I'm going to have to open up a couple of old wounds. I'm not totally against Rowlett 2020, although I am not sure it's as good a real estate growth study as I would like. I'm not totally against Form Base Codes, although I question some of the wisdom of the applications. There are places for Form Base Codes. Usually, cow pastures aren't one of them.
I've got some math and some esthetics I would like to share with you.
I drove up to Harmony, the new Huffines luxury apartment development up on the north city limits on the tollroad. They are open and currently renting. It seems to be a well conceived and well built project. However, I want you to look at something. You can visit some of the Huffines projects @ http://huffinescommunities.com/communities/.
The Rowlett project is attractive.........in an institutional kind of way. It is influenced by Form Base Codes. To me, the project looks like a really big hospital, or driver's license office. It's not unattractive, but hardly inspiring. Look at some other Huffines projects on the same site. Huffines has some other really attractive projects. Go look for them on Google. They certainly know curb appeal. It is only my opinion and you should form your own, but I think Harmony looks a little like a customs officer should be standing guard. It looks like a government designed project. This is a gift from Form Base Codes.
There is another project I have written about before. It is the land development project named Homestead Village, where Chiesa Road dead ends into Liberty Grove.
I wanted to see what has happened since I last looked. On November 6, there had been 20 homes started, 18 of which were production units. The other two were models. Today was 7 weeks later and 5 more houses had been started, making 25 total starts, 23 of which are production units.
I want to update the absorption rate math. I had earlier made reference to a Lennar subdivsion across the street. It had homes in the same price range and Lennar built and sold 49 houses in 52 weeks, thus creating an absorption rate of .942. At the time of my last post of the subdivision, the two builders had started 18 production units in 22 weeks for an absorption rate of .818. Today, there were 23 production units started in 29 weeks for an absorption rate of .793. Admittedly, the small additional slide is not much, but it would be better if it was going the other way. I've reveiwed hundreds of other subdivisions in recent years. There's just not much fire in Homestead when the rest of the North Texas market is ON fire. Our current North Texas residential market is the most active real estate market I have observed since I moved to Rowlett 41 years ago. It's just my opinion, but I think the buying public is having a hard time accepting our Form Base Code subdivision designs. I don't know why. It's out in a cow pasture where everybody can see it. Maybe it's some of the design features I wrote about earlier. Or, maybe it lays out like a government designed project.
Gee, it feels good to get back.