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.
For this week’s edition of Boring Title, we wanted to provide you with an update on the real estate market in the DMV, and how it has rebounded since the start of the pandemic.
Click here to read more.
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!
Address: 911 N. Daniel Street
Neighborhood: Lyon Park
Listed Price: $1,544,200
Open: Virtual & Private Tours Available
Just listed! Classic Cottages unveils its stunning home renovation in the heart of Lyon Park, just blocks from Clarendon.
This unique property features a charming brick home plus a brand new detached Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) built by Backyard Cottages, a sister company of local builder Classic Cottages. This ADU is the first of four permitted Accessory Dwelling Units in Arlington by Backyard Cottages.
Featuring 4 beds, 3 full baths, and 1 half bath, this home showcases open concept living and a light & airy theme through the home’s farmhouse inspired finishes. From shiplap accents and white painted brick to honey toned hardwood floors and subway tile, this home exudes southern charm within every room.
The detached ADU features an additional 1 full bedroom and 1 full bathroom. The ADU is flooded with light from the large black-cladded windows, skylights and recessed cans. Light painted walls complement the neutral white and black finishes within the kitchen, bathroom and bedroom spaces, creating a clean, simplistic aesthetic perfect for urban living. The ADU is completely outfitted with all living essentials: refrigerator, microwave, dishwasher, sink, washer, dryer, murphy bed and plentiful storage!
Together, the home & ADU feature a total of 3,412 finished sq. ft. Many Arlington residents are beginning to invest in their own backyards as they come to understand the beneficial uses that owning an ADU can provide such as separate living quarters for a family member, guest house for visitors or long-term rental income.
Schools: Long Branch Elementary School, Jefferson Middle School, Washington-Liberty High School.
In the unprecedented time of COVID-19, people are recognizing the sacrifices and dedication of frontline workers in the healthcare industry, public safety and emergency management.
These essential workers are embraced worldwide as true heroes in the public battle to withstand the dangers of this virus and have been venerated for their tireless effort and service to the community.
Arlington is unique in having many business and trade associations whose members are deemed essential and are on the frontlines of the pandemic. These members are located throughout the entire country and even overseas. The associations serve their members by providing advocacy, education, professional development, resources and member best practices. They advocate for members at the federal, state and local levels, and oftentimes their recommended policies have national implications. Arlington salutes these organizations and their members for their service.
The supermarket industry has been one of the most critically important sectors during the pandemic. With thousands of restaurants being forced to close, grocery stores have remained open to ensure food and essentials are available to homes around the country. Grocery workers labor long hours to make certain that store shelves are stocked and facilities are sanitized; and these days, their job includes enforcing social distancing rules.
Two national associations headquartered in Arlington represent the food distribution industry. Ballston-based National Grocers Association represents independent, privately-owned stores; and the Food Marketing Institute, headquartered in Crystal City, includes members from grocery stores to producers who supply the food. Their members are part of the nation’s critical infrastructure during the pandemic, and without a doubt, they have risen to the occasion.
Another organization whose members are on the front lines of the pandemic is the American Trucking Associations (ATA). Headquartered in Ballston, ATA is the largest national trade association representing the trucking industry with more than 37,000 members and affiliates in all 50 states. ATA members continue to haul billions of tons of freight across the country, helping drive the nation’s economy.
Pharmacists throughout the country also play a pivotal role in this crisis. They are adapting to social distancing guidelines while still making sure that every patient has the medication he or she needs. Courthouse-based National Association of Chain Drug Stores represents traditional drug stores, supermarkets and mass merchants with pharmacies. Chains operate nearly 40,000 pharmacies across the country.
With the recent federal guidelines allowing pharmacists to order and administer tests for COVID-19, pharmacists are at the forefront in the fight against the pandemic.
One of the professions that most exemplifies dedication and sacrifice in the face of COVID-19 is the healthcare industry. People around the world applaud health care workers’ unparalleled bravery, compassion and commitment to their profession. In normal times, nurses provide medical advice and care for their patients.
Now, nurses have to suit up each day just to go to work, often times putting their own health in peril, in order to care for their patients. The American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) is the largest professional membership organization for nurse practitioners. AANP’s government affairs office operates out of Crystal City, advocating for policies and legislation that serve AANP’s 107,000 members nationwide.
We appreciate the work these and are many other associations are doing, and we are honored they chose Arlington to call home.
Each week, “Just Reduced” spotlights properties in Arlington County whose price have been cut over the previous week. The market summary is crafted by Arlington Realty, Inc. Maximize your real estate investment with the team by visiting www.arlingtonrealtyinc.com or calling 703-836-6000 today!
Please note: While Arlington Realty, Inc. provides this information for the community, it may not be the listing company of these homes.
At times, particularly in the heart of our strictest of statewide and communal quarantines, the days sure did slug along.
But, alas, here we are in June already.
June is home to quite a few big and, in some instances, quirky happenings. It’s National Adopt a Cat Month. It’s Gay Pride Month. Father’s Day is on June 21 (which is also National Selfie Day, so take a selfie with Dad). And, prepare to cry, because June 27 is National Onion Day.
There’s a lot going on here in June. But, don’t worry, if you’re wanting to add a real estate transaction to the mix, we can certainly make that happen. Amid these uncertain times, the time-tested and proven team at Arlington Realty, Inc. is ready to help bring some certainty to your unique scenario.
Until then, here is the latest scoop on Just Reduced properties in Arlington County:
As of June 1, there are 158 detached homes, 30 townhouses and 102 condos for sale throughout Arlington County. In total, 18 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 Arlington Realty, Inc.
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: I just lost a competitive offer to an all-cash buyer. How common are cash buyers in Arlington? How much of a disadvantage am I at?
Answer: I have personally noticed an increase in cash buyers and expected to find a significant increase in the number of cash deals over the last 12-18 months, so I was a little surprised when I ran the numbers and learned that the percentage of homes purchased by all-cash buyers has only increased a few percent in the last couple of years. Since 2019, 17.5% of homes purchased in Arlington have been by all-cash buyers, compared to 14.3% in 2017.
Increased Cash Deals Attributed to Condo Sales
The number of cash purchases in Arlington jumped in 2018 and 2019, likely due to more cash investors getting involved after the Amazon HQ2 announcement in November 2018. This increase is attributed completely to condos (likely investors). The number of buyers paying cash for single-family or townhouse purchases has remained about the same since 2015.
The rate of all-cash purchases seems to be spread pretty evenly across all price-points and housing types. I assumed that the lower priced condos would have a much higher rate of all-cash deals, but it turns out that since 2019 only 20.5% of sub-$400k condo purchases were all-cash, which isn’t much higher than the overall Arlington market.
The chart below shows the percentage of homes sold in Arlington that were bought by all-cash buyers since 2015, also broken out by condo and single-family/townhouse purchases.
Cash vs Mortgage — What’s the Difference?
The idea of getting a cash offer sounds exciting, but what exactly does it mean? After all, a dollar from a lender is worth the same as a dollar from a savings account.
- Contingencies: Cash buyers don’t need the contractual protection of a financing or appraisal contingency because they don’t need a lender to approve/review anything. This is appealing for sellers because it decreases the possibility of something going wrong that disrupts the sale.
- Speed: Cash deals can close faster, often in one week or less, than financed deals which usually take at least 3-4 weeks due to the time it takes to process the loan.
- Security: Cash deals are considered more secure because the purchase funds are already available.
- Cost: Cash deals have lower buyer closing costs because there are no lender fees or lender’s title insurance. Lenders also require a substantial about (usually 1-1.5% of purchase price) of money be pre-paid into an escrow account for future property tax payments and homeowner’s insurance.
Given how competitive the current housing market is, many buyers using a mortgage take steps to make their offers as cash-like as possible by removing the appraisal and financing contingencies and/or working with lenders who can close quickly. For buyers that have taken these steps, there’s very little difference to sellers between their offer and a cash offer.
If you are a seller considering a cash offer, make sure you verify the existence of the cash funds the same way you would verify a buyer’s mortgage qualification with a pre-approval letter. The most common method of verification is to request bank statements, but a letter from the buyer’s bank should also suffice.
If you’d like to discuss buying or selling strategies, don’t hesitate to reach out to 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 RLAH Real Estate, 4040 N. Fairfax Dr. #10C Arlington, VA 22203, (703) 390-9460.
Address: 3115 S. Hayes Street
Neighborhood: Aurora Highlands
Open: Virtual Tour or Private Showing
This beautiful 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom Aurora Highlands duplex is located close to everything.
With plenty of natural light, this Hayes Street home has three levels with space for everybody. Loaded with charm and a modern flare, the home has hardwood floors, a renovated kitchen, and a gorgeous screened in porch and patio area.
With Approximately 1,303 sq. ft. of finished living space, there is tons of storage space within the house. The kitchen has been fully updated with stainless steel appliances, a gas stove, and sleek cabinets and storage. This home sits on a 3524 square foot lot, mostly fenced and has plenty of outside space for a barbecue or outdoor amenities.
Give us a call today if you’d like to schedule a private tour of this fantastic home or learn more about our listings. As licensed realtors, we cover all of Northern Virginia and specialize in Arlington real estate. Having lived and worked in Arlington for years, we consider ourselves to not only be local experts, but to really be a part of this community, and we always love to help our neighbors!
If you or someone you know is in the market for a new home, give them our number. Our clients’ happiness is our number one priority, so you know you can count on us!
This is a sponsored column by attorneys John Berry and Kimberly Berry of Berry & Berry, PLLC, an employment and labor law firm located in Northern Virginia that specializes in federal employee, security clearance, retirement and private sector employee matters.
By John V. Berry, Esq.
The Commonwealth of Virginia enacted a number of new employment laws this year, completely transforming employee rights as never before.
One of these new employment laws in Virginia involves providing Whistleblower rights for employees. In the past, employees had to rely on a very weak system of whistleblower protection that was developed through the courts and case law. Essentially, there was little protection for those terminated for blowing the whistle on an employer’s illegal conduct. That has now changed and this article discusses the new Virginia Whistleblower legislation.
Virginia’s New Whistleblower Law
Virginia’s new whistleblower law, enacted in House Bill 798, was sponsored by State Delegate Karrie Delaney, was signed into law on April 11, 2020, by Governor Ralph Northam and becomes effective on July 1, 2020.
The new law prohibits employers from discharging, disciplining, threatening, discriminating against, or penalizing an employee or from taking other retaliatory action with respect to the employee’s compensation, terms, conditions, location or privileges of employment.
How an Employee May Be Protected Under the Whistleblower Protection Law
An employee may be protected by Virginia’s new Whistleblower Protection Law if they:
(1) Report in good faith (or cause another employee to report in good faith) a violation of state law, federal law, or regulation to a supervisor, law enforcement or to any governmental body (e.g., Fairfax/Arlington County, City of Alexandria, federal government authorities).
(2) Are asked by law enforcement or a governmental body to participate in an investigation, hearing or inquiry.
(3) Refuse to commit a criminal act for the employer that would expose the employee to potential criminal liability.
(4) Refuse an employer’s order to perform an act that would violate any federal or state law or regulation (and explain to their employer that their refusal is based on potentially violating the law).
(5) Testify before law enforcement or a governmental body if it is connected to an investigation of an employer’s unlawful conduct.
If an employee is subject to whistleblower retaliation, then she/he may file a lawsuit within a year of the retaliation. Courts in Virginia may issue an injunction against the employer’s retaliation, reinstate a wrongfully terminated employee, provide appropriate backpay, attorneys fees and compensation and costs.
The law is new and more complex than provided in this article so it is important to obtain legal advice if a suspected case of retaliation develops.
If you are in need of employment law representation or advice, please contact our office at 703-668-0070 or through our contact page to schedule a consultation. Please also visit and like us on Facebook or Twitter.
This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment.
Air pollution is down across Virginia and the rest of the country, due to much lower personal traffic on roadways. You have undoubtedly noticed lighter traffic in Arlington.
The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments recently reported that traffic in the region had decreased by over 50 percent in late April, and VDOT data shows similar results. The same VDOT site shows even greater reductions during rush hour along Route 29 and I-66 in Arlington.
Similarly, energy use in buildings is down overall in the past two months, with many commercial and institutional properties closed or operating at a fraction of their usual use. Natural gas use is down with the mild spring, and electricity use is down sharply with lower occupancy and mild weather.
Savvy property managers have adjusted accordingly to control costs, shutting off unneeded equipment and setting thermostats back to “unoccupied” settings. As you might expect, Arlington County government has also seen sharp reductions in energy use in community centers and libraries.
Care is taken to not completely shut the buildings off — it is important to maintain proper humidity levels to avoid indoor air quality problems. Emergency lighting and other essential equipment prevent energy use from truly “flat-lining”, but curves like the one below warm the heart of an energy analyst.
Energy managers and planners are seeking insights into how we might maintain some of the energy and cost savings — and reduced pollutant emissions — once society resumes full operation after the COVID pandemic.
Meanwhile, many residents have seen an increase in energy and water bills from staying at home. More cooking, more heating or cooling may be driving household bills up. It may be difficult to assess because COVID hit as winter ended, and the need for air conditioning has been slight thus far. What have you seen in your home energy bills since March?
Address: 6537 36th Street N.
Neighborhood: Minor Hill
Open: Sunday, June 1 from 2-4 p.m.
Built in 2010 by renowned Arlington builder, Greg Pence, this home offers many upgrades and fine features: SubZero side-by-side refrigerator and freezer, Wolf 6 burner gas range, Miele dishwasher, Fisher Paykel dishwasher drawers, refrigerated veg and fruit drawers, plantation shutters at all windows; whole home technology, natural gas generator, whole home water filtration system, two mudrooms, two laundry rooms, built-ins, stone patio with built in grill and fire pit surrounded by lush landscaping.
Main level den with built ins flows into a traditional dining room with entry through butler’s pantry to kitchen. Double islands in the kitchen and breakfast bar will please the home cook with renewed interest in cooking and baking or one with Michelin aspirations.
Separate walk in pantry organized with cabinets and cupboards for incredible storage. The light filled breakfast room off the kitchen doubles as a second office or distance learning space. The focal point of the family room is the stone fireplace while doors open to the flagstone patio and lawn.
Upstairs, the master bedroom offers double walk in closet, luxe bath with double vanities, soaking tub and oversized showers. The other three bedrooms have private baths with tub and walk in closets. A bookcase in the hall slides away to reveal entry to the top floor bonus room with multiple uses.
The lower level rec room provides a game area with two wine refrigerators, two kegerators and built-in wine racks. Adjoining the rec room is the fully equipped theater room with double rows of reclining seating. Also on this level is a fifth bedroom, bath and separate entry through the second mudroom.
Nottingham, Willamsburg and Yorktown schools near and walkable to parks, shops, restaurants and services.
Looking for a home? There are plenty of houses and condos open for viewing this weekend.
5000 27th Street N.
6 BD/4 BA, 1 half bath single-family home
Agent: Rlah Real Estate
Open: Sunday 1-5 p.m.
Just Listed highlights Arlington properties that just came on the market within the past week. This feature is written and sponsored by Andors Real Estate Group.
Buyers, here’s the good news — mortgage rates have never been better!
The 30-year fixed has hit a new low, again breaking the record low that’s been established and reestablished numerous times over the past few months. Existing homeowners — you may be able to refinance with a 15-year mortgage close to 2.5% so this can probably save you serious money and you get to stay put!
As Northern Virginia begins to reopen, we’re seeing more and more in-person open houses scheduled, and expecting traffic to be way up in the coming weeks. The market only cooled slightly the past couple months in terms of volume — expect it to heat up faster than it cooled in coming weeks.
Some not-so-good news if you are a buyer — prices have remained remarkably steady!
Abundant speculation that prices would drop as a result of the pandemic has not rung true. There has indeed been an increase in instances of contracts falling through (previously a very rare occurrence in Arlington) and they were very largely due to financing issues. The housing market will always be a supply/demand equation and the years of pent-up demand in Arlington didn’t evaporate over the past couple months, despite global uncertainty.
Take a look below at some statistics for Arlington real estate — with this week’s slower numbers, we’ve crept up to 1.55 months of available inventory.
There are currently 267 homes for sale in Arlington. 143 are detached homes, 27 are townhouses/semi-detached, and 97 are condos. Average days on market (DOM) is 60 and median DOM is 34.
Sellers listed some 55 properties for sale this week. Buyers ratified 43 contracts, 23 of which were homes that had been on the market one week or less. The median list price of available properties is $1,155,000, while the average is $1,193,112.
Last year for the same week, sellers listed 81 homes and buyers ratified 71 contracts.
Click here to search currently available Arlington real estate. Call the Andors Real Estate Group today at (703) 203-1117 to talk more about buying or selling Arlington real estate. Below are eight homes that are new this week that I think you might like to check out.
- 2818 S. Abingdon Street #C2, Arlington, VA 22206 — $425,000
- 1040 S. Edison Street, Arlington, VA 22204 — $549,900
- 2001 15th Street N. #812, Arlington, VA 22201 — $600,000
- 2257 N. Harrison Street, Arlington, VA 22205 — $999,990
- 1210 S. Walter Reed Drive, Arlington, VA 22204 — $1,199,000
- 2118 N. Cameron Street, Arlington, VA 22207 — $1,259,000
- 3207 N. John Marshall Drive, Arlington, VA 22207 — $1,300,000
- 5526 18th Street N., Arlington, VA 22205 — $1,349,000