Date Archives February 2011

Friday Chart – Charlottesville MSA Real Estate Update – First 47 Days

I'm always trying to get a handle on what's happening in the Charlottesville real estate market**, and while anecdotal evidence is useful, data is mighty helpful as well.

… Today we're looking for trends; as I've said for years, looking at data from any level other than this house (whatever that house is) can be misleading.

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… Every time I see just how dead 2009 was, I'm a little surprised, and thankful to have made it through that time period.

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Fluvanna County’s Fiscal Pickle

Arguably, local governments have an equal and in many cases more significant impact on homeowners’ lives and property values – schools, fire and rescue, transportation infrastructure, snow removal … what happens if the tax rate rise so dramatically, and the budget becomes unmanageable? … Currently the real estate tax rate in Fluvanna County is $0.54 per $100 of assessed value ; the County is proposing a four cent increase in the tax rate in 2012 … and calling for a $1.22 per $100 rate in 2016 .

…With the pending reassessment, the audit calls for a fiscal year 2016 real estate tax rate of $1.22 per $100 to meet all expenditures and capital improvements.

…The tax options were part of a larger FY 2012 budget proposal that currently calls for a four-cent increase in the real estate tax rate, to $.58 per $100 of assessed value.

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Picasso Coming to Virginia

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts proudly announces a landmark exhibition in honor of its 75th anniversary, Picasso: Masterpieces from the Musée National Picasso , Paris. VMFA is the only East Coast venue for the exhibition’s seven-city international tour. The exhibition, which will be on view from February 19 through May 15, 2011, is co-organized by the Musée National Picasso , Paris and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts .

One of the most difficult parts of living in Charlottesville is making time to take advantage of the various opportunities.

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Au Revoir, Forest Lakes & Hydraulic Markets?

The beauty of the Markets – gourmet gas stations which really are ” ironically delicious ” – the original one at Bellair , the newest one on 29 at the corner of Greenbrier, the one at Hydraulic and 29, and the ones at Forest Lakes and Mill Creek – is that they are decidedly Charlottesville .

…“We’re trying to make these stores destinations rather than convenience stops,” said Stuart Lowry, marketing director for The Markets of Tiger Fuel, a Virginia convenience chain that offers fresh seafood, a fancy deli and professional chefs.

…While I share some of the writer’s sentiments, I’d rather focus on their current contributions to the economy and to the culture of Charlottesville for the past 20+ years as a resident, customer and Realtor in Charlottesville. … I may sound a bit elitist, but given the choice between a snack or sandwich and a cup of Mudhouse Coffee at a Market or a chili dog and a fountain drink at a 7-11, I’ll choose the former every day of the week.

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Buying a Home to Get More Expensive. Again.

Obama report on Fannie, Freddie plan may boost mortgage rates The Obama administration wants to raise fees for borrowers and require larger down payments for home loans as part of a long-term effort to restructure the nation’s housing market. But it warned that these measures could boost mortgage rates and make it harder for home buyers to secure the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, a mainstay of American home buying for decades. My first reads/reactions? – Cash buyers will be far better than borrowing buyers – Government’s not going to get out of the mortgage business . – Can’t live with ’em, can’t live without ’em – Calculated Risk likes Option 2 More at the WSJ : “The cost of mortgages is probably going to go up, and homeownership is probably going to go down,” said Daniel Mudd, the former chief executive of Fannie Mae who is now CEO of Fortress Investment Group. … As I tell anyone who asks, the best part of being an informed and active real estate agent is that every day brings new opportunities to learn.

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