Arlington, VA

Homeowners can take a class on how to choose the right contractor for their remodeling project at this years annual Arlington Home Show & Garden Expo this Saturday, April 27 at Kenmore Middle School.

Those homeowners will be learning from the best! Steven Tinter, President and General Manager of Arlington’s No. 1 Design Build Remodeling Firm, Cook Bros will be the instructor on the main stage at 10 a.m.

Tinter says that specialization reduces risk for consumers. Reducing risk is especially vital when it comes to one of the most expensive expenditures a homeowner will encounter — renovating their home.

“Arlington homes are modest, but they’re expensive homes,” Tinter says. And many of them are older, with residual quirks from previous builders. “Working with someone who specializes in renovating these homes will reduce your risk of cost overruns, delays and potentially missing out on something in the overall design.”

Cook Bros’ specialized experience in the area gives them an advantage when it comes to encountering challenges distinct to Arlington homes, including not only critical design elements but also navigating the county permitting processes. “Cook Bros only renovates homes in Arlington County, and has for 32 years.

We don’t do new homes, we don’t remodel homes in Maryland or D.C., or other places in Virginia,” he said. “Arlington County is all we’ve done for over 30 years. If you’re contemplating a major renovation and not talking to us, you’ll be missing out.”

Class seating for Steven Tinter’s class is limited. Kenmore Middle School is located at 202 S. Carlin Springs Road, Arlington, Virginia.

Cook Bros is at 5521 Lee Highway in Arlington. Call 703-536-0900 or email at [email protected]. The website is here: cookbros.org.

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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: I’ve read that home prices in Arlington are up since the Amazon announcement so I’m trying to decide if I should go ahead and sell my home now or if it makes more sense to wait for more appreciation when Amazon employees start to arrive. What is your recommendation?

Answer: Amazon’s decision to move HQ2 to Arlington has made an immediate impact on the local housing market and many home owners are asking whether or not they should sell or hold. As with most real estate decisions, the answer is… it depends.

It depends on your personal goals and circumstances, but the good news is that you’re likely going to be happy with either decision. Here are a few points to consider that are relevant to the market we’re currently experiencing:

Why You Should Sell Now

1. Highest One-Year Appreciation? — My guess is that 2019 will be our highest one year appreciation over the next decade barring some other major corporate news. While I do expect Arlington to experience steady growth over the next ten years from Amazon and the “Amazon-effect,” I don’t think the impact will be as extreme as many people fear/hope (see excellent analysis by the Stephen S Fuller Institute).

If you’re holding out for 40-50%+ returns over the next 5 years, I’d reconsider your strategy.

2. Better Application of Equity — I think this is the most important, and most personal, reason to sell. If you can improve the quality of your life with the equity you have in your home (early retirement or larger home) or you have a more productive application of that equity (start a business or re-invest), selling now might make a lot of sense.

3. Looming Economic Downturn — There’s always somebody warning of the next economic doomsday, but consensus seems to be building that we will face an economic downturn within the next two years. The potential for an economic shift is much more important if your decision is between selling now or 2-5 years from now vs selling now or 10+ years from now.

4. Your House Needs Work — Supply is so low right now, and demand so high, that sellers can command premiums on their home even if it’s lacking in updates or curb appeal that may have made a sale difficult in the past.

5. Condo/Townhouse Owner — Condo and townhouse inventory is down over 50% in each of the last two quarters compared to the prior year, a significantly higher drop-off than single-family homes.

Over time, the County should be able to facilitate more supply of condos and townhouses through up-zoning so this may be the best time to sell yours, especially if you own a two-bedroom where year-over-year inventory is down about 60% the last six months.

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Morning Notes

New Census Population Estimate — “Arlington’s estimated population was up 14.4 percent from 2010 to 2018, more than double the increase statewide and nationally, according to new figures from the U.S. Census Bureau. The federal government’s recently released guesstimate of Arlington’s population as of July 1, 2018, stood at 237,521, up about 1 percent from a year before.” [InsideNova]

Fraudster’s Arlington Home Sold — “The Arlington home of real estate developer Todd Hitt — who pleaded guilty in February to eight counts of fraud — has found a buyer, according to court documents. The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Alexandria Division, approved the $1.3 million sale of the 5,500-square-foot house on North Kensington Street.” [Washington Business Journal]

Arlington Working With MoCo on DCA Noise Study — “Arlington government officials plan to formalize their agreement with leaders in Montgomery County, Md., to fund a study on the northerly aircraft departure route out of Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. The County Board plans to ante up half the projected cost for a consultant, with the Montgomery County Council putting up the other half.” [InsideNova]

County Proposes New Development Review Fee — “Arlington County staff is proposing a new fee for the acceptance and review of conceptual site plan applications, a process through which developers can get input on their projects before their formal submission.” [Washington Business Journal]

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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:

6818 Williamsburge Boulevard
6 BR/6 BA, 1 half bath single-family home
Agent: Ttr Sothebys International Realty
Listed: $1,697,000
Open: Sunday 2-4 p.m.

 

1111 19th Street N. #2803
2 BR/2 BA, 1 half bath condo
Agent: Keller Williams Realty Falls Church
Listed: $1,200,000
Open: Sunday 2-4 p.m.

 

2604 N. Pocomoke Street
3 BR/1 BA, 1 half bath single-family home
Agent: Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc
Listed: $859,500
Open: Saturday 12-3 p.m.

 

3112 13th Street S.
3 BR/2 BA single-family home
Agent: Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage
Listed: $699,900
Open: Saturday 2-4 p.m.

 

2001 15th Street N. #319
1 BR/1 BA condo
Agent: Optime Realty
Listed: $489,900
Open: Sunday 2-4 p.m.

 

1001 N. Vermont Street #907
1 BR/1 BA condo
Agent: Keller Williams Capital Properties
Listed: $387,000
Open: Saturday 1-4 p.m.

 

2902 13th Road S. #2204
2 BR/1 BA condo
Agent: Keller Williams Realty
Listed: $299,900
Open: Sunday 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.”

The market remains hot, hot, hot.

Despite this being spring break week for area schools when families typically travel, and despite this weekend being Easter weekend, buyers and sellers were busy. Home owners listed 84 properties this week while buyers ratified 64 contracts with over half (37) of those homes sold within seven days.

Bidding wars have become common for fresh new inventory, especially for homes in pristine condition and priced under $750,000.

For buyers to have a chance, they first need to find a good agent and then follow their advice. Remember, you just need to get ahead of the market once to win. For every home you miss, that home becomes the next comp against your next attempt.

And by the way, all those other unfortunate losers will continue to be your competition on your next offer. So go big once early, and you’ll be further ahead.

Also, both buyers and sellers should not give much credibility to automated estimates of value on some popular websites especially for single family homes in Arlington. Unlike many other communities, Arlington’s homes vary greatly in style, size, degrees of upgrades, etc.

And auto stats on price per square foot are wholly unreliable as well mostly because there is no consistency in our public records on how finished square footage is measured. So you’re comparing apples to watermelons. Condos and townhomes are different. Those auto estimates are a little more reliable, but I wouldn’t take that info to the bank.

Mortgage rates creeped upward this week. The 30-yr fixed rate is now at 4.25%. This week saw the highest number of purchase mortgage applications in nine years.

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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Every week the Eli Residential Group scours our network for pre-market or off-market homes to give home buyers and investors access to properties they can’t find anywhere else online.

If you are interested in a property you see here, have specific needs you cannot find on the market or would like your pre-market or off-market property featured for a half million local readers on PoPville or ARLnow, please click here to contact us.

Updated 1 BR + Den Two Blocks from Ballston Metro
Description: Open 1 BR condo with extra den/sunroom in Eastview Condominium. Recently updated, one garage parking space, on an upper floor. Modest condo fee + pool. Blocks to the Ballston Metro and newly developed Ballston Quarter. Perfect for owners or investors looking for long-term growth potential.
Price: Upper $300s

4 BR Home Adjacent to McKinley Elementary
Description: 4 BR/3 BA two-level single-family home with nearly 1/3 acre private lot surrounded by mature trees. Good condition, needs some renovations, but full gut not required.

Off-street parking and quiet residential neighborhood. One mile to EFC Metro & Westover.
Price: $888,000

***Contact us for property photos and additional details***

To view all of our pre-market and off-market properties, visit the pre-market section of our website. We add new properties every week.

The Eli Residential Group is a real estate team with RLAH Real Estate, 2420 Wilson Blvd #101 Arlington VA 22201 (703) 390-9460. Office locations also include Dupont Circle, Georgetown, H Street and Chevy Chase. Contact the team directly at [email protected].

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Buying your first home is a huge step, but it doesn’t have to be stressful. These days, state and federal programs exist to help home buyers like you secure competitive-rate loans — and they can connect you with plenty of resources on financial incentives, tax credits and federal assistance that can reduce the cost of your home mortgage.

Here are 5 of the best loan options for buyers seeking to enter the housing market:

Federal Housing Administration (FHA) — First time home buyers can get approved for as little as 3.5% down.

HomeReady and HomePossible — 3% minimum down payment, reduced rates and private mortgage insurance for certain buyers.

DC Open Doors — on-amortizing down payment assistance loan at 0% interest, as well as below-market interest rates for first trust mortgages. 

Virginia Housing Development Authority (VHDA) — provides eligible homeowners a 2% to 5% grant toward their down payment.

Maryland Mortgage Program (MMP) — allows borrowers to pay off their outstanding student debt as part of the home purchase.

To learn more home financing options, attend the upcoming Home Buying Seminar on April 22 in Arlington.

Topics Covered:

  • Financing programs
  • How to avoid double paying a rent and mortgage
  • How to calculate your budget the right way
  • How to craft a winning offer in a highly competitive market
  • Finding off-market properties
  • Leveraging your equity
  • The 4 C’s of Real Estate

Space is limited — click to register

Benefits of Attending:

  • $1,500 credit towards your new home or towards early lease termination
  • 12-month home buy-back guarantee — purchase with confidence!
  • Wine and cheese provided
  • The first 3 to attend will receive a gift card to Barley Mac restaurant!

This event is hosted by The Keri Shull Team, the D.C. metro’s top producing real estate team. Details are as follows:

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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.

A few days ago, an article on MarketWatch dubbed our real estate as currently being “crazy.”

It’s generally a good crazy, if you own property… and the craziness is still being attributed to Amazon’s HQ2 announcement.

Let’s look at some numbers. The average selling price popped 4.3 percent between March and February… of this year. Yowsers. While there are certainly some price fluctuations throughout the year, prices are up nearly 5 percent year-over-year.

Additionally, the number of active listings and homes sold is down, equating to a 23 percent and 10.4 percent drop year-over-year, respectively.

So, if you’re looking to sell, you are absolutely in the driver seat at the moment. It’s time to make the most of your rosy scenario. And, if you’re buying, it has never been more important to navigate the landscape with caution. While the market may be hot, you need to ensure you’re still getting the most bang for your buck.

When you’re ready to chat through your options, our team is ready to help you GET MORE out of your transaction.

As of April 15, there are 150 detached homes, 21 townhouses and 105 condos for sale throughout Arlington County. In total, 21 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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This regularly-scheduled sponsored Q&A column is written by Eli Tucker, Arlington-based Realtor and Rosslyn resident. Please submit your questions to him via email for response in future columns. Enjoy!

Question: My condo association carries an expensive Master Insurance policy, but my lender is requiring that I purchase my own individual policy. What coverage do I gain from the individual policy that the master policy doesn’t include?

Answer: Every condo association has its own (expensive) Master Insurance policy to cover the common elements, but there are substantial gaps between the association’s policy and what you’ll personally be liable for without an individual HO-6 policy.

Most people shop for the cheapest, fastest individual insurance policy and apply just enough coverage to meet the lender’s requirements, but that may put you at risk.

To explain common gaps between master policies and HO-6 (individual condo) policies, I’d like to re-introduce Andrew Schlaffer, Vice President at USI Insurance Service’s Community Association Practice. Andrew is an expert in Master Insurance policies and has helped multiple local condo association’s reduce their cost and improve their coverage since writing a column on the topic last year.

If you’d like to contact Andrew directly to review your association’s master policy, you can reach him at 703-205-8764 or [email protected].

Take it away Andrew…

Increasing Claims, Increasing Coverage Gaps

The condominium insurance marketplace is facing challenges that will impact homeowners in 2019. Water damage is leading this list of challenges — according to the Insurance Information Institute, about one-third of homeowner insurance losses are caused by water damage and freezing. The DMV is home to many aging condo buildings that struggle with mitigating water damage losses and their impact on insurance.

As water damage claims continue to rise and property damage costs increase, many insurance carriers are beginning to make changes to their coverage offerings that may increase your risk exposure.

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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:

3207 N. Trinidad Street
6 BR/5 BA, 3 half bath single-family home
Agent: Keller Williams Realty
Listed: $2,098,000
Open: Sunday 2-4 p.m.

 

2003 N. Utah Street
5 BR/3 BA, 1 half bath single-family home
Agent: Keller Williams Realty Falls Church
Listed: $1,185,000
Open: Sunday 1-4 p.m.

 

4601 3rd Street S.
5 BR/3 BA, 1 half bath single-family hom
Agent: Re/Max Allegiance
Listed: $965,000
Open: Sunday 1-4 p.m.

 

2415 9th Street S.
3 BR/3 BA, 1 half bath villa/townhouse
Agent: Arlington Realty, Inc
Listed: $725,000
Open: Sunday 1-3 p.m.

 

1121 Arlington Boulevard #1006
2 BR/2 BA condo
Agent: Samson Properties
Listed: $625,000
Open: Sunday 1-4 p.m.

 

2011 Key Boulevard #599
2 BR/1 BA condo
Agent: Century 21 Redwood Realty
Listed: $389,900
Open: Sunday 1-4 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.”

BooYah!! What an incredible week for Arlington’s real estate market.

Sellers listed 88 homes, and buyers ratified 76 contracts, both records so far this year. Of those homes, more than half (39) sold within just seven days on the market. The average list price of those homes that sold is $768,819 and that includes condos as well as single family homes. The average days on market is now just 19.

And now here is a more astonishing statistic: Arlington has only 0.8 months of inventory. There are only 241 homes actively available for sale, with an absorption rate of 304 home sales per month.

They say a rising tide lifts all ships. It now appears that the high-end market has totally rebounded with robust sales above the $1 million mark. Some 21 homes sold this week priced over $1 million. This should inspire more new home construction in Arlington, but of course that means more tear downs of old functionally obsolete homes.

How many letters a week do you get asking if you’re ready to sell your home? Before you respond, if so inclined, I’d strongly advise that you obtain opinions from a few realtor neighborhood specialists on the value of your home before you sign anything and perhaps leave big money on the table.

Interest rates held steady this week with the 30-yr fixed rate sitting at 4.125%.

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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