January 2016

There are 8 blog entries for January 2016.

After a two and a half hour long debate, the Austin City Council voted Thursday to create an incentive-based program that rewards Uber and Lyft drivers who get a voluntary fingerprint background check.  The ordinance was approved on a 7-4 vote with Council Members Delia Garza, Ora Houston, Ellen Troxclair and Don Zimmerman voting against the ordinance.

Drivers who submit to the voluntary checks and pass will get incentives such as fee waivers, better parking and the ability to drop off riders closer to major events. Adler also wants to create a badge that will be displayed on the Uber and Lyft apps, indicating which drivers participate in the program. The ordinance actually applies to "peer-to-peer" enterprises which means taxi and limo drivers are

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70 Rainey St

  • On-site Restaurant, Bar, Pool, Gym
  • Park-like Terrace
  • Panoramic views
  • 164 Residences
  • 35 Stories
  • Planned Completion: Fall 2017

"Its street level is consistent with the distinct Rainey Street District, bringing the sought after elements and appealing character of the neighborhood into the building with meticulous attention to lighting, materials and design. Connect with nature and unwind as you walk past, looking up at the wood façade covered with vertical gardens." -http://www.70rainey.com

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Moviemaker.com based the list on the following criteria:
film production in 2015 (shooting days, number of productions and dollars generated)
film community and culture
equipment and facilities
tax incentives
cost of living
weather and transportation.

Austin Studios:
ATX Studios
Rooster Teeth Productions
Spiderwood Studios
South By Southwest
Troublemaker Studios

Robert Rodriguez
Richard Linklater
Yen Tan
Jason Cortlund.

Here's the full top 10 list for 2016:

  1. Atlanta
  2. New York City
  3. Austin, Texas
  4. Los Angeles
  5. Albuquerque, N.M.
  6. Chicago
  7. Seattle
  8. Boston
  9. San Francisco
  10. Memphis, Tenn.

To read the full report, click here.

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Engel & Völkers looks back on another record-breaking year once again: In the financial year 2015 the Group increased its commission revenues by 36.4 percent to 409.8 million euros. “It is not just the overall figure itself that makes this result so impressive. Never before have we achieved just a strong rise in turnover,” said Christian Völkers, CEO/ Founder of Engel & Völkers AG.

On the one hand, the Group’s Residential division played a key role in the high revenue growth. In the DACH region, residential property shops generated 15.2 percent higher overall turnover than in 2014.

This substantial rise was seen in many other European countries too: the Engel & Völkers Shops in Italy increased their commission revenues by 74 percent. In Spain there

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Austin-area single-family home sales and prices set all-time records in 2015, as well as records for the month of December 2015, according to the December 2015 and Year-End 2015 Multiple Listing Service (MLS) report released today by the Austin Board of REALTORS®.

Aaron Farmer, 2016 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS®, explained, “Demand for Austin-area real estate was stronger than ever in 2015, primarily due to our region’s job and ongoing population growth. However, low housing inventory levels, rising home prices and high housing development costs have brought Austin’s housing affordability issues to critical levels. Median price for single-family homes in the Austin area increased nearly $30,000 in the last year alone.”


According to

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There's been a lot of buzz recently about Austin's thriving sellers' market, but that doesn't mean buyers at all price points will be forced to deal with blink-and-you-missed-them listings or compete with multiple offers.  While the competition is fierce at the lower price points, the luxury market has shifted into one that benefits buyers, says Desmond Milvenan, a Realtor with Engel & Volkers Austin Westlake who has extensive experience in the luxury market.  

"People are hearing about fierce competition and multiple offers in the Austin market, and they think it's in every price point, but it's not anymore," she said. "The market has shifted, but we have seen a turn in the luxury market. It's become more of a buyers' market in the $1.5 million-plus

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To identify the cities most likely to boom over the next 10 years, Forbes took the 53 largest metropolitan statistical areas in the country (those with populations exceeding 1 million) and ranked them based on eight metrics indicative of past, present and future vitality. We factored in, equally, the percentage of children in the population, the birth rate, net domestic migration, the percentage of the population aged 25-44 with a bachelor’s degree, income growth, the unemployment rate, and population growth.

We may be one country, but the future is being shaped by two very different urban archetypes.

The Lone Star Model

The most vital parts of urban America can be encapsulated largely in one five-letter word: Texas. All four of Texas’ major

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As Austin passed the 2 million resident mark in the metro area over the summer it is no secret that people want to live in the state Capitol and there is a good reason why.  According to a national study by personal finance website WalletHub, which ranked Austin No. 3 on a list of the best cities to find a job. Austin has moved up on the WalletHub rankings from a year ago, when it was No. 6.

Texas took three of the top four spots, with the Dallas-area cities of Plano and Irving ranking No. 1 and No. 4 respectively. The only non-Texas city in the top 4 was Overland Park, Kansas, at No. 2.  With many concerned about the oil based economy of Texas in a current slump, projections seem to show that the state's business friendly tax policies and diversified

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