Craig Ranch homeowner blames developer for falling prices

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by STEVE STOLER

WFAA

Posted on April 24, 2012 at 10:11 PM

Updated Tuesday, Apr 24 at 10:31 PM

Craig Ranch

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McKINNEY — A new Case-Shiller report shows North Texas home prices fell one percent in February as new homes are popping up across North Texas.

But in McKinney's Craig Ranch, one homeowner says new construction is costing him money.

Tom Barry paid more than $1 million for his residence three years ago. Now, families are moving in for a fraction of that, and he says it's hurting his bottom line.

In three years, the appraised value of his house in The Settlement at Craig Ranch has dropped more than $250,000.

"Total shock," Barry said.

He blames the developer for bringing in an influx of smaller, lower-priced homes in his McKinney neighborhood.

"You need comps to sell your home," Barry said. "And if you don't have the square footage, and you don't have the price per square foot, you basically don't have any comps."

Craig Ranch executives said The Settlement was designed to have an array of homes at different price points. They blame the falling property values on the economy and a rash of foreclosures in the neighborhood.

“I don’t think the smaller homes have affected the larger," said Craig Ranch Chief Operating Officer Miles Prestemon. "It's just the fact that the bank sold them when they needed to, and the market is soft up there."

Other Craig Ranch homeowners, like Tom Moore, are concerned the smaller homes won't have the same quality as the larger, more-expensive homes, which feature stone and stucco facades.

"It may not be quite the dimensions of some of the other homes that are next to it and behind it," Moore said. “So it just kind of makes it look out of place. You don't want to run anybody off, but you certainly would like it to match the neighborhood."

Craig Ranch officials want to assure homeowners better times are ahead. Sales doubled last year, and are up so far in 2012.

They believe the economy will rebound,  too — along with property values that have so many homeowners like Tom Barry feeling nervous.

E-mail sstoler@wfaa.com

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