The 50 Hottest Neighborhoods

Despite those nasty rumors that the economy is slowing, real estate is still hot, hot, hot. How do we know? Because we asked the experts: local real estate agents from the most reputable firms who’ve been busy selling houses non

From Addison to DeSoto, Highland Park to Southlake, we’ve found the neighborhoods in Dallas, Collin, Denton and Tarrant counties where the housing market is generating excitement. Some areas are hotter than others, but the trends are the same. Whether you’re buying, selling or just watching your own home’s value, real estate is on the rebound.



RESEARCH BY COURTNEY DENBY & BLANCHE EVANS

Addison

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $170,120 $183,386

Avg. sale $165,419 $177,346

Avg. days to sell 65 42

Avg. sq. ft 2,029 2,109

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $81.93 $84.70

No. sold 71 22

High sale $244,500 $240,000

Prices are rising and days on the market are down in Addison. The 1997 YTD median sale price is up over 8%. and the current average list price for houses on the market ($224,322) is over 30% higher than last year’s average list. None of the houses sold in 1996 had more than 3,000 square feet. Only eight of the 71 homes sold last year went for more than $200,000. The highest sale: $244,500 for a 2,899-square-foot home on Ridgelake Court.

AU 16 houses on the market at press time were built during or after 1991; they ranged in price from $174,900 for a 3-bedroom home built in 1994 to $349,900 for a 4-bedroom home also built in 1994. The average days on the market, relatively low last year at 65, is down to 42 for 1997.



Bent Tree

1996 1997 YTD

Avg.list $337,869 $318,408

Avg. sale $321,283 $305,342

Avg. days to sell 120 123

Avg. sq. ft 3,740 3,625

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $83.57 $82.81

No. sold 126 53

High sale $850,000 $575,000



Unlike several neighborhoods north of LBJ, some of the most expensive homes in Bent Tree sold quickly: The highest sale in 1996-$850,000-sold in just four days at $97.58 per square foot. But while the average days on the market remains steady at about 120, the average list and sale prices for 1997 YTD were down $19,461 and $15,941, respectively; the median sale price for 1997 was down almost 10% from 1996. The majority of the homes in Bent Tree on the market at press time were built in the late ’70s through the ’80s, with just 20% built in the ’90s. Only one 1997 home was listed: a stone 5,670-square-foot home on Westgrove with 5 bedrooms/5 baths listed at Si .025 million (the only million-dollar listing in Bent Tree at the time). For about $375,000, you could buy a 3,780-square-foot house with four bedrooms built in 1996, or a 5,531-square-foot home with four bedrooms built in 1979.

FunFact : The log cabin in the plaza by the old red courthouse did not belong to Dallas founder John Neely Bryan as once thought, but rather to a local farmer. Bryan’s first home was a dugout on a bluff overlooking the Trinity River.



Bluffview

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $413,433 $486,772

Avg. sale $369,942 $454,131

Avg. days to sell 164 174

Avg. sq. ft 2,898 2,443

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $ 114.54 $138.79

No. sold 47 23

High sale $1.6 million $1.45 million

This neighborhood near Inwood and Lovers, with its hills and creeks, is the closest thing to Austin in Dallas. The least expensive homes ($113,900 to $339,000) were built in the ’40s, but tear-downs have made way for new construction; A 1997 home with 4 bedrooms/4 baths was on the market in June for $695,000. It takes a long time to sell a house here-an average of 174 days this year; of the 23 homes sold 1997 YTD, only five sold in under 30 days. Buyers are hard pressed to find more than 3,000 square feet for under $400,000. Of the 20 homes on the market at press time, two listed at more than $3 million. The highest sale of 1997 at press time, $1.45 million, was for a 4,534-square-foot home on Shady Lane that had been on the market for 345 days.

FunFact: Railroad contractor George M. Dilley’s Ivy Hall was the city’s residential showplace in the 1890s, featuring a mahogany interior, a third-floor ballroom and an eclectic blend of Moorish architecture fashioned in gray limestone from Pecos County, Texas. It was torn down in the 1920s to make room for the Maple Terrace Apartments.

Carroltton/Farmers Branch

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $184,195 $171,218

Avg. sale $177,511 $165,541

Avg. days to sell 85 76

Avg. sq. ft 2,739 2,583

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $62.81 $62.96

No. sold over 350 over 350

High sale $585.000 $395,000

The high sale in Carrollton/Farmers Branch in 1996 was $585.000 fora4,417-square-foot home on Glad Acres Drive that was on the market 52 days. The high sale for 1997 at press time was $395,000 for a 4,300-square-foot home on Woodhaven Drive that was on the market 168 days. The highest listing ($899,000) was for a 1920 wood-exterior home in Farmers Branch with 8,078 square feet and four bedrooms. Out of a sample of 422 current listings, only 27 listed for more than $200,000 and there were eight 4-bedroom homes (built between 1968-1976) listed at less than $100,000.

Cedar Hill

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $90,389 $103,350

Avg. sale $87,726 $100,795

Avg. days to sell 108 109

Avg. sq. ft 1,748 1,852

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $48.05 $50.70

No. sold 257 116

High sale $286,500 $347,359

Of the 257 homes sold in 1996 in this southwest Dallas County neighborhood, 244 sold for less than $100,000, but sale and list prices are up about 10% for 1997. The current average list price for houses on the market at press time was $ 120,803,34% higher than the average 1996 list price of $90,389. The highest list price at press time was $555,000 for a 3-bedroom home built in 1940 on Shiloh Road, which is $261,000 more than the highest list price of a home sold in 1996.



Coppell

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $211,845 $203,743

Avg. sale $205,890 $195,736

Avg. days to sell 92 87

Avg. sq.ft. 3,235 3,251

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $73.76 $74.39

No. sold over 350 over 350

High sale $490,000 $450,000



The average list and sale prices in fast-selling Coppell (381 homes sold in six months) are down approximately 10% for the first half of 1997. In 1996, 594 homes priced between $129,650 and $490,000 sold. Of the 324 homes on the market at press time, more than 75% were built after 1987 with an average list price of $216,256. New construction prices for4-bedroom homes run the gamut from $ 149,500 to $479,900. Last year a 5,363-square-foot home on Clearspring Drive sold for $375,000.

HOTTEST

Coronado Hills

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $112,968 $126,492

Avg. sale $106,765 $123,475

Avg. days to sell 77 49

Avg. sq.ft 1,543 1,442

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $65.92 $79.20

No. sold 51 23

High sale $215,900 $225,000

In Coronado Hills, an East Dallas neighborhood near Lakewood, sale prices are up even higher than nearby Hollywood Heights: almost 16% from 1996. In June, there were nine houses on the market in Coronado Hills with an average list price of $78,942. Most of what is on the market in Coronado Hills was built in the teens to late 1920s. The M Streets offer homes from the same time period, but their price per square foot is about $27 higher than the averages in Hollywood Heights and Coronado Hills.

FunFact: Belleview Place, Dallas’ first apartment, was built in 1890 on Sullivan Street near what is now Old City Park. It was advertised as “New York-style living,” but the concent was rejected. In 1902 the three-story brick building was converted to a center for the cure of “morphine, cocaine and tobacco diseases.”



DeSoto

1996 1997 YTD

Avg.list $123,992 $106,043

Avg.sale $119,544 $102,872

Avg. days to sell 127 111

Avg. sq. ft 2,301 2,039

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $50.26 $48.90

No. sold over 350 175

High sale $470,000 $325,000



DeSoto offers a good value per square foot for 4- and 5-bedroom homes. The average price per square foot was $48.90 at press time, even lower than last year. Two examples of great buys: a 4,025-square-foot 4-bedroom house built in 1959 was on the market for $219,900, and a 4,563-sqare-foot 4-bedroom house built in 1979 listed at $249,900.



Duncanville

1996 1997 YTD

Avg.list $102,734 $90,782

Avg.sale $118,339 $87,431

Avg. days to sell 101 95

Avg. sq. ft 2,051 1,785

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $60.73 $47.47

No. sold over 350 188

High sale $275,000 $282,000

While the high sale for the first half of 1997 exceeds that of 1996 by $7,000, the average sale price is down 35% and the median sale price is down almost 12%. The average size of a home in Duncanville is just under 1,800 square feet. The cost of new construction is well above the median sale price of $78,475: a 3,432-square-foot home built in 1997 with 4 bedrooms/3 baths listed at $206,000; a 2,200-square-foot home with 4 bedrooms/2 baths listed at $126,500.

The Estates of Monticello

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $534,894 $591,857

Avg. sale $520,507 $523,559

Avg. days to sell 117 134

Avg. sq. ft 4,794 4,792

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $108.57 $109.26

No. sold 18 9

High sale $653,000 $771,000

This gated community in Southgate is served by blue-ribbon Carroll ISD schools, the only other blue-ribbon school district in the far north aside from Piano ISD. The development is wooded and features homes from well-known custom builders. Average selling price is $523,559, average list price is $591,857 and the difference between the list and sale price is 12%. Low selling price is $396,500 and high is $771,000. The average age of homes is five to six years. Homes are on the market an average of 134 days with nine houses sold this year and 14 available. According to Dorothy Ratcliffe, manager of Henry S. Miller Realtors’mid-cities office, the higher-end communities in Southlake and Col-leyville have close-knit social structures because many residents are from other parts of the country and are making new friends.

Forest Hills

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $248,787 $246,233

Avg. sale $237,022 $235,167

Avg. days to sell 65 95

Avg. sq. ft 2,692 2.289

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $82.86 $94.65

No. sold 37 12

High sale $605,000 $478,000

The biggest turnover in this neighborhood east of White Rock Lake has been on Forest Hills Boulevard, where 12 homes sold in 18 months. The highest sale for 1996 and 1997 YTD was on San Fernando Way, where a 5,279-square-foot home sold for $605,000 after 196 days on the market. The houses on the market at press time were built from 1939 to 1965, with most dating back to the 1950s. List prices ranged from S119,700 for a 4-bed-room house built in 1952 to $449,000 for a 4-bedroom house built in 1947, The average sale price for 1996 was almost 5% below the average list. While the average sale price for 1997 YTD is down $ 1,855, the average price per square foot is up $ 11.79.

Fun Fact: Belmont Ave., which intersects lower Greenville, is named for New York financier August Belmont, whose plans for a world-class residential development in the area were derailed by the Panic of 1893.

Garland

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $113,835 $114,697

Avg. sale $110,469 $111,378

Avg. days to sell 83 77

Avg. sq. ft 2,050 2,100

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $52.75 $53.76

No. sold over 350 over 350

High sale $575,000 $390,000



While the high sale of 1996 was $185,000 greater than the highest sale for the first half of 1997, the average list and sale prices remained steady, increasing only by about $ 1,000. The average difference between list and sale price in Garland hovers at about 3% for 1996 and 1997 YTD. At press time, several 4- and 5-bed-room homes built in 1997 were on the market with list prices ranging from a low of $ 145,900 (a 2,285-square-foot 4-bedroom house) to a high of $342,000 (a 3,444-square-foot 5-bedroom house). Most of the homes on the market in Garland were built from the late 1980s to the mid-1990s.

Grand Prairie

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $78,850 $79,808

Avg. sale $76,498 $77,513

Avg. days to sell 80 95

Avg. sq. ft 1,651 1,628

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $45.03 $45.69

No. sold 327 172

High sale $245,000 $220,000

The numbers seem to be relatively static in Grand Prairie: The average sale price is only about 2% below that of the average list price, and the average sale and list prices have only gone up about $ 1.000 from last year. Of the 499 houses sold in 1996 and 1997 YTD, only two sold for more than $200,000. The price per square foot for 1997 home ranges from $57.79 to $147.46. One 1997 home, with 6,781 square feet and five bedrooms, stands out because of its $999,950 list price, but the majority of the homes are not nearly that expensive. The more common Grand Prairie home is a 3-bedroom ranch-style house built in the ’80s. with a list price of less than $100,000.

FunFact: In 1878, Dallas jeweler and amateur inventor John M. Oram became the first local resident to have a telephone in his home, but the only place he could call was his jewelry store on Elm Street.

HOTTEST

Highland Park

1996 1997 YTD

Avg.list $605,866 $723,411

Avg. sale $563,730 $675,681

Avg. days to sell 134 112

Avg. sq. ft 3,222 3,660

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $160.69 $175.96

No. sold 157 75

High sale $2.7 million $2.95 million



Of the 65 houses on the market in Highland Park at press time, 25 were listed at more than a million, but they’re selling almost as quickly as the $200,000 houses in Coppell. In the first half of this year, one-third of the 75 houses sold were on the market less than 30 days. There are still some deals in Highland Park on redos or cottages, but for a new house (built after 1990), be prepared for an average list price of $274 per square foot. Only three houses built in the ’90s were on the market in J une: a 4,049-square-foot 4-bedroom home on Southern listed at $849,500 (built in ’92); a 3,869-square-foot 3-bedroom home on Drexel listed at $1.35 million (built in ’93); and a 6,471-square-foot 5-bedroom home on Versailles listed at $1.7 million (built in’97).



Fun Faet: During the torrid Dallas summer of 1910, real-estate developers Edgar Flippen and Hugh Prather ran ads claiming that “It’s ten degrees cooler in Highland Park.” The Dallas Morning News retaliated by running the same statement on the front page the following winter.

Highland Shores

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $239,287 $252,900

Avg.sale $213,053 $248,433

Avg. days to sell 107 127

Avg. sq. ft 3,349 3,073

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $74.86 $80.60

No. sold 215 116

High sale $469,000 $321,400



Developed in 1985 on more than 980 acres with 140 acres set aside for general community use. Highland Shores is part of the master-planned community of Highland Village. Highland Shores is located on the shores of Lake Lewisville northwest of Dallas, and offers its residents tennis courts, swimming pools, playgrounds and soccer fields. Home prices range from a low of $250,000 to a high of more than $1 million, and the area is served by Lewisville ISD.

FunFact: Colonel John C. McCoy, the city’s first practicing attorney, was also first to use sawed boards rather than hewn logs in the construction of a Dallas residence.

Hills of Prestonwood

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $280,903 $295,600

Avg. sale $232,673 $251,900

Avg. days to sell 68 85

Avg. sq. ft 3,260 3,317

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $71.37 $75.94

No. sold 14 5

High sale $495,000 $495,000

Situated with views of Piano’s Prestonwood Country Club’s second golf course and scenic lakes, these homes range from luxury zero-lot line to large family homes. Average selling price is $251,900, with a low selling price of $191,500 to a high selling price of $495,000. Homes are less than five years of age, with 16 homes on the market. Average list price is $295,600 and homes are sold within 3% of list.



Hollywood Heights

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $106,671 $117,548

Avg. sale $102,062 $112,950

Avg. days to sell 71 78

Avg. sq. ft 1,496 1,517

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $63.87 $71.27

No. sold 129 64

High sale $332,600 $250,000

Average sale price in this neighborhood off East Grand Avenue i near Lakewood is up about 10% from 1996; the average price per square foot is also up by $7.40. In June, there were 43 houses on the market in Hollywood Heights with an average list of ; $97,040. Most homes in Hollywood Heights were built between i 1913 and the ’50s, with some newer homes built in the 1980s.



Kessler Park

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $198,170 $245,560

Avg. sale $191,325 $230.300

Avg. days to sell 62 181

Avg. sq. ft 2,319 2,487

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $82.54 $91.47

No. sold 22 5

High sale $300,000 $385,000

i In this Oak Cliff neighborhood the average sale price for 1997 YTD is up almost 20% from 1996. The highest sale exceeded last year’s by $85,000, or about 28.5%. While 22 houses sold last year at an average of $82.54 per square foot, only five had sold in 1997 at press time, for an average of $91.47. And only three were on the market (all on Lausanne Avenue) in June: a 4,708-square-foot home built in 1928listedat$449,900;a2,416-square-foot home built in 1938 listed at $269,000; and a 1.812-square-foot home built in 1936 listed at $194,900.

Lake Highlands

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $190,013 $156,113

Avg, sale $182,101 $150,490

Avg. days to sell 92 100

Avg.sq. ft 2,712 2,343

Avg. $ per sq. ft $65.87 $62.85

No. sold over 350 258

High sale $525,000 $372,000

Of the 350 sales listed for 1996 in the MLS for more than $147,500, only two were in the $500s and one was in the $400s: thirteen homes were in the $300,000 range. The biggest home that sold in Lake Highlands in 1996 was a 5,642-square-foot home on Hilldale (sale price: $370,000; price per square foot: $65.58). Lake Highlands offers some great values for big houses: A house with 5,287 square feet sold in March 1996 for $237,500 ($44.92 per square foot). The vast majority of what is for sale are 4-bedroom homes built in the ’70s. A sprinkling of 1997 homes (offered at about S120 per square foot) were on the market at press time: a 3,100-square-foot 4-bedroom house on Royal brook for $369,000 and a 2,870-square-foot 3-bedroom house also on Royalbrook for $347,500. The average sale price is only 3.6% below the average list for 1997 YTD, The average sale price in 1997 is down 17.5% from 1996, due, in part, to the fact that the lowest sale price listed to date in 1997 is $69,900 and the lowest in 1996 was $147,500.

Lakeside on Preston

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $534,540 $649,160

Avg. sale $522,734 $598,436

Avg. days to sell 136 136

Avg, sq. ft 4,589 4,983

Avg. $per sq. ft. $113.91 $120.09

No. sold 21 8

High sale $854.000 SI.17 million

Located at the corner of Parker and Preston roads in Piano, the 400 acres of Lakeside on Preston are embellished with stone bridges, screening walls and fountained lakes, and the community is overlooked by a stone tower. Amenities include a recreation center and jogging trails. Lot sizes in this neighborhood range from 10,000 square feet to one acre, and homes range from a low of $300,000 to a high of more than $1 million. Average selling price is $598.436 with the low selling price at $417,000 and the high selling price at S 1.175 million, and homes are on the market an average of 136 days. Twenty-live homes were available for sale at press time. Houses sell within 2% of list with the average list price at $649,160. Most houses are less than five years old.

FunFact: “Oak Lawn” was originally the

name of Colonel George Mellersh’s post-Civil War residence on four tree-covered acres at what later became the intersection of Oak Lawn and Cedar Springs.


Lakes of Somerset

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $474,370 $569,394

Avg. sale $465,533 $501,666

Avg. days to sell 221 75

Avg. sq. ft 5,053 5,094

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $92.13 $98.48

No. sold 10 6

High sale $579,000 $630,000



Fountained lakes, trees and jogging trails distinguish this sought-after Colley ville community. Average selling price is $501,666 compared to the average list price of $569,394. Difference in sale and list price is 12%. Low selling price is $382.500 and high selling price is $630,000. Average age of the homes is eight years and homes are on the market an average of 75 days. Six houses have sold this year with nine currently on the market. This community is all pre-owned homes with no new construction and is served by Grapevine/Colleyville ISD.

Lakewood (includes Swiss Avenue)

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $221,151 $174,300

Avg. sale $211,359 $167,670

Avg. days to sell 83 66

Avg. sq.ft 2,328 1,966

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $88.48 $83,63

No. sold over 350 over 350

High sale $732,000 $588,000



The top two sales for 1996 in Lakewood were on Tokalon Street: a $732,000 sale in December and a $662,000 sale in May. Of the 350 most expensive listings at press time, the prices range from i $83,000 for a 1,653-square-foot 3-bedroom brick home built in 1979 on Kilkirk Lane to a $950,000 listing for a 5-bedroom brick I home with 3,676 square feet built in 1971 on Lawther Drive. ! While the price-per-square-foot average in Lakewood usually hovers at about $85, there are some prices that rival those in i Highland Park. The most expensive asking price per square foot in June was $351.56 for a 2,560-square-foot stone home built in 1985 on Kingsman Drive listed at $900,000. The highest price per square foot for homes sold 1997 YTD was $172.18 for a ; 1,481 -square-foot home on Meadow Lake Avenue that sold after 66 days on the market for $255,000. The sale and list prices for i 1997 YTD were down about 20%, with the median sale for the same time period down $32,250.



FunFact: The Mansion on Turtle Creek was cotton magnate Sheppard W. King Jr.’5 second residential palace; he tired of the first and had it torn down in the 1920s.

Lancaster

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $75,286 $73,198

Avg. sale $72,053 $70,143

Avg. days to sell 131 126

Avg. sq. ft 1,665 1,577

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $42.15 $42.91

No. sold 180 65

High sale $198,000 $289,000



While Lancaster’s high sale in 1997 exceeds that of 1996 by 45%, the average sale price is down about $2,000 for 1997. The price per square foot for a 1997 home is about $12 higher than the average, which is steady for 1996 and 1997 YTD at $42.91: At press time a 1997 house with 3 bedrooms/2 baths and 1,716 square feet was offered at $93,950. Of the 151 houses on the market, only 35 listed at more than $100,000. One Lancaster listing that stood out because of its high list price ($469,900) was a 6,709-square-foot home built in 1985 with 4 bedrooms/5 baths.

HOTTE

M Streets

1996 1997 YTD

Avg.list $157,391 $166,972

Avg. sale $151,696 $161,394

Avg. days to sell 63 52

Avg. sq.ft 1,695 1,667

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $89.66 $94.89

Mo. sold 145 64

High sale $251,000 $259,000

The M Streets are high on charm and low on bathrooms, but the convenient location (only a few minutes from downtown) keeps the DINKs happy enough to pay as much as $ 131.91 per square loot. Only two houses on the market have three full baths: a 3-bedroom on Mercedes for $265,000 (built 1929); and a 4-bed-room on McCommas for $187,500 (built in 1950). The current average list of $ 174,323 (of the 41 houses on the market at press time) is up 10.76% from the average list of houses sold in 1996. The M Streets sell faster than any Dallas neighborhood with an average of just 52 days on the market, down 17% from 1996. Most of what was on the market in June were 3-bedroom cottages built in the mid to late ’20s.

Mesquite

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $104,363 $96,888

Avg. sale $101,790 $94,141

Avg. days to sell 84 74

Avg. sq. ft 2,004 1,787

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $50 $51

No. sold over 350 over 350

High sale $267,000 $499,000

Of 427 listings, only three sold for more than $200,000. There were four 5-bedroom homes on the market that were built between 1987 and 1993 that range in price from $124,000 to $149,000. The 1997 days-on-the-market average is down ten days from last year, but so is the average sale price-from more than $100,00 in 1996 to less than $95,000 this year.

Meadows West (Bellaire Park

1996 1997 YTD

Avg.list $264,927 $316,185

Avg. sale $256,090 $306,642

Avg. days to sell 130 110

Avg. sq. ft 3,342 3,679

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $76.63 $83.35

No. sold 11 7

High sale 391,000 $450,000

This area is hot because it is the only new-home construction in Fort Worth in the $200,000-$400,000 price range. Large square-footage, a neighborhood park and a family-oriented neighborhood near Mira Vista make this area desirable. The low selling price is $212,000 and the high is $450,000. Homes are on the market an average of 110 days with 28 available for sale. The average list price is $316,185 with a 3% difference between list and sale price. Homes are seven years of age or less.

Mira Vista

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $563,742 $584,737

Avg. sale $533,928 $559.975

Avg. days to sell 167 180

Avg. sq. ft 4,600 4,847

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $116.07 $115.53

No. sold 14 4

High sale $840,000 $849.900

This gated country-club community with private security in Fort Worth is the site of “The Street of Dreams” featuring all new custom-builder homes priced from $800,000 to more than $1 million. The average selling price is $559,975 with a low selling price of $335,000 and a high of $849,900. Homes are on the market an average of 180 days with 24 homes currently for sale. Average list priced is $584,737 with a 4% difference in list and sale price. The community is served by Fort Worth ISD/Crowley ISD.



HOTTEST

Montclair Pare

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $828,500 $1,074,450

Avg. sale $787,280 $993,750

Avg. days to sell 162 21

Avg. sq.ft 6,115 6,408

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $135.49 $155.08

No. sold 2 2

High sale $832,000 $1.1 million

This charming upper-tier development in Colleyville requires that builders meet stringent building codes including submitting total site plans complete with landscaping before breaking ground. Montclair Parc’s pre-owned homes have a low sale price of $887,500 and a high sale price of $1.1 million, with an average selling price of $993,750. Pre-owned homes are on the market an average of 21 days with eight currently on the market and two sold this year so far. The difference between list and sale price is 8%. Average age of the homes is two years. In addition to the carefully conceived European ambience, Montclair Parc’s central location, gated access, waterfront lots, award-winning Colleyville schools and easy access to job markets in Dallas, Fort Worth, D/FW and Las Colinas are all factors driving growth.

New Preston Hollow

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $360,866 $361,620

Avg. sale $336,464 $338,600

Avg. days to sell 147 157

Avg. sq. ft 3,199 3,179

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $101.61 $104.50

No. sold 118 48

High sale $867,500 $1.045 million

New Preston Hollow costs less than her neighbor. Old Preston Hollow. The average price per square foot for 1997 YTD in New Preston Hollow is $52.85 less than the same in Old Preston Hollow; the average sale price in New Preston Hollow is $465,712

less than the average sale price in Old Preston Hollow. There were three homes built in 1997 on the market in New Preston Hollow at press time with an average list price per square foot of $188.62: a 6 bedroom/5 bath with 7.340 square feet on Watson listed al SI.525 million: a 4 bedroom/4 bath with 5.093 square feet on Stichter listed at $945,000; and a 3 bedroom/2 bath with 3,622 square feet on Glenshannon listed at $625,000. The 1997 YTD average list and sale prices are just up $754 and $2.136. respectively, from 1996. The average discount off list price for the first half of 1997 was about 7%. Of the 75 houses on the market at press time, only two listed for more than $1 million.



North Dallas [WALNUT HILL TO LBJ; MIDWAY TO HILLCREST)

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $344,707 $344,082

Avg. sale $322,612 $321,814

Avg. days to sell 125 115

Avg. sq. ft 3.157 3.042

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $96.46 $98.20

No. sold over 350 236

High sale S3.15 million $2.3 million

North Dallas can claim the largest square footage of a house sold and recorded in the MLS for 1996 (18,194 square feet at 5505 Deloache Avenue sold for $2.9 million) and the highest price per square foot ($465.76 per square foot for a house on Lakehurst Avenue with L986 square feet that sold for $925,000). The high sale in North Dallas for 1996 was $3.15 million for 10.106 square feet on Hollow Way Road. The average days on the market for the first half of 1997 is 115, but 13% of the homes sold in less than 10 days. The lowest price per square foot for 1997 was $56.27; a 6.397-square-fool home on Prestonshire went for $360,000 in April. Lots of tear-downs make way for new construction in North Dallas: Twenty-one houses built this year were on the market at press time with a median list price of $650,000 and an average of 4.645 square feet.

FunFact: The historic homes on Swiss Avenue were developed as a part of Munger Place. Deed restrictions required the Swiss Avenue mansions to be two stories, have 60’ street setbacks and cost at least $10,000.

HOTTEST

Old Preston Hollow

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $653,493 $966,065

Avg. sale $593,624 $804,312

Avg. days to sell 162 146

Avg. sq. ft 3,983 3,905

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $135.52 $157.35

No. sold 57 18

High sale $3.15 million $3.55 million

Of the 57 homes that sold in Old Preston Hollow in 1996, six ; cost more than a million and averaged 176 days on the market. At press time, there had already been four million-dollar sales for 1997 (average price per square foot: $267.42) with the highest sale coming in at $3.55 million for a 10,597-square-foot home on Meadowood Road. With the days to sell down 16 days and the average size of homes sold virtually the same, the average list price for homes sold in 1996 and 1997 YTD was up $312,572 : and average sale price was up $210,688. But there are some ; affordable houses: Of the 18 sold by June this year, nine sold for $275,000 or less. There were 43 houses on the market at press i time and 15 of them listed at more than $1 million. Much of what was on the market in June was built in the ’30s, ’40s or ’50s. The newest house on the market was built in 1995: a 3,015-square-foot home on Northwood with 4 bedrooms/2 baths that lists for ; $479,000 ($158.87 per square foot).



Piano East

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $103,019 $107,162

Avg. sale $100,529 $103,876

Avg. days to sell 61 69

Avg. sq. ft 1,836 1824

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $22.75 $27.88

No. sold over 350 143

High sale $307,500 $978,000



With a cocktail of newer homes at lower prices and excellent public schools. Piano is a desirable location for families with school-aged children. The majority of the homes on the market in Piano East were built in the late ’70s through the ’80s. Of the 104 homes on the market at press time, the average list price was $ 131,829 and only four homes listed at more than $200,000. The list and sale prices have remained consistent from 1996 levels. Even considering the exceptional sale of a 7,214-square-foot house for $978,000, the numbers have not changed much in the last year. The biggest movement in price is at the lower property levels, where the low price per square foot increased 22.5%. The list price of the three homes built in 1997 was almost equal to the overall average list price: a 4-bedroom house with 2,276 square feet listed at $145,900.

FunFact:An area of 700 acres fanning out from the intersection of Greenville Avenue and Park Lane was once the farming and residential community of Vickery, which had a population of 100 in 1910.

Piano West

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $222,736 $218,294

Avg. sale $215,036 $211,934

Avg. days to sell 78 93

Avg. sq. ft 3,038 2,845

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $68.23 $70.90

No, sold over 350 over 350

High sale 1.747 million $ 1.175 million

While there are usually one or two million-plus sales in Piano West each year, the vast majority of homes falls in the $200,000 to $300,000 range. What does a million dollars buy in Piano West? Last year a 9,750-square-foot home on St, Andrews Court sold for $1.75 million; this year there have been two sales for more than a million dollars, with a price per square foot of about $165. At press time, a 1986 4-bedroom home on Hallmark with just 4,108 square feet listed for $3.25 million {that’s a list price of $791.14 per square foot!) and a 1997 5-bedroom home on Old Gate Road with 9,000 square feet listed for $1.98 million ($220 per square foot). The average list price for homes on the market at press time ($312,791 ) was $90,000higher than last year’s average list price, but average sale prices in 1997 have dropped $3,102 and days on the market are up almost 20%.

Richardson

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $182,632 $172,550

Avg. sale $175,492 $166,341

Avg. days to sell 85 75

Avg. sq. ft 2,803 2,550

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $61.94 $62.65

No. sold 92 44

High sale $470,000 $385,000

The high sale for 1996 was $470,000 for a 4,291-square-foot home on Woods Lane; it was on the market 372 days. It takes a long time to sell an expensive (more than $250,000) home in Richardson; the average days on the market for the top five sales in 1996 was 202. At press time, there were 321 homes on the market for less than $175,000 and 56 homes on the market listed at or about $175,000. Of the 377 homes listed in June, only two had more than 4.000 square feet; for those listed at more than $ 175,000 all but one had four or five bedrooms.

FunFact: The stately structure at 2101 Ross Ave. was originally the home of Colonel Alfred Horatio Belo, founder of The Dallas Morning News. While the building was leased to the Loudermilk-Sparkman Funeral Home in 1934, the bodies of Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker rested in state here.

Strait Lane Area

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $820,000 $2.3 million

Avg. sale $875,000 $2.9 million

Avg. days to sell 291 159

Avg. sq. ft 6,847 7,848

Avg. $ per sq.ft. $119.76 $293.06

No. sold 1 1

High sale $875,000 $2.9 million



There was only one sale last year in Ross Perot’s neighborhood, a house that was on the market a whopping 291 days. There has only been one sale in the first six months of 1997. after 159 days on the market, on Strait Lane. There were live houses on the market at press time, ranging in price from $395,000 for a 3-bed-room home built in 1950. to S2.699 million for a 5-bedroom home built in 1992.



Stonebriar

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $454,356 $532,066

Avg. sale $438,209 $490,453

Avg. days to sell 131 113

Avg. sq. ft 4,030 3,669

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $107.84 $113.59

No. sold 34 16

High sale $850,000 $1,025 million



Frisco’s Stonebriar offers new, large homes (mostly 4- and 5-bedrooms with more than 4,000 square feet). Of the 34 on the market in June, only six were built before 1990. Stonebriar homes are selling much faster than in 1996. The average time on the market is down from 125 days in 1996 to 90, with many of the most expensive homes selling well below the average. The third most expensive house to sell this year ($875,000) was only on the market 24 hours.



HOTTEST

Stonebridge Ranch

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $208,172 $254,524

Avg. sale $200.988 $245,900

Avg. days to sell 94 64

Avg. sq. ft 2,745 2,360

Avg. $per sq.ft . $70.66 $81.35

No. sold 319 231

High sale $379,508 $724,500



McKinney’s family-friendly Stonebridge Ranch offers its residents plenty of reasons never to leave home. The master-planned 6.300-acre community has two private country clubs. Beach & Tennis Club, a YMCA, shopping center, miles of hiking, biking trails and plenty of wide-open green spaces. The community is served by McKinney schools, with some of the highest SAT scores in the greater Dallas area. Hot properties are custom golf villas in the gated village of Ballantrae overlooking the Dallas-Fort Worth area’s only Pete Dye course. There are more than 50 homes available for sale.

Thornbury

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $623,000 $591,257

Avg. sale $575,500 $450,000

Avg. days to sell 166 174

Avg. sq. ft 6.038 5.450

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $95.31 $82.57

No. sold 3 2

High sale $690,000 $450,000

This 10-year-old gated community in Colleyville has winding streets, lakes and a jogging trail. Building restrictions include a minimum of 3,500 square feet and no composition roofs. Average selling price is $450,000 and average list is $591,257: difference in list and sale price is 24%. Homes are on the market an average of 174 days, with two sold this year and seven on the market. The neighborhood is served by Grapevine/Colleyville ISD.

Timarron

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $396,416 $393,987

Avg. sale $389,691 $381,141

Avg. days to sell 87 136

Avg. sq. ft 3,949 3,805

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $98.68 $122.35

No. sold 56 24

High sale $752,563 $610,900

Designed for an active, luxurious lifestyle in Southlake/Col-leyville and served by blue-ribbon Carroll ISD and Grapevine/Colleyville ISD, Timarron has an amenity package unmatched anywhere in Dallas/Fort Worth. In 1996. Golf Digest ranked the Byron Nelson-designed course one of the nation’s top ten new courses. Other amenities include a clubhouse, swimFunFact : The 43-room mansion of pioneer

geologist Everette DeGoyler, now home of the Dallas Arboretum, was the city’s first air-conditioned house.


ming pool, playgrounds and ball courts. Seven villages of homes are priced from the mid-200s to $1 million. Low selling price this year is $214,000 to a high of $610,900 with an average selling price of $381,141. Difference between list and sale price is 3%. Homes are on the market an average of 136 days, with 24 sold so far this year and 48 available on the market. The newest village is Crescent Royale, with zero-lot line golf villas created with empty-nesters and professional couples in mind.

Turtle Creek High-Rise Corridor

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $241,843 $211,216

Avg.sale $225,034 $197,845

Avg. days to sell 167 123

Avg. sq. ft 1,476 1,642

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $129.15 $102.62

No. sold 86 50

High sale $1.06 million $915,000

For 3,000 square feet and up on the Turtle Creek High-Rise Corridor, the going rate is usually more than $1 million and the average days on the market is well into the hundreds, but in June 1996 a 4,945-square-foot apartment sold for $695,000 in five days. The price per square foot in 1996 ranged from $44.23 to $335.23 and the sale prices started at $53,000 and topped off at $1.06 million. So far in ’97, there have been no million-dollar sales, and the price per square foot is down 20%, but the number of days on the market is also down about 25%. At press time, of the 71 apartments on the market, eight listed for $ 1 million or more; the highest list price: $2.2 million for a 3-bedroom unit at 3510 Turtle Creek. The two most expensive addresses are 3510, built in the ’80s, and 2801, built in the ’90s. The least expensive listing for 3510 was $550,000, and for 2801 it was $750,000.



Twin Creeks

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $295,936 $315,910

Avg.sale $300,291 $291,260

Avg. days to sell 122 103

Avg. sq. ft 3,303 3,297

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $90.91 $84.69

No. sold 20 15

High sale $419,000 $437,000

Built around the upscale, fee-for-play Twin Creeks golf club, the affordable golf-course community in Allen is a real find for families who love sports and community activities. Average sale price is $291,260, low sale is $ 149,000 and high sale is $437,000.

An average home lists at $315,910 and stays on the market 103 days. Thirty homes are currently on the market and are two to three years old. Compared to 1996, homes are selling twice as fast with 15 sold by June 1997 compared to 20 total in 1996.

University Park

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $433,344 $447,976

Avg. sale $410,595 $420,122

Avg. days to sell 103 106

Avg. sq. ft 2,706 2,618

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $140.44 $148.59

No. sold 270 96

High sale $4.5 million $2,125 million

University Park can boast the highest sale recorded in the MLS for 1996: a 14,400-square-foot house on Vassar Drive sold for $4.5 million after 210 days on the market. But the 1997 YTD average sale price in University Park is $255,569 less than that [ of its Park Cities sister, Highland Park (where 16 houses at more than $1 million sold during the same time period). The hottest i streets this year in University Park are Stanford, where seven I houses sold, and Southwestern, where five houses sold, both in I less than 30 days. Newer houses are at a premium in University Park: Of the 70 on the market in June, only 11 were built after 1980. Three built in 1997 were on the market at press time: a 5- bedroom home with 4,659 square feet on Hanover listed at $749,000; a 4-bedroom home with 4,051 square feet on Purdue listed at $725,000; and a 3-bedroom home with 3,080 square feet I on Granada listed for $439,000.

Westover Hills HOTTEST

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $563,115 $1,179,125

Avg. sale $473,467 $1,072,250

Avg. days to sell 308 85

Avg. sq. ft 4,711 6,471

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $100.50 $165.70

No. sold 13 4

| High sale $1,000,000 $2.5 million

This township, surrounded on all sides by the city of Fort Worth, I has been compared to the Park Cities in Dallas. It is the home to I numerous CEOs, professionals and many second- and third-gen-eration Fort Worth residents. Van Clibum, the Bass family and ! other luminaries call this area home. Houses range in age from 1923 to 1993. Average selling price is $1,072 million, with a low selling price of $377,500 and a high of $2.5 million. Homes are i on the market an average of 85 days, with an average list of $ 1.179 i million ( 18 more than $ 1 million and seven less than $1 million). ; The difference between list and sale price is 20%.

FunFact : Dallas’ first recorded land transfer on November 28,1846, involved the sale of two lots at the corner of Main and Houston streets from John Neely Bryan to Henry Harter for $160.

HOTTEST

Willow Bend

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $456,431 $470.645

Avg. sale $438,873 $452.599

Avg. days to sell 129 121

Avg. sq. ft 4,301 4,254

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $99.06 $104.10

No. sold 87 48

High sale $1.747 million $1.01 million



The average sale price in Piano’s Willow Bend is up $ 13,726 for the first half of 1997, and the days-on-the-market average is down by eight days. Of the 72 active listings at press time. 39 were for more than $500,000. While the 1997 YTDmedian sale for Willow Bend is $118,500 higher than University Park’s, the price per square foot in Willow Bend is just $104.10 compared to University Park’s S148.59, and the average house in Willow Bend is approximately 1,630 square feet larger than one in University Park. About 75% of the houses on the market in Willow Bend were built in the ’90s.

Winnetka Heights

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $77,205 $70,091

Avg. sale $73,038 $71,221

Avg. days to sell 125 103

Avg. sq. ft 1,890 1,704

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $38.37 $42.13

No. sold 45 11

High sale $127,000 $143,000



This historic neighborhood has a strong homeowners association and a fierce loyalty to preservation of its charm. The 10 houses on the market at press time, built between 1916 and 1949, range in size from 1,610 to 3,534 square feet and in list price from $45,000 to $239,500. The highest list price in the first half of 1997 was $139,900, but the house, 103 Winnetka Ave., actually sold for more: $143,000 in just three days. The average list price for 1997 YTD is down approximately 10% despite a high sale in 1997 that was $16,000 higher than any in 1996.

Wolf Creek

1996 1997 YTD

Avg. list $243,140 $236.793

Avg. sale $245,986 $232,507

Avg. days to sell 118 123

Avg. sq. ft 3,307 3,110

Avg. $ per sq. ft. $74.38 $74.76

No. sold 18 6

High sale $269,900 $265,000



Boasting convenient access off Midway Road to the North Dallas Tollway and Legacy Park in Piano, Wolf Creek offers more modest price ranges for homes that are less than five years of age. A pretty entrance, lakeside lots and a new phase of builder homes are the attractions. Low selling price is $188.000 and high selling price is $265.000. Homes are on the market an average of 123 days, with six homes currently being offered.

NEWLY DEVELOPED NEIGHBORHOODS

Because the following areas are so new, no MLS figures are available. Figures listed below are from builders.



Riverbend Estates: Located on the west fork of the Trinity River in Fort Worth and hidden by thick woods, Riverbend Estates is a guard-gated community. One-third of available lots are situated on the riverbank with remaining lots overlooking greenbelts, lakes, fountains and waterfalls. New homes range from $250,000 to $650,000.



Eagle’s Ridge at Trophy Club: Trophy Club is an actual town, not a subdivision as many believe. Eagle’s Ridge overlooks an Arthur Hill-designed golf course and a two-acre park. With .3- to .5-acre lots available, over one-third have sold in less than a year. Homes range from S279,000 to $600,000 at an average cost of $ 100 per square foot. Resale prices are not available due to the newness of the division.



Starwood: This new limited-access community in Frisco of more than 500 acres features dramatic hilltop views, a two-acre park, wooded creeks, easy access to Legacy Park and the Tollway, and boasts an on-site cardiovascular fitness center and a private school. Opened in May 1997, only 213 lots out of 1,200 are available. Homes range from $260,000 to more than $1 million and are built on lots of 10,000 square feet to one acre.



Bridlewood: Named by The Wall Street Journal as one of the top communities in the United States. Bridlewood in Flower Mound features homes for both active seniors (empty-nesters) and large families. Amenities are daily-fee 18-hole golf course, clubhouse. swimming pool, parks and lakes. According to figures from nine builders, the average selling price is $334,000, average list is $278,000. Flower Mound is seven miles from D/FW Airport and 12 miles from the Alliance development. This area boasts many trees and rolling hills.

SELLING YOUR HOUSE:

Secret Tip #1

REDUCE CLUTTER

Attorney Judith Swift and husband Ron Wetherjng-ton, an anthropology professor at SMU, raised their family and lived 21 years in their Inwood Road home. Realtor Dave Perry-Miller suggested that they put away some of their art and anthropologic collection. Though some of the objects were “museum quality,” Perry-Miller told them it was important to reduce clutter in the house. The family took half of their art off the walls and put away almost all of Wetherington’s artifacts and collections. They completed other projects, such as repainting every surface and replacing appliances. The result was a fresh, clean, spacious look. The house, located on a busy street and in an area where the average number of days on the market is 174, sold in six weeks.-CD.

SELLING YOUR HOUS:



Secret Tip #2



MOVE OUT



The house Fran Bunch and her family are living in and trying to sell is owned by someone else. When the owner put his house on the market for $1,649 million, his agent suggested that he move out and that Bunch, an interior designer with very nice antiques, rugs, draperies, bedding and artwork and great taste, move in. The owner is now renting a few streets away. Bunch gets half of her fee (usually S2 per square foot) when she moves in and half when the house sells. Through her business, Interior Transformations, Bunch also works by the nomas a house stager with her client’s furnishings and accessories. She has the house ready to show (totally clean with fresh flowers and other subtle design touches) every morning when she leaves. The owner pays her fee, the mortgage, the utilities {except for cable and phone) and keeps the yard and pool. Bunch has lived in seven homes in the last two years. A University Park house on Windsor that had been on the market for one year sold just 30 days after Bunch moved in and staged it with her furnishings. A Highland Park home on Euclid that has been on the market for almost four years sold in 45 days with Bunch as the tenant. The average number of days on the market after she moves in is 90.-CD.

SELLING YOUR HOUSE:

Secret Tip #3

REARRANGE THE FURNITURE

When Doris Jacobs of Allie Beth Allman listed 6214 Deloache at $625,000, it had already been on the market for two years. The house was in great condition and the furniture and oriental rugs were nice, but everything seemed to be in the wrong place. What had been used as (he primary den became a sunroom when Jacobs took out all the den furniture and added plants and two rattan chairs. Den furniture was moved to another sitting area to create a cozy den in a place that made better 5i- sense for entertaining. She collected the 5^ exercise equipment from around the house and created an exercise room with a TV. With two small rooms off the master bedroom, Jacobs created an office and a sitting room. Several oriental rugs were out of scale for their original rooms, so Jacobs moved them all. The backyard furniture was rearranged into conversation groups. The entire process took Jacobs and the owner two evenings and cost $500 (for flowers and accessories); the house sold for $575,000 two days later.-CD.

SELLING YOUR HOUSE:

Secret Tip #4



HIRE A HOUSE STAGER



MANY REAL ESTATE AGENTS PAY PROFESSIONAL HOUSE stagers, with backgrounds in interior design and space planning, to come in and make the house more appealing. This can be especially valuable when an expensive home is outdated or there has been a divorce and half of the good stuff is gone. They work with the owner’s furniture and accessories, often going through closets and drawers and pulling out never-used wedding gifts and forgotten treasures. Julie Lord’s home on Rankin, close to SMU, had been on the market for 19 months when Tom Rhodes, the new listing agent from Abio and Associates, brought in house stager Hope Sexton.

“Stepping into the entry hall was like stepping back in time 25 years,” says Sexton. “The first thing potential buyers had seen was a forest of silk plants. Every room had a TV and every wall was covered with 1950s wallpaper.”

Sexton took down all the wallpaper and painted the walls a cream color. She also cleared out some rust-colored display shelves and repainted the shelves to match the cream walls. Sexton then took every piece of furniture out of the living room and replaced it with pieces from around the house: a couch from an upstairs nursery, a round table from a back room, two dining room chairs.

Sexton moved a beautiful marble-topped antique dresser from a bedroom to the entry hall and accented it with pieces she’d found in drawers. She removed 25 pictures from the dining-room walls and replaced them with one painting. By the time she was finished, Sexton had moved all silk plants and one-third of the furniture to the garage. Lord spent $2,000 on wallpaper removal and painting, $600 on accessories and $700 for Sexton’s fee, for a total of about $3,300. The house sold in 10 days for $322,000, just $7,000 below list price.-C.D.

SELLING YOUR HOUSE:

Secret Tip #5

PAINT IT WHITE

LIGHT AND BRIGHT IS IN SO DON*T BE SURPRISED IF AN AGENT suggests painting your 1980s dark-wood kitchen cabinets white. House stager Hope Sexton says white is always the right choice because it modernizes the house and leaves a blank slate for the buyer’s imagination. Buyers must be able to visualize their things in your house, so you don’t want them distracted by your tastes.-CD.

SELLING YOUR HOUSE

Secret Tip #6

CREATE CURB APPEAL

IF THEY LIKE IT FROM THE STREET, YOU’RE ONE-THIRD OF THE way there,” says real-estate agent Dave Perry-Miller. He I recommends repainting the trim and the front door, taking off storm doors or screens and eliminating any front yard clutter. Have your windows professionally washed. Hire a professional landscaper to mow and trim your landscape and plant seasonal color. In the winter months, he suggests, over-seed the front lawn with winter rye.

Some things simply have to go. “Burglar bars are the kiss of death,” says Perry-Miller. The price tag for curb appeal alone could cost a few thousand dollars, depending on the age and shape of the house, but Dallas buyers won’t pay top dollar for a property that looks shabby. Sloppiness or disorganization sends two negative messages to a potential buyer: There is a likelihood of deferred maintenance and the property has not been well maintained.-C.D.



SELLING YOUR HOUSE!

Secret Tip #7

ADD VALUE

ONE YOUNG COUPLE PAID $170,000 FOR THEIR HOUSE IN A desirable North Dallas location, then made good home improvement choices that really paid off when they decided to sell. They knocked out a wall to enlarge the kitchen and then installed new cabinets, Corian counterops, a porcelain sink and new appliances. They painted the outside and replaced exterior lighting with coach lamps. Every piece of hardware throughout the house was also replaced.

They kept the original tile in the bathrooms but replaced the commodes and added a marble sink top with new faucets. The couple spent $30,000 total ($20,000 in the kitchen alone) and sold the home for $280,000 this April after it had been on the market for only three hours.-CD.

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