Category Archives: Austin

The Way You Pick Your Real Estate Agent Is Flawed

When I got into the Real Estate business in 2003 I could not believe how people picked their agent. They would tell me “my neighbor has his license.”, or “my buddy in Austin sells a couple of homes a year so I am going to let him sell it.” Worst of all was the “I am going to get my license and sell the home myself.”
Real Estate is one of the few professions where people hire people because of proximity, a relationship or because they don’t want to tell someone “NO”.
Imagine you are building a top notch NBA team to compete against the likes of the San Antonio Spurs or the Houston Rockets. Would you line up 100 people you know, put a basketball in their hands and then decide who to play, based on who you are most familiar with, or who cooks the best brisket or who last invited you over to play cards? NO!
You would go on a search looking for the most talented, committed, focused and experienced athletes you could find. You would look for drive and passion for the game. Just being able to hold a basketball (or real estate license) means NOTHING!
Real Estate agents are like athletes. Some approach the game in a casual and non committed way. Similar to an athlete happy to play for a few minutes a game because he’s “getting a check”. Other athletes show up at the gym early and stay late, they look at films, they work with a coach, the constantly strive to be better and more productive. They want to play and they love the game!
Why would you hire anyone less? You deserve to hire an agent that has the desire, drive, passion and enthusiasm to win and get the job done. There is no sitting on the bench collecting a check in Real Estate. Results get you a pay check.
Next time you need to buy or sell a home do your homework. Find the most talented agent with a business model and plan for success. Not just for you but for his/her business. That agent is a professional. Hiring any less will never get you to the playoffs and it will cost you time and money and cause you frustration.
Choose who you team up with like it’s important. Because it is!

The 10 Best Things About Dripping Springs, Texas

Dripping Springs is known as the “Gateway to the Hill Country”. It’s no longer a sleepy little, wide spot in the road, town.  Drippin’ has budded and grown into a thriving Austin suburb. Featuring lots of hot foodie spots, great music venues, fun local shopping and such a varied calendar of events your head will spin.
Here are some of the Best Things About Dripping Springs according to our distinguished panel of judges.  They include a bribed local goat farmer, a hyper caffeinated hipster, an exhausted and incoherent new mom and a tech CEO from Austin.

  1. FOUNDERS DAY–  No other Dripping Springs event is as big and bold as FOUNDERS DAY! From the Friday parade where hundreds of pounds of candy are chucked at the thousands of people that line the streets, to the 100+ smokers cooking all weekend, you can’t forget you’ve been to Founders Day. The live music and food will have you tapping your toes and rubbing your belly all weekend. Held every Spring since 1986, Founders Day has grown into a huge festival drawing thousands of people from all over Texas.
  2. TIGER FOOTBALL–  Tiger Football is a spectacle.  In fact any High School football game in Texas is a spectacle but Tiger Football takes it to a whole new level.  Almost the entire town will turn out for a Friday night game.  The streets are deserted from about 6:30 to 10:30.  At half time you get to watch one of the best marching bands in Texas perform and when the team comes back on the field the sound from the stands is deafening!  You gotta love Tiger Football!football-week-3
  3. MAZAMA COFFEE CO.-  Up until about 2012 the best cup of coffee in Dripping Springs came from the Circle K at the main intersection in town.  On it’s best day it was adequate.  When Vicky and Bruce Lewis decided to open Mazama Coffee Co. that all changed.  All of a sudden the town was saying things like “robust flavor” and “nutty overtones” and “fresh roasted aroma”.  Mazama quickly became the best meeting spot in town.  It’s worth a trip just to see all the locals sitting around enjoying a fresh cup of joe and a muffin or breakfast taco.  And the coffee is AMAZING!  Look for an additional location in Caliterra coming in October 2017.roaster_and_bag_web
  4. DRIPPING SPRINGS RANCH PARK  DSRP has quickly become a hub for all kinds of activities in Dripping Springs.  On any given weekend you could visit DSRP and see a horse show, a wine and food event and a gala.  The facility covers 166,000 square feet.  It has a huge rodeo arena and stalls and a covered and air conditioned convention center.  The building is hard to miss as you drive south on Ranch Road 12.  It’s a massive structure located on the old Harrison Ranch.  Check out the calendar of events!
  5. SHRED DAY–   Shred Day has helped free up more space in storage units and attics than any garage sale ever could.  Shred Day was started by Michelle Lewis and Steve Mallett of The Mallett Integrity Team Real Estate Company.  Each year they hire a giant truck to come out to the Keller Williams office in downtown Drippin’.  For 4 hours a line curls around the parking lot with people dropping off boxes of tax returns, bank statements and other useless paperwork to be shredded while they watch.  Held every year in September, Shred Day is a local favorite.14358836_10154216020517935_7573384935508649210_n
  6. FLORES TACO SHACK–  If you were driving through Dripping and saw Flores you might just drive on by and think “I’ll pass on taking a chance on that place.”  But the locals know better!  Flores is tasty!  From staple breakfast tacos like sausage, egg and cheese to the popular chicken fajita, and the occasional fresh hot tamales, the food is fantastic.  You will not be disappointed and as you wait in line you’re sure to meet some of the locals.  Being friendly is a Drippin’ way of life.
  7. RUN BY THE CREEK–  Started in 2012 by a group of runners, the Run By The Creek is one of the prettiest running courses in the Hill Country.  The course winds along Onion Creek and crosses the water 6 times in the 10K race.  There is a 5K and a 10K race.   Runners of all abilities come out from Olympic hopefuls to weekend warriors.  Expect to run with about 500 of your running buddies in one of the most fun and exhilarating workouts you can find west of Austin.fullsizeoutput_dbd
  8. DRIPPING WITH TASTE– The 2016 DWT was huge with over 2000 people sampling local food, music and adult beverages.  Each entry ticket comes with a small sipping cup so you can taste local brews, spirits and wines.  Music is all local.  The atmosphere is fun and lively.  It can feel like the whole town turned out!
  9. THE BARBER SHOP– The Barber Shop Brewpub is located in downtown Dripping Springs in a historic building that began life in 1924. In its earliest life, the building served as a garage, then later a gas station, before becoming “The old Barber Shop”. Now the Barber Shop Brewpub is where the locals come to unwind after a long hard day at work.  In addition to a well-considered selection of popular local, national, and international beers and wines, they have a tap or two of their own special brews! Live music is always on tap, and if there isn’t, just bring your guitar or violin and start playing.img4
  10.  HUDSON’S ON MERCER– If you have been searching for the place to venture out to in Dripping Springs Hud’s is the place to go. Chad and Natasha Hudson have worked tirelessly to build the venue they have always wanted to perform in and visit. Chad and Natasha met in Nashville and dreamed of owning a place like Hudson’s on Mercer.  When Hud’s opened the whole feeling of Mercer Street changed.  What once was a dusty street with a feed store and a post office has become the center of Drippin’ nightlife.  Even though the feed store is still right next door…

Why 80% of New Agents Fail

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A recent Inman News article gives good insight into the top three reasons the majority of Real Estate agents do not make it past their 2nd year anniversary.  In fact, according to NAR (National Association of Realtors), over 80% of new agents do not survive 2 years in the business.

These 3 reasons are:

1.  They did not have a mentor they could learn the business from.  Inman suggests “The best thing a new agent can do is find an excellent and generous agent mentor or coach to whom they should make themselves indispensable.”  Most new agents wallow through the first year with little or no traction because they are not trained properly.  Agents should seek out mentors and companies with real training programs.

2.  They did not learn how to LEAD GENERATE.  Being an expert at contracts, staging, marketing, and social media is worthless if you do not have anyone to sell your services to.  Discovering what type of lead generation works for the individual agent is invaluable.  An agent needs proper training to learn how to get in front of the next client.

3.  New agents can fall into the trap of not knowing what is the most productive thing they can do each day.  Many agents just wake up and see what happens that day.  With no “Boss”, other than themselves, they struggle prioritizing each day.  Time blocking is a learned skill.  New agents need to learn it from a mentor.  According to Inman “More than three-quarters of respondents (77.39 percent) said that new agents fail at least in part because they are unprepared for the realities of working as an independent contractor.”

I have built my business on the foundation that if every new agent learns the business the correct way then all the other agents will be more successful.  “A rising tide raises all ships”.  When the level of professionalism rises then so do incomes and customer satisfaction.  If you have ever wanted to start a career in Real Estate you need to know the facts about what you will need to know to be successful.

Steve Mallett

Mallett Integrity Team-Since 2003

Keller Williams Realty

www.mallettintegrityteam.com

Inman Success Report for Agents

8 Steps to Keep Your Home Smelling Fresh during the Winter

As winter settles in, we spend much more time indoors.  Being confined indoors means bad news if there are any triggers for allergies or asthma inside the home. Not to mention the fireplace smells, outdoor animals that are spending more time indoors because of the cold and children that are home inside more often. If your house is on the market or your you just want a clean home, follow some of these tips.

  1. Diffuser with essential oils – A few drops of your favorite smell can do your house wonders.  It creates a light mist with fragrant throughout your home.
  2. Lemons & Oranges – If the garbage disposal is still giving off the smell of last night’s dinner, run some lemon or orange peels through it to eliminate the odor.
  3. Lamp double duty – Put a dab of vanilla extract on light bulbs when the lights are off. Once the lights are turned on, the bulb will heat up the extract and emit a delicious smell.
  4. Potted plants aren’t just for looks   they’re also natural air purifiers. Some of the best are different kinds of palm trees, orchids and peace lilies.
  5. Pet Smells – If you love your cat but don’t love litter box odor, mix tea leaves with the litter. It will help to neutralize the smell.  Odors from pets can be from pet stains in carpet/pad or furnishings, or it can be from wet fur of animals.  Try getting your carpets steam cleaned on a regular basis and get pets house trained to keep carpets smelling fresh. Consider using a carpet powder or light baby powder on carpet and vacuum.
  6. Simmer Pot Recipe – For a long-lasting wonderful aroma that permeates your entire home, try a simmer pot recipe. Use this around the winter holidays to create a warm, homey ambiance.
    • Peel from 1 lemon
      Peel from 1 orange
      2 bay leaves
      3 cinnamon sticks
      2 Tablespoons whole cloves

    Add all these items to a medium pot or a small crock-pot. Add water to fill about halfway. Turn the burner on to low and let this simmer all day. If using a crock pot, set on low and let it freshen the air.

  7. Keep it Clean – With everyone spending more time inside the house, there is more of a chance with things such as pollen, dander, and dust mites to thrive. With more coughing and sneezing and less window opening, the air quality inside your home can be more dangerous than the air quality outside. Make certain to keep your home clean with regular dusting and mopping. If you do not have a fan in your bathroom to eliminate moisture that can cause mold to grow, perhaps now is a good time to invest in one.
  8. Don’t just sweep or mop – Using a vacuum that has good filtration and a HEPA filter is best. Of course, keeping the dust out can begin at the door. Install a dust walk-off system (grills, grates or mats that reduce the amount of dirt and dust that come into the home) and take your shoes off when entering. Having hard flooring is much better than carpet. Dust is harder to remove from carpet, and the older the carpeting is, the more difficult it is to clean. If you are going to clean your carpet, steam cleaning is better than chemical cleaners or shampooing.

Fireworks Safety Tips

Each county, city and neighborhoods can have different ordinances in regards to fireworks.  Their use, possession, and distribution depend on current burn bans, ETJ locations, Homeowner Association rules and general common sense. Please make sure fireworks are legal in your area before buying or using them.

Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose nearby.

Never allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks.

Avoid buying fireworks that are packaged in brown paper because this is often a sign that the fireworks were made for professional displays and that they could pose a danger to consumers.

Always have an adult supervise all fireworks activities. Children can suffer injuries even from sparklers, which parents often assume are safe. Sparklers can burn at temperatures of about 2,000 degrees, which is hot enough to melt some metals.

Never place any part of your body directly over a fireworks device when lighting the fuse. Back up to a safe distance immediately after lighting fireworks.

Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have not ignited fully.

Never point or throw fireworks at another person.

Light fireworks one at a time, then move back quickly.

Never carry fireworks in a pocket or shoot them off in metal or glass containers.

To prevent a trash fire, douse spent fireworks with plenty of water from a bucket or hose before discarding.

 

 

Is Austin is one of the worst places in America to own a home?

It’s one of the best towns for real estate investors but a new report boldly states that Austin is one of the worst places to own a home.

Porch.com recently released a list of the best places to own a home in America. Porch.com surveyed U.S. homeowners on a range of topics (from safety to taxes) and gathered insight from real estate agents to determine the rankings.

Austin ranks No. 48 out of the 67 cities studied. The overall ranking comprises 10 category ratings of which Austin has two positive showings. We rank No. 4 for economic opportunity and No. 15 for tax fairness. However, Austin lands at a dismal No. 63 for commute, No. 62 for real estate confidence, and No. 59 for walkability.

The Capital City bottoms out with the worst ranking in the state. Houston, which ranks No. 1 for economic opportunity, sneaks in ahead of Austin at No. 40. Dallas fares best at No. 21; San Antonio follows at No. 28.

The happiest homeowners, it seems, are living it up in Denver, Colorado. Other top places to own a home are Grand Rapids, Michigan; Washington, D.C.; Virginia Beach, Virginia; and Rochester, New York.

Don’t tell the locals though.  Almost everyone living in Austin loves it here.

I wonder sometimes if these reports have an agenda to keep our city from getting more and more crowded.  As new development spreads from Austin, out to the east into Bastrop and west into Dripping Springs, more and more locals talk about “the good old days”.  At some point the growth will slow and Austin will always have that small town feel even when it’s a bustling city.  We support more food trucks and local businesses than just about any other city in the country.  Keep the faith Austin!  We still are one of the best places in the country to live!

Austin-area home prices reach all-time high, March 2015 Stats

Austin Area MLS Stats 2015

March 2015 Statistics

    • 2,440 – Single-family homes sold, 13 percent more than March 2014.
    • $255,000 – Median price for single-family homes, 10 percent more than March 2014.
    • $334,758 – Average price for single-family homes, 13 percent more than March 2014.
    • 55 – Average number of days single-family homes spent on the market, four days more than March 2014.
    • 3,402 – New single-family home listings on the market, six percent more than March 2014.
    • 5,274 – Active single-family home listings on the market, six percent more than March 2014.
    • 2,812 – Pending sales for single-family homes, five percent more than March 2014.
    • 2.2 – Months of inventory* of single-family homes, statistically unchanged from March 2014.
  • $816,809,520 – Total dollar volume of single-family properties sold, 28 percent more than March 2014.

Thinking about buying or selling a home in the Austin area? Let us help! Contact us for more information!

JUST LISTED IN BELTERRA! 210 Trinity Hills

Check out 210 Trinity Hills, the most recent listing in Belterra from the Mallett Integrity Team! This fantastic 2988 square foot home just went on the market today and it is impressive! We love this beautiful 5 bedroom home with a rare 2nd master suite upstairs. Well-kept landscaping outside leads to a covered front porch where you can sit outside and enjoy the Spring in Central Texas. Walk in through the large foyer to a great open layout floor plan with soaring ceilings, stone fireplace, plenty of natural light and wood and stained concrete floors! The island kitchen with breakfast area feature gas cooking, granite counters and plenty of cabinet space. Take a step outside the back door and enjoy the Incredible outdoor living space with built-in fireplace and outdoor kitchen! As part of Belterra, one of the most popular and desirable subdivision in the area, owners of this home can also take advantage of the wonderful Belterra amenities including, walking/jogging trails, community swimming pool, fitness center, sports courts, and more! Not to mention this property is locating in the highly rated Dripping Springs Independent School District. Don’t miss this great property – contact us today to set up a showing and make this house your home!

Great Subdivisions in Dripping Springs – Belterra

Belterra is a master planned community located in South West Austin just past the Y in Oakhill (Hwy 71 and Hwy 290 intersection) between Nutty Brown Road and Sawyer Ranch Road. Belterra is still within Austin city limits and consists of 2,000 home sites on over 1600 acres in the Texas Hill Country. Community amenities include walking/jogging trails, playground, community pool, exercise facilities, and welcome center. Belterra is also only about 10 minutes from Dripping Springs, a short commute to downtown Austin, and served by the highly rated Dripping Springs school district.

Check out some of the great homes the Mallett Integrity Team has listed in one of the most desirable subdivisions in the Dripping Springs area below, and search all homes for sale in Belterra here!

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2014 Austin Holiday Events

The 2014 Austin holiday season is upon us! Can you believe there are only two weeks left until Thanksgiving!? With December drawing closer and closer, holiday events are already starting to pop up around Austin and the surrounding areas. It’s not too early to start planning your Austin holiday event calendar! Below, we’ve included some of our favorite and most popular events in and around the Austin area – these are ones you definitely don’t want to miss and will get you into the holiday spirit in no time! Just click on the image below to see the full PDF version with clickable links to the websites and more information.

Have any other holiday events that you regularly attend in the Austin area? Let us know! We’d love to hear about how you’re spending the holidays in Austin. Just leave us a comment below!

2014 Holiday Events in Austin