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Jacobson Realty and Home Staging (JRY) was established by Broker/Owner Belinda Jacobson-Loehle in April 2002. Belinda is a native Washingtonian who grew up in Alexandria, Virginia and has lived and worked in Gainesville, Virginia since 1995.

New assisted living coming soon!

New assisted living coming soon!

an assisted living community

Opening later in 2015, Tribute at Heritage Village, an assisted living community, will offer luxury living with lots of amenities designed for those who need a little extra help.

The community will have advanced building design, integrated technology and best-in-class care for patients. Tribute will also have memory care, a specific kind of long-term skilled care for patients with Alzheimer’s, dementia and other neurological challenges.

Tribute will offer active living with fun and engaging choices for residents who will be able to enjoy a balance of mental engagement, emotional enrichment and physical activity each day with on- and off-site activities such as dancing, live music, boutique shopping, reading, wine and cheese tasting, gardening, bingo, card games, art classes and brain games.

Freshly prepared meals will satisfy many special dietary needs. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are to be served tableside daily, with private dining available for special occasions. A choice of menu options, including light fare dining and a 24-hour bistro for gourmet snacks, will surely please.

Tribute at Heritage Hunt has infused technology into the community’s design to help keep seniors connected with their families. The community will have senior-friendly computers, community-wide Wi-Fi, community updates on social media, state-of-the-art call systems and virtual digital communication systems.

If you or someone you know would like more information on all that Heritage Hunt has to offer, contact Belinda at (703) 753-0125 or Belinda@JacobsonRealty1.com.

Regency at Catharpin Creek

Regency at Catharpin Creek, an assisted living community planned to be built at 5570 Catharpin Rd. was approved in April of last year. The Board of County Supervisors voted yes on the rezoning of 102 acres from agriculture to planned-mixed residential for an age-restricted community with a maximum of 208 single-family houses.

Although the community would fit with surrounding communities in Gainesville, such as Parks of Piedmont and Heritage Hunt, it would differ from its neighbors to the north along Catharpin Road, where housing is less dense. Regency will be made up of only single-family homes, no apartments or townhouses, in order to fit into the more rural feel of the area. In addition, about 55 percent of the overall property will be open space.

While the builder has not announced a timeline for completion, Regency will have easy access to a walking trail, a nice amenity for residents to enjoy local, natural beauty.

Stay tuned, as Jacobson Realty and Home Staging will keep a close eye on the development of this unique community!

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Real Estate Agent Qualifications – What do They Mean?

Real Estate Agent Qualifications – What do They Mean?

largest transactions

When you’re making quite possibly one of the largest transactions of your lifetime, you want someone with real expertise in your corner. There are many real estate agents out there for you to choose from, so what makes one real estate agent different from another?

One way to differentiate between realtors is by examining their qualifications. You’ll come across a lot of acronyms in your search for a qualified agent. So what does all this alphabet soup mean when it comes to real estate qualifications? Learn to decode real estate qualifications so you know you’re getting the cream of the crop when you select your realtor.

  • CRS – Council of Residential Specialist – This is the mark of an experienced agent who has completed advanced professional training and demonstrated outstanding professional achievement in residential real estate.
  • GRI – Graduate Realtor Institute – To get this designation, your realtor has to be a member of the National Association of Realtors in good standing. The coursework for this includes market knowledge, business skills, systems and avoiding setbacks, fines and lawsuits.
  • CNE – Certified Negotiation Expert – This professional certification means that your agent is an expert negotiator. They have learned how to best bargain to get you the deal you want when buying and selling.
  • ABR – Accredited Buyer Representative – This designation is for realtors to focus on working directly with buyer-clients. They learn valuable skills to help you purchase your home and learn specialized information to help them stay on top of trends and issues in home buying.
  • e-PRO – Electronic/Internet certification – This certification expands real estate agents’ digital skills so they can connect with the online market. They learn to properly leverage social media to get your home sold quickly and at the best price.
  • ASP – Accredited Staging Professional– Real estate agents learn how to professionally prepare homes through staging to get top dollar when selling your home.
  • SRES – Seniors Real Estate Specialist – If you’re over the age of 50 and looking to buy or sell a home, a Seniors Real Estate Specialist is best equipped to help you. They learn how to counsel clients through major financial and lifestyle transition in relocating, refinancing or selling their family homes.
  • Real Estate Broker – This designation requires many hours of education and testing. Real estate brokers are licensed to run their own real estate businesses as well as help you buy or sell a home.

Being a realtor requires quite a bit of training and continuing education, and those letters mean many late nights studying and hours of test taking to stay on top of the latest information out there in the real estate world. Being up to speed with the latest trends, laws, ways to market, negotiation techniques, lending procedures and more is critical when you want to get the most for your sale and sell in the quickest amount of time or scoop up the deal of the decade that just went on the market. For a fully credentialed realtor, visit Jacobson Realty and Home Staging or contact Belinda at (703) 753-0125 orBelinda@JacobsonRealty1.com.

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Active Adult Living and Peace of Mind Await You in Gainesville, VA

Active Adult Living and Peace of Mind Await You in Gainesville, VA

55 years or older

Heritage Hunt, an Active Adult Community

If you are 55 years or older and love to stay active, Gainesville has the perfect community for you! Heritage Hunt is the place for those who want clubs, sports, events, entertainment and a sense of community, as well as a quiet place to come home to. Named “Best Active Adult Community in the Country” by the National Council on Senior Living, Heritage Hunt is conveniently located near routes 29 and 66 in Gainesville, Virginia.

The Homes

The homes in Heritage Hunt include thousands of dollars in luxury add-ons at no extra cost. Homes are designed with the older adult in mind: low-maintenance and accessible floorplans make the living easy. You can choose from a luxury elevator condominium, featuring upgraded appliances and cabinets, enclosed patios or sunrooms and ceramic bathroom flooring. If you prefer a single family home, there are also main level living models with award-winning designs.

Amenities

Heritage Hunt is chock-full of amenities. One of the major attractions is the 18-hole championship golf course at the Heritage Hunt Golf and Country Club. There, the spacious grand clubhouse offers 27,000 square feet of social and recreational area. You will find a resort-style pool and spa, a large sundeck, an indoor aquatic center, a golf pro shop, a fitness center, a lounge, a movie room, a dining and banquet room and many social gathering areas. You can enjoy fine dining in the clubhouse or rent out space for your next big anniversary, birthday or other celebration. There’s even an on-site business center for those active adults who haven’t yet retired. For tennis buffs, you can find planned clinics and tournaments or catch a game on your own time on the lighted tennis courts.

Area Attractions

You will love Heritage Hunt’s convenient location with nearby shopping and dining. Enjoy a variety of shops, restaurants and entertainment just a few miles away inVirginia Gateway. Soon residents will also be able to take a short trip to a brand new Harris Teeter grocery store.

Nature getaways and day trips to Washington D.C. are always favorites for those in Heritage Hunt. Enjoy scenic views of the Bull Run Mountains right near the community or drive just about one hour to get to the Blue Ridge Mountains for hiking, camping, canoeing and more. If the city it your thing, spend a day in the nation’s capital.

Ease, amenities and attractions – if all this sound like something you would want,Jacobson Realty and Home Staging can help. Contact Belinda at (703) 753-0125 or Belinda@JacobsonRealty1.com.

Buy, Stage or Sell with Confidence!

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Gainesville Virginia Voted Number One for Young Families

Gainesville Virginia Voted Number One for Young Families

personal finance,

A recent article on nerdwallet.com, an online source for consumer-driven advice about personal finance, named Gainesville the number one best city for young families in Virginia, and we have to say, we agree whole-heartedly! The article cites that about 40 percent of households are families with children, which is the highest percentage of any city in the state. Pair that with fabulous schools, lots of family-friendly activities and beautiful scenery, and you’ve got a recipe for a great place to raise your family.

Gainesville District Supervisor Peter Candland commented for Bristow Beat on the nerdwallet.com findings, saying he isn’t surprised:

“Gainesville is a great place to live, work, and play. We have parks, schools, churches, and shopping so conveniently located that families can spend more time together and less time traveling to and from various events. Part of what makes Gainesville so great is a real sense of community within our neighborhoods and schools. Families can find a place to belong and become actively involved in the community. With the scenic Bull Run Mountains and the beauty of the Rural Crescent as backdrops, Gainesville combines the best of suburbia and wide open spaces. It is an idyllic slice of heaven right here in northern Virginia.”

Here are just a few reasons to bring your family to Gainesville:

Affordability – According to the nerdwallet.com survey, the median home value is $408,100, but when you compare that to the median annual family income for 2013 of $138,125 you are looking at an affordable equation for homeowners.

Growth and prosperity – According to the nerdwallet.com survey, family income has grown over 67 percent in the past 14 years. Though this community still provides a smaller-town community feel, it has definitely experienced significant growth in the past decade. According to bestplaces.net, Gainesville has grown183.53 percent since 2000!

Family friendliness – Gainesville and the surrounding area offer many family-friendly activities. You’re just an hour drive from the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains where you can experience the natural beauty of Virginia as you travel through the rolling hills, camp in the crisp mountain air or hike the beginner- and kid-friendly Old Rag. Teach your kids to golf at one of the area’s scenic golf clubs (or get a sitter and unwind on your own). Enjoy great food at one of Gainesville’s many family-friendly restaurants like Pizza NY Margherita or Grafton Street Irish Restaurant and Pub.

Educational quality – GreatSchools ranked Gainesville schools with an 8 out of 10, while the state average is 5.7. Gainesville schools are part of the Prince William County Public School District, which was also ranked in the top 8 percent in the U.S. (by Washington Post High School Challenge). Given those numbers, there’s no wonder why families with young children are flocking to this community! Find more information by visiting the Prince William County Public Schools website.

Beautiful communities – With nice houses come perks like great community amenities. Gainesville communities offer beautify scenery, landscaping and trees, walking paths, playgrounds, pools, golf courses and more.

We’re proud of Gainesville’s number one status and its many attractions. If you would like to know more about the area’s neighborhoods, call Jacobson Realty and Home Staging today at 703-338-9678, or emailBelinda@JacobsonRealty1.com.

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Happy Mother’s Day!

Happy Mother’s Day!

Hello, readers! It’s Mother’s Day weekend so, there will be no blog entry this week…but I’ll be back next week with some interesting insights on Refin.com and what to expect from their service.
I hope all mothers and mothers-to-be have a joyful Mother’s Day!
Mother's Day

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Braemar in Bristow, VA – Where Home is THE Place to Be

Braemar in Bristow, VA – Where Home is THE Place to Be

shopping for a new home

When you’re shopping for a new home, what’s on the top of your priority list? Maybe you’re looking for a great location for your work commute or easy access to shopping and restaurants. Perhaps you have kids, and you want to make sure they have access to the best possible schools. Or you might just be looking for a place where you can enjoy nature in your backyard, relax by the pool or practice your tennis serve. Why compromise on any of those things, when you could find all of them in Braemar, Bristow’s largest planned community?

Built between 1996 and 2008, Braemar has over 2,800 homes. And there are a variety of housing options in the community’s ten independent sub-associations. If you’re looking for condos, townhouses, courtyard or single-family houses (with and without garages), Braemar has them all.

Each neighborhood offers plenty of community amenities. For the fitness enthusiast or the busy parent trying to get kids out in the fresh air, Braemar has outdoor swimming pools, tennis courts, basketball courts, a volleyball court and tot lots. You can also walk, jog or bike the several miles of paved trails in the community. Living in Braemar means you can get fit in your backyard and pocket that gym membership money each month.

If commuting options are important, Braemar is easily accessible to the Prince William Parkway, Route 66 and Route 29. If you’re headed to D.C., you’re only 36 miles away. And if you prefer to relax on your commute and travel by train, it’s minutes away from the Manassas VRE station.

The community is close to Gainesville, Manassas, and Haymarket. If you’re looking for a nice date night or to buy that perfect pair of shoes, Braemar is only a short drive from great shopping and restaurants at Bristow Shopping Center and Braemar Village Plaza.

If you have children, of course, education is going to be on your list of must-haves in a community. Your children will have access to top-notch education when you join the Braemar community. The community is located in the Prince William County Public School District, which is the second largest district in Northern Virginia and ranked in the top 8 percent in the U.S. (by Washington Post High School Challenge).

Even in bustling Northern Virginia, there is still a strong sense of community at Braemar. Each year is jam-packed with family-friendly community activities like Breakfast with Bunny, community yard sales, dog swims, Braemar Day, Halloween parties and holiday parties. No matter what your priority is in house hunting, Braemar has you covered. To find out more about available homes, call Jacobson Realty and Home Staging today at 703-338-9678 or emailBelinda@JacobsonRealty1.com.

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Virginia Oaks, a Jewel in Gainesville, Virginia

Virginia Oaks, a Jewel in Gainesville, Virginia

choose a community

We know it’s hard to choose a community to live in when you are not familiar with the area. But we also know making the decision is easier when you have information from people who live close by. We’d like to introduce you to the Virginia Oaks community in Gainesville.

Virginia Oaks is made up of approximately 560 single family, town homes and NVHomes’ innovative villas. Come for the golf and stay for the scenic views along tree-lined streets where you can also live and play on the banks of Lake Manassas.

For nature lovers, as you stroll the neighborhood, you might spot a deer or see quite a few species of birds. The ponds are fully stocked with fish if you enjoy fishing for sport or for pleasure. Fitness enthusiasts will love catching an afternoon game of tennis out on the courts, taking a dip in the pool, shooting some hoops or pumping iron in the weight room. There are also playground areas for kids to run off some of that extra energy.

Interested in learning to swim or joining a swim team? The Virginia Oaks Sea Devils offer a swim team and developmental program and invites everyone in the community to be a part of the programs. This non-profit club loves to see families have an affordable way to foster a love of swimming in their children, but most importantly keep them safe in the water.

For many, the main attraction of Virginia Oaks is the Virginia Oaks Golf Club, a daily fee course with memberships available for priority tee times. Designed by P.B. Dye, the course offers a memorable and challenging golf game. The design of the course has natural areas and water challenges that enhance both the golf game and the beauty of the community. The recently completed golf course improvements and clubhouse renovations keep your golf game moving and add new entertainment opportunities for residence and visitors.

And if all those community amenities don’t keep you busy, nearby attractions include historic landmarks, the Jiffy Lube Live amphitheater, local wineries, new shopping boutiques, Regal Movie Theaters and restaurants. For outdoors enthusiasts, a short drive gets you to the Blue Ridge Mountains, where you can camp, ski, hike, raft and more.

Virginia Oaks is conveniently located for Washington commuters where many options are available. The community has easy on/off access to I-66 and the Route 15 corridor. It is also close to the Bristow Virginia Rail Express (VRE) and nearby Manassas VRE train station and Vienna Metro station.

As residents of Western Prince William County, we at Jacobson Realty and Home Staging Co., Inc. are familiar with life in Virginia Oaks. We would be happy to speak with you about the many offerings of this attractive community. Call us today at 703-338-9678 or email Belinda@JacobsonRealty1.com.

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Great Places to Live in the Washington D.C. Area: What’s the big deal about Gainesville, Haymarket and Bristow, Virginia? Part II

Great Places to Live in the Washington D.C. Area: What’s the big deal about Gainesville, Haymarket and Bristow, Virginia? Part II

a strong community

When you’re looking for a new home, you may be searching for that perfect backyard or that great school district, but there is something else that should be on your radar as you shop – a strong community.  We believe, as do thousands of others, that even though Western Prince William County — namely Gainesville, Haymarket, Bristow and Nokesville — is rapidly growing, there is still a strong sense of community that brings residents together.  Here are some aspects of the community that draw people to the area and keep them there.

Free Public Events Haymarket is always hopping with community events like Haymarket Day, Oktoberfest and their Friday Family Summer Concert series. During these events, local musicians, artists and businesses show residents and visitors what life in Western Prince William County is all about.  The next exciting free event will be the “Arts Alive” program at the Hylton Performing Art Center at the George Mason Campus in Prince William County on May 2ndfrom Noon-4pm. Local artist, actors, vendors and musicians including the Manassas Chorale will be sharing art inside and outside the grounds of the center. The entire event is free, and the center will be grooving to art!
Clubs – From community service clubs and family clubs to golf and country clubs, Western Prince William County has you covered, especially for golfers.  If you like to relax and dine with friends or play 18 holes of golf, you might enjoyEvergreen Country Club, Dominion Valley Country Club, Broad Run Golf and Practice Facility or the Stonewall Golf Course.  Our golf courses are so high quality, the Robert Trent Jones Club at Lake Manassas in Gainesville is where Tiger Woods will be hosting the 2015 Quicken Loans National from July 27-August 2, 2015. One of the premier stops on the PGA Tour, this event raises funds and awareness for the Tiger Woods Foundation and pays tribute to our armed forces.  Buy your tickets early!
Parks – Western Prince William County has open space that brings people together.  Whether it be for a Grizzlies football game, soccer games on lighted fields, a hike on Bull Run Mountain or a picnic in the park, this part of the county offers fields, streams and mountains, as well as a plethora of historic sites such as the untouched beauty of the Manassas Battlefield grounds that encourage residents and visitors to learn more about the history and attractions of this special region.
Nonprofits – Western Prince William County is a place where nonprofits work to enhance the lives of those with particular needs.  Some nonprofits work directly with those they serve.  For Example, Rainbow Therapeutic Riding Center in Haymarket provides therapeutic horseback riding and equine activities for those with disabilities.  The Benedictine Sisters in Bristow provide services for homeless women and their children and free instruction for English language learners.  There are also organizations like Dominion Woman’s Club that support other nonprofits organizations.
We know planning to move means making many decisions.  If you are considering moving, call Belinda Jacobson-Loehle at 703-338-9678 or emailBelinda@JacobsonRealty1.com.  Belinda would be happy to tell you more about the Western Prince William County community.

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Great Places to Live in the Washington D.C. Area: What’s the big deal about Gainesville, Haymarket and Bristow, Virginia? Part I

Great Places to Live in the Washington D.C. Area: What’s the big deal about Gainesville, Haymarket and Bristow, Virginia? Part I

half-packed boxes

When people think of moving, usually images of half-packed boxes and household chaos come to mind. What most people don’t consider is what happens before the move, before the home buying and even before the financing. Yet this early step is one of the most important – deciding which community to live in. In speaking with folks in Western Prince William County (namely, Bristow, Gainesville and Haymarket), we’ve been asking what drew them to the area and how they made the final decision to move here. Here are just two aspects of Western Prince William County that were mentioned over and over.

Location

We know real estate is all about location, but in the case of Western Prince William County, location means something other than “we want to be near the city.” In fact, of the people we spoke with, most wanted access to Washington D.C. and the Metro area but didn’t necessarily want to be that close to the Capital. What they wanted was a nice little escape when they returned home from a long day at work. Western Prince William, with the Bull Run Mountains in the backdrop and its rural roots juxtaposed with contemporary conveniences made these folks want to call Western Prince William County home. And while residents of Western Prince William County appreciate the natural beauty of the area, they also enjoy easy access to shopping and dining. From the quaint shops and cafes of Old Town Haymarket to the restaurants and stores of Atlas Walk and Route 29, this area has something for just about every taste.

Schools

For families with children, schools are a major concern. Whether families want to send their children to private or public schools, quality of education is crucial. Western Prince William County is fortunate to have some of the best schools in the area. The award winning public and private schools are accredited and have excellent academic and athletic reputations, as well as active, supportive parent teacher organizations.

According to Prince William County Schools (PWCS), recent state test scores show PWCS scored above other Virginia counties in just about every area. In reading and writing, PWCS outperformed the state on six of seven reading tests and equaled the state on the other. On high school reading, PWCS improved and had a pass rate of 90 percent. PWCS outperformed the state on all three writing tests. In science, PWCS met or exceeded state performance on four of six science tests. In history and social science, PWCS met or exceeded state performance on eight of nine history/social science tests.

In addition to having excellent K-12 schools, Western Prince William has college campuses right next door in Manassas. George Mason University and Northern Virginia Community College offer local options for higher education, as do some private colleges and career schools. We could go on about Western Prince William County and what makes it a viable place to live, and we will in Part II. For now, however, we will leave you with this thought. If you are considering a move and would like to know more about this growing but connected community, call Belinda Jacobson-Loehle at 703-338-9678 or email Belinda@JacobsonRealty1.com.

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