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db650

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Everything posted by db650

  1. The River Oaks is a beautiful building but there is little overlap in market appeal. It’s full service with HOAs probably around double the Westmore. It’s also a much bigger building in terms of number of units, so it has a different feel. Finally, the units are much larger in The River Oaks so they are much more expensive, even assuming you can still get in for 700 a square foot. Other comparison buildings are the Revere and Giorgetti which are around 30 units. The Revere is more full service than the Giorgetti but both have much higher end finishes than the Westmore. But both the Revere and Girogetti also have much larger units than Westmore. So the Westmore does fit a niche of relatively modestly priced units because of smaller unit sizes and lower quality finishes. I was not not a big fan of the exterior design of the Revere, but it’s grown on me. A glass wall building wouldn’t be a good fit for the neighborhood, despite the San Felipe tower around the corner.
  2. The pricing starting at $960,000 is what I expected. What is surprising, however, is what you appear to get for this. It comes with mid range Bosch appliances. The cabinet maker is not specified, which likely means builder grade cabinets. The same goes for the tile work. I was, however impressed, with four layers of drywall at “party”walls. Is that an official term? There is also a limited customization, which seems like a mistake at this price point. On the plus side, I like how they have storage units on the actual residence floor. I also know the builder is top notch. Only the market will tell if there is demand for very expensive, on a per square-foot basis, smallish condos in a terrific location with mid range build outs and limited building services.
  3. The pricing starting at $960,000 is what I expected. What is surprising, however, is what you appear to get for this. It comes with mid range Bosch appliances. The cabinet maker is not specified, which likely means builder grade cabinets. The same goes for the tile work. I was, however impressed, with four layers of drywall at “party”walls. Is that an official term? There is also a limited customization, which seems like a mistake at this price point. On the plus side, I like how they have storage units on the actual residence floor. I also know the builder is top notch. Only the market will tell if there is demand for very expensive, on a per square-foot basis, smallish condos in a terrific location with mid range build outs and limited building services.
  4. They start at 960,000 which would put entry units around 580 per square foot. Other buildings nearby start at between 630 and 650 per square foot. The Westmore looks like it has few amenities and limited staffing which will mean lower HOA fees but also less of a reason to be in a building. You’re paying a lot more for a potential view, single floor living, and construction quality. We’ll have to see if there is a market for this when a bigger and nice townhome nearby is comparable in absolute price.
  5. These are still expensive (and more expensive than comparable townhomes in the neighborhood) but less expensive that recent projects in the area. The units are also smaller (most if not all appear to be 2 bedrooms) and have lower-end buildouts (e.g., Bosch versus the more typical Wolf or Gaggenau appliances). So this is a plus as it's a different demographic than buildings such as the Giorgetti and Revere which are very nearby. Even if land is very expensive, why are less expensive units with lower-end finishes not viable in the neighborhood or is the condo buyer in this part of town only in the luxury market?
  6. The stone work has begun and it looks really nice.
  7. Crane came down today. 80 percent sold per sign at sales office.
  8. In Houston, a condo seems like a luxury purchase whereas in most other cities it’s a budget purchase. In Houston, condos cost more, in part because construction quality is much higher than wood framed homes and land is still relatively inexpensive. Condo fees support the non-profit HOA which is t like rent but paying for maintenance and services and some insurance. The fees are high because most people don’t budget properly for home repairs, maintain their homes like they probably should and/or do things themselves. There is also staff like security and doorman to pay for. If you don’t value the staff, you are throwing away money. Houston will never get large scale, dense residential development high rises like most cities as long as condo prices are greater than single family homes. Most people prefer a house, even with its hassles. And the fact that they’re usually cheaper makes the house for most a no brainer. In fact, it’s mostly empty nesters or two career couples without kids who can afford and live in these.
  9. Many of these condos are more expensive than homes in the neighborhood, so I’m not sure it’s simply cheaper dwellings. Condos in the U.K./River Oaks are are well over 600 per square foot and the newer ones are usually greater than 3,000 square feet in size. That’s way more expensive than townhomes and many single family homes in the neighborhood.
  10. Finally builders have caught on that you can fit many more condo units than townhomes on the same sized lot. And most people prefer one floor to four. What took so long?
  11. From today's Houston Chronicle: Building to be completed in Spring, 2020 Over 75% sold out Officially topped out https://www.chron.com/business/real-estate/article/River-Oaks-condo-tower-tops-out-14047001.php
  12. If the construction loan is due when the building is finished and they haven't sold enough to pay off the loan, they could slow down the construction.
  13. Brooklyn athletic club, a restaurant in Montrose which recently closed, had bocce courts.
  14. My point was simply the building is not selling--the market has been the naysayer; I was just the messenger. I think they've sold about 3-4 units in the past 14 months. It was supposed to open winter 2019 -- sign still says that. My guess is they are slowing construction down because of lack of sales.
  15. Article is from last year...I’d hardly characterize sales as brisk. Building has some interesting design elements but I’m not sure Houston is best market for it.
  16. Need to compare apples to apples. How much more is concrete vs wood frame construction? The interior buildout is also very expensive vs builder grade finishes.
  17. So no condos in their portfolio? It's very different than most of the retail/commercial or even some of the SFH projects they built. It makes the project less certain than if established condo developers were behind it.
  18. They will need to hit presales before construction begins. Last time they only presold 1 of 11 units so they redesigned the building with smaller units and didn’t market it for about a year. They also moved sales agencies. Sudhoff was their old agent and they seem to represent all the new high end construction. Not sure any of this will work. Has the builder Citiscsape put up multi-family in Houston before?
  19. That’s an old picture. I walked by this afternoon. It looks like they’re just finishing the staircases for roof access but the roof itself looks finished. I think the building has one more floor finished than what that picture reflects.
  20. They started constructing a wood fence around the site today. This.looks like it is finally getting started in earnest.
  21. Neat. My understanding is the building will top off on Monday.
  22. Every time I see updated pictures I can’t help but think about the Robinhood condos and that they are getting what they deserve.
  23. 70% sold, topping off at the end of the month, first units ready in approximately a year, according to HBJ: https://www.bizjournals.com/houston/news/2019/04/01/river-oaks-luxury-condo-to-top-off-this-month.html
  24. These are very expensive condos, not apartments. They should be a lot more durable as they are concrete and not the cheap wood common with 5 story wood frame construction.
  25. This project seems to be moving faster. Thanks for pics!
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