Greetings Virginia Real Estate Team Client Appreciation Movie Night

Each summer, the Greetings Virginia real estate sales team with Keller Williams Realty team hosts a client appreciation party to acknowledge our past clients, friends, family, and referral partners. Our real estate sales business is largely referral based from our happy past clients that refer us to their friends, families, and co-workers are in the market to Buy a Home, Sell a Home, or Invest in Real Estate.

When you buy a home or sell property with Greetings Virginia, you become a part of our GV Insider’s Club where we become your advocates for life. In addition to inviting you to great events like our annual Movie Night, we will be available to refer any resource to you that you may need in the future. Our extensive connections include close, well vetted relationships with almost any resource that you may ever need. Need a handyman or plumber or a chiropractor or massage therapist? Just pick up the phone and call us and we will introduce you. This is just another way that we provide World-class Solutions to our clients and past clients.

Members of our GV Insider’s Club enjoy invitations to free events such as Movie Night as well as our Christmas Tree Exchange and Toy Donation. In addition, we also support unwanted, abandoned, abused, or stray pets to be rescued and placed into loving homes by helping Homeward Trails Animal Rescue.

 

Check out a few photos from our last Greetings Virginia client appreciation Movie Night:

 

Some brought their kids and had loads of fun!

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Your Home Sold in 72 Days Guaranteed

Guaranteed Home Sold in 72 Days – Greetings Virginia Real Estate Sales Network

Your Home Sold Guaranteed

GUARANTEED Home Sold in Virginia

While every agent will promise to sell your home, the reality of the real estate market today is that, this simply doesn’t always happen. Needless to say, this is highly frustrating to a home seller like you. Well, we set ourselves apart from most agents by being accountable to you. In other words, we don’t just promise to sell your home, we Guarantee it. Our Sell Your Home in 72 Days campaign is as simple as this:

We guarantee to sell your home in Virginia within 72 days or we will buy it.
As you can see, we put our money where our mouth is. Instead of making you empty promises, we give you a written guarantee of performance and if we don’t live up to this agreement, you pay us absolutely nothing at all. We’re taking all the risk so you don’t have to, and this gives our many clients much greater peace of mind in the home selling process.

Want to know more? Just fill out this short inquiry and we will contact you soon.

Your Home Sold GUARANTEED!

Your Home Sold GUARANTEED!

 

 

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You can find properties before they go into tax sales and foreclosure, but should you want to?

Q: I read an article you wrote about buying real estate through tax sales, and it was very good. I met a contractor who told me that he was about to lose some land he owned because of back taxes. He said he may call me with the details so we could discuss whether we can both profit if I can pay his back taxes and then own the property at a huge discount for helping him out.

Is there is a way to buy homes from owners who cannot afford them, and who will lose them completely, before they are foreclosed on or before they are lost to tax sales?

Instead of waiting for the auctions, or wading through the many tax sale notices, is there a simpler way? I have capital, and I am able to talk and negotiate with people. I could help them by getting them some money for their property, and feel I could buy property at a big discount.

A: There are so many people trying to do what you want to do that we hesitate to say that you should jump into this business. To do this successfully (and there are hedge funds that bought tens of thousands of properties that were in or on the brink of foreclosure in the past 10 years), you really have to understand the ins and outs of real estate, real estate taxes, tax sales, foreclosures, sheriff sales, redemptions and a host of other real estate topics.

Let’s discuss your contractor’s property as an example. Your contractor may have a lender on the property he is about to lose. If he owes $100,000 to the lender and $10,000 in back taxes, if the property goes to a tax sale, the lender would probably bid at the tax sale to preserve their mortgage rights. So, this lender would bid $110,000 for the property.

If the property has no lender, the starting bid for the property should be $10,000, but if the property is worth $150,000, you better believe there are other tax buyers out there that will bid for that property with the hope that the owner loses the property in the tax sale and never redeems the sale.

You should also know that an owner of the property in some situations might have legal problems in trying to buy back the property through a tax sale and cheat the lender out of money the owner rightfully owes. So keep that in mind as you work with this contractor. You need to know and understand the issues involved and how they interrelate with each other and the pitfalls that you might encounter.

There are a fair number of books out there that discuss buying properties at tax sales. You could read some of those. You can read the many articles we’ve written on tax sales on Ilyce’s website thinkglink.com, and you can sit through some sales and see how the process works.

When it comes to buying pre-foreclosure homes, there are a quite a number of websites that publish information on that process. A pre-foreclosure home is one that has not yet been foreclosed upon but has still been delinquent.

Many of the websites that list pre-foreclosure homes are subscription services (with a paywall), but they show homes that may be subject to foreclosure in the near future. Sometimes a homeowner has fallen behind on payments, but the lender has not yet decided to foreclose. Many of these pre-foreclosure homes never go into foreclosure. The owner ends up paying what the lender is owed, and nothing happens.

But in other instances, those homeowners have fallen on hard times. You can try to work with those buyers, but many other people are in that space trying to help them out. You may be offering them a quick price on the home, but you should know that many of those homes are underwater. That means that the owner owes more in taxes and loan payments than the home is worth. You’d have to understand what it means to buy this home now, if it has no equity, and wait to buy it out of foreclosure when the lender has canceled the mortgage.

Ilyce Glink is the author of “100 Questions Every First-Time Home Buyer Should Ask” (4th Edition). She is also the CEO of Best Money Moves, an app that employers provide to employees to measure and dial down financial stress. Samuel J. Tamkin is a Chicago-based real estate attorney. Contact them through her website, ThinkGlink.com.

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Prominent Virginia estate is listed for sale

A mansion known as Guildford Farm, located on 91 acres near Charlottesville at 743 Welsh Run Rd. in Ruckersville, has been the site of countless weddings and family gatherings. Built in 1790, the mansion has been owned by prominent Virginia families including the Early family, for whom Earlysville is named. The property, which has views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, has been expanded, preserved and renovated several times and is priced at $2.3 million. The house can function as a wedding venue, bed-and-breakfast or a private home.

The mansion has 13 working fireplaces, each with a hand-carved mantel and surround. The columned front includes a front porch and a balcony. Inside, the main level has 10-foot ceilings and seven-foot windows, original wide-plank heart-pine floors, a formal living room, a formal dining room, a bedroom and a full bathroom. In addition, this level has a large country kitchen with a fireplace, granite counters and a beamed ceiling with wood hand-cut from large logs. Upstairs are three more bedrooms, each with a private bathroom. An enclosed porch with numerous windows is on the third level, along with access to a widow’s walk. The lower level has a recreation room, a bar, a bedroom and another full bath. This level also has a room with walls of stone and a beamed ceiling, probably the original part of the house.

The grounds include a stone patio, a pavilion with a hot tub, a pond and a rustic barn with equipment for caterers and space for wedding receptions.

For more information, contact Ginger Slavic, a real estate agent with Long & Foster Real Estate at 434-981-0118 or visit http://www.longandfoster.com/homes-for-sale/743-Welsh-Run-Rd-Ruckersville-VA-22968-188218144.

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Buyer’s Guide: Dehumidifiers for Basements

Shopping for the Best Dehumidifiers for Basements? Start Here

Photo: istockphoto.com

Because they’re located below ground level, basements tend to absorb moisture from surrounding soil, making them damp and musty, which can lead to mold and mildew growth. You probably know that inhaling mold spores can incite respiratory and allergic disorders, but you might not know that high humidity can also damage furniture and other items stored in the basement.

RELATED: 14 Surprising Places Where Mold Hides in the Home

Humidity levels also have an effect on your personal comfort. Ideally, they should be between 30 percent and 50 percent; any higher and you’re likely to feel chilled or sweaty (depending on temperature) because humidity inhibits the evaporation of perspiration.

If you’re in the market for an appliance to remove excess moisture from the air, read on. You’ll learn how to choose the best dehumidifier for your basement (as well as other areas in your home) and get the lowdown on our top picks.

The Three Types of Dehumidifiers

Dehumidifiers operate in different ways, and some methods are better suited than others to the high humidity levels found in basements.

Compressor dehumidifiers: The majority of dehumidifiers use a compressor to operate a fan that draws air over cold coils, causing moisture to condense (like droplets on the outside of cold drink). The droplets then run into a tank, which must be emptied regularly, or to a floor drain via a drain hose. Compressor dehumidifiers are some of the best dehumidifiers for basement humidity.

Desiccant dehumidifiers: In this type of dehumidifier, moist air is drawn through a filter made of a desiccant material (a chemical drying agent). The desiccant traps the moisture, which then drips into a collection tank. Desiccant dehumidifiers can control moisture levels in small rooms above ground but may not be powerful enough for basements.

Thermo-electric dehumidifiers: Also known as “Peltier dehumidifiers” after physicist Jean Charles Peltier, who discovered the thermo-electric method of extracting moisture from the air, these units work by drawing moist air along the surface of small heated surfaces (called “sinks”) where it collects and then drips into a collection tank. Thermo-electric dehumidifiers operate best in warm rooms, and they’re often on the small side, so they may not be the best choice for a large or cool basement.

Capacity and Cost Considerations

Shopping for the Best Dehumidifiers for Basements? Start Here

Photo: istockphoto.com

Dehumidifiers are categorized by capacity (how much water they can remove from the air per day.) Though labeled “small, medium, and large,” this refers to their power, not to the size of their collection tank. Collection tanks hold between one to three gallons, and as a general rule, the more powerful the dehumidifier, the greater its capacity. To remove the high level of humidity present in many basements, a large-capacity dehumidifier is necessary.

Small capacity: These lightweight, portable, and affordable ($45 to $90) units collect an average of 15 to 30 pints of moisture from per day. They’re well-suited to small rooms or closets.

Medium capacity: Capable of collecting 30 to 45 pints of moisture per day, medium-capacity dehumidifiers work well in medium-sized to large rooms but may not be powerful enough for a basement. They cost between $115 and $200.

Large capacity: With the ability to remove up to 75 pints of moisture per day, a large capacity dehumidifier is the best choice for a basement. Expect to pay between $180 and $300.

The Noise Factor

Dehumidifiers generate a noise similar to the hum of a window air conditioner, and the larger the capacity, the louder the device will be. Most dehumidifiers produce between 53 decibels (comparable to a normal conversation) and 65 decibels (comparable to the sound of street traffic), but manufacturers aren’t required to list the noise levels on their units. Reading customer reviews is the best way to determine how noisy a dehumidifier will be. (Tip: To reduce noise, make sure your dehumidifier sits on a level surface.)

RELATED: 12 Finishing Touches for Your Unfinished Basement

Drainage Decisions

All dehumidifiers come with collection tanks, but some models also offer the option to attach a drainage hose (typically a standard garden hose) to direct collected moisture into a floor drain. The unit will automatically shut off when the collection tank is full, so if you won’t be able to empty it daily, you should probably purchase a unit with a drain hose. Keep in mind that a pint weighs approximately one pound, so while a large capacity dehumidifier can collect up to 75 pints a day, tanks generally hold up to three gallons to allow for easy, frequent emptying—only the mightiest bodybuilder would want to haul a 75-pound collection tank around!

Energy Consumption Concerns

It costs an average of $15 to $50 per month to operate a large capacity dehumidifier, depending on your utility rates, the size of your basement, and the humidity levels. While today’s dehumidifiers are more energy efficient than those of a decade ago, it’s wise to look for the Energy Star label when shopping. These models are the most efficient and you could save up to 30 percent on energy consumption over a standard machine.

RELATED: 14 Secrets of People with Low Energy Bills

A Host of Helpful Options

All dehumidifiers let you choose a basic humidity level—normal, dry, or very dry—but some have additional features that you might find useful.

Digital controls that allow you to select the desired humidity level by percentages, such as 35 percent or 45 percent humidity. The unit will shut off automatically when the moisture in the room meets the preset level, and then turn back on as necessary.

• A timer you can program to turn the dehumidifier on/off automatically at a preset time, so you needn’t do so manually.

• An auto-restart feature to turn the unit back on after a power disruption, such as an energy outage.

• An easy-carry collection tank with comfortable handles and a well-designed spout that lets you dump water without spilling.

• A frost sensor to detect frost buildup and turn the machine off to save energy. When a compressor unit runs for long periods of time, frost can develop on the coils, which reduces the dehumidifier’s effectiveness. So while a unit with frost buildup will continue to run, it will no longer be effectively removing moisture from the air. Some models also come with a restart feature that turns the unit back on after the coils have defrosted.

Top Three Picks

To control the high levels of humidity found in basements, the best choice is a large capacity, compressor-type dehumidifier. The three best dehumidifiers for basements listed below all did great in independent testing and got rave customer reviews. One of these powerful machines will surely let you say goodbye to musty basement blues.

Best Dehumidifiers for Basements - Frigidaire

Photo: amazon.com

Frigidaire 70-Pint Dehumidifier with Effortless Humidity Control, White ($232)
The consumer products testing site Wirecutter chose the Frigidaire 70-Pint Dehumidifier as its top selection for effectiveness and ease of use. In tests conducted in a century-old stone basement, the unit reduced humidity by 20 percent and maintained a consistent level. The Frigidaire’s 1.6-gallon collection tank is easy to detach, and it comes with a hose outlet (hose sold separately) for drainage into a floor drain. Amazon customers also endorsed the Frigidaire, awarding it 4.3 out of 5 stars for durability, effectiveness, and quiet operation. It features a digital readout, a 24-hour on/off timer, and you can preset the desired humidity level while monitoring the current humidity level. The Frigidaire is Energy Star certified, weighs 47 pounds, and comes with a one-year limited warranty on the body and a two-year limited warranty on the compressor. Available on Amazon.

Best Dehumidifiers for Basements - Ivation

Photo: amazon.com

Ivation 70-Pint Dehumidifier ($240)
With an adjustable fan speed, an easy-to-program LCD interface, and the ability to maintain preselected humidity levels in large areas, it’s easy to see why the Ivation 70-Pint Dehumidifier earns 4.5 stars from satisfied Amazon buyers. Consumers like that the Ivation is easy to move from room to room (it weighs just 40 pounds and comes with caster wheels). With a 70-pint capacity, it’s powerful enough to dry out even the dampest basements. Consumers can monitor the current humidity level and program the unit to come on at preset times. The Ivation features an easy-empty 1.3-gallon tank and an optional hose connection (hose sold separately). It also has an automatic shutoff and a restart sensor that detects frost buildup and turns the unit off to allow the frost to melt before turning back on. Some customers say the unit only sounds like “white noise” while others find the noise level distracting. The Ivation is Energy Star certified and comes with a limited one-year warranty. Available on Amazon.

Best Dehumidifiers for Basements - GE

Photo: homedepot.com

GE 70-Pint Dehumidifier ($219)
Home Depot buyers give the GE 70-Pint Dehumidifier a hearty 4.7 stars for dependability and efficiency. The GE dehumidifier comes with pocket handles and hidden wheels that make it a cinch to move. There’s a drainage hose connection (hose sold separately) and an easy-to-program LED panel that lets you select one of three fan speeds and desired humidity level. The unit also features a frost sensor and an automatic shutoff in addition to a “full bucket” indicator. The two-gallon tank features an easy-carry handle, and happy customers cite the GE’s ability to quickly remove excess humidity, resulting in fresher-smelling basement air. Most customers found the unit to be very quiet, some claiming they barely hear it operating. It has a limited one-year warranty. Available from Home Depot.

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Buyer’s Guide: Dehumidifiers for Basements

Shopping for the Best Dehumidifiers for Basements? Start Here

Photo: istockphoto.com

Because they’re located below ground level, basements tend to absorb moisture from surrounding soil, making them damp and musty, which can lead to mold and mildew growth. You probably know that inhaling mold spores can incite respiratory and allergic disorders, but you might not know that high humidity can also damage furniture and other items stored in the basement.

RELATED: 14 Surprising Places Where Mold Hides in the Home

Humidity levels also have an effect on your personal comfort. Ideally, they should be between 30 percent and 50 percent; any higher and you’re likely to feel chilled or sweaty (depending on temperature) because humidity inhibits the evaporation of perspiration.

If you’re in the market for an appliance to remove excess moisture from the air, read on. You’ll learn how to choose the best dehumidifier for your basement (as well as other areas in your home) and get the lowdown on our top picks.

The Three Types of Dehumidifiers

Dehumidifiers operate in different ways, and some methods are better suited than others to the high humidity levels found in basements.

Compressor dehumidifiers: The majority of dehumidifiers use a compressor to operate a fan that draws air over cold coils, causing moisture to condense (like droplets on the outside of cold drink). The droplets then run into a tank, which must be emptied regularly, or to a floor drain via a drain hose. Compressor dehumidifiers are some of the best dehumidifiers for basement humidity.

Desiccant dehumidifiers: In this type of dehumidifier, moist air is drawn through a filter made of a desiccant material (a chemical drying agent). The desiccant traps the moisture, which then drips into a collection tank. Desiccant dehumidifiers can control moisture levels in small rooms above ground but may not be powerful enough for basements.

Thermo-electric dehumidifiers: Also known as “Peltier dehumidifiers” after physicist Jean Charles Peltier, who discovered the thermo-electric method of extracting moisture from the air, these units work by drawing moist air along the surface of small heated surfaces (called “sinks”) where it collects and then drips into a collection tank. Thermo-electric dehumidifiers operate best in warm rooms, and they’re often on the small side, so they may not be the best choice for a large or cool basement.

Capacity and Cost Considerations

Shopping for the Best Dehumidifiers for Basements? Start Here

Photo: istockphoto.com

Dehumidifiers are categorized by capacity (how much water they can remove from the air per day.) Though labeled “small, medium, and large,” this refers to their power, not to the size of their collection tank. Collection tanks hold between one to three gallons, and as a general rule, the more powerful the dehumidifier, the greater its capacity. To remove the high level of humidity present in many basements, a large-capacity dehumidifier is necessary.

Small capacity: These lightweight, portable, and affordable ($45 to $90) units collect an average of 15 to 30 pints of moisture from per day. They’re well-suited to small rooms or closets.

Medium capacity: Capable of collecting 30 to 45 pints of moisture per day, medium-capacity dehumidifiers work well in medium-sized to large rooms but may not be powerful enough for a basement. They cost between $115 and $200.

Large capacity: With the ability to remove up to 75 pints of moisture per day, a large capacity dehumidifier is the best choice for a basement. Expect to pay between $180 and $300.

The Noise Factor

Dehumidifiers generate a noise similar to the hum of a window air conditioner, and the larger the capacity, the louder the device will be. Most dehumidifiers produce between 53 decibels (comparable to a normal conversation) and 65 decibels (comparable to the sound of street traffic), but manufacturers aren’t required to list the noise levels on their units. Reading customer reviews is the best way to determine how noisy a dehumidifier will be. (Tip: To reduce noise, make sure your dehumidifier sits on a level surface.)

RELATED: 12 Finishing Touches for Your Unfinished Basement

Drainage Decisions

All dehumidifiers come with collection tanks, but some models also offer the option to attach a drainage hose (typically a standard garden hose) to direct collected moisture into a floor drain. The unit will automatically shut off when the collection tank is full, so if you won’t be able to empty it daily, you should probably purchase a unit with a drain hose. Keep in mind that a pint weighs approximately one pound, so while a large capacity dehumidifier can collect up to 75 pints a day, tanks generally hold up to three gallons to allow for easy, frequent emptying—only the mightiest bodybuilder would want to haul a 75-pound collection tank around!

Energy Consumption Concerns

It costs an average of $15 to $50 per month to operate a large capacity dehumidifier, depending on your utility rates, the size of your basement, and the humidity levels. While today’s dehumidifiers are more energy efficient than those of a decade ago, it’s wise to look for the Energy Star label when shopping. These models are the most efficient and you could save up to 30 percent on energy consumption over a standard machine.

RELATED: 14 Secrets of People with Low Energy Bills

A Host of Helpful Options

All dehumidifiers let you choose a basic humidity level—normal, dry, or very dry—but some have additional features that you might find useful.

Digital controls that allow you to select the desired humidity level by percentages, such as 35 percent or 45 percent humidity. The unit will shut off automatically when the moisture in the room meets the preset level, and then turn back on as necessary.

• A timer you can program to turn the dehumidifier on/off automatically at a preset time, so you needn’t do so manually.

• An auto-restart feature to turn the unit back on after a power disruption, such as an energy outage.

• An easy-carry collection tank with comfortable handles and a well-designed spout that lets you dump water without spilling.

• A frost sensor to detect frost buildup and turn the machine off to save energy. When a compressor unit runs for long periods of time, frost can develop on the coils, which reduces the dehumidifier’s effectiveness. So while a unit with frost buildup will continue to run, it will no longer be effectively removing moisture from the air. Some models also come with a restart feature that turns the unit back on after the coils have defrosted.

Top Three Picks

To control the high levels of humidity found in basements, the best choice is a large capacity, compressor-type dehumidifier. The three best dehumidifiers for basements listed below all did great in independent testing and got rave customer reviews. One of these powerful machines will surely let you say goodbye to musty basement blues.

Best Dehumidifiers for Basements - Frigidaire

Photo: amazon.com

Frigidaire 70-Pint Dehumidifier with Effortless Humidity Control, White ($232)
The consumer products testing site Wirecutter chose the Frigidaire 70-Pint Dehumidifier as its top selection for effectiveness and ease of use. In tests conducted in a century-old stone basement, the unit reduced humidity by 20 percent and maintained a consistent level. The Frigidaire’s 1.6-gallon collection tank is easy to detach, and it comes with a hose outlet (hose sold separately) for drainage into a floor drain. Amazon customers also endorsed the Frigidaire, awarding it 4.3 out of 5 stars for durability, effectiveness, and quiet operation. It features a digital readout, a 24-hour on/off timer, and you can preset the desired humidity level while monitoring the current humidity level. The Frigidaire is Energy Star certified, weighs 47 pounds, and comes with a one-year limited warranty on the body and a two-year limited warranty on the compressor. Available on Amazon.

Best Dehumidifiers for Basements - Ivation

Photo: amazon.com

Ivation 70-Pint Dehumidifier ($240)
With an adjustable fan speed, an easy-to-program LCD interface, and the ability to maintain preselected humidity levels in large areas, it’s easy to see why the Ivation 70-Pint Dehumidifier earns 4.5 stars from satisfied Amazon buyers. Consumers like that the Ivation is easy to move from room to room (it weighs just 40 pounds and comes with caster wheels). With a 70-pint capacity, it’s powerful enough to dry out even the dampest basements. Consumers can monitor the current humidity level and program the unit to come on at preset times. The Ivation features an easy-empty 1.3-gallon tank and an optional hose connection (hose sold separately). It also has an automatic shutoff and a restart sensor that detects frost buildup and turns the unit off to allow the frost to melt before turning back on. Some customers say the unit only sounds like “white noise” while others find the noise level distracting. The Ivation is Energy Star certified and comes with a limited one-year warranty. Available on Amazon.

Best Dehumidifiers for Basements - GE

Photo: homedepot.com

GE 70-Pint Dehumidifier ($219)
Home Depot buyers give the GE 70-Pint Dehumidifier a hearty 4.7 stars for dependability and efficiency. The GE dehumidifier comes with pocket handles and hidden wheels that make it a cinch to move. There’s a drainage hose connection (hose sold separately) and an easy-to-program LED panel that lets you select one of three fan speeds and desired humidity level. The unit also features a frost sensor and an automatic shutoff in addition to a “full bucket” indicator. The two-gallon tank features an easy-carry handle, and happy customers cite the GE’s ability to quickly remove excess humidity, resulting in fresher-smelling basement air. Most customers found the unit to be very quiet, some claiming they barely hear it operating. It has a limited one-year warranty. Available from Home Depot.

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