Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Deal of the Week: Historic Cottage With Mississippi Views

Like the Monkees once sang, take the last train to Clarksville (Missouri) and we'll meet you at the station—and then stroll on over to this darling Gothic Revival cottage, at which point we'll arm wrestle you for the property title! Why? Because this entirely updated (new electrical, hvac, etc) 1900 square foot home, which sits on a half acre with views of the nearby Mississippi River, is on the market might wanna sit down for this...$129K. No, seriously. Built around 105 years ago and on the National Register of Historic Places, the pale blue gingerbread trimmed home features 12 foot high ceilings, hardwood floors, stained glass accents and some of the fanciest woodwork/molding imaginable (looove that blue color!). Located 90 minutes from St. Louis, the tiny city of Clarksville (population: 500)  has a slew of artist galleries and antique shops (if you're a potter, a glass blower or a furniture maker, you'll feel right at home), and is one of the largest winter migrating areas for bald eagles. We ran the numbers and look at it this way: with a 30 year mortgage, taxes and insurance, this will cost you just under $600 a month. Seriously! Take a closer look HERE

Monday, October 17, 2016

Mid-Century Modern Monday: A-Town's Best Bargain?

Fun fact: Donald Glover, the writer/actor/creator of the great new FX series "Atlanta"—who was also the youngest writer (21) hired by Tina Fey for "30 Rock"—grew up 30 minutes northeast of A-Town in the small city of Stone Mountain (which explains all the references to "30 Rock" character Kenneth's hometown of Stone Mountain). Thus, we decided to go house shopping there and look what we found: a swingingly stylish 1956 MCM with 3 beds/2.5 baths, a nearly one acre lot on a shady cul-de-sac, and a ridiculously reasonable asking price of just $249.9K! For that, you get pretty much everything you could ever want, beginning with great curb appeal, a snazzy entrance complete with koi pond, glass walls, vaulted ceilings, gorgeous brick fireplace, built-ins, separate office/den, updated kitchen, master suite with a bath that opens to its own private patio, plus covered stone terrace and 2 car carport. Our very favorite thing might actually be located down the road but within strolling distance: a goat and miniature pony farm! Take a look at this awesome property HERE

Friday, October 14, 2016

Foreign Intrigue Friday: Lakeside in the Great White North

Just 90 minutes north of Montreal, Canada's magnificent Laurentian Mountains are a nature lover's nirvana: filled with evergreen forests, lakes and rolling hills, you can ski, snowshoe and ice fish to your heart's content all winter long, and swim, canoe and hike the rest of the year. Or, like, find a sweet spot in front of a roaring fire and/or an outdoor deck and kick back with a cocktail or three. This exquisite contemporary in this area gives you the freedom to do all of that and do it in—yeah, we're gonna go there—in sexy style. A good 80s house is a rare jewel, which is precisely what this 5 bed/3 bath home is with its vaulted, pale wood ceilings, stone floors, humongous fireplaces and walls of windows with dazzling views of not one but TWO lakes (lac Masson and lac du Nord)! Outside you'll find even more of those magnificent water views from the many decks and your very own dock, plus a tennis court, and there's even an indoor pool for winter months (or if you're too delicate for that refreshingly brisk Canadian lake H2O). We love the outdoors and all, but in all honesty, we'd just hole up in the master suite for the winter with a pile of books, an endless supply of hot toddys and enough logs to keep the fire going. Take a closer look at this dreamy property HERE

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Ringing Our Bells: Converted Church in the Berkshires

Maybe it's the fact that it's getting colder, or because the leaves are turning, or just because the damn presidential election has us feeling unsteady (and disgusted), but these days we find ourselves attracted to homes in small towns, surrounded by trees and with a feeling of history and warmth. The fact that this one just happens to be a former church and located in a historic village? Bonus points! Built in 1871 by a mill owner named Captain John Carroll for his workers, the now 3 bed/3 bath home has retained many of its original features—soaring ceilings, stained glass accents, random width floors, even the steeple with a bell that still rings—while incorporating modern features like the kitchen and baths. One of the five villages that make up the town of New Marlborough, Massachusetts, River Mill's general store, post office and library are all just a short stroll away, as are the banks of the scenic Konkapot River and the beauty of the surrounding Berkshire Mountains. Reasonably priced at $595K, this sprawling home, which sits on nearly 2 acres, would make a fine primary residence or even an extravagant weekend getaway, considering it's 2.5 hours from both Manhattan and Boston. Not to get all preachy, but if you believe in the higher power of good real estate, take a closer look HERE

Monday, October 10, 2016

Mid-Century Modern Monday: Hidden Among the Trees

The upscale, historic village of Franklin, Michigan—located 25 minutes northwest of Detroit—is the kind of place where Halloween is celebrated via the annual Franklinstein Frenzy, a day-long event that includes a costume parade, games, trick or treating and a pumpkin roll! (Mark your calendar for next Saturday, October 24th!) Resembling something out of a period movie, the downtown area is lined with buildings from the mid-1800s that now house restaurants, shops, yoga studios and juice bars. Just a stone's throw away, though, we found something slightly more modern: a bright and nifty 3 bed, 2 full-, 2 half bath cedar-shingled contemporary from 1965 tucked into a wooded 1.6 acre lot. On the market for $620K, the multi-level home has lots to admire, from its floating staircases and vaulted ceilings, to its blonde wood floors and humongous floor to ceiling windows. We especially heart the red lacquered accent wall in the eat in kitchen, the narrow living room fireplace, and the cozy screened in porch. If you move fast, you could be in by Christmas when the village turns into a wondrous winter wonderland, so take a closer look HERE

Friday, October 7, 2016

Foreign Intrigue Friday: Going Medieval in France

Break out the jousting lance and oil up your suit of armor: today's find is a fantastical stone stronghold in south-central France dating to the mid 13th century that's been resurrected and turned into a comfy 21st century residence. Perched on a grassy hill and surrounded by stone walls and stands of trees, the 3 story building's exteriors still look much the same as when Louis XI's personal physician lived here (in the 1400s), but once through the enchanting Gothic arched front door, the changes are immediately visible. Now a 3 bed/1.5 bath (though easily expandable), there's a library and lounge with humongous fireplace on the ground floor; the second floor's large, open space which holds a kitchen plus dining and lounge areas; the 3rd floor has 3 beds/1 bath and yet another living room. Wood beamed ceilings have been recreated throughout, there's a covered atrium, striking wood staircase, and a new skylight-dotted roof—hidden from the exterior—illuminates the home's central interiors. The location at the foot of the Cantal Mountains near Auvergne Volcano Nature Park mean you'll enjoy ah-may-zing views, and the quaint village of Paulhac is just down the road, with the larger town of Saint-Flour about 15 minutes away. And here's the best part: the asking price is...$384K. No, really. See more of this bargain HERE

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Romancing the Stone: Crushing on a Texas Tudor

A mere four miles north of San Antonio's city center, the leafy enclave of Olmos Park was developed by an oilman who bought the land from an Austrian count nearly 100 years ago. Median home prices here hover just under $640K, so at $449K asking, this handsome stone Tudor probably won't last long. To be fair, the price reflects the 1937 home's size (1600 square feet) and the fact that it could use some updating (the kitchen), but we still think it's an excellent price, considering its charm and potential. Highlights include excellent curb appeal, the great room's classic, beamed ceiling and fireplace, burnished wood floors, french doors throughout, bright office space and built-in brick planters (or were they originally water features?) in the yard. We hope that the new owner keeps some of the funky vintage features, namely the kitchen's built-in cabinetry and the fabulous ballet pink bathroom (the tile looks to be in excellent shape). With only 2 beds/2 baths, the size is admittedly on the compact side, but there's a bonus1 bath guest house (which we assume needs a full revamp)—perfect for post-collegiate offspring, in-laws or your own personal whatever (meditation room? recording studio? doll museum?). See the possibilities HERE

Monday, October 3, 2016

Mid-Century Modern Monday: Wowed in Westchester

History lesson in a nutshell: In the summer of 1781, General George Washington and his troops camped out in Dobbs Ferry, New York, before marching 400 miles to Virginia and turning the tide of the war with the Battle of Yorktown. Back then, it was a rural outpost, but cut to modern times and this pretty village, 21 miles north of midtown Manhattan and a 45 minute train ride via the Metro-North line, now has a vibrant downtown full of restaurants and shops, a plethora of green spaces (including part of 26 mile long Old Croton Aqueduct Historic Park) and excellent public and private schools. As this is Westchester County, it'll cost you, but when a home's this awesome, the $1.475 million asking price seems perfectly reasonable: built in 1965, the beautifully updated 5 bed/3.5 bath MCM sits on tree-ringed .6 acre lot with two Brazilian ipe decks, pool and year round Hudson River views. Interior highlights include the bright, open floor plan, white brick fireplace wall, dramatic vaulted ceilings, snazzy kitchen with limeston counters, 3 fireplaces and master with en suite and dressing room. We even love that one of the bathrooms wasn't revamped, and still has its original butter-colored porcelain fixtures. See all the loveliness for yourself HERE

Friday, September 30, 2016

Foreign Intrigue Friday: Former Olive Mill in Tuscan Town

Located equidistant (around 35 miles) to both Siena and the Tuscan coast, the small hilltop town of Montecastelli Pisano has the kind of charm we find impossible to resist: twisty cobbled streets and alleys, covered passages, vine-draped stone houses, a majestic medieval fortress tower and a castle (currently being restored) that dates back to 1202. And wouldn't you know, there's an incredible home for sale right in the middle of it all? This former olive mill, now a 3 bed/3 bath residence,  combines new features into vintage ones with stylish results. The ground floor's sleek contemporary kitchen melds effortlessly with vaulted plaster ceilings, large stone archways and original painted doors and shuttered windows; upstairs, the updated en suite baths display antique marble sinks and the bedrooms' newer terracotta tile floors compliment original barrel-vaulted and wood-beamed ceilings. The reasonably priced $390K home also has two fantastic bonuses: a .25 acre private garden with flowers, pergola and patio, and—hold on to your cantuccini—an indoor, grotto-like pool! If our lotto numbers hit this week, we'll be taking this one off the market, so take a closer look at it while you still can HERE

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Holy Literary Legacy: F. Scott Fitzgerald Slept (& Wrote) Here

This is the St. Paul MN house where a 22 year old F. Scott Fitzgerald—depressed because Zelda had broken up with him—spent the summer of 1919, typing out his first novel from the confines of a third floor bedroom. The book was "This Side of Paradise" and its quick publication and success the following year not only turned Fitzgerald into a literary wunderkind, but brought back his muse; he and Zelda were married that spring. A registered landmark that was built in 1889, the handsome 3 story stone row house, which was owned by the writer's parents, is located in the diverse, tree-strewn Summit-University neighborhood just west of downtown, within walking distance of restaurants and shops. Asking $625K, the updated 4 bed/4 bath 3500 square foot home has splendid original features—hardwood floors, high ceilings, arched doorways, rich moldings, fireplaces, original doors, transom windows, butler's pantry—along with a coveted 2 car garage and two outdoor decks. Whether you're a writer hoping for some of Fitzgerald's fairy dust, or just someone looking for a gorgeous vintage home in the city, you should take a closer look at this property HERE