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Builders start Houston area communities in Cypress, Humble

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Builders separately launched two single-family residential communities in the greater Houston area with homes starting under $300,000 as rising mortgage rates cut into buying power.

Taylor Morrison and Tri Pointe Homes announced plans to build more than 1,300 homes priced from the high $200,00s to the low $400,000s on 300 acres in Mason Woods, a new community east of the Grand Parkway near FM 529 in Cypress.

The homes, ranging from 1,300 to 2,850 square feet, will be built on 40, 45, and 50-foot wide lots. The builders acquired land that had previously been used for cattle grazing from Landmark Industries Development for the residential development, according to Taylor Morrison.

“Mason Woods offers an attainable price point, which is fairly hard to come by in the Houston area currently,” said Todd Rasmussen, president of Taylor Morrison’s Houston Division.

“We are excited to introduce three new innovative home collections offering open concept living areas, clean lines, natural light and sophisticated simplicity,” Rasmussen said.

Tri Pointe Homes said the location offers proximity to restaurants and retail in both Cypress and Katy and is a short drive from the Energy Corridor. The homes have open concept layouts, flex rooms and smart home technology.
 
“The Mason Woods community will offer a premium lifestyle for homebuyers due to its quick and easy access to employment centers, schools and shopping,” said Tri Pointe Homes Houston division president Joe Mandola.

Pre-sales in Mason Woods are expected to begin in late September, with the first homes available in early 2023. Zoned to Cy-Fair ISD, the community has a series of lakes, an amenity center with a resort-style pool, fitness center and play ground.

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The community adds a new option as Houston’s robust housing market has slowed  with rising home prices and higher mortgage rates. Mortgage rates last week climbed above 6 percent for the first time in nearly 14 years, according a weekly survey by the government-sponsored mortgage finance firm Freddie Mac. For a $250,000 mortgage, the monthly payment on a 30-year loan jumped to nearly $1,500 a month, up from $1,054 a year ago when rates were 3 percent.

New home prices are still reaching record levels even as sales have slowed and more homes are hitting the market, according to HomesUSA.com, a North Texas-based brokerage that tracks new home sales handled through the local Multiple Listing Services in Texas.

New home prices in the Houston area rose to a record $426,115 in August based on a three-month average, according to HomeUSA.com. The price is up by nearly $25,000 or 6 percent from $401,315 in August 2021.

Lawrence Dean, senior vice president, Texas advisory, for housing research firm Zonda, said first-time and other buyers seeking affordably priced new homes are finding it harder to qualify for mortgages.

“A portion of buyers are now considering more affordably priced sub-$300,000 homes that might not have considered these homes when interest rates were much lower,” Dean said in an e-mail. “As their buying power erodes due to higher interest rates, they are forced to or choose to look at more affordably priced homes therefore driving demand in this slice of the market.”

Builders have started the most homes in the $300,000 to $399,000 category, which jumped 33.7 percent over the last year to 16,302 homes, according to Zonda. Home starts in the $200,000 to $299,000 category dropped by 39 percent to 12,292, but not for lack of demand.

Because of price and cost increases, that very same house that was in the sub $300,000 category may now be selling in the $300,000 to $399,000 category, according to Zonda.   

In northeast Houston, KB Home, a Los Angeles-based builder geared toward first-time and first move-up buyers, announced the opening of Flagstone, a 100-acre community planned for 428 homes in the Humble area.

The community, located off FM 1960 north of Cypresswood Drive, is between the Hardy Toll Road and U.S. 59 about 23 miles northeast of downtown. Prices start in the $240,000s, according to KB Home.

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The one- and two-story floor plans contain up to five bedrooms and three baths and range in size from 1,200 to 2,200 square feet. The neighborhood is zoned to Aldine Independent School District. The community is near hiking and biking at Stahl Preserve and Spring Creek Greenway and will have a multi-acre park with playground.

“Flagstone’s convenient location provides easy access to major highways for a quick commute to area employers, and residents will enjoy the multi-acre community park and nearby outdoor recreation,” Brett Dietz, president of KB Home’s Houston division, said in a statement.

KB Home builds in 24 new home communities in the Houston market.

 

 



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