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Decorate Your Home For The Gallery of Ghoulish Homes Tour!

by The Rullo Team

 

 

 

Time to get spooky! Get in the Halloween spirit and turn your St. Charles home into a frightful delight for the 2019 “Best in St. Charles” Gallery of Ghoulish Homes Tour!!!

 

Whether you participate in this favorite annual event our not, be sure to check out the spookiest homes in the Fox Valley area beginning Friday, October 18th, through Halloween night! See the best ghoulish displays every evening at dusk until 10:00 pm. Find the Free Home Tour Guide online HERE starting on opening night.

 

 

SPECIAL TOUR DATES

  • Preview Night | Friday, October 18th

    • Opening night and last chance for homeowners to make changes before judging.

  • Judging Night | Saturday, October 19th

    • Best night to see the homes! Judging by contest committee begins at dusk.

 

AWARD CATEGORIES

  • Eeriest Haunt (w/o actors)

  • Craftiest Creeper

  • Best Rookie

  • Best Actors (1-6 ghouls)

  • Best Actors (7+ ghouls)

  • Best Youth Actors (ages 18 & under)

  • Family Fun

  • Judges’ Favorite

  • People’s Choice (determined by online voting between October 20th and November 1st)

 

REGISTRATION INFORMATION

Register your home today! Fill out the entry form by 5:00 pm on October 13th. Contact Katie Miller at (630) 513-4390 for more information. The Halloween House Decorating Contest is open to all St. Charles residents along with those living within the St. Charles Park District’s boundaries.


 

HAPPY DECORATING!

 

Image Credit: St. Charles Park District

Get Your Fox River Valley Home Ready For Colder Temps!

by The Rullo Team

Winter might still seem like a distant prospect in our future (thank goodness!). However, as we approach the end of the year, the days will just keep getting colder. Get your Fox River Valley home ready for the upcoming cold season by starting to winterize now. You will be able to do any necessary work while it is still comfortable enough to do so AND it will keep you and your family toasty all cold season long while also saving you money on your energy costs! Focus on these elements of your home as the temperatures drop!

  • Energy Monitor - Install this helpful tool to learn where your home uses the most energy so you can easily discover ways to cut costs this upcoming winter.....and ALL year round!

  • Windows - Use a Window Insulation Kit to add an extra layer against the cold. Be sure to properly caulk around all windows to avoid warm air leaks and cold air drafts.

  • Doors - Once the temperature drops significantly, add a draft blocker underneath all outdoor doors. Be sure to caulk and weatherstrip as needed. Consider switching to a Storm Door for added energy efficiency.

  • Furnace - Change the filters to increase airflow and remove illness inducing irritants. Have the system professionally cleaned and adjusted. Save money in the long run by upgrading to an Energy Efficient Furnace. You will stay warm and keep your family healthy all season.

  • Fireplace - Hire a professional chimney sweep to come clean and inspect your chimney. Doing so now will ensure that you can get someone into your home before they go into their busy season and will keep you safe by removing any potential dangers that could occur the first time you light a fire this fall.

  • Insulation - Just as you do to go outside, your home needs to wear some added layers in the winter. Add insulation between walls, to the basement ceiling, and the attic floor. Also, wrap insulation around your pipes to avoid the costly issues caused by freezing pipes.

  • Thermostat - Keep heating costs low by turning down the heat whenever you leave the house. Also consider reducing the temperature by a couple degress and cuddling up with a warm blanket instead!

 

For additional helpful home owner’s tips, check out our website at http://www.therulloteam.com/!


Get Your Home Ready For Fall With The Perfect Pumpkin!

by The Rullo Team

The first day of Fall is right around the corner on the 23rd! It is one of our favorite times of year! The cool sunny days, the crisp air, stunning colors of leaves, cozy sweaters, and the buzz of energy as we head into the end of the year are all some of the best aspects of the season. One of our other favorite fall things…...PUMPKINS. Here are our area's BEST PUMPKIN PATCHES for you to find the perfect pumpkin to decorate your Fox River Valley home this autumn!

 

Windy Acres

Address: 37W446 Fabyan Parkway

Geneva, IL 60134

Phone: 630-232-6429

Fax: 630-232-6459

Website: Windy Acres

Email: [email protected]

 


Kuipers Family Farm

Address: 1N318 Watson Road

Maple Park, IL 60151

Phone: 815-827-5200

Fax: 815-827-4100

Website: Kuipers Family Farm

 


Sonny Acres Farm

Address: 29W310 North Avenue

West Chicago, IL 60185

Phone: 630-231-3859

Website: Sonny Acres Farm

 


Abbey Farms

Address: 2855 Hart Road

Aurora IL, 60502

Phone: 630-966-7775

Website: Abbey Farms

 

 

If you are interested in more information about activities and events around the Fox Valley area, Like and Follow us on our Facebook page and check back to Our Blog weekly.


 


As summer winds down, you want to make sure that your Fox River Valley home is in tip-top shape. Now is the perfect time to complete some easy but important home maintenance projects before the seasons start to change. Here are the top maintenance tasks that you should do around your home this month.

 

Complete Important Yearly Checks!

Now is a great time to complete those yearly maintenance tasks. Service and clean your HVAC system to keep it running properly throughout the rest of the year. Check all your fire/smoke alarms to ensure they are working properly. Clean out your chimney so you can safely keep your family warm during the colder months ahead.

 

Keep Pests Away!

Just as you will be start spending more time indoors, pests will try to as well. Avoid unwelcome house guests by checking for small and large holes around your house. Use caulking or netting to cover up. Do an inspection of your attic's insulation to make sure that there are no holes created by pests. Cover up those holes to avoid potential ice damage from occurring to your roof this upcoming winter.

 

Check The Exterior!

End of summer is the perfect time to do a thourough check of the outside of your home. Finding necessary repairs now will help save you stress and money as we head closer to winter. Clear gutters of fallen leaves and debris so water can properly move away from your home. Look for loose or missing shingles that need to be replaced. Make sure that all the caulking around doors and windows is adequate and repair as necessary. Remove debris and trim your vegetation so it can grow properly come the next year.

 

Winterize Your Irrigation System!

Check the manufacturer's instructions to winterize your irrigation/sprinkler season so that it remains protected during the colder months. You can continue to use your sprinklers during the final days of summer but consider putting them on a timer since we tend to experience more rainfall that can naturally hydrate your lawn and garden.

 

Safety First!

With increased precipitation and colder temperatures, icy weather will be here before we now it! Inspect the handrails and supports on your patios and decks to ensure that you and others have something to safely grab onto should you fall. Keep walkways clear of debris.



Keep your Fox River Valley in top working order no matter the season by checking out The Rullo Team's Website and following us on Facebook throughout the year!

Get Your Garden Ready For the Post-Summer Cool Down!

by The Rullo Team

As summer winds down, it is the perfect time to get your garden ready for the end of the year. Protect your Fox River Valley garden for the rest of 2019 by following these simple tasks!

 

Water

Your plants and trees will need lots of moisture in their roots to survive the colder months. Be sure to water them well over the next several months to ensure their survival.

Amend Your Soil

Till the soil and add compost to get the soil ready for next year.

Plant Fall Annuals

Keep your garden looking great well into fall by planting annuals that thrive in autumn, such as mums, kale, and pansies.

Add Shrubs and Evergreens

Plant shrubs and evergreens early in Fall to allow their roots to grow before the ground freezes.

Lower Your Lawn Mower

It is important to keep cutting your grass before the winter. Allow the soil to dry out quicker in the spring by keeping its cutting height low.

Clear Rose Beds

Remove fallen debris from roses from the bed since this foliage can cause diseases to thrive and will destroy your garden next year.

Divide Perennials

Rearrange your plants as you divide your perennials.

Remove Weeds

Make sure to take out all the weeds from your garden before you cannot get them out of the frozen ground.

Dig Up Annuals

Remove any dead annuals from your garden.

Save Summer Bulbs

If you loved some of your flowers from this year, dig up the bulbs and save them for next year.

Plant Bulbs

For bulbs that are hardy enough to survive the winter months, plant them at the beginning of fall so you will have beautiful blooms right away in spring.

Feed Your Lawn

Add important nutrients to your lawn so it remains healthy throughout the winter.

Rake & Mulch

Get rid of all fallen leaves from your yard and add mulch to your garden beds.

Protect Plants

Plants that cannot survive the colder temperatures should be protected. After the first freeze, place mulch or other protective coverings over them.

Force Bulbs Indoors

Plant some bulbs indoors so that they bloom early in the year and are ready to transfer to your garden as soon as the ground thaws.

Keep Container Plants Indoors

Make sure to remove pests and dead foliage from container plants and bring them indoors to protect them from the cold.

Empty Hoses and Other Watering Equipment

Be sure to remove all water from your hoses, irrigation systems, fountains, and other watering equipment before storing them in a dry place for the winter.


 

Check The Rullo Team's website for more helpful home maintenance and landscaping tips for every season of the year!

Simple Chores To Complete After Moving In!

by The Rullo Team

There is always a lot of information and advice about Buying a home. What the process entails, when to do it, what you need, etc. But, after you close on the home and have your boxes packed and ready to go, what should you do? There are actually a few simple chores that you should always do once you move into your new home. You just made a major investment and you want to make sure it is in tip-top shape as you start to make it your own.  


Change Locks: In all reality, when you purchase a new home, you truly have no idea who all has keys to it. As soon as you move in, change all of the locks. You can either re-key or buy entirely new lock sets.

 

Check for Leaks: Other a home inspection has been completed, you still want to verify that there aren't any plumbing issues. Check for any leaks throughout the home. You want to handle these right away because they could lead to costly damage in the future if left unchecked.

 

Remove Pests: Hopefully, this is not an issue that you run into but you want to make sure you do not have any unwelcome "roommates" in your home. If you find pests, consider hiring a professional in order to complete eradicate the issue from the onset and give you peace of mind.

Inspect the HVAC System: Living in the Fox Valley, we know that we need our AC in the summer and our heat in the winter. Make sure you know how to use the HVAC system and that it is working properly throughout the home.

 

Update Lighting: The lighting throughout the house might not be your preference. As you start to settle in, determine how you prefer the lighting in each room and make changes accordingly, whether with overhead lights or accent lights.

Know the Circuit Breaker: If the previous owner did not do so, label the fuses in the circuit breaker. Figure out which ones control which rooms and mark accordingly so you can easily turn the power back on when needed.

 

Understand the Main Water Valve: We can get stormy weather in the Fox River Valley. Between this and plumbing emergencies, it might be necessary to turn off the main water valve from time to time. Find out whether it is located inside or outside of the home and know how to turn it off for these situations.

Clean the Carpets: Have a completely fresh start in the home by deep cleaning the carpets. Rent a steam cleaner or hire a professional to handle. Although the carpets might appear clean, this will give you the peace of mind that your home is sparkly and new.

 

 

If you are looking to BUY, work with The Rullo Team to help you find your dream home in the Fox River Valley. Give our team a call today or visit our website at http://www.therulloteam.com/.

Show Your Home Some Summer Time Love!

by The Rullo Team

Give your Fox River Valley home some TLC this summer These projects for inside and outside of your home will help spruce it up for you and your family and keep you comfortable and happy throughout the hot months and the rest of the year. Here are our top home maintenance tasks to tackle this summer!

 


1. Touch Up Exterior Paint - Boost your home's exterior appearance by touching up the paint. If you do not have any exterior paint on hand and need help matching the color, ask a professional to come out to help you find the perfect match.

 

2. Wash Windows - Be able to see the beautiful scenery of your landscaping by washing the outside of your windows. You will get best results by scrubbing with a bucked of hot soapy water.

3. Clean Window Screens - Window screens also need to be washed at this time. Gently scrub them with the same mixture. If they are too covered in dirt and grime, it is a great time to replace them.

4. Clean Exterior of House - This might be the most difficult maintenance task on our list but it is also vitally important. The warmer weather gives you the opportunity to wash the outside of your home and, after our winter and spring, that is a good idea. Do a soft washing to update your curb appeal and extend your home's lifespan.

 

5. Reverse Ceiling Fans - Change your ceiling fans to spin counter-clockwise so that a breeze is created throughout the home.

6. Clean A/C Filter - Keep your family cool all season long by cleaning the air conditioner filter. Wash with warm water or vacuum cleaner if your system does not have a self-cleaning function. Remember that this task should be done frequently while your air conditioner is in continual use.

7. Remove A/C Fan - After dealing with the A/C filter, now is a good time to dust off the fan. Remove it, clean it, and return it to its rightful place when done.

8. Check Furnace Filter - Your furnace has also been accumulating dust. Remove the filter and give it a thorough washing if the filter is a reusable one. If it is not, be sure to replace it with a new filter.

9. Maintain Washing Machine - Give your washing maching some care so your clothes continue to come out clean. Remove soil buildup from the seal around the door.

10. Inspect Driveway and Walkways - Driveways and walkways take a beating throughout the year: from the cold in the winter to the heat of the summer. Check for cracks and weeds and handle those issues as they are found. Afterward, it is a good idea to pressure wash these areas.

11. Clean Baseboards - It's a great time to work on those areas of the house that often get overlooked and that includes the baseboards. Give them a cleaning with a damp cloth to remove built up dust and dirt.

12. Clean Garbage Disposal and Dishwasher - Just like the laundry machine, now is a good time to clean the garbage disposal and diswasher. Refresh both by using vinegar. This will help remove food odors that have been building up.

13. Inspect Hoses - Look for cracks, wear and tear, or any signs of leaks in the hoses located around your house (i.e. dishwasher, refrigerator, washing machine, toilets, etc.). Replace as necessary.

14. Inspect Attic and Basement - Check both of these spaces for water leakage, mold and mildew, and pests. Handle any issues that you might discover right away.

15. Declutter - Get rid of those items that you really do not need around the house by hosting a rummage sale or donating them. If you discover that you have a lot of items to simply toss, consider renting a dumpster so you can do a giant purge at once and be done with it.

 

 

Keep your Fox River Valley home in tip top shape this summer by completing these home maintenance tasks! Check out The Rullo Team's website and follow us on Facebook for more helpful home owner tips throughout the year!


Spring Gardening Tips!

by The Rullo Team

The first day of summer is right around the corner! Add stunning curb appeal to your Fox River Valley home and create a peaceful space filled with fresh produce and beautiful flowers for your whole family to enjoy. Get your green thumb ready to follow these top tips for gardening success!

1. Map It Out

Start your garden off with a plan. Figure out the layout of your garden in terms of what plants look best near each other, the distance between each of them, where the sunlight hits, and more. The more you can plan out ahead of time, the better your garden will end up!

2. Begin Indoors

Get your plants started inside. All you need to do is fill containers with potting mix, moisten with water, and carefully add your seeds. Make sure to place in a warm spot of your home that receives 12 to 16 hours of daylight. Once your plants have gotten larger, you can transfer outdoors.

3. Prepare Your Soil

Make sure your soil is ready. Purchase a soil kit from your local home improvement store to learn its type and pH level. This information will help you determine what modifications your soil needs in order to grow the healthiest plants.

4. Start Planting ASAP

With our cold winters in the Fox River Valley, you want to make sure that you time out your planting properly so you start early enough to truly enjoy the plant throughout the warmer parts of the year.

5. Prune

Help stimulate plant growth and improve the look of your garden by pruning shrubs and trees. Just ensure that you are only pruning those plants that have bloomed on new growth from this year. If you prune plants that are still on last year's growth, you could cause irreparable damage to the plant.

6. Mulch

Save time in the future by adding several inches of mulch around your garden. Mulch moderates soil temperatures, saves water, reduce weeds, and wards of disease. When spreading out the mulch, be sure to water the soil before and after in order to keep the mulch a couple of inches away from your stems. Check out this Guide to Mulch Buying from the Chicago Tribune for more helpful information.

 


Follow us on Facebook and check out our Website for more fantastic Fox River Valley gardening and home tips throughout the year!

Stock Up At These Fox Valley Farmers Markets!

by The Rullo Team

This upcoming weekend marks the return of fantastic FARMERS MARKETS throughout the Fox Valley! You can find incredible local produce, from fruits and vegetables to meat and dairy to baked and handmade goods, in our local communities all weekend long during the summer! Stock up at these markets to put delicious, healthy food on your kitchen table and promote economic development in our area!

 

Wednesdays

Aurora Farmers Market - West

When: 12:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Where: 2131 West Galena Boulevard in Aurora

 

Fridays

St. Charles Outdoor Farmers Market

When: 8:00 am - 1:00 pm

Where: Baker Memorial United Methodist Church (307 Cedar Avenue, St. Charles)

Elgin Farmers Market

When: 3:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Where: South Grove Avenue in Downtown Elgin

 

Saturdays

Batavia Farmers' Market

When: 8:00 am – 12:00 pm

Where: North River Street in Downtown Batavia

Aurora Farmers Market - Downtown

When: 8:00 am – 12:00 pm

Where: 65 Water Street in Downtown Aurora

Sugar Grove Farmers Market

When: 8:00 am – 12:00 pm

Where: Village of Sugar Grove Municipal Center (10 Municipal Drive, Sugar Grove)

 

Sundays

Geneva French Market

When: 9:00 am – 2:00 pm

Where: South & 4th Street in Downtown Geneva

Oswego Country Market

When: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm

Where: North Main Street in Downtown Oswego

 



Follow us on Facebook and check out our Website for more fantastic Fox River Valley events all summer long!


Budget For These Home Maintenance Tasks When You Buy!

by The Rullo Team


There are some costs that homeowners know the budget for when buying their
Fox River Valley home. These include down payment, closing costs, and moving expenses. But, what about home maintenance? Just because the home inspection came up squeaky clean doesn’t mean that you don’t need to make any repairs or changes to the home.

 

In fact, the first year of ownership tends to be the most expensive, as you fill the home with new furniture and appliances, add personal touches, and complete those repairs that you find are needed. It can be hard to know exactly how much you need for home maintenance as you put together your budget for buying a new home.

 

Here are some immediate home maintenance costs that you should set aside money for:

 

  1. New Locks - You have no way of knowing who has a key to your new home. Be sure to install new locks on every exterior door.

  2. Fire Extinguisher - For the safety of you and your family, your home should have at least one fire extinguisher. If there isn’t one left at the property, purchase one for your kitchen.

  3. Chimney Sweep - It may have been years since the fireplace and chimney in your new home were properly cleaned. Before using it, be sure to hire a professional to come in and clean everything out of it.

  4. HVAC Maintenance - While the HVAC system might seem to be running properly, you can’t be certain when the last time it was maintained professionally. Have someone come inspect it and make any necessary repairs as soon as you move in to avoid pricey repairs in the future.

  5. Trimming Trees - The trees outside were not part of your home inspection and some could cause issues in the future, especially if they are older. Be sure to have the trees trims to avoid any potential damage to your home.

 

While these are the key maintenance areas to focus on upon moving in, you should not stop budgeting for home maintenance. Be sure to always keep some savings aside for issues that may arise with your home. A general rule of thumb is to budget for 1% of your home’s purchase cost every year for emergencies and repairs. Note, if your home is more than 10 years old, you might want to budget for more.


Follow us on Facebook and check out our Website for more helpful home maintenance and budgeting tips throughout the year.

 

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