There is a lot of news swirling around about the real estate market today. You are probably hearing, reading, or seeing that the market has slowed, inventory has increased, buyers are taking a break, and prices will crash once forbearances end. Well, the question is – what is real news and what is not? In my opinion, we are coming back to a more “normal” market based upon things like seasonality, and the market is not going to crash–at least not in Northern Virginia. The months of July and August are typically slower times of the year for real estate, and this year is no different (other than more people are vacationing due to the pandemic and travel restrictions last year). So, this is having a slight impact on the market. Couple this with the frenetic pace of the spring market, and the media would have you think the real estate market is coming to an end. It is not. The fundamentals are just too strong, so you can sleep at night now.
Let’s address each of the topics I mentioned:
•The market has slowed. Yes, it has slowed down slightly in relation to the over-heated market we discussed previously and the time of year. This being said, houses are still selling, and some have multiple offers on them. If you are selling, make sure you prepare your home in the proper condition and price it right. Now is not a time to overprice properties. Call me to discuss your situation in more detail.
•Inventory has increased. Yes, it has. We were at near all-time lows for houses for sale in Northern Virginia, and previously, there were not enough homes for the buyer demand we were experiencing. Additionally, we are still well below what is historically a “typical” market for the number of houses for sale.
•Buyers are taking a break. Houses are still selling, so they have not taken a break en masse. There are definitely some who have had enough and are taking a break, but it’s not happening across the board. Buyers are not competing as much in multiple contract situations, so the number of multiple offers has decreased. Buyers are more discerning, and with increasing inventory, they can be. It needs to be pointed out and repeated that this is an excellent opportunity for buyers – more inventory and less competition. If you are considering buying, give me a call to discuss your situation in more detail.
Prices will crash once forbearances end. Prices will not crash…inventory is still low, demand is high, mortgage rates are still fantastic, and just because an event like this occurs does not mean prices will crash. There will not be a flood of foreclosures like there were before. Too many reasons to list why, but feel free to call if you are interested in learning more. There is lots of information out there about real estate. To make sure you are well, and more importantly, accurately informed, call on this trusted professional. As summer comes to an end, I wish you all good luck sending kids back to school this year.
It’s a good life.
The Kitchen Features Buyers Love the Most
Side-by-side double sinks and walk-in pantries are the most desirable and among the most essential features in a kitchen, according to the What Home Buyers Really Want, 2021 Edition report, produced by the National Association of Home Builders. The survey was based on responses from more than 3,000 recent or prospective home buyers.
More than four of every 10 buyers said the double sink is so essential in the kitchen that they would be unlikely to purchase a home without it. More than half of home buyers surveyed rated 20 of 30 kitchen features either as essential or desirable. To see the full list click here.
Some age groups may desire certain features in a kitchen more than others, the survey finds. For example, millennials (born from 1980 to 1996) and Generation X (born from 1965 to 1979) look for steam ovens, trash compactors, wine coolers, a central island with a range, and even a double island. Baby boomers, born from 1946 to 1964, were less interested in those home features.
“NAHB Study Finds Double Sinks & Pantries the Most Popular Kitchen Features,” National Association of Home Builders’ Eye on Housing blog (6.17.21)
Cheater’s Skillet Lasagna with Corn and Cherry Tomatoes
Yields 6 servings ~ Total time 35 min
– 3 ears of corn on the cob
– 2 tablespoons melted butter
– 1 pound lasagna noodles, roughly broken
– 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
– 1 pint cherry tomatoes
– Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
– 2 large zucchini, peeled into ribbons w/vegetable peeler
– 1 bunch asparagus, peeled into ribbons w/vegetable peeler
– ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
– ¼ cup capers
– 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Brush corn w/melted butter, add to the skillet. Sear until well charred, about 4 minutes per side. Cool slightly, cut kernels from the cob.
- Bring large pot of salted water to a boil, cook lasagna noodles until al dente, 7 to 9 minutes.
- Drain noodles, toss w/ 2 tbsp of olive oil. Heat remaining olive oil in same skillet used to cook corn.
- Add tomatoes to the skillet; season w/salt & pepper. Cook until tomatoes are blistered, 6 to 7 minutes. Add zucchini & asparagus; cook until tender, about 4 minutes.
- Add noodles & corn to the skillet; toss to combine. Add Parmesan, capers & basil; toss to combine. Serve immediately.
- Cook’s Note: Throw in some grilled or rotisserie chicken for added protein. Enjoy!
10 Best Back to School Tips Ever
by Regan Lyons
Going from summer fun, vacations and late nights to homework, packed lunches and strict bedtimes can be a tough transition for both parents and kids. With these parent-approved back-to-school tips and tricks, though, heading back to school is sure to run smoothly this year!
- Start Preparing Early – The sooner you start, the easier it will be. Make a list of everything you need to do before school begins. The list can include everything from meal prepping and school supply shopping to hair cut appointments and sports physicals. The list will help you stay on track and, hopefully, keep you from forgetting something and having to make a last-minute trip to pick it up.
- Set Up a Command Center – A command center will help you stay organized all year round. This designated area will be where all school items go. Large cubbies work great to keep each child’s backpacks, lunch boxes, jackets and shoes together. This is also the ideal place to post your weekly calendar, so the entire family knows what is going on each day of the week. It would also be ideal to have a charging station for the kids’ school iPads and laptops, so they are ready to go for the next day.
- Line Out the Routine – Make a to-do list for each child that spells out the routine and responsibilities for the day. The list can include every task kids must complete before school, after school and before bedtime. Include tasks such as brushing teeth and combing hair, as well as after-school chores or putting away book bags. Spelling out their responsibilities for them will help kids get into their new routine and help you avoid asking them over and over whether they’ve brushed their teeth.
- Create a Dedicated Homework Space – Sometimes getting your kids to do their homework can become its own chore, but a designated homework space can help with that. Stock pencils, crayons, glue, tape and all the necessary supplies for homework at a desk or wherever they will be doing homework each day. Every day when it’s time for homework, the kids will be set up for success and won’t be wandering the house asking you where they put their scissors!
- Keep a Place for Important Paperwork – In your command center, create a filing system for important paperwork. This can be as simple as a file for each child or one tray in which to place all incoming paperwork and mail. This strategy ensures your kids know exactly where those important papers from their teachers need to go when they clean out their backpacks each afternoon. Gone will be the days of searching for a field trip permission slip the night before a trip to the zoo or trying to hunt down those overdue library books.
- Let the Kids Pack Their Lunches – Organizing the pantry and refrigerator will make packing lunches and snacks a breeze! Create bins in the pantry for items like chips, granola bars and drinks. In the refrigerator separate lunch foods like fruit, string cheese and applesauce packets into a bin. Then you can easily pack the lunches, or the kids can pick and choose what they pack in their lunches each day. For the first few days, you’ll want to check their lunch boxes to make sure they’re making good choices. This also works great for after-school snacks too!
- Plan Outfits for the Week – There’s nothing worse than rushing around in the morning trying to get your kids dressed and their saying they “have nothing to wear.” Make an evening habit of laying out their outfits for the next day, so when they wake up they can get dressed without all the stress. If you really like to plan ahead, set up compartments in their closet for each day of the week. On Sunday, set out the entire week’s outfits.
- Back to Bedtime – Have your kids become night owls this summer? Don’t worry! Slowly moving their bedtime up a half-hour per week until they are back to their school night bedtime will be a painless way to ease the kids back into their normal sleeping routine. When you bump up their bedtime, bump up their wake-up time, too. Give the kids a week before school starts to practice getting up on time, getting ready and eating breakfast before they would need to leave for school. Once the first day arrives, they will be up and at ’em bright and early!
- Skip the Store – Dreading those long, detailed school supply lists and mobs of moms with their kids trying to pick out the perfect binder in the back-to-school aisle? Skip it! Thanks to Target’s School List Assist and Amazon’s School List program, school supply shopping has never been easier. Simply find your child’s school and class supply list online, match the list to the items you would like to purchase, add the items to your cart, check out and wait for them to arrive on your doorstep!
- Make It Fun – Last but not least, make it fun and special for your kids. Starting a new school year is exciting. Take them out to breakfast before their first day, take their photos in their first-day-of-school outfits and maybe grab some ice cream after school to hear all about their day. The more excited they are to go to school, the easier the year will be for everyone!
New listing in Nokesville
Lovely single family home on 1 acre lot!
Call me for more details at 703-652-5703.