Long Cove LonghornsA precious family of three just “bought” some major water-front property over at Long Cove: Betty, Wilma, and Pebbles!

And even better news: they are expecting! 

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Long Cove proving groundsDoug Gibbs, Director of Resident Services over at Long Cove, tells us he is gearing up for the most active spring season ever. EVER. And he means that literally because The Toy Barn — remember that? — is filling up with athletic equipment of all kinds. From Lacrosse to biking and baseball and fishing, there is enough gear in this the fanciest of “toy barns”for everyone in the family! That means at least an activity or two per family. And the golf clubs are on order.

But if athletic activity doesn’t float your boat, well, the Coast Guard Auxiliary sure will. 

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89 Watercolor BoulevardThis week is spring break for a lot of peeps, and we know that a hefty slice of Dallasites and North Texans have invaded the Beaches of Walton County, Florida, those picture-perfect white sands along Highway 30-A in the panhandle of northwest Florida.

And after October, we might just re-populate the place.

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Party Line Real Estate – Webisode 1 from Party Line on Vimeo.

Hey guys, listen up. I’ve finally got my own TV Show! It’s called Party Line Real Estate, it’s loaded with real-time Real Estate news, and you are going to LOVE IT! 

I LOVE IT when Real Estate agents get together and TALK! After all, that’s how they network! And we know there is no better way to network than at a party with the top agents in town, great food, a little string quartet music, and a Candy Bar! Well, we got a whole camera crew and invited Realtors to have some fun and give me the inside scoop on this crazy market. It was such a success, we are going to have a party and a Candy Bar every month! And you are invited to come and share!

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Aerial

Because really, who doesn’t love Paris? If trans-atlantic travel just will not fit into your busy schedule, the gorgeous ranch at 632 County Road 43400 in Paris, Texas, just may be the perfect locale to get you and the family out of the hectic city. This property is so much more than a vacation home, it is truly an estate. Located on 22 sprawling acres complete with a six-acre lake, attention to detail abounds on this stately compound.

Gated entry with stained concrete circle drive.

Gated entry with stained concrete circle drive.

Designed with friends and family at the forefront, the main house is absolutely built for entertaining. Featuring three living areas, the kids, teens, and adults can all have their own space. No fighting over the television here! MainLivingArea

FamilyRoomSecondLivingArea

It’s hard to say what kitchen you’ll like more – indoor or outdoor? Both spaces are state-of-the-art with Subzero and stainless steel appliances.

MainHouseKitchen

OutdoorKitchen

The crown jewel of this property is really the outdoor space. The property has an astounding total of seven (yes, seven) fireplaces, including one outside, and a firepit for marshmallow-roasting lovers.

FirepitOutdoorFireplace

The sparkling 60-foot saltwater pool is overlooked by a cozy outdoor seating area, perfect for sipping cocktails and watching the sunset.

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OutdoorLiving

One of the major standouts of this outstanding property is the choice of both the 1,800-square-foot carriage house or the newly constructed 2,000-square-foot guesthouse for lodging. The simpler carriage house is perfect for kids or teens, while the guesthome features a stone fireplace and full master suite.

Carriage House Apartment

Carriage House Apartment

Guesthome

Guesthome

This peaceful, quiet property is such a gem, it is not to be missed. The ultimate in private family compounds, this ranch is just waiting for your friends and warm summer nights.

Your new weekend paradise is offered for $1,098,00.00 by Ebby Halliday Realtor Dee Evans.

“…You could say goodbye to everyone and retreat to your land, hunkering down and living off it.” – Jeanette Walls, Half Broke Horses

Kathryn Roan 1Kathryn Roan is an Ebby Halliday Realtor focusing on farms, ranches, and equestrian properties. Kathryn lives in Poetry with her 7 horses. Contact Kathryn at Kathryn@TexasEquestrianProperties.com

Breck Cannabis AP

The line at Breckenridge Cannabis Club goes out the door as vacationers and residents alike take advantage of Colorado’s new recreational marijuana laws. (Kathryn Olson/AP)

We’ve seen photos and stories from Colorado ski towns such as Aspen and Breckenridge showing vacationers filing lines out the door at marijuana shops, so of course, we had to wonder what kind of impact legal pot could have on Colorado real estate. Are more buyers putting it in their pipes and smoking it?

Turns out the Colorado Association of Realtors was wondering the exact same thing.  After all, with 136 pot retailers in the state as of Dec. 2013, buyers were throwing green after green, eventually causing a state-wide shortage of smokables. But is recreational marijuana a boon for Colorado real estate, or a burden?

“Some people don’t want to come [to Colorado] with their families,” says Joyce Burford, executive director of Colorado Association of Ski Towns. “Because they have this image that all these pot smokers will be everywhere.” That’s not happening, she says, and “I don’t think that’s going to happen.”

Analysis from the Colorado Association of Realtors shows that while state law no longer forbids recreational pot sales and retailers, local governments hold the keys to the lease.

The majority of counties in Colorado have either already passed bans on recreational marijuana retailers or have delayed making a decision and placed a moratorium on pot business; closely monitoring how enactment is working in other parts of the state.

It looks as though recreational marijuana businesses will be absent from large portions of the state for the foreseeable future. According to the Denver Post, of the ten largest cities in Colorado (by population), only Denver is expected to accept license applications for recreational marijuana stores this year.

It’s also important to note that in counties and cities that have decided to allow recreational sales, grow operations will only be in areas zoned industrial.

Right now, Denver and Denver County are the only areas where you can still apply for a marijuana sales license. So vacation property owners don’t really have to worry about an influx of new ganja businesses. And in Vail, there’s a complete moratorium on recreational marijuana sales. Still, folks in Aspen are buying pot, but at least one Realtor doesn’t think it will do much for real estate sales, if anything at all.

“I don’t think [legal marijuana] is making that much difference,” Joshua Landis, a real-estate agent in Aspen, said in this piece in The Daily Beast.

“People have always been able to access marijuana in Aspen. Nobody is out smoking marijuana on the corner” just because it’s suddenly legal to possess and use it in private (it’s still illegal to use publicly). In addition, he says, “I don’t think it has any effect” on property values. “No one who can afford to buy property in Aspen is going to make their decision based on marijuana policy.”

If the lines snaking outside of the Breckenridge Cannabis Club are any indication, pot tourism might make Colorado the new Amsterdam. And heck, it might be a draw so much in that it awakens latent demand for buyers who want to move to a 4:20-friendly state, but perhaps in more affordable areas such as Denver and its surrounding suburbs.

Others, like Lubbock’s Colt and Amanda Smith, are among those planning to move to the state to ride the new economy. The couple founded the Lubbock chapter of NORML (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws).

They had talked about retiring in Colorado but decided to act early once the new law took effect.

“We have our house on the market right now,” Colt Smith said. “It makes sense to find exile in a place that has more reasonable laws than to sit around and wait for Texas to get there.”

The Smiths hope to launch a marijuana edibles business once they establish residency.

“We feel like Colorado is just beautiful and has beautiful laws,” Smith said. “When people tell me they’re going there to ski now, they use air quotes.”

“Skiing,” indeed.

 

FrontofHome

I’m not the only one who is in love with my later-in-life hometown of Poetry, Texas. Author Janice Thompson even wrote a novel starring the 1800s version of this darling little town. Located just over 10 miles east of Rockwall, Poetry is a charming country community with sandy loam soil, populated almost entirely by horse owners, earning the unincorporated township the nickname “Little Aubrey.”

Locals are fond of saying “Poetry isn’t a location, it’s a lifestyle.” Less than an hour to Dallas, but it’s still the country out here. The waitresses at the BNF Diner know your name and your order by heart, and the food is good enough at Richards Smokehouse that even your visiting ”city friends” will approve. (Prepare to eat your weight in the just-like-grandma-made ‘em rolls. Poetry may be for lovers, but it is not for the waistline-conscious.)

DriveUp

If you’re not quite ready for a huge ranch, but want a little privacy from the neighbors and room for a few horses, the darling one-story home at 9738 County Road 2432 is the perfect transition from city to country. Built in 2005, the extremely well-constructed three-bedroom, two-bath home on three acres features flattering touches such as extra-high ceilings, crown moldings, stained concrete floors, and beautiful automatic gated entry.

LivingRoom

Kitchen

The floor plan accomplishes being both open and cozy at the same time, with all rooms overlooking the white pipe fenced pasture. The third garage space has been semi-converted to an exercise room, but could be a workshop or even go back to garage use. Small “dog room” offers indoor/outdoor access to your furry family members, and yes, the back yard is safely fenced for dogs, separated from the horse pasture.

ExerciseRoom

The back porch area is perfect for grilling out with friends, and enjoying the summer stars you’ll be able to see oh-so-clearly out here.

BackPorch

OutdoorKitchen

Your horses will feel right at home in the treed pasture, complete with pond and freshly painted white pipe-and-cable fencing. The barn has three beautiful heavy duty steel framed stalls, with water and electric already supplied for ease of care.

Stalls

PastureAcres

Located on one of the nicest streets in Poetry, with several $500,000-plus country estates and even an equine veterinary center, this lovely horse property is offered for $339,500 by myself, Ebby Halliday Realtor Kathryn Roan.

If you’d like to move to Poetry, we’d love to have you!

“A horse is poetry in motion.” – Author Unknown

Kathryn Roan 1Kathryn Roan is an Ebby Halliday Realtor focusing on farms, ranches, and equestrian properties. Kathryn lives in Poetry with her 7 horses. Contact Kathryn at Kathryn@TexasEquestrianProperties.com

 

Banner photoYear-round views steal the show at 739 Lakeview Ave., which is on the market for $2.7 million in South Lake Tahoe Calif. Listing agent Theresa Souers says this one is “probably the best buy all around the lake.”

Plenty of Texans go for vacation homes near Lake Tahoe.

“But be prepared that our houses aren’t as big as they’re used to,” real estate agent Theresa Souers adds with a chuckle. “I always tell them that upfront.”

Size doesn’t matter so much, however, when you’re breathing mountain air and pondering a looming, pristine lake that straddles California and Nevada.

Wealthy Californians are known for flocking to little towns on the Nevada side to avoid state income tax and enjoy a lower cost of living. Both options offer unfettered views and a sense of tony, tucked-away escapism, but it’s the area’s unbeatable year-round beauty and perpetual sports — including hiking, snow skiing, and waterskiing — that give Tahoe its biggest advantage over seasonal resort spots.

Serious buyers come because “they like the clean air,” says broker Chris Plastiras, of Lakeshore Realty. “They like the low crime rate, they like the educational system.”

220 Glen Way exterior739 Lakeview: Water and mountain views abound at this South Lake Tahoe property.

Home sales are up 30 to 35 percent this year by Sours’s count, and Plastiras’s company has seen a more than 100-percent increase, from $94 million in total sales to around $225 million.

The numbers aren’t a huge surprise, however; typically, California’s property sales foretell Tahoe’s to some extent.

“If you study the historical trends,” Souers explains, “we follow the Bay Area,” usually with about six-month to yearlong lag.

And guess what? The Bay Area is starting to fly high.

As for Tahoe, “we kind of flattened out around November,” Souers said, “but I don’t think it’s a permanent thing.”

Tahoe-area properties are often carefully regulated, for better or for worse; building permits can be scarce, which keeps neighborhoods quaint but frustrates some homeowners.

220 Glen Way interior(Above and Below): This low-elevation, lodge-style home offers direct access to a tennis and recreation center. 220 Glen Way is listed for $2.2 million in Incline Village, Nev.

739 Lakeview Living Room

“Even if you own [an empty] lot, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’d be able to build up there,” cautions Dallas resident Joyce Jacobson, whose family has kept a beloved second home in South Lake Tahoe — right on the state line, she says — for more than 20 years. Lake houses seem to hold their value better over time, she figures, but they’re also subject to strict regulations. In some cases, she adds, that means rules about what sort of blinds an occupant can hang from his or her windows. Seriously.

Her husband, Bob, has a funny story about their own vacation getaway, which isn’t on the lake. Seven or eight years ago, he said, Joyce and their grown children began pressuring him to sell.

“I put a real high price on it,” he says with a mischievous laugh — $1.2 million, which was several times what the family paid for it years ago — “thinking, ‘if we do [sell], we’re going to get something good.’”

A prospective buyer popped up immediately.

“They were so depressed,” Jacobson said of his family when they got the news. “They were hardly talking, and just walking around with their heads drooped down.”

Then and there, they changed their minds about leaving.

“Compared to Dallas,” Jacobson muses, “everything’s quiet. You get up in the morning, and the birds are making noise. You hear all these little animals. Last time I was up there, there were like six deer walking on our main street.”

Or maybe it’s the other humans — and myriad human diversions — that make die-hards keep coming back.

“It’s all the recreational spots, with all the skiing and the hiking and the water sports,” says homeowner Leroy Hardy (a relative of mine), whose custom-built Incline Village, Nev., house includes a creek, and is on the market.

“It’s unsurpassed.”

Georgia and Matt2Georgia Fisher is a Dallas expat now living in Reno, Nev., with her fiancé. Her interests include cats, Internet videos of cats, and cats watching Internet videos of cats. While she adores her quaint historic rental in Reno, she tries to escape to Lake Tahoe as often as possible.