Jack Brown’s Tattoo Revival
This year’s Tattoos For Community will be raising funds for Hazelwild Farm’s Therapeutic Riding Program. This program offers specialized lessons for all ages of riders with a wide range of physical, intellectual and emotional disabilities . These lessons provide invaluable physical and emotional benefits to the riders. Funds raised will go to support Hazelwild in purchasing much needed horses for the Program. You don’t need to get a tattoo to support the cause, there will also be awesome T-shirts for sale!
2 days of Walk-in Tattoos, Huge Bake Sale, Original Art Raffles, Custom Ink T-shirt fundraising campaign, and All the good Vibes you’ll be able to stand! 100% of all proceeds gifted to the Hazelwild Therapeutic Riding Program. Hazelwild Farm Educational Foundation is loved by many in our community and has served the greater Fredericksburg area for more than 45 years. The foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the academic and physical development of children and adults.
Fredericksburg National Cemetery
On the evening of Saturday, May 26, 2018, more than 15,300 candles will light the Fredericksburg National Cemetery for the twenty-third annual luminaria honoring those who gave their lives for their country.
The program extends from 8:00pm to 11:00pm in the cemetery which will remain open until the luminaria lights are out. This commemoration includes a historical walking tour to view the thousands of lighted candles. Each honors one of the soldiers buried in the cemetery, situated atop the battlefield landmark of Marye’s Heights. Taps will be played every 30 minutes.
Due to limited parking, a free shuttle service will operate from the University of Mary Washington’s parking lot on the corner of William Street and Sunken Road. Handicapped parking will be available in the parking lot behind the Fredericksburg Battlefield Visitor Center, with another shuttle operating between that point and the cemetery. Please note that pets are not allowed in the cemetery.
Farmer Snead at BRAEHEAD FARM has done it again and has turned to his friends for help! This time, he has called his friend STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE! Since Strawberry Shortcake loves strawberries so much, Farmer Snead asked her to help in celebrating the STRAWBERRY SEASON!
STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE will be waiting for you to visit her in her BERRY FUN, DECORATED “CLUBHOUSE” next to the strawberry patch at Braehead Farm! She will be READING STORIES EVERY HOUR (first reading at about 10:30am) and TEACHING HOW TO PROPERLY PICK THOSE PRECIOUS STRAWBERRIES! STRAWBERRY LOLLIPOPS AND STRAWBERRY STICKERS FOR THE CHILDREN! BRING YOUR CAMERAS!
STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE’S BERRY FUN, BERRY BASH, IN HER CLUBHOUSE, IS FREE TO ATTEND!
PICK STRAWBERRIES! Strawberries are $2.99 a pound to pick your own, or $3.99 a pound already picked in the Braehead Farm Market! Braehead Farm’s Lunch Kitchen will be open and serving STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKES, STRAWBERRY LEMONADE, STRAWBERRY RHUBARB PIE, STRAWBERRY ICE CREAM!
Farm fun and fireworks! Roast S’Mores over a campfire. Kids can make a flag craft to take home and get their faces painted. Try a BBQ Parfait and apple or cherry pie by the slice. Wow! Kaboom!
In addition to seasonal activities, farm attractions include:
Hop on the Jumping Pillow. Whoop it up in the Fun Barn. Meet goats, sheep and chickens in the Olde Barnyard. Wheee down Pumpkin Mountain Slide. Take Pedal Carts for a spin.
Also: Little Farmers’ Corral, Back 40 Games (corn hole, dress a scarecrow, etc.), and the Ball Zone (football, basketball, and baseball). Play Barnyard Bing·Oh! for prizes for a chance to win a Family 4-Pack to our annual Fall Harvest Festival. Tickets are $11.95 online and $14.95 at the gate.
Evolving Art Machine
Free food and concert with donation of a paper Product! Toilet paper, paper towels, pads, typing paper.. etc. Performers include: Soulegacy, Cara Bella, Josh Miller, Lake Alden. Food provided by Castiglia’s!
Gari Melchers Studio
Conducted by Virginia Master Naturalists, these informative walks cover a mile of trails in both woodlands and fields and also touch on the historic ruins of Belmont’s past. Please wear sturdy footwear. Meet outside the Visitor Center. Free.
Agora Downtown Coffee Shop
Agora Downtown Coffee Shop is hosting an intimate serious of acoustic performances this year. Cabin Creek will be there drinking coffee and performing a mix of original and traditional old time string and Americana tunes.
Fredericksburg National Cemetery
On Monday, May 28, the National Park Service will join with the community in honoring the nation’s fallen soldiers at the annual commemorative ceremony at the Fredericksburg National Cemetery. The program will begin at noon and will last about 40 minutes. This program will culminate a weekend that will include, on Saturday night, the illumination of the National Cemetery with more than 15,000 candles. This year’s keynote speaker will be Kirsten Talken-Spaulding, veteran, daughter of a Navy pilot lost while serving in Vietnam in 1969, and presently the Superintendent at Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park. Talken-Spaulding was commissioned in the US Navy in 1990 and attended Officer Candidate School at the Naval Training Center San Diego. She served as a Navy Chaplain in the reserves. Her father, LCDR Talken began his service in 1958 and was lost at sea while serving aboard the USS Kitty Hawk (CVA-63). While aircraft debris was recovered, his body was not. He was the Kitty Hawk’s last loss in her 1969 cruise. As the daughter of one who made the ultimate sacrifice for his nation, Ms. Talken-Spaulding will reflect on the meaning of Memorial Day, the sacrifice of individuals and families, and the legacy of those men and women who have given all for their nation. For the seventh year in a row, the program will be preceded by a procession through the streets to the National Cemetery. The event recalls a long-ago tradition of Fredericksburg citizens—many of them former slaves—gathering at Shiloh Baptist Church (Old Site) and processing to the National Cemetery on Memorial Day. The re-created 23d United States Colored Troops will lead the way. The procession will depart from Shiloh Baptist Church (Old Site), 801 Sophia Street at 10:45 a.m. For additional information about Memorial Day activities, call the Fredericksburg Battlefield Visitor Center at 540-693-3200 x4040. The Visitor Center and adjacent National Cemetery are located at 1013 Lafayette Boulevard, Fredericksburg, 22401.
Rick’s on the River
Join us in celebrating our Military and Armed forces this Memorial Day weekend. All members active and retired of the Military and Armed Forces will receive 20% off all weekend (excludes alcohol). We are kicking off the weekend on Friday with DJ Hatch at 8pm Saturday DJ Hatch at 1pm and NGJB makes their 2018 debut to the Rick’s stage at 8pm Sunday Big Rob at 1pm and the one and only Janitors Band starts at 8pm Monday we will be rounding out the weekend with the Jerry Wimmer Trio at 2:30 Remember “All gave some, and Some gave all” God Bless America
Mary Washington Healthcare
“All gave some; some gave all” Join us this Memorial Day for a FREE outdoor concert honoring those who gave their all. The Pops will be performing some of your favorite patriotic pieces including: The Star Spangled Banner, Stars and Stripes forever, and much more! Did we mention it is FREE?? Since there is no actual seating, we do recommend bringing a lawn chair and an umbrella (just in case it rains). Looking forward to seeing you there! ***Location details*** The orchestra will be performing underneath the large awning between Medical Arts Pharmacy and Elite Women’s Health (across from the children’s station).
Sign in for a chance to win!
This coming weekend, we’re excited to announce we have 28 homes being held open! Every visitor that signs in to one of our open houses on May 19th or 20th will have a chance to win one of three Amazon smart voice assistants: the Amazon Echo, Amazon Spot or the Amazon Plus! These are an awesome addition to your existing smart home system or a great way to start automating your home!
All of our agents are excited to see you this weekend — even if you’re not in the market right now for a home, they’d love to be a resource for you until you are ready to begin your home buying journey! The homes being held open are gorgeous and you can explore all of them ahead of time HERE and even use our map to plan your route!
Tips for Potential Buyers
Nervous about visiting your first open house? Not sure what you should do to make the most of your fact-finding mission? Check out our blog about how to take advantage of an open house for buyers! Seeing the home in person and info you gather during an open house can be extremely useful in determining what kind of an offer you should make or whether or not the home is the right fit for your needs!
Tips for Home Sellers
If you’re in the process of selling your home, prepping your home for an open house is extremely important. Make sure you’re checking all the boxes before opening your home to the public with our blog on how to set your home up for success!
We can’t wait to see you this weekend!
Thinking about skipping the home inspection in order to save a little money? You could end up costing yourself WAY more in the long run! Here’s why we always recommend buyers get a very thorough home inspection done:
Protect Your Investment
Buying a house is probably the single largest investment you’ll ever make and throughout the transaction, we’ll work to ensure you’re getting the best value for your money. Hiring a licensed home inspector can help make sure that your investment will not be wasted on an unsound or unsafe home!
A professional Home Inspector takes a close look beneath a house’s surface, and then prepares a detailed written report for the prospective buyer on things like the condition of the foundation, electrical service, roof, insulation, and other critical structural factors. We know several experienced and trusted Home Inspectors that are familiar with the local area and can help connect you with them when the time comes.
Are They Worth It?
Although costs will vary, you can probably expect to spend $200-500 for an inspection of a single family home. And who pays for it? Well, since the benefit is almost entirely that of the home buyer, it’s usually the buyer who pays the cost of the home inspection–particularly in a hot real estate market, where the home sellers have more leverage.
All things considered, it’s a small price to pay for the peace of mind it provides, and the negotiating power it can give you–especially if it indicates that there are major repairs required, but you decide to make an offer anyway. Most home inspectors are now offering a “re-inspection” service for a small fee so you can make sure that any items were repaired correctly! This is great to do during your final walkthrough for your own peace of mind.
When it comes to making your offer to purchase, our experienced agents
can provide you with good advice on how to allow for a home inspection.
Join President James Monroe for a celebration of the 260th anniversary of his birth! There will be photo opportunities with the president, music, and refreshments, including birthday cake! Visitors will also have the opportunity to sit for an individual or family silhouette portrait. There will be a fee for the portraits. All other activities for the celebration are free of charge.
Admission to the museum will be free all day in honor of Monroe’s birthday, while the special birthday activities will be from 2:00-5:00 PM only.
Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park will once again combine health and history with a new series of “Fit-History” hikes this spring. These ranger-led hikes are designed to cover a lot of ground in addition to a lot of history. This season’s hikes will cover two to three miles per hour. All hikes begin at 10 a.m.
Join historian Frank O’Reilly, and take a hike on one of the park’s most popular trails. Learn about the struggles of soldiers and civilians alike in the tangled wooded landscape. Meet at the Chancellorsville Visitor Center, 9001 Plank Road, Spotsylvania, 22553.
When attending any of our Fit-History programs, please remember to wear sturdy shoes, bring plenty of water, and pack a snack. Bug spray and long pants are also suggested.
Join us for a fun evening at Strangeways Brewing — a Lobster Bake, featuring traditional lobster bake fare and live music performed by The Feathered Fish!
Early Bird Tickets are available now through March 28th! Tickets include the lobster meal and a bottle of water. Adult beverages and sodas are available for purchase from Strangeways.
Early Bird Rates (through 4/28) 1 ticket – $25 / 2 tickets – $45
Regular Rates (after 4/28) 1 ticket – $30 / 2 tickets – $55
Proceeds from the ticket sales will go toward supporting the signature programs of the Fredericksburg Area Service League. For more information about the league, visit them online at http://www.faserviceleague.com/
This year’s Mary Washington House Annual Plant Sale will be on Saturday, April 28, from 10 am to 2 pm, rain or shine!
Perennials, including varieties from the museum gardens, will be available for sale. Our head gardener will be on hand to assist with your plant choices. All proceeds directly benefit the Washington Heritage Museums gardens.
New 7-week series of beginner & intermediate swing dance lessons at 6pm and 7pm. New! Salsa 1&2 class at 8pm. Week 1 will focus on Salsa basics, followed by new moves we haven’t taught before.. Sunday nights at DanceFXBG. Series starts April 29. Beginners meet at 6:00pm, Intermediates at 7, Salsa at 8. Cost: $110/person.
No previous dance experience for the beginner or Salsa class, no partner required. Register online at http://www.gottaswing.com/fredericksburg-va/
Get ready to lace up your running (or walking!) shoes and join us for our 8th Annual 5k Run/Walk to benefit Lloyd F. Moss Free Clinic. Presented by Fredericksburg Orthopaedic Associates, P.C., this 5K is family friendly and encourages competitive runners and casual walkers alike on its’ USATF Certified Course that, starting from the *top* of “Hospital Hill”, winds up and around Cowan Blvd. Prizes for top finishers as well as overall in age categories. Post-race beverages, snacks, and live music! Come out and enjoy a spring morning with us and support the Lloyd F. Moss Free Clinic; building a healthier community … together. Visit tinyurl.com/MFC5K2018 for more info.
Join us for an afternoon of organ music featuring St. George’s organists Trystan Bennett, Achim Loch, and John Vreeland.
#stgeorgesmusic For more information, visit: http://www.stgeorgesepiscopal.net/music/organ-recital-series/
Free admission. Donations appreciated.
The Fredericksburg area’s real estate market remains strong this February with year-over-year increases in total sold dollar volume, median price, and units sold as well as a decrease in average days on market. Inventory is still quite low but that’s good news for sellers, as properties spend fewer days on market and get higher sales prices! Homes priced appropriately are selling much faster than normal due to the scarcity of available properties.
The average sales price in the City of Fredericksburg was $307,797 in March, down 7.1% from this time last year. This makes it a great time to buy, but you may have trouble finding one–homes are spending an average of 86 days on market with only 16 homes sold in March. With so few homes coming on the market, you’ll need to act fast to get your offer accepted.
The average sales price in Stafford County was $343,938 in March, up 11.3% from this time last year. Homes are spending an average of 74 days on market with 85 homes sold in March. It’s a great time to sell in Stafford County so reach out to any of our agents for a free home evaluation!
It’s an awesome time to sell in Spotsylvania County! Average home prices are up 11.2%, with an average sales price of $280,675! While homes are spending 105 days on the market on average, 34 homes were sold in March alone.
The commercial real estate market is also posting positive numbers. Vice President of our Commercial Division, Ben Keddie, comments, “The commercial market has been very active of late. The progress of deals through the sales cycle is still relatively slow but activity and productivity is very high with all signs pointing towards 2018 being a very busy and productive year.”
As many of you may know, our CEO, Kevin Breen, is Irish so we love celebrating all things Ireland on St. Patrick’s Day! It’s almost here so pick out your best all-green outfits, grab some friends and make your weekend plans! Here are our picks for the best St. Patty’s Day events in the Fredericksburg region this weekend:
Bring your friends and family to Riverfront Park in beautiful downtown Fredericksburg for the St. Patrick’s Day Festival on Mar 17, 2018. The event includes music from three exciting bands, food trucks, local vendors, and of course, craft beer from local breweries.
The live music lineup features the Jack Dunlap Band playing traditional Irish music and local favorites Feathered Fish and Cabin Creek.
Participating breweries include Spencer Devon Brewing, Adventure Brewing, and 6 Bears and a Goat, Strangeways Brewing, Ono Brewing Company, Caboose Brewing, James River Brewing, and Right Proper Brewing.
The food truck lineup includes Jaun More Taco, Kool Zone Grille and UFO.
Field games like cornhole, disc golf and can jam will be set up throughout Riverfront Park.
Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the gate. Nondrinkers are free. Tickets include a free festival tasting glass, five six-ounce tasting tickets and an unbelievable concert lineup. Additional beer tickets will be available.
Visit https://www.universe.com/events/HJL92Q?embed=open&ref=universe_facebook_push&eventref=fb_oea for more information and to get tickets
12pm-A. Smith Bowman Distillery
The 16th Annual Jeff Fitzpatrick St. Patrick’s Day Parade starts off at NOON, includes fire trucks, classic cars, high school marching band, community organizations, Irish dancers, horses, military equipment and local pageant winners. The parade starts at Joseph Mills Dr and Main St in the Bowman’s Industrial Park. The parade ends at A. Smith Bowman Distillery, where we will be hosting a St. Patrick’s Day Festival including local vendors, live music and entertainment, family-friendly activities, food from local food trucks, and of course, plenty of beer. We will be collecting food for the Fredericksburg Regional Food Bank
Participating Food Trucks: Beverley’s Ribinator BBQ, 716 Slice, The UFO Truck, Outback Steak House
Music by: Whiskey Revival, Fat Stanley
Participating Vendors: Amy-Lou’s, Auntie Alice’s Kettle Corn, A. Smith Bowman Distillery, Central Rappahannock Regional Library, Daddy G’s Craft Salsas, Devilish Delights Desserts and Ice Cream, Greyt Hearts Service Dogs, The Lipchic Cafe, Strength & Honor Motorcycle Club, Stubborn Mule Rustic Designs, Twin Peaks Workshop, All About the Beverage, Rivah Southern, Tarica’s Adventures, Independent Damsel Pro Director, Hilary Pullen
Thank you to our Community Partners: Fredericksburg Brew Fest
Ample parking. This event is at the Spotsylvania County Business Park, a mile from downtown Fredericksburg.
If you are interested in marching in the parade or being a vendor please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Get ready to get sweaty with Fredericksburg’s homegrown street brass band! The Colonial Tavern is doing it up right for St. Patrick’s Day with music starting and noon and going deep into the night. Elby Brass hits the stage at 9 PM, be sure to be there with your dancing shoes on. $5 cover, 21+ only.
12pm-6 Bears & A Goat Brewery
St. Patrick’s Day is fast approaching! We’ll be celebrating the best way we know how…. with great craft beer, music, and food!
*We’ll be releasing our Irish Red: 5.6% ABV/23 IBU. An easy-drinking pint. Malt-focused with an initial sweetness and a roasted dryness in the finish. The perfect way to celebrate.
*Live music from two of our favorites: Marc Allred Music will be kicking things off from 4:30 – 6:30pm. Next, Karen Jonas Music plays from 7:30 – 10:00pm
*Our Pitmaster will also be serving up some amazingly tasty Corned Beef Sandwiches in addition to our regular menu. Nuff said!
Hogshead Cigar Lounge will also be here selling cigars with a lounge set up outside!
The First 100 people in the door get the chance to purchase a special edition St. Patrick’s Day themed pint glass!
See you at the party!
9am-Adventure Brewing South
Raise money for an awesome cause without even breaking a sweat at Adventure Brewing’s 0.5K Couch Potato Run. That’s right– unlike most races, there’s a ZERO and a DECIMAL before the “5”. So whether you’re a seasoned runner or a true couch spud, all are invited to run, walk, skip, jump, blade, or cartwheel down Main Street in your most festive St. Patrick’s Day duds.
$20 entry fee includes a post-race “Kegs and Eggs” breakfast buffet, a free pint glass, (1) complimentary fill of beer, and a generous donation to local volunteer fire and rescue squads.
$15 entry fee (under 21) includes the race and the “Kegs and Eggs” buffet only, with a generous portion of that fee also going to local fire and rescue.
Ages 5 and under are free
Superhero costumes, technicolor tutus, painted faces, pimped out wagons and strollers, and green on your EVERYTHING is highly encouraged! Prizes will be awarded for fastest time, best individual costume, and best group theme.
Get your tickets here: https://squareup.com/store/adventure-brewing-company
We will be giving out prizes!!! 1st place- $25 GC, Best Costume- $25 GC, Best Group- $50 GC
6:30pm-Hard Times Four Mile Fork
It’s the famous St. Patricks Day party at Hardtimes with the Worx. So come early, dress up in green and have some green drinks to go with the outfit. Party starts at 6:30 with the Jerry Wimmer Trio until 9 and 9:30 until 1:30 am with the Worx on the big stage.
7pm-Dockside Restaurant and Tiki Bar
Come get your St. Patrick’s Day Party On??
Starting with DJ Hatch at 7pm! “KLEPTORADIO” takes the stage at 8pm!
☘ST. PATRICK’S WEEKEND☘
MENU TAKEOVER Irish Specials including Bangers n’ Mash, Corned Beef & Cabbage, Scotch Eggs and more all weekend long!! Don’t forget to wear green?
Central Rappahannock Regional Library: Salem Church Branch
What the Health is a groundbreaking film that exposes the collusion and corruption in government and big business that is costing us trillions of healthcare dollars, and keeping us sick. The film is a surprising investigative documentary that will be an eye-opener for everyone concerned about our nation’s health and how big business influences it. Bring a friend! All are welcome!
Fairfax Area Restaurants
Take a bite out of Fairfax City! Get to know our diverse, independent and evolving culinary scene. Dine out at participating Fairfax City restaurants March 4 through 10, 2018 for special value 3 course meals and dine-in specials.
The Crafty Cottage
We’ll be making 3 kinds of soap: Spring (Lavender, Spearmint & Orange), Clary Sage, and Rosemary Lemon! All three of these are beautiful for springtime. The Spring soap is a very moisturizing favorite of ours. Clary Sage is one of my personal favorites because I adore Clary Sage which is just so soothing! And Rosemary Lemon is refreshing, cleansing, and aromatic! These are hot process soaps and there will be 3 crock pots brewing at once. This is a demonstration of how to melt, mix, cook, color, flavor, and mold the soap. It will then need to sit molded at least overnight. The soap will need to be picked up the next day, or the next weekend, after sitting in the molds and being sliced. The cost of this class is $30, and you will get the recipes and 1 bar from each batch. This class may be paid for ahead of time via PayPal (email@example.com) or at the beginning of class.
Adventure Brewing Company (North)
Bend and Brews with Adventure Brewing!
Join Natalie Selent (200hr RYT) and Downward Dogwood at Adventure Brewing for a 1 hour yoga class, followed by Adventure Brewing Beer! (1 beer included in admission price).
Escape the cold and come sweat, stretch and sip some beers with friends inside a nice warm brewery.
Savasana and then a Stonewall Stout?
Backbend and then a Backpack Wheat?
This class will be suitable for all levels and we welcome any and all first timers!
We are back again this year with our friends from Modified DMV and are ready for a bigger and better year than last season. Come out on our true never prepped track for some true street 1/8 mile action. Bring your friends, bring your family, call out your rivals!! See who has the quickest car in a true street scenario where your tire and driving ability actually come into play!!! Don’t worry about you guys and gals that don’t like dig racing we also do low roll races too. Don’t be scared come out and enjoy some racing along with great food at 118 bar and grill located on the 2nd floor!!! $20 to race all day!!! $5 to spectate!!
9am: 11th Annual Polar Bear Plunge
City Dock Park
Are you ready to brave the frigid temperatures of the Rappahannock River?? Register NOW for the annual Polar Bear Plunge benefiting the EOD Warrior Foundation. Check in opens at 9:00 AM and the plunge begins at 11:00 AM.
Early Registration (until 2/15): $25
Registration after 2/15: $35
Early registrants are guaranteed an event shirt.
Follow the link below to register today!
10:30am: Yoga and Beer
Join us for an invigorating, hourlong flow, accessible to all levels of yogis. After class, you’ll enjoy a tasty pour of your favorite Strangeways craft beer and great company. Ticket includes yoga and one beer. Namaste & Cheers! Register at www.eatyogadrink.com!
Yoga taught by Erin Sonn, RYT, owner of eat.YOGA.drink., LLC.
3pm: 4th Annual Indoor Beach Party
Tim’s at Lake Anna
Wear your best Hawaiian shirt👕 and flip flops👡 to the indoor beach party🏝 ! Take a picture with the Tim’s mermaid 🏖, enjoy some great food 🍗and drink🍹 specials, dance in the limbo contest, win a prize for your beachy attire🏄♂️ and listen to 🎵 Island Gerry 🎶 from 7 til 1030 !
7am: Lucky Road Historic Half Training Team
Lucky Road Run Shop
Join the Lucky Road Run Shop 2018 Historic Half Marathon Training Team, HHTT. A 12 week program to get you ready complete the MCM Historic Half with ease. Here’s what you’ll get:
* Group Runs Sunday morning starting and finishing at the Lucky Road Run Shop.
* Run along the Historic Half course as much as possible.
* Aide station for our long runs.
* HHTT technical shirt.
* Special Clinics with our local experts and Hoka One One.
* The best group of coaches… that money can’t buy. 🙂
All this, and a bag of chips, for only $60. There’s no better deal in town 😉
Registration will be available soon at the Lucky Road Run Shop.
5-8pm: Bridal Show Under the Stars
Inn at the Old Silk Mill
Save the date for The Silk Mill’s Bridal Show Under the Stars! Runway show, music, food, raffle prizes, meet with local wedding vendors, check out some of our bed and breakfast rooms and view the Silk Mill and Chapel in it’s elegant evening atmosphere! Couples and vendors, register on our website www.innattheoldesilkmill.com. Click on Bridal Show Under the Stars. Can’t wait to see you there!
Everyone knows that first impressions are important but when it comes to selling your home, it makes even more of a difference! We’ll go into our top 3 tips for making your home look like a million bucks (without spending a ton!).
It might be cliche but it’s true—buyers will appreciate (and pay more for) a clean and tidy house! For everyday showings, all surfaces and floors should be clean and any clutter picked up and put away. A subtle air freshener placed near the entryway can help set the mood. You may want to re-arrange the furniture in your home so that it’s easier for people to navigate during showings—this will probably be different from how you normally use your furniture but it’ll make a subconscious difference for the buyers!
When you’re getting your listing pictures done, you’ll want to go the extra mile. This may not be sustainable for everyday life but it’ll make a huge difference when people are searching for homes online. Completely clear off the counters—yes, completely. That means hide your toaster/decorative salt shaker collection/anything else you keep regularly on your counters in cabinets. A big clean empty countertop makes the kitchen or bathroom look bigger. The same goes for all types of visual clutter in the house—anything that can be hidden away in closets or cabinets, should be, at least for the pictures.
Shrubs, Flowers and Trees, Oh My
After you finish reading this paragraph, go outside and take a look at your house. Is the lawn mowed? Are the flowers and bushes blooming or struggling? Is there fresh mulch and does the yard look generally well-kept? If you’re lacking a green thumb, this might be a good time to hire outside help. The yard should look healthy and manicured and complement the home’s features.
Nobody has to know that you don’t normally host extravagant soirees and you’re more likely to heat up a TV dinner than whip up gourmet fare. When you’re selling your home, buyers need your help to see its potential, not just what it’s being used for currently. Fresh flowers in the foyer, luxe throws across the sofa and beautiful place settings at the table allow buyers to imagine what their life could be like in this particular home. If you’ve already moved everything out of the home, it may be worth setting up some decor in the entryway or on the mantle—just to accent the home’s features.
So you’re finally ready to buy your own home, congrats! It’s a big decision that can really impact your life and your finances. Here are our top five things to do before you take the leap to make sure you’re completely prepared!
Strengthen your credit score
Don’t know your credit score? If you’re thinking about buying a home in the near future—it’s time to find out! Try CreditKarma or any of the free credit reports to see what you may need to work on or if you’re in good shape! The better your credit score, the less you’ll need to pay for your home loan. The quickest way to improve your score is to pay down any credit card balances! You’ll also want to avoid applying for credit, for example, opening a new credit card or getting a car loan, until after you’ve closed on your new home!
Figure out what you can afford
Now’s the time to face the facts and be realistic. What’s your actual budget for purchasing a home? Conventional wisdom says that home expenses should only take up around 30-33% of your income each year. What will your monthly mortgage payment be, including interest, mortgage insurance and any HOA fees? An easy way to figure out what you can afford is by using Zillow’s Mortgage Calculator—easily adjust your purchase price vs down payment and see how it can affect your monthly payment. You’ll also want to set aside an emergency fund for unexpected repairs—especially during your first year! Once you’ve figured out what price range you can comfortably afford, stick to only looking at homes in that range.
Research different neighborhoods
You know your desired price range and what kind of home you’re looking for—now ’s the time to do your homework! Different areas and neighborhoods have their own character, benefits and drawbacks—consult your Realtor, websites like Niche, Crimemapping and Yelp, and if possible, drive through any neighborhoods you’re seriously considering at various times of day to really get a feel for them.
Keep in mind that the down payment is only one part of the costs you’ll need to pay upfront. Once you cough up that 10% down payment, you’ll still need to pay for any closing costs, necessary inspections, repairs or maintenance costs, the first few months of mortgage and insurance payments, and any moving costs. Closing costs can run anywhere from 2-5% of the asking price while typical home inspections are around $350-500. That’s on top of your down payment! With all that in mind, is your dream home still within your housing budget of 30-33% of your yearly income?
Connect with a lender
An experienced loan officer can be a huge help during your preparation period! They’ll help you figure out what loan product will be best for you and what you can do to improve your credit. Your CBE agent can recommend plenty of awesome loan officers and once you’ve got your pre-approval letter, you’re ready to tour homes and make an offer!
Buying a home (whether it’s your first or not!) is an exciting experience and can be immensely rewarding! All of us at CBE wish you the best of luck finding your dream home–don’t hesitate to reach out if you need help along the way!