The Best Antique Shops in St. Louis, Missouri

St. Louis, Missouri, and its surrounding areas are full of culture made rich by deep history. Founded in 1764, more than a decade before the signing of The Declaration of Independence, this gateway to the west has much to offer, especially for collectors, antique aficionados, or people just looking to upcycle a piece from a time gone by.

So, what are you waiting for? Keep reading to learn which are the best places to go antiquing in this beautiful city. Who knows, maybe you’ll find something magical!

St. Louis Antique Mall

This 21,000-square-foot location carries over 140 different vendors, which means you’re more than likely to find something just for you. The owners, team members, and vendors are dedicated collectors and pickers, and they love to help anyone find the next “thing” to collect or the perfect item to furnish their home.

Located near the St. Louis Lamber Airport, the St. Louis Antique Mall is also extremely convenient for those traveling out of state.

  • Location: 9715 St. Charles Rock Rd., St. Louis, MO 63114
  • Phone: (314) 733-5285
  • Hours: Monday – Friday 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Saturday – Sunday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Frenchtown Records, Antiques & More

This unique antique and music store is located in the heart of the old Frenchtown neighborhood, which encompasses Soulard, Lafayette Square, and LaSalle Park. According to its owners David and Christine Boykin, Frenchtown Records, Antiques & More is “an eccentric, fanciful, and musical trip through time.”

Inspired by the owners’ love of music and antiques, you can find anything from records, CDs, tapes, and vintage audio equipment, to antiques like jewelry, vintage lighting, fine art, and more. Not to mention, it’s also home to the Chandelier Whisperer!

  • Location: 941 Park Ave., St. Louis, MO 63104
  • Phone: (314) 630-1163
  • Hours: Tuesday – Friday 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.; Saturday 10:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sunday 12 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Treasure Aisles Antique Mall

Since 1997, Treasure Aisles Antique Mall has been open seven days a week and has cemented itself as the St. Louis hub for antiquing. This 13,000-square-foot, handicap-accessible space boasts 128 different booths of any aesthetic you could think of.

You can expect to find antique furniture, jewelry, memorabilia, glassware, and more! Attracting customers from all over the region, this antique mecca even offers to deliver to your location.

  • Location: 2317 S Big Bend Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63143
  • Phone: (314) 647-6875
  • Hours: Monday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

The Hill Antique Market

Opened in 2019, this new addition to the historic Italian neighborhood The Hill, The Hill Antique Market, has already expanded twice!

This warehouse turned antiquing gem hosts 75 seasoned vendors and artisans who carefully curate a unique vintage shopping experience. You can find anything here, from rare antiques to contemporary art and everything between, all at varying prices.

The market’s ambiance is made unique by helpful staff, groovy music, and the on-site café, Oliva Café.

Passionate about building on old traditions while setting new standards, vendors refresh their merchandise daily so you can find something new every time you visit!

  • Location: 4923 Daggett Ave., St. Louis, MO 63110
  • Phone: (314) 961-7879
  • Hours: Open daily 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. (Wednesday open until 8 p.m.); Oliva Café – Tuesday – Saturday 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. and Wednesday nights 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.

The Green Shag Market

This classic antique mall carries vendors that specialize in all sorts of eras. Listed as Missouri’s “Best Thrift Store” by Apartment Therapy, The Green Shag Market has the area’s most fabulous vintage, boho, mid-century, and antique finds.

With over 60 booths, you’ll never get tired of looking through all the nooks and crannies this market offers.  This place is worth a weekend visit with plenty of space for furniture and collectible nick-nacks alike!

  • Location: 5733 Manchester Ave., St. Louis, MO 63110
  • Phone: (314) 646-8687
  • Hours: Friday – Sunday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

TFA The Furniture Antiques

If you’re looking for high-quality, mid-century-modern items, TFA The Furniture Antiques is for you! Probably St. Louis’ most diverse scene for mid-century-modern furniture, lighting, art, glassware, and more, you’ll feel like you’re taking a step into the past once you enter its doors.

You can find anything for almost every room in your home. That’s right; it’s a one-stop shop if you’re looking for dining room, bedroom, living room, kitchen, and even garage décor.

  • Location: 6514 Chippewa St., St. Louis, MO 63109
  • Phone: (314) 865-1552
  • Hours: Monday 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Friday – 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Sunday 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.

The Brass Alligator

Located in Demun, a historic business district in Clayton, MO, The Brass Alligator offers some of the finest antiques and décor in St. Louis. They carry every aesthetic, from mid-century-modern furniture to art deco lighting, vintage jewelry, and books dating back to the 1800s. They also boast an impressive vinyl collection.

You can submit your contact information on their website to join their list of customers who become the first to know about shop news, booth updates, and information about upcoming estate sales.

  • Location: 6403 Clayton Rd., St. Louis, MO 63117
  • Phone: (314) 300-6666
  • Hours: Friday – Monday 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Alton Flea Market

Located in Alton, Illinois, the Alton Flea Market is an enormous (20,000 square feet) historic location comprised of two warehouses, a front courtyard, an office building, a neat old basement, and a “safe room” all built in 1854.

The Alton Flea Market is one of the largest flea markets in the area, in-door, and hybrid, meaning it’s a combination of permanent booths and new fresh vendors every week.

Owned and run by the Holt family, this is a joyful and friendly place for family and friends to come and have fun.

  • Location: 711 Belle St., Alton, Illinois 62002
  • Phone: (618) 767-5125
  • Hours: Monday – Sunday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Pink Elephant Antique Mall

Established in 2005, this locally owned and operated business has been helping customers find and enjoy quality antiques, homemade candy, fudge, and home and farm décor for 17 years.

Owned by Davie and Bernice Hammond, the Pink Elephant Antique Mall supports local merchants and creates the perfect atmosphere for you and the family to spend the afternoon hunting for beautiful antiques, unique menu items, or just a good time.

  • Location: 908 Veterans Memorial Dr., Livingston, IL 62508
  • Phone: (618) 637-2366
  • Hours: Monday – Sunday 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Alton Exchange Mall

The Alton Exchange Mall boasts over 16,000 square feet of almost anything you can think of. Along with amazing antiques, you’ll also be able to find soap, candles, incense, jewelry, Amish jams, candy, comics, books, records, and more.

You’ll be in your own little (not so little) wonderland at this hot spot in historic Alton, Illinois.

  • Location: 2990 Homer Adams Parkway, Alton, Illinois 62002
  • Phone: (618) 463-1273
  • Hours: Monday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Sunday 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.

The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties

St. Louis and the surrounding areas are rich in history, culture, and incredible pieces of art, furniture, jewelry, and more that mark each unique time period since the city’s inception. Any antique enthusiast or collector will tell you that it takes persistence and an open mind to find pieces that work for you and your home.

Now that you have a list of some of the best antique markets St. Louis has to offer, you can start your journey of upcycling. Embrace the old and make it new. Repurpose some old side tables or reframe an old sketch you find.

The fact is, there are treasures out there just waiting for you to find them. Just like your next home!

Contact us today if you’re in the market for a new home! Visit our website to see what houses we’re currently selling and give us a call at (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298, and a team member can answer any questions you may have. We can’t wait to help you!

2022 Summer Garden Trends

The past couple of years has changed our lives in many ways. We spent many days staying inside, prompting many of us to undertake some DIY home renovations. But, once that was done, where else could we turn?

For many of us, the time we spent outside during the pandemic was our haven. It gave us vitamin D from the sunshine, fresh air, and wildlife that seemingly lived on unbothered even though the rest of the world seemed to be in shambles.

In many ways, our connection to nature gave us hope for better and brighter days. That’s why nearly 21 million newbie gardeners put on some gloves, picked up a shovel, and got to planting.

So, what plants and features should you be putting in your garden this summer? Keep reading to find out!

Bold, Bright Colors

The past two years have been drab and soul-sucking. That’s why, as people worldwide regain their confidence, gardens are getting pops of color! Instead of monochrome, think polychrome; you want your outdoor space to be a maximalist’s mecca.

Look for daring colors like reds, oranges, and purples. Plants like crocosmia, salvia, and canna are set to be very popular in 2022 as a result.

Also, expect low-maintenance houseplants that offer a pop of color, like the red succulent x Semporium “Sienna.”

Small Space Gardening

Whether it’s your terrace, balcony, backyard, front garden, or even your stupe, you can find a spot to place a pot of a couple of troughs to bring nature into your life. Heck, some people have turned to creating “green walls,” taking the fencing around their spaces and turning the vertical space into beautiful, green works of art that are both beautiful and good for the environment.

Small gardens can go almost anywhere as long as you have the creativity to make them work! Besides creating an aesthetically pleasing space to look at and live in, a recent RHS study found that “filling a bare front garden with a handful of plants has the same stress-reducing impact as attending eight mindfulness sessions.”

Sustainable Gardening

It’s 2022, so we don’t have time to deal with and worry about plastics and other contaminants that we could live without.

For many gardeners, climate change has been on their minds for years now, but as more people learn to garden, they too are starting to realize just how vital it is that we protect our environment.

When gardening with the planet in mind, you must consider what, how, and where you plant, alongside provenance and packaging.

As well as no-dig methods, wildflower meadows, and following organic principles to nurture soil health, you may see a rise in “free planting” (a low maintenance form of mixed planting that requires no pesticides or netting and is excellent for biodiversity).

You can also plant more native plants in your garden. Check out the National Wildlife Federation’s Garden for Wildlife collection!

Some people have even turned to growing preservation gardens. Did you know there are more than 4,400 endangered plant species in the United States? Use the Rare Plant Finder Tool at the Center for Plant Conservation to find out which plants near you are at-risk.

Cutting Gardens

People seemed to realize that fresh flowers can warm up any space as flower sales increased 10% in 2021. Unfortunately, with rising inflations, it’s becoming more difficult to justify the price of a new bouquet every time you go shopping.

So how do you get a fresh bouquet when you want one? Plant a cutting garden, of course!

Grow favorites like zinnias, dahlias, and black-eyed Susans. All you have to do is plant some seeds in a sunny spot, add water, and you’ll have flowers for homemade bouquets in no time. Your flowers will be locally grown, meaning that they’ll be carbon-neutral, and you can keep growing your flowers back all summer long!

Time-Saving Gadgets

People are returning to the new normal, meaning that the time they dedicate to their gardening will shrink as hybrid work weeks become more common.

Expect to see more people purchasing and using labor-saving activities and products that provide timely results (e.g., growing kits, re-planted baskets and troughs, self-watering pots, and battery-powered pruners).

These time-saving gadgets provide more opportunities to sit back and enjoy your garden by yourself or with friends and family.

Gardening for Mental Health

Gardening can do wonders for mental health.

A garden is a restorative place, or at least that’s what many modern gardeners aim to achieve. When asking designers what they want their garden to look like, more people are using moods and atmospheres to describe their to-be garden rather than a series of physical fixtures. Gardens should work as a space to help us rest and recuperate after long days being subjected to a technology-focused society.

When gardening for your mental health, try to abstain from using power tools, gloves, and fancy gadgets. This will help you be more mindful and present in the task that you are doing. It will also help you look, touch, and sense what is suitable for your growing space.

You can also introduce fragrant plants like star jasmine, sweet peas, and mock orange. You may also want to try lemon-scented roses, like Rosa “Charles Darwin” or Rosa “Vanessa Bell.”

The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties

As homeowners, we’re always looking for ways to improve our space. That includes our garden as well! Gardening is beautiful and good for the soul and the environment. All you have to do is take a little time out of your day to ensure your plants are thriving throughout these summer months.

Are you looking for a new space with a beautiful garden? We’re here to help you find a home and feel at home.  Visit our website today or call the following phone numbers to talk with a team member: (618) 791-5024 & (618) 791-9298.

2022 Summer Housing Market Trends

2022 summer housing market trends

It’s the beginning of summer. It’s a great time for pool parties, barbeques in the backyard, and selling a house. The housing market is hot, with mortgage interest rates hovering above 5%, homes selling for 10% above their market value, and a tight supply of homes for sale. Answer important questions and gather all the details with this expert guide to 2022 summer housing market trends!

Why Is the Housing Market So Hot Right Now?

This is a seller’s market, as there are more buyers than homes for sale. Homes are in low supply and high demand, and this, combined with inflation, is causing prices to rise.

Pandemic uncertainty meant fewer people chose to move out due to economic concerns. At the same time, demand is higher because people now have a greater ability to work from home and relocate to a less expensive area. Millennials are also now approaching home buying age.

Are Millennials Buying Homes?

Millennials made up the largest share of home buyers at 37% in 2021. Younger Millennials, ages 22 to 30, were 14% of home buyers. Older Millennials, ages 31 to 40, are at 37%. Additionally:

  • 2% were Gen Z buyers, ages 18 to 21
  • 24% were Gen X buyers, ages 41 to 55
  • 18% were Younger Baby Boomers, ages 56 to 65
  • 14% were Older Baby Boomers, ages 66 to 74
  • 5% were from the Silent Generation, ages 75 to 95

Are We Headed for Another Housing Bubble?

Housing bubbles start with high demand and low supply. Buyers and investors rush to purchase properties as the supply starts to drop because they predict there will be more demand for homes in the future. Plus, low-interest rates and loose credit can bring borrowers, those who take out home loans, into the market and fuel demand.

However, once demand decreases or stagnates at the same time supply increases, prices drop sharply and the bubble bursts. The housing bubble of 2008 was not that long ago. Banks and other financial institutions engaged in predatory lending practices by approving people for mortgages they couldn’t afford. Lowered lending standards, irresponsible speculation, defaults, and foreclosures also played a part.

Fortunately, we are not headed for a housing bubble in 2022. Banking regulations are more restrictive than in 2008, meaning buyers today are more qualified to purchase homes.

What Home Buyers Need to Know

Home buyers should avoid panic buying by knowing what they can afford and sticking to a realistic budget. Be patient and ask yourself the following questions:

  • Are you debt-free?
  • Do you have an emergency fund for 3 to 6 months of expenses?
  • Will your mortgage payment be 25% or less of your take-home pay?

If you can comfortably meet these qualifications, you’re ready to buy!

What Home Sellers Need to Know

Home sellers should present their homes in the best possible way. You can renovate your home and increase your return on investment. Cleaning, decluttering, and organizing go a long way in making your home tidy. Bright lighting will also make your home feel more spacious. These steps help buyers envision themselves as the new homeowners.

Work With A Knowledgeable Agent at The Massey Team

Make the process of buying or selling your home as stress-free as possible by working with a knowledgeable real estate agent at The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties. Our team has over 45 years of combined experience and has listings in St. Louis and across the river in Illinois. Simply give us a call at (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298 to talk with a member of our team!

Top 3 Real Estate Trends to Watch in The Second Half of 2022

The housing market has been on fire for the past couple of years! People have been buying houses in record numbers, causing prices to increase and inventory to plummet.

So, what do the housing trends look like for 2022? Keep reading to find out!

Low Housing Inventory

The total number of unsold homes was down over 16% in November 2021 compared to the year prior. That’s partly because many people are looking to buy right now, and fewer sellers are listing their homes for sale. Unfortunately, fewer houses mean it will be harder to meet buyer demand.

How To Find a Home in a Slim Market

  • Sacrifice some wants – be willing to compromise. Give up some “nice-to-haves” for “must-haves.” Find the least expensive home in the best neighborhood you can afford and upgrade it over time.
  • Expand your search – perhaps, the location you want to buy in is too competitive. Expand your search to neighborhoods you haven’t considered. You never know what gems are waiting to be found. Work with a real estate agent who knows the area and is familiar with your budget and lifestyle.
  • Get preapproved ASAP – You must get preapproved for a mortgage before you go house hunting. This is even more vital when the housing supply is low. Competition is going to be tough. You don’t want to lose out on the home to someone simply because they were preapproved and you weren’t.

The best homes are going to be bought up first.

Near the end of 2021, most homes spent 47 days on the real estate market. That’s about ten days less than the past year, and it looks like this trend will continue in 2022, but only for a little bit.

Over the past two years, the lack of housing inventory has created a logjam of would-be home buyers. It’s going to take time to work through this logjam of home buyers, some estimate a couple of months, but as long as we’re stuck in this logjam, home prices will continue to climb up.

What Do Slim Pickings Mean for Sellers?

Sellers are going to have less competition. Meaning, that even if your home isn’t necessarily appealing to buyers, you still stand a better chance of selling it in this current market. You could also have the upper hand regarding negotiations and final sales price. So, enjoy receiving multiple offers, picking the best one, and moving at a pace that best suits your timeline.

If you buy a new home after selling your current one, you won’t be in the driver’s seat anymore. Decide on the plans for your next home before you sell your current residence.

Home Prices Will Continue to Rise… Slowly

By the end of 2021, the national average home price rose to $363,700. However, the rate at which this increased slowed toward the end of 2021. It’s expected that the prices will continue to grow in 2022, but much slower than we’ve seen in the past couple of years.

What Do Higher Prices Mean for Buyers?

In an expensive market, it’s crucial that you are entirely aware of how much you can afford. Commit to staying within that budget despite the pressure to expand it.

To help you feel confident buying a house in 2022, follow these steps:

  • Limit your house payment to no more than 25% of your monthly take-home pay – your house payment includes principal, interest, property taxes, homeowners insurance, and if your down payment is less than 20%, private mortgage insurance (PMI). Don’t forget about homeowner’s association (HOA) fees.
  • Save at least 10 to 20% for a down payment – We recommend at least a 10% down payment because anything less will leave you to your neck in interest and fees. Putting 20% or more down is better because you can avoid paying PMI.
  • Go with a 15-year fixed-rate conventional mortgage – this is the lowest cost loan. The 30-year mortgage, FHA, VA, USDA, and adjustable-rate mortgages will only charge you thousands of dollars extra in interest and fees, keeping you in debt for decades.

What Do High Prices Mean for Sellers?

Of course, rising prices are a good thing for sellers! If your home is on the market, expect a nice profit. This is excellent news if you have to buy a new home following the sale of your old one. You’ll need those extra funds to cover the rising costs.

To ensure you’re getting the most you can out of your home, wait for the best offer. If you have the time, take it. Remember, the less desperate individual always has the upper hand in negotiations.

Mortgage Interest Rates Are Still Low

A mortgage interest rate is the fee lenders charge as a percentage of your loan amount. For home buyers, it’s been nice and low.

The average rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage dropped to 2.2% in January 2021. While they started rising towards the end of 2021 (closer to 2.4%), and they may continue to grow in 2022 slowly, they are expected to stay relatively low.

That said, in December 2022, a 30-year fixed mortgage rate sat at 3.11%. That rate was up to 5.27% in early May, the highest since 2009.

While still considered low compared to other years, the rising mortgage rates of 2022 will create downward pressure on the housing market. The higher rates will price out would-be home buyers, but it also means that some borrowers have lost their mortgage eligibility.

What Does This Mean for Buyers?

Low interest rates help with affordability but don’t let that pressure you into buying a home you aren’t ready for. It’s still a bad idea to purchase a home you can’t afford, even if the interest rates are low.

Remember to stick to a monthly payment limit, down payment amount, and mortgage type, and you’ll be fine.

What Does This Mean for Sellers?

Low interest rates mean buyers will be more motivated to buy your home sooner rather than later. However, if interest rates rise, expect your home to stay on the market longer.

The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties

Find your perfect home this year with the perfect real estate agent! In this market, it’s nice to have a helping hand guide you through the ins and outs of all the various trends that make it difficult to find your next home.

Contact us today by visiting our website at https://masseyteam.bhhsselectstl.com/, or call us at (618) 791-5024 & (618) 791-9298.

Fun Things to Do in St. Louis This Summer

Make the most of these gorgeous summer days. St. Louis has a variety of exciting activities to enjoy with the whole family. Check out our list of things to do in summer for sure-fire ways to have fun right here in the Lou. Plus, with so many free options, you can have a blast without breaking the bank.

Go to Museums and Art Festivals

Conveniently, the museums listed here are in scenic Forest Park. This park spans 1,300 acres and has something for everyone.

The Saint Louis Art Museum hosts a varied collection of original works of art, spanning 5,000 years and 6 continents. Visitors get in for free every day and, on Fridays, the museum has free admission to special exhibitions.

Those looking for the only free nonprofit science museum in the US don’t have to look any further. The Saint Louis Science Center is one the largest in the US and has over 700 interactive experiences throughout 10 galleries, the McDonnell Planetarium, and a four-story OMNIMAX® Theater.

Entry into the Missouri History Museum is also free, and they have a hands-on gallery for kids. This museum looks into the history of St. Louis, from present-day all the way back to 1764.

For the history of America’s westward expansion with an emphasis on St. Louis’ role, check out The Museum at the Gateway Arch. This interactive museum has galleries spanning 1764 to 1965 and talks about the Native Americans, explorers, and pioneers who made America. Entry is free, but to get a birds-eye view of the city from the top of the Arch, a tram ticket is required.

Local art festivals include:

See Theater and Musical Performances

Sit under the stars or inside one of St. Louis’ grand theaters.

The Muny, founded in 1919, is America’s oldest and largest outdoor musical theater. They have 7 world-class musicals each year and welcome more than 350,000 theater-goers over each nine-week season. That’s not all; they also have arts education opportunities for people who want to pursue a hobby or a living in theater.

Additionally, the exquisite venue that is The Fabulous Fox, opened in 1929 and has touring Broadway shows, concerts, and comedians. People can also attend seminars, private parties, weddings, graduations, or proms.

Not long after, Stifel Theatre opened in 1934 and hosts a wide variety of events, from concerts and comedies to theatricals and family shows. Their space allows people to have weddings, Bar Mitzvahs, business meetings, fundraisers, and more.

The Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra was formed in 1890 and plays in the beautiful Powell Hall theater. This Grammy Award-winning orchestra is celebrated for its national and international touring activities, and commitment to educational and community outreach efforts.

Local theater and music festivals include:

Enjoy Food and Drinks

Have a taste of what the city offers with these beloved restaurants.

St. Louis landmark restaurant and music club Blueberry Hill is located in the bustling Delmar Loop. Ths bar and grill, known for its famous burgers and classic appetizers, has pop-culture memorabilia on display, live music regularly, and a legendary jukebox.

Pappy’s Smokehouse transformed the barbeque scene in St. Louis. Their pulled pork, brisket, and dry-rubbed ribs are slow-smoked for up to 24 hours over sweet apple or cherry wood, and they have three delicious sauces – Original, Sweet Baby Jane, and their spicy HooDoo Sauce.

Imo’s Pizza, nicknamed The Square Beyond Compare, is the quintessential St. Louis style pizza. The crust is thin and crispy, covered edge-to-edge with toppings and layered in Provel cheese. This popular cheese, a combination of cheddar, swiss, and provolone, dates back to 1947 when it was invented in St. Louis.

Local food and drink festivals include:

Say Hi to the Animals

Take a walk on the wild side at these top destinations for animal encounters.

Visitors of the St. Louis Aquarium, located in Union Station, are in for a splashing good time. The journey beings with the otters, sloths, and lizards that live in freshwater rivers and salt marshes, and moves to the octopus, eels, and jellyfish of the deep, dark ocean.

If you’re looking to walk through a butterfly habitat, the Butterfly House is home to 1,500 of them across 60 tropical species. Watch as they fly freely in an 8,000-square-foot glass conservatory and enjoy 150 tropical plants. The Butterfly House also has indoor insect exhibits, classes, and private events.

The Saint Louis Zoo is one of the few free zoos in the nation and is known for its innovative approaches to animal management, wildlife conservation, research, and education. This is home to over 14,000 animals. Come and see invertebrates, reptiles, amphibians, fish, birds, and mammals.

Grant’s Farm, operated by Anheuser-Busch, Inc., is named after former President Ulysses S. Grant, who founded and farmed a portion of this land. This is a refuge for more than 900 animals, big and small, from around the world. Enter for free and take a tram ride, feed the animals, and see the Budweiser Clydesdales.

Local animal festivals include:

Take the Kids

While you could take kids to any of the above venues, this list puts them at heart.

Kids can jump, dodge, and weave their way through Sky Zone. This indoor space has massive wall-to-wall trampolines, a trampoline dodgeball court, and a pool of huge foam squares made for daring stunts. Kids can dunk like a pro with basketball hoops of different heights that accommodate all sizes. 

Take the adventure outside with RYZE Adventure Park. Their 4-story tower, with 110 obstacles and 2 ziplines, is the ultimate jungle gym experience. Ages 4-7 can take the Little Ninja course and their parents or caregivers can watch or follow along. Visitors also have fun on the ground with their 18-hole mini putt-putt course.

Hundreds of interactive exhibits at The Magic House peak curiosity and spark imagination. Children engage in hands-on educational experiences that align with national and state academic standards. This promotes the all-important skills of creativity, critical thinking, and collaboration.

Find a Home in St. Louis With The Massey Team!

Whether you’re new to the St. Louis area or are looking to move to another part of the city, The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties has you covered! View our listings or call (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298 to talk with a member of our team. We’ll help you feel right at home in our community.

7 Spring Cleaning Trends

It’s May, which means we’re well into the spring season. Spring is a time for rebirth. Flowers are blooming, fawns are taking their first steps, and you need to clean your home!

Spring cleaning is a must for everyone. It gives you a chance to purge your home of winter grime and vibes. That means cleaning the floors and changing out your drapes or throw pillows for something light and airy.

But where do you start?

Spring cleaning can seem intimidating, but it really isn’t. Look at this list of trends to help get you in spring cleaning spirit!

Make A Schedule

Think about what areas need the most work. Are there areas that you typically skip that needs some love? You should start at those places.

However, regardless of where you start, it’s paramount that you have a plan in place. Have a list of tasks that take more time and others you can accomplish in five minutes. You can complete a task every day until you’re done.

De-Clutter for Spring

Studies show that the more disorganized your home is, the more stressed out you tend to be! Clutter can raise the stress hormone cortisol, as it signals to your brain that there’s still work that you need to finish.

Because of the pandemic, we’re spending more time at home, which means it’s even more important to keep living and working spaces clear of clutter.

Go through junk drawers, closets, and dressers. Take out everything that doesn’t suit your needs any longer or is inappropriate for the season.

Go Green

Part of the purpose of spring cleaning is to make you feel better. You can’t do that if you’re spraying chemicals and toxins all over the place.

While they may clean your surfaces, some cleaners aren’t the best for you. Exposing yourself to dangerous substances is not worth it! A steam cleaner is an excellent green option for spring cleaning.

You can use a steam cleaner on your microwave, tile, hard floors, kitchen appliances, bathrooms, and outdoor spaces. They’re 100% natural and free of chemicals.

If you don’t own a steam cleaner, white-distilled vinegar, baking soda, and warm water is a natural combination that’s perfect for cleaning.

Work From Top to Bottom

It’s essential to work from room to room. However, where do you start in each room?

Start at the ceiling and work your way down. If you have dust on your ceiling, walls, or ceiling fan, it will fall to the ground. You don’t want to vacuum more than once, so make sure you start from the top and finish at ground level.

Don’t Forget About Your Walls & Windows

You probably don’t think about cleaning your walls and windows during your regularly scheduled cleaning, but they need TLC.

Use a damp towel to wipe down your walls, baseboards, and blinds (remember to start from the top). Remove and wipe down your window screens. For your windows, a steam cleaner and a squeegee can work wonders.

Keep Your Air Pure

If you haven’t recently, seriously consider replacing your furnace and HVAC filters. You can even replace a regular filter with a more robust one with a high MERV rating. This step will help keep you healthier as you welcome all the spring dust, dander, and pollen.

You can also get an air purifier for the different rooms of your home. It can help keep your air clean of allergens, odors, and indoor chemicals. These are especially useful in the bedroom for anyone that suffers from seasonal allergies.

Set A New Tone

Your space may feel dark and heavy after winter. Swap out the darker winter colors and fabrics for something that screams springtime! Add new colorful pillows, light and flowy drapes, and new bed linens. You can even swap out your towels and table linens for something that brightens your home and your day. Just make sure to clean and iron (if needed) everything before putting it out.

The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties

Are you looking for a new home this spring season? The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties is here to help. We can help you find the home of your dreams. Simply visit our website today to look at our listings, or give one of our team members a call at (618)791-5024 or (618)791-9298.

Credit Scores—What Do They Mean and How are They Changing?

Credit scores, every U.S. adult has one. But what do they mean, and how does your credit score affect you?

Credit scores may seem complicated, but they’re really just a summary of your financial history. Keep reading to learn why curating and maintaining a good credit score is best for you.

What Is a Credit Score?

The Fair Isaac Corporation, also known as FICO, launched the first credit score model with Equifax in 1989. A credit score is a number rating between 300 and 850 used to determine a consumer’s creditworthiness. Other credit-scoring systems exist. However, financial institutions most widely use the FICO score.

What Determines Your Credit Score?

The higher your credit score, the better a consumer looks to potential lenders. FICO bases its credit score model on:

  • Payment history – accounts for 35% of a credit score; shows if an individual pays their bills on time
  • The total amount owed – accounts for 30% of a credit score; considers the percentage of credit available to an individual that the individual is currently using
  • Length of credit history – accounts for 15% of a credit score; the longer the credit history, the more information there is to determine payment history
  • Types of credit – accounts for 10% of a credit score; shows if an individual has a mix of installment credit and revolving credit
  • New credit – accounts for 10% of a credit score; factors how many accounts an individual has, how many accounts they have recently applied for, and when they opened the most recent accounts

How Does Your Credit Score Affect You?

Credit reporting companies separate credit into five categories:

  1. Excellent (800 to 850)
  2. Very Good (740 to 799)
  3. Good (670 to 739)
  4. Fair (580 to 669)
  5. Poor (300 to 579)

An excellent credit score will help you get lower-rate loans, better car insurance rates, and easier approval to rent a property. A person’s credit score may also determine how much of a deposit one may need to put down for a smartphone, cable service, or utilities.

How Are Credit Scores Changing?

Four significant changes are coming this year.

  • Removing Most Medical Debt from Credit Reports

Starting July 1, 2022, medical collection debt that you paid (bills that were given to a collection agency but eventually paid) will no longer appear on credit reports. Also, starting July 1, consumers will have one year to fix insurance or billing issues before the unpaid medical debt is reported on their credit files. Currently, this period is only six months.

Also, in the first half of 2023, credit bureaus are to start omitting all medical collection debt under $1,500 from credit reports. This is estimated to remove about 70% of medical collection debt from credit reports.

  • BNPL Accounts to Be Added to Credit Reports

BNPL, or buy now, pay later, allows consumers to purchase items through installments that span several weeks or months, usually with no interest. However, the credit bureaus may classify BNPL accounts as short-term loans, which can lower your score. This is terrible news for the nearly 100 million U.S. adults that used BNPL over the past year.

  • Free Credit Reports Through 2022

During the beginning months of the pandemic, credit bureaus began to offer free weekly credit reports. Before the pandemic, you could only receive one free report from each bureau per year.

While this offer was supposed to expire as of April 20, 2022, credit bureaus have extended it to last through December 31, 2022.

It’s beneficial to check your report at least once a year. However, if you are a victim of identity theft or know that you have debt that needs to be paid, it’s best to check your score periodically to ensure it hasn’t gone down for a reason you’re not aware of.

  • Transitioning to FICO 10

In January of 2020, FICO updated its model from FICO 8 and FICO 9 to FICO 10. “The new FICO score is reported to give more weight to rising debt levels, higher debt utilization (the ratio of the amount you borrow relative to the amount of credit available to you), and late payments. Unsecured personal loans are also being reconsidered,” according to Schwab.

It’s expected that this new FICO model will cause points to fluctuate about 20 points in either direction. If you already have excellent or very good credit and take steps to build it, you have nothing to worry about. These changes are expected to widen the gap between those with good credit (670-739) and those with bad credit (below 580).

Why Do You Need a Good Credit Score?

Good credit makes it easier for you to get approved for better credit cards and loans for purchasing things like cars and homes. Without a good credit score, you risk higher interest rates, smaller loans, or not even getting approved for a loan at all.

To improve your credit, you should:

  • Pay your bills on time
  • Up your credit line
  • Keep credit card accounts open (even if you don’t use them)
  • Only open new lines of credit periodically (not all at once)
  • Work with a credible credit repair company

Prepare For Your New Home Today!

Excellent credit is vital in obtaining a loan for your dream home. Check your credit score periodically and follow the steps listed above, and you should be golden when it comes time to make a big purchase.

At The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties, we can help you take that giant leap into the unknown waters of home buying and owning. We know it can seem intimidating at first but trust our expertise, and we’ll help you every step of the way.

To view our current listings, visit our website today! If you would like to contact a team member, call us at (618) 791-5024 & (618) 791-9298.

What Is Title Insurance?

When buying a home, one of the most vital steps in securing ownership is obtaining the title. Obtain title refers to the buyer receiving ownership rights for the property from the seller. So, why would you need a title insurance policy? Keep reading to find out.

Why Do You Need Title Insurance?

Generally, title insurance is an insurance policy that protects homebuyers and lenders from a bad title. A bad title could mean there are outstanding liens, back taxes, and/or conflicting wills. Overall, a title insurance policy protects the buyers when the title to a property is invalid.

How Does Title Insurance Work?

There are two types of title insurance:

Owner’s title insurance

You are not required to purchase owner’s title insurance, but it is highly recommended. It can protect you from:

  • Conflicting ownership claims
  • Outstanding liens, lawsuits, and other encumbrances that invalidate the seller’s legal claim to the property
  • Flawed or fraudulent records
  • Undisclosed easements or other agreements that might limit the use or reduce the value of the property

Trust us; it’s wise to purchase owner’s title insurance. You don’t want to be stuck with extra fees, fines, and more leftover from the previous owner. Owner’s title insurance is a one-time fee that lasts as long as you own your home. So, we think it’s definitely worth it!

Lender’s title insurance

A lender will almost always require a borrower to purchase lender’s title insurance before receiving a home loan. The title company will typically issue the policy once they have concluded their title search.

Lender’s title insurance does everything that owner’s title insurance does, except it protects the lender against potential losses if the seller cannot legally transfer title rights. The policy will cover the lender up to the amount of the mortgage.

What Is Warranty of Title?

Warranty of title is an alternative to title insurance. It’s a guarantee by the seller that they have the legal right to transfer ownership to the buyer. If this turns out to be false (someone else also has a claim on the property), the warranty permits the buyer legal recourse against the seller.

Most transactions already include a warranty of title by default. However, it’s always vital to check.

How Much Does Title Insurance Cost?

It can cost anywhere between $500 and $3,500, depending on your geographic location and how clean the title is. If a title has too many defects, the title company may decline to offer a policy.

How Do I Get Title Insurance?

Many real estate companies will recommend a title company you can work with. However, you are always free to choose one of your own.

Typically, the process occurs in two steps:

  1. A title company performs a title search. This search ensures that the property you’re purchasing has a clear title, which means the seller owns the property and has the legal right to sell it.
  2. After the company finishes the search, it will assess any issues and potential previous undiscovered ones. They will base their quote on these issues.

Find Your New Home Today!

The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties will help ensure that you are well protected during and after the homebuying process. We want to make this process as straightforward and fun as possible. Buying a new home is an exciting time that shouldn’t be marred with the worry that back taxes or liens will rear their ugly heads.

If you’re in the market for a new home, you’ve come to the right place! Visit our website today to view our listings.

Do you want to get in contact with a team member? Give us a call at: (618) 791-5024 & (618) 791-9298.

Décor Trends For 2022

Although we’re only a few months into 2022, certain décor trends have already made their mark this year. We’ve noticed that people are creating change by embracing the past, showing off their bold personal style, and adapting to the challenges we’ve faced these past two years. If you’re looking for some exquisite décor inspiration, you’ve come to the right place. Read on for the décor trends of 2022.

Curved Furniture

Curves add comfort and calm to an environment, which we’re looking for in 2022. After spending so much indoors the past couple of years, we’ve realized we want a cozy living space that makes us feel safe and comfortable. The natural and sculptural structure of curved furniture adds a soft, feminine tone to the room without it feeling overdone. Plus, curves also lend well to big and bold designs. So, if you want to add pops of color, your curved furniture makes for the perfect opportunity.

Soft Earth Tones

People are looking for healing spaces that exude restorative and calming vibes. We expect to see earthy greens paired with other nature-inspired colors, like sky blues, warm browns, sandy beiges, and cloudy whites. We are embracing the therapeutic nature of the outdoors. Brown, in particular, seems to be making a comeback.

Brown has a powerful connection to all things nature. For this reason, many people are incorporating rich chocolate hues and lighter camel colors into their décor, like pillows and linens. The warm tones feel welcoming and are the complete opposite of the sterile gray. Gray has quickly become the color of cookie-cutter homes. On the other hand, brown feels unique and personal. Plus, it’s a popular color in mid-century modern design. People are calling on their retro roots and welcoming décor inspirations from the ‘70s and ‘80s.  

Fun Wallpaper

Funky, fun, and unique wallpapers add layers of interest to a room. This is especially important in rooms where you entertain. Yes! We said it. In 2022, we expect to see people entertaining more than in the last two years. So, why not give your guests something to talk about. Your goal is to make your surroundings feel more playful and lighthearted. Trust us; people enjoy a pop of color and some motifs that tell a story. There are so many different possibilities will wallpaper that everyone can find something perfect for them.

Create A Quiet Place

People are trading their open floor plans for pocket doors and even building walls to help segment their homes. In light of the pandemic, more people realize the need for quiet space away from the hustle and bustle of the rest of the home. While open-concept homes are still popular, people are finding ways to incorporate quiet sanctuaries as places to work, meditate, or simply relax in after a long day. Plus, the more closed rooms you have, the more creative you can get in decorating. Open floor plans typically lend themselves to safe, neutral colors. But if you’re looking to get bold in 2022, think about closing off some spaces around your home so you can incorporate eye-catching statement walls and eclectic finishes.

Traditional Touches

Picture this, a dark-wood canopy bed accompanied by an ornate mirror, velvet chairs, and maybe a couch trimmed with fringe. In 2022, we are looking to past for traditional touches and antique accents to make our homes feel stately, historical, and ironically modern. Many people are combining their contemporary furniture pieces with family heirlooms or antiques that stand the test of time. Many people are also opting to put their money and time into vintage pieces that they can restore and make entirely their own rather than waiting months upon months for a couch that looks like all the others made these days.

Dark Kitchens

The moodier, the better. Dark greens, blues, browns, and, of course, black will be the ‘it’ colors for your 2022 kitchen. The whole point of creating a dark kitchen is to create a sophisticated, elegant, and glamorous space that’s perfect for inspiring five-star meals. Don’t be afraid to experiment with countertops, either. Dark granites, marbles, and quartzites are sexy, mysterious, and will add a cohesive feel between them and cabinets and the walls. However, although dark is in, don’t be afraid to add pops of light in painting or two or some gold, brass, and copper fixtures. It’s all about balance.

Kitchen Banquettes

Kitchen banquettes are making a comeback in 2022, and we’re so happy to see it. Not only do kitchen banquettes add a sense of coziness to the room, but it helps make the kitchen feel like the heart of the home. It also gives people a place to sit and keep the cook company while they work. These chic space-savers are a must if you’re looking to remodel your kitchen anytime soon.

Personalized Tableware

It’s time to start thinking of how we want to express our style and flair as we welcome guests back into our homes. That includes how we set our dining table! The art of tablescaping is quickly becoming revered by designers everywhere as not only an art form but an instrument of self-expression. In 2022, we expect to see a mix-match of color and other details. Collect different artisanal serve ware and patterned linens. Mix up plates, tablecloths and placemats, glassware, and silverware to make the dining experience feel fun and eclectic. To create some uniformity, either follow the same color scheme throughout your pieces or ensure that each piece represents a different part of the same style. Most importantly, do forget to have fun with it!

Find The Perfect Real Estate Agents Today!

Working with The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties will ensure you work with real estate agents that have your best interest at heart. We care about you and your future home. For more information about our team, visit our website. For questions about our services, please call us at: (618) 791-5024 & (618) 791-9298.

Home Buying Outlook For 2022

The home buying process has been crazy the past couple of years. Between a pandemic, increased housing prices, global supply chain issues, and skilled labor shortages, the ability to get your foot in the door has been difficult. This is especially true for first-time homeowners, who must combat bidding wars, speculators, and older homeowners with more income to pay for the rising prices. If you’ve been stressed out, thinking about when the best time to purchase a home will finally come, well, we have some good news. Keep reading for 2022 home buying predictions that might have you ready to make a move.

Expect More Inventory

In recent years, supply chain issues and labor shortages have meant that housing shortage is an issue even in the most competitive market seen since a decade ago. This shortage has jacked housing prices up and has pushed homebuyers into unbelievable bidding wars. In 2022, expect a shift back towards normalcy. According to Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the National Association of Realtors (NAR), housing supply and demand will move towards stability. This will cool off the competition. While we still expect 2022 to be a seller’s market, buyers expect more inventory come spring. Housing prices will still increase, but at a much slower rate than previously seen.

Mortgage Rates Will Rise (But Remain Low)

The Fed predicts up to three interest rate hikes in 2022, which will increase mortgage rates. Daryl Fairweather, the chief economist for Redfin, claims that mortgage rates are likely to rise from 3% to 3.6% by the end of 2022. While mortgage rates will remain historically low, the increase may pose new affordability challenges. If you foresee this being problematic for you, early 2022 is the best time to buy.

Demand Will Be Strong

Millennials and even some of Generation Z are at the perfect point in their lives to purchase their first home. However, Boomers are living longer than ever, which means they are staying in their homes longer than ever before. However, with rent prices expected to rise another 7.1% this year, people are looking to move into a more permanent location so they can save money. On the bright side, the average price growth of homes for sale is expected to rise only about 3%. This low-price growth will most likely discourage speculators from entering the market, giving first-time homeowners more chances of securing a home. Overall, expect healthy competition, but be optimistic. Increased employment rates and higher wages will help you make these important purchases.

Climate-Conscious Home Buyers

With the weather becoming more unpredictable, home buyers will be thinking about climate change and how their new home can reduce their carbon footprint. We expect home sellers to make significant investments in climate-change resilient home features in the coming years. You may also see more new construction that is more energy-efficient and durable when it comes to extreme weather.

People Want Real Estate Agents

With the pandemic came homebuying online. Virtual home tours overtook traditional walk-throughs. However, what hasn’t changed is the need for a real estate agent to help make the buying process easier. Real estate agents offer emotional investment and industry understanding. Wanting an all-in-one buying experience became the norm in 2021 and is only gaining momentum in 2022.

Real Estate Agents You Can Trust!

The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties offers premier home buying and selling services. We only want the best for our clients. Our job is not just to find a house for you but also a home. We dedicate ourselves to making your dreams a reality. Visit our website to view our listings! If you need a reliable real estate agent, contact us at: (618) 791-5024 & (618) 791-9298.