Grand Oaks welcomes two builders offering entry-level homes

Homes are popping up quickly in Grand Oaks Reserve in Cleveland. Three home builders are offering a wide variety of floor plans and finishes - McKinley Homebuilders, First America and Kendall Homes.

Two years after breaking ground on its first homes, Grand Oaks Reserve has more than three dozen houses completed or under construction. The master-planned community, located at the east end of the SH 105 bypass and SH 321 in Cleveland, is a 600-acre residential community that eventually will be built out for more than 900 homes.

Two builders with a reputation for offering good quality entry-level homes recently joined the project – First America Homes and Kendall Homes. Both builders have worked in Liberty County in recent years on other housing developments. Kendall Homes is selling homes in the Glen Park community in Cleveland while First America Homes, a division of The Signorelli Company, most recently built homes in Encino Estates in Kenefick and Fordland Estates in Dayton.

Grand Oaks Reserve in Cleveland offers homes priced to fit most budgets, including first-time home buyers, with homes starting in the $180s.

Ramiro Gonzalez, vice president of sales for First America Homes, said the company is proud to now be part of Grand Oaks Reserve.

“We like this location and the market. Grand Oaks Reserve is a beautiful development with a golf course, a ton of amenities and a great front entryway,” Gonzalez said.

As the community is built out, pocket parks will be placed throughout, providing recreational spots for families. A network of paved walking trails will wind through the community. Also in the works are a clubhouse and a 40-acre lake that will only be accessible to property owners.

According to Gonzalez, home buyers with First American can pick and customize a home from among 8-10 floor plans or select one of the homes already on the ground.

“It they don’t have time to wait on a home to be built, we have homes available that are ready to go,” he said. “If home buyers want to pick their own finishes, colors and floor plans, we can build them a home from scratch within 4 to 5 months,” he said.

The starting prices for the entry-level homes ranges from $180,000 to $230,000.

“Our focus is to offer affordable homes to people who might otherwise not be able to get into a home purchase,” Gonzalez said. “Our main focus in selling an entry-level house is getting a home buyer to the right payment, the right tax rate and the right HOA fees. If a person is looking to get out of their renting situation, we have options.”

McKinley Homebuilders, a division of McKinley Development – the developer of Grand Oaks Reserve, is still offering a wide range of homes, including lakefront custom homes for residents with discriminating tastes and the ability to reach a higher price point.

Gonzalez said that many of the home buyers currently are from Cleveland and the surrounding area; however, he has also seen some interest from the Kingwood and Humble area.

“We have had some teachers who are coming to work for the school district. We also have seen home buyers who want to get out of the hustle and bustle of the city,” he said. “We are really excited to be here. We like being on the outskirts of Houston and we know people will drive a little further to get in an affordable home in a great community like Grand Oaks.”

Amanda DeRosario, vice president of McKinley Homebuilders, added, “We are seeing a lot of people interested in getting out of Houston. Grand Oaks Reserve is the best home value for a golf course community in the area. Cleveland is a piece of the pie that hasn’t been developed as much but it’s developing rapidly. With US 59 and the Grand Parkway so close by, the property is making commutes a lot easier for home buyers.”

During a recent Cleveland City Council meeting, David Nemeth, vice president of McKinley Development Company, told council that they should expect to see an acceleration in home building and provided an update on the golf course development.

“The golf course is in the growing phase. It’s a very nice golf course. The opening will follow the building of the clubhouse. We are into budgeting and planning, getting some bids,” he said. “Then we will turn that over to the head office for funding.”

Councilwoman Carolyn McWaters told Nemeth that she recently drove through Grand Oaks Reserve and was impressed.

“It really looks nice out there. The homes are nice and it’s great to see people in them. You have done a good job out there,” she said.

For more information on Grand Oaks Reserve, go online to or call 936-703-5780. The McKinley Homebuilders’ sales office can be reached by calling 1-833-MCK-HOME. To take a tour of model homes, stop by the sales office, which is located inside the Grand Oaks Reserve community. Look for signs on the west side just after the entrance.

To reach First America or for more information, call 281-603-1473 or stop by the model home inside the community.

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Before creating Bluebonnet News in 2018, Vanesa Brashier was a community editor for the Houston Chronicle/Houston Community Newspapers. During part of her 12 years at the newspapers, she was assigned as the digital editor and managing editor for the Humble Observer, Kingwood Observer, East Montgomery County Observer and the Lake Houston Observer, and the editor of the Dayton News, Cleveland Advocate and Eastex Advocate. Over the years, she has earned more than two dozen writing awards, including Journalist of the Year.


  1. How much are their HOA fees? My guess is 50-85 a month. These homes are more expensive than most of Cleveland proper, but I get that they’ll bring in business from Conroe and Kingwood (even more growth!). These new homes are being counted on to help pay for the bonds via their property taxes. We also cant cant afford anymore property tax increases as our 3ish percent rate is at or near the highest of any county in the state, and the Appraisal District has continued to increase by over 10 thousand a year. Homes that were 80-100 thousand in 2010 are being taxed at a rate of 150+ now, and some homes on Circle Dr have a tax bill of 6000 a year if you look them up because of the 3ish percent rate. Im hoping we get some property tax decreases vecause of Grand Oaks or they decide to spin off Plum Grove its own school district to take some of the pressure off. Plum Grove is basically Tarkington size now, and they have their own nice school system. Might be ten or twenty years before that happens though.

    Anyway, hope that the walking trails will be open to the public as it is something the city lacks. In years past we used places like the Cleveland High School track, but even Coldspring has a walking trail behind its library, and Livingston has Pedigo Park. Golf course will be nice since the old country club shut down

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