Tim Stoll Real Estate Dallas Texas

Tim Stoll Real Estate Dallas Texas

Friday, July 15, 2016

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Homes for Sale in Uptown Dallas? Think Food!


It’s interesting to look into how many ways the universe of food —be it restaurants, markets, cooking, gardening or eating—intersects with the world of real estate. The connections are many and important. That’s true from the moment a future urban homeowner begins to look into the current crop of uptown homes for sale.

uptown dallas

We commonly think about residential real estate predominantly in terms of shelter. The listed homes for sale are vying to become the roof over our head; the place where the family will be blissfully protected from the elements. But since it will also be the place where we prepare our meals, store the groceries, and experience the holiday celebrations and feasts that will be remembered forever as key moments in our family’s life together. 

Food is central to all these things—it’s why homes for sale that can claim superior kitchens have a clear advantage over those with cramped layouts or dated appliances. The popularity of formal dining rooms may be waning, but the importance of the kitchen has never been more pronounced. Interestingly, large, showy kitchens don’t always get the highest marks from experienced family head chefs. For some, a more compact layout that creates an efficient “work triangle” (the imaginary line connecting cook top, sink, and refrigerator) can win favor by saving steps—and time. In any case, most Americans think of the kitchen as the house’s nerve center around which family life revolves. And in summertime, when the action moves outside, an extra advantage goes to the homes for sale that have patios or decks that look ideal for outdoor grilling.

It is also true that for even the most dedicated amateur chefs, hectic workday schedules can mean that cookery of any kind is forced into becoming a strictly weekend pursuit. For those whose professional lives make that an unavoidable reality, a property’s proximity to quality uptown Dallas dining outlets can be a major selling point. One way alert homeowners take advantage of that is by preparing a list of their favorite local eateries—or even by prominently displaying a collection of current take-out menus from nearby restaurants.

When you think about it, it makes good sense to take a look at the ways homes for sale in Dallas can make the food connection part of their marketing approach. Call me for a rundown of some of the other lifestyle elements that we can use to demonstrate to prospective buyers how readily your property can fit into their vision of what a treasured home should be.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Uptown Moving Day with Small Kids? Make it Fun!


Moving Day: for Dallas residents who relish order in their lives, this is one day when no amount of preparation is likely to totally quell the feeling that the world is on the verge of chaos. The day (or days, if the move is one that begins or ends outside uptown) will predictably end with all worldly goods beginning to rearrange themselves in their new settings—but although the outcome is assured, as moving day approaches, rattled nerves require taking a deep breath. Several deep breaths…

Dallas Moving Day Prescription for Dealing with the Kids


When you add small children to the mix, strategic preparation is even clearer as the order of the day. Some of the tried-and-true ideas are ones that all parents naturally figure out—such as having kids help put things away at the new house so they feel part of the process (as well as seeing where familiar things are now located). Other strategies may be obvious, but in the throes of unpacking, can require discipline to carry out—like sticking to the kids’ familiar morning and evening rituals. 

One idea is especially useful because it can be completed before the movers arrive. Create a special box or duffel bag with all the child’s “gotta-haves”—toys, blankies, pjs, toothbrushes, a favorite book or two, and the like. Then add some Ziplock bags with the very best special favorite treats (ones that don’t need to be refrigerated)—these will definitely come in handy. Be sure to keep an eye on the special bag throughout the day, and let the child know where it is. Especially as long as there are untapped treats in there, its safety and well-being will be a healthy diversionary focus.

See if you can arrange for the children’s room to be the last the movers pack into the truck. That way, they’ll be first out—which will allow you to set up the children’s room ahead of everything else. It may be necessary to fight powerful contrary urges—like getting the kitchen into some semblance of order—but it will be worth it.  See if some of the child’s own ideas about where to arrange their things are doable. If so, all the better: the feeling of ownership will help make their new room no longer such a strange place (and possibly exactly the perfect place to dig one last treat out of the duffel bag).

Making moving fun for kids is a noble goal. It’s doable for some, but since all kids are different, perhaps creating a moving day where the kids feel they’ve been valued contributors to a family adventure is a significant enough outcome. 

Moving day is, after all, the culmination of the team effort that stretches all the way back to when you made that first call to the one who turned out to be your Uptown Dallas Realtor. If you’re just at the starting point, I hope that call is to me!      

Friday, May 27, 2016

Mortgage Rates in Dallas Unbelievable Drop Produces…Yawns


Mortgage rates, Dallas home loan applicants and soon-to-be-applicants should be delighted to hear, went down again last week. The national average quoted in the Washington Post notched down to 3.61% on a 30-year fixed loan, down from blah blah blah

Dallas Homeowners Watch as U.S. Mortgage Rates Drop. Again

Mortgage Rates

You will probably not be surprised by the presence of the multiple blahs. By now, everyone in Dallas has simply heard this so often and for so long that it has practically lost all meaning. But it’s sort of fun to realize that we were already celebrating the decline in mortgage rates to 3.8% a year ago, although it was pointed out even back then that we’d been hearing it for so often and so long… 

Despite the repetition, in the real world of uptown dallas—where low mortgage rates translate into very real payment dollars saved every month—this is the kind of news that impacts a family’s future disposable income more than any other. The difference between last year’s average mortgage interest rate and that average last week means savings of more than $13,000 over the span of a $350K loan. And that was just the improvement since last year. The savings over historical average mortgage rates (7.49%) amounts to a gasp-inducing $306,000 for the same loan…a difference that surely deserves banner headlines.

That didn’t happen. Even the most financially sophisticated journals seemed to have all but succumbed to the numbness-producing sameness of the news, partly because the Fed’s announced plan to raise their Fed Funds rate seems to be fizzling out. The Economist described the moves by the Federal Reserve variously as “lackluster” and “dovish.” “If any other lift-off were so sluggish,” they yawned in the print edition, “you would not want to be aboard the rocket.”

There was little more excitement evident at The Wall Street Journal, who focused on guessing what mortgage rate changes might be in store. They found that the mix of good and bad economic numbers meant that the Federal Reserve “may opt to simply wait”—rather than rocking the boat and raising in June, as had been expected.

“Mortgage Rates: Trending Down Going Into Home-buying Season” was the most excitement Forbes’ headline writers could muster; possibly because the news that followed was anything but new. Forbes quoted Freddie Mac’s chief economist with his less than stirring pronouncement: “Since the start of February, mortgage rates have varied within a narrow range.” Forbes’ deduction? “For now, home loans are really cheap.”  

Does this mean that uptown home buyers can relax for a while longer, content to rely on an extended period of this kind of bargain-basement financing? Perhaps. But although those historical averages are reassuring when compared to current mortgage rates, they also stand as a sobering reminder of what the new normal could become. In other words, if striking while the iron is hot is still common sense, giving me a call sooner rather than later could be a prudent move!