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Reston VA Town house under contract in 5 days.

May 13, 2010

Too late on this one. It barely had the new paint dry when we got a nice offer that our client accepted.

1808 Golf View Ct Reston VA Town house for sale.

1808 Golf View Ct. Reston VA

Tom: I am interested in buying a town house in Reston. I know there are hundreds out there, but how many 3 bedroom, 2+ baths, 3 level homes between $300k and $360k are for sale today?
Steve: Tom, there are only 8 to choose from with one being a short sale.

your  home row at sunset

Tom: Well, what I would really like is an all brick home with newly refinished hardwood floors on the main  2 levels, new carpet in the basement, new stainless steel appliances in the kitchen with new hardwood floors and a new top to bottom paint job.
I know that it is too much to ask in this price range, but if it could border
Almost like having your own golf course.
Hidden Creek Golf Club, back to common area, have plenty of parking and be within walking distance of Reston Town Center, and have a commuter bus stop at the front of the community I would buy such a home today.
Reston Town Center:only .5 miles from your door
Steve: Well Tom, such a home does not exist to be purchased today….but if you can wait until tomorrow, there will be such a property ready for your acquisition.
Lake Anne Center just 1.5 miles from your home
Tom: I know that it is too much to ask, but my wife and I really enjoy
strolling along the lake, going to the Reston Museum then relaxing at a waterfront dining emporium in the cool of an evening.
It makes us feel as if we were living in a resort community even though we are within the heart of the east coast’s number one technology corridor. Is this home for sale within a couple miles of Lake Anne Center?

Sit beside Reston founder Robert E. Simon

Steve: Again Tom, you are in luck. This enclave of  31 homes lies within the North Shore Cluster and is only 1.5 miles from Lake Anne Center.
You can ride your bike to Reston Town Center for dinner…(it’s only .5 miles from your front door), ride on over to Lake Anne Center for waterfront after dinner drinks and watch the sun set.
There are very few places in the entire Washington DC area that you can have a night like that so close to your own property for under $360k for a place that size.
Tom: Can’t I buy it today?Stroll on over to Reston Town Center

Steve: No Tom, we still have to vacuum and take pictures. This home is so
freshly done that I have to take the wrap off the new appliances today so that I can photograph them. Have your agent bring you by in the next couple of days or call me and I  will be happy to sell you the property. The address is 1808 Golf View Ct. Reston VA.



Lotte Love: Mega International food market not far from Reston

May 13, 2010

Whole Lotte Love, yoja chingu.

Terri: I am not a person that just wants to eat meat and potatoes all the time I am sorely dissapointed in the produce and international food of the standard local markets. Do you have any suggestions for shopping venues not too far from Reston?

Steve: You are in luck. Reston is only a few miles from the Shangri La of international food emporiums. Lotte.…..The  produce section is about 3 times the size of your basic Safeway or Giant’s section and the prices are usually 1/3 to 1/2 that of other
stores with nowhere near the selection.

Fresh snow peas generally run $4/lb at the Giant…Lotte had them for $.99/lb last week. Normally they run around $1.5/lb. (I love snow peas can you tell)Bean sprouts are $.79/lb and are of awesome quality. The seafood selection cannot be matched anywhere and the guys will clean your catch at no extra charge.

Tom: Do they have Vietnamese, Spanish, Indo/Pak, Korean, Chinese and Japanese sauces and specialties and 20 different kinds of soy sauce?

Steve: Yes, and they have a sushi counter that is cheaper than you can get anywhere
I have seen and the guy will make it custom if you want. There is a
bakery, a food court, Asian cooking and serving implements, optometry
and kitchen and bath remodeling. I am not making this up.

Green onions:
Seven 1 inch bundles for a buck, frozen pot stickers at

1/2 the price of Giant and 40 times the selection. There are isles
dedicated to the different cuisines. We got 6 full bags of stuff there
last week for $27 …unbelievable.

Sue: Can you tell me how to use this stuff to make an amazing concoction out of Ramen which you can buy 6 packs for a buck?

Steve: OK Sue. Get your Ramen and follow the directions. Put sliced
mushrooms in the water at the start. Cook a couple minutes then add the
noodles as directed, then with one minute left to go throw in some snow
peas, bean sprouts, seafood mix (or sliced meat of your choice) turn
off the heat and use scissors to top it off with cut green onion tops
and cilantro ($.79 for a big bunch).

Then you can sauce it up
as you see fit. We use hoisin and red
pepper sauce to create
what we call  “fast faux Pho” (Pho, pronounced

FA is a Vietnamese soup…you probably have seen the stores in your
local strip shopping center with names like Pho 90 or Pho 27 or some variation)

After a hard day of showing property to clients, we will make this version of Ramen and have pot stickers to go with it. Takes about 15 minutes total
and is extremely non boring.

Check it out yoja chingu …’s a trip.

More results from »

food stores near Reston, Lotte, Lotte Plaza

What should I do to get my Reston house ready to sell? Maybe not much!

May 11, 2010

Let’s face it, if you want your real estate agent to sell your Reston property for the highest price in the shortest period of time you should spend a ton of money fixing it up right?


Your goal should be to NET the most money for your house including keeping update and remodeling cash in your pocket.

Do not put on a new roof if it is not leaking. I have yet to hear a buyer exclaim “oh what a lovely roof!”

Do not put in replacement windows unless yours look REALLY REALLY BAD. Yes buyers like newer windows but if everything else in your house is great, they won’t care too much. Now if all your neighbors and the other homes for sale that you are competing with have replacement windows you will have to make price concessions…maybe…..this is one area where a good real estate agent can save you far more than than their fee for service.

A good agent knows the strength and/or weakness in the local market….the market in general, and the specific “mini market” that you will be competing in.

When people look for a new home, they look for a specific type and price of property within a school district, zip code or set of similar neighborhoods.

Good agents analyze and are thoughtful

This mini market can actually change daily or certainly weekly in areas where people are mobile and the selling season (spring through fall) is in full swing.

If the market is really tight where you live, meaning there is not much competition for properties in your location, the less you have to do. If there are a ton of homes you are competing with you are going to have to fix your home up more and price it very aggressively.

Let us look at a example. We put a home on the market in Reston last Saturday.

Move to Reston. It is a nice place.

We had an offer on Monday, one on Tuesday and we were under contract by Thursday. This does not often happen in today’s market frankly, but we felt sure that the NUMBERS SAID IT WOULD.

A good Realtor can analyze the market and cut it up into an understandable spread sheet that will show you your competition’s price per square foot and sold price to tax assessed value…do not hire one that cannot do this. We knew that even though Reston has hundreds of town houses, there were only 6 in our price bracket that were truly our competition.

The Center of Reston Town Center

The DAYS on MARKET analysis showed us that if we priced the home correctly, we should have a shot at having it under contract within 12 days. In fact, all of the townhouses we were competing with were on the other side of the Dulles toll road.

Good Reston Realtors know the side our listing was on is preferred by buyers in geometric proportions to the other side all other factors being the same…..

We went to visit almost all the competing homes to see how they compared to ours; our client came along. What homes we couldn’t get in we looked at all the pictures.

We did all of this BEFORE a paint brush was lifted to fix up our listing. Our client wanted to know what had to be done to NET the most money.

We started at: doing nothing (which is sometimes a reasonable option) and gave her a price we thought we could get. She then asked what repairs would get her the most bang for the buck. Since we took her with us to tour the competing homes, she knew exactly where she stood.

In most cases of repair and fix up if you can spend a dollar and get a dollar back, you should be content. In this case, we felt we could net our client $2 for every dollar she spent. (Saying stuff like that puts a lot of pressure on the one giving the advice as you can imagine) So we advised new flooring throughout, complete repaint, new appliances and kitchen counters, vanity and toilet replacement in the baths but not re-tiling, sprucing up the kitchen cabinets with new hardware, and new light fixtures and fans throughout. It had to be done…no question…and it wasn’t done for 500 bucks.

Reston Town Center....lots of eateries!!!

We could have recommended completely redoing the kitchen and baths, but that is SERIOUS $$. Since we knew what our competition was, we knew it was not necessary.

Because we had so much data and took our client to see the competition, the decision was self evident and no persuasion was necessary on our part. We have a smart client who knows what she is looking at and does not engage in speculation and wishful thinking.

Reston's Lake Anne is breaking into springtime

All real estate agents are not the same…they are not a commodity. Do your own homework and find folks who know how to analyze the big picture and your particular mini market.

Also, good agents know the best and most affordable contractors…our flooring guy and painting guy have never been underbid in the last 5 years and no client has complained about their quality.

In every geographic area of our country there are good real estate agents who know all this stuff and more…hire one of those. They can both make and/or save you far more than their fee for service.

May 10, 2010

OK. So you do not think that buildings are beautiful.

Well, unless you are a subsistance farmer, you will need a job and a building to work in. Jobs are nice…so are pay checks.

Reston has an unemployment rate of less tha 3%, while the current national number is over 9%. Money Magazine ranked Reston 37th best place to live in 2008…shows that they must not have actually visited!!

6 of the countries highest median family income counties are in the Washington DC area. Fairfax county where Reston is located is #2 in the nation with its neighbor Loudoun ranked #1. Oh, by the way, if you live in Reston…. Loudoun’s high tech corridor on Route 28 around Dulles Airport is only 3-5 miles away. Tyson’s Corner which has more office space than downtown Dallas Texas is only 6 miles up the Dulles toll road. This area has the hottest job market in the nation…and it is the most protected from job loss…always has been.

Who is here?
BAE Systems,
Fannie Mae,
Hyatt Regency Reston

General Dynamics

L-3 Communications Titan

Lafarge North America,
Lockheed Martin,
Northrop Grumman – Mission Systems
Qinetiq North America
Sallie Mae
SI International
Siebel (now part of Oracle)
Sprint Nextel
U.S. Geological Survey.
X/O Communications

And lots of drycleaners and international restaurants too!

Wikipedia reports the following info regarding Reston employment..
.and NO you do not have to have a double masters degree in computer science or engineering to work in Reston. Although that never hurts.

Reston Jobs

Provided by Wikipedia

Reston, Virginia

Reston is an internationally known planned community whose goal was to revolutionize post-World War II concepts of land use and residential/corporate development in American suburbia. Reston is an unincorporated census-designated place located in western Fairfax County, Virginia in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. As of the latest unofficial estimates, Reston has a population of 60,353. Although it is not a city and does not have a traditional central business district, the Reston Town Center is becoming a focal point or “downtown” for business and transportation connections within the community, with several high-rise office buildings and condos and apartments, restaurants, a cinema, a hotel, and shops. Some municipal, government-like services are provided by a nonprofit corporation, Reston Association. Reston also straddles the Dulles Technology Corridor and is home to the world headquarters of three Fortune 500 corporations, , as well as the United States Geological…more

Reston Careers

Among the most common occupations in Reston are Management, professional, and related occupations, 60%. Sales and office occupations, 21%. and Service occupations, 9%. Approximately 76 percent of workers in Reston, Virginia work for companies, 16 percent work for the government and 5 percent are self-employed.

Popular Reston Jobs

Currently, the most commonly listed Reston Jobs are for physical therapist jobs, occupational therapist jobs, project manager jobs, administrative assistant jobs, program manager jobs and program analyst job jobs.

Reston Industries

The leading industries in Reston, Virginia are Professional, scientific, management, administrative, and waste management services, 25%; Educational, health and social services, 13%; and Information, 11%. Simply Hired’s Reston job listings indicate that the following industries in Reston are hiring the most workers: Hospitals, Computer Makers, Computer Equipment Mfg, Computer Storage Device Mfg and Software Makers.

Reston Job Salaries

According to government data, the average salary for jobs in Reston, Virginia is $58,038, and the median income of households in Reston was $80,018.

Average Salaries in Reston, VA

In USD as of Apr 16, 2010

25k 50k 75k

Reston, VA


Reston Unemployment Rate

Reston has an unemployment rate of 2.9%, compared the national average of 5.8%.

According to our Reston Trends data, the number of Reston, Virginia jobs has increased by 95% since August 2008.
Reston job trends

“Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again” Reston neighbor

May 10, 2010

Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again” Manderley lives in Oak Hill VA…estate homes just minutes to Reston Town Center

“”Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again” Now, there’s a famous opening line from years past
“cinema” days.

Manderley Estate homes in Oak Hill VA

Did you ever see that Alfred Hitchcock 1940’s movie thriller Rebecca? It starred Laurence Olivier
as Maxim de Winter and Joan Fontaine and
won 2 academy awards. No, well there is this very cool estate named Manderley in the story that was made so popular by the book of the same name that it became the most popular house name in England for quite a

Manderley Estate homes in Oak Hill VA

If you don’t have time to live in England right now and would prefer to stay near Reston in the Oak Hill/Herndon area, you can still live in Manderley.

You will have to watch carefully since there are only a handful of these estate homes on a wooded acre just 10 minutes from the employment mecca of Reston. One comes on the market rarely, but they are worth the wait.

Tom:Do you have any pictures of Manderley that you could place in this post?

Manderley Estate homes in Oak Hill VA

Steve: Sure Tom. Look all around and above you. Most of these homes have 4-6 bedrooms and 3-4 full baths. No need to go on vacation…. between the beauty of the Manderley setting and the plethora of entertainment that can be found in Reston…people would be flocking to your place in search of the perfect bed and breakfast. Forget that. Turn them away. It’s your place.

Manderley Estate homes in Oak Hill VAConveniently located just off the confusing area where West Ox road becomes Lawyers road, then Reston Parkway, you can get any where from here. Everyday
shopping and resturantant needs can be met a couple miles either right or left of Manderley’s entrance at the Franklin Farm shopping center to the left or Fox Mill shopping center to the right.

Manderley is served by Crossfield Elementary, CarsonMiddle and Oakton High schools.

Manderley Estate homes in Oak Hill VA

Please remember that school boundaries can change. Always check with the school district to verify. For Fairfax County Schools go to this web page:

Manderley Estate homes in Oak Hill VA

If you would like to receive automatic emails of homes for sale in the Manderley area, you can set that up here at the links at the bottom of each post.

Manderley Estate homes in Oak Hill VA

Parc Reston-condos within walking distance of Reston Town Center

May 4, 2010

Parc Reston- One and two bedroom condos within walking distance of Reston
Town Center

Parc Reston: Affordable condos within walking distance of Reston Town Center

Sam: Are there any 1 and 2 bedroom condos within walking distance of Reston
Town Center? I have looked at several properties inside Reston Town
Center’s boundaries and they were a bit more than I am prepared to pay.
I am looking for the best of both worlds of course. Do you have any

Parc Reston: Affordable condos within walking distance of Reston Town Center

Steve: Sam, I would suggest that we go visit some of Reston’s garden style condos at Parc Reston. This community is right across Reston Parkway from Reston Town Center’s Macaroni Grill Restaurant.

Parc Reston has a tunnel to Town Center

In fact you do not even have to cross Reston Parkway, there is
a tunnel under the road direct from Parc Reston. See the picture of the
tunnel to the left?

Parc Reston: Affordable condos within walking distance of Reston Town Center

lso, see the Reston Town Center skyline to the right? I took that photo from the near the tunnel entrance.

Sam: What kind of price range are we looking at here Steve? I am not made of money. Also, could you post some pictures here for me to see how aesthetic this place is. I care about my surroundings you know?

Parc Reston has a tunnel to Town Center

Steve: From the beginning of February 2010 to the date of this posting,  the high price 1 bedroom 1 bath home in Parc Reston was $171k with the low price being $170k. The high 2 bedroom home went for $215k and the low was $181k. There are a number of floor plans that you can see at the Parc Reston’s main web site: Parc Reston

A Parc Reston Azalea

Parc Reston is served by LakeAnne Elementary, HughesMiddle and SouthLakes High schools.

Please remember that school boundaries can change. Always check with the school district to verify. For Fairfax County Schools go to this web page:

A Parc Reston Dandelion

Parc Reston: Affordable condos within walking distance of Reston Town Center

Have a High Time in Old Town Herndon. OOOhhhhh YEAHHHHH.

February 24, 2010

Have a High Time in Old Town Herndon. OOOhhhhh YEAHHHHH.

Have a pint at Jimmy's Old Town Tavern

Danny: What would you suggest I do in Old Town Herndon this Friday afternoon since I get off work early. By the way my wife is coming with me, we both like ale on tap, we need some custom draperies and some reupholstery work and we want to sit down to a nice dinner with music.

Also did I mention that we
want to walk no more than one hundred feet

to accomplish all this since did I mention that we like ale on tap?

come on in ....we're ready for you

Oh Danny Boy, this is an easy one. Old Town Herndon is an
awesome place to spend the afternoon and on into the evening. I would suggest that you start with a pint atJimmy’s Old Town Tavern along with some great appetizers.

Beautify your home right here! Family owned for 30 years

Once you are in the mood to look at fabric selections for your new draperies, walk out the door, turn left walk 15 feet, turn left, walk 30 feet and turn left into

Designs and Interiors by the Upholstery shop.

Come to the Icehouse Cafe now

After you arrange to get your home beautified…if you time all of this right Herndon landmark Icehouse cafe and Oyster Baryou can walk straight out the front door of the Upholstery Shop and walk 60 feet on a 35 degree angle to your left and into the Herndon landmark Icehouse Cafe.

You can have some oysters on the half shell, another pint or two and hold your wife’s hand while listening to smooth jazz. Since you will have saved so much money at

The Upholstery Shop you can go all out for the full
dinner treatment that the Icehouse is famous for.

Then if you want to buy a home Jan and me.

You will be in just the right frame of mind.

We’ll leave the light on for ya.