Dallas does everything big — including commutes.

According to a new Apartment List study, examining commuter data from 2005 and 2016, one in 45 commuters in the Dallas metro are “super commuters,” traveling 90 or more minutes to work each day, and the prevalence of super commuting is on the rise. The share of Dallas commuters who are making super commutes increased from 1.8 percent in 2005 to 2.2 percent in 2016, a 22.3 percent increase.

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Bitcoin is growing in popularity, and gaining ground in mainstream markets, says Ashley Stanley.

By Ashley Stanley
Special Contributor

The intersection of digital money and traditional finance occurred over the weekend in Chicago, as the first major U.S. exchange offered a product targeted toward Bitcoin: Bitcoin futures. If you’re new to the market, there’s a lot to learn. Bitcoin users are doubling every 12 months. That might seem wild and crazy, but it’s supported by data. If this trend continues, we are less than a decade away from half the world using Bitcoin.

I’ve been trading Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) since April of this year. Now joining the list of “altcoins,” or alternative cryptocurrencies, is Cardano (ADA) and Litecoin (LTC). I quickly realized the need to assist my cryptocurrency friends since there is typically a two- to three-day delay in exchanging digital money, and everyone knows in the apartment industry that hot units go fast!

Should this be a mainstream “ah-ha” moment?

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Sources tell me that the California-based mega high end appliance and “try before you buy” plumbing showroom Pirch at NorthPark Center will be shutting its doors at the end of this month. Due to a massive corporate re-structuring, all six Pirch locations outside of California will close. The four California locations will remain open for business as usual with the full support of L. Catterton, their private equity firm, who seeded the company’s rapid expansion into ten other locations, four outside of the Golden state. 

Pirch has been named on Forbes’ list of America’s Most Promising Companies twice, dipping down to number 32 the year they opened in Dallas. The company has also cleaned house on awards for visual presentation and in-store communications from the Association of Retail Environments.

Their homilies — “Live joyfully,” “Your first decision of the day is the most important,” “Choose happiness” — have been the “the soul of Pirch,” as Connie Dufner reported when the Dallas store first opened: 

A washer-dryer isn’t just a washer-dryer,” says (CEO Jeffery) Sears. “It’s the caretaker of a child’s first blanket. That tub represents 45 minutes of sanity for a working mom. That oven baked the chocolate chip cookie with a gooey smear on a baby’s face.” (Oh stop, Mr. Sears! You had us at “Hello, may we get you a beverage?”) Have a great experience, try before you buy and eventually you will buy…

Well, maybe not.

In a meeting this morning, Dallas PIRCH employees were informed that the company is closing its Dallas showroom. The company’s warehouse north of LBJ will close in November. And the newly opened Austin store at the Domain, unveiled in May, is also closing.

It will be interesting to know what NorthPark Mall will do to fill the huge 35,000 square foot space the high end appliance showroom has occupied since August of 2014.

There is no word, however, on whether the company will be changing any of those perky slogans, as they exit six markets.

PIRCH Dallas Opening
Dallas, TX
©2014 Darin Fong Photography

 

[Editor’s Note: This column reflects the opinion of the writer. It is not to be interpreted as the editorial position of CandysDirt.com]

The recent brouhaha surrounding Confederate monuments is a furtherance of the elimination of the Confederate flag that has gained steam in reaction to the white-supremacist leanings of our president and his supporters. It’s a pretty easy series of events to break down, made easier when our sitting president has David Duke stumping for him.  Ahh, David Duke, whose Wikipedia page opens with, “David Ernest Duke is an American white nationalist, politician, anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist, Holocaust denier, convicted felon, and former Imperial Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.”
(Every parent’s dream.)

Prior to a few months ago, when you didn’t think about Confederate monuments at all, you may have thought these statues were the last remnants of a bygone and painful era never to be repeated again.  You’d be wrong.  Humanity habitually repeats history by changing the lyrics to the same tune.

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Even amid growing concerns over affordability and inventory, Dallas-area small- and mid-sized cities remain some of the hottest in the country for first-time buyers. Just this week, McKinney, Frisco, and Allen took top honors in a new study by WalletHub, making them the three best housing markets in the United States for new homebuyers. Richardson came in not too far down the list at No. 7. Not too shabby!

As for large cities (populations over 300,000), Dallas itself didn’t quite crack the top 20 (it’s still a respectable number 26). But Forth Worth represents at No. 5. Stick around after the jump to see what criteria makes a city most appealing. Visit here to see if your city made the list.

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Another day, another article about what Millennials are — or are not — up to. With housing affordability looming as a constant concern, it comes as no surprise that Millennials find themselves profoundly affected. They’re feeling the pinch, even in Dallas where housing remains more within reach than in many areas of the country.

A recent report on Millennial home buying power by ABODO.com looks at the shrinking number of 18  to 35 year olds able to afford homes. It also analyzes where Millennials have the best chances of buying a home, and the kinds of homes they can afford.

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avocado toast

Is this avocado toast the only thing standing between you and homeownership? (Photo courtesy Wikipedia Commons)

It was the sternly worded lecture heard ‘round the Millennial world — give up avocado toast if you want to buy a house.

And almost as soon as Australian real estate developer Tim Gurner’s words trilled over the airwaves, the debate began: Was it really a matter of just not being frugal and smart, or was Gurner being dismissive of a larger problem because, well, he’s rich and out of touch?

Many felt insulted, and some skewered the claim in humorous fashion (just check Twitter, where people are still clapping back). An article fact-checking the claim also revealed that no, it’s not as easy as just not buying coffee and avocados, too.

“In fact, research suggests that people from 18-to-34, a group often referred to as Millennials, are no more freewheeling with their spending on travel and dining than other generations,” the article on CNBC.com revealed. “And it would take a lot of skipped avocados to put a dent in the heavy costs of homeownership, which is not always a prudent financial goal.”

The same article found that Millennials spend about $305 more than Baby Boomers per year on eating out. “The truth is, even if Millennials assumed the eating-out habits of Baby Boomers, it would take around 113 years before they could afford a down payment on a home,” the article added.

“If you gave up every healthy smashed avocado sprinkled with creamy Feta, it would save you a mere $176 per month,” another piece at CBS News’ Moneywatch found. “At today’s paltry interest rates, that’s likely to net you just $11,000 in five years, which isn’t enough for a car, much less a house.”

So with all that in mind, we found the perfect couple to weigh in. Bob and Kimberly Sinnott. Bob owns Toasted, a restaurant in Dallas that sells (among other things) avocado toast. Kimberly is a local Realtor.

I mean, really — how many other couples do you know that would combine to be the perfect source for a story about avocado toast and homebuying? None. The answer is none.

Because the two are busy (they are also brave souls who moderate a bustling and sometimes fractious Facebook group for Lakewood and Lakewood-adjacent residents), we shot them some questions via email, and they responded.

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On average, the North Texas labor shortage is adding two months and $4,000 to the cost of every home.

By Phil Crone
Executive Officer, Dallas Builders Association

“The guest worker program unnecessarily lowers construction worker wages.”

“Put simply, there is no construction labor shortage.”

“It’s five o’clock somewhere. And maybe there’s a construction worker shortage, too, somewhere. But it’s not significant in the U.S., and it’s not very widespread.”

Would you believe that all of these are recent quotes from organizations involved in the construction industry? Believe it or not, they were recently published in Illinois and Michigan. I share them because I want to illustrate the labor demand difference between the laggers and leaders of our nation’s economy. It also demonstrates the uphill battle that looms for any type of legislative fix for immigration and long-term cure to our labor shortage.

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