That’s usually one of the first questions that comes up when discussing the home buying process. In response to that I hear, “I/We want to live within walking distance of a MetroLink stop.”
Here’s a quick survey of homes under $200,000 within a one-mile radius of a MetroLink stop. There are a lot more great homes available, but to get a sampling of what is out there I pulled a few examples:
1302 S. 10th is listed at $165,000 has 3 bedrooms and 2.5 baths.
6560 Mardel is listed at $174,900 has 3 bedrooms and 2 baths.
702 Atalanta in Webster Groves is listed at $184,500. It has 3 bedrooms and 1.5 baths.
6612 Winnebago is listed at $185,000 and has 4 bedrooms and 2 full baths.
When: Wednesday June 3, 2009
Where: South Grand, St. Louis, Missouri
What: Progressive Dinner Event
The taste of South Grand is June 3, 2009. For $26 ($28 the day of the event) you can sample appetizers, entrees, dessert and drinks from many South Grand restaurants including Absolutli Goosed Martini Bar, Basil Spice Thai Cuisine, Café Mochi, Café Natasha Kabob International, City Diner, Emack and Bolio, Gelateria Del Leone, King and I Restaurant, Lemon Grass, Mangia Italiano, Mekong Restaurant, MoKaBe’s Coffeehouse, Parkside Lounge, Petra Café Hookah Lounge, Sameem Afghan Restaurant, Sekisui, The Vine, Urban, and Wei Hong BBQ and Bakery.
Interesting clip form Marketplace today about young families reconsidering a move to the suburbs to stay in the city. In this audio clip, it talks about owning in the suburbs vs. renting in the city. This may make more sense in a city like Chicago where owning a home in the city may be harder to afford for many people, but in St. Louis homes are less expensive.
As more middle-class families choose to stay, new models arise. BRUEGMANN: The experimentation is really vigorous. We have all kinds of new options in charter schools, in magnet schools, in parochial schools, so that there’s no longer this feeling of hopelessness. Now, at least, you have a lot of choices on what you can do.
But even those choices can be a tough sell for parents who mostly grew up in the suburbs and in small towns.
Here’s a new take on “What Can I Afford for $200,000?” In this post I used the MLS to view all the inventory in Tower Grove South between $100,000-300,000 and picked what I thought was the best house in each price range. I looked for properties in $25,000 increments. “Best” is a relative term and in each price range, it means something different. At the most basic level, I was looking for the nicest place, that was move in ready. In my estimation, the house did not have to meet specific criteria, instead I evaluated it next to its competition and chose what I thought would be the most solid house, one that would cause its potential new owners the least amount of worry.
$100-125K 4106 Fairview listed at $116,500 has 2 beds and 1 bath. In this price range there are 5 total active listings in the outlined area. Out of the five, Fairview seems to be the most solid. It has been well-maintained, has newer vinyl windows, beautiful wood floors and a very livable layout. The kitchen has newer appliances but the cabinets seems a little dated. But for 116,5, I don’t think you can beat it. Additionally there’s a little bit of extra space in the basement, a landscaped backyard and off-street parking. Runner up, just for curb appeal was 4252 Conecticut. It’s nicely done, but being a one bedroom puts it at disadvantage. The kitchen is cute and the closet in the bedroom is amazing.
$125-150K 4119 Parker Ave, is priced at $130,000 and has 2 beds/1 bath. It’s a cute little bungalow with a pitched roof. It has wood floors and some stained glass. Seems like it retains a little more charm. The kitchen has been updated as well as some of the bathroom fixtures. The sunroom adds a lot of additional space and some of the systems have been updated including HVAC, electric panel and water heater. There were only four total listings in this price range. 4048 Winnebago had much better curb appeal but didn’t really look like you could move right in. The other two were a lot larger but needed a good amount of work to be livable.
$150-175K 3921 Humphrey is listed at $169,500. It has 3 bedrooms and only 1 bath.The floors in the living room and dining room are gorgeous. The kitchen has been updated but is a little small. The only bathroom is on the second floor which means that if you have people over, they have to go upstairs. It’s nice though. It was completely renovated and has solid surface Swanstone shower surround and all new fixtures. Two of the bedrooms are good size, the third would make a great office. The only other option in this price range is at 3938 Hartford. Supposedly it is move-in ready but with no interior pictures it’s difficult to tell. Regardless Humphrey has much better curb appeal and with the similar square footage and the same number of beds and baths, Humphrey is the better choice, especially since it has a lower price.
$175-200K 3964 Wyoming is on the higher end, but is completely “buttoned up” and ready to move in. It is listed at $199,900 and has 3 bedrooms and 1 bath. Every room has been attended to and there is nothing left for the new owners to do. The new Brazilian cherry floors make the space feel elegant. The kitchen has been updated, has tons of cabinets and is large enough for a table. It has newer windows. There’s a manageable amount of space. All of bedrooms are actual bedrooms. And it has a cute backyard with a 2 car garage. The runner up in this range is 3731 Hartford. The block alone is worth the price of 189K but the interior just doesn’t compare. Hartford, due to location, space and historic quality has the potential of being in a much higher price range. But it would need at least one more bathroom and some elegant finish work.
$200-225K 3828 Fairview is listed at $219,900 and has 3 bedrooms and 2.5 baths. If it were in Tower Grove Heights proper, I think this would be much higher. Overall it has great curb appeal. A solid two story brick home. The finish work here is great. The kitchen is updated and well planned. There’s a center island with drawers. The floor plan is open and has a family room off the kitchen. There’s second floor laundry, speaker’s piped throughout and a one car garage.
Sneaking in at $249,900 3826 Juniata is the best home for the money in this price range. Two and half stories, 4 bedrooms and 1.5 baths this home seems to be what everyone is after. Great first floor for entertaining. Second floor has all the bedrooms and private space you could ask for and the third floor is gorgeous with refinished pine floors. Love the front porch!
$250-275K 3734 Hartford is the jewel of Tower Grove South. In this price range there are five listings. 3734 falls right in the middle of the price range at $268,500. This home is one of the largest on the block and has a very grand feel. The front entry is magnificent and most of the woodwork is unpainted. There are four bedrooms, an informal family room, an office and two full baths. The kitchen has open shelving and could use some updating, but it has a very workable layout and great farmhouse feel. It has lots of original charm and is move-in ready. Out back there is garage and the oversized lot even has a private basketball court. The yard is blooming, literally, and it’s only one block from the park and one block west of grand. COMING SOON!
This Saturday is the Old North Saint Louis House Tour. If you have not been to Old North or just have not been to Old North in awhile you should definitely come on up and check it out. This year there will be 10 historic homes on the tour. Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 the day of and include a free ice-cream from Crown Candy Kitchen. Much has been going on in Old North since last year’s tour.
Old North was featured on the NRDC website in a write-up by Kaid Benfeild where he called it “one of the country’s best revitalization stories” in its “thoughtful, inclusive, diverse, grasrootsy sort of way”. The April issue of St. Louis Magazine named Old North one of the best places to live in the city and this little urban village also got a spot on KETC, Living St. Louis. See the clip here.
Construction on Crown Square and the 14th Street Mall has been moving forward steadily. This piece from KMOV says that five business have committed to the Square. Crown Village Gallery is almost complete and the new coffee shop on 14th at the Urban Studio should be opening soon.
Sounds like a great place, yes? 35 million dollar retail development, local farmer’s market, arch view, coffee, ice-cream, art gallery and neighborhood gardens and educated and active neighbors. Well, you can live here too!
1412 Hebert is on the market and the residents, reluctant to move, indeed must sell. The home has 3 bedrooms and 2 full baths, a massive yard and yes, an arch view. It’s for sale and open this Saturday from 10AM-4PM!
Many of you have probably heard something about the tax credits for first time home buyers as part of The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. This site does an excellent job explaining the details of this and who is eligible.
One point of clarification before you read on: while this is indeed a great incentive, it is not a check you get once you close on the house. I’ve seen and heard ads from some agents enticing potential clients with some borderline misleading tactics regarding this.
This is something worth looking into if you’re on the fence about buying, and definitely something you need to look into if you did in fact buy your first home in 2009. Don’t let the negative news coverage discourage your efforts to own a home. I really do believe it is still the Golden Age for First Time Buyers!
It’s proving to be a pretty exciting and jam-packed spring so far. First of all, I now have a new site and blog! I wanted to simplify the content overall and it’s now a bit easier for me to update the site. My old site had been up almost as long as I have been a Realtor, so it’s time for a change. Special thanks to Geoff who spent a Saturday afternoon taking pictures for the site… and let me use his front porch for the set. Up next, look for some local advertising as well as some updates to the individual property pages, which I set up for every new listing.
Speaking of which, I have many new listings I’m pretty excited about. They’re all in awesome locations and each one has something great and unique about them. See my listings page for more information.
And of course, pardon the dust while there’s some clean up and tweaking happening to the site in the coming week or so.
Dawn Griffin Real Estate Blog
I’m an experienced Saint Louis Realtor specializing in St. Louis City as well as neighborhoods like Webster Groves, Maplewood, Clayton, University City and Ladue. With an undergraduate degree in Education and Master's in Urban Planning and Real Estate Development — I have the heart of teacher.
I have been immersed in Residential Real Estate, helping home buyers and sellers understand the market, manage the ambiguities and negotiate the best terms for themselves. I am consistently voted a 5-Star Agent by clients and featured as one of St. Louis' Best Agents in Saint Louis Magazine.