Sales of luxury homes in Pulaski County continued to break records in 2022.
For the second consecutive year, Arkansas Business increased the floor price of the homes it follows, raising it from $1.25 million to $1.5 million.
In 2022, 20 homes sold for $1.5 million or more, up from 16 homes in 2021.
The most expensive home sold in 2022 was for $5 million. The home, in the Country Club Heights neighborhood, also is the most expensive home sold in Pulaski County since 2004, when Arkansas Business began keeping statistics on homes that sold for $1 million or more.
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“In 2022 we saw an increase in home sales across all price points, including those houses over $1.5 million,” Jon Underhill, who sells upscale homes through his own agency in Little Rock, said via email. “The market continues to be strong. So far in 2023, we have seen 17 homes over $1 million sell or go under contract.”
He said that some homes can still sell for more than the listed price. “Real estate values are determined by supply and demand,” Underhill said. “Our inventory is still quite low.”
In the middle of March, there were 36 homes listed for $1 million or more for sale in Pulaski County.
The rising interest rates don’t seem to be an issue for luxury homebuyers. “Buyers of the higher-end homes are not first-time buyers,” Underhill said.
They are coming from homes that have substantial equity in them and are using that equity to buy their new homes, he said. “They are typically in high-income tax brackets and since interest is deductible, the higher interest rate does not affect them as much,” Underhill said.
Casey Jones, who sells high-end and other homes for The Janet Jones Co. of Little Rock, said some of the key features that people are asking for in an upscale home are location, followed by modern amenities.
“They want the newest and latest in design or amenities,” Jones said. Upscale homebuyers also are focused on the kitchen, outdoor living spaces and the primary bedroom.
Underhill said that there seems to be a resurgence in buyers seeking larger homes as people want to entertain more and use their homes for family gatherings. Seven homes on the list were larger than 7,000 SF.
Underhill said that some buyers like an open floor plan, others are asking for more segregated floor plans. Buyers also aren’t as interested in high-end theater rooms as they were years ago. Instead, they are opting for a more multi-functional space.
For this list, Arkansas Business used interviews, the real estate website Zillow, public real estate records and other documents to briefly describe the 10 most expensive Pulaski County homes sold in 2022, as well as their buyers.
1. $5 Million
Buyer: DFW Hawthorne 2800 LLC, led by Warren A. Stephens
Seller: Briland Enterprises LLC, led by Jonathan Dyke
Neighborhood: Country Club Heights
Date Sold: Nov. 16
Year Built: 2006
This five-bedroom house sits on about 10 lots adjacent to the Country Club of Little Rock golf course. In 1986, Warren Stephens became the CEO of the independent financial services firm Stephens Inc. of Little Rock. Under his leadership, Stephens has expanded the company’s small regional footprint into a national presence and has established overseas operations in London and Frankfurt, Germany. The private family business, founded by his uncle Witt during the Depression and developed by his father, Jack, became Stephens’ alone in 2006 after he bought out his cousins. Forbes estimated Warren Stephens’ net worth at $3.2 billion as of last week.
2. $3.18 Million
Buyers: R. Jonathan and Leigh R. Henderson
Sellers: Byron W. House III and Shae M. House Living Trust
Neighborhood: Pulaski County
Date Sold: April 21
Year Built: 2011
This custom home west of Ferndale boasts of outstanding views, five bedrooms, a studio and office. It also features a pool and has a creek on the property. Dr. R. Jonathan Henderson is a nationally recognized urologist and joined Arkansas Urology in March 2022. His practice is primarily focused on robotic surgeries and the treatment of prostate cancer, according to Arkansas Urology’s website. He is the past president of Large Urology Group Practice Association, the only nonprofit urology trade association. Dr. Leigh Henderson’s specialty is physical medicine and rehabilitation.
3. $2.95 Million
Buyer: Dacus/Gilmore Realty LLC, led by Lowell Steven Jumper and Sheila Jumper
Seller: HCB LLLP
Neighborhood: River Ridge
Date Sold: March 21
Year Built: 2020
This home features a gourmet kitchen and also comes with an office with a vaulted ceiling. It also has a view of the Arkansas River and landscaped grounds with a pool. Lowell Steven Jumper is the birth name of Ron Sherman, the former television weather anchor and founder and president of Ron Sherman Advertising of Little Rock. “RSA was the pioneer in home improvement TV lead generation,” according to the company’s website. “We were the first with ‘Look Live’ telethon spots and in-movie sponsorship. We began using our RSA concepts on daytime TV, and they are still the Benchmark for home improvement companies.”
4. $2.5 Million
Buyer: 1023 Bond Investment Properties LLC
Seller: Blizzard Properties LLC
Neighborhood: Sologne Circle
Date Sold: May 31
Year Built: 2011
Built by renowned Little Rock homebuilder Jack Hartsell, this house features a two-story foyer and is on the signature hole of Bear Den Course at the Chenal Country Club.
5. $2 Million
Buyer: Yogesh Asudani & Gitanjali Bajaj Trust
Seller: David Michael Mego & Patricia Louise (Pat) Mego Living Revocable Trust
Neighborhood: Sologne Circle
Date Sold: Sept. 16
Year Built: 2004
This five-bedroom, eight-bathroom home overlooks the 15th hole at Bear Den Golf Course at the Chenal Country Club. The residence features a safe room, media room and game room as well as an outdoor patio with a fireplace. Last year, Asudani joined BOND.AI of Little Rock as executive vice president, partnerships. BOND.AI uses artificial intelligence to help consumers enhance their financial health without moving from their home bank. With a background in electrical and computer engineering, Asudani began investing in early-stage startups, hedge funds, real estate, hotels, restaurants and other ventures, according to a BOND.AI news release.
6. $1.98 Million
Buyers: Mark Christopher Mangum and Gabrielle Mangum
Sellers: Timothy Scott and Jennifer Nina Trzebiatowski
Neighborhood: The Heights
Date Sold: May 23
Year Built: 2010
Chris and Gabrielle Mangum were attracted to this three-story house in the Heights because of its six bedrooms. “It’s spacious, which is nice because of the size of our family,” said Chris Mangum. Gabrielle Mangum’s mother lives with the couple and their three children, and in the next few years one or both of Chris’ parents might move in with them. “It has a nice outside living area in the backyard,” Chris Mangum said. He is the president and CEO of Servato Corp. of Little Rock, a technology company that manages backup power infrastructure for large broadband service providers. Gabrielle Mangum works in corporate finance for Entergy.
7. $1.96 Million
Buyer: Shay Zohar
Sellers: William Parker and Jessica Parker
Neighborhood: Waterview Estates
Date Sold: April 11
Year Built: 2017
This five-bedroom, five-bathroom home has a pool and features views of Lake Maumelle. Shay Zohar is the executive vice president of operations at Westrock Coffee Co. of Little Rock. The coffee, tea and extracts company increased sales by 26% to $867.9 million in 2022. Zohar’s LinkedIn profile said he has more than 18 years of executive management experience in “turnaround and high-growth environments, driving business initiatives for major corporations with deep passion for strategy, innovation and desire for an energetic business environment.”
8. $1.93 Million
Buyer: 60 River Ridge Road Trust, led by Jason Bright and Tiffany Hatchett
Seller: Betty L. Richards Revocable Trust
Neighborhood: River Ridge Manor
Date Sold: Sept. 20
Year Built: 1969
This six-bedroom, seven-bathroom home features views of the Arkansas River and has floor-to-ceiling windows, a gourmet kitchen and a curved staircase. 60 River Ridge Road Trust, led by Drs. Jason Bright and Tiffany Hatchett, bought this $1.93 million home in September. They are both optometrists and received their license to practice in Arkansas in 2004.
9. $1.85 Million
Buyers: Eric Rockwell and Casey Rockwell
Seller: Beck Road Properties LLC, led by Jon Jacoby
Neighborhood: Pulaski County, east of Pinnacle Mountain
Date Sold: Jan. 13
Year Built: 2003
This estate sits on 12.7 acres and features a 6,559-SF house along with a home built in 1950 and a guest house. The properties, which total 15,000 SF, also include an English garden designed by P. Allen Smith, a horse barn and wine cellar. The garages hold 12 cars. The main house has a bedroom suite with a balcony. Casey Rockwell is an assistant professor at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock School of Business, where she teaches classes on subjects that include employment law. She also is an attorney and a former president of the Junior League of Little Rock.
10. $1.85 Million
Buyer: AA Properties LLC, led by Syed Samad
Seller: Westwood Real Estate Development Co., led by Steve Wortman
Neighborhood: Valley Falls Estates
Date Sold: Aug. 15
Year Built: 2009
This four-bedroom, seven-bathroom home was the subject of a lawsuit in 2009 between estranged Little Rock business partners Steve Wortman and Rick Ferguson, a builder of upscale homes, over alleged major construction flaws in the mansion. The case settled in 2011 with Wortman and his wife receiving four upscale residential lots from Ferguson’s LRG LLC. In August, AA Properties LLC, led by Dr. Syed Samad, bought the property. Samad’s specialty is gastroenterology, and he practices in Pine Bluff. In 2018, Samad and his son Ahmed Samad sold Arkansas Surgery & Endoscopy Center LLC, a medical office-outpatient surgery center in Little Rock, for $3.4 million.