Austin TX Real Estate - Hill Country Austin Lakeway Homes for Sale: Buying a Dream House or Buying a Move-Up House?

Buying a Dream House or Buying a Move-Up House?

When should you look for your Dream House? The Austin TX real estate market has many different price ranges in many different eclectic neighborhoods and communities. The average person moves every 6-7 years, which is up from 4 years just a few years ago.

dream house austin tx homes for saleFor the most part, when someone buys their first house, it's not going to have everything they want in a house. Most first time home buyers are typically in a lower end price point, and as they build equity in their first house and save money over the years, they can then do what we call "move up". Is this "move up" house the dream house? Usually it's not.

On average, someone will buy 7 houses in their lifetime.  I'm already on my third.

Just last month, I received an email from an Austin TX Home Buyer wanting to buy a new house with her husband as they now have an infant and needed to get out of their 1000 sqft first house. She had picked out three houses to look at, and they were in a nice area and good prices for the size. They definitely wouldn't be cramped anymore.

After scheduling the appointments, she canceled the next day.  I received the following email, "I started second-guessing my whole "interim house" plan. I think we would be better off to bide our time and wait for the change to buy our dream house--less risky and more practical. Now to invest in more closet organizers!!"

I can't make this stuff up!  She's in her mid-20s and wants to go immediately to her Dream House.  Is this realistic? She has an infant in 1000 sqft. Yes, I know people in LA and NY do that all the time, but in Austin TX, there are many more options. In the mean time, she's losing sanity going crazy in cramped quarters, but she's also losing potential equity buying a house that would have potentially higher profitability as it would be more marketable to more people. The market for a 1000 sqft place is a small market. The market for a 2500 sqft place means a larger buyer pool and higher demand.

My advice is for her to buy the interim house as their criteria might change over the years as to what their Dream House would consist of. Who knows, she might have 5 kids and her Dream House could become too small!  As our lives change, our Dreams change. You shouldn't wait to buy a house while trying to predict future needs.  You should buy a house for the next 5-7 years and then think about the next move-up.

**Are You Packed Yet?**

donna harris Realtor Austin TX blog

Donna Harris, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Austin Skyline

Austin TX Real Estate

and the surrounding areas of Lakeway, Bee Cave, West Lake Hills, Cedar Park, Round Rock, Spicewood, Circle-C, Steiner Ranch, and everywhere in between... Hill Country Austin TX Real Estate and beyond. Whether you're buying or selling an Austin home, I'll be with you every step of the way. 

For real time Austin TX listings,click here.

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Copyright© 2011 By Donna Harris, All Rights Reserved. You may re-blog with links back to this post.
Buying a Dream House or Buying a Move-Up House? * was first published on

Comment balloon 7 commentsDonna Harris • October 19 2011 11:05AM



My dream house is in Cancun Mexico. For now I am happy with beautiful Round Rock. Great post. 

Posted by Alan Kirkpatrick, Alan in Austin (Austin Texas Homes) almost 9 years ago

I have not completely formulated my thoughts on this but I like what you had to say and will suggest.  I am from the Los Angeles area and can only make comments about my market, you know your market better than any one else and it seems as if you keep a vigilant eye on your area...I wish the public would be more trusting of the good advice of honest agents....but the sad reality is that they don't....and it's only after they go through "hardships" or in hindsight to they realize that the advise you were given them was the best advice.

Posted by Aida Pinto, Real Estate Broker (562) 884-6196 (Independent Real Estate Broker) almost 9 years ago

As the father of four daughters I have done the too many babies from this small home thing. Not fun on any level!

Posted by Doug Rogers, Your Alexandria Louisiana Agent (Bayou Properties) almost 9 years ago

With such low interest rates too now Donna and affordable Austin area home prices compared to LA and NY they just need to go for it. Great advice....

Posted by Gary Woltal, Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth (Keller Williams Realty) almost 9 years ago

Hi Donna,

I have to agree with you.  Closet organizers probably aren't going to cut it.  With houses prices and interest rates where they currently are, I bet they could find a terrific house that will appreciate more in the next 5-7 years than the house they are currently in.


Posted by The Scott Loper Team Bux-Mont Premier Properties (Keller Williams Real Estate - Montgomeryville) almost 9 years ago

Hi Donna,

Is this on your AR outside blog?  Because this was the link I got to give to Kerrie.. Just checking because she makes the final decision and I don't want to have the wrong links.

It's funny!  I'm having the same problem in NY!  I JUST wrote a post for my own contest (I'm recused of winning - but I'm just writing 6 posts).  I was attributing a lot of it to frustration at the expense of living in NY generally.  We are 33 minutes to Midtown Manhattan - and yes - that will be expensive no matter how bear the market.

The just-out-of-college 24-year-old who wants a 2 BR condo with granite counters, marble baths,  on-site parking, laundry in unit, walk to town, within 1/4 mile of the train for $300k...not happening. That's a $450-500k  proposition.  To me this is a can't get by with a little less and trim the excessive criteria?  You're kidding me!  She walked.

Posted by Ruthmarie Hicks almost 9 years ago

I'm sorry I forgot to come back and check for responses... No, I personally don't think closet organizers are going to cut it, and she'll probably call within the next few months as her infant turns into a walking toddler.

Posted by Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator (Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - almost 9 years ago