Fully Renovated Townhome in Stafford VA! 119 Oak Drive Now UNDER CONTRACT!!

You’ll love this fully renovated end unit, town home in Stafford Oaks. Once you enter you’ll be greeted by beautifully updated floors, neutral paint throughout, modern updates, and tons of space to spread out. From the chef’s kitchen to fine finishes throughout, you’ll be wowed by all these upgrades! Finished basement with 4th bedroom and a beautifully updated bathroom are sure to please. And…you’ll enjoy relaxing in your spacious, fenced in back yard. Conveniently located near shopping, restaurants, and 95. This home won’t last long! For more information about this listing, Click Here!

 Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Fredericksburg, Stafford, Orange, Locust Grove, Culpeper, Norther 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

Gorgeous Home with Stone Accents in Lake of the Woods, VA! 104 Cedar Court offered at $274,900

The stone accents welcome you to 104 Cedar Court. Once you enter, you are greeted by gleaming hardwood floors, a cozy corner fireplace, fine finishes, and a sought-after open floor plan! The ample windows and sky lights allow the sun to shine in this well-maintained, updated, move in ready Lake of the Woods home. You can enjoy relaxing on your screened in porch or gardening in your large, level yard! For more information about this listing, 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.

The Essentials for Entertaining Big in a Small Home

homeowner setting dining tableWith the holiday season approaching, many homeowners are starting to plan get-togethers with friends or family. While entertaining can be more of a challenge in a smaller home, it’s not impossible to host a memorable dinner party with your loved ones if you’re working with limited space.
Here are a few tips for throwing a large dinner party in a small area.

Before Guests Arrive, Clean and Clear Your Home

You don’t have to put as much effort into cleaning and decluttering as if you were selling a home; the basics will do.
Put away any unnecessary furniture, home décor, and kitchen appliances before the dinner party. Clean and dust the rooms that guests will visit: bathrooms, the kitchen, and the dining area. If you have pets, don’t forget to vacuum upholstery and stash toys or the litter box out of sight.

Get Creative with Guest Seating

You likely don’t keep a dozen matching chairs in storage just for dinner parties. Show off your creativity by relocating chairs, stools, benches, or ottomans currently in your home around the dinner table.

appetizers on raised food standsMaximize Your Table Space

Invest in a tiered platter for dinner parties. Raising the serving plates gives the appearance of more space on your counters and tables and keeps your serving stations from looking cramped.
To further free up space on your dining room table, keep the centerpiece decorations to a minimum. Instead, hang decorations from your walls or ceiling to maximize your space.

Trying to Make the Most of Your Space?

If you’re downsizing but still want to entertain friends and family in your new home, there are many ways to make the most of your space while still enjoying memorable occasions with your loved ones. As real estate experts, we can share downsizing tips and help you find a home that’s just the right size. Contact us to learn more.

 Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Fredericksburg, Stafford, Orange, Locust Grove, Culpeper, Norther 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 2 Fireplaces in Lake of the Woods! 1010 Eastover Pkwy Offered at $379,900

Relax on the front porch, sunroom, deck or screened porch! This move in ready, custom built home located near the small lake on a partially wooded lot boasts fabulous architecture and 4,000+ finished square feet Gleaming hardwoods, bright eat-in kitchen, open dining area/living room, 2 fireplaces, 2 laundry areas and space for a second kitchen will wow you! You’ll love the lake life!

Located in a private, gated, secured community, Lake of the Woods offers anything and everything you could possibly want. Home to two lakes (the 550 acre main lake and a 35 acre “fishing lake”, a golf course, an equestrian center, a fire and rescue department, and a church all within the gates, Lake of the Woods simply has it all. Whether your passion is boating, water skiing, kayaking, golfing, horseback riding, or simply taking in the breathtaking views from the clubhouse while enjoying a fabulous meal, from your own deck or yard, or from one of the beaches, you won’t be disappointed! Perhaps you’d like a game of bridge or volunteering your time and talents…Lake of the Woods offers more than 60 clubs and/or organizations from which you may choose to become involved. Located in Orange County, we are fortunate to enjoy low real estate taxes. Coupled with home prices ranging from $150,000+ to over $2,000,000, Lake of the Woods is the perfect community for both full-time residents, as well as weekenders. But don’t take my word for it, please come see for yourself! I will gladly give you a tour of Lake of the Woods by boat and by car so that you may experience why I love 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.

Home Organization Tips for the New Year

dining area with four chairs and a table

Now that 2020 is here and the busyness of the holidays is over, many people are setting New Year’s resolutions — whether personal, professional, or real estate-related. It is the perfect time to set goals and welcome the new year with a fresh start. And what better way to start the new year fresh than by cleaning and organizing your home?

10 Ways to Get Rid of Last Year’s Clutter

“Out with the old, in with the new” as the saying goes. To help you start fresh with a clean and organized home, here are ten tips for kicking out the clutter and keeping it out in the new year.

1. Tackle Holiday Messes First

The busyness of the holidays often brings messes — shredded wrapping paper, loose Christmas tree needles, half-eaten leftovers in the fridge. Cleaning up from the holidays is a great place to start, and HGTV offers a great article about how to clean your home in 45 minutes.

small vacuum cleaner on dark floors in a home2. Vacuum the Floors

Now that the holidays are over and the constant flow of guests has diminished, give your floors a little TLC with a thorough vacuuming. Even this simple cleaning task can make a world of difference in the look and feel of your home.

3. Open the Windows

Freshen up your living spaces by letting in the natural light. Opening the windows helps make your home seem more inviting to both you and your visitors.

4. Refresh and Rearrange

Tired of the layout in your living room or bedrooms? Mix it up for the new year to add flow and a fresh look to your home.

5. Dust in High and Low Places

Give your rooms a thorough dusting to get rid of last year’s grime, starting with the lowest shelf on the bookcase and moving up to the ceiling fans and the hardly seen areas behind your shelves.

6. Replace Light Bulbs and Fix Squeaky Doors

Have a minor fix that you haven’t gotten around to correcting yet? Maybe it’s the burnt-out lightbulb in your bathroom or squeaky door to your closet. Make those tiny repairs now and your home will start to feel new again.

7. Organize and Declutter

We all have that one space we use as a catch-all for our miscellaneous clutter, whether it’s a closet, a chair, or a table. This year, keep the clutter at bay by getting rid of unused items, removing the clutter catch-all, or organizing everything in labeled bins.

8. Donate or Discard Old Clothes

What better way to say “out with the old” than to get rid of any shirts, jackets, pants, or shoes that you no longer wear? Now you’ll have more space in your closets and more room for new clothes.

bathroom clean of grime and clutter9. Deep Clean Your Bathroom

A clean shower door and bathroom wall can do wonders to enhance the overall appearance of your bathroom. DIY Network has several easy cleaning tricks for bathroom sinks, shower heads, and toilets that you can use to get rid of the built-up soap scum and grime.

10. Put Out a New Welcome Mat

What better way to welcome the new year and your guests than with a new, clean welcome mat? You’ll impress your visitors from the moment they walk in, and that curb appeal can do wonders for how even your neighbors perceive your home.

Decluttering Works Well During Home Staging, Too

These home organization tips can work wonders when you sell your home, since the foundation of home staging includes decluttering and cleaning to give buyers the best first impression. If you are selling your home in the new year, we can recommend other home staging tips and resources to help you sell your home quickly and for top dollar.

We hope you had a wonderful New Year’s and are looking forward to what 2020 has in store. Let us know if there is any way we can help make the home selling process easier on you in the new year.

Raffle for 2 Tickets to SOLD OUT Murder Mystery Night on March 7th!

Friends of Orange County Animal Shelter and The Inn At Willow Grove are proud to present the 3rd Annual Paw Prints and Predictions 80’s Murder Mystery Dinner & Silent Auction, and we’ve got two tickets to give away! It’s gonna be a tubular night with a classic case of who done it! The dinner will be on Saturday March 7th with doors opening at 6:00 PM, and the show starting at 7:30 PM. The dinner will be hosted at The Inn At Willow Grove, with all proceeds going to support the Orange County Animal Shelter Emergency Vet Fund.

How do you win the two tickets? By simply bringing in items to donate to the OC Animal Shelter! All items are accepted, however the Shelter has mentioned that wet dog and cat food, bleach, and detergent are the top four most needed items. Please bring all donations to our office at 36111 Goodwin Drive, Locust Grove, VA 22508 in order to be entered to win the two free tickets. The winner will be randomly selected on Friday, 2/28. This is a great opportunity to help your community, and possibly win a night that is sure to be like totally far out!

Civic Club Speakers to Present “Living Easier with Less” on Wednesday, 2/12 at 7PM

Back by popular demand…On Wednesday, February 12, at 7:00pm in the Clubhouse Great Hall, two guest speakers will address the art of organizing and decluttering our homes and methods for removal of the items in order to accomplish an easier way of life. Even if one’s home is the perfect fit, there still may be items that can be “released” for simpler living. For many people, the stress comes from not knowing how to take the first step of thinking through what should stay or go, and for others it may be not knowing how to sell or where to donate items no longer needed or wanted.

Linda Clevenger, Professional Organizer and Owner of Organization Direct, will be our first speaker. Linda has been helping homeowners downsize, right-size, purge, and eliminate items from their homes for over 12 years. She helps clients walk through the process of making decisions regarding the need to keep items and how it will impact life both now and in the future. As the spouse of a disabled Veteran, she is passionate about helping other Veterans and those who struggle with the day to day task of living a clutter-free life.

Cathy France, owner of CopperStone Auctions and Estates, will provide options for the sale of items no longer wanted or needed. CopperStone’s offerings include estate sales from the home, consignment and auction services, and complete buyout of a home’s contents. And of course, the option always exists to donate items to organizations such as the LOW Lions.

There will be time allotted for questions, and we hope to see you there!

Thanks, Pat

foreclosure and short sales

Short Sale & Foreclosure: How Are They Different?

Short Sale & Foreclosure: How Are They Different?

As unfortunate as it can be when homeowners fall behind on mortgage payments and must face the possibility of losing their homes, short sales and foreclosures provide them options for moving on financially. The terms are often used interchangeably, but they’re actually quite different, with varying timelines and financial impact on the homeowner. Here’s a brief overview.
A short sale comes into play when a homeowner needs to sell their home but the home is worth less than the remaining balance that they owe. The lender can allow the homeowner to sell the home for less than the amount owed, freeing the homeowner from the financial predicament.
On the buyer side, short sales typically take three to four months to complete and many of the closing and repair costs are shifted from the seller to the lender.
On the other hand, a foreclosure occurs when a homeowner can no longer make payments on their home so the bank begins the process of repossessing it. A foreclosure usually moves much faster than a short sale and is more financially damaging to the homeowner.
After foreclosure the bank can sell the home in a foreclosure auction. For buyers, foreclosures are riskier than short sales, because homes are often bought sight unseen, with no inspection or warranty.

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 2019

The LOWdown on Real Estate at the Lake 2019 By Pat Licata

The continued inventory shortage experienced by most regions of the country was evident in Lake of the Woods again in 2019. Listings increased only 6.4%, from 373 in 2018 to 397 in 2019, while closed sales were up 28.6%. New construction accounted for 30 of the 301 sales. The median sold price increased a healthy 8% year over year from $249,900 to $270,000.

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Of the 301 total sales reported in 2019, only 5, or 1 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.

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

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In 2015, there were 247 sales, with 15% being distressed. Those total sales represented almost a 30% gain over 2014, and the median sales price was $210,000.  

In 2016, the market was quite flat compared to 2015 in regards to total sales, which held at 243 with a decrease in distressed sales to 11.1. However, 2016 saw the median price jump to $225,000, a healthy 7.1% increase.

In 2017, there were 294 total sales, a whopping 21.1% increase over 2016 with only 5.8% being distressed. The median sales price climbed to $239,000.

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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 127 in 2015 to 57 in 2019.

It’s also telling to note that a significant number of lots have sold in the past five years.  From January 1, 2015-Decemeber 31, 2019, 184 lots exchanged, with 41 occurring in 2019, down from 55 in 2018. There simply aren’t that many lots left in LOW.

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New construction has been climbing, as well. 2015 realized 41 new construction starts; in 2016, there were 28; in 2017, there were 30; in 2018, there were 34; and in 2019, there were 48.

In 2020, according to Freddie Mac and the Mortgage Bankers Association, mortgage rates are expected to stay within the 3.7-3.9% range.

The prognosis for 2020, as it was in 2019, is excellent! In LOW, there are 57 homes active on the market as of 1/14/2020. In January of 2018, there were 62. Low, stable rates and hopefully more inventory should propel us to experience healthy sales and appreciation.

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.

4 Tips to Ace Your First Home Purchase

If you ask a homeowner what it was like to buy their first home, they’ll probably mention a few things they’d change if they could do it all again. While it’s impossible to know everything about the home-buying process beforehand, you can still prepare yourself for what lies ahead—and figure out how to avoid some potential pitfalls. Not sure where to begin? Here are some key pointers to keep in mind before starting your search.

You’re Buying More Than a House

Neighborhood

We all know the phrase “love at first sight,” and it can certainly apply to homes, too! Even if you step inside a home and instantly fall in love, it’s crucial to step back and consider the whole picture before making a purchase.

When you buy your first property, you’re investing in more than just four walls. It’s worth paying attention to things like a home’s location, neighborhood, and physical condition, too. Even if you find that open concept kitchen you’ve been dreaming of, it might not be the right fit if it’s in the wrong community or if the rest of the house requires out-of-budget repairs. It’s best to stay realistic and listen to your agent’s (and home inspector’s) advice. Remember, this is likely one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make, so spend your money wisely!

Down Payments Are Different for Everyone

Piggy bank and house figure

So many would-be buyers are scared of homeownership for one reason: the down payment. Traditionally, you’d put down around 20% on a home and spend anywhere from 10 to 30 years paying your lender back. However, you actually have more flexibility than you might expect. 

Depending on your credit history, location, and occupation, you could be eligible for loans that require as little as 0% down. However, making a larger down payment means you’ll pay less interest to your lender in the long run. Be sure to shop around for the right fit and reach out to your agent with any questions—they’re always available to help you out. 

Prepare for Extra Expenses

House fund coin jar

Homeownership often comes with unexpected expenses, especially right after you move in. When you’re setting a budget for your big purchase, consider adding some wiggle room to allow for any additional and long term costs. You don’t want to realize that you can’t afford your home after you’ve purchased it!

Wondering what kinds of expenses can come up? Inspections, homeowner’s insurance, prepaid taxes and other various closing costs, HOA dues, and repairs are just a few possibilities. You’ll pay for some of these before or at the closing, but certain recurring costs will have to be factored into your monthly budget. 

Get Pre-Approved Before You Start Searching

Tax forms with phone and coffee cup

Once you’ve made the decision to buy, it’s tempting to start looking at listings right away. However, you might want to press pause and complete an essential step before you start scheduling showings. Getting pre-approved for your loan will show sellers and agents that you’re serious about buying—and it can tell you exactly how much you can afford to spend.

Ready to start the pre-approval process? First, you’ll want to get your finances in order and shop around for the right lender. Be sure to have all of your important documents on hand, such as your W-2 tax form, paystubs, and social security card. Most lenders allow you to apply online, and within a few business days, you’ll know whether you’ve been approved or not, as well as the conditions of the loan. 

Are You a First-Time Buyer?

Buying your first home is a big deal, and it’s important to have the right agent by your side throughout the process. If you’re ready to start your search, feel free to reach out to us with any questions. We can’t wait to help jumpstart your journey to homeownership!

 Whether you’re looking for homes for sale in Fredericksburg, Stafford, Orange, Locust Grove, Norther 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