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I’ve moved!

Thanks for finding this blog.  I’ve moved and consolidated my blog content onto a new site – Best Arlington Homes.  Please check in with me there, and I hope you enjoy!

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The Hawthorn

The Hawthorn is one of a handful of condo buildings built in the Ballston neighborhood of Arlington Virginia in 2006.  It’s such a beautiful and solidly built building, convenient to everything you could desire, including a choice of Orange Line metro stops, each practically right around the corner of the building.  The building has a business center and fitness center.

The following chart shows how the median sales price has evolved  since the groundbreaking in 2006.

These have been some pretty rough years in real estate since the Hawthorn was built.  This chart shows that the 2 bedroom/1bath units have been hardest hit.  These data are taken from the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).  It may in fact miss some sales that the Hawthorn sales office did not report in the MLS, so please take it as a rough guide.

The market is changing.  A 2 bedroom/1 bath unit that was listed for $455,000 8 days ago is already under contract, so there’s a strong indication that the MLS history for 2 bedrooms has some flaws, or maybe the market has just picked up that much???  Last year there were 4 1-bedroom units in the building for sale, and over the course of the year the sales prices for those units jumped up 7%.

Please call me if these numbers are difficult to read, or if you would like to get more information about the Hawthorn.

Median sales price over time at The Hawthorn

Most recently I’ve worked to help some really terrific clients purchase their first home in a neighborhood of Arlington Virginia called Spy Hill/Boulevard Manor.  Spy Hill homes are up on the hill, and Boulevard Manor homes are on the relatively flatter section of the neighborhood, but together they cover such a small area of Arlington that they are grouped together.  This old Washington Post article still conveys a lot of information about the Spy Hill neighborhood of Arlington, but keep in mind that the prices have changed a lot since 1995.  The neighborhood is remains a great neighborhood for a cardio workout, climbing some of those hills — that’s tough to change!

My clients purchased a small but wonderful home that had all the right space for them. The kitchen was upgraded, the bedrooms were sizable enough, there was a large enclosed “sunroom/porch/family room” off the back of the house, and the downstairs offered lots of additional space for relaxing and entertaining, with an additional room downstairs for whatever. All of this in North Arlington, convenient to everything, for about $500,000 all told. Not bad. Include also the great neighbors, easy commute, access to all sorts of neighborhood amenities, and you’ve got the typical Arlington lifestyle.

Boulevard Manor Home in Arlington Virginia

Someone asked me yesterday if there are any single family homes for sale in Arlington that are priced under $800,000. She’s just moving here from out of town, and clearly she’s already adjusted her expectations! But of course you can find homes priced below $800,000, and Spy Hill/Boulevard Manor is only one of many Arlington neighborhoods where you could be looking. The home above was listed at $525,000, and my clients got it for close to $500,000.

But, on the flip side, this being Arlington and all, there are of course more expensive homes to be found just around the corner. Like this one, part of a new development of homes by builder Kevin Smith:

Spy Hill Home, Arlington VA

There were a cluster of homes that Mr. Smith built a few years ago. Alas, they have not been selling super well. The one pictured here has been listed at $1.2 million, and was recently taken off the market. Sales among the less expensive homes in the neighborhood have been much more brisk.

Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

Real Estate Market Chart by Altos Research www.altosresearch.com

Mark your calendars for a fun-filled weekend in May, when Arlington County will partner with the Ballston Virginia Square Partnership to celebrate community, connections and friendship – topped off with good eats. The 22nd Annual Taste of Arlington is scheduled for Sunday, May 17, from noon to 5 p.m. on Wilson Boulevard in front of Ballston Common Mall. Neighbors can enjoy live local entertainment, children’s activities, special exhibits and delicious food from Arlington’s finest restaurants. This year’s event will highlight the businesses, restaurants, the arts and community organizations of Arlington’s many urban villages.

Admission is free but guests must purchase ticket books for restaurant tastes and beverages. Proceeds from Taste of Arlington will continue to benefit Community Residences, Inc., a local non-profit organization that assists people with disabilities to live independently in the community.

Click on the pic for more info.

Arlington Forest is a wonderful and AFFORDABLE North Arlington neighborhood that’s close to Ballston and has it’s own little shopping center that puts an Outback Steakhouse, a wonderful Thai restaurant called Crystal Thai, the neighborhood pizzeria, and a terrific home decorating store called Country Curtains, all within walking distance.  Arlington Forest was described in a Washington Post article as a neighborhood where:

there is little room for what are often derided as McMansions — the homes in the neighborhood date to just before World War II.  It’s a place of tiny lots with two-story houses and two-lane street, most nearly empty from 9 am to 5 pm on weekdays.

Pulling the neighborhood stats today provides a result that is very indicative of the real estate activity in Arlington Forest, Arlington Virginia.  The average price of homes for sale in the neighborhood is $596,540.  This price reflects the basic box colonial found everywhere in the neighborhood.

Two homes are currently under contract.  Those two homes had been expanded and renovated beautifully, and they were listed at $650,000 and $850,000.

You can occasionally find a short sale or foreclosure in this neighborhood, but even those homes tend to be well take care of and may provide a good way to own your first home in a desirable North Arlington neighborhood.


Arlington Forest, Arlington VirginiaTypical Arlington Forest HomesTypical Arlington Forest Home

Renovated home in Arlington Forest

Renovated home in Arlington Forest