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Is the Home Office on Its Way Out?The home office is becoming less important to homeowners, even though more people are working from home now than ever before.

Homeowners are finding less need for a central space for their work, according to a recent article in Bloomberg. Developers are realizing the change and are adopting house plans to accommodate the greater desire for open spaces instead. They’re adding in workplace nooks and power stations rather than an entirely separate space to work from.

Homeowners’ needs for a dedicated office with a big computer, fax, and printer are fading. Workers are no longer tethered by a cord and are favoring laptops and mobile accessories to do their work. That allows homeowners to take their work anywhere around the home, from their kitchen and living

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Austinites are getting their first look at the designs for the new Capital Metro Downtown Rail Station.

Capital Metro has a grant for $50 million to not only expand the MetroRail line, but make the downtown stop a destination. The rail would be built on East 4th Street near Brush Square.

CapMetro says they feel the changes would enhance the historic Brush Square, and make the area more pedestrian, bike, and walking friendly. The city hopes with the expansion of the Convention Center coupled with the transit plaza, this area could one day be the Convention Center District.

You can find out more about the design at Wednesday morning’s meeting at the Austin Convention Center at 11:30 a.m.

Local transportation agencies and CapMetro also want to

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Austin’s 5-County Metro area saw 2016 home sales up 3.9% over 2015, selling over 29,500 single-family homes, with a  Median price up 7.2%  at $284,000.

Brandy Guthrie, 2017 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS­® anticipates that “The Central Texas housing market is slowly beginning to align with long-term historical trends. Homes are spending more time on the market and the pace of both home sales and price growth is slowing,” but hasten to add that “This normalization does not necessarily mean a weakening housing market, but a return to less aggressive market conditions.”

Time will tell with home inventories remains at a lowly 2 months of supply.

For the full ABOR report, including individual County updates, check out the full report below

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5 Home Design Fads That Are Out in 2017Shiplap and white-on-white kitchens may finally be falling out of favor. The two trends have dominated home design in recent years, but® says they'll be fading fast in 2017. Here are some of the home design trends® predicts will fall to the wayside in the new year.

1. Gray. Once the hottest color, gray is now looking gloomy. "It's been overdone," says Tanya Campbell of Denver-based Viridis Design Studio. "Diversity in the palette will strike a contrast. We may even see a transition from gray color palettes to warmer mochas and taupes."

2. The glam look. This style's signature is bold whites, bright silvers, and deep blacks, which have been popular in kitchen and bathroom designs. "We're going to leave the glam era behind. That

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Austin is expected to hit another major population milestone in a matter of months.

The number of people living in the metro area will cross 2.1 million on March 20, according to estimates by Buffalo Business First, an affiliated publication of Austin Business Journal.

Twenty-five of the nation’s major metropolitan areas are expected to reach population milestones in 2017, the database shows.

A milestone is defined as a round figure that ends with five zeroes. Dallas-Fort Worth is the first market projected to hit such a benchmark this year, reaching a population of 7,300,000 on Jan. 14.

Business First has developed a computer formula that uses 15 years of demographic data to estimate the population of any community at any given moment. It

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Open floor plans are in demand in today’s housing market. But listings lacking one may not be hampered after all. In fact, if a new study is right, you might even turn that closed floor plan into a selling point: Its results suggest that open floor plans cause home owners to overeat, which in turn could make them gain weight.

Easy access to the kitchen in an open floor plan could prompt more visits to grab something to eat, the study suggests. Researchers in the study, recently published in the journal Environment and Behavior, found that participants in an open floor plan made about 10 percent more serving trips than participants in a closed floor plan scenario. Each time they got up to snack, participants ended up consuming an average of 170 more

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Austin remains a good place to find a technology job, according to a new analysis from personal-finance website WalletHub.

In its report, Austin ranked as the nation's sixth-best metro area for workers in one of the STEM fields — that's science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Seattle topped this year's list.

WalletHub's analysis compared the 100 largest metro areas in the U.S. on 17 metrics split across two dimensions: one measuring professional opportunities, the other measuring a given metro's "STEM-friendly environment." Data points included the number of job openings for STEM graduates per capita, the unemployment rate of residents with at least a bachelor's degree, performance on standardized math tests and the percentage of

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Home buyers get a lot of advice from friends and family – some good, some bad. A lot of myths can pop up and negatively guide their home purchasing experience. Make sure you don’t fall for one of these common buying falsehoods.

1. The only upfront cost is the down payment.
Buyers need to be prepared for several expenses – everything from fees, taxes, costs for inspections, credit reports, insurance, and others. Closing costs can be anywhere from 3 percent to 6 percent of the purchase price. Those costs can fluctuate greatly depending on the state you live in too.

2. Just looking for a house casually is not a big deal.
Some people may want to just start looking at homes to get a feel for the area, before they even sit down with a REALTOR®. But they could

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The new home market is struggling as builders say there's currently 200,000 unfilled construction jobs in the U.S.

The National Association of Homebuilders reports that the number of unfilled construction jobs has soared 81 percent in the past two years alone, causing new home construction to fall way behind the huge demand for homes.

Escalating labor costs and a shift in focus to construction of more expensive, and thus more profitable homes, is dampening the overall economy. As a result, entry-level homes are increasingly difficult to find, shutting out may would-be first-time buyers at a time when mortgage rates are near historic lows, and hitting debt-addled millennials particularly hard. Less than a decade after the housing crisis drove 30 percent of

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Austin’s blueprint for an innovation zone is years in the making, but now one step closer to reality. Other bigger cities like Boston, Chicago and Atlanta already have major innovation districts.

The project is a residential and business zone that combines science, education and art. On Thursday, organizers are headed to Atlanta to get more ideas on how to launch it.

Imagine a state-of-the-art hospital and medical school surrounded by apartments, office buildings, interesting shops, restaurants and cultural events. The innovation zone will sit within Martin Luther King Boulevard to Interstate 35 on the east side. The zone would stop at Cesar Chavez and Trinity to the west.

Part of UMC Brackenridge will be torn down later this year to make way for

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