The January 2020 Real Estate News Roundup

The year is young and yet Austin’s already made it on a “Best Of” list, with Zillow saying we’ll be the hottest housing market of 2020. Hold on to your hats!

Downtown transactions mean more covered sidewalks veering into the roadways as impending construction promises to bring ever more high rises to our skyline.

Three master-planned communities in Central Texas sold a lot of homes in 2019, and made an important list because of the sales.

If you want to live where Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston spent their newlywed years, read on to learn more!

Zillow: Austin’s Housing Market Grew Astonishingly Fast Over Last Decade

The Austin metro housing market grew by $141 billion, 126% in the past decade, according to a new report from Zillow. The metro area’s housing market is now worth about $252 billion, as compared to $111 billion in 2010. Most of the growth, according to Zillow, came from new home construction, rather than appreciation of existing homes. About 117,000 new homes were constructed in the metro in the past 10 years, according to Eldon Rude, principal of 360 Real Estate Analytics. About 68,000 apartments were built during the same timeframe.

Austin Will Be Nation’s Hottest Housing Market in 2020, According to Experts

In other news from Zillow, the real estate company also recently named Austin as the hottest housing market of 2020 based on a survey of real estate experts and economists conducted by Pulsenomics and Zillow in late 2019. Eighty-three percent of respondents said they expect Austin metro home values to grow faster than the expected national rate of 2.8%. Markets in southern states are expected to have the most growth of home values, while California markets will cool, according to the survey takers.

New Residential Tower to Be Built Downtown

Construction on a 28-story residential tower at West 17th and Guadalupe streets is expected to start March 2. New York developer Reger Holdings reports that the building will have 117 luxury 1- to 3-bedroom condominium units ranging from 1250 to 1350 square feet. The building, dubbed The Linden, will replace the William Gammon Insurance building on Guadalupe Street, and is expected to cost $65 million. Plans for the project include 5,000 square feet of ground-level retail and restaurant space, eight stories of parking, and condos filling the upper floors. Resident amenities will include a 24/7 concierge, fitness center, pool, hot tub, clubhouse and grilling areas.

New Plans Afoot for Brazos Lofts Property

Austin’s Cielo Property Group has purchased a prime downtown site that is currently home to the Brazos Lofts condominiums, with potential plans to build a new development on the property, according to the Austin American-Statesman. The .81-acre parcel, at the southeast corner of Brazos and Fifth streets, can accommodate up to 885,200 square feet of development. Cielo officials said that, under the terms of the sale, current owners and retail tenants in the building can remain for up to a year. Cielo has not disclosed specific plans for the site.

Three Area Neighborhoods Are Top-Selling Master-Planned Communities

A well-respected national group has put three Central Texas neighborhoods on a list of the 50 top-selling master-planned communities in the nation. One of the three, Sonterra in Jarrell, came in at No. 11 on the list, which was put together by Washington, D.C.-based RCLCO Real Estate Advisors. Sonterra sold 741 homes in 2019. The other  Austin-area communities to make the list were Sunfield in Buda, which sold 550 homes last year and placed 17th on the list, and Santa Rita Ranch, which came in at No. 48 with 372 sales.

Pitt-Aniston Home is Back on the Market

The home where Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston lived as newlyweds is for sale for $44.5 million. The stars bought the Beverly Hills property in 2001, and sold it post-divorce in 2006. The French Normandy Revival-style estate includes five bedrooms, 13 bathrooms, a screening room, tennis court and guest house. The kitchen is black and white and has heated marble flooring. The 11,173-square-foot property is gated.