6 things you need to know about buying a condo in Austin
1. Hire a Specialist
Working with someone who understands how a condo operates is incredibly important. Understanding HOAs and the documents required. Before buying a condo you need documents like insurance coverage, HOA meeting minutes, condo resale certificates, etc. Having an agent help you make the best decision and help you prepare can make a HUGE difference.
2. Asses the Amenities
Understand what the building has to offer and whether or not it will fit your lifestyle. Do the HOA fees match the level of amenities? Austin is notoriously a city where the people spend the same amount of time working as they do playing. Looking for a condo with a club house, pool, and 24 hour desk presence, would be in your best interest if you like to play too.
3. Check out the Neighborhood
This should be obvious, but make sure you check out the neighborhood. Is the condo gated? First floor? Parking garage? If you aren’t in the best neighborhood, then it’s probably not for you. Is there a train near by or new construction site around the corner? The last thing you want to do is move into a noise box!
4. Analyze the Homeowners Association Meeting Minutes and Rules
By gathering the information from the HOA meeting you can get a better understanding of how the community is run. Who is in charge? Do all the tenants have an opportunity to speak up? Make sure you ask the critical questions before closing. This information should be gathered by your real estate agent.
5. Review the Rental-to-Owner-Occupied Ratio
If you’re thinking you’ll need a loan, it’s important to gather this information. It’s important to know how many units are rented versus unoccupied or owner-occupied. Ut also gives you a better idea of the average tenant is like....
Orange Tree Condos is located just steps from the University of Texas in the heart of West Campus and is one of the most sought-after condos for UT students looking for campus housing. It offers a variety of floor plans from studio type to 3-bedroom units, catering to UT students’ varying budget and needs.
It is a large garden style condominium complex with units having a townhome like the design and plenty of privacy. These condo units have large bedrooms, washer/dryer and garage parking. Residents enjoy the rooftop terrace and take a dip in the pool with friends to escape the Texas heat.
West Campus is a busy part of Austin buzzing with students at all hours of the day. The overall walkability of West Campus allows UT students to walk from every area to campus. They also have the option to hop on the West Campus bus to make it across Guadalupe and onto campus. The fraternity and sorority life at UT Austin is also centered in this area.
Because the majority of the residents of West Campus are college students, the entertainment in the area is largely targeted toward this demographic. There are a variety of shops, bars, and restaurants in a major commercial area known as "The Drag" along Guadalupe Street. During the day, people shop and eat at local restaurants and other business establishments in this area. At night time, the bars and hookah lounges are filled with people unwinding after a long day of class or work.
About Railyard Condos
The Railyard is one of downtown Austin’s most affordable and unique condo buildings. Its two low-rise buildings, recognized for their Southwestern architecture, offer an experience of urban living on a budget without compromising on style. These 1-3 bedroom units include in-suite washers and dryers, hardwood flooring, carpeted bedrooms, multiple bathrooms, granite countertops and balconies. Residents can also enjoy the community outdoor pool and patio.
Railyard Condominiums are unique compared to other downtown Austin condos due to the fact that they offer short-term rentals. Railyard owners can open up their condo units as a vacation-rental-by-owner during SXSW, ACL, F1 and other conventions and yield more rent during those events than the total rent from a typical 12-month lease.
The Railyard Condominiums are located on 4th Street between Brazos and Trinity in the heart of downtown Austin. Lady Bird Lake, museums, dining, shops, bars, yoga studios, and entertainment venues are all within walking distance from these condos. It is also on a major bus route so it’s really easy to get to where you need to go without a car.
The Plaza Lofts is a 12-story high-rise condominium at the corner of Guadalupe and W. 5th Street. Developed in 2002, the Plaza was awarded a 4-star rating by the Austin Green Building Program for its eco-friendly design.
The Plaza houses 60 luxury condominium units ranging from 900 to 2,300 square feet in size. Available in studio type and 1-2 bedroom design, buyers can choose from various floor plans that come with elegant interior finishes like granite countertops and backsplashes, flush panel cabinetry with hidden hinges, modern lighting fixtures, ceramic tile showers and double vanities in the master bath. The units feature 11-13 foot high ceilings, stained concrete floors and oversized, private balconies that provide incredible views of the city.
Building amenities include on-site gym, rooftop pool, covered terrace, secured parking garage, elegant resident lobby and controlled and monitored building access, including entry camera closed-circuited to each unit. The Plaza Lofts’ proximity to the Central Business District, the downtown nightlife and Lady Bird Lake makes it the perfect home for those that value luxury and want to be in the middle of it all: dining, arts and recreation.
About Brazos Place
Brazos Place is a 14-floor high-rise located at 8th and Brazos in exciting Downtown Austin. Completed in 2008, Brazos Place Condos, or lofts rather, feature concrete floors, exposed ceilings, and the most upscale and current interiors around. Brazos Place lofts vary from studio-sized (378 square feet) to 3-bedroom penthouses and are priced anywhere from $250K to $1.5M, depending on their size. Just a few blocks from the Texas Capitol, Brazos Place residents live in and near some of the most historic areas in Texas.
Apart from the rich history surrounding Brazos Place, residents can also take advantage of the nearby entertainment, retail, and dining—some of the best in town. With Stubb’s Barbeque, a popular concert venue and restaurant, the Alamo Drafthouse on 6th St, and some of Austin’s finest art galleries close by, Brazos Place residents will never have to travel far for a good time. Amid the history and exhilarating atmosphere of its surroundings, Brazos Place offers one of the best places from which to enjoy all that Downtown Austin has to offer. Brazos Place is located at the intersection of Brazos Street and 8th Street. The zip code for Brazos Place is 78701.
Brazos Place Useful Links
The Shore is a 22-story luxury high-rise condominium located in Austin’s Rainey Street District with panoramic views of the Colorado River and the twinkling lights of Austin’s city skyline. This 192 unit condo tower offers studio and 1-2 bedroom units averaging 1,200 square feet in size.
It is an urban oasis surrounded by tranquil green spaces and has one of the most beautiful outdoor living areas in Downtown Austin. It is within walking distance of Lady Bird Lake and Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail. Lakeside recreation and classic Austin city life is available right at the building’s doorstep.
The Shore offers residents amenities suitable to the finest resort. In-house amenities include 24-hour security, a luxurious lobby, controlled-access parking, a spacious outdoor terrace with a calming lap pool, and a top-of-the-line fitness center. This environmentally-friendly building is certified by the Austin Green Building Program.
The Sabine On 5th Condos is a former iconic office building in downtown Austin recently renovated and repurposed into residences. It is located on the banks of Waller Creek, between 5th Street and 6th Street. This unique location gives Sabine Condos distinct views of the State Capitol, University of Texas, Lady Bird Lake, and the Hill Country.
Sabine Condos houses 80 units with floor plans ranging from one-bedroom units, 600 square feet, to two-bedrooms with 1400 square feet. It features stained concrete floors, massive windows, soaring 11' ceilings, stainless steel appliances, maple cabinetry and contemporary kitchens and baths with stunning glass tiles.
The building is close to chic cafes, museums, theaters, and a variety of Austin venues, perfectly blending prestige with trendiness, luxury with affordability. It is adjacent to the Red River District, with 3 blocks of live music venues and close to the famous 2nd Street District with a wide range of restaurants, shops, outdoor cafes, museums and outdoor activities in the nearby Town Lake complex.
Buying a condo is just like buying a home-- it has its pros and cons. Condos are cheaper, rarely requires you to do "the dirty work" (thanks to shared maintenance), and provides you with great amenities such as gym membership, pool use, and other facilities that are available in the property. However, the downside of living in a condo is that monthly dues are expensive (you don't do your landscaping but you're paying someone to do it for you) and you have to strictly comply with the rules of the condo board that regulates condo living.
To prepare yourself for the condo life ahead of you, you have to ask these important questions to your condo board to know what to expect before you actually purchase or move in:
How much is the monthly fee?
Condos charge a monthly fee that pays for the entire upkeep of the residential building. Ranging from $200 to $400, this monthly fee covers costs OUTSIDE your condo such as pool maintenance, landscaping, security, etc. Since you're going to pay this every month for the next X number of years that you're going to live in the condo, you have to ask the board exactly what your monthly fee covers. A general rule of thumb is that anything outside your condo should be taken care of by the board. The maintenance INSIDE your condo, on the other hand, should be taken care of by you.
Can I see the financial statements?
Condo owners are entitled to see the condo's financials, and you as a [future] condo owner should check this out. The financial statements will tell a story about your chosen residence: too much money going out compared to what is coming in almost always means "mismanagement" and headache for you as a future condo owner.
Are there assessments scheduled in the near future?
Assessments are one-time payments that cover capital improvements and repairs. If you are going to buy a condo, you have to ask if there...
A new 25-story office tower located at West Fourth and Colorado streets is bound to change the skyline of downtown Austin for the better very soon. We bring you the latest news from the hottest property development in an around the Austin area: Brandywine Realty Trust's 405 Colorado.
The 210,000-square-foot tower will stand about 366 feet tall. The specialists at Duda|Paine Architects will design the building. We can, therefore, expect a unique and savvy architectural design from this project, seeing as how the experts who designed the Frost Bank Tower will oversee its development.
Brandywine officials are acting mysterious about the new project as they decline to disclose info on price tags and declare that breaking ground is contingent on the leasing activity.
Diana Holford, senior vice president in Austin with JLL, a commercial real estate firm, said the tower “cannot be built fast enough.”
“The demand to be in Austin’s downtown market is at an all-time high and the supply of large blocks of new, well-located office space is at a historic low.”
-Diana Holford, JLL Vice President
405 Colorado will be built in downtown's Warehouse District where food & dining, shopping, and entertainment outlets are a mere stone's throw away. Promising 3,000 sq.ft. of ground floor retail space and 12 parking levels with about 530 spaces for tenant and public use, it's sure to be part of your downtown day trip as soon as the project is completed.
To read about the launch of this new project, you can access Shonda Novak's original news article here.
The Residences at W Austin offers contemporary luxury living in heart of Downtown's 2nd Street District. Located at 210 Lavaca Street, you live only steps away from fine dining and outdoor cafes, boutique shops, live music including the Austin City Limits Moody Theater, and the Lady Bird Lake hike and bike trails. Experience breathtaking views of downtown Austin, Lady Bird Lake as well as the Texas Hill Country.
More Downtown Austin Condos for Sale
The Residences at W Austin has unbeatable services and amenities. The W is home to the ACL Live Moody Theater, AWAY Spa, and Trace Austin Restaurant. Enjoy valet or reserved underground parking with a residence-only elevator, a residence only pool and dedicated lobby with concierge team, preferred access to events at ACL Live at the Moody Theater, and housekeeping and laundry services. Have access to 24/7 residential concierge services, car service, security service, and in-home dining.
Other amenities include availability to pet sitting and dog walking services, in-home spa services, 16,000 square foot gym facilities, and even residential rates within the hotel for your guests as well as discounted rates through Starwood Hotels.
The Residences at W Austin were created with high green living standards in mind. The units were constructed with non-toxic materials, and qualify for LEED certification. The building units also incorporate high tech systems for water and air filtration, and a commitment to green housekeeping and organic local ingredients in the restaurant. ...
The Austonian is a gorgeous downtown Austin condo complex located at 200 Congress Avenue. The complex offers spectacular views, as it's the tallest residential building in the state. The Austonian offers luxury living with unmatched amenities to downtown Austin residents.
Amenities at The Austonian include a 24-hour concierge, a 24-hour valet, housekeeping, dry-cleaning and laundry services, as well as advanced security services. The tenth floor exterior area known as The Lawn includes a 75-foot pool with in-water sitting area, hot tub, Dog Park, promenade sunroom, outdoor kitchens and fireplaces, herb garden, sunset viewing terraces and wireless internet. Other amenities include a media room with leather stadium seating for 12 and a 133-inch screen for HD viewing, an executive conference room, catering kitchen, billiard and game room, library, a 6,000 square foot fitness center, private spa treatment rooms as well as a pet spa, a 6,000 square foot entertainment space exclusively for residents and guests, and a climate controlled wine vault.
The Austonian is conveniently located in downtown Austin near 2nd and Congress Avenues. The complex is walking distance to tons of restaurants, shopping, bars and venues. Residents are only steps away from the beautiful hike and bike trails of Lady Bird Lake, as well as the fantastic music events in the city such as South by Southwest and Austin City Limits festivals.
The Austonian is also an environmentally conscious complex and participates in the Austin Energy Green Building Program. The building was constructed with environmentally friendly and sensitive materials. The Austonian uses no public water for landscaping, but instead relies on a unique condensation capturing system. This helps saves an estimated 33.2 million gallons of water per year.
If you are interested in learning more about...