We asked several real estate agents about their greatest success of the past six months, and we were certainly impressed!

Rex Schwerdt

Gladys Manion Inc.

      A 1930s home on a double lot in the Moorlands initially posed a conundrum for agent Rex Schwerdt. This unique home was built by a mobster, and “It was really like taking a step back in time—all original everything except for some delightfully tacky smoked crystal and plastic chrome sconces that were added to the living room sometime during the 1980s,” he says. The house had ‘period charm,’ he adds, with intricate moldings and a master bath that was outfitted entirely in black, lavender and purple Vitrolite tiles—topped off with a faux-crystal chandelier. Several clients showed an interest in the home, Schwerdt says, but didn’t see any use for a double lot in a neighborhood full of 7,000-square-foot lots.

    The breakthrough came when two other agents at the company mentioned a client who was looking for a lot to build on, and Schwerdt found that the lot could be split in two if the swimming pool were removed. “This would be as good of a time as any to see who’s been sleeping with the fishes!” he says. When it was all said and done, the interested client bought both the house and lot, then sold the house to a family who is now fixing it up. The second lot will soon become a new custom home.

Elaine Medve

Helix Realty Inc.

    Elaine Medve says that her most impressive sale was spectacular, not necessarily because of its grandeur; but rather because of the transformation involved. “It was a new condominium penthouse in the heart of Clayton, and it was rewarding because although it started out with blank walls, we got to see what the client did with it,” she says. “He made all of the selections and brought it up to his taste level.”

    The client chose many custom features, including cabinets, granite, backsplash lighting, and cool, contemporary colors throughout. Neutrals were mainly used in the common areas, with slate blue walls in the bedroom. Chocolate brown and powder blue walls complemented marble floors in the bathroom. “It was up in the treetops, on the third floor—a very private, quiet space with the best view in the building.” With all of the custom additions, the unit sold for well above $710,000.

Mary Beth Benes

Coldwell Banker Gundaker

    A Manderly Estates home was the favorite for Mary Beth Benes. It initially belonged to a couple who had custom built the home about 15 years prior. The four-bedroom, three-bath home in a gated Frontenac neighborhood boasts a media area in the lower level, a walkout basement, ‘huge’ kitchen and hearth room. “It was just a great family home; it was a nice size but not too big. It felt like you could use all of the space in it,” Benes says.

        For Benes, the best thing about the sale was the willingness of the homeowners to take her advice. “When they wanted to put the house on the market, they realized that things needed to be updated and made the commitment to do that,” she notes. “They kept saying, I can’t believe we didn’t do this before! People used to want to do things after moving in to make a home their own, but nowadays they don’t have the time or the money to do that.” With the updates, there were several highly interested buyers, and the home was sold near its asking price of $1.569 million.

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