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Old 02-11-2021, 08:03 AM
 
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We’re conducting some preliminary research on the San Marcos area and would like some insider information. Can anyone recommend any good areas or master planned communities in or around San Marcos that could be a match for younger working professionals with a family? Schools, bars, restaurants, and a home with hill country views are desired. We’re thinking that a new construction would be the way to go since we’re considering possibly renting out this house in the future. We don’t need a lot of land but would like the home to be ~2000 square feet. I reckon a lot size of about 7,000 to 10,000 square feet would be adequate and definitely better on the wallet. Austin pricing is crazy so we are having to look out further. We really liked Travisso in Leander and Headwaters in Dripping Springs. Hopefully we can find something of similar standards and views elsewhere. All recommendations are appreciated. Thank you.
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Old 02-11-2021, 08:11 AM
 
Location: Austin, TX via San Antonio, TX
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Blanco Vista and La Cima come to mind immediately for San Marcos proper. Not sure on what your budget is. The issue with "views" in San Marcos is that it's a bit flatter. To get views you'll need to look at older more established homes on .25 or more acre lots out further. I can't think of any master planned communities in the area where I'm like "Oh my gosh, that view, though..." I did some scouting for my parents in La Cima and didn't consider it particularly "view" centric, just another new master planned community. However, I know there are more lots then the ones I saw, since I went out there when it was just wrapping up phase 1 and 2 of their building. You may want to stick with something a bit more west. You might be able to get views in Wimberley, but I don't think I've heard of any master planned communities in Wimberley (and it should stay that way, honestly).

San Marcos Schools are so-so. Hays schools are so-so. If schools are your concern and you want views you'll need to stick with Leander, Round Rock, Eanes, etc. Please read over my thread about the Austin market settling down, too. My family is looking in this area and is one of 27 offers on a house in Kyle (different type of home though). The Austin market is spreading all the way up to Jarrell down to New Braunfels right now. And fyi, NB is actually San Antonio metro.

Someone had mentioned that if you're finding a home without a bidding war in the Austin metro that there's a reason. The house is utter crap or you're not in a desirable area. Are you in Austin already? Or are you just relocating right now? If you're just relocating then consider renting for a while. Someone else here had also mentioned that they saw a listing that said that a potential buyer for a new build was required to live in the house for two years. So, if you want to live there for a year and then rent, then let that sink in.

Also, whether you're new or an established Austin resident, realize San Marcos and Hays county are NOT Williamson and Leander. They are completely different culturally and amenities wise. I think some people assume that just looking in the other direction you'll get the same thing or are beating the system. You won't, you aren't and everyone else is thinking the same thing right now. San Marcos is still a college town with some bars and some shopping with the outlets there. You'll need to drive north to Kyle and Buda or South Austin or even down south towards Schertz and Selma (not their city limits but further towards SA) in SA to get to "things."

Last edited by ashbeeigh; 02-11-2021 at 08:28 AM..
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Old 02-11-2021, 08:28 AM
 
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Originally Posted by ashbeeigh View Post
Blanco Vista and La Cima come to mind immediately for San Marcos proper. Not sure on what your budget is. The issue with "views" in San Marcos is that it's a bit flatter. You may want to stick with something a bit more west. You might be able to get views in Wimberley, but I don't think I've heard of any master planned communities in Wimberley (and it should stay that way, honestly).

San Marcos Schools are so-so. Hays schools are so-so. If schools are your concern and you want views you'll need to stick with Leander. Please read over my thread about the Austin market settling down, too. My family is looking in this area and is one of 27 offers on a house in Kyle. The Austin market is spreading all the way up to Jarrell down to New Braunfels right now. And fyi, NB is actually San Antonio metro.

Someone had mentioned that if you're finding a home without a bidding war in the Austin metro that there's a reason. The house is utter crap or you're not in a desirable area. Are you in Austin already? Or are you just relocating right now? If you're just relocating then consider renting for a while.

Also, whether you're new or an established Austin resident, realize San Marcos and Hays county are NOT Williamson and Leander. They are completely different culturally and amenities wise. I think some people assume that just looking in the other direction you'll get the same thing. You won't. San Marcos is still a college town with some bars and some shopping with the outlets there. You'll need to drive north to Kyle and Buda or South Austin or even down south towards Schertz and Selma (not their city limits but further towards SA) in SA to get to "things."
I’ve considered Leander but there simply is no inventory. Travisso apparently has a 3 year waitlist for new builds. I’d be a fool to hold off for that long so I’ve given up on Travisso for now. Our budget is $350-$450 all in. We are from California and are performing this search remotely. We are working with an agent but we due our own due diligence as well. It has been recommended that we stick to new builds to eliminate competition. There is no way we could afford to do appraisal waivers or 20% over asking. To your knowledge does Liberty Hill or Georgetown offer the hill country views we’re searching for?
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Old 02-11-2021, 08:34 AM
 
Location: Austin, TX via San Antonio, TX
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Originally Posted by Dreamcatcherblanc View Post
I’ve considered Leander but there simply is no inventory. Travisso apparently has a 3 year waitlist for new builds. I’d be a fool to hold off for that long so I’ve given up on Travisso for now. Our budget is $350-$450 all in. We are from California and are performing this search remotely. We are working with an agent but we due our own due diligence as well. It has been recommended that we stick to new builds to eliminate competition. There is no way we could afford to do appraisal waivers or 20% over asking.
I'm going to sound a bit emotional and kind of a jerk here and I apologize in advance. I try to keep emotions out of my responses and to be rational, but right now, with the market and where my family is in their search for a home I am frustrated. There is zero inventory anywhere within an hour drive of Austin right now. People who are up and relocating right now from other areas for financial reasons, as it seems you are, are coming in with large cash offers and pushing out locals from moving up. And it SUCKS. The home my parents put in an offer for is probably going to go for 50k above asking because there is zero inventory.

Come visit, rent, hang out, get to know the area before making such a large move. The inventory in San Marcos is heading in the same direction as the Leander area. There are plenty of other threads about north Austin that you can search regarding views, because everyone wants to be there. Even the thread I started about the San Marcos area was derailed into a north Austin **** fest about bidding wards in north Austin.
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Old 02-11-2021, 08:45 AM
 
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You’re not going to get Hill Country views in that price range. Might as well scratch that off your list.
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Old 02-11-2021, 09:17 AM
 
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Originally Posted by ashbeeigh View Post
I'm going to sound a bit emotional and kind of a jerk here and I apologize in advance. I try to keep emotions out of my responses and to be rational, but right now, with the market and where my family is in their search for a home I am frustrated. There is zero inventory anywhere within an hour drive of Austin right now. People who are up and relocating right now from other areas for financial reasons, as it seems you are, are coming in with large cash offers and pushing out locals from moving up. And it SUCKS. The home my parents put in an offer for is probably going to go for 50k above asking because there is zero inventory.

Come visit, rent, hang out, get to know the area before making such a large move. The inventory in San Marcos is heading in the same direction as the Leander area. There are plenty of other threads about north Austin that you can search regarding views, because everyone wants to be there. Even the thread I started about the San Marcos area was derailed into a north Austin **** fest about bidding wards in north Austin.
I completely understand your frustration. The same kind of buying activity has been going on in my hometown of Los Angeles for many years. I lost count of how many folks I’ve come across that were from out of state or out of the country. Within the past ten years I became priced out completely and have been forced to rent. If it wasn’t for my work I wouldn’t have remained in Cali all this time. However, I now have the ability to work remotely and Austin is a place that I feel is best for my family.

I have visited Austin proper several times to visit friends of mine so I am familiar with certain parts. You’d be surprised with how many Austinites there are in LA. It was these friendships that I made at home that brought me to Austin. We are planning to be in Texas again next month to see how things are. All I can say is that it’s going to be tough and I know that it will be. But with some perseverance I’m sure we will all eventually find a home. On a plus side, I haven’t seen the buying activity of foreign investors (particularly from China) like I did in Los Angeles. This phenomenon saddened me as many neighborhoods changed not for the better. These investors were/are buying and holding California real estate simply for appreciation without regard for the neighborhood or its people. Bottom line is that it’s all about the $$$ and rightfully so—both builders and sellers will do their best to maximize profits.
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Old 02-11-2021, 09:23 AM
 
Location: Austin, TX via San Antonio, TX
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Originally Posted by Dreamcatcherblanc View Post
I completely understand your frustration. The same kind of buying activity has been going on in my hometown of Los Angeles for many years. I lost count of how many folks I’ve come across that were from out of state or out of the country. Within the past ten years I became priced out completely and have been forced to rent. If it wasn’t for my work I wouldn’t have remained in Cali all this time. However, I now have the ability to work remotely and Austin is a place that I feel is best for my family.

I have visited Austin proper several times to visit friends of mine so I am familiar with certain parts. You’d be surprised with how many Austinites there are in LA. It was these friendships that I made at home that brought me to Austin. We are planning to be in Texas again next month to see how things are. All I can say is that it’s going to be tough and I know that it will be. But with some perseverance I’m sure we will all eventually find a home. On a plus side, I haven’t seen the buying activity of foreign investors (particularly from China) like I did in Los Angeles. This phenomenon saddened me as many neighborhoods changed not for the better. These investors were/are buying and holding California real estate simply for appreciation without regard for the neighborhood or its people. Bottom line is that it’s all about the $$$ and rightfully so—both builders and sellers will do their best to maximize profits.
Find a place and rent. Rent out near Leander if that's where you want to be.
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Old 02-11-2021, 09:24 AM
 
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Originally Posted by austinaggie View Post
You’re not going to get Hill Country views in that price range. Might as well scratch that off your list.
What is a good price range in your opinion? Bryson in Leander was starting in the low 300’s. Travisso had homes on smaller lots at ~375k. Can you recommend any communities with hill country views that are around my price range?
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Old 02-11-2021, 09:32 AM
 
Location: Austin, TX via San Antonio, TX
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Originally Posted by Dreamcatcherblanc View Post
What is a good price range in your opinion? Bryson in Leander was starting in the low 300’s. Travisso had homes on smaller lots at ~375k. Can you recommend any communities with hill country views that are around my price range?
I responded to your questions about San Marcos since that's my expertise. I don't know anything about that. You may want to search the forum for some of that information and start another thread to address that question. I think it will be very hard at your price range.
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Old 02-11-2021, 09:53 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Dreamcatcherblanc View Post
What is a good price range in your opinion? Bryson in Leander was starting in the low 300’s. Travisso had homes on smaller lots at ~375k. Can you recommend any communities with hill country views that are around my price range?
You might get a nice view in Lakeway but I’m thinking
it’s going to cost you at least $600,000 for a house. Just guesstimating. It could be more. I’m not familiar with new build neighborhoods.
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