Santa Claus is Coming to Town!


Santa Claus at Penderbrook 2014 - December 14th -1pm-4pm

We have an all-star cast this year!! Santa & Elsa; a Caricature Artist to draw your little elves.



To download the full size image click on the magnifying glass in the bottom right hand corner, a window will pop up, click the window's magnifying glass and a the full size image will appear.
Sunday, December 14th - 1pm-4pm

Santa is coming back to Penderbrook again this year!  He had so much fun last year with over 150 people attending.  See you December 14th! 

*Not Required but everyone is encouraged to bring a present that will be donated for Toys for Tots and DC inner city kids.

Just added!  We will have a caricature artist to draw your little elves!



Parents feel free to bring your cameras as we will have a photo booth area for you to take pictures of your kids with Christmas props.

*Not Required but everyone is encouraged to bring a present that will be donated for Toys for Tots and DC inner city kids.

Everything is FREE!
  • Professional photographer will take your picture with Santa and upload it to his website. You can download this photo for free and print yourself! and you may also purchase prints from him, via his website. Instructions on how to down load your free pictures will be hosted here after the event.
  • While you are waiting for your picture, have your children write their Christmas wish list to Santa, color/draw a picture, build a Christmas ornament.
  • Snacks will be provided
  • Bring your cameras for fun pictues with the family in our cardboard cutouts.
Check back for more great events going on.

**Everyone is encouraged to bring a present that will be donated for Toys for Tots and DC inner city kids. More details to come on what type of presents are needed. Please do not wrap your present but bring it in a bag. Acceptable gifts for children 5-12, m/f (ideas: books, clothes, toys, games etc. please keep under $30)

Walmart Wish List - Items on this list can be purchased and donated (please do not wrap these)

Where: Penderbrook Community Pool Clubhouse
3704 Golf Trail Lane, Fairfax, VA 22033
When: Sunday, December 14th - 1pm-4pm
Who: Everyone
Questions please email us at mailto:nate@1245team.com



Other Pictures from the event below.

2012 Pictures














2011 Pictures









The Biggest Mistake Sellers Make

The Biggest Mistake Sellers Make
Home prices are starting to inch up again in most areas, which is encouraging sellers to believe that their homes will sell quickly and for more money. And that's when they start making mistakes.

Don't be one of them.

Overpricing a home is the biggest mistake a seller can make. Asking a high price for your home says more about you than it does about your home. It may show you value your investment, that you have cared for the home and kept it updated and in good repair. But if the price is too high compared to other similar homes, it can make you appear unrealistic.

Buyers shop in a range that they've either been given by their lenders or one where they feel comfortable. If they're searching on the MLS, they will typically look at homes they can afford and may miss seeing the page where your home is advertised because it's out of their price range.

It's also psychologically easier for buyers to negotiate in their price target range. Buyers feel more comfortable asking for a little discount on a home within their reach than to ask you for a big discount on a more expensive home.

You won't get the more affluent buyer either. Buyers who can afford to pay the price of your home will simply compare your home to others in the same range. They will quickly find out that other homes have better locations, more square footage and snazzier finishes than yours and for the same price.

You'll find your home will get few showings and if you get any offers at all, they will be low. To get traffic to your home, you'll have to lower the price. You may find that offers still aren't coming, even though your home is now fairly priced for its location, amenities and condition.

Why wouldn't buyers jump at a price reduction? First impressions count, and you didn't make a good one. The first impression the market had of your home was that it's overpriced. An overpriced home is a reflection of the seller, not of the home.

Other agents and their buyers don't want to deal with a seller who is unrealistic. They may have already jumped to conclusions about you and your home that are more negative than you deserve. You've overpriced your home because you're unreasonable, greedy, out of touch with current market conditions, or you're heavily in debt, upside down on your mortgage, or otherwise in some sort of trouble.

A wounded seller tends to bring out the predator in buyers. Often, homes that have been repriced attract lower offers than other similar homes in the same price range. Buyers think you're desperate, so they may offer less than market value hoping you're strapped enough to take it.

It's far better to make a good first impression on the market -- that your home is offered at a fair price because you're a reasonable seller who understands your home's value and current market conditions.

Keep in mind that a home will never sell for more than a willing buyer will pay for it, or that a willing bank will finance. You're always better off pricing your home so that you can get as close to 100% of your asking price as possible.

Only then, will your home sell quickly and for more money.
Written by Blanche Evans


Open House Saturday, 11/22 1-3pm - 6227 Frosty Winter Ct. Centreville, VA 20120

6227 Frosty Winter Ct,Centreville, VA 20120

3 beds 3 baths | 1,622 sqft

 Open House Saturday 1-3pm | Just Stop by!



Special incentives for buyer - call/text 571-494-1245 or email Buyers Agent NateJohnson@1245team.com to check on buyer incentives and schedule your private showing.

Brick front townhome with one-car garage!  Huge ceilings, bay window, recessed lighting, updates and more!

Coming Soon! --> 4409 Sedgehurst Dr Fairfax, VA 22033 Stonecroft in Fair Lakes Open House

4409 Sedgehurst Dr # 203, Fairfax, VA 22033

1 bed1 bath

Special incentives for buyer - call/text 571-494-1245 or email Buyers Agent NateJohnson@1245team.com to check on buyer incentives and schedule your private showing.
Listing by Keller Williams Capital Properties.
 

Open House - Just Stop By!

  • 10/19 2pm-4pm
  stonecroftsedgehurst4409fairlakes
 
 
 
Estimated Monthly Payment
30 Year Fixed:
$671/mo
15 Year Fixed:
$993/mo
5/1 ARM:
$587/mo
Estimated taxes & insurance of $212 are not included.

Coming Soon!! 8425 Piney Point Pl Manassas VA Point of Woods Open House

8425 Piney Point Ct, Manassas, VA 20110

3 beds2.5 baths1,440 sqft      

Open House 10/19 - 2-4pm  Just Stop By!!
 
Coming Soon! - Special incentives for buyer - call/text 571-494-1245 or email Buyers Agent NateJohnson@1245team.com to check on buyer incentives and schedule your private showing.
Large Townhome with backyard and plenty of parking and playground out front.
Listing by Keller Williams Capital Properties
 
point of woods manassas 8425 piney point
 
 

Estimated Monthly Payment

30 Year Fixed:
$858/mo
15 Year Fixed:
$1,267/mo
5/1 ARM:
$746/mo
Estimated taxes & insurance of $232 are not included.
 

Tips To Help You Decide Whether To Remodel Or Sell

Tips To Help You Decide Whether To Remodel Or Sell
As home prices increase, homeowners have options. Some are quickly gaining back the equity they lost over the last several years. That creates opportunity to maybe refinance, remodel, or sell. If you're sitting on the fence trying to determine whether to list your home for sale or to remodel it, consider these important tips.

Tip 1: Do a "Love it or List it" Analysis.

On a sheet of paper write down the things you love about your home and the things that might cause you to decide to list your home for sale. Take your time doing this. Really give every aspect of your home consideration. Do you like the neighborhood? Is it where you want to stay for a long while or even retire? Is the area or your home lacking something? Could remodeling your home be the solution? Once you do the "love it or list it" analysis, you'll be able to identify which parts of your home are bothering your the most. With that information, you can now start to explore more options.

Tip 2: Do your research.

This applies to both options–remodeling or selling. Visit other neighborhoods that you might like to live in. Carefully explore the surrounding area, the homes, the types of people, the shops, businesses, and churches. Think about your commute. Would it be longer? Would it cost more in gas? Are there any gains to offset extra costs? Gathering these details will help you add more to your "love it or list it" analysis. Also, invite some real estate agents to your home to get some expert advice on how much your home would sell for and how long it might take. When you get that information, it can help you determine if selling is best. Next visit some remodeling companies. See their remodeling projects and invite their team to your house to offer their suggestions. Sometimes what a homeowner thinks is a difficult remodel is really quite simple. Of course, the opposite is true too. For instance, if a home doesn't have the supporting structure it needs, a remodel could become very complex or, in some case, impossible, which might prompt an immediate desire to sell.  

Tip 3: Have your financial records in order.

Whether you decide to remodel or sell, having your financial records easily accessible is vital. You'll need these documents for both situations. Knowing what upgrades you've already done to the home will help when it comes time to sell. And, having your tax documents and other financial information on hand will help you if you decide to remodel using financing.  

Tip 4: Evaluate the process.

Talk to expert listing agents and remodeling companies so that you can completely understand what to expect with both processes. If you're listing your home, learn about the marketing process, holding open houses, showing your home, what large items might need to be removed, and the overall timing of how long you'll need before you close escrow. For remodeling, get details about the length of the expected renovation. Will you be able to live in the home or will you have to find a place to stay? Will you use one firm to do both the design and build process? Often this is easier and can be less costly than using several contractors.

Take your time and pay close attention to all the details. Both selling and renovating a home are major decisions. Make sure you give the decision-making process ample time as well as compiling a considerable amount of research to make your final decision.
Written by Phoebe Chongchua

Five Great Reasons to Buy a Home Right Now

Five Great Reasons to Buy a Home Right Now
 
The nature of market bottoms is that it's hard to tell one's occurred until prices and sales volume start to rise again. That's why the best time to buy is when market conditions suggest a bottom. That means there's still some risk for homebuyers, since no one has a crystal ball that predicts the future. To take advantage of low mortgage interest rates and home prices still well below previous records, you may have to take a risk, such as riding out another short-term dip in property values. But the rewards may be well worth it. Here are five reasons to buy a home right now.

1. More jobs are available Total nonfarm payrolls rose by 217,000 in June, and the unemployment rate is 6.3 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Employment increased in professional and business services, health care and social assistance, food services and drinking places, and transportation and warehousing.

2. Houses are a great hedge against inflation The Labor Department also says the May Computer Price Index is up 2.13 percent year-over-year. The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.3 percent in May, its largest increase since August 2011. The CPI excludes volatile food and energy, so you can bet that the accelerating cost of things, otherwise known as inflation, also includes housing. You may be paying more for goods and services, but if you're a homeowner, you're better off financially. A major asset such as a home, purchased at a fixed cost, becomes more valuable when prices inflate.

3. Housing price increases are slowing The median existing-home price was $213,400, over 5 percent above May 2013. Considering that the national median existing-home price was $158,800 in January 2011. That's when the PMI Insurance Company said home prices relative to income are below market fundamentals in more than half of U.S. states. Prices overcorrected during the recession, and then they soared by the double-digits in 2013. Now housing is correcting once again from an overcorrection. Now's the time to take advantage of better homebuying conditions.

4. Mortgage interest rates are still low During the recession, mortgage interest rates for a benchmark 30-year, fixed-rate loan, averaged 4.32 percent. Now they're close to that and there's no recession. That means mortgage rates have nowhere to go but up.

5. Pent-up demand ready to release Since the recession, household formation fell dramatically to one percent of the national population. But considering that the leading age of the largest generation ever - 81 million Echo Boomers -- is now over 30, the numbers should be closer to the 2.3% annual growth of the 1970's, when 78 million Baby Boomers reached adulthood. The National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB) said about 2.1 million households delayed formation due to the recession which allegedly ended in 2011. Now there's pent-up demand for housing that should continue to drive home prices higher.

The takeaway A housing recovery doesn't occur in a straight line. There are surges and dips. Buyers could wait for better conditions, but the present alignment of falling mortgage interest rates, slower home prices, and larger selection is highly unlikely to reoccur.
This may not be the bottom, but it's close enough.
Written by Blanche Evans

Upsizing? Moving Out of the Area? Relocating for Work?


No matter what the reason, consider these tips for selling your home with the 12:45 Team.

1.      Timing - How quickly do you need to sell your home?

The adage says timing is everything. When selling your home, this is especially true. Do you need to sell your home quickly? When you sell with the 12:45 Team, our average days on market is 13 days*. We sell your home faster than the competition.

2.      Pricing - How much money can you sell your home for?

As your realtor, we work with you to price your home ahead of the market. With our extensive marketing, we strive to acquire multiple offers and net a higher sale price for your home. Our sales price to list price ratio is 100.23%*. We sell your home for more money than the competition.

3.      Showing - How much work do I need to do to sell my home?

Selling your home may seem like a lot work, but our experience can help. We want this process to be as simple as possible for you, and that’s why we hire a professional stager and professional photographer to help make your home look spacious and wonderful to potential buyers. Professional staging can help your home sell for 6-10% more than a home that is not professionally staged.

*January-July 2014 data for standard sales

Time to Win or NOT Go Home...



In today's market there can be nothing more frustrating than looking to purchase your first home, and not being able to through no fault of your own! In the hectic and competitive market of Northern Virginia, buyers are seeing this very thing happening regularly. There are more buyers than actual inventory. This is causes multiple offers, higher prices and homes selling in the blink of an eye!

In a seller's market buyers need to be ready to act fast and compete for what they want. Here are four  strategies that I recommend for would-be buyers in today's market -

1. Work with a local agent.
An agent understands the complexities of the market and has a specific strategy for not only finding you a home but winning it! They should be thinking outside the norm such as calling the listing agent to find out how to structure the deal to be a win-win, submitting the offer in person (when possible), creating a cover page telling your specific story to personalize the offer and explaining the options to setting your offer apart from the others. Agents want to work with other well-known, well respected agents who are in production. 

2.  Don't use normal search methods to find that elusive home in the market. 
If you see a neighborhood you like, then you should let your agent know and they should proactively go into the subdivision and find it! The 12:45 Team believes that just because there's not a for sale sign in the front yard doesn't mean it's not for sale. Keep your eyes open for homes that are being sold by owners and tell your agent. They can contact the seller and represent you and your interests, often times out negotiating them to your advantage.

3. Get pre-approved by a local mortgage loan officer. 
Ever heard the phase, "The early bird get's the worm?" Well that's true in today's market with so much competition. When a seller is faced with multiple offers, having that pre-approval gives the seller the confidence they need in you to accept your offer. It also gives you the confidence knowing that every house you and your agent see are fully available to you based on your financial picture. Working with a credible, local lender to be pre-approved will also uncover issues with your credit before you get into a position where you miss out on a home. These letters are often good for 90 days which with a good agent is more than enough time to find that perfect home.

4. Finally, act fast! 
If a home comes on the market in the beginning of the week, rest assured if it's a nice home it won't be there by the weekend. It's not out of the norm for a new home to have multiple offers on it before it even gets to the open house. A good agent is going to negotiate to have that offer accepted BEFORE the open house to avoid any further competition. Just because there's an open house scheduled, doesn't mean it will happen or if it does, it could simply be to find buyers like you who are looking for a credible agent to get the job done!

The process of finding a home in a seller's market is no easy task. If you're not prepared for these situations or don't have an agent representing you then you could be left out to dry when it comes to finding a home. Be flexible with your schedule, be prepared to make an offer on the first day, have your pre-approval done and make sure that the agent and team you're working with is ready, willing and able to get the job done in a moment's notice.

Give the 12:45 Team a call at 571-494-1245 to schedule your free, no obligation consultation if you need to buy, sell or invest in real estate!

Article by:
Phillip Simon
 KWCP Agent & Real Estate Consultant

The Five Biggest Turn-offs For Homebuyers

The Five Biggest Turn-offs For Homebuyers

A lot of sellers don't listen to their real estate agents, so we'll tell you what your agent wants to say, but can't say to you and this is it - your agent can't get you the price you want unless your home is in pristine move-in condition.

That means no sticking drawers in the kitchen. No leaning fences. No rust-stained plumbing fixtures. We could go on, but maybe we need to make it clear. If you have even one of following "turn-offs," your home won't sell.

Buyers can get instantly turned off. Here are their five biggest turn-offs:
1.Overpriced for the market
2.Smells
3.Clutter
4. Deferred maintenance
5.Dark, dated décor

Overpricing your home

Overpricing your home is like trying to crash the country club without a membership. You'll be found out and escorted out.

If you ignored your agent's advice and listed at a higher price than recommended, you're going to get some negative feedback from buyers. The worst feedback, of course, is silence. That could include no showings and no offers.

The problem with overpricing your home is that the buyers who are qualified to buy your home won't see it because they're shopping in a lower price range. The buyers who do it will quickly realize that there are other homes in the same price range that offer more value.

Smells

Smells can come from a number of sources - pets, lack of cleanliness, stale air, water damage, and much more. You may not even notice it, but your real estate agent may have hinted to you that something needs to be done.
There's not a buyer in the world that will buy a home that smells unless they're investors looking for a bargain. Even so, they'll get a forensic inspection to find out the source of the smells. If they find anything like undisclosed water damage, or pet urine under the "new" carpet, then they will either severely discount their offer or walk away.

Clutter

If your tables are full to the edges with photos, figurines, mail, and drinking glasses, buyers' attention is going to more focused on running the gauntlet of your living room without breaking any Hummels than in considering your home for purchase.

Too much furniture confuses the eye - it makes it really difficult for buyers to see the proportions of rooms. If they can't see what they need to know, they move on to the next home.

Deferred maintenance

Deferred maintenance is a polite euphemism for letting your home fall apart. Just like people age due to the effects of the sun, wind and gravity, so do structures like your home. Things wear out, break and weather, and it's your job as a homeowner to keep your home repaired.

Your buyers really want a home that's been well-maintained. They don't want to wonder what needs to fixed next or how much it will cost.

Dated décor

The reason people are looking at your home instead of buying brand new is because of cost and location. They want your neighborhood, but that doesn't mean they want a dated-looking home. Just like they want a home in good repair, they want a home that looks updated, even if it's from a different era.

Harvest gold and avocado green from the seventies; soft blues and mauves from the eighties, jewel tones from the nineties, and onyx and pewter from the oughts are all colorways that can date your home. Textures like popcorn ceilings, shag or berber carpet, and flocked wallpaper can also date your home.

When you're behind the times, buyers don't want to join you. They want to be perceived as savvy and cool.

In conclusion, the market is a brutal mirror. If you're guilty of not putting money into your home because you believe it's an investment that others should pay you to profit, you're in for a rude awakening. You'll be stuck with an asset that isn't selling.

Written by Blanche Evans

Remodeling? Recoup Your Investment When You Sell

Remodeling? Recoup Your Investment When You Sell
Before you pour your savings into a new kitchen and a rainforest shower for the master, think about whether or not you'll be able to recoup your investment when it comes time to sell.

 If you have equity in your home, you can make improvements, but don't go over the limit of what other buyers can spend for a home similar to yours in your neighborhood.  

While it's tempting to make your home more beautiful, you have to consider the rest of your neighborhood. If most residences in your neighborhood are three-bedroom single-story homes, buyers are unlikely to shop in your area for two-story four-bedroom homes.  

Buyers want to shop for a home where there is the most selection of homes that fit their criteria. If they want a swimming pool, they're going to look in neighborhoods where many homes have pools. They won't be aware of your home if you have the only pool in your subdivision.  

 That's why over-improving for the neighborhood is a bad idea. Not only will you not get your money back for some updates, your home my be harder to sell because of them.   

Another reason buyers don't tend to pay as much for updates as you might think is broad differences in taste. Your updates may include choices your buyer wouldn't have made because of several reasons:  

 You only improved one or two rooms, leaving the rest of the home looking unfinished.
Your updates were too radical, such as cold minimalism in a traditional setting.
  Your updates masked a problem but didn't solve it, such as a kitchen that's too small. If the kitchen is still too small after you've put in granite counters, don't expect buyers to care.
  You failed to do necessary repairs and updates that were less visible than the new décor but buyers noticed anyway.
  Your updates are beautiful but require a lot of cost and upkeep.

Buyers want to make a home their own, and don't want to be distracted or confused by design statements that they don't agree with. Enjoy your home while you can, but make sure your new look can be easily depersonalized when it comes time to sell.  

Don't expect to set a listing price based on what you've put into your home no matter how long you own it. Your home will be worth market value no matter when you sell, whatever the value is for that point in time.  

All the improvements in the world won't change that basic fact. Your home and the improvements you make are only worth what willing buyers say they will pay.

Before you begin renovations, talk to your Realtor and your lender. They will help you develop a reasonable plan for updates that will add value to your home.
Written by Blanche Evans

Curb Appeal is a Must!

Curb Appeal is a Must!
 
If your home has curb appeal, you'll be able to sell it quickly and for top dollar. That's why REALTORS® rate exterior home remodeling projects as the most valuable homeowners can make.

 Many homeowners are confused about which projects will provide the most return on investment as they prepare their homes for the market.

 The 2014 Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report, co-sponsored by the National Association of Realtors and Remodeling magazine, outlines the costs and resale returns on the most popular home improvement projects.

 Realtors know which home features are important to buyers in their area. Projects such as a new entry door, siding and window replacements can recoup homeowners more than 78 percent of costs upon resale.

So why remodel anything if it's not going to give you back 100%? It's because the first impression a homebuyer gets is priceless. You want the buyer to choose your home, and quit looking for something better.

If the buyer doesn't like what he sees, you won't get another chance to make any kind of impression.

So which home improvement projects will net the most return?

Eight of the top 10 most cost-effective projects are exterior projects.

Replacing your front door with a steel entry will cost $1,100 on average, but you'll get nearly 97% of what you spent back in your pocket.

The second most popular improvement is a wood deck addition, which will return over 87 percent of costs, similar to the return on fiber-cement siding. Vinyl siding returns a little over 78 percent of costs.

A midrange garage door replacement returns nearly 84 percent while an upscale garage door replacement offers 82.9 percent of costs recouped. Wood window replacements recoup over 79% of costs and vinyl windows return nearly as much.

 Rounding the top 10 projects are an attic bedroom and minor kitchen remodel. These are important too, but you've got to pique buyers' interest first.

The good news is that the return for all projects is higher in the last two years. To find out what the best return on home improvements is in your area, talk with your REALTOR.
Written by Blanche Evans