4/18/08

The Brodies




One of the families that have been targeted by the investors are Ramona Brodie and her son Woody. Ramona has Emphysema and has to have oxygen 24/7. Her son was in a motorcycle accident years ago when he was a successful roofer in the Dallas area. The accident caused him to lose the use of his right arm, his speech, his wife and his child.

I first met Woody when I was looking for someone to fix my Montgomery Ward tractor that I had the bad habit of running into things. A neighbor let me know about Woody and even though communicating can be tricky sometimes, I've begun to learn "Woody-speak" and he has kept all of my yard and garden motors humming ever since. he is a sweet, kind soul and I couldn't ask for better neighbors. So when Woody came out of his home one day and told me he was "going down the road" I was floored. Selfishly I hated to lose them from the neighborhood, but I was also worried about where he and his Mom would go.

After speaking to Mrs. Brodie I learned that one of these investors had talked Mrs. Brodie into selling them her home but telling her if she didn't the city was going to come the next week and tear it down. Terrified about what would happen to her and her son she agreed to sell it for a price that was much less than even the lot was worth. Mrs. Brodie had no idea what her property was worth and the investors weren't about to tell her.

Mrs. Brodie was very worried about the condition of her home -neither she or Woody can work and because of the physical limits both of them have the house has fallen into disrepair. Not knowing where to turn, they gave up.

The Brodie family needs help, and I'm hoping that we can come together as a community and find that help for them. No one deserves to be taken advantage of or to lose their home. The great news about all of this is that Oak Cliff is a wonderful neighborhood, and that finding out about the needs that Ramona and Woody have and sharing that story has helped me to meet some amazing people. Every neighbor that I have shared this story with have offered to help - unconditionally. We've started looking out for each other and the word is now out about the unscrupulous people who are preying on our neighborhood so that what happened to the Brodies won't happen again.

4/17/08

I should have called a Realtor®

One of the things I love about Oak Cliff is that there are people who have lived in this area for generations which is very unusual for a "new" city like Dallas. My home was built in 1942 and it's been really fun to meet people who know the entire history of my home.

Because these people have never been active in the housing market they have no clue about what their home is worth, and to be honest most have no interest in moving but are at the age they are worried about what will happen to their dependents. This lack of knowledge about what their properties are worth is creating unfortunately a perfect opportunity for so-called real estate investors to prey on these people and talk them out of their homes.

I've heard from various neighbors about real estate investors coming to their doors, telling them that because of the condition of their homes the city wants to condemn them. But because these folks want to be good citizens they are willing to help them out and buy the home for literally pennies on the dollar so they won't lose their homes.

Honestly some of these people might be better off selling because they are getting to an age where keeping up a home and large piece of property is too much for them. But where the problem lies is that these companies are not offering fair market value so they are intimidating the owners into selling at a price that allows these groups to "flip" the homes before they even close on them for a 50% to 100% and up profit.

If these homeowners had any idea about the services that Realtors® offer, they might have been saved from the heartbreaks they have had to endure. A Realtor® is a professional that makes their living off of the sale of your home at a fair price - they are willing to do the research to let you know what your home realistically is worth and an honest expectation of what you can expect to receive at the closing table .Their interests are your interests and by doing the homework and the legwork if you do want to sell they can help you get through the process in a stress-free, positive way.

My favorite Oak Cliff Realtor® is Lisa Kleypas a team member of the very successful Cox + Partners team. I would say that Lisa loves Oak Cliff as much as I do, but honestly she probably loves it more. When I first got to really know Lisa she had a career and was a success story that most of us can only dream of achieving. But to find out more about Lisa and how she ended up helping people find the perfect home you will either have to contact Lisa or come back here :)

4/11/08

Living in Oak Cliff

Oak Cliff Texas is a wonderful historical part of Dallas, and is just the other side of the Trinity River from downtown Dallas.

What makes this community so unique is the cultural diversity of the homeowners here, and that there truly are neighborhoods. The Bishop Arts District has some of the best restaurants in town and there are great shops and art galleries to explore while you are waiting for a table.

The goal of this blog is to share the stories of some of the wonderful people who live here.