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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Important Questions to Ask your Mortgage Lender

Katy Home Sellers: Help Your Home Appraise, Part Two

This article is compliments of the Chris Bonin Loan Team.

Following are pertinent  questions you should ask your lender once you receive your approval letter. Leave nothing to chance! It is imperative that you interact with you mortgage lender on a regular basis.

For a referral to outstanding lenders, feel free to call me at 713-818-2404 or email me at juliefuelling@sbcglobal,net. I have sold Houston/Cypress and Katy real estate for over 24 yeas; experience does matter!

- See more at: http://fuellingkaty.com/?p=5287&preview=true#sthash.QqTFF0Qx.dpuf

Following are pertinent  questions you should ask your lender once you receive your approval letter. Leave nothing to chance! It is imperative that you interact with you mortgage lender on a regular basis.

For a referral to outstanding lenders, feel free to call me at 713-818-2404 or email me at juliefuelling@sbcglobal,net. I have sold Houston/Cypress and Katy real estate for over 24 yeas; experience does matter!

- See more at: http://fuellingkaty.com/?p=5287&preview=true#sthash.QqTFF0Qx.dpuf

  • What type of loan do you recommend for me?
  • Have you pulled my credit score? What is it?
  • Do you have enough of my pay stubs to proceed?
  • Have I provided my tax returns?
  • Do I have enough funds to close? How much will I need to bring to closing?
  • Are there any items on my credit report, funds to close  or income that may be a potential problem.
  • When will you provide me with a fee worksheet detailing my monthly payment and interest rate?
  • How long does it take your company to underwrite a file?
  • How long does it take your company to appraise the home?
  • Do you feel we will make the closing date on time as agreed?
  • Is there anything else I need to know?

It is imperative that you keep in close contact with your mortgage lender! For recommendations to several outstanding lenders, feel free to contact me at 713-818-2404 or [email protected]

I have sold Katy/Cypress and Houston real estate for over 24 years. Experience does matter!

 

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Homes Sale Slowdown? Not in Houston!

You won’t find signs of the traditional autumn slowdown in the Houston real estate market as August provided a 27th consecutive month of positive home sales. Following July’s small uptick in home inventory, buyers once again outpaced sellers in August, sending months of inventory from 3.4 to 3.3 months versus 4.9 months at the same time last year.

According to the latest monthly report prepared by the Houston Association of REALTORS® (HAR), home sales climbed 16.2 percent year-over-year, with contracts closing on 7,504 single-family homes. Monthly home sales volume has topped the 7,000 mark for four straight months, matching levels last seen in the spring of 2007.

The median price of a single-family home—the figure at which half the homes sold for more and half for less—rose 12.8 percent to $186,200. The average price increased 16.4 percent year-over-year to $260,607. Both figures represent the highest prices ever seen in an August in Houston.

August brought gains to all housing segments except the under-$80,000 market. Homes selling from $250,000 through the millions registered the greatest increase in sales volume.

“This has definitely been a summer sales season unlike any we have seen before,” said HAR Chairman Danny Frank with Prudential Anderson Properties. “Our small bump in inventory in July was short-lived as consumers bought faster than homeowners sold in August. It’s difficult to say exactly when Houston’s boiling real estate market will begin to cool down.”

Foreclosure property sales reported in the HAR Multiple Listing Service (MLS) dropped 47.0 percent compared to August 2012. Foreclosures currently make up just 7.7 percent of all property sales, down Read the rest of this entry »

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Make the Home Improvements Buyers Most Want

 
The most important home features buyers want are the ones that keep them cool, entertained and give them room to store their stuff.
 
Central air conditioning, (a “given”  in Houston), a walk-in closet in the master bedroom and being pre-wired for home entertainment and Internet were the three home features most valuable to buyers according to the 2013 National Association of Realtors Profile of Buyers’ Home Features Preferences.
 
If resale is important to you, the survey offers insights on improvements that can help when you’re ready to sell and add to your enjoyment of your home now. Chances are your home already has air conditioning — most owner-occupied U.S. homes do. But you can add a master closet for roughly $3,000 to $10,000. Get the most from your new master closet by including a laundry area, Read the rest of this entry »

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David Weekley Homes and the New Cinco Ranch Development — Ashfield Gardens

 

David Weekley

 5 10 designer palettes 058

Ashfield Gardens is an exclusive new area within Cinco Ranch. It offers easy access to freeways, shopping, entertainment, restaurants, 11 swimming pools, tennis courts, bike/walking trails and an 18 hole golf course. Set right in the heart of Cinco Ranch, this luxury development has its  own “residents only” Clubhouse.

The Clubhouse offers a wonderful center in which to entertain when residents don’t want to entertain at home. It features a  great room, game/card room, kitchen, outdoor kitchen with  living space and a full exercise room. There is also a gorgeous fire pit. It’s a grand gathering place in which to hold club functions. A part-time activities hostess is coming soon.

David Weekley Homes has especially designed new home plans with this section in mind. The David Weekley Homes incorporate an open, (no wasted space concept), which includes living space both inside and outside. There is an understated sense of luxury!

Plans range from 2255 square feet up to 3200 square feet. All can be personalized to fit the Read the rest of this entry »

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Cinco Ranch’s Heritage Grand Offers Residents a Grand Lifestyle

 
Heritage Grand in Cinco Ranch is a grand lifestyle for active adults over 55-years old! Part of the master-planned community Cinco Ranch, this gated community is in an ideal location, just west of Houston in Katy. Heritage Grand offers spacious Luxury Homes so residents can spend time enjoying their new life.
 
Heritage Grand active adult community sets the standard for lifestyle, fulfillment and value. This unique resort-at-home community provides a private world where friendships flourish.
 
Today, there are five patio homes on the market ranging in price from $200,000 to $372,300. There are eight homes that are sale pending! This is indicative of the bustling market in Heritage Grand. If you are shopping for a home in Heritage Grand, call me so we can get started looking right away! 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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Carpets in Need of a Tune-Up? Try These Ideas!

 

Before you try any of these methods, be sure to pre-test the carpet or stain; do this somewhere inconspicuous, like inside a closet.

First, to really get it clean, sweep the carpet with a broom, which will make the nap stand up and loosen embedded dirt. Next, vacuum the carpet. Your carpet should show a noticeable improvementjust from taking these two steps.

If you have pets and need help neutralizing strong odors, mix one cup Borax with two cups cornmeal. Sprinkle the carpet with this mixture. Let stand one-hour, then vacuum. To freshen the carpet, combine three-quarters of a cup of baking soda, two tablespoons cornstarch, and one-quarter cup perfumed talcum powder. Sprinkle on the dry carpet, let stand five to fifteen minutes, then vacuum.

Spot cleaning tips:

  • Do use a clean white, absorbent terry towel
  • Do blot or tamp the spot
  • Do pretest the carpet in an inconspicuous area
  • Do clean the stain from the edge to the center
  • Do apply cleaner to the towel
  • Do clean with modest amounts of cleaning solution
  • Do adhere to product safety guidelines and general instructions
  • Do remove the stain as soon as it is noticed
  • Do remove the dirty excess before cleaning.
  • Do use cleaning compounds at lukewarm temperature
  • Don’t saturate the carpet with cleaning compounds
  • Don’t apply heat or vigorously scrub the stain
  • Don’t leave the stain until later
  • Don’t fail to remove dried excess stain prior to cleaning

Don’t forget to pre-test the carpet or stain. Follow these tips and your carpet should look good as new again in no time!

If you would like to discuss touring 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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Title Insurance Rates to Increase in Texas on May 1st by 3.8%

 

A title insurance policy protects a real estate owner or lender against any loss or damage they might experience because of liens, or defects in the title to their property. In the sale of residential property in Texas, most often the seller pays for and provides this coverage for the buyer.

According to the Texas Land Title Association, this is the first time in over 20 years that premiums have been increased; the last price adjustment was in 1991. In fact, during the intervening years, policy rates actually decreased by almost 20%.

Title insurance rates are set by the Commissioner of Insurance as part of a thorough evidentiary based public meeting and hearing process. Extensive statistical data is gathered from title insurance underwriters and agents on an annual basis including expense and income figures as well as data on claims losses. This information is used to establish a cost that allows for a reasonable rate of return and is fair to the consumer.

Both the Office of Public Insurance Counsel and the Texas Department of Insurance staff testified at the hearing that this adjustment was reasonable and was supported by the evidence.

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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Houston Home Sales Blossom in March

 

HOUSTON — (April 16, 2013) — It’s hard to tell that the spring home buying season has begun because real estate transactions throughout Greater Houston never slowed during the traditionally quieter winter months. The addition of nearly 119,000 jobs over the past 12 months and the resulting need for housing, combined with continued low interest rates, helped make March Houston’s 22nd consecutive month of positive home sales.

According to the latest monthly data prepared by the Houston Association of REALTORS® (HAR), home sales jumped 17.0 percent compared to last March. Housing inventory, which had been at a 13-year low of 3.6 months during the first two months of the year, shrank slightly in March to 3.5 months.

The lower supply of homes and added demand sent prices higher. The median price of a single-family home—the figure at which half the homes sold for more and half for less—rose 6.5 percent to $172,000, an all-time record high for Houston. The average price rose 4.6 percent year-over-year to $236,195, the second highest level ever.

Contracts closed on 5,779 single-family homes. That is the largest one-month sales volume since August 2012. All housing segments experienced gains except for those priced under $80,000. Homes selling between $80,000 and $250,000 registered the greatest sales volume increase. Read the rest of this entry »

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