The unprecedented growth in the Dallas-Fort Worth real estate market is buoying one local brokerage, which in turn is reinvesting in offices and agents.
Ebby Halliday is one of the largest and most dynamic brokerages in North Texas with 31 offices, over 1,800 agents, and 12 percent of the market.
“We just had a fine fiscal year, closing Sept. 30, thanks to the very dynamic DFW economy,” said Ebby Halliday Chief Financial Officer Ron Burgert. “Volume-wise, it was just a shade better than the prior year and we closed in the area of 20,000 units.”
The overall sound financials of Ebby allow the company to undertake the construction and refurbishment of quite a few offices around North Texas, underscoring the company’s commitment to the region and signaling its plans to remain one of the top brokerages nationwide.
Nearly a decade after the housing crisis that sent the U.S. economy into freefall, housing is most certainly back—just look at our DFW market. Citing U.S. Census Bureau data, the New York Times recently reported that sales of new single-family homes nationwide were higher this past July than in nearly 10 years.
Nationwide, a company that tracks the health of U.S. real estate, reported at the end of quarter two that “the overall U.S. housing market is sustainable,” adding that “few regional housing markets are vulnerable to a housing downturn.”
In a new study, financial services site WalletHub compared 300 U.S. cities across 16 key metrics to help prospective home buyers find the most attractive real-estate markets. Their data set ranges from “median home-price appreciation” to “housing affordability” to “job growth.”
North Texas cities scored big: Frisco, McKinney, Richardson, Allen, and Plano made their top-ten list of best real estate markets nationwide in 2016. Denton, Carrollton, Fort Worth, Irving, Grand Prairie, and Dallas scored in the top 50.
So what made DFW cities score so high?
“North Texas cities have healthy and sustainable real estate markets,” said WalletHub analyst Jill Gonzalez. “Very few homes have negative equity, home appreciation in the past seven years has continued to increase, and foreclosure rates are extremely low. In addition to having a healthy real estate market, these cities are affordable with low maintenance costs and cost of living. Not to mention, the economic environment in North Texas is thriving, boasting some of the lowest unemployment rates in the country (under 3 percent across the board).”
We’ve been talking about this trend for some time, but thanks to the business-friendly environment Great State of Texas and our fantastic job market, more people are moving to our state from areas where there are fewer jobs and houses cost a whole lot more.
And of course, when more people relocate to Texas, that means more real estate clients. A total of 138,057 new clients according to the statistics from the Texas Association of Realtors’ “Texas Relocation Report.”
The report, which uses data from 2013 American Community Survey, the 2008-2012 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates by the U.S. Census Bureau, as well as the U-Haul 2013 National Migration Trend Reports shows that Texas is outpacing Florida, California, Georgia, and North Carolina in the number of people moving from out of state.
Several North Texas homeowners, especially those in Azle and near Eagle Mountain Lake, are concerned that expanded shale gas exploration and hydraulic fracturing may be causing the rash of seismic activity that has these communities all shook up.
To address these concerns, the Texas House Subcommittee on Seismic Activity is holding a hearing today at 1 p.m. The committee, headed by State Rep. Myra Crownover (R-Denton), will listen to expert testimony on the subject. Here’s what the agenda says:
“Study the current conditions surrounding the increased seismic activity in
the Barnett Shale and other areas of the State. Specifically, review the
possibility that increased exploration and disposal well activity could
impact seismic activity. The committee shall review active oil and gas
activity and injection wells in areas experiencing increased seismic
The increased seismic activity has some homeowners worried about their home values, which has many considering updates to their homeowners insurance policies. Earthquakes, much like floods, aren’t usually covered in typical homeowners policies, so if you think your home is at risk for earthquake damage, you might want to read our piece on how fracking-related seismic activity is sending tremors through insurance companies.
“Sellers very pleased with sale” — boy if that isn’t the understatement of the century! Details of Friday’s sale of Champ d’Or by auction up in Denton are eeking out. I got word from Laura Brady with Concierge Auctions that the buyers are definitely a family who apparently plans to live in the 40,000 square foot mansion. And that makes me so happy.
And the Denton Record-Chronicle apparently got in a word with the owner, cellphone mogul Al Goldfield.
Goldfield said he’s happy a family will be living there, and happy that the megamansion wasn’t purchased as an investment property.
“They are going to get a great house at a great price,” Goldfield said.
About that price: I am digging, of course, and beg you to stay tuned. But a sharp reader brought up a very good point in the comments:
The registration requirements stated that anyone who registered was required to place a bid at or above the minimum reserve and if they didn’t place a dollar amount it was assumed they were bidding at the minimum starting bid. This would mean that at least the house will sell at 10.3 million.
So there’s a clue. I do recall Joan Eleazer, who I hope is getting ready to set sail for a celebratory cruise on The World (though I hear she has some contracts pending, so probably busy working as we speak) telling me Goldfield might even take $15 million for the property. The Goldfields, meanwhile, still have a home in the vicinity of Champ and a second home at the Broadmore in Colorado Springs, CO.
Your Thursday $300K comes better late than never because it is so darn tootin’ cute. (And I am so darn tootin’ busy!) Might be a little outside the Bubble up in Denton, but what a pretty home. New construction —yes, I know it looks old, but this home at 1822 West Oak is located in Denton’s West Oak Historic District and walking-distance to UNT. May look charmingly historic, but her insides are newer than new: scraped hardwood flooring, granite countertops, custom cabinetry, 8-foot doors and 12-foot ceilings throughout. Oh yes: a charming wrap-around front porch.
Upstairs go get you a junior master suite, generous bedrooms and bathrooms and a multipurpose bonus room over the garage. The home was built in 2011 and has 3314 square feet, four bedrooms, three and a half baths and two living areas. The lot is .38 of an acre, and sits on a re-platted piece that was at one time two homes/lots. Back in 2009 one of the two lots was listed for $150,000 so this is a great bargain, and almost worth the long drive to Denton. At $324,000 the house is like $174,000… or $97.00 a square foot. Where do you get all this for less than $100 a square foot? Good example of why some people choose to live in places like Denton. And just dang drive.