House Hunting in Fort Worth With a Wealthy Californian

One sunny morning this spring, a Chevy Suburban pulled up to a sizable Mediterranean-style house in a gated community on the west side of Fort Worth. Inside the SUV, Ernie Tarut was recalling how the warm welcome he’d received at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, held in Arlington last December, had influenced his decision to move his Old Gringo Boots company from San Diego to Cowtown. “It was a great feeling that all these people were excited to have Old Gringo maybe coming here,” he said. “I was like, ‘Why do I want to stay in California? Here it seems like I’m already home.’”

So, just a few months after the rodeo, real estate agent Jamie Adams brought Tarut and his wife, Josy, to check out this two-story, 5,376-square-feet home listed for sale at $1.7 million. It was the couple’s second visit to the house in the Montserrat development, roughly a twenty-minute drive southwest of downtown Fort Worth. The Taruts both liked it—maybe even more than the ritzy penthouse condominium that they were also considering at the Montgomery Plaza building in the city’s West 7th district.