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Old 02-02-2010, 12:42 PM
 
Location: Broomfield, CO
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Default Dallas housing designs

Perhaps this topic has been touched on before, but as an Austin resident who frequently visits the metroplex, I am curious. Why are new homes and many older homes in the (mainly northern Dallas burbs) built with the garages in the rear?. I have been all over the country and never seen homes built like this on such a large scale. I also know that parts of the Metroplex homes are built with the garage in the front. Anyone know about this?
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Old 02-02-2010, 12:52 PM
 
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Our garage is in the rear and personally I prefer it in the rear. We use our garage as more of a hangout room to unwind after the baby has gone to bed. We've got some chairs and a table and eventually we're going to put a cheap couch or futon and a small tv back there. My husband also uses the garage to smoke since he's not allowed to smoke in the house and this way when the weather is nice we can leave the garage door up and hang out there and talk without having to keep our voices down so we don't wake up the baby and we have the privacy of having the garage face the alley instead of the front sidewalk. We also park one of our of cars in the driveway outside the garage and the car that is parked back there never gets messed with unlike the car we park in the front which has gotten egged on two occasions.
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Old 02-02-2010, 12:59 PM
 
Location: Austin
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Garages in the rear are a much cleaner look. Cars are parked in the driveways in the back rather than in the front if they don't utilize the garage. Trash pick up is in the back instead of lining the street with trash once or twice a week. Backyards don't back up to each other so they're more private.... however, this does create a smaller backyard. Weigh size of backyard verse cleaner, private property.

Plus, I hate the "welcome to my garage" that a front garage offers, as it usually takes up the entire front of the house... but overall, it's personal preference, and I'm surprised Austin doesn't offer rear entry.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:06 PM
 
Location: North Texas
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That is a very good question. I've been working with home builders and developers for nearly 40 years and it seems we have always put the garage in the rear access from an alley. In Houston they mostly have detached garages. I've been contacted from some large residential developers from out of state because I have a very large collection of home plans with rear garages and they want to develope some neighborhoods with that same concept and they think it will go well. Good for me, huh? Now I'm introducing them to the C shape concept. They like that idea too.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:18 PM
 
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Not sure why there is such a prevalence of rear-entry houses in the Metroplex. I had always lived in a rear-entry house until our current home, and I now have a front-entry...and I LOVE it! It feels much safer....alleys have always been a little uncomfortable for me...especially when coming home after dark. I also love that I SEE my neighbors as they come home from work, often stopping to chat as they/I drive by. I think kids tend to be out playing with each other more in a neighborhood with front-entry houses too...as parents can be doing things they need to do in the garage and still be in eye-sight of their kids. I had always heard that these were the benefits of a front-entry house...but didn't realize how true they were until we moved here. As far as the look of the houses, I actually like the look of the front-entry more often then not...as having a garage in front tends to create more dimension to the houses, and less of the typical suburban row of flat-front, box-like houses that all look the same. Anyway, just my 2 cents
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:24 PM
 
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A better question would be this: why are Dallas homes built with crappy materials vs. Austin homes that use a ton of stone?

I love the hill country style homes in Austin, even for homes in the upper $100s/lower $200s. You'll be hard pressed to find these styles of homes in the DFW area, until you get above the $400K mark.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:50 PM
 
Location: The Big D
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Quote:
Originally Posted by longhornswin View Post
A better question would be this: why are Dallas homes built with crappy materials vs. Austin homes that use a ton of stone?

I love the hill country style homes in Austin, even for homes in the upper $100s/lower $200s. You'll be hard pressed to find these styles of homes in the DFW area, until you get above the $400K mark.
FYI, they are built the same. That stone is just like brick and is nothing more than a facade. Underneath that stone you will find the same stick frame, insulation & sheetrock that is under the brick of homes in the Dallas area.


Rear entry garages were NOT the norm until the 70's when builderfs started doing rear entry garages. I grew up on a street w/ front entry garages until I was 12. Much prefer the rear entry as I remember all too well the fun of a car being parked in a drive blocking the sidewalk when one is riding their bike. More risk of kids getting run over as well with cars backing out with kids playing out front. With rear entry the kids can ride their bikes on the sidewalk and you don't have to worry about the cars as much.

As I said, before the mid-70's front entry was the norm here in Dallas. Drive thru older neighborhoods and you will see nothing but front entry garages. The alleys are not paved either but they are merely a utility easement.
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Old 02-02-2010, 05:24 PM
 
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Our 1967 house has a rear entry/alley garage. Back then it was considered a good thing and something you only saw once you hit a certain price point. It was the low end houses that had the garage in front.

I like rear entry - there are no shared fences and the neighborhood looks neater.
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Old 02-02-2010, 05:59 PM
 
Location: Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas
3,930 posts, read 8,720,202 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FarNorthDallas View Post
Our 1967 house has a rear entry/alley garage. Back then it was considered a good thing and something you only saw once you hit a certain price point. It was the low end houses that had the garage in front.

I like rear entry - there are no shared fences and the neighborhood looks neater.
It is still true today. Rear entry neighborhoods tend to be more expensive unless the homes have a front entry because they back to a golf course, a greenbelt or some kind of body of water.

Naima
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Old 02-03-2010, 08:35 AM
 
Location: Austin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by longhornswin View Post
A better question would be this: why are Dallas homes built with crappy materials vs. Austin homes that use a ton of stone?
In Dallas, the white limestone is called "Austin stone" for a reason. Because it comes from Austin. For Austin builders, the stone is a much cheaper way to go because it's right there. For Dallas, they have to ship the stone up there, so the cost is much higher, so only the higher end homes can start to afford it.

But as said already, the actual house is the same as all the houses are stick frame. The outside, even when stucco, is just a veneer.
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