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.

11/26/15 9:00am


This year’s ABPA Homes for the Holidays home tour is a bit more tightly curated than in years past, with four amazing homes to enjoy from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. next Friday, Dec. 4. This annual home tour is a huge fundraiser for the Armstrong Bradfield Preschool Association, and has brought in more than $675,000 for kindergarten and first-grade classes at the two elementary schools serving Highland Park. Now that’s something to be thankful for! Check out this video about what ABPA does for neighborhood schools!

Our favorite house on this year’s tour is a lovely cottage on Drexel Drive with a spacious front porch. It looks like it would be at home in New Orleans’ Garden District, with rows of French Doors and a lovely, bursting landscape. We caught up with the McClung family, owners of this Creole beauty, and asked them a few questions about their adorable abode.

Jump for a little teaser ahead of what is going to be a fabulous home tour!


11/25/15 1:20pm
The dining room at Champ d'Or could definitely host a crowd.

The dining room at Champ d’Or could definitely host a crowd.

I know this is last minute, but this is something that tugs at our heartstrings! A very high-profile local celebrity whom we absolutely cannot name wants to host a memorable Thanksgiving dinner for toddlers, children and teens placed in the conservatorship of the Department of Family Protective Services, as well as single mothers who might not otherwise be able to put dinner on the table. And he needs your help!

They are looking for:

1) A large luxury estate in the Dallas area to host about 200 people for dinner.

2) The celebrity hosting the dinner is also looking for a larger home, so a house that is on the market that could also host the dinner and be featured as a potential purchase is ideal.


“The event will go from 3pm to 6pm and we have a $2 million insurance policy for any venue,” says the rep.  “We would want to start setting up at 10 am.”

The dining room in the main house at Walnut Place could host an elegant Thanksgiving dinner for all.

The dining room in the main house at Walnut Place could host an elegant Thanksgiving dinner for all.

The first properties we can think of would be Walnut Place, the Trammell Crow Estate, Lisa Blue Baron’s estate on Deloache or perhaps even Champ d’Or. What about you?


736 Elsbeth Front

It’s rare to find a new build in this area of North Oak Cliff, so when we see one, we tend to take notice. And this listing from David Griffin Realtor Crystal Gonzalez demands your attention. It definitely has presence in the area, which is full of homes built in the 1920s to 1940s.

And the location? Well, it’s just a hop from the Bishop Arts District, and just down the street from Beckley and Zang. And just around the corner you’ll find the beautiful Lake Cliff Park. If you don’t fall in love with the house immediately, chances are the location will seal the deal.

And when you fall in love, be prepared to put in an offer. To do that, make sure you call Lisa Peters at Caliber Home Loans to get you through pre-approval so you can put in your highest and best offer on the spot! To get the deal done without hiccups or delay, call Lisa Peters at Caliber Home Loans today.

Jump to see the unexpected interiors in this North Oak Cliff new build!


11/24/15 3:31pm



Our Clay Stapp. He is always pushing the envelope… I’m sure that’s just how he gets our attention! Whether its mama wanting a bigger house or protection from unscrupulous agents, you have to admit — if the man can get attention this brilliantly, imagine what he can do for a house …

But did Stapp take things too far with his open house at 4231 Merrell with naked sushi and some very, very toned models relaxing pool-side?


Candy and Joanna were intrigued by Clay Stapp’s Naked Sushi open house at Scott Finfer’s recently finished remodel at 4231 Merrell.


11/23/15 3:41pm


You’ve heard about Realocator from us before. It’s the new app that helps buyers connect with Realtors in real time via GPS. It’s like Uber for real estate, and it’s a concept that intrigues us!

If you’ve wanted to see Realocator in action, check out this spot on CW33’s News Fix featuring Vivo Realty Group co-founder David Maez as he demonstrates what his app can do to revolutionize the real estate industry, one showing at a time.

Have you downloaded the iOS app for Realocator yet? What did you think?

11/20/15 4:07pm

image001 (2)

If you’ve had a settee, an armoire, a rug or a lamp on your wish list, next week is the time to make your wishes come true. IBB Design Fine Furnishings is hosting a huge Black Friday sale, with 40 to 75 percent off in-stock furniture.

The sale starts Monday, Nov. 23, and runs through Saturday, Nov. 28, taking a hiatus for Thanksgiving. If you want to score some real deals, though, head out to their Frisco location at Genesis Court early.

What is on your home decor wish list?

11/20/15 3:55pm
Should this homeowner convert her garage into a living space, or is it a risky investment?

Should this homeowner convert her garage into a living space, or is it a risky investment?

Today we have a really good question for our Realtors and appraisers. A longtime reader, first-time writer from Casa View Haven:

We’ve been talking about converting our garage to a living room and I’m getting concerned about what it might do to our value. We need more space, but don’t know where to start!

I am trying to get answers from the city on the details of permitting, and so far it sounds difficult, time-consuming and expensive — just for the permit.

Well, in our experience, the best place to start is with contractors. We have a short list of the best builders and remodelers in Dallas, which is a great place to launch your home renovation or custom builder search. But what do you think about garage conversions? Will they help or hurt a home’s value?

11/19/15 4:46pm
10034 Coppedge Lane is a remodeled mid-century modern featured on the Modern Mile home tour.

10034 Coppedge Lane is a remodeled mid-century modern featured on the Modern Mile home tour. (Photo: Dan Piassick)

The inaugural Modern Mile Home Tour held last month was a tremendous success for the Walnut Hill Neighborhood Association, raising more than $22,000 for the neighborhood elementary school. That’s $7,000 more than home tour organizers had hoped to raise in the event’s first year.

“We are definitely planning to do this on a yearly basis,” said Kathy Adcock-Smith, founder of the Modern Mile home tour. “And it will always benefit Walnut Hill as long as we do the tour.”

The proceeds from the tour will fund Walnut Hill Elementary School’s sensory garden, a program that supports the school’s autistic students, as well as a butterfly garden. The improvements come as the school to celebrates its 100th anniversary.


The Walnut Hill Neighborhood Association presented a check to Walnut Hill Elementary School for more than $22,000 on Nov. 2. The proceeds will go toward much-needed landscaping projects at the 100-year-old campus. (Photo: Dallas ISD)

“We value our relationship with the community,” said Chase McLaurin, principal of Walnut Hill Elementary School, told the Dallas ISD blog. “When I became principal here, we started developing this relationship with the neighborhood association. I was excited about this opportunity to get them involved at Walnut Hill.”

According to the report, not only did the neighborhood association raise enough for the material costs of the project, but they have also secured donated labor. Bravo! We can’t wait to see what homes will be on next year’s Modern Mile home tour!