state.

“The same things driving demand for residential real estate — jobs and affordability — are driving small land sales in Texas,” observes TAR Chairman Dan Hatfield. “Texans are looking for vacation properties, industries are looking to support their operations and investors are looking for new development opportunities.”

The analysis is based on information provided by the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University in College Station.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal. See the full report from the Texas Association of Realtors.

Texas hotel performances 1Q 2014 


TEXAS - In 1Q 2014, occupancy averaged 65.7 percent, up from 64.7 percent last year and well above the long term annual average of 60 percent.

Texas Metro Area Performances*
  2013 Year-End 1Q 2014
Metro Area** Occ. % $ Rev.
Occ. % $ Rev.
San Angelo 82.9 36.7% 85.0 19.4%
Midland 81.9 1.7% 82.6 13.1%
Odessa 77.0 -0.9% 76.4 2.3%
Austin-Round Rock 72.5 13.9% 74.7 10.8%
Dallas MD 65.4 10.2% 70.7 9.4%
College Station-Bryan 66.7 18.3% 70.0 26.1%
Houston-Baytown-Sugar Land 66.4 12.8% 69.9 10.6%
El Paso 64.5 -1.6% 66.9 6.5%
Victoria 64.1 -6.0% 66.7 6.3%
State average 63.6 8.6% 65.7 8.4%
San Antonio 62.5 5.5% 64.2 2.4%
Fort Worth-Arlington MD 61.5 5.5% 63.4 10.4%
Waco 61.7 10.4% 63.4 15.0%
Laredo 67.5 -5.2% 62.1 -7.4%
Lubbock 66.8 9.4% 61.9 2.3%
Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood 55.3 -4.6% 60.2 16.5%
McAllen-Edinburg-Pharr 55.8 2.7% 60.1 6.5%

*ranked by 1Q 2014 % Occupancy
**does not include metro areas below 60 percent occupancy

See the full report at the Office of the Governor, Economic Development and Tourism.

Texas student housing occupancy 98% plus 


TEXAS - American Campus Communities (ACC) has released fourth quarter 2013 statistics for their student housing properties across the U.S.

The chart below shows only Texas' final fall 2013 occupancy of 98 percent or greater.

4Q 2013 Same Store Properties with Final Fall 2013 Occupancy of 98% or Greater
Final Fall
2013 Occ.**
Initial Proj.
Rate Inc.***
Current Proj.
Rate Inc.***
26 West — Austin 1,026 99.5% 4.8% 5.4%
The Callaway House Austin &
The Penthouse at Callaway — Austin
753 99.5% 5.0% 4.9%
Vintage and Texan West Campus — Austin 311 98.7% 3.9% 4.7%
The Callaway House — College Station 538 103.9% 4.3% 4.3%
U Club Townhomes on Marion Pugh —
College Station
640 99.4% 3.5% 3.6%
City Parc at Fry Street — Denton 418 98.3% 2.8% 3.1%
University View — Prairie View 336 100.0% 3.0% 3.0%
University Village Northwest —
Prairie View
144 100.0% 3.0% 3.0%
Callaway Villas — College Station 704 99.7% 2.8% 2.8%
Union — Waco 120 98.3% 2.9% 2.8%
Aggie Station — Bryan 450 100.0% 1.8% 1.8%
Sanctuary Lofts — San Marcos 487 98.2% -1.1% 1.0%
Campus Edge on UTA Boulevard —
488 99.6% 0.7% 1.0%
The Outpost — San Marcos 486 99.2% -2.1% -2.1%

*Design beds include beds for staff accommodations. 
** As of September 30, 2013
*** Projected rate increase reflects projected rental rates anticipated to be achieved through the end of the company's leasing cycle, up to targeted occupancy.

See American Campus Communities for more information.

Texas' Big 4 cities among best in U.S. for small business 


TEXAS - Houston, Dallas and Austin are among the best cities to work for a small business in the United States, according to WalletHub.

Ranking cities using ten different metrics, such as net small business job growth, industry variety, employee hours worked and average wages for new hires, Dallas was ranked first among Texas cities at No. 9. Houston followed at No. 13, and Austin came in tied with Bridgeport, Connecticut at No. 16.

San Antonio also made the top 50 at No. 47.

Austin was ranked first in small-business health, while Houston came in fifth. Houston and Dallas were ranked Nos. 98 and 99, respectively, for average number of hours worked for small-business employees.

Read more at the WalletHub.

Seven of top 15 fastest growing U.S. cities in Texas 

(5/23/2014 11:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - New and big numbers confirm that Texas cities are among the fastest growing in the nation during the year ending July 1, 2013. Data released by the U.S. Census Bureau show that seven of the top 15 fastest growing cities in the U.S. are in Texas.

San Marcos takes the number one spot on the list. The top 15 cities are shown below.

Top 15 Fastest Growing Cities in U.S. by Percentage Growth Year-End July 2013
City  Increase 2013 Pop.
1.   San Marcos, Tex. 8.0% 54,076
2.   Frisco, Tex. 6.5% 163,791
3.   South Jordan, Utah 6.1% 59,366
4.   Cedar Park, Tex. 5.6% 61,238
5.   Lehi, Utah 5.5% 54,382
6.   Goodyear, Ariz. 4.8% 72,864
7.   Georgetown, Tex. 4.5% 54,898
8.   Gaithersburg, Md. 4.4% 65,690
9.   Mount Pleasant, S.C. 4.1% 74,885
10. Meridian, Idaho 4.0% 83,596
11. Odessa, Tex. 4.0% 110,720
12. Gilbert, Ariz. 4.0% 229,972
13. McKinney, Tex. 3.9% 148,559
14. Franklin, Tenn. 3.9% 68,886
15. Pearland, Tex. 3.8% 100,065

*Cities must have at least 50,000 residents to be included.

Read more at the Austin Business Journal and see the U.S. Census Bureau for more information.

Texas' economic outlook optimistic but problems may lurk 


TEMPLE - Mark Dotzour, chief economist and director of research for the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University, told community business leaders he is optimistic about the future, but also pointed to potential problem spots during the CentraLand Title Company’s 2014 Economic Summit.

One problem with limited growth is that regulators have made it difficult for banks to loan money for new subdivisions because they lost a lot of money six or seven years ago, Dotzour noted.

Dotzour pointed out that what makes Texas attractive to businesses is that families can come to Texas and make a decent living without a huge wage they’d need in some other places. If the price of homes starts to skyrocket, then that’s gone away.

Average house prices in Texas were $169,900 five years ago, $197,500 in 2013 and haven’t dipped below $200,000 since October — what Dotzour believes is a serious issue.

Dotzour also noted that Americans are back in the saddle again, citing that the net worth of Americans is at an all-time record high at $81 trillion. “The good news you never hear about is there are 4.1 million jobs open today. We have a labor shortage," Dotzour said.

Read more at the Killeen Daily Herald

Lone Star State employment continues to shine 


TEXAS - The Texas Workforce Commission has updated employment data for the Lone Star State. Here's the latest.

From April 2013 to April 2014, the Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington metro led the state in job growth, creating 115,900 jobs. Houston ranked second, with 85,800 jobs created, and Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos ranked third, with 29,900 jobs created.

Texas' unemployment rate was 4.7 percent in April 2014, down from 5.3 percent in March and from 6.0 percent in April 2013.

Here are the top performing metro areas from April 2013 to April 2014.

Change in Payroll Employment,
April 2013–April 2014
Metro Area Jobs Added Change
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington 115,900 3.8%
Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown 85,800 3.1%
Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos 29,900 3.5%
San Antonio-New Braunfels 20,200 2.2%
Corpus Christi 5,100 2.7%
College Station-Bryan 5,000 5.0%

Source: Texas Workforce Commission

Read more at the Texas Workforce Commission. For more stats, see Employment under any MSA's Market Data Sources.

Renting vs. buying map: how Texas stacks up 


TEXAS - Buying a home has long been part of the American dream, but rising prices have made renting less expensive in many places, according to Deutsche Bank. The five markets where renting has become cheaper than buying include Sacramento; Phoenix; San Bernardino and Riverside, Calif.; Austin; and Northern Virginia.

Miami, San Antonio and Las Vegas are among the hot markets where renters appeared to be on the verge of being better off than buyers at year-end.

The upside of buying is that a home can significantly increase in value. The median sales price of existing single-family homes rose 81 percent from 1993 through 2013, according to the National Association of Realtors.

Renters, however, make more money by investing savings and cash they would otherwise use for a down payment. The value of the average single-family home increased by 3.6 percent a year in the three decades through 2013, compounded annually, according Freddie Mac. By contrast, the compound annual return on the S&P 500 over that period was 11.1 percent, according to Morningstar.

For a nationwide renting vs. buying map, see the Wall Street Journal. (Look at the bottom for the map.)

Six South Texas counties prop up U.S. oil production 


TEXAS - Over half of 2013 U.S. oil production came from 20 counties, six of which are located in South Texas’ Eagle Ford Shale, according DrillingInfo.

The 20 counties — half spread through Eagle Ford and North Dakota’s Bakken Shale — represent just 2 percent of U.S. oil-producing counties yet accounted for 52 percent of 2013’s output. Karnes County, southeast of San Antonio, ranked 7th on the list, making it the highest-producing county in the Lone Star State.

In 2014, the results are likely to skew even higher to shale locations, usually described as “unconventional” basins, according to Kevin Thuot, Drillinginfo engineering research analyst.

Top Texas oil producing counties include:

• Karnes County, with 214,000 barrels per day;
• LaSalle County, with 141,000 barrels per day;
• Dewitt County, with 133,000 barrels per day;
• Dimmit County, with 117,000 barrels per day;
• Gonzales County, with 116,000 barrels per day; and
• McMullen County, with 88,000 barrels per day.

Read more at the San Antonio business Journal.

ALN Abilene, Amarillo, Corpus Christi, Lubbock apartments 


ABILENE, AMARILLO, CORPUS CHRISTI, LUBBOCK - ALN Apartment Data has released the April 2014 review of occupancy, effective rent and other data for many Texas cities.

General Overview April 2014
 Markets Abilene Amarillo Corpus
Occupancy rate 90.0 91.2 92.0 92.1
Units added 0 0 848 371
Units absorbed (annual) -99 -87 -80 378
Average size (SF) 869 811 849 846
Asking rent $660 $665 $864 $695
Effective rent $649 $657 $861 $691
Effective rent per SF $0.74 $0.81 $1.01 $0.82
Offering concessions 31% 24% 11% 15%
Avg. concession package 5.6% 5.0% 2.6% .2%

Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

For more ALN stories from other cities, see NewsTalk Texas.

Office forecast 2014-2016 across U.S. 

(5/6/2014 10:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - The office sector is exhibiting the most divergent performance between markets of any of the major property classes, according to the 2014 Integra Realty Resources report covering major U.S. markets.

2014 Office Market Conditions and Forecast: CBD Market Class A & B
Avg. Annual
Net Absorp. (SF)
Avg. Annual
Net Absorp. (SF)
Atlanta, Ga. 16,213,000 25.46% -577,000 900,000
Austin 10,129,378 10.45% 55,950 293,040
Chicago, Ill. 98,000,000 14.35% 412,145 -142,472
Dallas 30,895,730 27.37% -124,000 285,667
Fort Worth 10,124,653 12.63% -10,250 88,667
Houston 52,730,000 10.57% -10,000 310,000
Los Angeles 57,171,518 14.49% -150,000 100,000
San Antonio 4,985,000 28.29% -47,666 72,000

For the full report showing the Suburban Market Area and more, see Office under Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio Market Data Sources.

Texas summer power crunch punches up 2,153 megawatts 


TEXAS - New power generators coming online will add capacity to the state’s power grid. Six new units, totaling 2,153 megawatts (MW) of capacity, are slated to come on by August. Of that, 2,112 MW is coming from four new facilities:

•  Deer Park Energy Center is in Harris County
•  Ferguson Replacement is northwest of Austin
•  Panda Sherman is north of Dallas
•  Panda Temple is near Temple

A report by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), the state’s grid operator, has forecasted peak electricity demand this summer to be 68,000 megawatts, just shy of an all-time record set in August 2011.

One megawatt is the equivalent to the amount of electricity needed to serve about 200 homes during peak conditions in the late afternoon on a hot summer day.


Fire — smoke detector inadequacies from The Today Show 

(5/1/2014 8:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - One the best things we can do is put a smoke and heat detector in our attic. Attics are not commonly used as occupied spaces and, as a result, they usually do not have smoke alarms or heat sensors.

When a fire occurs in an attic, it is common that it will go unnoticed until smoke or flames, escaping from the roof, are visible from the outside. Dr. B. Don Russell, the Harry E. Bovay, Jr. Endowed Chair Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Texas A&M University, discussed inadequacies in smoke detectors during a segment of The Today Show Oct. 3, 2012.

Listen to Podcast 213 for more hints about May Home Improvement Month. Also see TAMU's website.

Thrills and chills: Texas’ top five exciting places 

(5/1/2014 7:39:00 AM)

TEXAS - Texas is one big rip-roarin rodeo of excitement, and Movoto Real Estate lassoed themselves a list of the ten most fun places and captivating locales.

The 100 most populated places in Texas were eligible for the list, and each received a score from one to 100, with one being the best. All the scores were averaged out to make one Big Deal Score, and whoever had the best score in that ranking was the victor.

Criteria for the list included:

•  Nightlife per capita (bars, clubs, comedy, etc.);
•  Live music venues per capita;
•  Active life options per capita (parks, outdoor activities, etc.);
•  Fast Food restaurants per capita (the fewer the better);
•  Percentage of restaurants that are not fast food (the higher the better); and
•  Percentage of young residents ages 18 to 34 (the higher the better).

Whether it’s festivals, amusement parks, shopping or dining, there is plenty to choose from in this great state. The top five exciting places in Texas are listed below.

Movoto’s Most Interesting Places in Texas
City Population Overall
Galveston 47,743 1 25 1 7 1 46 3 13.83
Austin 790,390 2 6 4 1 4 67 12 15.67
Houston 2,099,451 3 20 6 15 42 44 9 22.67
Conroe 56,207 4 18 13 6 3 82 14 22.67
Dallas 1,197,816 5 19 10 11 50 39 11 23.33

Read more at Movoto Real Estate. Listen to Podcast 213 for this story and more.

Order up sub(markets): in-depth look at Texas cities 


TEXAS - ALN's recent In Depth: Major Texas Markets show submarket data for Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio occupancy and effective rent rates by submarket. The report covers data for November 2013 and February 2014 by Theron Patrick of ALN Apartment Data.

The chart shows a comparison of occupancy and effective rents at the end of February 2013 and February 2014 for each major Texas market.

Major Texas Market Comparison
Markets Occupancy Effective Rent
Feb. 2013 Feb. 2014 Change Feb. 2013 Feb. 2014 Change
Abilene 92.1% 88.7% -3.7% $639 $658 3.0%
Amarillo 90.1% 91.1% 1.1% $634 $650 2.5%
Austin 94.0% 92.0% -2.1% $951 $1,026 7.9%
Corpus Christi 95.2% 94.5% -0.7% $858 $901 9.0%
Dallas-Fort Worth 92.0% 92.1% 0.1% $824 $867 5.2%
Houston 90.7% 91.6% 1.0% $828 $889 7.4%
Lubbock 91.4% 91.0% -0.4% $667 $685 2.7%
San Antonio 91.1% 90.4% -0.8% $789 $816 3.4%
Texas average 91.7% 91.8% 0.1% $831 $882 6.1%

See Multifamily in numerous Market Data Sources' metros for ALN March 2014 In Depth Apartment Data: Major Texas Metros 2014,

Source: ALN Apartment Data

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