River Oaks has always been a daunting real estate market, especially for younger homebuyers. Getting a toe-hold in the neighborhood has been made even more difficult in recent years by builders who have been snapping up older and smaller homes – the fixer-uppers, if you will – and scraping them from the Earth. The builders then build glitzy new mansions that sell for three times more than the homes they displaced.

We have participated in two home sales since the first of this year that featured perfectly nice older homes from the 1920s and 1930s. Both had mature trees, multiple fireplaces, wood floors and original windows. It’s also true that they lacked lavish spa-style baths and acres of walk-in closets, the ceilings were low and the kitchens did not open to the living area. Both will be demolished and the land redeveloped by builders who paid cash, muscling out starter-home buyers.

So, it is with real delight that we can announce that we are working on the renovation of an older home by a builder. The house at 2300 Timber Lane is a modern Mid-Century home that previously was the parsonage of St. Luke’s Methodist Church, and the buyer/builder is Unicus Developments, headed by our long-time friend and client Francisco Uzcategui. The plan calls for the house footprint to remain the same, as well as preservation of the enormous front double doors, vintage brick façade, mature live oaks and circular driveway.

From the street, the home’s profile will change on the second floor as more upstairs space is added. But it’s inside where most of the magic will happen. Sought-after features, such as open floor plan, downstairs master bedroom with double closets and spa bath, mud room, open kitchen with dining area and family room, and elevator are all part of the revamped design.

We look forward to sharing the progress of 2300 Timber Lane’s transformation with you over the coming months and will post photos from time to time on our Facebook page. With any luck, the home will be ready for new owners next spring.