Arlington, VA

When juggling a full-time job and evening classes four to five nights a week in George Mason University’s juris doctor (JD) program became difficult, graduate student Alicia Meads withdrew from the program. When she heard last year that the Antonin Scalia Law School was offering a new part-time juris master’s (JM) program, designed for working professionals, she re-enrolled.

“I wanted to understand the nuances of the law so that I could be a better lobbyist and policy professional,” said Meads, who works as a legislative affairs manager for one the nation’s largest fertilizer companies and regularly meets with members of Congress on Capitol Hill to represent her company.

Meads was able to transfer some of the credits from her JD program, and will be the first graduate from the JM program this fall. What she’s learning has been immediately applicable to her career, she said.

“I’ve been able to develop an expertise in environmental, social and governance — or ESG — reporting,” said Meads, who also helps the company coordinate its sustainability reporting and disclosure. “[The JM program] is perfect for anyone who’s working in public affairs, politics or policy and still wants a law school experience.”

Other JM students agree.

Ginger Burk, who’s been a journalist for more than a decade, said she joined the program to expand her understanding of the law and become an even stronger political correspondent.

“[Understanding the law] is inherent to all political and government reporting,” Burk said.

As a result of her studies, Burk is better able to understand court documents she reads for her job and how the lawyers she interacts with everyday have been taught to think, she said.

“A juris master’s degree will bring increased credibility to one’s skillset,” said Adriane McCray Webb, a mindfulness practitioner who said she facilitates workshops to guide clients to personal transformation, creative innovation and self-actualization. The Florida native believes the program will help her better understand intellectual property laws to help her clients copyright and protect their creative works.

Jessica Sartorius, director of the JM program, said the JM degree is in high demand and offered by almost half of all tier-one law schools. With Mason being close to Washington, D.C., the program could help many more professionals in the future, she said.

In addition to professors who keep class intellectually stimulating, there are other benefits to being part of a law school, the students said.

“You’re building professional and social connections with the people that you’re in class with and that you’re learning from,” Burk said. “It is truly a well-designed program.”

For more information about the JM degree program, please visit our website or contact Jessica L. Sartorius, Director of Juris Master (JM) Degree Program, at [email protected] or 703-993-8418.

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This regularly-scheduled sponsored Q&A column is written by Eli Tucker, Arlington-based Realtor and Arlington resident. Please submit your questions to him via email for response in future columns. Enjoy!

Question: Are there any loan programs available to people buying a home in Arlington?

Answer: October is Housing Month in Arlington which means some nice County programs including the annual Live In Arlington Info Fair which provides a ton of great information and education on fair and affordable housing in the County.

To support affordable housing, Arlington offers four programs for moderate-income homebuyers that I’ll highlight below.

Most Popular: Virginia Housing Development Authority (VHDA) Community Homeownership Revitalization Program (CHRP)

  • Reduces your interest rate on a VHDA loan by 1%
  • Household income must be 120% or less of the Area Median Income (AMI)
  • Purchase must be in one of three Arlington County zip codes: 22203, 22204, 22206
  • Must be a first-time homebuyer
  • Can be combined with other programs
  • Programs ends when funds run out each year. $5M was allocated in 2019 and ran out in September. Program will begin again in 2020 with new funding.

Most Unique: Moderate Income Purchase Assistance Program (MIPAP)

  • Interest-free loan up to 25% of the purchase price to cover down payments, closing costs, rate buy-downs, etc.
  • Owner pays back loan, interest-free, plus 25% of equity at time of a sale or refinance. If no equity or negative equity, only the original loan is due. This incentivizes owners to refinance once they can afford the home on their own and recycle the funds back to the County to expand the program.
  • MIPAP has only been used about ten times in the last two years, representing 50% of the program’s applicants
  • Household income must be 80% or less of the Area Median Income (AMI) and other loan/credit limits exist
  • Must be a first-time homebuyer or no interest in property within the last three year

Live Where You Work: Arlington County Employee Program (LINK)

  • Forgivable loan for Arlington County employees up to $6,600 (FY2020), becomes a grant after three years and does not have to be paid back
  • Can be used for down payment and/or closing costs and combined with other programs
  • No income limits or other restrictions
  • Also meant for teachers, but currently no budget allocated to it in FY20

Reduced Rate Homeownership: Affordable Dwelling Units (ADUs)

  • Housing units required to maintain specific reduced-price levels based on affordability standards for moderate income buyers
  • Buyers must register to qualify for ADUs and, once registered, will be notified when ADUs come up for sale. If multiple buyers are interested in purchasing an available ADU, there is a priority drawing.
  • Developers can include ADUs in new construction as a community benefit. Recent examples include Key & Nash (four two-bedrooms) in Rosslyn and Carver Place (six three-bedrooms) off Columbia Pike (Pike East)
  • Resale properties are periodically for sale, but there are none currently
  • Arlington currently has 55 ADUs in its portfolio
  • Arlington lender requirements mean buyers have access to a limited set of lenders and should inquire with their lender if they meet the portfolio requirements

If you have questions about any of these programs or would like to explore how they fit into your purchase strategy, feel free to email me at [email protected].

If you’d like a question answered in my weekly column or to set-up an in-person meeting to discuss local real estate, please send an email to [email protected]. To read any of my older posts, visit the blog section of my website at www.EliResidential.com. Call me directly at (703) 539-2529.

Eli Tucker is a licensed Realtor in Virginia, Washington D.C., and Maryland with Real Living At Home, 2420 Wilson Blvd #101 Arlington, VA 22201, (202) 518-8781.

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This content was written and sponsored by The Keri Shull Team, Arlington’s top producing residential real estate team.

Feeling hangry? Well, don’t be crabby. Let’s taco bout where to eat in Rosslyn, Virginia!

There are so many delicious restaurants in Rosslyn, it was hard to narrow it down to just these 6! Check out our list of the restaurants and nightlife spots that you HAVE to try if you are visiting or moving to Rosslyn.

What’s your favorite place to eat and drink in Rosslyn? Let us know in a comments below, we’d love to try it!

Are you planning to move to Rosslyn, or anywhere else in D.C, Maryland, or Virginia? You should get the best help when finding your new home! If you want to learn how our team of superstar agents can find your dream home (and get you in it for a great price!) contact The Keri Shull Team today!

As always, if you know anyone who’s looking to buy or sell a home in the DMV, The Keri Shull Team is here to helpClick here to contact us.

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Your Beermonger: WTGABF

This sponsored column is written by Nick Anderson, beermonger at Arrowine (4508 Lee Highway). Sign up for Nick’s email newsletter and also receive exclusive discounts and offers.

With this past weekend, another Great American Beer Festival has come and gone.

Virginia had another strong showing: 12 Virginia breweries won 13 medals at this year’s GABF, with three of those being Gold Medals won by Bluemont’s Bear Chase Brewing, Starr Hill and Port City.

Beer competitions kick up a lot of the dust you find in any situation where an attempt is made to apply the objective to the subjective. There are always the quirks of which beers get entered into which categories — The Vanguard Brewpub in Hampton, for instance, took away a Bronze in English Special Bitter for their Red Ale.

There are also dozens of factors at play in how a particular beer shows on a particular day: How that batch turned out, how/when it was packaged; how it was handled in shipping; what temperature it was served at; how long it was open pre-judging; which judges are handling which categories; what kind of shape they’re in.

To be frank, any medal competition is a crapshoot, especially GABF. This year’s event saw 9,497 beer entries (with 70 entries for Collaboration categories and 100 Pro-Am) from 2,295 breweries spanning 107 categories. There’s no obligation to hand out medals, either — no Gold Medals were awarded for American-Style Wheat Beer or Historical Beer this year, for instance. Getting a medal at GABF is like throwing a bullseye on a dartboard blindfolded: it’s what you intend to do, but if you do, you celebrate and take it like you stole it.

So, what can we learn from medals? Well, for one thing, so much chance at play, you might not be able to say a medal-winning beer isn’t the objective “best” version of a style out there, but it did show out against a slew of others from some of the best breweries around the country.

Port City’s German Pilsner, which won a Gold Medal for Kellerbier or Zwickelbier, may not strictly be either of those but it’s a damn good beer and maybe the win gets a few more folks trying it.

More broadly, it’s interesting as a gauge of where beer is growing, and which states are producing great beer. Outside of behemoths like California (68) and Colorado (40), there’s a tier of states that Virginia’s 13 medals lines up with, including Texas (16), Oregon and Ohio (15), Washington (14) and North Carolina (12).

Consistent medal-winners pop up too: Portland, Oregon’s Breakside Brewery; Sun King of Indiana, and Ohio’s Fat Head’s Brewery all seem to medal year after year. Here in Virginia, names like Port City, Hardywood (whose Pils, pictured, won a Bronze for German Pilsner), Devils Backbone and Starr Hill medal almost yearly.

If you ever get the chance, I recommend going out to Denver for GABF. If you can’t get tickets to the Festival itself, it’s worth just being in Denver during the week of the event; there’s so much happening around town that there’s all kinds of trouble to get into without setting foot in the Convention Center.

Upcoming Events at Arrowine:

Sunday, October 13, 1-4 P.M. — Super Sunday Wine Tasting feat. Kermit Lynch Portfolio — please call/email in to RSVP
Friday, October 18, 5-7 p.m. — Tyler Weaver of Väsen Brewing Company
Saturday, October 19, 1-4 p.m. — Jackson Brown (not that one) of Canarchy — Cigar City feature!
Friday, November 8, 5-7 p.m. — Jesse Ploeg of Potter’s Craft Cider

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Looking for a home? There are plenty of houses and condos open for viewing this weekend.

Check out the Arlington Realty website for a full list of homes for sale and open houses in Arlington. Here are a few highlights:

4531 40th Street N.
6 BD/6 BA, 2 half bath single-family home
Agent: Right Address Realty
Listed: $2,495,000
Open: Sunday 2-4 p.m.

 

938 N. Danville Street
4 BD/3 BA, 1 half bath single-family home
Agent: Keller Williams Capital Properties
Listed: $1,299,000
Open: Saturday 2-4 p.m.

 

4812 14th Street S.
3 BD/4 BA, 1 half bath single-family home
Agent: Weichert Realtors
Listed: $899,000
Open: Sunday 2-4 p.m.

 

3149 14th Street S.
3 BD/2 BA, 1 half bath villa/townhouse
Agent: Fass Results, Llc
Listed: $725,000
Open: Sunday 2-4 p.m.

 

851 N. Glebe Road #204
2 BD/2 BA condo
Agent: Samson Properties
Listed: $678,000
Open: Sunday 12-2 p.m.

 

820 N. Pollard Street #710
1 BD/1 BA condo
Agent: Century 21 Redwood Realty
Listed: $459,900
Open: Sunday 1-4 p.m.

 

4659 28th Road S., A
2 BD/1 BA condo
Agent: McEnearney Associates, Inc
Listed: $365,000
Open: Saturday 2-4 p.m.

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Just Listed highlights Arlington properties that just came on the market within the past week. This feature is written and sponsored by Team Cathell, “Your Orange Line Specialists.”

For a second straight week, buyer activity in Arlington’s fall real estate market has performed more like the summer doldrums.

Buyers ratified only 45 contracts this week, a few less than last week’s ho hum results. Sellers however stepped up and listed 62 homes.

A recent report from Redfin indicates that the bidding wars have significantly dropped nationally in the last year from an average of 41% of sales to just 11% last month. San Francisco leads in the bidding wars, followed by San Diego. A year ago, San Francisco had bidding wars in 73% of transactions, but last month that dropped to 32%. San Diego went from 49% to 21%. And our DMV area went from 41% last year to just 9.3% last month. The robust U.S. housing market may be losing its edge.

Federal Reserve meeting notes were released this week indicating the board may NOT be ready to lower its short term rate later this year as the financial markets have anticipated. The board will take a wait and see approach.

The notes also indicated that the board’s concern for the protracted weakness in business investment, manufacturing and exports may be worse than expected. They cited strong employment numbers and continued consumer spending as propping up the U.S. economy.

Meanwhile, mortgage rates have remained fairly stable at 3.625% for a 30-yr fixed rate.

What can you do to create a bidding war on your home? Two dominant themes prevail on those homes that attracted multiple offers:

  1. The homes are updated and in pristine condition, like new with nothing left to do
  2. The homes are priced properly, or maybe even a bit low to attract more buyers

Click to see all the fresh new inventory in MRIS and call Team Cathell (703-975-2500) when you find a home you like.

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It’s harvest season in Loudoun, and there’s no better reason to enjoy the season than by visiting Loudoun’s Fall Farm Tour, October 19-20.

This totally FREE, self-guided tour through western Loudoun County, Virginia is full of flavorful goodness from our Loudoun Made, Loudoun Grown products.

Here’s what to look for at your favorite Loudoun farmers market or farm tour stops as you prepare for Saturday evening’s meal:

Charcuterie Spreads: meals of high-quality meat and cheese date back to ancient times.

Produce Medleys: cucumbers, green beans, squash, sweet corn, apples and grapes are all ripening in Loudoun.

Straight off the Grill: pick up responsibly raised meat and hit the grill.

Adult Beverages: Loudoun is home to dozens of craft beverage makers, but these can be found at the local farmers markets. All will be open during Fall Farm Tour weekend.

Delectable Desserts: Loudoun’s close proximity to fruit farms and consumers makes it the perfect place to find top-notch desserts from local artisan bakers.

  • The Baekehaus, found at the Leesburg Farmers Market on Saturdays
  • Little Austria, found at the One Loudoun Farmers Market on Saturdays

For event details, itineraries, directions and more, visit loudounfarms.org/farmtour.

It’s harvest season in Loudoun, and there’s no better reason to enjoy the season than by visiting Loudoun’s Fall Farm Tour, October 19-20. #TakeLoudounHome #LoudounPossible

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Title insurance is boring, but Allied Title & Escrow is here to decode the jargon and make it (somewhat) more interesting. This biweekly feature will explore the mundane (but very necessary!) world of title insurance while sharing interesting stories of two friends’ entrepreneurial careers.

This week, we wanted to share an article that gives a great real estate market update for the DMV area.

Arlington and Alexandria are still two of the most competitive housing markets in the nation as they both continue to have very low inventory. In addition to this, mortgage rates have dropped below 4% and recovered from the recent spike.

To read the article, Click here.

Have questions related to title insurance? Email Latane and Matt at [email protected]. Want to use Allied Title & Escrow when you buy a home? Tell your agent when you buy a house to write in Allied Title & Escrow as your settlement company!

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Join the Friends of the Arlington Public Library on Friday, October 18 at 7 p.m. at Central Library for a special after-hours trivia experience.

Match wits against your friends and neighbors in this celebration of women’s achievements — in sports, entertainment, politics and government — as we celebrate 100 years since the passage of the 19th Amendment!

All proceeds from this event benefit the Friends of the Arlington Public Library in their mission to support Arlington Public Library and strengthen literacy in the community.

Friday, October 18, 7-10 p.m.
Central Library, 2nd floor
1015 N. Quincy St. Arlington

Buy tickets here.

Tickets are $30 for an individual, $160 for a table of six and sponsored tables are available for $350.

Sponsors will receive premium seating, recognition during the event and one free drink per person. Hors d’oeuvres and cash bar. Guests must be 21 or older. Doors will open at 6 p.m.

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This column is sponsored by BizLaunch, a division of Arlington Economic Development.

By Tara Palacios

Disaster

A disaster can take many forms. 

Whether a disaster is man-made or natural — the word alone evokes fear. A fear of the unknown and how to best move forward.  Many businesses are not prepared to overcome a disaster in the short or long-term. Entrepreneurs are busy trying to manage and grow their business — not trying to figure out when something bad “may”, happen to them.

In Arlington, we’ve recently experienced a natural disaster — with the fast-moving flood of July 8 as well as a commercial fire in Virginia Square and an unsubstantiated threat of an active shooter in Ballston this summer. On many occasions a business simply isn’t equipped to deal with a disaster. The high cost of insurance, understanding how to access capital quickly and how to best respond to customers effectively are all factors to consider as you plan for a potential disastrous moment.

BizLaunch in partnership with the Arlington Community Federal Credit Union and the Arlington Chamber of Commerce are kicking off their first Brunch and Business of the season by directly addressing how to “Navigate Disastrous Moment in Business,” on October 23, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at Arlington Economic Development.

We have brought together a team of experts in the fields of communications, emergency management, law enforcement and insurance to help business owners navigate successfully through a disaster.

Don’t live in fear — proactively take the steps to plan for a disruption by joining us on October 23 at a free program where you can minimize the impact of a disaster by developing a proactive plan.

We hope you can join us.

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Each week, “Just Reduced” spotlights properties in Arlington County whose price have been cut over the previous week. The market summary is crafted by licensed broker Aaron Seekford of Arlington Realty, Inc. GET MORE out of your real estate investment with Aaron and his team by visiting www.arlingtonrealtyinc.com or calling 703-836-6116 today!

Please note: While Aaron Seekford provides this information for the community, he may not be the listing agent of these homes.

It’s Fire Prevention Week.

Running from October 6-12; fun fact, the first Fire Prevention Week was established by Calvin Coolidge back in 1925. It exists to raise awareness of the practices that can prevent a catastrophe and also honor our fire-fighting heroes.

So, to our Arlington County Fire Department (and nearby jurisdictions), a sincere thank you for all you have done and continue to do for our community.

And, on the real estate front, there are a few simple things you can do to protect yourselves in your home. First and foremost, ensure that smoke alarms are installed on each level of your home, inside bedrooms and outside principal sleeping areas. If you haven’t checked your alarm batteries in a while, you should do so every month.

Also, make sure to have a fire escape plan — you never know when you’ll need it. For more helpful tips, the Department of Homeland Security has an excellent checklist.

We’re always looking out for you. When you’re ready to embark on a real estate journey, we’re ready to roll on that front as well. And now for this week’s stats and facts.

As of October 7, there are 147 detached homes, 23 townhouses and 103 condos for sale throughout Arlington County. In total, 26 homes experienced a price reduction in the past week:

Please note that this is solely a selection of Just Reduced properties available in Arlington County. For a complete list of properties within your target budget and specifications, contact Aaron Seekford.

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