07/29/14 10:28pm

Tom Horvath Tumlis.com

The best thing about going to Real Estate Connect in San Francisco is meeting up with all the innovative tech folks trying to streamline the real estate industry for agents and, ultimately, consumers.

Yeah, Zillow and Trulia were once one of them.

They dangle and display their wares for the media. One of the most exciting innovators I interviewed last week was Tom Horvath, CEO and founder of Tumlis.  Tumlis is a Bay-area brokerage that provides free lead generation and customer relationship management services to agents. Tumlis also just released a really great home pricing module called REALizer – a groundbreaking, proprietary real estate dashboard that agents can use with clients to accurately price homes and analyze market timing, among other things. (more…)

07/29/14 3:16pm
While the city tries hard to keep up with the influx of new residents with new water towers, housing is still a tight market it Midland.

While the city tries hard to keep up with the influx of new residents with new water towers, housing is still a tight market it Midland.

This report from the Texas Tribune tells a scary tale for troubled children and teens in the fast-growing areas of Midland-Odessa. It’s impossible to find housing in the oil-boom areas of West Texas, which means that critical workers, including state Child Protective Services caseworkers, have no place to live.

This has resulted in a necessary transciency for some staffers of the over-taxed CPS offices that oversee Midland and Odessa, which may mean that some cases and some children who are victims of abuse are slipping through the cracks:

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07/29/14 2:14pm

Home For Sale Sign Dallas

Maybe so, or maybe the market is just taking a breather while the summer heat is on before it grows legs again. According to Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller’s Home Price Index, Dallas has seen the smallest increase in home prices since August of last year. Still, prices are growing, at an albeit slower rate. In fact, all of the MSAs Case-Shiller surveys saw growth from April to May of this year, even beleaguered Detroit.

Regionally, home prices increased 8.6 percent in Dallas from May 2013 to May 2014, and between April and May of this year, the increase was 1.3 percent. That’s a decrease from March to April 2014, during which Dallas saw a 1.6 percent price growth. Nationally, housing prices are up 9.4 percent from May 2013, with a flat month-over-month HPI.

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07/29/14 1:14pm

881 Berkinshire Front

Just listed today, this Old Lake Highlands home is practically a celebrity! Its owners, Steven and Ashley Walton, found this beauty during a whirlwind search on HGTV’s House Hunters show in 2011 and again on House Hunters: Where are they now in 2013.

“In 2010, my wife and I decided to move out of our small Uptown apartment and buy 881 Berkinshire Dr. in Old Lake Highlands because we wanted a project,” Steven said. “Fast forward almost 4 years (and many projects) later and we are ready to simplify our lives and move back to the city to be closer to our jobs in downtown/Uptown.”

Ashley and Steven Walton went on 'House Hunters' in 2010 to find 881 Berkinshire. They're now selling the Old Lake Highlands home.

Ashley and Steven Walton went on ‘House Hunters’ in 2010 and find 881 Berkinshire. They’re now selling the Old Lake Highlands home.

This beautiful home, a charming post-war traditional in a fabulous neighborhood that is super close to White Rock Lake, is listed with Lauren Valek Farris with Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s Team Whiteside for $269,000. Today is its very first day on the market, and considering the competition in the $200K range, it may be it’s last!

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07/29/14 1:48am

SamsCityplaceAccording to Robert Wilonsky, who was at the hearing — and I would have been there, too, had it not been for this Zulia deal — he thought…  

“Judge Phyllis Lister Brown was going to side with the East Village Association and grant their request for a temporary injunction in the case involving the Sam’s Club Trammell Crow Company wants to build in the shadow of Cityplace. She chided the city and Trammell Crow for their “lack of transparency” in zoning documents and notices sent to nearby residents impacted by the Big Box. She made it clear she was unhappy with how the process failed the residents living next to a 150,000-square foot Big Box that will dropped in their proverbial front and back yards. She spoke of having to make a “difficult” decision.”

Yep, been there. That’s how judges operate. You think you have them convinced of the law, and opposing counsel says something, they swing back to the other side. Ultimately Judge Brown said the city had done just enough to force her to deny the residents’ request for a temporary injunction. So Sam’s Club can file for a building permit as early tomorrow. (more…)

07/28/14 11:30pm

zulia2-1024x492
It’s been a day trying to interpret and predict the future of the real estate industry. Good grief! Jeff Farris of BubbleLife Media reminded me that seven years ago, we didn’t have a verb called “google.” I was just getting an iphone. I started a “blob” called DallasDirt!

We think maybe in another five to seven years, we may have a verb called “Zillow” or “Zulia” as in : did you Zillow (or Zulia) that house?

What this means to the real estate industry: Zillow, now married to Trulia with a pretty sizable dowry, will have much more money, efficiency and power than the splintered MLS’s across the country. As Rob Hahn pointed out: they did a $3.5 billion deal that united two real estate giants in 6 WEEKS! Speed kills the competition. (more…)

07/28/14 5:37pm
Crescent Estates, the developer who built the Courtyards at Normandy, will construct an 18-home luxury development on Forest Lane.

Crescent Estates, the developer who built the Courtyards at Normandy, will construct an 18-home luxury development on Forest Lane.

Word comes that the custom home builder that has signed on to build 18 luxury custom homes on the almost 4 acre site on Forest Lane just sold by Unity Church of Dallas is none other than Crescent Estates Custom Homes, the very same developer that built the Courtyards at Normandy in University Park.

The development, which will be called 6600 Forest Estates, was part of the 11-acre Unity Church of Dallas Campus. Charles Hicks, who purchase the property in a deal facilitated by Solender Hall Real Estate, has had the land rezoned for planned development. Crescent Estates is known for European-style homes with top-of-the-line finish-out, including museum-quality interiors, and attention to detail both inside and out. We have a feeling that the homes proposed for the Forest Lane development will be similar in construction if not in style to the Courtyards at Normandy.

We have calls and emails out to Crescent Estates to get the specifics on this luxury home development, so stay tuned!

07/28/14 12:26pm

Zillow-logo

Candy already told you about this incredible, game-changing transaction. Of course, Zillow started out with a low-ball offer of $2 billion in stock, but the deal was sealed at $3.5 billion as Zillow acquired Trulia. This transaction will create a Goliath in a market where a new real estate internet start-up crops up seemingly every day.

Trulia shareholders will be getting compensated quite well, as each Trulia share will convert to .444 of a Zillow Class-A share, according to Business Insider. The acquisition will move Zillow head-and-shoulders above its next-closest competitor, Move Inc.’s Realtor.com. Just check out this chart from Inman News:

Zulia Chart Inman News

There are so many questions to answer! I wonder how the ongoing litigation involving Errol Samuelson’s defection from Realtor.com will affect the deal. And what about all of the duplication in talent? Both firms have excellent economists and analysts, so who will stay on? Will Trulia just become a Zillow brand? And what about mobile apps? Will Trulia be nixed? Or will they launch a new one that has access to all of that data?

One thing is for sure: All that data is going to change the way we do real estate. BubbleInfo.com’s Jim Klinge published a piece in BI about this very thing, and it will surely send shivers down the spine of any Realtor:

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