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5 things first-time buyers have to know about purchasing property in Katy, TX

5 things first-time buyers have to know about purchasing property in Katy, TX

Katy is a great place to live in. This suburban city gives off a warm and welcoming feeling, thanks to its residents and surroundings. It is home to a very diverse and close-knit community that actively contributes to this growing city. It is also the perfect place for a first-time homebuyer to settle in.

If you’re interested in buying a home in Katy, here’s what you need to know about this thriving city:

  1. Katy covers more than one area

    Katy is located within a tri-county area that dominates Greater West Houston. The city encompasses Harris, Fort Bend, and Waller counties along I-10. There are around 17,000 people currently living in Katy Proper, also known as Old Town Katy and Historic Katy. Surrounding Katy Proper is another area called “the greater Katy area” which has a population of around 200,000 to 300,000. It lies on the east and southeast side of Katy Proper and is mostly comprised of master-planned communities. While the Greater Katy Area is not in the actual City of Katy, it is covered by the Katy Independent School District (Katy ISD).

  2. Katy has over 30 neighborhoods and subdivisions

    In Katy Proper and in the Greater Katy area, there are more than 30 neighborhoods you can call home. Each area is unique when it comes to type of homes, prices, and amenities.

    Some of the most well-known neighborhoods in Katy are Cinco Ranch and Firethorne. Cinco Ranch, one of the largest master-planned communities in the Houston area, is known for its resort-style amenities and 18-hole golf course. Firethorne, which is conveniently located along major roads in the Katy area, features beautifully constructed single-family homes.

  3. Texas has no state income tax

    Instead of state income tax, Texas taxes its residents according to the value of their homes. This policy allows homeowners to use their income for other purposes such as a retirement fund, college savings, and credit card payments.

  4. Homeowners have homestead exemption

    Another benefit of living in the State of Texas is utilizing your homestead exemption. This entitles the homeowner to a lower property tax rate, as well as affords protection of their main home in the event of financial hardship. Residents can apply for the exemption, free of charge, by filling out an Application for Residential Homestead Exemption at the nearest appraisal district. More information on the Texas homestead exemption can be found at the Texas Comptroller’s website.

  5. You are not required to hire an attorney to buy or sell a home in Texas

    Unlike other states, Texas believes that real estate agents are more than capable of handling ordinary real estate transactions. For instance, the residential contracts come in a promulgated form issued by the Texas Real Estate Commission, Texas Association of REALTORS® (TAR), and Homes and Rentals (HAR – formerly Houston Association of REALTORS®). However, buyers and sellers are more than free to engage legal counsel.

About the Realtor

Armed with dedication and a keen eye for detail that has been developed over 15 years of working in different facets of the real estate and legal industry, Jonathan effectively and passionately helps his clients with all of their real estate needs. Born, raised, and college educated in Houston, Jonathan has a unique advantage through his knowledge of Houston’s distinct neighborhoods. Jonathan has resided in the West Houston area most of his adult life, which gives him first-hand knowledge of the area and its amenities.

Local Roots | Global Reach

Jonathan McNabb has earned multiple real estate professional certifications and designations and is an active member in:

  • Member of the Luxury Home Council
  • Member of 3 International MLSs
  • Member of the Houston Association of Realtors (HAR)
  • Member of the Texas Association of Realtors (TAR)
  • Member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR)
  • Member of the Institute for Luxury Home Marketing
  • Member of Hometown Heroes
  • Approved Veterans Land Board (VLB) participating REALTOR®
  • Cane Island Certified REALTOR®
  • Certified Home Marketing Specialist (CHMS)
  • Certified Neighborhood Specialist (CNS)
  • Luxury Country Clubs™ Preferred Real Estate Specialist for Sweetwater Country Club™
  • TSAHC Participating REALTOR®
  • Social Media Pro (SMP)
  • ePRO®

Real Estate Agent Jonathan McNabb is known not just for his attention to detail and unwavering commitment to his clients’ needs, but also for his unparalleled drive and his in-depth knowledge of West Houston’s various micro-markets and varying trends. His ultimate goal is to deliver the best service possible to his clients.

To learn more about the real estate opportunities in Katy, Texas, browse our exclusive site or contact Jonathan McNabb at 713.730.5050 or mcnabb(at)jonathanmcnabbrealtor(dotted)com.

You can also view the currently available homes in Katy by checking out this page.

The master-planned community of Grand Lakes, TX

The master-planned community of Grand Lakes, TX

Living in a master-planned community is the dream – it has space, security, and amenities. The Grand Lakes community in Texas provides all of these benefits, and more. Located in the Greater Katy suburb west of Houston, this upscale neighborhood occupies 1,200 acres dotted with over 2,700 gorgeously constructed homes. It is managed by a homeowner’s association (HOA) dedicated to the upkeep and quality of life in the community.

Situated along main roads and freeways, South of I-10, Grand Lakes allows easy access to neighboring districts and establishments. The nearby roads are S. Peek Road, S. Fry Road, Grand Parkway (SH 99), and Westpark Tollway.

Phases

Grand Lakes is divided into four phases. Phases one, two, and three lie along the east side of Grand Parkway (SH 99) while phase four is to the west of SH 99. Every phase boasts many culs-de-sacs and beautifully landscaped parks. There is also a variety of amenities the active community of Grand Lakes enjoys.

Amenities

Grand Lakes has every amenity imaginable — from full-sized tennis courts to the community’s 27 manmade lakes. Scattered throughout all four phases, these lakes provide homeowners with a sense of peace and relaxation, along with gorgeous views. Catch and release fishing is allowed for the lakes stocked with fish.

Homeowners can get their daily dose of exercise by practicing their golf swing at the putting green, serving an ace at the full-sized tennis courts, or swimming laps at the community swimming pools. For a more laidback workout, residents can take a leisurely stroll through the numerous hike-and-bike trails circling the lakes.

The neighborhood also has parks for every purpose: a dog park for furry friends, a splash pad and spray park for tots who want to play in the water, and multiple playgrounds for kids to run around in. Grand Lakes also has a community garden for avid hobbyists. There are over 200 acres of park land and vast amounts of green spaces for every occasion.

Schools

Grand Lakes is part of the Katy Independent School District (KISD), a top-quality suburban school district with the highest possible rating from the Texas Education Agency. Some of the excellent schools that belong in this district are the Roosevelt Alexander Elementary School or Michael L. Griffin Elementary School, Beckendorff Junior High School, and Seven Lakes High School. For more information on the Katy Independent School District, check out their website here.

There are also great private schools nearby such as Cinco Ranch Montessori School, Faith West Academy, Primrose School of Cinco Ranch, The British Private Prep School, and Westlake Preparatory Lutheran Academy.

Housing

All of the houses in Grand Lakes are single-family homes with either 1 story or 2 stories. These homes can be bungalows or traditional homes featuring 2 to 6 bedrooms, 1 to 6 bathrooms, and 1- to 2-car garages. Home sizes fall between 1,500 to 6,000 square feet.

Homes come in Traditional, Colonial, and Ranch-style design. Since the community boasts 27 manmade lakes, most homes offer views of calm waters.

About the Realtor

Armed with dedication and a keen eye for detail that has been developed over 15 years of working in different facets of the real estate and legal industry, Jonathan effectively and passionately helps his clients with all of their real estate needs. Born, raised, and college educated in Houston, Jonathan has a unique advantage through his knowledge of Houston’s distinct neighborhoods. Jonathan has resided in the West Houston area most of his adult life, which gives him first-hand knowledge of the area and its amenities.

Local Roots | Global Reach

Jonathan McNabb has earned multiple real estate professional certifications and designations and is an active member in:

  • Member of the Luxury Home Council
  • Member of 3 International MLSs
  • Member of the Houston Association of Realtors (HAR)
  • Member of the Texas Association of Realtors (TAR)
  • Member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR)
  • Member of the Institute for Luxury Home Marketing
  • Member of Hometown Heroes
  • Approved Veterans Land Board (VLB) participating REALTOR®
  • Cane Island Certified REALTOR®
  • Certified Home Marketing Specialist (CHMS)
  • Certified Neighborhood Specialist (CNS)
  • Luxury Country Clubs™ Preferred Real Estate Specialist for Sweetwater Country Club™
  • TSAHC Participating REALTOR®
  • Social Media Pro (SMP)
  • ePRO®

Real Estate Agent Jonathan McNabb is known not just for his attention to detail and unwavering commitment to his clients’ needs, but also for his unparalleled drive and his in-depth knowledge of West Houston’s various micro-markets and varying trends. His ultimate goal is to deliver the best service possible to his clients.

For more details about the Grand Lakes neighborhood in Katy, Texas, contact Jonathan McNabb at 713.730.5050 or email him at mcnabb(at)jonathanmcnabbrealtor(dotted)com.

You can also view the currently available homes in Katy by checking out this page.

Plentiful Swimming Pool Protection

Swimming Pool, PoolDid you know… that if you are looking to buy a home and a pool is a must have on your wish list, you need to check your liability limits on your homeowners insurance quotes? Most home policies come with about 100k in liability coverage. That may seem like a lot of money, but in the event that someone sues you over a pool incident, your coverage is very inadequate and leaves you susceptible to potential lawsuits, liens, judgments and financial crisis. Does this mean no pool? No way! Especially if you live in the Greater Houston area; let’s face it, it’s too hot out here not to have a pool! Swimming pool protection has to include sufficient liability coverage.

Many of us do not realize how inexpensive it is to increase your liability coverage. In fact, with some companies you can increase your liability limits to 1 million for less than $3.00 per month. If that isn’t enough you always have the option to purchase a blanket liability umbrella policy with even higher coverage limits.

So, let’s find your house with that pool so you can jump right in. Just don’t take a dive off the deep in without adequate liability coverage in place!

Who’s too young to buy a home?

From a very young age, real estate has always fascinated me. The character and diversity of homes and the allure of the hunt to find the perfect one has always been a welcome challenge. Just out of high school, I was barely 19 when I purchased my first home. My first real estate agent was Tami Thompson with RE/MAX out of Abilene, Texas. (Don’t feel bad, I wouldn’t have known where Abilene was either if I hadn’t been born there.) Tami was amazing. She went on the hunt with me, answered countless questions and mainly just made herself available whenever I needed her. However, I think the most important quality that Tami possessed was that she took me seriously. Rather than dismissing me for more important clients with deeper pockets, she bragged that I was her youngest client ever. Who sells houses to 19 year olds anyway? Well, Tami did, and with a smile to boot! She made my home purchase a smooth reality.

Now before you jump to conclusions, I know that age discrimination is not allowed. The moral of the story here is that agents should treat all of their clients with the same level of respect, period.

Fast forward twenty years and ironically, RE/MAX Grand out of Katy, Texas is now my broker. I went from a consumer/home buyer with a career in insurance to being a “Tami”, and I live and work in the Greater West Houston Area. As an agent, I hope to always model her endless energy, amazing spirit and integrity and make every experience with my own clients as fond of a memory as I have regarding my own first home purchase.

– Sherry McNabb