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Archive for the 'Monday’s Blog – Selling a Home' Category

Arlington’s Luxury Home Market Update

Arlington’s Luxury Home Market Update

Hi! I hope this finds you well and staying warm. I just returned from an incredible seminar focused on luxury homes’ best practices for marketing and sales. Based on the up-to-date information and tools available to serve the luxury homes market segment, our team is implementing more steps to serve you at an even higher level. Our concierge level of service will be expanded to include some very exciting items. Stay tuned to hear more about that in the coming months!

Arlington’s luxury home market continues to move. Here is a recap of the luxury homes market as it pertains to Arlington, VA. For specification, we will call the luxury homes in Arlington ones that list and/or list and sell (because not all homes that list sell) at or above $900,000.

Currently, we have for sale an inventory of 126 homes up to $3.875, with an average price of $1.579M. The average days on market is a very respectable 135DOM. For comparison, in all price categories, we have 434 homes for sale with an average 82DOM. Of the 115 total luxury homes for sale, 98 are detached. The remainder are in the categories of townhomes, townhome condos and condos.

Our last six month’s luxury home sales has 74 sold at an average price of $1.386M. A fun fact: The highest listed price was $2.995M and sold for $2.860M (located in the Country Club Hills neighborhood). The average days on market for luxury homes was only 27DOM. That is a very good number considering that the average days on market of the total homes sold in Arlington during this period – 699 homes – was 32DOM.

Ask us questions here or contact us for more information. We are always delighted to help in any way. Just a note that what you see online, on whatever website you use to research homes, is only a portion of what you can consider purchasing soon. I always know of homes that are not yet listed. I can share information with you based on what you are looking for.

Have a great day!

Cheers,
Ken

Why List Your Arlington Home in Winter?

Why List Your Arlington Home in Winter?

Happy New Year!

This question comes up every winter.  Perhaps as attendant to one resolution you have for the new year – to sell your home – and you wonder if winter is a good time to list your home on the Arlington market.  I have two answers to that question: Depends and usually, yes.

If the winter turns out to be one with a lot of snow and for a lengthy period of time, then not as great a time as it could be, so depends. This is usually not the case though in our region, though. And when it does come, it is usually once, sometimes twice, and rarely more than three times a season usually. When there is snow, it slows down buyers’ desire to get out to look for a home and is distracting, in general, to them. Again, this is not usually the greater part of the winter in our region.  So, that takes care of the depends. And on to my second answer: Usually, yes. Usually it is a good time to list a home in our winter. Why?

1. Our winters are usually pretty temperate, with not a lot of snowfall. And when it does come, it does not last a long time, generally.

2. There are people like you who have new year’s resolutions regarding homes too. In this case, to buy a home.

3. There are buyers who, having not found the home they wanted last year, are still intent on finding one.

4. There is less competition from other sellers for the buyer’s attention to choose their home over yours.

5. The buyers know there are strategic sellers putting their homes on the market when there is less competition from other sellers. So, the buyers continue looking, ready to pounce on the home they have been waiting for – which could be yours.

6. If you wait until spring, or even just before, there will be more homes on the market for buyers to choose from, so the statistical likelihood that the buyers will choose yours will be less than in the winter.

7. Past sales in the winter in Arlington, especially in February, attest to the strength of the buyer pool ready to buy then.

I hope you find this helpful. Please send any questions our way!

Cheers,

Ken

November Recap of Home Sales in Arlington County

November Recap of Home Sales in Arlington County

Hi!   Some good news for Arlington – after a sluggish start to the fall home selling season.

The median home price in Arlington is up from a year ago for the same month:  $498,500 to $590,000. That’s an 18.4% increase. Year-to-date, median price is up 1% From $525,000 to $530,000. That’s not a stellar, tho welcomed decent increase, considering what has been a lackluster showing overall this year, including fairly low inventory and what seem to be fewer buyers in the market. There is no tracking system for buyers. I rely on my working knowledge of being at work and networking in Arlington’s market full-time, and meeting and talking to buyers at open houses every weekend.

Closed sales were 182 units which was up 4.6% for the same month in 2013. New Listings were 190 units – down 11.6% from same month last year. New pending sales are 216 and down from ly 2.3%. Stats provided by RBI.

What does all of this mean? While we had a respectable increase in sales for the month over last year, not many homes were placed on the market the same period, so it is going to be more difficult for those buyers still in the market to have a decent choice of homes to buy. Meanwhile, the lower than last year for the same month pending sales means that fewer homes are under contract to close, so sales in December, at year end, may be softer than last year.

All-in-all, it’s a good time to be a seller, and and a good time to be a buyer. There are fewer homes asking for attention, so there is less competition from sellers, so it is a good time to list your home. And some buyers are distracted, as usual, by the holiday season and the colder weather, so there is less competition from buyers. It is a good time to find your home and to pay less for it.

Please let me know what questions you have!

Cheers,

Ken

7 Tips to Prepare Your Arlington, VA, Home for Sale

7 Tips to Prepare Your Arlington, VA, Home for Sale

Hi!

Most of my sellers want to get top dollar for their homes and will do the work to make that happen. They are happy to do some items to prepare their home for sale. When this is the case, I advise my clients  to get a pre-listing home inspection, and make any corrections before going on the market. I even market the home as having a clean bill of health with my “Buyer Approved Home Program.” This saves you, the homeowner, the possible need to give a monetary credit or doing work if a buyer finds something “that is not quite right” and “needs fixing.” And, if you do the work early on, saves you from doing it in a period of time that is usually not convenient – the same timeframe that you will be planning your move and preparing for closing.

Even worse – what can and has happened –  the buyer might get concerned, perhaps, about one single item she sees and take it as an indication that the owner has not paid attention to more items – and the buyer “freaks out,” decided to not buy your home. Talk about a hiccup in your home selling process! You’ve taken your home off the market, effectually, to have the buyer work through a home inspection as a contingency for sale, and now you need to put it back on, and potentially not only having lost other buyers that were out there, also possibly having additional buyers think that there is a “stain” on the property. Meaning that there is something so wrong with it that a buyer did not want to purchase it after having an inspection. You may get less money for it than originally or even not be able to sell it now.

kitchen 1

Here are some items to pay attention to or to do to prepare for selling your home!

1. Have all of your electrical switches and outlets in working condition. Electrical can scare some buyers because most do not know anything or much about what electricity is or how an electrical system works.

2. Make sure there are no plumbing leaks. Water is a major source of concern for buyers. Among other reasons, water or moisture is a component of mold formation.

3. Make sure that your toilet(s) flush correctly and that they do not wobble when you attempt to rock them with your hands by the seat side to side. Inspectors are known to tell buyers that a “broken seal” caused by a toilet that is not secured well to the floor can start a leak and damage the house.

4. Get items free and clear of your furnace and water heater. Do not have things near near them that could either combust or make a buyer think they could. Having the items there might register negatively in their minds in terms of what care they think you have given the home.

5. Have a termite inspection, if you are not in a type of dwelling such as a condo where the management does it already regularly. Get a clean bill of health and show that you take great care of your house.

6. If you are in a home that has you taking care of the exterior vs. a management company, take special note of roof and gutter condition and make any repairs. The goal is to keep water out of and away from the house. Make sure downspouts extensions lead well away from the foundation and that the ground is graded away from the house to allow proper drainage.

7. Have documentation of all work that has been done on the house, either preventative and even possibly corrective.  Put it in neat order in a binder. This helps the purchaser access the information and feel good that you are on top of the houses’ care, so they do not need to be concerned about items in the house .

I hope these tips to prepare your home for sale were helpful to you! Please let me know what questions you might have that I can help answer.

Cheers,
Ken

5 MORE Ways to Make a Successful Relocation Move to Arlington, VA

5 MORE Ways  to Make a Successful Relocation Move to Arlington, VA

Hi!

In  working with  relocating (relo) buyers to DC, I have found some great, key ways to help people experience less work and frustration in the process. I will share them with you here to be of help. I have collected many, so this is the second in  a two-part series.

Here goes:

6. Be prepared to make fast decisions. Nine times out of 10, you will want the same home that someone else does. This is natural. Wouldn’t you and another person at the supermarket want the same shiny apple over the one that is dull or bruised? With the best homes – best looking and best priced – going first, you will want to be ready to make an offer before anyone else does, whenever possible. It puts you in a MUCH better bargaining / negotiating position. Our market often favors sellers, due to a lack of inventory and a healthy pool of buyers. Do not wait until you view other properties to make an offer, as the house may very well have received another contract on it by the time you come back to it.

7. Learn the market through your agent. While there is a lot of information online, your agent is the on-the-ground person who will know the area, be able to  consult for you on choices – and if he is working in the market every day and is aggressive, he should know about some homes BEFORE they come on the market. He can tell you in order to help you get a leg up on the competition for the homes, by getting an offer in as soon as possible.

8. Always ask for a CMA – a competitive (or comparative) analysis of like homes in the neighborhood or in very close adjoining neighborhoods. A very good agent should be able to do this quickly. And this is where your agent who knows the local market can be a huge benefit to you.

9. Take notes and pictures or video. Especially if you are not used to looking at homes, you might not be able to recall certain details after you have seen them, to make a well-informed choice in selecting one to buy.  Notes and visuals can be resources for you to refer to in making a decision.

10. In our area, be prepared to negotiate hard, and go in with the knowledge that, on average, houses that are priced correctly sell within a few percentage points of the asking price (and when there is buying competition for the home, go for over the asking price). So, while you may not be able to negotiate as much on price for a home priced well, you can focus on terms and get ones that work well for you – especially in a relocation move where timing and details are more important, generally, in the total picture, than if you were moving locally.

I hope this was of great help. Call on us for any questions or to help you make your move!

Cheers,

Ken

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