Mayflower Front

You remember we posted about this cozy two-story home in Oak Cliff’s lovely Stevens Park Estates neighborhood. The owners have decided to do some sprucing up before leasing out this incredible home.

I can’t wait to see what this super-cute two-bedroom, three-bath home will look like after renovations, because it was pretty incredible last time we looked. Built in 1935, this incredible 2,638-square-foot home has formal living and dining rooms, as well as a beautiful updated kitchen with stainless steel appliances.

Mayflower Kitchen 2 Mayflower Kitchen

What you’ll love most about this incredible stucco home is the proximity to the recently renovated Stevens Park Golf Course, as well as how close this home is to downtown. Just of Hampton and Fort Worth Avenue, this home is perfect for city dwellers who want to try on Oak Cliff for size. With Sylvan | Thirty opening up soon nearby with a fantastic supermarket and delicious restaurants, as well as tons of amazing growth in West Dallas, huge strides in Oak Cliff schools, including Rosemont Elementary and Greiner Exploratory Arts Academy, you’ll find something to love about North Oak Cliff.

Mayflower yard

If this looks like the home for you, contact the Dallas-Fort Worth property management experts at LocalDwelling.com to see when 2010 Mayflower will be available. Its current price is $2,500 a month — a very fair rate for such a wonderful property in a fabulous location.

9812 Saint Annes Front

There’s a subtle line with traditional decor that you don’t want to cross. Often what starts out as a great traditional formal living room sometimes veers into the over-done swag curtain abyss. Luckily, this gorgeous West Plano home inside Ridgeview Ranch Estates is on the tasteful side of traditional.

Things you’ll love about this home right off the bat: The two-sided fireplace that adds warmth and ambiance to both the den and formal living rooms; the open formal dining room that blends seamlessly with the formal living room; the lovely golf course views.

9812 Saint Annes Formal L

Listed by Vivo Real Estate’s Bernice Maez for $289,900, this West Plano home is in perfect shape for a family to move right in and start living. It has four bedrooms, three baths, and 2,700 square feet. There’s a two-plus car garage, perfect for parking both family vehicles and even a golf cart, too, should you want to take advantage of the links in this fantastic community.

9812 Saint Annes Fireplace 9812 Saint Annes Kitchen

Another great feature of Ridgeview Ranch is that it feeds into top-scoring Frisco ISD schools. And considering that there is plenty of space in this home, you’ll have tons of room for your teenagers to be close, but not too close. The kitchen is a great hangout place for doing homework, thanks to the great breakfast area and open layout. With custom backsplash, granite counters, and stainless steel appliances, it’s an eyeful, too.

9812 Saint Annes Master

The master suite is well-appointed, but I’m not in love with the carpet (full disclosure: I am rarely ever in love with carpet). Still, the tray ceiling makes it feel elegant. The color on the walls is a bit overpowering. It’d look fantastic in a neutral gray or greenish beige with a bright white paint on the ceiling and maybe a graphic rug beneath the bed to add symmetry.

9812 Saint Annes Master Bath

The master bath is huge, but thanks to the wallpaper, it feels a bit dated. Don’t let that discourage you, though, as these spacious vanities, separate garden tub and shower, as well as walk-in closets, should be enough to persuade you to buy and do a tiny bit of work remodeling. Trust me, it’ll be worth it!

 

9812 Saint Annes Backyard 9812 Saint Annes Golf CourseOutside you’ve got that fantastic view of the course, which is absolutely verdant come spring. You’ve also got room for a lovely garden, and a rear patio that is fantastic for grilling with friends.

 

Your Houston News:Zach Haverkamp

 

Developers and members of the Katy Chamber of Commerce turn dirt at the site of the Falls of Green Meadow at the Green Meadow Golf Course. (Photo: Zach Haverkamp/YourHoustonNews.com)

I stumbled across this interesting bit of news that a new development just west of Houston in Katy will put 440 new tract homes on top of a 242-acre golf course.

Sacrilege? Considering the dearth of available land in the tony suburb, perhaps not.

Dubbed the “Falls of Green Meadow” — an ersatz homage to Green Meadow Golf Course — this development will be the latest master-planned community after a bevy of master-planned communities in Katy. The project is headed by Tom Fitzpatrick of Friendswood Development Co.

From the news story:

Home builders Lennar Homes and Meritage Homes will be the homebuilders for the neighborhood, and Village Builders will also begin home construction in the summer of 2014.

Fitzpatrick estimates that the first model homes will be ready for viewing around the beginning of this August, and the community’s final phase of construction should be concluded by 2014 or 2015.

Due to the attractiveness of the Katy area, he predicts the new neighborhood’s homes should be quick sellers.

“In the real estate business, Katy ISD is kind of like gold, that’s where everybody wants to be. As a developer who’s been around since 1962 – this is our 51 year [anniversary] – we’re constantly looking for new opportunities, and some of these hopefully will be in the Katy area.”

Green Meadows Golf Course first opened in 1965, when the property was converted from pastureland to a 36-hole golf course. It closed in 2008.

I wonder if the homes will come with bermuda grass lawns mowed like fairways … What do you think? Are there any golf courses Dallas suburbs should sacrifice in the name of new housing?

Your Houston News:Zach Haverkamp

 

Developers and members of the Katy Chamber of Commerce turn dirt at the site of the Falls of Green Meadow at the Green Meadow Golf Course. (Photo: Zach Haverkamp/YourHoustonNews.com)

I stumbled across this interesting bit of news that a new development just west of Houston in Katy will put 440 new tract homes on top of a 242-acre golf course.

Sacrilege? Considering the dearth of available land in the tony suburb, perhaps not.

Dubbed the “Falls of Green Meadow” — an ersatz homage to Green Meadow Golf Course — this development will be the latest master-planned community after a bevy of master-planned communities in Katy. The project is headed by Tom Fitzpatrick of Friendswood Development Co.

From the news story:

Home builders Lennar Homes and Meritage Homes will be the homebuilders for the neighborhood, and Village Builders will also begin home construction in the summer of 2014.

Fitzpatrick estimates that the first model homes will be ready for viewing around the beginning of this August, and the community’s final phase of construction should be concluded by 2014 or 2015.

Due to the attractiveness of the Katy area, he predicts the new neighborhood’s homes should be quick sellers.

“In the real estate business, Katy ISD is kind of like gold, that’s where everybody wants to be. As a developer who’s been around since 1962 – this is our 51 year [anniversary] – we’re constantly looking for new opportunities, and some of these hopefully will be in the Katy area.”

Green Meadows Golf Course first opened in 1965, when the property was converted from pastureland to a 36-hole golf course. It closed in 2008.

I wonder if the homes will come with bermuda grass lawns mowed like fairways … What do you think? Are there any golf courses Dallas suburbs should sacrifice in the name of new housing?

We just returned from a glorious ten days in Hawaii, island hopping from The Big Island to Honolulu and, finally, Maui. We survived a tsunami, my first! I’m still on Hawaiian time and mixing Mai Tais. As you know, Hawaii is second home nirvana for the wealthiest of the wealthy. Last week, I got to experience two fabulous second home communities, one Kukio, near Kona, the other on Kaanapali Beach, on Maui. Trust me, you can not go wrong with either.

This is Kukio. How to describe it? I never wanted to leave. No wonder so many turtles poke on over to rest on the Kukio beach: this is by far one of the most luxurious second home communities I have ever experienced.

A private oceanfront club and residential golf community, Kukio is the epitome of relaxed  luxury living amid a landscape of the most beautiful nature you can find: wide blue horizons, white sand beaches, and a gracious, warm and welcoming climate. Drive your golf cart on over to the Beach Club and leave the keys in it. Your warm towel is waiting for you after you emerge from the ocean, your snorkel gear is de-fogged and ready.

The only private equity Golf and Beach Club on Hawaii’s Big Island, The Kukio Club includes a full service Member’s Clubhouse, luxurious and I do mean luxurious open-air spa and fitness facilities, dining pavilion, beach bar, a ten-hole Tom Fazio-designed short course my husband says is among the world’s tip top, and Kukio’s signature Outdoor Pursuits program for paddleboarding, surfing, kayaking, whatever.  Newsflash: I learned to paddleboard, LOVE IT! The Beach Club has at least 50 paddleboards and I learned these things run about $2000 each! Then upslope from the short course is Kukio’s pride and joy, an eighteen-hole Tom Fazio-designed championship golf course, featuring dramatic panoramic views of the coastlines. Hubby loved this one, too. Amenities at Kukio blend aesthetically with the island’s natural physical features, resulting in a beautiful, well manicured environment. There is lava rock everywhere. Nearby bays – Uluweuweu and Kua – enhance and give you more beach options. Two pristine white sand beaches are to be found at adjacent Kikaua Point Beach Park, an ideal location for swimming, body surfing — I caught two big rides —  and a variety of ocean sports activities. This is a public beach but you will never find more than 30 people on it.

And the water is so warm you just walk right in!

Who lives here? Michael Dell, Lance Armstrong, tons of celebs lease homes here, an amazing Who’s Who that’s hard to nail because everyone who works there won’t jeopardize a job in paradise by spilling the beans. Can’t blame them. When you can afford a second home in Kukio, you have arrived.

This little number, affectionately called Lot 85, is on the market for $11,900,00, a major reduction from the original asking price of $12,900,000. That’s the good news about Hawaii right now — it’s a friggin’ bargain. The Japanese, Canadians and Chinese are buying real estate there like hotcakes. Lots in this area start at about $2 million just for the dirt/rock, but I found this little bargain surprise for $995K: the sellers apparently want to offer up a $275,000 golf club membership with the purchase, that’s how motivated they are. That’s what I heard, you’d have to check to be sure.

Get ready for lots of company: the home has five bedrooms,  five full and two half baths, all with outside rainfall showers, a Pool Papai with Thatched Roofing (basically, what we would call an outdoor kitchen in Texas but with a thatched roof cover), hand hewn teak flooring, stone, marble, louvered Koa Cabinetry, and great outdoor living spaces. Yes, that is a swim-up bar. Everyone needs one in their backyard! Most of the interior doors are pocket, Hawaiian-style, for serenity and clean lines. You get 6,187 square feet, but it’s really an 8,200 square foot plus home because everyone lives outside here. Note the master with that dramatic corner ocean view and the open master spa bath. In Hawaii, you’ll use your indoor kitchen for breakfast and big meals. Almost everyone cooks and entertains outside on the lanai. It’s really a three car garage, one split so you can keep golf carts and paddleboards in the smaller one.

This home was built in 2006 and sits on one acre, loaded with lush landscaping close to the home. Many of the lots in Kukio have lava rock yards, which really grew on me. First of all, they are are aesthetically fascinating and lava is good luck in Hawaii — just do not take it off the island! It is also very close to the Kukio Beach Club and Spa. FYI, when they evacuated the Four Seasons for the tsunami, everyone was put up at the Kukio Golf Club. You are a bit higher here, but just a short golf cart ride to fun.

This home also has a guest cottage, or two, which is vital to keep your future guest, that would be me, in privacy. After all, a girl has to have perfect peace and quiet to blog. But just think of what we have to call our blog when we launch in Kona? CandysRock.com!

 

 

 

Well, almost. Bluegreen Communities, a developer of premier, master-planned residential home communities, has launched a new program that pays real estate agents big buckeroos for referrals. Through the Realtor® Referral program, participating real estate agents who refer buyers to a Bluegreen Communities property earn a full six percent of the resulting sale.

Most of the time, the six percent commission is split between the buyer’s and seller’s agent. In this case, of course, Bluegreen is the “seller” so they are playing nice and giving it all to the agent.

Bluegreen, by the way, is the brains and brawn behind one of my favorite developments out in Gunter, Texas: the Bridges at Preston Crossing,  a 1580 acre former private horse farm (Cattle Barons was held here twice) that sports an 18 hole golf course, a clubhouse, pool, 24 acre fishing lake, greenbelts and forests.  What I particularly like about The Bridges is that there is also a GORGEOUS equestrian center, so kids can really live a healthy, clean, country life here while Dallas is less than an hour south.

To qualify, agents join the (free) program and receive email alerts on special pricing, new land releases, and other Bluegreen events. Unlike some development companies, Bluegreen allows agents to sell properties directly to retail customers without an on-site  agent. Land-buying customers tend to like this approach because they can select their own home builder and home styles.

Bluegreen is also hosting a sales sweepstakes for a 4-night resort vacation on the Realtor Referral Facebook page through May 31, 2011. To enter, all you have to do is go to Bluegreen’s Facebook page, ‚Äúlike‚Äù Realtor Referral, and enroll in the program.

Bluegreen Communities®, is a division of Bluegreen Corporation, which is on the New York Stock Exchange. For more than 40 years, Bluegreen has developed top-rated master-planned communities, including eight in Texas located near San Antonio, Austin, Houston and Dallas/Fort Worth.  Shooting for that balance of country living just out of the city, Bluegreen has sold over 55,000 homesites in 32 states and is an award-winning green developer.

Now, I’m waiting to see who the first agent will be to serve In N Out Burgers at an open house!

You do recall former NBA champ Michael Jordan.¬† Not only is he known as “the greatest basketball player of all times” but he is gaining a rap as the greatest home builder of all times! Jordan is completing a 28,000 square foot mansion in The Bears’ Club, Palm Beach County, Florida, near where Tiger Woods just completed his grand estate. The builder: Lavelle Builders out of Jupiter, Fla. Of course, Tiger’s estate is surrounded by water on three sides to,¬† perhaps, keep the paparazzi (among other things) at bay. Jordan’s mega-mansion, which is still under construction, is not even close to the water. But it now goes down as one of the largest, most expensive homes ever built in Florida that is not on the water, says real estate agent Jeff Lichtenstein of Christie’s Great Estates and Illustrated Properties. Lichtenstein knows of what he talks: he sells real estate in the Palm Beach area, which is notoriously filled with high net worth people who like to enjoy a second or third home here because here they have it all: a backyard marina for their yachts, sea, beach, and plenty of gorgeous Florida sunshine.

Oh yes, and I almost forgot: golf.

Though waning with the general population, the wealthy still love to tinker on the greens. Jeff’s father, Cary Lichenstein, was a golf rater for GolfWeek Magazine and has been playing since he could walk. In fact, he lives so close to Jordan — in Admiral’s Cove – the elder Lichenstein could lend a hammer or nail to the twenty million dollar project.

The Jordan home will have 11 bedrooms, sits on a three-parcel site right in the backyard of the uber exclusive (and hard to get into) Bear’s Club. Let me put it to you this way: it costs $350,000 just to call yourself a member of the club. The area is loaded with courses designed by Jack Nicklaus, but he personally plays at Bears Club — so basically this area is golf nirvana and the membership list is a regular Who’s Who…¬† stars, Fortune 400 execs, and the Nicklaus family.There are 55 residences ranging from $4 million on up to, well, probably Jordan’s home. When complete, Jordan’s mansion will be a contemporary with Spanish-style roof — this I have to see. It will have four separate structures: A main house, a guardhouse, a guesthouse and a poolhouse for the mammoth swimming pool. In other words, the largest spread in the ‘hood.

Neighbors once included chanteuse Celine Dion, who ran into a few problems with her HOA over her desire to add a commercial recording studio or music room to her property — deeds are so tough in this ‘hood that even if a home burns down, you have to re-build it to look just like the original home. I mean, can you imagine the disaster if a Mediterranean went up right next to — another Mediterranean?

Jordan paid $4.8 million for the land and is spending an estimated $7.6 million for the construction. The Lichtenstein boys estimate that the total booty will top $20 million, and they worry a bit about re-sale value:

“It would be interesting to see what the Jordan home resells for, being that its location, while great for MJ’s privacy, is not ideal for resale to the usual trophy-and-yacht buyer,”says Jeff.

Only his banker knows for sure!

1. Second home trends: Affluent Baby Boomers will retire later and downsize from their large McMansions for which utilities and taxes have become prohibitive, to smaller homes, maybe condos,¬† in the city and a second home — in the cheaper boonies, or in another city. Just last night a reader emailed me that his biggest dream is to own a second home condo in Quebec! Cripes, even Disney is getting into this market.

2. According to a study by E360 Global Research, 45% of current second home owners think now is a great time to buy a second home. Of those, Mexico has a strong pull for almost half — and this survey was done in August, 2010. The drug cartel crime in Mexico is isolated to certain areas, they believe.

3. Of the 54% who say now is not a good time to buy a second home, most say the next two years will be. E360 (who provided much of this information) expects big growth in the second home markets surrounding highly populated areas.

4. Most people want a second home as a vacation haven to de-stress. Most prefer a lake or ocean view, with a mountain view coming in second. North Carolina, for example, is one of the fastest-growing second home destinations.

5. What kinds of amenities are second home buyers looking for? Good question. To some extent, they want great medical facilities (resuscitate me!) and a spa. Golf and eco-green based living also does not turn them on. I’ve read that many want to re-live their college years, with classes and intellectual stimulation (and pot?) nearby. Boulder, Colorado is home to a lot of intelligent people and gaining a large second home population, for example.

6. Pricing sweet spot: $200,000 to $400,000 and pay cash, if possible. I mean, those 401Ks are doing so well, right?

7. Vacation and lifestyle are the reason 46% want to buy; another 41% want to buy for investment. Only 11% give a rat’s tooshie about retirement.

8. 49% of second home buyers want a single family home, and 60% just want a 2 bedroom, 2 bath floor plan.

9. 49% of second home purchasers will buy domestically, but a growing contingent is eying Mexico and¬† Central America — Costa Rica, Ecuador, Panama — as a low-cost of living second home and place to retire.

10. The second home won’t be too close to the first: 30% of buyers want to be 100 to 300 miles from their primary home; 40% want to be 500 to 1000 miles from the primary home; 11% are willing to be more than 1000 miles away from the primary home.