Articles by

Joanna England

If Executive Editor Joanna England could house hunt forever, she absolutely would. Instead she covers the North Texas housing market and the economy for While she started out with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University, Joanna's work has appeared in The Dallas Morning News as well as several local media outlets. When she's not knitting or hooping, or enjoying White Rock Lake, she's behind the lens of her camera. She lives in East Dallas with her husband, son, and their furry and feathered menagerie.

121 N Winnetka Front

It took Bob Agar and Jim Johnson two years to complete the renovation of 121 N. Winnetka Ave., converting an existing duplex into a single-family home. Of course, as things are in historic conservation districts, it was a challenge. However, David Griffin Realtor Paul Kirkpatrick says that the results speak for themselves.

“It really is a fantastic remodel and have had many agents say this should be the poster child of how to do a historic house like this,” Kirkpatrick said. Every bit of infrastructure was upgraded or replaced, he said, including all plumbing, electric, roof, and HVAC. Plus, it has two tankless water heaters.

If that’s not reason enough to name this adorable prairie-style home our High Caliber Home of the Week sponsored by Lisa Peters of Caliber Home Loans, then how about that turquoise door and the gorgeous front porch?

121 N Winnetka Porch


Seriously, I can’t imagine this home, priced at $679,000 will last too long, so if this is the historic property of your dreams, call Lisa Peters at Caliber Home Loans today so she can get you ready to put in your highest and best offer!

And if you thought the view from the curb of this stunning Winnetka Heights home was to die for, wait until you see inside!


05/03/16 1:44pm


Janet Ryan and friends

Guardian Mortgage’s Janet Ryan (bottom right) travels frequently to San Miguel de Allende with friends. (Courtesy Photo)

Janet Ryan has been in the mortgage industry since the 1970s. It was a different time then, she says, and her long career has given her a dose of perspective that clients constantly benefit from. Considering that Janet has been filling out mortgage paperwork for longer than some companies have been in business, her expertise is what helps her go above and beyond.

And that’s just one of the many reasons why Janet is our Guardian Angel at Guardian Mortgage Company. With more than 50 years in business and countless clients served, Guardian Mortgage will be there for you no matter what, just like Janet!

Jump to find out more about this tremendous mortgage professional!


05/03/16 12:18pm
Left: This outdated shower/tub unit was rarely used and presented a fall hazard. Right: Bruce Graf updated the bathroom with trendy tile and frameless glass, which is now wheelchair accessible. (Photo: Graf Developments)

Left: This outdated shower/tub unit was rarely used and presented a fall hazard. Right: Bruce Graf updated the bathroom with trendy tile and frameless glass, which is now wheelchair accessible. (Photo: Graf Developments)

“For most folks, their home is the biggest investment they own,” said Bruce Graf, a home remodeler with more than 30 years of experience in working with multiple generations of families.

Graf has helped families remodel a house to accommodate growth, and then returned years later to adapt their home to special health needs so they can continue aging-in-place within that same residence filled with lots of memories.


05/02/16 10:09am
4109 Live Oak

The DEEP Fund hopes to raise enough to preserve at-risk properties, such as this stately manor at 4109 Live Oak that was demolished last year.

Good news for preservationists Lisa Marie Gala, Virginia McAlester, and Jim Rogers, as the IRS has granted the Dallas Endowment for Endangered Properties (DEEP) with tax exempt status under Section 501 (c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.

“May is National Historic Preservation Month and The National Historic Preservation Act’s 50th birthday in 2016, so opening our determination letter just a few days ago was perfectly timed and exhilarating,” said Gala. “DEEP’s revolving fund concept is straightforward: We will receive or buy, own, restore, deed restrict, and sell endangered properties. We will develop the properties with partners who are outstanding stewards. Most importantly, we will raise money for our revolving fund to execute our mission. This is new century preservation.”

Jump for more!


04/29/16 4:18pm
It took Tina Westmoreland five years to convince her husband, Matt, to build their "House of Chicks." See it up close on May 1 during the coop tour. (Courtesy Photo)

It took Tina Westmoreland five years to convince her husband, Matt, to build their “House of Chicks.” See it up close on May 1 during the coop tour. (Courtesy Photo)

In the 11 years I have lived in East Dallas, I have had chickens for eight of them. When we first started out as urban chicken keepers, the trend was still relatively new, and the places from which you might score chicken feed were still limited. Today you can run down to Gecko Hardware and grab a 50-pound bag of (non-GMO, soy free!) hen scratch — and maybe a couple of chicks if you can talk your partner into it! – all in one fell swoop.
And just as there were few chicken keepers when we started out on our fowl odyssey, there were few coops. As life with hens has caught on, not only have coops popped up all over East Dallas, but they’ve upped the ante in style, too.


04/28/16 11:56pm

The first phase of the Fiji Townhomes development is almost sold out. The affordable prices and functional floorplans are attracting a lot of interest.

The first phase of the Fiji Townhomes at Compton and Fran Way won’t be finished until July and it’s almost sold out, says Virginia Cook Realtor Angela Downes, who is marketing the property. The brand new development by Sphinx is set just west of Corinth and south of Cedar Creek in an area ripe with opportunity.

Of course, Dallas is experiencing a real pinch in entry-level homes right now. With median home prices in our region topping $300,000, Candy has declared the $200,000 range all but unattainable, relegating an entire generation of would-be homebuyers to keep forking over their meager salaries to their landlord.

But is it?


04/28/16 6:00am

Want to see this super cute home on Santa Monica? Enter to win! Photo: Kim Leeson

Guys, we have a surprise for you, our loyal readers. I found out yesterday that for today’s ticket giveaway for the Hollywood Home Tour this weekend we have— get this — FIVE PAIRS OF TICKETS!

I am just beside myself because this is just one of my absolute favorite home tours, and this year the Hollywood Santa Monica Neighborhood Association is doing it up big for their 25th anniversary. I mean, they have some really cute homes, including Kelly and Tom Hoffmann’s cerulean cottage on Santa Monica that we featured last week.

Of course, not only are there amazing and adorable homes on the tour, but there’s also an auction party on Friday night at the Dallas Arboretum, a candlelight home tour on Friday, and some really fantastic artists vending at Lindsley Park this weekend for Hollywood Art in The Park. The home tour is slated for Saturday and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. and features five gorgeous historic properties.

Jump to find out how you can win one of our FIVE PAIRS OF TICKETS to the Hollywood Home Tour this weekend, April 30 to May 1!


04/27/16 4:28pm


Tragically, not every project that an architect designs makes its way from concept to reality. Truly, some of the most ground-breaking work that architects do never break ground. However, these designs and concepts deserve recognition, and that’s just what the AIA Dallas Unbuilt Awards will do.

This year’s pop-up exhibition tomorrow, April 28, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. is hosted by Lofty Spaces at 816 Montgomery in the Cedars. You can check out the gallery of unbuilt designs and cast your ballot on your favorites while meeting and mingling with the show’s jurors. Admission is $15 for AIA Dallas members and $20 for the general public.

Jump for more!

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