The tax reform proposal by the House Ways and Means Committee would eliminate the Historic Tax Credit. The Statler Hotel in Dallas was a project that benefited from the credit (Photo courtesy Hilton Hotels).

A plan to eliminate the Historic Tax Credit by the House Ways and Means Committee as part of its proposed tax reform bill will likely stymie efforts to continue preservation.

We have the details on what the HTC does for preservation efforts, and what it could mean if it was eliminated over on CandysDirt.com.

insuranceWhile Hurricane Harvey insurance claims are the first thought these days, every homeowner should know about a change to Texas homeowners insurance law that will go into effect on Friday.

House Bill 1744 was signed into law May 27 by Gov. Greg Abbott. Billed as tort-reform legislation that would reduce the opportunity for insurance fraud, some now say the law may very well get its first stress test in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.

The law reduces the penalties insurance companies can face if they settle claims for too little, and it lessens the chance the companies will have to pay the homeowner’s attorneys fees if the homeowner sues. It also protects individual agents from things like diminished credit scores if they are individually sued.

The bill addresses all weather-related damage — including floods, wildfires, hail, and hurricanes.

We take a deeper look at the change and what you need to know here.

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If you’ve dreamed of vacationing in Taos, New Mexico, Crested Butte, Colo., or Destin, Flor., mark your calendars for a fabulous silent auction offering stays at three luxury vacation homes in those locations.

The No Place Like Home vacation home silent auction event will benefit Austin Street Center, a nonprofit that has provided emergency shelter, food, and clothing to the most vulnerable homeless men and women in Dallas for 30 years.

“By leveraging vacation properties owned by Austin Street Center supporters and friends, we will be able to provide a unique opportunity to both our donors and auction winners,” said Becca Leonard, development director at Austin Street Center. “Donors will generate much-needed funds for Austin Street at little to no cost to themselves, and attendees will have the chance to win a stay at one of many fabulous spots around the country—only their vacation will benefit the homeless here in Dallas.”

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Party Line Real Estate – Webisode 1 from Party Line on Vimeo.

Hey guys, listen up. I’ve finally got my own TV Show! It’s called Party Line Real Estate, it’s loaded with real-time Real Estate news, and you are going to LOVE IT! 

I LOVE IT when Real Estate agents get together and TALK! After all, that’s how they network! And we know there is no better way to network than at a party with the top agents in town, great food, a little string quartet music, and a Candy Bar! Well, we got a whole camera crew and invited Realtors to have some fun and give me the inside scoop on this crazy market. It was such a success, we are going to have a party and a Candy Bar every month! And you are invited to come and share!

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SecondShelters.com welcomes its newest expert contributor, Dallas Addison, who really IS from Dallas, Texas!

My name is Dallas Addison, and my passion is real estate.  I’m trained as a lawyer and have helped many clients throughout the country buy, sell, develop and manage all types of  real estate over the years, with a  particular focus on recreational and hospitality-based real estate,  such as golf courses, resorts, ranches, second homes, etc.  I’m also a founding principal of Preservation Land Company, which has created several incredible (if I may say so) conservation-based recreational ranches near Dallas and worked on projects in Montana,  Hawaii and New Mexico.  On the educational side, I’m a long-time member of the Recreation Development Council  of the Urban Land Institute, a  global organization of leaders in the  real estate industry whose mission is to provide leadership in the responsible use of land and in creating and sustaining thriving communities worldwide.

I will be sharing with you interesting, exciting things that are going on in recreational real estate (which we’ll broadly define) across the country. We think it’s important to know that your source is not only reliable but actually 100% involved in the recreational real estate industry.

I also have a strong personal interest in how sustainability concepts are applied in recreational real estate.   While completely overused, the concept of sustainability still has merit.   Locally, it’s darn hot here and by the looks of our rapidly dropping lakes, we’re using lots of water.  Plus, our area is quickly growing, one way or the other, putting even more stress on our resources.  We should be looking to make choices that create better and more livable communities.  So, where I see interesting and innovative sustainability practices being applied, I want to share those as well. Hopefully those ideas will take root and help us manage the growth without depleting our resources.

Finally, how  did I connect with Candy?  Well, interestingly, her husband unexpectedly delivered our first daughter, but that’s not actually how we met.  We bumped into each other years ago as we share a passion for real estate. She came out to visit one of our projects, Cross Pines Ranch, near Mineola.  We’ve had many interesting conversations about what’s going on in this space and we thought others might want to listen in on the conversation.

Stick around,  and I think you’ll  enjoy the ride. We will be having the Aspen report, just in time for ski season, new news out of Hawaii’s Big Island, and one of my favorites: Cross Pines Ranch near Mineola, pictured here. Come back, come often, and join the discussion!

 

Looking to find a little estate in the Loire Valley but your spouse wears a “France Sucks” tee? You can have 25 acres that resemble the French countryside and a 48,000 square foot estate so perfect you may never wish to leave. The 25 acre estate of Thomas O. and Cinda Hicks on Walnut Hill Lane and Hollow Way Road in Preston Hollow just hit the non-MLS market for a whopping $135 million. For more photos and all the scoop, check out the site of Douglas Newby, who is the agent.

And it may actually now be the most expensive home listed in the entire United States!

For years, the Crespi Estate has headed every list of the Most Expensive Home in Dallas. But, having been inside it, I can tell you this home is about so much more than money. There was speculation when former President Bush bought his home on Daria that he wanted to be near the Hicks, and perhaps utilize their helicopter landing area. (Hicks does not have a concrete helicopter pad, I learned at the time, but he does have the lighting.) The Hicks have a rear auto estate entrance just a few feet from the Dallas North Tollway service road. The Hicks family hosted numerous Mayfllower Estates homeowners meetings introducing the Bushes to the neighborhood.

According to Doug, Mr. and Mrs. Hicks acquired the Crespi estate 16 years ago and Cinda spent five to ten years completing the architectural vision of the original architect, Maurice Fatio. She brought in international architect Peter Marino from New York and worked painstakingly on the home, refining and honoring Fatio’s proportions and architecture. I have heard from knowledgeable sources they spent close to $100 million on the expansion and remodel. The Hicks have raised six children in the house and are now empty nesters in a home DCAD sizes up at 28,996 square feet for the main structure, 6300 for the guest house, and 7200 for the pool house. That might be a little large for two people, eh? Tom Hicks is the former chairman of Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst, an investment banking firm, and he once owned the Stars and the Rangers. Hicks sold the Rangers for around $590 million in 2010. He recently just this January settled disputes with Texas Rangers Baseball Partners administrator Alan Jacobs. He is now the chairman of Hicks Holdings and currently making several exciting business acquisitions.
Doug says the dirt in Mayflower Estates is valued at $2 million per acre, which would be about $50 million, and the residence with pool house, guest house and main house comprises 42,500 square feet for a grand total of $85,000,000.

So it appears it will take $135,000,000 to buy The Crespi Estate. Did I get all those zeros right? This makes our Mt. Vernon look like a Blue Light Special.

But really, $135 million is nothing for the most refined, sophisticated residence in Texas on an expansive 25 acre estate that is merely 8 minutes from downtown Dallas, the Arts District, 40 minutes from D/FW or really, what matters, 15 from your private jet hangar at Love Field. I have been in this home and seen what the Hicks have created and it would be impossible, impossible to replicate it. A new owner could even add a stable: one horse per acre in Preston Hollow!

As Doug described it so aptly in this post for The Huffington Post:

“A winding private drive descends to the home beautifully placed in front of a creek flowing across the 25-acre estate property. It is majestic, dignified and graceful. The home is also warm and fun. The design exudes elegance and the architecture, a subtle power. The architectural massing of the main house, guest house and pool house convey a home that is grand yet serves primarily as a place for a family to live. The sensibility for the past is blended skillfully with the technology and resources of the present, presenting visual continuity. The estate owners honored the original family, architecture and history of the home with an inspired approach — one that creates the impression that the home has not been renovated or expanded, but truly and magnificently completed.

To be continued, stay very tuned..