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OFF-TOPIC Lets Hear From Folks in Austin TX!

Discussion in 'Off Topic: Sports, Funnies, Pop-Culture' started by MJ DeMarco, Feb 21, 2008.

  1. MJ DeMarco
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    MJ DeMarco Raving Lunatic Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

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    So I'm getting the bug to buy second home somewhere and I am thinking about Austin TX. There are several folks here from Austin ... can ya give me some insight?

    Which areas are best? Is lakefront property worth the $$? Night life? Summers are hot and humid?
     
  2. rcardin
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    rcardin Contributor

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    I'm from Dallas but have spent some time in Austin.
    Guess it depends on what you are looking for. The night life is great. Lots to do in a college town. If I were looking for relaxation and lake front property I would look in East Texas or beach property in Corpus Christi. Part of our PLAN is to own a 40 foot boat in a slip in Port Aransas.
     
  3. CarrieW
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    CarrieW Gold Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    well I am not in texas. but i will post anyway lol.

    I would suggest you taking a look at the savannah area too.

    it is awesome here.

    close to the beach, downtown is historic and beautiful, river street has the best stores and reastraunts. they have all kinds of festivals and theres always live performances and entertainment along the river.

    theres always tons of stuff to do. the nightlife I hear is great(tho I wouldnt know I am a home body lol)

    and the weather is excellent.

    plus I am here! lmao.
     
  4. NoMoneyDown
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    NoMoneyDown Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane

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    I live slightly north of Austin, but know the area a little. If you have kids, Eanes ISD is the place to live as it is supposed to be the best in the area. The night life focuses mostly on "6th Street", which is an actual street in downtown Austin known for it's clubs/bars and live music venues.

    I don't know much about the lakefront property, or whether it's worth it. I will say that if you jumped in the RE mix about 5-10 years ago here, you'd be sitting pretty now. Texas, and central Texas, especially, was immune to the ridiculously high appreciation rates the last 5 or so years, and is one of the few places in the country where one can still get property "cheap". Although, the word has gotten out and out-of-state (and even out-of-country) buyers are flocking by the droves here to snatch-up RE now.

    San Antonio is located just an 1-2 hours away. I always considered Austin a "working" town and San Antonio an "entertainment" town as SA seems to have more attractions, such as Six Flags Fiesta Texas, Sea World, the Spurs, the Alamo, etc. I lived in SA for 12 years before moving to Austin, and still miss all the attractions it offered.

    Numerous movie stars call Austin home, like Mathew McCounaghy (sp?) and Sandra Bullock, as well as some country singers. And Michael Dell (CEO of Dell Computers) has a gargantuan home in the Westlake hills.

    Winters here are usually mild. We may get 1-2 weeks where the temps fall below freezing, and snow is about as rare as hen's teeth. Of course, the downside is the summers are sometimes torturous with temps >100 degrees and stifling humidity. Some times you can walk outside in the summer and feel you have just stepped into a steam room. Another "con" is that Austin is almost always ranked 1-3 nationally as being the worst place for allergies. The old saying down here is that if you don't have allergies, you'll probably get them within 5-7 years of living here. Funny, but I've lived here for 10+ years and still haven't gotten them, so I must be one of the "lucky" ones.

    Edit: BTW, Travis County (where Austin resides) is primarily a "liberal" county, due mostly to the fact that the University of Texas resides there. Most (if not all) of the surrounding counties are generally more conservative as far as politics is concerned.
     
  5. djs13
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    I lived in Dallas but now I currently live in NY. I visited Austin last spring break and I must say it was awesome. I've decided that is definitely a place I want to spend some of my life at.

    Lake Travis is awesome and there are some great restaurants there too. The houses along Lake Travis are HUGE.

    Austin is a big music city. Alot of up and coming musicians move there to showcase their skills in the local cafes and restaurants.

    And don't forget about UT Austin. It was probably the coolest school I've ever visited. The football tickets are expensive, but if you can get your hands on them its one of the biggest college football fields there is. They have the second biggest screen for any sporting venue right behind one in Japan.

    Austin is three hours from Fort Worth and its in the best state there is. Go check it out!
     
  6. Rawr
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    Rawr Gold Contributor Speedway Pass

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    Dude do it. Then I will help you leap 60 feet into lake travis. Nightlife is some of the best in the country - same goes for the girls.
     
  7. Edge
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    Edge Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Summit Attendee

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    Rawr provided the perfect summary.
     
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  8. hakrjak
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    hakrjak Bronze Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane

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    I'm from Austin originally. The summers do feel sweltering with that humidity topping 90% most of the time. As a kid I remember my icecream cone just melting down my wrist as soon as I stepped outside. hahaha... Being from Phoenix though, you are used to heat -- I dunno if you can stand humidity though. Then there are Tornados, but those never bothered me.

    I think it's a great town, with some of the friendliest people in the country. I dunno if it's where I'd pitch a 2nd home though. I'd be down in the islands or Mexico with my 2nd ;) Austin is in too similar of a lattitude to Phoenix, don't you think?

    Cheers,

    - Hakrjak
     
  9. MJ DeMarco
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    MJ DeMarco Raving Lunatic Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

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    Yea Hak you're right, I'm actually considering leaving Phoenix. Winters here used to be 75 and sunny ... last 3 years its been 55 and sunny. Not that Austin is any better, but for 4 months of sweltering 110 degree weather, I expect 8 months of 70-90 degree weather ... not 1 month which seems to be occurring now. The middle ground (70-90 degrees) which is why I moved here seems to be disappearing -- its either 110 degrees or 60 degrees. I don't like neither.
     
  10. CarrieW
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    CarrieW Gold Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    here in georgia where I am its typically 65 or higher. I think Ive only encountered maybe 20 days or so of colder weather in the last year we have been here. it gets cold for a day or so then its right back to beautiful weather!!!! and by cold I mean 40's-50's. nothing like the cold in pa! I think it only got to 32 or below maybe 2 or 3 days since we have been here.

    (can ya tell I love it here lol)
     
  11. Russ H
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    Russ H Gold Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    If you want sunny weather all year long, try San Diego or SLO (San Luis Obispo). Most uniform, sunny weather in the US. LOTS of sunny days, cool nights (coastal climate), and NO humidity.

    I still prefer the weather (and people, and outdoor activities) up here, in Napa, though.

    November through March it's cool, 50s to 60s, w/some rain (about 1/4-1/3 of the days).

    From April to October it's 68-80, dry heat, and NO humidity, except at night (all of our nights are cool, 50-60 degrees, so we open up all the windows). And no rain or clouds, at all.

    No mosquitoes, since it's too cool in the evenings (they die).

    Kinda like the climate in the south of France.

    Perfect for outdoorsy people.

    But I honestly don't think you'd find any good Lambo mechanics.

    We don't even have a Mercedes Dealer within 30-40 miles!

    Ford and chevy pickups, no problem. :rolleyes:

    Napa. Kinda small town.

    But I like it. :)

    -Russ H

    PS One caveat: NO nightlife* (at least the public kind). Napa is a very amorous community. We practice home night life. ;)

    If you want nightlife, you have to make the 45 min drive to San Francisco. MAJOR nightlife there. :party:
     
  12. Z5 FILMS
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    Z5 FILMS Contributor

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    Austin is great. I love it. Nightlife is the the best. As mentioned there's 6th street. It's a street similar to full of bars, most have live music. But "6th" is mostly for the younger crowd. If you're over 25 or 30 you're more likely to hang in the "warehouse district" which is the same as 6th, but an older crowd and only a block away from 6th.

    Lot of year round music and film festivals such ACL Fest, SXSW, etc.

    Austin real estate does not seems to have hit the skids like the rest of the country. It still seem "cheap" compared to a lot of places. $850K can get you a nice custom 4 bedroom 3,500 SF house with hillcountry or lakeviews.

    I am going to start house shopping around the end of the year. I don't have any business downtown, so I'm going to look west side. Westlake Hills, Steiner Ranch or Lakeway.

    Weather can get upwards up 100 in the summer months. 85-95 is normal. Humidity is not bad. I come form Houston where it's like 95 degree with 100% humidity in the summer. You walk outside andyour clothes stick to you.

    If your house browsing, I would look at anything west of Mopac (Hwy 1) westward all the way to the lake. Nothing north of 183, and nothing south of 290 West.

    All the areas here are going to be your prime Austin real estate with possible hill country and lake views.

    There's other areas that are nice such as Circle C, And northward in Round Rock and Georgetown. But those areas I feel are more for families with 3.5 children and people who want to do the suburb life and don't care about the lake or hillcountry views.

    In the summer the lake is packed with 1,000's of smoking hot 22 year old girls.

    For a 2nd home with no kids, I would be looking around Lakeway, Lago Vista and Hudson Bend. Maybe Steiner Ranch.

    [​IMG]
     
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  13. CarrieW
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    CarrieW Gold Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    heres an awesome website that I used to research everything before we moved. it has climate outlooks, occupations and everything else you could possibly imagine.


    http://www.city-data.com

    if your even remotley interested in being near savannah ga tho I would suggest you look at the outlying cities.

    in savannah as in any major city there is a mix of people. you can go from multi million dollar houses to the projects within a few blocks.

    If I did not have kids I would be in savannah. I refuse to send my kids to chatam county schools tho. where I am now its less then 30 minutes to downtown savannah, about 45 to the beach and the effingham county school system is awesome!
     
  14. tchandy
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    I live about an hour north of Austin. Another issue not mentioned is traffic along I35. During peak hours, which seems often, you can literally drive at 5 MPH on a 60-70 MPH stretch so planning driving times is essential as well as finding other roads to take.

    Tom
     
  15. hakrjak
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    hakrjak Bronze Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane

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    How about Cancun? :) If I could work, run my businesses, and raise the kids from anywhere on Earth... I think I'd be in Cancun atleast 1/2 the time. Talk about beautiful, and the weather is spectacular. The Tequila is cheap....

    :banana:

    Cheers,

    - Hakrjak
     
  16. Z5 FILMS
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    True. But unless you're working a 9-5, or live in Round Rock you don't have to mess with that. I have lived in Austin for 2 years almost. I think I have been on I-35 only 2 times.

    If you live out by the lake, traffic is total non-issue.
     
  17. MJ DeMarco
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    MJ DeMarco Raving Lunatic Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

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    Lots of Mosquitoes? No State Taxes?
     
  18. Jill
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    Jill Silver Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass Summit Attendee

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    There is that.
     
  19. tchandy
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    tchandy Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane

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    Yes to both. :smxD:

    BUT, property taxes are high. If you live in the property you can file for a homestead exemption which reduces your property taxes. :banana:

    Tom
     
  20. nomadjanet
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    IMHO you should try Fredricksburg or Kerville or Marble Falls small cities just north west of Austin, great lake front properties in the hill country. The hill country is slighly cooler & less humid & is BEAUTIFUL. Most of these places are close enough to Austin to enjoy the night life & far enough to forget the traffic issues. They are going up in value and have been found by lots of celebrity types but they are still very down to earth.
     
  21. Corrado79
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    If weather is a factor, move to Santa Monica, Manhattan Beach, San Diego or some other beach community in SoCal. Stay within 5 miles of the water and it will never get above 85 and never below 60. No humidity. Always perfect.
     
  22. Corrado79
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    Yeah, property taxes in Texas are high. That's what mostly discouraged me from investing there.
     
  23. rcardin
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    I never thought about our taxes being high. My house is 2280 feet, 156,900 taxable value and I paid right around 4000 for taxes this year. Tarrant County tax roles
     
  24. Jill
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    2.5% is quite a bit higher than California's 1%, for instance. There may be some that are higher. I just don't know.

    Since most folks roll it into their mortgage payment, it doesn't seem like that much. But when you think about paying $5K/yr for schools you don't use and another $1K/yr for hospitals you don't use, it starts feeling like real money!!
     
  25. NoMoneyDown
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    Property taxes are high in Texas (some areas are at or near 3%) as are local taxes (most, like Round Rock, are 8.25%). But no state income tax, which may offset those other taxes (I've never done a comparison to other states, so don't really know).

    BTW, I recently read where Georgetown (about 25 miles north of Austin) is quickly becoming a retiree magnet. They already have Sun City, which is a big seniors community.
     

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