Photo courtesy of Ray Bodden

Photo courtesy of Ray Bodden through a Creative Commons license

Texas is the place to be for economic prosperity and job growth, which in turn has made our real estate market one of the best in the nation, according to the 2014 Texas Annual Housing Report, released this week by the Texas Association of Realtors.

Nearly every area of real estate in the Lone Star State continues to get bigger and better, some of it astoundingly so, the report shows. Most notably, growth has happened in luxury home sales, international home buying, relocation activity, condominium sales, and remodeling trends.

“It’s a great time to live in Texas. The high demand for Texas real estate is not being fueled by speculation and investment activity—it’s driven by the thousands of people who move to the Lone Star State daily,” said Dan Hatfield, chairman of the Texas Association of Realtors. “People are moving to Texas from across America and around the world to take part in our state’s booming economy, business-friendly environment, and quality of life.” (more…)

Salon Lure 4

Natasha Khan, Ericka Smart and Moi!

If you want to know how the Dallas economy is REALLY doing, check out the hairdressers. I was once told that Dallas women devour more blonde hair bleach than women in any other U.S. metropolis, and I believe it. I’m one of them!

Dallas hair salons are doing well, very well, thank you. Someone really needs to tell Robert Shiller that the hair biz is almost an indice for the real estate market: when I can’t get an appointment, I know the market is hot and home prices may be on the upswing. Similarly, I know of many hair stylists who had a tough time during the recession, tougher elsewhere than here in Dallas. Why? Our real estate market merely sneezed! And when the price of oil tanks, why you can walk right into any salon in town.

My locks have a total mind of their own. Many of you might know I’m really a curly-haired lass under those straight-yanked locks. Like the bad witch in The Wizard of Oz, toss water on me and I melt — well, I don’t melt, but my smooth straight hair kinks into a twirly, curly mane/mop that definitely has a mind of it’s own.

So why shouldn’t hair have it’s own Real Estate? (more…)

BHHS_2_0_01We keep telling you that North Texas is damn hot, and the brokers want in. Even Warren Buffet. His new real estate foray, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, part of the HSF Affiliates LLC family of real estate brokerage franchise networks, is now a presence in Dallas. The company announced yesterday that Prudential Texas Properties has joined their network, operating as Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty Texas.

PenFed Realty Texas Broker Rick Wylie said the transition ushers in a new era of growth at the brokerage, which has served the DFW area since 1989 and was a perennial top 50 company with Prudential Real Estate.

“We are so proud of our new name and what it stands for,” Wylie said. “Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices’ namesake is Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc., a corporation respected around the world. PenFed is one of America’s strongest and safest credit unions serving millions of Americans. Factor in our skilled and passionate agents, and you’ve got world-class real estate representation.”

There’s so much power in that Omaha, Nebraska, guy’s name. Buffett’s brand-new real estate franchise brand also has the strongest brand equity of all real estate brands, at least according to a consumer survey by Harris Poll.

The poll was conducted in January, and surveyed more than 41,000 Americans older than the age of 15. (Editor’s note: that’s a pretty young age to own a home!) The 2014 Harris Poll EquiTrend ranks brands by how strongly consumers connect with them. The survey gauged consumers’ emotional connection to brands, their awareness and familiarity of them, and the influence they may have on them.

Rick Wylie, President of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty Texas

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At the recent Frisco town hall meeting, a Collin County Association of Realtors member said above-ground power lines like those proposed by Brazos/CoServ would negatively impact home values by 5 to 20 percent along the selected route. Map: CCAR

At the recent Frisco town hall meeting, a Collin County Association of Realtors member said above-ground power lines like those proposed by Brazos/CoServ would negatively impact home values by 5 to 20 percent along the selected route. Map: CCAR

The gloves are off in northern suburb Frisco as homeowners fight against a power line proposed by Brazos Electric Power Cooperative Inc. and CoServ Electric.

But in an unprecedented twist, Frisco Realtors are fighting side-by-side with homeowners for their home values and property rights.

At the heart of the issue is a suggested above-ground, 138,000-volt, double-circuit power line along either Stonebrook Parkway or Main Street in Frisco, built by Brazos on behalf of CoServ. The power line will start at an existing transmission line west of the Dallas North Tollway, and run between 2.7 and 4.1 miles, depending on the approved route, to a new substation to be built on King Road, west of Farm-to-Market Road 423. The new power line would serve growth in Frisco, Little Elm and The Colony, one of the fastest growing areas in the nation.

This prospect has the West Frisco Homeowners Coalition (WFHOC) and Collin County Association of Realtors (CCAR) working together oppose the 12-story power line, proposing instead that Brazos/CoServ build the line underground. They say the above-ground high-voltage transmission line, which will run through densely populated neighborhoods, will adversely affect the rights of homeowners.

“This is not simply about lowering property values—we see this as a huge home ownership, private property rights infringement,” said Adam Majorie, Government Affairs Director for the CCAR. “We think [the above-ground lines] will have a detrimental impact on homeowners themselves, because it affects on the whole neighborhood, and it impacts the homeowners’ nest eggs.”

(more…)

Nina Pham

Nurse Nina Pham and her King Charles Cavalier spaniel Bentley.

For those in Dallas and North Texas who are following this news closely, Nina Pham, the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas nurse who contracted Ebola after caring for Thomas Eric Duncan, has issued a quote through the hospital. Pham, who has an apartment in the M Streets, started running a fever on Friday. Over the weekend, doctors confirmed that Pham had contracted the deadly disease that killed Duncan.

Jump to read the full quote, as well as a statement from the hospital.

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Marquita cleanup

Good morning! Did you ever dream we would be talking about Ebola here in Dallas? Most of us spent our Sunday digesting the sad news that a health care worker who had tended to Thomas Duncan, the city’s first Ebola patient and victim, at Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas, had contracted the disease from her job of caring for him in ICU at Presbyterian Hospital. Late Sunday night the Center for Disease Control confirmed the diagnosis. Speculation was made that the health care worker, a young nurse, had somehow breached the protocol of the protective gear. According to my sources, no breach took place. The hospital, infectious disease experts, and the CDC will be poring over the current containment protocols and hazmat suits worn by all Ebola health care workers in the next few days to determine many things, one of which could be a change in CDC policy for wearing of protective gear, and possibly getting out of it.  Presbyterian Dallas is already stepping up to a new level of infectious disease care, all prompted by rare chance that an Ebola patient from Liberia ended up in the Presby emergency room.

If anything, this is another sign that Dallas has become so much more of an international city, with a growing group of multi-cultural immigrants — which brings the good like real estate sales, and, unfortunately, the bad. (more…)

NTREIS Matrix

We asked our Facebook followers what they thought of NTREIS’ Matrix system, the update for the Tempos MLS system. While some agents seemed to love the new system, which now works with Mac OS and iOS devices, there are several problems that agents reported.

“Wow. Strange happenings. On my listing on desktop version of ntreis it says “Community Park”.
Go to ntreis mobile it says “Lanunity Park”.. How does that happen? No word from from tech dept after 2 weeks! Glad it sold right away…”

— Patrick

Read on for more user feedback:

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