alexandria: Kingstowne and Fort Belvoir-The Good Neighbor Policy - 10/31/09 07:28 AM
We don’t always get to decide who are neighbors are going to be. We take our chances when we see new houses going up around us. Deciding to put out the welcome mat often helps pull your new neighbors in and makes them feel welcome. And this is case with Fort Belvoir and Kingstowne. When the earth movers first arrived on a large expansive of dirt between Van Dorn and Beulah roads everyone waited with anticipation to see how the newest neighborhood would grow. And grow it has. Into a community divided into three villages made up of commercial and residential … (4 comments)

alexandria: Parkfairfax-Two Past Presidents Called it Home and You Could Too! - 01/14/09 12:46 AM
Tucked away just a few miles from DC in Alexandria VA are the rolling hills, tree lined streets and brick buildings that make up the community of Parkfairfax.   Parkfairfax has the distinction of being the former of home of two past presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford.  Both lived in the community prior to taking the highest office in the land.  Fitting since all of the condo models are named after presidents!

Parkfairfax was originally built to fulfill the need for housing close to the Federal Government, Pentagon and DC in 1941.  The homes were constructed as apartments by … (8 comments)

alexandria: Shhhh! Don’t Tell Anyone Else About this Great Little Place to Grab a Treat to Eat - 10/07/08 05:20 AM
In a way you hate to give up the "secret" of your favorite little places to sneak off for lunch or a sweet treat.  On the other hand you want others to realize that you don't have to spend a fortunate at one of the mega chain coffee stores or settle for fast food when in the same area is a great little deli and pastry shop that will satisfy your hunger with real food.
In this case the little secret spot is the Alexandria Pasty Shop and Deli in the Bradley Shopping Center on King Street.  Since I own a … (5 comments)

alexandria: Inquiring Minds Want to Know-Are You an Innie or an Outie? - 09/19/08 08:56 AM
No, this isn't a personal question about your belly button.  Buyers moving to Northern Virginia often see the phrase "inside" or "outside" the beltway in MLS descriptions and wonder where are these locations on the map.   For those who have lived in the Northern Virginia most of our lives we have watched "outside" the beltway on the Virginia side expand far west and south of DC. Just as the term "slugging" started as a phrase to describe riders using counterfeit tokens, the term inside or outside the beltway started with a different meaning in our area as well.  The phrase was … (8 comments)

alexandria: Welcome to Fairlington - 07/22/08 03:09 PM
Just a stoplight away from the Pentagon and tucked in the trees off of I-395, sit the seven neighborhoods that make up the community of Fairlington.  The connection between military families stationed at the Pentagon, Fort Meyer or other Military District of Washington facilities remains as strong today as it did in the 1940’s when Fairlington was first built.
Originally Fairlington was constructed as a garden apartment complex to house defense workers and their families during World War II.  The community remained popular as a rental complex for almost 30 years and then in the early 1970's the property was converted … (4 comments)

alexandria: "Just the Facts Ma'am!" Fairfax County VA Market Report (LOCALISM FEATURED) - 07/21/08 09:45 AM
Even though Joe Friday actually never uttered those words they have become associated with his character in Dragnet. However they seem appropriate to use when we try and talk to our clients about the current Northern Virginia real estate market.
With the news about Countrywide, IndyMac, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae buyers are finding even more reason to be skittish about the real estate market. In reality things are okay. Notice I didn't say great because they aren't great if you are a seller today. They are okay for realistic sellers who have over the years built up equity in their … (18 comments)

alexandria: Del Ray-An Alexandria Front Porch Community - 07/16/08 12:40 AM
Are you looking for a neighborhood where residents hang out on their porches in the evening and call out a friendly hello as you take a stroll? Want to grab a cup of coffee at the type of place where everyone knows your name or walk to the farmers market on Saturday morning? Then you need to take a look at the community of Del Ray in Alexandria. Del Ray is one of the original and still thriving "front porch" communities that you find in Northern Virginia. Founded as a railroad community for workers at the nearby Potomac Rail Yard, Del … (4 comments)

alexandria: Little Theatre of Alexandria Turns Seventy Five - 07/14/08 07:03 AM
Kicking off the Jubilee Celebration will be none other than the appropriate Tony award winning musical 1776.  The Little Theatre of Alexandria or LTA is a non-profit organization that is a local treasure.  The theater bought its first building in 1939 on Ramsay Alley in a former blacksmiths shop.  During WWII the theater was shut down and when they reopened Harry Truman was know to attend LTA plays.
With the growing popularity of local theater the LTA was able to buy a new building, its current home, at 600 Wolfe Street in 1961.  With 213 seats, dressing rooms and rehearsal space the … (3 comments)

alexandria: Condo Special Assessments-A New Problem in Today’s Market - 06/10/08 01:26 PM
When most people think of special assessments for condo owners they think major common area improvements.  In the Northern Virginia area condo owners often see them when it is time to repair the balconies, upgrade the amenities or redo the lobbies but in today's real estate market we also see special assessments for another reason.
Delinquencies and foreclosures are sapping associations of much needed income to keep current on the everyday bills.  A few years ago condos in Arlington and Alexandria were flying off the market faster than they could be built.  Unfortunately among the buyers who were excited about a … (13 comments)

alexandria: Military Relocation- Fort Myer and Eminent Domain Go Hand in Hand - 01/13/08 03:31 AM

It doesn’t matter how famous you might be in US history if you can’t pay your bills the government is going to confiscate your land. And this is what happened to none other than Robert E. Lee and his wife during the civil war. General Lee was unable to keep up with the taxes on the Custis-Lee estate and abandoned the property while fighting in the civil war. The land was purchased at auction by the US Government and divided into 200 acres for Arlington National Cemetery and 256 acres for a site originally called Fort Whipple. After the war the … (6 comments)

alexandria: Historic Churches in Northern Virginia-Alexandria - 12/14/07 01:59 AM
Today’s church is not quite as old as the others in the previous articles in the series but it is a beautiful church with a long history in Old Town Alexandria. Not as famous as its neighbor Christ Church the Washington Street Church has its place in Alexandria history as well.
The cornerstone for the Washington Street Church was laid in September 1850. However, the history of the church actually began almost 40 years before when a split erupted in the Methodist Church over the issue of slavery occurred. The church split into two factions, just as the country did, a … (6 comments)

alexandria: Kingstowne-A Masterfully Planned Fairfax County Community - 11/14/07 06:13 AM
Twenty years ago on a large expansive of dirt tucked behind Edison High School ground was broken for the first homes that started the 5200 residences that comprise the Kingstowne neighborhood. Designed with both commercial and residential areas the three villages that make up Kingstowne have continued to be popular with owners looking for a neighborhood that offers both easy access to public transportation, shopping and restaurants.
For owners who enjoy the outdoors and a healthy lifestyle Kingstowne offers a great variety of recreation options which include 18 tot lots, three multi-purpose courts, almost 22 miles of hiking and biking paths, … (4 comments)

alexandria: Meeting Local AR Members Is so Much FUN! - 09/27/07 09:38 AM
I told the lunch group today that I would write the minimum number of words required to get 200 points.  So to be a woman of my words here they are.
Thanks to Brian Block for pulling together Patricia Kennedy, Margaret Woda and myself for lunch at Harry's Tap Room in Clarendon.
They have the pictures!  
Opps I went over my 50 words.

alexandria: Apples to Apples in Fairlington - 09/24/07 03:16 PM
As a Fairlington owner I have posted market reports over the last few months about general real estate trends in the neighborhood.  Last month I wrote a blog titled "Saying No to Local Market Reports" in which I said I would no longer post generic information about the area.  In keeping with that promise I decided this month for Fairlington I would focus on one popular model in the neighborhood and take a look at the prices from August 2006 and August 2007.
It shouldn't be a surprise to anyone to see prices are down 10% from the previous year.  The volume … (3 comments)

alexandria: Do You Know about Habitat for Humanity ReStores? - 08/31/07 12:42 AM
If you are undertaking a spruce up project on your home in Fairfax or Prince William County you may want to make the Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Alexandria or Manassas your first stop.  The Habitat ReStore offers you an opportunity to do three things at once.  The first is to support the great programs Habitat for Humanity offers to low income families to give them an opportunity to own their own home.  The money raised by the ReStores across the US provides funds to build an additional 10 homes per year.
The second benefit is the Habitat ReStore has to offer is … (7 comments)

alexandria: Are you an "Innie" or an "Outie"? - 08/30/07 08:18 AM
No, this isn't a personal question about your belly button.  I have some new buyers moving to the Northern Virginia area and they have been reading some of the literature that I sent them to look over before they arrive in the area.  Many cities have unique terms to describe different neighborhoods and those of us who live in this area have some unique ones as well.  I have written about our "slugs" before but realized there is another phrase we all use liberally that needed explaining to someone new to the area.
We often describe neighborhoods in Northern Virginia as being either … (3 comments)

alexandria: People Who Live in Glass Houses - 08/28/07 09:47 AM
Hidden among all of the three level colonials in Fairfax County you will find a few pockets of Mid Century Modern homes (MCM).  One of those neighborhoods is Hollin Hills in Alexandria.   Designed over 50 years ago by architect Charles Goodwin the neighborhood was considered avant-garde at the time as it broke the traditional bounds of building in the area.   With clean lines and walls of windows the homes were designed to obscure the lines between the inside and the outside.  Originally the area was popular with Washington urbanite and now the second generation of fans of MCM are buying the … (3 comments)

alexandria: Saying NO to Generic Market Reports! - 08/22/07 12:59 AM
Every month hundreds if not thousands of agents jump on the band wagon and print the latest local market reports.  Most of the data that is presented comes from the same sources and the only noticeable difference is the way some agents format the data and the delivery method (print, blog, email).  I began to wonder who is reading all of the reports that are published each month.  Is it a buyer trying to decide whether to buy now or wait until they think the market has hit the bottom?  Is it seller trying to decide if this is the right … (8 comments)

alexandria: Unlocking Northern Virginia Marketing Reports - 08/11/07 03:06 AM
Every month in Northern Virginia a variety of reports are published by the MRIS, NVAR, Washington Post and others to provide the public with information on recent market trends.  The reports focus on comparing housing prices in a user selected zip code from the previous month and the previous year. 
When the local market was moving at a frenetic pace most of us didn't have time to look at the reports and we didn't have many reasons to question whether there was enough data included for a buyer or seller to make informed decisions.  Now don't get me wrong there are … (3 comments)

alexandria: Another Alexandria Neighborhood Holding it's own! - 08/03/07 04:49 AM
The July sales report for Park Fairfax is ready and though I had anticipated from last month that there would be 17 new SOLD signs instead there was a slight fall out and only 11 properties closed.  The days on the market for most properties in Park Fairfax is significantly lower than the average that we are seeing in the area. 
What is interesting about Park Fairfax is that the homes in this development do not have central AC and in some cases they also do not have washer and dryers installed.  Owners do have window AC/Heating units and  current homeowners generally adapt … (3 comments)

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Cindy Jones

Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Woodbridge, VA

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