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Austin's first zero COVID death day in months marks end of streak


As Austin rides a steady decline of COVID cases, new COVID deaths dropped down to zero over the Halloween weekend and into the first of November.

This is the first time since Sept. 10 that no new COVID deaths have been reported in Austin, according to Austin Public Health data. No new deaths reported on Monday means there were none reported over the weekend, since weekend data is reported on Mondays.

The 51-day stretch between Sept. 10 and Nov. 1 marks the longest streak of back-to-back new COVID deaths in all of the pandemic.

The news comes after Austin experienced a deadly third surge this past summer. A record 23 deaths in a single day was reported on Sept. 8 as Austin reached a grim milestone of 1,000 total COVID deaths. APH attributes the high death toll seen in this surge to the highly transmittable Delta variant.

As of Monday, there have been a total of 1,163 COVID deaths in Austin.

The COVID situation has been looking up, however, with cases on a decline since August, dipping into the Stage 2 threshold of APH's risk-based guidelines for COVID. The seven-day moving average of new COVID hospital admissions is down to 12.4 as of Monday—the lowest since July.

Health officials fear the holidays could cause another surge as seen last year. But this year could look different as almost 73% of those aged 12 and older are fully vaccinated and a vaccine for kids aged 5-11 will become available this week.

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A mortgage banker walks us through the math on purchasing a 'mid-price' Austin home

So you want to buy a house?

To anyone trying to get on the "housing ladder," it's been a discouraging couple of years as prices skyrocketed in a market crowded with buyers bidding against each other for just about any available home.

Things may be calming down, with the Austin Board of REALTORS reporting fewer sales and more available homes this summer.

Mortgage rates have more than doubled in the last year, from around 3% to well over 6% on a 30-year fixed rate loan, getting even more of a bump this week after the Federal Reserve raised bank rates on Wednesday.

So how affordable are homes right now? That, of course, depends on what you want and how much you're able or willing to pay, but here are some rough estimates of what a typical buyer would pay to buy a $650,000 home, which would be considered "mid-price" in today's market.

Mortgage banker Chris Holland (NMLS 211033) of Austin's Sente Mortgage ran some numbers for Austonia to illustrate a typical purchase.

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Fall camping: Camp Fimfo Waco offers one-of-a-kind experiences in the heart of Texas
Camp Fimfo Waco

Camp Fimfo Waco, a brand new camping resort, is kicking off football and fall camping season in style! With top-notch amenities, premium accommodations, and 10 weekends of fall fun, there’s no better place to have a fall camping getaway, especially if you’re a Baylor football fan!

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