10 Superb Outdoor Spaces


As summer continues with more sunny days and warm evenings, it’s only natural to spend time outdoors. Especially when the backdrop is your own backyard paradise.

From lush landscaping and sparkling pools to incredible patios and outdoor kitchens, these stunning backyards may cause outdoor-space envy.

Beautiful covered patio and outdoor space overlooking backyard pool and landscaping at 4738 San Gabriel Drive, Preston Hollow

4738 San Gabriel Drive | Preston Hollow | $3,250,000

Peaceful covered patio with views of landscaped backyard, sparkling pool and greenspace at 414 Lakeway Drive, Allen

414 Lakeway Drive | Allen | $2,850,000

780 Sundance Court | Prosper | $1,329,000

6032 Richmond Avenue | Belmont | $1,100,000

1706 Woodsboro Court | Allen | $950,000

175 Pronghorn Drive | Gordonville | $899,900

7106 Covewood Drive | Garland | $849,999

1520 Aberdeen Drive | Lucas | $625,000

3702 Old Orchard Court | Carrollton | $459,900

13738 Spring Grove Avenue | North Dallas | $375,000

To view all the homes with incredible outdoor spaces available across North Texas, visit the mobile-friendly Ebby.com.

Enhance Your Home’s Curb Appeal


Idyllic Home With Covered Porch

 

Although we’ve been told to do otherwise, people often judge homes based on curb appeal. Enhance your home’s exterior with these five tips.

 

Front Door

Wash your front door and polish hardware — replace if necessary. If the sun has faded the paint or you want a change, consider repainting with a bold new color that brings you joy.

 

Windows & Gutters

Remove debris from gutters and drain spouts before cleaning. Wash and repair windows or hire a professional. Clean or replace window treatments inside your home that are visible from the outside.

 

Landscaping

Mow, fertilize and water your lawn. Tidy up gardens; remove dead plants and branches; plant colorful flowers along any path or walkway; and add potted plants by the entry.

 

Porch

Sweep the porch; clear cobwebs from fixtures, railings and corners. Store toys, yard equipment and garbage cans. Clean patio furniture or consider updating worn pieces; add a swing or seating if space allows.

 

Exterior Touches

Check for missing or damaged shingles. Power wash and repair walkways and driveway. Clean or update light fixtures. Repaint shutters; repair, paint or replace mailbox. Check that house numbers are visible from the street; replace if needed.

Endless Summer: 10 Luxury Lake Homes


With a few weeks left to savor the sweetness of summer, many North Texans are drawn to pools and lakes alike.

 

These amazing waterfront properties will have you wishing for one last lake trip before heading back to school. Better yet, make yourself at home and enjoy an endless summer.

 

1_Palm Drive

4370 Palm Drive | Caney City | $7,580,000

 

2_Island Drive

6 Island Drive | Mabank$2,999,000

 

3_Waterside Drive

13300 Waterside Drive | Malakoff$1,995,000

 

4_Blackfoot Trail

123 Blackfoot Trail | Lake Kiowa$1,595,000

 

5_Nautical Point

114 Nautical Point | Mabank$1,399,999

 

6_Pleasantview Road

488 Pleasantview Road | Winnsboro | $1,399,000

 

7_Hide A Way Lane

530 Hide A Way Lane E. | Hideaway$995,000

 

8_Lynn Dell Drive

2944 Lynn Dell Drive | Tool | $995,000

 

9_Jackson Circle

265 Jackson Circle | Kerens$969,000

 

10_Medina Court

1217 Medina Court | Whitney$880,000

 

To view all the extraordinary lake homes for sale in North Texas, visit Ebby.com and enter ‘lake’ in the advanced search keyword field.

Tips for Flawless Outdoor Entertaining


Candle and string lights outdoor dinner

 

Summer will be here before we know it, which means longer nights and warmer weather. What better way to spend a summer day with family and friends than at an outdoor gathering? If you’re hoping to host a backyard soirée, here are some tips that will help things run smoothly.

 

Prepare your yard

Tidy up your yard before hosting guests. Mow the grass and pick up any tools, hoses or toys.

 

Choose the right seating

Patio furniture with thick, comfy cushions are the best option for homeowners who frequent their outdoor space. When hosting a gathering, make sure you have enough seating. Benches and tree stumps are a casual, rustic way to add seating to your outdoor space. Make sure all the seating is clean of debris before your guests arrive.

 

Keep guests comfortable

Guests will be more inclined to stay for the duration of the party if they are comfortable. Have ample shade coverage and consider running a fan near the dining area to keep guests cool. You may also want to set out a basket with warm-weather essentials for guests to grab — think sunscreen, insect repellent, handheld fans and iced spray bottles.

 

Plan a simple menu

Opt for recipes that can be prepared in advance and will withstand crowds and heat. Fresh grilled vegetables, pasta salads and guacamole are all popular (and colorful!) choices.

 

Add lighting

Outdoor globe lights, lanterns and LED candles are all great options for setting a relaxed summer atmosphere. Setting out candles with an open flame is a bit riskier — instead, use hurricane lanterns or jars to shield the flames.

 

Play relaxed tunes

Set the right tone with a playlist that is easy and laid-back. You don’t want to overpower any conversations among guests. Create a long enough playlist to avoid repeating songs too many times while guests are there.

 

Display fresh cuts

Use flowers and foliage from your own yard as centerpieces. Arrange your fresh cuts in jars or buckets and set them out to brighten up your display.

 

Offer activities

Providing lawn games like cornhole or croquet will keep your guests occupied and happy. Use butcher paper as a tablecloth and set out crayons for creative people of all ages.

 

Keep pests away

Be sure to protect food with mesh food coverings and light citronella candles to keep bugs away. Eliminate any standing water in gutters or the bottom of flowerpots to keep mosquitoes from breeding there. Offer guests bug wipes and insect repellent.

 

Create a beverage station

Make sure your guests are hydrated by preparing a beverage bar or cart stocked with the essentials. Include straws and plenty of ice.

 

Opt for melamine

Melamine is an affordable and durable option for outdoor dinnerware. Using the break-resistant plastic will help you reduce waste and also keep the area clear of lingering paper cups and plates.

 

Visit ebby.com to view all of the extraordinary outdoor patios on the market that are begging to have you as a host.

Love This Listing: Northwood Hills Modern


960x640_6229 Stonehill Drive_Thumbnail

 

Situated in Far North Dallas and renovated to perfection, this lovely home offers an open floor plan with high ceilings and abundant natural light. The spacious residence includes a tranquil backyard, extensive upgrades throughout and a dream kitchen with high-end appliances and plentiful storage.

 

Ebby Preston Keller Associate Deborah Laza will hold the property open from 2 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 13. Watch the video to learn more about why we love this listing.

Need-to-Know Numbers:

• 6229 Stonehill Drive
• $825,000
• 4 bedrooms
• 3 baths
• 3,634 square feet

Summer Sips & Bites


It can be tough to beat the Texas heat, but ice-cold beverages and tasty treats definitely help. Here are some easy and refreshing recipes perfect for relaxing on the patio or while enjoying summer by the pool.

 

Lemonade with lemon, mint and ice

Classic Lemonade

Ingredients:
*6 lemons, enough to make 1 cup of juice
*1 cup white sugar
*6 cups cold water

Directions:
1. Juice the lemons via your preferred method of juicing.
2. Stir together lemon juice, sugar and water.
3. Serve over ice.

 

Cold black tea with berries and ice

Blackberry Sweet Tea

Ingredients:
*1 pinch of baking soda
*4 cups boiling water
*4 tea bags
*2 1/2 cups cold water
*3 cups blackberries, fresh or frozen/thawed
*1 1/4 cups sugar
*1 tablespoon fresh mint, chopped

Directions:
1. Crush blackberries and sugar together in a large container.
2. Add mint and baking soda; set aside.
3. Drape tea bags over the side of a pitcher; pour boiling water into the pitcher.
4. Steep for 3 minutes; remove and discard tea bags.
5. Combine tea and blackberry mixture; rest for 1 hour.
6. Strain through a mesh sieve.
7. Add cold water and stir.
8. Refrigerate before serving.

 

Watermelon lemonade with ice and mint leaves. Homemade lemonade of ripe berry with red and green ripes. Glass of cold watermelon tea. Refreshing summer drink. Cocktail on a wooden background

Watermelon Green Tea

Ingredients:
*3 cups green tea
*8 cups watermelon, cubed
*1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
*1/2 cup seltzer
*Springs of mint, for garnish

Directions:
1. Combine green tea, watermelon and lemon juice in a blender; blend until smooth.
2. Strain through a mesh sieve.
3. Refrigerate until cool.
4. Add seltzer.

 

pita

Caprese Salad Pita Pockets

Ingredients:
*1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, quartered
*4 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, cubed
*1 cup coarsely chopped cucumber
*3/4 cup mixed spring salad greens
*1/4 cup fresh basil leaves
*2 tablespoons chopped green onion
*1 tablespoon red wine vinegar or cider vinegar
*1 tablespoon olive oil
*1/4 teaspoon salt
*1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
*4 large whole wheat pita bread rounds, halved crosswise
* Large soft lettuce leaves (such as butterhead, Boston or Bibb)

Directions:
1. In a medium bowl toss together tomatoes, cheese cubes, cucumber, salad greens, basil, green onion, vinegar, oil, salt and pepper.
2. Line insides of pita halves with lettuce leaves.
3. Spoon tomato mixture into pitas.

 

A set of ingredients for cooking Nam neung , Viatnam food on wooden table

No-Cook Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Ingredients:
*3 green onions
*1/2 6-ounce package refrigerated cooked chicken breast strips
*1/2 of a medium green sweet pepper, seeded and cut up
*3 tablespoons rice vinegar
*1 teaspoon sesame oil or olive oil
*1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, as desired
*1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
*1 cup shredded cabbage
*2 tablespoons water
*2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
*8 leaves butterhead lettuce (Boston or Bibb), about 1 small head

Directions:
1. Trim and discard root ends of green onions. Cut off and slice green tops and set aside.
2. In a food processor combine white parts of the green onions, chicken breast, sweet pepper, 1 tablespoon of vinegar, oil, black pepper and, if desired, crushed red pepper. Cover and pulse until chicken mixture is finely chopped. Transfer to a medium bowl.
3. Add cabbage and toss to combine. Divide chicken mixture into four individual microwave safe containers; chill.
4. Spoon mixture into individual lettuce leaves and wrap.

For dipping sauce, in a small bowl combine sliced green onion tops, 2 tablespoons vinegar, water and soy sauce. Divide among 4 small containers.

 

Homemade natural yogurt with strawberries and mint.

Sweet Ricotta and Strawberry Parfaits

Ingredients:
* 1 pound fresh strawberries, trimmed and halved or quartered
*1 teaspoon sugar
*1 tablespoon snipped fresh mint
* 1 15-ounce carton part-skim ricotta cheese
*3 tablespoons light agave nectar
* 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
* 1/4 teaspoon finely shredded lemon peel
* Fresh mint

Directions:
1. In a medium bowl combine strawberries, sugar and the 1 tablespoon snipped mint; gently stir to combine. Let stand about 10 minutes or until berries soften and start to release their juices.
2. In another medium bowl combine ricotta, agave nectar, vanilla and lemon peel. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed for 2 minutes.
3. To assemble, scoop 1 tablespoon of the ricotta mixture into each of six parfait glasses. Top ricotta mixture in each glass with a large spoonful of the strawberry mixture. Repeat layers with the remaining ricotta mixture and strawberry mixture. Garnish with additional fresh mint.
4. Serve immediately or cover and chill for up to 4 hours.

Fresh Listing Friday: Peaceful in Prosper


FLF Logo
 
Happy Friday y’all! This week’s Fresh Listing Friday is an energy-efficient custom in Prosper. Situated on the 17th hole of the Gentle Creek Estates golf course, 2941 Creekwood offers hardwood flooring, a kitchen with an abundance of storage, a master suite with a sitting area and custom closet, and a media or exercise room.

Need-to-know Details:

• Priced at $865,000
• 4,376 square feet: 4 bedrooms, 3.1 baths
• Kitchen with a wine cooler and a French-door oven
• Tiered multilevel patio
• Backyard oasis with a Pebble Tec® pool, spa and outdoor kitchen
 
134806603-2787053134806603-2787093134806603-2787103134806603-2787113134806603-2787063134806603-2787123134806603-2787153134806603-2787173134806603-2787193134806603-2787213134806603-2787273134806603-2787303134806603-2787043

To view this listing, contact Stacey Zimmerman at 469-865-3656 or StaceyZ@Ebby.com.

Outdoor Entertaining Tips (+ the Perfect Homes for Hosting)


Some vegetable and meat skewer and some pieces of pork meat on a flamy grill in a garden. XXL size image.
 
Summer will be here before we know it, and that means longer nights and warmer (okay, much warmer) weather. What better way to spend a summer day with family and friends than at an outdoor gathering? If you’re hoping to host a backyard soirée, here are some tips and tricks that will help things run smoothly.
 
*Prepare your yard
Be sure to clean up your yard before hosting guests. Mow the grass and pick up any tools, hoses, or toys.
 
*Choose the right seating (and have enough)
Patio furniture with thick, comfy cushions are the best option for homeowners who frequent their outdoor space. When hosting a gathering, make sure you have enough seating. Benches and tree stumps are a casual, rustic way to add seating to your outdoor space. Make sure all the seating is clean of debris before your guests arrive.
 
*Keep guests comfortable
Guests will be more inclined to stay for the duration of the party if they are comfortable. In addition to having ample shade coverage, consider running a fan near the dining area to keep guests cool. You may also want to set out a basket with warm-weather essentials for guests to grab (think sunscreen, insect repellent, handheld fans, and iced spray bottles).
 
*Keep the menu simple
Opt for recipes that can be prepared in advance and can withstand crowds and heat. Fresh grilled vegetables, pasta salads, and guacamole are all popular (and colorful!) choices.
 
*Add lighting
Outdoor globe lights, lanterns, and LED candles are all great options for setting a relaxed summer atmosphere. Setting out candles with an open flame is a bit riskier — instead, use hurricane lanterns or jars to shield the flames.
 
*Keep music relaxed
Set the right tone with a playlist that is easy and laid-back. You don’t want to overpower any conversations among guests. Make sure your playlist is long enough as not to repeat too many times while the guests are there.
 
*Display fresh cuts
Use flowers and foliage from your own yard as centerpieces. Arrange your fresh cuts in jars or buckets and set them out to brighten up your display.
 
*Offer activities
Providing lawn games such as cornhole or croquet will keep your guests occupied and happy. Use butcher paper as a tablecloth and set out crayons for creative people of all ages.
 
*Keep pests away
Be sure to protect food with mesh food coverings and light up citronella candles to keep bugs away. Eliminate any standing water in gutters or the bottom of flowerpots to keep mosquitoes from breeding there. Offer guests bug wipes and insect repellent.
 
*Create a beverage bar
Make sure your guests are hydrated by preparing a beverage bar or cart stocked with the essentials. Include straws and PLENTY of ice.
 
*Opt for melamine
Melamine is an affordable and durable option for outdoor dinnerware. Using the break-resistant plastic will help you reduce your waste and also keep the area clear of all those lingering paper cups and plates.
 
Now that you know the tricks for a perfect outdoor party, here are some outdoor patios currently on the market that are begging to have you as a host.
 
Outdoor Entertaining6413 Old Gate Road | Plano | $6,999,000
Outdoor Entertaining
1750 Trace Bella Court | Westlake | $4,995,000
Outdoor Entertaining5701 Arcady Place | Plano | $1,999,999
Outdoor Entertaining
5003 Horseshoe Trail | Dallas – Bluffview | $1,998,000
Outdoor Entertaining11111 Eastview Circle | Dallas | $1,960,000
Outdoor Entertaining
5001 Pinehurst Drive | Frisco | $1,350,000
Outdoor Entertaining1300 Lincoln Court | Allen | $1,140,000
Outdoor Entertaining2803 Edgewood Lane | Colleyville | $995,000
Outdoor Entertaining712 Basilica Lane | McKinney | $885,000

Of The Day: Get Updated In 2014


Happy New Year from the Ebby Blog! We thank you all for making 2013 our best year yet, and we hope you all had a wonderful holiday season! To start of the new year, we’re bring you five tips, big and small, for adding value to your home. Even if you’re not selling, we hope these tips will inspire you to update and make 2014 the best year yet for your home.

update tips- new blog

1. Light and bright: Light and ambiance are important in every home, no matter the size.

Keep it simple: Add table and/or floor lamps, having light at different heights is important in achieving the right ambiance. Open your blinds and pull back your curtains to make the most out of natural light.

Go big: Knock down a wall to create a more open floor plan, which will allow natural light to flow more easily around your home. Or widen doorways, which should be less costly and will also allow more light in.

For inspiration: A Place to Build or A Place to Entertain

 

2. Curb appeal: They say don’t judge a book buy it’s cover, but most of us still do.

Keep it simple: Mow your lawn. It’s really that easy. Invest in a lawnmower, or borrow one from a neighbor, either way it will make a huge difference in an unruly yard. Plant some flowers and maybe some bushes, too. No matter the color or variety, they will add life and interest to your yard.

Go big: Add a path to your front door or fix up your driveway, you can find many DIY’s online or hire someone to help you out. Then, plant some trees to add interest and height. They’ll take time to grow, but, like so many other things, your home is a worthy investment for time and money.

For inspiration: A Place to Notice

 

3. Outdoor space: A deck or patio creates an entirely new way to experience your home.

Keep it simple: If you’re pinching pennies this year, you can find cheap outdoor furniture at many of the big box stores. Throw down an outdoor rug, some chairs, and a table to create a gathering area in your backyard.

Go big: DIY or hire out to create a wood deck or laid-stone patio. From there the possibilities are endless- cozy furniture, a fire pit, an outdoor kitchen, an arbor- let your imagination run wild!

For inspiration: A Place to Go Outdoors

 

4. Apply a fresh coat: Paint is one of the most inexpensive ways to update your home.

Keep it simple: Apply some fresh of paint, in the same or a new color, to refresh your walls. You’d be surprised at the difference a few coats it can make!

Go big: Buy painter’s tape or hire a pro to detail your walls in the latest chevron or whatever design tickles your fancy.

For inspiration: A Place to Create or A Place to Welcome Others

 

5. The kitchen: Many say it’s the heart of the home, so give it the attention it deserves.

Keep it simple: Buy some new stools or chairs to change things up. Or paint your cabinets and switch out the hardware.

Go big: Islands are all the rage and don’t seem to be going anywhere any time soon. If you have the space and the budget, consider adding an island with some seating. Updating your appliances and your backsplash are also very effective ways to update the look and feel of your kitchen.

For inspiration: A Place to Cook

 

We hope these tips will help you start your 2104 on the right foot. If you need some inspiration for updating your home or a specific room, head over to our Pinterest page. Thanks for joining us for OTD!