Welcome to Secrets & Steals, wherein Curbed looks at interesting and vibrant, yet somewhat unknown, neighborhoods in terrific cities around the country and highlights housing picks in each. Curious about an up-and-coming neighborhood and want to see it featured? Hit up the tipline.
The Central East Austin neighborhood in Austin, Texas loosely includes the smaller communities of Blackshear/Prospect Hill, Guadalupe, Kealing, Robertson Hill
and Swede Hill. Together they make up one of the city's most accessible enclaves for young people, with easy access to downtown and more affordable housing options. Case in point, this stunningly affordable one-bedroom, listed for just $96K. No, it's not the largest one-bedroom, but it is 480-square-feet of detached goodness for a five figure price within walking distance the bars and restaurants on East 6th Street and across the street from a park. So what's the catch? Well, in order to get to that park, you would have to cross the street, a set of train tracks, and a brook, and the train traffic can't be too soothing. That said, this would make a great starter home.
? This much larger, 1,180-square-foot Craftsman sits on a small lot, but was renovated to a high standard back in 2006. That's a good thing too, because it sold that year for $120K and is asking more than double, $244K, today. Amenities like a washer/dryer, modern appliances, and ceiling fans join three bedrooms and two baths, all within an easy walk of restaurants, bars, and the campus of Huston–Tillotson University.
? In a neighborhood dominated by Craftsman cottages, buyers looking for larger homes will have to move quickly. Though this 2,200-square-foot house was on the market for less than two months, it has already entered contract for close to the $399K asking price. Built in 2008, the three-bed, three-bath spread enjoys luxury features like "custom refurbished antique doors, mahogany stairs, spanish tile" and a nearly-new granite kitchen.
And now for the RENTALS:
? There is a similarly wide range of rental options in Central East Austin, including this budget-minded cottage on Prospect Avenue. Listed for $1,235 per month, what the house lacks in curb appeal, it makes up for with an open floorplan, quirky but sizable kitchen, and two bedrooms. There are only 700 square feet of interior space, but the included washer/dryer and alarm system make it a good fit for college shares.
? One rung up the price ladder is this modern loft apartment, listed for $1,850 per month. Perfect for those looking to avoid a detached house, this duplex has just one bedroom, but plenty of space for entertaining in nearly 1,500 square feet. Polished concrete floors, exposed wooden beams, and two bathrooms add to the appeal.
? Those looking to move in with minimal fuss would be wise to check out this bungalow, on the market for $2,295 per month. For that amount, the renter gets three bedrooms, two baths, and 1,400 square feet of fully furnished interiors. In fact, the owner won't consider an unfurnished rental. Good thing the furnishings are inoffensive and the backyard includes one of those cool Big Green Egg grills.