4947 N Hall A

The real estate world is be buzzing with news about the sale of Walnut Place (aka the Crespi Estate) for somewhere in the ballpark of $100 million this week.

But in the It’s My Mansion occasional feature on CandysDirt, we look at newsworthy properties that have fewer zeros on the end of the list price.

Take, for example, the newly listed condo at 4947 N. Hall St. It’s located near Lemmon Avenue and the Dallas North Tollway, just a hop, skip, and jump from Oak Lawn. With 1,072 square feet, two bedrooms, one full bathroom, and a powder room, it offers a lot of space for well under $200K.

The Westbury Park Condominiums were constructed in 1954, and reflect their era with quaint courtyards, lots of mature trees, landscaping, a community swimming pool, and a serene environment.

Monthly HOA fees are $308 and the condo was listed Jan. 9 by Kristi Reinertsen with RE/MAX DFW Associates for $170,000.

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We’ve been blogging about it for weeks now, and I have to give credit where credit is due: Steve Brown at The Dallas Morning News was first to publish that Andy Beal was interested in buying Walnut Place, the former Crespi Estate on Walnut Hill Lane that was listed by Allie Beth Allman and David Nichols for $100 million. I had heard Beal was going back and forth between Walnut Place and the beautiful Crow mansion at 4500 Preston Road. We know the Hicks are getting close to finding a new home in Dallas, and Allie Beth Allman tells me the 35,275-square-foot (67,689 including terraces) estate closed officially this morning when papers were signed. And Beal paid for the home in cash. She will not disclose the sales price, nor comment on my incessant questions about the Crow estate or sales price, but she did tell me that Andy Beal bought all of the estate, all 25.25 acres, and he plans to keep it intact.

“He doesn’t plan to split it,” she told me.

Bravo Andy Beal!

Allie Beth Allman is an amazing agent, and I had to ask her, how does she feel after pulling off the largest sale in Texas history — actually, in Texas and Oklahoma and probably in the whole southwest U.S. history?

“I don’t feel any different,” she said. “I went to back to work immediately. I had an agent calling me during the closing about another property.”

And while she could not divulge what the final selling price was, she did say that both parties were thrilled.

“The Hicks are thrilled, the buyers are thrilled,” said Allie Beth. “And you know I’m not happy if it’s not that way at every single closing, regardless of the sales price. We are talking about someone’s home and they should not just be happy but be thrilled with the entire process.”

If they are not, she says, then I haven’t done my job. And Allie Beth Allman ALWAYS does her job.

As for the Crow estate, she has a listing agreement and it is on the market and available for $46 million.  It was off the market for the holidays, she told me.

I have to laugh at those who said, and some who actually wrote, that this estate would never sell. It took David and Allie Beth only 9 months to sell a $100 million property.

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Until the Waggoner Ranch closes, this is the largest real estate sale in Texas history, and certainly will be the largest in Dallas history for years to come. The last largest sale in Dallas history was 5323 Park Lane, when Kelcy Warren bought the nine plus acre estate of Joyce and Larry Lacerte, designed and built by Cole Smith, decorated by Sherry Hayslip, and listed with Ralph Randall at Ebby Halliday. 5323 Park Lane was originally listed in 2008 for $45 million, then lowered to just under $40 million as the nation’s real estate bubble went bust. According to my sources, it sold for about $29 million-ish, and sharp Kelsey even asked for an outside appraisal. His buyer’s agent was Rosie Waters of Allie Beth Allman and Associates, who is married to football legend Charlie Waters, who works (or worked at the time) for Mr. Warren.

Dallas real estate — I LOVE IT! Jump for the story on Walnut Place, complete with photos, that we ran back in March of this year.Hicks Main House- Foyer and Grand Stairway (more…)

4500 Preston Rd extIt is such a tough decision, I do feel his pain. Word is that Andy first wanted the beautiful estate of Margaret Crow at 4500 Preston Road. It was listed for $46 million and remains an expired listing listed with Allie Beth Allman.

It’s one of the largest & most historic sites in Highland Park. The rare 6+ acre estate is in the heart of Highland Park, one of only 5 multi-acre sites that were created on Preston Rd overlooking Turtle Creek when Highland Park was created in 1906.  The Tudor structure with Craftsman touches was designed in 1912, and has had only 3 owners. The grounds including a century-old tree.4500 Preston Road fountain

But he changed his mind and bought Tom and Cinda Hicks’ Walnut Place, the former Crespi Estate, on Walnut Hill Lane, the most expensive piece of real estate in Dallas or even North Texas… aside from the $725 million Waggoner Ranch, which is also under contract to a consortium of buyers. (Word is they close today.) Walnut Place is one of the most expensive properties in the world. It’s current status in MLS is cancelled.

And it is also one of the most beautiful. Breathtaking! But then, so is the home of the late Margaret Crow. Which one would you buy?

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Hicks Main House-Rear Garden on North Side

Steve Brown alerted us to word that Andy Beal was making a play for the two most expensive homes in Dallas, Tom and Cinda Cree Hicks’ glorious $100 MILLION Walnut Place, formerly known as the Crespi Estate.

Steve said that Beal is considering both the Crespi Estate (move in with your solid gold tooth-brush ready) and the $46 million Crow estate on Preston Road, which was taken off the market in early November, as I told you. It was reduced from $59.356 million to $46m, not sure Steve got that message. The $46 million Crow estate would likely be a tear down and a huge building project for a Mark Molthan, John Sebastian or one of our guys. Enormous.

But it would be someone’s total personal dream.

So I did some digging. I think Steve is onto something. Sure enough, the Hicks home status is cancelled — off the market. Went off MLS on November 24.

Well, why would they do that if they wanted to sell it, you ask?

Simple: keep the price and transaction quiet. Brilliant strategy.

Allie Beth and David Nichols are being quite mum, of course, but I hear that the Hicks have recently been looking at both Museum Tower and The Ritz Residences (Tower II) for an interim home while they decide how and where to downsize in Dallas. Word is they have to be out of Walnut Place by March. It’s really amazing because Allie Beth and David just got the listing in March!

This is all conjecture and chatter, but comes from people in the know, so I’m going to throw it out there.

After all, Steve started it. And I cannot think of a better way to end 2015, a killer year in Dallas real estate, than with the sale of a $100 million Dallas home! (more…)

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UPDATE 10:35 am: I heard from Thomas, who explains he was picked by Marketwatch as one of 21 representatives for 21 cities across the U.S. to write about their city’s real estate market. He is the Dallas representative and just got a crash course in SEO:

“My last article had about 6,400 views total and I started to think, what do people want to read about? Ultra-expensive, celebrity type homes of course! This article has 67,000 views in 18 hours.

 The ground rules are simply that they want us to write about the city’s real estate market: whether that be an interesting property or a change in prices, etc. I am on a warpath to become a top Dallas realtor, so this was a perfect opportunity! “

That would be Dave Perry-Miller agent Thomas Randall, who wrote a piece for the online Dow Jones’ product MarketWatch: (more…)

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It was back in January of 2013 that Tom and Cinda Hicks first shocked us by listing their 25 acre Preston Hollow estate, also known as the Crespi Estate, for $135 million with Doug Newby. That price tag sure garnered a lot of attention from the folks at places like Forbes, the Wall Street Journal, and pretty much everywhere. Lots of attention for being the priciest house in the US for awhile, but it never garnered any buyers. Newby always seemed to have the estate front and center on Private Air Luxury Homes Magazine. He even lowered the price to $98 million. Rumors were circulating for weeks before and after Christmas that the listing was changing hands. I know the Hicks spoke to Briggs-Freeman Sotheby’s as well as other top agents in town. The pricing advice on the home from these other agents was not accepted. Dallas is a hot market, and the Hicks want to sell their estate to downsize, enjoy their other homes, and not be so tied down to the annoying management of 25 acres.  (more…)

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Alan Peppard reported Sunday on something I have been meaning to tell you: The Tom Hicks Crespi Estate on Walnut Hill Lane has been reduced in price, somewhat. As Alan reports, the Hicks have decided to sell their estate with less land for less money: 10 acres, and 42,500-square-feet of the most luxurious living in Dallas or the entire state, for that matter.

Previously we reported here, first of course, that the Hicks estate was on the market for $135 million. At that time it took the prize for the most expensive estate for sale in the United States. That was for all 25.25 acres, a lot of grass and trees (and some ponds) even in the honeypot of Old Preston Hollow. In fact, I wonder how much damage the Hicks had from last weeks’ storm– hopefully none.

Alan reports that Doug Newby now says you can have the house and all the structural trimmings on 10 acres for a mere $60 million.

But aha, Unique Homes Magazine claims that the whole shebang was reduced to $98 million in 2014, for less land. How much less? I’ve got an email into my NAREE colleague Camilla McLaughlin over there to find out. (more…)

Private Air Luxury Homes coverSee this ad? If you have already seen it, I want to be your friend because it is in a publication called Private Air Luxury Homes. And the only place you can find this magazine is in FBO’s… that’s Fixed Base Operations, or where people with private jets hang out. You know what they say: once you go wheels up private, you never go back to commercial. This magazine rules and I can imagine their readership is so uber duber high net worth that ad rates must be out of the ballpark and into Fort Worth.

I spoke with the folks at Private Air Luxury Homes today, which is located in Scottsdale. They know some of the agents here in Dallas real well, like Doris Jacobs, our friend Doug here, and Robbie Briggs because they all have advertised in this mag. Here is a preview of their magazine, digital-style, and I’m telling you, there is some might fine House Porn in there indeed!

The Crespi Estate owned by Tom Hicks is still on the market, still at $135 million. Which reminds me of a clip I just saw on WSJ.com: it is not enough to be a millionaire anymore. $5 million is the new $1 million; a million bucks just doesn’t cut it, doesn’t even make you feel rich. What does cut it? $5 million or more, according to the story. Apparently the folks at UBS Wealth Management (where my son once worked) did a study of affluent investors and wanted to know how much money is enough money — to retire, to be financially secure. Here’s what responders said: I have enough money when I have no financial constraints on activities. 28% of people with investable assets between 1 million and 5 million do not even consider themselves wealthy, and only 60% of the people at the top of this group ($5 million invested) consider themselves wealthy.

In other words, I can buy anything I want. Like a private jet, or the Crespi estate.