Houston, Texas Real Estate Economic Data-and It’s Not All Bad

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As a partner of the Houston real estate team of The Zoller Group of Keller Williams Realty. I thought a would take time to share the following with you.

I attended a meeting this week and the speaker was a real estate investor whose topic concerned how things have gone so far in 2009 and what the trend is for the rest of this year. He makes his living buying and selling real estate and is constantly monitoring statistics which he thinks are real estate related. He had nothing to sell and had no handouts.  All the statistics I will be stating come from my notes. I haven’t verified any of them, but did find them interesting and thought that I would share them.

The Bad News-Nationally the latest unemployment figure was 9.4% and predictions are that it might climb to 10.5%. The latest Houston unemployment figure at the time of the talk was 6.90%, which is worse than predicted at the first of the year. Yesterday I read that this increased to 8.0%.  Through May 2009, the cumulative number of  jobs lost was 56,300, also worse than predicted.  

The Good News for Houston-we’ve gained about 7000 of the jobs back and have a chance to gain most of the remainder back by the end of the year. Major projects which will help gain jobs are the 1.5 billion dollar mass transit project, the 1.4 billion dollar restoration project for the UTMB facility in Galveston, the 98.3 million dollar stimulus money for the Port of Houston and the 40 million dollar stimulus money for the Port of Galveston. There is also a new 14 story medical building nearing completion at the Memorial Hermann Memorial City Medical Center and surprisingly to me, numerous new commercial projects planned throughout Houston.

National Real Estate Trends for single family homes:

For the last 3 months, pending sales have increased. 

 Sales in California, one of the biggest  losers real estate-wise, are double from their worst month.

May 2009  . . . job cuts were the lowest this year

The national home inventory is down to 9.7 months

Consumer sentiment is up for 4 months in a row

The HAI(Housing Affordability Index) is the highest since it became an index in 1971

The latest Durable Goods Index was up 1.8%   after predictions were for a .6% decrease

Houston Real Estate Trends for single family homes:

Home Inventory is 45,282 which is less than last year’s number of 53,305

Days on Market is 6.2 months which is considered a neutral market and is less than last year’s figure of 6.5 months. For those of you who remember the 1980’s in Houston, I believe that this number was about 2 years

May 2009 foreclosures accounted for 19.8 % of sales down from a high of 34% in January2009

Although new home sales are down 60% in Houston, we are still #1 in the nation.

The Brookings Institute has Houston as the major market least affected by the economy and ranked #5 in the “Market Expected to Rise” category.

Big Picture:

I bet that most people think that it is a strong buyers market, but the figures don’t support that. I know that some neighborhoods are worse than others, but overall it could be a lot worse.

The latest population prediction that I remember was 5.7 million in 2008 for Houston and vicinity . . . increasing to 11.7 million in 2040.  Can you imagine?!?!  If true, they gotta’  live somewhere.

If you have any information to add to this or want to discuss anything concerning this blog, please let me know.

This article was written July, 2009 by Guest Writer, JIM ZOLLER.

Categories: Business Concerns, Events, Foreclosures, Market Reports, Uncategorized


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Topics in The Zoller Group’s monthly real estate newsletter for August, 2008, include:

  • Mortgage Rate Locks Become Crucial
  • Current Mortgage Rates
  • What’s Hot & What’s Not in Bathroom Redesign
  • Credit Scores Remain Misunderstood
  • Man’s Best Friend May Be Costly When Selling
  • Local Market Conditions

Please click here to read these and many other informative real estate related articles.

We would appreciate it if you would contact us and let us know if this information is helpful to you.

Categories: Business Concerns, Events, Market Reports

Nature Discovery Center – 27th Bellaire Home Tour 2009

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As co-chairman for the Nature Discovery Center’s 27th Bellaire Home Tour to be held in March or April of 2009, I am requesting your helpI need suggestions and input for interesting or unique homes in Bellaire for consideration to be open to the public.  The homes can be older homes or new construction homes.  Maybe the owners are collectors and have something unique to offer visitors on tour.  Possibly the home owner has a fabulous yard or gardens that would interest a number of people.  If you or someone you know has a home that can be offered for this worthwhile event . . . please contact me.  I would greatly appreciate your help.

Bellaire Home Tour Benefits the Nature Discovery Center

The Bellaire Home Tour raises funds to benefit the Nature Discovery Center.  The Center continually offers educational and community programs.  This is one of the largest fund raisers held each year with the intent to continue these wonderful programs.  Hopefully you can help us make this a huge success . . . one more time.

I look forward to hearing from you!!

Categories: Events, Neighborhoods

26th Annual Bellaire Home Tour . . . Benefitting the Nature Discovery Center

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The 26th annual Bellaire Home Tour which benefits the Nature Discovery Center at Russ Pittman Park takes place this Saturday and Sunday, April 5th and 6th, 2008, from 1:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M.each day.  Six Bellaire, Texas homeowners have graciously offered to allow the public to view their homes. 

The homes vary from older construction to newer construction . . . traditional to contemporary architecture.  Tourists will enjoy the uniqueness of each home.


$12.00 in advance– picked up at Nature Discovery Center, Magpies, Teas Nursery amd Whole Foods.

$15.00 on day of tour – available at each house


  • 4911 Holt
  • 4815 Locust
  • 4533 Bellaire Blvd.
  • 114 Marrakech Court
  • 4401 Cynthia
  • 4336 Lafayette


4911 Holt - Bellaire, TX 77401

4911 HOLT –

This charming, roomy and traditional two story stucco home was built in 1995.  Homeowners, Bert and Karen Durel, designed their own home.  Features in this home include a wrought iron staircase and slate floors that extend to the sparkling pool area in the large back yard.

4815 Locust - Bellaire, TX 77401

4815 LOCUST –

Acting as their own architects, Charlie Yoa and his wife Shelby Song designed their own Mediterranean style home.  The builder was Jeffrey Harrington Homes.  This unique home has an extra layer of engineering in each room.  You’ll enjoy viewing the two-and-a-half story turret, the grand entryway, three living areas and two kitchens (one is for caterers).  A Master Feng Shui consultant recommended the 56 arches inside this lovely Bellaire home.


4553 Bellaire Blvd. - Bellaire, TX 77401


Offered for viewing by home owners and architect Kelly Larkin and Bubba Beasley . . . and built by Richard Price Custom Homes in 2005, this magnificent Mediterranean style mansion is “fully loaded”.  The four bedroom six bath home offers computer automated lighting, a security HVAC system and a whole home audio.   Among many other features you will discover distinctive inlaid wood floors and tile walls.  This stucco and stone home is topped by a dome, towering chimney stack and Spanish style tile roof.  A relaxing pool and summer kitchen are found in the back yard.


114 Marrakech - Bellaire, TX 77401


Designed by owner/architect John W. Gabriel, this modern contemporary three bedroom, two bath home was constructed in 1993.  It’s privately “tucked away” on one of Bellaire’s cul-de-sac streets. The open design was inspired by neoclassical architecture.  You’ll especially enjoy viewing the kitchen in this home that was built for comfortable living.  One of the surprise features of this home is that it backs up to the Nature Discovery Center and Russ Pitman Park.


4401 Cynthia - Bellaire, TX 77401


Mike and Mary Beth Destefano are excited to have you tour their two-and-a-half story traditional red brick, classic colonial family home which was built by V.J. Vallone of Teal Creek Homes in 1992.  Situated on one of the smaller Bellaire corner lots, this 4152 square foot four bedroom home offers formals divided by a dual sided fireplace, open family room, large game room and two additional rooms on the third floor.  Oak and walnut floors reflect the gold tones of the walls.  Take note of the octagonal areas found in this home cherished by it’s family.


4336 Lafayette - Bellaire, TX 77401

4336 Lafayette –

Architect Victor Perez designed and built his modern contemporary home for his wife Karen and their two children in 1999.  Interesting features of this home include the fact that the home itself was built on the left hand half of the lot, the court yard is on the right half of the lot, the garage doors are glass, the sleeping quarters are downstairs, the open living area is upstairs . . . and many more that you’ll just have to see during the tour.  The children especially enjoy the playground across the street in Lafayette Park.


The Nature Discovery Center appreciates your participation in this event.  The proceeds will greatly benefit the center and its various programs offered to the public.


Categories: Events, Neighborhoods, Open Houses

Bellaire Library Book Sale – Bellaire, TX . . . Stock up!

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There are many events and activities offered throughout the year in Bellaire, Texas.  One of my favorites, though, is the  Friends of the Library Book Sale.  Ever since our daughters were little, Jim and I would take them to the sale and we would all stock up on books to read.  It has always been a lot of fun to go through the piles of books and the boxes while we each selected those special books.  Since the cost was very low for the books, we could each buy quite a few more books than we would if we went to the book store.Well, it’s that time of year again.  The Friends of the Library Book Sale in Bellaire, Texas is this Saturday, March 29, 2008 from 9:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M.   It will be held in the parking lot at 5111 Jessamine in Bellaire.

Great bargains are always found.  Paperback books are 50 cents each and hardback books are $1.00 each.

I hope that you can make the sale and stock up with all the books you desire.

Maybe we’ll see you there!!!!

Categories: Events, Neighborhoods

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