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RECON for January 24, 2020RECON for January 24, 20202020-01-24T06:00:00Z2020-01-24T06:00:00Z

RECON Real Estate Center
Dr. Jim Gaines speaks to a camera while wearing a pink shirt.
We're making headlines. KBTX News' Clay Falls interviewed Real Estate Center Chief Economist Dr. Jim Gaines about property tax issues at the Center's office in College Station yesterday morning. (Photo by Center photographer JP Beato.)
January 24, 2020

Texas second most popular state in 2018 for relocating

​​​​AUSTIN (Texas Realtors) – Texas ranked second in the nation for relocation activity in 2018, according to Texas Realtor's 2020 Texas Relocation Report.

"For the sixth year in a row, more than half a million people chose Texas as their new home," said 2020 Texas Realtors Chairman Cindi Bulla. She cited the state's business-friendly environment and diverse culture as primary drivers.

According to the report, which analyzes the latest migration data from the U.S. Census Bureau and U-Haul, Texas welcomed 563,945 new residents in 2018. 

The net gain of out-of-state residents increased 78.1 percent from 57,173 in 2017 to 101,805 residents in 2018.

Among U.S. states, the highest number of new Texans came from California (86,164), Florida (37,262), and Louisiana (29,108). The number of people who relocated from California to Texas increased by 36.4 percent compared with 2017. 

At the metro level, Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, New York-Newark-Jersey City, and Chicago-Naperville-Elgin produced the highest volume of residents relocating to Texas​.

Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington had the highest number of incoming residents from out of state (200,966). At the county level, Harris County led the state with a net gain of 80,572 out-of-state residents.​

The Lone Star State also welcomed 201,559 new residents from outside the United States in 2018. 

Texas ranked third nationally for the number of residents moving out of state (462,140) in 2018. The most popular out-of-state relocation destination for Texans was California (37,810), followed by Oklahoma (31,551) and Colorado (26,930).​​
Texas Border Economy - November 2019 Summary
Read the Texas Border Economy report for the details.

EPA releases new clean-water rules

WASHINGTON (Wall Street Journal) – The Environmental Protection Agency has released new federal clean-water regulations that are less restrictive than those adopted in 2015, eliminating many seasonal streams, small waterways, and wetlands from federal oversight.

The new rules will exclude most roadside and farm ditches, groundwater, farm and stock watering ponds, and water bodies that form only when it rains. 

Waters under federal oversight would be limited to four categories: the territorial seas and navigable waters including oceans and major rivers; perennial and intermittent tributaries; some lakes and ponds; and wetlands adjacent to federal waters.

The 2015 rule expanded the reach of the 1972 Clean Water Act, giving the federal government oversight of some ditches and shallow wetlands that, when swollen with rain, could carry pollution downstream. 

While supporters said the 2015 rule would improve drinking water for more than 100 million Americans, critics said protections extended to dry land and amounted to overreach on property-owner rights.

For more on water rules, check out "Treading Water" by Real Estate Center Research Economist Dr. Charles Gilliland. 
Helping Texans make the best real estate decisions since 1971.

Texas economy adds 29,800 jobs in December

AUSTIN (Texas Workforce Commission) – Texas' unemployment rate inched up a tenth of a percentage point over the month to 3.5 percent in December, breaking a five-month streak of record-low unemployment, according to the Texas Workforce Commission. 

Texas employers added 29,800 jobs in December and 342,800 jobs over 2019, an annual employment growth rate of 2.7 percent last month. It has held above 2 percent since February 2018.

The Texas metro with the lowest non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was Midland at 2.1 percent. McAllen-Edinburg-Mission had the highest at 7 percent.

The construction industry had the most seasonally adjusted growth in employment from December 2018 to December 2019, growing 7.​​​​​​​​​​4 percent. The mining and logging and information industries were the only two sectors to see a drop in employment, falling 3.8 and 1.2 percent, respectively.
Looking for more real estate news? Our NewsTalk Texas feed has all the latest headlines. Here's a sample:

Austin closes decade with record-breaking $13 billion in home sales

AUSTIN (Austin Board of Realtors) – The metro closed out the decade with a record 33,084 homes sales in 2019 and $13 billion in sales volume, according to the Austin Board of Realtors (ABoR). ​

In December 2019, sales volume increased 9.2 percent to 2,608 sales, while inventory decreased by 0.5 months to 1.7 months of inventory. The Real Estate Center considers six to 6.5 months of inventory a balanced market.

Growing demand pushed the median price of a single-family home to $323,000.

New listings increased 1.4 percent year over year to 39,309 listings. Active listings decreased 4.3 percent to 6,216 listings. and pending sales increased 10.5 percent to 33,976.

Although the local housing market is doing well, ABoR President Romeo ​Manzanilla warns, "If we don't take action to increase housing supply in Austin, we will continue to see exponential increases in home values."

SwRI buys 260 acres near West Side campus 

SAN ANTONIO (San Antonio Business Journal) – Southwest Research Institute has bought 260 acres near its campus to develop more facilities.

The purchase includes 180 acres at 103 Callaghan Rd. and 80 acres ​south of US 151.

The acquisition brings the institute to 1,500 acres with 2.3 million sf of labs, test facilities, workshops, and offices on its property. Around 3,000 employees work there.
market viewer screen shotTexas Realtors' MarketViewer tool helps members and their clients quickly understand the market statistics in their area. This powerful tool is a member benefit available exclusively to Texas Realtors and local Realtor associations in Texas. Data are compiled and analyzed through a research agreement between Texas Realtors, the Real Estate Center, and all MLSs across the state. 

1,250-home community heads to Marble Falls

MARBLE FALLS (Austin Business Journal) – Harvard Investments is developing Gregg Ranch, a 240-acre, master-planned community in Burnet County near the intersection of SH 281 and SH 71. 

The development will have 700 single-family homes and 550 multifamily units. 

The project's central community area will have an outdoor pool, covered porch, barbeque area, dog park, games such as bocce ball and horseshoes, and jogging and biking trails.

Pulte Homes is the community's first builder. It will begin pre-sales on the first 100 homes this year.

Red Raiders getting vet school in Amarillo

AMARILLO (News Channel 10) – The Texas Tech University System Board of Regents has approved $90 million for the Texas Tech School of Veterinary Medicine.

The 185,000-sf, two-story vet school building will accommodate 400 students and include break-out rooms and office suites.

Construction will be complete in fall ​​2021.
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800K-sf warehouse planned for Hutchins

HUTCHINS (Dallas Morning News) – USAA Real Estate and Seefried Industrial Properties are developing a distribution building at 1305 Cleveland Rd.

The 800,000-sf warehouse is the second of four buildings in the 45-acre Interchange 20/45 business park near the southeast corner of I-20 and I-45.

​CBRE is leasing the project, which is set to open later this year.

Redwood acquires 302K-sf Exterran campus 

HOUSTON (NAI Partners) – Redwood Property Investors III LLC has purchased the former Exterran Energy Solutions campus at 12001 N. Houston Rosslyn Rd.

The nearly 32-acre campus consists of 301,127 sf of industrial office and manufacturing buildings. ​

NAI Partners represented the buyer, while JLL represented the seller, Exterran Energy Solutions L.P.  NAI will also market the property.
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Material herein is published according to the fair-use doctrine of U.S. copyright laws related to non-profit, educational institutions. Items attributed to sources other than the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University should not be reprinted without permission of the original source. To send news items for consideration, e-mail Hayley Rieder. The Real Estate Center is part of Mays Business School at Texas A&M University in College Station - the heart of the Research Valley.


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