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Socially Distanced Holiday Shopping in Brookside!

World’s Window

Although the holidays are looking a little different this year in Brookside, there are still plenty of ways to celebrate while social distancing. The Christmas lights are twinkling and the Brookside neighborhood is filled with some of the best local shopping in Kansas City. Home to over 70 shops, restaurants, boutiques and small businesses, and of course, your friends at Brookside Real Estate! We’re here to fill you in on our favorite go-to spots for a socially distanced holiday season!

World’s Window: Where you can explore an exciting “world” of fashions, accessories, folk art, gifts & home décor for everyone on your list by shopping online. The festive gift wrap is free, but they will gladly accept “thank you” donations for Rose Brooks Center.

Brookside Barkery & Bath: If you don’t want to get out of your car or spend time with other customers in-store, that’s no reason to leave your furry family members off your shopping list! Luckily, their entire pet holiday collection is available to shop online this year! Choose Curbside Pick-Up (no minimum) or free local delivery ($25 minimum, within 20 miles) at checkout, and they’ll do the shopping for you!

The Corner Candle Shop Holiday Gift Box

The Corner Candle Shop: Candles always make great gifts! If you’re more comfortable shopping these hand-crafted and unique scents from a distance– all of your holiday candle needs can be purchased online! Or you can skip the shipping costs and give them a call to place a curbside pick-up order.

Jorjy: A lifestyle shop that offers a fresh take on wallpaper, fabric, art and accessories for the home as well as interior design and to-the-trade partnerships. Shop coffee table books, cozy throw blankets, home accent pieces and jewelry all online!

Although these are just a few of the 70+ options, one thing is for sure – Brookside is your destination for socially distanced holiday shopping while also supporting local businesses! All of us at Brookside Real Estate Company wish you a happy and healthy holiday season!


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Brookside Real Estate Donates to Bags of Fun KC

Owner/Broker of Brookside Real Estate, Jim Kraus and Director of Bags of Fun KC, Louisa Weinrich

During the month of September 2020, Brookside Real Estate announced a partnership with Bags of Fun KC for Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. For every house sold during the month of September, Brookside Real Estate donated $100 to Bags of Fun KC to raise funds for children who are suffering from cancer or other life-threatening injuries.

Owner/Broker of Brookside Real Estate Company, Jim Kraus, recently met with the Director of Bags of Fun KC, Louisa Weinrich, to present a check from Brookside Real Estate Company that ultimately ended up sponsoring a Bag of Fun for Hayden – currently a patient at Children’s Mercy. Louisa said, “Hayden is five years old and inpatient at Children’s Mercy Hospital after suffering a traumatic brain injury. He had to have brain surgery to allow his brain to heal. He goes through intense physical therapy and occupational therapy as well as other therapies during the week.”

Hayden’s siblings were even able to come to the hospital when the Bag of Fun was delivered to spend some time with him.  Hayden’s Mom, Jackie, told us, “Getting this bag of fun with everyone here was amazing! It really helped to distract us and to focus on something other than Hayden‘s injury! It gave us all time to act as a family unit again!”

Each Bag of Fun comes with 12 to 15 items inside that are picked specifically for each child based on their developmental age, interests, and treatment plan. Hayden‘s bag had a Kindle fire as his electronic!

Ready to make a difference in the lives of KC children fighting life threatening illnesses, diseases & injuries? Follow Bags of Fun KC on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or visit the website to make a direct donation.

Bags of Fun KC delivers the power of play to children fighting cancer and other long term, life threatening illnesses or injuries. Each bag of fun is filled with hours of distraction, educational items, as well as items that bring comfort. Not only do bags of fun give the children something to focus on during their treatments, but they also give the families of these children the sense that someone else cares.

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Coveted Countryside Tudor in the Heart of KC!

This unique home is located in the Countryside subdivision, one of the most walkable neighborhoods in Kansas City! You’ll be able to walk your kids to and from school, walk to the Country Club Plaza and Crestwood shops, even stroll through Loose Park and the Trolley Trail. Located at 41 W. 52nd Street, all of this is just steps away from the front door. A gorgeous home in the heart of KC that you don’t want to miss out on!

This craftsman features an abundance of natural woodwork that greets you right as you walk in the door. Both the living room and dining room have custom built in cabinets with beautiful beveled leaded glass! Every bathroom in the home is updated and the sellers also added a stunning 20×20 foot family room with an open kitchen – you won’t miss a Kansas City touchdown while making your game day snacks! The lovingly planned landscaping makes you feel like you’re walking in your own personal park!

Watch the virtual tour below:

Ready to see 41 W. 52nd Street for yourself? Contact Jim Kraus at 816-806-7653 or stop by our storefront office located at 9 W 63rd St – when the flag is up, we’re open!

Click here for more listing information.

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Treat A Sick Child To The Healing Power Of Play This Halloween Season

Before the pandemic hit, children undergoing cancer treatments would spend an average of 120 days in the hospital. Because of COVID-19 and the weakened immune systems that come with a cancer diagnosis, these kids are experiencing hospital stays and isolation for much longer than ever before. Because of social distancing guidelines, the traditional Halloween celebration of trick-or-treating is not safe for children fighting life threatening diseases. Thankfully, a local nonprofit foundation held near and dear to the hearts of everyone here at Brookside Real Estate Company is doing something about this.

Bags of Fun KC delivers the healing power of play to children fighting cancer and other long term, life threatening illnesses. Director, Louisa Weinrich explained, “A bag of fun is a backpack filled to the brim with 12-15 items picked specifically for each child’s needs, interests and treatment plan. Each bag of fun is filled with hours of distraction, educational items, as well as items that encourage socialization and items that bring comfort. Not only do bags of fun give the children something to focus on during their treatments, but they also give the families of these children the sense that someone else cares.”

Because of the pandemic and so many restrictions for celebrating Halloween, there are 125 additional children that will need a Bag of Fun. As such, we at Brookside Real Estate are continuing to raise awareness to ensure that every child in Kansas City fighting cancer receives a Bag of Fun this Halloween season. 

Brookside Real Estate has proudly been a local partner of Bags of Fun KC since their inception in 2011 and have had the pleasure of providing over 200 bags of fun to sick Kansas City children and their families. “All of us here are extremely passionate about helping bring a smile to the faces of these KC children who are being treated for long term, life threatening illnesses,” said Brookside Real Estate Owner and Broker, Jim Kraus, “The opportunity for Brookside Real Estate Company to partner with this organization means a lot to all of us, we enjoy the opportunity to help spread the word and we encourage Kansas City to treat a sick child to the healing power of play this Halloween season.” 

If you would like to find out how you can help Bags of Fun KC or sponsor a bag of fun for a child, you can do so by going to their website:

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BRKS Partners with Bags of Fun KC for Childhood Cancer Awareness Month!

Childhood Cancer Awareness Month is nationally recognized every year in September. Increasing awareness of childhood cancer is extremely important to Brookside Real Estate Company and we’re excited to announce that we are partnering with Bags of Fun KC all month long!

For every house sold during the month of September, Brookside Real Estate will donate $100 to Bags of Fun KC to raise funds for research into its cause, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and cure of childhood cancer.

Bags of Fun KC delivers the power of play to children fighting cancer and other long term, life threatening illnesses. A bag of fun is a backpack filled to the brim with 12-15 items picked specifically for each child’s needs, interests and treatment plan. Each bag of fun is filled with hours of distraction, educational items, as well as items that bring comfort. Not only do bags of fun give the children something to focus on during their treatments, but they also give the families of these children the sense that someone else cares.

Director, Louisa Weinrich explained, “2020 has been an interesting year to say the least.  We have had to cancel all of our major fundraisers and try to reinvent ways to connect with our donors.  Our program is needed even more this year with hospital play rooms closed, no toy sharing, and no visitors allowed.  We need donations now more than ever to be able to continue bringing the power of play to children fighting cancer and other life threatening conditions.”

Ready to buy or sell your home and make a difference in the lives of KC children fighting life threatening illnesses? Give Brookside Real Estate Company a call at (816) 333-3330.

To learn more about Bags of Fun KC or to make a direct donation, visit their website here.


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3 Tips to Upgrade Your Home Office

While most of us were expecting to be back in the office by Labor Day, a lot of companies have opted to remain remote until at least the end of 2020. Now that most of us are working from home for the long haul, it might be time to give your home office an upgrade. If you’re looking for a place to get your work done with no distractions, or maybe a space that’s a little more video-conference friendly, we’ve put together a few tips to make you as productive as ever – even if you are just steps away from your bedroom. 

  1. Choose the right room. Zoom meetings from the dining room table or the living room couch just won’t cut it anymore!  Whether you’re cleaning out that room you used for storage, converting your spare bedroom, or transforming your unused sun room, make sure this space is designated for work only. This should be a room you walk into and you immediately switch your brain to work-mode. 
  2. Pick up the essentials. Make sure that you stay organized – that could mean a small filing cabinet to hold your paperwork or floating shelves to keep your important documents in order. An extra monitor and laptop stand are also very helpful.
  3. Take breaks. A great thing about working from home is that you are just steps from the outdoors – not just an office parking lot. Even if you live in Downtown Kansas City, the River Market, or the Country Club Plaza, a quick walk or jog around the block will give your productivity the boost you’re needing!

Wishing you hope, health and happiness, Kansas City!


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4 Tips For Selling Your House During Covid-19

It’s no secret that the Covid-19 Pandemic has caused the economy to tank, but what a lot of people don’t know is that the value of your home has likely remained intact! With low inventory and highly interested buyers, now is a great time to sell! Brookside Real Estate Company is here to help you make the process of selling your home as smooth and as enjoyable as possible – even during a global pandemic! We’ve put together 4 tips you should know if you are getting ready to list your home in the coming months:

  • Appraisals are Conducted Differently. For the most part, these jobs are essential. But new, temporary rules have been put in place to allow drive by and desktop appraisals. If an in person appraisal is necessary, social distancing guidelines should be implemented and the appraiser should enter the home individually.
  • Open Houses Are Not So Open Anymore. Virtual tours are the safest, but many buyers will want to see the house in person before they make a final decision. As we all navigate a new socially distanced world, you’ll want to make sure your house is ready to show as safely as possible. Everyone currently living in the home should be in good health, keep hand sanitizer and booties at the front door, turn on all light switches and open all doors to limit contact, and don’t forget to disinfect high traffic areas before and after each scheduled, private showing. 
  • The Closing Might Get Creative. The days of everyone gathering around a big table to sign documents are long gone, at least for now. It is likely that new, temporary rules to officially close have been put in place in order to comply with social distancing guidelines. 
  • Most Importantly, Choose an Agent You Can Trust. Be sure your listing agent is willing to go above and beyond to keep the selling process as smooth and as safe as possible. Including virtual (Facebook Live or Facetime) showings, in-person showings when necessary, and screening out those buyers that aren’t serious. 

If you’re considering selling your home in the next few months, contact a neighborhood expert you can trust: One of the real estate pros at Brookside Real Estate Company! Call today at (816) 333-3330.

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Why Matterport Matters to Your Homeselling/Homebuying Experience

View of home living room

Virtual 3D Home Tours!

Looking for a way to step up your real estate game and help you reach your home-owning goals!? Ellen Zetmeir works with cutting edge tools and technology to help!

Times may be uncertain for many people, but the way you feel about a home doesn’t have to be. Ellen has all the experience and insight to help you discover and build your dream home.

One tool in Ellen’s real estate belt is a virtual tour guide called Matterport that allows you to completely examine a home from top to bottom and inside out – without ever setting foot inside! Walk through the front doors, peer out the kitchen window, snoop in the basement! It’s all there for you to take an open house tour anytime. No need to awkwardly peek around the place with other potential buyers or in front of the owners, you get your own personal tour and as much time as you want! Snoop away! No, really – Click here to  virtually walk through an example!

Dollhouse View

Imagine eating breakfast in the cozy kitchen nook, or sitting down with family and friends in the spacious living area; check out the bedrooms, the closet spaces, and the garage. This virtual tour guide allows you to visualize just how your dreams can become a reality! You can even measure a space to make sure that your furniture will fit where you want it to! With various views including a “dollhouse” view, an inside view, a floorplan view, and a measurement tool – Matterport has something for everyone!

Ellen also knows this tool is a game-changer for those selling their homes. Great photos of the house generate more interest, and with Matterport, your chances skyrocket! Your potential buyers can peruse your home anytime they’d like – and buyers are far more likely to contact you about the house with questions and feedback. With Ellen to help set everything up, preparing a virtual tour is fast and painless. Matterport uses an app that scans for accurate measurements and breathtaking photos so that potential buyers can see just how enticing your home is. You can even call out your favorite features of your home by utilizing tags throughout the virtual tour! Ellen will use this tool to “up your house-selling game” and give you a cutting technological edge over other homesellers. Rise above the competition and sell your house faster!

There are several benefits to utilizing a technology like the Matterport virtual tour guide:

  • Screen Buyers: You are able to screen buyers without a physical walk through the home which eliminates the need for any additional people in your home. Only the most serious buyers will want a physical walkthrough.
  • Showing Off: Showing family your potential dream home is just a shared link away! When there is a virtual walkthrough, family is able to share in the excitement of home buying that much easier.
  • The Out-of-Towners: Many people still find themselves moving to new cities or even new states, and setting up a virtual tour opens up a whole new market of potential buyers who are not close enough to see the house in person.

Ready to take the next step? Whether you’re looking to buy or sell, Ellen is the personal and professional presence you need.

Give Ellen a call today at (816) 489–6950! See for yourself the difference a virtual tour and an agent like Ellen Zetmeir can make!

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Brookside Community Comes Together

Brookside Community Comes Together While Maintaining Social Distance

Even though times have been uncertain for everyone here in the Brookside/Waldo communities there is still a lot of good to be found when taking the time slow down and take a look around. In the words of, Ellen Zetmeir, with Brookside Real Estate,

“I have really been challenging myself, my friends, and my clients to observe the good that is happening right now and the closeness of the community through all of this. I am truly blessed to live in Brookside. The community coming together in this time just reminds me of all of the reasons that I was excited to move into this neighborhood in the first place. “

For example, some kind individuals are offering their help by sewing masks either for free or simply for donation; other neighbors are purchasing and delivering groceries to elderly friends who are stuck at home. A couple of kind hearts are volunteering simple joys like free flowers and other plants from their own gardens in the hopes of brightening people’s days. The Brookside community is more close-knit than ever thanks to thoughtfulness. chalk hopscotch

It is evident that the community’s creativity is alive and well. Many families are taking the time to create sidewalk chalk art – these bright and colorful creations include fun hopscotch games and meaningful messages of encouragement!

Brookside’s creativity has also forged a way for the community to still share music; sit out on your front porch some evening and you may well hear “Front Porch Concerts” drifting through the streets. From cellos and violins to pianos and flutes, neighbors are serenading the community from their very own homes. If you’re lucky, you might even witness ukulele concerts or some pretty phenomenal bagpipe playing!

Following proper social distancing and precautions of course, Ellen recommends getting out and breathing some fresh air.  Take note of the fluffy dogs delighted to have their humans home; watch for the kids on bikes or playing in their backyards.

See if you can discover which neighbor has a pet tortoise! Admire the sweet signs of spring like bright tulips! Wave to your neighbors! Remember, there is plenty of joy to go around! Take a stroll around your lovely Brookside community and you might just be surprised at what you find.

Ellen knows all about buying and selling homes, but she also has all the key insights into the Brookside community! Contact Ellen today for any questions about your home or any tips on becoming more involved in your Brookside neighborhood.

And please, feel free to share your own messages of encouragement with Ellen! Brookside Real Estate is delighted to have you as part of our beautiful Brookside bunch!


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I’ve Got a Guy Episode 5: Understanding Mortgage Forbearance

UPDATE: After we shared this video on social media, we were thrilled to learn that the Wall Street Journal had reached out to Andy Nolte to interview him on the topic of mortgage forbearance. Click here to read the full article.

Attention All Homeowners!

There is a lot of misinformation going around right now concerning mortgage options, so Ellen has brought in her mortgage guy Andy Nolte from Movement Mortgage to share some insight!

In this “I’ve Got a Guy” episode, Andy gives us some inside perspective into what “Mortgage Forbearance” really means and how you the homeowner should go about making the right choice for you during the COVID-19 crisis.

Promising mortgage options about postponing payments are not all they seem to be. Keep in mind the future consequences of rash actions and check out this online video for Andrew’s tips!

Andy’s main takeaways on mortgage forbearance is this:

  1. If you have your job, make your payment!
  2. If you lost your job and still have money in the bank, make your payment!
  3. If you lost your job and cannot make your payment, only then ask about your forbearance options but do your research! Be sure to review the agreement terms cautiously! This option is your last resort so please contact Andrew for more information or further questions.

Give loan officer Andy Nolte a call today at (816) 309 – 8175 or email him at

For all homeowners and potential homeowners, Ellen has the answers for your real estate questions. She is taking special precautions during these unusual times to ensure your safety while still helping you reach your homeowning goals. From inside contacts like her “I’ve Got a Guy” Series to her wealth of personal knowledge and experience, Ellen is prepared to guide you in the best decisions for you. Contact Ellen today for any and all questions you might have about your real estate situation!