02/26/15 4:10pm
5118 Stanford Ave. in 2013

5118 Stanford Ave. in 2013

In January 2013, my Hubby and I were frantically looking for a house as our Preston Hollow condo was under contract in 3 days to a cash buyer (HOORAY!!!). I fell in love the minute I saw this Briarwood cottage and the For Sale sign out in front of 5118 Stanford Avenue.

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02/26/15 1:46pm

9937 Larchbrook Front

If there was ever a deal, this is it. When I asked Dallas City Center Director Kevin Caskey about this house, he told me that there was already tons of interest in it. That was three days ago, and this home hasn’t been on MLS for more than a day! Truly, homes in the $300K ranch are a hot ticket in Dallas, and one in Lake Highlands with some really fabulous updates is going to have a full dance card.

I love this home for so many reasons, namely the clean, uncluttered updates that this seller did. Trust me, this home may look a little bland from the curb, but it’s a knockout inside! Jump to see the photos!

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02/26/15 12:23pm

DSW15 Banner Ad 2

Maybe you’ve had a great idea for a business but didn’t know where to start to get it off of the ground? Perhaps you need some inspiration from fellow entrepreneurs who have made the transition from big ideas to big business. That’s what Dallas Startup Week is all about! It’s five days full of talks and workshops built around the pitfalls that many would-be entrepreneurs face. From proposals and funding to branding and marketing you’ll learn everything there is to know about building momentum for your a business from the ground up.

Dallas Startup Week, which runs Monday, March 2 through Friday, March 6 in Downtown Dallas, features tons of great speakers that have real-world business-building experience. Nationally known entrepreneurs such as Project Runway alum and Dallas native Shirin Askari will share tips and advice on harnessing your creativity and personal brand. You’ll also find out about how to partner with corporations from business executives such as Clinton Anderson of Sabre.

“This is all the rage right now in the Downtown community,” says Ashley Stanley, founder of Ashley’s Apartments. “We are drawing business leaders from all over the Metroplex.”

Of course, we’re pretty excited about the ULI FlashTalk about Innovating for Real Estate. It will feature 7 minute talks from John Adolph of Parquer, Matt Alexander of NEED, Daniel Black of Glass Media, Brandon Castillo of ASH+LIME, Saurabh Gupta of CoHopping, and Christopher Haley of the Dietrich Von Hildebrand Legacy Project.

Best of all, this event is free! Yes, you can pick the brains of all of these successful business men and women at no cost. You can register here. Find the complete schedule of events here.

3620 Ranchero extThis is one for the record books. 3620 Ranchero in Ranchero Estates, Plano, has to be one of the most loaded homes in North Texas. I’m talking rivalling and actually surpassing Champs D’Or as far as interior over-the-top amenities. Champ, which is under contract, by the way, was more like living at the Broadmoor. You would need a staff of thousands and have to be thanking someone every two minutes. Ranchero is a home, a big home, yes, 17,306 square feet, but a homey home, a place that was built with absolutely anything and everything you could think of to make life as comfy as possible for a family and then some. Like, for example, the waterfall in the bridge overlooking the pool. A room just for the dogs that opens to the garage through double doors so you don’t have to bring them into the house from the car. This room has a custom dog bath off of it, all tiled with a drain, so you can wash the dogs right there. This leads to a spacious doggie yard of turf with built-in cleansing sprinklers. Urinals. I know, not a pretty word, but I swear the best Valentines gift you could give a woman would be to install a urinal in every bathroom in the house. That and some diamonds. There are urinals in every bathroom in this house — all nine of them — with the exception of the little girl’s room. Even daddy gets one! That is one example, one wee (sorry) example of the detailed thinking, planning and expense that was poured into this home: price was no object. I have a feeling that when the builder, DFW Fine Homes, said to the owner hey, we can do this but it costs extra the owner said DO FIVE OF THEM. (more…)

The Davis Building, aka Republic National Bank Building, in downtown has Dallas Historic Landmark Designation. 1926 this structure was the tallest in Dallas. In 1945, this structure was the largest office site in Dallas. Photo: Davis Building.

Downtown Dallas’ Davis Building, aka Republic National Bank Building, has Dallas Historic Landmark Designation. In 1926 this structure was the tallest in Dallas. In 1945, it was the largest office site in Dallas. Photo: Davis Building.

Dallas has a rich historic and architectural legacy, shown through buildings like the Texas Theatre in Oak Cliff, DeGolyer House and Gardens in East Dallas, and the Eastside Warehouse District and State Thomas neighborhood in Uptown.

But just because a building or neighborhood plays an important part in the story of Dallas doesn’t mean it’s protected from big changes, up to and including demolishment.

Just last September, 1611 Main Street and neighboring buildings were razed as part of the Joule’s expansion plans. It was a beautiful Romanesque Revival built in 1885, one of downtown’s oldest structures. It sat next to the site of another Dallas landmark torn down by the Joule in 2012, the former Praetorian Building.

Lakewood Theater is another example of an unprotected structure—it may be beloved, but nothing stands between it and the wrecking ball besides the assurances of the owner that they won’t demolish as part of renovation plans.

That’s where historic designation comes into play and the efforts of Dallas preservationists to care for the future of the buildings and neighborhoods that have shaped what our city into what it is today.

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02/25/15 12:49pm
Curbless shower master bath Graf Developments

Bruce Graf says that aging-in-place can be stylish with key updates in often-used rooms, such as master suites.

A survey recently released by the Global Social Enterprise Initiative at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business polled 1,000 people ages 50 to 80 years old. Only about 1 in 5 respondents to the survey had any plan to remodel their homes or incorporate technology to help them as they age, and yet, the vast majority (96 percent) of respondents said they want to remain independent while they grow older, and 91 percent said they wanted to stay in their own home, commonly referred to as ‘aging-in-place.’

Bruce Graf, a nationwide renovation consultant with over 32 years of experience and a Baby Boomer himself, scoffs at these survey results.

“It’s funny, people will spend $50,000 for a car. This is something with a relatively short life and depreciates the very second it’s driven off the car lot,” Graf said. “However, they think twice about spending that amount on their home, a place they could spend the next 30 years in easily, and it appreciates greatly.”

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9562 Ash Creek Front

In 2005, when Michael and Ashley Morris bought the home on the 0.82 acre lot at 9562 Ash Creek, legend had it that the small home on the lot was once an underground gambling house that was a favorite of Yankees slugger Mickey Mantle. “Apparently, it was one of his luckier spots in town,” said listing agent Brandon Stewart.

The home was torn down and the Morris family got to work with master architect Truett Roberts designing their dream home, while still maintaining the attractiveness of the wooded, creek-side lot. The design they settled on was one that was a mass of rectangles, using different textures to sheathe the second and first floors, and using the home as somewhat of a visual barrier to the backyard.

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zulia2-1024x492So apparently Trulia’s agreement with ListHub to receive listing data was set to expire next spring, 2016. But ListHub decided to turn it off sooner, like February 26, based on the Trulia-Zillow merger.

ListHub — which is owned by Realtor.com operator Move Inc., a News Corp. subsidiary — announced Thursday that it had terminated its syndication agreement with Trulia in the wake of its acquisition by Zillow and would stop sending listings to Trulia on Feb. 26.

Zillow announced Friday that it had filed for a temporary restraining order in a bid to keep listings flowing to Trulia.

 Well now a Judge says that cannot happen.  Trulia was given a temporary restraining order to NOT stop those listings coming. Bring ‘em, baby. Apparently, the cessation was too much of a jolt for most brokers with spring coming up. (more…)