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Old 09-20-2008, 11:59 AM
Location: Frisco, TX
80 posts, read 195,019 times
Reputation: 71


Hi All -
Have been reading this board for several weeks, but haven't seen any posts specific to my needs.

I was just offered a position with a company that has offices in Las Colinas. I'm going to have to take a salary cut and try to sell my house in Michigan, where both the unemployment and foreclosure rates are way out of control.

Since I'll have to pay two mortgages with less pay, I won't be able to spend as much as I'd initially planned on a house in Texas - as in the $175K-$250K range as opposed to the $325-$350K range previously.

I'm young-spirited, mid-40s and soon-to-be single. The kids are in college, but I'll still need space for them to stay on school breaks. And I have a TON of furniture as my current home is a newer 5/3.5/3 with a HUGE basement to boot, so storage is critical.

I'm looking for a new or newer 4/3/with a 3-car, rear-entry garage in an area with a decent commute to Las Colinas. My recent searches on realtor dot com have been depressing as the housing styles are very different from those here (lots of 2-car, front-facing garages; use of different cabinets in kitchen and master bath; very liberal use of patterned wallpaper ) in the $175K-$250K price points.

Any ideas on where I might look? Cities? Subdivisions?

I'm not adverse to driving as that's all we do in Michigan where we have two seasons: winter and construction. However, less than an hour's commute is much preferred.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-20-2008, 12:41 PM
37,315 posts, read 59,832,630 times
Reputation: 25341
sell most of the furniture up there--lowers your moving costs
plan on renting until you sell your home in Michigan--lease/rent someplace with two bedrooms and two baths unless you really need 3 bedrooms--your family won't be coming every weekend--be practical...
give yourself some time to learn the area before you buy
buying as soon as you come down is not a good idea for most people especially if they do not have to put kids in schools here
even though this area has not been as much boom/bust as other parts of US--the coming downturn in economy will have softening effect in TX
unemployment # are starting to rise--people are going to be layed off after the fiasco on Wall Street filters down into the real world

getting home loan with another mortgage extant is not going to be easy...just wait--
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Old 09-20-2008, 01:16 PM
Location: Kaufman County, Texas
11,853 posts, read 26,854,435 times
Reputation: 10592
The problem is that you're trying to buy a large house for not a lot of money in an area where the market is still very hot. Yes, 4/3 in that price range is usually going to have decor in serious need of updating!

I've lived in Texas all of my life, and I've NEVER seen a 3-car, rear-entry garage. Maybe on a $$$ home, but not in the price range you are considering. Most Texas homes are built with a 2-car garage, and a 3-car is only available by a custom builder. Also, most do have a front-entry garage. Some neighborhoods here don't even have an alley in the back! People here want a bigger back yard for a pool or recreation, and a big 3-car garage in the rear would reduce the yard size.

Many homes do have different cabinets in the kitchen and master bath. Since you can't see both rooms at the same time, most people (self included) do not care that the cabinets are different.

Honestly, if I were you, I would consider renting until your MI house sells. This will give you a better idea of what DFW areas are like and where you'd like to live, and it will also allow you to not have to "settle" for a smaller house and then have to turn around and sell it when your other house sells.
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Old 09-21-2008, 02:03 AM
Location: Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas
4,207 posts, read 15,250,942 times
Reputation: 2720
Your toughest requirements are going to be the age of the home and the 3 car garage (rear entry or front entry in this price point).

If you heart is set on new construction only: the closest areas would be North Fort Worth, by the Texas Motor Speedway, a couple of developments have homes you describe in your price range but they only have 2 car garages. There are also a handful scattered around such as Frisco and villas in Lewisville. Little Elm and Savannah would be stretching the 1 hour commute.

Corinth has several homes too. You would just have to handle the commute down I35 with everyone else.


p.s. what's up with Ann Arbor Michigan? I have had 3 clients in the last 6 months from there and they ALL still have their homes on the market up there!!
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Old 09-21-2008, 07:29 AM
Location: DFW
40,952 posts, read 49,155,879 times
Reputation: 54995
What you want and what you can afford do not match. You might be able to get in the far outskirts of the metroplex and get something close for $250K. The closer you get to Las Colinas & the airport the higher the prices.

Moderator cut: MLS Listing

Last edited by BstYet2Be; 09-21-2008 at 02:39 PM.. Reason: MLS Listings not permitted per ToS
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Old 09-21-2008, 08:13 AM
6,795 posts, read 14,018,392 times
Reputation: 5726
You should certainly sell most of the furniture. You mentioned you have a large basement which we do not have hear. You would quickly fill up a 3 car garage with that stuff and have to get rid of it after moving it here. Renting a place is certainly the way to go. Also make sure you figure in property taxes when looking for a place. They are quite costly here compared to most places.
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Old 09-21-2008, 09:03 AM
37,315 posts, read 59,832,630 times
Reputation: 25341
rear entry garages happen for two reasons--alleys which are fairly common in the Dallas area or some parts of Richardson/Plano...

or in some developments like in Colleyville or Southlake that prohibit front entry garages
they have long driveways to the back of the house and then either a 90 degree turn into a side entrance or a 90 and and 90 into a rear-entry garage
personally I think that is the kiss of death since I hate to jocky my car back and forth 4-5 times to park it---
that is why you see many people just parking their cars down the driveway--since it is a hassle...

you really need to just look at MLS listings and see what is going on around here

in custom homes of 1 Million or more you MIGHT get a basement....but it is just too expensive and causes all kinds of design problems because of the nature of TX soils and the fact that we don't have much of a frost line to worry about for buidling foundations--those are different here...

if you are reinevting your life i some ways better be ready to rethink your living situations
and REALLY--don't even think about buying a house until yours sells...
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Old 09-21-2008, 12:15 PM
Location: Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas
4,207 posts, read 15,250,942 times
Reputation: 2720
I don't think he is asking for a basement. He simply mentioned it so we have an idea of how much "stuff" he has.

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Old 09-21-2008, 03:59 PM
Location: Frisco, TX
80 posts, read 195,019 times
Reputation: 71
Thanks for the responses. You've definitely given me lots of food for thought.

No, not looking for a basement...just the storage the one affords. Well aware that they don't fly in TX. I will need to purge, but really like my furniture. Fortunately, the company will ship everything and store it for a while. I just need to find a place.

Interesting comments about the garages though. Up here, I think the newer construction lot sizes tend to be wider. Side entry (not swing) garages are very common so as to keep the front facade cleaner.

Looks like renting a home is going to be my best bet for now.

Nsumner - The market here is terrible. Michigan's economy is fueled heavily by the automotive industry. Most here work for an automaker or an auto supplier in some way. Decades of high salaries and big fat overtime and profit-sharing checks created a false middle- to upper-middle class.

Industry volumes have decreased drastically resulting large scale cutbacks for the past 5+ years. Many people have been laid of and hourly workers have either taken a buyout or had those wonderful overtime hours cut significantly. Things have been tanking in Michigan for a very long time and it's getting progressively worse.

Nothing's selling unless it's to the first-timer who can afford a smaller house. Not so in the more upscale areas. There are 13 houses for sale in my sub, which hasn't even been closed out. One of my neighbors had to relo to Virginia and their house has been on the market for 18 months. It's listed at less than half of what they bought it for...and others are doing the same. Scary times here.
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Old 09-21-2008, 05:43 PM
Location: Frisco, TX
80 posts, read 195,019 times
Reputation: 71
My soon-to-be new company will provide some marketing assistance but not a full buyout, unfortunately. Many former colleagues of mine have seen the buyouts fall by the wayside since sales are so sketchy here.

Since very few job opportunities exist here, I'm getting out while the getting's good, even though I'm taking a bit of a hit in terms of base salary.

Will keep you posted.

Last edited by BstYet2Be; 09-22-2008 at 11:29 AM.. Reason: Ref to deleted post removed.
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