My Journey to Lake of the Woods

lake of the woods

As a Lake of the Woods resident since 2008 (as a weekender and a full time resident), I’d like to share my journey to the Lake. My husband, John, and I were interested in finding the perfect location for a second/vacation home. Initially, we were open to looking at a beach location, as well as a lake. We began searching in the summer of 2007 through the spring of 2008 for our getaway.
We decided fairly early on that the beach just wasn’t for us because of distance from Northern Virginia and lack of activity during “non-peak season,” we began focusing on the lakes in the area. Having made the trek to Lake Anna and Smith Mountain Lake in Virginia, and Deep Creek Lake in Maryland, something wasn’t “perfect” for us regarding each location. Lake Anna was too busy for us, and Smith Mountain Lake and Deep Creek Lake were both too far for us to enjoy a home regularly, and we also didn’t care for how few conveniences were located close by (ie, grocery store, pharmacy, restaurants, etc).
Then we remembered having visited Lake of the Woods years ago, when we had been a guest of a friend. After our first house-hunting visit to the lake in early spring of 2008, we knew where we wanted to be. Lake of the Woods, as a gated, secured community, gave us peace of mind as weekenders. The community offered us close proximity (1 hr 15 min from Reston),  tons of conveniences, as we residents are supported by a grocery store, pharmacy, gas stations, cleaners, nail salons, automotive services, doctors, a library, a post office, many restaurants, and a brand new elementary school-all within 2 1/2 miles of the gates), over 50 clubs and organizations in which to participate, a fabulous club house overlooking the lake that serves excellent food, and a clear, pristine lake!! Oh…did I mention the PGA golf course and equestrian center within the community?? And the Community Center, and the non-denominational Church within the gates? Or the walking trails? And what about the wildlife!
We purchased our home in June of 2008, and after that first year (52 weekends), we realized that we had been to our home at Lake of the Woods 51 of those 52 weekends! That’s when we decided that the “allure of the lake” was just too great to resist and made the change from weekenders to full time residents!
Call me today at 540/735-7998 for a boat and car tour!

Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Lake of the Woods VA or Waterfront property in Virginia we are your Real Estate Advisors for Stafford, Fredericksburg, Spotsylvania, Locust Grove, Central Virginia, and Greater Virginia. Thinking of selling? In any market condition, “what is my home worth?” is the #1 question asked by home owners. If you wish to sell your home, it needs to be sold for top dollar and in a timely manner. Pricing your home accurately, Pat will partner with you to make the selling process so much easier. Get started today by calling us at (540) 388-2541 or contact Pat Licata.

To see available Lake of the Woods properties, please visit our site.

lake of the woods

Aerial Tour of Lake of the Woods, VA!

Aerial Tour of Lake of the Woods! By Pat Licata REALTOR

 

Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Lake of the Woods VA or Waterfront property in Virginia we are your Real Estate Advisors for Stafford, Fredericksburg, Spotsylvania, Locust Grove, Central Virginia, and Greater Virginia. Thinking of selling? In any market condition, “what is my home worth?” is the #1 question asked by home owners. If you wish to sell your home, it needs to be sold for top dollar and in a timely manner. Pricing your home accurately, Pat will partner with you to make the selling process so much easier. Get started today by calling us at (540) 388-2541 or contact Pat Licata.

To see available Lake of the Woods properties, please visit our site.

 

Tips to Take Control of Your Electric Bill

As we are still feeling the impacts that 2020 brought us, there’s a good bit of uncertainty about what can be controlled in this world. That being said, you may find that there’s one thing you can take control of, and that’s your electric bill! Now is the time to put an end to higher-than-normal energy consumption.

Depending on the situation you’re in, you may still be working from home, and/or have children that are having to attend school remotely. REC highly encourages you to take the time to make some simple adjustments so that you can continue to save money and energy!

The first tip is to set your thermometer to 68 degrees Fahrenheit or lower during the winter months. This will be the biggest step in controlling your electric bill, as thermostats are the highest users of electricity in your house. If you have a thermostat that is problematic, adjust the temperature to be 4-6 degrees lower. This should be done when there is either no one in the home or that everyone is asleep.

Next is to minimize your use of hot water. Water heaters are often the second-highest users of electricity, and something as simple as taking a shorter shower can make a big difference. Additionally, you can adjust your water heater temperature to 120 degrees Fahrenheit, which will help you save energy over time.

Space heaters are often tempting, however, you’ll need to minimize their usage. Space heaters often lead to a larger than desired electric bill, so instead consider using alternatives such as a small electric blanket that sufficiently provides you heat without having to heat up the whole room.

One simple tip to help manage your electric bill is to make sure that all doors and windows are sealed properly. You don’t to be spending money to heat the outside.

We are confident there are more useful tips that can help you take control of your electric bill, and we encourage you to contact your local energy provider to get their opinion on the matter.

Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Fredericksburg, Stafford, Orange, Locust Grove, Culpeper, Northern Virginia or even Maryland or DC, we are your Real Estate team committed to finding the perfect home for you! Thinking of selling? In any market condition, “what is my home worth?” is the #1 question asked by homeowners. If you wish to sell your home, it needs to be sold for top dollar, and in a timely manner. Pricing your home accurately, one of our area expert advisors will partner with you to make the selling process so much easier. Get started today by calling us at (540) 388-2541 or contact Pat Licata.

To see available properties, please visit our website licatagroup.com

Reasons why Canadians love Orange County, VA

If you are looking for a place to spend your vacation or move from your hometown in Canada, look no further than Orange County, Virginia. “Why,” you ask? This region is one of the most incredible areas you can visit on the East Coast. Namely, one of the reasons why Canadians love Orange County, VA, is because it is exceptionally uncommon ever to have a dull moment in this county. 

So, if moving to or visiting this place has been on your mental map for some time, we are pleased to give you an overview of all the fun and exciting activities and other things that await you here. 

Some Canadians choose to relocate to Orange County, VA, permanently

Before you start to plan out your itinerary in detail, it is helpful to have a clear idea about what you want to do here. If you wish to move to Orange County from Canada permanently, you might want to consider looking into how living here is similar and different from living in Canada. 

This includes checking out the general expenses of moving from Canada, what you need to pack and move to settle down in the new city in the county, real estate market trends in Virginia, local educational institutions, job prospects, etc.

Travelling is one of the reasons why Canadians love Orange County, VA.

In order to help you with this, we will discuss the main ‘attractions’ that grace this lovely region from a Canadian point of view. In this way, you should get a clearer picture of what makes it so interesting and irresistible to Canadians. 

On the other hand, if you simply love to spend time here in Virginia, this article will help you get acquainted with the region’s overall vibe. This should inspire you to visit some local amenities that make up the spirit of Orange County and that you, perhaps, were not aware of by now.

Historical sights in Orange County VA

This county has a rich history that makes it an unavoidable destination for all Canadian history buffs out there. Scenic tours of the region give you a chance to dive into Virginia’s rich and proud past. Since history and landscapes are a sight to behold here, it is no surprise that many Canadians cannot get enough of this region.

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Orange County, VA, has amazing landscapes and history.

In fact, historical sights are one of the main incentives for visiting or relocating here. In case you have set your mind on moving to Orange County, Virginia, from Canada, we highly suggest hiring a company that can handle your relocation, that is, a company with the necessary experience, expertise, and equipment to do the job right. 

Lovely rustic cottages in the countryside 

As we have mentioned, what is great about this region is the fact that you can investigate American history that is not as represented in your average history book. Namely, Virginia was the first of the original 13 European colonies, which means these cottages are, in a way, the first seeds of the American dream on the continent. The very thought of visiting or living near the first European settlements in America is one of the reasons why Canadians love Orange County, VA!

The rustic spirit and the ambiance that envelopes these cottages are truly something to behold. We suggest you visit the Boxwood Villa and the surrounding area. This villa is actually an old cottage built in the 1850s but is, luckily, open for guests. 

If you are lucky enough to purchase a property located in the vicinity of these cottages, be sure to plan out your relocation from Canada carefully. We suggest you first work on getting moving boxes and the other necessary supplies for your big event ahead of time so that you can move and settle in your new home without any issues. 

Local breweries and wineries

It is not only the great and rich history that this Virginian county offers. After getting acquainted with the historical sites, be sure to check out other region-specific attractions in the countryside. It is also well-known and appreciated for its variety of brews and wines, so be sure to taste some of them.  

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Don’t even think about returning to Canada before trying out the local beers or wines.

Trying out different wines and other alcoholic beverages made in the region is one of the favorite activities that Canadians enjoy when visiting Orange County. 

Christ Episcopal Church and other religious sites

Whether you are religious or not, appreciating the architecture of the many churches and other religious sites is an unavoidable part of spending time in Orange County, VA. We suggest you start your tour from Christ Episcopal Church since this ecclesiastical structure is the best representative of the Gothic influences in Virginia’s architecture. 

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From a Canadian perspective, Virginia’s ecclesiastical architecture is supreme.

All in all, we hope this brief insight into the reasons why Canadians love Orange County, VA, has inspired you to investigate and find out more about this lovely region on your own. 

Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Fredericksburg, Stafford, Orange, Locust Grove, Culpeper, Northern Virginia or even Maryland or DC, we are your Real Estate team committed to finding the perfect home for you! Thinking of selling? In any market condition, “what is my home worth?” is the #1 question asked by homeowners. If you wish to sell your home, it needs to be sold for top dollar, and in a timely manner. Pricing your home accurately, one of our area expert advisors will partner with you to make the selling process so much easier. Get started today by calling us at (540) 388-2541 or contact Pat Licata.

To see available properties, please visit our website licatagroup.com

Pictures Sourced from:

https://www.pexels.com/photo/wood-dawn-landscape-nature-5645446/

https://www.pexels.com/photo/alcoholic-beverage-bar-beer-beverage-1269025/

https://www.pexels.com/photo/brown-concrete-building-near-green-trees-under-white-clouds-5580132/

https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-in-red-sleeveless-dress-with-canada-flag-printed-background-1267369/

Stellar Home For Sale in Lake of the Woods, VA! 207 Madison Circle offered at $249,900 Now UNDER CONTRACT!!

Welcome to 207 Madison Circle! The first thing you will notice is the water views from your front door! This solidly built home is full of light and offers flex spaces on both levels. You will love the spacious living and dining areas, along with three bedrooms (one with attached bath as main floor primary) and flex space (classroom or office, perhaps?) on the main level. The upper level boasts either a private guest suite with en-suite bath or second owner’s suite with upper deck access, which would also make a great classroom or private office! Relax on the other spacious deck and enjoy the sounds of nature while you overlook your private, deep (246+ feet), level, tree lined backyard. Wait…there’s more….. an oversized one car detached garage with workshop space offering its own entrance, and a shed. Even though this home is being sold “As Is,” don’t let that fool you! You are already starting out with equity! For more information on 207 Madison Circle, Click Here!

Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Lake of the Woods VA or Waterfront property in Virginia we are your Real Estate Advisors for Stafford, Fredericksburg, Spotsylvania, Locust Grove, Central Virginia, and Greater Virginia. Thinking of selling? In any market condition, “what is my home worth?” is the #1 question asked by home owners. If you wish to sell your home, it needs to be sold for top dollar and in a timely manner. Pricing your home accurately, Pat will partner with you to make the selling process so much easier. Get started today by calling us at (540) 388-2541 or contact Pat Licata.

To see available Lake of the Woods properties, please visit our site.

Champion Ice House Set For Spring Reopening in Gordonsville, VA!

The historic Memorial Hall in Gordonsville, VA is being transformed into Champion Ice House! Champion Brewing Company, a very popular brewery in Charloesville, VA, is partnering with Craig Hartman, owner and chef of BBQ Exchange to bring you this very exciting addtion to Gordonsville! Expected to open in spring of 2021, Champion Ice House is looking to create that same spark that captivated the residents and visitors in Charlotesville, with Craig Hartmans focusing on Southern fried chicken as the signature flagship dish!

With years of combined experience and a desire to provide high-quality food and drinks in a historical part of the area, Champion Ice House is poised to go down in history as one of the go-to restaurants in Gordonsville!

Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Fredericksburg, Stafford, Orange, Locust Grove, Culpeper, Northern Virginia or even Maryland or DC, we are your Real Estate team committed to finding the perfect home for you! Thinking of selling? In any market condition, “what is my home worth?” is the #1 question asked by homeowners. If you wish to sell your home, it needs to be sold for top dollar, and in a timely manner. Pricing your home accurately, one of our area expert advisors will partner with you to make the selling process so much easier. Get started today by calling us at (540) 388-2541 or contact Pat Licata.

To see available properties, please visit our website licatagroup.com

market stats

The LOW-down on Real Estate at the Lake 2020 By Pat Licata

The continued inventory shortage experienced by most regions of the country was clearly evident in Lake of the Woods again in 2020. Listings decreased by 11.6%, from 397 in 2019 to 351 in 2020, while closed sales were up 4% from 301 to 313. New construction accounted for 34 of the 313 sales. The median sold price increased a healthy 7.87% year over year from $270000 to $291,250 in 2020.

Of the 313 total sales reported in 2020, only 8, or 2 1/2%, were either short sales or foreclosures. At the height of the distressed real estate market in 2010, a whopping 43% of all sales were either short sales or foreclosures.

Now let’s look at our steady growth over the past five years:

In 2017, there were 291 total sales, a whopping 21.7% increase over 2016 at 239. The median sales price climbed to $239,000.

In 2018, 234 homes sold, which was an 8% decrease from 2017. The median sales price rose to $249,900. In 2019, we realized a 28.63% gain in homes over 2018, with a total of 301 selling.

Average days on the market (DOM), which is the number of days it takes from the time a property is listed until it goes under contract, has steadily declined from 117 in 2016 to 37 in 2020.

It’s also telling to note that a significant number of lots have sold in the past five years.  From January 1, 2016-Decemeber 31, 2020, a total of 196 lots sold: 24 in 2016; 37 in 2017; 45 in 2018, 41 in 2019; and 49 in 2020. There simply are very few lots left in LOW.

New construction has been climbing, as well. 2016 realized 28 new construction starts; in 2017, there were 30; in 2018, there were 34; in 2019, there were 48; and there were a whopping 66 new starts in 2020.

Another notable statistic is the dramatic rise in average sold price to original list price ratio. It has steadily risen from 93.9% in 2016 to 99.2% in 2020.

According to Freddie Mac and the Mortgage Bankers Association, mortgage rates were expected to stay within the 3.7-3.9% range in 2020. Interestingly, rates were surely seen well below those numbers. As of today, it’s possible to obtain a 15-year fixed rate below 2%, with the 30-year rate below 3%. Financial experts are expecting another year of low interest rates.

The prognosis for 2021, as it was in 2020, is excellent! In LOW, there are 9 homes active on the market as of 1/14/2021. In January of 2019, there were 57. Low, stable rates and hopefully more inventory should propel us to experience another year of healthy sales and appreciation.

Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Fredericksburg, Stafford, Orange, Locust Grove, Culpeper, Northern Virginia or even Maryland or DC, we are your Real Estate team committed to finding the perfect home for you! Thinking of selling? In any market condition, “what is my home worth?” is the #1 question asked by homeowners. If you wish to sell your home, it needs to be sold for top dollar, and in a timely manner. Pricing your home accurately, one of our area expert advisors will partner with you to make the selling process so much easier. Get started today by calling us at (540) 388-2541 or contact Pat Licata.

To see available properties, please visit our website licatagroup.com

Why You Shouldn’t Wait Until Spring to Sell Your Home

Key Takeaways:

  • After a turbulent 2020, many homeowners are holding out until spring to list their properties.
  • Though spring is usually the busiest season for real estate, now is the time to take advantage of high prices, low interest rates, and skyrocketing demand for homes.
  • Not sure when to list? Get in touch with us today to explore your options!

Here’s Why Sellers Should Capitalize on 2021’s Hot Winter Housing Market

It’s safe to say that 2020 was a challenging year, both in real estate and for the world as a whole. And as we celebrate new beginnings, many homeowners are pondering a move at some point during 2021. Traditionally, spring is considered the best time of year to sell a home—but thanks to a number of factors, this is no longer the case.

Still not sure if now is the right time to move? Here’s why you shouldn’t wait any longer to put your home on the market.

You won’t have much competition

Modern for sale sign

If you haven’t seen as many “For Sale” signs in your neighborhood recently, you’re not alone. According to the National Association of Realtors, available inventory has plummeted by nearly 40% over the last few months, which is fantastic news for today’s sellers. 

Dwindling supply and high buyer demand will put your home in the spotlight if you decide to list this winter, and it means you’ll be in the driver’s seat during negotiations. Because there are fewer homes on the market right now, you also won’t have to compete with other sellers waiting to move in the spring. 

Interest rates are still low

House with coin stacks and percentages

Interest rates reached record lows in 2020, which tempted many buyers to enter the market even amidst a pandemic. In November, rates actually dipped below 2.3%—that’s the lowest they’ve been in recorded history!

Most experts believe interest rates won’t spike during 2021, but we’ll probably see some slight increases as the economy continues to bounce back. Listing your home before rates go up comes with a lot of benefits, and it might even be the smartest financial decision you ever make.

Low interest rates help drive buyer demand and make homeownership more affordable. As a seller, that means you’ll draw in a larger audience of financially-qualified buyers and maybe even sell faster than you expect. If you plan on buying another home, you’ll be able to secure a great rate, too.

Home prices keep rising

Calculating home prices

If you’ve lived in your current home for more than a few years, now could be the perfect time to sell and cash in on your equity. In a recent study, the National Association of Realtors found that home prices have increased by a whopping 13.4% since 2019. In 2021, prices are expected to increase by 8%—and in 2022, that projection drops to just 5%.

While it may be tempting to “time” your sale to get the best possible price, selling your home when you know the market is doing well is a surefire way to yield an impressive profit. And if you’re ever curious about how much your home is worth right now, you can always ask your agent for a free home valuation.

The market could change before spring

Aerial shot of a suburban neighborhood

As the market continues to recover, it’s still hard to know what will happen in 2021—after all, nobody predicted last year’s pandemic and economic collapse! Most experts aren’t expecting another sudden crash, but that doesn’t mean you should wait until spring to list your home.  

Right now, we’re seeing a record amount of home sales, as well as a surprising number of motivated winter buyers. So if you want to be smart about your move, it makes sense to sell sooner rather than later.

Get the Most Out of Your Home Sale

If you’re thinking about selling your home this winter, contact us today to get started. We have plenty of resources to guide you through every step of the process, and we can even help you buy your next home after you sell.

Want to know how much home prices have risen in your neighborhood? Be sure to ask about our complimentary home value assessment!

The Licata Group Gives Back to the Orange County Community!!

At the Licata Group, we truly pride ourselves in our Customer Service. In 2020 we received a total 102 NEW reviews from our wonderful clients, bringing us to a grand total of 238 reviews and counting!

At the beginning of the year, we made a pledge to donate $5 for each review received, bringing our total donation to $510. We want to continue to “Give Where We Live” and contribute to our local community, so a total of: $255 was donated to the local Wilderness Food Pantry and $255 donated to the Orange County Animal Shelter. We are continuing our promise of donating $5 per each new review in 2021 and hope to donate more next year!!

If we have ever had the pleasure of working together in helping you buy or sell real estate, and you would like to share your experience – we would love to hear from you!! Click here to leave The Licata Group a review! If you would like to see what some of our past clients have said about us, be sure to check out our review page! We look forward to another prosperous year in helping you with all your real estate needs!

 Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Fredericksburg, Stafford, Orange, Locust Grove, Culpeper, Northern Virginia or even Maryland or DC, we are your Real Estate team committed to finding the perfect home for you! Thinking of selling? In any market condition, “what is my home worth?” is the #1 question asked by homeowners. If you wish to sell your home, it needs to be sold for top dollar, and in a timely manner. Pricing your home accurately, one of our area expert advisors will partner with you to make the selling process so much easier. Get started today by calling us at (540) 388-2541 or contact Pat Licata.

To see available properties, please visit our website licatagroup.com

Beautiful Home with Brick Fireplace For Sale in Lake of the Woods, VA! 129 Parliament Street Offered at $249,900 Now UNDER CONTRACT!!

Welcome home to 129 Parliament Street in amenity-rich Lake of the Woods! You’ll love the location within walking distance of the pool, park, and Community Center! Upon entering, the light-filled living room with soaring ceilings and a brick fireplace for those chilly nights will wow you. The kitchen boasts upgraded appliances, breakfast bar and a large dining area with access to the deck. Off the deck you’ll find a private, level back yard perfect for gardening and enjoying outdoor activities. The main level also offers the owner’s bedroom, full bath and laundry. The upper level features a loft which is open to the living room below. This would make an awesome office or craft room, and it would be perfect as a virtual learning area. There’s even a private deck off of the loft! The upper level features two additional bedrooms and a full bath. For more information on 129 Parliament Street, Click Here!

Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Lake of the Woods VA or Waterfront property in Virginia we are your Real Estate Advisors for Stafford, Fredericksburg, Spotsylvania, Locust Grove, Central Virginia, and Greater Virginia. Thinking of selling? In any market condition, “what is my home worth?” is the #1 question asked by home owners. If you wish to sell your home, it needs to be sold for top dollar and in a timely manner. Pricing your home accurately, Pat will partner with you to make the selling process so much easier. Get started today by calling us at (540) 388-2541 or contact Pat Licata.

To see available Lake of the Woods properties, please visit our site.

market stats

Current Real Estate Statistics for Lake of the Woods


Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Lake of the Woods VA or Waterfront property in Virginia we are your Real Estate Advisors for Stafford, Fredericksburg, Spotsylvania, Locust Grove, Central Virginia, and Greater Virginia. Thinking of selling? In any market condition, “what is my home worth?” is the #1 question asked by home owners. If you wish to sell your home, it needs to be sold for top dollar and in a timely manner. Pricing your home accurately, Pat will partner with you to make the selling process so much easier. Get started today by calling us at (540) 388-2541 or contact Pat Licata.

To see available Lake of the Woods properties, please visit our site.

market stats 2020

Lake of the Woods December 2020 Market Statistics


In December, 25 homes sold in Lake of the Woods.
1 sold between $130-199,000;
4 sold between $200-249,000;
8 sold between $249,900-299,000;
8 sold between $300-399,000;
3 sold between $400-599,000;
1 home sold over $1,000,000!

13 Active Listings for Sale
42 Homes Under Contract
315 Homes Sold since January 1, 2020.

Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Lake of the Woods VA or Waterfront property in Virginia we are your Real Estate Advisors for Stafford, Fredericksburg, Spotsylvania, Locust Grove, Central Virginia, and Greater Virginia. Thinking of selling? In any market condition, “what is my home worth?” is the #1 question asked by home owners. If you wish to sell your home, it needs to be sold for top dollar and in a timely manner. Pricing your home accurately, Pat will partner with you to make the selling process so much easier. Get started today by calling us at (540) 388-2541 or contact Pat Licata.