Are you a Millennial? 5 tips for buying your first home

In 2020, millennials will be buying the bulk of real estate in the U.S., according to’s 2020 Housing Market Predictions. This could be due to the fact that they are currently the largest living adult generation in the United States. As a result, they have begun to reconsider its housing conditions. Most millennials buying their first home are learning about the world of loans, mortgages and interest rates. Millennials also bring to the real estate table considerations that generations before them have not faced in such depth, such as debts from student loans. This article provides characteristics for millennial home buying considerations.

It’s clear that buying a property is one of the biggest decisions the millennials are facing right now. If you are a millennial buying your first home, here are some tips to make that dream come true!


Student loans are one of the biggest challenges facing millennial homebuyers. According to Forbes, over 45 million Americans are paying off a national student loan that average $32,731 per graduate!

As if student loans weren’t enough, consumer debt has postponed the home-buying dream of many millennials. In fact, NAR reports that, second to student loans, the two expenses that delayed saving for a down payment were credit card debt (32%) and car loans (32%).

Consequently, before deciding to buy a house, millennials need to organize their finances first. Some ways to do that is by setting a priority to pay off the student loan. Once that is achieved, use the money you were using to pay off the loan to pay for the next largest debt you still might have. These could include credit card debt and/or car loans.

Therefore saving is the key to homeownership! This can be done in multiple ways by cutting down unnecessary costs. By sticking to a budget on expenses used for leisure, entertainment or eating out, you can start saving for that down payment. I understand how being in your 20’s or 30’s, it is hard to have a budget set for each aspect of your monthly expenditures. However, it is a small sacrifice to pay if your ultimate goal is to buy a property. 


Negotiating and knowing the real estate market is not easy. This is why it is highly advisable to find a local real estate agent that knows about the city and area you are looking into purchasing a property. 

This is the person who will be in charge of helping you make one of the most important decisions of your lives. Look for those who transmit you trust, security, and extensive knowledge in real estate. Furthermore, those who understand your needs and go the extra mile to help you get your dream home throughout the process. Last but not least, when buying or selling a house, you want a real estate agent who negotiates the best deal and treats you as their most important client.

If you want to have a chat with me about your real estate needs, please email me at or contact me here.


Buyers in their early 30’s tend to be more established in life. I encourage these buyers to share with me what for them are “must haves” for their future home. We reference this list often throughout the buying process and will even sometimes make changes after we have seen a few houses.

Knowing what you are looking for in a house is imperative, especially if you and your partner have different wants or needs. This will also give you and your partner peace of mind. You know that you have found the “perfect” house when you feel the house checks off all the important boxes on your wishlist.


When buying a new home, it is very easy to think the first house you look at may be “the perfect one”, or at least the one that “meets all your needs”. Hence, it’s important to trust your instincts and not be a conformist.

Pay attention to all the details of the property you’re considering to purchase. Unless you have found the property you feel in your gut happy with, it is best to look for more properties. The reason being that you can compare them and choose the right one for you considering your price range.

I found that most of my clients spend a period of time looking at houses online and physically before they feel very comfortable with their choice.


A hip condo downtown may appear to be an extraordinary spot to set up your first permanent residence. However, consider how that investment will look like in a few years. Where will your profession and career take you? What appreciation does the area have?

On the off chance that a single-family home is too overwhelming, think about an attached duplex or townhouse with a smaller parcel size. By doing so, you could have a more extensive amount of purchasers later on and the equity gain will often surpass that of a high-rise building.

I help clients think through different scenarios and determine their goals longterm. Are they looking for a house that provides them with a high quality of life? Are they most interested in a high rate of return for their investment? With their short and longterm goals in mind, we can go find the home that will make them happy for years to come.

SOLA – South lamar Neighborhood in ATX

The South Lamar neighborhood, a.k.a. “SoLa”, is in close proximity to just about everything in Austin. It is located in the cool 78704 zip code. Besides all the great restaurants, clubs, and bars on South Lamar Boulevard, you are also 10 minutes from the entertainment districts of downtown and 5 minutes from Zilker Park, Barton Springs Pool, and the hike and bike trails of the Greenbelt. The South Lamar neighborhood was once a sleepy area with mostly used car lots and auto shops, but has since become one of the trendiest and most desirable neighborhoods in south Austin.

There are a good mix of multifamily and single family homes. It is a dense neighborhood, so apartment, condos, and townhouses form the majority of the properties. A lot of young professionals live in this area as well as young families who enjoy urban living.

The prices for properties in the area range from $225k for a condo to over $2.5 million for a brand new single family home, with the median value around $375k. For information on all the current listings in the area, go to this link and search in the 78704 zip code.

Children who live in South Austin’s SoLa neighborhood are served by the Austin ISD and will likely attend the following schools:

  • Zilker Elementary School
  • O. Henry Middle School
  • Austin High School

I lived here now for over 10 years, so message me if you have any question about this neighborhood. Click here to learn more about me.

Looking For An Austin Real Estate Expert?

Expertise makes a difference when looking for a real estate expert who can help you with your real estate needs in the Austin market (or in any market). Many times, people confuse “knowledge” with “expertise.” There are a lot of real estate agents who may “know” how to buy and sell properties in theory. They may even complete a transaction. But completing a transaction is only one of the outcomes of expertise. Expertise is the ability to apply soft skills and experience to manage client’s expectations and concerns; negotiate the best price; and successfully navigate any challenge that encountered during the transaction.

Experience is obtained when one has applied the knowledge (the theory) to real life situations often enough. And it is able to predict results in different situations based on learned lessons. I think it is important to note that not everyone takes advantage of the opportunity to learn. These opportunities arise especially when something goes wrong or a new situation presents itself. That is why, I believe that expertise does not always have a direct correlation to the years in the business.

I believe in tinkering, in trying new ways to solve problems, and in adjusting one’s strategy depending on the “cards dealt.” One of the most interesting (and to me…enjoyable) parts of a real estate transaction is the people. I love to understand the different values, personalities, and goals of the parties involved. Without expertise, the ability to notice and act effectively in different situations is diminished.

higher returns

I take a lot of pride when I help my clients get the best price in a transaction. I know that purchasing or selling a home, especially a homestead or primary home, is one of the most expensive transaction we do in our lifetimes. Real estate is a great way people increase their wealth and establish financial security. I keep that is mind every… single… time.

A real estate expert has experience and skills in the art of negotiation. Effective negotiation can significantly increase the returns during a real estate transaction. It is important to note that if you are focusing on a particular market, you would want to look for a real estate expert in that market (for example: Austin). This is because knowing the culture, rules, and standards of a market is key during negotiations.

Also, sonly about 50% real estate agents are part of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). They are also called REALTORS®. Realtors abide by the Code of Ethics and ethical duties as established by NAR, so you can feel at ease knowing that you are working with an agent who has sworn to uphold certain professional standards.

austin real estate experts

Trusted Resource

Helping purchase or sell a property with the highest returns is important. But also, a real estate expert acts as an important resource to help clients navigate the local information on utilities, zoning, schools, and more. They can provide objective and helpful information about the different neighborhoods, appreciation trends, and future developments. And also, a real estate expert is able to help their clients understand the condition of a house and help prepare a budget for upcoming or future maintenance expenses or significant repairs.

Expert Guide

Buying or selling a real estate property usually requires managing and putting together dozens of forms, reports, disclosures, and other technical documents. A real estate expert is knowledgeable about the industry standard and is able to put together the best deal, while avoiding delays or costly mistakes. Also, there’s a lot of jargon involved, so you want to work with a professional who can speak the language.

Owning a home is a keystone of wealth… both financial affluence and emotional security.

Suze Orman

If you want to learn more about how I can help you with your real estate needs, please contact me here.

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1031 Exchange Deadline Extension – COVID-19


The COVID-19 affected certain deadlines, including those of a 1031 exchange. On March 13, 2020, the President of the United States issued an emergency declaration in response to the ongoing Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. The IRS issued a Notice 2020-23 allowing the postponement of the time for performing certain acts. This was a result of the president’s declaration and the help of The Federation of Exchange Accommodators (FEA).

Normally, a 1031 exchanger needs to identify the replacement property within 45 days. And, the exchanger also needs to the complete the purchase of the replacement property within 180 days from the date of the sale. However, due to COVID-19, if your 1031 exchange deadline was on or after April 1 and before July 15, it is now due on July 15, 2020. In other words, any deadline between April 1- July 15 is extended to July 15, 2020. However, there is still confusion regarding whether the extension is mandatory or just permissible. I found that Accruit, a 1031 exchange specialist, provides up to date information regarding COVID-19 and 1031 Exchange Deadlines.

If you are looking to gain more knowledge regarding a 1031 exchange, please let me know. It is a great mechanism for tax deferral of real estate capital gains. So, I recommend using this mechanism for several reasons that I am happy to share with you. Please, contact me here if you would like to know more about how it works, costs, benefits, and the process of getting the exchange completed. I have personally done a few of these myself. And, I have have also helped clients complete real estate transaction within the 1031 exchange requirements.