An inside look at the residential real estate market in Southeast Texas including: the hottest neighborhoods, proven home selling strategies, home buying and negotiating tactics, median prices by neighborhood, average days homes are on the market, and professional advice on how to get the best deal when buying or selling a home.

New Construction

New Construction Costs In Southeast Residential Market

Part two:  What's it cost to build a new home in Southeast Texas.

Looking at the sales data there is a clear pattern that develops when analyzing the new construction costs in Southeast Texas.  Here's a graph showing sales price by area.  These are homes that have sold.  This shows the price the builder was willing to sell for. In most cases we will assume they sold for a profit. 

$ SF 

The range is fairly narrow.  On the low side there are a few sales under the $100 per square foot mark.  On the high side there have been a few sales that approach $140 per square foot.  The neighborhoods where new construction has sold above $120 per square foot are:  Dominion Ranch in Port Arthur, Westchase in Beaumont, Barrington Heights in Beaumont, and Fairfield in Beaumont.  Interesting that there haven't been any new construction sales in Lumberton that closed for over $120 per square foot this quarter.

Here's a graph that shows the range from low to high.

$ SF hi-lo 

It is a pretty safe bet if you want to buy new construction in Southeast Texas you will need to budget at least $100 per square foot of living space that you desire.  If you add some bells and whistles and a prime Beaumont location be prepared to spend around $120 per square foot.  If you really want the newest and best materials then you'll be pushing the $130 per square foot mark. 

Now the builders aren't going to tell us what their profit margins are but I've seen them knock about $8 per square foot off once a home has stayed on the market a couple months.  Two years ago that was not seen in Southeast Texas.  In 2006, Builders didn't have to negotiate.  Full price or no sale.  That was then.  2009 is a whole new world.  Buyers have a lot more control.  We don't know how long the builders will continue taking offers but its safe to say until the economy starts to pick up and the inventory number start to decline home builders will still be considering all reasonable offers. 

One last piece of information to chew on.  Southeast Texas isn't home to any of the national builders who use the economies of scale to their advantage.  In Houston for example you can find new construction for less than you can in Southeast Texas.  Here you'll find a much smaller group of home builders but the flip side of that is you will get a higher spec level in a Southeast Texas home.  New home buyers can expect granite counter-tops, tray ceilings, crown molding, covered porches and that's just naming a few upgrades that are common in the area.  

So if you think $120 a square foot seems high, its not if you are buying new construction in Southeast Texas.

Search MLS for Homes
Email Diane

New Construction - Active and Sold - In Southeast Texas this Quarter

Here's a post that was requested.  The request asked a big question, "What is the cost of new construction in Texas?"   This one is going to be a multi-part post.  So here we go.  Since May 2009 there have been 38 sales recorded in the Beaumont MLS that are classified as new construction.  There are 23 sales pending - under contract- but not closed as of this post.  And there are 116 active listings that are classified as new construction. 

Part one of this answer will deal with areas in Southeast Texas where there are new construction homes for sale and the areas where the most sales have occurred.  Here's a graph.

New construction by area 

Most of the new construction is in Beaumont and Lumberton.  Not a surprise for the locals.  Those have been the main residential growth areas for a while now.  Its good to see there is some new construction at the beach. 

Its also interesting to see the median price of new construction by area and the median price of homes that have sold since May. Here's a graph for that.

New construction by price 

The highest median sales price is still in Beaumont on the west side of town.  The beach and Pinewood have higher asking prices for new construction but no sales this quarter.  Average days on the market for new construction sales is 128.  The average sale price for the whole Southeast Texas market is $237,000. 

Now to really get to the heart of the question that I was asked, "What is the cost of new construction in Texas", we really have to look at the price per square foot that the builders are building for and the price per square foot that they are selling for.  With 177 new construction homes that's going to take me a bit more time to input and analyze the price per square foot data. 

Once we can see the price per square foot -by area this will really tell us what builders are willing to build for and what they are willing to sell for.   The analysis will give you a really good idea of the cost of new construction in Southeast Texas.  I know your dying to know more, so tune in tomorrow.

Search MLS for Homes
Email Diane

Find The Best Southeast Texas Home Builders

Interior construction

Having a custom built home built from scratch just the way you imagine it is a dream for a lot of home buyers.  Finding a reputable builder to build it for you can be a nightmare. 

One way to make sure your home building dream is a pleasant experience is to check out several builders before you sign anything or put down a deposit.

A great place to start your home builder search is the BBB Southeast Texas Home Builders  guide.  These home builders are members of the local Better Business Bureau.  From the BBB reports you can check out a builders reputation and read any complaints that have been filed by unhappy consumers.  

You can also research the Southeast Texas Home Builders Association for more information on local home builders.  

Before you finish your research and select a home builder to build your dream home, make sure to see if they are a member of The Texas Residential Construction Commission.   

Once you've checked the Southeast BBB, the Southeast Texas Home Builders Association and the Texas Residential Construction Commission you ought to be a well-informed consumer.  Of course its always good to have friends, co-workers, and even local real estate professionals recommend the builders they have worked with.   Southeast Texas home buyers looking to find the best home builders in the area have plenty of choices when it comes to local home builders.  The BBB has over twenty-five builder members to select from.  Spend a little time doing your research and you'll make sure your building your dream home is a dream come true not a nightmare.

Search MLS for Homes
Email Diane

What's New! New Construction In Lumberton, Texas

As you may know by now, I'm a fan of graphs.  Its an easy way to convey a lot of information.  New construction is a hot topic in the real estate business.  People like to buy brand new homes.  Fortunately, for you new home buyers out there we have a good selection of new construction throughout Southeast Texas. 

  • 137 properties are listed in the Beaumont MLS as new construction.
  •   About 30% of the new homes available in the area are in Lumberton

Here's a cool chart to help you compare neighborhoods in Lumberton.  Color coded by Neighborhood.  You can see what you will be paying for square footage that has never been lived in by anyone other than you.


The highest cost per sqaure foot is in Grace Lake Estates, followed by Silvercrest and Stonegate.  The most affordable cost per square foot is Westwood.  If you want all the perks that come with a brand new home (fresh carpet smell is the best) then be prepared to pay.  Since Southeast Texas is not home to any of the BIG production home builders out there, our new home buyers are paying more than buyers in towns where the big guys build.  Its not uncommon to pay less than $90 per square foot for brand new construction in the Houston market. 

One advantage new home construction buyers in Southeast Texas have is that our local builders generally build to a higher "spec level" than the production builders do.  You can expect to find tray ceilings, crown molding, tile, granite and upgraded architectural detail on the new construction homes in Southeast Texas.  In other markets those are all upgrades. 

If you aren't from the area you won't recognize the names of our local builders. Right now in Lumberton the following builders have homes ready and available for purchase.

  • Bassa Homes
  • Lee Grantz
  • Just Construction
  • HR Homes
  • DJM Contractors Ltd
  • Beard Homes
  • AAA Homebuilders
  • S.E.T Construction
  • G C Builders
  • Merrill Builders

Texas Residential Construction Commission keeps track of builders who are licensed and in good standing in the state.  You can search for builders in any town or neighborhood.  Lumberton builder search results are posted for your review.

Its good to know TRCC is watching out for the consumer and making sure the builders remain in good standing.  Its also good to know if you are looking for new construction in Southeast Texas you have a good selection of homes and builders to choose from. That's what new in new construction in Lumberton, Texas.   

Search MLS for Homes
Email Diane

Lots of Lots For Sale In Beaumont.

Walden_aeiralWould you believe there are 129 residential lots for sale in Beaumont, Texas? 

That is the number currently on the market within the city limits. 

703 is the number available across Southeast Texas. *Data from the Beaumont MLS.

That's a lot of room for more homes and its good news for the residential new construction market.  Many of these lots are ready for homes now.  No waiting on a long drawn out permitting process.  Just choose your lot, choose your builder, choose your floor plan and go. 

But before you decide where to buy your new home site, here's some facts and figures to mull over.

  • The average price of these 129 lots in Beaumont is $71,929.
  • The median price is $52,500.
  • The most affordable lots are located in the North section of Beaumont on the East side of Hwy 287/69/96.  Average cost under $9,000.
  • The most expensive lots are located in the West section of Beaumont (Big surprise there :).  They average over $111,000 in parts of the west-end. 

Here's a snazzy little graph to show you how the lots are distributed in the different areas of Beaumont.  (By the way, did you ever wonder why we don't have a East section of town?)


Want to know the neighborhood with the most home sites available for immediate purchase?  Okay then, I'll clue you in.  Its "The Crescent on Walden".  54 home sites are available in this one community.  Its really nice there.  Big home sites, pretty lakes.  But its not for those on a tight budget.  Lots average $115,000+/-.  If you want a waterfront lot there a few available.  You'll need to have a cool quarter million to spend.  Yes, there are home sites for $250,000.  Call me if you need to buy a couple. In case you don't have time to build there are also completed homes for sale.  Prices starting in the 400k's.

Want to know what lots have sold in The Crescent this year?  Okay, here's another nifty chart to show you that info.


If you've got any other questions about home sites for sale or home sites that have sold in Beaumont this year just let me know.  Send me an email, post a comment on the blog, or just pick up the phone and ask me in person.  If you are looking for information on building a home in Southeast Texas- now you know- there are lots of lots available.

Search MLS for Homes
Email Diane

New Construction Booming In Southeast Texas.

Are you a fan of graphs? 

They can help interpret data so well.  Here's two I put together to give you an inside look at the residential new construction numbers in Southeast Texas. 

Graph 1 presents median price by area.  *For an area to be included there had to be a minimum of three active listings in the Beaumont MLS. 


Graph 2 shows average days on market by area. 


Ten other insights about new residential construction in Southeast Texas:

  1. Average Days on Market of single family homes for the entire area is 120.  Keep in mind builders often list new construction homes prior to completion.
  2. Median Price for the entire area is $239,500 for single family homes and $260,000 for Condo/Townhomes.  (Hum)
  3. Silsbee and Kountze tie for the most affordable new construction with a median price in both areas under $150,000.
  4. Pinewood has the most expensive new construction at a median price of $381,000.
  5. Beaumont (all West locations) is the second most expensive with a median price just under $300,000.
  6. Nederland has the lowest average days on the market at only 12.
  7. Beaumont has 31 new construction condo/townhomes for sale.  Metropolitan Park is where you'll find over half of them.  None are completed yet.
  8. Lumberton has 40 single family new construction homes currently waiting new owners with an average price of $228,187.
  9. $1,099,900 is the most expensive asking price of any new construction home on the market.  Its located in Montclaire.
  10. Over $115 is the average cost per square foot of living space in Beaumont.

Need to know more about residential construction boom in Southeast Texas?  Call me.   

Search MLS for Homes
Email Diane

Who's Who: SE Texas Home Builders

Child_w_building_blocksBuilding a new home is a lifelong dream for many. 

Knowing where to start can be a challenge

Building a new home in Beaumont, Lumberton, or other communities in the Golden Triangle doesn't have to be difficult when you have the right home builder on your side. 

Here's a Helpful List of Home Builder's in SE Texas.  The Homebuilders with websites get the top spots on the list.

First on the list is the local association of home builders.  Their membership is made up of many of the areas most productive home builders.

Home Builders Association of SE Texas

Individual Builder Websites:

Guseman Homes Inc.

Classic Homes

David L. Kish Custom Homes

King Homes Inc.

Ryan David Homes

DJM Contractors Ltd Lumberton

HR Homes Lumberton

Bullfrog Builders

Basco Construction

Tony Houseman Homes

Homebuilders with inventory homes for sale in the Beaumont MLS: 

*No websites found for these builders.

Bill Little Homes

Marino Home Builders

Keystone Homes

CSB Construction

Boykin Homes

Foster Homes

AAA Builders

Bassa Homes

Petry Builders

Priority Home Builders LLC

Classmate Properties Ltd

Right now, SE Texas doesn't have any of the Big Name National Home Builders such as: KB Home, Lennar, Centex or Pulte.  If our market keeps growing.  It won't be long before the big builders come to town.  For now, if you are dreaming of building a new home in SE Texas talk to the Who's who of SE Texas Home Builders.  You are sure to find one who can build you the home of your dreams.

Search MLS for Homes
Email Diane

New Homes, New Neighborhoods, New Construction.

Home_construction_2Looking for a new home in SE Texas?  One that is brand new. One that has never been lived in.  One with that new carpet smell and fresh paint in every room

153 brand new homes are waiting for you.  *Figures from Beaumont MLS.

"Where are the brand new homes?"

Lumberton has 41.  Average price $229,122

Fannett has 4.  Average price $197,500

Beaumont-North has 25.  Average price $206,900.

Beaumont-West has 43.  Average price in W2 $488,153, in W4 $327,340, in W6 $275,609. 

Silsbee has 5.  Average price $133,940.    Silsbee, TX has the most affordable newly built homes in the Golden Triange.

Vidor has 7.  Average price $146,457. 

Port Arthur has 10.  Average price $230,448. 

Later this week log on to the blog for more on the Neighborhoods in SE Texas where you'll find new construction and the new home builders in the area. 

Search MLS for Homes
Email Diane

Cathedral Square - Downtown Beaumont

Cathedral_square_townhomes The downtown living craze has swept many big cities across the country.  Young professionals want to live close to where they work and play.  Last March, Beaumont joined the list of cities who offer upscale convenient downtown living.

Cathedral Square is a multi-family project of luxury townhomes and lofts located in the heart of downtown.  The development also calls for a retail plaza.  Construction on a New York Style Pizzeria is underway.   

Over $70 million of reinvestment has occurred in the downtown area.  The restoration includes Suga's Restaurant ,a deep south cuisine and jazz bar, Crockett Street Entertainment District, featuring 7 unique bars and nightclubs, Jefferson Theater, The Hotel Beaumont and much more.

A partnership between Beaumont Main Street, and the City of Beaumont is stimulating historic preservation. You can pick up a Main Street National Register District Brochure at the Convention and Visitors Bureau.  When you are downtown make sure to stop by and see the Cathedral Square Townhomes.  Beaumont's first townhomes and lofts located in historic downtown.

Search MLS for Homes
Email Diane

Metropolitan Park, Beaumont

Metropolitan Park a new development coming to Beaumont will feature condominiums and exclusive residential lots blended with retail and commercial space in a park like setting.  The community has begun taking reservations.  Located on Dowlen Road in the heart of the Beaumont shopping district, this 35 acre project will use ample green space and be the first of its kind development for Beaumont. The Beaumont Enterprise has an article giving some specifics about the new development.  58,000 square feet of retail space, 61,000 square feet of office space to name two.

Metropolitan_park A full size drawing of the master plan of Metropolitan Park shows the residential lots, office space, village green, and outdoor courtyard.  The Village Green will offer high end retail space and one of the most convenient office locations in Beaumont's west end.

The project is the idea of Bryan and Mary Lee owners of Bryan's797 restaurant.  One of the finest dining experiences you will ever have.  If the Lee's create a total experience with Metropolitan Park as they've done with their restaurant, Beaumont can look forward to a wonderful new community.

Search MLS for Homes
Email Diane