The Affordability Gap –The Mueller redevelopment in Austin TX has two gaps. The first is the availability gap which I discussed in part one, the second is the affordability gap which l cover here. What does this mean for buyers and sellers at Mueller?
What is the Mueller Affordability Gap? There are two ways to buy a single family home from a builder in Mueller – with the income-qualified affordable program, and the regular market rate program.
Homes in the affordable program typically cost up to $170,000, and homes in the market rate program started at $219,000, with the majority being at $250,000- $300,000 and above. So the affordability gap refers to the lack of homes around the median home price in the Austin metro area of around $200,000.
How The Affordable Program Might Fill The Affordable Gap
So what does someone looking for a home between $170,000 and $250,000 at Mueller get? There are options in the Greenway Lofts and the few homes that were in this price range were sold extremely quickly.
There may be another choice however. For someone who has bought an affordable home and owned it for over a year, they have the option to sell. The Mueller Foundation which runs the affordable program has first right to purchase the home in this case. If they choose not to, then the owner can sell on the open market, and the home would no longer be in the affordable scheme.
The appraisals for the affordable homes would put the homes right in the $210,000 to $240,000 range in my opinion. Given that there is little competition in this range from the builders at Mueller (none at present), and a wealth of people who have been enquiring about this price point, I think sellers who fall into this category will do well.
Right now buyers are struggling with the availability of the affordable program (a third affordable availability gap!) and are signing up for waiting lists for homes when they come available in Phase III from the builders. If a current owner of an affordable home sells their home back to the Mueller Foundation, then these too will become available on the resale market at the affordable program pricing.