Real Estate Blog

One of the many great things about living in the Bayfront communities is the diversity of people, lifestyles, recreation, and homes.  No where is that variety more apparent than in Chic's Beach. It has been said that you can't quite "size-up" the person sitting next to you at Zia's or crossing your path on the beach. But ask the locals about the correct name and spelling of Chic's Beach and you will see community pride and unity well-up. Chesapeake Beach is the area west of Baylake Beach to Little Creek Amphibious Base and north of Shore Drive. It includes many neighborhoods such as Chesapeake Shores, Chesapeake Acres, and Chubb Lake Villas.  Maps dating back to the 18th century note "Chesapeake Beach" and a vantage point for Revolutionary soldiers to

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As most of you know, I update my website monthly with a review of current local housing market results.  By examining the same economic factors on a regular basis, I can give buyers and sellers reliable and timely advice.  It would be easy for me to provide my readers with a subscription to a newsletter that provides a national outlook, but my value to you as a real estate advisor is in knowing what is happening on a local level, as it happens.   I also provide this annual review and forecast for the coming year.

 

2016 showed steady and healthy improvements in the economy.  The United States is currently enjoying full employment (4.2%), a rising GDP, wage increases, and job gains. Job creation was however below expectation for economists and

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The December statistics for housing in Hampton Roads just rolled in, and it does appear we are riding into 2016 on a high tide!  With the Great Recession officially in the history books, consumer confidence and positive economic data abound, with experience as our compass.  I am excited about the opportunities for Buyers, Sellers, and Investors this year and look forward to helping make some goals come to fruition for my clientele. 

In October 2015, the Home Builder Confidence Index reached it's highest point in a decade. Housing starts ended 2015 with the healthiest gains in 8 years, mostly in multi-family complexes. As builders are reviving inventory shortages, we agents are experiencing home buyers at unprecedented levels.  Boomerang Buyers who

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Anyone who has searched for property online in the last five years has been exposed to the term "Walk Score."  A walk score provides an idea of how close restaurants, schools, parks, etc are for the potential buyer.  A low Walk Score would indicate a more car-dependent lifestyle.  Being a resident and agent in the Bayfront Communities of Virginia Beach, I have found that a "Sea Breeze Score" is a valuable tool for those who are interested in living in a beach community.  As you will see on my listings, a Sea Breeze Score will be determined by the opinion of "resident experts" in the community. 

Sea Breeze Score definitions:

 

90–100

Beach-lovers Paradise
Are you on vacation or at home?  Unobscured sunrise and sunset views.

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Split Modern 

As a Realtor, I've enjoyed witnessing the modernization of the split-level home.  Once known as "Cadillac splits," this home design lost popularity in the 80's & 90's, as buyer trends moved toward a separation of family activities and the McMansion was born.  As family values and needs have changed, the split-level home is getting it's second chance at being the darling of the American family.  Homeowners, today's buyers, and designers with vision are learning how limitless this floor plan is in providing comfort, convenience AND style to today's family home.   

Growing up in a split-level home in Virginia Beach, I enjoyed the many benefits of this unique home design. Originally designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, they gained popularity in the 60's.

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An insider's perspective provided by Mike Miller of Monarch Mortgage.

Last week I saw a restaurant review on a local blog that touted “The New York Times says  . . .” and I thought, wait a minute, the Times didn’t “say” anything, somebody that works for the Times did!  One person, one opinion, not the entire staff and their collective opinion, but one individual.  Invoking the mighty Times just because the reviewer works for the NY Times, transfers the credibility and credentials of the institution to the individual and turns an individual opinion into a powerful endorsement.

 

The mortgage lending business is hyper-competitive and mortgage originators come in all forms of education, training, experience and affiliation. With 25 years in the

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What is my home worth?

This is a question we receive daily in our business and the right answer is, "in whose opinion?"
Ultimately, it is the Buyer, the Seller, and the Appraiser that determine the value--what is one willing to pay, the other willing to accept, and the bank willing to loan against?  However, coupled with that are other valuable considerations that aren't reflected in the recorded sale price, such as Seller Concessions and repairs.  I'm of the opinion, that everyone should have a good idea of their Market Value, just as they know the value of their 401K.  Computer-generated values are available on Zillow and Trulia, however the owner of this company (they recently merged) even admits they can be as much as 10% off the value. Real estate

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wall art


What's a better idea on Valentines Day than surrounding yourself with pictures of what you love? Having photos of your favorite travel destinations, your best pet, your kids artwork, or your beloved family on your walls are hands-down the most attractive things in a person's home, in my opinion. I confess, however, that I have a habit of buying frames, printing photos, and never putting the two together on a wall. I question their placement, their grouping, the color of the frames. And then I put them back in the closet. I asked for the help of photographer, Tracey Sanders of Tracey Sanders Photography and she provided me with a helpful booklet on how to group a variety of sizes of photos (available at your request).  In addition, I've noticed that

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When showing a couple of painted brick ranches this weekend, my clients asked if there was a benefit to painting brick beyond aesthetic.  I replied that some people have strong feelings of opposition to painted brick.  Buyers can be concerned that evidence of settlement or foundation issues can be hidden, however foundation issues can usually be observed in other ways. What I see as more of a concern is that if brick isn't properly painted, it will generally need to be repainted every 3-5 years, according to the Brick Industry Association. So a product that was essentially zero upkeep or expense has been changed to an item of regular maintenance and cost.  Further, after it has been painted over a number of times, it can look gloppy. A better choice if you…
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To show my sellers where advertising for open houses is most effective, I have produced this poll. Anyone attending my open house tomorrow will be provided with the multiple choice code to text their response. That information will be graphed and provided to my seller.  If you intend to come out tomorrow, during National Open House weekend, please make your selection either here or via text.

<script language="javascript" src="http://www.polleverywhere.com/multiple_choice_polls/MTg0ODEzNTEzOQ/web.js?height=250&results_count_format=percent&width=300" type="text/javascript"></script>

 

Thanks for your feedback!

Windy

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