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Stanberry REALTORS® Blog

Now that the weather is warming up and beautiful weekends become commonplace many of you will be looking to complete some yard work. Before diving in though you should be aware of Oak Wilt and the problems that it can lead to for you and your neighbor's trees.  Oak Wilt is caused by the fungus Ceratocystis fagacearum and is a destructive disease affecting live oaks and red oaks in Central Texas.  This fungus can spread tree to tree through roots or by beetles moving spores between trees. Your trees will become vulnerable to infection whenever your oaks have new, open wounds like when you are pruning off unsightly branches.    

How Can I Tell If I Have Oak Trees?

In Central Texas, our oak trees are predominately live oaks and red oaks.  A…
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We have a lot of land under agricultural use in Central Texas.  People often ask us about how tax exemptions work, and the answer may be surprising.  Most of the “tax relief”  processes in place are not exemptions at all, but rather an adjustment to the way the land is valued for tax purposes.  The effect is the same, it lowers the property owners tax bill, but the way to get there is very specific. The Texas constitution permits certain kinds of agricultural land to be appraised for tax purposes at a productivity value, rather than a market value. This special appraisal value is based solely on the land’s capacity to produce agricultural products.

How is the Farm & Ranch exemption calculated?

Agricultural valuation on a property requires that

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The City of Austin is in the process of updating flood maps as a result of studies regarding the following creeks: Boggy, Bull and West Bull, Carson, Cottonmouth, Dry Creek East, Fort Branch, Shoal, and Tannehill. The City website states that the new, more accurate maps will remove approximately 2,400 properties from the flood plain.  On the other hand, roughly an additional 2,400 other properties will be soon considered to be part of the flood plain.  The City website states that the new maps should become official next January, but are already in use by the City of Austin for controlling future development.

At a recent Stanberry & Associates meeting, we were fortunate enough to have Wes Birdwell, P.E. speak to us about how the flood maps are

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Whether you are remodeling for profit, your own enjoyment, or making repairs to property damage from our recent violent weather episodes, you can follow these guidelines to reduce waste and pollution, and be more efficient in the use of energy, water, and other resources, and end up with a home where you are healthier and happier.

Choose Materials Carefully

Reduce environmental impact by being careful about how you source materials.  Choose materials that are produced more locally and with less energy involved in its production.

Do your homework by researching countertops, flooring, and other materials to identify your best options https://tree.house/ is a great resource for checking out materials. They are a sustainable home improvement

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The difficult Austin real estate market is making it tough on buyers. The only real way to get a competitive edge is to anticipate the difficulties that you will face in the future, plan for them and organize a team to help you succeed. Here are some ideas on how you can make sure you get into a home that you own the next time your lease comes up for renewal or your rent gets raised.

First – Plan Your Finances for Purchase

Getting out of the cycle of renting will take a certain amount of financial discipline. There are plenty of simple strategies that you can start today, which if followed correctly can position you for your future home. A lot of people have saved their whole down payment by getting part of their paycheck direct deposited into a

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The real estate market is cyclic, with a more active market in the spring and summer, and a less active market in fall and winter.  It is similarly cyclic during every decade with cycles of increasing activity and, then downturns with less activity.  You may have noticed that the long term view of a home’s worth always shows increasing value.  If you own a home now, it is, in almost all cases, of greater value than when you bought it, therefore, you have some equity in it. By holding on to your home, you can establish a real estate retirement plan.

The Real Estate Retirement Plan

If you think that it is a good time to sell, move to a bigger home or move out of town, you might consider keeping the property that you own now as a rental. You can pay

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