Dallas-Fort Worth’s Best Golf Course Communities

April 9th, 2014

Sure, the Dallas-Fort Worth area is known for is booming industry and business, its superb real estate market, and its lost cost of living, but let’s talk about golf courses. Yep, golf courses. You can’t live in Texas and not appreciate its year-round temperate weather on the fairway of one of its many fantastic golf courses!

Luxury homes and golf courses just go well together in Dallas-Fort Worth, so it only makes sense that golf course communities of every size and shape here are quite commonplace. In fact, if you love golf and you love luxury homes then Dallas-Fort Worth golf course communities are an obvious choice. Here are some of our favorite golf course communities in Dallas-Fort Worth:

Bridlewood

Bridlewood, which is ideally located in the central part of Flower Mound, is a master-planned community that features about 1,300 homes, all of which were built between 1996 and 2001. Within Bridlewood are the neighborhood of Steeplechase, Balmoral, the Reserve, and Bridlewood Farms. In addition to the Bridlewood Golf Club, this community features the Bridlewood Equestrian Center, as well as a host of swimming pools, tennis courts, biking and hiking paths, playgrounds, and basketball courts. Bridlewood also boasts a community center, a fitness center, and a strong homeowners association.

Castle Hills

Castle Hills is located just north of Carrollton. This master-planned community is still in the process of being developed and will contain about 1,800 homes when complete. Many of the homes of Castle Hills are built around the lovely Castle Hills Golf Club, which affords residents with a lovely backdrop to the beautiful homes found here. Just some of the amenities afforded to the residents of Castle Hills includes: a fitness center; a community clubhouse and swimming pool; and a community park, greenbelt, and lake. A number of biking and hiking paths wind throughout the community, and a children’s playground is a perfect fit for this family friendly community.

Gleneagles

Gleneagles, which is located in West Plano, consists of about 300 homes, most of which were constructed between the mid-1980s and the mid-1990s. This community attracts many families, as it is located in the highly desirable Plano Independent School District. Within Gleneagles is the Gleneagles Country Club, as well as the Gleneagles Athletic Club, a number of neighborhood swimming pools, lake and ponds. A community clubhouse, a network of hiking and jogging paths, and plenty of greenbelts provide plenty of options for the residents that call Gleneagles home.

Hidden Lakes

Hidden Lakes, which is located in Keller, is a master-planned community that is built around the beautiful Sky Creek Ranch Golf Club, a popular golf course in Texas. Residents here are afforded such amenities as a community club house for private events; plenty of community swimming pools; a hiking and jogging path; and gated entrances at select communities. Development of Hidden Lakes began in 1996, and homes are still being built here. When complete this community is expected to have around 1,840 homes.

The Secret to Selling your Home Faster

April 4th, 2014

If someone told you that you could sell your home faster using one, simple rule, would you sit up and listen? Chances are you would! After all, the last thing you need to worry about when selling your home is actually selling your home!

The secret to selling your home isn’t such a secret at all; it just begins and ends with a great realtor. But it’s not about just any great realtor; it’s about an Internet savvy realtor.

Q: What does it mean to be an Internet savvy realtor?

A: An Internet savvy realtor, in short, is a realtor who understands and appreciates the fact that most buyers today search for homes on the Internet. A realtor can be experienced, educated, and familiar with the local real estate market, but if he doesn’t have a presence on the Internet, chances are you are missing out on a key number of buyers; buyers who are ready to purchase your home!

The Internet today is a wealth of information for buyers. In fact, it is quite easy to find all the information needed just by searching the Internet. Most real estate sites have easy-to-use search engines, for example, that put homes for sale in front of them in just a minute or two. If your home isn’t on the top of the list, chances are it is getting overlooked among other homes for sale in your area.

Q: How do I know if my realtor is Internet-savvy?

A: The best place to start is to simply perform a web search on your realtor’s name. Does her properties show up? Does the search take you to her website, Facebook page or Twitter account? If not then your realtor probably doesn’t have a strong presence on the Internet. Do another search on homes in your area. Which realtors are at the top of the search engine? Chances are those are the ones you should consider using to sell your home.

Q: What kind of questions should I be asking my realtor?

A: When interviewing realtors to sell your home, it is always a good idea to ask them how they will market your home. An Internet savvy realtor will likely first mention his Internet marketing strategies, while a realtor without an Internet presence will likely mention other marketing avenues first. It is important to understand that, not only are buyers turning to the Internet to search for homes, the most serious buyers are almost always using the Internet as their source for real estate information. In other words, if your realtor isn’t Internet savvy, you could be missing out on attracting the most serious buyers in the market.

Before you sign a contract with any realtor, make sure the realtor understands the importance and value you are placing on an Internet presence. Make sure the realtor uses a number of Internet strategies, and make sure your realtor keeps in contact with you regarding his Internet marketing efforts along the way.

A Look at Popular Fort Worth Luxury Subdivisions

April 3rd, 2014

fortworthFort Worth continues to expand its offerings in the luxury home market. In fact, at any given time it is quite easy to find new home communities popping up in Fort Worth, most of which boast luxury homes and plenty of luxury home community amenities.  But luxury home communities aren’t anything new to Fort Worth, and it is quite easy to find both new and older luxury homes here.

We love Fort Worth’s offerings in the luxury home market, and it is worth mentioning that many of Fort Worth’s best luxury home communities are located in well-established communities, as well as new home communities. Here are some of our favorite Fort Worth luxury subdivisions:

Fossil Creek

We love Fossil Creek because it wraps around a breathtaking Arnold Palmer-designed golf course. Aside from the beautiful newer homes found here, many residents flock to Fossil Creek because of its excellent proximity to both Interstate 35W and Loop 820. It is also worth mentioning that the sheer number of nearby tech companies have drawn many people to this luxury subdivision, as well.

Oakhurst

This Fort Worth community is known for its beautiful, towering shade trees and its strong neighborhood association, which was actually one of the first developed neighborhood associations in Fort Worth. Skimming the banks of the Trinity River, Oakhurst is a community of homes that were built from the nearly 1900s all the way to the 1960s. Charleston, a subdivision of custom homes, is also close to Oakhurst.  If you love traditional homes and beautifully maintained properties then you must check out the real estate offerings of Oakhurst.

Park Glen

Located in the northern section of Fort Worth, Park Glen boasts newer homes, all of which feature many of today’s most popular homes designs, such as high ceilings and open floor plans. This community is also known for its strong neighborhood covenants, which ensure that home and property designs are fluid and aesthetically pleasing. In addition to the beautiful homes found here, Park Glen boasts plenty of outdoor recreation options, thanks to its 100-acre park, Arcadia Trails, which includes hiking and biking trails, a baseball field, and plenty of playgrounds and picnic areas for family fun. Many of the smaller subdivisions within Park Glen boast their own parks and swimming pools, too.

Woodhaven

Woodhaven is a fine example of the established communities found throughout Fort Worth. The luxury homes of Woodhaven, most of which were built in the 1970s, have beautiful views of the Woodhaven Country Club and golf course. Many of the homes of Woodhaven have been beautifully maintained, thereby giving an instant air of quality to this established neighborhood.

Ryan Place

Located just three miles from downtown Fort Worth, Ryan Place has always been known as an upscale Fort Worth community, and the luxury real estate found here is evident the moment you drive along Elizabeth Boulevard. In fact, many residents flock to this community because of the architecturally significant homes found here, from beautiful period revivals to stately Tudors.

Normandy Estates: A Plano Luxury Home Community

April 2nd, 2014

The Plano luxury market is brimming with amazing options for the luxury home buyer, and it’s no wonder, really. This upscale suburb of Dallas, which is ideally located just 19 miles north of the downtown Dallas area, boasts an impossibly high standard of living, excellent schools, and a booming economy. For everyone from families to city professionals, Plano is the place to be—and the luxury home market in Plano clearly reflects this.

Although there is an abundance of fantastic offerings of luxury homes in the Plano area, we have really come to adore Normandy Estates. Since it began development in 2008, this beautiful home community has become a highly desirable location in which to reside for Plano home buyers with the most discriminating of tastes.

Nature Abounds

The first thing you will notice when strolling through Normandy Estates is the wide open areas of land – more than 75 acres, in fact. From mature shade trees which gracefully arch over the winding creek to the picturesque, six-acre fishing pond with dock, where you can find families enjoying their free time on nearly every sunny day, Normandy Estates has managed to create not just a community, but a feeling; a feeling of quiet serenity, where you can leave the hustle and bustle of city life behind the moment you cross through the gated entrance.

Amenities Galore

The developer of Normandy Estates took the idea of a family community and kicked it up a notch by providing a plethora of envy-worthy amenities, such as a jogging trail, perfect for an early morning run or a late evening stroll; a fitness center, which offers up the best and most cutting-edge machines; an outdoor cooking area, which proves priceless when gathering for a community event or a family cookout; and a swimming pool and spa, a must-have for surviving the hot Texas summers.

Sitting and enjoying your surroundings in Normandy Estates is quite easy to do, whether from your private deck overlooking the sprawling green space or from the community pavilion area, which is surrounded by trellis-covered arbors, a sitting area, an outdoor fireplace, and an abundance of pristine landscaping.

Top Builders

Some of Texas’ best and most respected builders have put their mark on the exceptional real estate found throughout Normandy Estates. From Bentley Premier Builders to Mark Smith Custom Homes and Peckham Custom Builders, you can be certain that the real estate offerings of Normandy Estates are just as spectacular as the community in which they are built. The builders of Normandy Estates paid close attention to the Old World design of this home community, which includes estate homes, villas, and townhomes to suit nearly every type of luxury home buyer.

Normandy Estates feature 55 estate lots, 49 villa lots, and 37 townhomes. Estate homes range are priced from $1.5 million; villas are priced from $900,000; and townhomes are priced from $475,000. Lot sizes up to 1.77 acres are available.

 

Highland Park: Still the Best in Texas!

March 31st, 2014

Highland Park MLS ListingThere still isn’t a community around that can compare to Highland Park. This upscale—rather ritzy, if you will—community is where you can expect to find some of the most fantastic and impressive real estate in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, a superior proximity to nearly all of the best business hubs in the Metroplex, and shopping that can give Rodeo Drive a run for its money.

Yes, this is Highland Park, and it continues to where even the most discriminating buyer buckles at the sight of the homes found here.

Here are just a few reasons why Highland Park continues to be the best in Texas:

The Surroundings

It is rather befitting to begin our list of why we love Highland Park with its shopping center, Highland Park Village. This upscale shopping center boasts nearly all of the designer names we have come to know and love, as well as restaurants, offices, and a movie theater. It’s all here, folks, and it’s impressive.

Beyond the confines of a shopping center, however, are plenty outdoor spaces where residents can hike, picnic, or simply enjoy the beautiful Texas sunshine. Highland Park, in fact, was given its name because the original plan set aside more than 20 percent of the land in the community for park space. We particularly love Lakeside Park, which is 14 acres of sprawling beauty.

We can’t mention Highland Park without talking about the Dallas Country Club. This country club is where you can find Dallas’ most influential residents, and is a fantastic addition to this stunning community. Tennis, golf, swimming; it’s all here.

Location

Highland Park is part of the Park Cities area of Dallas, which also includes University Park. It is located just 3 miles from downtown Dallas, thereby making it an obvious choice for city professionals. What makes Highland Park so attractive is that, even though it is just a few miles from the hustle and bustle of downtown Dallas, the community remains a quiet respite teeming with beautiful homes and meticulously landscaped yards.

For the business traveler, Highland Park makes perfect sense, too, as it is located just 30 minutes from the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, a major international and domestic hub.

Because of its fantastic array of upscale, luxury homes and its excellent location near downtown Dallas, many of Dallas’ most prominent figures have called Highland Park home over the years. In fact, this Dallas community continues to position itself as one of the wealthiest communities in the country.

Education

Families love Highland Park because of its highly acclaimed school district, the Highland Park Independent School District, which has consistently received recognition from the state for its excellent academic and athletic offerings. The Highland Park ISD includes seven campuses and an enrollment of about 7,000 students.

In addition, the University of Texas at Dallas is just 20 minutes away, making it ideal for residents who want to further their education to meet the needs of nearby businesses and industries in the professional, scientific and management fields.

 

Coppell New Home Communities

March 21st, 2014

What’s not to love about Coppell? This desirable community, located in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, offers easy access to the business and cultural districts of Dallas, all the while enjoying a serene, suburban feel.

With award-winning schools (both Coppell Middle School and Coppell High School have received recognition by the Texas Business and Education Coalition), a reputation for being one of the best places to do business, and an efficient infrastructure, it’s no wonder this Dallas suburb is becoming the place to be for everyone from city professionals to families and empty nesters.

As such, Coppell is experiencing an impressive rate of growth, as is evident from the many new home communities found here. Here are a few of our favorites:

Ridgecrest Estates

Ridgecrest Estates is a new Coppell home community that features single-family homes of many different floor plans and designs. Ridgecrest Estates, which is home to many affordable properties, enjoys an ideal location near the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, Interstate 635, and the George Bush Turnpike. Families are certain to flock to Ridgecrest Estates, as it is served by the award-winning Coppell ISD.

Red Hawk

Red Hawk is one of Coppell’s newest communities which is currently developing new single-family homes. The homes of Red Hawk will be between 2,500 and 3,800 square feet in size, and all will be of the patio home design.  Red Hawk offers spacious patio homes for empty nesters, Dallas professionals, or families, and all of the homes in this community will be situated among mature trees. Red Hawk is conveniently located near both Dallas and Fort Worth, and a trip to the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport is just minutes away. All homes in Red Hawk will features a European carriage design.

Villas at Lake Vista

The Villas at Lake Vista is a new Coppell home community that features affordable homes and an enviable location. This townhome community provides low-maintenance, two-story living for the discriminating Coppell homeowner. Buyers of Villas at Lake Vista homes can expect a number of luxury features and amenities, as well as efficient floor plans and first-floor master suites. There will be four different floor plans from which to choose in this community.

The Villas at Lake Vista feature a number of community amenities, as well, including lovely landscaping throughout the community, as well as a resort-style swimming pool, which no doubt captures the interest of a wide variety of buyers, given the hot Texas summers. In addition to enjoying a prime location in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, this townhome community is also just minutes from a number of shopping centers, including Vista Ridge Mall, Vista Ridge Plaza, and CitiCenter, as well as a number of family attractions, including the Vista Ridge Athletic Center, Denton Creek, and Lake Vista.

Business professionals will also certainly enjoy the proximity of the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport to this community, as well, as it just a short drive away. This community is ideal for the homeowner seeking luxury, maintenance-free living in the heart of Coppell.

How to Make your Home Appear Larger

February 21st, 2014

Smaller homes often have a lot going for them – but size usually isn’t one of them. If you have a home that is well, cozy, you may want to make a few minor changes before selling to make it feel larger to buyers who walk through the door. Here are a few ideas to make your home feel more spacious:

  • Remove some of the furniture – Too much furniture in any room – regardless of the size – can make it feel much smaller. Because of this, it may be time to edit your furniture and remove any of it that doesn’t serve a purpose.
  • Remove some of the accessories – If in doubt remove a decorative item or two. Too many items on tables and countertops can make a space feel cramped and cluttered. Keep your decorative accessories to a minimum, and choose things that appeal to a large number of buyers, such as vases, flower arrangements and decorative bowls.
  • Hang a few strategically placed mirrors – Mirrors are a great choice for decorative wall hangings and they work great at reflecting light in a room and making it feel larger. If you have a bare wall, consider hanging a grouping of mirrors of different sizes and shapes together to make an interesting focal point.
  • Turn on the lights – A dark room instantly feels small and cramped. Before a showing, turn on all lights in the home and open the blinds and curtains. If you have a dark corner or hall in the home, add a small table lamp to brighten things up.
  • Remove clutter from your kitchen countertops- Smaller homes are notorious for having small kitchens, so it is best to do what you can to make it feel more spacious. Remove all clutter from the countertops and the kitchen table. Keeping things simple is the best way to make the room appear larger and more spacious.
  • Keep colors light and bright. Don’t forget that lighter colors really do make a room appear larger. Keep the colors neutral and choose cool colors for the bathrooms and warm colors for the bedrooms and living room.

Smart Commercial Leasing Practices

January 21st, 2014

commercial_real-estateIf you are in the market for commercial real estate for your business, and you want to ensure you get a great deal on a commercial real estate lease, then it pays to know a little more about commercial leases. In particular, it is important to understand that commercial leases differ somewhat from residential leases, so you may be surprised to learn that a commercial lease agreement is therefore quite different from a residential lease agreement.

Here are a few tips for preparing yourself to lease commercial property for your small business:

  1. Avoid snagging the first place you find. Because commercial spaces differ so much from their square footage to their layout and their lease price, it pays to really do your homework and find a number of properties that best fit your needs so you can compare them, side by side, and choose the one that works for you. In fact, due to the many features of any commercial lease, it may be best to write down all of the lease features in separate columns so you can easily compare them together.
  2. Remember the importance of location. As with all real estate, location is the key. However, you may find that traveling a mile or two in either direction of your preferred area can save you big on your monthly leasing expenses. It is really important to understand that you can end up paying big simply because the office space is located in a certain area deemed “desirable,” when, in fact, another location may work just as well for you and your business.
  3. Look at the entire picture, not just the lease amount. In particular, a commercial lease includes many components, such as maintenance and terms. The lease terms may be quite lengthy, in fact, so it is best to ask your attorney’s opinion if there is something in the lease that you don’t quite understand. Paying an attorney a couple hundred bucks to save yourself thousands of dollars down the road is well worth the expense. You will also notice that nearly every lease you view will be quite different from the next, which makes it all the more important to get the advice of an attorney or other real estate professional before signing a commercial lease.
  4. Everything’s negotiable with a commercial lease. You can negotiate everything from the term to the price-per-square-foot. A commercial lease may be a work in progress for a period of a few weeks, but it is important to make sure that all terms of the lease work for you so you don’t find yourself stuck in an unsavory lease for a long period of time.

A commercial realtor is far different from a residential realtor. In other words, calling up the realtor you used to sell your home and asking him to find you a commercial property to lease probably isn’t the best idea. Find a realtor who specializes in commercial real estate so you can be certain you have someone on your side who truly understands the process of leasing commercial re

Can you Time the Market?

January 9th, 2014

Many people assume that, during certain times of the year, they are more likely to get a good deal on a house. Although there may be some shred of truth to this notion, the truth of the matter is that homes may sell better at certain times of the year, but the likelihood that home prices will nosedive because it is the last week of December probably isn’t all that true. But it may make sense to sell at a particular time of year because of the convenience factor. Here are a few reasons why:

  • Many families wait to buy until summertime.

Many families of children, of course, may choose to wait until school is out to start house hunting for Dallas County homes. After all, moving in the middle of the school year— unless absolutely necessary— just doesn’t make sense for most families. Many markets see a surge in real estate activity in the summertime for this very reason. That means if you are house hunting in the summertime, there may be more of a demand for homes, and you could face being just one of a few offers on one home. For competition reasons, if you don’t have to move in the summertime, it may make more sense to wait until fall, for example. For sellers, this may mean your house could sell faster because of the higher demand.

  • Buyers during the holidays mean business.

Many sellers cringe at the notion of listing their home during the holiday season, for a number of reasons. Many families are pulled in multiple directions during the holidays, which may make showing a home and keeping everything neat a difficulty. Many families also want to be able to enjoy the holiday season in peace, which usually doesn’t happen if their home is listed for sale. Finally, many sellers assume that real estate activity drops off dramatically at this time, making selling a home during the holidays incredibly frustrating. However, the truth of the matter is that realtors across the country will tell you that activity rarely comes to a grinding halt during the holidays. In fact, the opposite is often true. People who choose to buy during this time of year are usually always serious buyers who are ready and willing to make an offer, which could be very beneficial.

Appealing Las Colinas Subdivisions

November 18th, 2013

Las ColinasLas Colinas, Spanish for “the hills,” is Irving’s crown jewel, all 12,000 acres of it. In addition to being home to many of the area’s major businesses and Fortune 500 companies, thereby earning itself a reputation as a major business hub in the process, Las Colinas has attracted many homeowners who appreciate its central location between Dallas and Fort Worth, and its ideal proximity to the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport.

Irving is also home to 22 million square feet of office space, three private country clubs, the Irving Convention Center, and four championship golf courses. There are plenty of subdivisions within Las Colinas; here are just a few of our favorite:

Cottonwood Valley

Cottonwood Valley, which enjoys a fantastic, central location within Irving, is one of the most upscale, luxurious country club communities in the area. Cottonwood Valley is known for its stunning, custom homes, all of which have beautiful views of the surrounding Four Seasons Resort and Club.

In addition to enjoying the community’s beautiful real estate, many residents choose Cottonwood Valley for its prime amenities, which include: two championship golf courses; tennis, racquetball, and squash courts; a fitness center with a 25-yard indoor swimming pool and an indoor jogging track; and a 25-meter outdoor swimming pool.

Residents of Cottonwood Valley enjoy the upscale features of this community, as well, which include tree-lined streets; 24-hour guarded entrance; and a number of annual events, such as a family Easter egg hunt, a Halloween party, and an annual holiday lighting contest.

The Enclave at TPC Las Colinas

With the signature holes of the Four Seasons Resort and Club as its backdrop, the Enclave at Las Colinas is one of the most prestigious subdivisions within Las Colinas the surrounding area. The homes found within the Enclave at TPC are nothing short of spectacular, with these estate homes consisting of stunning designs and architectures and surrounding landscapes that must be seen to be believed.

The Enclave at TPC, which has 120 upscale custom homes, features easy access to the Four Seasons Resort through a private tunnel and access to the Four Season’s best amenities, including

Hackberry Creek

Hackberry Creek is a lovely family community in Las Colinas, which has the reputation as being one of the largest gated community in North Texas, with no less than 4 guarded gates. There are now more than 1,200 homes in this community, along with many community amenities and events, including street parties, kids’ parties, a Fourth of July celebration, and the Taste of Hackberry annual fair.  Hackberry offers golfing via an 18-hole championship golf course; and a swimming at the family aquatics center, which includes a 25-meter swimming pool and two junior swimming pool. Hackberry Creek is attractive to a wide variety of buyers, as it features a nice array of home styles and home prices. It’s ideal location makes this community a favorite among both Las Colinas and Downtown Dallas residents, and business travelers will find the location to the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport quite ideal.