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Decision: Rent v. Buy May 11, 2010

Posted by Sarah in BRAC, HR Plan, Moving, Real Estate, Relocation, San Antonio Economy, San Antonio life, Tools, Transformation.
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Illustration by Sarah Samoraj

For all who plan on making the move out west to San Antonio, one thing is essential: finding a place to live.

Deciding whether to buy or rent may be easy to some, but not for all. Whichever you choose, here are some websites to help you and your Family   decide which route is best.

Here’s to your future life in San Antonio!

I don’t want to make the commitment of purchasing something until I become comfortable with the various neighborhoods and find out where I want to live.”

– Tamara Elston, Transition Center Program Manager, U.S. Army Installation Management Command

MSN Money Article

The Basics: Why it’s smarter to buy than rent

Zillow.com

An online real estate site where you can search for homes for sale, find home prices, see home values, view recently sold homes and check mortgage rates.

TexasRealEstate.com

This website serves as a guide for people planning to move to Texas.

[Moving to San Antonio] is a good opportunity for me to own a home.  … I think my quality of life will improve, definitely.  I’ll be able to do something in the afternoons besides go to bed.”

— Andrea Pratt, Human Resources Specialist, U.S. Army Installation Management Command (currently commutes about four hours a day to and from work)

Rent.com

A website allowing you to search apartment listings.

ApartmentRatings.com

This website lists renters’ reviews on apartments.

Rentals.com

A website that lists rental homes and apartments.

Greatschools.org

“Involved parents. Successful kids.” Learn about a school through parent ratings and reviews.

SchoolsK-12.com

This site is designed around the needs of a relocating family with school-age children.  “Finding the right San Antonio schools in the right neighborhood has never been easier.”

San Antonio Parks and Recreation Department

This website lists parks and recreation places around San Antonio.

CrimeSpot.com

This site lists crimes such as robbery, burglary and theft by date, time and place.

Texas Department of Public Safety Sex Offender Database

This website allows searches for risk levels and addresses of sexual offenders in San Antonio and surrounding area neighborhoods.

DISCLAIMER: The Installation Management Command does not control or guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness or completeness of information contained on external linked websites. The appearance of external links does not constitute endorsement by the Installation Management Command, the Department of the Army, or the Department of Defense of the services or products offered on external sites. Links are provided solely for convenience.

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FSH Community Development Office Opens April 28, 2010

Posted by imcomtransformation in BRAC, San Antonio Economy, San Antonio life, Uncategorized.
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This article from the San Antonio Joint Program Office April Newsletter talks about good news in the works for revitalization in the FSH neighborhood in San Antonio.
Read the article and the rest of the newsletter HERE.

“Land-Office business” March 8, 2010

Posted by Neal Snyder in Real Estate, Relocation, San Antonio Economy.
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Growing up with Texas on my mother’s side, I learned to say, “They’re doing land-office business,” when something was popular or selling well. It was a reference to the Oklahoma Land Rushes, when settlers literally raced to claim their homesteads. 

The thousands of civilian transfers, strong economy, mild climate and extended $8,000 tax rebate seem to have created a small land rush around IMCOM’s new headquarters. More than 160 homes sold in one day during my recent househunting trip. Homes we’d been watching online for months started leaving the inventory as we shopped. Fortunately, we found a large, comfortable place within easy commuting distance of Fort Sam. But it might be worthwhile, if you’re planning to go to San Antonio, to consider the land rush, schedule a househunting trip and stake your claim as soon as you can.

Texas Veterans Land Board September 2, 2009

Posted by imcomtransformation in Moving, Real Estate, Relocation, San Antonio Economy.
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Check out this opportunity for veterans relocating in Texas…
History of Texas Veterans Programs
Texas, unlike many other states, has been historically a “cash poor” but “land rich” state. Since the days of the Texas Republic, Texas has given its veterans land in recognition of their military service. In the days of Sam Houston, that debt for service was paid to Texas veterans in grants of land. Following World War II, this tradition was continued with the creation of the Texas Veterans Land Board (VLB) in 1946 to administer a new program which would provide low-interest, long-term loans to Texas veterans for the purchase of land.

Since its inception, more than 120,000 Texas veterans have taken advantage of this self-supporting program without costing the taxpayers a single penny. The program is funded by issuing bonds authorized by the voters; the bonds, as well as the cost of administering the program, are paid for by the veterans who participate in the program.

In 1983, the Legislature created the Veterans Housing Assistance Program to assist Texas veterans in purchasing a home. Texas voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment authorizing the issuance of bonds to fund the program.

In 1986, the VLB expanded the Veterans Housing Assistance Program, adding the Veterans Home Improvement Program to provide below-market interest rate loans to qualified Texas veterans for home repairs and improvements to their existing homes.

SA is nation’s best-performing city in recession June 18, 2009

Posted by imcomtransformation in San Antonio Economy.
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San Antonio Business Journal
June 17, 2009

San Antonio has been ranked the strongest metropolitan area in the country for economic performance, according to a new report from the Brookings Institution.

The Washington, D.C.-based think tank has begun analyzing the impact of the recession throughout America’s metropolitan areas. In the first of a series of quarterly MetroMonitor reports, Brookings ranked San Antonio, Oklahoma City, Austin, Houston and Dallas as the top five metro areas in the country in economic performance in the wake of the recession.

Brookings ranked the top 100 metropolitan areas based on six key indicators — employment, unemployment rates, wages, gross metropolitan product, housing prices and foreclosure rates. This initial MetroMonitor report covers the first quarter of 2009.
The five worst metropolitan areas in the country impacted by the recession are Jacksonville, Fla.; Lakeland, Fla.; Tampa, Fla.; Bradenton, Fla.; and Detroit.

“All metropolitan areas are feeling the effects of this recession, but the distress is not shared equally,” says Alan Berube, research director of the Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings and co-author of the report. “While some areas of the country have experienced only a shallow downturn, and may be emerging from the recession already, people living in metro areas that are now performing weakest economically should prepare themselves for a long recovery period.”

Howard Wial, director of the Metropolitan Economy Initiative at Brookings and another co-author of the report, argues that the report shows that a national fiscal and monetary policy will not be enough for stimulating the economy.

“Many (metro) areas will need targeted assistance, and since states have no funds available, the federal government will have to step up to fill the void.”

Concentrations of industry activity have both helped and hurt some regional economies during the recession. For example, metropolitan areas in states with specializations in energy and government employment — such as Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana — have largely been insulated from the recession. However, metropolitan areas in states like Michigan and Ohio that depend heavily on the automotive industry have been impacted by the downturn in the economy, the report shows.

San Antonio is home to Randolph Air Force Base, Fort Sam Houston, Lackland Air Force Base and Brooks City-Base. The 2005 Base Realignment and Closure decision alone is providing a significant economic punch to the Alamo City’s economy through the consolidation of high-paying military health care jobs and more than $2 billion worth of new construction activity.

A separate report released by The DiLuzio Group LLC outlining the impact of BRAC showed that Fort Sam Houston alone would experience a 11,500 increase of personnel. The Army post will also gain 7.9 million square feet of space. Construction activity due to BRAC alone should create 46,000 construction jobs during the course of the building programs, the DiLuzio report showed.