Category Archives: Buyers

Housing Market Update – Sept 2017

Housing market in Northern Virginia is doing quite well comparing to the other parts of the country:

– Homes were sold 17.65% faster with Average Days on the market went down to 42 days vs 51 days in Sept 2016.
– Number of Under Contract homes increase 22% compared to Sept 2016. This shows a stronger absorption rate.
– Inventory is only 2.81 months of supply compared to 2.9 months in Sept 2016 (Balance market has 6 months of inventory)
– Average Sales Price is 3.92% higher than Sept 2016
– Total home sold is 3.28% less than Sept 2016 (1620 compared to 1675).
In general, this local housing market appears to be sustainable.  Most homes on the market at a price higher than market value tend to stay longer on the market. At the same time, homes that are not updated or are in move-in ready condition will experience longer time of the market as well as price adjustment/reduction.  Well updated homes and well priced homes are still in strong demand and still receive multiple bids.

Source: https://www.nvar.com/realtors/news/market-statistics/market-statistics-september-2017

Northern Virginia Housing Market Update
Northern Virginia Housing Market Update

Change the appearance of the entrance and see how much changes you have created to your home.

Allow Entryway Inspiration to Strike with These Fresh New Ideas

Make a welcoming first impression with stylish accessories or a fresh color palette to update your front entry’s style.

A fresh, stylish-looking entryway will help welcome guests to your house and make them feel right at home. Giving your front entry an update doesn’t have to cost a lot of money or cause you a lot of work; these ideas will help you decide the best route to take to give your entry a boost and increase your curb appeal for open houses or your own pleasure.

Allow Entryway Inspiration to Strike with These Fresh New Ideas - bhgrelife.comClassic charm

Enhance your home’s facade with a few charming exterior touches. A mahogany door with matching molding sets a timeless tone, and its insulated glass meets Energy Star guidelines. The do-it-yourself address plaque features self-adhesive numbers and comes in three background finishes.

 

 

 

Allow Entryway Inspiration to Strike with These Fresh New Ideas - bhgrelife.comAdd greenery

Give your entry a fresh finish by slipping evergreens and shrubs into planters. Add visual interest by varying their heights and types. For best results, transplant evergreens and shrubs in your yard before the soil freezes. An entryway garden—even when the plants are in pots—adds a fresh appeal to any front entryway.

101690674Refresh a classic entry

Inspired to remake your entrance? Few projects can provide an instant face-lift like a fresh coat of paint does. Instead of the expected red, step outside of the norm by painting your door orange for a warm, fun and vibrant look.

101690674_b_300Customize accessories

Forgo a traditional doormat for a colorful round rug that’s suitable for outdoor use. PVC planters can be painted to complement your color palette, plus they are lightweight and maintenance-free.

101690671Finishing touches

Relax a formal entry with a pretty mix of metals. A fiberglass door with a paintable wood-look finish and an aluminum-clad frame offers low maintenance. Try a copper finish on house numbers to make them stand out from afar. If your front entry is lacking character, add a little instant architecture with a ready-made iron trellis.

101690671_b_largeTwo sides

An outdoor table isn’t just for the backyard. Up front, it’s ideal for plants or as a perch for bags when you check the mail. Matched sets flanking the door are fine, but different accents of similar visual weight and height, such as this table and pot, provide balance and contrast.

101187033_300Greenhouse effect

A hint of nature can instantly energize an entryway. With a leafy-green door and plants in sculptural containers, this front door ties perfectly to nature.

101187033_b_300Style made simple

Add instant contemporary polish to an entry with metal accents. These brushed-metal house numbers look stylish and are easy to apply—just peel, stick and enjoy.

101187032High contrast

A brilliant blue door with sharp black trim, crisp white house numbers, and sunny sconces adds drama to this traditional scheme.

101187032_b_300Strike a balance

Soften a striking color scheme with delicate details. Seasonal flowers and neutral-color pots balance a bold entry with a touch of feminine flair.

101187038.jpg.rendition.largest-2

Woodland retreat

Rich earth tones, a wood door with a natural finish and rustic materials such as copper and bronze lend classic character to this Craftsman-style entry door. Even the doormat, which resembles smooth river rock, harkens to the traditional building materials of the Craftsman era.

101187038_b_300Build on character

If your home nods to a particular style, gain instant curb appeal with a character-filled entry. The dentil shelf shown here is an affordable way to customize a Craftsman-style entry and add visual interest to a door.

© Meredith Corporation. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

Source: https://www.bhgre.com/bhgrelife/allow-entryway-inspiration-strike-fresh-new-ideas/?pps=full_post

10 Tips to Know When Moving into Your New Home

Moving

It’s no secret that moving is a difficult, time-consuming task. You pack everything you own into a moving van, only to unpack everything into a new house. What may surprise you is that moving doesn’t actually have to be a daunting experience. There are some excellent tips that can make the entire process easy, effective, and enjoyable. If you are able to hire movers, all the better. In any case, these 10 tips are all you need to know when moving into your new home.

10 Tips to Know When Moving into Your New Home - bhgrelife.com1. Connect your Internet

This is one thing that many people forget. If you want to have Internet access as soon as you move into your new home, you need to plan for it ahead of time. Depending on your location and service provider, set-up and wiring can take several weeks to book. So, schedule this prior to the move.

10 Tips to Know When Moving into Your New Home - bhgrelife.com2. Set up your electricity

Similar to the Internet, some people forget that the energy is likely disconnected in their new home prior to move-in. There is nothing more frustrating than trying to unpack in a dark room, but fortunately, the process of connecting your energy is fairly simple. Just call your local energy provider and give them the necessary information they request, such as your new address and connection date.

10 Tips to Know When Moving into Your New Home - bhgrelife.com3. Contact movers, or assistance, 3 – 4 weeks in advance

Once you have a tentative date, or a schedule, in mind for your move, it is important you contact your movers as early as possible in advance. This way you aren’t rushing last-minute, or revising your personal schedule, to begin the booking and organization process.

If you are not hiring professional movers, it is still important to inform anyone who might be helping you in advance so they can take time out of their schedule to help. For more information on the type of moving company you may want to hire, view our breakdown of moving services here.

10 Tips to Know When Moving into Your New Home - bhgrelife.com4. Give it a deep clean

If you have access to your home prior to moving day, take some time to give it a deep clean. This is actually fairly easy because the space is already empty—it will never be emptier, in fact. Scrub those cupboards, floors, baseboards, windows, and everything else while there’s nothing hindering access to such areas.

NewHouseTips_65. Inspect your belongings

When the boxes are off the truck and sitting in your new living room, take the time to inspect your belongings. This is incredibly important, especially if you hired movers. Make sure that everything has made the trip to your new place, and while doing so, you can place the boxes in the correct rooms.

10 Tips to Know When Moving into Your New Home - bhgrelife.com6. Unpack with organization

If you followed the previous step and have already placed boxes in specific rooms, you’re already ahead of the unpacking game. One way to make the entire unpacking process significantly easier is to start with the essentials. Unpack the absolute necessities, such as bedding, clothes, toiletry, and towels, first, and you’ll be able to start the relaxing process for the day quicker.

10 Tips to Know When Moving into Your New Home - bhgrelife.com7. Install window treatments

It’s time to turn your house into a home, and installing window treatments, such as blinds or curtains, is the first step to settling it. This will also help you protect your possessions, as people outside won’t have a clear view of everything you own. If you haven’t decided on specific window treatments just yet, hang some linen in the meantime just to give your new home and possessions that extra protection.

10 Tips to Know When Moving into Your New Home - bhgrelife.com8. Change the locks

Another thing you may want to do for your new home is change the locks. Unfortunately, you don’t know how many extra keys were made when the previous owners lived there. So, change the locks on the exterior of your home as soon as you can just to be sure that no outsiders have an open invitation into your new house.

10 Tips to Know When Moving into Your New Home - bhgrelife.com9. Locate the circuit breaker

As you unpack, you will likely come across the circuit breaker anyway, but this may be something you want to find right from the beginning. Check it out, and if there are no labels, make your own so you know what breaker controls each section of your home.

 

 

 

10 Tips to Know When Moving into Your New Home - bhgrelife.com10. Meet the neighbors

After all the unpacking, you’ll need a break, and some fresh air will do you well. Take a walk around your neighborhood, and stop by, and say hello to anyone you see. You’ll begin the process of fitting into your new atmosphere and feeling at home right away.

Moving doesn’t have to be an undesirable experience. With these tips, you can enjoy the entire process of moving into your new house.

Source: http://www.bhgre.com/bhgrelife/tips-to-know-moving-into-your-new-home/?pps=full_post

Housing Market Statistic – March 2015

Market Statistic March 2015 - NVARMarch 2015 Home Sales Compared to March 2014: NVAR Footprint

The Northern Virginia Association of Realtors® reports on March 2015 home sales activity for Fairfax and Arlington counties, the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax and Falls Church and the towns of Vienna, Herndon and Clifton.

A total of 1,538 homes sold in March 2015, a 13.84 percent increase over March 2014 home sales of 1,351.

Active listings continued to show a significant increase this month compared with 2014. Listings were up 27.23 percent over last year, with 3,831 active listings in March, compared with 3,011 homes available in March 2014. Homes continue to take longer to sell this year than last. The average days on market (DOM) for homes in March 2015 was 62 days, an increase of 37.78 percent compared to the 45 DOM for homes in March 2014.

The average home sale price rose this March, to $548,101. This is up 2.73 percent compared to March 2014, when the average price was $533,534.

The median sold price of homes this March, which was $475,000, rose by 4.40 percent compared to the median price of $455,000 in March 2014.

The 2,293 new pending home sales in Northern Virginia in March is an increase of 13.51% compared with 2,020 contracts that were pending in March of last year.

http://nvar.com/market-statistics/housing-market-statistics/market-statistics/housing-market-statistics

2014 Housing Market Year-End Update

Quận Fairfax chứng minh thị trường nhà năm 2014 khá ổn định. Mặc dù những thông số gần giống như năm 2013, nhưng rõ ràng thị trường khá mạnh. Toàn quận có 13,549 căn nhà bán (phân nửa là nhà Single Houses và phân nửa kia gồm cả condos và townhouses) trong năm 2014, con số này ít hơn năm 2013. 

Fairfax County demonstrated a stable market in 2014.  It was a healthy market although the stats are almost the same to previous year of 2013. There were 13,549 houses sold in 2014, a 10% decrease from 2013, and almost 1/2 of which is single family homes while the other half was comprised of townhouses and condos .

Giá thành trung điểm tăng khoảng 1.1% tới giá $460,000. Giá nhà single houses cao hơn, ở tầm $702,606, và nhà townhouses trung bình ở giá $368,002.  Chủ nhà trung bình nhận được 97.3% giá rao bán.  Các căn nhà nằm trên thị trường lâu hơn năm ngoái.  Trung bình tốn khoảng 45 ngày thay vì 37 ngày trong năm 2013. Điểm này chứng thực rằng số lượng nhà quá thừa thãi trên thị trường trong mùa Xuân và mùa Hè của 2014.

Median sold price still gained 1.1% to $460,000. Single family homes were at $702,606 and Townhouses were averaged at$368,002. Sellers generally got 97.3% of their list price. It took a bit longer for sellers to sell their homes in 2014 than the previous year.  The average days on market was 45 days versus 37 days in 2013. This was a true reflection of the abundant inventory during the spring and the summer of 2014.

Vấn đề vay mượn vẫn gây khó khăn cho người mua nhà, khoảng 13% không vay mượn, 65% mượn theo chương trình vay mượn thông thường, chỉ có 8% sử dụng chương trình do chính phủ bảo đảm.

Những chủ nhà hiểu biết thực tế của thị trường cảm thấy mạnh dạn, nhưng những người mua tìm giá rẻ thì thất vọng vì số lượng nhà gặp khó khăn trả nợ giảm dưới 5%.

Nếu bạn quyết định mua nhà thì có thể yêu cầu Hướng dẫn mua nhà ở đây.  Hoặc bạn có thể email để tìm hiểu chi tiết về thị trường trong khu vực mình ở.

Financing continued to be a challenge for many buyers, 13% of buyers made their purchase in cash (no financing). 65% of buyers used Conventional Financing and only 8% used FHA financing.

It is very encouraging to realistic sellers while it could be challenging for buyers who are looking for good deals. Distressed inventory went way down to less than 5% in the county.

Email now to discover the market update for your own neighborhood.

Don’t Miss These Home Tax Deductions

From mortgage interest to property tax deductions, here are the tax tips you need to get a jump on your returns.

Owning a home can pay off at tax time.

Take advantage of these homeownership-related tax deductions and strategies to lower your tax bill:

Mortgage Interest Deduction

One of the neatest deductions itemizing homeowners can take advantage of is the mortgage interest deduction, which you claim on Schedule A. To get the mortgage interest deduction, your mortgage must be secured by your home — and your home can be a house, trailer, or boat, as long as you can sleep in it, cook in it, and it has a toilet.

Interest you pay on a mortgage of up to $1 million — or $500,000 if you’re married filing separately — is deductible when you use the loan to buy, build, or improve your home.

If you take on another mortgage (including a second mortgage, home equity loan, or home equity line of credit) to improve your home or to buy or build a second home, that counts towards the $1 million limit.

If you use loans secured by your home for other things — like sending your kid to college — you can still deduct the interest on loans up $100,000 ($50,000 for married filing separately) because your home secures the loan.

PMI and FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums

You can deduct the cost of private mortgage insurance (PMI) as mortgage interest on Schedule A if you itemize your return. The change only applies to loans taken out in 2007 or later.

By the way, the 2014 tax season is the last for which you can claim this deduction unless Congress renews it for 2015, which may happen, but is uncertain.

What’s PMI? If you have a mortgage but didn’t put down a fairly good-sized downpayment (usually 20%), the lender requires the mortgage be insured. The premium on that insurance can be deducted, so long as your income is less than $100,000 (or $50,000 for married filing separately).

If your adjusted gross income is more than $100,000, your deduction is reduced by 10% for each $1,000 ($500 in the case of a married individual filing a separate return) that your adjusted gross income exceeds $100,000 ($50,000 in the case of a married individual filing a separate return). So, if you make $110,000 or more, you can’t claim the deduction (10% x 10 = 100%).

Besides private mortgage insurance, there’s government insurance from FHA, VA, and the Rural Housing Service. Some of those premiums are paid at closing, and deducting them is complicated. A tax adviser or tax software program can help you calculate this deduction. Also, the rules vary between the agencies.

Prepaid Interest Deduction

Prepaid interest (or points) you paid when you took out your mortgage is generally 100% deductible in the year you paid it along with other mortgage interest.

If you refinance your mortgage and use that money for home improvements, any points you pay are also deductible in the same year.

But if you refinance to get a better rate or shorten the length of your mortgage, or to use the money for something other than home improvements, such as college tuition, you’ll need to deduct the points over the life of your mortgage. Say you refi into a 10-year mortgage and pay $3,000 in points. You can deduct $300 per year for 10 years.

So what happens if you refi again down the road?

Example: Three years after your first refi, you refinance again. Using the $3,000 in points scenario above, you’ll have deducted $900 ($300 x 3 years) so far. That leaves $2,400, which you can deduct in full the year you complete your second refi. If you paid points for the new loan, the process starts again; you can deduct the points over the life of the loan.

Home mortgage interest and points are reported on Schedule A of IRS Form 1040.

Your lender will send you a Form 1098 that lists the points you paid. If not, you should be able to find the amount listed on the HUD-1 settlement sheet you got when you closed the purchase of your home or your refinance closing.

Property Tax Deduction

You can deduct on Schedule A the real estate property taxes you pay. If you have a mortgage with an escrow account, the amount of real estate property taxes you paid shows up on your annual escrow statement.

If you bought a house this year, check your HUD-1 settlement statement to see if you paid any property taxes when you closed the purchase of your house. Those taxes are deductible on Schedule A, too.

Energy-Efficiency Upgrades

If you made your home more energy efficient in 2014, you might qualify for the residential energy tax credit.

Tax credits are especially valuable because they let you offset what you owe the IRS dollar for dollar for up to 10% of the amount you spent on certain home energy-efficiency upgrades.

The credit carries a lifetime cap of $500 (less for some products), so if you’ve used it in years past, you’ll have to subtract prior tax credits from that $500 limit. Lucky for you, there’s no cap on how much you’ll save on utility bills thanks to your energy-efficiency upgrades.

Among the upgrades that might qualify for the credit:

To claim the credit, file IRS Form 5695 with your return.

Vacation Home Tax Deductions

The rules on tax deductions for vacation homes are complicated. Do yourself a favor and keep good records about how and when you use your vacation home.

  • If you’re the only one using your vacation home (you don’t rent it out for more than 14 days a year), you deduct mortgage interest and real estate taxes on Schedule A.
  • Rent your vacation home out for more than 14 days and use it yourself fewer than 15 days (or 10% of total rental days, whichever is greater), and it’s treated like a rental property. Your expenses are deducted on Schedule E.
  • Rent your home for part of the year and use it yourself for more than the greater of 14 days or 10% of the days you rent it and you have to keep track of income, expenses, and allocate them based on how often you used and how often you rented the house.

Homebuyer Tax Credit

This isn’t a deduction, but it’s important to keep track of if you claimed it in 2008.

There were federal first-time homebuyer tax credits in 2008, 2009, and 2010.

If you claimed the homebuyer tax credit for a purchase made after April 8, 2008, and before Jan. 1, 2009, you must repay 1/15th of the credit over 15 years, with no interest.

The IRS has a tool you can use to help figure out what you owe each year until it’s paid off. Or if the home stops being your main home, you may need to add the remaining unpaid credit amount to your income tax on your next tax return.

Generally, you don’t have to pay back the credit if you bought your home in 2009, 2010, or early 2011. The exception: You have to repay the full credit amount if you sold your house or stopped using it as primary residence within 36 months of the purchase date. Then you must repay it with your tax return for the year the home stopped being your principal residence.

The repayment rules are less rigorous for uniformed service members, Foreign Service workers, and intelligence community workers who got sent on extended duty at least 50 miles from their principal residence.

Related: A Homeowner’s Guide to Taxes

This article provides general information about tax laws and consequences, but shouldn’t be relied upon as tax or legal advice applicable to particular transactions or circumstances. Consult a tax professional for such advice; tax laws may vary by jurisdiction.

Dona-DeZube Dona DeZube has been writing about real estate for more than two decades. She lives in a suburban Baltimore Midcentury modest home on a 3-acre lot shared with possums, raccoons, foxes, a herd of deer, and her blue-tick hound. Follow Dona on Google+.

Read more: http://www.houselogic.com/home-advice/tax-deductions/home-tax-deductions/

The Heat Is On!

As the weather gets cooler, it’s a good time to check your HVAC (heating, ventilating and air conditioning) system to make sure it’s operating properly. While it’s wise to have your HVAC inspected by a heating professional every fall and spring, you can increase the efficiency of your system by following Heat during winterthese simple maintenance tips from American Home Shield.

Now:  Use a high-efficiency pleated filter with an electrostatic charge that works like a magnet to grab the tiniest particles. Replace the filter every 90 days and check it monthly. If it looks dark and clogged, change it, and if you have pets, you may need to change it more often.
Keep the air-conditioning unit free of leaves, pollen, grass or branches that can interfere with its future efficiency. Make sure there is at least two feet of space cleared around outdoor units.

Monthly or Seasonally: Inspect the insulation and refrigerant lines monthly. Before winter sets in, replace the humidifier filter and turn on the water.

Annually: Replace the battery in the carbon monoxide detector. Walk around the exterior of the house and check that outdoor AC units and heat pumps are on firm and level ground. Pour one cup of bleach mixed with water down the AC condensate drain to prevent a buildup of mold and algae, which can clog the drain.

Always: Keep at least 20 percent of a home’s registers open to avoid putting unnecessary strain on the HVAC system.

Following these simple tips can prolong the life of your HVAC system and help you be prepared for whatever the winter season may bring.

 

FromCRS – Your Home newsletter, Monday, 27 October 2014

Northern Virginia Housing Condition Update – Spring 2014

After a slow down of the unusual cold and snowy winter, the housing market in the area is just like the Awakening. It is going strong with $1,130,955,371 in Sales Volume – it is almost 20% increase from the month of April.  There were 3,679 houses entered the market for sale (9% more compared to May 2013), while there were 2,349 houses under contract (8% less compared to May 2013).

The median sold price was $480,000, slightly higher than April 2014 with an average days on the market of 32 days (1 week shy from last month).

Most sellers appear to get 98.6% from list price at an Average Sales Price of $566,044 – a 3.43% increase from last month, and an increase of 10% compared to 5-year Average.

Although the report and analysis are in clear details, every locality is different, even subdivisions are different.  I recently installed a tool for automated home value calculation.  It is an automated tool, so there are still errors. Yet, you can try it on your own and see if you like it: wwwfairfaxhouseprice.com

Statistics from RBINTEL.com

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