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Summer is here and the heat is on the rise in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. High temperatures can be harmful to your home and property so Christine McKenney of Dave Perry-Miller & Associates is sharing her suggested home maintenance tips to keep your home safe and looking its best.

WATER
To keep your home’s foundation secure in the dry months of summer, always water consistently and evenly around the foundation of your home. Homes that are not watered regularly and consistently may suffer cracks in the foundation due to the Texas summer heat and the constriction of the heavy clay content in the soil. Water during the early morning hours, so more moisture is absorbed by your foundation, grass, shrubs, and plants.

TREES
Summer storms can be fierce in the Dallas area. Trim all trees back from your home by four to six feet to avoid damage to your home’s exterior - gutters and roof.

ROOF
Summer is a great time to have your roof professionally inspected, repaired or replaced. Winter was likely hard on your roof.

GUTTERS & DOWN SPOUTS
Make sure that your downspouts and gutters are debris free. Debris in your gutters can lead to wood-rot and damage to your home and roof!

EXTERIOR JOINTS
For greater energy efficiency and to prevent air leaks, caulk windows and doors and replace old weather stripping. This is good to do during the summer months for many reasons: keeps creatures out; if/when it rains, it will prevent water from coming in; and, it helps to maintain your energy bills - you are paying for cool air, so keep it indoors! 

CLEAN & WASH
Use a garden hose to give your home a good wash. Avoid using a power washer, as it can potentially damage the exterior. Have your windows professionally cleaned.

PAINT & SIDING
Get rid of the paint chips with a fresh coat of paint – and do not forget the trim. Repair any damaged wood, aluminum or vinyl siding.

DECKS
Deck maintenance is critical to prevent discoloration caused by moss, dirt, and debris. Summer is the perfect time to have your deck cleaned, power-washed or resealed.

FURNACE
Some HVAC companies offer discounts for "all things" furnace in the summer months. Request they change your filters while they are there!

AIR CONDITIONERS
If you did not have your AC units serviced in the spring, do it now! If you have an issue this summer, the repairs will cost more should you have an urgent need after hours. Also, as a reminder, have your filters changed. Lastly, shrubs and plants should not be growing around your units and there should not be any debris around them – so trim back and clean up the area around your units!

HOT WATER HEATER
Schedule a maintenance appointment to keep your hot water heater operating correctly. Tip: to extend your water heater’s life by years, professional servicing will minimize rust and calcium carbonate build-up.

GARAGE
The summer months are sure to bring heat and rising temperatures. Do not store heat-sensitive or combustible materials your garage.

PREPARE
Summer is a great time to prepare your home for the vibrant fall housing market! Meet with your real estate agent to discuss your property’s condition and what may need to be done in addition to the above tips, to sell your home quickly and at the highest price!

Thank for you taking the time to review my tips! Enjoy your summer and keep me in mind for all of your Real Estate needs!

Christine McKenny
Call
: (214)662-7758
Email: Christine_McKenny@yahoo.com

Dave Perry-Miller - Highland Park
5500 Preston Rd, Ste 290
Dallas, TX 75205

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4346 Park Ln
Dallas, TX 75220
$5,000,000

This stunning Preston Hollow Estate is gracefully set back on 1.1 acres with unparalleled luxury features including a Control4 home automation system throughout the home (cameras, music, HVAC, lights), three Sub-zeros, Viking appliances, a nine foot television in family room, category 5 safe room, separate quarters and a sport court. The lush landscape embodies serenity and solitude with its vast green space, resort style pool, and outdoor entertainment area.

Filled with abundant natural light, this private paradise pays special attention to detail with mosaic inlaid tiles, Venetian plastered walls in the formal rooms, exquisite hand painted detailing throughout, and custom honey onyx finish out with back lights in powder bath and game room bar. The handsome wine room has a hand painted mural and a truly one of a kind unique feature - a built-in, temperature controlled humidor. This - no expense spared - estate is a rare opportunity for the most discriminating buyer.

 

Size
11076 SqFt.
4 Bedrooms
4.2 Bathrooms
5 Living Areas
2 Stories
Lot: 199.4x244.5
Dining: 20 x 16
Breakfast: 15 x 11
Kitchen: 22 x 10
Utility: 11 x 8
Study: 14 x 13
Living: 16 x 19
Living: 20 x 22
Living: 14 x 21
Master: 18 x 24
Bedroom 2: 12 x 15
Bedroom 3: 15 x 13
Bedroom 4: 16 x 13
Type
Single Family
Features
3 Car Garage
Pool
Library / Study
Cent Air-Elec, Zoned
Fence: Automatic Gate, Wood
Roof: Tile/Slate
Found: Pier and Beam
Built: 2000
Location
City: Dallas
Zip: 75220
Subdivision: Turner
Schools
School District: Dallas ISD
Walnut Hill
Cary
Jefferson

If you are interested in more information regarding this home or would like to schedule a visit, call Christine McKenny today. Click here to view more information about the listing.

 

Christine McKenny
Call

(214)662-7758
Email
Christine_McKenny@yahoo.com

Dave Perry-Miller - Highland Park
5500 Preston Rd, Ste 290
Dallas, TX 75205

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4212 Versailles Ave
Dallas, TX 75205
$2,595,000

Exquisite French Chateau in the Heart of Highland Park. Located on a highly sought after block of Versailles Avenue, one of Highland Park’s premier streets, this extraordinary French inspired property exemplifies the ultimate Highland Park lifestyle - modern amenities, style, grace, quality workmanship and construction by Gage Homes -- within walking distance to Highland Park Village shops, restaurants, and theatre. Exquisite Versailles and Herringbone patterned hardwood flooring and beautiful mill-work throughout, including gorgeous library.

Inviting Chef’s gourmet kitchen offers dual Thermador commercial grade ranges, two Thermador microwaves, two Sub-Zero refrigerators, and Thermador warming drawer. The gracious master suite features a sitting room, fireplace, coffee bar, bathroom with mosaic/heated flooring, steam shower, and separate closets. Outdoor living area offers grill, bar, sink, refrigerator, sitting area, and mounted TV, perfect for entertaining. The third floor is well suited for guest suite or quarters, with sitting area and en suite bathroom. Home is elevator ready and offers ample storage. Motor court is perfect for bikes, trikes or basketball goal! Scale, warmth, and exceptional design define this wonderful find!

Property Information

MLS # 1765282

Size
6,882 SqFt.
5 Bedrooms
5.2 Bathrooms
4 Living Areas
3 Stories

 Location
City: Dallas
Zip: 75205
Subdivision: Highland Park
School District: Highland Park ISD
Bradfield
Highland Park
Highland Park

Lot: 70x145
Dining: 18 x 14
Breakfast: 13 x 14
Kitchen: 15 x 14
Utility: 11 x 6
Study: 14 x 13
Living: 18 x 15
Living: 18 x 20
Living: 21 x 15
Master: 15 x 15
Bedroom 2: 15 x 12
Bedroom 3: 12 x 15
Bedroom 4: 14 x 16
Bedroom 5: 13 x 18

Type
Single Family
Features
2 Car Garage
Library / Study
Cent Air-Elec, Cent Heat-Gas, Zoned, Additional Water Heaters(s)
Fence: Wood, Automatic Gate
Roof: Tile/Slate
Found: Pier and Beam
Built: 200

If you are interested in more information regarding this home or would like to schedule a visit, call Christine McKenny today. Click here to view more information about the listing.

Christine McKenny
Call

(214)662-7758
Email
Christine_McKenny@yahoo.com

Dave Perry-Miller - Highland Park
5500 Preston Rd, Ste 290
Dallas, TX 75205

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What upgrades should one consider for a remodel?

The Heart of the House: Kitchens and Kitchen Renovations

  • Cabinets, flooring, countertops and appliances can all be costly, but worth the investment!
  • Paint and hardware – simple yet inexpensive and effective.
  • Keep it neutral. Subtle colors and classic designs are the most appealing. 
  • Make sure there are plenty of cabinets and counter space, updated light fixtures and energy-efficient appliances.And if possible, use high-quality materials.

Making one or all of these changes to your kitchen will add value to your home.

Bathroom Renovations:

  • Bathroom additions or updating what you have will sharply enhance the sale possibilities of your home.
  • A priority if budget allows: marble/granite vanity top, molded sink, bathtub with shower and tile. These improvements will almost pay for themselves.
  • In the luxury market, the trend for bathrooms is jetted tubs and heated floors.
  • Neutral colors still prevail!
  • A budget minimum –purchase new fixtures and hardware.The fixtures on the sink and shower and the hardware on the cabinets will look new with brushed nickel or oil-rubbed bronze.
  • A simple updated shower head can also significantly improve the appeal of your bathroom and make your shower more enjoyable!

Creating New Space

Adding a new room can pay off in the end. Depending on your budget and neighborhood theater rooms, open family rooms that adjoin the kitchen, outdoor living space and master suites are hot buzz items right now. Think about adding sitting areas or a small kitchenette area to your master suite! For the outdoors think about adding a fireplace or fire pit, a sitting area, a grill and ceiling fans.

Curb Appeal

The front door is one of the first focal points that someone notices about your home. If your budget won’t permit a new front door make sure yours has a fresh coat of paint in a desirable color and has updated hardware! Add a welcome mat, which you can buy inexpensively.

Modest landscaping can be inexpensive, and you will see a return. Make sure to get rid of weeds, cut trees and shrubs,add mulch, add color with attractive flowers and make sure your lawn is green and cut!

New Windows and Other Green Updates

New energy-efficient windows always pay for themselves at resale, as your property will be listed in the category of having green features. The savings on your utility bills is reason enough to consider energy-efficient improvements.

After you’ve made improvements to your home, make sure you are giving yourself time to live there and enjoy the benefits and fruits of your labor!

For resources on remodeling, call your REALTOR Christine McKenny. With knowledge of your neighborhood and the housing market, Christine McKenny can help you sell or purchase a home that meets your needs. 214.662.7758

Christine McKenny
Dave Perry-Miller & Associates, Realtor®
Quarterly Sales Leader
Sold Over 100 Million in Residential Real Estate
Follow McKENNY Dallas & Park Cities Real Estate on FACEBOOK
214.662.7758

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Here are some tips to get your house ready to sell.

1. It’s important to trust your agent, and follow their advice as often as you can.

2. Approximately 92% of homebuyers start their house hunt online. They will never get in the car to come see your home if the online listing isn’t compelling. Make sure photographs of your home are professional and intriguing.

3. If you home looks enticing, your potential buyers will be able to imagine themselves living there. The #1 rule to entice is to get rid of clutter and have the appearance of being meticulously organized (I have seen sellers even reorganize closets and kitchen cabinets by color and alphabetization).

4. Stage the exterior with fresh landscaping, fresh paint and wash windows inside and out.

5. As an individual homeowner, the way you can compete is on condition. It’s a major selling point to be able to advertise “move in ready” with a very low or non-existent repair bills and existing conditions (termite inspections/pest inspections/A-C service reports, etc.).

6.
Also, make sure all light fixtures have light bulbs, nicks and scratches are repaired, doorknobs are fixed as well as cracks repaired before showing your home.

7. Make sure your house numbers are legible, odors eliminated, and at least one bouquet of fresh flowers on a table await prospective buyers.

8. Accommodate all showings if possible and consider buying a new welcome mat. It’s an inexpensive way to jazz up the entrance to the house.

9. Keep pets outside. Not everyone likes animals.

10. Know your competition and price your home appropriately. Check out the other homes for sale in your area so that you know what you are up against. Price your home to sell in 60 days. Today’s buyers are very educated about the comparable sales in the area.

11. Counter every offer you get. Keep the deal alive.

12. Another way to make a deal more attractive is to offer a buyer terms that sweeten the deal. For example, sellers that offer the buyer a couple of thousand dollars toward closing costs will perhaps receive more attention than other homes for sale.

13. Provide a transferable home warranty, which can cost $300 to $500 for a one-year policy that covers appliances, such as air conditioners and refrigerators.

If you are thinking about selling your home, talk to an expert. Christine McKenny with Dave Perry-Miller and Associates can answer your questions and get your home listed and sold – in the shortest amount of time at the highest price!

Christine McKenny
Dave Perry-Miller & Associates, Realtor®
Quarterly Sales Leader
Sold Over 100 Million in Residential Real Estate
Follow McKENNY Dallas & Park Cities Real Estate on FACEBOOK
214.662.7758

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Step #1 Know Your Dates
There are several important property tax dates to remember in Dallas County.
 

  • January 1
    • Annual date used for tax appraisals.
  • January 31
    • Last day to pay “current year” property taxes without penalty.
  • January 31
    • Last day to file for Homestead Exemption on the previous two years (you must have owned and occupied your home on January 1 of the prior years you are seeking the homestead exemption).
  • April 30
    • If you have moved within the last 12 months and owned/occupied your new home on January 1 of the current year, the Dallas Appraisal District prefers you submit your Homestead Exemption by April 30.
  • April 30
    • Approximate date appraisal/value notices are mailed from the Dallas County Appraisal District (DCAD). (You will not receive a Notice of Value if your home valuation does not change or is lowered; however you may still protest.)
  • May 1 through 31
    • Time period to file a property value/tax protest in order to be granted an informal or formal tax assessment hearing.

Step #2 Look for Appraisal Notice of Value in Your Mail

Approximately April 30 of each year, DCAD will mail your Notice of Value for your property. You WILL NOT RECEIVE Notice of Value in your mail if your home valuation DOES NOT CHANGE or is LOWERED. Beginning May 1, new property valuations are available from DCAD at www.dallascad.org.

From May 1-31, you have these options:

  1. You may choose to accept the evaluation. No action is needed.
  2. You may return the Notice of Value:
    1. In person to DCAD for an informal hearing; go to the DCAD Office to meet with an appraiser.
    2. Return bottom “Protest” portion of your Notice of Value or go to www.dallascad.org and click FORMS to print the “Notice of Protest” for a formal hearing. (Note forms are only available on the site annually May 1-31.)
    3. File online “Notice of Protest” via uFile for an ARB formal hearing. You will be given a date to present your case and evidence. www.dallascad.org

Tip #1 – The DCAD Office is open Monday - Friday between the hours of 8:00 am-4:30 pm. DCAD is also open on a couple of Saturdays in May from 8:30 – Noon. Visit www.dallascad.org  or call 214-631-0910 to check Saturday schedules. Not as many individuals go to protest on Saturdays, so waits may be shorter.

Tip #2 - If valuation issues aren’t resolved with an informal hearing, file for a “formal” hearing with the Appraisal Review Board (ARB). Thus, you will have two opportunities to resolve.

Tip #3 – If you file evidence with your “Notice of Protest,” you may be able to resolve your valuation issue via phone and email conversations.

Tip #4 - You are still eligible to protest, even if you do not receive a Notice of Value in your mail – meaning DCAD did not change your home valuation or it was lowered. It is still a good idea to review comparable sales in your neighborhood to determine if the amount lowered or unchanged reflects current values.

Step #3 Gather Your Evidence

Gather Evidence prior to your Informal or Formal Hearing - Comparable Sales, Needed Maintenance/Repairs and Evaluate the Location of Your Home

  1. Gather Comparable Sales for Your Home
    Comparable sales will be in the same neighborhood with similar square footage, lot size, age, amenities, and the same school district.
  2. Maintenance and Repairs Needed?
    Is your home in need of maintenance and repairs? Take photos of needed repairs and price estimates to your hearing as evidence.
  3. Evaluate the Location of Your Home
    Is your home located near a busy intersection, on a busy street, near power lines, etc.? Homes in these locations are sometimes eligible for a “market adjustment” of 10% to 40%. Investigate on DCAD what types of adjustments, if any, your neighbors are receiving. To investigate more visit www.dallascad.org.

Tip #5 Need an Expert Opinion? Ask a Realtor® like Christine McKenny who is able to help you with comparable sales and an expert opinion.

For more information about the process to protest your home’s valuation; visit www.dallascad.org/

To view a 14 minute video of the process; visit http://www.dallascad.org/ProtestVideo.aspx

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Dear Neighbor,

How would you like to save money this tax season?

Have you recently purchased a new home in the Dallas area? Are you 65 or older? Are you a surviving spouse?

I would be silly to assume you know everything there is to know about property tax and tax exemptions. As a REALTOR® with over a decade of residential real estate experience, I want to share my knowledge and help you save thousands of dollars this tax season.

Are you aware that you may be eligible for homestead exemption?
TYPES of EXEMPTIONS for which one may apply: 

  • GENERAL RESIDENCE HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION (must occupy the property as of January 1, 2012)
  • DISABLED PERSON EXEMPTION
  • AGE 65 OR OLDER EXEMPTION
  • SURVIVING SPOUSE OF INDIVIDUAL WHO QUALIFIED FOR AGE 65 OR OLDER EXEMPTION
  • 100% DISABLED VETERANS EXEMPTION
  • SURVIVING SPOUSE OF DISABLED VETERAN WHO RECEIVED THE 100% DISABLED VETERAN’S EXEMPTION

Homestead exemptions remove part of your home's value from taxation, so they lower your taxes. For example, i.e. your home is appraised at $100,000, and you qualify for a $15,000 exemption (this is the amount mandated for school districts), you will pay school taxes on the home as if it was worth only $85,000.

You must file by April 30, 2012. The application with all required documentation between January 1 and April 30 must be completed for the year for which you are requesting an exemption.

Taxing Entities that May Offer Homestead Exemptions in Texas: 
There are several types of exemptions.

  • School taxes: All residential home owners may receive a $15,000 homestead exemption from their home's value for school taxes. 
  • County taxes: If a county collects a special tax for farm-to-market roads or flood control, a residential homestead owner may receive a $3,000 exemption for this tax. If the county grants an optional exemption for homeowners age 65 or older or disabled, the owner will receive only the local-option exemption. 
  • Age 65 or older and disabled exemptions: Individuals who are 65 and older and/or disabled and are residential home owners may qualify for a $10,000 homestead exemption for school taxes, in addition to the $15,000 exemption for all homeowners. If the owner qualifies for both the $10,000 exemption for 65 and older homeowners and the $10,000 exemption for disabled homeowners, the owner must choose one or the other for school taxes. The owner cannot receive both exemptions. 
  • Optional percentage exemptions: Any taxing unit-including a city, county, school, or special district-may offer an exemption of up to 20 percent of a home's value. But, no matter what the percentage is, the amount of an optional exemption cannot be less than $5,000. Each taxing unit decides if it will offer the exemption and at what percentage. This percentage exemption is added to any other home exemption for which an owner qualifies. The taxing unit must decide before July 1 of the tax year to offer this exemption.
  • Optional 65 or older or disabled exemptions: Any taxing unit may offer an additional exemption amount of at least $3,000 for taxpayers age 65 or older and/or disabled.

To find out if your house has its homestead exemption, you can search here: http://www.dallascad.org/SearchOwner.aspx
Find your property and click on the exemptions tab.

For more general information about homestead exemptions http://www.window.state.tx.us/taxinfo/proptax/exmptns.html   

To download the exemption application, visit: http://www.window.state.tx.us/taxinfo/taxforms/50-114.pdf

File the completed application and all required documents with the county appraisal district for the county in which you live,
The Dallas Central Appraisal District
2949 North Stemmons Freeway (I-35E)
Dallas, Texas 75247
214-631-0910
www.dallascad.org

Collin Central Appraisal District
250 W Eldorado Pkwy
McKinney, Texas 75069
(469) 742-9200
(866) 467-1110 (toll-free) 
www.collincad.org

 

Sincerely,