Tuesday, August 16, 2011
Frisco developments buck home sales trend
Places like Austin Ridge and Craig Ranch have plenty of buyers.
What’s wrong with living in Frisco? OK, yes, it’s a haul if you happen to work in or near downtown Dallas, which not everyone actually does. But my friend Brad Holden (who is practically my neighborhood correspondent up there) kept telling me how many homes he’s selling up in a burgeoning development called Austin Ridge in Lone Star Ranch.
I did not believe him. Nobody, I said, wants to live in Frisco.
So he invited me up for a look/see. And slap my face, hush my mouth, but they have sold 60 homes since October 2010 out of 190 developed sites at Austin Ridge. The goal wasn’t even that high — 40 or 50 sales, which they surpassed, said Dean Liter at Landon Homes.
This in the crappiest real estate market just about ever. Here are, by the way, 10 markets that may collapse this year — neither Frisco nor Dallas are on the list.
So I toured the house, and I got it: 3,500 square feet selling for just over $300,000. Spacious master down with full luxury master bath, guest down, kitchen with granite counters, stainless appliances, large soaring great room, upstairs a media/play room overlooking the great room, and three kids bedrooms. Little Jack and Jill action. Two car garage, four and a half baths, hand-scraped (engineered, full disclosure) hardwoods, radiant barriers, R-19 insulation, Rinnai tankless hot water systems, tile, pretty nice. People are buying, says Dean, because they like Frisco schools and get a bigger bang for their buck. Like 3,673 square feet of bigger bangs.
But what about financing, I asked? I know financing is the biggest hurdle to buying today, but the people looking have good credit, says Holden. They are buying these with 5%, 10% and 20% down.
Meantime, over at Craig Ranch, Dunhill Homes sold three brand new homes this weekend in the $260,000 to $300K range.
And that right there is the sweet spot of sales: $250K to $350K, says Brad. That is where everyone feels comfortable about buying a new home in this unknown economy and they can afford the payment. It’s also under jumbo loan guidelines.
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