Articles by

Candy Evans

Candy Evans is one of the nation’s leading real estate reporters, bloggers and consultants. She reports on Dallas real estate for WFAA-TV’s Daybreak with Ron Corning, and is frequently called as a real estate expert by other Dallas media. She is also a real-estate editor for CultureMap Dallas. She even has her own web-based Real estate show called, The Party Line. Candy has written for AOL Real Estate, and is a guest blogger for Joel Kotkin’s The New Geography, Inman Real Estate News plus a host of national sites. Candy was a longtime contributing editor to Dallas’ D Magazine and sister pubs, and in 2007 founded the wildly successful Dallas real estate blog, DallasDirt. That’s where she broke the news on where former president George W. Bush bought his Dallas home in 2008. She is the founder and publisher of an exciting platform of Dallas-based real estate sites including SecondShelters.com, devoted to the vacation home market, and her signature CandysDirt.com, everything you need to know about real estate in North Texas. And yes, we are still psyched about the GOLD! In 2013, CandysDirt.com was named Best Blog by the venerable National Association of Real Estate Editors, one of the nation’s oldest and most prestigious journalism associations, and the only association for journalists covering real estate, home and urban design.

05/26/15 1:41pm
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Greenbrier Sporting Club: 7000 sft, 5 bedrooms, wine cellar, billiards room, pool, hot tub, grill, bocce ball court, apartment: $5.995.

It was about this time last year that Kyle Crews, Juli Harrison, and Doris Jacobs all of Allie Beth Allman, and I hopped a plane to Charlestown, West Virginia to visit the one of the most beautiful, breath-taking and affordable vacation home spots in the nation: the Greenbrier Sporting Club.

Why I am telling you this story now? First of all, it’s the beginning of the vacation home season, and we should all be there, dry and happy and out of the rain. We are going back in a few weeks.

Secondly, I am sick of the rain. I know we need it, but this is getting ridiculous. Does Mother Nature know nothing but feast or famine? The only good news is that we may be able to sell some of this water to parched places in West Texas.

Then, the owner of the Greenbrier, Jim Justice, is running for governor of West Virginia in a self-funded campaign. The self-made billionaire was in Dallas last fall at an event benefiting Arlington Hall at Lee Park, visiting with some local owners – – there are a handful of folks in Dallas who own vacation homes at the Greenbrier, and more are interested. The Sporting Club will get even more interesting if Justice wins the governors race —

Greenbrier in Dallas Jim Justice and ABA

Jim Justice with Allie Beth & Pierce Allman, Judy Pittman, Dave Perry-Miller

Justice’s wealth easily trumps Rockefeller’s. The 64-year-old built a $1.7 billion fortune in coal and agriculture, and has painted himself a job creator who bought and restored The Greenbrier historic resort.

The values are unprecedented. When you see the resort, one of the oldest and largest in the country, and experience the magnificent homes and mountain home-sites that surround it, you will fall in love and seriously consider making your second home at the Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia.

Mountain mama, take me home.

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I come ready to hike!

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05/26/15 1:34pm

Greenbrier $950 635657440772825000_HC8_ext_1600x1200_NP

While flipping the filets yesterday, while it was pouring rain, I was aghast that I had left you with the impression that only a gadzillionaire could afford a vacation home at The Greenbrier. In fact, the Greenbrier Sporting Club is one of the best values in vacation home properties. I showed you a $5 million house, how about one for UNDER a million?

Lookie here: while the Sporting Club LOTS start at about $150,000, here is a 3-bedroom retreat, within close proximity to the resort, for less than a million. $989,900 to be exact. Reduced even.

And at this point I could at least grill on a LOT without rain seasoning the food! (more…)

05/13/15 3:21pm

Timber Creek Ranch - Sold by Concierge Auctions (www.conciergeauctions.com)

Wow, that was fast. I mean, FAST!

Kyle Crews of Allie Beth Allman, and Ralph Robertson of Century 21 Butler Real Estate Services successfully auctioned off the beautiful, 346-plus acre working recreational ranch known as Timber Creek Ranch last Thursday. Timber Creek is sold, gone, kaput and made someone a very happy ranch owner!

The $15 million investment property sold before Mother’s Day without reserve — yep, that means no minimum, — in three bidding segments: (1) the 26-acre lakefront parcel, which was previously offered for $11.95 million, (2) the 320-acre upper parcel, which was previously offered for $5 million, and (3) the entire property, approximately 346± acres. I’m told the sale was for the entire property and confidential. But my sources tell me the ranch sold for somewhere in the low $8 million range. And who was the buyer? After all the foreigners and out-of-staters who expressed interest in the property, it ended up being sold to a local Dallas person and client of the listing broker, Kyle. (more…)

04/02/15 11:18am

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Vacation home sales in the U.S. are at their highest ever, or at least since the national Association of Realtors began tracking vacation home buyer trends in 2003. Vacation home sales are up a whopping 57.4% from 2013, with an estimated 1.13 million vacation homes going under contract last year.

Most of those purchases are in the south and west.

Now may be the best time ever to buy a vacation home in Telluride, Colorado for BOTH winter and summer.

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02/16/15 10:15pm

Cedar Creek Lake

We have talked about the changes, and rise, in vacation home ownership trends. Sales are getting stronger in this market. In fact, the Wall Street Journal tells us that the world’s super-rich have now marked their favorite spots to store all those mega millions is New York City #1 and Aspen #2. That’s their top choices in the entire world! Sadly, no Texas cities even made the list — only the top two plus Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington D.C., and Miami in the U.S.

Here in North Texas, we love our second homes, too, we just want them to be within driving distance of soccer practice!

Take the 505 Ranch. Named for the pristine grasslands tucked along the tranquil shoreline of the area’s most coveted lake, the 505 Ranch on Cedar Creek Lake is a privately shared, lakefront community rich with ranch amenities. And it’s as exclusive as it is beautiful.

Designed after the shared-community model, but with the added bonus of world-class facilities, the 505 Ranch offers lakefront living nestled within a stunning ranch setting.  The lush, tree-filled concierge community offers the best of parallel settings – lake and ranch; a sense of community combined with privacy; a refuge and an escape; rustic unspoiled nature and modern amenities. (more…)

02/11/15 12:03am
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Photo: Carriage Properties

Maybe it’s the frothiness of the One Percent, or maybe the drop in oil prices just hasn’t sunk in. But people are buying vacation homes more than ever, the buyers are younger, and the vacation properties are further from the primary home. We know this from a terrific Austin-based company called HomeAway. The vacation rental guru celebrates its 10th anniversary this month. Because HomeAway has more than one million listings, they’ve seen it all! They have witnessed vacation rental owners take what was seemingly a “cottage industry” and become micro-entrepreneurs, turning their second homes into significant profit-drivers, funding college tuition, future retirement homes and family vacations. The vacation home market is good for business!

To celebrate, they reviewed a decade’s worth of data to compile a list of five trends driving meaningful change in the vacation rental ownership industry. Yeah I know, most people would open a bottle of bubbly, but the HomeAway folks really like pulling data, which they have plenty of. here are five key insights of the current vacation home market: (more…)

02/09/15 1:17am

Gus Cortina

I know it’s 72 degrees in Dallas, but the ski season is in full swing just a few hundred miles north of us.  And we are quite in love with the town of Telluride, Colorado. We would prefer a little ski in/ski out place at the Villas at Cortina over a box of chocolates. Or flowers. That’s a place where we could escape in winter OR summer, bring the kids and grand-kids, and make it a family fun time. When your children grow up and work, their time becomes incredibly precious and cannot be parsed out enough.

Cortina Villas

A care-free second home at the Villas of Cortina in Telluride provides the perfect family getaway with the cleanest, most wholesome family sport of all times: skiing. That photo is of 2014 Olympic silver medalist in Slopestyle skiing, hometown Telluride boy, Gus Kenworthy, in the Villa’s ski tunnel.

First of all, it’s easy to get to Telluride from Dallas. Dallas snow seekers are taking advantage of increased service to Telluride (MTJ) this winter on American Airlines. Telluride has announced a 20% overall increase in flights to the destination for the 2014-2015 winter season, and the Dallas flight leads the way with a 51% growth in seats. (more…)