Dallas. No, not the soap opera that was popular in the 80s. The state. If you’ve imagined the Lone Star state to be full of cowboys and cattle, you’re not too far off the mark, however Dallas is much, much more.
Whether you’re a Dallas Cowboys fan or basketball is more your speed, sports fans will find something to love about Dallas, which is the only metro area in the Southwest to host five major professional sports leagues. Like basketball? Check out the Dallas Mavericks. How about arena football? Then the Vigilantes will deliver what you crave.
If sports aren’t your thing, no worries. Dallas is well known for their first rate restaurants, and bargain hunters can find something for everyone at unique shops downtown. For a truly metropolitan evening, spend some time at the Dallas Museum of Nature & Science or enjoy more “hands on” fun and take a class or workshop at the Dallas Museum of Art.
For individuals craving a more physical experience, in the beautiful Dallas sunshine, there are many recreational choices available, such as hiking and trail biking on the vast number of trails throughout the Dallas area, or boating and fishing, on area lakes.
The weather in Dallas is normally temperate, although in the summer it can get quite toasty, with highs in the high 90s on average. Not a problem for residents in the Lone Star state, however, because they’ve a choice of nearby lakes to cool off in when temperatures start to soar.
Despite the growing trend of forecasting trouble in national markets, Dallas not all is gloom and doom. Over the next year home values are expected to drop by 4%, but then rise by 1% in 2 years and then 4% in 3 years – basically a slow and steady increase over the next 3 years after we’ve gone through this initial year of declining values.
As of the second quarter of 2011, the median sales price of existing single family homes in Dallas rose 12.5% from the same time last year, showing a definite uptick in the market. Combine this with the fact that as of September of this year, there were 43,516 homes sold in the Dallas area and things appear to be looking up for this region of the country.
Another promising trend in Dallas is the growth of employment in the area. According to a report issued by the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, “Over the past year, Texas added jobs in nine of the eleven major industries sectors, including educational and health services, professional and business services, trade, transportation and utilities, leisure and hospitality, manufacturing and mining and logging.”
The commercial market’s recovery is slow, but professionals are optimistic nonetheless. A recent survey conducted by audit, tax and advisory firm KPMG LLP concludes that although the commercial real estate market has had a tough go of it, commercial real estate execs are optimistic as they report improvements in both revenue and employment by next year. Level thinking also indicates that despite these positive signs a total economic recovery is still a few years distant. They also believe that distressed real estate will be an issue that the industry will continue to face.
The survey revealed that 64% of these executives reported higher revenue than last year, with 75% expecting higher revenues one year hence. They are also talking headcount, as 53% plan to add personnel, while 13% expect a decrease in staff. Of those optimistic execs, 27% expected staffing levels to reach pre-recession levels by 2013, 17% stated by 2014 or later, and 11% didn’t anticipate ever reaching those levels again.
Greg Williams, national leader of KPMG LLP’s Building, Construction and Real Estate practice stated, “Although real estate executives see things moving in the right direction, they believe it’s going to be some time before they see evidence to support higher levels of confidence.”
“The good news,” continued Williams, “is that there has been an infusion of capital as institutional investors and others seeking an alternative to the public equity markets are investing in commercial real estate, especially in primary markets where we’re seeing prices at or near pre-recession values.”