Anyone own a house at Canyon Lake? - 2CoolFishing
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Old 09-17-2019, 04:16 AM   #1
Moonpie
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Anyone own a house at Canyon Lake?

Wife wants to move over there after retirement.
How is it around there?
Traffic?
Crime?
Taxes?
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Old 09-17-2019, 06:49 AM   #2
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Howdy Moonpie,
We went that route a little over a year ago looking for a simpler life after retirement. Moved after a lifetime down in Seabrook along the bay to Canyon Lake. Seabrook had grown so much we hardly recognize it.

How is it? The lake is beautiful. We love it, but it may not be for everyone. Winter's colder, summer hotter and very dry, big hail storms are common. If you live on top of a hill it is very windy. It's not city living for sure. There are a lot of choices about where to live from new gated subdivisions to rural acreage, from trailers to estates. The real estate prices are skyrocketing. Good deals are far and few between. A lot of folks feel priced out of the market.

The Comal County area is going through growing pains---be aware of that. The old timers don't care for all the growth and associated problems---generational ranches are being sold to developers and being replaced with subdivisions. Our little red county is being flooded with California immigrants, bringing their money and attitudes. We love the German heritage, it is still alive and well. Lots of retired folks settle here...we are often the youngsters at get-togethers!

Compared to Houston, the traffic is nothing except along I-35 between San Antonio and Austin. It's a 20-30 minute drive to HEB, Walmart, or Home Depot. We chuckle when pulling up to a major intersection and have to wait for 3 or 4 cars to pass.

Canyon Lake has a reputation apparently....some call it "Crystal Lake" referencing the druggies, but we have not experienced it. It's a small community, so you do hear about every crime from dogs or peacocks on the loose to theft and drugs. Neighbors talk and watch out for each other. The sheriff's presence is visible. We feel safe. We love our community.

Taxes are less than Harris County (but not by much). With all the growth, taxes and property values are rising rapidly like anywhere else in Texas. When looking at properties, you can check values on the Comal County Appraisal district website. I found that very useful. Depending on the area you choose, insurance may be less than big city prices----just because you live on a hill does not mean you can omit flood insurance however.

Have fun shopping...it's good to visit often and get a feel for each area of the lake before you buy.

Hope this helps.
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Old 09-17-2019, 08:06 AM   #3
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My FIL & second wife built a home at the top of the hill on Sunset View in the Eagle Peak (Fischer, TX) subdivision back in the early 90's...A ways off, NE of the lake with a good distant view...No one else around...Didn't last long...I frequented the area from 97 through 2014 until his Alzheimers forced them to sell & move to Georgetown...It progressively became more and more populated & towards the end the traffic was horrible on the weekends on 32 and the development was such that all of their views was rooftops...Crappy little shops and flea market type places litter the Devil's Backbone area now...The lake is very crowded on the weekends in the Summer...If my plan was to get away from people (which are increasing at an alarming rate competing for the same resources) in retirement, I would get much further away like Possum Kingdom or Mackenzie
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Old 09-17-2019, 08:36 AM   #4
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We bought a house by Potter’s Creek on the North Side, the area is pretty quiet and the lake is great. In the summer on weekends after lunch the lake does get busy but on weekdays and early mornings the lake is quiet.

We bought this house to have a getaway and to see if this is where we want to retire in a few years, traffic is nothing compared to the Katy freeway at rush hour. Taxes are noticeably less than what we are paying in the Katy school district and Ft Bend county.

When we need a store beyond what is there at the lake we go to Bulverde to avoid the mess around I35.
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Old 09-17-2019, 09:31 AM   #5
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My mother in law lives in an older neighborhood near Mystic Shores. I've been going there to visit since the 1980's. The area has changed a ton. Used to be solitude, now it's really a suburb of San Antonio.

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Old 09-17-2019, 10:25 AM   #6
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Beats the heck out of the Houston area no matter how you slice it. Nature and beauty all around.
In Houston you thank the convenience store clerks. In Comal county they thank you.
It is a healthier lifestyle there.
Real estate values are increasing rapidly. From an investment perspective alone it is definitely worth a look.
I'm building on the Guadalupe below the lake and home values on the water are skyrocketing. I have noticed property value growth to a lesser extent but still rapid growth by the lake.
If you are interested you'd be better off buying sooner than later or you will be kicking yourself.
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:45 AM   #7
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We bought a house in Mystic Shores this spring so far it’s been great, new construction on a couple of acres, less than a mile from the boat ramp. Honestly, I see more deer than people especially during the week. It’s a weekend getaway home for us, we could easily retire up there. Lots of boat storage and ramps around the lake.
The lake is busy on holiday weekends, as is everywhere else, last place I want to be is on the water with idiots. If you’re not up there all the time garbage collection is a hassle, you have to bring it back to Houston or take a trip to the landfill in New Braunfels for $100. Traffic on I-10 can be a real pain on weekends.
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:48 AM   #8
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Best friend had a place on the south side of the lake in Westhaven, an older subdivision with mostly older homes, but still a number of empty lots and a fairly isolated place. You could probably build new there and the location is great - as close as you can get to NB.

I spent a ton of time there, did a lot of work on the place and thus had a key and free run of the place, yet I didn't pay taxes or know much about any of the utility issues, so my impressions are limited to recreational and personal experience. I do know that in the 14 years between when he bought it and sold it, values had risen drastically in Westhaven, but elsewhere, where the houses are newer and infrastructure more like a city (instead of asphalt roads and ditches), values had increased even more.

It is in the back end of the Tom Creek cove and there is relatively little boat traffic back there - a few anglers and a couple of jet skis here and there, but that's about it. Startzville is just a few miles away with a good little hardware store and a decent grocery store, a McDonald's and a DQ. Had I been in the market for a lake house, I would have bought that house in a heartbeat, even though it still needed a lot of work. Loved the location!!

I would suggest you at least take a look at Westhaven or some of the other older subdivisions on that lake. The new stuff is priced out of the range of normal folks
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:54 AM   #9
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Buy waterfront wherever you can get it. Buy a lot now and build later.
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Old 09-19-2019, 06:18 AM   #10
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I don't even know if any lakefront lots are still available. Last I heard they were all pretty well built out. Same for a lake view. Sister just sold their Lakeview last week. Been there 15 years and made a very nice profit. She has been complaining about the year-round traffic for a couple of years. It used to be seasonal but now it is pretty well year-round.

Westhaven- I owned a lot in this older gated community for about four years. Sold it after my wife decided she did not want to move. Doubled my money on the sale. Still get inquiries from people wanting to buy the lot. Wish I had kept it. Westhaven is a small, older subdivision on the lake. I believe it was built in the '80s or earlier. Some great older folks live there. It would be the subdivision I would look at if I was going to buy a place up there. Some folks owned two lots back then and I would try and try and locate them and see if they would sell their extra lot.
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