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Old 01-19-2012, 06:43 PM
 
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I've done a lot of reading, but want to run this by the locals as to whether I'm correct:

When looking for a home in Dallas, staying east of 35E, west of 67, south of 190, and north of 30 is a safe bet. Is that true, or is it like Baltimore with pockets within that area that you should still be wary of?


I've read the helpful threads on C-D about Preston Hollow, Park Cities, Lakewood, Uptown, Addison, etc., but can the general rule above apply, or should I be mindful of unsafe pockets between these good areas as I'm scouring the web for a place to rent? I ask because these areas were mentioned as some of the nicest in Dallas, yet I sometimes find a place for rent that seems so reasonably priced that I'm wondering if it's a scam or actually located in a pocket that's a bad area that I don't know about.
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Old 01-19-2012, 06:54 PM
 
Location: Junius Heights
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dclamb3 View Post
or is it like Baltimore with pockets within that area that you should still be wary of?
Yep.
Dallas is neighborhood specific, you cannot generalize about wide swaths like that.
I live in a fantastic neighborhood. I love it to death. It has been named the best historic neighborhood for families in the US by This Old House magazine. I will leave when carried out in a box. Just to my East is Lakewood, a little to my West just the other side of Munger Place is....... statistically one of the highest crime areas of Dallas. Now that is overstating things, most of the crimes there are petty, and parts of Peaks Suburban (the "high crime" neighborhood) are lovely. I lived there once, but you get my drift.
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Old 01-19-2012, 07:02 PM
 
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There are good & bad pockets all over. Generally, most of Dallas north of I-30 is a good bet but one of the most dangerous neighborhoods is Five Points, tucked between NorthPark Mall/ Preston Hollow's east border (75) and Lake Highlands. There are also sketchy neighborhoods in Far East Dallas (east of White Rock), northwest Dallas, and by the Dallas Galleria.

On the flip side, one of the nicest Dallas neighborhoods (looks like Lakewood but super hilly and has two golf courses) is south of 30 and west of 35- North Oak Cliff, with Kessler Park, Stevens Park, etc neighborhoods.

I would just caution you to get familiar with the "going rates" in each area of interest and beware that significantly cheaper properties may look close on a map, but in reality be in an adjacent very different neighborhood. For example, the nice Village apartments in Dallas are just across the street (an 8-lane major street) from Five Points apartments. It looks like its the same, but there's a good reason the Five Points apartment is $450.mo and the Village is $900.
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Old 01-20-2012, 07:03 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Macbeth2003 View Post
Yep.
Dallas is neighborhood specific, you cannot generalize about wide swaths like that.
I live in a fantastic neighborhood. I love it to death. It has been named the best historic neighborhood for families in the US by This Old House magazine. I will leave when carried out in a box. Just to my East is Lakewood, a little to my West just the other side of Munger Place is....... statistically one of the highest crime areas of Dallas. Now that is overstating things, most of the crimes there are petty, and parts of Peaks Suburban (the "high crime" neighborhood) are lovely. I lived there once, but you get my drift.
Oh no, I was so proud of myself for narrowing it down to that section of Dallas (as Dallas is enormous!). lol Ah well. Perhaps since I don't know the area I should stick with Uptown / Park Cities / Swiss Ave. (and learn those areas well so I'll know when something is a scam or not really in those areas but listed as such - I didn't want to limit myself to a small area since I have two pups and imagine renting with dogs will be hard - I wouldn't know though since I haven't rented in over a decade).

This website seems to have some great rentals. Power Properties Apartment Rentals Dallas Texas | Apartment Rentals I just feel so blind looking at any listings because I don't know the true boundaries of the neighborhoods (other than what Google Maps outlines for me in red), and where the seedy areas are in between (I wish Google Maps had a ghetto button, so I know where to avoid lol).

Thanks for the tips!
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Old 01-20-2012, 07:10 AM
 
653 posts, read 698,009 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurtleCreek80 View Post
There are good & bad pockets all over. Generally, most of Dallas north of I-30 is a good bet but one of the most dangerous neighborhoods is Five Points, tucked between NorthPark Mall/ Preston Hollow's east border (75) and Lake Highlands. There are also sketchy neighborhoods in Far East Dallas (east of White Rock), northwest Dallas, and by the Dallas Galleria.

On the flip side, one of the nicest Dallas neighborhoods (looks like Lakewood but super hilly and has two golf courses) is south of 30 and west of 35- North Oak Cliff, with Kessler Park, Stevens Park, etc neighborhoods.

I would just caution you to get familiar with the "going rates" in each area of interest and beware that significantly cheaper properties may look close on a map, but in reality be in an adjacent very different neighborhood. For example, the nice Village apartments in Dallas are just across the street (an 8-lane major street) from Five Points apartments. It looks like its the same, but there's a good reason the Five Points apartment is $450.mo and the Village is $900.
Thanks for the tips and the locations of the bad areas. It's so hard to tell remotely, and sometimes even driving through an area you wouldn't easily know you shouldn't be there at night. I'll look up those spots you mentioned on a map, and put a red x on them. I'm labeling a map of where's good, and will have to x out the parts of North Dallas that are to be avoided too.

Yeah, that's what I'm worried about. Thinking something is safe, yet it's not (especially scary as a single female in an unfamiliar city where you don't know a single person, and armed only with two Chihuahuas and a Dyson lol). It can be mind boggling learning the areas since Dallas is so expansive, but I still have a few months to figure it all out. Your tips of where to avoid in North Dallas really helped. Thanks!
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Old 01-20-2012, 07:21 AM
 
Location: Junius Heights
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Park Cities, Uptown, and Swiss Avenue Historic District are certainly safe. If interested in the Swiss area, I would also add Junius Heights, Munger Place, and Hollywood Heights to your list. Great neighborhoods in the same area, beautiful historic districts with marvelous homes/duplex's, and a few apartments. Swiss Avenue Historic is great, but a small and very expensive area. Swiss Avenue the street has great areas, and some that are more questionable, not really bad, but directly bad adjacent . Drive it and see. That really is the bottom line. Most areas if you drive them... you will know.
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Old 01-20-2012, 08:03 AM
 
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Yup, Swiss Ave area is interesting actually. Very nice streets with sketchy ones behind it. It is the same general area that MacBeth lives so there are literally $1M blocks, $450k blocks, $200k blocks, and $50k blocks. Very wealthy residents live blocks from middle class residents and then there are halfway homes and food pantries all within a 1 square mile-ish area.

Power Properties has rehabbed some great properties, but they are "urban pioneers" so some blocks are completely renovated & gentrified and others are still borderline rough. In general, the closer you get to Columbia Ave, the greater chance for sketchiness and closer to Gaston is nicer.

As MacB said, the area around Munger Place Church / Garrett Park is downright sketchy as far as coked-up, strung out transients milling around. Not a park to take the pup!!

Much of Old East Dallas (SAHD) is block-by-block. If you want a safer bet in the same part of town, check out M Streets, which is east of 75, south of Mockingbird, west of Skillman, and north of Belmont. You'll have to drive around and take flyers/ numbers on "for lease" properties but it's a larger swath of Dallas that's solidly nice and safe (extending east all the way to White Rock Lake and west across 75 into the Park Cities) if you enjoy walking a few miles or not having to dodge sketchy blocks on your walks with the dogs. Not picking on Old East Dallas as its a great area but you do need some time to figure out which blocks are good and which aren't. You may not have that kind of time if you're a relo.
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Old 01-20-2012, 08:39 AM
 
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Macbeth2003 and TurtleCreek80, I can't thank you enough for your insight! Thank you so much!!!

That is really, really helpful to know! I never would have guessed that, and yes, I do walk the pups every evening, so not being in an area where I could possibly unknowingly (easily) walk onto a bad block is very important to me.

Granted crime happens everywhere (and I'm sure the worst part of Dallas may be safer than some parts of Baltimore), but I don't want to walk right into it (or get locked into a lease right in the middle of it) if I can avoid it.
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Old 01-20-2012, 09:36 AM
 
Location: Junius Heights
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurtleCreek80 View Post
Much of Old East Dallas (SAHD) is block-by-block. If you want a safer bet in the same part of town, check out M Streets, which is east of 75, south of Mockingbird, west of Skillman, and north of Belmont. You'll have to drive around and take flyers/ numbers on "for lease" properties but it's a larger swath of Dallas that's solidly nice and safe (extending east all the way to White Rock Lake and west across 75 into the Park Cities) if you enjoy walking a few miles or not having to dodge sketchy blocks on your walks with the dogs. Not picking on Old East Dallas as its a great area but you do need some time to figure out which blocks are good and which aren't. You may not have that kind of time if you're a relo.
I know you aren't picking on OED. You used to live here didn't you? Was it in HH or am I misremembering?

To the OP. M Streets is nice, though a different feel than OED. If you get a chance come down to OED. It is pretty obvious what is good and what isn't. All of JH is fine (except a little strip on Reiger), Munger Place is great.... it border's Peaks Suburban district, which is a block by block area. "Stay on this side of Fitzhugh." a street is often told to MP kids. In Junius Heights when I travelled a little more, my wife used to walk the dog at night every night and feel perfectly safe. In Peak's I wouldn't do that, let alone my 5 foot tall wife.

TC80 there must be a business opportunity here. Since most of OED rents by Craigslist or signs in the yard, we could give tours to potential renters, especially out-of-towners. Point out which blocks are ok, and which aren't show where the transitions are, show the unofficial neighborhood borders as well as the official ones, rope Lakewooder in to fill in all the historical background as well then we can pocket a little fee.
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Old 01-20-2012, 10:12 AM
 
Location: Noblesville, IN
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I agree with the above about the areas...well informed, for sure. My sister, who is single, has lived in this area for more than 20 years. For about 13 or 14 of those years, she lived in a HUGE apartment on Swiss Ave. at the corner of Fitzhugh. Personally, I loved her place. And this was the beginning of when the Powers' guys were doing their thing...it's much nicer now than it was then, but still nice IMO.

I can't think of a time when she felt "unsafe"...no, she didn't go out at night necessarily, but she wouldn't have been afraid to...just no reason to...other than little projects outside etc. I do remember her once telling me that she left her car door open and somebody stole all the change out of it. Now, there have been incidences around her but I really think they're specific, not necessarily indicative of the location.

I'm not saying bad things don't happen, but as was pointed out, you have such a mix of the million dollar homes with the others, that you really can determine when and where you can be. And of course, it depends on your comfort level. She ended up buying a charming little house nearby and has still not had any real problems. This area is just so pretty and interesting...you have everything you need and it's very close by. Good luck!!
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