Real EstateDallas ISD is holding public information meetings for a proposed Tax Ratification Election to be held in November, a Desoto man has been tapped by Governor Abbott for a spot on a real estate advisory committee, and we take a look at how the market did in the area in July in this week’s real estate news roundup. (more…)

1212 Regents Dez Bryant Royce West Living

Texas State Sen. Royce West provided photos of the interior of 1212 Regents Park Ct. as exhibits in his suit against Dallas Cowboys Wide Receiver Dez Bryant, who allegedly left the home trashed after vacating it.

When Texas State Sen. Royce West entered his property at 1212 Regents Park Ct. in DeSoto after his tenant, Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant, had vacated the property, he found filthy carpet, garbage everywhere, broken windows and shutters, and even feces according to court documents. Bryant moved out in January, leaving the six-bedroom, seven-full-and-one-half-bath home in complete disrepair.

1212 Regents Park Ct.

1212 Regents Park Ct.

The lease documents signed by Bryant show that he was paying $4,720 per month for the 6,400-square-foot DeSoto home, which has both a tennis court and swimming pool. Lease documents show that pets were not allowed, and that the property was supposed to be kept in reasonably clean conditions, with repairs paid for upon move-out.

To fix all the issues with the property after Bryant vacated, West threw down more than $51,000, he says. West is asking for $60,000 for all the fixes to the property. Dallas County Appraisal District has the value of 1212 Regents Park Court on the tax rolls for $510,480 and the condition listed as “poor.” It was purchased in 2009 for $550,000.

West says he’s tried several times to get the embattled football star to pay up for repairs, but this is his last resort to get his money back.

Jump for more, as well as the original filings.


Screen Shot 2016-06-01 at 12.31.40 AM

Update, 4:09 pm: there IS a good, well, a very bad reason why John Ames had such a low appraisal: his home burned down! Details coming up.

I love our Dallas County Tax Assessor John R. Ames, I really do. I’ve met him, I voted for him, just love the guy. I think he’s doing a great job down at the tax office. Plus I think he’d be really fun at a party.

But I want to know, what’s in the secret appraisal sauce down there? John lives in DeSoto, in a darling circa mid 80’s house on a cul de sac. It’s 30 years old, 5199 square feet, and in very poor condition.

(Let’s face it: all our homes are in very poor condition, right? My dishwashers just broke, and I just found rotted wood from all this rain. This house is going to hell in a Louis Vuitton handbag.)

Last year his house was appraised at $254,380.

This year it’s appraised at $177,270.

In 2015 his land was $36,000, improvement was $218,380. Proposed for 2016 is land at $36,000 holding steady there but improvement is down at $141,270.

I mean Zillow, a real estate gawking site that is always off — wait — did you see where Zillow founder Spencer Rascoff’s former home sold for way less than the Zestimate?

On February 29, Rascoff sold a Seattle home for $1.05 million, 40 percent less than the Zestimate of $1.75 million shown on its property page a day later.

The gap between the Zestimate of Rascoff’s former property and its sales price has decreased only modestly since then.

Zillow readily acknowledges that Zestimates can be inaccurate, but some consumers can still take them at face value, causing headaches for agents.

Thank God because  Zillow has John’s house “zestimated” at $298,373.

That’s completely ridiculous but let me tell you: I think DeSoto is John’s secret sauce — DeSoto here I come!


If you’ve been on social media at all, you have probably come across one of Nick Novello’s comments or posts about the Dallas Police Department. A veteran officer, he’s kind of known for not holding his metaphorical tongue when it comes to hot takes on policing.

Yeah, you’ve probably heard of Nick Novello.

An officer with the Dallas Police Department since 1982, the former Navy recruit and Bronx-born cop has been speaking out for several years now on critical police shortages and under-staffing in Dallas. He criticized former Chief Brown for what he felt was grandstanding after the July 7, 2016 shooting ambush of five DPD officers. He says does not see Chief Hall as much of an improvement.

Now Novello is writing a book and producing a documentary called “Dallas is Dying,” in a similar vein as a movie produced called “Seattle is Dying.” His premise: Lack of respect for police and policing in Dallas, lack of strong leadership, plus a high concentration of poverty has resulted in unprecedented high crime for a city of 1.4 million that soon, he says, will no longer be just in places like South Dallas, where high concentrations of poverty and opportunity gap persist.

Sen. Ted Cruz and Novello

The city saw evidence of that with a record number of murders the month of May, more than the city has seen in almost two decades.

Novello has acquired a significant following across town — north and south — of individuals he says are willing to pitch in. He namechecks people like Susan Fountain with Citizens Matter, Troy Jackson with the South Dallas County Republican party, investor/radio host Eugene Ralph.

He has spoken to many groups — conservatives, liberals, homeowners and the country club set. He is known in Highland Park, Preston Hollow, and North Dallas. Novello says that some groups have tried to make him a political pawn, but he won’t have it.

He does agree with the Dallas Police Association, of which Novello is a member, who endorsed Scott Griggs in the current mayoral election, and says that Griggs is supporting the facts, but feels Eric Johnson doesn’t understand the crisis. It’s so bad that this week Gov. Greg Abbott offered to make the resources of the state (including the Texas Department of Public Safety) available to quell any increase in murders in Dallas.

The Dallas Police Department is not exactly thrilled about his negative messaging, he said, but they have not shut him up, though one of his superior officers was moved after Novello addressed the Dallas City Council this spring.

And the Dallas Police Association doesn’t seem to be countering any of his claims.

“What’s right is right,” said Mike Mata, president of the Dallas Police Association, told the Dallas Morning News. “I appreciate the fact Nick Novello is doing what he feels is right in giving the correct information to the council and letting them know what’s truly happening out there.”


Dallas proper posted moderate rent increases, but it was the area suburbs and exburbs that saw the biggest apartment rents in 2018, RentCafe revealed in a recent report.

Flower Mound posted the highest rent at $1,526 (despite only having a minimal increase of 0.1 percent), higher than Farmers Branch and Frisco with average rents of $1,382 and $1,343, respectively. In Coppell, rents have stagnated, decreasing by 1 percent year over year. (more…)

Whether you call it a tri-level or a split-level, mid-century fans will love this luxuriously-finished piece of history from 1968 with everything you want in 2019. This four-bedroom, three-bath home at 1554 Russell Glen Lane is this week’s featured Thursday Three Hundred with a list price of $385,000.

Check out this hard-to-find split level at an Open House from 2-4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10

Located in well-established Highland Oaks in South Dallas, this 2,876-square-foot home is a deep-set corner lot situated on a .63-acre lot. Just look at the long, down-sloping walkway to the front door! Plus, talk about a scenic part of town with a great location: 15 minutes to downtown and 10 minutes to Bishop Arts District and Trinity Groves.


By Lydia Blair
Special Contributor

For most North Texas homeowners, the 2018 tax statements started coming out last week. You may not have received your bill in the mail, but your tax bill is out and due for payment by Jan. 31.

Simply go online and search for your county tax assessor to get your statement before it arrives in the mail. For Dallas County, you can find your statement here.

You’d think property tax bills would be fairly direct: “Here is the property address, here is the tax bill.” But these are government entities. So, let’s see how complicated it really is.


The school system is so broken

Everyone wants to live in a highly rated school district, but not everyone can afford that anymore in Tarrant County.

Yes “location, location, location” is still the first thing that comes out of a buyer’s mouth when asked what’s important in their next home.  The second is typically, “We want to live in a good school district!”

Of course, as a licensed real estate sales professionals, we are gagged and bound by money-taking governmental bodies that forbid us from giving facts, figures, or opinions on local schools and school districts.  But thanks to the World Wide Interweb it’s not that difficult to find.

Recently, the Texas Education Agency (TEA) released the 2018 D/FW School District Accountability Ratings, and it’s very telling in regards to real estate.