Northern Virginia Real Estate Blog, Carolyn Capalbo


Prior to becoming a top Real Estate professional in Northern Virginia, I was a very successful Financial Specialist in the Banking world.  I often helped families review their personal finances, budget, and plan for the future.  Most families do not plan for life events or upgrades in their lifestyles until the emotional requirements or the physical necessity occurs.  Many people may take advantage of retirement planning; however, they do not stop and think about planning for life or everyday living. 

Many of the clients I work with are in the midst of a major shift in their life.  A growing family with changing needs, a shrinking family as children move out on their own, are examples.  These are everyday life occurrences; however the housing

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One of my challenges as a Financially Savvy Realtor, and former Banker is witnessing how casually most people manage their finances, their assets and liabilities.  Many families are not aware of ways to improve their financial and housing position.  I am going share a series of actual client experiences to highlight how I have assisted families over the years to improve on their finances and their living situations.  In many cases, I have helped families move to larger homes and save money in the process.  I hope I can open your eyes to a better financial approach towards your home and ultimately a better lifestyle! 

Client Experience 1

I helped a Single Professional living in a Condo that she purchased in 2012.  She paid $230,000 and it is estimated to

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There are so many variables that can influence your decision to lease a home or purchase a home.  How long do you intend to live in the home or area?  How much money do I have to put down on a home?  Are there low down-payment financing options available?  Can I afford upkeep and maintenance of a home that I own?  Am I able to enjoy tax benefits from owning a home?  How much are rental rates rising in my area?  How much are home prices rising in my area?  What is the monthly cost difference between renting a home and owning a home?  All these are important questions to ask when deciding on which is best for you, purchasing a home or leasing a home.  I have found a great article and interactive tool that can help you determine which is best for you. 

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The Northern Virginia Real Estate market continues to be very active.  While numbers are still processing and posting, we have seen slow growth year over year through November.  The Northern Virginia average sales prices are up 1.28% year over year.  Most of the yearly gain was achieved during the first quarter of 2015.  While the remaining quarters gave up earlier market gains.  This was a huge opportunity for buyers looking to capitalize on historically low interest rates and motivated sellers willing to negotiate price and/or concessions to buyers. 

Interest rates are on the rise.  I anticipate that this slow increase may continue throughout 2016.  Rates are up about .25% since the beginning of December when the Fed announced to raise the Federal

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It always amazes me when a fall website inquiry tells me that they are waiting until spring to purchase a home.  This is a phenomenon that occurs every year.  Why would one wait for an opportunity to buy a house for ~7% more?  Spring sellers are typically less motivated than Fall sellers and may not be willing to negotiate on price and terms.  In addition, more buyers flock to the market and this competition among buyers drives up prices.  Every year during late summer through early winter prices drop and relinquish some of their spring time gains.  This drop is ~7%.  If you are considering purchasing a $400,000 home, anticipate paying $428,000 in April for the same home you could have purchased for $400,000 in December.  This equates to ~$135.00 per

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In my opinion, home ownership is the greatest wealth building investment.  Rents are subject to market fluctuations; while, fixed rate mortgages are not subject to market fluctuations.  Monthly housing price stabilization is key to family budgeting and wealth growth.  Historically, property values rise and income rises.  This potential price appreciation has funded many retirements.  Historically, rental rates rise and keeps pace or exceeds income growth.  This diminishes wealth growth for individuals and families.  Overcoming down payment requirements and income for financing a home seems to be the largest hurdle facing many would be purchasers.  There are many great low down payment and even no down payment options currently available.  There are also

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The equity markets are currently plagued with losses and instability following China’s recent strong push to devalue its currency as China’s economic growth significantly wanes.  Experts are saying that China’s economic growth is significantly slower that being reported and the Chinese Stock Market, Shanghai Composite is crashing causing instability and sharp market corrections across the globe.  US stocks fell 888 points last week and the futures are pointing towards a down day yet again today.  Money is pouring out of stocks and remaining in cash reserves with little or no return.  Large institutional investors control the stock markets and volatility can wreak havoc on small individual investors.  Real Estate investing may be an answer to those worried

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The Palmerton, a model from the new Toll Brother’s Villas collection at Dominion Valley offers an airy floorplan, a first floor master and an incredible kitchen.  Entering the main level you are greeted by a two story foyer with adjacent Living Room or optional Study. Moving down the foyer there is a large Dining Room that has an optional tray ceiling. Moving to the rear of the home, the two story Family Room with optional expansion opens to the gourmet Kitchen with spacious center island and Breakfast Area. Additionally the Kitchen can be customized to open to a Greenhouse with optional Solarium Addition.  The Main Level Master Bedroom has a coffered ceiling, and a luxury master bath that walks through to the walk-in closet.  The

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The Tradition is part of t..he new Villas collection by Toll Brothers at Dominion Valley. This great model offers a first floor Master Suite, soaring ceilings and fantastic open concept. Entering the home, you are greeted by a Foyer flanked by a Dining Room and Living Room/Optional Study with tray ceiling. Moving to the rear of the home, the gourmet Kitchen offers a large center island, spacious breakfast area and opens to the lovely two story Family Room with gas fireplace. This space can be extended to include an expanded Kitchen, a covered Patio and expanded Family Room.

The Main Floor is also not short on Living Space as it includes the Master Suite as well as Bedroom 2. The Master Suite boasts tray ceiling, walk-in closet,

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