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 legally … [Read more...]


What’s the difference between a REALTOR® vs an Agent? Many people interested in buying a home often ask us, “What’s the difference between a Realtor® and a real estate agent, and, where does a broker fit in the equation?” We hear the terms real estate agent and Realtor® bandied about quite often, and many people think they’re referring to the same thing. Before the Multiple Listing … [Read more...]

The Second Agent Dance

There is a saying, almost a joke, among many Realtors: "The second listing agent often wins" I have heard this from so many seasoned real estate agents who will tell you that the first agent will do most of the work and if the home does not sell, the next listing agent will benefit greatly. Here is how it works. The first listing agent will spend a great deal of time with the sellers of a … [Read more...]

Charlottesville Solutions is a Green Business

What do I mean by this? When we opened the doors at Solutions, two years ago, I had a few simple rules for myself and our agents. One of the most important rules was "never hand me a piece of paper". The story actually started several years ago. I wrote a blog post in Aug of 2009 that I titled "I want a paperless office, am I wrong?" Back then, I was already using digital signatures … [Read more...]

Becky Crowe and Gibson Homes join Solutions

I promised you a surprise from Solutions and we are very excited to announce that Becky Crowe has joined Charlottesville Real Estate Solutions. Many people know Becky as not only an exceptional agent and advocate for her clients, but also as the representative for Gibson Homes in Charlottesville. Having a background in new construction gives Becky a unique perspective on the real estate … [Read more...]

Charlottesville Solutions welcomes Sybil Mahanes

Well the word is out and we are very excited to announce that Sybil Mahanes has joined Charlottesville Real Estate Solutions. Sybil was born and raised in Charlottesville Virginia. Her love of the area and its people is infectious. Prior to real estate, Sybil was the owner of the Ivy Store, a landmark in Western Albemarle, and she knows most residents on a first name basis. When I first met … [Read more...]

Explaining Virginia’s new Buyer Brokerage Agreement law

New Virginia Buyer Brokerage Agreement law What you need to know as of July 1, 2012 If you're thinking of purchasing a home in Virginia, you'll want to know that there's a new Agency law that will take effect on July 1 that will change the way you can see houses no matter where you are in the state. A great many of our clients already use our Solutions website to look up houses in our local … [Read more...]

Top 3 Google+ tips for Real Estate Business

Write a good Bio Seems like this is a no brainer but I am amazed at how many people have little or no Bio on Google. Why spend so much time without having a good Bio, makes no sense to me. Engage Google+ is very social and you have the opportunity to engage with "specific" circles of friends and contacts. Very powerful if used properly. Humor Have a sense of humor. All work and no play makes … [Read more...]

Real Estate Scam? – you have been warned

I recently got this email: Hi there, I am interested in viewing one of your properties, could you please call me on my foreign mobile +882 135 502 99 to setup a time. As I am travelling at the moment I am unable to pickup emails regularly so please call. Kind regards, Liz Casey --------- Mobile: +882 135 502 99 Email: ~~~~~~~~~~ I can tell you it was … [Read more...]

Positive, Focused, Above the Crowd!

Thomas Jefferson and Charlottesville Homes They say that Real Estate is local and with the current environment that is certainly true. I recently read a blog from Spokane Washington Real Estate Expert, BethAnn Long about their local market. My response to her was “Stay positive and stay focused you are above the crowd just by being actively working on your business!” Then it crossed my … [Read more...]

Solutions at the closing table today

This morning we are getting quite a rain in the Charlottesville area (most of the East Coast is getting it) So of course I get to go out to a walk-though and then to the closing table with clients. I like to attend closings at the attorneys office. There is often questions that my clients will have and since we have built a great relationship with each other, they often look to me for the … [Read more...]

Charlottesville Solutions and Agent Feedback

I show homes in the Charlottesville area almost every day. Many agents ask for feedback in one form or another. Some ask by email, Some call my cell and recently I got a text message asking for feedback.A few questions to ponder 1. Is it in my clients best interest to give feedback? What if my client is interested in the home, will this give the listing agent ammunition to go to another buyer and … [Read more...]

Charlottesville Tuesday closing

Off to a walk-thru this morning and then a closing on a Crozet home. Charlottesville Real Estate offers many areas that are really very charming and Crozet is one of those area. Come see why so many people love our area. … [Read more...]

One of those days in Charlottesville :)

Charlottesville Broker Today is Wednesday and after several days of showing homes in Charlottesville, writing a couple offers and looking at 2 new listing, I need to take a little break! This morning I have been working on paperwork and setting appointments for more showings this afternoon and Friday. With so much business I feel as though I have pulled all my hair out (see photo)... I … [Read more...]

Our Market in Charlottesville from our association

  Our mid-year market report from the Charlottesville Area association of Realtors has just been released. See attached report and let me know if you have any questions. One note about the report: The tax credit had a significant impact in helping the numbers look good, but moving forward the tax credit will likely have a negative effect on the numbers. Essentially, the tax credit … [Read more...]

CAAR’s Newly Installed 2010 Officers & Directors – Congratulations

Congratulations to Greg Slater, the newly installed 2010 President of CAAR! Also congratulations to the new Executive Committee and new Board of Directors members, who were sworn in: Barbara McMurry, President-Elect Brad Conner, Treasurer Daniel Rothamel, Director Joelle Meintzschel, Director Karen Pape, Director Posted via email from Charlottesville Virginia … [Read more...]

Bad MLS Photos… are you serious?

I can not believe these photos are in our local MLS. Now I am not going to mention the agent or the property. I do think that if this is the best you can do, you need to hire a photographer. In fact agents if this is the best you can do, call me and I will take some better photos for you at no charge.... These photos was posted directly from our local MLS with no touchups... I know … [Read more...]

2009 3rd Quarter Market Report CAAR

Remember what I recently posted about Statistics? ---- CAAR Market Report 2009 After 3 Quarters Published by the Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS®   Where Are We Now? Home sales, compared to 2008, showed improvement in the 3rd Quarter. At mid-year, sales were down 28%, but after the first 9 months of the year, sales are only 19% below the 2008 levels. In the third quarter, … [Read more...]

CAAR Tech Meeting this morning (Photo)

CAAR Tech Meeting this morning We are making decisions that will effect all members (Charlottesville Real Estate Agents). My only concern with our meetings is that members are not really aware of the consequences… Posted via email from Charlottesville Real Estate … [Read more...]

CAAR meeting (photo)

NOTE: Brief message sent from my BlackBerry® regards, Charles McDonald, (cell) 434-981-1585 Associate BROKER, Licensed to sell Real Estate in Virginia … [Read more...]

VHDA presents Charlottesville data and predictions

Today VHDA’s (Virginia Housing Development Authority) Barry Merchant presented data on our local Charlottesville Real Estate market. He sees the correction continuing into 2010 and agrees that we are seeing very few foreclosures in our area. let me know if you have any questions. NOTE: Slide 11, shows that we did not go up in price as much as some areas and we also did not correct as … [Read more...]

CAAR First Quarter 2009 Market Report

CAAR Market Report 2009 First Quarter Where Are We Now? The Charlottesville area real estate market improved in the first quarter compared to the 4th quarter of 2008, but still remains slow in terms of sales. The previous quarter will go down as one of the weakest real estate markets in history, so the improvement in the first quarter of 2009 is easy to understand, especially considering … [Read more...]

FREE and Fantastic Leadership Resourses! (Maxwell, Covey, Blanchard, Sharma)

JOHN C. MAXWELL            STEPHEN COVEY                KEN BALNCHARD            ROBIN SHARMA From the greatest leadership minds of our time, FREE for the asking! (and I think FREE is a great price!) Visit my … [Read more...]

why have you DISAPPEARED….?

When someone joins Active Rain there can be many reasons.... To gain knowledge- I personally have found AR to be a fabulous resource of information. I have taken surveys' of agents across the country and used the information at our MLS and Tech meetings.  What a great resource! To make new friends - We could go on and on with this one. I have more friends across the country after 2 years on … [Read more...]

Hello to a few of my friends!

Charlottesville Bloggers Sure we can get lost in each others posts and comments. We sometimes get mad, glad and even laugh a little... The bottom line is that we have a lot of fun here on AR. With the Charlottesville Real Estate market a little crazy, the stock market even crazier and the economy in question, I hear a lot of friends who are having a hard time. Today I just want to say … [Read more...]

IPOD Shuffle

I NEVER, NEVER, NEVER, NEVER win anything!!! I annouced the Mardi Gras Trade Show in Charlottesville on my BLOG! I went to the event, even though I did not have much time. Went to all the booths, talked with vendors, meet fellow agents and I threw a business card in the bowl for the drawing of prizes.... I did not even know what they were giving away. When I stopped by the CAAR office they … [Read more...]


Ok, this, I know is a touchy subject but here it goes... I do not believe that we should allow Dual Agency. Here is how Dual Agency is decribed in Virginia: Dual Agency Occasionally a buyer will wish to make an offer on a property listed by the buyer agent's firm, or even by the buyer agent. Virginia law allows an agent to represent both the seller and buyer in the same transaction, but … [Read more...]

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Charles McDonald
Charles McDonald
Charlottesville Solutions
2013 Woodbrook Court, Charlottesville VA 22901
REALTOR® - Licensed to sell Real Estate in Virginia
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