Why did you decide to go into real estate?
Shortly after college, I was invited into the real estate and home building industries by my college roommate. I moved to Charlottesville and immediately began working for a homebuilder and a real estate brokerage. I enjoyed it right away and 21 years later I am still at it.
What trends do you currently see in the local real estate market?
The market is very interesting right now and is starting to get back in the economic headlines. One of the main trends I see is the influence of baby boomers and millennials on the market place. They are both very large segments of our population generationally. Boomer demand is causing the need for more first floor master and one level homes, while millennials are interested in greener, smarter homes with walkability and access to employment and recreation. It is very much a lifestyle decision for these buyers.
Name your top 3 “hot neighborhoods” in Charlottesville and what are some of the hidden gems? There are many popular neighborhoods in our market in a variety of locations. Looking at the places where new homes are available, I would point out Lochlyn Hill, Old Trail, and Cascadia. Phase 2 of Lochlyn Hill is within the City limits and this is attractive to many buyers. There is diversity in home style and access to the Rivanna Trail for recreation. Old Trail is in the popular village of Crozet and offers walkability in a scenic environment. It is a mixed use community with retail, shops, etc. Cascadia is a great location just outside the City limits, but very close to downtown. It is an amenity-rich community with great views. All three of these communities offer a diversity of home styles and types that attract many buyers.
What do you predict the next hotspot will be?
The next hot spot to me is less about a specific location and more about the right homes in the right price range, within a reasonable proximity to Charlottesville. We have a lack of inventory for single family detached homes under $500k. The builders are having difficulty serving this segment of the market.
What advice do you give most often?
Be patient and take the time to understand the market in the context of a longer range look at your life and how it will change in the coming years. Owning a home is a long term commitment and should not be done in a rush when possible.