Winchester, VA Real Estate News

By Amanda S. Davidson, Alexandria Virginia Homes For Sale
(Amanda Davidson Real Estate Group Brokered By eXp Realty)
In the past two weeks I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and doing business with fellow Active Rainer Mike Cooper. Mike owns Quality Electric Company in Winchester, Virginia and the name speaks for itself. I learned of Mike’s company on Active Rain and contacted him about installing some new lighting in my kitchen.     Mike came out, looked things over and a week later arrived with his crew to take care of everything. I needed an old hideous fluorescent light removed and pendant/recessed lighting installed. I had to run out to a listing appointment while the work was being done and arrived home to everything installed, the floor swept, and my house locked up safe and sound. Now, that’s what I call a Quality Electric Company!     Thank you Mike for all of your work, I will be referring bus...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
Life is a learning experience, and most of us could write a book about the things we've learned along the way.  I have a few things I probably wouldn't put in my book of life lessons, but they are important things I've learned.  Such as: Never feed a gaseous dog broccoli.  TSA agents do not have a sense of humor no matter how hard you try. Do not drink a Coke while eating Mentos. A cat is really, really hard to bathe. I am not exempt from gravity. Never wash reds and whites together. Do not park under a power line.  Birds love to use your car for target practice. If you post your phone number online, people will call you.  A lot of people will call you. I retain ice cream. No matter how good they taste, fish smell bad before, during and after you cook them.  Hours after. A package will ...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
This morning, I had the pleasure of meeting an appraiser I've never met before.  We got together at 9:00 am to go over the house I have under contract and what a great guy he was.  Ironically, he had called my contracting company this past Monday to explain that he had an electrical issue he created and he needed somebody to rescue him from his wife who had no receptacles now, and she wasn't happy. I sent my son over, and in minutes he had him up and running and that was that.  While out on a project Tuesday, I got a call from the same fellow telling me he was tapped to do an appraisal on my listing on Friday.  We went over all of the details, and then I asked if he had done any electrical work since Monday.  He realized that I was not only the broker on this appraisal, but my company w...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
OK, I have to admit that I married a nature weenie.  My wife was the farmer's daughter, but you would never know it.  She's not a big fan of the outdoors, critters, bugs, sweating, livestock, gardening and now snakes in the pool.  My son dropped by today to take a swim and was greeted by a snake hanging on to the skimmer opening.  Surprise! I would agree that finding a snake in the pool with you would be a bit unnerving.  I had a water moccasin charge me while I was standing in a river fishing.  It did make me a bit uncomfortable, but I kept fishing. Sometimes we find ourselves in situations where there are snakes in the pool.  It's a great listing with a great family and all of a sudden there are snakes in the pool.  The house doesn't sell quickly enough, and you're to blame.  The offe...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
One of the biggest challenges I have as broker is that I'm real.  That means, in the process of working together you will likely get to know me and snippets of my life.  I can't seem to help it.  It just leaks out in the process of doing business. It's rare when I keep everything strictly business with no personal interaction.  We're social creatures.  We love social media.  We are involved in social events.  Why would our jobs as real estate professionals be any different?  Today, I received this nice email from a client.  This particular couple has been through the ringer, and when they dropped their last agent to come work with me, I promised we would make something happen, and it is.  Date: July 26, 2012 8:36:41 AM EDT To: Mike Cooper Subject: Impact Mike, S...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
Oakdale Crossing in Winchester, VA is an 18 year old subdivision of beautiful and spacious homes.  The home styles range from two-story colonials to single story ranchers.  All of the homes have spacious floor plans with a lot of room for growing families. There are currently four available listings in Oakdale Crossing.  The price range of these listings range from $349900 - $479900.  The price alone does not necessarily signify large changes in what you get for the money.  The lowest price listing and the highest price listing are within 71 square feet of livable space.  None of the current available properties are distressed properties. Oakdale Crossing did see a wave of foreclosures and short sales over the past 4 years, but the neighborhood seems to stabilizing to fair market listin...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
I'm a big fan of technology, and at the same time, I tend to review new devices forever because I just don't want too much new stuff to deal with at one time.  It took me two years to upgrade my Palm to a new iPhone.  So, I'm a bit slow on some decisions.  Ironically, I've been kicking myself for the past 5 months because I didn't upgrade to the iPhone sooner.  It has become an indispensable partner in my work.  Today, my wife put it all in perspective for me.  My wife has been out of town for a week.  I always depend on her to be my "hey, did you remember this" person.  I have a lot going on with two very busy businesses.  So, I need a lot of reminders.  This week, I was on my own so I put Siri to work as my "phone wife."  Whenever I remembered something I needed to be reminded of, I w...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
The Winchester, VA real estate market is changing monthly.  The 2012 trend has seen a slight reduction in inventory, but there is a more positive trend evolving.  The number of foreclosures and short sales have dropped considerably since the beginning of the year. The current available listings above $20,000 in Winchester, VA total 470.  Of that number, only 19 are foreclosures and 37 are short sales.  That's a serious drop in distressed properties as of July 2012.  The opportunity for a buyer to buy a discounted property is quickly passing.       Even though the number of distressed properties have declined over the past six months, the number of short sales have surpassed the number of foreclosures.  That's an indicator that the homeowners who were trying to stick it out in hopes that...
Comments 3
By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
Winchester, VA, was hurt by the recession just like most communities around the US.  The housing market took a huge hit, and REOs popped up everywhere throughout 2008-2011.  In mid-2011, short sales started to pick up popularity with underwater homeowners.  The local housing scales are starting to tip in favor of short sales today rather than foreclosures.  Because of that, homeowners need to have a better understanding of what is involved in a short sale in order to make the process less painful.  If you're not prepared, they will be painful.  A few simple preparatory steps can make the process more fluid and less stressful. Contact your lender before listing your home.  Tell them your circumstances, and ask them for permission to list your home as a short sale.  Don't list it before y...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
Forty-three years ago today, the world stood still and watched one of the most amazing events of mankind.  For a few brief moments, enemies set aside their differences, friends stood in awed silence, individuals ignored their biases, families gathered together and gazed quietly gazed off into space, the intolerant forgot their intolerance and in a unique way, the world was one. No matter what divided man, in that fateful moment, he was one with every other man.  It was a revelation that mankind can get along, and even thrive under the right conditions.  The irony of it all is that it didn't require anyone to accept anyone else's beliefs, thoughts or opinions.  In that one moment, mankind was united in a universal hope that a fellow human being would be successful and safe.  Take a look:
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
I realize it's Summer, and I know it's supposed to be hot, but that doesn't mean I have to like it.  I'm more of a Fall season person.  The only really exciting thing for me with summer is I get to swim.  I've always been like a fish to water.  So, summer heat gives me plenty of reasons to jump in the pool.Recently, I was swimming around my pool and it dawned on me that the water was as warm as my shower water.  It wasn't nearly as refreshing as I was expecting, and then I had an "aha" moment.  My boys are starting to worry about me because they think I'm becoming the nutty professor, but it was a rational idea.I don't have a sophisticated water cooling system with my pool, but I'm sure some brainiac has created one somewhere.  In the absence of such a wonderful invention I decided to s...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
A few years ago, a friend of mine attended my Spinning® class and afterward we ran into each other in the parking lot.  Actually, it started out with a "Pst, pst, hey Mike, take a look at this."  She was pointing in her trunk.  I was a little concerned that her previous Spinning® instructor might have been in there.  No instructor in the trunk.  Actually, it was a stack of pastry pizzas.  She proceeded to tell me about a little business on the west side of town that provided these yummy delights for her business. Diane carried these pizzas into her client's offices and won over the staff before talking to the decision makers.  Once she had the staff, the decision makers didn't stand a chance.  She was the top salesperson on the east coast for her company. Patsy's Pastry Pizza is a Europ...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
On July 4, 1917, General John J. Pershing marched American dough-boys into Paris in the first public display of American troops as the United States officially entered WWI.  The American troops continued their march through Paris until they reached the tomb of Marquise de Lafayette.   As the Parisians looked on, Colonel Charles Stanton stopped at Lafayette's tomb and declared, "Lafayette, we are here."  General Pershing announced that the Americans were there to return the favor.  The independence of America has aided many in their own independence.  God bless this great country, and happy Independence Day!   General Pershing also brought a layer of American soil which he placed on Lafayette's grave.  At the completion, he said, "Now Lafayette is buried under American soil."
Comments 8
By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
Winchester, VA was hit by a severe storm Friday evening.  High winds and driving rains combined to knock out power throughout the area.  The storm started close to 10:00 PM with violent winds that literally shook our house.  It felt a lot like the tornado winds I experienced in Tulsa, OK. The city of Winchester looked a lot like a war zone today.  The trees down in the city made it was difficult to navigate portions of the area.  The two local power companies have been working around the clock to restore power.  Shenandoah Valley Cooperative announced today that some areas of the Winchester / Frederick County area may not see electricity for two to three days. Comcast and Verizon both lost feeds throughout the area.  My Comcast Internet and TV feed was restored at approximately 8:00 pm ...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
I love those few simple words, "You will be my . . . . for life!"  In my case, that could be Realtor or contractor.  Yesterday, it was contractor.  A very distressed client called with an electrical need.  He is an out of the area homeowner, and his tenant had no electricity on 50% of their second floor. He had called another contractor first (from the Yellow Pages), and the estimate the guy gave him was stunning.  To look at the problem and assess it was $75 to show up and $500 to assess it.  When the client called and explained his previous estimate, I laughed.  It sounded a lot like someone was trying to get a few bucks for his next vacation.  We dropped in yesterday morning, and in 60 minutes we had everything working and we were on our way for $147.00.  When the wife called, she sa...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
If you're into beautiful unique art, you have come to the right place.  Wine-King Galleries provides some of the most unique and fun art you will encounter.  An Wine and Jess King, co-owners of Wine-King Galleries, provide you with a great array of photography, painting and physical art.  An is a native of Virginia, and Jess is a Las Vegas, New Mexico born artist.  Both ladies are personal friends.  As a matter of fact, I've known An since she was 13, and I have watched her art develop and continue to impress since she was in college.  I had the privilege of meeting Jess while she was still in college at James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA.  I call An and Jess the "daughters I never had," and like a proud dad, I think they're amazing. Both ladies are gifted and talented artists. ...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
The Wayside Inn in Middletown, VA, has the distinction of being known as the oldest continuous Inn in the United States. (There may be some question about that claim.)  When you're there, you can see why. It still has the flair of an early American Inn.  It opened in 1797 for travelers passing through the Shenandoah Valley, and it is open today for modern day travelers. A number of years ago, I had five office assistants.  During the Christmas holidays, I gave each one a gift of a night at the Inn along with a wonderful dinner there.  They all raved about the accommodations, and they loved the food.  I also love the food at Wayside.  It's always very well prepared, unique in its presentation and delicious to the last bite. The Inn survived the Civil War as both northern and southern tro...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
My little Volvo is dent magnet.  I've got to quit saying that, because it has become a reality.  I'm one of those people who parks his car in another county in order to keep people from banging the doors, and yet, they still find it.  It's got to be a conspiracy.  Fortunately, I have Patriot Collision Center to put the blue bucket back in shape when it gets dinged. I had the privilege of meeting Larry Howard, the owner of Patriot Collision Center, a little over a year ago when he called about a real estate need.  Larry is a great guy.  I found him to be a solid, honest and up front businessman, and I immediately wanted to see how we could do business together.  Well, we have a real estate relationship, and now we have a auto repair relationship. Patriot Collision Center was nominated fo...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
Yesterday, I wrote a blog about the perils of working with incompetent bank departments, and a lot of readers shared their similar experiences.  I'm definitely not alone in my frustration with uncaring and foolhardy REO and short sale departments. They are voluminous. Today, was a totally different day.  Today, I changed hats for the part of the day and went out into the electrical field with my son.  We took care of two projects before I headed into my brokerage office.  In both cases, the jobs went extraordinarily well, and in both cases, the clients were awesome.  We had a great time with both clients and it made me think of something. A lot of us have written rants about our frustrations generated when dealing with banks.  There seems to be far too many bad experiences, and far too ...
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By Mike Cooper, Broker VA,WV, MD, Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
(Cornerstone Business Group Inc)
Winchester, Virginia is a great place to relocate to for many reasons, but here are some of my favorite Reasons to Relocate to Winchester, VA: Economics - Winchester gives you more bang for the buck. Housing and the cost of living is less expensive than Wincheste'rs Northern Virginia neighbors. Access - Winchester is located at the top of Virginia just west of the Washington D. C. area. It hosts a series of major highways which make it a great hub for business and commerce. Those highways include, Interstate 81, Routes 7, 11, 50 and 522.  History - Winchester is full of history. From the founding of our country through the adventures of Admiral Byrd, Winchester played a role. The Civil War played out on the streets of Winchester City each day from the beginning to the end. Wikipedia off...
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