let's talk about really old houses!
Historical and Antique Homes in DFW
The DFW Metroplex has a very diverse collection of older homes. While Dallas and Fort Worth were the "big" cities in the area at the turn of the 20th century, there were a number of nearby smaller towns, some of which would be annexed by the larger cities and some which would remain independent. As a result, there are numerous pockets of beautiful homes built before 1930; some have been maintained as magnificent estates, some are recently renovated, and some are waiting to be restored. Take a look below for more information and links to available properties.
Tips On Finding The Perfect Older Home
1. Be Knowledgeable
You don't need a degree in architecture to buy an older home, but you will be faced with a rather small market of homes that are extremely diverse with regard to style, location, condition, and cost. Older homes in the Metroplex tend to be located in pockets, so take a few hours of your free time to explore these neighborhoods to see what appeals to you. Get an general idea on a price range in your favorite areas. When you feel you are ready to make an offer if the home of your dreams comes on the market, you've probably reached the knowledge threshold.
2. Filter Out The Noise
Whether you are buying new or old, as soon as people find out you are looking for a home, they will be glad to provide you with unsolicited, albeit generally well-meaning, advice. The advice is just a lot more magnified when you are looking at older homes. Of the twenty most expensive homes sold in the Metroplex since 2019, six were built before 1950. The most expensive house sold in the Metroplex since 2019 was built in 1921. Older homes hold their value because their beauty is timeless.
3. Focus On Potential
While many of the older homes in the Metroplex have been fully renovated, there are still quite a few homes that have not been renovated, or are partially renovated. For a lot of people, being involved in the details of the renovation, even if it takes a number of years, is the greatest joy in owning an older home. Older homes can almost always be redesigned with every modern convenience without destroying their elegance.
4. Enjoy The Process
From start to end, the process of finding, fixing and living in an older home should be a joy, not a job. If you are just starting your journey, click on some of the links below to see what your life could look like!
Dallas County Homes
Dallas County has the most pre-1930 homes in the Metroplex followed closely by Tarrant County. These existing homes were build largely in the early 1900s and there is a large degree of diversity in the size, construction and condition of these homes. Some of the areas with a high concentration of old homes, such as the Park Cities, Bishop Arts, and Lower Greenville are among the most popular neighborhoods in Dallas.
Highland Park and University Park (locally known as the "Park Cities") two independent towns (sharing a school district) forming an enclave just north of downtown Dallas. While a fixer-upper will come onto the market on rare occasions, most homes for sale in the Park Cities are move-in ready. Pre-1930 homes closed in 2021 ranged in price from $675K to $21.5M. Buyers should note that not all homes within the town limits of Highland Park and University Park are in the Highland Park School District.
City of Dallas
The largest collection of pre-1930 homes is within the city boundaries of Dallas, located within a short distance of downtown Dallas. Within the city boundaries there are neighborhoods that are loosely defined. Some of the most popular areas include: Lakewood, Forest Hills, Hollywood/Santa Monica, Bishop Arts, Uptown, Lower Greenville, Knox-Henderson, Swiss Avenue, Junius Heights, Winnetka Heights and Kessler Park. Many of these homes are priced for renovators. Because of the small number of homes currently for sale, there is a single search for all of Dallas, but we will split out homes into neighborhoods in the coming months
Other Dallas County
Outside of Dallas and the Park Cities, there are a number of towns and cities that have lesser number of older homes, but occasionally a real gem will turn up. Balch Springs, Carrollton, Cedar Hill, Coppell, DeSoto, Garland, Glenn Heights, Grand Prairie, Hutchins, Irving, Lancaster, Richardson, Sachse, Seagoville, and Wilmer are all towns or cities in Dallas County which have had older home sales in the last several years. Generally, but not always, these tend to be smaller homes.
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The Rest of Single Family Homes Built Before 1930 (page will open in new tab)
Collin County Homes
Collin County has some of the prettiest communities of older homes in the Metroplex. If you are looking for a special home in North Texas, Collin County is a must see.
The eastern part of McKinney (east of Central Expressway) is scattered with pre-1930 homes, with the greatest concentration around the beautiful Historic Downtown area. In 2021, sold prices for 50 homes ranged from $180K (2 BR 1 Bath 846 sf) to $1.25M (6 BR 6 Bath 5237 sf), with a media price of about $550K. Many of these home have been fully renovated.
The Rest of Collin County
Scattered throughout Collin County are a number of towns and cities with homes dating back to the mid-to-late 1800s. Some the areas that have fairly large numbers of old homes include: Anna, Celina, Farmersville, Frisco, Plano, Princeton, Prosper and Wylie.
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Rockwall, Kaufman & Hunt County Homes
At 147 square miles, Rockwall County is the smallest county in Texas, an area about 1/6 the size of Dallas County, but it makes up for its size in character. Kaufman County is southeast of Dallas and a short commute to downtown Dallas
Rockwall County may be small, but it has a very good collection of older homes, many of which are completely restored. The bulk of these homes are near Historic Downtown Rockwall, which is located just off of the tip of Lake Ray Hubbard. Another pocket of homes is in Royse City.
Forney has a beautiful community of older homes adjacent to its downtown area. Terrell has a number of older homes, including perhaps the most beautiful home in North Texas, the 1883 Cartwright Mansion.
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Tarrant County Homes
Tarrant County, home to Fort Worth, has a rich cultural history. Most of the older homes in Tarrant County are nearby downtown Fort Worth.
Ellis, Johnson and Hood County Homes
Kaufman and Ellis County are to the .
Fannin, Grayson, Cooke and Montague County Homes
This group of counties forms the northernmost edge of the Metroplex, with the Red River being the boundary with Oklahoma.
Fannin County is comprised of smaller cities and towns, but it is expected to grow significantly in the coming decades. While it is decidedly rural, the commute to McKinney, Frisco, and Plano is relatively short. The first new major reservoir in Texas in nearly 30 years, Bois D'Arc Lake located near Bonham, is nearly full and will be a major recreational attraction.
Sherman is the county seat and largest city in Grayson County. Texas Instruments is planning to start construction of a semiconductor fabrication center in Sherman in 2025. Denison is a popular destination due to its proximity to Lake Texoma, which is one of the largest reservoirs in the US. Van Alstyne is an increasing popular residential city.