Archive for the ‘texas homebuilders’ Category

10 Best Things about Cedar Park

1. Shopping
Lakeline Mall and Plaza is the most well known shopping center in Cedar Park, but the brand new 1890 Ranch Shopping Center is a great place to avoid the crowd.  The 800,000 square-foot shopping center is features a giant 12-screen Cinemark Theater, SuperTarget, Best Buy and more large retail stores. The shopping center is continuing to expand, so look out for more new stores in the future.

2. Cedar Park Regional Medical Center
Cedar Park Regional Medical Center, a partner of the Seton Family Hospital, is now open and is serving residents in Western Williamson County. The $125 million medical center offers full service healthcare including physician offices, labs, and diagnostic services, all in one location.  It is located right in the heart of Cedar Park behind the 1890 Ranch Shopping Center and has become a welcomed addition to the Cedar Park community.

3. Schools
Cedar Park belongs to one of the fastest growing school districts in Texas.  In just one year, the Leander ISD has expanded from six campuses to thirty-three campuses!  The highly-rated schools are known statewide for their 16:1 student-to-teacher ratio, 90% TAKS passing rate, and a consistently reputable education status.

4. Parks
Cedar Park is actually home to many parks, but one in particular stands out as an exceptional location for exercise and relaxation.  Brushy Creek Lake Park, one of the city’s newest parks, backs up to the Avery Ranch Golf Club.  The park has a small lake for fishing and kayaking, a sand volleyball court, hike and bike trail, and an exciting water playscape. This multi-faceted family and pe- friendly park is a perfect place for varying outdoor activities.

5. Location
Cedar Park’s convenient proximity to Austin is a big reason for its appeal.  Approximately 15 miles southeast of Cedar Park, the heart of Downtown Austin is only about 20 to 30 minutes away.  Cedar Park also stands at the center of the convenient 183A and I-45 toll roads, as well as Highway 183, which stretches south into Austin, giving its residents easy access into and out of the area. Cedar Park’s location helps maintain their “small town feel” without being too far from the city life.

6. Food
Although there are plenty of great restaurants in Cedar Park, two exceptional locations stand out.  For anybody who loves BBQ, Smokey Mo’s is the place to go in Cedar Park. The restaurant has an old Texan feel, and serves some great food (Try the brisket!).  Brooklyn Heights is another great Cedar Park find.  They are known for their outstanding pizza, but they also have a full menu that includes great sandwiches, rib eyes and desserts to satisfy the pickiest of eaters.

7. Size
One of the most astonishing things about Cedar Park is the growth it has experienced over the last couple years.  According to the city website, the population grew from 26,049 in 2000 to 52,058 in 2006, a 99.9% growth in just six years! It is also predicted to continue the substantial growth in the coming years.

8. Cedar Park Sports & Events
In 2009, Cedar Park will introduce the Texas Stars, a new AAA hockey team and a subsidiary of the Dallas Stars. Bringing the love of hockey to central Texas, the Stars will play in the brand new hockey arena beginning in September 2009.  Their games are certain to be “the next big thing” in Cedar Park, drawing in huge crowds from the surrounding area. Located at the corner of 183A and New Hope Road, the hockey arena is just one use of the new Cedar Park Event Center, be a 6,800-seat sports arena with room for up to 8,500 for concerts and special events.

9. Twin Creeks Country Club
The Twin Creeks Country Club is a refreshing getaway from the grind of the work week. Twin Creeks is home to the only Fred Couples signature golf course in the area, a challenging design that leads golfers through the beauty of the Texas Hill County. Complete with a private clubhouse, dining facility, recreation center, walking trails, and a water-park with a junior Olympic sized pool and a resort style pool with water slides, the club has something for every member of the family.

10. Housing Market
Thanks to Cedar Park’s incredible growth, the housing market has remained strong, despite national trends.  According to, a leading market website, home prices in the area increased an average of two thousand dollars within the last month, and the number of homes listed continually decreasing.

About Buffington Signature Homes
Buffington Signature Homes is dedicated to building homes that will last a lifetime. A locally owned company with a wealth of experience, Buffington Signature Homes combines innovative floor plans, skilled craftsmanship and an exceptional buying experience to deliver homes with value that each and every customer is proud to live in. Proudly building fine communities and new homes in South Austin, Round Rock and Cedar Park.  Home prices vary per community, from the $210’s to the mid $300’s, ranging in size from 2000 to 3700 sq ft with new plans in the works to go over 4000 sq ft.

Media Contact:
Gary Warren
Vice President of Sales & Marketing

“10 Best Things about Round Rock”

1. Round Rock Premium Outlets
Name brands like Coach, Calvin Klein, BCBG-Max Azria and Burberry at discounted prices? It doesn’t get any better than that.  Round Rock outlets are indeed the greatest thing to happen to shopping in Round Rock since…well, ever.  Finally, Round Rock residents don’t have to travel 45 minutes down I-35 to San Marcos to enjoy outlet prices because they can now enjoy them from their own backyard.  The outdoor outlet center has an exceptional selection of popular retail shops that sell a variety of clothing, shoes, jewelry and fragrances.

2. Round Rock ISD
It has been talked about before, but the “10 Best Things about Round Rock” cannot be complete without including Round Rock ISD. Frankly, the excellent school system is one of the reasons Round Rock has such a good reputation, why Money Magazine named them number seven out of the one hundred best cities in which to live.  Their annual dropout rate is only 0.1%, with a 14.6:1 student to teacher ratio, and produce 87% of graduates that say they will continue their education.  It’s not hard to see why Round Rock ISD has become one of the most talked about school districts in the area.

3. Round Rock Donuts
For those who have never tasted a warm and golden Round Rock Donut, it is definitely an experience not to let pass.  The reputation of Round Rock Donuts has stretched far across Central Texas, and the residents of Round Rock will argue this is the best donut ever made.  They still remain in a single location near downtown Round Rock, but they have expanded their business in the last couple years.  Now, not only do they serve their signature donuts, but also a variety of delicious baked goods, cakes, pies and pastries.

4. Round Rock Express
The Round Rock Express, the AA minor league team located in Round Rock, is one of its most popular attractions and brings in a sell out crowd from all over the area.  As a subsidiary of the Houston Astros, it is home to professional players before moving up to the major league or during rehab (some might remember the two weeks Round Rock got to see Roger Clemens).  The Dell Diamond has affordable tickets, great seats and can provide some fun family entertainment during those hot summer days.

5. Texas State Campus at Round Rock
The new Texas State campus in Round Rock provides an excellent educational resource to people in the area. They offer Associate, Bachelor and Masters Degrees as well as certification and continuing education programs.  The campus offers a similar curriculum with the same professors as Texas State San Marcos but at a more convenient location for local residents.  They hold day and night classes and have many opportunities to get a degree while working full time.

6. The History
The evidence of Round Rock’s rich history can be seen all over town.  The popular “round rock” that the town was named after can be seen from the bridge above the brushy creek on Chisholm Trail Road. Also in that area, there are still wagon marks from the historic Chisholm Trail etched into the rocks along the river bank.  Downtown Round Rock was also the site where notorious train robber Sam Bass was shot on the streets downtown, and his grave is actually located nearby at the Round Rock Cemetery. All landmarks can be seen by visitors, and the Sam Bass shooting is recreated along the streets downtown.

7. Downtown Round Rock
Downtown Round Rock has become the cultural epicenter of the town with specialty retail shops, local eateries and art galleries.  The popular town square on Main Street is home to authentic restaurants such as Main Street Bar & Grill, the Louisiana Longhorn and el Matador.  They also host plenty of exciting events all year long like the artisan stroll, a local art market which occurs every second Sunday, movies in the park, and concerts.

8. The Bats of Round Rock
Ok, so it’s a little odd how watching bats fly out from a highway underpass in Round Rock can be enjoyable, but it is truly a one of a kind experience.  Most people know about the bats that fly out from under Congress Bridge, it has become quite an attraction in Austin, but Round Rock has its own population of bats that is just as enjoyable to view, without the crowd.   The underpass at highway I-35 and McNeil is home to thousands of Mexican free-tailed bats and right after dusk they all fly out at once to feed.  It only lasts for a couple minutes, but the multitude of bats flying in unison is really one of the most amazing natural spectacles to watch.

9. Old Settlers Park
Located right across from the Dell Diamond, Old Settlers Park is one of the best places in Round Rock for outdoor sports and recreation.  The large park is home to 20 youth baseball and softball complexes, soccer fields, and many youth and adult leagues to join.  For kids, it features a water park called Rockin’ River complete with a lazy river, crazy slides, and a water playground.  The park also features a hike & bike trail and a small lake stocked for fishing.

10. Avery Ranch Golf Club
Created along the rolling green landscape of the Texas Hill Country, Avery Ranch Golf Club is one of the newest and most craftily designed golf courses in the area.  The challenging 226 acre, 18-hole golf course, designed by Andy Raugust, is available to the public and makes for an enjoyable day of golf.  After your finished, don’t forget to head over to Z Tejas, the newest location of the original Austin restaurant, for some fine wine and food selections.

About Buffington Signature Homes
Buffington Signature Homes is dedicated to building homes that will last a lifetime. A locally owned company with a wealth of experience, Buffington Signature Homes combines innovative floor plans, skilled craftsmanship and an exceptional buying experience to deliver homes with value that each and every customer is proud to live in. Proudly building fine communities and new homes in South Austin, Round Rock and Cedar Park.  Home prices vary per community, from the $210’s to the mid $300’s, ranging in size from 2000 to 3700 sq ft with new plans in the works to go over 4000 sq ft.

Media Contact:
Gary Warren
Vice President of Sales & Marketing

Overview of Austin Housing Market

With the recent economic turmoil, many consumers may find the idea of building a home too risky. While that risk is subtantiated in some markets, overall the housing market is relatively stable and growing. This is especially true in the Austin real estate market, which continues to stand out as one of the best in the country. In contrast to the national housing and lending dilemmas, the Austin market continues to show strong numbers in relation to accumulated inventory, home purchases and overall home values.

During 2008, the Austin real estate market slowed down in response to the credit crisis affecting the country. (3) The collapse of the subprime mortgage market has led to more restrictive mortgage qualification standards, including the elimination of many down payment assistance programs and higher equity requirements for jumbo loans. The outlook may appear grim, but Austin shows more than one sign of changing that image. (1)

In the Austin area, the housing inventory stands at a 6.3-month supply, just over the standard equilibrium of 6.0 and much lower than the whopping 10.9-month supply nationally. What does this mean? It shows that our region remains relatively unharmed by the current economic crisis. It is estimated that the national real estate economy will show signs of recovery within the next three to five years. This is in stark contrast to Austin’s real estate market, which is expected to recover within the next 18 to 24 months. Signs of recovery will begin to show by next summer.
The continued strength of Austin’s housing market now is in large part due to builders making up for the slowing economy. Record numbers of homes were built in Central Texas just two years ago, providing a large inventory of homes that went unsold. This led to a dramatic decrease in new homes built the following two years. While this is an unfavorable position for builders, it is great for consumers. Increased inventory and slowing sales lead to great buyer incentives from builders hoping to get consumers into their homes. These incentives can range from free upgrades and appliances, to extended warranties and services, to large discounts that can save consumers a substantial amount of money on their loans and down payments. Opportunities like this will not last long, though and most will fade quickly as the economy regains strength. (2)

The estimates of a quicker recovery, combined with the availability of current inventory and builders’ willingness to sell for lower prices led the experts at Forbes magazine to name Austin one of just three cities in the country to “Buy Now.”(1)

Behind the raw numbers of home sales, remaining inventory and solid values, experts are looking at the strength of Austin’s job market. As a leading region for technology and research-based jobs, the Austin boasts a strong supply of new jobs, plenty of residents with dependable salaries and strong credit, and a strong cultural atmosphere that attracts new talent. Much like the Dot-Com bust in 2000, the current economic crisis has left Austin relatively untouched when compared to other parts of the nation. The city’s unique blend of great weather, distinctive culture and entertainment, and continued job growth and economic strength help Austin hold its place as one of the best places to buy. Add to that the benefits of increased inventory and many builders offering incentives to maintain their sales, now is a great time build your home in Austin.

1. Shonda Novak, Kate Morton. “Credit Crunch Squeezes Central Texas Home Starts.” American Statesman. Oct. 2008. Statesman. 12 Oct. 2008.
2. “Austin Builders Are Cutting Back, Confident of Rebound.” American Statesman. Oct. 2008. Statesman. 17 Oct. 2008.
3. Roselind Hejl “Real Estate Market Update.” Roselind Hejl’s Austin Real Estate Guide. Oct. 2008. 9 Oct. 2008.

Buffington’s Guide to Living & Buying in Austin

Join local Austin homebuilder, Buffington Signature Homes, for a tour of the ins and outs of buying a new home in the capital city! Where to buy, what to look for, where it’s hot and where it’s cool!

There are lots of great places to live in Austin. Use these tips to find the perfect neighborhood and home for your lifestyle!

1. North, South, East & West—head any direction from downtown Austin and you’ll discover four distinctive areas of town, each with their own character and atmosphere.

  • North: North Austin and Round Rock are home to many of the region’s biggest employers, with great shopping, accessibility and family-friendly living.
  • South: The original home of “Keep Austin Weird”! South Austin offers a unique experience of the culture and style that made the city famous.
  • East: Enjoying a resurgence in economic development and investment, East Austin is home to great historical neighborhoods, arts and eateries.
  • West: As you head west, the city gives way to the Texas Hill Country. With grand hillside homes and nearby access to Lake Travis, life is good in the west.

2. Major Roads & Highways. Several major roads make getting around town a lot easier… unless you catch them at the wrong time.

  • I-35: The main North/South thoroughfare, I-35 bisects the city just east of Downtown. Connected to just about everything, but beware of rush hour traffic and backups.
  • Mopac / Loop 1: Also running North/South, Mopac loops west of downtown and can be faster and less congested than I-35.
  • 183/183-A: Running southeast to northwest, 183 takes you from the airport, north of Downtown into North Austin. From there, the 183-A toll road offers easy access from Cedar Park and Leander.
  • 290 / 71 / Ben White Blvd: Running East-West from the airport into the Hill Country, Ben White connect South Austin to I-35 and Mopac.

3. Schools. Austin area schools are consistently ranked among the best in the state and even the country. For the top rated public schools in the area, check out the Eanes School District in West Austin, and the Round Rock and Leander ISDs. There are also several highly-rated independent and church-affiliated private schools throughout the city.

4. Colleges & Universities. Austin is perhaps best known as the home of the University of Texas. UT sits right in the middle of the city, just north of the Capital, with nationally ranked undergraduate, graduate and adult education programs. Just south of the river, St. Edwards University is a private, Roman Catholic university known for quality liberal arts programs. Several Austin Community Collage campuses can be found throughout the city, offering quality undergraduate and adult programs, as well as Early College Start programs for high school students.

5. Live Music & Events. “The Live Music Capital of the World” is home to more than 200 live music venues and over 1,900 local musicians! On any given night, you can find incredible live music on the world-famous 6th Street or nearby in the Warehouse District, another growing entertainment area. Local favorites for live performances include Stubb’s BBQ, Auditorium Shores and the newly completed Austin Music Hall. You can also check out hundreds of local and national acts every spring at South by Southwest (SXSW) and at Austin City Limits Music Festival in late summer.

6. Parks & Lakes. The city’s parks, greenbelts and lakes offer endless possibilities for outdoor fun. Barton Springs is a popular attraction, at an average temperature of 68° year round! Lady Bird Lake and Lake Travis offer great places for boating and skiing, and miles of hike & bike trails throughout the city are perfect for exercise and leisure. The most popular outdoor destination is Zilker Park, located along the south shore of Lady Bird Lake. Zilker Park is home to a popular dog park, the famous Barton Springs Pool as well as one of the largest trailheads leading into the Barton Creek greenbelt.

7. Sports. Great sports action is never far away, with UT athletics throughout the school year, as well as the Austin Aztex USL soccer team and the Round Rock Express baseball team, affiliate of the Houston Astros! Coming in 2009 or 2010, the Texas Stars AHL hockey team will hit the ice in Cedar Park as the top affiliate of the Dallas Stars NHL franchise.

8. Temperature & Climate. Bring your sunscreen! Austin averages 300 days of sunshine per year, with hot summers and mild winters. The coldest month in Austin is typically January, with overnight lows averaging 40°. In the summers, late July and August are typically the hottest, with average daytime temperatures in the mid to upper 90s.

9. Shopping. Key shopping centers for the area include Southpark Meadows and Barton Creek Mall in South Austin, La Frontera and the Round Rock Premium Outlets in Round Rock, as well as Lakeline Mall and the new 1890 Ranch in Cedar Park. For great local boutiques and arts, check out the great clothing and vintage stores on South Congress, as well as “The Drag” on Guadalupe near the UT campus.

10. Dining. Whatever kind of food or atmosphere you’re in the mood for, there are great places to eat all over the city. Find your own favorite neighborhood eatery or look for local favorites scattered across town, like Chuy’s Tex-Mex, Gumbo’s Louisiana Style Cafe, Austin Java, Amy’s Ice Cream and Rudy’s Country Store & BBQ.

Buffington Signature Homes is locally owned and operated in Austin, proudly building new homes in the most sought-after communities in South Austin, Round Rock and Cedar Park. Dedicated to building homes that will last a lifetime, Buffington combines innovative floor plans, skilled craftsmanship and an exceptional buying experience to deliver homes that each and every customer is proud to live in.