Agents Help Prepare CitySquare Cottages for New Residents


Ask any real estate agent — preferably one from Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate — what they enjoy most about their job, and they’ll tell you: it’s helping people find a place to call home.  A place to retreat after a long day, to regroup and relax, to dream big dreams for themselves and their family, to offer security and safety, to lay their head at night.

No matter who we are or what we do, we all need the stability that comes with having a home base to keep getting up every day and giving life another shot. Ask any homeless person what happens when that is taken away from you, and they’ll tell you it starts a downward spiral that’s difficult to recover from. At least on your own.

No one understands this hard truth better than CitySquare. This compassionate community neighbor, headquartered in the shadows of the I-30/I-45 interchange along Malcolm X Blvd, has been a lifelong friend to Dallas’ homeless. They started 29 years ago as Central Dallas Ministries, with the mission to fight the causes and effects of poverty through service, advocacy and friendship.  On January 3, twenty-six Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents showed up to their highly anticipated new Cottages at Hickory Crossing, ready to join that fight.

Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents started off the new year by extending a helping hand to some fellow citizens trying to get back on their feet. Photography by Jason Riley Hoss Photography
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents started off the new year by extending a helping hand to some fellow citizens trying to get back on their feet. Photography by Jason Riley Hoss Photography

The Cottages comprise 50 homes, each 400 square feet, with enough room for a bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, living area and a front porch. A public registry at Target provided furnishings and basics to stock each cottage, and the agents assisted in setting up and staging 12 of the new homes.

The Cottages at Hickory Crossing are made up of fifty 400 square foot "mini homes" like those pictured here.
The Cottages at Hickory Crossing are made up of fifty 400 square foot “mini homes” like those pictured here.
A resident of The Cottages at Hickory Crossing returns to her new permanent home.
A resident of The Cottages at Hickory Crossing returns to her new permanent home.
The Cottages at Hickory Crossing are just southeast of Downtown.
The Cottages at Hickory Crossing are just southeast of Downtown.
In the spring, residents of The Cottages at Hickory Crossing will be able to plant and grow their own food and herbs in these troughs.
In the spring, residents of The Cottages at Hickory Crossing will be able to plant and grow their own food and herbs in these troughs.

In addition to lending a hand, agents got a first-hand look at CitySquare’s pioneering approach to easing chronic homelessness, one based on a concept called “Housing First.” The model prioritizes providing the homeless with permanent housing as quickly as possible – and then providing voluntary supportive services as needed, such as mental health and medical services, job training and more. Studies show that when potential loss of housing is taken out of the equation, recovery and rehabilitation is more likely to be successful.

Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.

Scott Kaserman had this to say about his experience at CitySquare: “I learned something new. That it costs the city $40,000 annually for each of their most susceptible homeless persons, while it only costs them $15,000 to build one of these beautiful homes! The cottages have really taken a serious problem and come up with a serious solution. I think this community would help anyone to be better and to do more good in life.”

“What a wonderful project our city has invested in to help people down on their luck,” said Frada Sandler. “The houses are darling and will give them such a sense of pride, in addition to being part of a community that understands and helps their situation. Very rewarding!”

Ged Dipprey summed up the afternoon nicely when he said: “It was an amazing opportunity to finally see that as a city we aren’t apathetic to helping the “least of these.”  CitySquare’s development restores the dignity, hopes and dreams of those fortunate to call one of these cottages “home.”  It was a sweet reminder of the value associated with having a home to call our own and the special privilege it is to help others achieve their own dream of home ownership!”

To see more images from this event, please visit our Facebook page.

The finished product!
The finished product!
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.
Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate agents joined CitySquare in their fight to alleviate poverty and homelessness by setting up and staging 12 of the new Cottages at Hickory Crossing.

PHOTOGRAPHY CREDITS: JASON RILEY HOSS PHOTOGRAPHY, FORT WORTH, TX  817-676-5778

Ponder & Ponder List a Lakewood Original


One of Dallas’ oldest and most eclectic neighborhoods, Lakewood, was established in 1882, only a few decades after the city itself was founded. Many current residents are the third, fourth, even fifth generation in their family to live in the area.  In addition to the obvious reasons of “lake” and “wood,” people stay because of its distinctive neighborhood character. Character such as is found in 6709 Lakewood Boulevard.  Homes here are extremely well maintained and while virtually unchanged on the outside — save new landscaping, a new coat of paint or late model cars in the driveway — they have been brought up to date on the inside. Margaret Ponder and Evelyn Ponder, of Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate’s Ponder & Ponder Group, have listed this 1926 beauty and are thrilled not only to showcase it to the world, but to help this Lakewood home for sale find its next owner. One who will appreciate its past and usher it into the future with care and great integrity.

A Lakewood Original

Just say “I live in a Dines & Kraft home,” and you have instant cachet in Lakewood circles. Albert Dines and Lee Kraft left their mark on the area, building solid, distinctive, quality single-family residences back in the ’20s and ’30s. 6709 Lakewood Boulevard is a testament to their craftsmanship and still bears many of the hallmarks that make those homes instantly recognizable: stained glass, tile roofs, thick hardwood floors, ornate millwork, arched pass-throughs and more.

It’s not often photos of the original construction are available, but the current owners were in possession of them, and they help tell the home’s story in a way that doesn’t need words.

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Dines and Kraft home at 6709 Lakewood Blvd, in 1926 and today, is listed by the Ponder & Ponder Group of Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate.
Dines and Kraft home at 6709 Lakewood Blvd, in 1926 and today, is listed by the Ponder & Ponder Group of Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate.

Of course, through the years the neighborhood has grown up around the home. It’s not uncommon to see couples out walking their dogs in the evening, or families riding bikes together.  Where once upon a time, you probably had to drive a bit for commerce, now you can walk to shopping, including Whole Foods, to the great schools, and of course, to White Rock Lake and the Dallas Arboretum.

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On approach, the authentic Italian Ludowici tile roof really captures your attention. It is made to last 100 years, and each tile bears a stamp to verify it was handmade in Rome.

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Inside, the home features an open floor plan, perfect for entertaining many guests, with a flow that works well  for a family.

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The spacious Chef’s kitchen features state-of-the-art appliances including a Thermador stainless steel gas range and two convection ovens. And the large island is an ideal gathering spot for family and friends.

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The guest quarters, set atop a two-car garage, are 550 square feet with a full bath and hardwood floors. Other features of note: the home’s HVAC system was recently upgraded to a Trane High Efficiency, 20 seer variable speed A/C  and heat exchange. And  the mature trees are properly armored and on a vitamin regimen.

6709 Lakewood Blvd is currently listed at $1,389,000. For more information or to schedule a showing, please contact Ponder & Ponder: Margaret Ponder at 214-803-6002/mponder@daveperrymiller.com or Evelyn Ponder at 214-535-8170/eponder@daveperrymiller.com.

 

Preston Hollow Home That Hosted Various ‘Royalty’ Open This Sunday 1 to 3pm


Every home has history, but few have a story. 5425 Royal Lane (5425royal.daveperrymiller.com) is one of the few. The just-listed five-bedroom, 5 full-bath/2 half-bath home presents a rare opportunity to own an acre in an exclusive cul-de-sac of Russwood Acres, just off of Royal in Preston Hollow. The French Mediterranean is represented by Margaret & Evelyn Ponder of Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate and is well-priced at $1,375,000 for 5,706 square feet.

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“If these walls could talk,” Margaret says, “they’d boast about how they once hosted the likes of Elizabeth Taylor, the King of the Zulu tribe in Africa and other notable guests. For the home’s owners, entertaining was a lifestyle.”

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You can almost hear the party chatter and clinking glasses moving from the two-story entry hall into the sunken living room or the magnificent great room with soaring ceilings.

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“Double French doors in there open onto the outdoor living space,” Evelyn says. “It’s easy to picture your own parties overflowing outside to the clover-shaped waterfall pool area, summer kitchen and cabana/art studio.”

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“The other side of the great room,” she continues, “is lined with bay windows overlooking a garden and large side yard, making for great views all around.”

The first floor master bedroom suite boasts a large sitting area and marble fireplace, and in the master bath, there are separate dressing rooms with an adjoining dry sauna and shower. Incredible etched glass detailing in the suite’s windows also remind you of the bygone era. Waterford and Baccarat fixtures serve as reminders that there was no corner-cutting then either.

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The eat-in kitchen with tile countertops and farmhouse sink extends from front to back with views of both, and the dining room looks out to the pool as well. A bonus room off the kitchen could be an extra living space, game room or study. Back stairs lead up to four secondary bedrooms with en suite baths, walk-in closets and more great views of the property. The home also has a three-car garage.

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Margaret and Evelyn are equally adept at entertaining and would love to show you around the home, telling you more of its great stories and features over a flute of prosecco. And should you decide you’d like to add your own stories to its colorful history, you’ll be equipped for a celebratory toast!

To schedule a private showing with Margaret or Evelyn, call 214-803-6002 or 214-535-8170 respectively, or email mponder@daveperrymiller.com or eponder@daveperrymiller.com.

Several of Our Firm’s ‘Agents For Life’ Have Been Mentored by Their Mothers


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Clockwise from top left: Becky Gruber and Diane Gruber, McKamy Tiner and Martha Tiner, Margaret Ponder and Evelyn Ponder, Jennifer Haddock and Patricia Massey, Kristin Smith and Leslie Rouda Smith, Lacy Schultz and Kathy Myers, Taylor Gromatzky and Kimberlee Gromatzky

At Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate, we pride ourselves on being “agents for life,” meaning our clients will rely on the same professionals to represent them in multiple transactions through the decades.

But for a few members of the Dave Perry-Miller family, that phrase has another meaning. They have been “agents for life” because they literally grew up in the real estate business. Their mothers were Realtors before them, and they work alongside their mothers today.

With this being Mother’s Day weekend, we asked some of these legacy agents to share lessons they learned from their moms/mentors.

Taylor Gromatzky, daughter of Kimberlee Gromatzky: “She always told me when going through a tough time ‘this too shall pass,’ and it’s a phrase I always repeat if I need that little reminder during a hard time.”

Becky Gruber, daughter of Diane Gruber: “My mom has taught me many valuable lessons and given me so much great advice over the years, but the greatest thing she’s done is lead by example. She didn’t tell me and my brothers how to be good people; she showed us in her everyday actions and interactions with the people around her. She has shown us how good it feels to help others, how to pick our battles, how to be respectful and appreciative — the list is endless. The thing I am most appreciative of is her supportive, nonjudgmental attitude toward us. She allowed us the freedom to be ourselves, to make mistakes, to embrace our quirks. Thank you, Mom, for always being my biggest cheerleader, no matter what crazy paths I decide to take in life. I am a better person because of you.”

Jennifer Haddock, daughter of Patricia Massey: “My mom has taught me so much that is used in my everyday life. To name a few: respect, honesty, forgiving others, forgiving myself for my own mistakes, living life to its fullest, making each day count as it were the last. After working by her side for 16 years in real estate, she is not only my mom, she is my mentor. She has taught me about working and taught me that success is not because of money; success is helping clients’ dreams come true.”

Alex Simpson Johnson, daughter of Nancy Johnson: “Her hard work and drive to be the best has been inspiring. Her amount of knowledge is just incredible, and she has allowed me to see and learn more in five years than most agents see and learn in a lifetime. She puts every client’s needs before herself and is so passionate about helping them find the homes of their dreams.”

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James Martin, son of Eloise Eriksson Martin: “What can I say about her energy and the example she has set? She taught me the importance of giving 100 percent to every client, and that selling a home is more than just paperwork and details; it’s about realizing your goals and dreams.  I continue to see how giving, always give more in return from your lessons. Mom, thank you for all you have done for Ellen and I, and happy Mother’s Day to all the moms this weekend.”

Margaret Ponder, daughter of Evelyn Ponder: “One of the most important lessons my mom taught me was to count your blessings and to always be thankful for what God has given you. I have found through the years that this seemingly simple lesson can produce big results in a person’s life. When practicing the art of thankfulness, you are able to see every potential struggle in a more positive light, no matter how bleak the circumstances may seem at the time. Thankfulness breeds compassion, and compassion leads to giving and caring for others. When you embody these traits, as she has done, a person is able to give and keep on giving without expecting anything in return. Mom has lead me to believe that being thankful is one of the key ingredients to successfully achieving true peace and happiness in life.”

Lacy Schultz, daughter of Kathy Myers: “I have learned so much from my mom — haven’t we all? However, the work ethic she instilled in me is a most valuable skill that carries over into everything I do. Since we work together now, I get to see her persistence, diligence, and determination on a daily basis! I’m sure when I was growing up I bemoaned the tasks and expectations of such a work ethic. Now, it is something I am proud of in myself and thankful to her for building in me.”

Kristin Smith, daughter of Leslie Rouda Smith: “I couldn’t dream of a better mother. I never had an issue respecting my mother, because she was not a ‘do as I say’ person; she was a ‘do as I do’ person. She set an incredible example. I tell her all the time that if/when I am ever a parent, I have huge shoes to fill. My passion for the homeless started with my mother taking me to Paint The Town in the ’90s. I’ll never forget how grateful this woman was after we had repainted her entire home. I was raised in a home where we were taught to count our blessings, not our problems, and to always give back. If I do anything in life, I owe it all to her. My mom is the most positive, driven, independent woman I’ve ever known: ‘If you believe it, you can achieve it!’ It’s been incredibly inspiring to watch my mom chase her dreams. What she doesn’t realize is how much it inspires me to chase mine. She’s my rock, my best friend, and the person I look up to most! I wouldn’t be half of the person that I am if I wasn’t blessed with having her as my mother. Happy Mother’s Day to all of the incredible moms out there! You have the toughest job on the planet.”

McKamy Tiner, daughter of Martha Tiner: “Over the past 31 years, my mom gave me invaluable advice and taught me to be a confident woman. She always wanted to work, so watching her be a successful businesswoman as I was growing up really shaped my views on what I could achieve. On top of working, she always made my events — from soccer games to volleyball tournaments — around the country; she somehow balanced working and being my mom with grace. Another important lesson she taught me was how to care for and treat other people. She is a dependable friend, wife, and mom, and I hope that rubbed off on me. When I was growing up, she always reminded me that she was my mom and not my best friend; 31 years later, that has changed. Today, she is my best friend, and I value our time together more than anything. I could not be more thankful to work with my mom every day.”