Walking with the dog through the swirling leaves on a cool, crisp fall morning. Good time for thought and contemplation. At this time a year ago, boxes surrounded us in our condo in Arlington. After meetings with a Realtor, our home for the previous 23 years would go on the market in a few days and she expected a quick sale, driven by a hot condo market where two-bedroom units smaller than ours commanded seven figure prices.

Walking with the dog through the swirling leaves on a cool, crisp fall morning. Good time for thought and contemplation.

At this time a year ago, boxes surrounded us in our condo in Arlington. After meetings with a Realtor, our home for the previous 23 years would go on the market in a few days and she expected a quick sale, driven by a hot condo market where two-bedroom units smaller than ours commanded seven figure prices.

As it turned out, we sold the condo in two days. The buyers planned to gut it, remodel it extensively and “flip” it to take advantage of the hot market. Two days after selling, we found our current home. After an exchange of offers, we put down a contract.

We closed on our condo sale on November 29 and then closed on our new home purchase five days later on December 1. We spent December on various minor improvements to the property, including new flooring in the entrance hall and dining room from Sam Hancock at Highland Hardwoods and began living there right after the first of the year.

Ten months later, we’re about three-quarters moved in. Boxes remain in the garage, although less than half the mountain of cardboard that rose nearly to the ceiling after the movers left on February 1. The past 10 months have also brought a new water heater, a new dish washer, new gas logs for the living room fireplace, a new fireplace in the dining room, new furniture in just about every room, a new hot tub on the back porch, extensive changes in the plumbing plus a new dog and cat to join the other two cats who moved with us from Arlington.

From an investment point of view, our new home has already paid off handsomely. The latest tax assessment places the value of the house and land well above what he paid just 10 months ago. Similar homes and acreage now sell for far more. Property values in Floyd County continue to rise – a double-edged sword that rewards those selling but punishes those who must pay the higher taxes and deal with the problems of growth.

The couple who bought our condo didn’t fare as well. The condo market flattened in Arlington 45 days after we left and, instead of flipping the property for a tidy profit, they are now renting the unit out for $3500 a month. Optimistic builders who expected to sell new, smaller units for $1 million plus are settling for two-to-three hundred thousand less. Some say the market is saturated. Others blame economic unease. Still others say a growing gang problem in Arlington drives prices down.

But the problems of Northern Virginia seem far away now as Chewy hits me at full gallop and then scampers off to plunge headfirst into a pile of leaves. Fall has come to the mountains. Our mountains. Our home.

Share:

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on pinterest
Pinterest
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn

5 Responses

  1. Ten years ago, my wife, Karin, and I decided to move farther away from the Capital of New York State..
    The political battles here may be even worse than in Washington, because there is so much less at stake.

    We didn’t move far, out to “hunt country” in upper Columbia County, but it’s a different world. Karin found the land, designed and built the house—my job was to write big checks—and our home is
    peaceful and serene. As
    recovering alcoholics, we both need that.

    The sun hits our house from
    early AM to late PM, and we
    sit on our patio,looking 100 yards down a gentle slope to the pond where wild ducks stop on their way South. Sometimes we get
    an egret in there, too. But
    sometimes the big bass we call, “Jaws” scares the birds away. At night, the
    coyotes howl, red foxes occasionally run through our yard, deer wander through the orchard to sample the apples and pears.

    We’ve got a lot to be grateful for—and we try to show it in our actions.
    Having a sanctuary gives a
    chance to remember what we were like—and how far we yet have to go—one day at
    a time.

    Walt

  2. P.S. Sorry to mess up the
    posting. I went to the Web to search, “HTML tags” for
    style, looked at five different explanations, did
    not understand one single thing to do. Sorry. I’m,
    “computer challenged.”

  3. Attn: Doug Thompson
    Re Steve Holland’s October 24th column, which begins “Nearly a year after his re-election” . . . I MUST comment that Duyba was NOT re-elected, but was “selected” to serve his first term – by the Supreme Court. Only those who are “elected” the first time can be “re-elected!” Please convey to Mr. Holland that a journalist should not be careless, but be accurate! It’s usually what distinguishes the reporter from the reader! Thanks, Sincerely, elgee

Comments are closed.

On Key
Related Posts
Keeping time around the world

Keeping time around the world

In a period of my adult, professional, life, I spent many days (and nights) on planes flying around the world. For many of those years,