GEICO to add 1,000 Jobs in Katy!

 The-Gecko-GEICO

Gov. Rick Perry joined GEICO Chairman Tony Nicely and Lance LaCour, President and CEO of the Katy Area Economic Development Council, to announce the opening of a GEICO claims office in Katy.

The office is located at 21420 Merchants Way in Katy. GEICO expects the office to employ 400 associates by 2015 and up to 1,000 associates within the next three years. The company will fill positions for entry-level claims representatives, degreed candidates for liability claims representatives and college graduates for GEICO’s fast-track management development program with a focus on claims operations.

“We are energized by GEICO’s decision to establish its Houston Claims Center and 1,000 new jobs in Katy, Texas,” said Lance LaCour, president and CEO of the Katy Area Economic Development Council (EDC). “Katy Area EDC’s targeted focus on recruiting quality companies, such as GEICO, will Read the rest of this entry »

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Westpark Tollway/FM 1093 Expansion to Begin in November 2013

 

Construction on expanding FM 1093 and the Westpark Tollway is scheduled to begin in November once the design and environmental clearance processes are completed, according to an update from Fort Bend County.

The project is split into two phases with Phase I stretching more than four miles from FM 1463 to the Grand Parkway, and has a price tag of more than $60 million. An update released on Feb. 21 announced that the survey and property mapping are complete, and the design is pending approval by various entities.

If the process remains on schedule, the design will be finalized in June, construction will start in November and finish in summer 2015.

Phase II runs from James Road to FM 1463, and the schedule is currently under development.

If you would like to discuss touring tour Katy, Cypress or Houston homes or selling your home, contact me at 713-818-2404 or [email protected]  I have sold local real estate for over 23 years. Experience does matter!

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Pricey Katy Rentals Reflect Tight Market

Nationwide, more than 20 million households spent over 30 percent of their income last year on rent. In fact, more than half of those renters spent at least half their income on housing, “severely burdening” their finances. This information is from Realtor Magazine and USA Today.

Demand has surged for rental homes as many prior homeowners have lost their homes to short sales and foreclosures. Credit repair is a lengthy process. The other factor is the very tight lending environment which precludes many families from realizing the American dream of home ownership.

In the past few years, median rents have soared almost 20%. In Katy, one is hard pressed to find a reasonable property for less than $900 a month. Properties on the southside of I-10 are next to impossible to find below $1100 per month. With a shortage in homes for lease, landlords are requiring reasonable credit scores, good rental history and steady employment. Criminal background checks are also done on a prospective tenant. It is not unusual for a new rental property to receive multiple applications shortly after it goes on the market.

According to HAR MLS data, leases accounted for 35% of Houston area residential real estate transactions last year. In 2011, rentals accounted for a little bit above 50% of all real estate Read the rest of this entry »

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Drilling Rig Equipment Firm to Build New Facility Along Katy’s Grand Parkway

It’s a long way from Aberdeen, Scotland to Katy, but the two cities do have things in common.

Aberdeen is known as the “the Oil Capital of Europe,” while Katy is the headquarters of various petroleum industry-related businesses, and is about to become home to one more: Hampco, a company that builds drilling rig equipment and which is owned by Scotland native Andy Grieve, who entered the drilling business while living in Aberdeen.

Hampco, which also does consulting, upgrades, maintenance and other services, only recently began experiencing a rise in its custom-equipment designing and manufacturing services — which brought about the need to build a new facility. “We’ve grown substantially over the last three years,” Grieve says, “and after doing a large amount of sub-contracting, the natural next step was to find a site and build a facility large enough Read the rest of this entry »

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Katy New Construction Update–September 2012

This article is compliments of The Katy Area Economic Development  Council

Cinco Ranch Southwest located at Spring Green Boulevard and FM 1093 is almost nearing completion, with 905 lots developed in 2011, 678 lots projected for 2012, and 5,200 total lots are projected at completion.

Cinco Ranch Northwest projected 429 lots for 2012, and 1,182 total lots are projected at completion in about four years. The firm and the school district have already determined that another school is needed in that community.

Cross Creek Ranch projected 550 lots for 2012 and 6,575 total lots are projected at completion.

Churchhill Farms, a project located west of FM 1463 is under construction with 187 lots projected for 2012, and 570 total lots projected at completion.

Pine Mill Ranch completed 153 lots in 2011; 176 lots are projected in 2012, and 1,212 total Read the rest of this entry »

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New Katy High School: Falcon Landing Boulevard Breaks Ground

Fort Bend County is moving forward with a new east-west corridor named Falcon Landing Boulevard.  “The biggest reason is we have the new high school that’s going in at Gaston and Falcon Landing Boulevard next year, Fort Bend County Pct. 3 Commissioner Andy Meyers said. “And we need to make some more east-west connections across the creek.”

Meyers continued, “We’re building about 3,200 feet from Westheimer Parkway to the creek, Willowfork at Buffalo Bayou, and Pulte Homes is going to be building 4,200 feet through their new subdivision of King Lakes.

Fort Bend County will be building a four-lane road. The section being built by Pulte Homes will be a two-lane. Voters passed a bond in 2007 to fund this project. Building is estimated to take between 9 to 10 months.  The county will start construction on the third phase, improvements to  Falcon Boulevard to Greenbusch, in October.

If you are interested in selling or buying real estate in Katy, contact me at 713-818-2404. I have sold real estate for over 23 years. Experience does count!

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Katy’s Tortoise, Hare and a Seagull

I love this photo and immediately thought it would be a great analogy for the recovering real estate market. Steadily and most assuredly the Katy real estate market is making great strides.

Katy real estate market

Certain areas of Katy, especially those houses south of I-10, are experiencing a very competitive market. In most sections of Cinco Ranch, it is not a buyers market.

Public perception seems to lag behind the current market movement. Sometimes a buyer has to lose several houses when they make low-ball offers before they enter into competitive negotiations.

To tour Katy homes and work with a Realtor who can assist you in selecting a home, navigate repairs and negotiations, call me at 713-818-2404. I have sold Katy real estate for over 21 years. Experience does count!

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“Churchill Farms” Coming to Katy/Fulshear

beazer homes Katy TX

Beazer Homes, an Atlanta based builder, recently closed on 209 acres on FM 1463 for a development to be called Churchhill Farms. According to The Houston Chronicle,  ”Named after the founder of Fulshear, Churchill Fulshear, Churchill Farms will have 550 lots, more than 40 acres of open space, a 10-acre lake and a community pool and clubhouse.” The first model homes are scheduled to open in January 2012.

The Cardiff family, one of Katy’s oldest families, retained this last tract of the old family homestead. The land was purchased by the Cardiff family in 1924 and recently sold to Beazer.

The Chronicle went on to say, “Homes will range from $150,000 to $250,000, depending on the lot sizes. The smaller lots are targeting single professionals working in the Energy Corridor in west Houston or medical professionals working in the hospitals along I-10. The larger lots will likely house move-ups.”

Beazer has announced that preliminary plans include 16 acres of retail and commercial development.

To tour Katy or Fulshear homes and work with a Realtor who can assist you in negotiations, call me at 713-818-2404. I have sold Katy real estate for over 21 years. Experience does count!

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The Good News You Never Hear…

good news about katy housing market

About today’s real estate market:

Courtesy of federalhousingtaxcredit.com

It seems like every time we turn on the evening news or read a newspaper headline, the bad news deepens our fear and concerns about the economy. With the news media in full throttle, using terms like “meltdown” and “crises”, it’s easy to see why you might lack confidence in buying and selling a home.

We have to remind ourselves that the media reports negative news, not positive. Their key objective is to pull in an audience and advertisers, not to make you feel good about yourself. They announce the unemployment rate rising despite the fact that millions of people are still working, making money, eating at restaurants and even buying and selling homes.

Are we really spinning out of control? Let’s look at the facts remembering that Katy is far ahead in financial recovery than other parts of the nation. The following data in based on national averages:

  • The U.S. Gross Domestic Product is greater than Japan’s, Germany’s and China’s combined.
  • Approximately 30% of American homes are owned free and clear and Read the rest of this entry »

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Business Booms in Katy–$20 Million Construction Project Announced

PathFinder Energy Builds Katy TX Facility

PathFinder Energy Services, Inc., a Houston based company, has announced it has begun work on their new corporate location in Katy.  The 34-acre site is located near the northwest corner of Colonial Parkway and the Grand Parkway on the north side of I-10. The site is adjacent to the 800,000 square-foot 99-Cents-Only warehouse.

This influx of PathFinder employees to the Katy area will be a boon to Katy real estate particularly to homes on the market.

According to The Houston Chronicle, “The firm anticipates spending more than $20 million on the technology center. Plans are to build a two-story facility and Read the rest of this entry »

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