Articles Tagged "Kirkwood MO"

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Area Information | 31 Posts
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Home Improvement | 12 Posts
Sell a Home | 2 Posts
August
15

Sunrise Hikes in the St. Louis Area

St Louis HikesHere in the St. Louis area, we're lucky to have some truly amazing hiking trails right in our backyard. Of course, summer in St. Louis can get a little toasty, which is why this is a great time of year to hit the trail bright and early!

After all, there may be no better way to start your day than with a brisk sunrise hike. Our real estate agents are excited to share some of their favorite early morning hiking trails in the St. Louis area.

  • Dual Recreation Path, Forest Park - 5595 Grand Dr, St. Louis, MO 63112
    Spanning more than 1,300 acres, Forest Park is the largest park in St. Louis and one of the largest urban parks in the United States. Within its boundaries are some amazing hiking opportunities, foremost of which is the Dual Recreation Path, which forms a 6-mile loop around the park. Located just minutes from many St. Louis homes for sale, this trail is also known as the "Wheels and Heels Path" because it is essentially two paths side by side, one for bikes and roller blades and the other for walking and jogging. 

  • Fort Belle Fontaine Loop Trail - 13002 Bellefontaine Rd, St. Louis, MO 63138
    Overlooking the Missouri River north of St. Louis, Fort Bella Fontaine is a historic U.S. military base, originally built in 1805 when Missouri was the farthest edge of the Western frontier. Today, the fort is the centerpiece of Fort Bella Fontaine County Park, and a 3-mile hiking trail surrounds it. This loop hike, known as the Bella Fontaine Loop, offers views of the river and the fort itself, as well as a pleasant trek through the surrounding forest. 

  • Cliff Cave County Park Loop - 806 Cliff Cave Rd, St. Louis, MO 63129
    Known for the natural cave entrance preserved within its boundaries, Cliff Cave County Park is also a great hiking destination with spectacular views of the Mississippi River. The park includes roughly 5 miles of trails which can be hiked individually or as a loop. These trails also connect to the Mississippi River Greenway, which extends a further 7 miles along the river. Visitors are not permitted to enter the cave—it's gated to protect the endangered Indiana bats that reside inside—but the entrance can be viewed from the trail.

  • Grant's Trail - 601 S Holmes Ave, Kirkwood, MO 63122
    The 10-mile Grant's Trail is a great urban hiking option in the heart of St. Louis. Open to bikes as well as foot traffic, this trail is part of a "rails to trails" project and mostly follows the path of a former railroad line. The scenery around the trail ranges from residential neighborhoods and urban areas to stretches of park that feel far from city life. Several trailheads provide access and parking, including one at the northern end of the trail, just north of I-44 on Holmes Ave. 

  • Dennis Schick Trail, Jefferson Barracks Park - 345 North Rd W, St. Louis, MO 63125
    Jefferson Barracks Park contains the military outpost for which it is named, as well as the Missouri Civil War Museum. Visiting these historic sites makes for a great day of sightseeing, and the park also offers the 2.7-mile Dennis Schick Trail, which forms a figure-eight-style loop through rolling woodlands. This trail also connects to the Mississippi River Greenway, which is a great option for an extended hike. 

  • Katy Trail - 222 S. Riverside Dr., St. Charles, MO 63301
    Spanning over 240 miles, you can spend an entire day exploring what the Katy Trail has to offer. There are 26 different trailheads for you to start your morning hiking adventure. One of these access points is conveniently close to our St. Charles homes for sale. Just like other trails on this list, this is another railway-turned hiking trail so residents and visitors can learn about the history of the area while enjoying beautiful scenery. 

Contact us today to learn more about life in St Louis! 

October
18

Fall 2021 Interior Design Trends

Fall Interior Design

Fall is here, and so is a new wave of interior design trends. According to our real estate agents, this season's design ethos is all about comfort and self-expression. Let's delve into 5 of the most popular interior design trends this fall, how we've seen them applied in many of our St. Louis homes for sale, and how you can bring these ideas into your home. 

  1. Earth Tones
    Fall's stunning orange and brown color palette is providing inspiration for some homeowners in 2021. In addition to rich chocolates and muted apricots, many choose to add soothing blues and verdant greens to their homes. These hues evoke the natural world. 

    Because many of these colors are very close to neutrals, they are very easy to incorporate into almost any room. Repainting the walls is the most obvious way to do this, but it isn't the only way. A small touch like a mist-colored vase or some mossy green curtains can go a long way. 

  2. Soft, Cozy Fabrics and Textures 
    In stressful times, people often try to make their homes as comfortable and welcoming as possible. This might be why homeowners are currently so eager to add soft textures to their living rooms, bedrooms, offices, and other living spaces. At the moment, most use discreet, removable items like blankets and rugs for this purpose instead of permanent fixtures like carpeting or upholstery.  

    It's easy to bring this trend into your home with a single shopping trip. Look for throw blankets and decorative pillows, especially ones made of materials like wool, flannel, and sherpa. 

  3. Dividers 
    In the past, homeowners often wanted to open up every space as much as possible. This is no longer the prevailing trend. Instead, many people are adding room dividers (screens, shelves, and other partitions) to their homes to break up those open spaces and create more intimate areas without having to actually build new walls.  

    If this idea appeals to you, experiment with different types of room dividers. An elegant folding screen, sturdy bookshelf, or long silky curtain can break up those large rooms and add some additional function or decoration to the space, depending on what you prefer. 

  4. Natural Finishes and Other Elements 
    Homeowners are also taking cues from nature when adding furniture and fixtures to their space. Faux stone finishes, light natural woods, and other rustic accents are becoming increasingly common this season, especially in conjunction with nature-inspired color schemes. Together, these two design choices amplify each other and create an even more sense of soothing respite within the home. 

    Countertops, mantlepieces, coffee tables, and other focal points are great places to incorporate natural elements into your own home. 

  5. Vintage Furniture and Housewares 
    Finally, fall 2021 has also brought an increased interest in vintage furniture and homeware pieces. After spending so much time in their homes over the last year and a half, homeowners see their interior spaces as an extension of themselves. This has led to an interest in personalizing spaces with art, furniture, or knickknacks from the past, especially if these items are family heirlooms. 

    These days, it's easy to find as many charming old items as your heart desires – if you can't find exactly what you want at local thrift stores and garage sales, hop online and see what's listed on sites like eBay and Craigslist. 

No matter how you choose to decorate the inside of your home, the most important thing is that you feel happy and at ease there. If you're in the market for a new home, contact us today. 

August
2

How to Add More Natural Light To Your Home

Natural Light Tips

A healthy dose of natural light is an easy way to help any space look its best. Natural light illuminates the room, making it look larger and more inviting; high levels of natural light also boost your body's production of serotonin, one of the chemicals associated with happiness and better mood levels.

Our real estate agents suggest exploring options to increase the natural light in your home before you put your home on the market. Here are a few ways to boost your property's natural light. 

  1. Choose Colors That Reflect Light
    When choosing paint colors for your home, stick with light hues that will reflect the light that enters the room. Darker hues absorb light, making the room feel smaller and more compact. If you're dealing with a room that you want to leave a darker color, try painting the ceiling, doors, and baseboards in a light color to lighten the room's look. 
  1. Add More Mirrors
    Mirrors are an excellent alternative for sleek wall decor and for maximizing a room's natural light. For the best results, position the mirror on a wall across from a window. It will reflect the sunlight the enters the room, instantly increasing the size of the space and enhancing its appearance. The same concept also applies to shiny or reflective pieces of home decor. If you already have a mirror in a room or prefer to consider other options, add decorative pieces crafted from shiny metals or with metallic finishes. These additions instantly brighten the atmosphere in the room. 
  1. Reconsider Your Furniture
    Instead of choosing furnishings crafted from dark wood tones and materials, opt for lighter tones. These light colors are another way to reflect the light already in the room. If you're craving a darker alternative, one solution is to use your throw pillows and decorative blankets to decorate in patterns or colors that aren't as effective at reflecting light. Or make sure that the largest pieces of furniture are in lighter hues.
  1. Install Larger Windows
    If you're willing to explore more drastic alternatives, install larger windows or new doors in the room. Saint Louis homes for sale that have new, energy-efficient windows are also appealing to potential homebuyers. The presence of more windows is a fantastic way to permanently increase the natural light in your home. Or, if you simply want to replace a window, look for a design with lots of exposed glass. Bay windows and bow windows are both excellent possibilities. 
  1. Wash Your Windows
    Even a property that's filled with windows will have insufficient amounts of natural light if the windows are dirty. Washing the interior and exterior of your windows is a simple way to make sure that dirt and grime aren't preventing outside light from penetrating your home. 

Interested in a property with more windows or even a sunroom? Contact us to start your search!

July
5

5 Tips for Selecting a Pet Sitting Service

Pet Sitting St. LouisAs we return to the workplace and travel becomes more frequent, many of us will be faced with the dilemma of pet care. If you are considering one of our St. Louis homes for sale, you are probably looking at a new community. You might not know your neighbors well enough to ask them to look after your dog. A kennel may work once in a while, and pet daycare could be an option. But our real estate agents suggest you consider another solution: a pet sitter who can come to your home. But where do you begin? These simple tips can get you started:

  1. Use Reputable Resources
    Some of the trade associations that can help you initiate your search are The National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS), Pet Sitters International, and Fetch! Pet Care. Each offers a locator listing professionals in your area. Once you have located sitters you want to interview, check their references and reviews. When reviewing comments, make sure there is a "verified stay" indicator to ensure they were written by actual customers.

  2. Select Bonded and Insured Sitters
    These designations don't just mean that you are protected in case of loss. They mean that the sitter has invested in a layer of trust between them and their customers, assuring quality and the integrity of the person entering your home when you are not present. Consider also a criminal background check and proof of sufficient training to perform services well. 

  3. Arrange for Introductions
    It's important that you feel confident in the person that will be providing care. You'll want to watch the sitter interact with your pet. Dogs and cats are automatically drawn to some people and are equally repelled by others. You'll want to make sure that your pets are comfortable with the sitter and do not exhibit fear or nervousness around them. Make sure you allow time for them to meet and greet each other appropriately so that the sitter has the opportunity to comfort the pet. If your pet is not frequently socialized, this could take a little time for them to develop a rapport. 

  4. Thoroughly Discuss Expectations
    Let the sitter know what services you expect and with what frequency. If you expect the pet to be walked, brushed, taken to dog parks or other activities or services, be sure to let the sitter know and obtain a formal agreement. It's important that they can commit the time and energy to meet your expectations. Include start and end times for each session. If there are activities you don't want them to do, be clear in your instructions. Make sure the sitter is aware of any dietary restrictions such as treats versus no treats or specific brands that should be avoided. 

  5. Plan for Emergencies
    Prominently display contact information for you, emergency veterinary services, pet insurance information, and a secondary contact. Maintain a medical history for the pet in case the sitter must seek vet care in your absence. Make sure that you are able to reach the sitter via phone or email every day you are away. Agree upon a backup plan for any emergency that could arise, including a substitute sitter in case the regular sitter is unable to fulfill the agreement. 

        If a new neighborhood is in your future, contact us. Our real estate professionals will be happy to help you find the perfect home for you and your family, including the furry members.  

        May
        17

        Top Issues a Home Inspection Might Detect

        Home Inspection Tips

        When purchasing a home, ordering a home inspection is an essential item to add to your to-do list. Our real estate agents know that a home inspection is vital for revealing major and minor issues with a home. While a home inspection will cost you, detecting issues now can help you save money in the long run and give you peace of mind about the property you are buying. Here are some home issues detected by a home inspection. 

        1. Problems with the Grading
          If the grading of the home's lot isn't scaled correctly, this can cause water to flow towards your home. Your foundation and crawlspace may have excessive levels of moisture; this can cause the frame of your home to rot or lead to the formation of mold. The placement of the windows and doors can also shift, eventually causing the home to appear uneven. 
        1. Issues with the Roof
          A home's roof is a common source of issues during a home inspection. Since the roof covers such a large surface area, it's easy for a shingle or two to be damaged during a storm. This can allow water to seep in and damage the home's underlayment or ceiling. Or, the roof itself may be nearing the end of its lifespan. Your home inspector will also examine the components around the roof, like the gutters. It's common for gutters to be clogged and require cleaning. Or, a downspout might not be long enough to properly re-direct water away from your home. 
        1. Trouble with the Windows
          Many home inspections reveal problems in and around the windows. If the windows are older, the problem may be that they aren't very energy efficient. Or, the windows can have cracks around them that need to be sealed. Problems with the windows can raise the home's heating and cooling costs and impact the air quality. St. Louis homes for sale with new, energy-efficient windows will have lower energy bills than those with older components. 
        1. Complications with the Plumbing
          During the inspection, your inspector will run the faucets and examine the pipes for signs of a leak. They'll also see that the drains are draining correctly. A home's plumbing system is fairly comprehensive, making plumbing issues extremely prevalent. 
        1. Defects in the Home's Exterior
          A home's exterior is another common source of issues detected in a home inspection. Wood homes must be closely examined for signs of rot and mildew. Vinyl siding homes may have sections that are damaged and require replacement. Stucco must be correctly installed, or it will present an opportunity for moisture to enter the home. 
        1. Unauthorized Additions
          Many cities require a permit for home additions and certain renovations. These projects must also be completed according to the local building code, or the home will potentially have illegal modifications. Fixing illegal improvements is expensive and time-consuming. An inspector will look for signs of shoddy work and discrepancies among the home's construction. 

        Are you ready to start shopping for your next home? Contact us today to get started!

        January
        4

        Home Improvement Projects to Work on This Winter

        Home Improvement Projects

        While the cold winter months are ideal for cozying up on the couch, sometimes it feels good to be productive. A little home maintenance will also ensure your home looks its best if you list it among the St. Louis market and surrounding area. Whether your home is in St. Louis County, Franklin County, or even further north in St. Charles County, our agents encourage you to work on these home improvement projects this winter. 

        1. Declutter and Organize
          Winter is a perfect time to declutter and organize your belongings. You likely have some new holiday gifts that you need to make room for, and there's no better way to start the New Year than with an organized space.

          You can either tackle one room at a time, or you may declutter categories of stuff. For example, you might declutter all the clothing in your home or all your paperwork and mementos. Get rid of anything you no longer use, that you have too much, or that you haven't used in more than a year (aside from seasonal items).

          Once you know what you're left with, you can organize your belongings with containers, shelves, rods, and hooks. Our real estate agents know that a well-organized home also looks larger and more appealing to potential buyers. 
        1. Replace Old Hardware
          Old hardware, like your door hinges, cabinet knobs, doorknobs, and door levels, can quickly make your space look dated. Give your home an instant facelift by replacing these items. You can replace most old hardware with a screwdriver, drill, screws, and wood putty. 
        1. Service Your Ceiling Fans
          Did you know that you need to change the direction of your ceiling fans during the winter months? When the weather is cold, you want your ceiling fans to operate in a clockwise direction, so it pushes warm air down. You can adjust your ceiling fan's direction by using the direction switch on your fan's motor housing.

          While you're changing your fans' directions, give them a thorough dusting. Dust the fan blades with a microfiber cloth or duster that will prevent the dust from scattering. Wipe down the fan pulls with a damp cloth. 
        1. Repair Any Wall Blemishes and Touch Up Your Paint
          If you've got some areas with scrapes or holes, winter is a fantastic time to patch these blemishes and touch up the paint. You'll be spending a lot of time indoors, and you want your home to look as inviting as possible.

          You can fix most small wall defects with a layer or two of spackling compound. Once it dries, sand the area smooth and add a fresh coat of paint.
        1. Change the Batteries in Your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
          Keep your family safe by changing the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Once the units have fresh batteries, test them to make sure they're working properly. If necessary, install additional detectors in your home.

          You should have a smoke detector in each bedroom, in the hall outside every sleeping area, and on each level of your home. There should be a carbon monoxide detector on each level of your home and in your garage. 

        Ready to explore new properties for your family? Contact us today!

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