- Government job losses are slowing Texas' employment growth, but the state's private sector continues to create jobs, offsetting government job losses.
- Texas created 15.4% of total jobs in the US from October 2010 to October 2011
- Non-farm jobs grew by 2.2% in Texas compared to 1.2% for the United States.
- Private sector growth was 3.4% vs. 1.7% for the nation.
Interest rates are at an historic low. Now may be the time to make that home purchase. Picking a neighborhood that fits your lifestyle and desires is an important part of the homebuying process. It can be challenging, though ... there are so many things to consider.
For a lot of people, quality schools top the list of desirable neighborhood amenities. It may surprise you that being in an area with good schools is important even for people without children because good schools mean a higher resale value. You will find the most recent Texas State Evaluation Agency's rating of our local schools on my homepage.
As unpleasant as it may be, the crime statistics of an area are important, too. Take your time and do your research on this one ... there are plenty of resources out there, including local law enforcement resources, Web sites, even neighborhood Internet groups.
You may also want to consider transportation issues, such as how living in an area is going to affect your day-to-day errands, your commute, and the ease of access to public transportation and major thoroughfares.
Some people want to be in close proximity to healthcare facilities. Others find that having quick access to shopping centers or their favorite grocery store or restaurants is a top priority. Still others may value features such as public pools and parks, access to bike routes and jogging and walking trails; others crave a lake view.
The point is that everyone's list will be different. The key is to find a neighborhood that scores well in areas you deem important. That's a good place to focus your search efforts.
If you're able to find everything you're looking for in a neighborhood, good for you! However, if you're like many people, you may have to make some sacrifices. A neighborhood you're considering may score well on most of your checklist but not meet every single one of your criteria. That's when you have to decide if one missing attribute can be offset by the presence of another.
When you are ready to begin this important search, please call me. I will help you work through the choices so that you can find the neighborhood best for your family.
For the first time ever, 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell below 4 percent, Freddie Mac reported in its weekly mortgage market survey.
In the last month mortgage rates have continued to set new weekly record lows, but the 30-year mortgages' latest drop below 4 percent may be an important threshold for potential buyers. The 30-year mortgage is the most popular financing option of buyers.
Mortgage rates are expected to stay well-below 5 percent through 2013, Fannie Mae economists are projecting. Home buyers taking out loans for purchase is expected to more than double in the next two years too, Inman News reports.
Rates have continued to free-fall as concerns over a global recession grows, Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac's chief economist, said in a statement.
Here's a closer look at rates for the week ending Oct. 6.
- 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.94 percent this week, down from last week's previous record low of 4.01 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.27 percent.
- 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.26 percent, another all-time low. This is the sixth-consecutive week the 15-year mortgage has posted new average record lows. Last week, 15-year rates averaged 3.28 percent. Last year at this time, 15-year rates averaged 3.72 percent.
- 5-year adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 2.96 percent this week, dropping from last week's 3.02 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 3.47 percent.
- 1-year ARMs: averaged 2.95 percent, the only mortgage rate to move up last week. Last week, the 1-year ARM averaged 2.83 percent. A year ago, the 1-year ARM averaged 3.40 percent.
By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine Daily News