Posted by: Hewitt & Habgood Realty Group | July 24, 2017

Prepare Your Home Before You Travel

Empty airport lounge shot at night in front of the city skyline with airplane taking off against the bright lit of the city.
Steve Smith

Whether you’re planning an exotic escape, or taking a quick weekend trip somewhere fun, summer is a time to relax and enjoy a change of scenery.

It’s important to take the necessary measures to close up your home before leaving. The tips below will ensure you can stay worry-free while away.

Leave your keys with a neighbor you trust
If you have a trustworthy neighbor, leave them a copy of your key as well as your contact information. While you’re away, they can check your home, collect mail, and be available in case of emergency.

* Lock up
Take extra precautions by hiding your valuables or placing them in a safe. Be sure to lock each window, door, and fence in your home. If you have a garage, park your car inside.

* Be mindful of energy consumption
Electronics can still expend energy when not in use. Unplug any devices such as appliances, computers, gaming consoles, and televisions to prevent hazards and save on your energy bill. Turn off your air conditioning, or leave it at a level to keep any pets comfortable, and put your water heater in “vacation mode.”

Plan ahead for pets
Make arrangements for someone to feed and watch your pet. If you will be away for an extended period of time, you should consider having someone housesit and stay overnight to care for your animals.

Avoid unnecessary smells
Leaving food that will expire soon in your refrigerator while you’re away will only become more of a hassle when you get back. Avoid smells and messy cleanup upon return by discarding almost-expired food before you leave. Be sure to remove all trash before you leave, as well.

* Time your lights
Invest in a few timers for lamps in your home. Program them to turn on lamps near windows to mimic the appearance of activity. This can help prevent intruders who may target homes that have been dark for a few days.

Posted by: Hewitt & Habgood Realty Group | July 11, 2017

7 Etiquette Rules for Home Sellers

Steven Smith – Architectural Digest

If you’re trying to sell your home, you’ve probably scrutinized it, staged it, and scrubbed it down as if the folks from Architectural Digest were stopping by for a cover shoot. OK, so it’s in immaculate shape — but your home isn’t the only thing under scrutiny here. You are, too. That’s right: No matter how nice your home is, your behavior can also affect how buyers feel about making an offer.

Below are seven etiquette rules sellers should follow to show their home — and themselves — in the best possible light.

Leave — Sure, you’re dying to know if prospective buyers will love what you’ve done with the kitchen, but agents agree sellers should not be there lurking in the shadows during an open house or showing.

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1052 Kessler Pkwy Kitchen

 

Take your pets with you — You may think your dog is the cutest ever, but not everyone is bound to share that opinion. In addition to having allergies, some home shoppers may not be in the market for a run-in with an animal they don’t know.

Move your car — Make it easy for visitors to park and view your home. No one likes parking issues. Having them is a sure way to get a viewing off to a bad start.

Offer some refreshments — House hunters can get parched and peckish. You can help. Putting out a few small bottled waters in a bowl of ice is always appreciated, along with some light, easy grab-and-go sort of refreshments like mints or cookies.

3-pool spa sun

707 Tenna Loma Pool

 

Be patient waiting for feedback­ — Of course, you’re dying to know what buyers thought of your home, but that information may not flow back to you instantaneously. It’s reasonable to ask for feedback from your agent after the showing, but understand it may take a day or two for the buyer’s agent to respond.

Don’t be greedy — Who doesn’t want top dollar for their home? But an unwillingness to negotiate can kill a possible deal and keep your home on the market long after you were hoping to be unpacking at your new place.

Listen to the professionals ­­— If your Realtor has some suggestions for improvements that may help sell your home faster, take them to heart but don’t take them personally. Keep emotions out and listen to what a licensed, trained, professional has to say about your house.

To find out more about our team for all your residential real estate needs, visit hewitthabgood.com.

Posted by: Hewitt & Habgood Realty Group | June 5, 2017

Top 10 Tricks for Staging & Selling Your Home Fast!

By Susan C. Kims – Houzz Contributor, Ebby Halliday Blog

A real estate slump is a real drag, especially if you’re trying to sell your abode. So stage your pad to beat out the competition and draw in more prospective buyers. Most buyers have a hard time looking past pink walls and green shag carpet, so do the legwork for them and present their “new home” on a silver platter. If done smartly, the money spent staging will be made up tenfold in the house sale — and you keep all the hot accessories for yourself afterwards (or unload them on Craigslist). Here are some tips Houzz.com used when staging a San Francisco condo.

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  1. Clear it all out. Move every single thing out of your place. That goes for your beloved troll doll collection, leopard skin rug, and the couch your mom claims you were born on. As sentimental as these things might seem to you, buyers want to be able to imagine themselves in your space; seeing clothes in the closet, family photos, and random tchotchkes prevents them from doing so. Then place back in only necessary furniture, keeping in mind that you want the space to look big, clean, spacious, and uncluttered. This isn’t supposed to be a functional room. You can lose the TV, stereo, side tables, and ottomans if it creates more room.

 

  1. Freshen up the style. You may be a diehard Shabby Chic follower, but even Rachel Ashwell would agree that not everyone is. Aim for a style that most buyers would like, even if it’s not your cup of tea. Furnishings that seem homey and comforting — yet fresh and contemporary — give an aura that your home is updated and well cared for. Neutrals work best; just add colorful touches here and there.  Think  bright rugs to punch in some color and pattern to an otherwise boxy white room.

6-DR 2 Kit

 

 

  1. Mirror, mirror on the wall. Who’s the fairest one of all? Your room, that’s who. Use mirrors liberally to make your area look bigger, lighter, brighter, and encourage sunlight to bounce all over the walls.

 

  1. Don’t forget the details. Set the table. It’s easy to do and makes a big impact. Buyers walk in and instantly feel welcome, like as if they’re coming over for dinner. Light clean- or non-scented candles, place plush towels and fancy soap in the bathrooms, a breakfast tray on the bed, and a pretty book on the coffee table. If all goes as planned, they’ll want to stay over forever.

 

  1. Play with texture. Wallpaper, pillows, rugs, blankets, baskets, and other tactile accessories can play up texture in a room. It’s an easy way for anyone, even my colorblind husband, to add warmth to a blah room. Try grass cloth wallpaper on plain walls that need a little oomph, such as in this master bedroom, where buyers expect to see a little more luxury and style.

 

  1. Smart accessories. Clear the kitchen counter of appliances, spice racks, towels, and cooking utensils and leave only a few things: a couple of cookbooks and a shiny tea kettle. Random? Not at all. The gourmet cookbooks give the impression that this kitchen is built for serious cooking. It’s called “branding” — and it’s what advertisers bombard you with every day. You’re advertising your home, so buyers need not know that your cooking skills are actually a fire hazard to your own kitchen. The cookbooks here say culinary creations might have been whipped up here.

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  1. Small furniture, big space. It’s the trick of the trade: downsize your furnishings to upsize the room. Get rid of the king-size bed, two nightstands,  dressers, or bookcases; can you imagine what rooms looked like with all that stuff crammed in there?

 

  1. Create vignettes. Set up little scenes that help buyers visualize their potential life in this home. For a nursery, I wanted the buyer to walk in and say, “How lovely, I could totally see my future baby sitting in that chair nicely reading a book.”

 

  1. Don’t forget the outdoor areas. Those spaces add as much interest for the buyer as the interior rooms. Try adding inexpensive bamboo sheeting to the rail, an outdoor rug, small table and bistro chairs, and a few plants. Now the buyers will see a formerly blank space as an additional living area. Bonus.

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  1. White is nice. When in doubt, use white in the bathroom. It spells clean, and that’s what buyers want in a bathroom. Plus, it matches the toilet. (Note the absence of bath rugs, toothbrushes, and fuzzy toilet covers).

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Posted by: Hewitt & Habgood Realty Group | May 17, 2017

Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate Celebrates 10 Years with 140+ Open Houses

citywide open house tour

Sunday, May 21st, marks the 10th anniversary of Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate. The brand, which was absorbed into the Ebby Halliday Family of Companies a decade ago, has steadily risen in the ranks of area brokerages over a relatively short period of time. It had ascended to the number one spot for total sales volume in Dallas proper by the end of 2016 and has maintained this placement through Q1 of 2017 (according to MLS data for Areas 11, 12, 14, 16, 17, 18 and 25).

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To celebrate the milestone — an impressive achievement given the company’s formidable competition and the prolific nature of the industry – agents will be holding open 140+ homes citywide today, as well as handing out token gifts to attendees as a “thank you” for supporting the brand.

“In its infancy, Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate survived the 2008-2010 market downturn,” said Ebby Halliday CFO Ron Burgert, “and continued not only to grow, but to thrive. This is a testament to the caliber and resolve of the many agents who have remained loyal through the years. They’ve worked hard to make sure clients understand the brand’s core values of service, excellence and unparalleled market knowledge. Once you get someone to experience this difference for themselves, they typically make the shift to seeing a DPM agent as their ‘agent for life.’”

To promote the open home tour — extending from Southlake to Rockwall, and Prosper to South Dallas — the firm has taken out five digital billboards and two full page ads in the Dallas Morning News and ramped up its email efforts and social media presence.

The Hewitt & Habgood group is proud to represent North Oak Cliff on Sunday by hosting five Open Houses from 2-4pm in different areas of North Oak Cliff including Stevens Park Estates, Wynnewood North, and Bishop Heights. Visit HewittHabgood.com for more information about these five Open Houses.

For a complete list of Dave Perry-Miller homes that will be held this Sunday visit openhouse.daveperrymiller.com.

Posted by: Hewitt & Habgood Realty Group | February 28, 2017

Top Spots for Shopping Throughout DFW

Living in the DFW area means you’ll have plenty of access to great shopping. Plenty of malls, such as the North Park Mall and The Galleria are found throughout the area. Along with the many shopping malls, there are several local boutiques throughout the area.

Finding a great place to shop shouldn’t be all that difficult no matter which neighborhood you live in. Here are some of the top shopping options found throughout DFW.

Highland Park Village

highland-park-villageA shopping center with a ton of history, the Highland Park Village opened in 1931. It was the first shopping center of its kind in the entire country. The open-air center has become a town square and a National Historic Landmark. Some of the shops you will find here include, Harry Winston, Hermes, Escada and Jimmy Choo.

Allen Premium Outlets

Found in the suburb of Allen, the Allen Premium Outlets is one of the top choices in DFW for shopping. It’s just a short drive from the northern neighborhoods and provides a complex full of high-quality shops. Some of the top shops found here include Adidas, Coach, Polo Ralph, Banana Republic, Nine West, Gap, Perry Ellis, Puma, Calvin Klein and Michael Kors.

Plenty of other shops are also found throughout this complex. It’s the place for luxury goods at a lower price. You’ll also find a food court here along with a few entertainment options.

The Shops at Willow Bend

This set of shops may be a bit smaller than some of the other DFW malls, but it still provides plenty of good choices. Apple, J. Crew, Neiman Marcus and Anthropologie are all found here, along with more than 100 other shops.

Galleria

galleriaMaybe the most well-known shopping mall in Dallas, the Galleria is an upscale place for shops, restaurants and boutiques. You’ll find Gucci here, along with Old Navy, Saks Fifth Avenue, Nordstrom’s, Banana Republic, Sephora, Oakley and Macy’s. There’s also an ice skating rink and a jungle-themed play area for kids here.

Other top places for shopping in Dallas-Fort Worth include:

  • Northpark Center
  • The Shops at Park Lane
  • West Village
  • Town East Mall
  • Grapevine Mills
  • Firewheel Town Center

If you’re moving to the Dallas area or just move here, try one of these malls for your shopping needs.

Posted by: Hewitt & Habgood Realty Group | February 23, 2017

Hottest New Subdivisions Found in Dallas

Finding the right community when moving to Dallas is very important. You want to get settled in and enjoy your new home quickly. With the way the DFW area continues to expand, it’s important to look at the hottest new subdivisions found throughout Dallas.

Oak Park Gardens

oak-lawn-1

With plenty of two-story homes found throughout this subdivision with proximity to Oak Lawn, Lemmon, Highland Park and Dallas North Tollway, residents moving in here are rather pleased. The subdivision offers unique floor plans throughout with plenty of highlights. Oak Park Gardens is known for pocket parks and plenty of green space. A covered pavilion and swimming pool are also found here with homes ranging from 1,800 to 3,709 square feet.

HighGrove at West Kessler

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Another popular subdivision in Dallas, HighGrove is found at the corner of Marycliff and Stevens Forest in Oak Cliff with 53 single-family homes. With a location in the very popular Bishop Arts District, this is one place many new residents are flocking to. The community provides low maintenance living with beautiful views of Downtown Dallas and Stevens Park Golf Course.

The Heights at Oak Lawn

heights-at-oak-lawn

Those seeking a downtown community with plenty of luxury and convenience will enjoy living at The Heights at Oak Lawn. The community includes 14, three-story homes with plenty of unique architectural elements, easy access to the city and plenty of living space. Homes range from 1,813 to 2,335 square feet and provide one of the top locations in the city.

Villas at Kimsey Place

kimsey

Another very hot community, Villas At Kimsey Place provides three-story, single-family homes in the Oak Lawn neighborhood close to UT Southwestern, The Medical District and Dallas Love Field. Residents living here are close to top attractions, Inwood/Love Field Dart Station, and plenty of entertainment and so much more.

There are several great subdivisions and communities found throughout the Dallas area. The Bishop Arts District provides a number of very popular communities and it’s growing quickly. If you’re looking for one of the hottest subdivisions, check out the communities listed above.

Posted by: Hewitt & Habgood Realty Group | February 20, 2017

Downtown Dallas: A True Playground for Families

skyline1

While many may think of Downtown Dallas as the place for business professionals, it’s far more than just a busy business district. There are plenty of places for shopping, eating and for entertainment. It doesn’t matter how young or old you are, the downtown area of Dallas has something you’ll enjoy.

Families will find great attractions for kids with many of the museums participating in the Kids Club. This specific club actually hosts six different arts & crafts events every year, as well.

Top Museums for the Family

nasher-sculpture-centerIt starts with the Nasher Sculpture Center with Target First Saturdays and the Crow Collection of Asian Art. From there, families can enjoy the Dallas Museum of Art with First Tuesdays designed specifically for those children five and under.

The Perot Museum of Nature and Science provides hands-on experiences through the Art Lab and Discovery Days. If you want to go from one museum to another, you can do so by riding the D-Link bus for free.

The Dallas Farmers Market

dallas-farmers-market

You may not think of a farmers market as a place to take the entire family, but on Fridays, the Dallas Farmers Market features live music. The Mama Ida’s Teaching Garden is also found here helping provide a bit of fun and education for the kids.

The second Saturday of each month also provides a walkabout with a Chef showing you the best ingredients and recipes at the market. Other special events are also help throughout the year at the Dallas Farmers Market.

A Few Other Family Attractions

35027-dallas-heritage-villageIf you want to discover a bit of history, the Dallas Heritage Village found at Old City Park is the place to go. You’ll learn all about the city from 1840 to about 1910. The second Wednesday of every month is also the Nip and Tuck’s Barnyard Bodies program here, which provides plenty of fun for the little ones.

Of course, a stop in at the J. Erik Jonsson Central Library may be just what you need. They provide plenty of events including Sunday family movies, crafts, music classes and plenty more.j-erik-jonsson-central-library

No matter what you’re family enjoys doing, there’s plenty for all ages in Downtown Dallas.

Posted by: Hewitt & Habgood Realty Group | February 15, 2017

Why do People Enjoy Moving to Dallas?

dallasIf moving to Dallas is on your radar, you may want to know the top reasons others have relocated. Of course, a new job or being close to family may be your reason, but there are several reasons why people love moving to Dallas.

About 300 people move to the Dallas Metro area every single day. With good weather, plenty of culture, a healthy housing market and a good job market, it’s not surprising. Here are some of the top reasons why people enjoy moving to Dallas.

Growth

In 2014, Dallas was the third fastest growing city in the entire country. The economy brings many to Dallas and with the sixth best GDP in the country; it’s a popular place for relocation.

Big Companies Galore

Large, Fortune 500 companies are found all throughout the area with 21 in total. Dallas has the second most Fortune 500 companies in the nation and a very low unemployment rate, which was just 2.8% in 2015. It’s also rated as the second best city in the United States for new college graduates.

Plenty of Things to Do

dallas-sportsWith multiple pro sports teams, museums, art galleries and amusement parks, there’s plenty for residents to do all throughout Dallas. Some of the country’s best golf courses are located in Dallas, and it’s well-known as a great destination for foodies. The city also provides the largest urban arts district found in the United States.

Good Weather

The climate is a bit of a draw, as well. With average temperatures sitting around 76 degrees as the high and 55 degrees as the low, the weather draws some to the area.

High Wages/Low Cost of Living

The wages in Dallas are above the national average, while the cost of living is rather low. This allows residents to enjoy their money more without needing as much to cover regular living expenses.

Good Schools

smuFamilies often relocate to Dallas for the excellent schools. Some of the suburbs, such as Frisco and McKinney provide excellent schools from pre-school on up. In addition, Southern Methodist University and Texas Christian University are both here. Both rank in the top 10 for Texas Universities.

Dallas is also where you will find two of the highest rated high schools in the entire country.

There are plenty of great reasons to move to Dallas. No matter why you want to relocate to Dallas, you’re sure to find it as a great city to call home.

attAT&T and Dallas are in the planning stages of creating a new site in Downtown Dallas with plenty of dining, shopping and greenspace. AT&T wants to invest millions to renovate buildings on the site for restaurant, entertainment and retail spaces.

The spot they are looking at will be called the AT&T Discovery District. It will become an urban-tech center with wide sidewalks, entertainment venues and landscaping throughout. Workers, visitors and residents of the Downtown area will enjoy new places to relax, dine, connect and shop.

An Innovative Space for All of Dallas to Enjoy

AT&T has made Dallas their home and they want to grow with it. This space is part of the plan for growth and they expect the innovation to help attract new people to the south part of Downtown Dallas. There could be many economic benefits for the area restaurants, hotels and other businesses.

While AT&T is taking on a large portion of the project, they are not acting alone in this. DART, The City of Dallas and Downtown Dallas Inc., along with some local businesses are all involved in reshaping the south Downtown Dallas area.

att-dallasIn 2008, AT&T moved its’ headquarters to Dallas and they have doubled since then. The company provides about 5,700 jobs to the area in the four-building complex found at Akard and Commerce streets. They have also invested about $100 million in renovating the outside and inside of the headquarters buildings.

AT&T has a goal of not only providing their employees with a great place to work, but also providing visitors, residents and other workers in Dallas with a great outdoor destination. They want the AT&T Discovery District to become a popular gathering place for residents and tourists.

The hope is to provide free Wi-Fi throughout the area, event space, retail locations and plenty of public art spaces. It will be very well landscaped with fountains, wider sidewalks and plenty of seating. All of the plans fall in line with the Downtown Dallas 360 plan, as well.

Posted by: Hewitt & Habgood Realty Group | February 6, 2017

5 Tips for Winning a Dallas Bidding War on a House

bidding-warWhen you get involved in a bidding war in Dallas, there are some ways you can go about winning it. With the right tips, you can put yourself in the house you want without losing the bidding war. Here are five tips to help you win the war.

Choose the Right Real Estate Agent

Winning the bidding war starts with the real estate agent. A seasoned professional with experience in the Dallas market is your best bet. This person is the one that will lead your team during a bidding war to ensure you don’t try to submit a bid higher than necessary, as well as know the nuances of the contract that sellers are looking for to make your offer the most attractive offer. You don’t just choose a Realtor for their knowledge but also their ability to negotiate the best deal for you. With over 78 combined years of experience the Hewitt & Habgood group has successfully closed over 2,322 transactions. We certainly have the track record of helping buyers achieve their dream of a new home, even in the most competitive circumstances.

Get the Right Lender

Often, your real estate agent can recommend a good lender. Regardless of the lender you choose, it’s necessary to get one that will be available when you need them. Sometimes, you have to get a pre-approved letter for a larger amount than you originally received during a bidding war. A local lender might just be the right choice.

Put Together a Plan

planGoing into a bidding war without a good plan may cost you more than you want to spend. However, with a good plan, you can submit the right offer helping to ensure you get the property for the right price. Often, it’s not time to try to save money when you go into a bidding war or cut corners.

If you’re trying to cut corners with your budget, you may want to avoid properties with multiple offers. However, those looking to win the war, need to work with their agent to put together a very attractive offer. This is your plan and if it’s as strong as you can make it, you might just win the war.

Avoid Contingencies

Sellers are more likely to choose the offer with the least contingencies during a bidding war. If the prices are all about the same, but one offer includes a contingency upon the buyer selling their home, the seller will probably choose a different offer.

It’s best if you can put in an offer with no contingencies at all. However, when this isn’t possible, make sure your offer is as strong as possible. What does a strong offer look like? Ask a Realtor!

Use a Hard Deadline

deadlineWhenever you want to win a bidding war, you need to use a hard deadline. This gives you the ability to move on to another property; if necessary. Make the deadline reasonable, but make sure you get a response from the seller by a certain date or the offer becomes void.

Getting involved in a bidding war can be a bit difficult, but with the right team you can win the war. Start with the right agent and you’ll have someone to help you submit the winning bid.

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