Volume 1, Number 2
September 2009 
Austin in September               

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Dear Carvajal,
Greetings from the Carvajal Group Realtors!  We are a full service Real Estate Firm with expertise ranging from Residential Leases and Purchases to Commercial Real Estate to Real Estate Investment opportunities.  Log on to our web site where you can perform up to date MLS property searches, talk with one of our Realtors via our new live chat button, or find out more information about our company and Realtors.  We hope you enjoy this newsletter and we look forward to assisting you with all of your Real Estate needs!

September is an exciting month in Austin as we welcome the arrival of Fall, hopefully some relief from the summer heat, and of course, Texas Football.  We are thrilled to host home game tailgates this year to cheer the on the Longhorns and spend time with our friends and families.  Please see the information below regarding the Longhorn Football schedule and more details about our tailgate.  We hope to see you all there!
The Carvajal Group 

September in Austin 

Noteworthy events in September

ACL crowd 2 

*ACL, Austin City Limits Music Festival, is just around the corner.  This year the festival will be the first weekend of October 2-4 in hopes of some relief from the summer heat.  Headliners include Pearl Jam, Dave Matthews Band, Kings of Leon, John Legend, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and too many more to mention! Check out for lineup information and anything else you need to know related to the fest!
*The AVIA Austin Triathalon will take place Labor Day, September 7th at Auditorium Shores Downtown Austin.  Grammy award winner Shawn Caulvin will sing the National Anthem to kick off the race and The Mysterious Ways Band will head up the finishing carnival.  Log onto for additional information and road closures.

*5th annual Keep Austin Weird 5K and Festival hosted by RunTex will be held on September 12th beginning at 8 am on Caesar Chavez.  Participants keep true to the Austin Mantra by wearing outrageous costumes.  Festival, music, food, and costume awards to follow the race.  Check out for more details!
*George Strait comes to Austin September 25th and will play at the Cedar Park Center, for additional information. 
*Participate in Austin's vibrant Art scene with Austin Museum of Art.  AMOA regularly hosts guest artists, exhibits, and events including the annual La Dolce Vita Food and Wine Festival at the beautiful Laguna Gloria mansion. La Dolce Vita boasts some of Austin's finest chefs and spirit samplings from Twin Liquors and Texas Wine makers.  For a complete calendar of events and for more information/ticket purchases regarding La Dolce Vita, visit

*Austin Farmer's Market features fresh produce and meats from local farmers, fresh and local cheeses, soaps, baked goods, pasta, herbs and much more!  Downtown at Guadeloupe and 4th street at Republic Park 9 am-1 pm and Wednesdays at the Triangle 4 pm-8 pm.  More information at

Austin Real Estate; The Benefit of Short Sales

The number of mortgages entering the foreclosure process has risen to record levels over the past year.  Of the nearly 44 million mortgages, about 0.58 percent - that's 254,590 - or one out of every 172 loans, are now officially in foreclosure.  Foreclosure occurs when borrowers have not made two or more payments and lenders respond by filing a legal notice and commencing a legal proceeding to take possession of the home.

A Foreclosure Alternative

The prospect of foreclosure is difficult for a homeowner, but there is another option.

A little-known alternative, once more commonly used in the real estate downturn of the early '90s, is the "short sale," which works like this: A homeowner falls behind on his or her mortgage payments, usually due to a job loss, rising debt payments, or both. Facing a situation in which the home value has fallen and cannot be sold for the amount of the mortgage owed, the homeowner works out a deal with the lender to sell the home for whatever the market will bear. If the amount of the sale is for less than the amount owed on the mortgage, the lender gets the proceeds and discharges the remaining debt. The homeowner will have to leave the house as soon as it is sold.

Lose the House, but Not Your Credit

According to sources in the mortgage industry, people who agree to a short sale with the lender do far less damage to their credit rating than those who go through foreclosure.

While in both cases, short sale and foreclosure, the delinquent mortgage will negatively affect their credit rating, at least short sellers avoid having a "debt discharged due to foreclosure" on their credit reports. Mortgage and credit experts say that, after bankruptcy, having a foreclosure on your credit report is the worst result and will reduce your credit score by over 250 points. You could also have to wait up to three years to qualify for a mortgage at a reasonable rate.

Short sales show up on a credit report as a "pre-foreclosure in redemption" status and can result in a credit score reduction of 100 points or less. After the sale, the mortgage may show up as "discharged." People who successfully complete a short sale may also qualify for a mortgage at a reasonable interest rate in as little as 18 months. So, if buying a home is a future goal, then a short sale is the better option for many.

If all goes as planned, the lender will receive all of the proceeds, typically not enough to pay off the loan. The remaining balance of the loan is discharged. But a homeowner agreeing to a short sale should also get legal advice to protect his or herself from future claims of the lender. In some states, only purchase mortgages are fully discharged. For all other types of debt (equity loans, refinancing, etc), the homeowner can be held personally liable for repayment in the future. For this reason, a lawyer's advice will include getting the lender to agree to fully discharge all mortgage debt involved in the short sale.

Buying a Short Sale Home

Some Buyers think that the best deals are in foreclosures, but buying a home through foreclosure is risky business.  Buyers who can find a short-sale can get a very good deal. The advantages of buying a property through a short sale include buying at a discounted price and buying a house where the sellers are still motivated to sell the home and may take care of it until it is sold.  In many cases, foreclosed homes have been stripped and or abandoned by their owners and can cost the new owner a lot of time and money.

How the Carvajal Group can Help You

It's typically advised to work with a Realtor with experience in short sales.  At the Carvajal Group, we have agents that are seasoned in short sales.  We are ready to educate you on the short sale process and discuss how we can assist you in selling a short sale or purchasing a short sale.  As a Seller, we can help you list and market your property to attract a qualified Buyer and communicate with the cooperating lender.  As a Buyer, we can research the market and facilitate a sale negotiation with the cooperating lender.  Please feel free to give us a call at 512-419-7770 or visit our web site at

Carvajal Group Tailgate 
Join the Carvajal Group September 5th at MLK and Brazos in the Bob Bullock Museum parking lot for the first of our annual tailgates!  This year spirits will be provided by our awesome sponsors Miller Light/Centex Beverage, Firefly Vodka, and Buffalo Trace Bourbon.  The Longhorns will kick off the 2009-2010 football season at the DKR Memorial Stadium at 6 p.m. against University of Louisiana-Monroe.  RSVP to for your tailgate wristband today!  
Texas Football schedule:
*Sept. 5
   La.-Monroe        6 p.m.               
  Sept. 12 Wyoming           2:30 p.m. 
*Sept. 19 Texas Tech        7 p.m. 
*Sept. 26 UTEP                 2:30 p.m.
*Oct. 10   Colorado           TBA
  Oct. 17   Oklahoma          11 a.m.
  Oct. 24   Missouri             TBA
  Oct. 31   Oklahoma State  TBA
*Nov. 7    UCF                   TBA
  Nov. 14  Baylor                TBA
*Nov. 21  Kansas               TBA
  Nov. 26  Texas A&M          7 p.m.

*Indicates home game
Log onto University of Texas Football Website for up to date information regarding kickoff times and broadcasting information

Eats in Austin
Favorite Restaurant Suggestions from our Agents:

WeFuse offers a combination of Asian and French cuisine has awesome Bento Box deals and YUMMY salads.  Dowtown in the Frost Bank building, great place to grab lunch...and they deliver!  Menu at

Phil's Ice House, located right next door to Amy's Ice Cream on Burnet (Phil's is owned by Amy's) has AMAZING hamburgers.  Phil's gives a shout out to some of Austin's favorite neighborhoods; think The Allendale, The Rosedale, and The 78704, making choosing a burger even more fun!  Sweet potato french fries to boot...I'm sold!
Oyster Lover's!!!  Parkside Restaurant above 6th street has 1/2 Price Oysters (and champaigne ladies) every Wednesday...13 types...knock yourself out-Sean
Able's on the Lake, great place to catch sports games, stop in after a day on the lake, grab some good old comfort food, and kick back.  -Steven
House Wine located just behind P Terry's on South Lamar in a cozy little renovated house offers great Happy Hour specials and light plates...perfect place to unwind after a busy day-Ashley