Dec. 4, 2014

Principal Profile Meeting – Gorzycki Middle School

Principal Profile Meeting – Gorzycki Middle School

Yesterday I attended a meeting at Gorzycki Middle School in Southwest Austin. AISD hosted the meeting so parents could give input to the type of principal Gorzycki should be looking for, since our beloved Mrs.Bauerle is retiring this year.

Although there are over 1,300 students enrolled in the campus and the parent community is generally very involved and vocal about what we expect from the school and teachers, it saddened me that only 11 people attended this meeting. Although the principal of a school may not have direct contact with our kids, he or she will set the course for the rest of the staff and that ripple effect will most certainly affect every student.

The district asked us to consider what criteria we would like the new principal to have in several different areas including experience, leadership style, communication, and community involvement. We were divided into 2 groups and asked to come up with what we felt was important in each of these areas.

Several themes kept repeating in my group – we wanted to see a principal who had experience leading successfully through times of change, who had worked in a school community that had extremely high expectations, and who was experienced at integrating social and emotional learning into a campus, and who was expert at not just involving parents in the school, but at managing what some might perceive as hyper-involvement.

My understanding is that the teachers participated in a similar exercise, and that the district would be compiling the answers to come up with the candidate profile. They then will vet the applicants (there are 80 already!) against the profile, and come up with a manageable list of contenders. From there, a screening team made up of district personnel, and at least 2 faculty members and 2 parents (the Campus Advisory Council co-chair and the PTA President) will interview the candidates. Their goal will be to come up with about 3 acceptable candidates to present to the school board, and hopefully our new superintendent, by February. The final hiring decision will be made at that level.

Share This Post
Dec. 4, 2014

Cyber Bullying - It's Not Just for Middle Schoolers

Something interesting happened recently in a Facebook group I belong to. Someone posted a photo of a homework assignment with disbelief that it was assigned to a 6th grader. The lesson on inference required the student to read a short passage about a woman who found a hairclip in her bedroom and knew that 

it wasn’t hers or her daughters’.  One possible inference would be that her husband was having an affair, and it was this topic that seemed inappropriate for 11 year olds. 

A slew of comments and questions from neighbors and parents of kids at the school ensued - ranging from curiosity as to whether this assignment was in the district curriculum to using this as an example of why homeschooling is best to demanding that the school punish the teacher and report what punishment was given.

As a parent of 2 kids currently at Gorzycki Middle School in Southwest Austin and 3 older kids, I read with interest. Predictably, I agreed with some comments and not others. But the more I read, the more uncomfortable I felt – and here’s why:

We teacCyber Bullyingh our middle schoolers that if they have a problem with another student, it’s best to address the matter directly, in person. Under no circumstances should they post mean things on social media about a fellow student. That would be Cyber Bullying. Ironically, Gorzycki Middle School teaches children the dangers of Cyber Bullying and the PTA regularly brings in a speaker for parents to learn more about this. Yet isn’t this exactly what the adults in this community were doing on this Facebook page? Spreading rumors, intimidating?

I’ll admit, I am not biased. I used to be a middle school teacher, and I remember how much work and energy it takes to keep up with a gaggle of pre-teens in various states of hormone explosion. I’m also quite involved with the PTA at Gorzycki, so I have first hand exposure to just how much extra the staff does and how many advantages our kids have by attending this school. But if you are so concerned about the quality of the school and its teachers, why not get involved?

Yesterday I attended a meeting of parents to help the district create the criteria it will use to hire Gorzycki’s new principal when Mrs. Bauerle retires at the end of this month. I had mentioned this meeting in the very same Facebook group where so many were concerned about the homework assignment and a meeting invite was also emailed to all 1,300 parents at the school. You know how many parents were at the meeting? 11, yes just 11. So while everyone is entitled to their own opinions, could we agree to be careful about how loudly we share them from behind the comfort of our own computer monitors?  

 

Keep Austin Weird Homes

Theresa Bastian and Rodney Campbell run an Austin, TX real estate brokerage established with the intention of doing good business with good people.  As Austin real estate market experts, Theresa and Rodney can help you buy, sell, lease or invest in real estate in and around Austin, TX.

 

HOW CAN WE HELP YOU TODAY?

I want to sell my Austin, TX property

I’d like to Search for Austin Real Estate

I’d like to speak to someone from Keep Austin Weird Homes

Share This Post
June 17, 2014

Imagine Austin City Living without the sterile high rise!

Imagine Austin City Living without the sterile high rise!

Enjoy the comforts of a quiet neighborhood home in Judges Hill, the heart of downtown Austin.

Downtown Austin Condo for Sale 1704 West Ave.You’ll love relaxing in your large, light living room with hardwood floors and a fireplace. The kitchen features granite counters and new energy efficient appliances, which will all stay with an acceptable offer. The open floor plan offers great flow for entertaining in the kitchen, dining room and living room. 

      View FULL DETAILS and additional PHOTOS here: 

      Downtown Austin Judges Hill Condo for Sale

Upstairs, you’ll find two large bedrooms - each with at least one walk-in closet for storage. There are two full baths upstairs, and a powder room on the main floor.  The master bath features a separate shower and a soaking tub with treetop views which are increasingly rare in downtown Austin, and even a peekaboo view of the University Texas clock tower.

 

History buffs will enjoy Preservation Austin’s 26 minute long video (password to view: judgeshill) about the first homes built on Judges Hill, as this coveted neighborhood in Austin is known. At the 18 minute mark, Edward Mandell House is mentioned. The historical marker on this property notes this is the spot where Mr. House’s home once stood.

This brownstone-type building is very private, with only 11 other mainly owner-occupied homes.  You’ll have access to an onsite gym, locked storage unit & 2 reserved spaces in the secure garage. From this spot, you’ll be able to walk or bike to downtown, the University of Texas, the State Capitol, the 42 acre Pease Park (home to hiking and biking trails and Austin’s infamous Eeyore’s Birthday Party) and more.

Like what you see? Contact us at 512-297-3442 to schedule your private tour of 1704 West Ave #102, a downtown Austin condo for sale.  

Welcome to the Austin condo portal: your single stop for finding a condo for sale in downtown Austin. Here you can search every available condo for sale in Austin.

SEE ALL CONDOS FOR SALE IN AUSTIN NOW

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE: Although this property was available at the time of this ad creation, it is very possible that an offer has been submitted or even accepted since that time. This ad was created with the intent to lease THIS property. If you are interested in this property, Please call 512-740-6486 to check on its current availability.

Keep Austin Weird Homes

Theresa Bastian and Rodney Campbell run an Austin, TX real estate brokerage established with the intention of doing good business with good people.  As Austin Condo Specialists, Theresa and Rodney can help you buy, sell, lease or invest in real estate in and around Austin, TX.

HOW CAN WE HELP YOU TODAY?

I want to sell my Austin, TX property

I’d like to Search for Austin Real Estate

I’d like to speak to someone from Keep Austin Weird Homes

 

-       By Theresa Bastian

 

Posted in Austin Real Estate
Share This Post
June 3, 2014

These Six Words May Be Preventing You From Finding Your Next Austin Home: “But I Saw It On Zillow”…

These Six Words May Be Preventing You From Finding Your Next Austin Home: “But I Saw It On Zillow”…

As a professional, full time real estate broker with more than a decade of experience in two states, I can tell you that few statements irk me more than those that start with these 6 words: “But I Saw It On Zillow.” Why? Because they are almost always followed up with a statement that cannot be verified anywhere except on Zillow.  It’s almost like an alternate reality for real estate.

For example, when a buyer who is actively searching for her next Austin home with one of our agents  calls and asks about a foreclosure on 2.5 acres right outside the city limits that she just saw for just $305,000 and wonders why we didn’t send it to her when we sent her properties to tour this weekend. I drop what I’m doing, concerned that perhaps we did miss this needle-in-a-haystack perfect home. But no, a quick check of Zillow and a through cross check with the Multiple Listing Service and county tax records shows that the home is not bank owned. It’s not on the market. It hasn’t been on the market for at least a decade. In fact, it’s had the same owner for over a decade.

So why would this home be displayed on Zillow as a foreclosure? Well, if a property owner misses even one mortgage payment, the bank reports that to the credit bureaus. Zillow purchases data like this and in the company’s infinite wisdom, it lists that house on its website as a pre-foreclosure. But that doesn’t mean the homeowner hasn’t already caught up on the missing payment, and it certainly doesn’t mean the homeowner is considering selling. And it REALLY doesn’t mean that the bank is able to negotiate a deal with a buyer who is ready to buy now.

Because buyers are scrambling to find good deals in today’s market with limited inventory, these longshots on Zillow seem attractive. I do understand that. But I have seen this enough times to know that shopping on Zillow can create a huge distraction from the REAL market, the REAL prices, and the homes that are available today – you know, the market that I as a professional real estate broker am working in to find my client her next Austin home.


Keep Austin Weird Homes

Theresa Bastian and Rodney Campbell run an Austin, TX real estate brokerage established with the intention of doing good business with good people.  As Austin real estate market experts, Theresa and Rodney can help you buy, sell, lease or invest in real estate in and around Austin, TX.

 

HOW CAN WE HELP YOU TODAY?

I want to sell my Austin, TX property

I’d like to Search for Austin Real Estate

I’d like to speak to someone from Keep Austin Weird Homes

 

 - By Theresa Bastian 

Share This Post
June 3, 2014

Starting Your Austin Home Search Online – Dos and Don’ts

Starting Your Austin Home Search Online – Dos and Don’ts

 

At Keep Austin Weird Homes, we work with a lot of home buyers. Heck, our owners even bought a home of their own recently. We know how much fun it is to look at homes online – you get to see the photos and prices without having to talk to a pesky Realtor who is going to talk your ear off or add you to their mailing list so they can spam you for the next couple of years. We get it!  Starting your Austin home search online makes sense

Let’s take a moment to consider a popular website where you can start your Austin home search: Zillow.

Pros: This company has done a great job of making searching for properties easy. You can see lots of pictures, the list prices, even a ‘Zestimate’ of what the home should be valued at.

Cons: The data on Zillow isn’t necessarily up to date or accurate. There is no consequence for Zillow if they publish inaccurate data – no professional board of standards or anything like that. This is one reason the Austin Board of Realtors recently opted to stop syndication listing data to the website. Yes, that’s right. If you live in Austin, the Board of Realtors no longer automatically sends listings to Zillow, making it even less of a complete source for the most up to date information.

 

But what about when it’s time to get out of “shopping” mode and into “buying” mode?

Let’s say you’ve been looking at homes online for a while, and you see one that really interests you. You need to bear in mind that the Realtors listed on the side of Zillow’s website are simply displayed there because they are paying for ad space. Not because they know anything about the property, and not because they are good Realtors that Zillow has vetted. Nope, the only vetting Zillow does is making sure their credit card goes through each month for payment of their ad bill. To be sure you are talking to a professional, we advise you to interview agents BEFORE you fall in love with a property. That way you already have an established relationship with someone who will have your interest at heart, and with whom you feel comfortable. Not just an agent who had a few extra bucks to spend on advertising and room in their schedule for new clients this season.

Consider our “Ten Questions To Ask Your Realtor” and give us a call. We don’t buy business on Zillow-we earn it by building relationships with people whose goals we care about.


Keep Austin Weird Homes

Theresa Bastian and Rodney Campbell run an Austin, TX real estate brokerage established with the intention of doing good business with good people.  As Austin real estate market experts, Theresa and Rodney can help you buy, sell, lease or invest in real estate in and around Austin, TX.

 

HOW CAN WE HELP YOU TODAY?

I want to sell my Austin, TX property

I’d like to Search for Austin Real Estate

I’d like to speak to someone from Keep Austin Weird Homes

 

 - By Theresa Bastian 

Share This Post
June 3, 2014

Keep Austin Weird Homes Offers Austin Property Management Services

Keep Austin Weird Homes Offers Austin Property Management Services

 

Keep Austin Weird Homes, an Austin real estate brokerage, now offers Property Management Services.

Due to popular demand from satisfied clients who have purchased investment properties using our services, Keep Austin Weird Homes recently launched our property management division.

 Here are some of the property management services we offer to landlords:

  • Tenant credit and background checks
  • Leasing
  • Make readies
  • Periodic property visits and evaluations
  • Utility transfers
  • Rent collection
  • Move-in and move-out condition checks
  • Property maintenance and repairs
  • Separate profit and loss statement for each property

 

View homes for lease in Austin

View condos for lease in Austin

 

Whether you are a landlord or a tenant, Keep Austin Weird Homes is here to help!  If you would like to discuss our Austin Property Management Services, please call Theresa at 512-593-2289.  If you are interested in getting some professional assistance in securing a home to rent in our tight rental market, contact our leasing specialist, Lauren Tindal, at 206-778-5924.  We know how hard it is to find a good place in Austin, especially on a budget, and we are prepared to go theextra mile for our clients.


Keep Austin Weird Homes

Theresa Bastian and Rodney Campbell run an Austin, TX real estate brokerage established with the intention of doing good business with good people.  As Austin real estate market experts, Theresa and Rodney can help you buy, sell, lease or invest in real estate in and around Austin, TX.

 

HOW CAN WE HELP YOU TODAY?

I want to sell my Austin, TX property

I’d like to Search for Austin Real Estate

I’d like to speak to someone from Keep Austin Weird Homes

 

 - By Theresa Bastian 

Share This Post
May 30, 2014

Keep Austin Weird Homes Sells a Home in Olympic Heights, a South Austin Neighborhood

Keep Austin Weird Homes Sells a Home in Olympic Heights, a South Austin Neighborhood

 

Keep Austin Weird Homes just sold another home in Olympic Heights, a South Austin Neighborhood.  Keep Austin Weird Homes is excited to get another home sold in Olympic Heights.

 Austin May 29, 2014 - Keep Austin Weird Homes

 

Keep Austin Weird Homes, an Austin real estate brokerage, has sold another house in Austin. This Austin home sold for just under $225,000.

The home is located in the Austin neighborhood of Olympic Heights. The home has 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, and approximately 2,073 square feet. The property has a lot size of .118 of an acre and was built in 2003. Students who live at this house attend the Austin schools of Baranoff Elementary, Bailey Middle School and Bowie High School.

 

This home is located in Austin's zip code of 78748. The number of active listings in this area of Austin increased in April by 10.2% from the previous year and the number of sales in April was 70, a 9% decrease from April 2013. The median number of days active properties have been listed for sale in this area of Southwest Austin is 43, which is shorter than the national average.


Keep Austin Weird Homes represented the sellers of this property, who selected Keep Austin Weird Homes to represent them because of the brokerage’s extensive marketing plan and experience in South Austin.

 Click here to view the property that get sold.

View other properties for sale right now in Olympic Heights:

All properties for sale in Olympic Heights

 

 Keep Austin Weird Homes

Theresa Bastian and Rodney Campbell run an Austin, TX real estate brokerage established with the intention of doing good business with good people.  As Austin real estate market experts, Theresa and Rodney can help you buy, sell, lease or invest in real estate in and around Austin, TX.

 

HOW CAN WE HELP YOU TODAY?

I want to sell my Austin, TX property

I’d like to Search for Austin Real Estate

I’d like to speak to someone from Keep Austin Weird Homes

 

 - By Theresa Bastian 

Share This Post
May 30, 2014

Keep Austin Weird Homes Sells a Home in Scenic Brook, a Southwest Austin Neighborhood

Keep Austin Weird Homes Sells a Home in Scenic Brook, a Southwest Austin Neighborhood

 

Keep Austin Weird Homes just sold another home in Scenic Brook, a Southwest Austin Neighborhood.  Keep Austin Weird Homes is excited to get another home sold in Scenic Brook.

 Austin May 29, 2014 - Keep Austin Weird Homes

 Keep Austin Weird Homes, an Austin real estate brokerage, has sold another house in Austin. This Austin home with a pool sold for just under $300,000.


The home is located in the Austin neighborhood of Scenic Brook. The home has 4 bedrooms, 2 baths, and approximately 2,420 square feet. The property has a large lot size of one-third of an acre and was built in 1969. Students who live at this house attend the Austin schools of Patton Elementary, Small Middle School and Bowie High School.

 

This home is located in Austin's zip code of 78749. The number of active listings in this area of Austin decreased in April by 24.2% from the previous year and the number of sales in April was 34, a 10% increase from April 2013, which reflects the inventory shortage in the Austin market. The median number of days active properties have been listed for sale in this area of Southwest Austin is 36, which is shorter than the national average.


Keep Austin Weird Homes represented the buyer of this property, who will be doing a massive remodel on this Home in Scenic Brook, a Southwest Austin Neighborhood.

 View other properties for sale right now in Scenic Brook:

All properties for sale in Scenic Brook

 


Keep Austin Weird Homes

Theresa Bastian and Rodney Campbell run an Austin, TX real estate brokerage established with the intention of doing good business with good people.  As Austin real estate market experts, Theresa and Rodney can help you buy, sell, lease or invest in real estate in and around Austin, TX.

 

HOW CAN WE HELP YOU TODAY?

I want to sell my Austin, TX property

I’d like to Search for Austin Real Estate

I’d like to speak to someone from Keep Austin Weird Homes

 

 - By Theresa Bastian 

Share This Post
May 29, 2014

Keep Austin Weird Homes Sells Another East Austin Home

Keep Austin Weird Homes Sells Another East Austin Home

 Keep Austin Weird Homes just sold another home in East Austin. Keep Austin Weird Homes is excited to get another East Austin home sold.

Austin May 29, 2014 - Keep Austin Weird Homes

Keep Austin Weird Homes, an Austin real estate brokerage, has sold another house in Austin. This Austin home sold for $100,000. This price reflects the value in the land, which is close to downtown Austin.

The manufactured home is located in the Austin neighborhood of Montopolis. The home has 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, and approximately 1,546 square feet. The property has a double lot size of .369 acres and was built in 1999. Students who live at this house attend the Austin schools of Allison, Martin and Eastside Memorial.

This home is located in Austin's zip code of 78741. The number of active listings in this area of Austin increased in April by 25% from the previous year and the number of sales in April was 24, a 4% increase from April 2013. The median number of days active properties have been listed for sale in this area of Southwest Austin is 42 which is shorter than the national average.


Keep Austin Weird Homes represented the seller of this property, who was happy to have had professional guidance on the sale. She had previously tried to sell by owner, but with no success and much frustration.

Click here to view this property that get sold. 


Keep Austin Weird Homes

Theresa Bastian and Rodney Campbell run an Austin, TX real estate brokerage established with the intention of doing good business with good people.  As Austin real estate market experts, Theresa and Rodney can help you buy, sell, lease or invest in real estate in and around Austin, TX.

 

HOW CAN WE HELP YOU TODAY?

I want to sell my Austin, TX property

I’d like to Search for Austin Real Estate

I’d like to speak to someone from Keep Austin Weird Homes


- by Theresa Bastian

Share This Post
May 29, 2014

Keep Austin Weird Homes Sells Another Southwest Austin Home

Keep Austin Weird Homes Sells Another Southwest Austin Home

 

Keep Austin Weird Homes just sold another home in Southwest Austin. Keep Austin Weird Homes is excited to get another Southwest Austin home sold.

Austin May 29, 2014 - Keep Austin Weird Homes

Keep Austin Weird Homes, an Austin real estate brokerage, has sold another house in Austin. This Austin home sold for $369,500. This is almost $80,000 than the price the current owner bought it for in 2011.

The 2 story home is located in the Austin subdivision of Village of Western Oaks. The home has 2 beds, 3 ½ baths, and approximately 2,857 square feet. The property has a lot size of .179 acres and was built in 2000. Students who live at this school attend the Austin schools of Mills, Gorzycki and Bowie.



This home is located in Austin's zip code of 78749. The number of active listings in this area of Austin have decreased in April by 10% from the previous year and the number of sales in April was 49, a 33.8% drop from April 2013, reflecting the inventory shortage in Austin. The median number of days active properties have been listed for sale in this area of Southwest Austin is just 15. This is significantly shorter than the national average.


Keep Austin Weird Homes represented the buyers of this property, who were enthusiastic in finding this home before it went on the MLS. Due to her extensive knowledge of the Southwest Austin community, Theresa Bastian was able to negotiate with the listing agent to accept the buyer’s offer before the property hit the open market, which typically results in multiple offers.


Keep Austin Weird Homes

Theresa Bastian and Rodney Campbell run an Austin, TX real estate brokerage established with the intention of doing good business with good people.  As Austin real estate market experts, Theresa and Rodney can help you buy, sell, lease or invest in real estate in and around Austin, TX.

 

HOW CAN WE HELP YOU TODAY?

I want to sell my Austin, TX property

I’d like to Search for Austin Real Estate

I’d like to speak to someone from Keep Austin Weird Homes


- by Theresa Bastian

Share This Post