NewsTalk Texas

Texas

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

(4/22/2014)

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

ALN: How smaller Texas markets fared Feb. 2014 

(4/18/2014)

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

Links in the chart lead to Market Data Sources for each city under Multifamily. The full report also shows smaller cities from Alabama to Wisconsin.

Texas Market Occupancy*
Market Occ.
Feb. 2014
Beaumont 88.4%
College Station 93.8%
El Paso 91.5%
Harlingen 95.0%
Killeen-Temple** 89.8%
Laredo 92.8%
Longview-Tyler 90.0%
Lufkin*** 89.6%
Midland-Odessa 92.2%
San Angelo 95.5%
Texarkana 89.9%
Victoria 94.6%
Wichita Falls 86.1%

*excludes student, senior, income-restricted properties
**Central Texas
***See Longview

Source: ALN Apartment Data .

Residential remodeling: popular, profitable in Texas  

(4/15/2014)

TEXAS - Residential remodeling projects in Texas’ major cities grew increasingly profitable and popular in 2013, according to the 2014 Texas Remodel Valuation Report by the Texas Association of Realtors.

The report analyzed the project recoup costs and recoup cost growth in 2013 for remodeling projects in Austin, Dallas, El Paso, Houston and San Antonio. Four of the five Texas markets showed significant gains in project recoup costs in 2013.

All five Texas markets demonstrated that smaller, functional remodeling projects showed greater increases in recoup costs than upscale, luxury projects.

Steel entry door replacements ranked number one for total recoup cost nationwide and in Houston, recouping up to 105.5 percent of the total project cost.

Basement remodels ranked in the top five for recoup cost in four of the five major cities in Texas, recouping up to 99.6 percent of the total project cost.

Kitchen remodeling projects also ranked in the top five for recoup cost growth in all five Texas metro areas, recouping up to 143.9 percent of the total project cost.

Backup power generators ranked number one for recoup cost growth in Austin, El Paso and Houston including a 105.1 percent gain in recoup cost in El Paso in 2013.

Natural materials, such as wood, cement and steel, led to a significantly higher recoup cost than synthetic, plastics-based materials, such as composites and vinyl.

Sunroom additions ranked in the bottom five for recoup cost in five Texas metro areas, recouping a maximum of 61.3 percent and as little as 38 percent of the total project cost.

Read more at Business Wire.

For the full report, see the Texas Association of Realtors.

Texas tea flows: crude production up 22 percent 

(4/15/2014)

TEXAS - Crude production in Texas reached an estimated 77.2 million barrels in February 2014 — up 22.4 percent from February 2013. The Texas Petro Index soared to the highest level since 1980, according to economist Karr Ingham.

The value of oil and gas produced in February 2014 totaled $10.63 billion, up rose by more than $2.85 billion from February 2013.

The oil and gas sector averaged about 285,000 people on its payroll in February 2014 — up nearly 5 percent from February 2013.

The Texas Alliance of Energy Producers created the Texas Petro Index in 1995. It combines various metrics to provide an indication of the health and trajectory of oil and gas production in the state.

Read more at Fuel Fix.

Abilene, Amarillo, Corpus Christi, Lubbock apartments 

(4/11/2014 7:30:00 AM)

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

General Overview March 2014
 Markets Abilene Amarillo Corpus
Christi
Lubbock
Occupancy rate 89.7 90.9 92.6 90.8
Units added 0 0 564 371
Units absorbed (annual) -117 -5 -162 273
Average size (SF) 869 811 850 847
Asking rent $658 $700 $857 $699
Effective rent $644 $692 $854 $695
Effective rent per SF $0.74 $0.85 $1.00 $0.82
Offering concessions 37% 25% 12% 15%
Avg. concession package 5.3% 5.0% 2.5% 4.5%


Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

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

ALN provides data for Texas metros! It's easy to find under the category Multifamily under Market Data Sources.

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

(4/10/2014 8:00:00 AM)

AUSTIN, DFW, HOUSTON, SAN ANTONIO - ALN Apartment Data released the March 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 March 2014
Markets Austin DFW Houston San
Antonio
Atlanta Tucson
Occupancy rate 91.8 92.3 91.8 90.2 91.9 89.9
Units added 7,013 10,003 11,438 3,769 4,168 375
Units absorbed (annual) 2,590 8,097 12,964 1,834 7,188 165
Average size (SF) 854 860 873 835 1,015 729
Asking rent $1,045 $883 $912 $838 $878 $643
Effective rent $1,038 $871 $899 $819 $869 $618
Effective rent per SF $1.21 $1.01 $1.03 $0.98 $0.85 $0.85
Offering concessions 13% 35% 32% 45% 31% 58%
Avg. concession package 3.9% 4.1% 4.6% 4.7% 4.1% 6.9%


Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

See NewsTalk Texas for this story. ALN provides data for Texas metros! It's easy to find under the category Multifamily under Market Data Sources.

Texas contractors building larger ... workforce at 23,000 

(4/3/2014)

TEXAS - General contractors across the state enjoyed another month of strong employment numbers, according to the February 2014 analysis by Associated General Contractors of America.

Over the 12 months ending February 2014, construction firms in Texas added 23,700 employees to their payrolls — a 3.9 percent increase from February 2013.

Texas added the third largest number of new construction employees on a year-over-year basis, behind Florida and California.

Read more at the Dallas Business Journal.

Texas public school enrollment soars past 5M 

(4/1/2014)

TEXAS - Student enrollment in Texas public schools has hit a new record with an enrollment of 5,075,840 in 2012-2013, according to the Texas Education Agency. Between the 1987-1988 school year and the 2012-2013 school year, enrollment grew 57.4 percent or about 1.85 million students.

Enrollment in Texas increased by 21.6 percent between 2000 and 2010, four times more than the nationwide increase of 4.8 percent over the same period.

By 2050, the number of Texas public school students is expected to swell to 9 million, according to Steve Murdock of Rice University.

In 2012-13, Education Service Center Region 4 (Houston) served the largest student population, accounting for 22.1 percent of total state public school enrollment.

The number of students in Grades 9-12 participating in career and technical education programs rose by 21.1 percent between 2002-03 and 2012-13. The number of students receiving bilingual or English as a second language instructional services increased by 46.9 percent over the same period.

Read more at the Texas Tribune.

See the full enrollment report at the Texas Education Agency.

Deep in the heart of a surging Texas economy  

(3/31/2014 7:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - The $1.3 billion state economy has completely recovered from the Great Recession and is getting stronger. The Texas economy is now larger than those in Michigan, North Carolina and Georgia combined.

Texas and New York are the only two states to have restored all of the jobs lost when the recession hit in 2007, said John Heleman, chief revenue estimator in the Texas comptroller's office.

Texas unemployment is down to 5.7 percent, about a point lower than the national average, and the state's average home price has broken $200,000 for the first time ever. Consumer confidence in Texas is above average, while it remains low in California, Ohio and other Midwestern states.

Oil and gas production has doubled over the last six years and the state's rainy day fund will have $8 billion at the end of the 2014–2015 budget year.

The oil and gas industry directly employed 416,000 employees in 2013 and they averaged $120,000 a year in wages, according to James LeBas, economist for the Texas Oil and Gas Association. Producers paid $11.5 billion in royalties to 570,000 families, or about $20,000 per household.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram, courtesy of the Associated Press.

Texas office: Big four metros 4Q 2013 CBRE 

(3/25/2014)

TEXAS - The Texas office market concluded 2013 on a favorable note, both for the quarter and for the year, according to a report from CBRE. Positive net absorption remains a widespread theme for the major metropolitan areas of Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio, totaling about 9.5 million sf for the year in just the office market alone.

Office vacancy in Texas continues to be driven down by sustained positive absorption, fueled by prolonged demand in most of the state’s largest markets.

Total net absorption for fourth quarter 2013 was positive and exceeded 2 million sf. This is a reduced amount since last quarter, but boosts the annual total to nearly 10 million sf — the highest year of annual absorption since 2006.

The quad-market average for quoted lease rates witnessed another uptick in 4Q 2013, averaging $23.11 per sf and up by $0.33 per sf from the previous quarter. Asking rates are expected to continue rising trend while supply is still constrained due to the slow churn of new speculative inventory.

The construction pipeline picked up momentum once again over 4Q 2013, expanding by almost 4.5 million sf and exceeding 20 million sf in total projects actively under construction.

Texas Office Market Statistics 4Q 2013
Market RBA* Total
Available
Space (SF)
Vacancy Net
Absorption
(SF)
Asking Rate
Market Avg.
Austin 42,444,966 6,919,831 12.1% 205,463 $28.15
DFW 225,501,521 49,303,128 18.0% 436,746 $19.85
Houston 193,551,155 26,986,051 11.8% 1,343,850 $24.62
San Antonio 27,151,901 6,007,609 19.1% 103,484 $19.82

*Rentable building area

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

Texas multifamily: Big four metros 4Q 2013 CBRE 

(3/24/2014 9:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - The multifamily market wrapped up 2013 with a strong quarter, making 2013 a banner year for the state, according to CBRE's 4Q 2013 Texas Multi-Housing report.

Texas saw 37,739 new units added in Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio — up from 23,880 new units in 2012. Nearly 50,000 more units are currently under construction.

The hottest area for multifamily development across Texas in 2013 was the Uptown-Oak Lawn-Highland Park submarket in Dallas, with over 5,400 units currently under construction.

Rates have remained fairly steady over the past year in all four metros, even as new units are added, signaling continuing strength for apartment demand. Occupancy rates in Austin, DFW, Houston and San Antonio are 91.7 percent, 92.1 percent, 90.5 percent and 89.8 percent, respectively.

Houston ranked second in the nation for multifamily permits issued year-to-date through November 2013, behind New York City. Dallas placed third and Austin was fourth.

See CBRE's Texas Multifamily: Big Four Metros under Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston or San Antonio Market Data Sources.

Texas hotel occupancy 2013; 11 metros beat state average 

(3/4/2014)

TEXAS - In 2013, 11 areas exceeded the state occupancy average. Meanwhile, 18 of 27 Texas areas exceeded occupancy compared to 2012, according to Source Strategies Inc.

Hotel revenues in fourth quarter 2013 alone rose 9.1 percent to $2.1 billion, up from $1.9 billion a year ago.

In oil and gas counties statewide, room revenues rose 9.5 percent in 2013 to $3.386 billion.

Top 11 Metros Ranked by Occupancy 2013
  2012 Year-End 2013 Year-End
Metro Area Occ. % $ Rev.
% Chg.
Occ. % Chg. % $ Rev.
% Chg.
San Angelo 73.6 42.6% 82.9 9.3 36.7%
Midland 91.5 55.9% 81.9 -9.6 1.7%
Odessa 90.3 55.0% 77.0 -13.3 -0.9%
Austin-Round Rock 69.1 11.6% 72.5 3.4 13.9%
Laredo 70.5 6.6% 67.5 -3.0 -5.2%
Lubbock 62.9 7.6% 66.8 3.9 9.4%
College Station-Bryan 61.2 8.7% 66.7 5.5 18.3%
Houston-Baytown-Sugar Land 64.6 14.3% 66.4 1.8 12.8%
Dallas MD 62.8 6.3% 65.4 2.6 10.2%
El Paso 64.4 -0.7% 64.5 0.1 -1.6%
Victoria     70.2 16.3% 64.1 -6.1 -6.0%
State average      62.5 10.2% 63.6 1.1 8.6%


See the full report at the Office of the Governor, Economic Development and Tourism. For more stats on all counties and MSAs, see Source Strategies under the hotel category at Market Data Sources.

Texas outpaces nation in new home sales 

(3/4/2014)

TEXAS - The Lone Star State outpaced the rest of the country in new-home sales in 2013, according to the 2014 Texas Homebuyers and Sellers report by the Texas Association of Realtors.

Of all the homes bought in Texas in 2013, 30 percent were new, a 4 percent increase from 2012. Nationwide, new homes accounted for 16 percent of all the homes sold last year, unchanged from 2012.

The highest share of homebuyers were married couples, according to the report. In Texas, the number of married homebuyers increased to 71 percent in 2013 from 69 percent in 2012. Nationally, 66 percent of the buyers were married couples, up from 65 percent in 2012.

The percentage of first-time homebuyers in the state last year was 33 percent, a decline of 2 percentage points from 2012. That compares with 38 percent in the U.S.

See the full report at the Texas Association of Realtors.

Texas national park tourism $188M economic benefit 

(3/4/2014)

TEXAS - National Parks in Texas saw 3,939,160 visitors in 2012, received $188.1 million in economic benefit, and supported 2,592 jobs, according to the National Park Service.

“This new report confirms that national park tourism is a significant driver in the national economy, returning $10 for every $1 invested in the National Park Service,” said Sue Masica, director of the National Park Service’s Intermountain Region.

The national report shows $14.7 billion of direct spending by 283 million park visitors in communities within 60 miles of a national park. This spending supported 243,000 jobs nationally and had a cumulative benefit to the U.S. economy of $26.75 billion.

Jobs in restaurants, grocery and convenience stores received 39 percent of spending, hotels, motels and B&Bs received 27 percent, and other amusement and recreation received 20 percent.

Read more at KTSM-TV.

Site Selection crowns Texas with Governor's Cup 

(3/3/2014)

TEXAS - Site Selection Magazine has crowned Texas the winner of their Governor’s Cup for 2013. The award is given annually to the state with the most new and expanded corporate facilities announced over the year, and 2013 is the fifth time Texas has won the award under Governor Rick Perry's leadership.

Texas previously won the Governor’s Cup in 2004, 2005, 2010 and 2012. Texas had 657 qualifying projects in 2013.

Ohio finished second with 480 qualifying projects. A qualifying project had to have a capital investment of at least $1 million, must create 50 or more jobs or have 20,000 sf or more of new construction.

“States are the laboratories of innovation, and Texas continues to be a beacon of opportunity for job creators and entrepreneurs,” said Governor Perry. “Over the past 12 years, we’ve built a strong foundation for the future of this state with our low taxes, smart regulation, fair courts and skilled workers. Companies nationally and internationally know that Texas works, and is the best place to live, work, raise a family and own a business.”

Read more at the Dallas Business Journal.

Texas builder, Granger MacDonald, elected to NAHB 

(2/19/2014)

TEXAS - Granger MacDonald, a Kerrville-based builder and developer with 40 years of experience in the home building industry, has been elected as the 2014 third vice chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

MacDonald is president of the MacDonald Companies, a diverse development and construction enterprise with more than 35 neighborhoods completed throughout Texas.

MacDonald has been active in the NAHB leadership structure at the local, state and national levels throughout his career. He has served on the NAHB Board of Directors for more than 30 years and is a member of the NAHB Executive Board.

MacDonald has also served as chairman on several influential NAHB committees and councils, including the Federal Government Affairs Committee, the State and Local Government Affairs Committee, the Housing Credit Group, the Multifamily Council and BUILD-PAC, the political action committee of NAHB.

NAHB’s newly elected senior officers serve on a multi-year leadership ladder. MacDonald will become chairman of NAHB’s Board of Directors in 2017.

Read more at the National Association of Home Builders.

Mexico's fuel fix? $1.2T to border towns 

(2/18/2014)

TEXAS - As Mexico moves to open its energy sector to international companies, the new investments and increased activity could mean a bonanza for  border towns on both sides, attracting as much as $1.2 trillion in economic activity to the region in the next decade, according to Marcial Nava, BBVA Compass economist.

However, while Mexico will be looking to increase its supply of natural gas, this could come through exploration or through increased pipeline infrastructure to the United States.

The United States is Mexico’s largest natural gas supplier, providing 80 percent of imports. More than 60 percent of the natural gas supplied comes from Texas through pipelines that link the Lone Star state with its southern neighbor.

In 2012, the Mexican government only authorized the drilling of three shale oil and gas wells, a stark contrast to the 9,100 in the United States for the same period.

The reforms will remove the limitations that prevented international investment from developing Mexican shale plays, especially in the Burgos Basin, which is the portion of the Eagle Ford Shale that extends into Mexico.

This play could hold more than 300 trillion cubic feet of technically recoverable shale gas, while Mexico’s other shale plays — the Sabinas, Tampico and Veracruz Basins — are estimated to hold more than 1 trillion cubic feet of natural gas reserves.

Read more at Fuel Fix.

Texas $45B trumps nation in tech exports  

(2/17/2014 8:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Texas has surpassed California for the first time to become the largest tech exporting state in America, according to the TechAmerica Foundation.

Technology exports from Texas increased 7 percent from 2011 to 2012, to total of $45 billion.

Technology exports, such as semiconductors, computer equipment and communications equipment, accounted for 17 percent of all exports from Texas in 2012, significantly higher than the national average of 13 percent.

Texas’ largest trading partner by far is Mexico with $22 billion in tech exports flowing across the border. Second is Canada with $4 billion followed by South Korea with $3 billion.

“The high tech industry is not only growing in Texas, but it is also yielding thousands of high paying jobs in our state,” said U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro.

Nationally, technology trade in the United States totaled $204 billion in 2012, growing by 1.3 percent or $2.7 billion.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

See the full report from TechAmerica.

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

(2/13/2014 6:45:00 AM)

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

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

General Overview Jan. 2014
 Markets Austin DFW Houston San
Antonio
Atlanta Phoenix
Occupancy rate 92.2 92.4 91.6 90.3 91.5 92.0
Units added 4,761 10,360 7,185 2,381 1,943 748
Units absorbed (annual) 1,914 11,771 11,342 1,100 5,812 2,221
Average size (SF) 853 860 873 835 1,015 839
Asking rent $1,029 $877 $897 $832 $867 $765
Effective rent $1,022 $864 $884 $813 $857 $750
Effective rent per SF $1.20 $1.00 $1.01 $0.97 $0.84 $0.89
Offering concessions 14% 36% 33% 43% 34% 47%
Avg. concession package 4.2% 4.2% 4.7% 4.9% 4.2% 4.9%

*Stabilized market is everything in a market except for apartments in initial lease-up.

Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

Want more ALN news in other Texas cities? See NewsTalk Texas.

ALN Jan. 2013: Abilene, Amarillo, Corpus Christi, Lubbock 

(2/12/2014)

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

General Overview January 2014
 Markets Abilene Amarillo Corpus
Christi
Lubbock
Occupancy rate 88.9 90.8 94.6 91.3
Units added 0 0 179 205
Units absorbed (annual) -232 126 20 246
Average size (SF) 868 811 848 844
Asking rent $658 $657 $834 $692
Effective rent $645 $647 $832 $685
Effective rent per SF $0.74 $0.80 $0.98 $0.81
Offering concessions 37% 30% 7% 22%
Avg. concession package 5.7% 4.7% 2.1% 4.3%


Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

Want more ALN news in other Texas cities? See NewsTalk Texas.

Texas exports close to $280B in 2013 

(2/12/2014)

TEXAS - Texas’ export revenue totaled $279.69 billion in 2013, up $14.3 billion, or 5.4 percent, from 2012. This marks twelfth consecutive year that Texas is the top exporting state, according to U.S. Census Bureau data.

In August 2013, Texas hit a record $134.4 billion in exports for the first half of 2013, according to the International Trade Administration. That figure was up 3 percent from the first half of 2012.

California saw the second-largest increase, up $6.4 billion to $168 billion. Washington also was up $6.4 billion for a total of $81.9 billion. New York increased $4.8 billion to $83.99 billion, and Kentucky was up $3.19 billion to $25.3 billion.

Read more at the U.S. Census Bureau and the San Antonio Business Journal.

Texas ranked sixth for solar jobs, first in potential 

(2/12/2014)

TEXAS - Texas ranks sixth in nation with 4,100 jobs in the solar industry, a 28 percent increase from 2012. Texas also ranks first in solar potential capacity, according to the Solar Energy Industry Association.

"Falling solar prices combined with enormous solar resources will make Texas a huge solar market. With some smart policy, jobs in the solar industry could easily double or triple in the next three to five years," said David Dixon, CEO for Native Inc.

San Antonio and Austin account for about 85 percent of the state's solar capacity.

CPS Energy, San Antonio's municipally owned utility, plans to have 400 megawatts of utility-scale solar constructed by 2017. That is projected to power about 10 percent of San Antonio area homes.

In 2014 Texas will see two private solar projects come online, one in Pecos County and one near Lubbock.

Read more at the Burnt Orange Report and The Solar Foundation.

ALN apartment occ. Dec. 2013: Beaumont to Wichita Falls 

(2/11/2014 8:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - ALN Apartment Data released December 2013 occupancy for Beaumont, College Station, El Paso, Harlingen, Killeen-Temple, Longview-Tyler, Midland-Odessa and Wichita Falls.

Texas Market Occupancy*
Market Occ.
Dec. 2013
Beaumont 88.5%
College Station 94.5%
El Paso 92.1%
Harlingen 94.6%
Killeen-Temple** 89.3%
Longview-Tyler 90.4%
Midland-Odessa 90.9%
Wichita Falls 87.4%

*excludes student, senior, income-restricted properties
**Central Texas

For the full report see ALN Apartment Data.

Texas cookin’: restaurant sales to hit $42.5B 

(2/5/2014 7:45:00 AM)

TEXAS - In 2014, the Texas restaurant industry is expected to post 4.7 percent sales growth, reaching $42.5 billion, according to the National Restaurant Association (NRA).

2014 will be the fifth consecutive year of restaurant industry sales growth despite a continued challenging economic landscape.

Texas restaurants will employ 1.1 million in 2014 and create an additional 170,800 jobs in the next decade. 2014 will be the 15th straight year in which restaurant industry employment growth will outpace overall employment growth.

For example, Abilene has seen an influx of restaurants opening. McAlister's has opened their second location on North 10 & Judge Ely, the third Golden Chick location opened on US Hwy. 351, and Firehouse Subs has taken out a $450,000 building permit to begin construction on the vacant space near Target on Ridgemont Dr.

Local Abilene restaurants say they are already seeing an increase in sales since 2013. Oscar Avila of Oscar's Mexican Restaurant says his business has seen an 8 percent increase, which he attributes to the oil boom in Midland and Odessa.

Read more at Big Country homepage.com.

Texas fishing lures $3.7B from anglers 

(2/4/2014)

TEXAS - More than 1.6 million adults fished in the Lone Star state during 2011, spending $2.1 billion in retail sales, generating $1.1 billion in salaries and wages and supporting more than 29,000 jobs, according to Southwick Associates.

The total economic multiplier effect is estimated to be as high as $3.67 billion. Of the total economic effect, $1.67 billion was generated by freshwater angling, while saltwater angling accounted for $1.97 billion.

The largest economic impact from a single species was attributed to red drum, which produced an economic multiplier effect of $763 million in Texas.

The report looked at the demographics of 2011′s Texas anglers: how many freshwater fished and how many fished saltwater, age, income, marital status, race and other key factors.

Lunker after lunker for Lake Fork (Jan. 13, 2014): Randall E. Claybourne of Tulsa, Oklahoma, was fishing in 15 feet of water in the east arm of Lake Fork when a 13.86-pound bass took his jig-and-craw lure about 11:20 p.m. The fish was 25 inches long and 21 inches in girth. It was held for pickup at Lake Fork Marina.

Read more at Lone Star Outdoor News and Southwick Associates.

Texas Petro Index hit new high in December 2013 

(2/3/2014)

TEXAS - The Texas Petro Index hit a new record in December, rising for the fourth consecutive month, according to the Texas Alliance of Energy Producers.

The measurement, a composite index based on several upstream economic indicators, hit 295.0 last month, up 6.7 percent from a year ago and above the previous high of 287.6 set in October 2008. Nearly all of the growth in 2013 was driven by crude oil, but higher wellhead prices for natural gas was a contributing factor.

For all of 2013, Texas crude oil production totaled 856.8 million barrels, which accounted for 31 percent of all U.S. oil production and is the highest statewide total since 1985.

Among the highlights of the report:

• The statewide working rig count averaged 835, about 7.1 percent less than in 2012.
• The Texas Railroad Commission issued 21,471 drilling permits, compared to 22,479 permits issued in 2012.
• The estimated value of Texas-produced crude oil increased by 27 percent to about $81 billion, with wellhead prices increasing slightly (4.2 percent) and production up by nearly 150 million barrels.
• The estimated value of Texas-produced natural gas increased 29.6 percent to $28.56 billion, as wellhead prices increased 31.8 percent to reach $3.60/Mcf while production declined slightly (1.0 percent).
• About 276,092 Texans on average were employed in the oil and gas production, drilling and service sectors during 2013, up about 6.4 percent compared to 2012 (average of 259,575). Upstream industry employment reached a record 282,700 in August before declining during the remainder of the year.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

DFW, Houston, SA tops apartment list into 2017 

(1/31/2014 8:00:00 PM)

TEXAS - Three Texas cities have made the list of 14 cities that will overcome oversupply issues in the multifamily market, according to Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL). Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth and San Antonio are the three Texas cities that are expected to shine bright into 2017.

Other U.S. cities making the list include: Phoenix, Atlanta, Jacksonville, Tampa, San Diego, Philadelphia, Orange County, the Inland Empire, Palm Beach, Las Vegas and Memphis.

The JLL report showed that the housing recovery is causing expansion nationwide. In addition, tightening market conditions brought U.S. quarterly rent increases for 2013.

Source: Jones Lang LaSalle

Texas contractors add 13,000 employees to payrolls in 2013 

(1/30/2014 6:59:00 AM)

TEXAS - In 2013, Texas construction firms added 13,500 employees to their payrolls, according to the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC).

The state’s construction industry had 611,100 employees on its collective payroll in December 2013, compared to 597,600 in December 2012 — an increase of 2.3 percent.

In December 2013 alone, contractors added 3,400 jobs — going from 607,700 employees in November 2013, to 611,100 employees in December.

Texas was one of 34 states that added jobs between December 2012 and December 2013. Additionally, it was one of only 17 states that added employees on a monthly basis.

While Texas construction firms do expect some challenges in 2014, as a whole, contractors were more optimistic than their peers were across the United States.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

Forbes: four Texas cities best places to retire 

(1/20/2014)

TEXAS - Abilene, Austin, Fredericksburg and San Angelo have all been selected for Forbes Magazine’s list of the 25 best places to retire in 2014.

Abilene’s cost of living is 13 percent below national average and the average home price is $139,000, compared to the national average of $207,000.

Austin boasts a terrific economy with a cost of living at about national average. The low crime rate and high grades for bicycling and volunteering are also enticing factors.

Fredericksburg has above average air quality, high walkability and a low crime rate. The cost of living is 5 percent below national average and the median home price $138,000.

San Angelo offers a warm climate with a booming economy where the cost of is living 9 percent below national average and the median home price $175,000.

Four states — Texas, Florida, South Carolina and Pennsylvania — have two or more listings.

See the best places to retire at Forbes.com.

Some small, midsize farms going away 

(1/20/2014)

TEXAS - A growing number of Texans are leaving the land because of opportunities in urban areas, a spike in land prices and concerns about risky weather patterns fueled by a blockbuster drought that continues to plague much of the state. The agricultural workforce is also aging.

Small and midsize farms and ranches — those under 2,000 acres — have been declining at a rate of 250,000 acres a year, according to the Texas A&M Institute of Renewable Natural Resources. From 1997 to 2007, the institute estimates, Texas lost about 1.5 million acres of agricultural land and is expected to lose a million more by 2020.

And while Texas as a whole is growing rapidly, the 96 counties that lost population from 2010 to 2012 are mostly in heavily agricultural West Texas and the Panhandle, the Office of the State Demographer said.

“The scariest thing is what’s happening to the blacklands;  that’s the land that’s being built out,” Billy Howe, the state legislative director for the Texas Farm Bureau, said, referring to cropland that lines Interstate 35, around which the swelling metropolitan areas of Austin, Dallas and San Antonio are clustered.

A century ago, Williamson County, north of Austin, was a top cotton producer. “It’s nothing but houses now, for the most part,” Billy Howe, the state legislative director for the Texas Farm Bureau, said.

A decline in population did not always mean less farming, according to Darren Hudson, a professor of agricultural economics at Texas Tech University. Technological advances have allowed many farms and ranches in the Panhandle to expand, while maintaining production levels with fewer workers.

Read more at the Texas Tribune.

Eagle Ford tops U.S. with $8.8B in deals 

(1/17/2014)

TEXAS - The Eagle Ford Shale drew $8.8 billion in upstream oil and gas deals in 2013, the largest value in the country, according to the Petroleum Listing Service.

The shale play in South Texas was also the site of 2013’s largest energy deal, with Devon Energy’s $6 billion Eagle Ford land acquisition.

In West Texas, unconventional regions of the Permian Basin were targets of the second-largest disclosed value of deals, $7.5 billion. Other high-value regions included:

•  the Rockies conventional plays, with $5.5 billion in deals;
•  the Gulf of Mexico shelf, with $4.2 billion in deals; and
•  the Bakken Shale, with $2.9 billion in deals.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

2014 could yield Texas $70B worth of industrial projects 

(1/13/2014 9:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Texas is going to be bustling with industrial construction activity in 2014. This year, more than $70.9 billion worth of planned industrial capital and maintenance projects are scheduled to start in Texas, according to Industrial Info Resources.

Many of those projects will be in Houston, a hub for oil, gas and chemical processing and manufacturing operations. The bulk of new projects in Texas are related to liquefied natural gas production and export facilities and chemical processing facilities.

Although the firm points out that not all of these projects will come to fruition, this number is still pretty astounding, especially when compared to other states.

For example, Louisiana, another state that expects a surge of industrial projects in 2014, has $45.7 billion worth of industrial capital and maintenance projects planned.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

Love's fuels Texas  

(1/13/2014)

TEXAS - Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores will introduce fast-fill compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling capability for heavy-duty trucks at nine Texas locations by second quarter 2014.

Love’s CNG stations are designed to deliver a fill rate of at least ten gallons per minute in all lanes, meaning a driver can fill a 100-gallon-equivalent tank in ten minutes or less.

“Professional drivers filling up with CNG see a $2 savings per gallon-equivalent over diesel. That economic edge creates an incentive for fleets to look into the viability of fast-fill CNG,” said Jon Archard, director of fleet sales at Love’s.

Love’s fast-fill CNG locations will include the following:

•  Amarillo — I-40, Exit 74

•  Dallas — I-35/I-20, Exit 466

•  Fort Worth — I-35 W, Exit 40

•  Houston — 610 Loop, Exit 24A

•  Katy — I-10, Exit 737

•  Rockwall — I-30, Exit 283

•  San Antonio — I-35, Exit 144

•  Seguin — I-10, Exit 604

•  Willis — I-45, Exit 95
 

Read more at Convenience Store Decisions.

Job growth is bigger in Texas 

(1/9/2014)

TEXAS - With booming construction around the energy industry and a strong tech community, the Lone Star State has harnessed the two biggest drivers of job growth, according to TriNet.

The report, which analyzed small business employment in 2013, found that construction and technology were last year’s hottest growing sectors, leading to net job growth of 21.53 percent and 21.07 percent, respectively.

Thanks to the Barnett Shale construction has been blazing hot in the state as the energy industry continues to heat up, with jobs growing by 68.06 percent in Texas in 2013. Austin’s technology scene has also led to impressive job growth.

Read more at Fox Business.

ALN Dec. 2013 Abilene, Amarillo, Corpus Christi, Lubbock  

(1/9/2014)

ABILENE, AMARILLO, CORPUS CHRISTI, LUBBOCK - ALN Apartment Data has released the December 2013 review of occupancy, effective rent and other data for many Texas cities.

Markets Abilene Amarillo Corpus
Christi
Lubbock
Stabilized Market Overview December 2013
Occupancy 91.1 91.6 95.2 92.0
Units added 0 -57 -57 224
Units absorbed (annual) -63 75 -118 358
Average size (SF) 868 812 847 842
Asking rent $649 $655 $830 $683
Effective rent $637 $645 $827 $678
Effective rent per SF $0.73 $0.79 $0.98 $0.80
Offering concessions 40% 33% 10% 19%
Avg. concession package 5.2% 4.6% 2.9% 4.0%

*Stabilized Market is everything in a market except for apartments in initial lease-up.

ALN Apartment Data provides more Texas city information including general overviews.

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

(1/9/2014)

AUSTIN, DFW, HOUSTON, SAN ANTONIO - ALN Apartment Data released the December 2013 review of occupancy, effective rent and more for Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), Houston and San Antonio.

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

General Overview Dec. 2013
 Markets Austin DFW Houston San Antonio Atlanta Phoenix
Occupancy rate 95.0 93.4 92.5 91.5 91.9 92.1
Units added -401 -1,925 -1,415 -100 -1,481 -150
Units absorbed (annual) 1,069 5,244 7,233 -663 4,229 1,837
Average size (SF) 852 859 871 834 1,016 838
Asking rent $1,006 $865 $882 $824 $863 $760
Effective rent $1,002 $853 $868 $805 $853 $744
Effective rent per SF $1.17 $0.99 $1.00 $0.96 $0.84 $0.89
Offering concessions 13% 36% 34% 44% 34% 48%
Avg. concession package 3.4% 4.3% 4.7% 4.9% 4.3% 4.9%


Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

Want more ALN news in other Texas cities? See NewsTalk Texas.

Cline Shale creates $14.5B impact, Eagle Ford with $61B 

(1/8/2014)

TEXAS - The oil and gas industry had a $14.5 billion impact on the Cline Shale region in 2013, according to The University of Texas at San Antonio’s (UTSA) Institute for Economic Development. The industry supported 21,450 jobs with $1 billion in salaries and benefits to workers.

The core counties for the study were Fisher, Glasscock, Howard, Irion, Martin, Mitchell, Nolan, Reagan, Scurry and Sterling, where around 854 vertical wells and 57 horizontal or directional wells were completed in 2012.

The study forecasts that by 2022 — depending on a variety of factors that include oil prices and well productivity — the annual economic output could be as low as $7.6 billion or as high as $34.3 billion.

Neighboring counties, including Brown, Coke, Coleman, Runnels, Taylor and Tom Green, don’t have much drilling activity, but have had a lot of construction and new headquarters because of the boom.

The oil and gas activity generated $472 million in state revenue in 2013, including $187.4 million in severance taxes, and $447 million in local government taxes.

In 2013, UTSA estimates the Eagle Ford had a $61 billion impact and supported 116,000 jobs across 20 counties in South Texas.

One of the long-term challenges for both West and South Texas will be to diversify their economies, but it may be easier for South Texas, according to Thomas Tunstall, research director with the Institute for Economic Development.

“In West Texas, it’s mostly scrub, the two interstates and it takes a long time to get out there. It makes it harder for them to diversify,” said Tunstall.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Mexico's oil industry monopoly ends 

(1/6/2014)

MEXICO - The Mexican government has approved to historic legislation to open the state-run oil industry to private investment. The legislation dismantles a 75-year-old barrier to foreign investment in Mexican oil fields.

As a result, Mexican oil output is expected to double, according to Citigroup Inc. The impact is equivalent to adding another Nigeria to world supply, or about 2.5 million barrels a day.

An influx of Mexican oil would contribute to a glut that is expected to lower the price of Brent crude, the benchmark for more than half the world’s crude that has averaged $108.62 a barrel this year. It could go as low as $88 a barrel in 2017, based on estimates from analysts in a Bloomberg survey.

Five of the seven analysts who provided 2017 forecasts said prices would be lower than this year.

The revolution in shale drilling that boosted U.S. oil output to a 25-year high this month will allow North America to join the ranks of the world’s crude-exporting continents by 2040.

The effects of the reform will reverberate far beyond the energy industry. Some estimates predict the reform will boost Mexican GDP by 2 percent and create 2.5 million Mexican jobs by 2025.

Read more at Bloomberg and USA Today.

Magpul Industries HQ moving to Texas 

(1/3/2014)

TEXAS - Firearm accessories manufacturer Magpul Industries has announced it is relocating its corporate headquarters from Colorado to Texas. Production, distribution and shipping operations will be moving to Cheyenne, Wyoming.

Magpul cited the Lone Star State's business-friendly environment, predictable regulations and consistent respect for the Second Amendment as key elements in its decision to relocate.

Three North Central Texas sites are under final consideration, and the transition to the Texas headquarters will begin as soon as the facility is selected. The company said its Texas relocation is being accomplished with support from Texas Governor Rick Perry and the Texas Economic Development Corporation.

Read more at NBC DFW.com.

Say 'howdy' to your new neighbor! Texas No. 1 

(1/2/2014 9:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Texas gained more residents than any other state in 2013, according to estimates released by the U.S. Census Bureau on Dec. 30, 2013. The Lone Star State, which has ranked first in annual population growth since 2006, said 'howdy' to 387,000 new Texans from July 1, 2012, to July 1, 2013.

California — still the nation's most populous state with 38 million people — added 332,000 residents while Florida netted 232,111 newcomers.

Warmer-weather states in the South and West are gaining residents at a faster clip than the chilly Midwest and Northeast, both of which have seen only sluggish growth in recent years.

North Dakota's impressive 3.1 percent population increase proves the one exception to the climatic trend, notes the Washington Post, thanks to the state's ongoing boom in oil and natural gas.

You're the Tops in 2013
State Population Gain
from 2012
California 38,332,521 332,643
Texas 26,448,193 387,397
New York 19,651,127 75,002
Florida 19,552,860 232,111
Illinois 12,882,135 13,943
Pennsylvania 12,773,801 9,326
Ohio 11,570,808 17,777
Georgia 9,992,167 13,103
North Carolina 9,848,060 99,696

 
Read more at Culture Map Houston.

Top places to invest in real estate 

(1/2/2014)

WICHITA FALLS, LUBBOCK, AUSTIN - As you look for investment opportunities in 2014, take a moment to look beyond your local market, according to Brian Kline, real estate investor who lives in Lake Cushman, Washington.

Wichita Falls, Texas, is an oil town with money. But more than that, nearby Sheppard Air Force Base provides a steady stream of renters.

In this expansive prairie region of Texas, home prices are cheap with a median cost of $84,000, according to RealtyTrac. A 1,700-sf house recently listed for $89,900. Houses that size easily rent for $1,000 or more. The average return on investment in this region is 13.4 percent.

In Lubbock, Texas, 2,100-sf homes again being rented to oil workers and in this case to college students that are delivering an 11.8 percent return on an average investment of $111,000.

College towns almost always make a good investment. Syracuse, N.Y. is a good example where you can expect a 10.9 percent return on your average investment of $120,000. That’s about $90,000 below the national average.

Very close behind Syracuse is Oklahoma City where houses are a touch more expensive but average rents are approaching $1,200. Here you can expect a 10.8 percent return on your rental investment. These are newer houses built around 2009 requiring very little maintenance.

Take a close look at the Austin region. The fact that the average cost of a house drops to $158,000 and rents dip to $1,400 still means you make an annual return on your investment of 10.7 percent.

Large houses in the range of 2,400 sf are in the heart of Dell Computer headquarters country.

According to Kline, much of the research was recent information provided by RealtyTrac.

Read more at RealtyBizNews for other U.S. cities.

Cushing gut unblocked to Texas leg of Keystone 

(12/12/2013 8:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Crude oil has started flowing through the Gulf Coast Pipeline — the Keystone XL Pipeline's southern portion, which runs from Cushing, Okla., to refineries in Nederland.

There is only a small amount of crude oil flowing initially, because the transmission line is being tested by federal authorities, according to Shawn Howard, a spokesman for TransCanada, the Canada-based company that built the pipeline.

The line fill will continue through the end of 2013 with about 3 million barrels of oil pumped through the 485-mile, 36-inch pipeline. The Gulf Coast Pipeline, which passes about 80 to 100 miles east of Dallas, will reduce the oil glut that has occurred in Cushing, according to TransCanada officials.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal. Also see TransCanada's Gulf Coast pipeline to Keystone.

Texas hotel occupancy 3Q: 13 metros beat Texas 

(12/3/2013)

TEXAS - In third quarter 2013, 13 areas exceeded the state occupancy average. Meanwhile 17 of 27 Texas areas exceeded occupancy compared to 2012, according to Source Strategies Inc.

The table below is sorted by 3Q 2013 occupancy. It clearly shows the major effect of oil and gas exploration and production activity.

In oil and gas counties statewide, 3Q 2013 occupancy averaged 64.8 percent, up 0.3 points from 64.5 percent in 2012.

Top 13 Metros Ranked by Occupancy 3Q 2013
  2012 Total 3Q 2013
Metro Area

Occ. %

$ Rev.
% Chg.
Occ. % Chg. % $ Rev.
% Chg.
San Angelo 73.0 42.6% 88.7 10.8 32.4%
Midland 91.3 55.9% 75.6 -14.4 -1.0%
Odessa 90.7 55.0% 72.2 -16.3 -10.2%
College Station-Bryan 61.0 8.7% 71.4 8.6 22.4%
Lubbock 63.3 7.6% 70.2 3.6 11.0%
Amarillo 59.3 5.5% 69.3 3.7 11.7%
Austin-Round Rock 69.2 11.6% 68.1 3.2 14.2%
Laredo 70.3 6.6% 67.5 -4.8 -9.2%
Houston-Sugar Land-
Baytown
64.3 14.3% 66.5 2.0 13.2%
Corpus Christi 54.9 10.5% 65 -0.4 9.3%
Waco 57.6 10.1% 64.8 7.7 19.8%
San Antonio 62.3 6.1% 64.3 -1.2 -0.2%
Victoria 71.0 16.3% 64.1 -3.3 -3.5%
State average 62.3 10.2% 63.6 0.5 7.0%

*Revenue

See the full report at Source Strategies Inc. For more stats all counties and MSAs, see Hotel under Market Data Sources.

ALN Abilene, Amarillo, Corpus Christi, Lubbock 

(12/3/2013)

ABILENE, AMARILLO, CORPUS CHRISTI, LUBBOCK - ALN Apartment Data has released the October 2013 review of occupancy, effective rent and other data for many Texas cities.

 Markets Abilene Amarillo Corpus
Christi
Lubbock
Stabilized Market Overview October 2013
Occupancy rate 89.1 91.2 95.7 91.9
Units added 0 -56 -61 517
Units absorbed (annual) -285 -80 -96 403
Average size (SF) 869 812 847 843
Asking rent $657 $657 $833 $692
Effective rent $647 $649 $831 $690
Effective rent per SF $0.74 $0.80 $0.98 $0.82
Offering concessions 29% 32% 5.0% 13%
Avg. concession package 5.6% 4.1% 3.5% 4.6%

*Stabilized Market is everything in a market except for apartments in initial lease-up.

ALN Apartment Data provides more Texas city information.

Texas manufacturing grows for third straight month 

(11/27/2013)

TEXAS - Growth in factory activity increased for a third consecutive month in November 2013, according to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index, a measure of state manufacturing conditions, rose from 13.3 to 16.9, reaching its highest reading in five months.

The November 2013 employment index was 5.0, down slightly from October, but still indicative of increased employee headcounts. Only 10 percent of firms reported layoffs, while 15 percent reported hiring new workers. The hours worked index held steady at a reading of 4.2, suggesting a slight increase in average workweek length.

The general business activity index posted its sixth consecutive positive reading but edged down to 1.9. The company outlook index also posted its sixth positive reading in a row and moved up to 8.0, its highest level since June 2013.

The new orders index came in at 5.4, similar to its October 2013 level, and marked a seventh consecutive month of increased demand. The capacity utilization index rose to 16.2, its highest level since March 2011, and the shipments index edged up to 14.8.

Read more at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

Texas cities rank in top ten fastest markets 

(11/26/2013)

TEXAS - Market speed remained steady for the second consecutive month in October, according to brokerage and research firm Redfin. Across 23 metro areas, the percentage of homes that went under contract within two weeks remained flat in October at 28.1 percent.

Houston saw the biggest month-over-month increase in market speed, with a 4.5 point increase in the rate of homes going under contract within 14 days.

Below are the top ten out of 23 markets ranked by percent of new listings under contract in two weeks.

Rank Market Oct. 2013 Oct. 2012
Top Ten Percent of New Listings Under Contract
1 San Jose, Calif. 48.9% 54.3%
2 San Francisco, Calif. 43.1% 46.0%
3 Boston, Mass. 40.2% 13.4%
4 Dallas, Texas 34.6% 20.6%
5 Las Vegas, Nev. 33.9% 11.7%
6 Austin, Texas 32.5% 24.7%
7 Seattle, Wash. 32.2% 32.4%
8 Washington, D.C. 30.9% 30.8%
9 Houston, Texas 30.0% 18.8%
10 Los Angeles, Calif. 29.9% 37.0%


Source: Redfin

Cities codes escaping you? See Municode Library 

(11/25/2013 10:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Looking to develop in a city and don't know where to start? Want to renovate your home or business but fear the city won't allow it? How can you access your city's code of ordinances?

The planning and zoning communities don't take a cookie-cutter approach for rules and regulations. As such, it is important to review the development codes of each municipality you do business in.

Whether you're looking to find information on traditional zoning or land development code, a form-based code, or even a SmartCode, check out Municode’s library for the municipal code near you. Municode includes the code of ordinances of most of the cities and towns in Texas.

Find the link to Municode’s website under "Market Overview" on any MSA Area page at Market Data Sources.

Bexar, Travis home value growth tops in U.S. 

(11/22/2013 8:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Of the 50 most populous counties in the United States, only three saw significant growth in home values from 2007 to 2012: Allegheny County, Pa.; Bexar County, Tex.; and Travis County, Tex., according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Other, less populated counties in Texas also saw significant median home values increases from 2007 to 2012. Ector, Midland and Wilson counties have their gains listed below.

County Median
Home Value
2007
2009
Median
Home Value
2010
2012
Difference
American Community Survey Home Values by County
Travis* $206,600 $215,700 $9,100
Bexar* $117,500 $123,500 $6,000
Wilson $121,400 $153,800 $32,400
Midland $125,800 $146,600 $20,800
Ector $78,500 $92,200 $13,700

* in top 50 most populated counties in U.S.

Read more at the Texas Tribune and the U.S. Census Bureau.

TWC: state unemployment slips in October  

(11/22/2013)

TEXAS - The seasonally adjusted state unemployment rate decreased from 6.3 percent in September 2013 to 6.2 percent in October 2013, according to the Texas Workforce Commission’s latest report.

The private sector in Texas recorded a strong annual growth rate of 2.9 percent in October 2013, adding nearly 265,000 jobs over the year.

Seven out of 11 industries that added jobs in October 2013 included leisure and hospitality, which expanded by 7,600 positions; professional and business services, which added 5,000 jobs; and trade, transportation and utilities, which grew by 3,700 positions.

The Midland MSA had the lowest statewide jobless rate in October 2013 at 3.1 percent, and the McAllen-Edinburg-Mission area had the highest average unemployment at 10.1 percent.

The nationwide jobless rate for October 2013 was 7.3 percent.

Texas MSAs With Lowest Unemployment Rates*
MSA Oct. 2013 Sept. 2013 Oct. 2012
 

Civilian
Labor
Force**

Unemp.
Rate

Civilian
Labor
Force**

Unemp.
Rate

Civilian
Labor
Force**

Unemp.
Rate
Midland 95.9 3.1 95.9 3.3 92.4 3.1
Odessa 87.8 3.6 88.0 3.8 85.3 3.7
Amarillo 135.4 4.4 134.8 4.7 134.6 4.4
Lubbock 149.1 4.7 148.8 5.0 147.7 4.9
Abilene 85.4 4.7 85.5 5.0 84.6 4.8
San Angelo 57.1 4.8 56.8 5.1 56.6 4.8
Texas*** 12,784.1 6.0 12,833.7 6.3 12,667.7 6.2

*top six, ranked by unemployment rate
**not seasonally adjusted (in thousands)
***includes all MSAs

Read more at the Texas Workforce Commission.

Texas cities make ten most affordable suburbs in U.S. 

(11/22/2013)

TEXAS - Movoto has compiled a list of the most affordable suburban cities in America. Movoto surveyed 139 suburbs, which comprise the largest suburbs of the 50 largest cities in the country. The top ten affordable suburban cities in America, along with their rank in each of the seven categories measured, are listed below.

Most Affordable Suburban Cities in America
City Overall
rank
Cost of
living
Cost of
food
Cost of
utilities
Home
affordability
Property  Sales
tax
Income
tax
Midwest City, Okla. 1 3 15 4 6 26 57 57
Moore, Okla. 2 11 14 4 10 27 59 57
Cimarron Hills, Colo. 3 28 21 15 47 1 50 43
Pearland 4 28 1 21 22 73 65 1
Greenwood, Ind. 5 15 10 76 21 36 9 56
Clarksville, Ind. 6 15 10 76 21 36 9 56
Universal City 7 18 5 21 27 87 65 1
Schertz 8 31 2 12 36 78 65 1
Fishers, Ind. 9 53 15 42 12 56 9 39
Cibolo 10 37 2 12 32 78 65 1


Other Texas cities on top 50 list inlcude League City, San Elizario, Horizon City, Cedar Park, Socorro, Round Rock, North Richland Hills, Georgetown and Euless.

Source: Movoto Real Estate

Drilling domination: Texas holds half of national rig count 

(11/22/2013)

TEXAS - The 825 oil-and-gas drilling rigs active in Texas account for 47 percent of the national total, according to Baker Hughes Inc.

West Texas’ Permian Basin boasts the largest share of Texas’ rigs at 470, while South Texas’ Eagle Ford Shale ranked second with 223.

The most active drilling counties in the Eagle Ford include:
•  Karnes, with 29 rigs;
•  DeWitt, with 28;
•  La Salle, with 27; and
•  McMullen, also with 27.

Of the 1,762 active U.S. rigs, 1,385 are drilling for oil.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

Texas construction booming on economic strength 

(11/20/2013 6:30:00 AM)

TEXAS - While many parts of the country have not fully emerged from the housing crisis and recession, Texas continues on a tear with new building and thriving residential and commercial real estate markets.

Single-family home building rebounded dramatically in 2012 after a trough in 2011 and is on pace to gain this year while home sales also rebounded in 2012 from a 2010 trough, with more gains on pace this year, said Mark Dotzour, chief economist of the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.

The 2011 single-family housing market in Texas saw just 67,254 building permits issued, Dotzour notes. The next year permits were up to 81,926, and this year is apt to notch 90,000.

Residential home sales volume, which was down to 203,637 as reported in the Multiple Listing Service in 2010, increased to 238,056 by 2012, Dotzour said. He estimated sales would reach more than 280,000 units this year.

Three of the top ten U.S. metro markets with the highest number of annual housing starts are in Texas, according to a recent Metrostudy report. Houston and DFW are at the top of the list, while Austin places ninth.

Meanwhile, 23,500 rental units are under construction in the Dallas area, near a record high. Occupancy levels are at 94.4 percent, a 12-year best, MPF Research said.

Some 17,000 rental units are underway in Austin, while 16,000 units are going up in Houston.

Economists and property developers say the construction boom throughout the state, whether office, housing or industrial, is being fueled by one main driver: jobs.

Payrolls are still 932,600 jobs higher than in January 2008, when national payrolls peaked. The rest of the U.S. is still down 2.85 million. Job growth in Houston, Dallas and Austin is twice that of the national average.

Read more at Investor’s Business Daily.

Texas among states adding most new physicians 

(11/20/2013)

TEXAS - Although many experts say the Lone Star State is facing a shortage of doctors, Texas is adding physicians faster than all but one state. Texas added 4,939 physicians who treat patients between 2008–2012, according to data released by the Association of American Medical Colleges.

Only California topped that number nationwide, with 5,466 physicians added during that span.

Texas saw an 11.5 percent gain in the number of physicians during that period. Utah had the largest percentage gain of physicians from 2008–2012, at 12.8 percent.

Texas has held the runner-up position in numerical and percentage gains in physicians since 2008. The new Dell Medical School scheduled to open on the University of Texas at Austin campus will enroll its first class of 50 potential new doctors in 2016.

Read more at the Austin Business Journal.

Texas closures and layoffs 

(11/14/2013 8:30:00 AM)

BROWNSVILLE, CONROE, IRVING, KILGORE, ODESSA, SAN ANTONIO, SPRING - Closure and layoffs have been announced throughout the U.S. Below is a list from CoStar Group.

Layoff and Closures in Texas Cities
City Company Address Closure or
layoff
# Impact date
Brownsville Convergys Customer
Management Group
935 N. Frontage Rd. closure 362 1/21/2014
Conroe US Foods 10 S. Trade Center Pkwy. closure 84 12/31/2013
Irving Wells Fargo and Co. 250 E. John Carpenter Hwy. layoff 845 12/1/2013
Kilgore Caterpillar 3007 Maverick Dr. closure 41 12/20/2013
Odessa Green Field Energy
Services
12914 W. County Rd. 91 layoff 125 12/15/2013
San Antonio Travelocity 11603 Crosswinds Way, Ste. 125 layoff 110 9/30/2013
San Antonio Trinity Mining & Construction
Equipment
647 N WW White Rd. closure 112 12/10/2013
Spring Dr Pepper Snapple Group 21500 Springwest Dr. closure 112 12/6/2013

 

Source: CoStar Group

Veterans Hiring Red, White & You! comes to your town Nov. 14 

(11/13/2013 1:00:00 PM)

28 TEXAS CITIES - Hiring Red, White and You job fair will takes place tomorrow in 18 locations.

The job fair connects Texas veterans and their spouses with Texas employers who value the experience, discipline and other exceptional qualities inherent with a military background.

Last year, over 12,000 veterans and more than 1,400 employers attended the statewide job fairs. TWC estimates that approximately 2,800 hires were made as a result of the statewide job fairs.

For the entire list with location and times, see Hiring Red White and You! Veterans Workshops.

ULI: Emerging Trends in Real Estate 

(11/13/2013 8:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - The pace of the economic and real estate recovery remains uneven across U.S. metropolitan-area markets, according to the annual Emerging Trends in Real Estate 2014 report by the Urban Land Institute.

The top five markets remain virtually unchanged with only some moderate reshuffling. San Francisco maintains the No. 1 position in the overall rankings.

Houston jumped three spots to No. 2 in 2014. Two Texas markets switched places in the top five from 2013. Dallas-Fort Worth jumped up four spots to No. 5, while Austin slipped three spots to a still-respectable No.7. Also, San Antonio ranked No. 14 overall.

Markets to Watch: Overall Real Estate Prospects
City Ranking Investment
Rank
Development
Rank
Home Building
Rank
1. San Francisco, Calif. 2 1 1
2. Houston 1 3 2
3. San Jose, Calif. 5 2 3
4. New York City, N.Y. 3 4 6
5. Dallas-Fort Worth 6 6 4
6. Seattle, Wash. 4 7 7
7. Austin 7 10 5
8. Miami, Fla. 10 5 8
9. Boston, Mass. 8 8 9
10. Orange County, Calif. 9 12 10


See the full report at Urban Land Institute.

Top Texas trading cities with Canada, Mexico 

(11/13/2013)

TEXAS - The Brookings Institution has released its latest report on trade between the largest metropolitan areas in North America, which included five Texas metros.

Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown ranked as the number one area that conducted the highest trade value with the two other countries in North America: Canada and Mexico.

The bulk of products exported and imported in Houston are energy products, chemicals and plastics — not advanced products.

Top Texas Trading Metros*
Metro Canadian
Trade**
Mexican
Trade**
Total
North American
Trade**
Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown $18,775 $16,801 $35,576
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington $9,470 $8,947 $18,416
Austin-Round Rock $2,323 $3,702 $6,025
San Antonio $1,580 $1,505 $3,085
McAllen-Edinburgh-Pharr $229 $232 $460

*ranked by North American trade value
**amounts in millions

Read more at the Houston Business Journal and the Brookings Institution.

NAR: Texas single-family home prices on the rise 

(11/13/2013)

TEXAS - The National Association of Realtors has released its third quarter 2013 single family pricing data report. The majority of metropolitan areas in 3Q 2013 experienced robust year-over-year price gains, with the national median price showing the strongest annual growth in nearly eight years.

The chart below shows how select Texas MSAs measured up to the United States and southern United States averages.

Median Sales Price of Existing Single-Family Homes for Metropolitan Areas*
Metropolitan Area 2010 2011 2012 3Q 2012 3Q 2013 Y-O-Y
Change
Abilene 112.8 119.2 124.6 135.7 139.0 2.4%
Amarillo 124.7 128.2 133.8 140.0 145.9 4.2%
Austin-Round Rock 193.6 193.1 206.0 207.5 225.3 8.6%
Beaumont-Port Arthur 125.1 124.2 127.8 126.6 139.2 10.0%
Corpus Christi 135.1 134.2 142.7 146.6 160.0 9.1%
El Paso 134.3 134.3 138.6 142.1 143.6 1.1%
Houston-Baytown-Sugar Land 155.0 155.7 164.8 167.5 186.6 11.4%
San Antonio 151.0 152.5 159.5 161.9 175.0 8.1%
U.S. Total 173.1 166.2 177.2 184.3 207.3 12.5%
Southern Region 153.7 149.3 158.4 161.6 181.3 12.2%

*Not Seasonally Adjusted, 000s of dollars.

Source: National Association of Realtors

For more in-depth housing data for all 25 MSAs in Texas, check out Market Data Sources.

ALN apartment 3Q cities: Tex., Fla., Ariz. 

(11/12/2013)

AUSTIN, CORPUS CHRISTI, HOUSTON - ALN Apartment Data has released its third quarter 2013 review of overall occupancy and effective rent. The sample includes Austin, Corpus Christi, Houston and Texas. Two cities each are listed in Florida and Arizona.

The sample overall market summary below includes properties in initial lease-up.

3Q 2013 Overall Market Summary*
Metro Occupancy Effective Rent
  Sept. '12 Sept. '13 % Chg. Sept. '12 Sept. '13 % Chg.
Austin 95.0% 94.5% -0.5 $937 $1,010 7.8
Corpus Christi 96.1% 95.5% -0.6 $767 $821 7.0
Houston 92.4% 92.6% 2.0 $817 $869 6.4
Texas Avg.** 92.4% 92.9% 0.5 $822  $870 5.8
Melbourne 92.8% 94.5% 1.8 $709  $758 6.9
Pensacola 91.5% 93.4 2.1 $787 $829 5.3
Florida Avg.** 92.7% 93.1% 0.4 $853 $893 4.7
Phoenix 91.8% 92.2% 0.4 $713 $743 4.2
Tucson 90.6% 89.8% -0.9 $605 $617 2.0
Arizona Avg. 91.5% 91.8% 0.3 $693 $719 3.8

*Statistics reflect only conventional, midrise and high-rise apartment communities. Income restricted, student housing or senior independent housing are not included.
**All cities surveyed are included in the state average.

Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

Hispanic-owned businesses thrive in Texas 

(11/11/2013)

TEXAS - Hispanic-owned businesses are continuing to drive U.S. economic growth, with more than 3.16 million companies nationwide – up nearly 40 percent since 2007 despite a tough economy, according to a study by Geoscape International Inc. and the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

The West South Central region, which includes Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana, saw a 43 percent expansion in the number of Hispanic-owned businesses between 2007 and 2013.

The region was surpassed only by the East South Central at 59 percent growth — including the states of Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama and Mississippi — and the South Atlantic — the Southeastern seaboard — at 52 percent.

Percent Change in No. of Hispanic-Owned Businesses from 2007 to 2013
Region States Included Change
East South Central Ky., Tenn., Ala., Miss. 59%
South Atlantic Fl., Ga., S.C., N.C., W. Va., Va., Md. 52%
West South Central Tex., Okla., Ark., La. 43%
Mountain N.M., Ariz., Colo., Utah, Nev., Wyo., Idaho, Mont. 42%
West North Central Mo., Kan., Iowa, Neb., S.D., N.D., Minn. 41%
Pacific Calif., Ore., Wash., Alaska, Hawaii 32%
East North Central Ill., Ind., Ohio, Mich., Wis. 31%
New England Maine, Vt., N.H., Mass.,  Conn., R.I. 30%
Middle Atlantic N.Y., Pa., N.J., Del. 28%


Read more at the Austin Business Journal.

Banking bets on Texas 

(11/7/2013)

TEXAS - Financial Funding LLC statistics through June 2013 has determined what the 25 best Cities are for Commercial Loans. This means starting new businesses and having commercial loans available to these same start-ups, allowing them to survive their first few precarious years in operation.

There are some cities that are more predisposed to commercial lending than others are.

Best Cities for Commercial Loans
 U.S.
Rank
City, State Explanation
1 San Antonio, Tex. Constant success story, military bases
2 El Paso, Tex. Cross-border trade, military base
3 Fort Collins, Colo. Educated workforce, military base
4 Austin, Tex. Technology companies
5 Killeen, Tex. Military base
6 Salt Lake City, Utah Mining industry
7 Anchorage, AK. Shipping, shipping and more shipping
8 Huntsville, Ala. Aerospace and defense
9 Provo-Orem, Utah IT, tech companies
10 Kennewick, Wash. IT, health care


To see how other cities fare, see PRNewswire for the complete list.

Listen to Podcast 194...for this story and more!

Texas generates $4.34B in commercial activity 

(11/6/2013)

TEXAS - The Lone Star state placed second on a list of states with the most commercial real estate development activity by generating 162,877 jobs and $4.34 billion in new projects and spending related to commercial real estate in 2012, according to the NAIOP Research Foundation.

New York took the top spot in the report.

“These advances and increased projects are paramount to continued growth in the country, as the U.S. economy cannot achieve sustained expansion in the absence of the development industry’s full recovery,” said Stephen Fuller, a professor at George Mason University.

Nationwide, development and construction of new commercial real estate contributed $303.4 billion to the economy — up 16 percent from 2011 — and supported about 2.3 million jobs, marking the second year that the sector posted gains since 2007.

The report was produced using data provided by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau, McGraw Hill Construction and a NAIOP member survey.

Read more at the Houston Chronicle and NAIOP.

Texas homes hit historic highs, inventory at historic low 

(11/4/2013)

TEXAS - The inventory of homes for sale in Texas has reached an all-time low and is down to a four-month supply, according to the Texas Association of Realtors (TAR).

At the same time, home prices and sales reached their highest level ever in third quarter 2013. Home sales in 3Q 2013 surged 18.9 percent from a year ago and the median price increased by 10 percent.

According to the Texas Quarterly Housing Report, 80,105 single-family homes were sold in Texas in 3Q 2013.

This high demand has shrunk the inventory of homes to a four-month supply, which is nearly 28 percent less than 3Q 2012. At that time, the state had a 5.5-month supply.

Source: Texas Association of Realtors

Check out TAR's report and others at the Real Estate Center's Market Data Sources.

Texas cities: population, housing and renters 

(10/31/2013)

TEXAS - The National Multi Housing Council (NMHC) has released population, housing and renter data for the largest U.S. cites. The Texas cites of Austin, Dallas, El Paso, Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio data are below.

Largest Texas Cities: Population, Housing and Renters*
City Population Total
Occupied
Units
Total
Apts.
Apt. %
of All
Housing
Houston 2,161,686 780,364 302,812 39%
San Antonio 1,383,194 480,693 108,931 23%
Dallas 1,241,108 463,719 185,321 40%
Austin 842,595 330,838 116,148 35%
Fort Worth 782,027 268,919 53,006 20%
El Paso 672,534 219,578 34,975 16%

* Ranked by total population

Source: NMHC tabulations of 2012 American Community Survey, one-year estimates. Updated October 2013.

See the entire list beginning with New York, NY, at National Multi Housing Council.

Texas named among top global regions to visit 

(10/31/2013)

TEXAS - Texas has been ranked No. 5 out of the top ten must-visit regions of the world by Lonely Planet. A panel of travel experts picked the locations based on their natural beauty and cultural riches. The ranking also factored in the foodie culture of Texas.

Within Texas's recommendation, Houston received a special mention for its Buffalo Bayou Park enhancement, and Fort Worth received mention for its new Sundance Square Plaza.

The Lone Star State was the only region in the United States on the list.

The top region named? Sikkim, India. Other regions mentioned on the list are The Kimberley, Australia; Yorkshire, England; Horkuriku, Japan; Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe and Zambia; Mallorca, Spain; West Coast, New Zealand; Hunan, China; and Ha'apai, Tonga.

Read more at Lonely Planet and the Houston Business Journal.

Passport to Texas Frontier Reconnaissance 

(10/30/2013)

TEXAS - The Texas Forts Trail Region is now offering a “passport,” which is a booklet of information on the various forts along the trail, and a place to get a stamp. From "Old Yeller" to "Lonesome Dove," visit the Region where Western Classics have their roots!

The Passport is available at no charge. Request your Passport or pick one up at any of the featured sites listed below.

Visitors are welcome to use the passport to make a reconnaissance through the Texas Forts Trail Region, a place that was once the wild frontier where explorers and frontiersmen clashed with the land and Native Americans.

The "trail" is a recommended 650-mile driving loop within a 29-county region of Central West Texas that is anchored by a Spanish presidio and eight historic frontier forts.

Passports are available at no charge at any of the featured sites:

•  Abilene — Frontier Texas!
•  Abilene — The Grace Museum
•  Albany — Fort Griffin
•  Albany — The Old Jail Art Center
•  Bronte — Fort Chadbourne
•  Brownwood — Brown County Museum of History
•  Buffalo Gap — Buffalo Gap Historic Village
•  Eastland Chamber of Commerce — featuring the Connellee Hotel, Grimes Memorial Garden, Old Rip Park, Connellee Plaza, the Majestic Theater, and the Eastland Historic Hotel
•  Eden — Don Freeman Memorial Museum
•  Fort McKavett/Menard — Fort McKavett
•  Jacksboro — Fort Richardson
•  Mineral Wells Area Chamber of Commerce — featuring the Mineral Wells Famous Mineral Water Company, Fossil Park and Palo Pinto Old Jail Museum Complex
•  San Angelo — Fort Concho
•  San Angelo — The San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts
•  San Angelo — The San Angelo Visitors Center
•  Thurber/Mingus — W. K. Gordon Center

Find out more details at The Texas Forts Trail!

UT, A&M, Tech, Texas State student housing 98% plus 

(10/29/2013 8:00:00 AM)

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

The chart below shows only Texas' final fall 2012 occupancy of 98 percent or greater with fall 2013.

Texas Legacy* Properties Final 2012 Occupancy 98% or Greater
(Ranked by Rental Rate Change)
  Physical Occupancy at
September 30**
 
Property Units Beds 2013 2012 Fall 2013 Rental
Rate Change
26 West — Austin 367 1,026 99.5% 99.5% 8.9%
U Club Townhomes on
Marion Pugh — College Station
160 640 99.4% 99.4% 3.9%
The Callaway House — College Station 173 538 103.9% 104.1% 3.9%
Campus Edge on UTA
Boulevard — Arlington
128 488 99.6% 100.0% 3.5%
University Village — Prairie View (ACE) 36 144 100.0% 100.0% 2.8%
Callaway Villas — College Station 236 704 99.7% 99.3% 2.3%
Sanctuary Lofts — San Marcos 201 487 98.2% 98.2% 2.2%
The Outpost — San Marcos 162 486 99.2% 99.0% 2.2%
Aggie Station — Bryan 156 450 100.0% 100.0% 1.0%
The Village at Overton Park — Lubbock 163 612 93.3% 98.7% 0.0%

* Same store legacy properties 4Q 2013
**Physical occupancy is the number of occupied beds, including staff accommodations, divided by the number of beds the complex was designed to house as of September 30.

Want other housing with 98 percent plus? See the Univ. of Boulder, Chapel Hill, Norman Okla. and more starting on page 9 and 10!

See the full report at American Campus Communities.

Players flock to Texas senior housing boom 

(10/29/2013)

TEXAS - With construction and development reemerging in the senior housing sector around the nation, one area that is experiencing a higher rate of development is Texas.

The state’s demographics with highly populated metros including Dallas, Houston and San Antonio, have led operators, including new entrants, to seek opportunities within the Lone Star State.

Occupancy levels are holding steady at 86 percent across the southwest region, compared to a national average of 89 percent, according to the National Investment Center for the Seniors Housing and Care Industry.

Rent growth, however, is outpacing the national aggregate at 1.8 percent as marked in third quarter 2013, 3 basis points above the national average 1.5 percent.

Yet construction levels are high versus the national average. Particularly in assisted-living development, new construction far outweighs inventory.

In the Houston area, 1,072 assisted-living units are under construction, or 19.2 percent construction versus inventory.

In Austin, 528 units are being constructed, or 28 percent construction versus inventory. Those figures compare with the national average 5.2 percent.

Read more at Senior Housing News.

Texas a ‘domestic migration destination’ 

(10/28/2013)

TEXAS - Texas has experienced a net gain of households, with 10,326 more households moving into Texas than Texas households moving to other states, according to the Texas Association of Realtors’ Texas Relocation report.

Bexar County experienced the largest net inflow in Texas and the fourth-largest net inflow of households in the U.S. with 5,601 households. Six other Texas counties ranked within the top 20 in the nation.

Harris County is the most mobile county in the Lone Star State, ranking No. 1 in Texas and No. 3 nationally for the largest inflow of households with 67,299. Harris County is also the top county in Texas and third-largest county nationally for outflow of households with 65,395.

Dallas and Tarrant counties are the second- and third-most mobile Texas counties, ranking No. 7 with 54,388 and No. 16 with 40,699 nationally for the largest inflow of households. Dallas and Tarrant counties have the second- and third-largest outflow of households statewide and are ranked No. 6 with 56,223 and No. 19 with 37,561 nationally.

Williamson County garnered the highest net inflow of households from out of state with 1,846, followed by Montgomery County with 1,226 and Bell County with 849.

This report comes six months after U-Haul named Texas the No. 2 growth state for 2012 and Houston as the nation’s top relocation city with Austin as the third-most popular in its 2012 relocation report.

Source: Texas Association of Realtors

Texas flooded...with water data 

(10/28/2013)

TEXAS - The state has launched a drought and reservoir monitoring website with the newest up-to-date data. Water Data for Texas is overflowing with information for all Texans!

Data originate from the U.S. Drought Monitor, the Texas Water Development Board and Texas Parks and Wildlife.

Most CEOs worldwide: Texas A&M, SMU, University of Houston 

(10/28/2013)

TEXAS - Three Texas universities have made a global list of schools that have produced the most CEOs.

The Times Higher Education Alma Mater Index: Global Executives 2013 ranks schools from around the world based on the number of Fortune Global 500 CEOs among their alumni.

Texas A&M University in College Station is the highest-ranked U.S. public university and takes the No. 34 spot on the list. It produced three Fortune Global 500 CEOs, whose companies have combined revenue of $237.8 billion.

Southern Methodist University in the Dallas area is the top Texas school on the list, ranking No. 22. It has awarded five degrees to four Fortune Global 500 CEOs. Those CEOs’ companies have combined revenue of $575.3 billion.

University of Houston came in at No. 98. It has produced two CEOs of companies on the most recent Fortune Global 500 list. Those two companies have combined revenue of $63.4 billion.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

Top ten oil producing counties in Texas 

(10/15/2013 6:45:00 AM)

TEXAS - The top ten oil producing counties in Texas are in the Eagle Ford and the Permian Basin in West Texas, according to the Texas Railroad Commission. Three Eagle Ford Shale counties — Karnes, La Salle and Gonzales — were the top crude oil producers in Texas in July 2013.

The state’s top crude oil producing counties in July 2013 include:

•  Karnes County (Eagle Ford): 4,530,197 million barrels
•  La Salle County (Eagle Ford): 3,226,082 million barrels
•  Gonzales County (Eagle Ford): 2,560,834 million barrels
•  Andrews County (Permian Basin): 2,538,978 million barrels
•  Dimmit County (Eagle Ford): 2,081,143 million barrels
•  Ector County (Permian Basin): 2,078,478 million barrels
•  Gaines County (Permian Basin): 1,994,044 million barrels
•  McMullen County (Eagle Ford): 1,875,298 million barrels
•  Yoakum County (Permian Basin): 1,831,985 million barrels
•  Upton County (Permian Basin): 1,819,138 million barrels

Texas produced an average of 1.69 million barrels of crude oil daily in July 2013, up from 1.3 million barrels daily in July 2012.

Read more at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Housing boom bigger in Texas 

(10/15/2013)

TEXAS - With the advent of Texas’ booming housing market, real estate bidding wars are becoming more common. Prices of existing homes in Dallas and Houston are up more than at any time since the oil boom of the 1980s.

Home builders, caught off guard by the ferocity of demand, are struggling to recruit workers to complete houses.

The number of residential sales across the Lone Star State reached a record in second quarter 2013. The inventory of existing homes on the market in Houston and Dallas sank to about three months of supply in August, less than the U.S. level of 4.9 months and the lowest since at least 1990, according to data from the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.

The median home price rose 15 percent in Dallas and 14 percent in Houston in August from the previous year, according to the Real Estate Center’s data.

Texas isn’t just making up ground lost in the housing crash. The state’s home prices fell about 2.5 percent from a peak in 2007 to a trough in 2011, compared with a nationwide decline of 20 percent, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

The S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city index shows that home prices remain 21 percent below their 2006 peak, while Dallas prices are 4 percent above their previous high.

Read more at Bloomberg.

Top States for Doing Business 2013 list 

(9/24/2013)

TEXAS - The Lone Star State has been ranked first in the nation in Area Development’s annual Top States for Doing Business survey.

The survey of site consultants ranks the states based on 17 categories including: Business Environment (costs, taxes and regulations, incentives, etc.), Labor Climate (diversity, costs, development programs, etc.); and Infrastructure and Global Access (rail/highway access, shovel-ready sites, utility rates, logistics access).

Here’s how Texas scored in some of the categories used to find the Top States for doing business:

Top States for Doing Business
1. Texas
2. Georgia
3. South Carolina
4. Alabama
5. North Carolina

Business Environment
1. Texas
2. South Carolina
3 tie. Georgia
3 tie. Louisiana
4. Alabama
5. Florida

Labor Climate
1. Texas
2. South Carolina
3 tie. Alabama
3 tie. Georgia
3 tie. North Carolina
4. California
5. Kentucky

Overall Infrastructure & Global Access
1. Tennessee
2 tie. Georgia
2 tie. Texas
3 tie. Illinois
3 tie. South Carolina
4. Alabama
5 tie. Indiana
5 tie. North Carolina

Read more at Area Development.

Texas hotel occupancy 2Q: 13 metros beat state 

(9/24/2013)

TEXAS - In second quarter 2013, 13 of 27 Texas areas exceeded occupancy compared to 2012, according to Source Strategies Inc.

The table below is sorted by 2Q 2013 occupancy. It clearly shows the major effect of oil and gas exploration and production activity. In oil and gas counties statewide, 2Q 2013 occupancy averaged 67.2 percent, up 0.5 points from 66.7 percent in 2012. 

Top 13 Metros Ranked by Occupancy 2Q 2013
  2012 Total 2Q 2013
Metro Area Occ. Rev.* Chg. Occ. Chg. from
2012 total
Rev.* Chg.
Midland 91.3 55.9% 87.5 -3.0 17.9%
San Angelo 73.0 42.6% 83.8 10.5 45.3%
Odessa 90.7 55.0% 81.5 -10.8 -2.6%
Austin-Round Rock 69.2 11.6% 75.5 4.2 16.3%
Lubbock 63.3 7.6% 71.7 4.9 9.9%
College Station-Bryan 61.0 8.7% 71.4 9.6 25.3%
Houston-Sugar Land-
Baytown
64.3 14.3% 68.8 2.3 12.8%
Victoria 71.0 16.3% 68.7 -3.9 -3.3%
Dallas MD 62.7 6.3% 67.8 3.5 10.1%
San Antonio 62.3 6.1% 66.6 -0.4 6.5%
Laredo 70.3 6.6% 66.3 -5.0 -7.3%
Waco 57.6 10.1% 66.2 4.2 8.2%
Amarillo 59.3 5.5% 66.1 2.9 16.1%
State average 62.3 10.2% 66.0 1.2 9.0%

*Revenue

Read more at Texas Hotel and Tourism and Source Strategies Inc.

Dunkin’ handles run on Texas 

(9/24/2013)

TEXAS - Coffee and doughnut maker Dunkin' Brands Group Inc. — which owns Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin-Robbins brands — inked store development agreements with two new franchise groups to develop 17 new restaurants in markets in west and central Texas over the next several years.

• Niknud LLC plans to develop eight traditional Dunkin' Donut restaurants and three Dunkin' Donuts/Baskin-Robbins combination units throughout west Texas in Abilene, Amarillo, Lubbock and San Angelo.

The first restaurant is planned to open in 2014 and the remainder by 2019.

• Alamo Donuts LLC plans to develop five traditional Dunkin' Donut restaurants and one Dunkin' Donuts/Baskin-Robbins combination location in San Antonio. The first restaurant is planned to open in 2014 and the remainder by 2019.

In Amarillo, when Dunkin’ Donuts opened last November at the Travel Centers of America site at East Interstate 40 and Lakeside Dr., it sold an average of 15 doughnuts a minute in its first four hours of operation, according to AGN Media archives.

Read more at the PRNewswire and the Amarillo Globe-News.

See Dunkin’ hot on Humble.

Listen to Podcast 189...for this story and more!

Texas No. 2 for construction employment growth 

(9/23/2013)

TEXAS - Construction firms in Texas added 24,200 employees to their payrolls between August 2012 and August 2013, according to Associated General Contractors of America.

In August 2012, the state’s construction industry was reporting a total of 587,100 employees. A year later, this sector had 611,300 employees — an increase of 4.1 percent.

Only California added more jobs than Texas over the 12 months ended Aug. 31, 2013. Construction firms in the Golden State added 29,100 employees to their payrolls.

California and Texas were two of 35 states that added construction jobs between August 2012 and August 2013.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

GDP growth in Texas areas ranked at the top in 2012 

(9/19/2013)

TEXAS - The resurgent oil and gas industry helped two Texas areas — Midland and Odessa — rank No. 1 and No. 2 in economic growth for U.S. metro areas in 2012, according the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Midland posted a 14.4 percent gain in inflation-adjusted gross domestic product from 2001. Odessa saw a 14.1 percent gain in real GDP.

Overall, real GDP rose in 305 of the nation’s 381 metro areas in 2012, fueled mainly by durable-goods manufacturing, trade and financial services. The average U.S. real GDP growth in 2012 was 3.1 percent, up from 1.9 percent in 2011.

Top Texas Metros by GDP Growth
Metro Area 2011 GDP 2012 GDP Change 2012 U.S. Rank
2012
Midland $13,277 $15,193 14.4 1
Odessa $6,201 $7,073 14.1 2
Victoria $3,548 $3,858 8.7 6
Corpus Christi $16,644 $17,791 6.9 12
Austin-Round Rock $85,261 $90,831 6.5 13
Longview $9,323 $9,831 5.4 20
Houston-The Woodlands-
Sugar Land
$366,303 $385,683 5.3 23
Abilene $4,862 $5,098 4.9 30
College Station-Bryan $6,208 $6,482 4.4 34
Lubbock $9,159 $9,555 4.3 37
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington $357,252 $372,652 4.3 39
Waco $8,054 $8,378 4.0 52
Laredo $5,745 $5,967 3.9 56
San Antonio-New Braunfels $76,180 $79,060 3.8 60
San Angelo $3,477 $3,600 3.5 68
Wichita Falls $5,123 $5,281 3.1 91


For a list of all 25 MSAs in Texas and to read more, see the Dallas Morning News.

International homebuyers add $6.13B to Texas economy 

(9/18/2013)

TEXAS - International homebuyers contributed over $6.13 billion to the Texas economy between March 2012 and March 2013, according to the National Association of Realtors and the U.S. Census Bureau.

International homebuyers accounted for 6.3 percent of total U.S. home sales between March 2012 and March 2013, totaling $82.5 billion in sales volume.

And $6.13 billion, or 9 percent of the $82 billion, originated from Texas, making the Lone Star State tied with Arizona for the third-largest state in the U.S. for international home sales.

Homeownership rates increase with length of tenure in the U.S., rising from about 25 percent for persons who entered after 2000 to 67 percent among persons who entered before 1990. Combined with rising immigration rates (37 percent of immigrants in Texas entered in 2000 or later), these figures indicate that international home sales in Texas are likely to increase significantly over time.

In addition, Texas has the third-largest immigrant population size and six of the top 50 metro areas for immigration in the U.S., accounting for 9 percent of all immigrants who migrated to the U.S. and 8 percent of all immigrants who became naturalized citizens in 2011.

Read more at the Houston Community Newspapers.

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

(9/10/2013 8:30:00 AM)

AUSTIN, DFW, HOUSTON, SAN ANTONIO - ALN Apartment Data has released August 2013 review of occupancy, effective rent and more for Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), Houston and San Antonio.

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

General Overview Aug. 2013
 Markets Austin DFW Houston San Antonio Atlanta Phoenix
Occupancy rate 94.2 93.0 92.2 92.0 92.1 92.3
Units added 3,131 12,296 5,070 2,617 1,852 1,013
Units absorbed (annual) 1,947 12,864 11,265 1,636 5,828 2,353
Average size (SF) 853 860 872 834 1,014 839
Asking rent $1,012 $870 $878 $821 $853 $757
Effective rent $1,008 $859 $865 $805 $843 $742
Effective rent per SF $1.18 $1.00 $0.99 $0.96 $0.83 $0.88
Offering concessions 14% 36% 35% 42% 34% 50%
Avg. concession package 3.5% 4.2% 4.7% 4.6% 4.4% 4.6%


Read more at ALN Apartment Data.

Want more ALN news in other Texas cities? See NewsTalk Texas.

Aug. apartments: Abilene, Amarillo, Corpus Christi, Lubbock 

(9/10/2013)

ABILENE, AMARILLO, CORPUS CHRISTI, LUBBOCK - ALN Apartment Data has released the August 2013 review of occupancy, effective rent and other data for many Texas cities.

General Overview August 2013
 Markets Abilene Amarillo Corpus
Christi
Lubbock
Occupancy rate 89.2 90.6 95.1 92.0
Units added 0 41 -61 507
Units absorbed (annual) -318 15 -219 486
Average size (SF) 869 812 848 844
Asking rent $654 $651 $814 $693
Effective rent $640 $638 $813 $689
Effective rent per SF $0.73 $0.79 $0.96 $0.81
Offering concessions 32% 43% 5.0% 13%
Avg. concession package 6.0% 4.5% 4.1% 6.1%


ALN Apartment Data provides more Texas city information.

Who will build? Labor shortages in Alamo City and Texas 

(9/6/2013)

SAN ANTONIO - The construction industry in Alamo City and the state is not very optimistic, according to Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), who conducted industry-wide surveys to gain a better understanding of the challenge construction firms are facing on the employment front.

The results show that in San Antonio, 83 percent of the industry’s firms are having a hard time filling craft-worker positions — including laborers, carpenters, electricians and cement masons.

That figure compares to the 79 percent of firms in Texas that are facing challenges filling these positions; and the 74 percent of firms nationwide that are having a hard time filling these positions.

The future isn’t looking much better.

Locally, 100 percent of the firms in San Antonio do not expect the craft-worker shortage to improve over the next year. By comparison, 87 percent of Texas’ firms, and 86 percent of national firms expect that it will remain difficult, or get even harder, to find qualified craft workers.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

Texas A&M engages private landowners in national program 

(9/5/2013)

TEXAS - A Texas A&M University System institute is playing a role in a new federal, local and private collaboration dedicated to natural resource sustainability for areas surrounding military installations.

The Texas A&M Institute of Renewable Natural Resources is assisting the U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Department of the Interior in developing a viable framework for the nationwide Sentinel Landscapes Partnership, said Bruce Beard, associate director for the institute’s military land sustainability program.

Through this partnership, the three federal departments and other entities will work together in priority areas near military installations, recognizing those areas as “sentinel landscapes.”

By maintaining certain landscapes such as farms, ranches, timberlands or simply open space, landowners have for years — and without due recognition — significantly contributed to the nation’s defense, according to a Sentinel Landscapes fact sheet.

Through the Sentinel Landscapes Partnership, landowners will be recognized and rewarded for using their lands in ways that are compatible with the military mission and will be encouraged to continue those land-use practices well into the future.

The first pilot landscape is in the South Puget Sound region of Washington state. Home to Joint Base Lewis-McChord, this region has some of the last remaining native prairie habitat in that state.

Read more at AgriLife Today.

Texas oil output doubles in two years, jobs follow 

(9/4/2013 9:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - Oil output in America's No. 1 oil-producing state continues its meteoric rise, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA). Here are some details of oil output in "Saudi Texas" for June 2013.

Texas produced an average of 2.575 million barrels per day (bpd) of crude oil in June — the highest average daily output since May 1981.

Output increased by almost 31 percent in June 2012 from June 2013, posting the 21st straight month that the state's oil output has increased by more than 30 percent on a year-over-year basis.

Oil production has almost doubled in the past two years, from 1.4 million bpd in June 2011 to nearly 2.6 million bpd in June 2013. The increase would have never been possible without the new oil play in Eagle Ford Shale and Permian Basin oil fields.

In mid-2009, Texas was producing less than 20 percent of America's domestic crude oil. Texas’ share has been above 30 percent in each of the last 14 months — up to 35.8 percent of America's crude output in June.

If Texas were considered as a separate oil-producing country, it would have been the 11th largest oil-producing nation in the world for crude oil output in April (the most recent month available for international oil production data). That's just slightly behind No. 10 Mexico at 2.56 million bpd (Texas produced 2.465 million bpd in April).

The exponential increase in Texas' oil production is bringing jobs and economic prosperity to the state. Every business day over the last year, almost 1,300 new jobs were created in the Lone Star State.

Read more at Seeking Alpha.

Texas jails create many contracting opportunities 

(9/4/2013)

TEXAS - Contracting opportunities related to jail and public safety facilities will be plentiful in Texas in the near future. New oil drilling in the state has resulted in a booming population increase; and with that, has brought an exponential increase in jail occupancy across the state.

Contracting opportunities will include new construction, renovation, upgrades, technology, food service, surveillance equipment, telecommunications and energy savings solutions.

A growing issue for local governments is that the jail facilities needs major renovation and it cannot function efficiently or economically.

In El Paso County, local officials estimate that the main jail will need between $3 million and $5 million in repairs in the next three years. Replacing aging plumbing and electrical systems could cost another $30 million over the next decade.

The Texas Commission on Jail Standards reports that a 384-bed addition to the Denton County jail is currently under construction, as is a similar 300-plus bed addition to Smith County’s jail. Also under construction are new jails in Walker and Wheeler counties.

Source: Strategic Partnerships Inc.

Water worries? Track Texas reservoir levels 

(8/29/2013 1:00:00 PM)

TEXAS - The state has yet to bounce back after enduring the most intense drought in recorded state history in 2011. See the Texas interactive map which visualizes the current state of Texas’ reservoirs.

Data collected from the Texas Water Development Board's reservoir status tracker shows water levels at a number of reservoirs remain significantly low. The data shows that reservoirs remain significantly low in West Texas, which is drier than East Texas.

Read more and view the interactive map at The Texas Tribune.

Texas foreclosures take a 50 percent dive 

(8/21/2013)

TEXAS - A total of 4,914 foreclosures were filed in Texas in July 2013, marking a 50.7 percent decline from the number of foreclosures filed during July 2012, according to Irvine, Calif.-based RealtyTrac.

During July 2013, 3,498 homes entered the foreclosure process — a 39 percent decline from the number recorded in July 2012.

Meanwhile, a total of 1,416 foreclosures were completed in July 2013 — a 66.6 percent drop from the number of completions last July.

A completed foreclosure occurs when a property is sold at auction to either a third party or to the lender holding the mortgage.

Nationally, a total of 130,888 foreclosure notices were filed in July 2013, representing a 31.8 percent decline from the number of filings recorded in July 2012.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

Construction jobs building up Texas 

(8/20/2013)

TEXAS - Between July 2012 and July 2013, Texas added the most construction jobs in the nation, 33,100, according to analysis by Arlington, Va.-based Associated General Contractors of America (AGC).

The Texas construction sector reported a total of 615,900 jobs as of July 31, 2013, a 5.7 percent increase from the 582,800 jobs reported in July 2012.

The Texas construction industry though is still down 9 percent from its peak of 679,000 employees in April 2008. Texas was also one of only two states in which there was no change in employment numbers between June 2013 and July 2013.

Between July 2012 and 2013, construction employment increased in 37 states.

Read more at the San Antonio Business Journal.

Bringing home the bacon: Texas adds 19,900 jobs  

(8/19/2013)

TEXAS - Texas added 19,900 jobs in July 2013 with month-over-month increases seen in five of the state’s 11 major industries, according to the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC). The state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained at 6.5 percent.

All metropolitan rates reported by the TWC are not adjusted for seasonal trends. For comparison, the state recorded a 6.7 percent rate, not seasonally adjusted, which is down slightly from 6.9 percent in June 2013.

Meanwhile, the Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown metropolitan statistical area recorded a 6.5 percent rate, not seasonally adjusted, which is down from 6.7 percent in June 2013 and from 7.3 percent in July 2012.

Statewide, the McAllen-Edinburg-Mission MSA had the highest unemployment rate at 11.3 percent, and the Midland area again had the lowest rate at 3.5, not seasonally adjusted.

Both the state's and the Houston area's rates remain well below the national unemployment rate, which was 7.4 percent seasonally adjusted and 7.7 percent not adjusted in July 2013.

Read more at the Houston Business Journal.

Top metros gas up hotel occupancy 1Q 

(8/8/2013 5:55:00 AM)

TEXAS - In first quarter 2013, 17 of the 27 Texas areas showed increased occupancy versus last year. Ten areas exceeded the state occupancy average, according to Source Strategies Inc.

The table below is sorted by 1Q 2013 occupancy. It clearly shows the major effect of oil and gas exploration and production activity. In oil and gas counties, 1Q occupancy averaged 66.6 percent, up 0.4 points from 66.2 percent in 2012.

Top Ten Metros Ranked by Occupancy 1Q 2013
  2012 Total 1Q 2013
Metro Area Occ. Rev.* Chg. Occ. Chg. from
2012 total
Rev. Chg.
Odessa 90.7% 55.0% 88.8% -4.5% 16.1%
Midland 91.3% 55.9% 87.5% -3.0% 17.9%
San Angelo 73.0% 42.6% 77.7% 8.6% 44.5%
Austin-Round Rock 69.2% 11.6% 74.2% 3.2% 13.3%
Houston-Sugar Land-
Baytown
64.3% 14.3% 69.0% 1.6% 12.7%
Victoria 71.0% 16.3% 67.8% -6.5% -7.6%
Dallas MD 62.7% 6.3% 67.7% 3.8% 11.1%
Laredo 70.3% 6.6% 66.7% -1.4% 0.1%
San Antonio 62.3% 6.1% 65.6% 2.6% 10.4%
El Paso 64.4% -1.1% 65.1% 3.1% 4.0%
State average 62.3% 10.2% 64.8% 1.8% 10.5%

*Revenue

Read more at Source Strategies Inc. and Texas Hotel and Tourism. Listen to Podcast 182...for this story and more!

Construction to drive job growth in Texas, U.S. 

(7/17/2013)

TEXAS - Construction will continue to be the main driver of job growth in Texas and across the country.

“Construction is only getting started,” IHS Global Insight economist Steven Frable said about the employment and housing market rebound. “As the housing rebound continues and housing starts increase this year and in all of 2014, we expect the construction sector to start posting double-digit gains in most states.”

Nine states, including Texas, already are at or above their pre-recession peak employment. IHS ranked Texas No. 3 for its annual job growth rate of 3 percent as of May.

“Texas is so large with highly diversified industries — combined with the relatively low cost of land and low taxes, it only makes sense that it is doing well,” Frable said.

Most states will recover recessionary job losses by 2014 or 2015. Only two states — Michigan and Rhode Island — will not regain those jobs until 2018 or later.

Texas and four other states — Colorado, North Dakota, Oklahoma and South Dakota — have exceeded their pre-recession home price peaks. In the first quarter of this year, Texas prices were up 5 percent from their pre-recession peak.

A separate report issued by CoreLogic Inc. said Texas home prices were 2 percent off from their pre-recession peak. The average U.S. home price was 14.2 percent below where it was before the recession, CoreLogic said.

CoreLogic and IHS use different data sources and methodology.

In Dallas-Fort Worth, median home prices have risen to a record $185,820.

Read more at The Dallas Morning News.

Texas housing fully recovered, leads country 

(7/16/2013)

TEXAS - Helped by the energy sector boom, Texas home prices have regained all the value lost during the recession and housing crash, according to a new report by CoreLogic Inc.

Texas joins Oklahoma, South Dakota and Nebraska as the three U.S. states where home prices are now rising above pre recession levels, according to the new report.

On average, home prices in U.S. states are 14.2 percent below where they were before the housing market decline.

North Texas home prices have risen to a record high $185,820 median price, according to data from real estate agent sales.

Read more at the Dallas Morning News.

Texas trough to Texas surge 

(7/16/2013)

TEXAS - It’s no surprise that Texas cities placed on a national list of improving metro regions for residential real estate.

Twenty Texas cities appear on the list of 255 U.S. metropolitan areas included on the July National Association of Home Builders/First American Improving Markets Index.

The group tracks housing markets that are showing signs of improving economic health across three sectors: job growth, house-price appreciation and single-family permit growth. It includes regions that have shown improvements for six months since their respective troughs.

Seven of the 20 Texas metropolitan areas are ranked by each sector since their respective troughs.

NAHB/First American Improving Markets Index Ranked by Category
City Permits trough
date
Rank Growth from
trough
Prices trough
date
Rank Growth from
trough
Employment
trough date
Rank Growth from
trough
Odessa 02/28/09  1 20.8% 10/31/10  1 25.4% 08/31/09  2 29.5%
Midland 04/30/09  3 3.2% 01/31/10  2 22.1% 09/30/09  1 30.4%
Victoria 09/30/10  2 4.4% 02/28/11  3 14.1% 11/30/09  7 9.9%
Austin 07/31/11  4 2.3% 01/31/11  5 9.9% 09/30/09  3 12.7%
Houston 02/28/09  6 1.7% 08/31/11  4 11.9% 12/31/09  5 11.3%
Laredo 12/31/08  5 1.9% 07/31/12  6 8.2% 08/31/09  6 10.6%
Longview 05/31/09  7 1.3% 01/31/12  7 6.2%  10/31/09  4 11.5%


Sort the list yourself for all 255 areas. See the NAHB/First American Improving Markets Index Excel file from July 8, 2013.

Read more on Houston at the Houston Chronicle.

Gulf Coast Pipeline nearing completion 

(7/2/2013)

TEXAS - Oil could be flowing through TransCanada’s Gulf Coast Pipeline by the end of the year, clearing up the logjam in Cushing, Okla., and sending thousands of barrels per day to refineries near Nederland.

The 485-mile pipeline is more than 85 percent complete, said David Dodson of Calgary, Canada-based TransCanada.

Additional pumping stations and ground meters also need to be built. The 36-inch diameter pipeline passes through 17 Texas counties and will have a capacity of 700,000 barrels per day.

The Gulf Coast Pipeline is often confused with the Keystone XL Pipeline, which is still pending approval.

Read more at the Dallas Business Journal.

Texas Realtors' listings lead in accuracy, reliability 

(7/1/2013 10:00:00 AM)

TEXAS - There are many sources homebuyers can use to find homes for sale in their area, but not all of them may be trustworthy.

A recent analysis of multiple real estate industry reports by the Texas Association of Realtors revealed that home-listing sources vary widely in reliability, with real estate portal websites providing significantly less-accurate data than data offered by real estate professionals.

According to a 2012 Redfin study conducted by the WAV Group, more than one in three homes (36 percent) listed on real estate portal websites are no longer available and inaccurate listing prices varied by 20 percent or more.

In addition, these websites were found on average to be missing 20 percent of the available homes within an area — and post homes-for-sale listings seven to nine days after they first went on the market.

Shad Bogany, chairman of the Texas Association of Realtors, commented, "Texas is home to some of the fastest-selling housing markets in the country, so it is crucial that real estate sources provide the most up-to-date, accurate, and complete information possible to avoid disappointments in the homebuying process. In housing markets like ours, a one-week delay makes a big difference in decision-making for homebuyers and sellers."

Conversely, the study showed that multiple listing service (MLS) systems — to which portal websites do not typically subscribe — and real estate brokerage websites contained 100 percent of an area's available homes-for-sale listings on average.

The vast majority of local MLS systems offer real-time data and real estate brokerage websites are updated with current listing information as often as every 15 minutes.

Read more at TexasRealEstate.com.

Store RedZone Podcast RSS logo Twitter Facebook YouTube Mays Business School
© 2014. REAL ESTATE CENTER AT TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. TERMS OF USE.