Photo: Carolyn Brown

By Donovan Westover
Special Contributor

When I began working with Dilbeck connoisseurs Willis Winters and Jann Patterson Mackey on house selection for Preservation Dallas’ October 27th Fall Architectural Tour – Charles Dilbeck In Dallas, they stressed the need for us to feature a Cochran Heights home.  The neighborhood recently received a Texas Historical Commission marker recognizing it as a significant part of Texas history, based upon the numerous Dilbeck designed houses in the neighborhood.


Photo: Carolyn Brown

The entire neighborhood is fun and peculiar to immerse in, and the house we focused on is a super intact library of Dilbeck’s quirk.  So much so that the house still has the 1936 kitchen and bathroom!  While it may be the tour’s most modest Dilbeck house, it delivers a powerful punch.  The current stewards have taken incredible care of this little gem as only the third owners, and I can hear the cameras clicking away to capture all the surprising details.


Cochran Heights is a wonderfully central Dallas neighborhood, walking distance to all the pleasures of the Knox-Henderson area with quick access to Central Expressway, making it minutes from downtown Dallas. Development started in the 1940s and many older homes are being renovated for maximum enjoyment. 

In this week’s Splurge vs Steal, we’re looking at two houses in Cochran Heights that description. Which one is your favorite?



Cochran Heights is known for its incredible collection of Charles Dilbeck-designed homes. In fact, thanks to neighborhood leaders, the neighborhood was recognized last year with a Texas State Historical marker. The plaque, which was placed on Henderson Avenue between Consignment Heaven and Nick Brock Antiques, sheds light on Cochran Heights and its priceless character. 

Though Charles Dilbeck is well known for his traditional eclectic designs, there are very few remaining homes built buy this renowned architect in the international style. So we’re thrilled to feature one such example — 5103 Pershing — as our High Caliber Home of the Week sponsored by Lisa Peters at Caliber Home Loans. It’s an incredible coming-soon listing from Dave Perry-Miller Realtor Jarrad Barnes

“This is a unique property and has been published in multiple books on Dallas architecture and Charles Dilbeck, identifying this home as Mr. Dilbeck’s finest example of the international style,” Barnes said. 


Photos showing some of the original details of this 1940 home by noted architect Charles Dilbeck, located at 5106 Milam Street in the Cochran Heights neighborhood. (Photo © Michael Hamtil)

This 1940 home by noted architect Charles Dilbeck, located at 5106 Milam Street in the Cochran Heights neighborhood, will be on the April 3 home tour. (Photo © Michael Hamtil)

Fans of Charles Dilbeck’s quirky, brick-and-timber aesthetic will probably already have tickets to the inaugural Cochran Heights Home Tour on Sunday, April 3, from 2 to 4 p.m.

The home tour, a fundraiser for the neighborhood, will help celebrate the brand new Texas Historical Commission marker signifying the tremendous collection of Dilbecks in this East Dallas neighborhood. You can come to the marker unveiling on Henderson Avenue at 1 p.m., and then head to the five incredible tour homes afterward.

Tickets are $15 in advance through the neighborhood website, or $20 the day of the tour. Or you could try your luck and enter to win one of two pairs of tickets we’re giving away right here on!

Jump to enter!


Photos showing some of the original details of this 1940 home by noted architect Charles Dilbeck, located at 5106 Milam Street in the Cochran Heights neighborhood of Dallas, Texas. Taken March 17, 2016. (Photo © Michael Hamtil)

Dallas Morning News photographer Michael Hamtil and his wife, photojournalist Lara Solt, have opened their Cochran Heights Dilbeck for the neighborhood’s first ever home tour on April 3. (Photo: Michael Hamtil)

This brand new home tour on April 3 is part celebration, part education, as Cochran Heights opens five of its Dilbeck-designed homes.

So, what’s the occasion?

According to Erika Huddleston, the neighborhood is celebrating its new Texas Historical Commission marker signifying the splendid collection of Dilbecks Cochran Heights holds.

The marker, which is on Henderson Ave. next to Consignment Heaven and Nick Brock Antiques, will have a formal unveiling at 1 p.m. Sunday April 3 with Preservation Dallas director David Preziosi and City of Dallas Parks and Recreation director Willis Winters. The unveiling will be followed by the home tour from 2 to 4 p.m. Tickets are available on the Cochran Heights Neighborhood Association website for $15 in advance or $20 the day of the tour. Or, if you want to try your luck, will have a ticket giveaway next week for two pairs of passes to this tour. Stay tuned to our Facebook page for your chance to win!

“These Cochran Heights Dilbeck homes have not been open to the public before, so this tour is a rare opportunity to peer into 1930s Dallas architecture and see how the homes have been adapted to 21st century living,” Huddleston added. “I hope that the Texas Historical Commission’s marker will encourage developers and homeowners to restore and rework old homes as a continuation of our history rather than tear them down and replace them.”
5216 Milam BeforeAfter


Before the official home tour, Preservation Dallas will host an in-town outing March 30 at 6 p.m. at 5215 Milam, pictured before and after restoration above. The home, a 1936 Dilbeck that was completely restored to LEED standards, won a 2015 Preservation Dallas Achievement Award. The tour is free for Preservation Dallas members and $20 for non-members, which also includes a ticket to the earlier neighborhood home tour. You can RSVP via

Michael Hamtil, owner of 5106 Milam, shared some splendid details discovered during renovation. He gave us a sneak peek of his charming home, which will be on tour:


1102 Easton Road is a new build by Tom Greico of Greico Modern Homes. It will be one of the many cool stops on the White Rock Home Tour April 25-26.

1102 Easton Road is a new build by Tom Greico of Greico Modern Homes. It will be one of the many cool stops on the White Rock Home Tour April 25-26.

It’s one of my favorite times of year: Home Tour Season!

Yes, spring is just brimming with great Dallas-Fort Worth home tours, and we have pulled together a helpful list of our favorites so you can get your calendar in order. From modern to historic and from  Dallas to the Park Cities to Fort Worth, there’s a home tour coming up no matter your tastes or location.

Plus, there’s a brand new home tour launching this year that will not only showcase one of our favorite architects and celebrate preservation in our region. Jump to find out more, and stay tuned to for exclusive interviews and ticket giveaways to each of these events!


5029 Pershing Front

If you are looking for a home in the $200K range, good luck. Pretty much everything that is clean inside with a few updates here and there is under contract within a few days. Of course, there are some holdouts.

Take this interesting two-bedroom, one-bath cottage in Cochran Heights at 5029 Pershing. This is the little neighborhood sandwiched between Henderson Avenue and the M Streets area, just east of Highway 75. It’s chock full of little cottages and condo developments, and is rapidly becoming a walkable neighborhood. It’s close to Knox Street, which is becoming more and more dense thanks to developers buying up blocks and putting in urban-oriented mixed-use developments.

5029 Pershing Living 2

But this home is another animal entirely. You need only glance at the living room to see what I mean. The gilded trim and furniture inside this 996-square-foot home is more befitting Champ d’Or than a small urban cottage, but you know what? I don’t care. I LOVE IT. It is so fun, and with the chandeliers and decorative fireplace, this home shows that taste and style can transcend size. That’s actually a great description of the previous owner, too, a graphic designer who was creative and energetic. It’s just a tragedy that his life was cut short by a fierce battle with lung cancer.

5029 Pershing Living 5029 Pershing Dining 5029 Pershing Kitchen

His appreciation for the finer things lives on in this fun little house. The home is a feast for the eyes, with opulent wallpaper in the dining area, quirky cabinets with a tiny sink in the kitchen, a master bedroom bedecked in gold painted moulding, a marble-lined bath, and an office that can inspire creativity in anyone with intricately inlaid and stained wood paneling reminiscent of a setting inside Downton Abbey. Truly, this home is full of light and texture.

5029 Pershing Bedroom 5029 Pershing Bath 5029 Pershing Office

And outside you’ll find a perfect above-ground pool, fantastic for inviting friends over and enjoying a dip when the weather becomes unbearable. The deck is lovely, too, and thanks to the urban environment, you’ll love the background noise as a backdrop for a fantastic party. And considering the excellent condition of the property, including all of the upgrades, and of course, the beautiful person behind it, I can see why this splendid little 1940s cottage is being marketed for $269,000. What’s your favorite thing about it?

5029 Pershing Pool

5226 Richard Front

How I love this home! Seriously, how could you not love this Prairie-style one-story in Vickery Park just from the curb. I bet people hit the brakes when passing 5226 Richard Ave. all the time, just to slow down and admire shutters, bright white porch, and the rich “Stiffkey Blue” exterior paint on the broad wood siding. This is the only blue Valentine I’d ever want!

5226 Richard Porch

And would you check out that front porch? The scored concrete and the darker blue doors are just perfect. I imagine that this porch would be just amazing with a swing or hanging daybed such as these amazing designs from Low Country Originals.

5226 Richard Living

Inside, it’s cuter than cute, with cozy spaces that belie its 1,500-plus square feet. And with two bedrooms and only one bath, the pool of buyers of this oh-so-adorable home is somewhat limited to singles, downsizing empty-nesters (though the area, which is near Henderson Ave. and Highway 75, is high-traffic and somewhat busy after 9 p.m.), and small families or childless couples. Still, It has me wondering why this adorable property has sat on the market for more than 150 days. Could it be that, even in the trendy and up-and-coming Henderson Avenue area, $294,990 is still a bit high? This home hit the market at more than $319,000, so I suppose time or money will tell.

Still, I love this home and its gracious layout. The fireplace in the living area is so perfect — bright and quaint, I don’t even mind that it’s been painted, although I’m sure that the brick beneath is beautiful, too. The lighting has been upgraded too, with some that echo the 1920s time period and Craftsman design. I love all of the windows and the floor-skimming drapes, which make this petite bungalow feel even bigger.

5226 Richard Dining

The dining room is such a fantastic size — perfect for intimate dinners with friends before enjoying the nearby nightlife. You’ll also love the two-way swinging glass panel doors between the dining room and the breakfast area/butler’s pantry. Such a perfect detail that is often overlooked.

5226 Richard Pantry and Breakfast 5226 Richard Kitchen

The kitchen has been updated with granite counters, stainless steel appliances, and fresh shaker-style cabinets, but this is a room that would have benefited so much more from a professional photographer who could have really emphasized the space, and shown how versatile it is. You have to have a good eye for how a photo relates a space, and considering how the kitchen and breakfast area are closed off from the rest of the home, it’s hard to understand the size and capacity of the kitchen.

5226 Richard Master 5226 Richard bath

The rest of the home is just adorable. The “master” bedroom is so pretty with plenty of windows and gorgeous paint that is so perfect for this home and these gorgeous floors. The bathroom is quaint, with a pedestal sink and a shower/tub, with cute tile and border on the floor. It’s small, but considering it’s the only bathroom in the home, it does well to not cram in a huge vanity or use up every single inch with a separate tub and shower.

The backyard sports a fantastic little deck for enjoying a mild spring or autumn night with friends. Too bad we don’t see the rest of the lot. Still, I love this home and I hope it finds the perfect buyer soon!

5226 Richard Back Deck