1.* The 2016 Home Buyer & Home Seller Survey by the National Association of Realtors, with results published in late October, shows a small rebound from two key segments of buyers who have been missing in action in recent years: first-time buyers and single women. In the past year, single women made up 17% of all homebuyers, purchasing at twice the rate of single men, according to the new annual report. Despite having a much lower income ($55,300) than single male buyers ($69,600), female buyers made up over double the amount of men (7%) Like men, three-quarters of the properties the women buy are single-family, detached homes. And after slipping for 3 straight years, the share of sales to first-time home buyers in the 2016 survey ticked up to 35%, which is the highest since 2013 (38%) and a revival from the near 30-year low of 32% in 2015. In the 35-year history of NAR’s survey, the long-term average of first-time buyer transactions is 40%.
2.* Trinity Groves opened four years ago as a dining and drinking destination. With the success of the restaurant venue confirmed, developers are betting some of those same folks who dine there will want to live at Trinity Groves, work in an office and stay in hotel rooms with a postcard view of the nearby skyline. Development designs show a 349-unit apartment and retail building just across the street from the Trinity Groves restaurant park. The first apartments are expected to be ready in early 2017. Next door to the new apartments on the site of an old concrete plant, designs show an 11-story hotel. And across the street on a parking lot, the latest architectural renderings picture an office tower. Watch for tremendous growth near the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge.
3.* Ground was broken November 2, 2016 on Wise Health Surgical Hospital near Argyle. The 44,782 square-foot, single-story facility at I-35W and Crawford Rd. in Denton, about a mile from Robson Ranch, will focus on orthopedics and spine surgery with six surgical suites and 12 patient beds. With the orthopedic concentration, it will have a full complement of imaging services, including a CT scanner, MRI, X-rays and separate exam rooms. There will also be an on-site emergency area with two treatment rooms that have the capabilities necessary to stabilize a patient for transfer to a hospital. Several medical office buildings will eventually be built near the hospital. The hospital is expected to open in fall 2017.
4.* One of the largest independent suppliers of tires — North Carolina-based American Tire Distributors — plans to open a large regional distribution hub within the Roanoke/Denton County portion of the 18,000-acre Alliance Texas development. In all, the hub will create 60 new North Texas jobs. American Tire Distributors expects to move into the new building in early 2017.
5.* OKI Data Americas — a printing technology firm — plans to move its headquarters to Irving from New Jersey following a national real estate search that will bring 100 jobs and $3.5 million of capital investment into the North Texas city. The average annual salary of the firm’s employees is projected to be $86,000. The company is a subsidiary of Tokyo-based OKI Data Corp. This is Irving’s 35th business to join the city with connections to Japan. Other companies include NEC Corporation of America, American Honda Motor Company and Canon USA.
6.* The 13th annual Lone Star Christmas “Ice” event has opened at the Gaylord Texan Resort in Grapevine.
It is a chilly 9 degrees inside winter wonderland that includes 2 million holiday lights, 2 million pounds of hand-carved ice, a 6,000-square-foot ice-skating rink and a 54-foot-tall Christmas tree.
Forty master ice artisans from China traveled to Grapevine to carve the ice into an ice bar, five ice slides, holiday scenes and characters. The theme for this year’s event is “Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town”, and it is open every day through January 1st.