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Dallas Metro Area Master Planned Communities

If you are moving to Dallas-Fort Worth or if you are planning on buying a house in the North Dallas or any other city in Texas, you may want to consider living in a master planned community. There are some excellent choices of planned communities around Dallas and Fort Worth. As you browse this website you can find some great information about DFW cities. Plus, your real estate search will help you with the home buying process. Also, as you search new construction homes for sale in DFW, you will view terrific single story homes as well as two story houses. Moreover, you will find houses to buy in master planned communities which have wonderful amenities. So, take your time while looking to buy a house.

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Master Planned Communities in Dallas-Fort Worth and North Texas - FAQ


What is a master-planned community in North Texas?


A master-planned community in North Texas and in other parts of the country is a large-scale residential neighborhood with a large number of recreational and commercial amenities, such as golf courses, tennis courts, lakes, parks, playgrounds, swimming pools, and even stores and restaurants. Some master-planned communities may have schools, office parks, large shopping centers and other businesses.


Master-planned communities are also known as green towns, garden cities or greenbelt towns.


How is a master-planned community different from a subdivision in Dallas?


The average master-planned community is more than 2,500 acres and is located in an urban or suburban environment. Residents move there to experience a self-contained environment. All social and recreational opportunities typically are limited to residents and their guests.


A master-planned community differs from a subdivision based on the number of amenities it offers. It may contain one large residential area, or it may be broken down into multiple subdivisions and neighborhoods.


Sometimes, the community’s developer will allow separate builders to create these smaller subdivisions so that each one is unique and offers residents something different from the others. This may include housing styles, home sizes, prices and lot sizes. Some are aimed specifically at adults over the age of 55 and at retirees.


There are many master-planned communities located throughout the world, including in many urban and suburban areas in the U.S. Some of them include:


The Woodlands in the metropolitan Houston area: The Woodlands, which sits on 27,000 acres, was built in 1974 to accommodate Houston’s growing population. Today, it is home to six champion golf courses, a 200-acre lake, 100 miles of trails, 80 parks, a 17,000-seat amphitheater, a large shopping mall, a conference center and many more amenities.


Here is a link to to 50 top-selling communities, who sold at least 320 homes per community in 2018


What are the benefits of living in a master-planned community in North Dallas?


The benefits of a master-planned community include:


  • Amenities: Planned communities boast many amenities, which can include pools, tennis courts, golf courses, playgrounds, parks, walking trails and more. Lights Farms in Celina offers a fitness center, Tennis and Recreation Center to residents. These homeowner amenities help to create a true sense of community. They’re often popular meeting spaces, encouraging neighbors to spend time together.


  • Lifestyle: One of the most important factors in a master-planned community is the lifestyle! Stonebridge Ranch in McKinney offers 12 parks, 830 acres of golf courses, lakes, ponds, sailing, fishing for residents who like the outdoors. Most communities have a dedicated team that focuses on the lifestyle in the communities – especially planning the events. These can include big community-wide events such as The Great Get-Together picnic, to regular activities like Story Time, Movies on the Lawn, Happy Hours and MyBalance Fitness classes.  


  • Neighborhoods: Planned communities are unique because they include a mix of distinctive neighborhoods and home designs. For example, Stonebridge Ranch in McKinney community features 9,000+ single family homes, 1700 multifamily units, 280 acres of retail, and 270 acres of office space. This variety ensures that homebuyers have many options when searching for their new home.


  • Multiple Uses: You may have heard the term “live, work and play” which perfectly describes planned communities. They’re designed to serve multiple functions, so you can live and work within the same community. Of course, many planned communities also include grocery stores, restaurants, shops and more so you can enjoy some “play” time too!  Residents in a typical community can easily walk to schools, can have access to a library and a town center with shops, restaurants, and a grocery store.


  • Detail: Attention to detail is paramount in a master-planned community. It’s one of the reasons homes in these communities are so desirable. These details can range from the architecture of homes to the types of amenities available to the way the streets and sidewalks are designed. The spectacular homes in Tucker Hill in McKinney feature period-specific architectural details and styles, including English Tudor, Spanish Mission, Four Square and many more. Attention to detail is present in the streetscapes.


Where are master-planned communities located compared with suburbs in Dallas metro area?


Dallas has a number of excellent suburbs that offer top rated schools, amenities, convenience and safe neighborhoods to families. But as the master-planned communities are typically built over hundreds of acres, they are developed in newer and growing cities where a large amount of land is available. So such a community will be farther away from the city center of a major city and can impact your commute if you have to travel to the city center.


Why do buyers moving to Dallas choose a master-planned community when relocating to Dallas?


Master-planned communities usually have many housing options, including condos, townhomes, and single-family homes ranging from modest to quite large in square footage. Master-planned communities often cater to families and might include elementary, middle, and high schools within the community as well as daycare facilities although some master-planned communities can focus on residents aged 55+ or families wanting to have access to farming (commonly known as Agrihoods) like Harvest in Fort Worth, TX.


In addition, master-planned communities often have well designed streets and thoroughfares, wide sidewalks, ample parking, landscaping, and security. A master-planned community may or may not feature a security gate, but almost all will have well-lit streets and some sort of after-hours security presence.


What are the downsides of a master-planned community in DFW?


One of the biggest possible issues with master-planned communities is the distance from the city center and other urban facilities as discussed earlier. As a buyer, you have to find a balance between lower cost of housing in a master-planned community and distance from the major city center.


In addition, some of these communities may also have a MUD (Municipal Utility District) which is an additional recurring cost for the homeowners along with the property taxes. You may be surprised to learn that MUDs have had a dramatic impact on the landscape of cities throughout Texas and have been used for decades by numerous municipalities including: University Park, Highland Park, Conroe, Houston, Cypress, Katy, Cinco Ranch, Pearland, Spring, Kingwood, Sugarland, Round Rock, Pflugerville and Granbury.  Park Cities (University Park & Highland Park) has used a MUD to fund a water treatment plant. Some popular local MUD neighborhoods include Trinity Falls (McKinney) and Light Farms (Celina).


What else should I know about master-planned communities in Texas?


A MUD is incharge of providing utility-related services such as water, sewer, and stormwater drainage services. Typically, it is enacted by state law and is funded by special assessment bonds. Individuals living in a MUD are assessed a tax based on the value of their property and the current tax. Make sure you ask if the community you are moving to is in a MUD. MUD tax rates, like all property tax rates, vary according to property values and debt requirements. MUD rates generally decline over time as the MUD is built out and operating and debt service costs are shared by more homeowners.



Are there rules and restrictions in these master-planned communities in DFW metro area?

There are recorded covenants (CC&Rs) that control aesthetics, building types, facades, streetscapes, signage, fences, parking and many other items. These allow the residents, owners and tenants to know exactly how their particular community will look and feel. There are many rules, but this permits the different groups and property types to coexist in a friendly, balanced and cohesive way for long periods of time.


What are the advantages of HOAs in a master-planned community in Dallas?


Maintenance and upkeep of the grounds, common areas, and amenities, such as swimming pools, trails, golf courses, and tennis courts are built in to the residents’ HOA dues. Along with that, there are usually strict guidelines for the upkeep and presentation of one’s individual residence. This helps keep the entire community looking attractive and can go a long way for curb appeal when it comes time to sell.

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