Open Houses – How Effective are They Really?

"Open House” Posting. Part of our “Create a Sign” Series.

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 … [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 … [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 … [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 … [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 … [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 … [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 … [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 … [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 … [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 … [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...]

Spring 2017 in Charlottesville


When the winter jasmine and daffodils start to bloom, we all know the redbuds, forsythia and crocuses aren’t far behind and spring is once again almost here in Charlottesville unless we get one last surprise snowstorm between now and then! One could argue there really isn’t a prettier place to be than in this area for spring - neighborhood streets boast a riot of colors, from small plants to … [Read more...]

Working out in Charlottesville


Charlottesville has long been known for its access to natural beauty.  On any given day or weekend you can see people out walking the Downtown Mall and in surrounding neighborhoods, hiking in the Blue Ridge Mountains or on the local Rivanna or Monticello trails, running in a local 5k or just for fun, and biking.  If the weather is iffy, there’s always swimming at the Smith indoor pool or … [Read more...]

Your Home Stinks


How to eliminate odors in your home For Sellers, decluttering and staging a home are both incredibly important to presenting it in a flattering way, but it’s also important to make sure potential buyers don’t stop at the front door because of an unpleasant smell. We all have walked into homes that have the strong stench of something undefinable, whether it’s from pets, bad food or strong … [Read more...]

Moving abroad?


Moving abroad - how complicated can it be? If you think moving across town or a few states over is hard, consider what’s involved with moving to another country. As exciting as a move abroad can be, it’s also complicated — with a seemingly endless number of issues thrown at you as you make your way from Point A to Point B across the globe.  You already know about the visas you need to … [Read more...]

Charlottesville 2016 4th Quarter Market Report


Charlottesville Real Estate - CAAR 2016 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, 2016 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 … [Read more...]

How to Get Ready to Move

Moving day box representing movers and packaging for a move from one home to another

How to Get Ready to Move You’ve gotten your house contact signed and are on your way to the settlement date, but there might be one hiccup left along the way - how are you going to move everything? While you’re excited about all the possibilities a new home can bring, this might also be the perfect time to get rid of old clutter in your life so you can really begin anew. But where to … [Read more...]

Tips For Keeping Your Home Safe


Protecting your home and family go hand in hand. With the help of a little research, finding the right home security tools will prepare a homeowner, whether they’re just moving in, are already living in or are in the process of selling a house, for whatever may happen. Most burglaries occur on weekdays between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. Homes that appear unoccupied during the day, are dark at night, … [Read more...]

If You Can Rent in Charlottesville You Can Own in Charlottesville


Newly elected CAAR president Anthony McGhee recently said that he believed, "If you can rent in Charlottesville you can own in Charlottesville.” Here at Solutions, we thought this was worth investigating. Should you buy or rent? This is a question most of us will likely face in our lives, whether buying a house makes more financial sense than renting a home.  What’s the financial … [Read more...]

Shopping for a Home in January


Shopping for a Home in January With the start of any new year, buying a new home might be the furthest resolution on people’s minds. But it might, in fact, be a very smart way to start off the year right. For one thing, as a Buyer, you will have little to no competition for houses on the market, even though the inventory will be lower than the most popular time - spring. Another reason to … [Read more...]

Goodbye 2016


Looking Back at 2016 at Solutions Another year has come and almost gone here in Charlottesville.  We’ve seen the Rio Road/Rt. 29 Intersection completed and watched as new construction began to fill in the empty lots next to Stonefield. We also heralded the opening of 5th Street Station and the long awaited Wegmans.  We’ve had to say goodbye to a few institutions - Spudnuts, long a … [Read more...]

​ 2017 New Years Eve in Charlottesville


New Year’s Eve Celebrations Around The Area It’s rare to have New Year’s Eve fall on a Saturday so this is the year to get out and enjoy the various events scheduled around our area. The most beloved one in Charlottesville - known for its many family-friendly activities on and around the historic Downtown Mall - is celebrating its 35th birthday this year.  First Night Virginia (FNV) is … [Read more...]

Organic ​Food in Charlottesville​


As we all know by now, Charlottesville is a foodie town. You can dine at a different place every night for a year and not eat at the same place twice it seems. And if you don’t want to partake of our many amazing restaurants, you can always find freshly picked and locally sourced ingredients to prepare a memorable meal at home. Farmer’s markets have long been a staple for residents in our … [Read more...]

When to Decorate for the Holidays


When to Decorate for the Holidays Although some grocery stores and other shops around Charlottesville were pushing the season way back in October, the days just after Thanksgiving are when most people start to think about decorating for the upcoming holidays, usually to coincide with the start of Advent. This year, some people might be looking for new ways to dress up their homes.  One way … [Read more...]

Charlottesville Thanksgiving


Thanksgiving in Charlottesville This time of year 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 during the harvest season for centuries - … [Read more...]

Angie Woodson joins Charlottesville Solutions


Angie Woodson joins Charlottesville Solutions Angie Woodson is well known in the Charlottesville area as an advocate for her clients. She not only has a fantastic reputation with her clients, but also with other agents in the area. She is a top producing agent work works in Albemarle and all surrounding counties. Locally, Angie has worked on fundraising efforts for the Virginia Institute of … [Read more...]

2016 Christmas In Charlottesville – Fun Ideas for the Holidays


Let’s 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 traditional events: From Nov. 25, 26, 27, 28 … [Read more...]

Questions your Realtor may not legally be able to answer


As REALTORS®, we get asked many questions by Buyers. We’re happy to help answer as many as we can, ones like: how old is the roof on a house, or does it use gas or electrical heat?  Your Solutions agent can tell you pretty much anything you need to know about a home you’re hoping to buy (or at least find answers for you). But there are several questions that we (any REALTOR®) aren’t … [Read more...]

Charlottesville 2016 3rd Quarter Market Report


Charlottesville Real Estate - CAAR 2016 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, 2016 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 … [Read more...]

Why buy a Charlottesville Home in the Winter


Why Buy A Charlottesville Home in Fall/Winter? In a place where spring is one of the most beautiful seasons of all, it makes sense that our Charlottesville real estate market is also incredibly busy during that time  - with homes often selling within hours or days of coming on the market after fielding several contracts at a time. In spring, people who have been cooped up over the winter are … [Read more...]

Halloween in Charlottesville 2016


Fun Halloween Ideas Around Charlottesville Although Halloween decorations made their appearance in grocery stores around town back in late August, now is the time when people have started decorating their yards and getting ready for a fun annual tradition in Charlottesville, even though it’s on a Monday evening this year. Trick or Treating on the Lawn The best place to take younger … [Read more...]

Crozet Arts and Craft Festival 2016


36th Annual Crozet Arts and Craft Festival Set for Oct. 8 & 9, 2016 One of Crozet’s most popular bi-annual events, the Crozet Arts and Crafts Festival, will once again take place this weekend on Saturday, Oct. 8, from 10 am-5:30 pm, and Sunday, Oct. 9, from 10 am-5 pm, rain or shine.  Over the years, the festival has endured hurricanes and torrential downpours from one second to blazing … [Read more...]

​ 2016 Parade of Homes Charlottesville

53rd Annual Parade Of Homes - Oct. 1 & 2, 8 & 9 - Noon-5pm It’s that time of year again. Sponsored by the Blue Ridge Home Builders Association (BRHBA), the now 53rd Annual Parade of Homes is a chance to see what’s new in the world of building, and it’s a free event. This year’s Parade features 42 homes from 18 builders, up from last year’s numbers of 12 builders and 32 … [Read more...]

Foxfield Races – Sunday September 25, 2016


Foxfield Races - Sunday, September 25, 2016 The start of Fall in Charlottesville isn’t complete without 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 Fall version is known more as a … [Read more...]

Spudnuts and Duck Donuts – Choices in Charlottesville


Spudnuts and Duck Donuts - Hard to Choose Just One For as long as most Charlottesville natives can remember (since 1969) Spudnuts, located at 309 Avon Street just after the Belmont Bridge, has been waking them up in the morning with the glorious smell of their famous potato-flour doughnuts wafting throughout the surrounding neighborhood. First opened by Richard Winfield and now operated … [Read more...]

A Quick Tour of the Darden School of Business


The University of Virginia is well known for its research hospital, engineering and law schools, but for those who are looking at getting their MBAs, the Darden School of Business often tops the list, and is regularly ranked as being among the Top 15 business schools in the U.S. and Top 30 in the world. Located near UVA’s School of Law and the JAG School, just behind the Barracks Road … [Read more...]

How Many Natural Lakes are in Virginia Anyway?

beaver creek

How Many Natural Lakes are in Virginia Anyway? Here at Solutions, we often get asked this question - especially by clients who have already seen, or read about in one of our recent blogs, our local lakes at Chris Greene, Mint Springs, Sherando, Smith Mountain and Lake Anna, just to name a few. You might be surprised to hear that none of the ones mentioned above are naturally formed. All … [Read more...]

Moving Checklist


Moving Checklist It’s that time of year again - college students are heading back to school and anxious parents are trying not to forget anything along the way. Moving to your dorm room or apartment is the same as moving into a new house - just on a slightly smaller scale. We have some great tips to help your move go smoothly - regardless of whether it’s to a smaller or larger … [Read more...]

What to do with a Low Home Appraisal


What to do with a Low Home Appraisal In the home-buying process, there are several crucial steps along the way that Sellers and Buyers alike will have to navigate: the home inspection, radon test, title issues, getting a survey and negotiating when an appraisal comes in significantly lower than the accepted offer. When this happens both sides can go through many different … [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!
Charles McDonald, REALTOR® and Principal Broker, is Licensed to sell Real Estate in Virginia. 434-515-1585
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