Longtime Lakewood Lovers Plan to Live Long in Prosper

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If you live in Lakewood, or you have kids at Lakewood Elementary, you already know Gretchen Stofer Darby. The PR powerhouse and mom of three kids has worked tirelessly to promote fundraising events through her agency, GDC Public Relations and Promotions. While their tenure in the most sought-after neighborhood in East Dallas has been fruitful Gretchen and her husband, James, made the difficult decision to pull up stakes for more wide-open space in Prosper.

“We decided to move out to the country for more space, a bigger home, safety, small-town feel, slower pace of life, and to custom build our dream home,” Gretchen said. 

That, of course, means that their Lakewood digs are on the market. 

“Our beautiful home in Lakewood has been well-maintained and will be a fabulous home for the next perfect buyer,” she added.

The Lakewood two-story is a great low-maintenance family home for those of us who keep our schedules packed. There are four bedrooms, three full and two half baths, plus a bonus room and media room. Functionality abounds with a double-height great room, open kitchen, wet bar, and turf backyard.

Overall, the home has been perfect for the Darby family, which includes daughter Presley (9), twin boys Jax and Jagger (5), and German Shepherds Max (3) and Maverick (2).

“We moved from Oak Lawn/Turtle Creek to Lakewood in 2010 after our daughter was born in 2009 for several reasons: family and community oriented, proximity to Lakewood Elementary school, close to Uptown/Downtown, suburban feel in the city, young families, and good neighbors,” Gretchen said. “We ultimately decided in 2018 after eight great years in Lakewood, that our next chapter would include upsizing our home and lot, and custom building a one-story in Prosper.”

The Darby family was on the hunt for the perfect home for the past couple of years, but the search was fruitless. A fully custom build ended up working best for her family, Gretchen said. Of course, we’re kind of jealous about the Darby family’s new home in Prosper’s gated Christie Farms. They chose a 1.2-acre wooded, creek-side lot in Phase II. Their builder is Dave R. Williams Homes.

“We completely designed and custom-built our new home from the ground up, and have taken a lot of pride in seeing our vision come to fruition over the last 1.5 years,” Gretchen said. “We ultimately wanted more space with six bedrooms, six baths, a four-car garage, pool, contemporary open-concept design, great schools, small town/community feel, and a few unique rooms/spaces built inside the home.” 

While the custom home building process is exciting at first, the details, meetings, and length of the process can be daunting. 

“I was surprised at the sheer amount of time and effort it takes to custom build,” Gretchen said. “There are so many steps, phases, decisions, and details – it’s a full-time job by itself! You have to stay on top of the process, and remain diligent and focused every step of the way.”

Kelley McMahon of Compass Dallas has listed 6701 Sondra for $1.125 million.


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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