Business Growth

What’s The GOOD News?

Good News1

June 20, 2017

Toyota2

Toyota Plano – Starting May 15, 2017, the first wave of Toyota employees — mostly in facilities and information systems management — began working in the new 2 million square foot North American headquarters in Plano.  By December 11, 2017, about 4,000 Toyota employees will work in the 100-acre development.   The company plans to move in employees in waves of about 250, with a peak of about 350 during the summer. Construction is expected to officially end in October and the project is reported to have remained on schedule.

Forbes1Forbes 2017 Global 2000 List – The Forbes 2017 Global 2000 list of the world’s largest public companies was released in late May.  The list features public companies from 58 countries that together account for $35.3 trillion in revenue, $2.5 trillion in profit, $169.1 trillion of assets, and have a combined market value of $48.8 trillion. All four metrics are up from the 2016 ranking, with market capitalization up 10% from last year. Industrial & Commercial Bank of China and China Construction Bank are the #1 and #2 largest public companies in the world, with the top five rounded out by three American financial institutions: Berkshire Hathaway, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo.

AT&T has leapfrogged Exxon Mobil in Forbes’ 2017 Global 2000 list, taking over the perch as the largest public company in Texas.  The Dallas telecom giant moved up a spot to 11th in this year’s edition of the rankings, with Exxon dropping down to 13th from 9th in 2016.  Japanese automaker Toyota Motor comes in at the 10th spot on the list. Round Forbes4Rock-based Dell Technologies Inc. landed at No. 608 overall and No. 14 in Texas on Forbes’ list.  Dell has been privately owned since a 2013 buyout led by CEO and founder Michael Dell, but it has a tracking stock listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker “DVMT.”  Overall, the U.S. earns 565 of the top 2,000 spots, with China grabbing 263 and Japan taking 229.   The three countries account for more than half the list.

 DFW1DFW International Airport – More than 18 million passengers are expected to travel through Dallas Fort Worth International Airport during the 2017 summer travel period — a projected increase of 3.5% over last year.   More than 65 million customers pass through DFW Airport every year, making it one of the most frequently visited super hub airports in the world. The airlines serving the DFW offer a total of 163 domestic and 55 international nonstop destinations worldwide, including new DFW2nonstop routes to Rome and Amsterdam.  DFW Airport plans to spend $400 million on infrastructure, including an August 2017 start date for a new north entry cellphone lot, a better baggage handling system at Terminal B, passenger boarding bridges and more employee parking over the next few years.

TreeHouse – Home improvement retailer TreeHouse, which opened in TreeHouse4Dallas Friday June 2nd, is the world’s first retail store to produce more energy than it uses. A Tesla power pack battery wall stores harvested solar energy to redistribute when needed, and to put excess back into the grid. All of its plants are native species and watered from harvested rainwater. The store uses daylight as much as possible, and cools by using Big Ass fans.

The Austin-based home improvement store sells products that fall into 3 categories: Performance – meaning energy efficient merchandise,EKO_symbol_cmyk windows, roofing, insulation; Design including paint, flooring, cabinetry, lighting; Landscaping including decking, irrigation, gardening.  Many products come from recycled materials, are free of toxins, are more sustainable or integrate automation for ease.  Inside the store, customers will also experience a live kitchen with local chefs demonstrating smart-home appliances, and two to three classes each week on topics like native landscaping.  The location is at the northeast corner of Interstate 75 & Walnut Hill Lane. The store will span 25,000 square foot, including 5,000 to 10,000 square feet for an outdoor landscaping section.  TreeHouse has also announced it will open a second North Texas location this fall at the corner of Preston Road and Park Boulevard in Plano, adjacent to a Whole Foods.

EpicWaters1New Epic Waters Waterpark – A new Dallas-Fort Worth Waterpark is set to make an EPIC Splash! The city of Grand Prairie announces their new $75M recreational facility that is slated to open in November of this year.  Epic Waters indoor waterpark is an indoor-outdoor venue with a retractable roof that’s open year round.

EpicWaters3The park will have nine water slides, including an outdoor wave pool, a lazy river, an activity pool, a children’s area, and an arcade. There will be cabanas, a full-service grill/bar, and private party/meeting areas, both indoor and outdoor. It’s part of The Epic recreation center, which will feature fitness equipment, indoor tracks, a digital library, and recording studio. The complex will also have a 5,000-seat amphitheater, and more than two miles of trails. Epic is the final phase of the 172 acre Grand Central recreational development.

Information provided by Keller Williams Dallas Metro North. Call us today for assistance with your real estate needs!

Keller Williams Dallas Metro North remains a strong presence in the Metroplex!

Newest data indicates that Keller Williams Dallas Metro North remains a strong presence in the Dallas/Fort Worth real estate market!

Slide1In May 2017, Area 41, Keller Williams Dallas Metro North (KW-DMN) closed more than twice as many units as the next closest brokerage firm.

Area 41 = the communities of Argyle, Bartonville, Copper Canyon, Corinth, Double Oak, Flower Mound, Hickory Creek, Highland Village, Lake Dallas, Lewisville, Shady Shores and parts of Hebron and Northlake.

 

Slide2Similarly, YTD 2017 data for Area 41 clearly demonstrates that Keller Williams Dallas Metro North (KW-DMN) closed more than double the units of their nearest competitor!

Area 41 = the communities of Argyle, Bartonville, Copper Canyon, Corinth, Double Oak, Flower Mound, Hickory Creek, Highland Village, Lake Dallas, Lewisville, Shady Shores and parts of Hebron and Northlake.

 

Slide3In May 2017, Keller Williams Dallas Metro North (KW-DMN) ranked 5th in closed units for the D/FW four-county area (Collin, Denton, Dallas and Tarrant Counties). Also notable – Keller Williams brokerage firms are a strong presence in the area, holding the top eight positions for closed units in the Metroplex!

 

slide4YTD 2017 figures indicate another strong showing by Keller Williams Dallas Metro North (KW-DMN), ranking 5th in the D/FW four-county area (Collin, Denton, Dallas and Tarrant Counties) for closed units. 8 of the top 10 Metroplex brokerage firms for Closed Unit Data belong to Keller Williams brokerage offices!

 

Slide5Keller Williams Dallas Metro North (DMN) improved to 5 fewer days on market for YTD 2017 when compared to 2016.

Furthermore, our listings are selling 16 days faster than the area MLS listings, an improvement over 2016 figures by 3 days!

Area 41 = the communities of Argyle, Bartonville, Copper Canyon, Corinth, Double Oak, Flower Mound, Hickory Creek, Highland Village, Lake Dallas, Lewisville, Shady Shores and parts of Hebron and Northlake.
It’s highly beneficial to have a professional, knowledgeable, local real estate agent by your side! Contact Keller Williams Dallas Metro North today for your real estate needs!

Dallas, Seattle top cities for U.S. Home Price Changes

business - growth 2[reprinted] from Dallas News – by Steve Brown, Real Estate Editor, May 25, 2017

U.S. home values have risen above the peak before the last recession, according to a new report from Zillow.

Nationwide home values are 1 percent higher than they were in 2007, the real estate marketing website said in a new report.

North Texas home prices have already soared past pre recession levels.

Zillow said D-FW’s median home value in April were up 11.1 percent from a year earlier to $207,300.

That’s almost $10,000 more than the U.S. median.

Only Seattle at 11.8 percent had a greater year-over-year home price gain in April, blog 053017according to Zillow.

“Now that the typical U.S. home is worth more than ever, people may be tempted to ask if we’re in another national housing bubble,” Zillow Chief Economist Dr. Svenja Gudell said in the new report. “We aren’t in a bubble, and won’t be entering one anytime soon.

“Supply has been slow to catch up to this demand, which is causing home values to grow at a faster clip than we might otherwise expect,” she said. “Beyond that, the market’s fundamentals look largely healthy.”

North Texas home prices are now almost 50 percent higher than they were at the peak before the recession in the summer of 2017.

Median home sales prices in the region are up 13 percent for the first four months of 2017 compared with the same period last year, according to data from local real estate agents.

It’s highly beneficial to have a professional, knowledgeable, local Real Estate Agent by your side! Call Keller Williams Dallas Metro North today for all your real estate needs!

Good News – May 2017

business - growth 5Nationally, homeowners saw 24% average return in 1st Q. 2017 – Homeowners who sold in the first three months of this year saw an average price gain of $44,000 from purchase, according to a report from Attom Data Solutions released April 27, 2017. That represents a 24% return on the purchase price – the highest gain since third quarter 2007.  Nationwide, the median home price was $225,000 during the first quarter of 2017, the report stated, up 13% from a year ago. Homes in more expensive markets have seen the highest average price gains so far this year, the report found. Sellers in San Jose, California, saw an average price gain of $356,500 (71% return on investment), followed by those in San Francisco with a gain of $276,750 (65% return on investment).  The Austin-Round Rock, Texas market is the only Texas market that shows up on the Top 20 metro areas where home sellers are making the most money when selling their homes, with an average return on investment of 39% and an average price gain of $81,795…..and that puts them at the #19 spot on the list.   

shutterstock_389597869Noble Gold Investments opens IRA depository in Dallas – Delaware and New York no longer have a monopoly on storing gold and precious metals for IRAs. This month, Noble Gold Investments opened an IRA depository in Dallas, the first of its kind in this region of the country.  Charles Thorngren, CEO of Noble Gold, said they will store everything from bullions to coins and platinum to palladium at the high-security facility. He could not disclose the  location, only that it is in Dallas.

And yes, they are storing the physical metal. Like any asset, gold prices do fluctuate from day-to-day based on economic conditions and demand. On May 12, spot prices for gold were at $1,226 an ounce.  Noble Gold stores the precious metals for a flat $300 annual fee.

Plano Water TowerAltice USA Inc. expansion to bring 400 jobs to area – International telecommunications firm Altice USA Inc. has decided to expand its presence in North Texas with a new 79,000 square feet office in Plano. The company already has an office in Plano, and this new office, which they expect to occupy by the 3rd quarter of this year, will bring 400 relocated or new jobs to the city.  The company provides internet, video and phone services throughout the country with 4.9 million residential and business customers in 21 states.  Altice has expanded its 1 Gigabit per second broadband services in Texas to about 85 communities in the state and has announced a five-year plan to build a next generation fiber optic network capable of delivering speeds of up to 10 Gbps.   

Innovative Design of Connex Office Park will Use Shipping Containers as Construction Material – Construction has begun on an office park made entirely of shutterstock_554962666shipping containers, which, once started, will deliver a new office and retail option to tenants near downtown Fort Worth.  The three-story office park, called Connex Fort Worth, will sit on a tract at 1201 Evans Ave. and is being developed with the help of 40 shipping containers.  The Connex office park is slated for completion by the end of October.  Upon completion, the Connex office park will bring a zero energy building powered with the help of solar power and wind turbine trees atop the roof of the structure.   

Grand Opening of Kubota Tractor Headquarters in Grapevine – Early April marked the grand opening of the Kubota Tractor headquarters campus in Grapevine, completingshutterstock_322361249 a 2 year building process.  The new facility includes the headquarters building and an adjacent 62,000 square foot research and development building, an outdoor water garden, and a large employee lounge and food service area.  The facilities already have about 280 employees working there, with 2017 employment expected to reach 340 jobs created. The new Grapevine campus is built to ultimately house as many as 600 workers, and has already brought a payroll of $25 million annually to our area. The completion of the $50 million campus for Kubota Tractor Corp in Grapevine has pushed the vertical limit of tilt-wall construction, with its tallest concrete panel coming in at 82 ft 11 in.  In the past, tilt-wall construction has been reserved for mainly industrial buildings, but as technology has evolved — so has the use of tilt-wall construction — and it has fully transferred into the construction of office buildings.  The building appears to be four-stories tall instead of its actual three story height and has 20-foot floor-to-floor heights. A 300-ton crane was used to erect the concrete walls.

When to get excited about the housing market

shutterstock_627512981Real estate professionals get that consumers, by and large, ignore housing statistics and the market until they become involved in the purchase or sale of a home. It’s only natural then that what impacts the market is a bit of a mystery to many. What determines a buyers’ or sellers’ market? What factors influence home prices?

Of course the answers to these questions and more may be multi-faceted, but it’s important to pay attention to them if you hope to keep more of your money when it’s time to buy or sell real estate.

Believe it or not, even in what seems like the gloomiest of real estate markets, there will be a glimmer of light for some.

Pay Attention to Interest Rates

It certainly is no secret that obtaining a lower interest rate for a mortgage typically allows for a lower payment. Naturally then, low interest rates make home-buying an attractive venture—and, even whispers of a rate hike can spur folks to get out into the market.

For instance, by the end of 2015, the U.S. saw 5.26 million home sales, which was the most robust housing market since 2006. Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), attributed the robust market, in part, to the mere “prospect of higher mortgage rates in coming months.”

And, rise they did, throughout the following year. In fact, late in 2016, mortgage interest rates rose eight times in nine weeks, according to bankrate.com. Sounds rather gloomy until one recognizes that, post-hike, rates were still at historic lows.

The bottom line is that if you’re in the market for a home and interest rates decrease or remain attractively low, it’s time to get excited about the housing market.

The Economy

The current economy is a key factor affecting the real estate market. “Broadly speaking, when the economy is sluggish, so is real estate,” claims Joseph Nguyen at Investopedia. Rather than look at the glass half-full, however, we choose to take the opposite tack—when the economy is humming along, the housing market is at its most attractive.

When job growth is robust, consumer confidence rises and we’re more apt to spend money on high-ticket items, such as cars, appliances, vacations and, yes, homes.

Exciting Markets for Sellers

There’s an old saying in the real estate industry that counsels homeowners that the best time to sell a home is when you need to sell your home. Yes, we understand that isn’t very helpful. If you’re one of the fortunate who has no compelling reason to sell (such as a job offer in a different town or divorce), you have the luxury of choosing when to put the home on the market.

Get excited if real estate professionals mention the words “sellers’ market.” This is a period in which there are few homes for sale but buyer demand is high. During sellers’ markets prices typically increase rapidly and homes sell at or above list price.

One of the biggest mistakes we see in sellers’ markets is the homeowner who feels that the market itself will bring top dollar for the home, regardless of condition. Be aware that it’s the homes in good condition that sell the quickest and for the most amount of money. Regardless if market conditions favor sellers, if your home isn’t in move-in condition, it may be passed over by home buyers.

Buying a Home This Year?

A buyers’ market—when there is a large selection of homes for sale and few other buyers in the market—is a great time to purchase a home. Unlike a sellers’ market, prices aren’t shutterstock_626492420rapidly escalating and you won’t be competing against a slew of other buyers. These markets are more relaxed so homebuyers can take their time deciding.

In a sellers’ market, however, it’s more important than ever to have all your ducks in a row before making an offer on a property. Ensure you know exactly how much you can spend and that you’ve obtained a preapproval letter from your lender. Make your offer stand out from others by keeping it lean and mean, with the shortest time periods for contingencies as possible. Finally, come in with your highest and best offer. A sellers’ market moves too quickly to assume the homeowner will negotiate over price.

While the type of market may determine when to jump in, as mentioned earlier, interest rates can also cause excitement in the housing market. Low rates and relaxed lending guidelines, such as we saw in 2015 and 2016, presented a prime opportunity for many would-be buyers who previously couldn’t afford to purchase.

Lower mortgage rates mean a lower monthly payment, which means you have more purchasing power, and that additional power can “mean the difference between buying a 2-bedroom home versus a 3-bedroom one; between buying a home with large closets versus small closets; and, between buying an upgraded home versus a dated one,” according to Dan Green at The Mortgage Reports.

Regardless of the media’s perception of the housing market, there is always a mix of good and bad news, depending on whether you are in the market to buy or to sell. Arm yourself with a professional real estate agent who can supply you with current and local market information (too often what you read in the news is stale and based on nationwide statistics), follow his or her advice and buying or selling a home in any market will be an exciting process.

What Was The Good News For July?

Mary KayMary Kay Inc. will build a $100 million manufacturing and R&D complex near Lewisville’s Vista Ridge shopping mall. The new plant will start construction in September on 26 acres at the northeast corner of Denton Tap Road and Vista Ridge Mall Drive near State Highway 121.  The project will replace the company’s almost 50-year-old plant in Northwest Dallas.  The 470,000 square foot building will open in the first quarter of 2018.  The manufacturing operation produces up to 1.1 million products per day and more than half of the output of that plant is exported to Mary Kay Inc.’s international markets.


 

Tech Week

Techweek is a week long technology festival for entrepreneurs, tech visionaries and thought leaders to meet and enable the innovation ecosystem across the globe. Techweek was founded 5 years ago in Chicago, and in 2016, will be held in 98 cities in North America.  Toronto and Dallas are two new additional cities for 2016, and the November 14 – 20, 2016 Dallas event is expected to draw 5,000 – 6,000 attendees. Techweek will remain in its current markets of Detroit, Chicago, Kansas City, New York, Miami and Los Angeles.


Wind Energy

American wind power supported a record 88,000 jobs at the start of 2016—an increase of 20% in a year—according to the U.S. Wind Industry Annual Market Report.  The Texas wind power industry currently ranks first for both installed and under-construction capacity and employs almost 25,000 people.   Strong job growth coincided with wind ranking number one as America’s leading source of new generating capacity last year, outpacing solar and natural gas.   Innovative turbine technology has cut the cost of wind energy by two-thirds in just six years, which is leading to continued interest and investment in the wind energy industry.   Texas is home to about 40 wind turbine manufacturers, and the wind industry has a total capital investment of almost $33 billion.  The Department of Energy estimates Texas could produce enough wind energy by 2030 to run about 15 million homes.


Pokemon

Pokemon Go has seen more downloads and more activity than Twitter or Tinder either one since its release on July 6, 2016.  Nintendo is reaping huge rewards from Pokemon Go’s instant success, seeing an amazing 25% increase in stock shares. At $37 or so, the company’s stock price is still well below the high it hit in 2007 when Nintendo was trading in the mid $70 range, however the increase adds somewhere around $9 billion to the company’s market value.  While the game itself is free to play and can easily be used without spending any money, it’s still bringing in somewhere around $1.5 million in revenue each day through in-app purchases. Businesses of all shapes and sizes are finding ways to cash in on the Pokemon Go craze, by having locations called PokeStops and Gyms, that correspond to the business’s real-life locations that players have to go to in order to pick up items or battle other trainers. Unfortunately, most Pokemon Go players are not big spenders, but certain businesses in certain places are seeing a significant impact.  Impressively, over 60% of those who have downloaded the app in the US are using it daily.  Be watching Virtual Reality vs Augmented Reality, and what that may mean for the real estate industry and many others.


Condos

The U.S. Senate recently passed H.R. 3700, the “Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act,” by unanimous consent. This legislation includes reforms to current Federal Housing Administration restrictions on condominium financing, among other provisions, and is long supported by the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR).  Changes include efforts to make FHA’s recertification process “substantially less burdensome,” while lowering FHA’s current owner-occupancy requirement from 50 percent to 35 percent. The bill also requires FHA to replace existing policy on transfer fees with the less-restrictive model already in place at the Federal Housing Finance Agency. Condominium sales in Texas’s 4 major metro areas increased in the first half of 2016, according to a report released the Texas Association of REALTORS®.   According to the report, Austin, Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio all experienced an increase in condo sales between January and May 2016 compared to the same six-month period last year.

What’s The Good News For November?

The Dallas Business Journal released its “Tracking Dallas’s Wealthiest Zip Codes” article.  As no surprise, while wealth still resides in the core of Dallas, wealth is showing a distinct migration to northern suburbs.  The top 5 zip codes in the November 13th article were:  76034 Colleyville; 75225 University Park; 76092 Southlake; 75022 Flower Mound; 75205 Highland Park.  Number 8 on the list was Argyle 76226; Coppell #11 75019;  75028 in Flower Mound was #15; and Lewisville 75077 was #17.

 

Gaylord Texan is already hard at work on its annual Lone Star Christmas extravaganza featuring a 2 million pound hand-carved ICE! attraction.  The theme for this year’s Nov. 12-Jan. 3 exhibit is Christmas Around the World. The ice for ICE! is created using a special “recipe”, and it arrives in approximately 36 truckloads over a 3-week period… 2 trucks a day for 15 days. The master carvers who are from the city of Harbin in Northeast China, near Siberia, take shifts working inside a 9-degree freezer to transform the 2 million pounds of ice.

 

Almost 20 years after buying the land, Dallas Cowboy’s owner Jerry Jones has quietly started construction on his $1 billion Gates of Prosper development. The project will be a 300,000-square-foot shopping center on the property located just north of Frisco.  It is slated to be a 93-acre retail center, with a Walmart store included in the project.  The Jones project in Prosper also includes the  979-acre Villages of Star Trail, an 1,850-home community. The first phase of the Star Trail community will include about 300 homesites, and will begin construction in early 2016.

U.S. homebuilders have not felt this good about their business in a decade. Sentiment jumped 3 points in October to a level of 64 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index. Anything above 50 is considered positive sentiment. The index stood at 54 last October, but has held in the 60s since June of this year. When homebuilders feel confident, it is trackable to an increase in housing starts – which are desperately needed in our area.

 

An Austin homebuilder, Scott Felder Homes, is making inroads in the booming North Texas housing market.   Scott Felder Homes has tied up land for eight Dallas-Fort Worth developments with more than 500 houses. The builder’s first houses in the area are expected to be ready next year. While most of Felder’s new neighborhoods are for traditional single-family homes, the builder will start construction soon on a 127-home project in Plano’s $2 billion Legacy West development.  The high-density contemporary houses will occupy a site between Toyota Motor and Liberty Mutual Insurance’s new Plano campuses. The two- and three-story detached houses have different architectural styles and will be constructed around a small park.  The 2,000- to 3,000-square-foot houses will start around $500,000. Along with the Legacy West project, Felder Homes has purchased building locations in Highland Village, Celina, Prosper and Frisco.

Cinemark’s Nextgen 53,000 square foot theatre is open in Roanoke, featuring 14 screens, and 2,500 parking spaces. It is located at the intersection of Hwy. 170 and Hwy. 114.  The theater features all leather luxury lounge chairs and a cafeteria style concessions area with expanded food choices.