3806 Walnut Hill Front

Not every home is a great buy because of the finish-out, the appliances, or the landscaping. Some of them are outstanding buys because of the lot. So while there are some things I love about 3806 Walnut Hill, a 1952 traditional ranch in the Marsh Lane subdivision, it’s the almost half acre lot that has me going ga-ga.


7317 Fieldgate Front

This home is a fantastic rental for someone building their dream home and in need of temporary housing, or someone who decided to capitalize in our scorching market and is still looking for the perfect house to move into. And if access and amenities are what you want, you really can’t beat this location.

This is one of those rentals that, when you come across it, you feel like you’ve struck gold! It’s only been on the market for two days, and considering how sought-after the Meadows is, well, I give it a week, max.


4242 Walnut Hill Front

Built in 1959 and reimagined as a contemporary home for today, this ranch at 4242 Walnut Hill is an excellent example of how you can convert an older, less-functional home into a showstopper. Let’s look at some “before” pictures, which show some of the hallmarks of this building style.

4242 Walnut Hill Before 4 4242 Walnut Hill Before 3 4242 Walnut Hill Before 2 4242 Walnut Hill BeforeSwag drapes really set it off in the formal living room, but you can definitely tell that this home was a time warp. Walls and walls and more walls make it very claustrophobic. And check out the carpet in the master bathroom — yikes! Located in Meadowood, though, this house has a wonderful asset in location. That’s probably why it was so attractive to investors, who have turned this home into an epic example of a contemporary ranch remodel.

4242 Walnut Hill Dining

From the living area with the cool fireplace straight across to the kitchen, you can practically see the entire house when you walk in the front door. It’s a far cry from the home’s choppy, walled-off beginning. This four-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bath home with more than 2,500 square feet is priced at $599,000, down from the original $649,000.

4242 Walnut Hill Living

The paint colors are modern — striking tone-on-tone grays and whites, that blend well with the stone and hardware selections in the kitchen, which is a total knockout. I love the island and the light fixtures, which are chic bell jar-style pendants that have tons of contemporary style without looking like spacecrafts hovering over your workspace.

4242 Walnut Hill Kitchen

And you’ll just adore the master bath. Not a hint of carpet or pepto pink ceramic tile. Just loads of glass and marble, with a brilliant divided vanity. Tons of storage and a beautiful stand-alone shower make it absolutely modern and stunning.

4242 Walnut Hill Master Bath

The backyard has a great stone patio with built-in planters and tons of grass for playing catch or burning off steam. You could definitely fit a garden back here, too, if you’re the sort with a green thumb.

4242 Walnut Hill BackyardIt really shows that structures built years ago can be rejuvenated with the right details. What do you think?



3409 Webb Garden Front

We just posted yesterday about what homebuyers are looking for according to the National Association of Realtors’ 2013 Homebuyer Survey. They want garages, fireplaces, backyards, and central air (which is a no-brainer for Texans!). Well, if you think you need to head north to the suburbs to get everything you want, just check out this great traditional in Walnut Gardens.

3409 Webb Garden Office

Situated north of Walnut Hill and east of Webb Chapel, this fantastic little enclave has tons of great homes that are being updated and loved, thanks to a great location and decent lot sizes. At 3409 Webb Garden Drive you get a completely updated home with vaulted ceilings, designer paint, gorgeous floors, and a two-car garage.

3409 Webb Garden Dining

With four bedrooms, three bathrooms, and more than 2,400 square feet, you get all the size and amenities that the suburbs offer without having to drive all over creation to get to the office. This home is on a corner lot, too, which means more room to garden and spread out. It’s listed by Susan Melnick of Virginia Cook Realtors for $285,000.

3409 Webb Garden Living

The kitchen features granite counters and a travertine backsplash that complement the gorgeous cabinets. I love the cool pendant light fixtures above the breakfast bar. It’s a spacious kitchen, with a huge eat-in area next to a bay window. Of course, you’ll find stainless steel appliances and upgraded fixtures in the kitchen, too.

3409 Webb Garden Kitchen

The master bedroom is a decent size at 16 x 14, but I’m more concerned about that door and where it leads. Is there a patio? Does it lead to the backyard? The listing info doesn’t tell you, and me, personally I would prefer to not have a door so darn close to my bed.

3409 Webb Garden Master

The master bath is completely updated with a granite vanity and stone-and-glass tile shower with a frameless glass surround. The fixures, which include a waterfall and directional shower, as well as double sinks, are all in oil-rubbed bronze. It’s pretty typical of what you see in updated masters today. Considering that there are two other full baths, I don’t think I will miss having a bathtub in the master.

3409 Webb Garden Master Bath

The backyard, well, it’s perfect for a small playset for a couple of kids to run around. There’s a few areas for a flower bed if that’s more you’re speed, and I really like the brick half-wall that separates the rest of the yard from the tile patio.

3409 Webb Garden Backyard

So what do you think. Is this a good value?

3747 Valley Ridge Front

Oh my gosh this house is adorable! Is it not perfect for newlyweds? Just think: It’s completely remodeled, has great appliances and gorgeous refinished floors, and it’s near Marsh Lane and Walnut Hill — an excellent location for privacy and access.

3747 Valley Ridge Living

This home, which is at 3747 Valley Ridge, has three bedrooms and two baths, two living areas, and a great back deck for a young couple who loves to entertain a few friends. Set up a grill and get a stereo, and it’s perfect. It’s an especially good first home for younger people who might be more accustomed to renting. I say that because with all of these new appliances and fixtures there’s little probability you’ll have to unexpected repairs or make major replacements for quite some time.

3747 Valley Ridge Kitchen

I have to say I do love the kitchen, too. I think the person who remodeled this home was smart to not add an island that would interrupt the kitchen’s flow from the living areas. The peninsula, which really showcases the granite countertops, has plenty of prep space and works great as a breakfast bar. There are stainless steel appliances, too, as well as a built-in refrigerator.

3747 Valley Ridge Master

I think the master bedroom is kind of small, which is perhaps highlighted by the way the bed is angled toward the corner, but it’s not prohibitively tiny. The master bath is small, too, and there’s no tub. Still, it has great neutral tile and will hold its value …

3747 Valley Ridge Master Bath

… which, come on, at $209,900 this house is a great deal! Coming in at 1,455 square feet, that puts this house at $144 per square foot! I bet you could even put a bid in for less than $200K and you’d have a great shot of getting this house.

3747 Valley Ridge Master Bath

So what do you think? Great deal?

Everyone seems to be moving to Dallas these days, especially people who are transferred or promoted by one of the billion corporations that call Dallas their headquarters. Finding housing is a big problem for folks moving to a brand-new place, so I’m going to make it easy for them.

This home — 7238 Joyce Way, to be exact — would be a fantastic home for an executive with upward trajectory just moving to Dallas. The location, which is just south of Walnut Hill and smack in the middle between Hillcrest and North Central Expressway, is perfect for someone still getting their bearings. And the price — $499,000 — won’t have you running for the hills, or the next promotion.

The home is nothing to sneeze at, either. This house, repped by Lori Sparks of Virginia Cook Realtors, has two living areas, four bedrooms, three bathrooms, a saltwater pool and a two-car garage totaling just less than 3,000 square feet.

This house was built in 1967, but there’s not a trace of original anything left on this home. If you’re moving to Dallas for a corporate relocation, you don’t want to buy a fixer-upper or a house you can’t invite your boss over to. No way, Jose. This house is practically pre-assembled and totally neutral.

The kitchen is very pretty, and will be great for dinner party prep once you ace that electric cooktop and route a gas line in there. Everything else is what you’d expect: Stainless, granite, fresh cabinets, and tumbled stone backsplash. There’s plenty of extra storage for plates and doo-dads in the breakfast nook, as well as a small wet bar with a wine fridge, which will be absolutely necessary when hosting your boss.

The master suite is large and slightly set apart from the rest of the house. The bedroom is  fairly standard, and two full-light doors divide the sleeping area from the lavatory. The master bath is your typical five-piece bath, with a rather standard shower stall and tub combo. The double vanities are average, too.

The backyard, that’s where this place has some real character. Check out the free-form saltwater pool with cascading river rocks. There’s also a decent-sized patio, which will fit a dining set and a grill, no problem. Maybe, just to spice things up a bit, you can negotiate the flying pig!

Just from looking at the front of 10323 Sherbrook, you wouldn’t say, “Well there’s a remodeled Midcentury Modern!” But once you step inside this Walnut Hill Manor home built in 1955, that’s exactly what you’ll be thinking.

It’s the clerestory windows that are a dead giveaway. That and the sunroom and rear patio.

Otherwise, well, there aren’t too many Mid-Mod touches left. That’s not to say the home isn’t unique. I mean, check out the kitchen. You know, the one with NO WALLS! That’s right! There are no backsplashes! No upper cabinets! It’s just counters!

You know what would be fun? Filming your own cooking show here! There’s got to be a food blogger out there who really needs a space like this! It would be PERFECT!

Now, the rest of the home is pretty much standard, save for the green Daltile bathroom that has been preserved.

I guess what I’m saying is that one of you Midcentury Modern-ophiles needs to snap this baby up and make it Mad Men worthy! And at $399,000, it’s totally doable!

In fact, take out all of the furniture and it’s pretty much a blank slate! You could totally have fun in here!

Want to see all 2,197 square feet of this three bedroom, two bath home? The open house is Sunday, July 1, from 2 to 4 p.m.

I am just so darn giddy with excitement, I had to go search and see if I really did tell you this, and I DID!!!, last November when Central Market was under construction at Preston Royal. I had heard from a reliable source that Trader Joe’s was going to plant its second or third Dallas store at the northwest corner of North Central Expressway and Walnut Hill Lane.

What fabu news for the neighborhoods! The famous West Coast foodie store that you have to drag me out of in Santa Fe or Cali will anchor a new development to be built on the vacant 42-acre property on that corner that is also to include an R.E.I.

Once upon a time, many moons ago, that corner was the Willow Creek apartments and shopping center, which were torn down starting in 2007, after a fire. Provident Realty planned to build a $300 million urban shopping and housing village on the tract. But the project stalled during the recession and bank credit crunch. Wells Fargo foreclosed on the tract in late 2009. I recall an auction where no one bought. Kroenke Holdings bought the land from Wells Fargo Bank in 2010 and formed a partnership with Provident Realty to continue development. Isn’t it nice that despite the bust, this project still came together?

Seems the stinkers at Provident Realty Advisors and Kroenke Holdings of Missouri have been covertly working with Trader Joe’s since last summer, planning a 14,000 square foot store as well as a variety of other developments on the corner, including several hundred units of multifamily residential at the same time. Keeping us in the dark, eh?

Trader Joe’s is opening its first two Texas stores on June 15 in Fort Worth and Houston; nine locations have been announced for Texas so far, including two more locations in Houston and one each in Austin and San Antonio.

According to Steve Brown, Trader Joe’s is “known for its value-priced store brands, kitschy interiors and zany marketing campaigns, Trader Joe’s has been in business since 1958. The company has more than 370 stores in 32 states.” Me, I like Two Buck Chuck, the ginger cookies and everything in the prepared food case.

The neighborhood is already AA Central: Houston-based Spec’s Wines, Spirits & Finer Foods has a 43,000-square-foot store (Good Lord!) near the southeast corner of Central and Walnut Hill, and is opening up another location at Preston-Royal where Blockbuster used to be. (Talk about the maturing of the community: it used to be a Toys R Us!) Then Total Wine & More, a Maryland wine and beer retailer, is opening a store in this quad. As my friend Wyman Elrod says:

“There will soon be large liquor and wine merchants on all four corners of this intersection. You should move to The Meadows or Glen Lakes and walk to get your wine! You probably can even have it delivered like Ozarka!”

Another coolio thing about this deal: the neighboring Homeowners Associations really worked with the developers on the site:

“As most of you know, the 42-acre property at the northwest corner of Walnut Hill and Central Expressway that was owned by Provident Realty Advisors was foreclosed on by Wells Fargo late last year. Because the Wells Fargo loan pre-dated the private deed restrictions (“PDR”) that The Meadows, Glen Lakes and Windsor Park had collectively negotiated with Provident, the PDR has been negated. However, the zoning that we negotiated remains in place (see www.themeadowsna.org for a copy of the approved zoning). Because of continued support from our City Council representative and the expectation that any future owner will likely seek changes to the existing zoning, we believe we will have reasonable influence in what ultimately transpires on the site. As a reminder, current zoning includes, among other things, a requirement that the western-most 385 feet (approximately 17 acres) be solely residential, with no more than 140 residences that must be townhomes (rather than condos, apartments, etc). Wells Fargo has recently opened up bidding for the site. The Joint Task Force (made up of representatives from The Meadows, Glen Lakes and Windsor Park) will continue to work with potential developers on behalf of our respective neighborhoods. The JTF is currently taking the approach that, rather than express upfront what our neighborhoods want on the site, we will wait and see what the future owner/developer has in mind.”