Market Watch & Musings

March 29, 2022

Having a garden is both visually appealing and can provide you some utility! Let’s help you get some great ideas for your home garden!

 Why do you need a home garden?
It’s peaceful and relaxing to have a lovely outdoor setting to enjoy and it also adds value to your home! Nicely landscaped and hardscaped homes can increase the purchase price of your home. 

Utilize whatever open areas you can find in limited spaces.
Owners of small houses and studio apartments may find it challenging to create home gardens. Here are some great ideas to maximize the limited space you have for a garden –

You can create small vegetables gardens like this one.

Create a cluster of beautiful pots that grow your favorite herbs!

There are also bungalow gardens or little porch compartment gardens if you have a small area outside your home.

Hanging baskets are always aesthetically pleasing as well!

Pay attention to the direction of your home garden
Consider the East side of your house while planning your garden, where the plants will receive enough of sunshine from morning to dusk.

Pick native plants and succulents alongside vegetative assortments
Always consider native plants, succulents, and rock gardens which are excellent air purifiers and circulators.

Ana and Melissa Are Here to Help
Don't hesitate to call us for home valuations, mortgage questions, buying in another state.  Just pick up the phone and we will help you, your friend and family.  That's what we love to do! Here's how to reach us! 
Ana 703.772.3526 
Melissa 703.407.5847
Email - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



March 25, 2022
We #justsold! This newly updated 1 bedroom/1 bath townhome is move-in ready with luxurious features. The kitchen was updated in 2021 and features a brand new $4k ILVE imported Italian stove, Italian Carrara marble backsplash, designer porcelain tiles, and large windows with warm morning light. An attached spacious outdoor deck is perfect for a morning cup of coffee or al fresco dinners. The newly renovated 2019 bathroom also makes a statement, with Carrara marble floor and wall tiles, a modern glass shower, and a barn door entrance.

In the evenings, the spacious bedroom glows with gentle golden hues from the western windows and recently refinished original hardwood floors. It also features two generous closets and is large enough to comfortably accommodate both a workstation and a king-sized bed.

The Condo Association maintains the exterior of the building, as well as the landscaped gardens and lush grounds. The home features a private entrance, a newly replaced HVAC system (2019), and a Nest thermostat to monitor your carbon footprint… and your bank account.

Situated in the historic community of Arlington Village, which backs up onto the Army Navy Country Club. The amenities include tennis and basketball courts, a pool, nature walk and community center, as well as Sunday farmers markets, local coffee shops, and boutique restaurants all within walking distance. This unique property offers all the benefits of suburban and city living at an affordable price point. And! It has TWO parking spaces!
March 25, 2022

Our Sellers #JustSold! Welcome your new neighbors! The community is just minutes from the Van Dorn Metro stop and is also minutes away from shopping, restaurants in Kingstown, Springfield Town Center, Old Town and the future Landmark Mall project. It is also just steps away from I-95/395 and 495 making it an easy commute to DC, Arlington and Maryland.

If you or someone you know is considering a move or selling, let us know!
February 9, 2022
Herndon, Virginia!  We love Herndon.  It’s an unassuming community that was established in 1879.  It includes a cute downtown area that reminds us of a small town anywhere in America. And the great thing about Herndon, it’s only 22 miles from downtown DC and minutes from Washington Dulles International Airport.

We just helped relocate one of our clients from Texas to Virginia and they bought a great house in the $500K price range. They LOVE Herndon, as Alexi put it, “friendly doesn’t even really cover it… we’ve had a neighbor come ring our doorbell because our blow up Santa was swept up by the wind and traveling halfway down the street! …. We also had several neighbors we never even met bring baby gifts because they saw that we had our baby. People here are just SO SO nice!”.

Herndon offers a great location because of its easy and accessible transportation commute to  Tyson’s Corner, Arlington and DC.  The Metro is easily accessible by walking, public bus or a kiss and ride.  One of the best DC Museum’s is located just minutes away!  And walking trails and parks are found in practically every neighborhood.  The W&OD trail, which goes through the core of old town Herndon can take you as east as DC and as west as West Virginia. 

So you are asking what does it cost you to live in Herndon?

Median Single Family Homes are priced between $525,000 to $815,000.

Townhomes are priced between $385,000 to $600,000.

Condos start at $400,000.
Cromwell Lefrak

If you plan to visit, don’t leave without grabbing a bite to eat!  We, our friends and clients enjoy Zeffirelli Italian restaurant, The Breeze Mediterranean (they have an awesome outdoor area that started during covid), and the Aslin Brewery, which started in Alexandria and now has a new location in Herndon!

Ana and Melissa Are Here to Help
Don't hesitate to call us for home valuations, mortgage questions, buying in another state.  Just pick up the phone and we will help you, your friend and family.  That's what we love to do! Here's how to reach us! 
Ana - 703.772.3526 
Melissa - 703.407.5847
Email - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
January 21, 2022
Metropolitan Washington Restaurant Week is seven days in length festivity of region restaurants; for local diners Restaurant Week is something other than a "bargain" - it is a valuable chance to attempt another food, investigate cafés in various areas or visit old top picks. For visitors to the area, it's a potential chance to encounter the best of our local cafés without burning through every last cent. As one of the most profoundly expected food-related projects in area, eateries in the advancement offer 3-course menus for lunch at $22, meals for $35 and $55, or then again on the off chance that you love a decent informal breakfast, enjoy menus at $22. Restaurant Week starts January 17th through January 23rd in DC. 

You can also enjoy Alexandria Restaurant Week from January 21 to 30, 2022 and show your backing for the city's enormous local area of privately possessed cafés. For 10 days and two ends of the week, in excess of 60 restaurants in Alexandria, Virginia will offer a $35 prix fixe supper for a couple of individuals. Unique menus will be accessible in person at taking part restaurants, numerous with warmed open air eating choices and in excess of 50 cafés will likewise offer to-go choices.

 Which are your favorite restaurants in Metropolitan Washington or in Alexandria? Visit the official Restaurant Week site for thr participating restaurants and make the Reservations now!

See Metropolitan Washinton Participating Restaurants
See Alexandria Participating Restaurants
January 13, 2022

The expense to replace a portion of the homes obliterated or harmed by last week's Colorado rapidly spreading fire in suburbia of Denver and Boulder could turn out to be more than insurance agencies will pay out by countless dollars.

As per the Wall Street Journal, the Marshall Fire caused more than $1 billion in damage while obliterating almost 1,000 homes. Government authorities alongside insurance and construction industry specialists say plans could miss the mark by many thousands because of inflation and supply chain burdens, concerning giving sufficient cash to rebuild.

Homeowners are expected to review and update their policies to ensure the cost of a home replacement will be covered, even in case of rising costs, as most carriers have quit offering certifications to pay the full expense of rebuilding. All things considered, when a deficit happens, companies pay a decent level of the home's insured value. Numerous insurances offer some type of inflation protection; however, they demand their customers to update them polices to consider expansion or redesigning.


December 2, 2021
There are numerous ways to increase property value. For instance, you could invest in upgrades, build an additional unit, or install energy-efficient features. However, what if you’re just starting your business and don’t have the means to fund costly projects? Find out how sweat equity is a great way to build up a new real estate business when you’re on a tight budget.

What Is Sweat Equity?

Sweat equity is a term used to describe when a person contributes their time, labor, and effort to a project. It’s a non-monetary exchange used to cut costs and increase value. You’re putting in your own “sweat” instead of hiring someone else to execute a job.

How Does Sweat Equity Work In Real Estate?

In real estate, sweat equity often takes on a more literal meaning. Real estate investors and homeowners will make repairs or upgrades through their own physical labor. For homeowners, this could help lower the cost of homeownership or increase property value when putting their house up for sale. For real estate investors, this often applies when they’re flipping houses.

If you think about it, paying for contractors, painters, and carpenters can be expensive. If you can do it yourself, you can reduce your costs and boost your bottom line.

what is sweat equity

How To Calculate Sweat Equity

The value of sweat equity is measured by how much value is added to a business as a result of that sweat equity. It’s easiest to explain this in terms of how much equity an investor is willing to put in for a share of the profit.

To calculate sweat equity, take an investor’s investment amount and divide it by the percentage of equity it represents. Then, subtract the investor’s investment. The remaining number expresses the dollar value of your sweat equity in the business venture. Let’s use an example to flesh out this concept.

Example Of Sweat Equity

Let’s say that your friend wants to invest $25,000 into your latest fix-and-flip project for a 20 percent stake. The valuation of this deal is $125,000 ($25,000 / 20% = $125,000.) Your friend’s stake is $25,000, so your stake is $100,000. If you don’t invest any cash into the project, the sweat equity equals your stake, or $100,000. However, let’s say that you planned to invest $50,000. In this case, the value of your sweat equity is the remaining $50,000. ($100,000 – $50,000 = $50,000.)

This example shows that you control how much or how little sweat equity you put into a project. This largely depends on how much capital you’re willing to invest. If you’re just starting out, you may not have any choice but to put in 100 percent sweat equity. You can gradually increase your initial outlay and decrease your personal labor as you accumulate capital.


Another great way to think about sweat equity is the time value of your money. It is a great way to help build up your business with your own hands. Once you accumulate some capital, however, it’s a great idea to take a look at the big picture and evaluate how your time could be used effectively.

Thinking of Selling? Now is a great time.
Call us today for a free consultation.

We are your Realtors - We Guarantee to Listen, Advise and Advocate for You!
Give us a call at 703.772.3526
Email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

November 30, 2021
Working in real estate can be challenging in fact some agents face truly awful situations. The horror stories we’ve collected below can happen to any agent, so be sure to review them closely and take note of recommended ways of avoiding them.

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1. Stealing Medication During Open House

At the top of our horror story list is the open house incident, in Oregon, the owner was selling her own property a couple of years ago. She let buyers walk through her home at their own pace. When one visitor did not return for a long time, she went searching for him and found him rifling through the kitchen cabinets. She asked him what he was looking for and he bolted out the door—with her prescription medication in his jacket.

Theft is a fairly common issue for agents hosting open houses. To avoid this problem, make sure you lock up all valuables and keep them out of sight. Just as important, make sure dangerous items—like medication—are also locked up. If you’re concerned about safety, have another agent join you at the open house, and be sure they accompany all visitors as they tour the property.

2. The Home Wrecker

Some people take the foreclosure of their property harder than others. The owner of one house, in particular, decided to respond to the news by painting obscenities all over the walls and punching holes in the cabinets. He even poured concrete down the toilets to stop up the plumbing. There was so much damage to the house that the city condemned the property rather than put it up for sale at auction.

Notice of foreclosure is hard—whatever your circumstances. If you’re an agent or investor who wants the property, be prepared to spend a little extra money on repairs to damage caused by homeowners unhappy about the loss of their home.

3. Raining Rat Poison

Upon moving into her new house in Pennsylvania, Liz Spikol was greeted with a short note from the previous owner stating, “We have seen a mouse.” One mouse did not seem like a big deal for the new owner, so she continued her move-in. Within a week, however, she noticed blue powder falling from the ceiling and opened it up to inspect. The ceiling area was overrun with mice—dead and alive. The blue powder was rat poison.

To be sure you’re not setting yourself up for unwanted surprises, be sure to complete a thorough inspection of any property you intend to buy. Check all areas of the house—not just common living areas—and ensure your home inspector does the same.

4. Bathroom Gatherings

A chair would be perfectly acceptable in a sitting or living room, but an armchair in a bathroom—complete with an area rug and pillows—is odd. One property, as showcased below, featured exactly this setup, which made it a bit awkward to shoot and show for prospective clients.

If you’re aiming to sell a property, appeal to the most common buyer in your market. This often requires re-staging a home to be sure that each room reflects its intended purpose. Whatever the owner’s preferences, a house should feel open and welcoming to all prospects, giving them the ability to envision themselves living there.

5. Unwelcome Guests

Mike Litzner, an agent from Long Island, New York, reported finding a homeless man living in the house he was showing to potential buyers. The man created a fort around himself and stocked it with alcohol to help manage cold nights. One buyer humorously asked if the fort came with the house.

Believe it or not, common squatters are not an uncommon problem for real estate agents. To be sure you avoid this problem—and disrupt showings—keep doors and windows locked at all times and only provide keys or entry codes to approved persons.

Bottom Line – Real Estate Agent Horror Stories

While real estate horror stories can be humorous, they can also jeopardize sales or ruin the relationship between a buyer or seller and an agent. To avoid this, be sure to consider the scenarios above and make note of how to avoid them. Being prepared will go a long way to ensuring nothing disrupts a successful sale.

Thinking of Buying or Selling? Now is a great time.
Call us today for a free consultation.

We are your Realtors - We Guarantee to Listen, Advise and Advocate for You!
Give us a call at 703.772.3526
Email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

November 29, 2021
Did you know – holiday shopping for interior design lovers can be easy? Before plunging into great interior design gift ideas, consider the person you want to gift. Their style, home needs, and available space will guide you toward getting them a perfect gift they really appreciate. Here are the lists of the top interior design for stress-free seasonal shopping.

1. Artwork as Interior Design Gifts

Hanging art is one of the best gifts for interior design lovers short on floor space and gives love to empty walls. Art can also increase value over time as an investment.

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2. Greenery & Interior Design Ornaments

Plants are hassle-free interior design presents. You can grab mood-boosting greenery when you’re in a rush or out of ideas and still be sure to put a smile on someone’s face. Living plants not only look great in a beautiful pot, but they also produce oxygen which can help purify the air, improve your mood, and lower fatigue.

Home decor Artificial Plants Artificial Grass Fake Plants wedding decoration Living room Green Turtle Leaves Garden

3. Sculptural Carafes & Decanters

A sculptural carafe or decanter could be just the thing for that friend with the home bar. Craftsman pitchers, like those from Crate and Barrel, make great gifts for interior design lovers and wine lovers alike. Master glassblowers and makers craft sophisticated mixed-material bottles that stand out from the rest to become truly showstopper pieces.


4. Interior Design Gift Ideas for Dinnertime

Few things feel chicer than handsome serveware appetizers, cheeses, and salads look even more delectable in pretty platters and bowls. And when not in use, these arty pieces can adorn open shelves in the kitchen.


Read on for the lists of perfect gifts @decorilla

November 24, 2021
Here are the best reasons to spend a day in Arlington while on vacation in Washington DC. There’s a place right across the wild and wide Potomac River that is worth a brief respite from your Washington DC itinerary. Arts, culture, and nightlife are alive and well here.

1. Arlington National Cemetery

john f kennedy grave

Established during the Civil War consisting of 624 acres of land once owned by Robert E. Lee, Arlington National Cemetery is a United States military cemetery home to the Tomb of soldiers who died in the nation’s wars beginning with the American Civil War. And the eternal flame marking President John F. Kennedy’s grave as well as the final resting places of numerous other famous Americans. The cemetery is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

2. U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial

1200px 2018 10 31 15 25 21 The west side of the Marine Corps War Memorial in Arlington County Virginia

It is a military monument dedicated to the memory of all the members of the United States Marine Corps who have died defending the country since 1775. It is also known as the Iwo Jima Memorial.

3. The National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial


It is a permanent outdoor memorial to remember the 184 people who died during the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon: these people include those who were in the building at the time of the attack as well as the passengers on American Airlines Flight 77.

Learn more of the complete lists @arlingtontours

Please contact us today, at 703.772.2536 or via email: