Archive for November, 2011

Featured Property of the Week!

Wednesday, November 30th, 2011


1875 Manning Rd   Suffolk, VA 23434

Custom built Cape Cod on 6 acres of serenity. Enjoy over 2700 sq. ft. with large master suite, huge finished room over garage, & plenty of room to expand. Bring your horses. Only 2 minutes to highway 58.

Listed by: Amanda Janney

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Featured Property of the Week

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

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1822 Mountainside Ave   Suffolk, VA 23434

Great location in a family friendly neighborhood. Spacious, open floor plan with hardwood & tile floors. The 4 bedrooms & 2.5 baths make it a perfect house for families. Master bedroom has a huge walk-in closet, kids will love the fenced-in backyard, & it even has an attached 2 car garage.

Listed by: Lee Cross

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Harry’s Monthly Real Estate Insight

Monday, November 21st, 2011

One of the things happening in the real estate market across the county is the proliferation of market data being presented on the internet about individual properties. The idea is that the provider that has the “richest” site that is easiest to navigate will capture the buyers. There are a number of players in this market: Zip, Zillow, Trulia, RPR/Realtors and Cross Realty. Yes, we are in the internet fight to capture business! The MLS system serving Hampton Roads does an excellent job of projecting listings to multiple sites and our content keeps growing, but it will be tough to compete with the major internet players in the short run. No telling where all this is going, maybe a national MLS. Buyers and Sellers still need local experts to really understand their opportunities and challenges. Knowledge and experience is still the key to getting properties sold and finding that right property at the best price.

As to our local market, we are still fighting the Repo problem. They are 25% of our listings and getting close to 40% of our sales. This tends to lower the average sales price.

Have a great Thanksgiving and lets all be thankful for our blessings.

Featured Property of the Week

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011

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913 Pennsylvania Ave  Suffolk, VA 23434

Pristine brick colonial, recently painted inside & out. Hardwood floors through-out, high ceilings in keeping with home. Ceramic tile in kitchen & master bath. Charming private backyard with patio. A must see!

Listed by: Barbara Kayes

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Recipe of the Month

Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

Pumpkin-Pecan Cheesecake


Makes: 12 Servings
Hands on Time: 25 min
Total Time: 11 hours, 32 min (Including topping & pecans)

2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/3 cup finely chopped pecans
5 tablespoons butter, melted
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
4 (8-oz.) packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin
1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice

Praline Topping (below)
Garnish: Coarsely Chopped Pecan Pie-Glazed Pecans

  1. Preheat oven to 325°. Stir together first 4 ingredients in a bowl until well blended. Press mixture on bottom and 1 1/2 inches up sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned.
  2. Beat cream cheese and next 2 ingredients at medium speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer until blended and smooth. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Add pumpkin and lemon juice, beating until blended. Pour batter into prepared crust. (Pan will be very full.)
  3. Bake at 325° for 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes or until almost set. Turn oven off. Let cheesecake stand in oven, with door closed, 15 minutes. Remove cheesecake from oven, and gently run a knife around outer edge of cheesecake to loosen from sides of pan. (Do not remove sides of pan.) Cool completely on a wire rack (about 1 hour). Cover and chill 8 to 24 hours.
  4. Remove sides and bottom of pan, and transfer cheesecake to a serving plate. Prepare Praline Topping; immediately pour slowly over top of cheesecake, spreading to within 1/4 inch of edge. Garnish, with Pecan Pie-Glazed Pecans.

Praline Topping
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/3 cup whipping cream
1/4 cup butter
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  1. Bring first 3 ingredients to a boil in a 1-qt. saucepan over medium heat, stirring often. Boil, stirring occasionally, 1 minute; remove from heat. Gradually whisk in powdered sugar and vanilla until smooth. Let stand 5 minutes, whisking occasionally. Use immediately.

Pecan-Pie Glazed Pecans
1/4 cup dark corn syrup
2 tablespoons sugar
2 cups pecan halves
Parchment paper
Vegetable cooking spray

  1. Stir together corn syrup and sugar. Add pecan halves; stir until pecans are coated. Line a jelly-roll pan with parchment paper; coat parchment paper with cooking spray. Spread pecans in a single layer in prepared pan. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes or until glaze bubbles slowly and thickens, stirring every 3 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack. Spread pecans in a single layer, separating individual pecans; cool completely. Cooled pecans should be crisp; if not, bake 5 more minutes.

Southern Living Magazine-November 2011

November To-Do List

Monday, November 14th, 2011

The days are getting shorter, but that’s no excuse to let important home projects fall by the wayside. Fall is the perfect time to complete home-related projects. The mild, pleasant temperatures reduce the physical stress of working outdoors, and it is the last chance for many to make needed repairs before inclement weather arrives. Knock these projects off the to-do list this month, and you’ll be able to give thanks knowing your home is ready for whatever lies ahead.

Keep Gutters Clean

The leaves, pine needles and other debris piling up in the gutters have to go. Gutters are highly ineffective when clogged with debris from nearby trees. These obstructions cause gutters to collect and hold water and prevent them from funneling moisture away from the home. Clogged gutters should not be ignored because they can damage fascia boards, cause mold growth and create foundation issues.

Winterize Irrigation Systems

Irrigation systems are in serious danger if not drained properly. Water left in the lines will expand as it freezes and can cause the pipes to burst. To ensure all water is cleared from the pipes, use an air compressor to force water out of the system. This process, known as “blowing out,” should be done by a professional. The amount of pressure needed to blow out the water will vary from one system to the next, and if not done correctly, it can cause considerable damage to the pipes and other components.

Clean The Chimney

Floors aren’t the only things that need to be swept from time to time. Chimneys also need a good cleaning. Over time, a combustible material called creosote can build up inside the chimney. If this catches fire, it can cause major damage to the home and result in serious injuries or even death. Chimneys should be inspected and cleaned by a professional at least once a year to ensure they are free of creosote and are ready for use.

Check The Roof

Roofs will last a long time, but they will not last forever. Eventually, the roof’s shingles will begin to wear, causing them to curl, chip or go missing. All are very bad signs and should be repaired immediately. Damaged roofs can allow rain or melting snow to infiltrate the house, which can cause thousands of dollars of damage. Use binoculars to visually scan the roof from the ground. Also, check the gutters and downspouts for roofing granules. Finding an abundance of granules is a sign the roof will need to be replaced.

Get Snow-Removal Tools Ready

Snow-removal tools will not be doing anyone any good if they are buried in the corner of the garage when the frozen stuff starts to fall. Get ahead of the game, and pull out all snow-related gear so it can be easily accessed and properly inventoried. Salt and sand should be well stocked and stored off the ground in a dry location. Snow blowers should have their oil and spark plugs changed, and the engine should fire up easily and run smoothly. Remember, last year’s mega snow in Hampton Roads started falling Christmas night. So, if you’re short on supplies or any equipment needs repairs, take care of it now.

Five Items That Can Destroy Your Mortgage Application

Monday, November 14th, 2011

Not only do would-be homebuyers have to be concerned with their credit scores and their income, but they should keep an eye on five other factors that could affect their ability to secure a mortgage, reports.

Are you in the midst of a divorce? According to the website, most lenders refuse to issue a loan to couples who are undergoing a divorce. Fearful that a one-person income would affect a homeowner’s ability to make payments, most lenders are reluctant to lend money to potential homebuyers, the article said. Would-be homebuyers beware: Do not attempt to hide the fact that you are undergoing a divorce, reports. Most institutions will find out during a background check. If this happens, homebuyers will definitely be turned away and could face charges of mortgage fraud for lying on the mortgage application.

Did you recently switch careers? Potential homebuyers who changed careers within the past two years may find it difficult to secure a mortgage, said. Lenders are wary of issuing mortgages to people who are not yet established in their careers, even if a person is earning more in a new job than in his previous occupation, the article reported.

If homebuyers are thinking of switching careers, advises against the move until after a mortgage has closed, or you may face the prospect of starting over. And, if for any reason a potential homebuyer has been unemployed, he will probably have to work in a job for at least two years before he can qualify for a mortgage.

Are you a party in a lawsuit? It may be difficult to secure a mortgage for potential homebuyers who are either plaintiffs or defendants in a lawsuit, according to Lenders fear that defendants may get whopped with a hefty settlement that may make it difficult to pay monthly mortgage payments. On the other hand, plaintiffs who lose their cases may get stuck with pricey attorneys’ fees, reported.

Are you making repairs on your existing residence? Lenders are hesitant to provide mortgages to borrowers who are in the midst of repair work on their homes, even though that work may increase their home’s value, according to Because repairs may never be completed and could take any amount of time to end, banks prefer to see finished repair work before issuing a new mortgage.

Did you recently take on new debt? Lenders do not want to see a borrower’s debt-to-income ratio at any more than 43 percent of monthly income, according to Taking on new debt, such as a car loan, could increase a potential homebuyer’s debt to levels above the bank’s comfortable debt-to-income ratio. The site suggested that it is best to wait to make new purchases until after securing a mortgage.

Featured Property of the Week!

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011


1820 Mountainside Ave   Suffolk, VA 23434

This great home has an open floor plan with great room, dining room, & large eat-in kitchen. Large fenced backyard, deck play set, shed & 2 car attached garage. Come & See! Great neighborhood for your family.

Listed by: Gisela Greene

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Featured Property of the Week!

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

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23486 Deer Path Rd  Windsor, VA 23487

This is a rectangular shaped building mostly open with two 1/2 baths. Current use is religious, but could be excellent for other uses, such as a day care center, hunt club, educational center, starter church. Located on 1 acre with plenty of parking. Central Heat & AC.

Listed by: Marion Grigg

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