How the Government Shut Down Could Effect the Real Estate Market

It’s not totally cut and dry on the government shutdown and it’s effects on the real estate market, but hopefully it will be resolved quickly. The last shut down occurred in 1997 and lasted 21 days. A long term shutdown would potentially hurt the real estate market because the feds would cut federal expenditures and interest rates could spike. Most believe the impact will hit the stock market as we have seen the last few days.

Owners who are selling their homes and home buyers should have minimal impact according to most experts unless the shut down lasts long term. Any buyers should contact their current lender to gauge their view on the process and ensure their loan can proceed as normal. Likewise, sellers can visit with their real estate agents so they can be in communication with the other brokers.

Let’s all hope for the best!

The Big Move

The Big Move

So It’s time to move and you are overwhelmed with what to do first. Don’t worry, I have some great tips and suggestions to help with this crazy time.

I would suggest taking the time to make a list and go through each room 1 by 1 in your home and figuring out what you want to keep and what you want to get rid of. Chances are you have many pieces that may not work in your new place. Start taking measurements, and pictures, and see if you can return to measure the new place you are moving into. This will help you place each item your keeping just in the right spot in the new home you’re moving into. Next give unwanted items to friends, goodwill, a cancer center, or place on Craigslist to make a little extra money for the move. Make sure you start looking on Craigslist too for free boxes, wrapping paper and bubble wrap. There are always people coming and going and they want an easy way to get rid of their boxes. Many times, they place them on the curb or street and they are free for the taking. This is a great way to recycle and save money at the same time. Another great way to get boxes, is to call your local grocery store and they will save them for you if you call ahead. Then it’s time to start packing. Most of us have a friend or 2 that will offer to help. Make a great lunch for them, put on some great tunes and start packing away. I know in many instances some of us don’t have time to plan. Do what you can and try to make sure to take some time for yourself to go on a small walk in the am or pm to decompress. This will help give you clarity and perhaps some more ideas for the new place! Happy moving!

New 3.8% Real Estate Tax in 2013

There has been much talk about the new 3.8% real estate tax coming in 2013 and how it will affect investors and owners of real estate. We manage property for many investors so I wanted to show a recent article put out by the National Association of Realtors. (Washington Report)

Learn the most important takeaways for REALTORS® when it comes to the 3.8% tax that’s part of health care reform:
1. When you add up all of your income from every possible source, and that total is less than $200,000 ($250,000 on a joint tax return), you will not be subject to this tax.
2. The 3.8% tax will never be collected as a transfer tax on real estate of any type, so you’ll never pay this tax at the time that you purchase a home or other investment property.
3. You’ll never pay this tax at settlement when you sell your home or investment property. Any capital gain you realize at settlement is just one component of that year’s gross income.
4. If you sell your principal residence, you will still receive the full benefit of the $250,000 (single tax return)/$500,000 (married filing joint tax return) exclusion on the sale of that home. If your capital gain is greater than these amounts, then you will include any gain above these amounts as income on your Form 1040 tax return. Even then, if your total income (including this taxable portion of gain on your residence) is less than the $200,000/$250,000 amounts, you will not pay this tax. If your total income is more than these amounts, a formula will protect some portion of your investment.
5. The tax applies to other types of investment income, not just real estate. If your income is more than the $200,000/$250,000 amount, then the tax formula will be applied to capital gains, interest income, dividend income and net rents (i.e., rents after expenses).
6. The tax goes into effect in 2013. If you have investment income in 2013, you won’t pay the 3.8% tax until you file your 2013 Form 1040 tax return in 2014. The 3.8% tax for any later year will be paid in the following calendar year when the tax returns are filed.
7. In any particular year, if you have no income from capital gains, rents, interest or dividends, you’ll never pay this tax, even if you have millions of dollars of other types of income.
8. The formula that determines the amount of 3.8% tax due will always protect $200,000 ($250,000 on a joint return) of your income from any burden of the 3.8% tax. For example, if you are single and have a total of $201,000 income, the 3.8% tax would never be imposed on more than $1,000.
9. It’s true that investment income from rents on an investment property could be subject to the 3.8% tax. But: The only rental income that would be included in your gross income and therefore possibly subject to the tax is net rental income: gross rents minus expenses like depreciation, interest, property tax, maintenance and utilities.
10. The tax was enacted along with the health care legislation in 2010. It was added to the package just hours before the final vote and without review. NAR strongly opposed the tax at the time, and remains hopeful that it will not go into effect. The tax will no doubt be debated during the upcoming tax reform debates in 2013.

If you are looking to buy, sell, or need a property management company, please contact me at 512-423-069eight.

Urban Condo Near Downtown Austin 2205 N Lamar #111

Caswell Loft Condo For Sale, Austin, Tx

Check out this great Urban condo near the heart of Downtown Austin yet nestled away in trees across from Pease Park. The condo is a 1 bedroom 1 bath and features 11 Ft Tongue and groove ceilings with steel beams, stainless appliances, polished concrete floors, motorized window treatments, glass mosaic tiles, and large windows that illuminate the rooms with bright light. Incredible location, it’s close to UT, Caswell Tennis Courts, Seton Medical, and Downtown Austin. Hike and bike trails are across the street surrounding Shoal Creek. There is 1 reserved parking space (covered carport) that comes with unit and it is below the building. The Caswell Loft Condominiums are a low rise community tucked right off N Lamar in Central Austin. For More information including the price, contact Cari.

Cari Patterson -Broker
Vance J. Elliott Realty
1504 Aquarena Springs Dr., Ste. 204
San Marcos, TX 78667
(512) 353-3002 ex

t. 21
(512) 423-0698 Mbl.
(877)394-2877 Fax

Podcasts, Catching up on the Go

Are you always on the go and have a hard time finding time to catch that great radio show, pastor’s sermon or that audio book you have been trying to get to? This day and age there is really no excuse, just grab your ipod, ipad, or any MP3 player and listen on the go.

Have you heard of the podcast? A podcast is an audio or video program that lives on the Internet and can be downloaded to your computer as an mp3 file. Missed your favorite sermon from church or radio show? No worries, you can download them to your MP3 device and catch them when you are riding in your car, flying on a plane, taking that bus commute, or riding your bike to class.

Many people forget their device can be so useful and educational. MP3’s are not just for listing to music anymore. With over 2 million songs that can be downloaded on itunes, they now offer over 30,000 podcasts. I even listen to one of my favorite jazz musicians on his weekly podcasts. Keep current on the latest real estate trends, mortgage outlook, NPR, sports shows, college lectures, and the list goes on. The best part is podcasts are free.

Take a gander, see if there is anything to peak your interest and perhaps you will find this is a great resource to save you time while on the go! Let me know if you find a podcast I need to check out!

Cleansing for Success

Cleansing for Success

For many of us, life is like a race. Our daily routines and schedules are so packed full we never take time for ourselves to focus on health, wellness, and exercise. About 45 days ago I started a cleanse. This was not a traditional cleanse where you starve yourself and you drink fetid lemon cayenne water.
The cleanse was composed of healthy shakes, organic foods (including fruits and vegetables) and emphasized portion control. I eliminated sugar, gluten, dairy, soy, and alcohol for 30 days. I was only hungry at mealtimes, was equipped to make healthy desserts, and never felt deprived. Not only did I loose 10 lbs, I gained mental clarity, calmness, and confidence in myself.
This in turn has helped me be more efficient in working, accomplishing my goals, and being more relaxed when the storms of life hit me. Lets face it, you can’t avoid the bad news, stress, and disappointments of life; but how we react to them can alter and change our progress and growth. Take time for yourself and you will be surprised the difference it can make in your productivity.

If a small thing has the power to make you angry, does that not indicate something about your size? ~Sydney J. Harris

If you would like more information about the cleanse, feel free to email me, I will be happy to share.

Cari Patterson -Broker
Vance J. Elliott Realty
1504 Aquarena Springs Dr., Ste. 204
San Marcos, TX 78667
(512) 353-3002 Xt. 21
(512) 423-0698 Mbl.
(877)394-2877 Fax

Let Real Estate Be Your Passive Investment for Retirement

There are many theories about how to plan for your retirement. One I have taken on personally is to make a goal for myself to implement new proven strategies to make passive income.  Try to make a goal for yourself this year to build and expand your real estate nest egg.  Once you purchase your property, put it on an aggressive amortization and/or a bi-monthly mortgage and you will see that 30 year amortization cut to 18 1/2 years plus or minus.  Likewise, apply additional cash flow to principal reduction. By the time you reach retirement age, the asset will be paid off, you can sell the asset as a seller financed note,  and you will reap all the interest and equity in that property. Call me to assist you in finding properties to start, add to, or finalize your investment portfolio.

Cari Patterson 512-423-0698

Vance Elliott Realty- Broker

Investing in San Marcos

News of Texas State University moving to the WAC in 2012 has created quite a buzz around the San Marcos, Texas community. The campus is expanding with the Undergraduate Academic Center, the state of the art Performing Arts Center and much, much, more.  Texas State is now the 5th largest University in the state with more than 32,000 students currently enrolled.

Currently, San Marcos is undergoing dynamic growth with Texas State University additions, and it’s prime location between the Austin and San Antonio corridor.

Don’t wait to find your son or daughter a rental, why not invest in something in which you will benefit for years to come?  The student population continues to grow in San Marcos and your equity builds while you student lives there. Once they graduate, your property can be turned into a rental revenue stream for you to enjoy many years after they are finished with school.

Don’t have a dependent in college yet you still want to invest? A college town is an ideal place to own rental houses, condos, duplexes, four-plexes, and apartments.

At Vance Elliott Realty, we are your one stop establishment for full service real estate services.

Cari Patterson, or “Condo Cari”, is our condo specialist if your looking for a condo or she can help you find the perfect investment to meet your vision of building a portfolio.

Don’t put off today, start building your financial freedom and invest in your future.