Looped In

Looped In

loopedin.libsyn.com/podcast
Houston Real Estate
Ep 100: Meet the legends of Houston real estate, Part I
Dec 10 • 40 min
For Looped In’s 100th episode, we sat down with some of the city’s most prominent figures in real estate and development. Joe Colaco, Marvy Finger, Ed Wulfe and Welcome Wilson Sr. have spent a collective 230 years shaping our skyline and our suburbs….
Ep99: WORTH ANOTHER LISTEN: Houston real estate history 101
Dec 5 • 36 min
Looped In has been on a mini break gearing up for a new year and new episodes, so enjoy this rerun from November 2016 on the history of Houston neighborhoods. (Incidentally, we recorded this episode right after real estate developer Donald Trump was…
Ep98: Still homeless after Harvey
Nov 16 • 14 min
Nearly 1,800 households in East Texas are still living in trailers provided by FEMA more than a year after Hurricane Harvey. Now, many are at risk of losing their temporary shelters.
Ep97: Adding developments to flood plains
Nov 8 • 28 min
More than a year after Hurricane Harvey, developers continue to build in parts of Houston that flood, and it’s not expected to stop anytime soon. After all, one-third of the city is covered by flood plains. On the newest episode of Looped In,…
Ep96: Small house, big city
Nov 2 • 23 min
After years of catering to move-up buyers with big housing budgets, builders in Houston are introducing new models with lower price tags and smaller footprints. One company is marketing a 1,000-square-foot model with three bedrooms, two bathrooms and…
Ep95: Why Mattress Firm blanketed the market
Oct 16 • 21 min
Nancy and Chronicle retail reporter Paul Takahashi deep dive into Mattress Firm’s strategy of “over-storing” and talk about where the company – now in Chapter 11 – goes from here. Houston retail expert Jason Gaines of NAI Partners joins them…
Ep75: Why building affordable housing can be so unaffordable
Apr 16 • 51 min
In her attempts to bring a communal-style pocket neighborhood to Acres Homes, Heidi Eagleton discovered another way she could build in the underserved area: affordable housing. But her homes don’t fit the typical image of affordable. They have exposed…
Ep74: ‘Bean’ there, done that
Apr 4 • 23 min
Whenever Houston finds itself in competition with another city, it’s usually about the food, the fashion or the attitudes of the people – and it’s usually Dallas that we’re defending ourselves against. Houston recently found itself fending off…
Ep73: Immigrants’ impact on rebuilding Houston
Mar 21 • 26 min
Perhaps unlike any other time in history, immigrant labor is playing a critical role in getting Houston back on track, a theme highlighted in a new documentary called “Immigration’s crossroad, rebuilding after Hurricane Harvey.” Director Gregory…
Ep72: Buffalo Bayou Reborn (w/Anne Olson)
Mar 6 • 39 min
Hurricane Harvey destroyed the lower portions of Buffalo Bayou Park, devastating the beloved dog park and causing the loss of some 400 trees. After hauling off 30,000 cubic yards of sediment — at a cost of more than $1 million — the Buffalo Bayou…
Ep71: Gosh Dome It!
Feb 27 • 39 min
Ryan Walsh, one of the county officials guiding the redevelopment of the Astrodome, and local preservationist James Glassman join Nancy and Harris County reporter Mihir Zaveri to discuss the plans, the funding and the ethos of the project, which aims…
Ep70: If these walls could talk: the final days of Montrose’s antique French ballroom
Feb 20 • 17 min
Nancy and Allyn talk to Chronicle writer Molly Glentzer about her story on dismantling the 18th century ballroom at La Colombe d’Or, the boutique hotel on Montrose Boulevard, to make way for a luxury residential tower.
Ep69: Documenting racial tensions in Riverside
Feb 14 • 34 min
Houston native and L.A.-based filmmaker Jon Schwartz talks about his 1987 documentary This is our home, it is not for sale. The film explores integration, real estate blockbusting and white flight in Riverside, a historic Houston neighborhood along…
Ep68: The silver lining to Amazon’s snub
Feb 6 • 20 min
In its failed bid for Amazon’s second headquarters, Houston offered up three urban sites with tremendous potential: a vacant downtown skyscraper, a sprawling property along Buffalo Bayou and an aging department store in the center of urban life….
Ep67: Buying and selling flooded homes
Jan 29 • 44 min
Nancy gets a look behind the curtain on an industry that’s playing a key role in Houston’s post-Hurricane Harvey real estate market: investing in flooded homes. She and her Chronicle colleague David Hunn talk to Brian Spitz, a local investor…
Ep66: The Loopies: Our inaugural awards for Houston real estate and things
Jan 4 • 23 min
For the first episode of 2018, Nancy and Allyn asked their social media followers to cast their votes for some of 2017’s most outstanding real estate deals and developments in the inaugural Loopie Awards. They, along with the help of some of their…
Ep65: H-E-B bets on Meyerland (w/Scott McClelland)
Dec 22, 2017 • 28 min
Scott McClelland, the newly minted president of H-E-B, will open nine stores in and around Houston in 2018 and will begin building what could be H-E-B’s most anticipated store yet: Meyerland. McClelland joins Nancy to talk Meyerland, kosher…
Ep64: Building the perfect prefab
Dec 14, 2017 • 25 min
Houston architect Brett Zamore earned high praise more than a decade ago for his modern reinvention of the shotgun house. His next move was designing and building kit houses in the urban core. Zamore joins Nancy and Allyn to discuss his latest design:…
Ep63: What NOAA knows now about Texas storms
Nov 29, 2017 • 17 min
New storm data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association, or NOAA, could lead to sweeping changes in the way real estate is developed in the Houston area. The research shows the amount of rain typical of a 100-year storm has risen by…
Ep62: Future proofing
Nov 22, 2017 • 39 min
A world where a self-driving car is a common mode of transportation is not that far away. Such a scenario has implications for real estate development. Take office buildings, which in Houston are required to have 2 1/2 parking spaces for every 1,000…
Ep61: What downtown could look like in 20 years (w/ Bob Eury)
Nov 14, 2017 • 37 min
Two decades from now, downtown Houston could be a be a thriving neighborhood where the streets teem with life seven days a week. In this future world, start-ups in modern offices would create the latest technological advances in the fields of energy…
Ep60: Living large in a micro condo
Nov 7, 2017 • 31 min
A pair of developers from Montreal join Nancy and Allyn to talk urban housing trends from around the world and their newest Houston project: an upscale development in Midtown with 14 pint-sized condominiums.
Ep59: Amber’s journey (Harvey series, part VIII)
Oct 27, 2017 • 26 min
Before the storm hit, Amber and Lenny Ambrose packed up their two young kids and small dog and drove to Amber’s parent’s house in Nederland, outside of Beaumont. The Ambrose’s house in Candlelight Forest flooded during the Tax Day storm in 2016, and…
Ep58: Swamped and the city revisited
Oct 19, 2017 • 28 min
From episode 23, Nancy and Erin talk to Chronicle journalists Mike Morris (City Hall) and Mihir Zaveri (Harris County) about their reporting on floods and development after two major flooding events two years in a row.
Ep57: MUDs and floods (Harvey series, Part VI)
Oct 13, 2017 • 18 min
Residents of Canyon Gate say they were never told about the warning that said their neighborhood could be subject to severe flooding because it was built in a so-called flood pool behind Barker Reservoir. Investors who bought millions in bonds that…
Ep56: Brandon’s journey (Harvey series, Part V)
Oct 6, 2017 • 28 min
Brandon Polson recounts his journey from helping his neighbors escape their flood-ravaged apartment complex to spending an evening with one of the biggest celebrities on the planet.
Ep55: Riding out the hurricane in a new house (Harvey series, Part IV)
Oct 3, 2017 • 37 min
As Harvey’s flood waters continued to rise in Braes Heights, Scott Davis, his wife and their two young daughters fled to a neighbor’s place – a brand new house built five feet above grade. As Davis sees it, the safest place to ride out the hurricane…
Ep54: What’s zoning got to do with it? (Harvey series, Part III)
Sep 27, 2017 • 31 min
Before Hurricane Harvey’s flood waters could even recede, the national media was reporting on Houston’s lack of zoning and how it played a role in the floods. Local law professor, land use expert and repeat Looped In guest Matt Festa explains how…
Ep53: Milton’s journey (Stories from Hurricane Harvey and Houston’s recovery, Part II)
Sep 22, 2017 • 40 min
From his second-story apartment in west Houston, Milton Lawson thought he had avoided the worst of Harvey. But then officials began releasing water from the nearby Addicks reservoir. Lawson recalls his journey from evacuation, to rundown FEMA hotel,…
Ep52: Stories from Hurricane Harvey and Houston’s recovery, Part I
Sep 20, 2017 • 18 min
Looped In returns with a multi-part series exploring the lives of several Houstonians who survived Hurricane Harvey but remain in a state of limbo as they seek to rebuild after the worst rainstorm in U.S. history. In coming episodes listeners will…
Ep51: Breweries: The latest neighborhood amenity
Aug 14, 2017 • 23 min
Research has shown that living near a Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s or Starbucks can increase the value of your home. The same might be true of craft beer breweries, these suddenly popular hangouts that have been multiplying in Houston’s inner city and some…
Ep50: Warehouse wars
Aug 10, 2017 • 23 min
Retailers don’t just take up space in shopping malls and strip centers. Amazon, Home Depot, Walmart and others have been building giant warehouses to store everything from toothpaste to toilet paper to toys. Nancy talks to Chronicle reporter Dylan…
Ep49: Acres Homes is where the art is
Aug 2, 2017 • 33 min
Nancy hits the road to visit painter John Calaway in his new studio in Acres Homes, a historically African-American neighborhood that has long attracted artists for its open space and affordable land. Now, though, high-end developers are discovering…
Ep48: Deconstructing the Houston farmers market
Jul 29, 2017 • 25 min
Nancy and her Chronicle colleagues Allyn West and Jody Schmal discuss the hour they spent with the new owners and consultants (including James Beard award-winner Chris Shepherd) of the Heights-area farmers market.
Ep47: Why Houston has so much parking, Part II
Jul 20, 2017 • 29 min
When real estate investor Mark Davis released some early renderings for a redevelopment project on lower Westheimer, they were criticized by some who didn’t like the plans for parking on the site. Davis tells Nancy and Allyn what he actually wants…
Ep46: Why Houston has so much parking, Part I
Jul 14, 2017 • 36 min
City planner Christopher Andrews joins Nancy and her co-host Allyn West to discuss how Houston’s parking ordinance and other building regulations shape the way real estate is developed here. They discuss one project at length – a lower Montrose…
Ep45: How legal weed can spark a real estate market
Jul 5, 2017 • 32 min
Texas may be a long way from legalizing marijuana, but if that day ever comes Houston’s real estate market could change dramatically. That’s what happened in Denver, where commercial real estate prices have spiked and apartment rents have doubled, in…
Ep44: Montrose, TX: uniquely urban in a city of sprawl
Jun 23, 2017 • 30 min
When Houston Chronicle managing editor Vernon Loeb arrived in Houston some four years ago he rented an apartment in Montrose and began exploring the area on foot. An avid marathoner, Loeb learned his new neighborhood by running it almost every…
Ep43: Will the Heights farmers market get ‘hipsterized?’
Jun 15, 2017 • 37 min
New owners of the Heights-area farmers market say they want to expand the offerings with a seafood counter, a butcher and a baker. They plan to improve the space by adding bathrooms and fixing the jumbled parking area. Nancy and her colleague…
Ep42: Swiping right on 609 Main
Jun 6, 2017 • 32 min
In 1970s and 1980s Houston, skyscrapers were built as urban icons where form often overtook function. Nancy Sarnoff talks to the Chronicle’s Allyn West about how the city’s newest office towers are transforming into dynamic spaces meant to engage…
Ep41: Looped In LIVE!
May 31, 2017 • 25 min
Nancy and Erin (she’s back for one more episode!) host their first live show from the lobby of downtown’s historic Texaco building – now a luxury apartment tower called The Star. In front of about 25 of their most loyal listeners, the ladies…
Ep40: Concourse Cuisine
May 22, 2017 • 22 min
A wave of new restaurants connected to local superchefs (such as James Beard Award-winning Hugo Ortega of Hugo’s and Chris Shepherd of Underbelly) are beginning to congregate in an unlikely place: the airport. From farm-to-table to Asian-fusion, the…
Ep39: Millennials, meatloaf and Mulvaney
May 11, 2017 • 32 min
On Erin’s last official episode of Looped In, she and Nancy share memories of their past year podcasting about the quirks, the curiosities and the characters that define Houston real estate. Looped In will continue, but the…
Live show update
May 10, 2017 • 1 min
Eek! We’re recording our next episode in front of a live audience. Want be part of our first live show? Listen for details.
Ep38: Grocery Store Wars
May 4, 2017 • 29 min
Houston has perhaps the most competitive grocery market in the country, and as H-E-B’s real estate broker, it’s Lance Gilliam’s job to keep up with the major players and the latest trends. Gilliam, a partner with Waterman Steele, joins Nancy and Erin…
Ep37: What’s up with Uptown’s Zone d’Erotica?
Apr 27, 2017 • 23 min
Nancy Sarnoff and Erin Mulvaney are joined by retail guru Ed Wulfe to discuss Uptown’s Zone d’Erotica, the adult novelty shop widely seen as a striking contrast to the gleaming Galleria and other luxury spaces surrounding it.
Ep36: Affording Houston, Part II
Apr 18, 2017 • 17 min
Nancy and Erin continue their conversation with the Houston Housing Authority’s Tory Gunsolley about how the city is grappling with its lack of affordable housing.
Ep35: Affording Houston, Part I
Apr 13, 2017 • 20 min
Historically, Houston has always been a relatively cheap place to live. Now, not so much. There are more than 300,000 households here paying more than 50 percent of their incomes on housing, according to the Houston Housing Authority’s Tory…
Ep34: Apartments: When will the specials end?
Apr 5, 2017 • 28 min
For the past 30 years multifamily analyst Bruce McClenny has seen the apartment market boom and bust a few times. The wild overbuilding always results in the same thing: developers cutting rents and offering steep discounts to get “heads in beds,” as…
Ep33: High-rise living in a low-rise town
Mar 27, 2017 • 38 min
Condomania: Nancy and Erin are joined by Jacob Sudhoff, a luxury real estate broker marketing some of the most expensive condos in town, to discuss why Houstonians never had much of an appetite for condo living and how that’s changing.
Ep32: #Downtown
Mar 10, 2017 • 21 min
Downtown boosters have floated myriad proposals over the years as they’ve worked to transform the city center into a vibrant place for people to live, work and most importantly, stay. The latest proposal is a plan to address and provide…
Ep31: The cost of labor lost
Mar 2, 2017 • 27 min
Many of the thousands of laborers building Houston’s glass and steel skyscrapers, apartment complexes, houses and roads are immigrants living here illegally. What if they were forced to leave the country? Chronicle reporter Dylan Baddour recently…
Ep30: Houston, we have a plan. Now what?
Feb 24, 2017 • 27 min
Houston architect and planning advocate Joe Webb joins Nancy and Erin to talk about “Plan Houston,” the city’s first-ever comprehensive planning effort meant to provide a strategic vision for housing, transportation, neighborhoods and other key…
Ep29: Does the Texas bullet train have a shot?
Feb 17, 2017 • 30 min
Before a 240-mile train connecting Houston to Dallas becomes a reality, the folks proposing it must convince an unknown number of property owners to sell them their land. The company behind the project, Texas Central, says it has agreements to buy a…
Ep28: Airbnbust
Feb 7, 2017 • 21 min
If you tried but to rent your house during Super Bowl LI but never had any takers, you’re not alone. Supply of short-term rentals was way up during the week of the big game. Nancy and Erin are joined by Heights resident Sorcha Landau who listed…
Ep27: PARTY!! Finding the sights and celebs of Super Bowl LI
Jan 31, 2017 • 27 min
Houston will get a flash of Hollywood glam this week when celebrities begin to descend on the Bayou City for Super Bowl LI. Local publicist Mark Sullivan dishes on the best places to get a glimpse of Beyonce, Lady Gaga and Josh Brolin among lots of…
Ep26: Can your house score $10k this Super Bowl (w/Laura Spanjian of Airbnb)
Jan 26, 2017 • 35 min
Thousands of Houstonians have listed their homes on various vacation rental platforms in hopes of cashing in during Super Bowl LI. But is it realistic to find someone who will pay thousands of dollars a night for your home or apartment? And what about…
Ep25: Housing Boomer
Jan 10, 2017 • 29 min
Dwight Silverman spent years raising kids in a comfortable subdivision in piney northwest Houston before deciding to buy a townhouse inside the Loop. About a year ago, he and his wife moved again. They sold a bunch of their furniture on Craig’s List…
Ep24: And the Swampie goes to…
Dec 26, 2016 • 35 min
It’s Swampie season. The real estate website Swamplot is collecting ballots for its annual “Swampie” awards, which showcase all that is remarkable and peculiar about Houston real estate. Nancy and Erin bring Swamplot editor Christine Gerbode…
Ep23: Swamped and the City
Dec 22, 2016 • 27 min
Houston was hit with two major flooding events two years in a row. Roads and highways were under water. Subdivisions and people’s homes were destroyed. Questions arose about why is this happening and what can be done to stop it. One of…
Ep22: Montrose: can you manage this?
Dec 16, 2016 • 19 min
There could be weighty implications for Houston if president-elect Donald Trump picks Ben Carson for secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Nancy and Erin explain, while also updating listeners on the lawsuit against the…
Ep21: All about the sprawl
Dec 6, 2016 • 29 min
Town centers in The Woodlands, Sugar Land and elsewhere are filled with storefront-lined streets, multifamily housing and even hotels and office towers. But there’s a darker side to suburbia in areas that lack infrastructure and private…
Ep20: Houston Real Estate History 101
Nov 28, 2016 • 35 min
Which Houston neighborhoods were designed to look like English cemeteries? Why does U.S. 59 outside the 610 Loop veer off at a 90 degree angle towards Sugar Land? Houston housing expert Scott Davis answers these questions and others as he shares his…
Ep19: Ms. Mulvaney goes to Washington
Nov 14, 2016 • 21 min
In typical millennial fashion, Looped In co-host Erin has picked up and moved. She put Houston in her rear-view mirror last week when she took a three-day road trip to her new home in the Washington D.C. area. In this episode of Looped In, Nancy…
Ep18: ‘Brew’-haha in the Heights, Part II
Nov 4, 2016 • 27 min
Nancy and Erin hear from H-E-B’s Scott McClelland, who is hoping Heights residents vote ‘yes’ Tuesday on the ballot measure that would allow off-premise beer and wine sales in what is now the dry part of the neighborhood. He has a lot riding on the vote.
Ep17: ‘Brew’-haha in the Heights, Part I
Nov 2, 2016 • 28 min
On Nov. 8, residents in a corner of the Heights will vote on a measure that, if approved, would allow stores to sell beer and wine for the first time in more than 100 years. Heights resident and real estate broker Bill Baldwin loves his Cabernet, but…
Ep16: Make Bayous Great Again
Oct 25, 2016 • 32 min
On the latest episode of Looped In, Parks Board president and CEO Beth White joins Nancy and Erin to chat about the transformation of Houston’s once tired bayous into connected greenways throughout the city. A Chicago transplant, White compares…
Ep15: The Z Word, Part II
Oct 18, 2016 • 20 min
Nancy and Erin continue their conversation with Houston land use professor Matthew Festa about the city’s lack of a formal zoning code. And in the “lighting round of questions,” find out what Festa’s favorite land use juxtaposition in Houston…
Ep14: The Z Word, Part I
Oct 12, 2016 • 24 min
Houston has long been famous for its cowboys, pickup trucks and freeways. But there’s another key characteristic that’s shaped the city from early on: a lack of zoning. Erin and Nancy talk to land use professor Matthew Festa about why Houston…
Ep13: Over the river and through the Dome
Oct 4, 2016 • 21 min
A Houston developer is planning what it says will be a “transformative” mixed-use project that could shift the urban core to the east. It will be built near downtown along Buffalo Bayou, but the company is calling the project East River. Nancy and…
Ep12: Dome Stop Believing
Sep 26, 2016 • 24 min
Some call it the Eighth Wonder of the World. Others refer to it as the albatross no one can figure out. Whatever it is, the Astrodome has a special place in Houston’s history. Ahead of what could be a potentially historic day in Harris County’s…
EP11: Would you look at that Swankienda?
Sep 22, 2016 • 25 min
Erin and Nancy give a shout out to the GBV — or Glenbrook Valley — in the latest episode of Looped In. It has been called the neighborhood “where Don Draper would live if he landed a big oil account.” While, this neighborhood in southeast…
Ep10: TMC: The Millennial Complex
Sep 15, 2016 • 25 min
Nancy and Erin talk about a few different upcoming and recent stories they have worked on for the Chronicle. They explore some of the quirks of land use in the Texas Medical Center and revisit one of their favorite topics: millennials. The land ladies…
Ep9: Music & Mayhem
Sep 9, 2016 • 28 min
In this episode of Looped In, Erin and Nancy talk about the latest, greatest and most controversial music venue in town: The White Oak Music Hall. To help them out with analyzing the saga and Houston’s entertainment scene, they…
Ep8: Houston: the land of misfit tinkerers
Aug 23, 2016 • 35 min
In this episode of Looped In, Chronicle reporters Nancy Sarnoff and Erin Mulvaney speak with fifth-generation Houstonian James Glassman to explore the meanings and backstories behind some of the words in his book, “The Houstorian Dictionary: An…
Ep7: Hot or not?
Aug 16, 2016 • 24 min
An affordable housing project on Fountain View has been a lighting rod at City Hall and among residents of the neighborhood surrounding it. Erin’s been covering the story for months and has the background on this controversial project and where it…
Ep6: The Newstonian
Aug 7, 2016 • 24 min
According to one definition, a “Newstonian” is “a recent transplant to Houston, usually coming from the east or west coast for a job and bringing lots of non-Houstonian views and traditions with them.” Here in the Chronicle’s business section, we just…
Ep5: Free rent!
Jul 27, 2016 • 29 min
Houston apartment glut gives way to free rent
Ep4: Talk of the Tower: Part 2 (Don’t Call me Ashby)
Jul 19, 2016 • 26 min
Nancy and Erin continue their discussion of the 21-story tower planned nearly 10 years ago in a neighborhood near Rice University. In this episode, the reporters talk about their interview with Matthew Morgan and Kevin Kirton of Houston’s…
Ep3: Talk of the Tower, Part 1
Jul 7, 2016 • 27 min
The Ashby high-rise and the high-profile protest it inspired has become a symbol, for better or worse, of Houston as the biggest American city without a formal zoning code. Since the project was announced in 2007, it has influenced city policy,…
Ep2: Hines not Heinz
Jun 28, 2016 • 19 min
If you don’t know who Gerald Hines is, you definitely know his buildings: the Galleria, Williams (nee Transco) Tower, Pennzoil Place and so many more. Erin and Nancy share stories about the legendary Houston developer, including what the 90-year-old…
Ep1: I’m gorgeous inside!!
Jun 21, 2016 • 19 min
Houston Chronicle real estate reporters Erin Mulvaney and Nancy Sarnoff take their deskside chit chat to the podcasting world. In “I’m gorgeous inside” Erin and Nancy dig into how the oil downturn is – or isn’t – affecting the housing…