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…)

From left: Blackline Renovations Office Manager Jennifer Holloway, President Chris Black, Project Manager Taff Welborn and Interior Designer Jenifer Wiley. Wiley, the owner of J. Wiley Designs, is also Black’s wife.

Blackline Renovations founder and president Chris Black says that one of his biggest challenges these days is standing out from the crowd. By his count, there are more than 3,500 remodeling companies in Dallas alone.

“Demand is high but so is the sheer numbers of remodelers in the business,” he said. “We see new names popping up on signs all the time.”

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DallasHow much does it cost to buy a home in a good school district in the Dallas area? What do single-family rents look like in Dallas? And are people remodeling? We find out in a roundup of real estate news. (more…)

[Editor’s note: Merry Christmas! This week, we’re taking time off to focus on our loved ones, so we are sharing some of our favorite stories from this year. Keep an eye out for our top features from the archives as we rest and get ready for a brilliant 2018! Cheers, from Candy and the entire staff at CandysDirt.com!]

From Jon Anderson: Too many think of December as the month to start counting their Santa haul. How about helping those less fortunate and yourself?  earlier in 2017 I urged you to check out Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore shops.  You can donate to ReStore for the tax write-off and buy from ReStore for bargains to help you make your home more homey. That’s a win-win regardless of your beliefs this time of year.


Sometimes it kills me to watch HGTV.  Eager beaver renovators gleefully rip through their home with sledgehammers ablaze without a thought that some of what they’re splintering could be reused. Sure the cabinets aren’t spankingly trendy and the appliances aren’t stainless, but for someone without, they’re precious.

When I gutted my 1960s home, I called ReStore.  They’re a division of Habitat for Humanity that takes donations of furniture, appliances and construction materials from individuals and businesses and resells them in their stores. Donors get a tax write-off and a lighter conscience.  Someone renovating their house on a shoestring gets some bargains.  Someone else gets housing from Habitat for Humanity.

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Hill Country Contemporary 5531 Boca Raton Dr 1

Once in a while we see a house and think, wow, it checks every single box a buyer wants. This Hill Country contemporary at 5531 Boca Raton is a great example of getting it absolutely right.

Hunter Dehn and Laura Baynham of The Hunter Dehn Group  just listed this 4,253-square-foot home in Inwood Road Estates for $1.395 million. If you’re unfamiliar with the area, it’s right across the Dallas North Tollway from The Lamplighter School and The Hockaday School. You can also be downtown in minutes — talk about a great location.

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Capital Distributing Clearance Center

Capital Distributing Clearance Center: Sub-Zero, Miele and Bosch, OH MY!

On Wednesday I wrote about how you can use the internet to find some bargains. Today we’ll go native and shop local.

Scrounging for Gold

I do enjoy the vignettes on display in retailer showrooms to give me ideas, but for appliances, I’m more interested in the back room. “Open box,” “scratch and dent,” and “display model” are words that should prick up your ears. Dallas has several of these little-known appliance “speakeasys.”

Note: Be aware that most of these items will have a full new-product warranty – ask to be sure.

Capital Distributing

CandysDirt.com supporter Capital Distributing has their main showroom on Stemmons just north of Inwood, with a backroom outlet on 183 just south of Regal Row. You can find bargains on brands like Sub-Zero, Thermador, Gaggenau, Viking, Bosch and Wolf. Pay particular attention to Sub-Zero and Wolf – they almost never go on sale. The only way to find a deal is at places like this that sell display models, returns, and discontinued models. Get on their mailing list for special sales. Due to their relationships with manufacturers, they do not publish pricing online or provide it over the phone, so you’ll just have to stop by for a peek.

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Do you want a stylish kitchen but find your budget lacking? Jon Anderson has a few tips.

Do you want a stylish kitchen but find your budget lacking? Jon Anderson has a few tips.

Has slobbering over all the house porn on CandysDirt.com gotten you fired up to redo your bathroom or kitchen? Do you swoon for Gaggenau clutching a Hotpoint purse? I know I sure do, so what’s a boy or girl to do? Read on of course, read on…

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Peeling, beige 1980s tile with thumb-width grout lines

Peeling, beige 1980s tile with thumb-width grout lines

In every other part of my home, there was zero I wanted to restore. Gut? Heck yeah! But not restore. It was closed off, boxy and an inefficient use of space. In addition, the original 1966 finish materials were, well … 1966 finish materials. Flocked and metallic wallpaper, crumbling cabinetry, age-stained tile, and crow’s foot plaster work coating … Every. Single. Wall. (A list of plaster texture horrors can be seen here)

So finally I have a restoration project: The patio! It was originally a beautiful 27’ long and 7.5’ deep open expanse until the previous owner cut it in two and enclosed half of it. The horrible, peeling beige-glazed tile with thumb-wide grout didn’t help.

After two years of penny-saving, the glass enclosure is now gone and the glass wall resealed. But this job almost didn’t happen.

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