Welcome to the Platinum Group Real Estate Blog

In this blog, you'll find useful information including helpful advice on selling your house or finding your dream home, the latest real estate news, local events, and life in Northern Virginia. 

We've also created these categories to make it easier for you to find what you are looking for. Click on the links below for more information.  

Selling Your Home 

Buying a Home 

New Listings 

Client Reviews 

 

April 30, 2018

Review - Jeanne Kelly

You bet that after working with Jeanne Dodrill Kelly you will highly recommend her too!

JEKelly

Posted in Reviews
April 26, 2018

Bring Your Kid to Work Day!

It could not be a more beautiful day???????????? to bring our kids to work today and we are very excited to have some special guests with us. with Jodi HooperBeth Donahue LamLisa Scott MarshChrisie PekalaMaryellen Lamparter RagsdaleMelissa OliverKaryn Embrey Carkin and Vicky Noufal

Bring your kid

Posted in PG News
April 26, 2018

Review - Chrisie Pekala

Chrisie Pekala IS amazing!

CP

Posted in Reviews
April 25, 2018

Administrative Professionals Day

Did you know that today is “Administrative Professionals Day”?

Which really is just a chance to say thank you and show appreciation for the incredible work and support that our incredible Platinum Group Support Team provides each day. They serve our clients with such a high level of care, professionalism, patience and kindness, we truly couldn’t do it without them.

On behalf of the entire Platinum Group Real Estate Team and our clients, we truly thank you for all you do each day! We love you all so much! ??

From left to right (standing) Real Estate Assistant Jennifer Thomas, Client Care Manager Melissa Oliver, (seated) Client Care Coordinator Karyn Embrey Carkin, and Marketing Director Edyta Simmons.

PG Assistants

Posted in PG News
April 24, 2018

Coming Soon - Lost Corner Rd

COMING SOON: Have a buyer with unique needs for a home-based business or important hobby? Look no further than this wonderful Leesburg/Lucketts area property! This charming Cape Cod on 5.65 acres offers new paint, carpet, hardwoods, appliances, granite counter tops and more with 3 bedrooms (2 on main level), 3 baths (2 on main level) and a large unfinished basement. One of the best parts? The HUGE detached building designed as a professional music studio is heated, cooled, has running water and multiple rooms including the studio (also perfect for a yoga studio, workout space, and more), office area, wet bar, ½ bath, unfinished room for storage/workshop/wood working plus single bay garage with ceilings high enough for a lift, and driveway and parking area separate from the house. Just minutes to downtown Leesburg on all paved roads. Listed at $575,000.
43325 Lost Corner Road, Leesburg, VA. 20176

Coming Soon

Posted in Coming Soon
April 23, 2018

Coming Soon - Tavistock Farms

On the Market This Friday! 
Updated SFH in Leesburg's Tavistock Farms community. Large corner lot in cul-de-sac. New windows, hardwoods, granite, ceramic tile, architectural roof, and more. Huge composite screened-in porch with covered deck that spans the length of the house. Stamped concrete, 6 bedrooms, 3.5 Baths. Going on at $615,000. Please email Jeanne Kelly, jeanne@jekellyproperties, if you would like a sneak peek.

Coming Soon

Posted in Coming Soon
April 8, 2018

5 Ways to Stage Your Home (And Sell Your Home Faster)

 



Buyers want to imagine your house as their own. It’s hard for some people to picture how furniture will fit in certain spaces and they aren’t able to appreciate the size of rooms unless they are furnished. That’s why staging your home is so important.

 

Over 80% of buyers say that staging a home makes it easier for them to picture the house as their family’s future home. Also, staged homes spend on average 73% less time on the market compared to homes that are not staged.

 

Here are 5 ways that you can stage your home to help it sell faster.

 

Clean

 

The easiest and cheapest way to stage your home is to deep clean it from top to bottom. You want to make your house sparkle. A clean home makes people feel comfortable. Clean your windows to make your home seem brighter. Scrub the bathrooms including the grout, shower doors, mirrors, and remove any mildew.

 

Steam clean your carpets - especially if you have pets. Take a look at your hardwood floors. Do they need refinishing? If that’s not in the budget, a nicely place area rug can do the trick.

 

Don’t forget about your closets. Even if you shut your closet doors, people will look in your closets. You want your closets to look as big as possible, so make sure everything is organized and you don’t have any excess boxes or storage.

 

De-Clutter

 

If you want your home to show as well as possible, make sure your house is clean and free of clutter so your home can feel as big as it can.

 

Go through your home and determine what things - including furniture - you can live without while your home is on the market. Some professional stagers will remove up to 50% of the homeowner’s furniture to stage their home. If needed, you can rent a storage unit or try services like Clutter.com or Makespace.com in order to free up space in your house.

 

Also, buyers want to imagine the house as their own so as hard as it may be, take down any family photos. You can always decorate your new home with them.

 

 

Go Neutral 

 

Paint large rooms in your house with warm, neutral colors. This can include shades of tan, beige, grey, and blue. A great tip to make your room color stand out is to paint your crown molding and baseboards bright white. This will make your room look very clean and professional, while making the paint color pop. If you want a splash of color, try painting small rooms like the powder room with a bold color.

 

Put away anything that is has a very unique style. Buyers may have different tastes than you. The point of staging is to get buyers to fall in love with your house and not be distracted.

 

 

Little things make a big difference

 

If you don’t have the budget or time to update an outdated kitchen, one of the simplest ways to do so is to update your cabinet hardware. You can find luxury style cabinet hardware at any hardware store and it’s a cheap and effective way to make a huge difference in your kitchen. Giving your cabinets a fresh coat of paint will also freshen up your kitchen at a low cost.

 

Bring some life into your home with fresh flowers on tables and bowls of fruit on the counter. You want to make your home looked lived in (but not cluttered). Adding flowers and fruit are simple and affordable ways to brighten up your home.

 

Finally, lighting can have a huge impact on the room so make sure you are using the correct wattage of light bulbs.

 

Stage the outdoors, too

Along with making sure your curb appeal is updated, you can also stage the outdoors. Put chairs and a small table on your front porch. Set up a dining area on your patio or deck with flowers, bright pillows, and outdoor furniture. Have a fire pit? Place chairs around it so people can imagine an evening relaxing with family and friends. Outdoor areas are great selling points for homes.

 

 

While staging may take some upfront work for you and your family, it will be worth it in the long run. You want to sell your home fast and get the most value for your home. Staging is a great and simple way to achieve that goal. For more advice on how to stage your home (or if you want some customized help), reach out to our team of staging experts.





Posted in Selling Your Home
April 7, 2018

4 Characteristics to Look for in a Good Realtor [Selling Your Home]

 

 

When selling home it’s important to have someone on your team who is an expert.  One of your biggest assets when selling home is your real estate agent. Selling your home is a huge life event and while it may seem like a stressful time, a good realtor can make the experience fun (and if they’re really good - fast).

 

Track Record

 

One of the first questions to ask is how long have they been a real estate agent? While experience isn’t everything (there are plenty of excellent new realtors), real estate agents live off of commission. In order to be in business for a while, they need to be good at what they do.

 

Another great question to ask is how many properties they have closed. The more deals they’ve closed the more experienced they are in the market. Are they good negotiators? Have they been able to get their clients fair prices in the past? You can also always ask your real estate agent for references from their past clients.

 

Reputation

 

A real estate agent’s reputation within the local real estate community is very important. Do they have good relationships with other realtors? Are they willing to work with others? Having good relationships with other real estate agents is a benefit for you because it means they have more access to qualified potential buyers.

 

You want a real estate agent that is honest and has integrity. This is a person you are going to be working closely with, so you want them to be trustworthy. A great way to check on this (besides your conversations with them) is to read customer testimonials. How was their experience working with this agent? Would they recommend them to others? If so, you know you have a winner.

 

Knowledgeable

 

You want a real estate agent that knows the industry and market inside and out. Don’t be afraid to ask your realtor questions. Your realtor’s job is to help you sell your home, so they want to help you in any way they can. Here is a list of some common questions to ask your real estate agent.

  • How well do they know the market? Are they familiar with what other homes are selling for in your are to be able to price your house competitively?
  • How well do they know the selling/purchasing process?
  • Do they have a recommended vendor list? Such as recommended lenders, title companies, inspectors, contractors, moving companies etc.
  • Are they part of a team? Teams are great because if there is something your agent isn’t personally familiar with, then someone on their team will be able to help.

 

Attentiveness

 

You want a realtor that gives your home the attention it deserves. They should create a custom marketing plan to locate your buyer faster. You need an agent who is a skilled marketer and negotiator working on your behalf to make sure your home gets maximum exposure, including online marketing, professional photography, custom brochures, and online and social media advertising.

 

Finding a real estate agent with these top four characteristics will make selling your home a more enjoyable and less stressful experience.

 

 

At the Platinum Group, our team helped 315 families in 2017. We know the Northern Virginia market inside and out and are well respected throughout the community. We’d be happy to help you find the home of your dreams. Contact us today to be paired with an agent best suits your needs.  

Posted in Selling Your Home
April 6, 2018

8 Affordable Ways to Increase the Curb Appeal of Your Home

 

 

Curb appeal. Everyone is talking about how important curb appeal is to sell your home fast. So we are all on the same page, “curb appeal” simply means the visual attractiveness of a house seen from the street. It’s your home’s first impression - and it can make or break the sale of your house.

 

Why is curb appeal so important?

 

While having poor curb appeal can turn people away from viewing your home, having good curb appeal can actually increase the value of your home. For example, according to a survey done by the National Association of Realtors in 2016, having lawn care treatments done (fertilizer and weed control) can see a 300% return on investment. In other words, the $300 you put into maintaining your lawn will see a $1,000 increase in the value of your home. That’s a pretty impressive!

 

We all know that most people do their home buying research online. However, 63% of homebuyers drive by the homes they view online, making curb appeal (both online and offline) extra important.

 

Here are some simple and affordable ways to increase the curb appeal of your home.

 

1. A picture is worth a thousand words

 

We just mentioned that people search for homes online. Most homebuyers rate photos as the number one feature they use most when searching for a home. When you take your exterior photos, make sure you have good lighting. A bright sunny day may seem like the ideal setting, but the light can be harsh if it’s not exactly right. The best time to take photos is when it’s overcast. Also make sure to clear off any clutter from your front porch or driveway, and shut your garage door.

 

2. Pressure washers are your new best friend

 

One of the easiest things you can do that makes a huge difference is pressure (or power) washing your house. You can pressure wash your deck, sidewalk, front walk, front porch, garage door, siding, etc. It gives your home a fresh, clean look without having to paint your home. Plus, you can rent a pressure washer from Home Depot for around $40 a day.

 

3. The grass is always greener

 

As mentioned earlier, landscaping is a big deal to potential homebuyers. The 2016 National Association of Realtors survey states that landscaping is the number one preferred curb appeal item. Keep your plants and shrubs trimmed and your grass mowed. Fertilize every six months and keep your yard free of weeds. Spending a couple of Saturdays working on your landscaping can really impact your curb appeal.

 

4. Give your entryway a facelift

 

Spruce up your house number by either cleaning, spray painting, or getting new ones. Update your front light fixtures. A simple cleaning out cobwebs, leaves, and wiping down the glass can work. Or, if you feel like they are outdated, you can always spray paint them a new color.

 

5. Washing windows

 

Wash the inside and outside of your all your windows. It will make the inside of your house brighter and create a shiny and inviting look from the curb. While you’re washing those windows, also check out the screens and repair any that are torn.

 

6. Paint your front door

 

A fresh coat of paint will make your front door really stand out. You can simply repaint the color you already have or pick a bright color that will really pop like red, yellow, or blue. Not sure what color would look good with your house? Don’t worry. Ask your realtor, one of your friends, or there’s even an app that can help you choose.  

 

7. A thousand yellow daisies

 

Plant some flowers to bring a splash of color to your front yard. Put flower boxes in your front windows, or hanging plants on your front porch. Having flowers and pops of color makes your home appear more welcoming.

 

8. Look up

 

Take a step back and look at your roof. Is it in good condition? Do the gutters need to be cleaned out or replaced? While this last one may not be as affordable as the others, it could provide the most value.

 

 

There are many things you can do to increase the curb appeal of your home. While it may seem daunting, many of these projects can be done over a weekend. Put in the effort. In the end it will be worth it when you are able to sell your home. For more curb appeal ideas, check out this article or talk to a member of our team to get personalized suggestions.

 

Posted in Selling Your Home
Feb. 27, 2018

Top 5 Things to Prepare Your Home for Sale

Clean, clutter, and color

If you want your home to show as well as possible, make sure your house is clean, free of clutter (you want your home to feel as big as it can!), and has tasteful pops of color. Buyers want to imagine your house as their own so also take down any family photos.


Over 80% of buyers say that staging a home makes it easier for them to picture the house as their family’s future home. Plus, staged homes spend on average of 73% less time on the market compared to homes that are not staged. Let our staging expertise work for you to sell your home fast.

 

 

Honey, stop the car! 

The outside of your home is the first thing people see as they approach, so it needs to wow them. According to the National Association of Realtors®, 63% of homebuyers drive by the homes they view online. Enhancing your curb appeal includes things like keeping the front of your house clean and having a well maintained yard, flower beds, and shrubs. Our team can give you valuable insights on things you can do to increase the curb appeal of your home.

 

 

 

Ladies and Gentlemen, can I get your attention?

A custom and creative marketing plan will locate your buyer faster. You need an agent who is a skilled marketer and negotiator working on your behalf to make sure your home gets maximum exposure. Online marketing plays a key role in listing your home. Our team will ensure that your home receives the full attention it deserves with professional photography, custom brochures and flyers, and extensive online and social media advertising.

 

 

Interview Local Real Estate Experts

Your real estate agent is vital in the selling process - so you need to make sure you are working with an expert. Ask how many homes they have sold in your area, their market statistics, and their reputation in the community. Well respected agents have a good relationships with other local agents, giving them access to more buyers.

 

Sell your home The Platinum Way

Our team is proud to have helped over 315 families in 2017. We understand the market and know what buyers are looking for to help you market and sell your home. You only list once when you list with us!

Call us today at 703-999-3601 or email info@goplatinumgroup.com.

 

Posted in Selling Your Home