I Love Porches!

If I had a choice between having a porch or a deck, then a porch would win any day of the week. I’m devoted to screen porches in particular. There’s nothing like having a shaded or sunny spot with no bugs and a breeze. And if it’s raining, you can still enjoy a screened porch despite the weather(provided the rain is coming down rather straight and your porch is large enough to allow you a sitting spot away from the screens).

I spend time on decks but they can get too hot in the middle of the day. The mosquitoes can eat at you in the evening, or even dusk. Forget being out there when it rains, unless you want to be wet.

Here, then, some images showing a variety of porches. Summer is on it’s way after all.

A traditional porch in Boston

Note the blue ceiling on this porch

This one has a rustic feel with its wood furnishings

A conservatory style porch in London

Another conservatory, this one in Philadelphia

A sweet porch in Charleston

An octagonal porch in Chicago

A porch with motorized Phantom screens and a fireplace

A small cottage in Los Angeles with a sweet and inviting front porch

A porch decorated with colors and plants

A wraparound porch in Portland, Maine

This porch feels very open and airy with its high ceilings

I had to include this one because I know exactly which house this is. I’ve been inside this house and this porch! The views are lovely.



They Fell in Love…

And Then They Bought It

My sister and I were working with a lovely newly wedded couple to find them a home. We looked at homes in Saint Paul. We looked in Minneapolis. We looked along the river front. And then this home came on the market. Initially, the only photo on the MLS was of the front exterior. I told them it was either ugly and dated inside or the listing agents were planning professional photos to be taken.  It turned out they were having professional photos taken of the interiors.

We went to see it right away. The couple knew they had found something special that first time through. My sister and I have worked with many buyers who have walked into homes and known immediately it was the home for them.

The home had been owned by the sellers for over forty years. The prior owners had also lived in this home for decades. Both of the previous owners had been newly wedded couples when they first moved in to this home. This is what I call great predecessor history. It bodes well for this couple’s future happiness.

The next day we went back with an architect to get some ideas and cost information for remodeling the kitchen. The architect confirmed they had great space to work with.

They made their offer, and after some pretty painless negotiation, the contract was signed and delivered. They secured an amazing 2.75% mortgage rate. The closing took place at the end of July. They love their new home.

I can’t wait to see their new kitchen!

The home has a great screened porch!

And a private, double lot with mature trees and perennial gardens.


Ready to buy or sell a home? Call the sister team.
We’d love to help you move forward.

Ellen and Kate Walsh
Coldwell Banker Burnet



I Hope It Doesn’t Fall Down

Weekly Photo Challenge: Wrong

This week’s photo challenge is to depict something wrong. As in, there’s something wrong here. Here is a photo of a house I came across while out and about one day. It’s a stately home that has seen better days. I’ve been by it before, a few years ago, and it doesn’t appear to be getting much maintenance on the outside. This area definitely needs repair: this is serious wood rot.

Here’s another photo showing more of the front exterior and the way these pillars hold up the roof of the front porch and the third floor space. What keeps these homeowners from repairing their home? Is it financial issues? Is it lack of interest? Do they feel overwhelmed with the rest of their lives? I hope they can have it fixed before it comes crashing down.



Capturing the Snowfall

Photos of the Day

January 3, 2011

Powdery snow fell and blanketed the city with fresh winter beauty.

Red Brick and Falling Snow – Minneapolis




3920 Cedar Shore Drive, St. Louis Park MN

Exceptional Mid-Century Home just steps from Cedar Lake

Beautifully renovated from top to bottom. Gorgeous grounds and rarely found five-car garage. Please feel free to contact me for additional information or to arrange a showing of this fine home.

This property has sold.

Family room off kitchen with view to four-season porch and backyard.
Kitchen and Family Room

What an ideal room arrangement! The family room off the kitchen features a beautiful stone-surround fireplace, built-in cabinetry and shelves, and a wall of windows/doors that open to the backyard. The four-season porch with its many windows continues the line of views to the yard.

This kitchen provides both functional beauty and entertaining space.

Click on any photo below to see it in a larger format.

The four-season porch with views of the landscaped backyard.
Formal living room with view to street and greenery beyond.
Main level master bedroom.
Main level master bath
Beautifully landscaped yard
Plenty of green grass, surrounded by flowers, patio and shrubs.
Captivating plantings and design.
Plenty of room to the side for a play area.
Lower level family room has a fireplace and dramatic lighting.
Lower level office area and bedroom. There's also a bath on this level.
The lower level was just finished this year and includes this second kitchen.
Classic stone-front rambler in St. Louis Park, Minnesota
The front yard is also beautifully landscaped.

The Details:

  • Four bedrooms and three baths
  • Private master suite
  • Hardwood floors
  • Central air conditioning
  • Three fireplaces with a mix of wood-, and gas-burning styles
  • Main floor laundry
  • Attached, heated and insulated five-car garage—a rare find in the city!
  • Exceptional presentation and finishes
  • Approximate finished square footage: 4,154
  • List Price: $889,900

For more information or to arrange a showing, contact:

Kate Walsh, REALTOR
Lakes Area Realty


Listing provided courtesy of Coldwell Banker Burnet.

Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Lasted updated on October 21, 2010 at 05:29pm.

The data relating to real estate for sale on this site comes in part from the Broker Reciprocity program of the Regional Multiple Listing Service of Minnesota, Inc. Real Estate listings held by brokerage firms other than Lakes Area Realty are marked with the Broker Reciprocity logo or the Broker Reciprocity house icon and detailed information about them includes the names of the listing brokers. DesignHouse9 is not a Multiple Listing Service MLS, nor does it offer MLS access. This website is a service of DesignHouse9 and Lakes Area Realty, a broker Participant of the Regional Multiple Listing Service of Minnesota, Inc.



Minneapolis—St. Paul Real Estate Market: July 26, 2010

Weekly Market Activity Report

It’s been almost 3 months since the expiration of the federal home buyer tax credit and the market appears to have settled into something of a rhythm. With the dust settling, pending sales have become mostly fixed in the 500-to-600 per week range for the past 9 weeks.

While the dramatic drop from a year ago is certainly not positive, demand is at least holding relatively steady for the time being. The 626 purchase agreements signed for the week ending July 17 were 39.7 percent behind a year ago. For the same reporting week there were 1,618 new listings in the Twin Cities, down 10.0 percent from a year ago.

Inventory is rising due to slower demand. The 27,350 homes currently available for sale represent an increase of 4.8 percent from last year.

As reported by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors


Perfect Bliss: The Screened Porch

Perfect Bliss Can be Just Outside One of Your Doors

A screened porch on the front of a home.

I grew up in homes with screened porches. It was the best room in the house on a summer day. The porch was a spot that offered shaded comfort, gentle breezes, the sounds of nature, and the perfect place to read, dine, play cards, talk and nap. And best of all—no mosquitoes!

It’s still my favorite place during summer. I’ll take a screened porch over a deck any day of the week.

Many homes feature an open porch. Here’s an article that offers a new and improved way to install a porch screen.

How to Install a Porch Screen | Step-by-Step | Porch | This Old House – Introduction.

A Porch on a Home by the Creek
Porch and Chairs
A Wrap-Around Porch
Porch with a view of nature.
This home's porch opens to the master suite and the dining/kitchen area.
The porch overlooks this beautiful garden with a water feature.


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