New downtown San Antonio options to buy, not lease

Residences for sale starting to grow

Author: Charles Gonzalez, Reporter, Anchor, cgonzalez@ksat.com
Published On: Feb 05 2013 09:14:35 PM CST   Updated On: Feb 05 2013 10:30:00 PM CST
SAN ANTONIO -

People interested in relocating to some of the growing areas downtown have seen their options for new apartment rentals increase almost exponentially over the last few months.

Nearly 1,000 new units have opened north of downtown along Broadway. But for people interested in owning a new piece of downtown, there haven't been many places to turn until now.

Just west of Broadway, crews are hard at work at the Casa Blanca Lofts, a 17-unit townhouse complex.

"I can see people coming down and giving the apartments a try and wanting to own something more permanent," said Mitch McManus, one of the partners on the project.

16 of the units are single floor and there will be 2 covered and gated parking spots for each home with some space for guests.

"We have other buildings that we're going to develop after this so this is just the beginning," said McManus.

Just a couple of blocks away, construction is set to begin on the East Quincy Townhomes right across from the Pearl Brewery. They will have 25 three-story townhouses, including some with views of the River Walk.

"One thing we've heard from the market and a lot of people is they want to be around Pearl, they want to be down here but for whatever reason empty nesters, et cetera, they don't want to go back to renting, they want to buy," said Steve Yndo of Yndo Commercial Real Estate, who's helping to develop and sell the townhouse.

"It's a commitment to the community," added Frank Pakuszewski of 1836 Asset Development which oversees the project. "It's 25 individuals owning a piece of downtown."

Another option that's sprouting up: provide a townhouse feel with a bit more personal space.

Terramark Urban Homes out of Houston broke into the market last year with a small 4-unit project across from Cevallos Lofts.

"We liked what we saw there and saw opportunity up in the Tobin Hill area," said Charles Turner, founder and CEO of Terramark.

Ogden Modern is an 11-unit development at Ogden and East Myrtle near San Antonio College which offers residents open floor plans in a small gated community with courtyards for every home. Prices start around $160,000. Of the seven homes already under construction, five are sold and at the title company.

"We think that there are people that want to own," said Turner. "They've come down here rented for a while, they like living downtown and now they're looking for a place to maybe invest in downtown."

Terramark has five other properties around the downtown area which will add another 45 homes. All of the properties are expected to be available before the end of the years.

For a list of recent stories Charles Gonzalez has done, click here.