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Lee Ann Ruby
REALTOR®, Associate Broker
Serving Metro Richmond
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Date Archives: December 2020

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Henrico, VA | 1 Posts
Hopewell VA | 2 Posts
Midlothian VA | 3 Posts
Napier ERA | 9 Posts
Petersburg VA | 4 Posts
Powhatan VA | 3 Posts
Richmond VA | 111 Posts
December
28

Fireplace Safety Guide to Follow This Winter

Fireplace Tips

One of the best ways to warm up this winter is to curl up by the fireplace with a good book. A fireplace adds a cozy touch to your home in colder weather, but if it's not maintained and used properly, it can pose a fire hazard.

Our real estate agents suggest the following fireplace maintenance and safety tips you need to know this winter:

  1. Have your fireplace inspected and cleaned annually
    Creosote and soot – byproducts of fires that aren't burning efficiently – can build up and coat the inside of your chimney. Once this happens, these substances can catch fire. To prevent this from happening, call a professional to clean and inspect your chimney before using it this season.

  2. Take care of ashes properly
    After using your fireplace, take care of the ashes properly, so a smoldering one doesn't start a fire. Don't vacuum them up because live coals can still remain and could cause a fire in your vacuum cleaner bag. Instead, remove them from the firebox by using the ash dump or scooping them out from the firebox once the ashes are cold. 

  3. Use a non-flammable rug
    Buy a non-flammable rug – which you should be able to find at a fireplace supply store – to put in front of your fireplace. That way, if sparks fly out, they won't damage your carpet.

  4. Protect your kids
    Never leave a fire unattended if you have children in the house. Now's the time for them to learn to stay away from the fireplace as well as the tools you use for it.

  5. Test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
    Make sure you have enough working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in your home. This will help your family stay safe in case of a fire or if there's a buildup of carbon monoxide – an odorless, clear, and tasteless toxic gas. Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors should be tested monthly, and their batteries should be replaced annually.

  6. Your fireplace should have a door
    Make sure your door has a tight-fitting door rather than a screen. A door will keep sparks inside the fireplace, while a screen may let some escape.

  7. Check the flue or damper
    Before starting a fire, check your damper or flue to make sure it's open by looking up into your chimney with a flashlight or mirror. It should remain open to let smoke out of your house, so keep it that way until all the embers have stopped burning.

  8. Use wood that's dry and well-aged
    Avoid using wet or green wood in your fireplace. These woods cause more smoke and make more soot build up in your chimney.

  9. Keep the area around your fireplace clear
    Keep all flammable items – including draperies, newspapers, and furniture – away from your fireplace. If they get too close, they could catch fire from a sparking ember.

  10. Never leave a fire unattended
    Never fall asleep or leave your home with a fire burning, even if it's just for a brief moment.

  11. Keep a window cracked
    If you can, leave a window slightly cracked when you have a fire going. That way, you'll be keeping the room ventilated and give any smoke or gasses a chance to escape.

Contact us today at Napier ERA if you're interested in Richmond homes for sale. If a fireplace is on your list of must-have items for your new home, we can show you houses where one or more fireplaces creates a beautiful focal point.

December
22

Napier ERA is a FAMILY

Our People, Our Family

Not just offices of Realtors, Napier ERA is a family of all sorts of professionals that gather together to help Central Virginia live and love at their greatest capability.

We are so proud of our growing family and all our agents do to make our little world a better place. Our culture in offices and on the streets would not be the same without their compassion, giving spirit, and enthusiasm to help others. 

December
21

Your Guide to Last Minute Holiday Shopping in Richmond

Richmond Shopping Guide

If you're like our real estate agents, then there are a few people still on your gift-giving list. This year, it's more important than ever to think, shop, and buy local. By purchasing from locally-owned stores, your money goes back into the community and supports your family, friends, and neighbors.

Think. Shop. Buy. Local.

No matter how long you've lived in a place, there are surely a few hidden gems you've yet to stumble upon. Think. Shop. Buy. Local helps you discover the wonderful mom and pop shops around Richmond. If you prefer in-store browsing, you'll be happy to know that these shops all have made adjustments to provide safe, socially distant shopping experiences. However, these shops will also offer curbside pickup for those who order online. For a completely zero-contact experience, you can order from these businesses and have your products shipped directly to your front door. Some of our favorite shops highlighted by Think. Shop. Buy. Local include:

  • AR Hot Southern Honey, selling tasty Virginia honey products.

  • Disco Sports, a staple of the Richmond sports scene for over half of a century who knows how to get you game-ready.

  • Little Nomad, housing a collection of clothes, toys, and other products for young children.

  • Re-Funk-It, a funky art shop with works created by artists from in and out of Virginia.

  • The Boho Basement, perfect for gifts for the upcycler in your life.

  • Thistles, a Richmond tradition for delivering distinctive gifts to those you care about most.

Local Shops Around the RVA

It's no secret that there are plenty of other great locally owned shops around the city. If you've explored everything you could in downtown Richmond, there are a few other towns to check out. If you're still searching for that special gift, may we suggest visiting one of the many shopping areas near Midlothian homes for sale, or venturing further south to downtown Petersburg:

  • Cottage Lane — 1353 Sycamore Square, Midlothian, VA 23113
    Though Cottage Lane is not offering in-store shopping right now, you're welcome to buy online and retrieve your purchase at the curb. Gifts and home décor are available from a number of wonderful shops. 3 Marthas stocks quality products for infants while Catstudio produces geographic towels, glasses, and pillows. Jelly Cat has plush animals for children or the young at heart, and you will never go wrong when gifting a box of Byrd's Famous Cookies.


  • Old Towne Petersburg — 216 N. Sycamore Street, Petersburg, VA 23803
    Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, the once burned down Old Towne of Petersburg has found new life as a district boasting unique shops and renovated homes. The antique lover will find great pieces at Sycamore Antiques and Architectural Art or at The Oak Antique Mall. Second Hand Rose, Mad Biddy's, and Camera & Palette also have interesting items for sale that make for one-of-a-kind gifts for the antique collector on your list. Be sure to stop by after browsing Petersburg homes for sale in the area. 

Is a new home in the RVA on your shopping list as well? Let us help you cross it off your list. Contact us today to tour our many Richmond homes for sale.

December
14

Holidays at Home: 7 Ways to Step Up Your Decorating Game

Richmond Holiday Decorating

Ask any of our real estate agents, and they'll tell you that the holidays are a big deal around here! From enjoying delicious baked treats to over-the-top decor, we love everything about it. If you're ready to step up your decorating game, we've got plenty of excellent tips. Here are a few of our favorites! 

  1. Decorate Your Front Porch
    Boost your curb appeal and make sure your guests get a festive feeling right from the start by decorating your porch. A wreath is a simple way to add a touch of class to your front door. Take things a step further by adding some garland and ribbon to your banister. If you have space, place matching evergreen trees on either side of the door or choose other festive decor like vintage sleds, a statue of a woodland creature, or a painted porch leaner. 

  2. Don't Stop with the Entryway
    Many homeowners beautifully decorate their front porch and entryway, but that's as far as they go. If you want to step up your decorating game, make sure you continue your decor theme throughout your home. Adding small, simple touches in each room will make a huge difference! 

  3. Deck the Halls (And the Stairs)
    Some of the best Richmond homes for sale have multiple stories. If you're lucky enough to have a staircase in your home, take advantage of this great decorating opportunity. For a simple, classy look, add some greenery or garland down your banister and accent it with red, green, or gold bows. Are you an expert wrapper? Show off your style by stacking elegantly adorned gifts on the edge of each step. You can also use your stairway to hang stockings or other treasured trinkets.

  4. Bring Nature Indoors 
    One of the most beautiful ways to decorate your home for the holidays is to incorporate natural elements into your interior decor. Think sprigs of pine, poinsettias, pinecones, and natural wreaths. 

  5. Rock Your Christmas Tree 
    In most homes, the tree is the centerpiece of the holiday decor. Whether you buy a fresh new tree every year or opt for a pre-lit artificial tree, knowing a few simple decorating tips can help you create a stunning look time and again. After you've strung up your lights, it's time to add some garland. Feel free to get creative with this. Use beaded strands, wide ribbon, or any other style that appeals to you. 

  6. Don't Forget the Base 
    If you want to take your holiday decor to the next level, don't forget your tree's base! Start with a coordinating tree skirt that matches your decor, or choose a neutral white or off-white skirt that matches everything. Then, add something under the tree to create visual interest. Think a train track, snowmen, or even a vintage wagon or sled. Pull everything together by wrapping gifts or empty boxes, so they coordinate with your decor and place them under the tree. 

  7. Dim the Lights 
    The soft glow and twinkle of your holiday lights will look much more attractive when the other lights in your house are slightly dimmed. If you don't already have dimmer switches on your lamps, it's time to get some. This is an easy and inexpensive way to add instant ambiance to your home. 

Are you dreaming of a new home this holiday season? We can help turn your dreams into a reality! Contact us today to discuss your goals and get started. 

December
9

Going On Now: Massey Street of Hope

Massey Street of Hope Luxury Home Show

This is your last weekend to attend the most charitable home show in our region!


Massey Street of Hope is a NAHB award-winning special event featuring designer furnished new homes for tour to the public in an effort to raise money for VCU Massey Cancer Center.

The homes showcase the latest in interior decorating ideas, trends, and innovations with an emphasis on unique designs and creative use of space.

Napier Realtors ERA is the proud Real Estate Sponsor of this limited-time event! Join us in supporting Massey Cancer Center at VCU and see some of the best new homes of Central Virginia.

Learn more about home builders, get directions to Meadowville Landing, and support Massey Cancer Center at VCU on the official website.
December
8

Meet Our Team: Kim Harvey

Meet Kim Harvey, West End office administrator 

When you work with Napier Realtors ERA, you're working with a team of professionals that are devoted to you! Whether you are an agent or client, our team works hard to get transactions closed in a timely manner that makes it all easy. We're proud to have a West End office that's filled with family values, professional ethics, and smiling faces. Thanks to Kim for being a spectacular part of our team! 

December
7

Find the Perfect Christmas Tree at These Richmond Tree Farms

Richmond Tree Farm

November has certainly flown by, and now it's time to find the perfect Christmas tree. Our real estate agents love the look, smell, and feel of a real Christmas tree. The good news is there are plenty of places where you can pick up a locally grown tree! When the snowflakes fall, there's no better way to spend the evening than gathering around the tree to enjoy cookies and hot cocoa. If you're searching for a tree that will create a sense of wonder and magic in your home, pay a visit to these tree farms around the RVA.

  1. Sneed's Nursery — 8756 W. Huguenot Rd., Richmond, VA 23235
    Open since 1976, Sneed's Nursery has been a local source for year-round garden needs and of course Christmas trees. A perfect option for those on the go, they have trees packaged and will load them in your car for you. Also, be sure to check out their wreaths and bouquets while you are there for an extra holiday touch for your home. 

  2. The Great Big Greenhouse & Nursery — 2051 Huguenot Rd., Richmond, VA 23235
    For nearly half of a century, the green thumbs of Richmond have trusted The Great Big Greenhouse & Meadows Farms Nursery with their lawn and garden needs. During the holidays, they have the area's best inventory of live and cut Christmas trees, as well as poinsettias, mistletoe, and other seasonal plants. As you're searching for the perfect tree, stop by for a look and let them treat you to a free cup of hot chocolate or coffee.


  3. Boulevard Flower Gardens — 2120 Ruffin Mill Rd., South Chesterfield, VA 23834
    Not sure if you have the time to find and cut down a Christmas tree this year? If you live near South Chesterfield homes for sale, you're in luck! Let Boulevard Flower Gardens lend a helping hand. They're offering curbside pickup and local delivery of their evergreens with no minimum purchase. 


  4. Azalea Garden Center — 1320 Westbrook Ave., Richmond, VA 23227
    If you haven't taken a stroll around Azalea Garden Center, now is the perfect time to discover their selection while shopping for a Christmas tree. This locally-owned business has helped Richmond homeowners on the Northside keep their gardens growing strong since 1994. Stop by to see their selection of fresh-cut Balsam Fir and Fraser Christmas trees.

  5. Willey's Christmas Trees — 6305 Mechanicsville Turnpike, Mechanicsville, VA 23111
    Is there anything better than a relaxing walk through a Christmas tree farm? Embrace the magic of the season at Willey's Christmas Trees, just a few blocks away from our Mechanicsville homes for sale. Pre-cut trees, garland, and holiday wreaths are all for sale. Be sure to stop by to find the best Christmas trees while they last.

Now that you have a tree, you need a space to set it up. Contact us today to tour our Richmond homes for sale with expansive living spaces where your family can celebrate the holidays around the tree. 

Disclaimer: All information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. All properties are subject to prior sale, change or withdrawal. Neither listing broker(s) or information provider(s) shall be responsible for any typographical errors, misinformation, misprints and shall be held totally harmless. Listing(s) information is provided for consumers personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing. Information on this site was last updated 12/01/2022. The listing information on this page last changed on 12/01/2022. The data relating to real estate for sale on this website comes in part from the Internet Data Exchange program of CAAR MLS (last updated Wed 11/30/2022 11:10:27 PM EST) or CVRMLS (last updated Thu 12/01/2022 1:07:40 AM EST) or Williamsburg MLS (last updated Wed 11/30/2022 10:54:30 PM EST) or NNAR MLS (last updated Wed 11/30/2022 10:26:40 PM EST) or Chesapeake Bay & Rivers (last updated Wed 11/30/2022 8:50:19 PM EST). Real estate listings held by brokerage firms other than Napier Realtors ERA may be marked with the Internet Data Exchange logo and detailed information about those properties will include the name of the listing broker(s) when required by the MLS. All rights reserved. --


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