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Northern Virginia Real Estate Blog,
Carolyn Capalbo

The Break Up and the Bargain Hunter

Wednesday, March 9th, 2011 at 1:29pm. 2,092 Views, 0 Comments.

If you're a home buyer on the hunt for a great deal on real estate, you probably know that sellers facing troubles like foreclosure or loss of income will oftentimes accept a lower offer in exchange for a quick sale. Divorcing couples are another group of sellers that may present a similar opportunity for a deal.

Those going through a divorce are often eager to sell their home and move on as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, the financial gains you may get as a buyer may be trumped by the stress, risk, and aggravation that go along with buying from a couple that are breaking up.

A couple going through a divorce may have a volatile relationship, which can make negotiations tense. This is especially true if the spouses do not agree in terms of

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Taxing Times for Northern Virginia Home Owners

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010 at 7:54pm. 2,591 Views, 1 Comments.

As the season rolls on, Northern Virginia residents will be anticipating some pretty extreme winter weather in the coming weeks. For many homeowners, the burden of paying those increasing energy bills during the colder spells can certainly make the holiday season seem a bit less merry. Old windows and doors can let so much warm air out and cold air in, while poorly insulated roofs will add significantly to the cost of keeping the home fires burning.

If you've been thinking of improving your property's comfort and energy efficiency, help may be at hand, but only until December 31. The Federal Residential Energy Efficiency Tax Credit initiative, officially comes to a close at the end of the month but there is still time to take advantage for those

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Renting at a Premium in Northern Virginia

Sunday, December 12th, 2010 at 8:14pm. 2,086 Views, 2 Comments.

It costs more to rent a home in many Northern Virginia communities than it does to purchase that same home.  This reversal in trend sets an interesting precedence.  The current market has seen a sharp decline in buyer activity over the past 60 days.  Buyer confidence is down as fears surrounding a potential increase in foreclosure inventory and title concerns prevent many would be buyers from acting now.  In addition, many folks have been through foreclosure and short sales and are now part of the rental/tenant market place.  This is driving demand for rental units up.  Many would be buyers are waiting to see what happens after the first of the year and foreclosure moratoriums are lifted, they are opting to rent instead of committing to a purchase at…

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Lockheed Targets Manassas

Friday, November 19th, 2010 at 6:34pm. 1,879 Views, 0 Comments.

Aerospace giants Lockheed Martin have just announced the closure of a manufacturing plant in Minnesota, with the total loss of around 400 jobs. Of the 1000 employees currently working at the facility, which makes P-3 surveillance plane components, it is hoped that 650 will be relocated, or the jobs filled, at other Lockheed Martin centers, including one in Manassas.

The Eagan, Minnesota plant is scheduled to be closed in 2013, with the secured positions being transferred to Owego, NY, and San Diego CA, as well as Manassas. So far, the number of jobs specifically being created at the Virginia plant hasn't been announced. The move is hoped to save the company around $150 million, over a ten year period.

So while this is unfortunate news for Minnesota,

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Have you read your Deed of Trust or Mortgage Note?

Sunday, October 10th, 2010 at 11:17pm. 1,413 Views, 0 Comments.

As the media focuses in on the latest foreclosure scandal regarding “Robo Signers” and the heartless, cruel and greedy banks, I took the time to read my Deed of Trust.  In Virginia, most mortgages are non-judicial Deeds of Trust.  My Deed of Trust is only 19 pages long and has two riders that attach making the entire document only 26 pages long.  The document is very straightforward and outlines what the bank and I have agreed upon.  It is a contract that afforded me the opportunity to purchase my home provided I adhered to the terms specified in the Deed of Trust.  The Deed of Trust outlines how the bank can accelerate the loan and the steps involved with foreclosure.  This document is non-emotional.  It does not outline special terms for an

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Bank's Change of Heart for Foreclosure Family

Tuesday, September 21st, 2010 at 6:59pm. 1,244 Views, 1 Comments.

The nation's media is practically bursting with stories of foreclosures, and the ongoing housing crisis in the US. Desperate families, from sea to shining sea, are struggling to find ways of keeping their heads above the metaphorical water, as the coils of recession continue to tighten.

The Washington Post recently reported on the plight of one such family from Prince William County, Virginia. Mike and Kathy Wales, with their two kids, were featured in an all-too familiar story concerning attempts at preventing the bank from foreclosing on their family home. But theirs is no ordinary tale...

The family had run into trouble with their mortgage repayments following a series of medical emergencies, involving their seriously ill son Alex. The 10-year-old had…

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Micro Burst or Tornado rocks Lake Manassas Today

Sunday, July 25th, 2010 at 8:20pm. 4,029 Views, 1 Comments.

Was it a tornado or a micro burst that tore down 3 huge oak trees today in Lake Manassas.  Earlier today, Lake Manassas was ravaged by a severe thunderstorm and possible tornado or micro burst.  The winds and rain were ferocious.  I watched as tree limbs and leaves flew past my window in a short but violent burst that lasted maybe a minute or two.  My team members, Barb and Tave Costa were showing a beautiful home here in the community.  They called me to tell me that they and our clients were blocked in by the fallen giant oak trees.  They were not kidding.  Three giant oak trees reportedly over 150 years old had snapped by the fierce winds during the storm.  Their vehicles were blocked by the trees.  Luckily no one was injured when the trees came

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Rooms for Improvement

Tuesday, July 6th, 2010 at 2:05pm. 2,025 Views, 0 Comments.

Until fairly recently, a good number of home owners were spending serious money on lavish home improvements, with the focus on increasing the value of their property. But with the current condition of the housing market, many people are opting to stay in their houses, and do some remodeling that actually add benefits to their day-to-day lives, as opposed to the future marketability of the home.

So, rather than thinking about how you can make our homes more attractive to cash-wielding strangers, a huge number of home owners are simply changing a few things to make their existing home, a sweeter home. And thankfully, many Americans are ensuring that these remodels and spruce-ups, whatever their size, are being done to a sensibly managed budget.

Of course, the…

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Fannie Mae intitiates new policy on Strategic Default

Sunday, June 27th, 2010 at 6:30pm. 1,474 Views, 0 Comments.

In a press release announcement this week Fannie Mae has taken a sharp stance against those borrowers that walk away from their obligations and pursue what the industry has termed a Strategic Default.  Fannie Mae would ban those borrowers from obtaining a new Fannie Mae backed mortgage for 7 years and take legal action to pursue deficiency judgments to collect outstanding mortgage debt against those in states that allow deficiency judgments.  In that same statement Fannie Mae also expressed that some distressed borrowers who seek work out options with their servicers could be eligible for a new Fannie Mae backed mortgage in 2 to 3 years. 

It has been interesting reviewing blogs and conversations on this subject.  The feedback is mixed.  There

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Easy Credit?

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010 at 12:40am. 1,367 Views, 3 Comments.

Confucius said “He who will not economize will have to agonize.”  These words ring very true today.  An alarming trend is continuing.  I read that consumer debt rose again last month.  In a time when foreclosures are on the rise and the US economy is poised for another potential dip, climbing consumer or credit card debt is not good news.   The economy reported growth last month; however, is current consumer spending relying on credit, instead of income growth, to expand the economy?  This underlying trend will keep us from a true recovery as we put off debt reduction and spur growth on borrowed dollars.  Income must rise again to allow healthy consumer spending to return.   Households should be taking a conservative approach to ride this troubled

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