Potomac Yard | Del Ray | Old Town Alexandria Real Estate News

July 24, 2013

Northern Virginia Real Estate Update and Stats for June 2013

Northern Virginia Real Estate Update and Stats for June 2013

The following is the latest MarketWatch video that details the June 2013 statistics for the Northern Virginia real estate market:


Here is a snapshot of the details:

  • Nationally, job growth continues to be modest, but steady with 195,000 jobs added between May and June.  Over the last 12 months, the US gained 2.3 million new jobs.  Federal government employment continued to decline, however the US unemployment rate remains at 7.6%.
  • Housing sales and prices are up nationwide, and while inventory is still low, it has seen growth in recent months.
  • The region added about 14,000 jobs compared to 12 months ago.  The unemployment rate in Northern VA increased to 4.3%, from 3.8% last month as more residents entered or re-entered the workforce than were hired, a trend frequently seen in summer months.
  • Housing market performance picked up again in June.  Sales were up 15% from a year ago, and we saw the highest sales total for any month since June 2006.  New pending contracts were up 12% from this time last year, this represents the highest June total since 2005.  There were 6,250 active listings in June, which was a 10.7% decline from June of last year.  The total of homes for sale is now 72% lower than its June 2006 peak.  Despite this steady decline, new listings are on the rise for the third consecutive month.
  • There were almost 4,500 new listings in June, up 9.5% from this time last year.
  • At $443,000 the median sales price is 8% higher than this time last year, this is also the highest median sales price the region has seen since August 2007.
  • The median days on market is now 8 days, which is 9 days lower than this time last year, and the lowest level seen in 8 years.
  • Summer is off to a strong start in Northern VA, sales and new contracts are up compared to this time last year and prices continue to rise.
  • The inventory shortage is beginning to show signs of improvement as more and more sellers enter the market, possibly driven by higher prices.  As summer continues, it’s likely the pace of sales will slow, in line with seasonal market patterns, possibly tempered by rising interest rates.


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Posted in Uncategorized
June 19, 2013

Is The Alexandria VA Real Estate Market Out of Control?

Is The Alexandria VA Real Estate Market Out of Control?

Yesterday's rainshowers mean lots of green lawns, beautiful flowers blooming, and sunny skies today. I know you've got 'Work To Do', but find the time to enjoy it today and I'm sure you'll be glad you did.

One of the ways that I can tell that we're back into a sellers market is that buyers are contacting me about homes that sold over six months ago, and they want to look in those neighborhoods, and they are astonished to learn that the prices have risen. We try to make it super easy to search for homes that are currently for sale, but for some reason, buyers want to dig, hunt, and scavenge for listings that are obsolete and have sold. Oy!

Home Prices Coast To CoastBut many are wondering, are things out of control again in the Alexandria VA real estate market? Is there a new housing bubble forming? Are people more confident now about buying a home? Take a look at the infographic and you'll see that from coast to coast, home prices are up. This graphic shows first quarter of 2013, compared to first quarter 2012. Across the United States, home prices are in the green. What you need to understand in the current real estate market, is that waiting for the next house means the next house will likely cost more money.

There are two things that factored heavily into the last housing bubble:

  • Banks were too lenient with their money. Anyone with a pulse could get a mortgage, and without documentation. That means you didn't have to provide paystubs, tax returns, or bank statements to your lender, they would give you a mortgage and you didn't have to prove that you could pay it back.
  • Appraisers were lax and loose when it came to valuing a property. Comparables were laughed at, and there was so much pressure to close, that many appraisers felt obligated to appraise properties at the contract sales price. Appreciation was assumed and appraisers took into account the number of offers received and the short days on the market.

These two things are clearly not happening today. The two biggest challenges for buyers now are the tighter lending guidelines and tighter appraisal guidelines. Just last week, a buyer for one of my listings was denied the mortgage because her credit score dropped before closing. The buyer had charged too many items on her credit card, and in doing so brought her closer to her credit limit, and that brought her score below the qualifying guideline. We were past all inspections, only five days to closing, and her lender said, "no way Jose!".

Appraisal guidelines have also tightened up. There are federal guidelines in place to prevent you from overpaying for a home (not that you still couldn't pay cash for more than the value). Lenders cannot speak to the appraisers, they only take into account what has sold and settled, not homes that are still pending.

We are in a healthy Alexandria VA real estate market. And that healthy real estate market is fueling the economy. And when the economy has momentum, you can expect interest rates to rise. When interest rates rise, the cost of buying increase. So don't delay your home search any longer.

Recent Rate Movement

Home prices are still below their peak levels, but now is a good time to buy a great home, in a great location, and still lock in with an attractively low interest rate.

Need help with your search, I'll be around this week for your real estate needs.

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Posted in
June 12, 2013

Del Ray Real Estate Market Report and Sale Update - May 2013

Del Ray Real Estate Market Report and Sale Update - May 2013
Sales Volume Up For Third Consecutive Month

Del Ray Market Report Graphic


Del Ray Real Estate and Homes For Sale - Located in Alexandria City and just a few short minutes from DC, the Del Ray area of 22301 remains to be a hot market.  Known for its trendy bungalows, affordable duplexes, charming cape cods, and remarkable rebuilds, homes sales in Del Ray continued to climb in the month of May 2013.


In May, there were 34 homes that sold in Del Ray, up from 26 in April, 19 in March, and 12 in February.  The number of homes sold in Del Ray over the past few months is a welcome and positive sign for the real estate market.  With low interest rates, buyers are taking advantage of increased buying power and snapping up these close-in homes, reducing the cost of the commute.


The median sales price increased slightly in the month of May, up to $665,500.  Last year's median was $551,250.  The average sales price for a home for sale in Del Ray was $751,505.  In May 2012, the average sales price was $626,645.


What Del Ray home seller who has been on the fence wouldn't want to sell now?!  The average days on the market was just over a month, at 35 days. In May 2012, the average was 34 days.


And Del Ray homes sellers are getting very close to their original asking price as well.  In May 2013, the average sold price-to original list price ratio was 98.5%, giving up just a little bit but not bad when you consider that in May, it was 97.45%.

Del Ray Alexandria VA Market Analysis

May was an absolutely exceptional month for the Del Ray real estate market.  Looking back the trend is clearly visible, and the pendulum has swung back into the seller's favor.  Increased average sales price, increased closing price ratios, and days on market only increased by one day from this time last year.  There's no question that location is a big factor for buyers who are looking to stay close in.  Right now, there are 26 active home listings in Del Ray, and this is down by two units from this time last year.  Buyers who are new to the Del Ray real estate market would be wise to review these current statistics.  The market is hot, homes are moving fast, and there's not a lot of room for negotiating.

Click this link to see a current list of all Del Ray homes for sale in Alexandria VA for zip code 22301.

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May 20, 2013

Northern Virginia Real Estate Market Statistics for April 2013

Northern Virginia Real Estate Market Statistics for April 2013

The following is the Northern Virginia Market Watch video update for April 2013:


Here are the highlights for the April 2013 real estate market:

  • 165,000 jobs were added to the economy between March and April
  • Government employment continued to decline on federal, state, and local levels
  • Unemployment rate fell to 7.6%
  • Housing activity continues to be a bright spot for the recovery, sales volume and prices continued to increase, however there is some concern that investors are ‘propping up’ some local markets
  • Economic growth in Northern Virginia is slower than last year.15,000 jobs were added in the last 12 months. Unemployment dropped from 4.3% to 3.9%
  • April sales were 12% higher than this time last year, the highest April level seen in three years.
  • New contracts were up 12% over last year, after five consecutive months of decline.
  • Active listngs were 25% lower than this time last year,the lowest April level in 8 years.
  • New listings were up 17% from April 2012.  Sellers are starting to be drawn into the market with higher sales prices and faster sales times.
  • The median sales price is up 8% from April 2012, the highest the region has seen since fall 2007.
  • Median days on market is now 9 days, the lowest since 2005.
  • While active listings remain low, the rise in new listings may be the sign of a changing pattern.

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Posted in Market Reports, Videos
May 2, 2013

6181 Trident Lane Woodbridge VA 22193

Woodbridge VA Real Estate |
Move-In Ready Townhome at 6181 Trident Lane Woodbridge Virginia

6181 Trident Lane

Have you been thinking about taking advantage of the current low interest rates?  Lease ending soon, and decided that it doesn't make sense to renew? Then take a look at this beautiful, end-unit townhome tucked away in Trentdale.

Priced at $239,900, this lovely home is ideal for first-time buyers, investors, and scale down buyers. When you drive up, you'll immediately notice that there are two assigned parking spaces directly in front, in addition to visitors spaces.  So, don't be shy about inviting guests over because there's ample parking in the community.

It's hard to imagine from the outside, but there is over 1600 square feet of comfortable living space.  As you walk up, you'll notice four box bay windows.  These augment the size of the rooms, giving the home that sought-after open feel.  Enter through the front door and you'll be greeted by pergo flooring in the foyer and oversized living room.  The living rom features french doors that lead to rear deck and fully fenced back yard.

Also on the main level is the powder room, and the utility room that houses the full sized washer and dryer.  The kitchen is abundantly equipped with cabinets and countertop space.  The upgraded stainless steel appliances include a built-in microwave, dishwasher, side-by-side refridgerator, and gas stovetop cooking.

Upstairs you'll find three oversized bedrooms, including the master bedroom with a walk-in closet and full private bath.  You don't want to miss out on this opportunity to own an affordable home with a fenced back yard, rear deck, open kitchen, and full owner's suite.

Take a look at the video show for 6181 Trident Lane below.

Use this map for 6181 Trident Lane if you're interested in driving by this home to see if it fits the bill.

View Larger Map

To schedule an appointment to view 6181 Trident Lane Woodbridge VA, please call me directly at 703-623-8759.

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Posted in Just Listed
Feb. 10, 2013

Pieces of Home - 2012 Virginia Housing Market Report Released

Pieces of Home
2012 Virginian Housing Market Report Just Released

 Curious about how the Virginia housing market compared to the rest of the United States?  Curious about what's going on in the different regions across the Commonwealth? Take a look at this comprehensive housing guide brought to you by the Virginia Association of Realtors.

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Posted in Market Reports
Feb. 5, 2013

Have Your panCAKE and Eat It Too - National Pancake Day At IHOP

Have Your panCAKE and Eat It Too - National Pancake Date At IHOP

Short Stack of Pancakes
Sweet and Tasty! There's nothing like pancakes to make the world go 'round.

Do you have a hankering for something sweet?  Then take advantage of some pancakes today at IHOP locations across the country.  It's never too late for breakfast, or take a long lunch.  Better yet, treat the kids to a sweet surprise after school to have "Breakfast for Dinner" or as my kids call it..."Brinner".

Today, February 5, is National Pancake Day at IHOP.  Visit your area IHOP restaurant to get your free short stack of delicious buttermilk pancakes, and please make a donation to the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals.

If you are in the Alexandria VA area, there are three places where you can stop by and enjoy your free short stack today:

  1. 3425A Jefferson Davis Highway, Alexandria VA 22305 (Potomac Yard)
  2. 7694 Richmond Highway, Alexandria VA 22306 (Greater Mount Vernon Area)
  3. 6206 Interparcel Road, Alexandria VA 22315 (Across from the Festival at Manchester Lakes)

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Jan. 22, 2013

Top Alexandria VA REMAX Agent Earns Hall Of Fame Award

Top Alexandria VA REMAX Agent Earns Hall Of Fame Award

Me and Margaret Kelly Me and Margaret Kelly

Top Alexandria VA real estate agent Tamara Inzunza has just earned the prestigious RE/MAX Hall of Fame Award.  This company award is presented to successful sales associates who have earned more than $1 Million in commissions during their careers with the company.

Inzunza has been selling real estate since 1997 and has extensive experience working with buyers and sellers, serving the areas of Alexandria City, Arlington, Fairfax County, and Prince William County.  She has also earned multiple designations including Certified Residential Specialist (CRS), Accredited Buyer Representative (ABR), and is Quality Service Certified (QSC).

Always passionate about new homes, Inzunza took the required courses early in her career to earn the Certified New Homes Sales Professional (CSP) designation.  "Learning about new home selling and the construction process was vital.  Every homeowner dreams about building and owning a new home.  Even with my experience with resales, it's helpful to my clients that I have more than just a basic understanding of how a home is built from foundation to rooftop."

In 2009, Inzunza was one of first 1,000 agents to earn the widely recognized Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE) designation.  As a CDPE Advanced agent, she has been successfully helping homeowners avoid foreclosure by listing, selling, and facilitating short sales in addition to assisting homeowners with loan modifications.  Last year, Tamara attended the annual CDPE Breakthrough conference and is pictured above with RE/MAX CEO Margaret Kelly.

Tamara works in the Del Ray office of RE/MAX Executives in Alexandria, VA.  For more information, please visit www.MovingToNova.com or call Tamara at 703-623-8759.

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Posted in News, REMAX
Jan. 21, 2013

Northern Virginia Real Estate Video Market Update for December 2012

Northern Virginia Real Estate Video Market Update for December 2012

Here is the December 2012 MarketWatch video that summarizes the real estate market statistics for the Northern Virginia region:

Here are the highlights:

  • On the Hill, partisan uncertainty regarding the fiscal cliff and sequestration will linger for the next couple of months.
  • The national economy continued a steady pace of economic growth, the U.S. added another 155,000 jobs.
  • From December 2011 to December 2012, there were 1.8 milltion jobs added, and the unemployment rate held steady at 7.8%.
  • Most experts believe that 2013 will be a good year for home sellers, inventories are still low, prices are rising, and underwriting guidelines for new mortgages are becoming more uniform.  However, the lack of uncertainty on fiscal issues will continue to slow the potential for a more robust recovery and will likely result in a slow but steady growth pattern.
  • Locally, the Northern Virginia economy added 19,000 workers over the last 12 months.
  • The unemployment rate in Virginia is 3.9%, down from 4% in November, and this remains one of the lowest regional unemployment rates in the nation.
  • There were 2,289 sales in the Northern Virginia housing market in December 2012, a 5.4% increase than in December 2011, and the 11th monthly increase in 2012.  The consistency of year over year sales growth signals rising demand.
  • There were 2,066 new pending contracts in December 2012, down just 1% from December 2011.
  • The most striking aspect of the 2012 housing market has been the diminishing supply of homes for saleActive listings continue to plunge and have fallen to their lowest levels since 2005.  There were 4,364 active listings at the end of December, 28% below the number of active listings in December 2011.
  • New listings are also falling relative to last year, down 9% from December 2011, the 8th monthly decline in 2012.
  • The median sales price is up to $385,000, almost 11% higher than December 2011.
  • Low inventory is not only applying upward pressure to median sales price, but it is also affecting the days on market.  The median days on market was 28 days, down 14 days from December 2011.
  • The expectation that there will be continued low inventory in January will mean pressure on prices as long as buyers remain active.
  • There may be some drag on the spring market due to the uncertainty of the fiscal issues on the national level.

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Posted in Market Reports, Videos
Dec. 4, 2012

First Time Homebuyer Class Held In Alexandria VA Saturday December 8

First Time Homebuyer Class Held In Alexandria VA
Saturday December 8, 2012

Alexandria VA Real Estate - The real estate market is up, the real estate market is down.  What's this talk about foreclosures and short sales?  What types of inspections should I get before buying a home? What's an FHA loan?  What does AS-IS mean? Aren't the sellers required to fix that? What are closing costs and why do I have to pay them? What is hazard insurance, is that the same thing as homeowners insurance?  What about title insurance...why do I need that? What's an earnest money deposit?  What exactly does a buyer agent do? What types of down payment programs do I qualify for?  Are there any grants available for first-time homebuyers?

If you're thinking about buying a home in Alexandria VA in the next couple of months, then I'm sure that you've asked yourself these questions and more.  Be sure to register and attend the free First-Time Homebuyer Class that will be held this Saturday, December 8, 2012 at the Charles Houston Recreation Center, located at 901 Wythe Street.  The class will begin promptly at 10:00 am and will end at 12 noon. Street parking is available in addition to parking in the rear of the building.  The Charles Houston Recreation center is conveniently located just four blocks from Braddock Road metro station.

What questions did I miss?  Use the comment section below to add your question about the homebuying process.

Info Flyer - $5000 Grant Program!

Seating Is Limited - Register Today For Saturday's Class

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Posted in Buyers, News, Things To Do