Hibiscus and Frost

Hibiscus and Frost My wife and I just lost a Hibiscus to Frost so we thought it was appropriate to write this blog: After the unpredictable winter we’ve experienced this year we know many gardeners and homeowners alike who are trying to get some color going in their gardens right away instead of waiting patiently for the regular perennials to make their appearance. Recently, we bought a … [Read more...]

Charlottesville Real Estate – CAAR 2018 First Quarter Market Report

Charlottesville Real Estate - CAAR 2018 First Quarter Market Report Our Charlottesville Area Association of Realtors has just released the latest real estate market report showing stats for sales in our area, 2018 1st Quarter. This report comes out Quarterly and gives us a good idea of the current Real Estate Market in the greater Charlottesville Area. The specifics are pulled from our local … [Read more...]

What Does a Builder’s Warranty Cover?

What Does a Builder's Warranty Cover? With the boom in new building construction taking place all over Charlottesville - from Crozet to in town and all along the 29 North corridor - many people considering building new might also want to think about what the builder’s warranty will cover after the home is built. Or, what it might cover if you buy a newer home a few years after that. Most … [Read more...]

Home Buying Tips for 2018

Home Buying Tips for 2018 Springtime typically means warmer temps and blooming flowers in the Charlottesville area, although the start to this year’s spring has been anything but typical with snow showers on the first official day of spring, and interspersed with sunnier days ever since. The market is indeed different from year to year, and spring 2018 is already shaping up to be a uniquely … [Read more...]

Should You Buy in a Gated Community? 

Should You Buy in a Gated Community?  We have already looked at the pros and cons of buying a home in a neighborhood that has a Homeowner’s Association. Let’s now look at homes that go one step further - those that are located in a gated community. A gated community is a collection of homes that are accessible only to residents and their guests via a gate or wall across any roadways in or out. … [Read more...]

Why some Real Estate Deals Fail

When you’re in the middle of the buying process, there are several things that can crop up that might throw a monkey wrench in the works - also known as “deal killers.” Despite the recent pickup in spring sales activity, the tough lending climate continues to kick up obstacles for both Buyers and Sellers — from obscure zoning problems to 11th-hour mortgage glitches. One of the best ways to … [Read more...]

Why is home inventory so low?

Why is home inventory so low? Spring is typically the time when new listings are popping up on the market like so many daffodils in a meadow, but this hasn’t been the case for some time. Inventory of available homes on the market is the lowest it’s been in two decades, but the reasons may surprise you. Two of the likely culprits are baby boomers and homeowners who are simply satisfied with … [Read more...]

Getting your yard ready for Spring

Getting your yard ready for Spring in Charlottesville Despite the appearance of snow flurries around the area today, Spring is one of the most important times to perform maintenance to your lawn.  Winter weather can leave your grass, shrubs and trees weak and hungry, especially after months of lying dormant. By following the steps below you can help prevent your beautiful lawn from being … [Read more...]

Should I have a Whole House Generator in Charlottesville?

Should I have a Whole House Generator in Charlottesville? With last Thursday’s strong wind storm knocking out power to much of Central Virginia, as well as up the Northeast corridor, many home owners are asking if having a whole house generator is the right choice for them. Memories of the 2012 derecho and recent hurricane activity also brings this to mind. After major weather events, we have … [Read more...]

Spring 2018 – Charlottesville VA

Spring 2018 - Charlottesville VA Cherry trees, winter jasmine and daffodils are already dotting the Charlottesville streets with color as we look at the last days of February and peek into March.  Daylight Savings time starts at 2 am on Sunday, March 11, and Spring officially begins this year on March 20. Residents and visitors alike know what’s coming - Charlottesville is beyond compare in … [Read more...]

Virginia Festival of the Book 2018 – Charlottesville VA

Virginia Festival of the Book 2018 - Charlottesville VA If you hear a buzz of excitement on the Downtown Mall and around town this time of year, you know it’s almost time once again for the Virginia Festival of the Book (VFB), which celebrates its 24th anniversary this year! The annual Festival will be held March 21-25, 2018, in and around Charlottesville, and brings readers and writers … [Read more...]

Interest Rates are Rising – What does this mean for you?

Interest Rates are Rising - What does this mean for you? As of Feb. 9, mortgage interest rates were moving up, though not to the point where they are expected to dampen the demand for home ownership or curtail the strength of the U.S. housing market. The rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage climbed to 4.5% at the end of January, close to a four-year high, according to Capital Economics. This … [Read more...]

Groundhog Day 2018 and Charlottesville Real Estate

Groundhog Day 2018 and Charlottesville Real Estate Groundhog Day 2018 is now past us and Punxsutawney Phil, in the same named town in Pennsylvania (and from his hill home at “Gobbler’s Knob”), has predicted six more weeks of winter.  The movie of the same name celebrated 25 years on Friday and Bill Murray’s title character would agree that, sometimes, the real estate market feels like it … [Read more...]

2018 Design House Charlottesville

2018 Design House Charlottesville Address: 2525 Wind River Road, Charlottesville VA 22901 - MAY 7 – MAY 22, 2016 Open every day: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Extended hours on Wed & Thurs: 10 a.m. - 7 p.m. Purchase tickets online or at the door starting May 7. What is Design House? In 2009, the Shelter for Help in Emergency (SHE) celebrated its 30th anniversary, and a vision for establishing a … [Read more...]

Can I Afford a Home in Charlottesville?

Is Charlottesville Housing Affordable?  The city of Charlottesville is a town in constant flux - students move from place to place as they travel through their University careers, medical residents live here for about three years before heading off to other opportunities, visiting scientists and professors stay for a year or two before moving again, and government employees are stationed at the … [Read more...]

Charlottesville Real Estate Market Report 2017 Fourth Quarter

Charlottesville Real Estate - CAAR 2017 Fourth Quarter Market Report Our Charlottesville Area Association of Realtors has just released the latest real estate market report showing stats for sales in our area, 2017 4th Quarter. This report comes out Quarterly and gives us a good idea of the current Real Estate Market in the greater Charlottesville Area. The specifics are pulled from our local … [Read more...]

We Buy Homes for Cash (Seller Beware)

We Buy Homes for Cash (Seller Beware) You have seen these signs on telephone poles, but what exactly are they all about? Can they be legitimate? Maybe you've received a flyer in the mail that promises investors will buy your house - in any condition - and for all cash.  Some of these signs say the Buyers are real estate licensees, but they will not charge you a commission. A smart person … [Read more...]

Livability – 5 best places to live in Charlottesville 

With a population now hovering around 44,500 and often the subject of Top Ten lists nation and world, the city of Charlottesville has a lot to offer locals and transplants alike. Greenbrier takes Number 1 spot According to a recent look at the five best places to live in Charlottesville, ranked by their livability scores, the Greenbrier neighborhood takes the top spot at 84 out of 100, and also … [Read more...]

2018 New Year’s Eve in Charlottesville

New Year’s Eve Celebrations Around The Area New Year’s Eve falls on a Sunday this year, but with the next day typically a national holiday there is still lots to do and enjoy around our area. The most beloved annual celebration in Charlottesville – known for its many family-friendly activities on and around the historic Downtown Mall – is celebrating its 36th birthday this year. First … [Read more...]

2017 Christmas In Charlottesville – Fun Ideas for the Holidays

With Thanksgiving on Thursday, it’s now time to turn our thoughts to celebrating the holidays in Charlottesville. Every year, there are signature events that define the season and we’ve compiled them for you below, along with some new traditions. We all know that shopping local helps the local economy, but celebrating local also helps the community spirit as well. We’ll start with the … [Read more...]

Charlottesville Thanksgiving 2017

Thanksgiving in Charlottesville 2017 Once again we have arrived at the time of year that reminds everyone to slow down from all the rush of the holidays and enjoy a meal with family and friends and think of ways to be thankful. Although history has shown us many different versions of when the first official date of Thanksgiving is in North America – Native Americans had been giving thanks … [Read more...]

Charlottesville Halloween 2017

Charlottesville Halloween 2017 Although Halloween decorations made their appearance in grocery stores around town back in late August, now is the time when people have finished decorating their yards and getting ready for a fun annual tradition in Charlottesville, even though it’s on a Tuesday evening this year. JMRL- Gordon Avenue On Friday, October 27, at 10:30 am, come and enjoy “Hotel … [Read more...]

Charlottesville 2017 3rd Quarter Market Report

Charlottesville Real Estate - CAAR 2017 Third Quarter Market Report Our Charlottesville Area Association of Realtors has just released the latest real estate market report showing stats for sales in our area, 2017 3rd Quarter. This report comes out Quarterly and gives us a good idea of the current Real Estate Market in the greater Charlottesville Area. The specifics are pulled from our local … [Read more...]

Charlottesville 2017 2nd Quarter Market Report (revised)

Charlottesville Real Estate - CAAR 2017 Second Quarter Market Report (REVISED) Revised reports are posted below for 2Q 2017, based upon a discrepancy in the current and historical inventory statistics. Upon review, a MLS data update in early June resulted in the inaccurate counts. While the current Greater Charlottesville statistic for "inventory of homes for sale" was previously stated as … [Read more...]

A Tour Around Charlottesville

A tour around our Charlottesville area Afton Afton straddles Albemarle and Nelson counties, and is located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, about 20 miles west of Charlottesville.  Its highest elevation is 1,362 feet and one of the most beautiful vistas of the area can be seen at the lookout at the top of Rt. 64 as you cross over from Waynesboro heading east, near the Rockfish … [Read more...]

Welcome to Crozet 

Welcome to Crozet  The community of Crozet began as a whistle stop on the Chesapeake and Ohio (C & O) Railroad that was established at the request of the Miller Manual Labor School (the Miller School), which had been founded a year earlier.  Originally called "Wayland's Crossing," it was renamed in 1870 in honor of Colonel Claudius Crozet (1789-1864), the French-born civil engineer … [Read more...]

Rivanna Trail around Charlottesville

Rivanna Trail around Charlottesville Here in Charlottesville, we have a true example of what happens when volunteers get together and work on a community project - the Rivanna Trail around the city. The Rivanna Trails Foundation (RTF) is a non-profit corporation founded in 1992 by area citizens with a dream to create a trail system throughout the greenbelt of the Rivanna river and its … [Read more...]

Ivy Creek Natural Area

One of our area’s greatest treasures is the Ivy Creek Natural Area (ICNA), a 215-acre preserve bordering the South Fork Rivanna Reservoir, which is located off Earlysville Road - just down the road from the Rock Store on the way to the Reservoir.  Long a destination for those who really enjoy a walk in the woods nearer to Charlottesville, the preserve is a “mix of upland woods, pine stands, open … [Read more...]

Open Houses – How Effective are They Really?

When it comes to listing your home, the idea of an “Open House” will most likely come up in a conversation with your listing agent.  When the weather turns from Winter to Spring and Summer, newspapers and signs start appearing promoting the latest Open House opportunity - usually on a Sunday - but they’re not always the right choice when selling a home.  Here at Solutions, we don’t always … [Read more...]

Charlottesville 2017 2nd Quarter Market Report

Charlottesville Real Estate - CAAR 2017 Second Quarter Market Report Our Charlottesville Area Association of Realtors has just released the latest real estate market report showing stats for sales in our area, 2017 2nd Quarter. This report comes out Quarterly and gives us a good idea of the current Real Estate Market in the greater Charlottesville Area. The specifics are pulled from our local … [Read more...]

Why You May Want to Buy a Home in the Summer

Why You May Want to Buy a Home in the Summer The fact Summer is traditionally seen as having higher Inventory levels is good news for many would-be Charlottesville area Buyers as we’ve experienced a severe lack of inventory in town this past Spring. Other good reasons to buy in Summer? Buyers might have more negotiating room as Sellers are on the move and motivated. Prices aren’t necessarily … [Read more...]

Jumping into Early Possession can be Risky

Early Possession - Is It a Good or Bad Idea? In a perfect world, moving into a new home is seamless for both the Seller and Buyer, and possession of a home typically transfers from the Seller to Buyer at closing.  But, when you factor in such events as the Buyer also selling a home or ending a lease before the settlement date, or the Seller building a new home that isn’t quite ready, Early … [Read more...]

Drones and Real Estate

Drones and Real Estate More and more these days, if you’re outside in a lovely spot admiring the view you might notice a steady buzzing noise also accompanying the peace and quiet and wonder, “What the heck is that annoying sound?” Welcome to the age of the drone - now, more than ever, they’re being flown by hobbyists and professionals alike, especially in the field of real estate. Aerial … [Read more...]

Charlottesville Real Estate Market Timing

Charlottesville Real Estate Market - Hot or Cold? As many of you know, the Spring 2017 market here in the Charlottesville area was hopping! With low inventory, there were many occasions when a house would come on the market and have several offers within a few hours and go under contract not long after.  This can be frustrating for Buyers when they see their dream home disappear in a flash, … [Read more...]

Fourth of July Charlottesville 2017

Fourth of July events around the Charlottesville Area The United States of America is celebrating its 241st Birthday this year and many of our surrounding communities, including the city of Charlottesville, are planning fun celebrations. Here’s a short round-up of what’s available. Crozet The July 4th weekend will start on Saturday, July 1, in Crozet Virginia with the Crozet Independence Day … [Read more...]

Private Schools near Charlottesville

Private Schools near Charlottesville Our area has grown by leaps and bounds over the years. For those who feel like they want their children to be in an atmosphere that offers the smaller class size not commonly seen these days in the public school systems - both city and county - there is a slew of Charlottesville private school options to fit any requirement. Here is a complete list of private … [Read more...]

Summer 2017 in Charlottesville

Summer 2017 in Charlottesville Memorial Day is the unofficial start to summer and 2017 is rapidly filling up with fun activities for the entire family to enjoy. From farmer’s markets to hiking, tubing and vineyard tasting, to music at various venues around town, there’s truly something for everyone.  Farmers Markets Long a favorite as a Saturday morning destination, and now starting its 44th … [Read more...]

New Charlottesville County Schools on the horizon?

The Charlottesville/Albemarle County area has grown by leaps and bounds over the past decade. This has led to some growing pains for the county schools, in particular, Albemarle High School, and many developers are taking that into account, especially in the popular Rt. 29 North corridor. As of Sept. 2016, Albemarle High School had a student population of 1,987, which is over its official … [Read more...]

How to Sell Your Home to Baby Boomers

Last week, we talked about what Millennials are looking for in a home, but now it’s time to look at Baby Boomers and see if their needs are changing. This group spans two decades, from 1946 to 1964, with the oldest nearing 70, and the youngest just passing AARP’s 50-year threshold. More than one-third are single females.  The United States currently has a population of 76 million Baby Boomers, … [Read more...]

How to Sell Your Home to Millennials

How to Sell Your Home to Millennials Much has been made about the different generations of Buyers and how they approach purchasing a home. Baby Boomers have ceded space to Generation X, and now the Millennials are jockeying for their place in the real estate market. Numbering around 80 million, Millennials now represent the fastest-growing generation of consumers in the U.S. Those born between … [Read more...]

40th Annual Foxfield Races – Saturday April 29, 2017

40th Annual Foxfield Races – Saturday April 29, 2017 We’re nearing the end of April and so that means it’s time once again for the the Foxfield Races, officially known as the Foxfield Racing Association (FRA) and Race Course. Held, since 1978, twice a year, in late April and in late September, the bi-annual event typically features seven to eight steeplechase races. The 40th Running of the … [Read more...]

All About Albemarle Barracks

All About Albemarle Barracks When anyone mentions “Barracks Road” today, everyone immediately thinks about the shopping center located a few minutes away from UVA and within minutes of Downtown and points north and south.  Barnes & Noble also comes to mind, as does Ben & Jerry’s for a quick ice cream fix, or any of the restaurants, like Zin Burger, Hotcakes or Tara Thai (best won-ton … [Read more...]

Charlottesville 2017 1st Quarter Market Report

Charlottesville Real Estate - CAAR 2017 First Quarter Market Report Our Charlottesville Area Association of Realtors has just released the latest real estate market report showing stats for sales in our area, 2017 1st Quarter. This report comes out Quarterly and gives us a good idea of the current Real Estate Market in the greater Charlottesville Area. The specifics are pulled from our … [Read more...]

Home Trends for 2017

Charlottesville Home Trends for 2017 Every year, it’s always interesting to see what designers are looking at in the way of trends for the home. Although everyone has their own personal style, many trends do end up either coming back in style, expanding their reach or quietly going back into the past again, until the next time. We may see more color this year, as opposed to the white, grey and … [Read more...]

Best House Hunting Strategies

Best House Hunting Strategies Searching for your dream house can be a daunting task, and most of the homes you see won't be what you're looking for. Below are some great strategies to use to help you weed out the houses that are just not right for you and help you avoid common house hunting mistakes. Have your team in place While many house hunters think they will save money by not working … [Read more...]

All about Keswick

Keswick When you live in Charlottesville, going for a “Sunday” drive in the country takes a matter of minutes. Keswick offers some of the most beautiful views to enjoy as you meander by on Route 22/231, which has often been cited as one of the most scenic roads in America.  Film buffs know the 1956 movie “Giant” - starring Elizabeth Taylor, James Dean and Rock Hudson - was filmed partially at … [Read more...]

All About Spring Creek

All About Spring Creek, Louisa Va For many people, being able to live in a gated community that offers a well-rated 18-hole golf course just 20 minutes drive outside Charlottesville, and with easy access to Rt. 64 and points east and west, brings them to Spring Creek as the perfect choice. Located just off Rt. 64 at Exit 136 – Zion Crossroads/Highway 15 – the entrance to Spring Creek is a mile … [Read more...]

Staging Mistakes

Staging Mistakes To Avoid So You Can Sell Your Home Faster When Sellers ask us here at Solutions for advice, it’s usually because they’ve read the latest magazines or watched HGTV and the many shows targeting fixer uppers or DIY projects, but just don’t know where to begin when it comes to listing their own home. The first thing to remember is that they’ll no longer be living there so Sellers … [Read more...]

All about Belvedere Neighborhood – Charlottesville VA

Like Old Trail out in Crozet, Belvedere - just off Rio Road and next to Dunlora - was designed to be a self-sustaining neighborhood that would include plenty of green spaces, and provide a blend of houses near retail and business centers. Founded on the principles of sustainability, healthy living and great streets, Belvedere is a sought-after hybrid — combining the best of urban and country … [Read more...]

Tips for a Smooth House Closing

Tips for a Smooth House Closing When it comes to finding your dream home, there are many steps along the way to a smooth closing. After you’ve identified your perfect house - negotiated the contract, applied and approved for a loan, inspected and agreed to repairs and/or credits - the last step is the most important: the closing. By knowing what to expect and doing some legwork, you can … [Read more...]

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Charles McDonaldBy Charles McDonald - Charles, and his firm, Charlottesville Solutions, are known locally and around the world for helping people relocate to the Charlottesville area. His background (running his own engineering firm for 20+ years in the Silicon Valley) has given him the skills to not only develop this site but also to manage a stellar group of agents!
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