Ranchero Jim Duns

James & Betty Muns with Jan Richey of Keller Williams

The original owners of 3420 Ranchero, the mega Plano mansion that will be auctioned tomorrow at 2 o’clock p.m. sharp, stopped by one of the preview events at the home over the weekend.

Here is James Muns,  a former mayor and the developer of El Rancho Estates back in the early 1970’s. He built the home that the second owner is now selling.

Fun fact: Jim built the dock/gazebo that sits on the pond of this incredible property. Family members and friends were married there over the years! Oh the parties… if dirt could talk!

The home will be auctioned off Tuesday afternoon, at 2:00 p.m. The property was last listed for $4,249,500 and the very motivated seller has agreed to sell this property at $2.4, which is now the minimum bid for the estate.

3420 Ranchero aerial

Let me tell you why Tuesday’s auction of 3420 Ranchero in the honeypot of Plano is so very important: dirt. This area is the estate haven of Plano, equivalent to the honeypot of Old Preston Hollow in Dallas, or Hunters Glen in Highland Park. And the property can be had for less than its Collin County appraisal!

In the early 1970’s, as the town of Plano, Texas was just opening its sleepy eyes, James Muns and Don Dilmore developed Ranchero Country Estates. There were to be 19 properties on two meandering country roads, Ranchero and Rambling Way. On Ranchero, the property plots measured from 2 to 4.62 acres, and five properties were carved out on Rambling Road, all measuring from 1.92 to 2.33 acres.

The area is literally in the heart of Plano, off Parker Road, between the Tollway and Preston. The lots are gigantic, wooded, with tanks and ponds and natural surroundings that lure you into believing you are in the country, especially at night. For his own home, Muns chose a 4.62 acre parcel with the very, very best view of the sparkling pond.

3420 Ranchero kitchen (more…)

VIP party guest2

Last Wednesday, we were just starting to feel a bit lighter on the scales after a weekend of eating turkey, or whatever your favorite Thanksgiving indulgence happened to be. Heritage Auctions Luxury Real Estate threw open the doors at 3908 Euclid, the Dallas-based auction house’s next big luxury real estate auction that happens NEXT WEEK! The previews begin this Friday through Monday, from 1 to 5 p.m, at the property.

And where did everyone end up after the presentation? In the DREAM GARAGE!

That’s right, you too can grab the steal deal of the century (and the best garage in Texas) for an exquisitely timeless, modern home on one of Highland Park’s most coveted streets designed by Joe McCall, built by Randy Clowdus, and offered for sale by the folks at Heritage along with Martha and McKamy Tiner from Dave Perry-Miller.

Heritage is the world’s third largest auction house and is a leader in luxury real estate auctions after several recent scores, including the successful sale and closing of 3756 Armstrong Avenue, Highland Park’s famed O’Neil Ford house. It is now the only top tier auction company to offer truly luxury properties through auctions. Utilizing a powerful platform from a client base of more than 900,000 members worldwide, Heritage Auctions specializes in marketing and selling luxury real estate valued at $2 million and above throughout the United States, the Caribbean, and in select international destinations. It is an effective alternative to selling high-end properties in a transparent, competitive bidding environment — all within 60 to 90 days.

True to it’s core business, Heritage also offers a benefit auction at each property prior to sale. Through donated paintings and furniture, funds were raised last week for Jubilee Park, a thriving residential neighborhood in Fair Park, with affordable new housing options for low income residents.

Heritage brought in Joe McCall, of Oglesby Greene Architects, who oversaw the construction of 3908 Euclid. The home is one of the most unique in Dallas. There is a six-car garage split in two, four bays decked out as a professional garage for car collectors and aficionados.

3908 Euclid is not like any other home that has been to auction in Dallas. Frankly, it has no flaws. The home was timelessly built to the most exacting standards by the owners, architect and builder. Though the brick appears to be NorthPark brick, it simply matches the same color.

The home will have an undisclosed (but easily attainable) reserve, the listing price is $6,400,000. It is listed with veteran Dave Perry-Miller agent Martha Tiner and her daughter, McKamy. Get thee to this auction for the bargain of a century!

Oh and one more thing you will not find in any other house in Dallas: a waterproof mailbox! Jump for more party photos!

(more…)

3756 Armstrong Ave rear3756 Armstrong in Highland Park goes to auction tomorrow at 2 p.m. They say it was not because they got so very many bidders registered on the Highland Park estate, but because of the incredible quality of the bidders, who have said they want a shot at buying the architecturally significant Penson home that the reserve has been lifted.

“We had a very easily attainable reserve,” says Nate Schar, Director, Luxury Real Estate, Heritage Auctions. “The property is owned by an estate that is being finalized, and the sellers saw it only as an insurance policy against an unlikely series of catastrophic events leading up to auction day, like a financial market crash.”

Based on the incredible interest generated about the estate, from the many stories, and the qualifications of those bidders, the sellers are confident in Heritage’s ability to capture true market value, says Nate.

So that reserve is gone. Adios! The auction takes place at the Armstrong Avenue estate tomorrow at 2:00 p.m. selling to the highest bidder.  (It is NOT TOO LATE to sign up.) The auctioneer will open the bidding and determine the starting number. And things will roll from there.

The home has been listed, as we told you, at a high of $7.5 and then later reduced to the current appraisal of $6.1 million for the land. That means the 8900 square feet of living space created by the grandfather of Texas Modernism is basically FREE.

 Agents tell me they believe the master bath alone holds one million dollars in marble. If you are a mid-century aficionado, this home is your Mothership.

 

Surrounded by trophy properties, such as the estate of Jerry Jones, Troy Aikman, and other Dallas movers and shakers, many wonder why this trophy home with so much architectural significance has not yet sold on the open market. In fact, it is one of a handful of O’Neil Ford creations in our city.

“When it was listed, a lot of buyers didn’t have the vision or expertise to realize they could buy it for lot value,” says Greg Rohan, president of Dallas-based Heritage Auctions. “Then they could spend a couple of million dollars to return it to its original splendor.”

At lot value plus a full restoration, you could end up spending $8 million for a sprawling masterpiece on one of Highland Park’s most prized lots.

At that price, it would be $17 million cheaper than the house across the street.

Thinking of picking up a historical Highland Park bargain? Then get thee to the auction. (more…)

Heritage Auctions home 1If you are on our email list, which you should be because we have some very cool parties, then you know that I am a panel speaker tomorrow evening at Heritage Luxury Real Estate Auctions 2nd Tuesday... along with Ben Jones, Brad Kimple, and those fantastic Heritage folks Nate Schar and Scott Foerst, who know everything you’ve always wanted to know about real estate auctions, but were (maybe) afraid to ask. Or maybe not!

Everything you wanted to know real estateTee hee. I remember when my dear mom bought that book, she was trying to be so private, and it slipped out of the bag in the middle of the bookstore, and I picked it up!

Well, tomorrow night, we are pulling out the stops and talking all about LUXURY REAL ESTATE AND AUCTIONS! And you can ask us anything you want!

Tuesday, September 10, at the Heritage Auction Gallery, 1518 Slocum Street, Dallas from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Hope to see you there! Refreshments provided, so you never know what might happen... please RSVP to RSVP@HA.com or let your fingers do the talking: 214.409.1050

Heritage Auctions home 1Fasten your seatbelts, get that reserve ready! I have told you all about real estate auctions, and I predicted we would be seeing a whole lot more. Real estate auctions are a great way, in fact, maybe the only way, to unload big, kinda albatross-y homes, as well as your standard multi-million dollar fare. Best example, of course, is Champ D’Or which sold at auction last March 31 in Hickory Creek.; whose contents were just sold off last week. That puppy had been on the market for about ten years. Often the owners are high net worth individuals who dabbled, or rather, over-dabbled in building, went a little too high end, or built in a location that turned out to be just plain WRONG!

Well, guess who figured this out and has jumped in to help? Our friends over at Heritage Auctions right over there on Maple Avenue. Did you know that Heritage has slipped right up on Sotheby’s and Christie’s (and, some say, moving up on) to become the world’s third largest auction house? Yes, right here from Big D. Now the venerable art and collectibles auctioneer has announced the addition of Luxury Real Estate auctions to its growing portfolio of 30+ Auction categories.

The Heritage folks are so smart: not only will this net them more fine art and collectibles to sell, it will net them the very dirt and walls that surround all that stuff like, for example, the contents of Champ. Brilliant stroke!

The timing may also be more than perfect: two of the country’s top real estate auction houses are embroiled in nasty finger-pointing lawsuits. North Carolina-based Grand Estates Auction has charged New York based (and Sotheby’s sort of affiliated) Concierge Auctions of using sham bidders and other fraudulent tactics to inflate its transaction volume, and is seeking $23 million per claim. Concierge sold Champ D’Or here last March and more recently, an estate in Plano. Grand Estates, based in Charlotte, and two couples/home sellers alleged that Concierge published auction results for sales that never went through or involved “shill” buyers. The buyers, in collusion with the company, allegedly failed to register for the auction or pay a $100,000 registration deposit. The suit says deposits were returned in many of the sales. Further, Grand Estate says Concierge allegedly misrepresented its sales numbers and used web crawlers to inflate its Internet traffic. (Say what?) Of course, Concierge had already sued Grand Estates, alleging the firm set up fake email accounts to publish “false and defamatory” stories (what we call troll comments) about its competitor and steer business to Grand Estates. While these two duke it out, Heritage ought to sail right down the runway.

Unlike traditional real estate listings, sellers with Heritage Luxury Real Estate Auctions work with the team to maintain control over the entire sale, setting the date, marketing strategy, and terms of the auction. Relax agents, that team includes YOU. Selling at auction, of course,  creates a competitive bidding environment, where fully-qualified and motivated buyers participate in a transparent, non-contingent sale — all within 60 to 90 days’ time frame from beginning to closing.

Do not, repeat, do not confuse auctions with foreclosures. The Luxury Real Estate auction format accelerates the selling process, creates a sense of urgency with buyers and eliminates carrying costs while the vetting process brings in something every Realtor would kill for:  fully qualified buyers.

Experts tell me that homes that sell at auctions are homes that are simply not going to sell the traditional way: list, sign, MLS, wait for buyer. They may be too specialized, or overbuilt, or in the wrong location, or the sellers have grown tired of waiting. (Sound like Champ?) But never mind all the negatives: if a home is highly desirable and you can get a lot of people excited about it in a short, defined period of time, and you market the bejesus out of it, you can sell it.

More and more sellers, in fact, are coming to auction houses first so they don’t have to hassle with the time and inconveniences associated with listing a property the traditional way.

The Directors of the new Luxury Real Estate category are Nate Schar, who will be working from San Diego, Scott Foerst in Atlanta, and Amelia Barber, holding down the fort in Dallas, where Scott and Nate spend half their time anyhow. Scott  and Nate have a 13 year history of selling multi-million dollar properties by auction throughout North America totaling more than $250 million in sales. Previously, Nate was an asset manager at one of the Midwest’s top wealth management firms, and Scott served as architect and senior project coordinator with both commercial and residential construction firms in the Southeast. Both came to Heritage from — surprise! — Grand Estates Auctions. Amelia comes to Dallas by way of The Hill as in Washington, D.C. where she was a lobbyist. Amelia also managed operations for a national financial trade association.

“Heritage is the first fine art and high-end collectibles auctioneer to offer Luxury Real Estate auctions in this specific format, a perfect fit with our portfolio of services catered to high net worth individuals,” said Paul Minshull, Chief Operating Officer of Heritage Auctions. “These auctions will put the seller in control and provide liquidity in a timely manner.”

The properties presented by Heritage Luxury Real Estate Auctions will be marketed with customized advertising plans regionally, nationally and internationally, including Heritage’s 750,000+ bidder members from more than 186 countries. (How do you spell high net worth? HERITAGE.) The auctions will be marketed out the wahzoo to qualified buyers.

“Our sellers are finding this process a tactful and savvy means of resolving their traditional selling dilemma,” said Scott. “Auctions help maximize the full market potential of Luxury properties.”

So I asked Nate, Scott and Amelia: will this be vacation or primary homes?

“Vacation properties about 80% of the time,” said Nate, “There’s a lot of vacation homes out there and available, thus more inventory to sell.”

Many of those homes are free and clear with zero mortgage debt. Heritage will not be selling private planes and yachts, at least not at this time.

But there will be some primary residences in the pool. The trio plan 18 to 24 auctions per year, with the first one set to rock and roll this fall. I’m off to Maine next week — I’ll take this one!

 

Heritage Auctions home 2