Articles by

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.

 

It’s rare that we see a clean, modern take on a Southwestern aesthetic, but this modern home in the White Rock Valley area of Lake Highlands accomplishes it exceptionally well. Designed and constructed by award-winning W2 Studio in 2005, this home is kitted with only the best materials, notes listing agent Kevin Sayre of David Bush Realtors.

Though unassuming from the front, this ecologically sensitive home in a sought-after enclave of East Dallas easily earns the title of High Caliber Home of the Week sponsored by Lisa Peters of Caliber Home Loans. With a huge screened porch, beautiful gardens, and inside one of the very best elementary attendance areas in Richardson ISD, 8605 White Rock Trail is sure to impress.

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Slow inflation has the Federal Reserve eyeing a December rate increase, says Bob Johnson (AKA BobMortgage). That news, plus housing data, could seriously influence the mortgage market this week. Plus, the bond market, which has a lot of sway on mortgage rates, has been fighting to stabilize, too. Should you lock or float? 

This week’s mortgage report paints a perfect picture of why an experienced mortgage advisor can save you thousands of dollars. There’s no better expert in the ups and downs of housing finance than Bob Johnson, senior mortgage advisor for Wallick & Volk, the nation’s oldest private mortgage company. 

Educate yourself and find out more about the hurdles for the housing market in this week’s Mortgage Report: 

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10/13/17 9:59am

The problem with living on the Katy Trail is that, as Jon Anderson pointed out, so many other people want to live there, too. That’s why there are so many high-rise buildings in planning phases that will line this popular city amenity. Of course, with all of those new buildings, and all of the demand, prices are going to get higher, too. So if you want to get into this area for a reasonable price, Brandon Travelstead of Dallas City Center Realtors has a great unit inside the Lofts at the Katy Trail — the only one with an attached garage — and it’s priced under a half million.

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So rarely does a home blend with its surroundings so well that it feels native to the land, but that’s the perfect way to describe this gorgeous midcentury modern on more than an acre in Forest Lane Estates. Designed by noted modernist architect Herschel Fisher in 1955 for a doctor and his family, this stellar example of post-war modernism was renovated and expanded in 2000 by AIA award-winning architect Russell Buchanan, adding a master bedroom suite, a pool house, and a three-car garage.

The additions, much like how the home connects with the park-like setting that surrounds it, are seamless. The attention to detail is incredible, making it an easy pick for our High Caliber Home of the Week, presented by Lisa Peters of Caliber Home Loans

To many, this home, with its beautiful carpentry and huge walls of floor-to-ceiling picture windows, is a dream house. “It is rare to find a midcentury design on such a grand scale,” notes David Griffin, who is listing 11550 Wander Lane for $2.75 million. “This home is around 5,700 square feet, and that doesn’t include the guesthouse/cabana.”

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10/11/17 9:10am

Designed by Maestri Studio, this stunning contemporary in Forest Hills offers bright and open entertaining. (Photos: Aaron Dougherty Photography)

When it comes to residential architecture, our city is just lousy with incredibly designed homes thanks to our stacked lineup of talented Dallas architects. And like any house porn addict, we here at CandysDirt.com look forward to the annual AIA Dallas Tour of Homes with excitement, as there’s no faster way to induce heavy breathing among us than with high design and risk-taking concepts come to life. 

This year, the sole architect-curated home tour doesn’t disappoint. With seven incredible houses ranging between 2,700 and more than 6,000 square feet, you can get a taste and feel for the modern and contemporary residential architecture of Big D, from Forest Hills to Preston Hollow and beyond. 

One of our hands-down favorites on this year’s tour, which runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 28 and 29, is a beautiful, warm contemporary with a touch of the Texas Hill Country vernacular on a beautiful lot in Forest Hills from Maestri Studio. Unlike many more traditionally styled homes in the neighborhood, Santa Clara offers front yard living with huge glass walls that open the home’s interior to the neighborhood. 

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While the stock market has been posting gains, bonds continue to sink lower. The affects, combined with reports of job losses in September, have been a disaster on the mortgage market, says Bob Johnson (AKA BobMortgage), the senior mortgage advisor at Wallick & Volk  — the nation’s oldest private mortgage lender.

And despite the news, rate hikes are on the horizon in December. So what should you do? Find out from one of the best in the business with more than 20 years of industry experience — Bob Johnson (AKA BobMortgage) — in this morning’s Mortgage Report presented by Wallick & Volk:

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10/07/17 12:43pm

Though I absolutely love the idea of loft living, the biggest turnoff, is the lack of easily accessible green space. But what if you could live in a historic commercial conversion that lived more like a single-family home? That’s what Jenni Stolarski‘s latest Kings Highway listing is, to a tee.

And the isn’t the first time Stolarski has listed this particular property, either. When homeowner Jennifer Waddell was ready to sell this two-bedroom, two-bathroom converted corner market at 805 N. Montclair in the historic Kings Highway Conservation District, her first and only call was to Stolarski. 

Vintage cast iron dragon lights flank the front door of 805 N. Montclair.

Truth be told, I’ve always been intrigued by this property. Back when I was an editor and reporter for Oak Cliff People, I would frequently drive by on my way to PTA functions at nearby Rosemont Elementary and play something of a guessing game with myself regarding this house. “I wonder who would live there? What does it look like inside? What did it used to be?”

Now, with all the answers, I can share with you that anyone who appreciates the rich texture of history could live here, that it is an absolute textural feast for the eyes inside, and that it used to be Moore’s Market for 30 years, after which it was used as a potato chip factory. 

Though many of the commercial aspects of the property have since been lost (sadly, including the potato chips), it still has a working phone booth, tall ceilings, and a few of the original window frames within the interior spaces. Let’s have a look:

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10/05/17 8:45am

As Bob Johnson (AKA BobMortgage) notes, buying a home is often the biggest financial transaction most people make in their lifetimes. It can be rife with stressful situations and pitfalls, but it doesn’t have to be that way. How do you manage all of the moving parts and make the most of your experience? By following these 10 tips buyers absolutely must consider. 

And there’s no better source for expert homebuying tips than from Bob Johnson, senior mortgage advisor at Wallick & Volk — the nation’s oldest private mortgage lender. With thousands of happy clients and more than 20 years of industry experience, trust BobMortgage to get you and your buyer clients on track:

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