Big Thought

Fossil Group will host its seventh annual Works of HeART auction and fundraiser next week, benefitting Big Thought, a nonprofit organization working to close the opportunity gap (Photo courtesy Can Turkyilmaz).

Have some empty walls and empty shelves you need to fill? Fossil Group will host its seventh annual Works of HeART auction and fundraiser next week, and the money from that piece of art you could pick up there will go to benefit Big Thought, a nonprofit organization working to close the opportunity gap.

The event, which will be held Friday, Feb. 1, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Fossil Group Headquarters, will showcase original artwork created by company employees. Paintings, textiles, jewelry and even a 3D printed piece are on the auction block, and all proceeds from ticket sales and the silent auction will support Big Thought, a Fossil Foundation partner.

Big Thought’s mission of closing the opportunity gap for area students includes in-school, out-of-school and community partnership programs, with the idea that making imagination part of everyday learning can help achieve that. The organization also helps ensure that students get high-quality learning experiences (their summer camps are the stuff of wonder, and are offered free of charge) that promote creativity as well as social and emotional learning. (more…)

home buyingWho is most likely to have home buying as a goal this year? Will remodeling and home improvement spending continue to grow?  We look at this and more in this week’s roundup of real estate news.

Four Percent List Home Buying a 2019 Goal

Four percent (about 10 million Americans) said buying a new home was their main financial goal for the year — and millennials were the most likely generation to claim that as a goal, a new Bankrate survey revealed.

Seven percent of millennials said they wanted to buy a home this year.

But that doesn’t mean financial goals aren’t being set. Bankrate’s survey revealed that about 89 percent of Americans have at least one goal for the year, with paying down debt being at the top of the list, with three in 10 saying that was their goal, followed by better budgeting (13 percent), saving more towards retirement (12 percent), saving more for emergencies (10 percent), getting a higher-paying job (6 percent), and investing more (5 percent). (more…)

recessionThe two Metropolitan Statistical Areas that encompass Dallas-Fort Worth ranked in a recent list of top 10 metros that have recovered the most from the Great Recession, HSH.com said.

But that recovery isn’t all that usual — 27 major cities still haven’t seen home prices recover peak values they were posting pre-recession. But that number is dropping, HSH said, and so far, 73 U.S. home markets seen complete recovery.

Dallas-Plano-Irving found itself in fourth place, with home prices 68.51 percent above peak). Fort Worth-Arlington was fifth, at 59.85 percent above peak.

Three more Texas metros found themselves on the recession recovery list as well: Austin-Round Rock at No. 2 (72.55 percent), Houston-The Woodlands- Sugarland at No. 6 (57.05 percent), and San Antonio-New Braunfels at No. 8 (44.47 percent).

“Although the Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO metro still holds the top slot, Texas markets dominate the most recovered group, holding five of the 10 slots,” the company said.

Additionally, El Paso made the company’s “nearly recovered” list, signaling that its current values are only one or two percent below previous peaks, and that the city is likely close to making that “fully recovered” list, possibly even by the next quarter.

The rankings are determined by using the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s Home Price Index to determine which markets have recovered fully and which ones are still lagging.

Uptown Marriott on Fairmount, with west-facing, fifth-floor pool deck.

There was just one project slated for last night’s Oak Lawn Committee and it was about a variance needed for a pair of awnings by the Uptown Marriott being built by Alamo Manhattan on Fairmount Street in back of Nick & Sam’s restaurant. The pre-awning project gained support from the OLC in December 2016. At first glance I figured the awning was a yawning – I mean one was for an 11-inch variance. Whoo-hoo! Stop the presses!

But when you go to OLC for one variance, any question becomes open mic night.

This past summer marked the migration from Las Vegas of the hotel day party by the pool. For a modest entry fee, lush bodies swerve to the thumping beats of an outdoor nightclub. Unfortunately, unlike Las Vegas, Dallas hotels aren’t located in entertainment districts. Some, like the Stoneleigh’s Splash parties, are in more densely residential Uptown.

It was with those sharp memories that residents (and OLC members) of the Stoneleigh Residences asked Alamo Manhattan if Marriott would ban amplified music outdoors. Having lived through weekly raucous parties literally out their windows, they don’t want another hotel offering a similar noise issue.

(more…)

Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

From staff reports

Word came early this morning that the Dallas Morning News laid off 43 employees, including 20 writers, editors, and other newsroom personnel, marking yet another round of staff reductions as print revenue declines.

The 43 layoffs account for about 4 percent of the A.H. Belo Corp. employees, the newspaper said. It did not say what percentage of Dallas Morning News employees that equated to, nor did it disclose how much of the newsroom that accounted for. (more…)

Christmas lights

As Christmas creeps closer, and the nights get longer, you can ask just about any North Texan — checking out the homegrown light displays in various neighborhoods is as much a tradition as tamales and NorthPark Santa.

But do you worry you’re missing out on a great neighborhood? Or are you new to the area, and don’t have the skinny on the great displays? Fear not — CandysDirt.com staffers have been quizzing readers, scouring the Internet, and strapping jingle bells on our gumshoes to find some of the best neighborhood and city-led decoration displays in Dallas-Fort Worth.

And thanks to one of our favorite luxury Realtors, Christy Berry with Compass, and CandysDirt.com, you can check out our list of great cruising spots this holiday season. Think you might want to find a house in a neighborhood that embraces their inner Clark Griswold, or maybe something a little uh, more Martha Stewart? Stay tuned, because Christy has a listing to share that could get you right in the middle of Christmas central. (more…)

Euclid

Candy Evans and Vicki White of Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s talk about 3509 Euclid at a CandysDirt.com staff party held Nov. 8.

What did you miss at last night’s CandysDirt staff party at 3509 Euclid? Only an amazing house, listed by Vicki White with Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s.

Lucky for you, we have a sit-down interview, where Candy Evans and Vicki White talk about this epic Highland Park estate built to entertain. Designed by Robbie Fusch, built by John Sebastian of Sebastian Construction Group, with landscape designed by Harold Leidner, 3509 Euclid offers all of the bells and whistles you expect in a luxury estate today. Made with the best of everything, this home features spaces that are both grand and intimate with a living area that opens completely to the backyard, which is perfectly suited for year-round entertaining.

Want to see a few more shots of this beautiful home? (more…)

Getting the DirtAs we mentioned last week, we’ve debuted two new Facebook groups designed to provide a platform for the house hunter and the Realtor alike, and all those businesses also make homeownership possible.

This week’s roundup of open houses features two house that came to us during our Open House Roundup feature that we have on Tuesdays on Getting the Dirt, our open group that is a place to talk about trends, to post a story you wrote and ask for direct feedback, and is also home to regular posts like, “Pitch Me Please,” where we will ask Realtors to pitch us their best houses in the $200,000 to $700,000 price points; “Open House Roundup,” where Realtors will have the opportunity to point us to their open houses for the week; “Hip Pocket Monday;” and “Suburb Sunday,” where readers and Realtors will be able to weigh in on what suburb we will look at on Sunday.

Our CandysDirt.com Open Houses of the Week are listed by members of Getting the Dirt, and range in price from $378,000 to $515,000. Which ones will you visit? Want to see your open house in next Thursday’s roundup? Join Getting the Dirt! (more…)