Dallas Builders Association Member Spotlight: Mark Dann With Highland Classic Homes

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As more and more homes in Lakewood get a “glow up,” so are we educated on the builders in East Dallas that not only manage sites responsibly and work with the neighborhood, but also those that produce incredibly well-built homes. At the intersection of those two qualities, we found Mark Dann of Highland Classic Homes. 

Dann is a mainstay in the White Rock Lake area. With 35 years in the business and 14 years at the helm of Highland Classic, it’s easy to see that his experience has generated a well-deserved following and a few awards, too. For those reasons, we’re pleased as punch to give our readers an inside look into what makes the Mark Dann and Highland Classic Homes a brand you can trust in our Dallas Builders Association Member Spotlight.

Get to know Mark as the CandysDirt.com highlights some of the spectacular members of Dallas Builders Association right here, asking these consummate professionals all about their business as a way to brag on the many quality, trustworthy builders in the North Texas area that can count themselves among their peers in the Dallas Builders Association.

To learn more about Highland Classic Homes, keep reading!

Mark Dann

What location or area do you primarily build in? 

Lake Highlands, Lakewood, and White Rock Lake

What’s your go-to architectural style? Traditional? Contemporary? Old World? Modern?

Any style, but mainly Contemporary/Modern as well as Texas Traditional/Transitional.

How does your company provide value to your clients?

We build on a fixed contract basis and the buyer does all of their selections up front.  We spend a lot of time with the buyer to make sure very little, if any, is left out that we hadn’t already thought of.  They are then given the total price and it is all-inclusive. There will always be changes, add ons, and upgrades — after all, it is custom home.  But for the most part, the buyer knows up front what they are in for, and this alleviates any “surprises.” So a very small percentage is spent on “extras” during construction.

Have you received any recent awards? What for? From whom?

2016-2018 Best Builders Award from DHome Magazine

2016 APEX Achievement Award from the Dallas Builders Association

Considering the competition, how does your brand distinguish itself?

Our relationship with our buyers is very hands on, unique, open, and up front.  At the end of the day, it is all about having a satisfied home owner. If the buyer had a good experience throughout the building process, as well as after move in, then we have successfully done our job. It is about building their dream home within their budget, with quality workmanship, attention to detail, and added value, all while finishing on time.  But at the end of the day, we want to make sure that it was a positive experience for them. Our goal is to create a lasting relationship with our buyers, even long after they have moved into their dream home. 

What does being a member of the Dallas Builders Association do for you and your business?

I have been a member of the DBA and on the board for over 10 years now. You don’t always get a chance to connect with other builders, and this is a great way to connect. I have also hired many contractors and vendor/suppliers through the DBA. There are just many things that I would not know about if I was not an active member.   They really have your back when you need help, whether that is with city officials, building codes, or anything that may come up that hinders your ability to effectively build. They also offer an array of educational and certification courses. You can’t stop learning in this business, as it is ever evolving.

What is the biggest challenge you face in the current market? What are you doing to overcome it?

Rising land values/prices really — and that’s the good and the bad.

Home values have gone up the last couple years, and that’s great for home ownership, but when you are a buyer, that can be a trying time. It just means we have to be a smarter, value-driven builder. We have to find ways where we can give the buyer back value in the homes we build. We just have to be even more cost conscious with what we do.


Joanna England

If Executive Editor Joanna England could house hunt forever, she absolutely would. Instead she covers the North Texas housing market and the economy for CandysDirt.com. While she started out with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University, Joanna's work has appeared in The Dallas Morning News as well as several local media outlets. When she's not knitting or hooping, or enjoying White Rock Lake, she's behind the lens of her camera. She lives in East Dallas with her husband, son, and their furry and feathered menagerie.

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