Real Estate Information Archive


Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 13

Leaves Are Falling!

by The Rullo Team


2015 Tri-Cities Leaf Collection Schedule   


Be sure to check the 2015 Leaf Collection Maps and Schedules for boundaries, schedules and availability.


St. Charles

Leaves must be on the parkway by 6:30 a.m. on your area’s designated day even though it may take several days to pick up the piles in your specific area.

This program is funded by a portion of the fee collected on the utility bills of eligible homeowners. Check your utility bill or call Utility Billing at 630-377-4426 with questions about your eligibility for this program.




 Residents must place their leaves on the parkway no later than 7:00 A.M. of the day of your scheduled

pickup period. If leaves are placed on the parkway after the collection crews have gone by, they will not

return until the next scheduled pickup date.

Each year, the order in which the zones are collected is alternated to provide equal service to all residents. Collection this year will require approximately 2-3 work days to complete each zone




 Residents are asked to rake leaves to the space in the parkway no farther than 6’ behind curb and not in street by 6 a.m. on the Monday of your scheduled week.

Leaves will be collected in designated areas, rain or shine.  Crews will not return to an area once they have made one pass during the scheduled weeks.

National Chocolate Day

by The Rullo Team




National Chocolate Day is observed annually on October 28


While there are many specific chocolate related holidays throughout the year, National Chocolate Day celebrates all things chocolate.  As America’s favorite flavor, chocolate is well deserving of it’s own day of honor and celebration

 Chocolate comes from the seed of the tropical Theobroma cacao tree.  Cacao is grown in Mexico, Central America and Northern South America.  The earliest known documentation of using cacao seeds is from around 1100 BC.  The cacao tree seeds have a very intense, bitter taste that must be fermented to develop the flavor.

 Once the seeds have been fermented, the beans are dried, cleaned and roasted.  After roasting, the shell is removed to produce cacao nibs.  The cacao nibs are then ground into cocoa mass, which is pure chocolate in rough form.   The cocoa mass is usually liquefied then molded with or without other ingredients. At this point of the process it is called chocolate liquor.  The chocolate liquor may then be processed into two components: cocoa solids and cocoa butter.

◦Unsweetened baking chocolate –  cocoa solids and cocoa butter in varying proportions.

◦Sweet chocolate –  cocoa solids, cocoa butter or other fat and sugar.

◦Milk chocolate – sweet chocolate with milk powder or condensed milk.

◦White chocolate – cocoa butter, sugar and milk but no cocoa solids.

NOTE: Research has found that chocolate, when eaten in moderation, can lower blood pressure!








Celebrate! Go out to your favorite local restaurant and indulge in a delicious chocolate dessert...

Grahams Chocolate:

Grahams 318 Coffee house:

All Chocolate Kitchen:


Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory:

...Or try one of these recipes at home:

Chocolate Lasagna
No Bake Chocolate Oat Bars

Another Geneva Commuter Parking Lot

by The Rullo Team

New Fourth Street Commuter Parking Lot Coming This Fall!

A minimum of 70 new commuter parking spaces will be coming to downtown Geneva this fall. Trees and brush have been removed from the future parking lot at Fourth Street and Crescent Place. Construction is set to begin in October and is expected to be completed by mid­-November, weather dependent. The parking lot will be designated for commuter permit parking during the day but will be open for free public parking during the evenings and weekends. The project has been a high priority in the City's Capital Improvement Program. The parking lot and expansion of the Third Street Commuter Parking Deck were needed to accommodate parking that will be lost as part of Union Pacific's future plans to add a third rail line, which will remove 145 existing surface parking spaces. For more information about the Fourth Street parking lot construction, call Assistant Public Works Director Brian Schiber at 630-­232­-1501 or send him an email [email protected]

If you are interested in more information about the benefits of home ownership in the Fox Valley Area please contact a real estate professional with the Rullo Team.

Fox Valley Halloween 2015!

by The Rullo Team





We absolutely love this time of year.  When little ghouls and goblins romp from house to house, tricking or treating and this year SPIKE RULLO wanted to join in the fun, but he can't decide on a costume.  His Despicable Me Minion costume seems to be popular, but then again, he's always loved Star Wars, can you find him below?  Go to our Facebook Page and help Spike pick out a costume, voting will take place OCT. 30


We know Spike isn't the only one with last minute costume anxiety.  If you haven't decided on a costume yet, don't fret, we're here to help. 

Halloween falls on a Saturday this year, so many are planning for celebrations lasting the entire weekend.  People are buying multiple costumes to wear on Thursday, Friday and Saturday! Which can be hard on the wallet. Americans will spend close to $6.9 billion on Halloween costumes this year, averaging  $74.34 per person in 2015, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF).  If you haven't bought your costume yet, we're here to share the most popular costumes, so you don't end up 1 of 4 Cinderella's at the ball, as well as inspire your inner creative, for a one of a kind Spectacular Costume Contest Winner!! 

This year the top sellers for adults are various Superheroes, Disney Princesses, Star Wars and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  For the Kids; The hottest seller is The Descendants, followed by the Disney villains from the hit 2015 movie.  So, think outside the box, and remember you don't have to spend a bunch of money, get creative; here are some of our favorites:

                                                            French Kiss                                    Google Maps


Ginger Bread Man                                          Spelling Bee


Formal Apology                               Philosophical Play-Doh


Some links to get your creative Halloween juices flowing: 

20 Very Punny Costumes To Rock This Halloween


Now, it's time to engage your inner Martha Stewart.  If you're brave enough to host a Halloween party this year, don't skimp on the details.  Cleverly themed appetizers and drinks are a must.  Here are some appetizer ideas, sure to impress your guests for many Halloween moons to come!









For a really special treat....make you're guests an amazing PUMPKINTINI!!!

The drink of the month and the one that will make you the talk of the Halloween Party Circuit! 

Hopefully you feel inspired!  Halloween is one of the best parts of Autumn and certainly one of our favorites.  If you have any unique costume, appetizer or drink ideas, please feel free to share on our Facebook Page!  We're always on the look out for fresh creative ideas to help make the season better each year. 

Trick or Treating Times

by The Rullo Team


It's that time of year again, when little goblins and ghosts will be going door to door trick-or-treating. Children and parents are encouraged to trick-or-treat in their neighborhoods between their City’s recommended Halloween hours:

  • St Charles recommends that you limit trick-or-treating to 3 to 7 pm on October 31
  • Geneva children and parents are encouraged to trick-or-treat in their neighborhoods between the City’s recommended Halloween hours of 3 to 7 p.m. Saturday, October 31. **Families also are invited to two additional candy collection opportunities in Geneva. Participating downtown businesses will be offering free Halloween treats to children from 2 to 5 p.m. Thursday, October 29, and Geneva Commons will host trick-or-treating from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday, October 25.
  • Batavia’s suggested hours for trick-or-treating are from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 31

To assure that all little superheroes, princesses and scary monsters

have a fun and safe Halloween experience this year, parents should take an active role in this process

by making sure their families follow these safety tips:


Young children should be accompanied by their parents or another responsible adult.

 If there is a chance children will be out after dark, at least one member of each group should carry a flashlight.

Teach and stress to children to watch for traffic. Walk only on sidewalks and cross the streets at intersections.
Bicycles and skateboards should be left at home.

Use stick-on reflective material generously.

Only give or accept wrapped or packaged candy.

Do not trick-or-treat at a house if there is no light on.

Ensure costumes fit and are worn in a manner that prevents tripping.

If children wear masks, make sure they can see clearly and their visibility is not obstructed.

Stay within familiar neighborhoods.
Carrying hard props such as swords and daggers should be substituted with soft foam rubber materials.



For more tips and guidelines on Halloween safety, please visit:

Daylight Savingstime

by The Rullo Team

Spring Ahead ~ Fall Back


On Sunday, November 1, 2015 at 2:00 a.m., set your clocks back one hour … or you could just turn your clocks back before you go to sleep in order to save yourself the hassle. Don’t worry about your cell phones because they reset themselves. If you’re out still partying for Halloween, many bars and restaurants are staying open that extra hour, which means another hour of fun, but you’ll have to check with your local establishments! 




This is also the perfect time to remember to change the batteries in you smoke and CO detectors!




Credit for Daylight Saving Time belongs to Benjamin Franklin, who first suggested the idea in 1784. The idea was revived in 1907, when William Willett, an Englishman, proposed a similar system in the pamphlet The Waste of Daylight.

 The Germans were the first to officially adopt the light-extending system in 1915 as a fuel-saving measure during World War I. The British switched one year later, and the United States followed in 1918, when Congress passed the Standard Time Act, which established our time zones. This experiment lasted only until 1920, when the law was repealed due to opposition from dairy farmers (cows don’t pay attention to clocks). 

During World War II, Daylight Saving Time was imposed once again (this time year-round) to save fuel. Since then, Daylight Saving Time has been used on and off, with different start and end dates. Currently, Daylight Saving Time begins at 2:00 A.M. on the second Sunday of March and ends at 2:00 A.M. on the first Sunday in November.



3 Traditional Fireplace Alternatives

by The Rullo Team

There’s nothing better in the fall and winter than the snap, crackle, pop of a warm wood-burning fireplace; the scent of burning wood in the cozy air as you sip on some hot chocolate (with marshmallows of course).  We know, super romantic!  It is actually one of the most coveted features of a home.  Many homeowners will pay upto $1,400 more for a home with a fireplace, according to a 2013 Home Feature Survey By NAR and we get it, it’s charming…but it’s not so charming to your lungs…and your budget…and the Earth really.  So, here’s the 411 on fireplaces, and we’re not just blowin smoke!

  • Traditional fireplaces are notorious heat thieves. Chimneys suck up 90% of the warmth a fire creates and then it takes some of the heated air and sends it up into the atmosphere, which is obviously bad for you energy bills, not to mention the whole global warming issue.  Yes, burning wood unnecessarily can be bad for the planet. The soot your fire creates is a heat-trapping pollutant.  The more of this in the air, the more heat is trapped on earth.
  • Did you know inhaling burning wood smoke is as harmful as smoking? Wood smoke is loaded with carcinogens like benzene.
  • Did you know wood-burning fireplaces need lots of maintenance? Routine ash cleanup and professional cleaning every other year is important in order to keep the combustible creosote at bay, and it’s not just wood burning fireplaces, gas fireplaces need this as well. 


Ok, so enough of that.  You get it.  Wood Fireplaces aren’t as charming as we thought, but here are 3 beautiful alternatives, so you can enjoy all the traditional charm, without the consequences to your health and wallet.  


1.  Direct-Vent Gas Insert Fireplace

Professional Installation required to ensure the fumes are vented through the roof or wall.  You’ll also need a plumber to hook up a gas line.  A good permanent option is to put this fireplace behind gas.  That way, the pollutants are vented to the outside and not the home. These can also come with real fire sound and scent, so you can still hear the snap crackle and pop and smell the burning wood, just like a traditional fireplace.  Since you’ll be using gas, it could increase your utility bill a bit.  However, these gas fireplaces don’t have the same heat loss associated with a wood burning fireplace.  A good way to balance this though, is simply turn down your thermostat a bit while you have your fireplace on.  It is a good idea to do seasonal maintenance on these units as well, to remove accumulated dust from the inside of the fireplace.  



2. Electric Fireplace Insert

Some of these can be super simple; plug into a grounded outlet.  So, you can pretty much install this one yourself.  What’s nice about these, is they’re portable.  You can just move it to  another room.  The newer models are using LED lights, creating a more realistic fire feel.  What’s different about these, is that there is no sound or scent.  Just the pleasing motion of flames.  This kind of fireplace, because it is electric, may increase your utility bill a bit, but it will last a lot longer than a gas fireplace.  You’ll want to clean this one each season as well. 






3. Alcohol Gel Fireplace with Fake Log Insert (Ventless)

Place these logs inside your existing hearth.  Alcohol gel is a combination of Isopropyl alcohol, water, salt and thickeners.  Usually sold in cans, these produce a real flame and can burn up to 3 hours.    There are also options for realistic sound and scent, or scentless.  They will emit heat and a tiny amount of carbon dioxide.  Alcohol is considered a clean fuel, but still, if you are burning these in your home more than twice a week, you should air out your home occasionally to prevent minute build-up.  You’ll want to clean these each season to remove dust.  


Direct Vent Fireplace 


Bio Ethanol fireplaces are similar and becoming quite popular as well: 

Illinois' Top Ten Most Haunted Cities

by The Rullo Team

Illinois has no shortage of ghost stories and spooky legends of haunted places, and the spooks inside them.  From the state’s creepiest cemeteries to roads known for strange and inexplicable happenings, there is a rich history of haunts in the Land Of Lincoln.

For years, Mysterious Heartland has sought out some of the most notable haunted locations throughout Illinois and the Midwest.

Mysterious Heartland’s Michael Kleen acknowledges some people’s claim that Illinois is one of the most haunted states in the nation, and the eerie stories across the state seem to validate this claim. 

Below is a list of the Top 10 most haunted cities in Illinois, according to Mysterious Heartland.

10. Naperville

In 1946, [Naperville] was the scene of one of the worst train disasters in U.S. history. Two passenger trains collided, killing 47 and injuring 125. There have been Eyewitness accounts of seeing lost disoriented specters walking along Loomis Street.  The residents along 4th avenue have also reported experiences of cold spots, strange noises and shadows; which makes sense since this is where they laid all the bodies out after the crash.  It is said that as many as half a dozen ghosts haunt the Barbara Pfeiffer Hall and Theater, on the campus of [North Central College]. Naperville Cemetery, usually a peaceful place, has also been the scene of strange encounters.

9. Galena

First opened in 1855, the DeSoto House is one of the oldest operating hotels in Illinois. Hotel staff and guests have witnessed apparitions in old fashioned clothing, passing through walls where doorways once were. Others have heard voices in the hallway and even caught the scent of old cigars. The Galena History Museum, Turner Hall, and One Eleven Main (a former mortuary turned restaurant…strange) are also believed to be haunted.

8. Decatur

Author Troy Taylor has spent more than a decade documenting and offering tours of Decatur’s haunted places. High on his list are the Avon and Lincoln theaters, Millikin University, and Greenwood Cemetery. After the Avon Theater reopened in the 1990s, staff began experiencing strange events, including hearing laughter, footsteps, and applause after hours. They have also seen the apparition of Gus Constan, who owned the Avon during the 1960s. At Greenwood Cemetery, visitors have caught a glimpse of spook lights, phantom funerals, and the “Greenwood Ghost Bride.”

7. St. Charles

St. Charles is home to a surprising number of haunted places. Al Capone’s Hideaway and Steak House, which closed in 2012, was probably the most famous. The Arcada Theater, Dunham-Hunt Home, Hotel Baker, and St. Charles East High School are all also believed to be haunted. The Dunham-Hunt home is one of St. Charles’ oldest buildings. According to Bethany Krajelis of the Kane County Chronicle, “Museum staff have reported hearing footsteps, seeing moving shadows under doors, and claw marks on the wallpaper, as well as neighbors reporting flickering lights.” One former museum director held a séance in the home.




6. Springfield

Aside from its position as the political hub of Illinois, Springfield is known for its many museums and connections to President Abraham Lincoln, whose tomb is located in Oak Ridge Cemetery. The ghost of Lincoln himself has been spotted numerous times around the old State Capitol. Additionally, the Dana-Thomas Home, Legacy Theatre, Yates Mansion, and the Chesapeake Seafood House are all believed to be haunted. In the 1970s, an exorcism was performed at the Sober Duck, a former disco and rock club on Fox Ridge Road in Springfield that burnt down under mysterious circumstances in 1992. In the Dana-Thomas Home, volunteers have heard humming, the sound of chairs tumbling down the stairs, and have even seen a lady dressed in black wandering the home when no tour groups were present.




 5. Carbondale

Southern Illinois University is rich with ghost-lore, and many of its buildings are believed to be haunted. Oakland Cemetery is also no stranger to the unusual. The ghost of a young woman in a flowing white gown, a mausoleum that unlocks on its own, vapors, glowing balls of light, and even strange creatures have all been reported there. The Hundley Home, where a former mayor of Carbondale and his wife were found shot dead, was featured on the Discovery Channel’s series Ghost Lab in 2010. Even the former post office, now home to a blood plasma center, has experienced unusual activity. Employees have seen the lobby chandelier swing back and forth, doors open by themselves, radios turn on and off at will, and at least one janitor quit because he “could not handle the intensity and frequency” of the activity.



4. Peoria

Aside from its association with the infamous Peoria State Hospital (actually located in neighboring Bartonville), Peoria is home to more than its fair share of haunts. The Meyer-Jacobs Theatre at Bradley University is one of the most haunted theaters in the state. Equally haunted is the Peoria Public Library, which was allegedly built on cursed ground and is occupied by as many as a dozen different ghosts. At the Peoria Players Theatre, Lights flicker and props seemed to move on their own. Once, the grandson of a volunteer saw the ghost of a man in a gray suit sitting in the auditorium. Ghostly nuns reportedly comfort the sick at Saint Francis Medical Center, and the sprawling Springdale Cemetery is home to an isolated place known as the “Witch’s Circle.”



3. Rockford

Rockford Female Seminary evolved into present-day Rockford University, which is home to numerous ghost stories. The laughter of past students has been heard in the vicinity of Adams Arch, which was constructed using a doorway from the original campus. Though not well advertised, haunted sites abound throughout the rest of the city as well. Twin Sister’s Woods, the Emma Jones Home, Coronado Theater, Faust Hotel, and the Camp Grant Museum and Command Post Restaurant are just a few. Most famously, in 2012, Tinker Swiss Cottage Museum was featured on Syfy’s Ghost Hunters. The Atlantic Paranormal Society documented every inch of the museum while filming the episode. At one point in the evening, a rocking chair began to move on its own. At the Emma Jones Home, a newlywed couple reported that an old woman appeared in their living room and asked what they were doing in her home, before she vanished.



2. Alton

Perhaps because of its rich history, Alton has a disproportionately high number of allegedly haunted places. Most famously, it is home to the McPike Mansion, one of the most haunted houses in the Midwest. There are a lot of repurposed buildings here, leaving behind ghosts of the past. That was the case with the former Enos Sanitarium, now an apartment complex, as well as the Mineral Springs Mall and Old Milton School. The Mineral Springs Mall, a former hotel, is said to be haunted by several ghosts, including that of a jasmine-scented woman, an artist, and one frightening specter who hangs out in the former swimming pool. The modern Saint Anthony’s Health Center is also believed to be haunted by at least three ghosts.



1. Chicago

With so many people living and dying here, it comes as no surprise that Chicago would be home to many ghosts. Entire books and their sequels have been devoted to the ghost-lore of the Windy City. The Congress Plaza Hotel, Excalibur Club, Red Lion Pub, and Drake Hotel are among the most infamous. Guests at the Drake have reportedly seen the ghost of a “Woman in Red” throughout its halls. More than half a dozen bars and pubs in Chicago are believed to be haunted. Ethyl’s Party in Chinatown, for example, was a former funeral home, and employees have seen the ghost of a man dressed in a brown trench coat, a thick white cloud, and even an extra band member who was spotted on stage for a few moments before vanishing. Though technically not located within city limits, one of the most famous ghost stories in the world, Resurrection Mary, and one of the most famous haunted places in the world, Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery, are often associated with Chicago.



*Special Thanks to Michael Kleen of Mysterious Heartland for the spooky info.  Check out their website for more haunts!

Geneva IL Yellow-Arrow Traffic Signals Coming Up!

by The Rullo Team

Yellow-Arrow Traffic Signals Coming to Randall Road in Geneva Oct. 15


You might expect delays on Randall Road in Geneva during the last weeks of October, but what you will get in the end are safer intersections for decades to come!

The Kane County Division of Transportation announced that workers will start removing and replacing traffic signal mast arms and equipment at three Randall Road intersections in Geneva, starting Oct. 15.

Upon completion of the work, new traffic signals will include a Flashing Yellow Left Turn Arrow, which has been proven to reduce collisions and increase safety at all locations where it has been implemented.

A flashing yellow arrow operates the same as a solid green ball for left turns. The difference is that the flashing yellow arrow better conveys to drivers the need to yield to oncoming traffic and pedestrians who may be crossing. For more information regarding the project and the Flashing Yellow Arrows Project, please visit Randall Road HSIP Project.

During construction Randall Road traffic will be allowed to flow north and south without stopping. Construction is expected to last three to four weeks.

Motorists will not be allowed to turn off of Randall Road onto the intersection side street from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the day’s work is being done and should expect delays, increased travel times during the process, and are advised to consider alternate routes during the work.

 The intersections and timetable of the project are as follows:

  • ◦Randall Road and Glen Eagle Drive, beginning Monday, Oct. 15, 2015
  • ◦Randall Road and Christina Lane, beginning Oct. 20, 2015
  • ◦Randall Road and Fargo Boulevard, beginning Oct. 30, 2015

 Kane County is making these upgrades at 11 Randall Road intersections this year, part of a $1.7 million upgrade under the federal Highway Safety Improvement Program.

 For all Kane County traffic advisories, see KDOT Traffic Alerts.

 If you are interested in more information about the benefits of home ownership in the Fox Valley Area please contact a real estate professional with the Rullo Team.

Things Your Home Inspector Wants You To Know

by The Rullo Team

It doesn’t matter whether you’re buying or selling, the home inspection process can be a bit intimidating. For sellers, it can be a reminder of the issues you’ve been avoiding, and for buyers, it can spell heartbreak.  You fall in love with a home, only to find it has some problems you didn't expect.

So, yes, home inspections come with a little anxiety, on both sides, but don’t let it stress you out.  Remember, your inspector is there to protect both parties and create a comprehensive "to do list" of sorts, that hopefully ends with two very happy parties.  

Instead of fearing the Home Inspector, make them part of your team. Knowledge is key, for both buyers and sellers.    

Here are some things your inspector wants you to know:

For Sellers

1. Move your Pets

We know your new puppy is a cutie pie, but even if your inspector is an animal lover, having pets running around while the inspection is taking place, makes the job more difficult.  So, for your inspectors sake, get the dog out of the house. It makes the inspector more at ease and happier while performing this extremely useful and important task.

2. Don’t forget to Clean

Whether you plan on being there for the inspection or not, you should clean your home up as if you are showing the property.  I mean you don’t need to scrub like your mother in law is coming over, but get rid of the clutter and dirt.. It really does make a difference to your inspector and obviously the homebuyer.  First Impressions are Lasting Impressions...make your's the BEST it can be!

For Buyers

1. Your potential home may have problems

Your home inspector may come up with a list of problems or issues that need to be solved. Expect this!  Relax. Remember, your inspector is on your side.  They are there to give you the full picture!  Sure, there are times to worry, but not every single issue is super critical.  Your inspector will let you know what issues to deal with first.  

2. Anything can be fixed…well, almost anything.

We all know the Evil Three of home inspections; MoldRadonAsbestos, and yes these things can be frightening… and that is why your Home Inspector is there! If he finds there is a problem with any of these, he will recommend that a study be done and if needed, a remediation before the home could even be sold. Normally, most homes aren't in this category so there's no need to fear this issue. Just remember that the Home Inspector is there to protect both parties if any one of these does exist.

3. One thing you should worry about is water

Here’s one problem you should stress about.  While not necessarily a deal breaker (remember almost anything can be fixed) you must fix any water related issues before the closing of the home. Make special note of puddles and leaky ceilings, giving special attention to the basement.  Water issues in the basement can be an expensive and difficult fix. 

4. Home inspectors can’t predict the future

Often, buyers ask questions like, “how many more years will this roof last?” And your inspector may be able to give you a good estimate, but they cannot give you a precise timeline. There are no crystal balls in an inspectors tool kit.  They can simply tell you what they see.  

5. Don’t buy JUST with your heart.  Don’t buy JUST with your brain either.  Find a healthy balance.  

Don’t let the potential for repairs stop you from buying that dream home.  It’s easy to forget how much you love a home as you imagine the cost of said repairs…just take a deep breath.  Think for a moment.  Could this be a good investment in your future? This is not an easy process, but if you approach it level headed, realistic and optimistic, you’ll come to the right conclusion.  


Your inspector’s visit will simply provide a to-do list, but not everything needs fixing immediately, unless the roof is caving in, so don’t let a long to-do list weaken your love for the home. Just take a deep breath and work through these things one at a time with the Seller and negotiate what YOU are willing to take on and what you feel THEY need to fix or put money up to fix as part of the sale of the home.

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 13