As Summer Comes to an End…
The real estate market was not hot like the weather in August – it was slow relative to July’s numbers, but we were relatively consistent with last year’s numbers. The lack of activity resulted in sales being lower compared to July by about 9%. The reason for the slowdown – interest rates are rising, prices are rising, and many school districts started school prior to Labor Day which means more vacations were taken this August than in previous years. The last one is pure speculation, but many of our clients and agents did vacation earlier hence the belief in the slowdown of sales.
As prices have increased, buyers have become more discerning. Today’s purchasers expect houses to be more HGTV-like as prices increase and, in many situations, they are not. This has had great effects on both median and average days on market. Both increased over July even though these numbers are down year over year. The current median days on market are 14 and the average days on market are 34. As the real estate market stabilizes, sellers tend to become anxious, yet they should not as we are in a normal market and there is nothing to be concerned about. Price and condition are the key indicators to the sale of your house. Please call me to discuss in more detail if you are considering a move.
So, what could the end of the year bring to the DC area? The decision as to whether Amazon is going to select our area as their new HQ2. A lot of leading indicators say we are definitely in the running for this selection. Most recently, Amazon joined the DC Chamber of Commerce, advertised for an Economic Development Manager and has continued to purchase land in Loudoun County. These factors along with the fact that Amazon Web Services (AWS) is currently a member of the Loudoun County Chamber of Commerce, Virginia Chamber of Commerce, DC Board of Trade, the Northern Virginia Technology Council and Jeff Bezos already owns a home here in DC. Time will tell and his upcoming interview at The Economic Club of Washington DC could shed additional light on the subject. Stay tuned! I blogged previously about this topic which you can read here.
If you have questions about buying, selling or the Amazon announcement, please feel free to call me.
It’s a good life.
Fall is upon us. Time to enjoy some outdoor events! There is always something fun to do in and around Northern Virginia!
Reston Multicultural Festival, Lake Anne Plaza, Reston, September 22, 2018
Lake Anne Plaza will be full of color, music, and culture at the annual Multicultural Festival. The FREE festival celebrates the diversity and vibrancy of Reston’s
community with performances, arts and crafts, food, and activities. Festival goers are encouraged to dress in attire that represents their culture.11:00am – 6:00pm.
Irish Folk Festival, The Sherwood Center, Fairfax, September 22, 2018
The 223rd annual Irish Folk Festival features a day of music on four stages, plus dancing, vendors, workshops, and Gaelic sports. Admission is $10 ($20 max per family). Noon – 6:30pm.
Bluemont Fair – September 16 & 17, 2018
Family fun at the 47th annual Bluemont Country Fair featuring live blues & country music, traditional crafts, Children’s Fair, farm animals, homemade food, antiques & collectables, local wine-tasting, breweries & gourmet treats, model railroad display & antique caboose, pre-Civil War Country Store and more. Special events – craft & farming demonstrations, 10k race, Farmer’s Market, and a pie-baking/pickle making contest. No pets please. Admission $7, ages 9 and under free; 10am – 5pm daily.
Clarendon Day – September 22, 2018
Being one of the most popular street festivals in the Arlington area, thus year’s festival is expected to draw over 20k people! Experience live music, local food & beverage options, a kids zone, and local business and charity exhibits. Free to attend, 11am – 6pm. For more details, visit www.clarendonday.org
Arts and Crafts Fair – September 29 & 30, 2018
Hosted semi-annually by The Town of Occoquan, this is the premiere festival on the east coast for craft enthusiasts of all ages. Stroll along the riverfront walkway, take in the fall foliage and peruse the numerous craft vendors and artisans that line the main streets of Historic Occoquan. Free admission; Saturday 10am – 6pm, Sunday 10am – 5pm.
A spotlight on one of my valued partners in real estate
Signature Design Interiors
Signature Design Interiors is a full service decorating, remodeling and staging firm. We are known for our turnkey service and purposeful designs that are beautiful, functional and unique to each individual client.
SDI’s creative team of designers has been working together for over a decade. When you work with us you get the talent of all of our experts in space planning, furnishings, art, color, remodeling, and staging working together behind the scenes to create your project.
We are proud of the accolades we have achieved, which include:
•Voted Best Interior Designer on Northern Virginia Magazine’s 2017 Top Contractors List
•Best of Houzz Service 2014-2018
•Home Advisor Elite Service Award
•Featured on HGTV’s My Lottery Dream Home and in The Washington Post’s House Calls
•Endorsed by Moms of Arlington
Custom Upholstery & Furnishings • Art & Accessories • Lighting • Flooring • Color Consultations • Paint & Wall Coverings • Staging • Kitchen, Bath & Basement Remodeling
Let’s Create Something Together. Call 888.969.3326 today.
Please visit SignatureDesignInteriors.com to meet our team, learn more about our process, and view our portfolio.
California Grilled Chicken
You’ve got grilling to do before the summer ends! Chicken breasts topped with yummy mozzarella, avocado & tomato.
- 3/4 c. balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 2 tbsp. honey
- 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 4 slices mozzarella
- 4 slices avocado
- 4 slices tomato
- 2 tbsp Freshly sliced basil (garnish)
- Balsamic glaze, for drizzling
- In a small bowl, whisk together balsamic vinegar, garlic powder, honey, oil, and Italian seasoning and season with salt and pepper. Pour over chicken and marinate 20 minutes.
- When ready to grill, heat grill to medium-high. Oil grates and grill chicken until charred and cooked through, 8 minutes per side.
- Top chicken with mozzarella, avocado, and tomato and cover grill to melt, 2 minutes.
- Garnish with basil and drizzle with balsamic glaze.
The Pros and Cons of Converting a Garage into a Living Space
Record-low housing inventory across the nation has some homeowners rethinking their plans to move to a bigger space. Instead, they may be looking at ways to renovate or expand their current home. What about converting the garage into extra living space? Here are some pros and cons.
Pro: Make the most of what you have
In the era of ride sharing services, many young professionals are choosing to downsizing by opting for public transit over car ownership. In that case, the unused garage is much easier to convert to a functional living space than dealing with the expense and hassle of an expansion.
Con: Loss of Storage Space
Many homeowners use their garage for additional storage, so before you make the decision to alter the space, make sure you have a plan for your storage needs. Better yet, downsize your possessions for a little more breathing room throughout your home.
Pro: Help Pay Down Mortgage
Looking to rent a room out in your home to help pay down your mortgage? According to a survey performed by HomeAdvisor, millennial homeowners are 39 percent more likely to renovate a garage compared to all other homeowners that can allow them to create a usable living space while building equity.
Con: Future Buyers Wants and Needs
Before you convert a garage, make sure to do your homework on your neighborhood. What is selling? Are garages sought after by home buyers? If you are looking for answers to these or other questions, or are concerned about the resale value of your home, please feel free to give me a call. I’m here to help you with your home selling and buying needs.