Simple Staging Tips

For those selling their home, staging can make the difference between a home sitting on the market for months on end or flying off the market in a matter of days. A survey was done by Coldwell Banker Real Estate found that homes that had been staged spent half the time on the market compared to those that were not. In addition, the staged homes sold for more than 6% above asking price. Staging also makes online photos stand out more and an NAR survey found that 90% of home buyers search online first.  The Ellen Clark Team has put together some helpful pointers for staging your home to make the process easier.

Interior:

  • Remove any excess furniture and rearrange/move furniture that could be better suited for other rooms. You want to ensure that the potential buyer can see their self and their things in the space. Create a natural flow for each room. For example, living room furniture should be set up for conversation and entertainment.
  • Re-paint in neutral colors.
  • Add lamps, rugs, and mirrors to update rooms and make them appear larger.
  • Replace outdated or worn hardware throughout the house including light switch plates, cabinet handles, faucets, the toilet seat, etc. These little details make all the difference!
  • Add houseplants/flowers to create focal points in rooms.
  • Remove personal photos and de-clutter all areas of the home. Pay particular attention to counter-tops.
  • Remove excess clothing from closets. You want to highlight the space and have it not appear smaller by over-crowding. Also, make sure all hangers are faced in the same direction.
  • Simple things like new hand towels and decor in the bathroom can make a huge impact. Choose colors that pop and match.
  • If your bedspread is outdated or does not compliment the theme of the room, consider investing in a new bed set. Try to choose accessories and bedding that are gender neutral.
  • Add area rugs as needed and make sure wood floors are clean. If the home has carpet it is advised to have it professionally cleaned or redone depending on its condition from wear and tear. Consider having wood floors refinished if they are in bad shape.
  • Clean! Windows, stainless steel, under the sink, you name it! If your home is sparkly and fresh people will be more apt to put in their offer. Make sure you get all the grime that accrues over time in the kitchen and bathrooms. These are areas people are sure to notice.  A little trick for eliminating odors: put a lemon half in the garbage disposal. This will release a natural fresh clean aroma.
  • After windows are clean, open up blinds/curtains to allow natural light in and show off the view of your home.
  • Organize cabinets/cupboards. Pack up all dishware except one matching set, same goes for glassware and stemware. This will create more space.
  • Repair any squeaky doors or cabinets. WD-40 is your friend.
  • Think about adding dimmers for lighting. This is a small addition, but people love these in living, family, and dining rooms.

Exterior

  • Check the gutters and roof for dry rot and moss. Clean the gutters.
  • Repair roofing, siding, and windows as needed. This not only improves the visual aesthetic of the home but also has avoided any devaluing of the home during the inspection.
  • Power wash the exterior including the deck, sidewalk, and vinyl siding. These can look brand new afterward but be careful as if not done properly can remove paint.
  • Patch up the driveway and concrete walkways.
  • Repaint the front door, fence, and any other wood features outside that could use a fresh coat.
  • Mow the lawn and re-seed/add sod if needed.
  • Cut back overgrown shrubs and trees. Remove dead debris. Clean up flower beds and add new flowers if needed.
  • Add potted plants to walkway or front porch of the home.
  • Update exterior hardware including door handles, the mailbox, and the house numbers. These are low-cost updates that can really make your home stand out.
  • Accessorize the exterior. Add a seating area to the front porch or a new doormat. You could also hang a seasonal wreath on your freshly painted door.
  • Keep porch light on at night in case potential buyers drive by during the evening hours.

We hope these tips will be helpful in the selling process of your home. If you do not have time for DIY staging you can also consult a local staging professional. Remember, details make all the difference in getting the most return on your investments and ensuring your home sells quickly. Contact Patricia Clark with the Ellen Clark Team if you are looking to list or buy a home TODAY! 804-387-2976/ patricia@ellenclark.com

New Listing In Sherrington

http://see.tourvahomes.com/public/vtour/display/807763?idx=1

6353 Greenback Drive is located in the Sherrington neighborhood of Mechanicsville, Va. This neighborhood is just minutes from the beloved Pole Green Park and the Pole Green Produce Market. It is close to 295, 360, 301, 95 and 64 and a twenty-minute drive to the City of Richmond. The Sherrington neighborhood community association has a pool and clubhouse. 6353 Greenback is a part of the Hanover School District: Pole Green Elementary, Oak Knoll Middle, and Hanover High Schools.

The home features a charming wrap around front porch. The entry hall and kitchen have wood flooring. There is a first-floor bedroom with door leading out to the front porch and has a full bathroom. The family room has a gas fireplace with access to the covered back porch which overlooks the large private back yard. The kitchen has beautiful oak cabinets, a new dishwasher, tile back splash, built in shelving, display cabinets, pantry, and a large eat-in area that open to the family room. The second floor has three other bedrooms and amazing closet space. The master bath has a double vanity, shower, jetted tub and HUGE walk in closet. There is a huge bedroom with great natural lighting. There is also a large walk up unfinished attic, great for storage but could also be easily finished. This home has vinyl siding, vinyl windows, a paved driveway, an attached 2 car garage, and a full irrigation system for the yard. This home has newer HVAC and a whole house generator.

With 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms, this is the home you’ve been looking for. The asking price is $320,000 and with the market being hot it won’t be around for long. Contact Patricia Clark with the Ellen Clark Team to learn more about 6353 Greenback Drive and to schedule a showing.

By Phone:(804) 387-2976

By Email: patricia@ellenclark.com

Birkdale Transitional Home Just Listed!

http://see.tourvahomes.com/public/vtour/display/794271?idx=1

The Ellen Clark Team is featuring a charming home located on .5 acres in Chesterfield County. This 1.5 story home sits on the 4th hole of the Birkdale Golf Course and was built in 2000. Its location features great local amenities, shopping, and schools ( Spring Run, Bailey Bridge, and Manchester). With an asking price of $315,000, 8814 Merseyside Lane is the home of your dreams!

Features include:

  • 2,416 SQ feet
  • 4 bedrooms
  • 2 full bath one half
  • Wonderful views of the water
  • Association offers clubhouse, golf course, and pool
  • 1st-floor master bedroom
  • Walk in closets/storage
  • 9 ft+ ceilings
  • Ceiling fans
  • Recessed lighting
  • Carpet
  • Wood flooring with cherry inlay
  • Trey Ceilings
  • 2 story family room
  • Gas fireplace
  • Eat in kitchen
  • Pantry
  • Formal dining room
  • Jetted Tub in master bath
  • Walk in attic
  • Spacious bedrooms
  • Country front porch
  • Maintenance free vinyl siding
  • 2 car garage
  • New water heater
  • Security system
  • Convenient to 360/288/150/95

This beauty is sure to move quickly so call Patricia Clark at 804-387-2976 or email at patricia@ellenclark.com to schedule your showing TODAY!

Memorial Day 2017

The Ellen Clark Team wants to commemorate, honor, and thank those that have served our nation. This extended weekend is full of local events and activities to partake in. Some of our readers may be headed out of town but for those who are staying in the Richmond area, here are all the fun and educational festivities that will be going on over the next few days.

Weekend

  • Kings Dominion: May 27th-29th All active and retired military personnel will receive free admission. The water park opens May 27th and there will be extended firework shows all weekend.
  • Friday Cheers: Hosted by Venture Richmond on Browns Island. This week will be an RVA Music Night with Ohbliv at 6 pm, Angelica Garcia at 7 pm, and Peoples Blues of Richmond at 8 pm.  The music styles range from indie blues to psychedelic rock. Entry for the event is $5 this week and children 12 and under are free.
  • “James and the Giant Peach Jr”: An adventurous musical adapted from Robert Dahl’s book will be featured May 25th-28th at the Glen Allen Cultural Arts Center. Music and lyrics come from Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (LaLa Land).
  • Music for Two at Trinity: Jessica King (bassoon) and Kari Boyer (flute) will perform works by Bach, Beethoven, Clarke, Gabaye, Merrit, and Mignone from 7-8 pm May 26th at Trinity Luthern Church. Admission is free but donations are accepted.
  • Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden “Wild Art: A Journey Off Canvas”: An event series kicks off this Saturday. Studio 23 will have a mobile printmaking set up outside of the Conservatory West Wing from 10 am to 4 pm. “Tale of Chef Kale” theater performances run from 10 am to 1 pm at the Ian Robertson Pavillion. There will be a water play area and activity STEAM stations for the children from SCRAP RVA  from 10 am to 2 pm. The garden will also be hosting the Richmond Rose Society Show May 27th and 28th. All activities are included with admission. On Monday the Garden will offer free admission to military personnel, first responders, and their dependents.
  • Gallmeyer Farms Memorial Day Saturday Celebration: Admission, music, hayrides, and activities for the children will be hosted from 10 am to 5 pm in Henrico. The farm has invited all branches of US Military and there will be equipment displays all day. There will be food vendors, arts and crafts, along with strawberry picking.
  • Henricus Military Muster: Henricus Historical Park in Chester will be offering 17th-century military training from 10 am to 5 pm Saturday the 27th. This will include marching and fighting with the armor of the time. Admission is free for those with military ID. $8 for adults and $6 for children.
  • Richmond Wine Festival: Local wine, cider, and mead will be featured at James River Wine Cellars. Food trucks will be on site. The event is dog and child-friendly. It runs from 12 to 5 pm. Tickets range in price from $25-$60.
  • Foundry Market: An artisan craft fair will be hosted at the American Civil War Museum at Tredegar from 12 to 4 pm Sunday the 28th. The event will include handmade products from local vendors, food trucks, and craftsmen displays.
  • The Movies: Both highly anticipated “Baywatch” (featuring Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron) and “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales” (featuring  Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, and Javier Bardam) are released this weekend.

Monday

  • Memorial Day 5K or 12K: This run, walk, or roll will go from 8-11 am at the West Striker West Creek Field and registration for the event ends at 11:59 pm Sunday. It is hosted by The Race Team RVA Running Club and sponsored by YMCA of Greater Richmond. This year’s proceeds will benefit Team RWB whose mission is “To enrich the lives of American’s veterans by connecting them to their community through physical and social activity.”
  • Maymont Park: Both the nature center and mansion will be open for Memorial Day 10 am to 5 pm. Typically indoor exhibits are closed on Mondays.
  • John Marshall Cadet Memorial Day Observance: Music from the John Marshall Alumni Band along with taps, a wreath laying ceremony and rifle salute will be hosted at Hollywood Cemetery. This will be to honor those cadets who served in the WWI, WWII, Korean and Vietnam wars. The ceremony starts at noon.
  • Historic Cemeteries Bus Tour: The Valentine will be hosting bus tours of 18th and 19th-century cemeteries to commemorate the holiday. The tour will include the African Burial Ground and Shockoe, Hebrew, Oakwood, St. Johns, and Woodland cemeteries. Buses will run from 1 pm to 5 pm. Tickets are $20 for members $25 for non-members and reservations are required. If you are a veteran the tour is free but you will need to call (804) 649-0711 ext. 301 to secure your spot.
  • Dogwood Dell: This Monday will begin the 61st Festival of the Arts series for the park. At 4 pm the “James River Bell Ringers” will play patriotic musical selections.
  • Pamplin Historical Park and The National Museum of the Civil War Solider: The park will host a special program with an artillery firing, playing of taps, and presentation of the colors at 12:30 pm. The program will also offer stories of the soldiers and their personal experiences during the civil war. There will also be a Breakthrough Battlefield Tour and viewing of “War So Terrible”. The park will be open 9 am to 5 pm and the program is included with regular park admission.
  • 61st Commonwealth Memorial Day Ceremony: This will be at the Virginia War Memorial from 10 am to 11 am and is co-hosted by the 11th District American Legion. The guest speaker will be Major General Timothy P. Williams of the National Guard. The Galanti Education Center will have extended hours for the holiday staying open until 7 pm. A “Never Forget Memorial Run” hosted by the VCU Police in honor of fallen US service members will wrap up at the memorial after 12 pm. At 2 pm the Thomas Jefferson School Alumni Cadet Corps and Friends Band will have a patriotic performance in the Memorial Shrine.
  • Confederate Memorial Day Service: The Confederate Memorial Chapel (located on the grounds of the VMFA) will host a service with organ music and period tunes starting at 10 am. The event will feature speaker James I. Robertson who is the founding director of the VA Center For Civil War Studies.
  • Fort Harrison National Park and Cemetary: The park is sponsoring a Memorial Day program with wreath-laying. The event begins at 12 pm.  The keynote speaker is Alexander Barnes who is a historian for the Virginia National Guard and has written several books. Music will be provided by the Varina Community Choir. The ceremonies are free and open to the public.
  • 9th Annual Sandston Memorial Day Parade: The festivities begin at Seven Pines National Cemetary at 12 pm with a Veterans recognition ceremony with Doug Middleton as the speaker. The parade will kick off at Seven Pines Elementary at 1 pm and run through Sandston to Confederate Avenue. After the parade, the Sandston Recreation Association will host entertainment, food, and festivities at JB Finley Road.

The Ellen Clark Team hopes that you and your family have a safe and fun holiday weekend. Please remember that on Monday at 3 pm, wherever you may be, to pause for a minute of silence to remember those who died while serving our great nation.

Happy Memorial Day and Weekend!

Great News For Those Looking To Sell In Central Virginia!

for sale

There has been a boom in the local buyers market, the highest the Central Virginia community has experienced in the past 10 years, making 2017 the year to sell your home. With interest rates being low (3.8% on average on a 30 year fixed mortgage), and local millennials transitioning from rental properties to seeking homeownership, now is the time to sell. Consumer confidence is high meaning the local demand is only growing higher. Currently, inventory is low so most homes on the market are selling fast and are generating higher selling prices and bidding wars. All in all, the market is great for those looking to sell.

According to the CVR-MLS 2017 Quarter 1 Report:

“The Central Virginia housing market is off to a strong start in 2017 relative to last year. Home sales and pending sales both climbed at double-digit rates, homes are selling much faster, and prices are rising at an increased pace. These housing metrics indicate strong buyer demand in the market, which is being driven by a healthy economy, both at the national and regional level. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has been consistently rising for about 2 years, and the employment picture continues to strengthen with lower unemployment and more jobs available. At the region level, jobs are being added every quarter from a variety of sectors, and the unemployment rate continues to trend below the national level. Consumer confidence in both the current and future economic situations is trending upward.”

The report goes on to say:

“With momentum following a strong finish to last year’s market, sales in the Central Virginia Region housing market are off to an even stronger start to 2017. There were 3,650 sales in the first quarter, 15% higher than this time last year, an increase of 478 sales. This is the sharpest increase in sales the region has had in nearly 2 years. The increase in sales occurred throughout the region, with 12 of the 16 jurisdictions having more sales than last year, all at double digit rates. There were 3,028 sales in the Richmond Metro Area and 316 sales in the Tri-Cities Area in the first quarter, both 16% higher than a year ago. Sales throughout the Richmond Metro Area exceeded first quarter levels from the previous 9 years. Hanover County led the Metro Area in terms of growth rate, climbing to 317 sales, 49 more than last year, an 18% increase. There were 1,192 sales in Chesterfield County in the first quarter, up 16% from last year, and now more than double the number of sales from the recession 8 years prior (554 sales in the first quarter of 2009). Jurisdictions within the Tri-Cities Area also had strong sales growth in the first quarter. Notably, the City of Hopewell had 81 sales, up 53% from the first quarter of 2016, the highest growth rate in the region. There were 78 sales in Petersburg, up 28% from a year ago, a gain of 17 sales. ”

In addition, typically when there is an administration change there is a shift in the economy. This has yet to occur which means the steady supply of those who are ready to buy is only increasing. If a house is available for showing the consumer is having to rush out that day for a viewing and put in their offer because the majority of the time the home is flying off the market. This can be quite stressful for those purchasing but is excellent news for the seller. Days that homes are listed on the market have gone down significantly as well due to purchase demand being so high.  So, what does all this mean for those who may be on the fence about selling their home? SELL NOW!

For those that are buying… buy now. Prices will only increase and with interest rates for new home loans being so reasonable, this is the time to lock in your loan and get out there to bid. The Ellen Clark Team is here to help you get the most for your home and ease the stress of listing your home yourself. For those looking for a home, we are also here to aid in the search, negotiations, paperwork, and closing process. Remember, the Ellen Clark Team has proudly served the Central Virginia area for over 25 years and are here to service your real estate needs.

Clarkteamproperties.com

804-387-2976/ patricia@ellenclark.com

 

 

New Listing in RounTrey

3830 Evershot Drive is located in the premier RounTrey Community of Midlothian, Va. This neighborhood sits along the Swift Creek Reservoir and is convenient to both 288 and the Powhite Parkway. The RounTrey neighborhood is home to walking trails, fishing, swimming, and a dog park. Other amenities include a clubhouse, pool, tennis courts, and a fitness center. RounTrey is 5 minutes away from 288 and the Powhite Parkway and a 25-minute drive to downtown Richmond (great for those who work in the business district!). For those with children, it is good to note that this home is in one of the best school districts in Virginia: Swift Creek Elementary, Tomahawk Creek Middle, and Midlothian High School.

3830 Evershot Drive has newly refinished wood floors and crown molding throughout the first level. It houses a study that could also be used as a playroom and a kitchen that is open to the family room. The kitchen features granite counters, stainless steel appliances, breakfast bar, recessed lighting, tile backsplash, large pantry and an eat-in area. The family room has a gas fireplace and sliding doors to the two-tiered deck that’s great for entertaining. There is a master suite which has a large walk-in closet, raised double vanity, jetted tub and a large tile shower with glass surround. Other features include new 2nd floor HVAC, spacious bedrooms, bathrooms with ceramic tile, large laundry room, vinyl siding, cement driveway, 2 car garage and front, side and rear irrigation system.

With 4 bedrooms and 2.5 baths, this Craftsman home is a dream come true for today’s home buyer. The list price is $345,000 so this home will not be on the market for long! There will be an open house this Sunday (4-23-17)  1 pm to 3 pm. Contact the Ellen Clark Team to learn more about this fabulous home.

By phone: (804)387-2976

By Email: patricia@ellenclark.com

 

 

Spring Break Ideas Part IV: Meadow Farm Museum at Crump Park

*Photos Courtesy of: henrico.us

For the fourth installment of our series on local and fun family Spring Break outings, we decided to highlight one of our favorites in an area we service that we have not covered in our blog this week. Some may not know that Patricia Clark of the Ellen Clark Team also serves Henrico County’s real estate needs.

Thursday’s Pick: Meadow Farm Museum at Crump Park

History: The Meadow Farm Museum and Crump Park sit on 175 acres at 3400 Mountain Road of Glen Allen, Va. The Meadow Farm Museum was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1974, and is a piece of living history. The land came into the Sheppard family in early 1700’s by land grant, and the home was built in 1809/1810 with the property being worked on through 1858. The farm house and land were then passed down through seven generations of Sheppard’s. It is legend that during the civil war, Union General George Armstrong Custis actually came to the property and tied his horse to a tree in front of the home. The Meadow Farm exhibits and programs highlight rural southern life.

Reasons to Visit:

  • Crump Park is great for fishing ( catfish, bluegill, and sunfish). There are also wetlands, a nature trail, and also features a playground.
  • There is an orientation center and blacksmith forge that can be toured along with the farmhouse.
  • Livestock!  Can be viewed daily, bringing rural farm life to an every growing urbanized county.
  • Crump Park is dog friendly! (Virginia leash laws do apply)
  • The farm house grounds and park are a birdwatchers paradise.
  • There are animal tours where you can learn more about the resident cows (Bossy and Emily Florence), sheep, mule, turkeys, chickens, pigs, and donkey.
  • Meadow Farm offers  great programs like their sewing guild and agricultural guild. Details about these are available on their website.
  • Nearby is the RF&P park. This park hosts an athletic facility, soccer-football-baseball-and softball fields. There are also 4 restored train cars for viewing.

For all these reasons and more, we highly recommend Meadow Farm and Crump Park are a great place to visit today, this weekend, or any time you and the family are looking to adventure. Enjoy some fun in the sun today and we look forward to sharing more ideas for the family tomorrow. Remember the Ellen Clark Team proudly serves Chesterfield, Henrico, Hanover,Moseley, Powhatan, and Richmond! Call 804-387-2976 or email at patricia@ellenclark.com for any and all of your real estate needs. Follow us on Facebook and visit our site at clarkteamproperties.com.