Despite the constant negative news reports, I'm happy to share that we sold 22 homes at McEnearney Associates Inc. (Old Town Alexandria office) last week with the notable volume being in the $200,000 - $600,000 price range.

You may be confused between positive reports and negative reports in the media, so I wanted to use this week's tip to help clarify some things and to shed some light on some of the most commonly asked questions that I face weekly.

Who Should Be Buying Real Estate and Homes For Sale In Alexandria VA Right Now?

  • Anyone who has stable employment. Lenders are looking for a two-year job history.  If you have recently changed jobs, as long as your new job is in the same field of business, then you're in a much better qualifying position.
  • Active military and veterans. You can buy home using a VA loan, with zero down payment, and finance up to $812,500.
  • First-time home buyers. In many areas, there is still competition among first time home buyers.  Well-priced homes (both distressed and non-distressed properties) are seeing multiple offers, and especially below $300,000 some homes are still being sold above the asking price.  With the VHDA loan, first-time home buyers can take advantage of 1.5% down payment AND below market interest rates.  And paired with local housing authority programs, like Alexandria City's SPARC program, or Moderate Income Homeownership program, additional down payment assistance of up to $30,000 may be within reach.
  • Buyers who want a fixer upper at below market value. With the FHA 203k loan, you are able to finance the estimated repair costs into the home mortgage.  If you've found a $250,000 home in a $500,000 neighborhood, this is the loan for you.  And yes, below market real estate deals can be found throughout Alexandria, including Old Town, Del Ray, Kingstowne, and Manchester Lakes. This loan can help you make 'UGLY' houses, look beautiful, and is one of the best tools to gain instant equity.  If you've seen a fixer-upper in a great neighborhood, don't pass it up because you may be concerned about out-of-pocket fix up expenses.  If you've encountered multiple offer situations as an active buyer when considering move-in ready homes, outsmart your competition by expanding your search to include homes that need some TLC.
  • Investors with cash. The best low-end deals right now are OUTSIDE the beltway.  And with prices down, real estate investors now have the ability to purchase income properties, and the market rent will now cover the monthly mortgage.  Two years ago, this was impossible because of the high real estate prices. Northern Virginia Real Estate For Sale Under $150,000: In Arlington County: 46 homes; Alexandria City: 46 homes; Fairfax County: 341 homes; Prince William County: 546.

Who Should Be Selling Alexandria VA Real Estate Right Now?

  • Homeowners with a home value of less than $500,000 with equity.  This is the price range that is sure to get attention, and according to market statistics, homes in the $500,000+ price range are experiencing longer days on market.  If you're selling and buying up, you'll have less competition and more negotiating power on price when you've sold your home.
  • Distressed sellers who are behind on their mortgage.  Banks do not want your house back. Short sales in Alexandria Virginia (VA) are becoming more common and banks are developing strategies to get short sales approved in quicker times.  I recently sold a short sale and we received bank approval in two weeks with buyer paid closing costs.  If you are a homeowner facing a financial hardship, click here to see if you qualify for a short sale in Alexandria VA.  We may be able to help you avoid foreclosure and protect your credit.
  • Homeowners close-in and who are move-in ready. People are getting GREENER. More buyers want walkable neighborhoods, close to metro.  Areas like Old Town, Del Ray, Kingstowne, and Manchester Lakes are walkable, pet friendly, and conveniently located near metro, public transportation, HOV, and the interstates.  We're seeing that more buyers prefer to go car-less and homes close to metro and with a high walkscore are fairing well in the market.  If you're in a good location, location, location, and you're close in, now may be a good time to sell your home.