Built on the 700 acre site where the Robert Mueller Municipal Airport was once located, Mueller is one of East Austin’s most popular neighborhoods. Before the airport relocated in 1999, a task force was formed to determine what to do with the space. The task force had the forethought to create an urban, work/live/play community, but had some trouble moving the project forward. The site was left vacant for years until the first commercial building was built in 2007 and since building has boomed. The neighborhood’s proximity to Downtown Austin and UT make the neighborhood very popular among young professionals, UT professors and those looking for brand new construction just 3 miles from Downtown Austin. When complete, Mueller will be a true mixed use urban village with over 13,000 residents, 5,700 homes and 4 million square feet of office and retail space.
Mueller Affordable Home Program
Another aspect of Mueller that makes it intriguing to a lot of home buyers is the Mueller Affordable Home Program. More than 25% of the homes and condos in Mueller are reserved specifically for households making below the area’s median income and they sell them at a discounted price. This accounts for over 1,400 new houses and condos, making Mueller the largest community in Central Texas offering affordable housing.
How Do I Qualify for the Mueller Affordable Home Program?
The Mueller Affordable Home Program is marketed to families making at or below the 80% median income for the City of Austin. Income is not the only component for eligibility. Household size, assets and a few general guidelines are also considered.
Mueller Affordable Home Program Income and Household Size
Income and household size go hand in hand with the qualification process. Household size includes all individuals that will be occupying the home. This includes spouses, children and any other person that will be living in the home.
Mueller Affordable Home Program Income Limits
Currently the income limits per household size are as follows:
|80% Median Income||$42,250||$48,250||$54,300||$60,300||$65,150||$69,950||$74,800||$79,600|
Income includes all wages, salary, tips, commissions, overtime, bonuses and other compensation. Other income that may be considered is child support, alimony, social security, retirement funds, disability, public assistance and gift funds. Please keep in mind, these limits are subject to change at any time and without warning.
Mueller Affordable Housing Asset Limits
Net Assets can include any funds in your checking, savings, cash, money markets and/or investment accounts. The total family savings can not exceed $150,000 for all individuals living in the house. College saving accounts, health savings accounts, retirement and teacher pensions may be excluded from your total assets.
Mueller Affordable Housing’s Other Requirements
Other requirements are included in the eligibility process. At least one person in the household must work more that 25 hours per week. Property must be owner/occupied, meaning that you cannot be an investor and must live in the home as your primary residence. You must agree to all restrictions and commitments outlined in the contract for the Mueller Affordable Homes Program.
Mueller Affordable Home Program Gives Lower Income Families Options
As home prices in Austin continue to rise, some Austin households are starting to be priced out of the market. The Mueller Affordable Home Program may be one of the few ways a family could purchase a newer home close to Downtown Austin.
Mueller Affordable Home Program Restrictions
Although the program sounds enticing, there are very few houses available with most people spend quite a while on the waiting list. There are also some limitations and restrictions that come with the program that you should be aware of. Some of these restrictions include:
- Restrictions and penalties when selling the property
- Restrictions and penalties when refinancing out of the program (Must receive permission from the program)
- No ability to rent the property if your family needs to relocate
- Not receiving the full benefit of property appreciation
How Much are Mueller Affordable Homes?
The houses that are part of the program are selling for a discounted, $160,000 -$185,000, but there’s a catch. When you buy the property, it will be appraised for current market value, which will be quite a bit higher than the discounted sales price. You will receive a second loan for the difference between the discounted sales price and the appraised value. As long as you are living in the home, the second loan will not accrue interest or be due for a payment for 30 years.
How Much Will I Need to Put Down?
The program requires a 3% minimum down payment, which can be a gift from a generous friend or family member.
Here is an example of the program can work:
The home has an appraised value of $240,000 with a discounted sales price of $180,000. You will receive a first loan of $174,600 (180,000 – 3% down payment). A second loan will be given for the $60,000 difference. The second loan does not accrue interest, or have to be paid for 30 years. After 30 years, you either pay off the second loan or refinance it and make payments.
Mueller Affordable Home Program Has the First Right to Purchase
The program also has the first right to purchase if you decide to sell the home within the first 30 years. If you sell within the first year, the program will buy the home back at your initial discounted sales price and sell it again.
Mueller Affordable Homes Appreciation
You will not receive the full benefit of appreciation. You only receive a fixed 2% (simple interest) per year based on your initial discounted sales price.
Mueller Affordable Homes Resale Scenario
Here is an example of how a resale situation might work for someone who purchased a Mueller affordable home:
- Discounted purchase price: $180,000
- Down Payment (3%): $5,400
- First Loan: $174,600
- Appraised Value of Home: $240,000
- Second Loan: $60,000 (No interest accrued for 30 years)
Let’s say you sell your home in 10 years and the home is worth $400,000.
- The program has the first right to purchase the home based on their program guidelines. This could be at a discounted sales price, not at market value.
Once you sell the property at the agreed upon sales price:
- The first to be paid off is the remainder of your first loan.
- You will then receive 2% simple interest for 10 years based on your purchase price of $180,000. This amounts to $32,000.
- The remainder of the funds pay off the $60,000 second loan.
- Any additional funds will go back to the program.
Is a Mueller Affordable Home a Good Fit for Your Family?
As with everything, there are pros and cons when it comes the the Mueller Affordable Home Program. There are a lot of restrictions and a limited amount of homes available, but they also provide home buyers an opportunity to live in a place they will really enjoy for a price they can afford. You might not get all of the benefits a traditional home buyer might get, but you also won’t be paying as much as they will either. Work with someone who understands the program and your situation. They can help you determine whether or not the program will be a good fit.
Think You Might Want to Buy a Mueller Affordable Home?
If you would like to see if you are eligible for the Mueller Affordable Home program or have more interest in the Mueller community, don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our Buyer’s Agents. We will be happy to answer your questions, traverse the paperwork required and assist in the understanding of guidelines/commitments with the program. If you want to learn more about our team first, check out our Austin Home Buyers section. Then, send us an email at info@11OaksRealty.com, call us at (512) 827-8323 or fill out our Buyer Survey. Remember, hiring an Eleven Oaks Realty buyer’s agent to represent you when buying a home costs you nothing. Our fee is paid by the seller!