Condo Life: Houston area experiences condo urban boom



The Houston luxury condominium landscape has evolved offering a wide variety of options not only in locations, but also in selections of properties.

So, what’s pushing this demand for mid and high-rise living?

Sharon Dreyer with John Daugherty, Realtors said condos used to be geared more toward older buyers, but now with the increase in new construction, they’re attracting a wider variety of buyers.

“Not only has our city changed in the last 10 years as it has experienced growth, but so have our concerns of everyday living,” Dreyer said. “Buyers are looking for more out of condos. They want walkability, great amenities, and easy living.”

Buyers include empty nesters who are looking to scale down to maintenance-free living. They want easy living and all on one level according to Dreyer.

Working millennials are also shopping for condos Dreyer said. They want a home with a lower price point and walkability.

“They want to be able to walk to their favorite restaurant, bar and grocery store. They’re more open to living in a smaller unit. Condos also make a great second home for those who are looking for a lock and leave option. Several use condos as an investment opportunity to enter the Houston market,” Dreyer said.

There are many facets to what is appealing to condominium homeowners Dreyer explained.

“Living in a condo is a lifestyle, and that is why it is appealing to buyers of all ages. When you move into a condo, you move into a community. It is not like a single-family home. In a condo, you have neighbors close by and help is always around the corner if you need it,” she said.

Buildings such as Highland Tower offer potluck dinners, a book club, community events and activities, and holiday parties.

In addition, homeowners can see the value of the maintenance fees compared to expenses when living in a single-family home.

“While some may consider condo maintenance fees to be high, but when you do the math, it really is a wash,” Dreyer said. “Condos are able to offer several amenities including concierge/valet service, pools, gyms, trash and recycling services, conference rooms, etc. Maintenance fees pay for the amenities, along with the salaries of the building’s staff, such as concierge and security.”

Not sure where you want to be? There’s plenty of options.

Dreyer said downtown and Midtown properties tend to be primarily older offering smaller units with a lower price point. Galleria condos, which can provide larger square footage and a higher price point, appeals to a distinct buyer.

“Each neighborhood in Houston attracts a different type of buyer, and that is the beauty of having such a diverse city. The Galleria area is very dense, so the only way to build is up, which is something to consider if you are buying a unit in the area for its views,” Dreyer said.

In River Oaks and Highland Village, buyers can find larger units and better, unobstructed views.

“Walkability and entertainment are another reason condos in this area are attractive. It’s like you have a front row seat to the game, but you aren’t down on the field,” said Dreyer.

Lastly, knowing there is a price point for every buyer is a win-win. Numerous factors come into play calculating pricing according to Dreyer. Location, maintenance fees and number of investment units in a building can all affect price. In downtown, buyers can find between the high 300’s to low 500’s per square foot whereas in the River Oaks and Galleria, they from the mid 500’s to high 600’s per square foot.

“Prices depend on the characteristics of the building and the location, but the great thing about Houston is that our condo market is still at a great price point. There is no sticker shock for buyers who come from other urban cities because in Houston you get great value for your money,” Dreyer said.


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