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Stonegate Townhome Listed Today! Alexandria Rocks, too! Open House 3/22.

Stonegate Townhome Listed Today!
Alexandria Rocks, too! Open House 3/22!

Hi! We just listed a stunning townhome in Alexandria in the fabulous area of Stonegate. It is the most beautiful home I have ever seen here.

This luxurious home is completely and elegantly renovated for your turnkey move-in. The floorplan has over 12 ft. ceilings on the main and master bedroom levels, gleaming hardwood floors, a unique, wonderful two-level master suite with loft spa bath – and so much more – to charm and please the distinguishing buyer. The new kitchen just sparkles and has the conveniences of well thought out pull-out storage, beautiful stainless steel appliances and more-than-ample cabinets.

Please come see this incredible home and us this Sunday 1-4pm. Priced at $572,000. Here is a sneak preview!

2440 Garnett's Living Room

2440 Garnett’s Living Room

2440 Garnett Dr., Alexandria, VA 22311

See more at 2440GarnettDr.com.

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Moving Tips For Arlington, VA, and Elsewherre

Moving Tips For Arlington, VA, and All Home Buyers

Hi,

If you plan on moving to a new home or rental, here is a brief video I produced to help you with some clever moving tips.

I hope you found it helpful. Please let me know if you would like more tips or even a referral to an excellent moving company. I have tracked the ratings by my clients of the movers they like, including the ones that I refer them to and they use, and can share what they have to say.

Moving to a new home

Moving to a new home

Having sold a lot of homes, we have many clients who have moved. I know how nerve-wracking it can be. Like all we do for our clients, we like to take as much stress as possible off of our clients’ shoulders every step of the way. We hope this helps make your move easier. Have a great day!

Cheers,
Ken

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Selling Your Arlington Home in Spring 2015 – Statistics

Selling Your Arlington Home in Spring 2015 – Statistics

Hi! Arlington homeowners are asking me: “What is the chance of selling my home this Spring?”

I will share here Arlington’s current inventory of homes and you will quickly see why it is a Seller’s Market.

Total of all homes, any type (detached, condo, etc.) at all prices: 462
(The estimated 2014 population of Arlington County, VA, by the US Census Bureau was 224,906)

Average price of all: $734,397

Seller's Market

Seller’s Market

Number of homes available by price bracket / range
$1,000 – 299,000 106
300,000 – 399,000 61
400,000 – 499,000 44
500,000 – 599,000 31
600,000 – 699,000 37
700,000 – 799,000 27
800,000 – 899,000 20
900,000 – 999,000 14
1,000,000 – 1,099,000 4
1,100,000 – 1,199,000 10
1,200,000 – 1,299,000 9
1,300,000 – 1,399,000 9
1,400,000 – 1,499,000 14
1,500,000 – 3,750,000 58
(If you would like a further breakout of the last bracket / range, please comment on the post and ask. Thanks.)
Source: MRIS, March 9, 2015

With this very small number of homes on the market, sellers have much more ability to ask for a price they want (it still needs to be reasonable, as always) and get it, and with the best terms possible. Having the stronger market position as compared to buyers gives home seller’s the better negotiating position. More strength.

If you would like more information or a free market valuation of your home, please contact us. We can do it within 24 hours. Have a great day!

Cheers,
Ken

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Top 2 Ways to Buy Your First Home with Less Work and Less Money

Top 2 Ways to Buy Your First Home with Less Work and Less Money

Hi!

When buying your first home in Arlington – or anywhere – there are some fundamental things to put into place to help you get the best home possible for you with the least effort on your part and for the smallest amount of bucks out of your pocket. Here goes!

1. Have a plan. The key components of this are timing, money and who.

-When do you want to buy, and what is this based on? Can there be flexibility in the timing? Flexibility is one of the keys to having more negotiating power when making an offer.

-Where is the money for the purchase coming from? If a loan, get a referral from your agent. They know the best ones. Service to get you to closing, not just a great rate, is important. You need to close on the house in the time you have agreed to in your contract with the seller, so you are not in default. When you say you will buy it on a certain date, the lender needs to make sure all flows well and you can close on that date, with certainty!

A Top Notch Buyer Representative saves you time and money.

A Top Notch Buyer Representative saves you time and money.

-Who is going to lead you to success? Choosing a Buyer Representative is important. A study showed that buyers consider buying a house for an average of 13 months before they select a Realtor. And then guess how long they take to select a Buyer Representative? Only 1 week. And it’s such an important decision to make. What this leads the experts to believe is that, for the most part, not a lot of thought is put by buyers into selecting a great agent, and one that will work well with a buyer’s needs and personality. Some buyers choose to work with the first agent that they meet in public. It’s highly recommended to choose one wisely.

2. Reduce your time spent on searching and buying. Time is money – imagine considering to buy a house and then the interest rates increase to a point that you cannot buy the house you want? Wouldn’t that be a bad thing?

The best time reduction technique or choice is to get an agent to represent you 6 months to a year out from when you want to buy. Let them do the work!

I hear every week from buyers, when I am out in the field working, that they are just checking things out and online, figuring out what they want to buy and where before engaging an agent. That they do not want to “waste” an agent’s time early on to help them determine this.

One, if they help you through the process and work with you until closing, they are paid by the seller when you close on your house. It is their choice as to how they plan to use their time in their business. No skin off their teeth, as the saying goes, huh?

Two, a great agent can determine your needs and wants with a great complimentary consultation in an hour or less.

There is no substitute for a top notch Buyer Representative. If you decide to do the work early footwork of what you think it takes to get started by yourself – which might be ill-informed by online information or what someone might tell you – no fault of your own, this takes a lot of time and work. The information that you find online, that you might elect to use as resources, can be incomplete, incorrect and not up to date. Can one believe all they read on the internet? Note that none of the real estate portals that the public has access to are real time. That’s why perhaps you showed up for an open house that was listed in the MLS as being open, and the unit had since gone under contract and the open house was canceled. Not fun, especially if you planned your day around it – or there was freezing rain – like buyers told me last weekend when this happened to them.

More on timing: There is work that needs to be done to establish your ability to buy a house. For instance, perhaps there is an erroneous item that shows up on your credit report and it takes time to get it removed before you can have a lender look at your true credit score and thereby get the best loan rate possible. A higher rate often means that you will not be approved for as expensive of a house.

I hope this was helpful! If you would like a complimentary hard cover book that we at Keller Williams have designed just for first time home buyers, please let me know. Or ask questions, and I will be delighted to help! Have a great day!

Cheers,
Ken

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The 4 Keys to Selling Your Home Fast in Arlington Va, and Elsewhere

The 4 Keys to Selling Your Home Fast in Arlington Va, and Elsewhere

Hi! I hope you are staying safe on the ice in the DC area today.

The 4 Keys to Selling Your Home Fast

The 4 Keys to Selling Your Home Fast

What are your guesses of the 4 most important items to focus on to sell your home fast?
Here are my top 4.
1. Price it right. Use a pricing strategy; don’t simply pick a price you would ultimately like for it and put it on the house as a price sticker, like a product in the supermarket. Real estate is much more complex than that and your home sale is very important! A pricing strategy positions your home in the current market to get the best price.

Immediately before you go on the market, look at recent sales, home under contract and any new listings that just came on. Additionally, if your agent is very connected to the market where your home is located, he or she might know of other properties coming on the market soon that are relevant to consider in your pricing.

Remember, it’s a pricing strategy that one needs to strategically put into place to get the highest offer.

Our recent sale. 3 contracts, sold in 3 days for $40K over asking price.

Our recent sale. 3 contracts, sold in 3 days for almost $40K over asking price.

2. Show it right. Have an incredible stager and an agent that knows the value of staging and how to best present a home. Does your agent have a great sense of style, especially as it pertains to the local home scene? Having worked in the design and architecture field for many years before opening my real estate business, I am constantly considering how homes are presented. I see many approaches to presentation here. Just like in any profession, each agent is different, in this case, in their skills and also how they choose to have their clients’ homes presented for sale.

3. Show it easily and often. Make your home as accessible as possible for buyers to see – this holds true both virtually and in-person. Using a great photographer and posting online as many photos as the MLS allows (currently, 30), gives the on-line shopper (which is now almost 90% of buyers, before they go to look in person) the drive to want to see the home in person. Additionally, I recommend having a floorplan online. I have floorplans drawn for all of my listings. Additionally, the system I use allows buyers to see where a photo was taken at the particular place in the room and also to virtually place furniture in the room! Yes, this adds to the marketing cost and takes more effort. It is well worth the extra work and expense.

4. Choose a great, successful Realtor. Like any profession, skills and talents vary greatly. Real estate is a complex business. For instance, in a recent study, one item that was rated less highly in terms of what the public is looking for in an agent is negotiating skills. Little perceived, it must be, how important that is to many, many steps in marketing and selling a home, and in working to buy a home for the best price and terms, especially in such a competitive market at Arlington, and DC, in general. One recommendation – ask your agent how they will defend your price if you are selling, (and if buying, ask them what is the highest number of contracts that they have negotiated against and won a purchase on for their clients).

I hope you found this helpful! Questions? Comments?

Cheers,
Ken

person. Have you thought about an incredible photographer who

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