REW Writers



Madison County: Close-in, and Affordable With Panoramic Views

Madison County: Close-in, and Affordable With Panoramic Views

By Celeste M. Smucker – Home buyers love Madison County for its beautiful scenery and its multitude of outdoor activities such as hiking, camping and fishing.  Just north of Greene County, it attracts those who value privacy at a reasonable cost, along with access to the employment, shopping, educational, recreational and cultural benefits of Charlottesville. […]

Lots To Do In Scenic Madison County

Lots To Do In Scenic Madison County

By Celeste M. Smucker – While perhaps best known for its spectacular scenery, Madison County also attracts tourists coming for special events like the upcoming Hops Festival, or passing through on their way to Charlottesville and points south who decide to stop for a meal or enjoy a night in one of the county’s gracious […]

Living in a College Town: Just How Good We Have It

Living in a College Town: Just How Good We Have It

By Ken Wilson – “If you close your eyes and say, ‘What would Charlottesville-Albemarle be like if UVA were somewhere else?’, muses Timothy Hulbert, President of the Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce, “I don’t think anybody can tell you.” He can say that again. The University of Virginia, Thomas Jefferson’s dream, is now ranked second […]

Smaller + Greener = Winner

Smaller + Greener = Winner

By Marilyn Pribus – Statistics and reports reveal a definite move toward people building and buying smaller homes than a decade ago. “I think the trend really started with the recession,” declares REALTOR® Greg Slater, an associate broker with Nest Realty in Charlottesville. “Everyone started looking at building projects more closely.” According to the U. […]

Now Is The Time to Buy Your Vacation Home

Now Is The Time to Buy Your Vacation Home

By Celeste M. Smucker – Mountain views, gorgeous lakes, and  year-round vacation lifestyles all draw people to our area whether for jobs, retirement, or just  get away from urban life.  Some pass through on their way elsewhere, others come for specific events like the Wintergreen Summer Music Festival or the Montpelier Races.  Still others come […]

Habitat for Humanity Benefits Entire Community

Habitat for Humanity Benefits Entire Community

By Marilyn Pribus – What’s the best thing about Habitat for Humanity? “My children have a place,” declares Sheron Sinclair, a Habitat homeowner for more than two years. Habitat for Humanity® of Greater Charlottesville is all about having a place. In more than 25 years of homebuilding, this remarkable effort has constructed more than 170 […]

pouring red wine glass

Virginia Wine: Finding Its Own Identity

By Ken Wilson –  It’s no novelty anymore, no curiosity, no fledgling with promise. Virginia wine—more than 6.6 million bottles in 2016—has found its identity and found its fans. It may have taken a few decades—or a couple of centuries counting Jefferson’s aborted attempts—but the local vino is making us proud, and making the state […]

Cider with three sorts of apple, isolated on white

Cider Makes a Comeback

By Ken Wilson –  It was a staple of the Colonial diet, the most common drink in 18th and early 19th century America. Thomas Jefferson grew two varieties of apples, Hewes’ Crab and Taliaferro, especially suited for making it, and served it with the main course. And then, on American shores, it all but disappeared. […]

Charlottesville Is Horse Country

Charlottesville Is Horse Country

By Celeste M. Smucker –  Horse lovers, from weekend trail riders to fox hunting, racing and dressage enthusiasts, all appreciate what the Charlottesville area offers them and their animals.  Some come to participate in or watch races and other events, spend their money and go home. Others fall in love with the mountains and beautiful […]

Fridays After Five: A Charlottesville Tradition

Fridays After Five: A Charlottesville Tradition

By Ken Wilson –  The Dave Matthews Band  played it. So did Corey Harris, and so did Sons of Bill. The hometown crowd heard these future stars, and heard them for free, at Fridays After Five, the April to September concert series set to begin its 30th season. Fridays from April 14 to September 8, […]

Home Owners Love Louisa’s Relaxed Country Lifestyle

Home Owners Love Louisa’s Relaxed Country Lifestyle

By Celeste M. Smucker – Comfortable rural living where you can see the stars at night is one way people describe life in Louisa County located just to the east of Albemarle.  Others point to its vibrant economy and central location with easy access to the three major urban centers of Charlottesville, Richmond and Fredericksburg. […]

Soft-edged modern interior with wood colours and contemporary furniture

Staging a House to Sell

By Marilyn Pribus –  “It’s critically important to have a house show well when it’s time to sell,” declares REALTOR® Byrd Abbott, an associate broker with Roy Wheeler Realty Co. “Some tweaking and paring down often needs to be done because it’s so much easier to present a staged home.”  What Exactly Is Staging? Often […]

Historic Garden Week 2017: Sharing the Beauty

Historic Garden Week 2017: Sharing the Beauty

By Ken Wilson –  “Gardens above all else are for sharing.” – Emily Whaley Would any gardener beg to differ? Emily Whaley knows: after all the planning and the plotting, and the digging and mulching and watering and tending have done their work comes a garden’s finest hour, when gardener and friends stroll through, approving […]

Keep Your Cool This Summer

Keep Your Cool This Summer

By Marilyn Pribus – “I can’t believe we’ve already had the AC on and it’s only April,” laments a Lake Monticello resident. “I don’t even want to think about our electric bill this summer.” She’s not alone. Air conditioning soaks up about five percent of all the electricity produced in our country, approaching $30 billion annually. […]

How to Find the Best Mortgage for Your Next Home

How to Find the Best Mortgage for Your Next Home

By Celeste M. Smucker –  A big concern for home buyers is finding the right mortgage program, one they can live with for many years, and this decision is especially important for those who have limited funds for a down payment. Many move-up buyers have more than enough cash from selling their previous home to […]

modern private interior (3D rendering)

Home and Garden Trends: What’s New in 2017?

By Celeste M. Smucker – When it comes to home and garden, you can count on one thing.  The new year brings changes in everything from floor plans and style updates to interior and exterior color preferences  and cutting-edge technologies.  Home buyers and those thinking about remodeling an existing house can look online for trends and […]

Building ,buying, renting, loan, repairs, renovation , insurance ect. Home on the top of a register with sales receipt coming out of the window on a white background.

What is Your Home Worth?

By Celeste M. Smucker – When home owners are ready to sell their house, they usually have a good idea about what they think it’s worth. Similarly, buyer prospects have a strong opinion about what they are willing to pay for it.  Sometimes these numbers are far apart.  So what determines what a home is worth […]

Building Goodness

Building Goodness

By Ken Wilson – Jack Horn loves to build and he loves to travel. A couple of weeks after a 7.0 magnitude earthquake devastated much of Haiti in January of 2010, Horn, the CEO of the Charlottesville contracting firm Martin Horn, Inc., found himself on a mountainside overlooking Port-au-Prince. He was in the country with Building […]

Landscape Design Adds Home Value

Landscape Design Adds Home Value

By Marilyn Pribus – It’s always important to plan for the future when landscaping your yard. You want it to be nice for you today and you also want to keep an eye on the resale potential because a well-landscaped yard adds to that all-important curb appeal. How Much Landscaping Should I Have? “It’s very much […]

A conceptual heart formed by folding pages in a book.

Up Close and Personal: The 2017 Virginia Festival of The Book

By Ken Wilson –  Up and down Charlottesville’s Downtown Mall on a recent Saturday morning, the literati were looking. At New Dominion Bookshop, the oldest bookstore in town, dating back to 1924, a woman was checking out the Lit Crit section.  At the Blue Whale, where original prints, antiquarian maps, and rare volumes sit alongside […]

Curb Appeal Sets Homes Apart

Curb Appeal Sets Homes Apart

By Marilyn Pribus –  You’ve probably heard the term “curb appeal” that often hovers over discussions of the marketability of a property, but just what is it? “Curb appeal is an individual preference,” declares REALTOR® David Sloan of Sloan Manis Real Estate in Charlottesville, “but I think of a home that is well-landscaped, with a […]

Repurposing Is Good For Your Community and Your Wallet

Repurposing Is Good For Your Community and Your Wallet

By Marilyn Pribus –  In colonial times, people automatically repurposed items when they broke or wore out. Today repurposing is still a smart practice because it keeps things out of the waste stream, saves on fuel for trash trucks, and reduces the need for disposal sites which can pollute the air and water. Reuse also […]

Now Is a Great Time to Buy a Farm or Estate

Now Is a Great Time to Buy a Farm or Estate

By Celeste M. Smucker – People love country living for all kinds of reasons, and if you are in the market, now is a great time to buy no matter if you want acreage for farming or are dreaming of living in an historic estate property.  While agents are hopeful about a stronger market this […]

Open Houses Can Be a Valuable Selling Strategy

Open Houses Can Be a Valuable Selling Strategy

By Marilyn Pribus- “An open house can be a valuable tool,” declares Debi Dotson, a REALTOR® with BHG  Real Estate III. “A lot of people are pre-viewing 30-50 days before they really start looking for a property or getting a REALTOR®.” Why Do People Visit an Open House? While the majority of properties for sale […]

2017 Spring Real Estate Market Expected to be Brisk

2017 Spring Real Estate Market Expected to be Brisk

By Celeste M. Smucker Local REALTORS® and national economic forecasts predict a healthy 2017 real estate market. Senior Economist Joe Kirchner at Realtor.com predicts the 2017 market will be characterized by increases in both homes sales and prices, though at slower rates than experienced in the last two years.  A possible damper on sales is […]