The Decade From Hell? The Declining Decade? I Beg to Differ - 12/31/09 07:22 AM
Today's the last day of the first decade of the 21st Century! Wow!
Over the past few days and weeks, I've seen boatloads of news stories in print, online, and on television decrying the events of the past 10 years and saying that this was "The Decade from Hell" or "The Declining Decade" or using some such negative descriptions.
People are quoted as saying good riddance to this decade.
Sure, there have been some horrible things that have happened in the past 10 years -- September 11th, Hurricane Katrina, Wall Street scandals, the big Asian Tsunami, etc.
However, when I look
Those Condo Fees are Too High! Compared to What? - 12/30/09 10:51 AM
People buying condos are often shocked, surprised, deterred, upset, disgusted, confused, aggravated, insulted, scared, cautious, and multiple other adjectives (which cannot be printed on this family-friendly blog) upon hearing about the monthly condo fee payments.
Those Condo Fees are Too High!
To get an idea of average area condo fees, take a look at Alexandria Virginia Average Condo Fees -- 2009 which I wrote earlier this year, comparing the fees at some of the more popular condo complexes in Alexandria, Virginia.
So, yes, the average condo fee for a two bedroom high-rise condominium unit easily exceeds $600. Yes, that $600 is not
The Story is Inventory (or lack thereof) - 12/29/09 12:14 PM
Inventory -- in real estate, it's a fancy way of saying how many homes are available for sale. It's fancy because most real estate agents are used to talking in single syllable REALTOR-speak, to wit:
buy, sell, rent, sold, price, sale, home, house, etc.
As we approach 2010 (not the sci-fi sequel to 2001, but the year), it is clear when analyzing the Northern Virginia real estate market that The Story is Inventory, or more appropriately, the lack of inventory.
Take a look at some charts that vividly show you the picture of inventory in Northern Virginia, comparing today's numbers to
You Don't Need a Bailout -- You Need Social Media! - 12/27/09 09:54 PM
FACT: 25% of Ford's marketing spending is on Digital/Social Media.
FACT: Ford is the ONLY U.S. auto company that didn't take a government loan.
Are you new to blogging? New to social media? Welcome aboard. In planning for 2010 and beyond, you're going to want to increase your use of these tools.
If you've been around the internet in the last 6 months, you've watched the video Social Media Revolution.
What you might not have seen is the equally impressive sequel: Social Media ROI.
This video below is a must watch. No matter what business you are in, for 2010, say
Market Shift and Recovery: The Slides Tell the Story - 12/18/09 04:32 PM
I am not by any means, a Powerpoint master. I'd rather be out and about helping people buy and sell real estate in Northern Virginia than sitting in front of a Microsoft program designing charts, graphs, slides, and presentations.
That's why I'm happy and thrilled when someone else has created a Powerpoint presentation which helps to explain the real estate market. Especially when it tells the story in a simple and easy to understand way.
The four slides below are part of a recent presentation given by Christine Todd, CEO of the Northern Virginia Association of REALTORS.
They point to the
Future Leader Selected to Participate in 2010 NVAR Leadership Institute - 12/17/09 09:17 AM
THIRTEEN OUT OF ELEVEN THOUSAND
With over 11,000 members, the Northern Virginia Association of REALTORS (NVAR) is the largest local REALTOR association in Virginia and one of the largest in the United States.
Thus, it was a proud moment last week, when I received a letter informing me:
"Congratulations! You have been selected as one of thirteen REALTORS to participate in the NVAR Leadership Institute"
NVAR LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE PROGRAM
According to Vinh Nguyen, 2010 Chairman of the Board of the association, "[t]he objective of the Institute is to familiarize future NVAR leaders with all aspects of the REALTOR family, including the
Fairfax County Ranks 13th Nationally In Traffic Congestion - 12/10/09 05:00 PM
While certainly not good news, there's some silver lining to this report that Craig Richardson (an agent in my office) discusses below regarding traffic congestion in the D.C. and Northern Virginia areas:
The traffic congestion points to the fact that our region is growing -- people are coming to the area.
Some of the congestion is temporary, as Craig points out, due to the current construction surrounding Tysons Corner and the Metro extension. Finally, the completion of the Metro extension over the next few years should alleviate some of the road traffic as public transportation will reach out further into the Northern
Are You a Provider? - 12/10/09 04:43 PM
It happened to me just a few weeks ago. One of those ah-hah moments, which I'm sure you've all had.
I was walking out the door from my condo, and a fellow approached me with a question: "Who's the cable t.v. provider in this area?" An innocuous question, to be sure. I quickly answered Comcast, who's been my cable t.v. provider for as long as I could remember.
Immediately thereafter, one word kept ringing in my head. Provider. Provider. Provider. Hmmm...
The dictionary has several definitions of the word "provider". Among those definitions
December Real Estate Market Snapshot for Alexandria Virginia - 12/09/09 01:45 PM
If you spend enough time walking around Old Town Alexandria, you're sure to see plenty of old, original gaslamps on many of the historic homes in the area. That's the charm of Old Town Alexandria!
What's Happening today in the Alexandria, Virginia Real Estate Market?
Here's a snapshot of Alexandria Virginia home sales in the last 30 days from early November 2009 through now:
ALEXANDRIA VIRGINIA HOME SALES:
Active homes for sale: 451 (including 118 new listings in the last 30 days). Inventory is way down! Alexandria Homes sold in the last 30 days: 182 Average Sales Price: $459,222 Median Sales Price: $422,582 Average Days on
Stop Thinking About It. It's Time to Sell Your House. Inventory is Very Very Low in Northern Virginia - 12/02/09 05:49 PM
The title of this blog post pretty much says it all.
I'll repeat it here:
If you've been thinking about selling your house in Northern Virginia, follow these four important steps:
Stop what you are doing right now. Seriously. Stop! Stop "thinking" about selling your house. Tidy up the house. Call me to help sell your house. (Call today at 703-626-0715) Why?
Northern Virginia Housing inventory is at EXTREMELY low levels. A "normal" or balanced market means that there is 6 months of inventory of houses on the market. More than 6 months inventory favors buyers who have lots of homes
It's in the Charts: Fairfax County November 2009 Home Sales - 12/02/09 04:38 PM
There were 1,017 homes sold in Fairfax County last month (November 2009).
If you're buying or selling a home in the area, you want to know a breakdown of which price ranges are selling and how much negotiating room exists on these sales.
The answers to these questions are in the charts:
As you can see, the majority of Fairfax County home sales are in the $200,000 to $500,000 price ranges. In fact, there were more sales in this overall price range than in all the other price ranges put together.
The chart above shows the final net sales
November's Most Expensive Sales in Northern Virginia - 12/02/09 11:51 AM
Are you wondering about Northern Virginia real estate and pondering what has sold recently?
Here's some information about the most expensive home sales in Northern Virginia (Arlington County, Alexandria City, Fairfax City, Fairfax County, and Falls Church City) for November 2009. All information was obtained through MRIS.
Overall, there were 48 Northern Virginia home sales topping $1 million during the month of November 2009, just slightly down from the 55 in October.
Currently, there are 708 homes on the market in Northern Virginia with list prices topping $1 million down from 798 that were on the market last month.
NOVEMBER'S MOST EXPENSIVE SALES
Back, Better, and Beautiful: 2 Bedroom 2 Bath Condo at Alexandria Knolls West - 12/01/09 04:23 PM
It's back on the market. After taking a breather off the market, this Alexandria Knolls West condo is back. It's at a better price ($250,000) and it's still beautiful. Not only is the condo great, but so is the building.
How do I know? Well, I've lived there for over 6 1/2 years. Doesn't that add some credibility to the neighborhood when your real estate broker lives in the community?
One thing is for sure. Alexandria Knolls West has the biggest balconies around. While it's getting chilly outside these days, during the warmer weather, my wife and I enjoy eating many of our
Kilts, Bagpipes & Maybe Some Haggis: The 39th Annual Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend in Alexandria VA - 12/01/09 03:12 PM
I'll skip the haggis.
Just doesn't sound appetizing does it? Haggis contains sheep's heart, live and lungs, minced with onion, oatmeal, suet, spices and salt, mixed with stock and traditionally boiled in the animal's stomach for about 3 hours, according to Wikipedia.
Sorry for those of you who love it, but YUCK!
They (or at least Mike Myers on SNL) used to say that "If it's not Scottish, it's Crap!"
Well, then, here's an event that is most certainly not crappy! In fact, it's fun for the whole family and a long tradition in Alexandria, Virginia:
39th Annual Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend