Buy Alexandria Real Estate: What's Hot & What's Not for Real Estate this Summer

Alexandria Virginia Real Estate Blog

What's Hot & What's Not for Real Estate this Summer

What's Hot & What's Not

Unlike the latest hit song or fleeting celebrity of Ashley Dupre (who? oh yeah, that was Eliot Spitzer's call girl), real estate is always a hot topic.  Whether the market's going up or going down, having a home and a place to rest your head at night will always rank up there on Mazlow's hierarchy of needs.

While real estate as a whole always generates buzz, here's a look at What's Hot & What's Not for

D.C. & Northern Virginia real estate

for Summer 2008:

                               


Negotiating discount from asking price                                Bidding wars on homes

New construction condos                                                    Condo conversions

Living on the metro line                                                    Commuting to D.C. from Loudoun County

30 year fixed rate loans                                                    5 year interest only ARM

Foreclosures                                                                    Handyman special

Home inspections                                                            Waiving a home inspection

FHA & VA mortgages                                                        Zero down mortgages

Buy & Hold                                                                      Flip that house

Homes selling in weeks/months                                        Homes selling in hours/days

Staged homes                                                                Vacant homes

Craigslist                                                                        Newspaper classifieds                                     

Short sales                                                                     Short sales

Online home search                                                        Driving to open houses every Sunday

Buyer's market                                                               Seller's market  

Affordable housing                                                          Sky-high prices

 

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Comment balloon 90 commentsBrian Block • June 24 2008 07:35PM

Comments

Add affordable housing in good condition.  I think we are going see a trend of smaller, more managable homes.  The pendullum is swinging back toward conservatism when it comes to housing.

Posted by Kristal Kraft, Selling Metro Denver Real Estate - 303-589-2022 (The Berkshire Group Realtors) over 9 years ago

Good lists.  I still don't get the staging thing.  The last time I held an open house a stager came buy to tell us that they could help us sell the house with staging.  My partner was writing a contract in the library as they spoke. 

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) over 9 years ago

Many of the things that are hot in your market are down here in Georgia also.  Funny how the shifts occur and I'm glad I don't get paid to discover the next trend.

Posted by Michelle DeRepentigny, Broker Athens, GA (Success Realty) over 9 years ago

Brian - Nicely done on your lists here.  On a somewhat related note, I must admit that it has been crazy-hard to get mortgages for several of my clients this year.  Sometimes I miss the days of the 5-year interest-only ARM.  This was a terrific idea for a post.

Posted by Jason Crouch, Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653) (Austin Texas Homes, LLC) over 9 years ago

KRISTAL:  Yes, that's a good point.  We have some city-subsidized housing built recently just down the street from us and it's very well-maintained.  Smaller or "normal" sized homes are coming back rather than the mega-mansions.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

LENN:  Thanks!  While I believe staging can possibly help with a home showing well, I don't think it is the be-all and end-all or magic bullet that some in the staging community make it out to be.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

MICHELLE:  Thanks for comment.  I think many of these things would apply to many markets around the country.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

JASON: Thanks!  The mortgage landscape has certainly changed significantly.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

I'm just giggling that short sales made both lists :)  Nicely done, Brian.

Posted by Lisa Heindel, New Orleans Real Estate Broker (Crescent City Living LLC) over 9 years ago

LISA:  I'm glad that someone noticed that.  Obviously intentional...  Thanks Lisa.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

Brian,

Nicely put together post!!! Thanks,   Fran

Posted by Fran Gaspari, "The Title Man" - Title Insurance - PA & NJ (Patriot Land Transfer, Inc.) over 9 years ago

great list brian...so very true!

Posted by Jeremy Blanton, Myrtle Beach REALTOR®- myrtlebeachhomesblog.com (Myrtle Beach Homes Blog) over 9 years ago

Brian- I agree, great list although open houses are still hot in my market but with gas prices ticking up who knows for how long.

Posted by Anonymous over 9 years ago

Brian- That last comment is mine. Dont know what happened to my name but....

Posted by Martha Brown, Your Homes Around Annapolis Agent (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc., Annapolis MD 21403) over 9 years ago

Brian~ Great list.  It is interesting to see how much has changed and will continue to change with the real estate market.  Pro-Active Vickie McCartney,Realtor Ownesboro Ky

Posted by Vickie McCartney, Broker, Real Estate Agent Owensboro KY (Maverick Realty) over 9 years ago

Clever list, what a difference a year makes...

Posted by Mindy & Jay Robbins, Expect Excellence from Robbins Real Estate (Robbins Real Estate) over 9 years ago

Brian,
Most of these apply to our market too.  Those who adapt, survive while those who live in the past will not.

Posted by Cynthia Tilghman, Realtor® Onslow County NC Home Specialist (Kingsbridge Realty, Inc) over 9 years ago

Were active rain bloggers on the list?

Posted by Michael Sahlman, e-PRO - Miami Beach Florida Luxury Homes (www.HomesForVIPs.com - Keller Williams Realty) over 9 years ago

Brian, in the District, I think the older, established condos and conversions are doing a lot better than the new construction.  A lot of the newer buildings here, like many in Norhtern Virginia, were hastily constructed and are encountering problems.  It'll be interesting to see how it turns out in a few years time.

Posted by Patricia Kennedy, Home in the Capital (RLAH Real Estate) over 9 years ago

Good list. And if the list is redone in 6 months it likely will change again somewhat. We have to keep moving and changing with the market.

Posted by Bob & Carolin Benjamin, East Phoenix Arizona Homes (Benjamin Realty LLC) over 9 years ago

Quite Clever post, Brian.  Pretty accurate as well.  My have times (okay in just a few years) changed!  I too believe that smaller homes will indeed come back as energy prices continue to go up, and counties continue to increase taxes to pay for schools and infrastructure.

Posted by Stephen Adams (Keller Williams Realty) over 9 years ago

flipping in this market is a bit more difficult but buying and holding could turn a nice gain in the near future.

Posted by Terry & Bonnie Westbrook, Westbrook Realty - Grand Rapids Forest Hills MI Re (Westbrook Realty Broker-Owner) over 9 years ago

Nice! That was informative and a bit funny. I enjoyed it thorgouhly

Posted by James Simmons (RE/MAX Greater Princeton) over 9 years ago

Maybe instead of short sales making the list on both sides, "Short Sales" should have been on one side and "Potential Short Sales" should be on the other. 

Posted by Lane Bailey, Realtor & Car Guy (Century 21 Results Realty) over 9 years ago

Brian, In our area bidding wars on short sales and REOs are HOT.

Posted by Mana Tulberg, Real Estate Agent - Camarillo CA (805 County Real Estate) over 9 years ago

What a different list than it would have been just a few short years ago. 

Posted by Christine Donovan, Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M (Donovan Blatt Realty) over 9 years ago

Excellent post, Brian... right on the money as well.

Posted by Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired (Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®) over 9 years ago

Which list do bell bottoms fall on? Good list!

Posted by Dennis Swartz, ABR, CRB, CRS, GRI, CMCA, MBA...experience counts! (Rickert Property Management) over 9 years ago

"temperatures" in different parts of the country certainly vary...and what we all need to remember and to tell folks we know is that real estate is local...and by neighborhood, what the media says, what is true on one coast or the other is probably not true in the midwest...Great post...

Posted by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce - Short Sale (Keller Williams 414-525-0563) over 9 years ago

Brian - The hot or not is a cool idea for a post... I love it! Certainly a great way to feature past articles :)

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 9 years ago

Brian!  Very clever post! The hot topics change but everyone likes to talk about real estate.

Posted by Judy Peterson, "Superb Service, Superb Results" (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Fox&Roach Realtors ) over 9 years ago

Brian, I love this ! Did you get the idea from Cosmo ? Wish I had thought of it.

Posted by Missy Caulk, Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate (Missy Caulk TEAM) over 9 years ago

Brian, nice post.  Changing this list to show consumers what's hot and what's not would probably make a nice advertisement.

Posted by Mike Miller (EXIT REALTY SERVICES) over 9 years ago

good post..enjpyed your list,,,how about adding under hot..full loan approval and not hot..preapproval

Posted by Michael Shankman, Selling Las Vegas 702-498-3383 (Award Realty) over 9 years ago

I like it!  Thanks for a great post about how times have changed over the last few years!

Posted by Hope Goss, Ventura Real Estate (Ventura Property Shoppe) over 9 years ago

Brian,  Great list you put together and very accurate! Amazing how the market has changed, isn't it? Happy to see you made this a public post. Very good list indeed!  Now, get back to work on your challenge for this week! lol

 

Posted by Elizabeth Cooper-Golden, Huntsville AL MLS (Huntsville Alabama Real Estate, (@ Homes Realty Group)) over 9 years ago

Brian,

     Great list, it was good to see similar things going on in other areas. 

Posted by Joshua & Kathy Schmidt (ERA Henley Real Estate) over 9 years ago

Brian, why is short sales on the Hot and Not list?

Posted by Ann Cordes (Keller Williams, Waco) over 9 years ago

I'm glad you listed staging as hot right now. Speaking as a stager myself, I have seen the results of stsged homes selling faster and for more money than non staged homes. A home owner who spends $500 on a staging can recoup their money by 343%.

Staging, I believe is and will be the way to sell houses. Todays families want move in ready homes. A staged home is move in ready. WE stagers  have the ability to look at the home with a buyer's eye and see what needs to be done and how to arrange the furniture. Some real estate agents don't know how ro rearrange furniture that makes the room stand out and make it look airy, and cozy.

Vacant homes have a hard time selling because they lack warmth and coziness that occupied homes have. People come to look at a home to see if their things will fit. It 's hard to imagine putting your things in a home that someone else occupies with clutter all around. Clutter makes it hard to see how much space there really is.

Real estate agents don't have the time or knowledge to stage homes, but we stagers do. We know how to package a home so that it outshines the competition.

Posted by Sheila Swanson (StageStruck) over 9 years ago

Brian, I had no idea you were this active on AR.  Quite a following you have....

 

Great post by the way.  Now that AR is emailing me a daily digest of articles I'm checking things out again.

 

j

Posted by Jay Seville, Northern Virginia & SE NC Beaches ((owner) JustNewListings.com Realty, Inc.) over 9 years ago

I just love that homes are becoming more affordable for my buyers now! Customers who could only afford townhomes and condos in their price range are now renting them out and calling me to purchase the single family homes they could not afford then.

I pretty much agree with everything on the list with the exception of staging. That's only because I haven't had any experience with them.

Posted by Kim Dove, Realtor - Jacksonville FL (Watson Realty Corp) over 9 years ago

I think you missed one thing off the hot list, ‘Green / Environmentally Friendly Housing'. It seems everything is going green nowadays and real estate is no exception.

Posted by Trela Bird, Realtor, Salt Lake City Utah (Urban Utah Homes & Estates) over 9 years ago

Nicely put and I totally agree..But I would say that I agree with Trela... Green Building is now hot and so is economic "fixtures" and "features"

Posted by Ginger Walker, Realtor e-PRO,CSP (Keller Williams Realty) over 9 years ago

FRAN:  Thanks Fran, my man.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

JEREMY:  I appreciate it.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

MARTHA:  Open houses are still busy here in Virginia too, but I'm not sure how much buyers really enjoy driving to them all the time.  Especially when there are easier ways to find a home -- sitting right at home and viewing virtual tours.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

VICKIE:  Certainly.  Real estate is an ever-changing field.  In so many ways.  Many things always stay the same, but there are also constant changes and shifts.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

MINDY & JAY:  Thanks for your comment and compliment.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

CYNTHIA:  I imagine that many if not most of these things apply in markets around the country.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

MICHAEL:  No, not on the list.  This is a list for the real estate consumer, not for the industry.  AR bloggers would be on that list, however.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

PAT:  Thanks for that information about D.C. condos.  I personally favor older construction over the sometimes flimsy and unproven new construction condos.  I had clients just purchase a home in Old Town built in 1800.  One of the things the inspector said was "It's still standing!  It's stood the tests of time."

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

BOB & CAROLIN:  I couldn't agree more.  Thanks for your comment.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

STEPHEN:  Thanks for your comment.  Time have changed and they will continue to change.  We've got to go with the flow and anticipate some of the changes and alter our business and marketing plans accordingly.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

TERRY:  I certainly agree with your comment.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

JAMES:  Thanks for your comment and compliment on the post.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

LANE:  Good suggestion.  Obviously you know what I mean.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

MANA:  Same here.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

CHRISTINE:  That's certainly true.  It will be a very different list in another few years or months!

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

Short sales on both lists - we all get it!  They're hot when they work, and not when the buyer finds something else and walks.

One thing about fix & flips.  I'm seeing some successful ones here in Denver's north metro area. A person would still have to get a very good deal up front and buy in the right neighborhood, as always. 

Posted by Joetta Fort, Independent Broker, Homes Denver to Boulder (The DiGiorgio Group) over 9 years ago

sweet. short. simple.  thanks for the perspective

Posted by Greg Vogel (ICOR) over 9 years ago

Great list.  I agree especially with the idea that open houses are just not working, at least in my area.  Most buyers seem to be looking on line and deciding which houses to visit, saving time and gas.   As far as staging is concerned, I agree totally with Sheila.  Staging does make a difference.

Posted by Mary Hammatt over 9 years ago

Great List.  Open houses not so hot in Morristown NJ, especially since we are not permitted to put signs out.  Getting the buyers pre-approved and signing buyers agent agreements with a retainer is "Hot"....we want serious buyers and commitment.  Buyers are starting to realize that there is real value in retaining an experienced REALTOR for their services and knowledge to work for them in finding that right house.

Posted by Susan Zanzonico, Sellers/Buyers Agent, Morristown NJ Real Estate (Berkshire Hathaway Home Services) over 9 years ago

Brian, great article!!! I loved it.

Green building would be a great one to put on the HOT list!

Here's something a little of out the real estate realm.

HOT - no speed limit in Montana

NOT - receiving speeding tickets in the mail in California ;)

Posted by Goomzee Corporation, www.goomzee.com (Goomzee Corporation) over 9 years ago

JESSE:  Thanks.  I'm happy that everyone likes the lists.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

DENNIS:  Bellbottoms?  Depends on the year, I guess.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

SALLY & DAVID:  You are right.  Things vary from state to state and region to region.  Sometimes even within the same general vicinity.  Real estate is hyper-local.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

BILL:  Thanks for your comment.  I figured that you see this type of stuff all the time in magazines, so why not give it a twirl.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

JUDY:  Yes, everybody always likes to talk about real estate.  Real Estate Makes Good Party Talk

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

MISSY:  No, not Cosmo... not one of my subscriptions.  It's those beginning of the new year lists that you always see in the mags and the newspapers.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

MIKE:  I actually made this list for consumers, not necessarily for the industry.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

MICHAEL:  Good addition to the list.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

HOPE:  Times have changed and they certainly will change again.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

ELIZABETH:  Thanks for your comments.  Hard at work...

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

JOSHUA & KATHY:  Thanks for your comment.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

JOE:  Thanks for your comment.  It's Brian, though.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

ANN:  There is a reason.  See if you can guess.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

SHEILA:  Yes, staging can have an impact.  I took the ASP course for REALTORS back in the Fall, though I can't say I've actually used staging much in my business, but it's nice to know about it and understand the concept and the profession a little more and to be able to explain it to clients.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

JAY:  I guess saying that I'm active on Active Rain is a bit of an understatement.  By the way, I owe you a phone call...

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

KIM:  Yes, it's nice to see some people who were previously priced out of the market hopping back in.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

TRELA:  You are right -- Green Housing is definitely a Hot Topic.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

GINGER:  Thanks for your comment.  Agreed.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

JOETTA:  Thanks for your comments and for reading.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

GREG:  You are welcome.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

MARY:  While most people still need to physically go visit a home at some point before making a decision, a lot of the legwork can be completed online before ever getting in the car.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

SUSAN (MORRIS COUNTY NEW JERSEY):  Thanks for your comment.  You may or may not wish to change your profile name so that people know who you are.

 

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

ERIKA:  Thanks for your comment and the laugh about the speeding tickets.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

I think sky high prices were never in ;) And thanks for plugging home staging! It does work!

Cheers,

Cindy

Posted by Cindy Lin (Staged4more Home Staging & Designs // EcoJoe) over 9 years ago

CINDY:  Thanks for your comment.  Nobody enjoyed sky high prices, but they most certainly were here for a while.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

Very clever list and true to our today's market.

Posted by Ritu Desai, Virginia Realtor-Fairfax/Loudoun/PW-703-625-4949 (Samson Properties) over 9 years ago

RITU:  Thanks for your comment.

Posted by Brian Block, Northern Virginia & D.C. Real Estate (RE/MAX Allegiance, Managing Broker/Branch Vice President) over 9 years ago

Participate