A House In Mansfield

A House In Mansfield

A’s home buying starts back in May. She contacted me because she had thought about buying a small starter home, but didn’t know exactly where to start. We met for a quick cup of coffee and got the ball rolling.

As everyone knows, this market right now is CRAZY. I think a lot of people don’t even know how crazy it is until you actually try to buy a house. We probably saw about 30 houses, submitted offers on 4, before one actually stuck.

It can get very depressing and frustrating when you find a home you love and don’t have your offer accepted. Especially when you are bidding above asking. It gets especially frustrating when that happens 4 times, so I have to give a lot of credit to A for being such a trooper and not giving up.

We started looking for houses in Arlington and Grand Prairie with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. After many showings, and some offers, we saw a cute little house in Mansfield set on a quiet street with a backyard view of a horse barn. It was a little out of the way, but the house was the perfect layout and right in our budget.

Of course there were multiple offers, but we went with our highest and best, and had the offer accepted! The inspection came back pretty good and with just a few more negotiations and a little waiting, closing time came and went.

This story was all about the house searching process. Sometimes my clients find a house the first time out, sometimes it takes 30 showings. Eventually, everyone finds the house perfect for them.


What is an Option Period?

Home Buyer Series

A lot of people ask me about the option period. What do you have to pay? What do you need to do? What happens if you want to back out? Well I have all the answers!

So you found a house you love! Yay for you! Now you submit an offer and it gets accepted! Double YAY. As soon as the other party signs the contract it is “executed.” If that word sounds big and scary it’s because it is. JK words aren’t scary. As soon as the contract is executed, your option period starts. How many days are in your option period? Time to check the contract. Most of the time it is 10 days.

So what should you do first? Start calling inspectors. Your agent should have a list of reputable inspectors, and if I am your agent I have a huge list of inspectors that are super great at inspecting things. I tell my clients to start at the top of the list and start calling! Try and find someone that can come out within the next two days.

An inspection costs anywhere from $340-380. When you meet the inspector out at your future house for the breakdown, bring that check with you!

Your inspector will give you a quick rundown on the condition of the house and any problems they noticed. They will also send you an official report later on that is very official with official inspection words.

So you got the inspection and the inspector says “Good news! This house is perfect! There is absolutely nothing broken!” That will probably never happen in the history of home buying. But if it does, good job you are done.

Instead your inspector will probably tell you “Well the house could collapse at any minute and it’s a miracle the roof has not caved in and the plumbing is leaking under the house and I found a dinosaur in the attic.” That scenario is actually way more likely. But do not fear little baby bird home buyer! Time to ask for repairs! You can ask for whatever you want, but that doesn’t mean the seller will do it.

So what happens if you can’t agree on repairs? Well that is what the option period is for silly head! You have the right to terminate for any reason during the option period. So you can politely so thanks but no thanks house seller. You will still be out the money for the inspection and you will not get the option fee back (about $100) but at least you didn’t buy a house with a dinosaur in the attic.

So there you go. Option Period. See it’s not that complicated!

First Time Home Buyer: Winnetka Heights Cottage

North Oak Cliff, Winnetka Heights

I’m so excited to be finally sharing this experience with you all! It was hard to keep hush about all the exciting real estate things happening in my life, but I have learned you shouldn’t get too excited until everything is signed on the dotted line. A tiny million things can and will go wrong during a the home buying process.

My client, let’s call them “C” was a first time home buyer who wanted a north Oak Cliff home that had some historic charm. Lucky for me, Oak Cliff is full of historic homes. There are a lot of garbage homes as well so I do have to do some sifting. I also learned that there are some real estate agents with magic photoshopping skills out there.

The first home we looked at was in Beckley Club Estates. It was recently updated and had a great kitchen.If you have never been to Beckley Club Estates you should really go check it out. At first you feel like you might be murdered as you drive under 35, but don’t worry! Just keep driving and then you will see a glorious wild peacock and you have arrived!  While C really loved the home, it had another offer already that the seller was going to accept. In this market, that happens all too often. It is always best to never get too attached to a home, which is a tough lesson to learn BELIEVE ME. I have fallen in love with so many homes and then start pinning all night about what i’m going to do to the house only to not get it and then have all these pins that I have no use for. It’s just sad. Don’t get attached.

The second home we looked at was in Elmwood. Elmwood is a neighborhood on the rise. It has some great Tudor homes and many of them overlook a creek with a natural wildflower area. This home had so many great things going for it. It had a HUGE backyard and across the street was a wildflower area and the creek, so it had a beautiful view. C fell in love and wanted to submit an offer. Unfortunately, she was leaving to go out of the country for a week, so we had to wait.

You always want to make sure you will be available for a few days after you submit an offer. Once it is accepted and executed you will need to schedule an inspection immediately and be available for negotiations.

C came back a week later, and while the Elmwood house was already under contract 😦 two new houses had popped up. One was a cute green cottage in Winnetka Heights and the other a completely renovated Tudor in Elmwood.

The Winnetka Heights green cottage was full of historic charm. Large front porch, porch swing, and claw foot tub. It needing some small updates, but overall so good. AND there was a cute cat outside that wanted to so many pats. Any house with a cat is a win for me! The Elmswood tudor was so beautiful inside. The flipper did a fantastic job of updating everything to perfection. C had a tough choice to make.

She thought about if for a few hours and decided to go with the Winnetka Heights Cottage, as I knew she probably would.I’m sure it was the outside cat that swayed her.  We wrote up the offer quickly and submitted it with fingers crossed. The waiting part after you submit an offer is the worst. I seriously hate waiting. I will send like twenty emails to the agent asking the status, so buyers, I get you. I get you dawg. Waiting sucks.

The seller came back and accepted the offer!!!! Most people right now are going through a rough time and having to submit multiple offers on homes before one is finally accepted. We were lucky, and C had a talented real estate agent that had the first offer accepted 😉

We were also lucky and got an inspector to come out the next business day. Good news: house was not falling down. Bad news: It was smelly and wet under the house. We had a plumber come out that day and I helped him discover the problem. By help I mean I stayed in the air conditioned house and turned on faucets while he crawled around in the muck under the house for two hours.

We got through the after-inspection-negotiations and were on our way! More waiting until the next big hurdle, the appraisal. The whole house buying process is so much waiting and you will lose all your hair from the stress of waiting.

Finally appraisal day was here! It was a little disappointing when the appraisal came in under. At this point we had to do some more negotiations, which were luckily pretty painless. FINALLY everything was good to go. Closing day came and went with no big issues.


I’m so happy that C decided to use my as her real estate agent. I am super jealous of C’s new home and I know that she will enjoy it for years to come!

Digs For Dad: Happy Father’s Day!

This one goes out to all the Dad’s in the world. If anyone deserves a sweet new house with a basketball court, outdoor grilling area, and movie theater, it’s our Dad’s right?

Digs for Dad

Dallas Home with Basketball Court

This one is for the basketball Dad. The Stephen Curry’s of the world. This Dad plays a pick up game with the neighborhood kids and never lets them win. He is too good to let a ten year old beat him. Sure the neighborhood kids cry, but they need to learn that you can’t win at everything

Dallas Home with Large Closet

This is for the fancy hipster clothes loving Dad. I’m thinking the David Beckham dad’s of the world. They like to look good and they will spend 30 minutes choosing an outfit if they want. They don’t care if you make fun of their bow tie.

Dallas Home with Wine Cellar

This one is for the wine loving Dad. If you watch Scandal (and if you don’t you should you crazy person) then this is totally a Papa Pope Dad. This dad can smell a wine and tell you the year. All wine mostly tastes the same to me, so this Dad would probably be so ashamed I was his daughter.

Dallas Home with Media Room

This is for the dad’s that love the movies. I’m thinking the Steven Spielberg’s of the world. Although if your dad was Steven Spielberg I doubt you would be getting him JUST A media room  for fathers day. If Steven Spielberg were your dad you could probably afford to buy Hawaii for him.

Man Caves

This it totally the room for my dad. He is in a super cool rock band and loves ping pong. Cool dads that love to rock out only in this room.

Man Caves

I don’t even know what’s going on in this room, but it looks like a golf man cave. The only golf player I know to make this dad analogy work is Tiger Woods. I’m pretty sure he is a Dad, so this room is for him.

Man Caves

And last but not least, this is dad room is totally for Ron Swanson. Ron Swanson would build all that furniture himself while drinking a glass of Lagavulin,

Want It Wednesday: Country Edition!

McKinney Home

For this edition of Want It Wednesday, we are going country ya’ll! This house was featured on the Ebby Blog, and I just had to share it. Now probably most people wouldn’t consider McKinney “country” but I do. If I have to go beyond 635, then its the country. I hope you city folk will agree 🙂

Now here are some details on this house in case you have a big pile of money laying around:

  • Priced at $750,000
  • On 10 acres of land
  • 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 3,759 square feet
  • Barn/workshop, 3 car garage, covered porch, and fenced in backyard

McKinney Home

Oh man, I think I want to move to McKinney guys! I never thought I would say that. I have this small part of my heart that loves country homes. I will thank HGTV for that.

The homes entry shows off the high ceilings, beautiful hardwoods

Perfect entry way that just shouts “hey you are about to enter the most precious home you have ever seen you will want to throw up it is so perfect!!!!!!!!!!”


So in my mind, a cool young family live here. I’m sure you have seen them around. That perfectly dressed mom and dad who look so effortless even though they probably haven’t slept in like a year. And their kid has on a freaking bowtie and looks better dressed than me. I hate them, but can’t help but respect.

The dining room/breakfast area is located ideally between the li

I wish I was cool enough to have a lime green island….I would never be able to pull it off. Every time I would have someone over I would just be trying to prove how cool I was to justify a lime green island.

The spacious, first-floor master suite has its own fireplace and

WHAT I NEED THIS. This bedroom is totally ridiculous in size, but yet somehow, I need it.

The master bathroom features dual vanities, a large glass shower

Now this house is just messing with me right? Is this the kind of bathrooms you get in McKinney? My bathroom is literally the size of a broom closet, just enough room to squeeze in and out.

8GetMediaSlow clap for the colors in this house. They just really nailed that laid back without trying too hard but yet still fun vibe.

The home also features its own laundry room with a sink and abun

 This laundry room puts mine to shame. My washer and dryer has crusted detergent running down it, this one is so perfectly perfect I am about to run into traffic so I can go to laundry room heaven.

Barn with loafing shed.

So this is described as a “barn with loafing shelf” WHAT IS A LOAFING SHELF?!?!?! Is that where you house your loaves of breads? I would bake so much bread if I lived here.

Privacy abounds with this property. Behind the home are numerou

Ok so this is where the house lost me and why I don’t move to the “country.” My three greatest fears in life are 1. aliens 2. possums 3. rats in that order. This yard is just asking for an alien ship to come and land in the front. And there are probably possums and rats abound. NO THANKS

And that concludes this week of Want It Wednesday! Did this house convince me to give up on the city life and become a country girl? Almost. I would love to sit and bake bread all day but I have a feeling that there are a lot more chores than just baking bread when you are living in the country (McKinney).

Estate Sale Round Up 5/9-5/10

Estate Sale Roundup

It’s another estate sale round up! This one comes a little late, but there is still time people!!!! It will be super rainy in Dallas this weekend, so nothing better to do then shop til you drop.

Our first sale comes from J&S. I think I included one from them last week too. I did end up going to the one last week, and everything was WAY overpriced. They have some good stuff this week so might be worth checking out.

estate sale 1

This stuff looks so ugly as is. Makes me want to puke. BUT if you paint it, beautiful! That is the magic of paint. They have some nightstands in this same style as well.

estate sale 2

Now THIS is pretty good. If you have the right room, no recover necessary. Make sure you give this one a good sit. You don’t want to spend money on a chair with old gross stuffing. The stuff gets hard over time. Also if this is listed over $65, walk away. These sales get a little crazy with their prices on wing backs.

estate sale 3

I want this. I love gold. I love trunks. It’s a win all around.

Final Verdict: I might check this out on the last day, see whats left and snatch it up for cheap

Okay this next sale might be a total bust, the pickings are slim this week, so i’m stretching it a little bit.

estate sale 4

This estate sale caught my eye because of this picture. Any house that has a lot of dishes probably has some good smalls. If you are looking for small accessories to fill your home, look for pictures like this.

estate sale 5

If you recovered these chairs in a more modern fabric, you got yourself a cute set friend! Wicker and bamboo is so IN right now. Everything in my house would be bamboo if it didn’t make me look like a crazy person.

NEXT! This sale is good guys. Real good. REAL REAL GOOD.

estate sale 6

I spy with my little eye a campaign desk and bamboo china cabinet. Drop whatever you are doing and drive here. Buy these now!

estate sale 7

Most people don’t have room for a sectional this big. But go ahead and buy it anyway. MAKE IT FIT. Again, give it a good sit, if it’s comfy then give them all your money.

estate sale 8

I have a weakness for ceramic animals. Its totally impractical but I can’t stop. I was meh on this sale before, but seeing this little guy made me jump up and grab my purse. Also that little chair is freaking adorable! Anyone can recover that little chair and stick in a corner to make your house look fabulous!

Overall there are some good pickings out there. The weather sucks anyways. Go forth and buy buy buy!

Estate Sale Roundup! April 28-May3

Estate Sale Roundup

I’ve spent a lot of time driving 45 minutes to a bum estate sales where I leave smelling like cat pee. You would not believe the amount of houses that smell like cat pee. I have three cats, but I don’t think our house smells like cat pee. Maybe it does and everyone is too nice to say anything.

ANYWAY. This weekly series is here to rescue you from cat pee! and old moth balls. I’ll go through the listed estate sales on estatesales.net and let you know which ones look worth it.

First up, this sale for J&S looks pretty good. It has a lot of oriental stuff and some great mid century pieces that are catching my eye.

estate sale1

I would buy these, then paint white or a bold color. Teal or pink anyone? I just got a new paint sprayer so i’m on the lookout for larger case goods like this to rehab.

estate sale 2

I love these little tapestry/art things. I don’t feel very confident in my buying art for resale skills, so I always make sure I buy art that I wouldn’t mind keeping. These would look great on a gallery wall to balance out other photographs and add some texture. Now they could be asking too much money for these, so think hard before scooping up.

estate sale 3I want this lamp hard guys. There are a few things that I see that I regret when I don’t pull the trigger. This will be one of them. I have no need for this, I have no clue what I would do with out, but my life might end without it. I love lamp.

estate sale 4See all those cute ginger jars? I will be buying them. Sometimes they look tacky when you see a picture like this, but take my word for it. You put one of those little guys on a bookshelf, or on a coffee table tray, instant style. You’re welcome. I just made your house look stylish.

Final Verdict: I will probably go to this one the second or third day when discounts start. I have a funny feeling things will be priced high as they listed a lot of stuff as “antiques” so wait a day and then scoop up those deals.

Alright, this next sale has a few interesting prospects.

estate sale5That china cabinet has such intricate woodwork on the bottom, its dying to be painted white. Now i’m too lazy to figure out a way to move that thing and paint the inside, so I would probably stare at it for ten minutes, and then walk away, only to walk back and stare a few more times, and ultimately, not buy.

estate sale 6Now this cart is interesting. I never shy away from a cart, I wish all my furniture was on wheels. I can’t tell from the picture of that is a vintage cart, or new cart pretending to be vintage. Same goes for that mirror. I hate things pretending to be vintage, but if it’s actual vintage winner winner chicken dinner.

estate sale 7Oh my gosh, these people must love carts as much as I do! This one looks like it might be a weird height, but who are we kidding? I’m gonna buy it and let it be friends with all my other carts.

Final Verdict: Ehhhh, i’m not seeing enough vintage to make it worth.

This next sale is a Mad Men’s super fan dream home! Is it weird i’m starting to get a serious crush on Pete Campbell? I’m digging the whole balding thing. Don’t worry I do feel shame for this.

estate sale8

Ughhhhhh I want that bed so I can pretend to be hungover Betty Draper! Seriously though, this headboard looks pretty big, and it’s really hard to find vintage headboards in a queen or king size. So snatch this up if you are in the market.

estate sale 9This couch recovered would be a dream couch. Just make sure to give it a good sit and test out the padding/foam. That stuff is expensive.

estate sale 10I see you there lamp. Looking all cool, chilling in the corner.

Final Verdict: YES! mid century furniture i love you so much.

That’s all she wrote folks. Kinda slim pickings this week. Go forth and search my friends! I wish upon you happy hunting and houses that don’t smell like cat pee!