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Old 03-17-2018, 12:45 PM
 
Location: Texas
205 posts, read 161,515 times
Reputation: 428

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We are planning on moving the Fort Worth area, probably NE Tarrant County, maybe southern Denton county. I grew up in the area and still have family there but haven't lived there for many years.

This is a retirement home for DH and I. So, we aren't concerned about schools or commuting. Of course, we want to be in an at least reasonably good school district for future resale.

We have several areas we are considering. We have main goals: area has to be pet friendly (I have another thread on that) and we want to be close to amenities (at least one grocery store within 10 minutes, hospital within 20 minutes, basic shopping within 10 to 15 minutes, good shopping within 30 minutes). We also want to be reasonably close to drive to family and friends (mostly in northern Tarrant County).

We plan to be in this house for the long haul. Therefore, one of my primary concerns is that I don't want to be in an area that seems OK today but is a future declining area. By declining area I mean an area that will have increased crime in the future and that will lose amenities. My mother has lived in the Oakhurst area of Fort Worth for 70 years (she is in her 90s). That is where I grew up. And, that area has declined a lot over the years. Oakhurst itself is still fine, but a lot of the shopping that used to exist nearby is gone, restaurants have closed, and crime as gone up in the areas around Oakhurst. I don't want to experience that in my retirement home.

I realize no one has a crystal ball. But, would appreciate thoughts on any of the areas we are considering as to what might be an area in decline in, say, 15 years. Right now, DH and I are in good health and very mobile. But, 15 years from now we might be more limited in where we can easily travel to and we may want to limit driving. So, we would want a place them that had a lot of amenities and was safe.

Our current preferred budget is $350k to $400k. For the right house, we could go above to $450k that but would prefer not to unless we found the really ideal house (we could go above that but just don't want to). I don't want to buy a house that is more than about 30 years old unless it has already been remodeled. One story only, fairly small.

Places we are looking at:

1. North Hurst and North Bedford - north of 183. We have gone through there and like many of the houses. It is somewhat challenging to find a house of the age that we want, but we have seen some. I do worry that this might be a future declining area. I looked at the median income for Hurst and Bedford and both are shockingly low. That gives me real pause. Of course, that is for those cities as a whole not just limited to the northern part. I am concerned with the low median income and whether the area over time will decline to lower income with more crime and less amenities.

2. Trophy Club - Not worried about decline unless someone knows something I don't.

3. Colleyville - Most of the houses within our budget are older than I would like. But, I have family and friends in that area and know there are scattered houses that might work for us. Not worried about decline unless someone knows something I don't.

4. Flower Mound - In some areas I'm not worried about decline. But it is a large area. I have the feeling that I might need to be more worried on the eastern part near Lewisville, but not sure. Flower Mound is good for the pets but is the least preferable in terms of going to see people we know.

5. Keller - Was suggested to me. Have driven through it once. Don't know much. We would only buy in the part that is actually in Keller city limits (that is not in the part that is Fort Worth in the Keller school district). I don't know though if there are areas in Keller that might have future decline.

6. Grapevine - Sort of like Keller. I know there are a variety of areas. Which areas might have future decline where I might want to avoid buying for the future?

7. Euless - Northern part north of 183. I am concerned about being so close to the airport but might consider it. Same basic concern as with Hurst and Bedford.

The one place I considered that was not the NE part of Tarrant County or Denton was Mansfield. I liked a lot of the houses there and the amenities were nice. However, given location to other places (such as Arlington) I have serious concern that Mansfield could be a future declining area. It is also less convenient to people I know. I do like the affordability of homes there...but that comes at a price. I think Mansfield would be fine for the next 5 to 10 years, but I could be in this house for over 20 years. So, I'm inclined to cross Mansfield off the list but would appreciate any thoughts. The current median income is fine -- much higher than Hurst and Bedford but due to what is near Mansfield I just wonder what will happen in the long term.

We have also considered the new home community of Canyon Falls in Denton County. It is partly Northlake and partly Flower Mound. I like the houses and don't worry about future decline but it is farther from amenities.

In my pet related thread, some suggested Haslet. I explored that on our last trip up there and didn't like it. The part that is actually in Haslet city limits (and not Fort Worth) doesn't really have good amenities in close enough proximity. I don't want to live in Fort Worth or anything in the Fort Worth ETJ due to pet limits that I don't want.
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Old 03-17-2018, 02:44 PM
 
16,018 posts, read 1,313,415 times
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Trophy Club is out of your budget range.
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Old 03-19-2018, 04:09 PM
 
32,128 posts, read 50,375,086 times
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There are homes in TC under 400---older, not updated--but they come on the market

Re Hurst and Bedford income average
There is long complicated explanation for that but they are older towns and for the most part were "built out" in mid 80s
With probably half the housing of 2500 sq ft or less
People making high salaries usually don't buy homes that are smaller and cheaper than they can afford
Look at CD's other side w/demographic info

I live in north Hurst now--for past 10 yrs---and lived in north Bedford for 25 yrs before that
Hurst has made a strong effort in past 5 yrs or so to inject new projects into Hurst south of 183 to help encourage new growth and add to the positive appeal
Bedford from what I have seen has paid attention to the area north of 183 but there is less retail space in south Bedford to start with
Hwy 10 has seen some refurbishing but at this point it is less desireable for lot of reasons

If it were me I think as retirement property you need to consider access to medical facilities as you age
Location of your family could change---they could move within the general area so you should consider why you want a particular area for YOUR need primary and proximity to them maybe secondary

I think you are right about Mansfield mainly because the ISD is not holding its own
And Haslet doesn't appeal to me because of the topography---too flat and few large trees--but know people who moved there from Bedford to be close to their daughter/grandkids and they are fine with it...

Grapevine would be some place I would recommend for longevity
Having the airport income/location and the ISD that it does has really made it seem pretty sure bet but it is at top of your budget

Denton because of two universities and growth from the east--Lewisville area--moving toward it would seem to encourage its longevity
Denton is also trying to upgrade its downtown area but there are some who don't rate that as a positive
Personally I think lot of Denton is really unattractive and pretty scruffy and the traffic is horrible at times...

Flower Mound and Lewisville both still have open land that allows for new retail and home construction
That normally helps a town stay viable because the tax base grows and it can support the ISD and other services

Like I said -- check the other demographic side of CD
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Old 03-19-2018, 10:52 PM
 
Location: Texas
205 posts, read 161,515 times
Reputation: 428
Threestep - The other day I looked at Trophy Club and there were 7 homes that met my criteria and budget even accounting for possibly having to pay above listing price. These were smaller one story homes that needed some updating but didn't need huge remodeling in most cases. That is, I might paint, put in new flooring, update the master bathroom but I wouldn't have to add a room or knock down walls.

loves2read - Thanks for the feedback.

Quote:
There is long complicated explanation for that but they are older towns and for the most part were "built out" in mid 80s
With probably half the housing of 2500 sq ft or less
People making high salaries usually don't buy homes that are smaller and cheaper than they can afford
This is an interesting point. Certainly, when DH and I were working full-time I wouldn't have done that either. Back in that day we had a 4500 SF house with a guest house. But, we still had kids at home and needed space and we were making high salaries. At that time, had I been buying in the Fort Worth area we probably would have bought in Southlake or Colleyville.

But, that was then. We are at that point in our lives when we don't have kids at home and don't want the upkeep of a large house. And, we don't really want to pay for it either. I've set a budget that basically reflects mostly what I want to spend on housing. We could increase the budget if we really wanted to. But, we don't.

I have driven through northern Hurst and Bedford and have seen some nice houses and they are close to amenities which is really important to me. The ones that are new enough are relatively few. I find more of those in Hurst than Bedford. I do see on the data side of the forum that if I search for zip code 76054 then the median income jumps to $88,491.

So, I think that northern Hurst probably looks OK...but will the area decline in future due the southern part of Hurst?

Oh - I agree about the medical stuff. I will look carefully at that no matter where we end up.

Grapevine is a possibility. We can go over $400k for the right house just would prefer not to.

I don't much care for Denton itself. I'm a big city person and Denton is just too far from the big city. Flower Mound is probably about as far as I can go. I do like Flower Mound from driving around it and I've found houses in my price range. I'm not sure though if it is close enough to good medical.
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Old 03-19-2018, 11:06 PM
 
32,128 posts, read 50,375,086 times
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What about areas of Dallas that are going through gentrification and still have an "upside" going into future or maybe Richardson

Check the NRHills part of 76054

To be honest there are some areas in south Hurst and Bedford that are safe and people enjoy where they live and don't make lot of money
I would suggest you look at the Tarrant county appraisal district database at neighborhoods you like in lower price points and see how many homes are rentals vs owner occupied
That is a good way to judge how likely a neighborhood is to go "downhill" IMO since I think renters as a group don't tend to invest in a neighborhood like an owner/occupier does
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Old 03-20-2018, 12:45 AM
 
Location: Texas
205 posts, read 161,515 times
Reputation: 428
Quote:
Originally Posted by loves2read View Post
What about areas of Dallas that are going through gentrification and still have an "upside" going into future or maybe Richardson

Check the NRHills part of 76054

To be honest there are some areas in south Hurst and Bedford that are safe and people enjoy where they live and don't make lot of money
I would suggest you look at the Tarrant county appraisal district database at neighborhoods you like in lower price points and see how many homes are rentals vs owner occupied
That is a good way to judge how likely a neighborhood is to go "downhill" IMO since I think renters as a group don't tend to invest in a neighborhood like an owner/occupier does
Problem with Dallas is that much of the people we are close to are in Tarrant County, mostly fairly NE Tarrant County. Have one in Burleson, one in Richardson and one in Forney. My mother still lives in Oakhurst and I will need to go there often so want a reasonable drive.

I like the idea of checking about the rental property. I will do that.

NRHills won't work because they don't have as pet friendly ordinances as the ones I am looking at.

Mostly Pet Friendly - Colleyville, Trophy Club, Hurst, Flower Mound, Bedford, Grapevine, Euless, Keller (pretty much in close to that order).

From just having stalked the listings for the last few months and having driven through a lot of neighborhoods and visited a few open houses and talked with people I know in the area, my rough sort of assessment at the moment of those.

Colleyville - Most pet friendly, I have a good friend and a family member who live in Colleyville. Not worried about decline. The negative is that I would need to up the budget and accept a house that needed updating. There are some in the price range that are older than I want, but occasionally one shows up that might work. -- Conclusion: I will keep checking there, but unlikely to find something unless the just right house shows up on the market.

Trophy Club - In many ways this has the best overall mix. I'm not worried about decline. Pet friendly. I have consistently found several houses in my price range available. I do think that location within Trophy Club is important. Right now I live in a gated community toward the back and it is a trek to just get out. Some parts of Trophy Club seem like that to me. I don't want to have spend several minutes winding around just to get to major roads or amenities.

Hurst - Pet Friendly. I have a little concern about decline but not much in the part that is close to Colleyville. But, houses that are not too old are few and far between. Sort of like Colleyville -- if one turns up great but we will be in a short term rental and won't want to wait months waited for the needle in a haystack.

Flower Mound - Pet friendly. Not much concerned about decline although I have a little concern about the SE part near Lewisville. Flower Mound is farther away from most people that I want to see. I think the amenities are adequate, although I think it is a little weaker on medical stuff than some places. However, there are a lot of houses that I've seen there that would meet our needs. It has newer houses and more in the price range I would prefer. I had sort of rejected it on location grounds before, but it is growing on me.

Bedford - Fairly pet friendly but not as much as above. I am more worried about decline with Bedford than Hurst although maybe the far north part would be OK. However, there are fewer pockets of houses less than 30 years old than in Hurst. Even more of a needle in a haystack.

Grapevine - Fairly pet friendly but less than all the above. Has some areas that seem OK and others not so much. Doesn't seem to be a lot available of the age range I want in the price range I want. But, possible.

Euless - Same as Grapevine on pets. Far north might be OK. Not very many homes available that aren't too old. Still, a little better than Bedford. I don't like the overall location though as much.

Keller - Meets my minimum pet requirements but just barely. However, seems to have a lot of homes that might work for me in terms of price, amenities, etc. The real issue is whether to trade pet friendliness for having more house choices or try to hold out for a house in one of the more pet friendly places....
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Old 03-20-2018, 04:39 AM
 
Location: Grapevine, Texas
10,323 posts, read 21,978,901 times
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The thing to watch in Bedford is the large number of apartments, many of which accept Section 8. For the most part, the city keeps a close eye on the maintenance, but there have occasionally been upkeep and crime issues.

Grapevine has lots of houses under $400k, but you may get into a bidding war for them or have to do some updating. Even the older Bellaire neighborhood, which may appear less desirable, has bidding wars for properties due to the very desirable location. There are some shabby trailer parks, and the code enforcement and police keep a very close eye on them.
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Old 03-20-2018, 08:05 AM
 
32,128 posts, read 50,375,086 times
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The competition in the housing market is that even in lower income areas less desireable homes for some people are desired as rental/investment properties for other people

Pet policy might be important right now but pets age as do people
How do you envision your pet situation in 2-4-6 yrs?

Christy is right about Bedford's number of apartments
The city had people in power in the late 70s-earlier 80s who went nuts to max out w/apartments and increase tax base when apartments were allowed to exclude families
That rule was declared unconstitutional for the most part and so many apts that were filled w/younger professionals reversed and added single parents w/kid...
That as much as anything kept Bedford from holding property values and becoming more desireable vs less...
It has great location on 121/183 for access into Dallas, FTW, and now Southlake area since that retail has exploded
Some nice parks and mix of retail/professional offerings
HEB schools do good job considering their changing, more demanding demographics
If the city officials had been willing to hold more land vacant for development over time vs cashing all in 30 yrs ago, Bedford could have been the jewel of Tarrant county

We saw the same thing in reverse in Southlake---which was considered "too far" and its school district initially was NOT very desireable because there were so few professional families with desireable demographics living there...
As areas along 121/183 were developed and 114 was developed Southlake became more accessible...housing developments were created vs larger farm/ranch lots...the city government never allowed apartments and restricted developments pretty strictly to larger lot SFH...
Schools improved w/those types of demographics and increased tax money which made it more attractive to people spending top dollar for SFH and it became the mecca for many professionals and self-employed moving in from out of state especially
Now Southlake is considered the top area in N Tarrant County--excluding Westlake I guess which most people can't afford...

Last edited by loves2read; 03-20-2018 at 08:21 AM..
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Old 03-20-2018, 08:53 AM
 
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Keep in mind that decline usually happens as quickly as growth. The areas that build out the fastest are also the areas that decline the fastest. Also be weary of what will happen to undeveloped land. I live in Euless where you are looking. I personally think it will experience some decline long term just because there are a ton of apartments in the area along 360 from Harwood to Mid-Cities and a lot of new apartments are coming in along the Euless/Colleyville border. But it has been a slow build so I expect a relatively slow decline. I just need about another 10 years before all of my kids are through high school so I'm not worried. There's also a large undeveloped area at the northwest corner of 183 and 360. I've heard there are plans for that area but I've been hearing that for a very long time now.

My personal plan is to get the kids through school, sell the 4br 2400 sq ft house we have in Euless, and move to a smaller house up by Lake Grapevine. I personally think Grapevine and Colleyville are best suited out of your list to avoid long term decline. They each have a lot of single family housing, plenty of businesses to help keep property taxes low, and they're fairly insulated geographically from low income areas. Grapevine's biggest weakness is the large number of apartments along Mustang Drive that now accept section 8 vouchers and the trailer park there.

I don't trust Flower Mound at all due to how much they've grown and how quickly. I'm also leery of Trophy Club for the same reason. I also dislike how hard it is to get in and out of Flower Mound due to lack of major highways, but the same could be said of Keller proper.

I think north Hurst and north Bedford are great. They're already heavily built out and I think they're in the best position to stay relatively the same. And I'm personally very impressed at how low crime is and how good the schools are given the relatively low incomes of most of the residents. I'm also very impressed at the city services both offer. In my opinion they're second only to Grapevine in the list you've compiled as far as things like parks, events, and public facilities go.
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Old 03-20-2018, 07:02 PM
 
Location: "The Dirty Irv" Irving, TX
3,675 posts, read 1,928,780 times
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My opinion is even in this hot market you are unlikely to find a place in the 350-400k range that will decline in your life time, unless it is the "Exception" house in the neighborhood. "Biggest house on the street" kinda deal. Areas with consistent home prices in that range are probably not in decline.

Thats simply my thoughts, I could be wrong.

I think in the long hall alot of suburbs might have issues, but not for the time frame you are looking at.
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