He’s lived in the M Streets for 30 years, so of course Ken Lampton has a home on the Internet at MStreets.com. He also shares his unvarnished opinions on his blog, where you can find out more about Lampton’s adventures in this sought-after neighborhood, as well as the challenges it faces when it comes to redevelopment and preservation. He’s a meticulous, detail-oriented Realtor with an engineer’s brain who loves historic homes and has a hat collection that would stir the envy of any Southern girl. It’s kind of his thing!
For all of those reasons (and many more!) RE/MAX DFW Associates Realtor Ken Lampton is our Great Western Home Loans Featured Realtor this week. He’s got personality, determination, and serves his clients with expert knowledge and patience. He reminds us a lot of Jeff Lindigrin of Great Western Home Loans, now that we mention it! What has your lender done for you lately? See what you’re missing by calling Jeff Lindigrin of Great Western Home Loans today.
And now jump to find out more about this treasure of a Realtor, Ken Lampton!
CandysDirt.com: So, where are you from?
Ken Lampton: I grew up in Louisville, Ky. I came to Dallas when I graduated from the University of Louisville with an engineering degree in 1972. I worked as a machinery designer for more than a decade. Then the company shut down the factory where I worked, and I gathered up my courage to jump into real estate brokerage. I have to admit it was an unlikely change, but I found I had many talents I hadn’t developed when I was an engineer.
CD: So, how did you get into real estate? What’s your specialty?
KL: I became a Realtor in 1985. By that time I had renovated a 1923 Tudor Cottage on Belmont Avenue — mostly with my own two hands. (Engineers are like that, you know?) I got involved in a lengthy zoning dispute and was a founding member of two different neighborhood associations in the 1980s. I became interested in the way the policies adopted by Dallas City Hall had an enormous impact (often negative) on the redeveloping close-in neighborhoods. I didn’t just want to sell homes, I wanted to help people appreciate the charms of living close to downtown Dallas.
CD: How do you stay sharp in a challenging market?
KL: With my technical background, I’ve always been an early adopter of new technology. My broker, RE/MAX DFW Associates, has very fine programs of training and continuing education. This is very helpful. But in spite of all the constant changes in the industry, real estate is still a “people-to-people” business. This applies to relationships between real estate agents just as much as it applies to relationships between agents and their clients.
CD: Where is home for you in Dallas?
KL: I live in a 1928 Tudor Cottage in the Belmont Addition in the Lower Greenville/M Streets area. For my wife and I, our little house is the headquarters for excursions to eateries on Greenville and Henderson avenues, movie-going at the Angelika and Magnolia theatres, bicycle riding at White Rock Lake, shopping at NorthPark Center, and high culture in the Dallas Arts District. I can’t think of another area in Dallas where all the things we like to do are so easily accessible in such rich variety. We have a lot of fun with like-minded friends in the neighborhood.
CD: And you drive a … let me guess, Range Rover?
KL: I’ve got a Lexus, and it’s time to trade up. I hope a Lexus salesman will see this posting and call me with a great deal!
CD: What’s your favorite ‘hood in Dallas and why?
KL: The area between downtown Dallas and White Rock Lake has fascinated me since the first moment I arrived in Dallas. Old East Dallas, Lakewood, Lower Greenville, the M Streets — they offer a phenomenal diversity of lifestyles. It’s been exciting to watch the amount of reinvestment money pouring back into this part of town. And now that the new home builders are busy in the neighborhood, everything old is being made new!
CD: What was your best/highest sale?
KL: My best sale is always the one where my seller (or buyer) and I develop the best working relationship. It’s great to make money, but real estate is really about collaboration and making friendships.
CD: Likewise, what was your most challenging or memorable transaction?
KL: Several years ago I was representing a seller in a deal where the buyer kept “nibbling” for better terms. At one point my seller, myself, the buyer, and the buyer’s agent came together in a title company office to discuss some of the buyer’s trumped-up demands. Before I went in with my seller I told her, “A moment is going to come in this discussion where we are going to need to literally walk out of the room. Jump up and follow me when I give you the signal.” Sure enough, the buyer and his agent were very belligerent, unreasonable, and disrespectful. I said, “It’s good we could come together and discuss this, but clearly we’ve come to the point where no agreement is possible.” My seller and I marched calmly for the door. Just as my hand touched the door handle the other agent came rushing up to urge us to return to the table. From that point the buyer was very polite. Everyone agreed to a reasonable settlement of the remaining issues. I felt proud of my ability to sense the buyer’s true desire to hold the contract together. I saved my seller from making unnecessary and unreasonable concessions.
CD: Tell us: What was the most interesting thing to happen to you while working with a client?
KL: There was the time I destroyed my car’s engine when I sucked water into the intake manifold. I was showing houses in that big flood we had a few years ago. My buyers and I had just agreed it was raining too hard to keep on visiting homes. Then I drove into a monster puddle on La Vista Drive behind the golf course. We had a nice two-hour visit sitting in my car in the middle of a rushing stream of flood water while the rain poured down in buckets. Nobody could reach us to rescue us!
CD: How quickly have you ever turned a house?
KL: I never brag about selling a house quickly. I’m more concerned with giving it wide enough exposure to ensure I get the highest price possible. Sometimes I wonder if agents in today’s seller’s market are taking a little too much pride in quick sales.
CD: How much did you sell last year?
KL: Dear me! That’s like asking a woman her age!
CD: What words of wisdom do you often share with clients?
KL: I tell buyers they should expect their first ideas to change as they shop for a house. Buyers shouldn’t expect to simply define the parameters of a house and then go find that house. Individual homes have very subtle charms that can’t be reduced to writing and displayed on the internet. You must come out and visit a reasonable number of “for sale” homes in order to teach yourself how to recognize the house that suits you best.
CD: If you ever change careers for an encore you’ll…
KL: I think it would be fun to be a professional genealogical researcher. I’ve got a great interest in history, and families are history in the flesh. I probably shouldn’t admit I think that way — everyone will think I am a nerdy geek. Or a geeky nerd. Whichever!
CD: Do you have a second home? If so, where?
KL: Well, sometimes owning a 1928 home is like owning two homes — at least in terms of maintenance. But I find one home is enough, since it is located in the most exciting neighborhood in Dallas!