REW Writers



What is your home worth?

What is your home worth?

Determining a home’s value is key to a successful listing and sale.  Sellers who insist on over pricing their home will find that when it doesn’t compare favorably with others in the same price range buyers won’t make an offer.  Meanwhile, buyers looking at lower priced homes who may be good prospects won’t see it […]

Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival

Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival

Classical music fans in Central Virginia love September. So do some of the finest classical musicians in the world. For fifteen years now, Charlottesville natives Timothy Summers and Raphael Bell have brought the two together for the Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival, two weeks’ worth of stimulating concerts of classical music for small ensembles. The eight […]

Saving for a down payment

Saving for a down payment

These days it is not unusual for lenders to require a down payment of as 20 percent on the purchase price of a home. This makes a lot of sense from the lender’s point of view for several reasons. First, buyers who can save that 20 percent show they handle their finances well. Second, with […]

Commercial real estate market remains positive

Commercial real estate market remains positive

Nationally the commercial market continues to recover, according to Lawrence Yun, the National Association of REALTORS® Chief Economist.  Yun predicts an improving commercial market, with the multi-family sector leading the way based on what he expects will be an expanding GDP, an easing in commercial lending and continued job growth. The Charlottesville Market Hock Hockensmith, […]

Staunton Music Festival: celebrating a living tradition

Staunton Music Festival: celebrating a living tradition

Staunton hasn’t heard about “the death of classical music.” The little Shenandoah Valley city with the handsome, historic downtown and the rich reputation for the performing arts celebrates a living tradition each summer with the Staunton Music Festival, drawing larger crowds each year for dynamic and innovative chamber music concerts. The 2014 event, August 15-24, […]

Retiring early? Mind the gap!

Retiring early? Mind the gap!

According to a recent Gallup poll, the average American retires at age 61.1 That’s at least five years away from collecting full Social Security retirement benefits, not to mention pensions, which typically begin at age 65, when available. Collectively, these programs can account for a significant share of retirement income. According to the Social Security […]

Central Virginia private schools

Central Virginia private schools

Each summer we highlight the many outstanding private schools in our seven-county readership area. We are pleased to enable these schools to shine a light on their extraordinary accomplishments, helping readers to get a flavor of the type of private school opportunities available to their children throughout central Virginia. Here are the schools that replied […]

Inexpensive home energy makeover

Inexpensive home energy makeover

Energy-saving upgrades such as weather stripping compact fluorescent light bulbs, low-flow faucets and showerheads, and lifetime air conditioning filters can save you up to 25 percent annually on your utility bills. Here are some energy-saving tips you can apply to your home. And these don’t cost a lot of money, either. Immediate insulation A good […]

Looking for real estate online takes off

Looking for real estate online takes off

Once upon a time prospective homebuyers asked their agents to search the local MLS and find the listings they thought their clients would like best. Back then only REALTORS® had access to MLS information, and buyers who wanted to be more independent had to rely on print ads, open houses or just driving through neighborhoods […]

Louisa County Public Schools

Louisa County Public Schools

At Louisa County Public Schools, we know that each student is capable of learning, achieving, and succeeding. We know that graduates need to be prepared for the workforce as well as the classroom. We know that a child is much more than a score on a standardized test. Through innovation, compassion, and hard work, Louisa […]

Charlottesville named Walkable City

Charlottesville named Walkable City

Several years ago Walk Score.com named Charlottesville the Most Walkable City in the Commonwealth of Virginia. What exactly does that mean? “A Walk Score,” explains REALTOR ® Jim Duncan of Nest Realty, “is a ranking algorithm for a home and it depends on pretty much everything people want to walk to—grocery stores, entertainment, schools, restaurants, […]

Do fences make good neighbors?

Do fences make good neighbors?

No, we’re not going to quote Robert Frost here, but we are going to talk about fences. For homeowners seeking a little more privacy or to keep children and animals in (or out), we’ll discuss when you can and cannot put up a fence and the best materials to use for your construction.   ”There’s […]

Amazonas: the 2014 Wintergreen Summer Music Festival

Amazonas: the 2014 Wintergreen Summer Music Festival

Ask orchestra conductor Larry Alan Smith about the continent to the south of us, and he’ll tell you about rhythm and color. South American music can be “mournful and soulful,” Smith says, but by and large “it’s very perky, very bright, very sunny.” Smith’s frequent conducting stints in Brazil in the 80s and 90s engendered […]

A primer on closing costs

A primer on closing costs

Negotiating and agreeing on the price for a new home may seem like the final step of a long process. In fact, it’s just the beginning of maneuvering through the long list of closing costs. These costs and payments are typically organized by a settlement company and paid to lenders and other third parties involved […]

Projects Reflect Confidence in Cville’s Commercial Real Estate Market

Projects Reflect Confidence in Cville’s Commercial Real Estate Market

News about commercial real estate both nationally and locally continues to be positive.  The Urban Land Institute’s 2014 annual report entitled Emerging Trends in Real Estate (based on interviews with 1,000 experts in the field) states that respondents “expect growth to be sufficient to generate consistent and growing demand for commercial real estate across all […]

Charlottesville’s Golf Course Communities

Charlottesville’s Golf Course Communities

If you love golf and want to live near your favorite course, our area offers a lot of options. Home buyers seeking a golf course community with a country club atmosphere can pick from neighborhoods such as Glenmore or the Estates at Keswick Hall where a newly designed course will open soon.  Public courses are […]

Charlottesville Named #2 Friendly Small City in USA

Charlottesville Named #2 Friendly Small City in USA

MOVOTO.com’s blog—which dubs itself “the lighter side of real estate”—recently named Charlottesville as the #2 Friendly Small City in the nation. What exactly makes a city friendly? “When we decided to tackle this question,” the blog says, “we realized that we’d need to look at it in some unique ways,” They decided some measures such […]

Organic Lawn Care is Good for Your Family and Your Community

Organic Lawn Care is Good for Your Family and Your Community

For those who are environmentally conscious, we want to offer some “green” tips on how to keep your lawn healthy and be a good steward of our environment at the same time. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that as much as 80 percent of the water falling on lawns—from rain or sprinklers—doesn’t stay there.  Instead […]

Joel Sartore’s “Photo Ark,” featuring endangered wildlife, is this year’s “TREES” exhibition on the Downtown Mall.

LOOK3: Photography in Charlottesville

Look up in the trees when you’re having coffee on the Downtown Mall this June. Note the Budgett’s Frog facing off with the Green Tree Python, mouths agape, outside of the Nook. Check out the Indian Rhinoceros, the Golden snub-nosed monkey, the Sulawesi Crested Macaque and the Matchie’s Kangaroo. The larger-than-life animal images on the […]

Crozet: A Vibrant Community Surrounded by Natural  Beauty

Crozet: A Vibrant Community Surrounded by Natural Beauty

Drive twelve miles west from Charlottesville and you’ll find Crozet, a quaint village and a popular residential area surrounded by gorgeous mountain scenery.  One of Albemarle County’s fastest growing areas,  Crozet  features the walking community of Old Trail and a growing number of other subdivisions where residents can experience a relaxed country lifestyle  and still […]

Farmers Markets: Buy Fresh, Buy Local

Farmers Markets: Buy Fresh, Buy Local

Every season, more people are becoming fans of farmers markets, counting them as genuine quality-of-life enhancements in their communities.  In fact, Virginia has nearly 250 across the commonwealth and quite a few of them are in the seven-county area around Charlottesville. “I’m really proud of our City Market,” says Charlottesville REALTOR ® Cynthia Viejo, an […]

Charlottesville Area Real Estate Professionals Give Back

Volunteers are a valued part of our society and our economy. In 2012, the Corporation for National and Community Service reported that 64.5 million Americans volunteered a total of 7.9 billion hours, which had an estimated economic value of $175 billion. In Charlottesville, an online survey conducted by CAAR (Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS) found […]

Madison County Schools

Pride. In all, Madison is known not so much by “schools” as by educational families – students surrounded by caring, thoughtful parents and community members who expect graduates to have earned a top-notch education. Our students attend Virginia and the nation’s top schools and enter the workforce exceptionally well prepared. This great feat is accomplished […]

How Green Is Your Garden?

How Green Is Your Garden?

It’s easier than you think to create a healthier yard. Homeowners are realizing the cost of expansive lawns in terms of water usage as well as expensive and environmentally unfriendly chemical fertilizer, pesticides and herbicides. Plus the human time expenditure and fuel for lawn mowers, weed whackers, and leaf blowers.  People are also becoming more […]

Charlottesville Real Estate News – Week of May 15, 2014

Charlottesville Real Estate News – Week of May 15, 2014

Real Estate News Local Fire Fighters, Nurses, Police Officers and Teachers Have More Home Purchasing Power through CAAR Workforce Housing Fund Changes to Workforce Housing Fund Guidelines Result in Six New Home Ownership Success Stories CAAR, the voice of real estate in the Central Virginia region, has announced changes to the guidelines for its signature […]