Life is good in Amarillo!

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Submitted by Darrell Young on July 21, 2006 - 8:33am

I feel your pain California. Depending on your perspective; you're either losing/winning or just hanging in there. The Eagles sang a song with a lyric that reads, "Call some place paradise, kiss it goodbye". Maybe its time to do just that.

Consider this: sell out now, for what you can get and move East. For instance; check out this house:

I can help you understand that there is life in the rest of these United States that's truly wonderful in other States.

I encourage any feedback so if you're moved one way or another on my post, email me. Luxury Living at $164.97/SF - Check out this luxury home!

Submitted by FormerSanDiegan on July 21, 2006 - 9:03am.

Energy efficieny, sand (dirt?) hills, neighborhood vibe: I especially love the energy efficiency (lots of hot water), the lovely view of the sand (dirt?) hills and the vibrant neighborhood feel in the pictures linked from this advertisement. All for a mere 650K. Please take your ads somewhere else.

Submitted by PerryChase on July 21, 2006 - 9:03am.

$650,000 for a house in Amarillo, TX? Talk about a bubble!!
That's how much that same home will be worth in So Cal when the bubble bursts. So why move?

Personally, I'd rather live a well designed and nice appointed urban flat. I wish that in San Diego, builders would build affordable condos downtown without all the amenities that require $300+/month HOA. How about a nice urban condo with $50 HOA -- an empty square space that I'll appoint myself?

Submitted by PerryChase on July 21, 2006 - 9:23am.

Did you also know that stairs pointing straight out the front door is bad Feng-Shui? That means that the family living in this house will have chi (energy) flow outward causing lots of pain in the future.

Submitted by Bugs on July 21, 2006 - 9:40am.

I thought Amarillo was one of the last remaining hot spots right now for the itinerant investor class. Is traffic slowing up some?

That same type of house went for that same price level here in eastern SD County (Ramona Country Estates) back in 2003, which means we may very well see it again before this cycle is all over. And if San Diego county shakes back down to yr2003 prices (or lower), then it's a cinch that Amarillo's gonna drop a lot, too.

So I wish you good fortune in selling that house, and I hope your buyers have what it takes to hang in there for the coming loss.

Submitted by speedingpullet on July 21, 2006 - 10:07am.

Is it just me, or does that house bear a striking resemblance to the one in "The Munsters"...

..ok, maybe its just me.

Submitted by barnaby33 on July 21, 2006 - 10:12am.

That place is a scary looking dump. I imagine it being an albatross around somebody's neck quite soon. Is there a single job in Amarillo which would pay well enough to afford that monster? Harder to fathom still, if there is would that person be mentally unhinged enough to buy that place?

Wow that is just mind blowingly ugly. I think at its most visceral level the reaction I get is TINY PENIS, extremely tiny.


Submitted by Darrell Young on July 21, 2006 - 10:20am.

First, the pictures you collected are of the new development area of La Paloma. Second, please understand, Amarillo HAS NO BUBBLE. Our cost of living, income levels and disposable income have been rising "steadily" for years now. There is no "wild speculative" investment like what's occurred in San Diego and elsewhere in the coastal cities of California. Amarillo, Texas grew by a steady 14% last year (per CNN MONEY).

The point of my post is truly a marketing effort, however, your missing out on the point. Your market is odd and way off to the rest of the US. I'm suggesting you capitalize on your temporary good forture now but cashing out and taking your money to a lesser economy where you can "own" something with the equity in your California house.

You've complete knocked my town and this top of the line neighborhood because you'd rather live in a box for $350,000 hoping someday you can get that equity out. I'm merely pointing out a solution to a life long problem (what to do before I lose everything "my equity").

Did you read the captions on the photos? If so, you understood what it was I was showing you.

Again, thank you for your response, I did ask for it. What I did ask for was condescension from someone who lives in constant traffic, bad air, millions of gallons of rainfall, and overall, a hectic way of life. Sure, you've got an ocean to "swim" in but its an all day event getting there.

Life is good in Amarillo,

Darrell R. Young
Amarillo, Texas
(806) 236-4102

Submitted by FormerSanDiegan on July 21, 2006 - 10:32am.

OK, I am interested. Please send me a list of job openings in the High Tech Sector. We are interested in openings in Biotechnology and Architecture.

By the way, to afford this house these jobs will have to pay a cominbed income of $175K (assuming we put 20% down) to maintain our current lifestyle.

P.S. - How much are property Taxes & HOA fees on this house ? My frineds in Dallas and Austin pay over 2% in prop taxes. Hope it's cheaper in Amarillo.

Submitted by Darrell Young on July 21, 2006 - 10:33am.

Energy efficiency? I remember the screaming two years ago about California energy costs. Texas never said a word. The pictures of the dirt are the "undeveloped" part of this otherwise, top of the line neighborhood. This neighborhood is "brand new" as in 2 years. Sure, we have a little construction sand in the streets.

Once again, I realize I'm here to peddle a house, but you need to realize WHY I'm posting here. Its because your INFLATED California economy just might be a godsend to you IF you capitalize on your equity now. In other words, sell your dang houses and move the equity into another property that is COMPLETELY PAID OFF.

I've lived in many States including California. Pound for pound, I wouldn't trade the love and sincereity of the people of Texas and the Panhandle for nothing. We have zero rush hours, weather that changes completely in 24 hours, tons of sunshine, a (steadily) growing economy, excellent high tech industry (Bell Helicopter/Marine 1 (Presidents choppers are built here) as well as 1/3 of all the Beef industry in the entire United States. As I've said before, life is good in Amarillo.

Thanks for your post/response. I wish I could have seen a litte more careful or well thought out response rather than your cute collage of misunderstood photos and snide commentary. My posts are all about quality of life sir. I'd never trade you mine for yours - been there, done that.

Life is good in Amarillo,

Darrell R. Young
Amarillo, Texas
(806) 236-4102

Submitted by no_such_reality on July 21, 2006 - 10:37am.

The median income for a household in the city was $34,940, and the median income for a family was $42,536. Males had a median income of $31,321 versus $22,562 for females.

Sorry Darryl, $650,000 for a 4000 sq ft house is only appealing compared to related prices in California. For the housing market in Amarillo with a population of 183,000. It's 20X median income.

Submitted by Monster on July 21, 2006 - 10:37am.

Just shoot me if that is my future. Beers, steers etc etc. Guess what is the neighborhood topic every weekend/all year long? Texas football!!! Hook 'em Horns!!! Maybe a drinkfest at the Lonestar restaurant by the mall before the game. Sorry, but life is too short to look at dirt.

Submitted by VCJIM on July 21, 2006 - 10:45am.

I think it's kind of cute in an ugly sort of way.

Most out of state realtors want to capitalize on California's huge run up in prices.

Submitted by EJ on July 21, 2006 - 10:45am.

This is a nice house, I hope it sells. Your idea is decent that someone from CA could cashout and buy your property, however most the people on this board believe that there is lots of speculative activity in many markets nationwide (myself included). Why is someone selling a big beautiful home only 2 years after custom construction? Was there high appreciation these last two years in the region? Was this appreciation driven by market fundamentals (higher wages and rents)? I believe there are similar size/priced homes in regions of southern CA far from economic centers (Victorville comes to mind).

Now to address the the location bashing: you like TX, I like SoCal. Maybe you ride horses, personally I ride waves (and it doesn't take me long to get to the beach, I see it from my front window). I am sure each location has it's ups and downs.

Good luck with the property!

Submitted by Bugs on July 21, 2006 - 10:48am.

I agree that some of the responses have been a little harsh, but if you had taken the time to read our content here you would realize that if we think a house like your's would be overpriced here then there's no question as to what we think about that price in your town.

Here's a serious question that I often ask of appraisers all across the nation:

What percentage of price appreciation would you attribute to imported equity (from Calif, New York, Florida or wherever) and how much is attributable to local employment enabling local move-ups? 'Cause the word I get from appraisers in various areas is that equity flight from the metro areas is fueling most of the increases in the more outlying areas.

Without imported money initiating the increases and competing with local money, many of these other areas would have never started into this current upswing. That's a generalization and I really don't know how applicable it is to Amarillo, but you might give that some serious thought. It stands to reason that as our pricing declines, so will our exported equity. To that extent it will have some effects on other areas of the nation and some of them will follow us into decline. Regardless of where the money is coming from your stability will ultimately be tied to your local wages - how are local wages doing anyway? Are they also increasing at 14% a year?

BTW, my ex-wife moved to Amarillo back in some years ago with a job change, and bought a little ranchette outside of town for $125,000. When she moved 3 years later she couldn't sell the place for what she had bought it for even though they had made a number of improvements. It took them almost 2 years to sell at a break-even. Now I realize her place was nothing like this house and that neighborhood was nothing like this neighborhood, but I would also point out that $125,000 is not $650,000. If the lower price ranges got squashed that badly last time around, what makes you think this much higher price range is so stable?

As for quality of life, it all depends on a person's priorities. If I didn't have family here, if I didn't surf (a lot), if my business wasn't here and if I didn't hate the desert then I'd probably think Amarillo is a wonderful place to live. Alas, I don't have the priorities that would allow me to enjoy life in Texas.

Submitted by FormerSanDiegan on July 21, 2006 - 10:49am.

Nothing against Texas.

I grew up a few miles north (Kansas). I have family in Fort Worth and friends in Austin, Dallas. I've spent time in Lubbock, Midland ...(not just a day, but weeks). I love to visit the state and unwind, enjoy good barbecue, family, friends, etc.

You know nothing about my quality of life. I live 2 miles from work, can walk to my kids' school, walk to some of best restaurants on the west coast. For the record, I do love Beef.

People in general just don't appreciate people abusing Blog forums to PEDDLE their WARES. When you post advertising, you will get abused.

P.S. -
"I remember the screaming two years ago about California energy costs. "
Are you referring to the period where companies such as Enron (Ken Lay, rest his soul), ILLEGALLY robbed us by manipulating the derregulated electricity industry ?

Submitted by Carlsbadliving on July 21, 2006 - 10:50am.

It's actually $191/sq.ft. I'd give you about $400k for that place in a few years.

Submitted by Darrell Young on July 21, 2006 - 10:51am.

Texas no State income tax. Sure, our property taxes are higher, but we just passed landmark legistlation to move a signficant portion of the tax burden to business in the form of excise taxes.

Taxes in Amarillo are about the same as in other places in Texas.

There is no HOA.

There are high tech jobs, but mostly in the technical trades. Draftsmen/Architects can work anywhere with a web connection.

As to ownership, as I've tediously mentioned in previous responses, this situation is for those who have the equity. If you have nothing but a huge mortgage, with no equity, then you're wasting time typing. If none of this information can be applied in your life, pass it over. But please, leave off the flames. That's not what I intended by posting here. I read the entire forum before I posted and I've read nearly nothing but negative, gloomy, posts about how hard the real estate economy is. How many agents have lost their jobs and how prices have begun falling.

I'm here with a remedy for some, but not all. If I can be of further assistance in showing you other homes, priced appropriatly in the $95-$110 per square foot (2005 and newer) homes, 3000-4000 square feet, just give me a call or email me.

Life is good in Amarillo,

Darrell R. Young
Amarillo, Texas
(806) 236-4102

Submitted by Carlsbadliving on July 21, 2006 - 10:56am.

I just think you would have been better off showing us one of those $95/sq. ft. homes.

A lot of the posts on this blog have to do with America's over-consumption and all the new McMansions. You showed us exactly what we usually bitch about and the price wasn't that great either.

No hard feelings.

Submitted by PerryChase on July 21, 2006 - 11:05am.

I think that Darrell is really cut out to be a realtor -- doesn't give up and is forever positive. But I think that he's barking up the wrong tree here.

$650,000 for that house is overpriced in parts of SD County! Why would anyone want to buy that albatross in Amarillo, TX?

I hate it when salesmen blow smoke up my ***. I'd rather they be understated and tell me truth. Truth builds trust and repeat business.

Submitted by powayseller on July 21, 2006 - 11:12am.

Darrell Young, I agree that cashing out in CA is a great idea, so I did just that. Once you cash out, you can either rent in CA as I did, or buy in a lower-priced city.

If you choose to leave CA and buy elsewhere, you have to be careful to not buy iknto another bubble. The question I would ask is, "What is the income/median home price ratio today, compared to its historical average?"

In SD, the average is 7, and we are at 14.

What is the average multiple in Amarillo, and what is it today? After all, wages are the fundamental that supports a true non-bubble housing pirce.

The second question is what percentage of sales and refis in the last 5 years are adjustable mortgages (I/O, option ARM, ARM) and stated income, so I get an idea of the future foreclosure rate.

In Omaha, NE, the income/home price multiple is the same as it's always been, but the high use of ARMs are causing home prices to drop.

Third, how is the job market? Has main employment been in construction, real estate, lending, and MEW-related (retail, restaurant, travel, services)? Or is employment independent of the real estate market and MEW? Even Omaha NE had most new jobs in the last years in construction, and they are starting to lose jobs there. The construction and MEW dependence is not limited to CA. It is nationwide, and I wonder if Amarillo is somehow isolated in this regard.

So please answer these 3 questions, and then we will all know whether Amarillo is a good deal, or waiting to fall off a cliff.

Submitted by FormerSanDiegan on July 21, 2006 - 11:13am.

So Cal for less than Amarillo: Sick of living in the West Texas real estate Bubble ? Tired of all that Beef ? Like to eat your your salad with fruits and nuts ? We'll they are all out here in sunny southern California. This house is listed at $460K, for 3142 sq. ft. Much cheaper than Sandy Hills. Come West y'all.

Maybe I should go into real estate sales.

Submitted by Carlsbadliving on July 21, 2006 - 11:17am.

That's classic!

Submitted by Darrell Young on July 21, 2006 - 11:41am.

The business owners I know are living and doing quite well. If your way of life depends on "median" living; well, your not really up to speed with the points of my posts. A better indicator of quality of living can be found in property growth values. I'll recommend some improved reading for you:

Life is good in Amarillo,

Darrell R. Young
Amarillo, Texas
(806) 236-4102

Submitted by Darrell Young on July 21, 2006 - 11:45am.

The answers to many of your questions aren't just sitting on the edge of my tongue. You'll have to work a little to find out for yourself. Check out and read the articles yourself. Sadly, there aren't any true indicators or reports for "rush hour" or "beautiful sunsets" or "great neighbors", but I'm way happy here and never felt at home in Colorado Springs or Denver, Colorado for 18 years previous.

No hard feelings either.

Life is good in Amarillo,

Darrell R. Young
Amarillo, Texas
(806) 236-4102

Submitted by Darrell Young on July 21, 2006 - 11:51am.

Of course, you realize I showed you a complete custom home. Custom dude. I'm talking a $30,000 roof. Slate floors, hand scraped, oak flooring in nearly every room. A $3000 gas grill on the back porch. The differences in these two properties are so extreme, it makes your argument seem even sillier. You've compared a 2006 Chevy Impalla SS to a 2006 BMW 760i.

Life is good in Amarillo,

Darrell R. Young
Amarillo, Texas
(806) 236-4102

Submitted by bob007 on July 21, 2006 - 12:00pm.

Why can't I build a house for $150,0000 in Amarillo ?
Why spend $650,000 ? For that I can buy a 40 year old 1500 sq ft home in San Jose for $700,000.

Submitted by FormerSanDiegan on July 21, 2006 - 12:03pm.

More Like and HUMMER H1 Alpha versus a Lexus GS450H

Submitted by powayseller on July 21, 2006 - 12:04pm.

Darryl, I gave you the benefit of the doubt. I gave you the opportunity to prove to us that the Amarillo economy is sound, the loans outstanding are solid, and that housing prices are supported by fundamentals.

You tell me to do my own research?? Get real! I'm not your gopher.

If you come here to peddle wares without understanding the value of your wares, you are premature.

Do some research, and then come back. We're too smart here, to be fooled by some pretty picture. We are well read, we understand the economy and real estate markets and we want data.

Once you have your data, I will be here to listen to your arguments. So go back to your desk and do some research, to understand your economy and markets better. For all I know, you are in a classic speculative bubble yourself!

How dare you tell me to research if you are in a bubble? Why would I want to use my time to research the bubblicous-ness of Amarillo, TX? I'm not your gopher.

Submitted by Bugs on July 21, 2006 - 12:09pm.

Mr. Young,

You apparently don't have ready access to data that would answer these basic questions about the economic fundamentals in the market you're attempting to sell here. That's too bad, because around here that puts you at a disadvantage. Around here, data talks and sentiment walks.

You might be able to make a very sound economic argument in favor of your sales pitch, but we're never going to be able to see it unless you can get it together and show us. And yes, the burden is on you because you're the one who's come here to sell us on your idea.

What are the dominant growth industries in your town of 183,000? What kinds of professional opportunities are currently available and/or are coming to town soon? How many universities are in town to encourage economic growth and support new businesses? How many households in town are making the $150,000+ it takes to buy the homes you're selling? After all, that's our market if we go to sell later when there is no more imported equity.

And that's just the start. You've got a loooong way to go before you'll be able to land a buyer off of this board. If you're not up to it then this may not be a productive way to spend your time.

Submitted by powayseller on July 21, 2006 - 12:58pm.

Way to go, Bugs!

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