Every week, we ask a Houston real estate professional for their thoughts on the top three stories from the week before.
This week, we talked with Derek Boles, an agent with Broussard Investments who specializes in downtown investment properties and single-family homes in the North Shore, Crosby, Baytown and Channelview neighborhoods.
Houston Agent (HA): Our most popular story the last couple weeks has been our coverage of the priciest ZIP codes in Houston; in your respective market, what areas have you found to be generating the most interest among homebuyers?
Derek Boles (DB): In my experience thus far, i’ve seen lots of interest generated in the Fresno area. 77545 and surrounding ZIP codes have been on the radar of a lot of my clients. I’ve also had numerous requests for homes on the outskirts of East Houston. The Baytown and Crosby areas have been offering buyers a lot of home and space for their money. With good school systems and updated shopping and recreation in these areas, it has been a hotspot for up and coming buyers.
HA: Readers also continue to read our story on 2013 market predictions; how is 2013 going for you, so far, and how do you feel about the rest of the year?
DB: So far in 2013 I have come across a lot of clients who feel that it is their year for their next or first home. Many clients fear that interest rates may rise and are also weary of the small amount of inventory currently on the market. For that reason, I have numerous leads for clients who plan to buy this year. 2013 has been very busy already. There is no shortage of buyers; there is, however, a shortage of homes in certain markets.
HA: What forms of online marketing have you found to be the most effective for your business? And do you use different kinds of marketing for different purposes?
DB: Social media connections have worked well for me. Conversations on sites such as Facebook and Instagram have made potential buyers easier to spot and reach out to. I have different pages to target different markets. I utilize a page full of younger contacts for rental client leads and a different page of older contacts for homebuyer/seller leads. I am traditional in my approach in many ways, and use face-to-face encounters and business cards. However, social media sites have made it a lot easier to keep on pulse on the needs of individuals in my various social circles.