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All Blog Entries by Richard Soto

Richard is the CEO & Broker of VIP Realty, The Premier Firm in Real Estate. Our offices focus on the Austin, Dallas, Houston & San Antonio real estate markets. To keep up-to-date with the Texas real estate market by visit our real estate blog.

Found 101 blog entries published by Richard Soto.

Apart from its vast size, Texas has a reputation for barbecue, wide-open spaces and thriving cities. The largest state in the U.S. not only dwarfs others in land mass but also ranks number two in the nation when it comes to population and population growth. Here are the ten best places to live in Texas. 

1. Highland ParkHighland Park, Texas

Despite being landlocked by the city of Dallas, Highland Park is proud of its small-town atmosphere. Some of the homes for sale in the area were built as far back as the 1940’s, though many have been torn down to build larger, more expensive homes. Highland Park home prices and real estate is the highest per square foot in the Metroplex and land alone can cost over $1million. With a perfect rating school district, small-town

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Many colleges and universities in Texas are located in the cities of Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, El Paso, Corpus Christi and Austin. Two of the state’s publicly funded universities – the University of Texas, Austin and Texas A&M University, College Station are among the largest universities in the country, with each enrolling roughly 40,000 undergraduate students.Texas Colleges & Universities

In matters, real estate, one of the benefits of investing in properties near any university campus, is that property owners can keep their investments insulated from the dips in the market as student housing is always a necessity.

Here are some of the top ten universities in Texas you should consider.

1. Rice University

Located in the heart of Houston’s Museum District,

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Austin is a thriving city with a cosmopolitan luxury real estate market. It comprises of properties in Travis, Williamson, and Hays counties. The rapid growth in population along with modern infrastructure has created demand for luxury homes both inside and outside the city of Austin. Buyers can find a wide variety of homes in different architectural styles, locations and price points.

Here are some of Austin’s newest luxury subdivisions. 

1. Belvedere

Belvedere is one of Austin’s newer luxury neighborhoods and is ideal for families who want to be a short distance from the town, inside a gated community with loads of amenities. This subdivision was named the Best Overall Community at the 2010 Max Awards and 2010 Star Awards. The most common

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Houston New Home Communities

Houston’s growing job market, countless corporate headquarters and diverse culture of ethnicities is a magnet for people relocating or seeking new challenges. The “City with No Limits” has seen new homes with modern features and resort-like amenities spring up, giving buyers several options to choose. Thanks to the city’s mild winters you’ll enjoy plenty of warm weather to get outside and explore.New Construction Homes for Sale in Houston

Here are some of the best new home communities in Houston. 

 

1. The Groves

The Groves is a pristine mater planned community that offers residents respite from the hustle and bustle of city life. Residents have access to a resort-like swimming pool, fishing at the Fish Camp and picnic areas in the neighborhood parks.

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A house is probably one of the biggest investment the average Texan will ever make. To make such an investment a reality, the state of Texas offers its citizens a simple way to save money on their property taxes through a homestead exemption. Eligible Texas homeowners can reduce the taxes owed on their property by a certain percentage, by filing a homestead exemption. If you wish to know how to go about it, the guide below will help you learn more about Texas Homestead Exemptions.

What is a Homestead Exemption?

A homestead exemption removes a part of the value of your house from taxation and lowers the amount of your property taxes. To qualify you must fulfill the following:

· Be the owner

· Must be your primary residence in January when

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For an entrepreneur running a business, a time may come when you will have to make the decision whether to buy or lease commercial property or space.

It’s easy to plan for a car, vacation or education. But deciding which property type best suits your needs can present many challenges.

Here are some pros and cons for both buying and leasing a commercial property or space to help you make that choice.

1. The Pros of Buying

Extra Income: Ownership allows you to rent out unused space. The rental revenue can be reinvested in the business or help pay the mortgage.

Tax Advantages: The associated costs of owning and operating commercial property allows you to claim tax deductions. This includes interest on mortgage and property taxes.

Control:

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People love bats, but it seems only in baseball or Gotham City. The real deal kinda freaks people out.

But it shouldn’t. Bats are actually one of the great critters on this planet. Without them, the environment and its many ecosystems would suffer greatly, and you and I would be awash in bugs. Bats provide pollination and seeding and are so vital to some ecosystems that the absence of bats in some parts of the world would cause entire plant species to die out. And bat guano is such a powerful fertilizer that many crops in many areas of the world would dry up if bats were not around.

Less freaked out? Good. Now you can check out the best place to bat-watch in Austin. The Congress Avenue Bridge, right downtown, is home to the largest urban bat

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Whether you’re app-happy or suffer from app-fatigue, there are some apps you just gotta have. The best apps are those that answer the daunting question: What do you want to do tonight?

Well, if you want some good answers on what to do in and around the capital area, check out these great mobile apps:

1. Happy Hours

Ducking out of work a little early? We won’t tell your bosses, but we can’t promise they won’t find you at the same happy hour they’re going to. Happy Hours, gives an exhaustive list of food and drink specials going on in most large U.S. cities, and that definitely includes Austin. Click through for a photo of the bar or restaurant and get details about the menu, hours, specials, and what people have to say. Vote up your favorite spots

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Austin is mostly famous for its youth-centered nightlife and college-age shenanigans. But there is a quieter, more contemplative, more family-oriented side of Austin, and one of the best examples of it is the Umlauf Sculpture Garden.

The garden is named for the great Austin-area sculptor and art teacher Charles Umlauf, who taught At UT-Austin for 40 years and in 1985 donated his home and grounds for use as a sculpture garden and repository. Being a former home, the Umlauf is big on promoting art and sculpture to families and children. The garden features Family Days, free and open to all, with hands-on programs designed for those with children ages four to ten. There are stories, garden yoga, demonstrations, and live music.

But the Umlauf offers

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Let’s just all acknowledge that being in Texas gives one a hankerin’ for really good barbecue. Fortunately, it also gives one access to really good barbecue. In fact, it may be harder to choose which BBQ joint to pick from the bevy of low-lying fruit.

Well, don’t say we’re not here to help. Check out a few of these top-notch BBQ places in the Austin area.

1. Franklin Barbecue 

There is little that people agree on when it comes to any best-list rankings, but few who know Austin barbecue would not put Franklin Barbecue in the top spot. Everything, absolutely everything, from Aaron Franklin’s kitchen is the stuff only hyperbole could even try to make sense of. It’s so good that people with many other things to do spend as much as five hours in line

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