Richardson, TX Real Estate News

By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
This past year, many people griped and moaned about the new registration tags for our cars.  They're were much bigger than the previous years and they had this awful, cloudy, almost clear boarder with the Texas Flag in the middle...  It was huge and it obstructs some view out the front window.So, with enough people saying how ugly it was and the cloudy boarder looking bad, they changed it.  You would think that was a good thing, BUT, they changed it so the border is now blue instead of cloudy and there's no flagged background, it;s white.  There is a tiny red, white, and blue Texas graphic... but it's the exact same size as last year's!  YUCK! Now, instead of having a small obstruction of view, there's going to be a much larger one since it's a dark navy blue they're using...Man, some p...
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
It was announced yesterday that eHomeshowings.com has been bought by CSS, Centralized Showing Services.  It was inevitable.  EHS was never as big as CSS.  I used CSS when I was with a previous broker, so when I had to sign up with EHS, a much smaller company, I was disappointed.  I love being able to call one number to schedule all my appointments, and I get a little irritated when I have to call multiple numbers.  Well, to be signed up myself with EHS, I was making sure all other agents always had to call at least 2 numbers if scheduling multiple showings.In my area, you must be signed up where your broker is signed up, so there was not an option for me when I switched brokers.  I am so glad to be back with the big-dog of scheduling showings, and hopefully my sellers won't have to tell...
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
I truly believe there is a reason for everything... the latest event that happened to fuel this theory more is that I met my grandmother for the first time in almost 18 years and I have to thank real estate for that.If I wasn't in real estate, I would have had no reason to be at the title company a couple of weeks ago.  If I wasn't there, I wouldn't have been able to see a familiar name on a folder.  A name that I had not seen in years!  After a few phone calls, I spoke with the buyer's agent who then called me on a three-way conference call to be able to talk with my grandmother.  After a couple of hours, we decided we needed to meet, so we met for lunch last week.  I told my mother about this a couple of days ago and my mom wants to meet her!!  In so many ways, life is not fair... but...
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
I just wanted to remind everyone about National Night Out on August 1.  It's coming up pretty quick.  This is a great way to meet your neighbors and create new friendships.  I've only been in my neighborhood for about 10 months, so I'm definitely looking forward to meeting new people.I really want to make friends with my neighbors across the street as they're putting in a new pool!  We've passed pleasantries with a wave and smile, but not real talking.  Also, listings are popping up right and left around me, and my name is not on any of those signs.If we get a certain amount of people to show up, we get to keep the Crime Water signs within the community.  All that's asked of us is to bring canned goods and something to share.  My street has been assigned "Cold Bottled Water."  I guess t...
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
Big Town Mall in Mesquite started demolision, but it was just a procedure as the mall has been dead for years.  Me? I say, "Where the heck is Big Town?  I've never heard of it!"  I've been here for 22 years and never heard of Big Town Mall.It was the first in the Southwest to be fully enclosed and air conditioned and opened in 1959. It was fourth in the country.  It was apparently over 77 acres and even had a small amusement park for the kids, but again, I say, what's Big Town?Big Town, since all stores had pulled out by about 2001, was actually a staging area for Katrina victims.  It was also in the movie True Stories in  1986, yet another movie I've never heard of. I guess I never heard of this mall because the main mall in Mesquite opened in 1971 only 5 miles from Big Town.  Town Eas...
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
Money Magazine did their usual rankings for this year and four Dallas areas made the top 100 list for the best places to live: Carrollton, Denton, Plano, and Richardson. Not to be biased, but i moved to Richardson 22 years ago and currently still reside here, so I could have told you Richardson was a great place to live!!other rankings are:Highest Income:#5 Flower Mound with $104,921#22 Allen with $92,404Job Growth:#2 Allen with 55% #4 Frisco with 53%#8 McKinney with 40.1% (mckinney had no where to go but up)#23 Flower Mound with 31.1%And the most important was Body Mass Index:all cities tied with 25.4, but were still ranked in an order ofDenton #14, Flower Mound #15, & Ft Worth #16
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
Verbal contracts are not held up in a Real Estate transaction.  Everything must be in writing.  All terms of everything must be discussed.  I love it when an out of town buyer tells me to just call up the listing agent and ask if such and such price is ok.  I'm like, we need more than just a price.  I need to know the amount of earnest money you'll be putting up, how much time you want to inspections, do you want a home warranty, when will we close, will possession be given at closing and funding or will there be a lease back... as I list off all these questions and more, people's eyes just start to bug out.I understand in some areas, people can write a letter of intent and then fill out the full contract later, but this is not how real estate works in the Dallas market.  Letters of Int...
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
I always thought DFW was in the top 10 of largest metropolotan areas, but I guess I was wrong.  People always think Ft Worth is larger than it really is, but it's actually a small fraction of the metroplex, whereas Dallas holds well over the majority of the population.  Granted, Ft Worth had the largest amount of growth last year, by 21,500 and percentage growth is high, but percentage growth is only high because the original population count was low.For all of Tarrant County, the population is 1,702,250.For all of Dallas County, the population is 2,383,300.For the main counties in between, you have Collin County at 690,500 and Denton County at 578,500.Overall, the ranking for the largest metropolotan area encompasses 16 counties.The entire artice can be found here.
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
Can you believe the price of gas these days??  We just hit an all-time high of $3.015 across the country.  The high we beat was set in September of 2005 and it was at $3.0117.I've been asked many times if the price of gas is going to change my business and I keep saying no.  However, I did give a referral to an agent last week because the buyer's price range was only $100k and he was looking in an area that's 45 minutes away... normally, I would have jumped to help anyone that I could, but decided taking the referral fee was well worth it in this case.The average in Dallas/Ft Worth is at $2.92 according to the 5PM news on NBC on Friday.
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
I can't wait for this weekend!  We have had 10 days in a row of triple digit temperatures.  We even hit 107 earlier this week, which was the highest recorded temperature in over 3 years!  This weekend, we will be dropping to 95 degrees!!  Can you believe it??  95 degrees, possibly 94 degrees!!Actually, can you believe that we're all excited about 95 degrees?  I mean, if the cold front were to be in the 80's, that would be one thing, but it's still going to be in the mid-90's and, yet, everyone is still excited.  There is also a small chance of rain!  YIPPIE!!  I can't wait for some rain as the yards and landscaping definitely need more water!Stay warm this weekend.  I would hate for you to catch a cold by being out in the "cold" front!
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
A new development is slated to start next month in Frisco, Crosswinds.  This will be 1000 acres of Residential and parks off Lebanon and west of the Tollway.  It looks as though the lot sizes might be a bit larger than what we're used to seeing these days.  The original plot was for 5100 houses and now it's only going to have 3228 houses.  The reason for this was to have some larger green, open areas, but hopefully this means it won't be a normal track-home neighborhood.So many of my buyers are sick of the neighborhoods where you can reach out and touch your neighbor.  They're always counting the number of windows that overlook a backyard of a potential new home.There is also a survey conducted on whether or not Frisco is building too much. Results, thus far, are:71.65% say Yes, the sma...
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
With the latest statistics coming out, it looks as though the North Texas area has actually seen some apprciation instead of just being "flat" as most people would say it's been. Compared to the same period of 2005, the first half of 2006 showed 5% appreciation!  Granted, we still have around 44,000 active listings on the market, but average sales prices are about 97-98% of asking prices.  I wouldn't say it's a buyer's market, but it's not a seller's market either.Housing bubble? What bubble? No one can get rich in Dallas with only 5% appreciation. Would we like higher appreciation? Of course!! But, I don't think it'll happen any time soon until we can see average salaries increase. If houses increase but salaries remain the same, who can afford those houses as they go up and up?Here's ...
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By Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
(Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com)
When I first got into real estate, I had just turned 24 and I looked about 18. It was no wonder people always asked my age and how long I was in the business. I always had to prove myself as to why they should use me as a newer agent...Now that I'm past the five year mark, and at the end of my sixth year, I love this new study that came out. Researchers followed 55,000 properties in the Dallas/Ft Worth area. The averages of these properties showed an average days on the market at 90 days and an average sales price of $175,270.What the study tracked was how long the agents had been in the business. "Sellers using listing agents with less than two years of experience received 1.1% less or a house compared with sellers who used agents with two to five years of experience, and the marketing...
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