T&S Home Cover Stories

Sales Trio: Warner Hall Thornhill

Realtor Alex Thornhill explains her career choice simply and succinctly: “It’s for the love of home,” she says. Her partners J. Warner and Sam Hall share a similar philosophy, and together, they have more than 30 years of combined real estate experience among them.

The Warner Hall Thornhill trio is Sotheby’s No. 1 team for the state of Missouri, and part of Dielmann Sotheby’s International Realty. Their primary focus is on St. Louis’ central corridor, but first and foremost, they say their goal is to help clients find the best homes for their families. This, explains Thornhill, could be a loft downtown, a $300,000 house in Creve Coeur or a $2 million property in wine country. “It’s really about helping people look beyond the deal and understand the kind of lifestyle they hope to have in a house,” Thornhill explains. “It may look good on paper, but if you’re the kind of person who likes to walk, and the home is miles away from the park or from your preferred school district, it may not be the right house for you.”

Of course, sometimes clients are looking for a house to live in short term. Then, explains Thornhill, her team’s job is to focus more on finding them something with strong resale value, encouraging clients to ‘buy low’ in a good neighborhood. “In this case, the house may not have everything they want,” she explains. “But perhaps, with a few cosmetic updates here and there, they can put a little equity in over a short time.”

Thornhill says she and her partners consider it just as important to keep clients from buying the wrong home as helping them lock in the right one. “We don’t let people forget what’s important to them,” she says, emphasizing the need to keep buyers focused on their life goals. “It’s not just about occupying a house. It’s about living, growing and changing in a place,” she explains. “If you keep people returning to their core values, it absolutely pays off in the long run.”

The Warner Hall Thornhill trio also shares a passion for restoring old homes. “We found each other because we are chronic renovators,” Thornhill says. Warner has rehabbed more than 20 homes; Hall—previously in construction—loves to get his hands dirty, as well. “And I’m not content without a project,” Thornhill admits, adding that she and her husband recently moved because they had done almost everything possible to the home they lived in. “I thought we were going to be there forever, but after seeing our new project, I was eager to get going all over again,” she says.

Built in 1929 and untouched in three generations, the Thornhills’ new house was so overgrown, she says you couldn’t see it from the road. “It’s going to take us at least 10 years to get it where we want it to be,” she says. “But it will be a labor of love, and just right for this chapter in our life.”

Warner Hall Thornhill is Sotheby’s No. 1 team for the State of Missouri and part of Dielmann Sotheby’s International Realty. Pictured on the cover: Alex Thornhill, J. Warner and Sam Hall

Cover design by Julie Streiler | Photos: Bill Barrett