You can’t call it sticker shock if the seal has already been broken, so to see more and more homes in the Lake Highlands area listed for $1 million or more speaks to a growing trend toward high-end remodels and flips.
In fact, remodeled homes specifically within the White Rock Valley neighborhood and the highly sought-after White Rock Elementary attendance area are commanding prices upwards of $1 million on a frequent basis.
“Lake Highlands has definitely developed into a marketplace where high end $1 million-plus homes are not uncommon,” says Kevin Caskey with Halo Realty Group. Caskey, who is also a Lake Highlands resident, just listed 9751 Larchcrest Dr. for $1.025 million.
A mix of price ranges
However, that’s not to say that the neighborhood is now destined to be full of luxury-level real estate. There are still many adorable ranches, a treasure trove of midcentury moderns, and quite a few stellar 1970s contemporary homes that have escaped massive upgrades and still remain quite attainable.
“I personally like that the product varies from builder new construction, reconstruction, and older homes with impressive updates to even huge lots where end users are renovating or tearing down to build new,” Caskey adds. “Being a 20-year real estate veteran, it makes me happy to see that the rest of the world has finally found value in our beloved Lake Highlands.
New Leaf Custom Homes is one of those brands that found its own niche in Lake Highlands. The founders, Melissa and Scott Powell, chose to build their personal home in the White Rock Valley neighborhood, which is just north of Flag Pole Hill Park. That’s just one of two homes on Forest Trail that the Powells have built.
And those are just two of several new builds and remodels in the Lake Highlands area that are commanding luxury-level prices.
Right now, the priciest listing in the Lake Highlands area, which is generally the 75238 ZIP code, is 7830 Blackbird. The gorgeous transitional home is a new listing (at $1,499,000) from Compass agent Mike Cassell, and it looks like it wouldn’t stick out in the toniest areas of Lakewood, the Park Cities, or Preston Hollow.
In fact, Cassell goes so far as to call the location “coveted,” and it’s hard to argue with him when so many homes in this area priced at $700,000 and more regularly fly off the market.
Naturally, there are some homes in this enclave that never make it to MLS, and thanks to NAR’s now-enforceable Clear Cooperation policy, private listings can’t be marketed to the public and therefore we don’t get the privilege of really comparing notes or kicking the tires.
Schools help propel values
However, it’s undeniable that one factor has really propelled Lake Highlands forward in value: Richardson ISD schools.
In fact, the schools tend to be a huge selling point for buyers in the White Rock Valley area and beyond. Homes inside the Wallace Elementary attendance area have appreciated remarkably, too. And if you read the romance on some of these high-end listings in Lake Highlands, the attendance zone usually comes right after mentioning the marble countertops and designer light fixtures.
And where schools are sought after, spec builds usually follow. In fact, a listing at 9727 Parkford, currently under construction by MP Design, offers a unique opportunity for buyers. For $1.2 million, you can add your own personal touch to this spec home, which is in the midst of finish-out. Listing agent Emily Alfano says that this home has wonderful mature trees and a large backyard, as well as an attached garage and gated drive.
A version of this story originally was published on CandysDirt.com.