Author: Bob McKenna


About Bob McKenna

As managing broker of Austin Real Estate Partners, Bob is a strong believer in the importance of teamwork to create a collaborative environment among agents and support staff. Bob also believes in partnering with clients to provide the objective support they need and deserve on every real estate transaction.

Circle C Housing Market Update February 2019

Circle C Housing Market Update February 14, 2019

Hey neighbors, Happy Valentine’s Day!  Hopefully you’ve picked up something special for your Valentine and can relax the rest of the day.  Me, I’m thinking about the housing market in good old Circle C.  If you have a few minutes, let’s go over the numbers for the past 6 months and January specifically.  It’s a new year and people are thinking about moving again.

The past six months and January totals

Between August 2018 and January 2019, we recorded 150 sales in Circle C.  Average size was 2806 Square Foot, average price was $512k or $182/Square Foot.  Those numbers were slightly down from last month.  Only nine homes closed in Circle C during the month of January!  That’s amazing.  We typically average about 30 home closings in a month, but January was SLOW.  Remember, January closings are the result of December contracts… so really December was a slow month.  Last year we saw 16 homes close in January 2018.    The minimum sale recorded in January 2019 was a 1,690 Square Foot home for $379,500.  The average home in January was 2,621 SQUARE FOOT and closed at $453k.  The highest recorded sale in MLS for January was a 2,750 square foot home that closed at $465k.

When I think about the market now, I notice a few very interesting things.  First, the lack of homes on the market – it’s amazing to me that a community the size of Circle C (approx. 5500 homes) that only 30 homes are currently ACTIVE and for sale.  Of those 30, nearly half (14) are new construction.  That means there are only 16 resale homes available. Wow.  Using the National Association of REALTORS© months of inventory measurement, NAR would say that Circle C currently has only 1 month of inventory!  That is what we would call a giant Seller’s market.  Now there are more new construction homes available in various stages of build, but they may not be listed in the MLS.  Still, this is a tough environment for Buyers.

See table below to see the January stats year over year.


  Jan 2018 Jan 2019 % Change
Homes Sold 16 9 Down 44%
Minimum price $370,100 $372,500 Up 1%
Average price $454,521 $446,389 Down 2%
Median price $439,500 $464,000 Up 6%
High price $601,490 $525,000 Down 13%


The Take Away

It’s only been one month for 2019, but given our lack of resale home inventory I am not going to forecast a huge 2019 in terms of home sales.  After all, some of the current inventory is not actually ready to move into (new construction) yet.  I did notice a change from our two builders in the area – Cal Atlantic / Village Builders who have homes going up in Hillside Estates, Greyrock and Avana.  Looks like they are still going strong and I expect that Greyrock will be built out in early 2020.  Avana and Hillside Estates similarly.  Homes By AVI moved their sales office away but are building a few 3 story townhomes as specs, and fielding inquiries by phone.

It’s going to be an interesting year folks.  Here’s to your Valentine’s Day – we hope you have a wonderful day and an even greater year!

For More Information

For more information about the Circle C housing market and your particular neighborhood click here to view the updated Market Stats report on or  There you’ll see a google map with specific values for each neighborhood and if you scroll down a little two tabs with more information – one for the prior six months and one for the annual growth rate.

Still have questions about the market or what your home value could be today?  Call me directly at (512) 288-8088 and I’ll do my best to provide an answer and there is no obligation.

Circle C Housing Market Update January 2019

Circle C Housing Market Update January 5, 2019

Hey neighbor, got a few minutes?  Let’s take a quick look at Circle C’s last six months of home sales and as an added year-end bonus: the 1-year, 5-year and 10-year average price per square foot numbers across the 18 distinct communities within Circle C.

The past six months and annual totals

First, from July through December, we recorded 178 homes sold in Circle C.  The average sold price was $516k or $183/sf.  23 of those sales were closed in December.  Median price for December was $465k. As predicted, we recorded just under 370 homes closed for Circle C for the year, 367 to be precise, with prices ranging from a low of $349,500… a high of $1,190,170… an average of $512,854… and a median sold price of $483,235.  Remember not all sales are captured in the MLS – most off market homes are new construction and never reported through the MLS.

As a point of reference, in 2017… we saw 353 homes close.  So, the number of homes that sold year over year increased by 4% (14 units).  See Table 1 below to see the high-level year over year stats.


  2017 2018 % Change
Homes Sold 353 367 Up 4%
Minimum price $306,500 $349,500 Up 14%
Average price $497,969 $512,854 Up 3%
Median price $474,130 $483,235 Up 2%
High price $1,450,000 $1,190,000 Down 18%

Table 1: Year over Year comparison

CAGR versus Appreciation Rate

Before we dig into the longer time range changes, it’s important to clarify the measurement to not mislead.  The following numbers are called CAGR or compound annual growth rate.  CAGR is a measurement that smooths that annual rate of change over a specific time period.  At first glance, one might say CAGR is like an annual appreciation rate… but, true appreciation rate also considers currency inflation or deflation. CAGR does not.  Nevertheless, it is a fair representation of the direction of an asset – in this case the asset is a neighborhood average or median sales price, which we project on the value of a specific property.  The bottom line is this is an academic exercise performed at a fairly high-level and may or may not hold true at the individual home level.

The 1-year, 5-year and 10-year rate of change

We’ve been tracking home values in Circle C since 2003… but, we are only going to talk about the 1, 5 and 10 year values today.  That’s comparing the average sold price per square foot (S$/SF), for 2018 versus 2017, 2014 and 2009.  It’s also important to note that the economy was significantly different in 2009 (remember the great recession?).  Due to limited space, we will talk briefly at the entire subdivision level (Circle C) but for more details, you may want to see how your particular ‘neighborhood’ faired over the same time period… you’ll see how to do that in the final paragraph.

Ready?  Good.  Year over year the average sold price per square foot in Circle C rose from 177/sf to 184/sf.  That represents a 4.3% increase in average sold price / sf.  If we look back to 2014… the average sold price / sf was $151/sf…. So, a 6.6% increase compounded per year gets us to the same $184/sf in 2018.   Now, lets reach back to 2009 when the average sold price per square foot was $115/sf.  Wow, that’s a (184-115)/115 = 60% increase in average sold price / sf in ten short years.  The CAGR (annual growth rate) required to achieve that increase is 5.54% per year.  See Table 2 below for a quick summary of CAGR and Increase (decrease) in average sold price / sf for Circle C.

Measure 1 Year 5 Year 10 Year
CAGR 4.3% 6.6% 5.4%
Increase (Decrease) Percent (184-177)/177= 4% (184-151)/151= 22% (184-115)/115= 60%

Table 2: CAGR and Increase in Average Sold Price / SF

The Take Away

Any way we look at it we see home values on the increase.  But are they rising too fast?  Maybe.  Home values have increased faster than wages and with the rising interest rates (projected to end in the 5.5% to 5.8% by the end of 2019), I would guess that while the market in Circle C (and just about everywhere in Central Texas) would still be considered a seller’s market… I don’t think we’ll see the big growth year over year that we experienced back in 2014 (that year values rose 10.1%).

For More Information

For more information about the Circle C housing market and your particular neighborhood click here to view the updated Market Stats report on or  There you’ll see a google map with specific values for each neighborhood and if you scroll down a little two tabs with more information – one for the prior six months and one for the annual growth rate.

Still have questions about the market or what your home value could be today?  Call me directly at (512) 288-8088 and I’ll do my best to provide an answer and there is no obligation.

Circle C Housing Market Update September 2018

Circle C Housing Market Update September 25, 2018

Let’s take a quick look at the Circle C housing market for a few minutes. Specifically, March 2018 through August 2018. For that six-month period, we recorded 230 homes sold in Circle C. The average sold price was $514k or $184/sf. 39 of those were in August. That’s ~11% more homes than same time last year. The highest sales per month of the year was May 2018, when we recorded 53 homes sold. I expect to continue seeing sales in the 25-35 homes per month range for the next month or so before we go into the fall and winter months. By the end of the year, I would expect to see a total of 350-370 Circle C homes sold and recorded in MLS. Remember not all sales are captured in the MLS – most off market homes are new construction and never reported through the MLS.

Year to date (9/23/2018) the average home sold in Circle C this year is almost 2,800 square feet, was built in 2003 and sold for $504k. Prices and sizes do range from a low of 2,017 SF and $414k to a max of 4,363 sf and $725k. As projected in January 2018, we’ve seen slower price growth than the past few years. Year to date, prices are up approximately 4% over last year at $183/sf.
Average days on market is lower than same time last year at 36.5 days (on average) whereas in 2017, we were averaging 40 active days on the market before contract. That number can be skewed by the number of resale homes versus new construction homes as new construction homes that are listed in MLS (spec homes) may be tracked from the start of construction and are not ready for move in for 6-8 months.

We did see a ‘pop’ of resale homes hitting the market in this last week of September jumping from 50 in August to 57 on the 23rd of September. Still with for sale we have only ~ 1.6 months of inventory based on a sale rate of 39 homes per month. The short story there is we are in a robust seller’s market although Fed rate hikes and the potential of an economic slow down because of the recent global tariff’s being applied could damper the market a bit going into the winter months.

For more information about the Circle C housing market and an interactive map of the 5400 home master planned community click the one of the two links to view the updated Market Stats report on or if you still have questions about the market or what your home value could be today? Call me directly at (512) 288-8088 and I’ll do my best to provide an answer and there is no obligation.

14th Annual Stars and Stripes Celebration

Whew, it was a hot one temperature wise, but what a great time everyone had at our 14th Annual VIP Client Appreciation celebration at Grey Rock Golf Club’s Stars and Stripes event on July 3rd, 2018!

Over 240 clients and their friends attended this year’s celebration of our independence as a nation in our VIP section off the 18th fairway, with over 3,000 in total attendance at the club. The gates opened at 6pm and the parking lot filled quickly.

Parents and kids alike enjoyed 400 hot dogs, bags and bags of chips, cookies and lemonade in our section alone. Adam the Balloon man was busy making all sorts of fun hats and playful animals while Russ was busy applying temporary tattoos for kids. The adults enjoyed 3 kegs of Alaskan brew while the temperatures slowly dropped as the sun went down.

Finally, dusk arrived and the fireworks show began – this year – with the addition of lower flying fireworks that had the crowd cheering. We would like to thank Grey Rock Golf Club for catering to our needs as well as everyone who attended our party! We are looking forward to seeing you all again next year.

Photography courtesy of Sam Armstrong Photography

Rattlesnakes are no longer on my protected species list!

A note of thanks to all of you who sent me “Get Well Soon” wishes following my run in with a rattlesnake this past May.

What can I tell you – I learned a valuable lesson – and hopefully by following our updates on Facebook, you and your family learned what a bad idea it is to try to bag a viper regardless of their size.
My encounter was with what I would call a 2’ 4” ‘baby’ rattler but he (or she) got the better of me. Thanks of course go out to the folks at Seton SW ER and Dell Seton Trauma floor for their work and kindness while halting the effects of the venom. Doctors told me that in fact, the baby rattlesnakes are worse than their full-grown parents, apparently as the baby’s do not regulate the flow of venom in a bite, they unload it all!
I’m fortunate to say that there should be no long-term effects and the bite has pretty much healed although the swelling around my finger, while much reduced, lingers as a daily reminder. If you read the story about the unlucky man from Corpus Christi who was envenomated by a headless Rattler – please take note. I thought that story was a hoax, but apparently it is all too true, the chopped off head of rattlesnakes can and will bite for how long I’m not sure. Neighbors have since shared that is why you never pick up the head of a rattlesnake – use a shovel and bury it to avoid the risk of a bite! Or if you are faced with a decision of taking on a rattlesnake or walking away, choose the latter. It’s far less risky and certainly a less expensive solution.

Circle C Housing Market Update July 16, 2018

Let’s get caught up on how Circle C Austin homes are selling this year – through the first six months of 2018.

So far, we’ve recorded 199 home sales in MLS since January 2018, that’s 22 more than the same time last year or an increase of 12% YoY. Not all sales are recorded in MLS, so we can guess that there are more new construction homes closing above that number of 199. Nevertheless, the average size of the homes recorded so far is 2,830 sf and they are selling on average for $519k. That’s $19k more than same time last year or an increase of 4% YoY. The average age of a Circle C home sale is 2004. One thing to look for in the coming months is the sales of homes in Hillside Estates, that’s the Cal Atlantic (or Village Builders) section next to the blue water tower off FM 1826. There are nine lots in the gated Hillside Estates community, and so far, we are tracking 6 homes… 2 are listed as Active at an average of $951k and 4 are listed currently as Pending at an average price of $1,028k or just over 1 Million. Homes in Greyrock Ridge (another new construction area just south of SH 45 where Mopac begins is selling quickly. Greyrock Ridge has recorded 22 sales this year, 5 of those are resales and the 17 others are new homes.
There are 58 active homes currently for sale (as of July 16), a very low amount of inventory given we are averaging one home every single day. With 47 homes pending we have just under two months of active inventory. A balanced market is reportedly 6.5 months of inventory – so we are in a strong seller’s market. Note, just because it’s a seller’s market that does not mean pricing is completely out of this world, homes that are priced well relative to the competition and present as clean and open will sell. Homes that are over priced or do not present well – will sit. The market is what the market is. If you are selling in Austin but staying in town, you will be on the buyers’ side soon enough and feel the pain of little inventory and higher prices. Many sellers have intentionally not put their home on the market as they recognize that even if they were to downsize in terms of SF, they still may pay as much or more for the new home – which does not always make financial sense.
To see more information about the Circle C housing market click here to view the updated Market Stats report on or

Back to School Season

As most of you know, it’s about that time of year… Time for Back to School shopping!

Backpacks, school supplies, pens, pencils, lunch boxes, maybe some new outfits. That’s what I think of at least… but this year is a little different.

Austin Real Estate Partners is launching a new REWARDS program specifically for educators.

That’s the Teachers, Administrators or Staff at both public or private school systems. We know that being in education requires a whole new level of patience, dedication and commitment that most people don’t possess and we think our educators should be rewarded.

So, this year will be our first formal Educators Reward Program in Central Texas. What’s the REWARD program all about? Well, we know that many educators have a tough time with purchasing their first or even second homes. It’s just so expensive in Austin and the surrounding areas. Too expensive for many. That’s why we are going to share 20% of our paycheck with you when you purchase or sell a home with Austin Real Estate Partners. To learn more about it click the Educators Reward Program link or call us and we’ll explain.

So, here’s to all our dedicated Central Texas Educators! We are pleased we can help you with your “HOME” work for once!

Contact us today at (512) 288-8088 or email us to learn more

Update on SH45 SW Progress

Greetings friends and neighbors! I was recently sent a link to a drone video of the progress as of April 21st, 2017 on the planned SH45 Toll Road between Mopac and FM 1627 and I thought you might be interested in viewing the link as well.

SH45 SW has been a hot topic ever since the state owned right of way was acquired in 1987 for use as a future roadway connecting FM 1626, Bliss Spillar, Loop 1 (Mopac) and SH 45 West of Loop 1.

I live in Greyrock Ridge, a recently developed section of Circle C Ranch, located near the South and West corner of Loop 1 (Mopac) and SH 45, so I am witness to the construction efforts increasing daily. On those days when no work is going on, I’ve take the opportunity to hike approximately 1/3 of the route personally and take photos from the ground but the drone video gives a much better perspective on the route and progress thus far. For those of you who also live in Greyrock Ridge, note the 4:10 minute market of the video and you can clearly see the Greyrock Ridge homes to the left side of the screen as it approaches the Loop 1 (Mopac) and SH 45 SW connection.

Credit to Gregg Sales for the video and potentially more updates in the future. To learn more, click this YouTube video link or go to to learn more about the project.

Meridian Housing Market Update April 2017

Wow, what a difference one month makes!

We have entered the Spring Selling Season. In April Meridian recorded 8 Homes Sold, that’s 5 more than were recorded in March. Seems the jump in sales could be caused by several homes priced below $500k. The median sales price in April was $491k while the median price in March was $710k.

Over the prior six (6) months of sales, Meridian recorded 17 sales – with an average size of 3370 sf, and $537k. As of May 4th, there were 9 homes available for sale in the MLS with an average price of $759k.

The most sales were centered on homes between 3500-3999 sf (7) selling for an average of $152/sf or $557k. One super-sized property (>4500 sf) sold for approximately $165/sf or $745k.

The latest report appears below for your convenience. To see more details about sales in Meridian over the past 6, 12 or 18 months, feel free to send us a note and request a sales history report. Alternatively, we are now publishing a monthly update in the Neighbors of Circle C and Meridian magazine that is delivered to residents of Meridian by US Post.

Meridian Market Statistics

Market Statistics Update: April 2017

It’s that time of year again! More and more CCR homes are popping up on the market for sale and it seems that if they are priced correctly they are under contract just as quickly.

In April, Circle C recorded 26 sales in the MLS (some new construction or FSBO sales are not captured) with an average price of $518k with an average of 31 days on market. As of May 4th, there were 55 homes for sale in the MLS with an average price of $526k! Similarly, there were 60 homes under contract at an average price of $524k.

Over the past six (6) months CCR recorded 142 sales with an average price or $480k or $171 per Square Foot!

Compared to the same six (6) month time frame last year (November 2016-April 2017 versus November 2015-April 2016) the number of homes sold in the MLS jumped by 14 or 11% for an additional $4k, or +2%. Month over month we see a very slight uptick as the market maybe starting to normalize.

Just like last month, if I were to get out my crystal ball and make a forecast I would expect a solid spring for sellers. It’s still a “Seller’s Market” and Buyer’s continue to shop CCR due to the location, amenities and schools!

To see more details regarding the last six months of sales, check out what is selling in your neighborhood by viewing our market statistics. If you have questions, post them here or give our office a call.