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Old 04-02-2013, 11:01 AM
 
Location: Houston - Galleria
3 posts, read 4,058 times
Reputation: 10

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My husband and I are hoping to buy a home next year, around this time. I know it is probably too early to be worrying about this but I feel like I can’t find answers to my questions, especially since Houston is a different market than most other places.

We will have $20k for the down payment, and based on the “2.5x salary” advice, our price range would be up to about $320k, which is probably higher than we want go. Of course, we are not pre-approved at this point, so I would say our max is around $275k. We both work in the Galleria area, on San Felipe, so carpooling is an option for us if we end up in the suburbs, which is definitely NOT our preference.

What would be some good neighborhoods for us to look at? The main things we are interested in are 3 bedrooms and some kind of outdoor space. Hubby has warmed up to the idea of a townhome if we could stay close to work. We don’t have kids but will probably have some soon, so elementary schools are the main focus right now. When should we start looking if we wanted to move in April?

I have a co-worker who recently bought a house in Walnut Bend. I’m not sure how long she was looking, but I know it was a pretty frustrating experience because homes would be under contract the same day they were listed. I also know that the more time that passed, the wider their search area would become!

Sorry for this long rant, but I am nervous about this process already and just hoping for some info!

Last edited by txelle05; 04-02-2013 at 11:02 AM.. Reason: tags
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Old 04-02-2013, 12:38 PM
 
34,648 posts, read 17,968,158 times
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Out in the burbs, you see more homes going on the market in late April and the beginning of May as families prepare for a summer move when the kids are not in school. I don't believe the inner loop and Galleria area sees as much of this kind of a swing.

Since you don't have kids yet, what about getting a place in the part of town you live and not worry about schools, and once you have children getting close to going to a public school, consider a move? This way, you can have a number of years with the shorter commute and live in a "fun" area. Additionally, school districts can change over the years; therefore, a district you might find acceptable may not be in another 7 to 10 years and visa-verse. Obviously, you would run the risk of having higher interest rates when you moved in the future; however, there is a strong possibility that an inner loop home or own in the Galleria area will increase in value enough to make up for that difference.
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Old 04-02-2013, 02:58 PM
 
1,474 posts, read 2,515,540 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PedroMartinez View Post
Out in the burbs, you see more homes going on the market in late April and the beginning of May as families prepare for a summer move when the kids are not in school. I don't believe the inner loop and Galleria area sees as much of this kind of a swing.
THIS is good to know. There seems to be a severe lack of quality suburban homes on the market, and anything that appears to be half decent is either overpriced or has something wrong with it. Here's to hoping it gets better in a month.
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:03 PM
 
Location: Houston - Galleria
3 posts, read 4,058 times
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Thanks for your reply, PedroMartinez ... I guess I'd just hoped that we wouldn't have to move again in 5 or 6 years for the kids' sake but if we weren't as concerned with that, we could get a better house even if the schools weren't that great. Although, schools do help resale value.

I think I left out an important part of my original post - what areas would people suggest that are reasonable commutes for where we work? The most ideal suburb (that I can tell) would be Sugar Land, but what are the areas we should be looking at closer to town? Since we don't even work inside the Loop as it is, that isn't of the utmost importance, but we do like being near the city!
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:07 PM
 
1,474 posts, read 2,515,540 times
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Originally Posted by txelle05 View Post
Thanks for your reply, PedroMartinez ... I guess I'd just hoped that we wouldn't have to move again in 5 or 6 years for the kids' sake but if we weren't as concerned with that, we could get a better house even if the schools weren't that great. Although, schools do help resale value.

I think I left out an important part of my original post - what areas would people suggest that are reasonable commutes for where we work? The most ideal suburb (that I can tell) would be Sugar Land, but what are the areas we should be looking at closer to town? Since we don't even work inside the Loop as it is, that isn't of the utmost importance, but we do like being near the city!
Look at parts of Westbury zoned to a good elementary school. I checked Meyerland prices recently and they are obscenely high from what they were. I can't tell if this is a short-term phenomenon or a sustainable huge jump.
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Old 04-05-2013, 02:28 PM
 
52 posts, read 67,839 times
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I recently was in your situation. The areas to look for would probably be Heights, Washington Ave, Galleria Area, Midtown, EaDo (East Downtown), and Museum District. You will probably be getting townhomes in all of the areas but they are close to your work and in the city. As other people mentioned, get a house now and when you have kids maybe start looking into moving into the burbs. Also, HISD has a magnet program, so if your kids test well they can go to pretty decent schools in the city.
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Old 04-05-2013, 09:21 PM
 
Location: 77027
3 posts, read 5,690 times
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I hate to hijack txelle05's thread but my hubby and I have a very similar situation. We are looking to buy a home in the 4th quarter of this year. We currently rent an apartment (2 bed 2 bath) in 77027 and love our current neighborhood for the proximity to shops, restaurants, museums, bars/clubs, everything... We have 20K also for a down payment. I work off the beltway (77064) and he works off of 10 east (77029). What neighborhoods would you recommend?

We have been in Houston for a little over a year, but haven't found much advice on where to live other than the Woodlands (boring) and we do not have any children nor do we want any so school districts do not matter. I will say that I want a yard, and would prefer a larger home (4 bedrooms). As both of our parents are retired and our friends travel often we keep house guests. However, I would love to stay closer to the city but the houses just are either too expensive (600k plus) or too old for my personal taste.

Thanks
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