11/28/14 9:00am

6153 Ellsworth Front

I think that the $400Ks are the new $300Ks in Dallas, with a greater diversity of homes in established neighborhoods coming with features you used to see in houses priced around $300,000. Today we take a look at three different homes from three different brokerages in three different neighborhoods to see what you can get in the $400K range.

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11/27/14 9:00am

1031 N. Madison Living

Happy Thanksgiving! Looking for something to be grateful for? Here at CandysDirt.com we’re absolutely grateful for the amazing deals you can still find in Dallas, especially in North Oak Cliff. This area of Dallas is super hot, and it’s difficult to find a deal thats in good shape. But we’ve found a great candidate for someone who wants a home with character and history. It’s a listing with Jenni Stolarski, a Realtor with Briggs Freeman who knows a good investment when she sees one. Stolarski says this home at 1031 N. Montclair has views of downtown Dallas from the front porch! Now that’s a selling point if there ever was one.

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11/26/14 4:16pm
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Photos: Jeremy Lock

(Editor’s Note: We originally published a version of this story last year, but since D’Andra and Jeremy are graciously opening the doors of their beautiful Lindenwood contemporary again for the Friday, Dec. 5 ABPA Homes for the Holidays Home Tour, we decided to take another look at this lovely home!)

D’Andra Simmons hopes you’ll get a glimpse at her and Jeremy Lock’s personalities when you tour their incredibly chic Highland Park contemporary during the Armstrong Bradfield Preschool Association Homes for the Holidays Home Tour.

The eclectic two-story modern has an open floorplan with a global vibe injected with a shot of old-Hollywood glamour. And Simmons, founder of the Hard Night Good Morning line of cosmetics, knows a thing or two about glamour. The 6,600-square-foot home is both a home base and a showcase for these two world travelers. Lock is an award-winning war photographer, and Simmons, who admits she feels more relaxed on safari in Africa than anywhere else, have assembled their collections in a way that reflects their travels and tastes.

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11/26/14 12:45pm

1531 San Saba Front

Dan Koller, the absolutely incredible publications manager over at Dave Perry-Miller & Associates, sent this listing my way on Monday. “Something tells me this house will tickle your fancy,” Koller said. Holy cannoli, was he right! Not only that, but I drive by this home all the time, but I had no idea what kind of wonder was set across the cute red bridge from the street.

That’s what’s perfect about this home: It’s so secluded and private that the only thing you can see from the street is the little bridge. But what sits across that lovely little bridge is what makes this house at 1531 San Saba worthy of our “High Caliber Home of the Week” title. Truly, this house is a sight to be seen, and won’t be around for long. Why worry about hitting snags with financing when you could have a lender that takes pains to make sure your pre-approval and mortgage paperwork goes as smoothly as possible. That’s what Lisa Peters does at Caliber Home Loans. Find out more about her high-caliber service by calling her today.

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11/25/14 5:00pm
An old brochure for Kessler Park shows the beautiful stone stairways that can be found within the neighborhood.

An old brochure for Kessler Park shows the beautiful stone stairways that can be found within the neighborhood.

Rachel Stone at the Oak Cliff Advocate has an update on an unexpectedly contentious issue that has formed battle lines among Kessler Park residents: The steps between Canterbury Court and Edgefield Avenue.

The stone walkway, which was installed by the original developers of Kessler Park, North Texas Trust Co., was part of a system of small pocket parks that were meant to attract wealthy families to the neighborhood. However, the steps have fallen into disrepair, and until recently, it wasn’t exactly clear who owned the steps or was responsible for their maintenance.

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11/25/14 1:16pm

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If it seems like the lists of top-performing companies in national business magazines are populated by industry mammoths and impossibly large corporations, it’s because they are. Sure, economies of scale can help a company realize success relatively fast, but these lists leave the real, tangible successes of small businesses in the shadows.

Recognizing that these regional brands deserve distinction, the Caruth Institute at SMU’s Cox School of Business came up with the Dallas 100™ Entrepreneur Awards. This list is populated by “the unsung heroes of our economy,” according to the Caruth Institute. Within this list of the 100 fastest-growing privately held companies in North Texas were two residential real estate brands that have been burning up shoe leather in their bid to succeed: Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty (No. 20), and CLAY STAPP + CO. (No. 80).

“The incredible growth and performance of the Dallas 100™ winners is a tribute to the dynamic and vibrant entrepreneurial community in which we live,” said Jerry White, director of the Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship at SMU Cox. “The Dallas economy has been driven by entrepreneurs since its founding. With today’s entrepreneurs, investors and supporting professionals, the economic future of our area and beyond looks bright indeed.”

We agree, and it’s fantastic for these two regional brands to see such growth. Perhaps North Texas has fully recovered from the economic downturn now that we’re seeing brokerages post big numbers? At any rate, congratulations to Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s and CLAY STAPP + CO. on your Dallas 100 win!

11/24/14 4:10pm
BA Norrgard is taking her tiny house on tour, but the Dallas native is hoping living small will catch on in her hometown.

BA Norrgard is taking her tiny house on tour, but the Dallas native is hoping living small will catch on in her hometown.

We’ve been following BA Norrgard and her quest to live small — tiny even! — in a hand-built home after divesting herself of her mortgage and working to help people simplify, simplify, simplify. And as much as I love her mission, I have to wonder if Norrgard’s work is ever going to pay off. Can the people of Dallas, a place whose very motto is “Big Things Happen Here,” live small?

Perhaps the real question is this: Can we appreciate time outside, putting more emphasis on experience and less on material things? That’s what Katie Arnold asked in her essay for Outside magazine:

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11/24/14 11:51am

The inside has been renovated by Crest Custom Homes!

You’ve been looking for a home that is large and well-appointed and absolutely fresh inside, this beautiful home inside McKinney’s Stonebridge Estates will do just the trick. This home is a gorgeous custom property built in 2003 and just renovated by Crest Custom Homes with a brand new heated pool and spa, fresh paint inside, a beautiful kitchen, and a lovely master bathroom.

This brick and stone home is perfect for entertaining this holiday season, too, from the dramatic two-story entrance to the formals to the  butler’s pantry, wine room, and wet bar. Not only that, but you have a two private suites downstairs, one master and another for those VIP guests you wouldn’t dare set up in a hotel!

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