Our Stories: Real Estate Problems and Solutions

by Chuck Roper 5. September 2013 06:20



My buyers fell in love with a home which contained high radon levels.

During the inspection and environmental testing phase of their purchase, we received a radon test indicating radon levels of 37.4 pCi /L (picocuries per liter).

We thought it must be an error as the EPA has an action level of 4.0 pCi/L. Further research indicated that radon levels were unusually high in this particular area due to rock formations.

We asked the Seller to immediately install a radon mitigation system to reduce levels. Within days, the new mitigation system did its job and follow-up tests showed radon levels had gone from 37.4 pCi/ L to 0.6pCi/L, well below EPA standards.


Cindy Lee Gladney   I   314.503.4234


Our Stories

Our Stories: Real Estate Problems and Solutions

by Chuck Roper 21. August 2013 07:56



A filthy, dirty oven is discovered at the final walk-through.

Make sure all built-in kitchen appliances, especially the oven and the refrigerator, are thoroughly cleaned before the property goes on the market. Why, you ask?

First, potential buyers will be inspecting them during listing appointments. Their cleanliness will reflect on the condition and quality of your home. Second, once the home is sold and you are in the midst of a hectic move, it is easier to simply wipe them down if they have already been deep-cleaned.


Tricia Kolbrener I 314.504.5564


Our Stories

Susan Hurley: Agent of the Month

by Chuck Roper 15. August 2013 04:03


A very wise woman once wrote, "….each of us has a personal calling that’s as unique as a fingerprint…and that the best way to succeed is to discover what you love and then find a way to offer it to others in the form of service, working hard, and also allowing the energy of the universe to lead you."

We are unable to imagine a finer description of Janet McAfee Top Agent, Susan Hurley. Today, her successful real estate practice is a personal calling founded on her passion for helping clients achieve their goals. Against her heavy transaction levels and unbounded geographic service area, her superior service ethic is fueled by infinite energy. She is truly a rising star in our small galaxy of bright lights.

We invited Susan to sit down and talk with us about her success as a Realtor. Her insights and efficient observations reveal a great deal about her professionalism and her vision.

How do you stay on top of your profession?

Exploring fresh solutions and staying relevant are key, as each project is so different than the next. This includes surrounding myself not only with current information, but maintaining relationships that offer positive energy and optimize my network.

What personally drives your success?

The intrigue of a new challenge is irresistible, and once I have a vision of how I see that project coming full circle, I take great pride in all the steps involved to meet the expectations I set out to accomplish and eliminate mediocrity. The feeling at the end of the day knowing you have kept your best foot forward is a great one, and consistent preparation allows that.

How do you manage your priorities?

I do have a system for that...it is simple, just not easy... I use my best energy on the hardest task of the day... it takes a bit of discipline but once you do this, the rest of the day flows much smoother allowing me to be focus on being in charge of my day.... rather than my day being in charge of me!!

What do you do when you are not working?

At the top of my list: weekend getaways, anything outdoors, hanging out with my family, and trying new and unique restaurants.

To learn more about Susan and to see her fine listings, simply follow the link to her website: www.janetmcafee.com/susanhurley.


Top Agent Profiles

9847 Litzsinger Road: A Ladue News Distinctive Home Feature

by Chuck Roper 14. August 2013 07:26

When the Ladue News Magazine sought an example of the top one-percent of luxury home offerings in the Saint Louis market, they turned to the team of James Manion and Barbara Wulfing of Janet McAfee Real Estate. Their listing at 9847 Litzsinger Road in Ladue unites over 12,800 square feet of beautifully articulated luxury finishes with a commanding presence on a private 3.4 acre setting.

In a Distinctive Home feature article by Staff Writer Katherine Comfort-Mason, the glorious highlights of the residence and its impressive amenities follow:

A 5-bedroom, 10-bath home in Ladue is listed for $7,100,000.



A TREASURE TUCKED AWAY ON 3.4 secluded acres; this châteauesque home is both impressive and inviting. From the sweeping circular drive, step through heavy double-doors into the entrance hall, which features a grand staircase.

The parlor and two-story dining room each boasts a fireplace and chandelier, plus plenty of natural light. The kitchen, which has been photographed for several national publications, opens onto a breakfast banquette and a cozy hearth room. There also is a library lined with built-in bookcases, a wood paneled game room with a wet bar and a soundproof state-of-the-art home theater.

 Completing the first floor is a lavish master suite with his and-her bathrooms, separate closets and a sitting room. There are more bedrooms upstairs, plus comfortable living quarters for a guest or housekeeper. Beautiful terraces, a pavilion and swimming pool extend luxury living to the outdoors.

For more impressive details, simply follow the link below:



St. Louis Luxury Homes

Saint Charles Summer 2013 Market Report

by Chuck Roper 9. August 2013 08:39


Saint Charles residential housing was robust for the first two quarters of 2013
. Our research suggests the real estate market continues to grow. The overall trend is encouraging and represents a continuation from the four quarters of growth in 2012. It’s all in our Summer 2013 Market Report for the Saint Charles Community. A link is furnished below.

The report provides a comprehensive analysis of residential housing activity including price levels for the Saint Charles community and is segmented by property type and school district.

The continued improvement in activity levels, modest price level increases and the relatively low inventory levels all contribute to our favorable outlook for St. Charles housing for the balance of 2013.




Our Stories: Real Estate Problems and Solutions

by Chuck Roper 6. August 2013 11:17

Disputes between buyers and sellers regarding which fixtures the sellers can remove.

The sale contract lists the items and fixtures that are automatically included with the sale. Sellers should review this list prior to bringing the house on the market and remove items they would like to move to their new home. While excluding them from contract is an option, a safer decision is to replace the items with similar fixtures before you list your home and photograph the interiors.

Megan Holekamp:


733 Middle Polo Drive: A Ladue News Distinctive Home

by Chuck Roper 2. August 2013 06:54


When Ladue News Magazine wanted examples of luxury Clayton homes with distinct architectural elements, they turned to Kathy Bussmann and Jody Fancher of Janet McAfee Real Estate. Kathy and Jody’s listing at 733 Middle Polo Drive in Clayton is an impressive example of an aesthetically appealing Tudor style home with updates and finishes for today’s luxury living. In a full page feature article by Staff Writer Katherine Comfort-Mason, the compelling aspects of the home follow:

A 5-bedroom, 6-bath home in Clayton is listed for $1.27 million.



A LUSH LAWN AND FOUNTAIN give this 5,000-square-foot Tudor-style home impressive curb appeal. Inside, you’ll find carefully crafted details like oak moldings, built-in bookcases, cathedral ceilings, stained glass windows, hardwood and terrazzo floors and multiple fireplaces. The modern kitchen features custom cabinetry, top-of-the-line appliances, granite countertops and a large breakfast room that opens onto a private front patio.

On the second floor, the master suite includes a large walk-in closet and updated bath that blends seamlessly with the home’s original style. A bedroom, bath and bonus room make the third floor a perfect guest apartment.


To see sunning color images and more property detail, go to:



St. Louis Luxury Homes

Our Stories: Real Estate Problems and Solutions

by Chuck Roper 1. August 2013 09:23

Our client was a bachelor living in a great house that needed some updating and TLC.

The client wished to sell his home "as-is." The home languished on the market for seven months without selling. After getting married, he took the house off the market to do some updating. With our guidance on resources, the client commissioned the painting of the exterior of the home and all the interior rooms. They installed new doors, removed carpeting, refinished hardwood floors and added accent millwork. The kitchen was updated with new granite counters and new stainless appliances. Additionally, the old tile floor was replaced and some of the cabinets were removed to create a dining nook. The remaining cabinets were painted in a fresh neutral color. Bathrooms were also updated with bead board wainscoting, new vanities and granite tops. The final key step in the turnaround was to hire a trusted stager to give the home a young fresh décor.

The home returned to the market and sold the first week.


Linda Benoist 314.504.5495


Our Stories

Christy Thompson: Agent of the Month

by Chuck Roper 25. July 2013 05:38



It's not a secret that Top Agent Christy Thompson artfully combines her legal training with her passion for real estate to successfully advocate for her clients. As a Top Agent at Janet McAfee Real Estate for the past five years, and a six-time winner of the prestigious Five-Star Customer Satisfaction Award sponsored by St. Louis Magazine, Christy offers a verifiable track record of success. She truly represents the next generation of the firm’s real estate professionals.

Christy took time out of her busy schedule to talk with us about the "secrets" of her success both in real estate and her personal life. Her insights and observations reveal a great deal about her professionalism and discipline, the hallmarks of real estate success.

How do you stay on top of your profession?

Market knowledge is the number one most important way to stay at the top. Happily, our market is showing improvement each month, and I do my homework to keep up to date with recent sales, list-to-sale percentages and statistics pertaining to various market segments. Knowledge of national and local housing trends, credit changes as well as legal and tax issues can be very important to clients.

What personally drives your success?

Quite simply, I’m in a business I love. I enjoy meeting clients each day and helping to solve their problems-whether it’s selling the house they loved or finding the perfect new property. I love touring our market and seeing the changes taking place around us. And most importantly, I love the "art of the deal." Negotiating the best possible position for my clients allows me to use my legal background and my market knowledge to bring everyone to the closing table.

How do you manage your priorities?

Our business takes some serious organizational skills. Here again, my legal training helps me focus on the topic at hand while still actively representing my other clients. I am a hands-on agent and it’s important to me that my clients have my undivided effort and attention. They don’t get passed along to a member of "the team." I am also a list person. I am able to identify the key tasks I need to complete daily, weekly and monthly. It also helps that I am one of those people who doesn’t require a lot of sleep!

What do you do when you are not working? Any surprises?

My favorite times are spent with my husband and son. We often spend time in and around St. Louis, playing tennis or biking. My four-legged family members (my horse and two dogs) help me to stop and enjoy the world around me every day. You may be surprised to know that in my spare time I am also a practicing real estate attorney. I have been negotiating contracts daily for the past twenty-one years.

To learn more about Christy and to see her fine listings, click on the following link:




38 Brentmoor Park: A Town & Style Featured Home

by Chuck Roper 19. July 2013 09:33

When Town & Style Magazine went searching for examples of current luxury home opportunities, they turned to Ann Carter and Marcy Byrne of Janet McAfee Real Estate. Ann and Marcy’s listing at 38 Brentmoor Park in Clayton is an impressive example of the romantic charm inherent in a Tudor style home with updates and finishes for today’s luxury living.  In a two page feature article by Staff Writer Stephanie Zeilenga, the compelling highlights of the home follow:|


 by stephanie zeilenga

list price | $2,295,000 

listing agents | ann carter and marcy byrne of janet mcafee real estate

When Ryan Bogan received a work transfer from San Diego to St. Louis, he and his wife Jill already knew they liked the Clayton area, but they probably weren’t expecting to see, fall in love with, and buy their home at 38 Brentmoor Park all in one weekend.

It’s no wonder they did. The 7,744 square-foot, five-bedroom English Tudor-style home was built in 1924 and has maintained its architectural and aesthetic integrity. The family hunted down original photos of the house when it was built and to help them in some restoration work. Besides bringing back the terrazzo flooring, they also restored the wood paneling in the living room to match the original photos. "We really tried to do whatever we could to maintain the integrity of the home and restore the old features," says Bogan.

The home has a stunning entryway with a wood-beamed ceiling, marble flooring and a sweeping staircase. To the right of the entry is a living room with original wood paneling, a white ceiling with decorative relief work, and a massive decorative limestone fireplace flanked by large arched windows looking out onto the lush yard.

The cozy-yet-grand basement lounge is Bogan’s favorite space in the house. "We’ve used the area for special occasions, for dinner or just to talk in front of the fireplace," he says. "The room has a community aura and it makes you feel like it’s circa 200 years ago." Decorated with a Tudor aesthetic, this room has high ceilings accented with dark wood beams and a second fireplace.

A house this grand needs the right setting, which is provided by its 1.38-acre grounds. "It has almost every type of flora and fauna, such as azaleas and dogwoods," says Bogan. The grounds feature a koi pond and a pool surrounded by a brick deck. There is also a brick patio and a pagoda nestled in the foliage.

With downtown Clayton less than a mile away, Bogan and his wife enjoyed walking to their favorite area restaurants. But as much as they love the home and surrounding area, Bogan says the family-oriented community is what they will really miss when they return to San Diego. "The community has almost this Leave It to Beaver feel, where the kids can go out to play and it’s very safe, that’s what we’ll miss the most," he says.

For more property details, go to




St. Louis Luxury Homes


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