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June
6

Summer Programs for Your Kids Near Richmond

Richmond Kids

So summer is almost here and you're already dreading the cries of, "There's nothing to do!" Our real estate agents have been there, and they recommend these wonderful summer programs near Richmond homes for sale to keep your kids engaged in productive and entertaining activities. 

  • Steward School Summer Experience - The Steward School, 11600 Gayton Rd., Richmond, VA 23238
    With more than 80 programs for K-12 students, the Steward School Summer Experience offers something for everyone. Camp categories include Academics, Arts, Innovation, Sports, and Traditional. Choose from full-day, half-day, or single-session options, along with early drop-off and extended daycare for maximum flexibility. Share quality time with parents and kids workshops in activities such as painting, cooking, and yoga. Visit the website for full catalog, including schedule and pricing. 

  • Twist Gymnastics - 2130 John Rolfe Pkwy., Richmond, VA 23233
    Whether your child dreams of the Olympics or just enjoys challenging themselves, Twist Gymnastics will help them accomplish their goals. Summer camps are available in half-day and full-day options, by the week or day. Full-day camps include afternoon sessions in Young Chef's Academy, with hands-on lessons in preparing healthy and delicious meals. Camps begin the week of June 20 - June 24, and discounted pricing is given for additional siblings. Learn more at the Twist Gymnastics website.

  • SPARC - 2106 N. Hamilton St., Richmond, VA 23230
    Kids can develop their creative and performing chops at summer camps offered by SPARC. K-Grade 4 students have fun with themed sessions like, "Super Pets and Super Friends," while Grades 5-12 take part in film and performing arts classes, including the chance to stage a production of Spamalot, SPARC's summer musical for 2022. Camps run for one to two weeks. Visit the website for more information.

  • RoboKai - Village Marketplace Shopping Center, 13114 Midlothian Tpke., Midlothian, VA 23113
    Robots have gone from a fixture of sci-fi films to real-life applications in healthcare, manufacturing, and industry. Half-day summer camps at RoboKai, not far from Midlothian homes for sale, let kids explore this fascinating field through games and teamwork. Many activities are live-streamed for parents to follow, and each camp concludes with a lively tournament. Classes are open to kids from ages 7-12 with any level of experience. Monday through Friday sessions from 8 a.m. - noon or 1 p.m. - 5 p.m. begin the week of July 11 - July 15. Price is $289 per week. 

  • Hanover County Summer Youth Programs - Various Locations
    Offering a variety of summer camps for kids of all ages and interests, Hanover County Summer Youth Programs are put on by the Parks and Recreation Department. The huge selection of camps allows you to pick the right one for your family's summer schedule. With EPIC Summer Camps and Theme-based camps, your kid will learn and have fun while doing so. Plus, these camps aren't far from Hanover homes for sale. 

Richmond offers family fun all year long. Are you buying or selling a home in the area? Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties for experienced real estate help. 

May
9

5 Things to do This Spring in Richmond

Richmond Spring Activities

Spring is the perfect time to get out and partake in all the entertaining events and activities around Richmond homes for sale. Check out these incredible options that our real estate agents have on their must-list. 

  1. Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden - 1800 Lakeside Ave., Richmond, VA 23228
    April showers bring May flowers, and there's probably no better place to view nature's handiwork than Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden. Walk the 50-acre grounds that include upwards of a dozen themed gardens, including Cherry Tree Walk, Asian Valley, and the spectacular 11,000 square-foot Conservatory, dubbed the "Jewel of the Garden." Kids get a hands-on experience exploring a treehouse, planting seeds, and viewing wildlife in the Children's Garden. The whole family will enjoy special visiting exhibits such as Butterflies LIVE!, which runs through October 22. Hours are 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. daily, with extended Thursday hours through September. Admission is $17 for adults and $8 for ages 3-12.

  2. Metro Richmond Zoo - 8300 Beaver Bridge Rd., Moseley, VA 23120
    No matter what your age, everyone's a kid when they visit the Metro Richmond Zoo. Located just minutes from Moseley homes for sale, the Zoo features more than 2,000 exotic animals as well as a large number of barnyard animals, such as chickens, sheep, and goats. Add to your adventure at Treetop Zoofari, the area's first zipline course. Try your hand at 40 challenges across 15 ziplines that span more than 3,000 feet. The smaller Junior Explorer Course lets the little ones join in on the fun. Zoo hours are 9:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Tickets are $21.95 for adults and $15.95 for ages 2-11. Separate admission for Treetop Zoofari is $55 and $22.50 for the Junior Explorer Course.

  3. Richmond Flying Squirrels - The Diamond, 3001 N. Arthur Ashe Blvd., Richmond, VA 23230
    Watch the next Mike Trout or Bryce Harper take the field for a game with the Richmond Flying Squirrels. As the Double-A affiliate of the San Francisco Giants, the Squirrels have included MLB players such as Brandon Crawford, Hunter Strickland, and Brandon Belt on their roster. Nearly every game features a promotion such as fireworks, kids running the bases, and t-shirt giveaways. The regular season runs through Sunday, September 18. Visit the website for the full schedule and ticket prices. 

  4. Richmond Scavenger Hunts
    Whether you're a lifelong resident or newly transplanted, you'll learn something fascinating during Richmond Scavenger Hunts. These self-guided interactive tours take you through culturally and historically important neighborhoods, including Downtown Richmond, Capitol Square, Museum District, and Church Hill. There is no time limit, so you can proceed at your own pace and make side trips as you like. Fee is $28 for teams of up to four people. Visit the website to purchase tours and download the app.

  5. Dominion Energy Riverrock
    With activities ranging from biking to stand-up paddleboarding, Dominion Energy Riverrock is a great kickoff to summer outdoor fun. Founded in 2009, Riverrock is a pet-friendly outdoor sports and lifestyle festival taking place at various venues throughout Richmond. In addition to the competitive events, Adventure Zone offers a great opportunity for all ages to try slacklining, bouldering, and other activities at no charge. There will be food, beverages, and live music on hand when you need some downtime. Riverrock is set for Friday, May 20 through Sunday, May 22. Visit the website for schedule and competition registration fees.

Life in Richmond is always exciting, no matter what the season. If you're buying or selling a home, contact us at Joyner Fine Properties for experienced help.

May
2

BBQ Spots in Richmond for National Barbecue Day

BBQ Richmond

National Barbecue Day is coming – and our real estate agents know just how to celebrate!

National Barbecue Day on May 16 celebrates one of the nation's time-honored culinary traditions. Although it's during the spring, May marks the start of the summer barbecue season. Why not kick things off with a bang?

There are over three dozen barbecue restaurants within a short drive of Richmond homes for sale.

No matter whether you love steak, pork, or grilled veggies, you'll have no end of selections for a National Barbecue Day to remember.

Let's take a look at some of your options throughout the RVA:

  • Alamo BBQ – 2202 Jefferson Avenue, Richmond, VA 23223
    In the heart of the historic Church Hill neighborhood, Alamo BBQ dishes out authentic Texas-style meals and has won plenty of awards for its beef brisket. The menu is crafted with Tex-Mex flair – you'll also be able to enjoy fish tacos, grilled burritos, ribs, and a whole slew of fresh-made side dishes.

  • Big Daddy's Barbecue & Ribs – 6359 Jahnke Road, Richmond, VA 23225
    Big Daddy's Barbecue & Ribs is so small you might miss it – a "mom and pop" drive-through barbecue joint. Locals laud the quick service and hot, fresh food (it's been called "bangin'") you can get in just a matter of minutes from Big Daddy's. Don't miss out on the Texas brisket and baby back ribs!

  • Hawk's BBQ – 8191 Brook Road, Richmond, VA 23227
    With 50 years of history behind it, Hawk's BBQ is a storied local barbecue place known for its burgers and "legendary" fried fish. The headliner on the barbecue side is the Hawk's BBQ Sandwich, with its slow-roasted pork marinated in house sweet and tangy sauce, then piled high.

  • HogsHead Cafe – 8902 West Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23294
    HogsHead Cafe will treat you to barbecue made fresh from scratch using the finest ingredients. Visitors come from miles around to try The HogsHead Special, which consists of signature pulled pork topped with baked beans and coleslaw. You'll also find tacos, hot dogs, burgers, soups, and salads!

  • Inner City Blues – 3015 Nine Mile Road, Richmond, VA 23223
    Inner City Blues bills itself as "the home of Carolina barbecue" here in Richmond. You'll find a full range of barbecue and soul food recipes with dinners, including smoked pork ribs, pig feet, and pork chops. You can also walk away with brisket, barbecue chicken, pork, or ribs by the pound to savor later on.

  • Oak & Apple – 1814 East Main Street, Richmond, VA 23223
    Oak & Apple was known for its spacious patio before outdoor dining was cool. A popular spot in the spring, it is beloved for its seasonal events and involvement in the community. There's always a new deal at Oak & Apple, whether that means whole smoked turkeys for Thanksgiving, New Year's party pre-order packs, or cider specials during CiderCon. It truly is a taste of Richmond, VA culture.

See for yourself what life in Richmond has to offer! Contact us to discover more about the RVA today.

April
25

5Ks in Richmond to Start Training for

Richmond Running

What could be better than spending some time outdoors, enjoying a healthy, fun activity, and supporting great causes in the process? Spring and summer are the busiest times of year for 5K events around Richmond, with plenty of races to train for in the upcoming months. Our real estate agents have the details on six 5Ks that you can start training for in the Richmond area.

  • ASK 5K – April 30, 2022 – 3001 N. Arthur Ashe Blvd., Richmond, VA 23230
    Kick off the 5K season with the ASK 5K, which is held every year at the Diamond near Richmond homes for sale. The 17th annual ASK 5K Run & Fun Walk is held to benefit children with childhood cancer and their families, with flexible fundraising goals to help you raise money for a good cause while you run.

  • Holton Hustle 5K – May 14, 2022 – 1600 W. Laburnum Ave., Richmond, VA 23227
    A community event held to promote health, wellness, and physical activity, the Holton Hustle 5K will take you on a scenic trip through Richmond's historic Bellevue neighborhood. The event regularly attracts more than 500 participants and benefits the students at Holton Elementary School.

  • Belle Isle Blitz – May 20, 2022 – 4021 Forest Hill Ave., Richmond, VA 23225
    Looking for something a little different from your next 5K? The Belle Isle Blitz is a 5K trail run which some challenging climbs and fun downhill sections to keep you on your toes. Enjoy a run through Forest Hill Park, and consider bringing your four-legged friend for the Dog Wave of the race. Participants will receive a specially designed t-shirt and a chip-timed bib so that you can easily track your time.

  • Summer Solstice 5K – June 21, 2022 – 4021 Forest Hills Ave., Richmond, VA 23225
    Celebrate the start of summer with a 5K run or walk on the longest day of the year. Held every year as spring turns to summer, the Summer Solstice 5K also takes place at Forest Hill Park. However, there's no trail running element, and this is a more traditional 5K run on flat, paved trails. A week after the main 5K, there will be another 5K race at the same location for youth participants under 18 years of age.

  • Speak Up 5K – September 10, 2022 – 1001 Blanton Ave., Richmond, VA 23221
    If you're training for a 5K a bit further in the future, consider circling the Speak Up 5K on your calendar. This event was started by the CKG Foundation to raise awareness of teen mental illness in a positive, empowering way. In addition to the usual 5K festivities, this race features unique "fun zones" where you might run past a dance party or get squirted with a water gun along the way.

  • Give a Dog a Job 5K – October 1, 2022 – 1603 Ownby Ln., Richmond, VA 23220
    The 4th annual Give a Dog a Job 5K is the continuation of a popular event held every year by the Canine Companions organization. It raises money that goes toward raising highly trained service dogs for adults, children, and veterans who need them. Of course, you're encouraged to bring your own pup along to add some extra fun to your run!

Ready to buy or sell your next home in Richmond? Let our local real estate team help you accomplish your goals. Contact us to buy and sell homes in the Richmond, VA, area.

January
24

About Downtown Richmond's First Fridays

First Fridays

Once a month, Richmond's thriving arts community takes center stage in one of the city's most popular traditions. Our real estate agents love visiting Downtown Richmond for First Fridays from 5 p.m. - 9 p.m. During these monthly events, make sure to stop by these wonderful galleries, shops, and restaurants that are right down the street from Richmond homes for sale.

  • Big Secret - 120 W. Marshall St., Richmond, VA 23220
    Lasers may sound like the stuff of science fiction, but Big Secret uses them as a tool to create "future artifacts." The artists use the energy and precision of laser beams to turn wood, metal, glass, and fabric into toys, jewelry, home accessories, and other works of art. Even non-traditional materials such as shoes, leaves, and film stock can be a canvas for this creative form. Big Secret's studio is open by appointment and for special events such as First Fridays.

  • Quirk Gallery - 207 W. Broad St., Richmond, VA 23220
    Art is meant to be shared. In addition to exhibits of innovative work from top and emerging artists, Quirk Gallery has a boutique of curated items that make wonderful gifts. The Quirk also hosts pop-up shops, one-day-only shows, and workshops that let you unlock your own creative spirit. Hours are 9 a.m. - 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Saturday, and noon - 4 p.m. Sunday.

  • Lift Coffee Shop & Cafe - 218 W. Broad St., Richmond, VA 23220
    The creatively designed and decorated drinks at Lift Coffee Shop & Cafe are works of art in their own right. All coffee drinks, such as Mayan Mocha and Banana Bread Latte, are made with fair-trade organic beans that are roasted locally. If you're looking for a light breakfast or lunch, Lift offers a nice selection of sandwiches, paninis, and salads. Relax with friends over a beer, wine, or cocktail. Lift is open 8 a.m. - 2 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

  • Blue Bones - 310 N. Laurel St., Richmond, VA 23220
    Lauren Healy-Flora worked for iconic designer Anna Sui, while Jeremy Flora has had a lifelong passion for vintage. Together, their fashion instincts and knowledge have turned Blue Bones into Richmond's hippest vintage and consignment shop. When you visit, chances are that Lauren herself will be helping you pick out the perfect outfit, accessories, or home decor items. Blue Bones is open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. - 7 p.m. and Sunday from noon - 6 p.m.

  • Vagabond - 700 E. Broad St., Richmond, VA 23219
    Vagabond serves a menu of upscale Southern favorites in a stylishly casual ambiance. Customers give high marks to the shrimp po'boy, fried catfish, collard greens, and mac 'n' cheese. On weekends, head downstairs to the Rabbit Hole, a speakeasy-style bar with live entertainment. Vagabond is open for dinner and drinks Thursday through Sunday, as well as Sunday through Wednesday on show nights at the National.

Be a part of the creative energy in Richmond. Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties for cheerful and dedicated help from our experienced agents. 

September
13

National Comic Book Day: Comic Book Stores Near Richmond

RVA Comic Book StoresNational Comic Book Day is on September 25th and is a terrific time to explore local comic book stores or treat the comic book lover in your life. Richmond homes for sale benefit from the city's creative culture, and comic books have long been a part of the area's publishing scene. If you take a little time to plan ahead, you could end up starting your own comic book collection just by visiting all of the comic book stores near Richmond!

Here are a few that stand out:

  • Velocity Comics – 819a West Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23220
    Velocity Comics has one of the biggest selections of comic books in Richmond. Its customer service is second to none, as the team will automatically pull your favorite comics for you based on the list you submit rather than wandering the shelves – not that doing so can't be fun all on its own! Open seven days a week, Velocity has a reputation for always being up to date on the latest big events from Marvel, DC, and many more.

  • Alpha Comics & Games – 1601 Willow Lawn Drive 300B, Richmond, Virginia 23230
    Alpha Comics & Games has new releases every week and is known for its collection of vintage comics – it touts "The Best Vintage Section in Central Virginia." If you've fallen behind on all the latest developments in comics, the staff will be glad to catch you up with its weekly events on Wednesdays. A family-owned and operated business with a long local history, you might remember it under the name Nostalgia Plus.

  • Richmond Book Shop – 808 West Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23220
    Richmond Book Shop has it all, giving you the unbeatable feeling of venturing through the eclectic collection of a beloved community bookseller. Its stunning selection of comics runs the gamut from vintage to modern, with graphic novels and manga added in for good measure. It's easy to spend a whole day browsing the shelves!

  • Richmond Comix – 14255 Midlothian Turnpike, Midlothian, VA 23113
    Richmond Comix earns its reputation as one of the top comics stores in Midlothian by topping off an excellent selection with plenty of live events, a book club, and much more. The store has been around since 1987, and its dedication to quality shows in its curated selection, slick website, and emphasis on uplifting local creators. It's yet another stellar reason to choose Midlothian homes for sale.

  • Stories, Comics – 9040 West Broad Street, Henrico, VA 23294
    Stories, Comics may have an unassuming name, but it has an incredible collection of contemporary and classic comics with a "neighborhood comic shop" feel. It has a robust selection of action figures, comic book storage supplies, graphic novels, and even magazines, in addition to its treasure trove of comics. Top brands include Action Lab, Boom Studios, Dark Horse Comics, Image, and Vault – all minutes from Henrico homes for sale.

Our real estate agents know local shops are one of the many things you'll enjoy when living in the Richmond area. Contact us to discover more about Richmond real estate.

August
9

Visit the Heart of Virginia Wine Trail This Summer

Wine Trail Virginia

The rich soil between the Blue Ridge and the Atlantic Coast is perfect for growing grapes and has given rise to some truly outstanding local wineries. 

Our real estate agents are excited to highlight some of our favorite wineries in the region. These five local wineries are collectively known as the Heart of Virginia Wine Trail, and each one has something unique to offer!

  • Grayhaven Winery - 4675 E Gray Fox Cir, Gum Spring, VA 23065
    Although Virginia is now home to over 400 wineries, Grayhaven Winery was one of the first. Established in 1978, Grayhaven is known for its outstanding handcrafted estate wines, including signature wines like Pinotage, Marechal Foch, and Petit Verdot. The winery provides tastings and some excellent cheese and Charcuterie boards in their cozy tasting room and offers a beautiful outdoor space with nature trails and outdoor seating. Grayhaven Winery is nestled in the community of Gum Spring, less than an hour from these Richmond homes for sale

  • James River Cellars Winery - 11008 Washington Hwy, Glen Allen, VA 23059
    Offering a superb selection of red and white wines, James River Cellars opened its doors in 2001 and quickly established itself as one of the best wineries in the Richmond area. Wine flights are available in the tasting room, and you can also order wine by the glass, bottle, or even cans. Be sure to check out these Glen Allen homes for sale just minutes from James River Cellars Winery. 

  • Lake Anna Winery - 5621 Courthouse Rd, Spotsylvania Courthouse, VA 22551
    The folks at Lake Anna Winery have been growing grapes on their picturesque 75-acre vineyard since 1989. They offer several varieties of rich red wines, aged in the traditional French style in oak barrels, as well as some truly exceptional dry white wines. Lake Anna Winery also hosts several events and festivals throughout the warmer months with food, live music, and ample opportunities to sample from their excellent wine selection. Lake Anna Winery will also ship wine just about anywhere in the United States. They offer free shipping on six or more bottles and are still offering curbside pickup as well.

  • Mattaponi Winery -7530 Morris Rd, Spotsylvania Courthouse, VA 22551
    A family-owned winery with a diverse selection of offerings, Mattaponi Winery, brings together years of expert wine-making experience with a keen appreciation for Virginia's Native American traditions. Their beautiful, rustic tasting room can accommodate groups of any size, and their outstanding white Wabamin (Niagara grape) and red Miskwamin (blue Concord grape) wines are local favorites. Mattaponi Winery also offers several excellent sweet dessert wines, including award-winning blackberry, blueberry, and strawberry wines. 

  • Fifty-Third Winery & Vineyards - 13372 Shannon Hill Rd, Louisa, VA 23093
    Formerly known as Cooper Vineyards, Fifty-Third Winery & Vineyards offers handcrafted wines to suit any taste. It's a great place to sit and sip a glass of wine in their warm, welcoming tasting room or on their spacious deck overlooking acres of rolling farmland. In addition to several outstanding red and white wines, Fifty-Third Winery also makes some of Virginia's best rosé. The winery is located a short drive from Richmond, Charlottesville, and Fredericksburg and offers daily wine tastings year-round. 

From award-winning wineries and spectacular scenery to unique culture and outdoor adventure, the Richmond area has it all. Contact us today to learn more about all the opportunities that await in Central Virginia! 

July
5

How to Maintain Your Gutters This Summer

Gutter Tips

It's easy not to think about your gutters when they're doing their job, but a little cleaning and maintenance should be done at least once or twice a year. If you haven't cleaned your gutters since the trees dropped their leaves last fall, doing your maintenance now will help keep them clean throughout the summer's rainstorms. Here are a few tips from our real estate agents for gutter maintenance this summer.

  1. Remove Nests
    First things first: Check your gutters for any nests from animals or creepy crawlies. Birds' nests are commonly found in and around gutters. If you've waited until summer to clean your gutters, chances are the birds aren't using the nests anymore, so you can remove them without worrying about the occupants. Wasps nests, on the other hand, are best left to a professional pest service for your own safety.

  2. Remove Debris
    Before you can flush your gutters, it's important to make sure you remove any loose debris so that you're not washing it all downstream and creating a blockage. Check your gutters for leaves, sticks, and other debris that can be removed manually. It may be time-consuming, but it'll save you any hassle later on.

  3. Flush Your Gutters
    Once you've removed all the loose debris, you can use a garden hose to manually flush the gutters. Make sure the downspouts are running quickly and don't show any signs of blockage inside. If you do find blockages, you can remove the downspout and work on it from the safety of the ground. Clear the blockage by running the garden hose directly into the downspout, running a plumbing snake through the downspout, and if none of those work, disassembling the downspout to find and remove the blockage. Once the downspout is clear, you can reattach it to the gutters.

  4. Repair Any Damage
    Gutters can become damaged over time, especially if they're not cleaned regularly. Inspect your gutters thoroughly for rust, cracks and busted seams, and signs of problems such as algae growth. Algae can be scrubbed off, but cracked or rusted gutters should be repaired or replaced. This is especially important if you're planning on selling your home, as unsightly gutters will be an immediate red flag to potential buyers that can be seen from the street, if not the listing pictures.

  5. Call a Professional if Needed
    Whether you're working on a ladder at gutter height, or leaning down to access the gutters from your roof, cleaning and repairing gutters can be dangerous. Consider whether you have the tools and skills to do this job yourself, and call the pros if you don't. Especially if you are planning to sell the home, it may benefit you to have a pro doing the work, and recent gutter maintenance or even a brand new gutter system will be a selling point over other Richmond homes for sale.

Keeping up on home maintenance is an easy way to protect your investment, but it's especially important to catch up on any maintenance tasks if you're planning on selling your home soon. The outside of your home is a great place to start because that's the first thing a buyer sees. For more suggestions on how to get your home ready to sell and boost your curb appeal, contact us today.

June
21

Install a Sprinkler System This Summer With These Tips

Sprinkler System

If you're tired of your yard turning brown during the stifling dog days of summer or want to cut down on the time you spend watering your garden, it's time to install a sprinkler system. Not only will a sprinkler system make it easier for you to care for your landscaping, but our real estate agents know that it appeals to potential homebuyers when it's time to sell your home. Here are a few tips to follow when installing a sprinkler system. 

  1. Decide If You Should Hire a Pro
    A DIY project is an excellent way to save money when you're on a tight budget. Opting to purchase and install your sprinkler components yourself can cut the cost of the project in half. However, you have to spend time installing the system, and adding a sprinkler system can be a fairly labor-intensive project. You may also have to rent or purchase tools to complete the job. It can also be tricky to properly place the sprinklers so that every area of your landscaping receives ample moisture. While it costs more to hire a pro to install your new sprinkler system, you'll maximize the amount of time in your schedule by letting someone else handle the job. Most professionally installed sprinkler systems also come with a warranty on the parts and labor, giving you a little peace of mind in your investment.
  1. Have Underground Lines and Cables Marked
    Regardless of which installation method you choose, you'll need to have your local utility companies come and mark any underground lines that are located on your property. When installing a sprinkler system, you'll need to avoid these lines. Otherwise, you risk cutting power, cable, or TV to your home. You'll also have to pay for any damage caused to these lines or cables. 
  1. Determine What Features You Want
    Your sprinkler system should incorporate elements that make it a good fit for your home. After considering what the sprinkler will water (such as grass, vegetables, flowers, or trees), you can decide what kind of water pressure the system should have and how quickly the water needs to flow. These features will also factor into what kind of service lines you purchase for the system. When you add your home to the inventory of Richmond homes for sale, buyers will appreciate a sprinkler system that's adapted to the property's unique vegetation. 
  1. Select Your Sprinkler Heads
    The sprinkler heads are one of the most important components of your sprinkler system. Different heads will add moisture to your landscaping in distinct ways. For example, fixed spray heads produce a consistent span of water that travels 5 to 15 feet, while bubbler sprinkler heads add moisture at the base of vegetation. Bubbler sprinkler heads are ideal for plants that easily mold due to excessive moisture, like hydrangeas. Pop-up sprinkler heads are popular with families who enjoy using their yard for exercise and recreation; when they aren't in use, these sprinkler heads disappear into the ground. You can mix and match sprinkler heads to have the best alternative for each section of your yard. 

Ready to put your home on the market? Contact us today to get started!

May
17

About the Walkable Neighborhoods in Richmond

RVA Walkable Neighborhoods

Do you love to live in a walkable neighborhood with plenty of attractions and key services located within walking distance of your home? Walking is such a healthy activity for both body and mind, so it's no surprise that so many shoppers are increasingly looking for a walkable neighborhood to call home. Richmond is one of the most walkable cities in Virginia, with various scenic, amenity-packed neighborhoods to choose from when shopping for your next home. Our real estate agents are here to help you learn more about all of the vibrant, walkable neighborhoods that are waiting for you in Richmond.

About the Walkable Neighborhoods in Richmond

  • Shopping, Food, and Fun in Carytown
    If shopping, dining, and family-friendly attractions are must-haves for you, then you're sure to love all of the fun that's located within walking distance in Carytown. This neighborhood covers about 10 blocks and is packed with some of the most diverse dining options in the city with loads of international flair. Near all of the great dining options, you will enjoy tons of shopping, including the outstanding Ellwood Thompson's market, where you will find fresh, organic produce and so much more.

  • Entertainment and Education Meet in the Downtown Arts District
    If you've been searching for Richmond homes for sale in a neighborhood that's filled with entertainment options, the Arts District is the perfect place to start. This is where you'll find some of the city's most exciting entertainment venues, as well as the historic campus of Virginia Commonwealth University. The National is an amazing music venue that attracts some of the best talents in the industry for shows, while the Virginia Repertory Theatre is a great place to catch a play or musical. In this neighborhood, you will also be able to enjoy frequent outdoor festivals all year long.

  • Art and History Meet in the Museum District
    The Museum District ranks as one of Richmond's most walkable neighborhoods, and as you might expect, it's an excellent place to live if you love to explore fascinating museums. The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is the main attraction, and it regularly ranks as one of the 10 best art museums in the country. The Virginia Museum of History and Culture is an amazing place to learn about local history, and there are also a variety of fun, smaller museums located throughout the neighborhood.

  • Walking Is a Great Workout in Church Hill
    While the Church Hill neighborhood offers plenty to see and do, the big attraction for avid walkers will be the especially good workout that walking in this neighborhood provides. The hill part of Church Hill is an accurate description because this neighborhood has a fairly steep uphill climb that's perfect for a walking workout. Near the bottom of the hill, you can enjoy a flatter, more leisurely walk along the river, with great waterfront scenery.

  • Monroe Ward Rated as Richmond's Most Walkable Neighborhood
    Walk Score 
    is a website that ranks neighborhoods for walkability in cities all around the country, and they ranked Monroe Ward as the most walkable neighborhood in all of Richmond. There are more than 100 restaurants, bars, and coffee shops located within walking distance in Monroe Ward, so it's easy to find a great place to recharge after an enjoyable walk. 

Are you ready to find your next home in one of Richmond's walkable neighborhoods? Our local real estate team is here to help. Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout the Richmond, VA area.

April
19

Architecture Styles You'll See Throughout Richmond

RVA Architecture

As one of the oldest major cities in the United States, Richmond features stunning examples of the various architectural styles that have been popular through the years. Get a new appreciation of the city's rich historical heritage when you view these classic buildings, only minutes from Richmond homes for sale

  1. Virginia State Capitol - 1000 Bank St., Richmond, VA 23218
    Any discussion of architecture in Richmond begins with the magnificent Virginia State Capitol, a National Historic Landmark. Founding father Thomas Jefferson designed the building in 1785 with assistance from French architect Charles-Louis Clerisseau. In addition to being the second-oldest working statehouse in America, the Capitol is the first structure in the country to be designed in the style of first-century Roman temples. 

  2. Egyptian Building - 1223 E. Marshall St., Richmond, VA 23298
    Ancient pharaohs would have been justifiably proud of Richmond's Egyptian Building, located on the campus of VCU's Medical College of Virginia. Signature features of this style include the massive pillars at the entrance and the so-called battered walls, which are thicker at the bottom than at the top to give the illusion of height. Imhotep is considered the first physician of the Western world, so it's appropriate that the Egyptian Building is used for the medical school's classrooms and offices.

  3. Wills House - 407 N. 27th St., Richmond, VA 23223
    Once home to a wealthy local merchant who owned the entire block, Wills House is the oldest residence in the historic Church Hill North neighborhood. Many of the original beaded boards still remain in this Federal-style building, which dates back to 1812 and is still in use as a private home. Just two doors down is Wills Store, believed to be the oldest commercial building in Richmond. 

  4. Putney Houses - 1010-1012 E. Marshall St., Richmond, VA 23298
    In stark contrast to the nearby Egyptian Building sit the Putney Houses, once owned by father-and-son shoe manufacturers of the same name. The Italianate style marked a loosening of the restrictions found in more rigid architectural forms, such as Greek. Distinctive features of these Italianate homes include low-pitched roofs, round-head windows, and arcaded porches. Today, the restored houses serve as offices for VCU.

  5. Markel Building - 5310 Markel Rd., Richmond, VA 23230
    Looking like something from the world of The Jetsons, the Markel Building evokes polarized reactions from most viewers. The circular structure, wrapped with unbroken pieces of textured aluminum measuring 555 feet in length, is thought to have been inspired by the sight of a foil-wrapped baked potato. However, the material is significant due to the heavy presence of Reynold's Metal in Richmond. 

  6. Altria Theater - 6 N. Laurel St., Richmond, VA 23220
    Back in the early 20th century, when entertainment venues were designed as "palaces,"  the Altria Theater still stood head and shoulders above the rest. Seven years of planning, two years of construction, and $1.65 million went into the completion of the building. Since its successful restoration in the mid-1990s, the Altria Theater has hosted a wide range of events, including Broadway productions, comedy shows, musical concerts, graduations, and lectures.

Our real estate agents are experienced in matching people with their perfect home. Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties to learn more.

March
9

Learn About Butterflies Day: Explore Butterfly Gardens in Richmond

Richmond Butterfly Gardens

For centuries, butterflies have captured human imagination, serving as inspiration for art, poetry, and song. Explore the fascinating story of these stunning insects during National Learn about Butterflies Day on Sunday, March 14. Join our real estate agents by planning a visit to one of these wonderful gardens around Richmond.

  1. Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden - 1800 Lakeside Ave., Richmond, VA 23228
    With more than a dozen themed gardens across 82 acres, Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden offers plentiful opportunities to spot butterflies in their natural habitat. In 1926, Grace Arents bequeathed her beautiful farm, along with the sum of $100,000, to Richmond. She asked that her gift be used to establish a garden honoring the memory of her uncle, local businessman and philanthropist Lewis Ginter. Today, Grace's dream has landed on several lists naming the top ten botanical gardens in North America. Tickets, which must be purchased in advance, are $14 for adults and $8 for kids up to age 12. The garden is open 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.

  2. Maymont - 1000 Westover Rd., Richmond, VA 23220
    Butterflies are just one of many reasons to visit Maymont, a picturesque estate on the banks of the James River. The one-time home of James and Sallie Dooley is now the site of an arboretum and several specialty gardens, including a wetland, grotto, and ornamental lawn. Marie's Butterfly Trail opened in 2009, features signage with helpful information about the life cycle of butterflies and why they're attracted to specific plants. While the grounds are open to the public with free admission, a $5 donation is suggested. Hours are 10 a.m. - 7 p.m. daily between April and September. Closing time is 5 p.m. during the offseason.

  3. Bellemeade Park - 1800 Krouse St., Richmond, VA 23224
    Bellemeade Park is a labor of love for a dedicated group of volunteers working to develop and maintain the beautiful six-acre public facility. Their goal is to promote the park as a valuable environmental asset benefiting the community around Richmond homes for sale. Butterflies, turtles, hawks, and owls are just a few of the park "residents" that may be spotted during a walk along trails that pass through forests and gardens. The park is open to the public free of charge.

  4. Bryan Park - 4308 Hermitage Rd., Richmond, VA 23227
    Butterflies add a colorful touch of the present to Richmond's past at Bryan Park, which was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2002. Named for the founder of the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the property on which the park resides was donated to the city in 1910 by Joseph Bryan's widow. See a wide variety of butterflies at the popular 17-acre Azalea Gardens and the pollinator garden in the Nature Preserve. Park hours are sunrise to dusk, seven days a week.

  5. James River Park - 4001 Riverside Dr., Richmond, VA 23225
    Enjoy a refreshing getaway without leaving the city with a visit to James River Park. This spectacular location in the heart of Richmond draws nearly two million visitors each year. Don't miss Williams Island, a densely vegetated area that is home to butterflies along with other insects, birds, and wildlife. James River Park is open year-round from sunrise to sunset. 

Whether you're a social butterfly or cocooning is more your thing, we can help you find a home in Richmond that suits your lifestyle. Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties to learn more.

March
1

Plan Your Day in Richmond's Museum District

Museum District Richmond

Looking for a chance to enjoy art and culture in Richmond? Our real estate agents have an idea!

When you're visiting Richmond homes for sale, you want to take the chance to learn all about the community. One way to really enjoy the spirit of Richmond is to visit its Museum District, truly one of a kind in the state.

No less than four world-class museums are situated right in this neighborhood, also known as the Upper Fan. You'll also find row homes and detached townhouses. Many of the buildings are striking examples of historic architectural styles, set off with majestic old-growth trees.

Throughout the Museum District, you'll also see many memorable examples of public art. Breathtaking murals await to be discovered around every corner. Exploring the District is a terrific way to spend a day that will give any history buff plenty of think about. Plus, there are family-friendly attractions, too!

Let's take a closer look at everything Richmond's Museum District has to offer:

  1. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts – 200 North Arthur Ashe Boulevard, Richmond, VA 23220
    The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is the premier cultural institution for preserving, celebrating, and promoting fine arts. Permanent collections span the globe and highlight a wide range of styles. One of the most popular exhibits is "Fabergé and the Russian Decorative Arts," a showcase of nearly 300 Fabergé objects like nothing else on display in the United States.
  2. Virginia Museum of History & Culture – 428 North Arthur Ashe Boulevard, Richmond, VA 23220
    A beloved fixture of the Museum District, the Virginia Museum of History & Culture is dedicated to telling "The Story of Virginia for All Virginians." It has quickly become well-known for its outstanding virtual and digital art programs. Among its most prized long-term exhibits is Landscapes of Virginia, a curated experience of 21 landscape paintings that exult in the diverse terrain and climate of the state's five distinctive regions. While the museum is currently closed, you can stay up to date on their virtual programs here. 
  3. Children's Museum of Richmond – 2626 West Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23220
    Known for its award-winning interactive exhibits and educational programs, Children's Museum of Richmond is one of the leading museums of its kind in the United States. With two locations, including one in Richmond and another in nearby Midlothian, it will captivate and stimulate young minds with its dedication to learning through play. Every week, families can visit the Family Creation Station to make something to take home!
  4. Science Museum of Virginia – 2500 West Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23220
    Science Museum of Virginia is the place to go for exciting exhibitions about the most important topics in science today. Kids love journeying through the galaxy in The Dome, an immersive planetarium and 76-foot screen – Virginia's largest. Newly popular is The Forge, a dedicated "makerspace" where kids can do hands-on, STEM-based building projects with the whole family. There's always something new to see and do!
  5. Scott's Addition Historic District – North of Museum District, See Website for Details
    Scott's Addition Historic District is a great place to sample the local nightlife after a full day of learning. Adjoining the Museum District to the north, it is home to acclaimed restaurants, a boutique bowling alley, cinema, and much more. Once the industrial heart of Richmond, it underwent a renaissance starting in 2005 when the Scott's Addition Boulevard Association succeeded in winning its Historic District designation.

The Museum District is just one more way Richmond stands out from the rest. Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties to learn about real estate opportunities around Richmond.

February
22

Get Your Home Ready to List With These Tips

List Your Richmond Home

Putting your home on the market is a big decision, and the process can be intimidating. Did you know the best way to prepare your home for an upcoming listing is by taking the time to properly stage it for potential buyers? The home staging process is actually one of the most exciting parts of the sales process. While it does require a lot of work and planning, it can also be fun. Proper staging can not only help you sell your home faster, but it can also help you get more in return. 

Below are some tips from our real estate agents on how to get your home ready for the real estate market:

  1. Empty Your Closets
    A lack of storage space can be a deal-breaker for many buyers, so it's a good idea to show off the size of your closets. Cramped or overflowing storage space can really make your home smaller than it actually is, but the reverse is true as well. Half-empty closets can make your storage space seem more than adequate. By keeping a minimal number of items in your closets, you can create the visual perception that they're actually a lot larger.

  2. Hide Your Pets
    We know you love your pets, and even if they're incredibly cute, potential homebuyers might not think so. Not only should you keep your dogs, cats, fish, and hamsters out of sight, you should also conceal their toys and bowls as well. You also want to be sure to get rid of any lingering pet odors before showing your home.

  3. Depersonalize The Space
    Creating an environment that enables buyers to envision themselves in the home is crucial to the staging process. The more personalized a home, the more difficult it will be for visitors to imagine themselves living in the space. We recommend keeping things as neutral as possible. Limit the exposure of family photos or bold art pieces and put away any clothes or personal items. 

  4. Do A Thorough Deep Cleaning
    We don't mean a quick tidy-up. Before listing your home for sale, you'll need to make every inch of your house shine. Baseboards, floors, ceilings, and windows -- every nook and cranny. Not only will this give buyers a good first impression, but it will also indicate that you've taken good care of the property.

  5. Maximize Light Exposure
    Maximizing the light exposure across every room of the house is critical before putting your home on the market. If you have rooms that don't receive a lot of sunlight, consider investing in inexpensive lighting to help brighten things up. Not only are bright rooms more welcoming, but they can also appear larger from a visual perspective. For inspiration on how to really maximize light exposure throughout your home, check out these Richmond homes for sale.

  6. Rearrange Your Furniture 
    The location or layout of your furniture can have a tremendous impact on the appearance of a room. Consider eliminating large pieces of furniture that don't fit the size of the room. As a rule of thumb, there should be adequate space on both sides of every furniture piece, and you should be able to easily walk around the room without issue. 

Home staging is both an art and a science. Working with a professional real estate agent is the best way to ensure your home is ready to list on the market. Contact us today for more tips!

February
15

How to Start Your Garden Indoors This Month

Richmond Indoor Garden

If you have plans for a garden this year and prefer to save money and start your own plants from seed, now is the time to start those seeds indoors. Even if you're planning on selling your home this year, our real estate agents advise moving ahead with your normal gardening plans, as adding pretty flowers to your landscaping or to pots around the front door and porch can dramatically improve your home's curb appeal. Here are a few tips to help you successfully start seeds inside.

  1. Know what plants need to be started indoors.
    Plants that are native to warmer climates closer to the equator tend to require long growing seasons. These include fruits and vegetables like melons, squash (including pumpkins), peppers, tomatoes, and many others. The same goes for many flowers. Some vegetables, on the other hand, don't need to be started indoors or don't do well if transplanted, such as carrots. Do your research now and make sure you know what needs to get started indoors this month.

  2. Choose an appropriate soil.
    Seedlings are picky about soil, and the wrong soil can doom your starting attempts. The soil needs to be light and fluffy and should be fertilized so you don't have to worry about fertilizing for a little while. It should also be clean and disease-free. Seed starting kits should have everything you need to start your garden indoors, or you can buy bags of appropriate soil.

  3. Provide enough light.
    Many people think that simply putting seedlings in a kitchen window will provide enough sunlight, but remember, you're trying to mimic a climate that has more hours of sunlight throughout the growing season. Insufficient light will leave your seedlings leggy and weak if they make it at all. Instead, position lights 3 to 4 inches from your seedlings, set on a timer so the plants get around 16 hours of light per day. Even just goose-necked desk lamps will do. This will help ensure that your seedlings leaf out and are strong enough to transplant.

  4. Start your seeds far enough in advance.
    Seeds need to be started far enough in advance that they are stable by the time you transplant them into your garden. This means 4 to 6 weeks for most plants, with as much as 8 weeks for warmer weather plants, such as tomatoes and peppers. Starting vegetables far enough in advance ensures that you'll be able to harvest your garden before the first frost. Likewise, if you start your flowers now, you'll have plenty of flowering plants to boost your home's curb appeal and help it to stand out among other Richmond homes for sale.

A successful garden takes some preparation, so start your research and get your seeds started now! In a few months, you'll be able to enjoy the fruits of your labor (pun intended). For help deciding what touches like flowers and landscaping your home might need, or determining when the best time is to list your home on the market, contact us today.

February
9

5 Pro Tips for Arranging a Gallery Wall

Gallery Wall Tips

The traditional way to decorate your walls is to hang a few select pieces of artwork or mirrors, leaving a lot of empty wall space. If this seems a little boring to you, you'll love an alternative approach we often see in well-staged Richmond homes for sale: the gallery wall, which is where you hang many pieces of artwork together for a collage-like effect. While some of these gallery walls might look haphazard at first glance, usually they're well planned out with a theme and with an eye for balance and design. They're great for family photos or eclectic displays of artwork. Here are a few tips for bringing this savvy look into your own home.

  1. Create your collection.
    The first thing is to determine what's going to be on the wall. You want to emphasize variety, so don't make them all the same style or size. Use a common theme to pull everything together. Family photos are another frequent choice for a gallery wall, although if you're staging a home for sale, our real estate agents recommend replacing the family photos with framed artwork for a less personal effect. 

  2. Frame it right.
    Once you have your collection assembled, it's time to decide how you plan on framing it. Most interior designers recommend museum glass because it will minimize reflection and keep damaging UV light from your photographs and artwork. The frames you choose are also important, as they are a part of the overall aesthetic of your gallery wall. Subtle, matching frames can tie everything together and help provide balance if the wallpaper or collection is very busy. A variety of interesting frames can provide a more eclectic look or help draw attention to favorite pieces.

  3. Maintain balance.
    Balance is how you can hang an entire wall's worth of photos and make it look interesting and pleasing instead of cluttered. Start by paying attention to where the permanent furniture will be on your gallery wall. Large artwork should be placed first in a balanced fashion, and then smaller artwork can be used to fill in the spaces around it. The space between frames should be narrower than the artwork and fairly (although not perfectly) uniform. Don't cram something in where it doesn't fit; instead, shift the other pieces or find a different place.

  4. Do a trial run.
    Many designers recommend that you start planning a gallery wall by laying everything out on the floor the way you'll want it on the wall. You can arrange and rearrange to your heart's content, making sure everything looks even, balanced, and interesting. You can even mock it up on the wall when you're done by measuring and creating outlines of each pieces on the wall in blue painter's tape. 

  5. Leave room to grow.
    If your gallery wall will be up for a long time, leave room to grow. Many people start with a smaller area of the wall and build it into a larger area, especially if it is something like family photos. Or you might eventually decide to turn an adjacent wall into an extension of the original gallery wall. Just keep in mind that you'll need to maintain the same principles of balance as you expand.

A gallery wall is an excellent way to express yourself and your sense of style, but it also can be a useful tool for staging your home as you get ready to sell. For more staging ideas and information about selling your Richmond area home, contact us today.

February
1

National Pizza Day: Order a Pie from These Richmond Shops

Richmond Pizza Shops

Who doesn't love a fresh pizza from a pipping hot oven? No matter what you top your pie with, pizza is one of the most popular foods in the country. That popularity led to Tuesday, February 9 being designated as National Pizza Day. Join our real estate agents in the celebration by ordering your favorite pie from one of these top pizza joints around Richmond. 

  1. Napoli Flame Baked Pizza and Italian Grill - 3324 Pump Rd., Henrico, VA 23233
    Enjoy classic thin-crust pizza just minutes from Henrico homes for sale. Pies from Napoli Flame Baked Pizza and Italian Grill are made with hand-tossed dough and hand-seasoned sauce, then baked in a brick oven. Order by the slice or whole pie. Carryout is available, as well as delivery within a six-mile radius. Hours are 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

  2. Brooklyn Pizza Authority - 10613 Hull St. Rd., Midlothian, VA 23112
    Brooklyn Pizza Authority brings iconic New York-style pizza to the community around Midlothian homes for sale. Even the names of the pies have a distinct flavor of the Big Apple. Try the Red Hook, made with pepperoni, spinach, and meatballs, or the Q-Line, topped with pesto, seasoned ground beef, red onion, tomato, and banana peppers. Order online for convenient no-contact delivery. BPA is open Sunday through Wednesday from 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. and Thursday through Sunday from 11 a.m. - 11 p.m.
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  3. Piccola Italy Pizza & Subs - 1100 W. Main St., Richmond, VA 23220
    For more than 30 years, Piccola Italy Pizza & Subs has been serving their first-rate pies, pasta, and sub sandwiches with a goal to provide consistency in both food quality and service. Order the eggplant Parmigiana pizza or cheese calzone with confidence, knowing you'll get the same freshness and flavor every time. Piccola is currently open for carryout and delivery only. Hours are 11 a.m. - midnight daily except for Sunday when the starting time is noon.

  4. Pupatella - 1 N. Morris St., Richmond, VA 23220
    How authentic is the thin, crispy Neapolitan-style pizza served at Pupatella? The restaurant has earned officially designation from the Associazione Vera Pizza Napoletana. This international organization represents generations of Neapolitan pizza-making families and sets the standards for restaurants around the world. Go old school with Pupatella's Margherita, the signature Neapolitan pizza, made with San Marzano tomato sauce, buffalo mozzarella, basil, and olive oil. When you want some variety, try one of the white pizzas with an Italian cream sauce base. Pick up a pizza after a day of viewing Richmond homes for sale. Pupatella is open noon - 9 p.m. Sunday and Monday, 11:30 a.m. - 10 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, and 11:30 a.m. - 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

  5. Papa Lou Pizza - 5310 Hull Street Rd., Richmond, VA 23224
    Papa Lou Pizza takes pride in offering food made with fresh, quality ingredients for a low, affordable price. Expand your culinary horizons with the Mexicana pizza, a pie topped with chicken, jalapeño, and avocado. Customers give high marks for Papa Lou's calzones, a turnover-style pizza stuffed with ricotta, mozzarella, and optional fillings such as pepperoni and mushrooms. Hours are 10 a.m. - 10 p.m. Monday through Wednesday and 10 a.m. - 9:30 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. 

When you need a moving crew, pizza is the perfect bribe for family and friends. Whether you're buying or selling, contact us at Joyner Fine Properties for friendly and professional assistance.

January
25

Bird Watching Trails in Pocahontas State Park

Richmond Bird Watching

Need a break from the fast pace and digital overload of daily living? Our real estate agents recommend bird watching as a perfect way to connect with nature and restore a peaceful state of mind.

Whether you go alone or with family and friends, check out these great bird watching trails in Pocahontas State Park, just minutes from Chesterfield homes for sale.

  • Beaver Lake Trail
    Bodies of water always attract great numbers of birds. As a bonus, they provide a beautiful background for bird-watching scenes. Stunning scenery is one of the reasons that make Beaver Lake Trail one of the more popular destinations in Pocahontas State Park. The dog-friendly 2.3-mile trail offers a moderate challenge suitable for families. Please note that, unlike several other trails in the park, biking is not permitted. 

  • Forest Exploration Trail
    When you really want to get away from it all, head to Forest Exploration Trail. The densely wooded grounds create a peaceful serenity that lets you focus on spotting birds. Leashed dogs are welcome on the 2.2-mile trail, which is also a good spot for mountain biking year-round.

  • Bright Hope Trail and Otter Lick Loop
    Want to combine bird-watching with an invigorating workout? Bright Hope Trail and Otter Lick Loop may have a tongue-twister of a name, and at 6.8 miles, it's one of the longer trails in Pocahontas State Park. On any given day, you may share the trail with hikers, mountain bikers, runners, and horseback riders. Bring your leashed dog along when you visit the trail, which is accessible all year long. 

  • Parallel Trail
    Enjoy an outing with the kids and get them hooked on bird watching with a hike along Parallel Trail. Measuring just over one mile in length with minimal elevation, the trail accommodates both newbies and experienced hikers. The forest setting allows for easy conversation along with opportunities to view different trees and plants. The kids will be happy that they can bring Fido along as well. 

  • Pocahontas State Park Red Trail MTB
    Mountain bikers, rejoice! Pocahontas State Park Red Trail MTB is reserved exclusively for bikers. Keep your eyes peeled for sightings of birds and wildlife as you cycle around the 3.2-mile looped route. February through November are the best months to visit this trail.

Bird Watching Tips

  • Avoid dressing in bright colors. Birds have poor color vision, but the greater the contrast, the more you'll stand out from the natural background. Stick with dark colors and earth tones in order to blend in with the surroundings.

  • Be patient. Birds are not on a schedule. They will eventually reveal themselves on their own timetable. Also, avoid sudden movements and loud noises that are likely to frighten birds away.

  • Keep the sun behind you. When you're facing the sun, resulting shadows make it harder to distinguish actual bird sightings.

  • Bring a bird identification guide along. National Geographic and Peterson are considered the gold standards by most bird watchers. Today, many guides are even available for download on a smartphone. Take a picture with your cell phone camera to make identification easier.

  • Binoculars are a must-have for even casual bird watchers. Without a decent pair of binoculars, you'll miss out on many details of a bird's appearance and behavior. 

Where will you be feathering your nest this year? Find out why Chesterfield is a wonderful place to call home. Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties to learn more.

January
11

How to Find the Right Style of Decor For Your Home

Decor for Richmond Home

When it comes to your home decorating style, do you struggle to pick out pieces because you don't know what to focus on? Do you feel pulled around by trends? Or do you feel like you can't put your finger on it because everything is mismatched and pieced together? Identifying your home decorating style can be a minefield of indecision and procrastination.

Our real estate agents believe that our homes should be a reflection of our personalities. It has to do with trusting your intuition instead of following the crowd. The following tips for finding the right style of décor for your home will help you create spaces that look beautiful, feel authentic, and make you happy.

  • Look in Your Closet
    Take a good, hard look at what's in your closet. Pay attention to the colors, textures, patterns, and fabrics you turn to again and again. Are they mostly neutral?  Or are your favorite clothes made with bold patterns and lots of colors? Let the colors guide you when choosing textiles and décor items for your home.


  • Design a Style Vignette
    A style vignette is an arrangement of objects displayed together in a pleasing, balanced way. The grouping is typically made up of homeware pieces but can also feature craft objects, art, natural elements, flowers, and other mementos. Walk around your home and gather anything that tickles your fantasy and captures the look you're going for. Arrange them and live with them for a few days to help you define the decorating style that appeals to you. If you end up liking the overall vibe, tone, and color scheme, you can spread that style across your entire home.


  • Get Inspired
    You can also use outside inspiration to find your design style. You might want to create a Pinterest board with places and rooms you love or scroll through home décor hashtags on Instagram. See if you can spot a color scheme, trend, or theme that you're most drawn to. Sometimes, however, Instagram and Pinterest can be a bit overwhelming because there are so many beautiful images at one time. Instead, you can just flip through a magazine to find out what you love. Next, look through your magazine and Pinterest boards to decipher commonalities among the photos.


  • Take an Online Decorating Quiz
    There are tons of online decorating quizzes that can help you discover and pinpoint your tastes and preferences, so you can start designing your dream home. Some quizzes will also reveal the paint colors, types of furniture, and accent pieces that you should have in your space. Consider taking multiple design style quizzes at your leisure. You know you've found your style and are ready to start designing if the quizzes end in similar results.


  • Think About Your Current Décor
    It's not common to start decorating from scratch. Walk through your house and make a list of all pieces of furniture, accessories, or art that have to stay. Separate what you love from what you wish you could replace. Next, review the list of things you love to see the common traits and write those down. This will serve as a guide to keep you true to your style.

Need some additional advice about decorating your home as you think about buying one of the Richmond homes for sale? We can help you. Contact us today to schedule tours of beautiful homes in the RVA.

January
4

Is it Time to Upgrade Your Kitchen Appliances?

Kitchen Appliances Upgrade

When is the last time you thought about your kitchen from the eyes of a stranger? When you look at something every day, it's easy to stop seeing the things other people would notice, such as dated appliances. Here are a few guidelines our real estate agents give for when you should upgrade your kitchen appliances, based on the homes they see regularly.

  1. They're getting old.
    Take a moment and think about how old your appliances are. If they are older than 10 or (gulp) 20 years old, it's probably time to replace them. Even though they might still work fine, upgrading means taking advantage of exciting new features. Not to mention, if an old appliance goes out unexpectedly, it could leave you on the hook until you can get it replaced. Not sure how old your appliances are? If you don't know, that probably means they are long past due for replacement.

  2. Your appliances are mismatched.
    Houses all start out with matching appliances for that new house look, but as they stop working, they often get replaced one at a time. Most likely, this also means they're all older, and probably basic models as well.

  3. They're not meeting your needs.
    Of course, the biggest sign that you need new appliances is that they no longer meet your needs. If your refrigerator doesn't offer intuitive storage or enough space for your family, if you really need a double oven for all the cooking you do, or if your dishwasher no longer cleans your dishes, it's probably time to think about springing for an overhaul of all your kitchen appliances.

  4. Your kitchen needs updating.
    Maybe it's not just your appliances that need to be updated. Vintage can be quaint or even trendy in other areas of the house, but in the kitchen, it's just old. If you're tired of your kitchen looking like it came out of a home magazine from 30 years ago, a new counter and backsplash, refaced cupboards, and a new set of matching appliances can go a long way toward refreshing your kitchen.

  5. Your old appliances are energy hogs.
    Maybe it's not about cooking, or even how your kitchen looks. Old appliances tend to use a lot more energy than newer models, especially when compared with new energy-efficient appliances. Save some money on your energy bill, and maybe the planet, too, while you're at it by installing new appliances.

  6. You're excited about the cool new features.
    We're seeing a lot of exciting new appliances these days in Richmond homes for sale! Check out today's top models to find the latest and the greatest. Smart fridges can keep track of what's inside and alert you when you're getting low on something. Smart ovens allow you to start your oven remotely so that it's already preheated by the time you get home. And with hygiene being a top concern these days, some fridges now come equipped with UV sterilizing lights and disinfecting drawers.

Remodeling your kitchen may seem like a big hassle, but something as simple as replacing all the appliances with a stylish matching set can do wonders for how it looks. Are you going to be listing your home for sale and need a few pointers to make it more appealing to buyers? Contact us today, and we'll help you figure out how your home stacks up to the current market. 

December
28

7 Reasons You Should Move to Richmond in 2021

Move to Richmond

As we move into the waning days of 2020, Richmond homes for sale are still getting plenty of attention from buyers. For all kinds of reasons, people from around the country are learning what our real estate agents already knew: Richmond is the place to be in 2021!

Let's look at seven of the biggest reasons why:

  1. The James River
    Richmond got its name from the river, as the breathtaking views from Libby Park's Church Hill reminded early residents of Richmond, England. There's plenty of space along the James to go hiking or bicycling – and yes, boating is popular, too! Plenty of picturesque neighborhoods sit right by the water.

  2. A Promising Future
    Richmond has one of the best post-COVID unemployment rates for large cities in the United States and is gaining ground in its employment outlook. There's a highly active downtown area with plenty of new development. Plus, RVA boasts an active startup scene and colorful small businesses.

  3. The Perfect Location
    With its central location – literally – Richmond is a convenient home base no matter where in the state you wish to journey. Sitting at the intersection of Interstate 95 and Interstate 64, it's two hours to the astonishing Blue Ridge Mountains, Charlottesville, or even Washington, DC.

  4. Vibrant Arts and Culture
    A truly creative city, Richmond has an array of museums, galleries, and musical venues to suit any taste. The Carpenter Theater is home to the Richmond Ballet. The Altria Theater brings Broadway right to your door, and both the Virginia Opera and Richmond Symphony are world-class.

  5. Family-Friendly Fun All Year Around
    Dotted with parks and playgrounds, Richmond is ideal for keeping the kids entertained. The Children's Museum of Richmond is an award-winning interactive experience, and the Science Museum of Virginia enthralls older kids. Local botanical gardens hold family days, and there are three amusement parks too.

  6. Unbeatable Culinary Scene
    Richmond is known for its culinary delights. Famous chefs flock here, and some of the top names in the industry got their start in the area. James Beard Award Winner Sally Bell has been offering classic boxed lunches since 1924, and Alton Brown of Good Eats called Proper Pie the best pumpkin pie he's ever had.

  7. A "Festive" Atmosphere
    There's always something going on in Richmond, with a social calendar packed with unique local events. Some favorites include the Irish Festival in Church Hill, the Easter Parade on Monument Avenue, Arts in the Park, Broadappetit, the Carytown Watermelon Festival, Hogtoberfest, and much more.

In 2021, Richmond is set to continue growing. It's a thriving city that will always pleasantly surprise you. There's plenty more to see, and your next home could be waiting!

Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties to learn more about the area or get started.

December
21

Order Holiday Cookies from These Richmond Bakeries

Richmond Bakeries

The holidays are right around the corner — have you put in your cookie order yet? Though our real estate agents love baking cookies, this is one of those years where we could all use one less to-do on our plates. Instead of baking yourself into a frenzy, order holiday cookies from these Richmond area bakeries.

  1. Red Eye Cookie Co. — 935 W. Grace St., Richmond, VA 23220
    Get a true taste of Virginia with the cookies at Red Eye Cookie Co. This locally owned bakery locally sources all of its ingredients so that their cookies are a true representation of the Richmond culinary scene. With cream-line milk from Burnt Chimney and whole-wheat grain flour from Ashland, you'll taste a little bit of Virginia in every bite.


  2. Buttermilk Bake Shop — 257 E. Bank St., Petersburg, VA 23803
    Should you choose to purchase one of our cozy Petersburg homes for sale, you'll be pleased to know that a classic American bakeshop is right around the corner. Located in Old Town, Buttermilk Bake Shop makes all of their pastries from scratch. Call in an order of holiday cookies so you can check it off of your to-do list. When you swing by to pick them up, help yourself to a fresh sticky bun or cupcake…and don't forget to grab your dog a treat, too!


  3. Westhampton Pastry Shop — 5728 Patterson Ave., Richmond, VA 23226
    If you've lived in Richmond long enough, chances are high that you have fond memories of holiday cookies from Westhampton Pastry Shop. Since 1952, they've provided dazzling desserts to thousands of families over the holiday season. Ordering holiday cookies from Westhampton Pastry Shop is one Richmond tradition that you dare not break.


  4. Morsels — 4040 MacArthur Ave., Richmond, VA 23227
    Don't leave even the tiniest crumb up to chance this holiday season; order your cookies from Morsels to ensure that every bite is the best. This Bellevue bakery cooks up everything from snickerdoodles and macaroons to Italian pignoli cookies and cookie sandwiches. Prefer bars over traditional cookies? Morsels will gladly bake a tray full of one of two-dozen different bar styles like a Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Bar, Kitchen Sink Cookie Bar, and Bourbon Apple Pie Bar.


  5. That Much Sweeter — 1640 Featherstone Dr., Midlothian, VA 23113
    How do you make sure your holiday cookies are as sweet as can be? You let That Much Sweeter take care of the baking. They believe that cookies possess superpowers, and while you may not gain superstrength after munching on some morsels, you will be flying high after one bite. Order up a few boxes of chocolate chip cookies and make your whole family proud. Thankfully, you don't need to hope that these cookies give you x-ray vision to peer into our Midlothian homes for sale — you just need to schedule an appointment.

Are you searching for a sweet home in the RVA? Let us help you find it. Contact us today to browse our best Richmond homes for sale.

December
14

Simple Tricks to Lower Your Heating Bill

Heating Bill Tips

High heating bills pack a real punch into homeowners' budgets each winter. Sure, it's not cheap to keep your entire house warm, but that doesn't mean you accept this as an annual hit to your wallet. Consider these tips from our real estate agents that are free or low-cost tricks for staying warm and saving money.

  1. Turn Down Your Thermostat
    Turning your thermostat down a few degrees can shave up to 10% off your heating bill. Whether you're going to be at work all day, running some errands for a few hours, or will be headed out for the weekend, lower your thermostat temperature by 3 to 7 degrees. If you're slightly forgetful or the back and forth is just getting on your nerves, consider upgrading to a programmable or smart thermostat. You can set it to adjust the heat on a predetermined schedule. Many are Wi-Fi compatible and let you control your thermostat from an app.


  2. Seal Up Air Leaks
    Air leaks allow heat to escape your home easily. Light a candle, and let's do some detective work here. Hold the flame near doors, windows, light fixtures, ceilings, walls, switches, and in areas where cables and wires enter your house. If you see the flame flicker, that could mean you've spotted an air leak. Sealing up those air leaks is as easy as applying some inexpensive caulking, weather stripping, or adding insulating material.


  3. Let Ceiling Fans Work to Your Advantage
    Yep, you read that right. Ceiling fans are typically meant to cool down a room, but they can also be good at warming them up and helping you save on heating bill costs. During cold weather, get that fan to spin clockwise and keep it on the lowest setting. This will push warm air downward, leaving your house feeling warmer.


  4. Don't Let Heat Escape 
    If you don't use a certain room in your house, why heat it? Everyone knows that turning off the lights when exiting a room helps lower your electric bill. The same goes for keeping your windows and doors shut when you leave a room. Even when you're in the room, shutting the doors will allow the heat to hang out in the room, reducing the load on your HVAC system. If you aren't using your fireplace, seal the chimney flue and ensure the glass door is in place to minimize heat loss.


  5. Use a Humidifier
    The air in your home tends to be dry during the winter months. Using a humidifier can help put some moisture in the air and keep your home warm without causing a dramatic increase in your heating bill. The moisture released by the humidifier will retain heat, keeping you more comfortable. 


  6. Let the Sun Hit Things Up
    When the sun comes out, open your shades, curtains, and blinds to make the best use of "passive solar gain." Your home's exterior walls can soak the heat and give some serious warmth the old-fashioned way. 


  7. Call for a Checkup
    Proper maintenance of your heating systems can make a big difference in your home's heating efficiency. You can keep your furnaces or heaters running at peak performance by having them checked by a professional at least once a year. It also pays to have your ductwork fixed to prevent the loss of heated air. Similarly, you should change the air filters to allow better airflow and reduce the strain on your furnace.

Are you looking for beautiful and winter-ready property among the wonderful Richmond homes for saleContact us to get started.

December
7

5 Staging Tips to Try This Holiday Season

Holiday Staging TipsWith the end of the year approaching, prospective homebuyers have holiday cheer on their minds as they tour Richmond homes for sale. This doesn't mean you should make your home into a replica of the North Pole though! Successfully staging your home for the holidays takes subtlety and class. Here are a few tips for tastefully staging your home for the holidays.

  1. Decorate the front door. 
    The front door is your best place to make a good first impression. Hanging a cheery holiday wreath on the door can set the stage for your prospective buyers to imagine themselves in your home for the holidays from the moment they step over that threshold. Don't clutter up the yard with a lot of decorations, though, as it doesn't take much to cross over the line into the realm of tacky. Instead, focus on improving your curb appeal.

  2. Match your decorations to your decor. 
    The best way to achieve subtlety and class is to make sure your holiday decorations blend seamlessly with the existing decor. Opt for holiday colors and styles that complement your themes and furnishings. If you've done your job with staging, these should be fairly neutral, setting the stage for a subtle holiday display.

  3. Remember that less is more. 
    The rule of thumb for staging isn't any different around the holidays. As always, you should minimize the decor as much as possible. Instead of adding holiday decor, replace what you had used for staging before, as you don't want it to appear too cluttered by trying to squeeze everything in. And don't break out your entire collection of holiday ornaments! Just a few tasteful touches, such as a bowl of pinecones on the coffee table or a holiday greenery arrangement, will be just enough to encourage your buyer to envision themselves in your home.

  4. Keep the decor impersonal. 
    Staging your home needs to be impersonal at any time of the year, but perhaps most of all around the holidays, when people are thinking about entertaining and celebrating with their families. This means that not only should you remove family pictures from the walls, but you also should make sure not to hang any holiday decorations that are too personal. We all have our own ways of celebrating the holidays, so keeping your holiday decor subtle and impersonal will allow them to picture themselves and their own traditions in your home.

  5. Highlight your home's best features. 
    Finally, don't forget that the main purpose of staging is to show your home to its best advantage. You can use your holiday decor to highlight your home's best features, just as you would with any other decor. A strategically placed decoration can draw attention to a feature of your home that you want to highlight. Use your decorations sparingly, but use them to help your home shine.

No matter the season, staging a home for sale is an art form. If you feel overwhelmed or are unsure of how to proceed, one of our real estate agents can walk you through it. Contact us today to start the process!

November
16

7 Home Improvement Projects You Should do in the Fall

autumn home improvement

Fall is the prime time of the year to tackle certain home improvement projects! Not so hot and sticky outside, and you can even turn off the air conditioner, open the windows, and get some work done before the cold weather sets in. 

Inside or outside the home, get your property ready for the winter so it will stand out among other Richmond homes for sale

  1. Clear the rain gutters.
    After the leaves have all fallen, clear your rain gutters of leaves and debris. This will make it harder for animals to build nests that block the flow of rain. Check for sagging sections of gutter and cracks in the edge of the roof where water might be entering.

    After securing a ladder, remove leaf debris and put it in a bucket, handing it down to a helper when full. Wash out the gutters with a power hose attachment. If you have rain gutter covers, you'll need to remove and reattach them when you're done with the job. 

  2. Have the roof inspected.
    It's a good idea to get the roof inspected now and then, even if it is fairly new and hasn't been damaged by hail or a major wind storm. These days, roof inspectors often use drones to do the job, so no need to endanger yourself. Or, if you're handy, have a go at it. Do schedule a roofing company to make any needed repairs. 

  3. Disconnect garden hoses. 
    Disconnect hoses and turn off valves. Cover faucets whenever freezing is imminent.

  4. Protect outdoor furniture.
    Clean and store plastic, resin, wood, or wicker furniture indoors. You can leave teak and metal furniture outdoors, although if you have a covered patio, maybe you should move it there and cover it. Store cushions and umbrellas out of the elements. 

  5. Air seal your home.
    Your furnace or other types of heating system will work much more efficiently if your home is tightly sealed around areas where conditioned air typically leaks out and air from the outside gets in. Use caulk, weatherstripping, and insulation around the door and window frames, around the attic hatch, along baseboards, and around the holes in exterior walls for cables, wires, and pipes. You'll boost your efficiency and lower your energy bill considerably.

  6. Switch the direction of ceiling fan blades.
    When ceiling fan blades go counter-clockwise, they help to lift warm air from floor level and move cooler air from the central air conditioner down the walls to the level of the room's occupants. Reverse the direction of the fan blades with a switch on the motor in the winter, and they do the opposite. If you've been using the ceiling fans all summer, wipe off the blades so they will work with less resistance.

  7. Check smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
    These two devices can save your family's lives, but only if they're connected to the home's wiring or have fresh batteries in them. Perform tests according to instructions.

Ask our real estate agents for more tips about ensuring that your Richmond home's shipshape for winter. Contact us today. 

November
2

Get Ready to Buy Your First Home With This Checklist

First Home Checklist

Are you ready to buy your first home? Congratulations! This is a major milestone and an awesome accomplishment that you should be proud of. Our real estate agents understand how important this decision is, and we're here to help anyone who feels ready to enter into homeownership. Get ready to buy your first home by using this helpful checklist.

  1. Check Your Credit Score
    First, we recommend all first-time buyers check their credit score, resolve any issues, and increase their score if possible. A few simple tricks can increase your credit score in a matter of months, which may help you secure a better mortgage rate.


  2. Determine Your Budget
    Before you determine how much home you can afford, you should look at how much your rent and bills cost now. This will give you a baseline of what you can afford, which you can then use to determine how much farther your budget can stretch.


  3. Know Your Finances
    As you look at your expenses, you should also determine how you can save for a down payment. See where you can not only cut expenses but find additional ways to proactively save each month to hit your down payment goal.


  4. Learn About Real Estate Transactions
    Educating yourself about real estate transactions is never a bad idea. Learning the lingo, uncovering the "hidden" costs of buying a home (such as closing costs and moving expenses), and understanding how a transaction proceeds from start to finish will better prepare you for your own experience.


  5. See if You Qualify for Assistance
    Many first-time homebuyers qualify for federal, state, or local programs that either provide financial assistance or enable you to secure a lower mortgage rate. You should also look into other assistance programs available to see if you qualify for assistance.


  6. Get Pre-Approved
    Getting pre-approved for a mortgage loan is extremely beneficial. Not only will you discover how much you qualify for before you put in an offer, but you'll also look better in the eyes of the seller when you place an offer that already has pre-approval from a mortgage lender.


  7. Make a Wish List
    Before you begin your house hunt, create a list of what home features you need, want, and can live without. This will help you view each home objectively and not become distracted.


  8. Find a Real Estate Agent
    A knowledgeable, experienced, and honest real estate agent will be your best resource throughout the homebuying process. 


  9. Tour Homes
    It's time for you to begin your home search. Once you've narrowed the inventory down to your favorite homes, schedule private showings with your agent. Be sure to revisit your favorites multiple times at different hours of the day and night so you can truly get a feel for what the property and neighborhood are like throughout the day.


  10. Trust Your Instincts
    Ultimately, you need to trust your gut when buying a home. This is one of the largest purchases you'll ever make, and you must be completely confident and comfortable with your decision. Trust your instincts, and you'll achieve your homeownership goals.

Would you like to schedule tours of our latest Richmond homes for sale? Let us help you. Contact us today to tour the best homes in the RVA.  

September
28

7 Backsplash Ideas You'll Want to Try in Your Kitchen

Backsplash Ideas

As you consider kitchen updates, the first projects that probably cross your mind involve updating large items such as your appliances, flooring, lighting, and cabinets. Leaving your kitchen backsplash as an afterthought. However, you shouldn't ignore this important element! A new backsplash can make a big visual impact in exchange for a minimal investment.
  
Our REALTORS® suggest the following 7 backsplash ideas you'll want to try in your kitchen:

  1. Mix Materials and Match Colors  
    Try sticking with one main color and a few accent colors while mixing up the materials in your backsplash. Different shades and finishes or metallic tile with inspiration drawn from your lighting or hardware finishes create an interesting look. And get inspiration from your countertop to pull in small tiles with granite or marble to incorporate these colors and materials without having just a boring stone slab.
      
  2. Add a Modern Touch with Glass 
    Glass backsplashes can add a modern touch with a shine to your kitchen since it has a sleek, modern appearance. The options are numerous, including glass tiles in iridescent sea glass, a stunning starburst design, or ones that are made with some crackle or frosted finish. As an added bonus, it's usually a reasonably priced option and is also easy to clean.
      
  3. Give Subway Tile an Update
    Subway tile is always a popular kitchen backsplash choice, and it's easy to improve upon by using some creativity. Try breaking up its color by adding two bold stripes of another color, and enhance the entire look by adding some white floating shelves.

  4. Try Shapes
    Shapes can add visual interest to your backsplash, and the possibilities are nearly endless. You'll be able to choose from elongated octagon tiles, chevrons, and many more. Or use the tiles themselves to create a unique abstract backsplash that can create a stunning focal point.

  5. Add Texture with Penny Tiles  
    Penny tiles are back in style, and they'll suit almost any style of kitchen décor, from mid-century modern to industrial. Although you may be used to seeing them in bathrooms, they add interesting texture to your kitchen and come in a variety of colors and shades.

  6. Don't Forget the Impact of Grout   
    It's easy to focus on the pattern, color, and materials used in your kitchen backsplash and think of grout as an afterthought. Not only does grout serve an important function, but it also can add visual interest to your kitchen. For example, try a touch of gold grout to add an instant dose of warmth and elegance.

  7. Go Faux
    Faux finishes can fool the eye into thinking your backsplash looks like something in a much more elevated style other than what it actually is. For example, a rough-hewn terra cotta tile made to look like brick can make your kitchen look as though it has exposed brick, even when it doesn't.

Contact us to learn more about popular design trends in Richmond homes for sale. Updating your kitchen backsplash can make one of the most important rooms in your home much more attractive without investing much money.

September
21

5 First-Time Homebuyer Mistakes You Should Avoid

Homebuyer Mistakes

Purchasing a first home is one of the largest financial decisions most people make in a lifetime. The process can be an emotional roller coaster -- stressful, exciting, and overwhelming at the same time. For inexperienced homebuyers, it can be difficult to know what to expect and it's common to make mistakes during the house-hunting process. However, with a little preparation and research, you can avoid costly pitfalls and prevent major issues from popping-up down the line. Below are some tips to help you make the best decision when purchasing your first home.

  1. Don't Look at Homes Before Applying for a Mortgage
    While it may be tempting to dive right in and start viewing these beautiful Richmond Homes for sale, your first step should be to apply for a mortgage. Being pre-approved sends a signal that you're a serious, qualified buyer. Not only will this help you understand how much you can afford, but you'll be in the right position to make an offer once you do find the home you love.
  2. Consider Multiple Lenders
    Sometimes first-time homebuyers will accept a mortgage from the first lender they meet with instead of shopping around for the best rate. This can be an incredibly expensive mistake. Be sure to compare rates and evaluate at least three lenders and a mortgage broker to be sure you're getting the best deal.
  3. Draining Your Savings
    While putting down 20% is usually a good idea, it's also important not to drain your savings. Owning a home can come with many unanticipated costs, so it's a good idea to have some cash on hand for emergencies. If you barely have enough cash to make the 20% down payment, you might be better off putting a smaller amount down so you can be better prepared for emergencies.
  4. Forgetting About the Neighborhood
    Remember, you're not just buying the house, you're also buying a piece of a neighborhood. It's common for first-time homebuyers to fall in love with a house, only then to later realize the neighborhood isn't what they expected. Be sure to buy a house in an area that has the location, and amenities that are the best fit for you and your family. 
  5. Making an Emotional Decision
    Because purchasing a first home is such a major life experience, it can be easy to fall in love with a particular feature or amenity. It can be easy to envision some of life's great moments happening in a specific home. While it might be difficult, it's important to try to remove emotions from the decision making process and instead, make sure your future home checks all the right boxes.

Buying your first home can be an intimidating experience, but our REALTORS® can help. If you're a first-time homebuyer, contact us today for assistance. 

September
11

Become A Tourist In Your Own Town

Take a Look at RVA in a new light!

Richmond at Dusk
It's easy to forget about Richmond's many museums, historic sites and attractions when you're scrambling to keep up with the day-to-day. But why not take a break and explore the city as a tourist would?
 
The COVID-19 pandemic has pushed many of us indoors for extended periods of time, but the good news is we live in a beautiful city with lots to see all from the comfort of our own vehicles! If you can do so in a safe way, many of these destinations offer a great opportunity to get out and stretch your legs while taking in the views.
 
We've outlined a few traditional sites to enjoy, plus a few you may not have experienced yet!
 
Top 10 things to do on your day trip:
    1. Have a picnic lunch at Maymont Park
    2. Grab your bike and head for the Capital trail
    3. Take a walk in the Fan or Church Hill and point out your favorite homes
    4. Use a mural map and bike the city taking pictures of your favorite murals along the way.
    5. Search for a secluded spot with a little privacy and just breathe the fresh air, or spend some time meditating
    6. Be your own tour guide as you cruise through Hollywood Cemetery
    7. Pick a classic Richmond restaurant for takeout like Shagbark, Stellas, or Gelati Celesti
    8. Catch a sunrise by the Nickel Bridge or on the James River and capture that quintessential Richmond photo
    9. Sketch the city from the vantage point of the Virginia War Memorial
    10. Finally, grab a local growler to-go and toast your favorite town

Wherever you decide to go, there's no need to leave town to take a vacation — there's plenty to discover right here in RVA.

Bridge

Inspired by: Richmond Magazine
Photo: Adobe Stock

September
14

National Coffee Day: Coffee Shops in Carytown

Coffee Shops Carytown

Let's be honest: for java lovers like our REALTORS®, every day is coffee day. But Tuesday, September 29 has been officially declared National Coffee Day, so why not celebrate? Luckily, there are plenty of local coffee shops serving up delicious roasts in our area! Get your favorite drink or try a new one at one of these popular Carytown coffee shops around Richmond homes for sale

 

  1. Sugar & Twine - 2928 W. Cary St., Richmond, VA 23221
    Sugar & Twine isn't satisfied with simply offering the finest locally roasted coffee. They want to satisfy your sweet tooth with a mouthwatering selection of muffins, croissants, cookies, and other freshly baked goodies. If you prefer something more hearty, go with the breakfast sandwich on focaccia bread or cheddar biscuits. Stop in on the weekend and unwind with a cold beer or glass of wine. 

  2. Roastology Coffee - 2701 W. Cary St., Richmond, VA 23220
    With a name like Roastology Coffee, you know they're serious about their craft. Top-quality coffee beans are roasted in-house to create every day and seasonal blends. and you can even purchase ready-to-use half-gallon jugs of iced lattes and cold brew. Turn your beverage into a light breakfast or lunch by pairing it with one of Roastology's sandwiches, salads, or pastries. Order ahead on the website or just stop by the shop's convenient roll-up window. 

  3. Lamplighter Coffee Roasters - 116 S. Addison St., Richmond, VA 23220
    Few things are as satisfying as a cup of joe, but maybe you're in the mood to try something adventurous. Lamplighter Coffee Roasters features specialty drinks such as Thai coffee, lavender latte, and a black eye, which is drip coffee turbo-charged with a double shot of espresso. Feeling hungry? Breakfast burritos come in regular and vegan varieties, or you can opt for a sandwich on a locally-made Cupertino bagel. 

  4. Alchemy Coffee - 814 W. Broad St., Richmond, VA 23220
    The country's great coffee revolution originated in the Pacific Northwest. When Eric Spivack relocated from Portland to Richmond, he brought some of that coffee culture along to found Alchemy Coffee. In true pioneering spirit, the shop's mission is blending a scientific approach with people's emotional relationship to coffee. Fittingly, Alchemy's website features a flowchart of different coffee preparations, both hot and iced. Coffee is sourced from a rotating list of top local and regional roasters.

  5. Rostov's Coffee & Tea - 1618 W. Main St., Richmond, VA 23220
    Variety is the name of the game at Rostov's Coffee & Tea. With more than 50 years in business, family-owned Rostov's is the oldest coffee roaster in Richmond. Choose from an incredible 40+ blends, sourced from the world's top coffee-growing regions, in a wide range of flavors and intensities. Rostov's also carries 60 types of teas, including herbal, decaf, black, green, and flavored. Call in your order at least one hour ahead and it will be ready for pickup. Orders can also be shipped for a flat fee of $4, with a 25 percent discount on shipping for orders over two pounds. 

After all those cups of coffee, we can't wait to put our energy to work fulfilling your real estate needs. If you're buying or selling a home in Richmond, contact us at Joyner Fine Properties to get started. 

September
8

Where to See The Leaves Change Colors Around Richmond

Richmond Fall Leaves

Exploring the natural beauty around Richmond is an especially pleasant pastime in autumn when the air is crisp, the sun is shining, and the changing leaves are fluttering with the breeze in a dazzling display of colors. Whether you visit a local park, take a long, scenic drive, or head out for a hike deeper into nature, there are so many different ways to enjoy the fall foliage this year. Our REALTORS® are ready for the show, and we've got all the details on where to see the leaves change color around Richmond this year.

  1. Maymont Estate – 1000 Westover Rd., Richmond, VA 23220
    Every entry on our list can be easily reached from Richmond homes for sale, and the historic Maymont Estate is the perfect place to start. This beautifully maintained estate is a treat to visit during any season, but if you love fall foliage then there's no doubt that this is the best time of year to visit. Take your time as you tour the 100-acre estate, which features gardens, lakes, an arboretum, and mature trees with leaves in a kaleidoscope of colors. 

  2. Byrd Park – 600 South Blvd. Richmond, VA 23220
    Conveniently located in the Near West End of Richmond, Byrd Park has long been a favorite outdoor destination for Richmond residents. This 287-acre park offers a little bit of everything – and a lot of changing leaves during the fall season. There are three beautiful lakes to explore scattered throughout the park, along with walking trails that will allow you to enjoy the foliage from every angle. Be sure to visit the historic monuments at the southern end of the park, to see reminders of the city's past framed by the fall foliage of the present.

  3. Bryan Park – 4308 Hermitage Rd., Richmond, VA 23227
    One of Richmond's largest and most popular parks, Bryan Park is sure to be a hit for fall foliage viewing. The park is home to thousands of mature trees of many types, which ensures a diverse palette of colors during foliage season. There are ample walking and hiking trails that weave through the park, along with an expansive azalea garden that is home to some great colors in the fall.

  4. Three Lakes Park and Nature Center – 400 Sausiluta Dr., Henrico, VA 23227
    Searching for the colors of fall close to Henrico homes for sale? Then just head for Three Lakes Park and Nature Center, where you can see the colorful leaves reflecting off of the surface of beautiful lakes. This park also features ample family activities, from playgrounds to an educational Nature Center, so you can turn your visit into a full-day event.

  5. Forest Hill Park – 4201 Forest Hill Ave., Richmond, VA 23225
    Having once served as a quarry, an estate, and an amusement park at separate times, Forest Hill Park is a unique slice of local history. It's also a great place to check out the changing leaves in the fall, with more than 100 acres to explore. Take a stroll around the lake, stop for a picnic in one of the shelters positioned throughout the park, and visit the historic buildings located around the park while they are surrounded by the spectacular colors of autumn.

When you live in Richmond, your next outdoor adventure is always waiting close to your front door. Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout the Richmond, VA area.

August
24

What Sellers and Buyers Need to Know About Home Inspections

Home Inspections

A home inspection is an important step when you're buying or selling a home, so it pays to know what an inspection entails and exactly what kind of information it reveals.

Our REALTORS® explain the following points buyers and sellers need to know about home inspections for Richmond homes for sale.

  • How a Home Inspection Works  
    A home inspection isn't mandatory, but it's usually a good idea to have one performed. The homebuyer usually pays for the inspection, which calls for a third-party professional inspector to closely examine and evaluate many aspects of the property. If you'd like to look at the home when the inspector does, there's a lot you may be able to learn.   

    Sometimes a home seller will pay for an inspection to reassure potential buyers that their property doesn't have any major issues. The areas covered by an inspection usually include the foundation and basement, interior plumbing systems, interior electrical systems, heating, and cooling systems, and more. After the inspection, a report will be generated for you to examine.

  • How to Choose a Qualified Home Inspector  
    If you need help finding a home inspector, your REALTOR® can often suggest someone who has the proper credentials and experience. He or she should have certifications from groups such as the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors (NASH) and the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI). That way, you'll know they meet ongoing professional standards.

    In addition, they should carry an insurance policy that protects you in case they're injured on the property you own. Experience in the local area is also a plus. That way, the inspector knows about local pest issues, soil conditions, and more.

  • What an Inspection Can't Do  
    While an inspection provides a great deal of information, it can't predict the future or give you a guarantee of how long a system will last. Instead, it can let you know about the age of important systems and provide a snapshot of their condition at the present time. A system that was working properly when it was inspected could develop problems. 

    And some areas of the property – such as inside the walls or septic tanks – may not be a part of a standard inspection. If that's the case and you'd like to have these areas inspected, your REALTOR® may be able to suggest someone who can do this more specialized job.

  • What Happens After the Inspection  
    After the inspection is completed, the buyer will be given a report detailing any problems. At this point, the buyer may decide to move onto another home or may choose to negotiate with the seller to either make some repairs or to lower the price to compensate for the cost of fixing the issues that were found.   

    If the seller has ordered the inspection and it reveals any serious issues, he or she might choose to make the repairs, since potential buyers may not want to deal with the hassle and time involved with significant repairs even if the home price is reduced accordingly.

Contact us to learn more about home inspections and how they can benefit buyers as well as sellers. And whether you're buying or selling a home in the Richmond area, our experience and knowledge of the local area can help make your transaction proceed smoothly.

August
17

Why Sellers Should Avoid These Popular Interior Design Trends

Design Trends to Avoid

There are classic design styles in home decor, and then there are fads. Classic endures, and fads, while fun, fade. Selling your home? As much as you love your purple and yellow accent walls, your brass fixtures, and your boldly patterned bathroom wallpaper, potential sellers probably won't. 

A seller needs to appeal to the mass of buyers, not just the quirky few who might be tuned into your flights of decorating fancy. Potential buyers want to see a neutral palette where they can imagine themselves bringing their own decorating dreams to life in your home.

Now that you're ready to list your home among Richmond homes for sale have a look at some trends to avoid -- and why you should resist them.

  1. Brass or Other Warm Metal Fixtures
    We've already mentioned brass, so let's just go with it, but we're also going to throw copper, rose gold and other warm metals in there. True, they're having their moment, but it will pass, and remember, some potential buyers will just plain loathe brass. So play it safe and go with nickel, chrome, or stainless steel.

  2. Colorful Appliances
    Colorful appliances are also having their day. But go with stainless steel -- a perennial favorite -- or even black stainless steel. White appliances have also regained popularity in recent years. These neutral tones are the least likely to inspire backlash as potential buyers scroll through images of your home.

  3. Bright Wallpaper
    Bright, boldly printed wallpaper has been cropping up in bathrooms in the last couple of years, and while it can make an exciting design statement, it's best to turn down the volume on the loud wallpaper when you're trying to sell your home. 

  4. Stark White Kitchens and Bathrooms
    Don't get us wrong: white kitchens (and bathrooms) can look fabulous, especially in an ultra-modern home. However, there's a balance between livable and stark, clinical white. Warm things up with accessories and accents in neutral tones. Offset those clean, cold lines with some subtle accents.

  5. Vibrant Front Doors
    If you've been walking your neighborhood, you've likely seen plenty of gray, white, or neutral-toned homes with surprising, eye-popping front doors in bright, bold colors, ranging from fiery orange to sunny yellow, and blues and greens and everything in between. It's definitely a trend, but you just can't know if your lime green door is going to drive away a potential buyer. Be safe and go understated, or if you want to be a bit bolder, do red or black (two current favorites). Above all, make sure the door is clean, and in good repair.

  6. Tile Countertops
    Tile countertops had a good run in the 80s and 90s, but in 2020 most homebuyers are going to think about having to clean that grout. Have a look at quartz, now recognized for its durability and low maintenance.

  7. Over the Range Microwave
    They were a great idea in the mid-80s, but now gas range burners are cooking with more BTUs, and having the microwave over the range presents ventilation issues with all that grease, steam, and heat. New options include microwave drawers and under-cabinet models. 

Our real estate agents can help with more tips for creating eye-catching appeal when your home goes on the market. Contact us today.  

August
10

Geocaching Day: Where to Go Geocaching in Richmond

Geocaching in RichmondFor International Geocaching Day this August 15th, our REALTORS® want to introduce the fun and excitement of geocaching!

Geocaching is a hobby that's being adopted in ever greater numbers by urban adventurers near the best Richmond homes for sale. Anyone who is interested in spending more time outdoors and has a mobile device, like a smartphone, can participate.

What is Geocaching, Exactly?

In geocaching, you use your smartphone to navigate to a "hidden treasure" stored somewhere in a publicly accessible outdoor space. These unique geocaches are left by other players.

The usual geocache is a small container, sealed from the elements, that includes a logbook and pen. When the cache is found and logged, the player should return it to its original location so it can be found again and again.

Players might be from the local area or just passing through. Likewise, many geocaches contain small items like toys or other trinkets, so each new discoverer can find an item and leave an item.

Get Started With Geocaching in the Richmond Area

Of course, we can't tell you precisely where to find active geocaches in Richmond!

That would take away the fun of discovering them all for yourself. But there are many areas around the city where caches can commonly be found. Geocaching has become so popular that the Virginia State Park System is in on the act, too.

When exploring a Virginia state park, you can expect to find at least one cache. These may be quick grabs you can find near an established trail or multicaches that require you to find a final location by consulting other cache sites throughout the area.

Let's check in with some of the parks known to harbor geocaches:

  1. Pocahontas State Park – 10301 State Park Road, Chesterfield, VA 23832
    Just half an hour from downtown Richmond, most geocaching journeys start in Pocahontas State Park. Boating, picnicking, and camping can be enjoyed in season. The park is well known for its camping cabins and three lakes providing abundant fishing.
  2. Powhatan State Park – 4616 Powhatan State Park Road, Powhatan, VA 23139
    A few more minutes away – 45 minutes from Richmond center – you can discover Powhatan State Park. Seated on the historic James River, it features diverse wildlife habitats from fields to hardwood forests. Full-service campsites and primitive campgrounds are available.
  3. Twin Lakes State Park – 788 Twin Lakes Road, Green Bay, VA 23942
    Approximately an hour west of Richmond, Twin Lakes State Park sprawls 548 breathtaking acres. You can choose the 33-site campground or 11 climate-controlled overnight cabins as you venture through the land in search of your latest geocache find.
  4. Belle Isle State Park – 1632 Belle Isle Road, Lancaster, VA 22503
    Ready to go further afield? Gear up and head out an hour and a half northeast of Richmond to Belle Isle State Park. With seven miles of lovely shoreline along the Rappahannock River, it is one of the best places to explore Virginia's tidal wetlands.

Geocaching is fun, but you don't have to range far and wide to find the right Richmond home for you. Contact us today for expert advice on local real estate opportunities.

August
3

International Beer Day: 5 Richmond Area Breweries

International Beer Day

Wouldn't it be nice to live in a city where every day felt like International Beer Day? The actual holiday falls on August 7th this year, and our REALTORS® are happy to report that Richmond's vibrant craft brewing culture means that you can celebrate in style close to home. Get ready to raise a glass, with our guide to 5 Richmond area breweries that you definitely won't want to miss.

  1. Strangeways Brewing – 2277A Dabney Rd., Richmond, VA 23230

    Sure, you could visit an ordinary brewery, but this is no ordinary holiday! Why not try something unusual, new, and unique from Strangeways Brewing? Conveniently located close to Richmond homes for sale, Strangeways Brewing strives to serve the most unusual, flavorful brews, created in styles scoured from every corner of the world. Founder Neil Burton has traveled far and wide in search of strange brews, and you can taste the results of that journey at the award-winning Strangeways Taproom.

  2. Garden Grove Brewing – 3445 West Cary St., Richmond, VA 23221

    Garden Grove Brewing is known for its innovative takes on craft beer, wine, and hard cider. The team at Garden Grove believes that the best beer deserves to be served fresh so that you won't find its brews in bottles at the corner store. Visit the taproom, however, and you'll be treated to an amazing selection of beers, all barrel-aged for up to one year.

  3. Fine Creek Brewing Company – 2425 Robert E Lee Rd., Powhatan, VA 23139

    Family owned and operated from a rustic farmhouse among rolling, rural fields, Fine Creek Brewing Company is your source for the best craft brews close to Powhatan homes for sale. If you love variety, this is the place to be. Fine Creek doesn't believe in flagship beers, instead choosing to rotate flavors and brewing styles regularly. You never know what you'll find at Fine Creek!

  4. Stone Brewing – 4300 Williamsburg Ave., Richmond, VA 23231

    In addition to welcoming leashed pets, the Stone Brewing taproom in Richmond serves one of the most diverse selections of craft beer in the city. Along with a regular selection of year-round brews, Stone Brewing offers special, limited-release beers to bring home by the growler or keg. You never know what you'll find, from rare beers that have never been bottled to vintage batches of your favorite seasonal Stone brews from years past.

  5. Veil Brewing Company – 2256 Dabney Rd., Suite F, Richmond, VA 23230

    The Funkhaust Cafe, operated by Veil Brewing Company, is a one of a kind taproom with a menu of funky, wild brews that always includes something new to try. There are always four "normal," easy-drinking beers on tap, along with a selection of more unusual options for when you're feeling adventurous. If you're searching for creations that push the limits of what beer can be, you'll fit right in with the folks at Veil Brewing Company.

If you love to immerse yourself in the craft brewing culture of your home city, then there's never been a better time to call Richmond home. Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout Richmond.

July
27

5 Restaurants for Patio Dining in the Richmond Area

Richmond Patios

After months spent indoors cooking or ordering delivery every day, it's safe to say that we could all use a nice night out. Thankfully, many eateries throughout the RVA are now offering outdoor dining options. Our REALTORS® encourage you to support our local RVA businesses and enjoy patio dining at one of these Richmond area restaurants.

  1. Union Market – 2306 Jefferson Ave., Richmond, VA 23223
    Your favorite neighborhood café and market in Union Hill is ready to serve you in person once again. Union Market has limited patio seating available for customers between 11 AM and 9 PM. Swing by for lunch or dinner and savor favorites like the Chicken Tarragon sandwich, Fattoush Salad, and handmade soup of the day. They're also serving wine and beer by the bottle as well as kombucha for any adults who surely deserve a night to unwind away from home.

  2. Ipanema Café – 917 West Grace St., Richmond, VA 23220
    If you've been craving amazing vegan and vegetarian food, you'll be happy to know that Ipanema Café is once again ready to serve dine-in customers. Their popular BBQ jackfruit, tofu sandwiches, and fresh salads are waiting for you on their cool patio. Stop by if you're in the area browsing Richmond homes for sale and enjoy a healthy meal outdoors.

  3. Home Sweet Home – 3433 West Cary St., Richmond, VA 23220
    Even though you're dining out, Home Sweet Home will make you feel like part of their family with their friendly service and homecooked meals. As one of Carytown's favorite neighborhood hangouts, they're ready to welcome you back for patio dining during brunch, lunch, and dinner. We can't wait to bite into the Upstate, the Jerk, or another Specialty Grilled Cheese. If you can't make it out during the week, dive into their Breakfast Sausage Sandy or Greek Frittata for brunch and savor that sweet flavor you've longed for.

  4. Latitude Seafood Co. – 15532 WC Commons Way, Midlothian, VA 23113
    Even though our Midlothian homes for sale are a little far from the ocean, we're thankful that restaurants like Latitude Seafood Company are in town to provide us with the freshest fish each day. Start your meal with over a dozen seafood appetizers, soups, and salads before diving into the fresh catch of the day like the Mahi Mahi and Snapper or another salty entrée like Lobster Grilled Cheese or Fish Tacos. Be sure to treat yourself to dessert with a Mill Street Cake or Nightingale Ice Cream Sandwich.

  5. Red Salt Chophouse & Sushi – 12221 West Broad, Henrico, VA 23233
    If the words 'steak' and 'sushi' make your mouth water, then Red Salt Chophouse & Sushi is ready to satiate your taste buds. Delivering a new culinary experience to the area, this unique steakhouse and sushi bar is unlike any other restaurant near Henrico homes for sale. From the lunchtime Bento Boxes and savory starters to the exceptional hand-cut steaks and specialty sushi rolls for dinner, every dish is handcrafted to your preference. Their patio offers limited seating for guests who are ready to finally enjoy the upscale restaurant experience that they've desired for months.

Are you looking to get out of your current house and move into a home with a large enough patio to enjoy outdoor dining? We can help! Contact us today to browse our homes for sale in the RVA and surrounding area. 

July
20

How to Make Your Home Feel More Spacious

Spacious Home

Who wouldn't want their home to feel more spacious? You might think the only way to accomplish this would be to add onto your home, but our REALTORS® have a few other tricks up their sleeves. 

Whether you're getting ready to put up your Richmond home for sale, or you just need a little extra space, these tricks will make your home feel much more open and spacious.

  1. Eliminate Clutter
    Nothing makes a small space feel even smaller quite like being filled with too much stuff. Decluttering your space is one of the quickest and easiest ways to open it up. That means reducing the number of pictures on the walls, getting rid of old and unused items, and thinning out your collection of knick-knacks. 
  2. Lighten It Up
    It's a well-established fact that lighter colors make a room feel more spacious. When you want a room to feel cozier, you paint it a bold, dark tone. When you want it to feel open and airy, you paint it white (or off-white). Another great trick is to paint your walls a pale shade of blue or gray, and then paint the trim an even lighter white. This creates the illusion that the walls are farther away, enhancing the sense of space. 
  3. Downsize
    Scaling down your furniture is a little-used trick to open up your space. And no, we don't mean switching to miniature furnishings. We mean replacing a big overstuffed plushy couch with a more sleek sofa that still offers the same amount of seating, but with a much trimmer profile. Same goes for chairs, dining room tables, coffee tables, and other furniture. Streamlined furniture, like tables and chairs with lithe legs and a low profile, also helps open up the space by letting light flow through and around them. 
  4. Use Mirror Magic
    The mirror trick is an oldie but a goodie. Interior designers have been using them to trick the eye into perceiving more space since before interior designing was a thing. Of course, no one is going to see a mirror on your wall and mistake it for a window leading into a whole other room; mirrors trick the eye in a more subtle way. They reflect light as well as the view, subconsciously suggesting that the room is bigger than it is. 
  5. Go With the Flow
    Furniture should be arranged in such a way that the empty space flows naturally around it. Pull furnishings out against the wall to create some more space and keep enough space between each piece that they don't feel like they're at risk of bumping up against one another. 
  6. Get Creative With Storage
    One of the problems with trying to create space is that we simply have a lot of stuff, and it all needs a home. Even after doing a thorough decluttering, you still need to put all your remaining belongings... somewhere. Use creative storage solutions to keep all this stuff neat and, as much as possible, out of sight. This could mean mounted racks, hooks or cubbies, recessed shelves, and cabinets, or getting creative with baskets and bins. 

Contact us today to learn more about simple tips and tricks to make your home feel more spacious. Our team at Joyner Fine Properties has years of experience selling homes in the Richmond area, and we can offer the guidance you need to sell your home. 

July
10

Home Organization Tips To Inspire You While Social Distancing

Organizing and decluttering can be great ways to stay productive while social distancing. The only thing more satisfying than an ultra-tidy closet, pantry, or laundry room is seeing what it looked like before it was super organized. And it doesn't need to be spring for us to get overly excited about a good clean-up and organization project. If you need a little inspiration to start your own, these tips and tricks are the perfect motivation to tidy up.

To-Do List 1. Create Effective To-Do Lists

Make a habit of writing down your short and long-term goals. Then create additional to-do lists, separated by task. Listing out the steps you need to work toward your goals will help you reclaim the kind of crisp, results-oriented mindset that builds and sustains momentum.
Mise En Place 2. Make "Mise-En-Place" a Way Of Life

The French phrase translates literally to "put in place," and it refers to the practice of gathering all the ingredients and utensils needed before cooking a meal, then systematically cleaning your utensils and workstation as you go. Mise-en-place also beautifully focuses the mind, and, best of all, dramatically cuts down on organizational chaos.
Dresser Drawers 3. Expose Everything in Your Storage Spaces

Stacking clothes up pancake-style means you inevitably only end up wearing (and re-wearing) the few garments that land on top of the piles. The solution: Fold clothes small and tight, and store them in drawers "standing up rather than laid flat," says Marie Kondo, author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing.
Kid's Toy Box 4. Reuse and Repurpose

You don't have to leave the house to purchase anything for these organization projects. Get creative by repurposing shoe boxes and bank-check boxes (both lids and bottoms) as drawer dividers, or putting instruction manuals in a three-ring binder and you'll never rifle through drawers again.
Closet Organization 5. Hang and Stash

Hanging and stashing can make any space seem tidier. Think outside of the box when looking for creative storage solutions. A wine rack might store magazines and newspapers, while a wooden peg rack can be used to hang brushes or a blow-dryer in a bathroom.
Organized Desk 6. Keep Your Files Streamlined

To keep your desk and living spaces clear of papers and documents you're not currently using (both energy-sapping eyesores), try a simple, three-tiered filing system: one file drawer close at hand for current projects, another for research material you may need in a month or two, and a third for documents relating to finished projects you should hang on to for legal reasons.
Photos: Adobe Stock
Source: Real Simple
July
13

National Ice Cream Day: Ice Cream Shops in Richmond

Ice Cream in Richmond

Grab your spoon! National Ice Cream Day is Sunday, July 19th, and you'd better believe that our real estate agents are ready to devour scoop after scoop! National Ice Cream Day is always the third Sunday in July (which also happens to be National Ice Cream Month) and celebrates one of our favorite desserts. Celebrate National Ice Cream Day at one of these Richmond ice cream parlors.

  1. Scoop – 403 Strawberry St., Richmond, VA 23220
    Looking for the scoop on National Ice Cream Day? Then you need to head to Scoop, the small-batch ice cream shop that churns our signature and seasonal flavors that everyone will love. Located in the Fan, they produce flavors that are vegan as well as gluten-free. We suggest ordering an ice cream flight (3 mini scoops with three cookie wedges), so you can try multiple flavors. Do note that they also make ice cream cakes, including custom orders, which are perfect for birthday parties, anniversaries, and celebrating National Ice Cream Day, of course!

  2. NarWhals – 3313 W. Cary St., Richmond, VA 23221
    NarWhals
    is Richmond's first hand-rolled ice cream parlor, where you can create your own mix-in flavors. One of the NarWhals crew members will help you craft the perfect mix-in flavors at their NarWhals Workshop. What do you want with your ice cream? Candy, cereal, fruit? Get as creative as you'd like and enjoy an RVA ice cream experience like no other!

  3. Charm School Social Club – 311 W. Broad St., Richmond, VA 23220
    Using fresh dairy from a local farm, Charm School Social Club makes their ice cream and cones by hand in house every day. They're also hard at work on vegan flavors for those who would love a dairy-free cup or cone. Along with your ice cream, you can also grab a float, cup of coffee, soda, or tea to take on the road.

  4. Gelati Celesti – 3004 Stony Point Rd., Richmond, VA 23235
    Heavenly handmade ice cream right in the RVA, Gelati Celesti, gives you a moment of pure joy every time you take a lick of their ice cream. Using the finest ingredients on the planet, they have over 100 rotating flavors that are made in small batches. Best of all, they'll happily fill a few pints for you to take home so you can celebrate National Ice Cream Day as often as you'd like!
    * Check the website for their 5 other locations and food truck.

  5. Moonrocks Gelato – 2400 W. Main St., Richmond, VA 23220
    Moonrocks Gelato
    is out of this world! Their unique combination of Gelato and waffles creates a one-of-a-kind sweet shop. Their premium Gelato flavors are constantly changing, offering up new scoops throughout the month. Their warm waffles are also second to none, but what you really want to get a Moonrocks is the Moonrock Panini! A warm Brioche that's stuffed with Gelato and covered with your choice of over 50 toppings…how can we resist?

Hungry for more? Taste test every ice cream shop in the RVA when you move into one of our Richmond homes for sale. Contact us today to get your search started!  

July
6

Natural Ways to Get Rid of Bugs This Summer

Ways to Get Rid of Summer Bugs

Most of us would prefer to forego harsh chemicals to repel summertime bugs. But we also don't want our homes and gardens to be overwhelmed by pests. You know the kind: they bite, sting, make us sick, and destroy our flowers and vegetables. Some of them work their way inside and wreak havoc in insidious ways in our closets, in the kitchen pantry, or while we're trying to cook dinner. 

You've probably heard of some natural remedies for a lot of these pests and have wondered how effective they are.

Need some additional advice about controlling pests and other issues as you think about listing your home among Richmond homes for sale? Follow these tips below. 

  1. Garlic 
    Garlic doesn't just keep the vampires away. It's a natural bug repellent inside or outside the home. Grow the plants to repel fruit tree borers, weevils, Japanese beetles, and spider mites. Eating lots of garlic can keep mosquitoes away because you exude garlic breath and sulfur compounds from the skin. Also, you can exploit garlic's natural sulfur content by mixing it, either raw or in powder form, with water and spraying it on plants and on yourself to repel mosquitoes.

  2. Peppermint
    The insect-repelling properties of peppermint and other mints have been known for ages. Add peppermint oil to water and spray it around the house to repel flies, ants, and pantry moths. Grow peppermint outdoors or place pots with the plants around your patio to repel mosquitoes. Rub the leaves on your skin to ward off mosquitoes. Plant peppermint around your home's exterior to deter wasps, ants, and cockroaches.

  3. Pennyroyal
    Exercise care with this member of the mint family and never ingest it. Stick some crushed stems under your hat or put them in your pockets to keep away mosquitoes and gnats. Wrap some of the crushed plant in your doggie's bandana before you go walking to drive off fleas, but get rid of it when you get back home. Never use it as an essential oil. 

  4. Diatomaceous Earth
    Diatomaceous earth is made of fossilized algae called diatoms. High in silica, this substance is found worldwide. Diatomaceous earth has many uses, but one of the major ones is as an insecticide. It's non-toxic but kills insects by drying them out. Gardeners sprinkle it in flower beds to control snails, pillbugs, and other insects. Homeowners sometimes use it inside the home to control roaches and fleas. 

  5. Boric Acid
    This white powder contains boron, which is sprinkled around baseboards or on carpets. Insects such as cockroaches, fleas, termites, and silverfish walk through the dust and lick it off their legs. It causes them to become dehydrated within about ten days. Keep pets and children away from boric acid.  

The key to attaining success with the remedies listed above is to use them liberally, inside, and outside the home. Nevertheless, do keep kids and pets away from them, as you don't want them ingesting these substances. 

Turn to our real estate agents for more advice on getting your home in shape to list. Contact us today. 

June
22

What You Should Know Before You Remodel Your Kitchen

Kitchen Remodel

Summer is a popular time for kitchen remodeling projects. And with good reason! The long summer days mean you don't have to worry about limited daylight hours. Plus, if you're replacing your stove, the grill is just steps away. 

But no matter when you plan to remodel your kitchen, you'll want to keep these considerations in mind. 

A New Look Requires A Broad View 

What the finest Richmond homes for sale have in common is a consistent style. The changes you want to make to the kitchen should harmonize with the architecture of the rest of the house and any elements of the kitchen that you don't plan to change. If your living room is full of sleek leather and glass, a farmhouse kitchen will seem jarring. And if you plan to keep your mid-century style refrigerator, a dishwasher in a brushed chrome finish would create the wrong sort of contrast. 

Money Matters

The quotes and estimates you are offered may differ from season to season. The time it takes to complete a project and the availability of professionals changes throughout the year. If you got an estimate in the winter and you'd like to start your remodeling project now, ask the contractor what changes the weather might make in the budget. 

If you're just getting started with your remodeling plans, you can start by seeking estimates and making funding decisions after, or you can budget a specific amount before seeking estimates. The former offers the advantage of knowing what your dream kitchen will cost. The latter helps you stay within specific financial guidelines. Your kitchen remodeling plans may go through some revision, so you may try both approaches before settling on a final budget and plans. 

Something Bold Or Something New?

Some kitchen remodeling projects are all about the aesthetics. New cabinet fronts and appliances to match can make a world of difference for your home. But other remodeling projects are more about bringing your home up to date. Especially if your home was built prior to the mid-20th century, talk to an electrician about the wiring and a plumber about the water lines that newer appliances may need to work to the best of their capability. Their advice will help you save time and money during the remodeling process. 

Also, keep in mind your goals for the kitchen remodel. Are you remodeling to make your home more appealing to potential buyers? Or are you looking to make your kitchen more comfortable for your family? If you are planning on listing your home, keep in mind certain kitchen features that you like might do little to peak a buyer's interest. But if you are wanting to stay in your current home for some time, you can customize this space as much as you and your family want. 

Summer is a great time to update your kitchen, but any time of year is a perfect time to make your house more enjoyable to live in. Our real estate agents will be happy to talk with you about what a remodel could do for your kitchen. Contact us sometime soon.  

June
15

4 Tips for Deep Cleaning Your New Home

Deep Cleaning Your New Home

A new home is the perfect blank canvas for creating the life you envision. Before you can turn your new home into your dream space, you need to ensure that you're starting with a clean canvas. Though most home sellers clean their homes before they move out, our real estate agents still recommend cleaning prior to unpacking.

Follow these tips for deep cleaning your new space.

  1. Gather Your Supplies
    Before you get started cleaning, take a few moments to gather everything you'll need for the job. You may want to pack your cleaning gear in a separate moving box so that you know where it is and can easily access it. Here's what you should have on hand:
    • A vacuum cleaner with a wand attachment (and an extension if possible)
    • Cleaning rags
    • Broom
    • Mop and mop bucket
    • Your preferred cleaning products
  1. Start at the Top of Your New Home
    Even if the floors in your new home look like they need the most attention, you should clean your new digs from top to bottom. This will ensure that dust and dirt don't fall onto your floors after you've already cleaned them. Begin by dusting the ceiling fans and light fixtures. Dust around the perimeter of each room for cobwebs. Don't forget the tops of your cabinets and appliances! A vacuum cleaner attachment with an extension is one option for cleaning these high-up spots. Or, depending on the design of your home, a ladder may be necessary. Then, dust the windows, any window coverings, and any built-in units or shelves. Your vacuum cleaner attachment is super handy for getting into these spaces. Tackle your cabinets, counters, and baseboards before moving onto the floors. Check that you clean the interior portion of your cabinets so you have a clean spot to house your belongings. If there are any areas with leftover odors from the previous homeowners, mix a solution that consists of half vinegar and half warm water. Use a wet rag to wipe down the offending surfaces with the solution. Should you spot any areas with set-on gunk, you can let the solution sit for a few minutes.
  1. Change the Home's Air Filter
    A clean air filter is essential for providing your new property with clean air. In most homes, the air filter should be changed every 3 to 6 months. When you change the filter, make sure you dust the grates surrounded your filter. You can do so with a damp cloth. 
  1. Consider Steam Cleaning Your Floors
    While vacuuming or sweeping your floors will remove the dirt, dust, hair, and other debris, these tasks won't remove all the allergens. Consider cleaning your carpets and floors with a steam cleaner. You can often rent a steam cleaner at your local grocery store. Make sure you let your carpets dry before bringing your furniture inside. There are also steam cleaners available for hard surface floors, like laminate and tile. Some steam cleaners even have a brush attachment that you can use to thoroughly clean the grout. 

Want to start looking at Richmond homes for sale that are ready for you to move in? Contact us today to get started!

June
8

National Weed Your Garden Day: Maintenance Tips for Your Richmond Garden

Weed Your Garden Day

National Weed Your Garden Day is set for June 13, and as far as we're concerned, it's a great opportunity to focus on the topic of controlling weeds. If you're looking around at Richmond homes for sale and imagining your new garden, you'll need to know about weeds and how to keep them away from your plants.

What's a Weed?

One person's weed can be another person's wildflower, but in general, we look at weeds as invasive plants that muscle in and threaten to take over from cultivated species. So a weed can be anything from crabgrass to a humble dandelion (much beloved by honeybees, but a horror in lawns). Other objectionable plants in our region are chickweed (another lawn invader), ailanthus (the so-called "tree of heaven" is anything but!), and the dreaded Chinese privet and multiflora rose, two invasive shrubs. There are hundreds more, but why not start with the 10 or 20 Most Wanted in our region and have at them? Your local horticultural extension service can advise you. 

For ridding your garden of these unwanted visitors, follow these tips.

  1. Spray Them
    Many gardeners swear by chemical herbicides such as glyphosates and pre-emergents sprayed to control weeds. But sometimes, these miracle chemicals don't seem to work. It can be these chemicals are applied at the wrong time to prevent seed germination or to inhibit the enzyme in the weed that keeps it growing. Follow directions on the bottle for the best results. However, many gardeners these days have weaned themselves from chemical spraying and prefer other methods, as the chemicals may cause health problems and persist in soil. 

  2. Dig Them
    For best results, wait till you've had a drenching rain; weeds come up easier than when you dig or pull them. Stage a big weed-pulling session, making certain to get the roots. You'll find a multitude of recommendations in garden lore for the right kind of tool, ranging from a steak knife or a kitchen fork to a spade, digging fork, or a stand-up weed grabber. 

  3. Block Them
    One of the best ways to control weeds is to block them so they can't get sunlight. Cover control areas with newspaper and then at least 2 inches of mulch. Keep replenishing it as the season wears on. You can also use plastic sheeting, but this can collect dirt and start sprouting weeds. 

  4. Top Them
    This is simply the practice of cutting off weed flowers before they produce seeds.

  5. Crowd Them Out.
    Known in some gardening circles as intensive gardening, planting cultivated plants close together can block the sun and starve weeds out.

Looking for more home maintenance tips? Our real estate agents can help. Contact us today.

June
1

7 Tips to Help You Get the Summer Patio of Your Dreams

Richmond Summer Patio

As the days get longer and the weather starts to warm up, spending more time outdoors becomes increasingly appealing. That appeal can fade a little, however, if you have a patio that doesn't suit your summer plans. If you're looking to sell, your outdoor space can be an introduction to your home's style. Our real estate agents appreciate a home that is welcoming at first sight, and potential buyers will as well. The spring is the perfect time to evaluate your patio and consider the following for your perfect summer outdoor space. 

  1. Come Into Focus 
    If you have a garden that you're proud of, a patio can provide the best area to sit and admire it. If you entertain friends, having a space to socialize might be your best bet. Decide what activities your patio should be focused around, and that will help you decide what comes next. 
  2. A Porch of A Different Color 
    Your patio can take a significant departure from the color schemes of your house and should respond to the different lighting offered by outdoor spaces. You might want muted hues to avoid competing with the natural beauty in your backyard or appreciate the chance to use the bolder shades in a setting that they won't overpower. 
  3. A New Light
    Summer nights are short, but barbecues often run late. A string of lights can mimic the fireflies and add a romantic touch. A fire pit can also provide warmth for cooler nights. Citronella candles serve a practical purpose, and in a lantern or candelabra they will stand out among the Richmond homes for sale
  4. Have A Seat 
    Your seating will make up the largest pieces of furniture on your patio, and will largely define the look of the space. Wicker is lightweight, durable, and a perennial favorite. Steel-framed outdoor furniture offers a sleek look when paired with outdoor cushions and a coffee table to match. Adirondack chairs are a comfortable classic that suits a casual, easy elegance. 
  5. Cut A Rug
    Outdoor rugs are coming into their own in terms of style. Use one to tie together contrasting colors of furniture and establish a space for outdoor entertaining. 
  6. An Obvious Plant
    If you don't have a garden, or if your green thumb will not be restrained, use the surfaces of your patio for plants. Hang planters and place small pots on tables, or place larger pots in corners. Remember that patios often have a lot of shade, so your sun-loving flowers and herbs should be placed accordingly. 
  7. It's Art
    Your patio probably isn't the spot for delicate or pricey works, but in a durable frame, a sketch or watercolor will bring your love of art into a space where you can appreciate it and fresh air. 

Your summer patio offers as many options for entertaining and private enjoyment as any room in your house. Make the most of your summer and your summer patio this year. If you have any questions about what the summer might mean for your home, contact us today. 

May
26

Study Up on These Real Estate Terms Before Buying a Home

Real Estate Terms

Buying a home requires learning a new language. It is normal to feel a little lost in the conversation until you learn the lingo. To help make buying a home in Richmond a little easier, our real estate agents recommend studying the following vocabulary words as you start the process.

Mortgage Terms

  • ARM - Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) refers to a mortgage whose interest rate changes over time. ARM's can adjust at 5, 7, or 10-year intervals, and you will want to go over the terms of the loan carefully before deciding on this mortgage option.
  • Amortization - This option allows you to combine both interest and principal in your payments. This allows you to build equity in the home earlier in the process.
  • Discount Points - Don't like the interest rate offered by the bank? Ask about discount points. You can purchase these and receive a lower interest rate, which can save you money over the life of the loan.
  • Fixed-Rate Mortgage - A fixed-rate mortgage is a conventional loan. Most fixed-rate mortgages are for 15, 20, or 30 years. With a fixed-rate mortgage, your interest rate remains unchanged for the life of the loan.
  • Pre-Approval Letter - Pre-approval letters are issued by the bank and estimate how much money they will lend you to purchase a home. This requires proving income, employment, and credit history. It's a good idea to get a pre-approval letter before you start searching. There are two reasons for this. First, it helps you narrow your search to homes you can afford. Second, it shows sellers you can purchase the home, and it can give you a little leverage during the negotiation process.

Legal Terms

  • Active Contingent - When the seller accepts your offer, both parties may have certain contingencies, you will need to meet. Active contingencies can include the results of a home inspection, mortgage approval, and the seller's purchase of a new property before you can move in.
  • Appraisal - Lenders will require an appraisal of the home's true value before they will approve the loan. The appraisal needs to be conducted by a qualified third party.
  • Clear Title - It is imperative to conduct a title search before purchasing any property. The title search verifies that there are no liens or levies from creditors or government entities. When you receive a "clear title," you have a green light to purchase the home that verifies there are no building code violations, survey problems, back taxes, etc. on the property.
  • Escalation Clause - This clause establishes how much you are willing to bid on a property if a bidding war develops. This clause will set a ceiling on your bid price and the terms that you are willing to accept as part of the deal.
  • Dual Agency - The laws in Virginia allow real estate agents to represent multiple parties in the transaction. There are strict rules regarding this, and it is essential to ask your real estate agent all the parties to the transaction that they represent.

There are a hundred or more terms to learn when buying a home. Contact us and our team will help you study these as you start the process of examining which Richmond homes for sale are best suited for the lifestyle you want to enjoy. 

May
18

Improve Your Home's Air Quality with These 7 Tips

Air Quality in Your Home

Our real estate agents know many things go into choosing the perfect place to live. And once you find the perfect Richmond homes for sale, making your house a home is an ongoing process.

Keeping your space clean, neat, and organized helps a lot when it comes to comfort. But did you know that your air could also need a cleaning? Indoor air pollution can be a serious problem!

With its enclosed spaces, even the most modern home can develop indoor air more polluted than the air outside.

That said, it's easy to overlook the important ways you can keep your indoor air fresh and clean. While you're taking care of your home, be sure to check out these vital indoor air quality tasks:

  1. Change Your Air Conditioning Filter
    Your air conditioning filter works harder than any other filter in your home. Whenever your system is on, and air is circulating, the filter is in use. Luckily, most modern air conditioners are designed for quick and easy filter replacement. It extends your system's life, too.
  2. Replace Filters on Other Appliances
    Lots of other appliances can have internal air filters. The vacuum cleaner, clothes dryer, and kitchen vents may all use filters. Check them out on a regular basis, and be sure to change them. The owner's manual to your devices will let you know how frequently to do it.
  3. Clean Out Your Air Ducts
    Air ducts can be a major culprit when it comes to indoor air pollution. They distribute air through your home when your air conditioner or heater is on. In older homes, they can be very narrow. It is important to have them cleaned once a year to ensure they don't get clogged.
  4. Use Cooking Vents
    The kitchen is the epicenter of indoor air pollution in most homes. Gas stoves are significant sources of carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide. When you're cooking, always use your cooking vent or have a window open for better air circulation.
  5. Deep Clean the Carpet
    Pollutants that start in the air can easily migrate down into the carpet. They accumulate over time and cling to fibers. Then, ordinary foot traffic can stir them up all over again. Weekly vacuuming and annual deep cleaning will help keep your carpets genuinely fresh.
  6. Reduce Humidity in the Air
    Too much humidity creates the conditions for mold and mildew. Humidity can also make things harder for those with existing allergies or asthma. Compact, efficient dehumidifiers can be set up throughout the home for consistent lower humidity.
  7. Invigorate Your Air With Plants
    Plants are nature's way of clearing the air! Even small plants can be very powerful when it comes to indoor air quality. Ferns and lilies are just two of the many plants that bloom indoors.

Thinking about a new home this spring? Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties to learn more about Richmond homes.

May
11

9 Tips for Staging for Real Estate Videos and Photos

Staging for Real Estate Photos

Staging your home is an effective way to help buyers visualize the space as their own. However, it's important to remember that what looks good in person might not always translate as well to video and photography. To create a listing that entices buyers, our REALTORS® suggest using these nine staging tips for real estate videos and photos.

  1. Use Natural & Artificial Lighting
    You don't need to be a professional photographer to know that lighting is key for any type of photography or videography. When you're taking shots of your interior, you'll need to maximize lighting in ways that illuminate the space without casting shadows. 

  2. Clean From Top to Bottom
    You need to remember to perform this deep clean before taking listing photographs. All areas of the home should be cleaned including overlooked elements like fan blades, ventilation covers, and window sills. Buyers will be able to zoom into your photographs which means you must make sure every nook and cranny is cleaned.

  3. Don't Forget About the Exterior
    Curb appeal is vital, even for online listings. If you're hiring a cleaning service for your interior, you should also consider enlisting the help of a lawn care company for your landscaping. You may also want to wash or repaint your siding and front door as well.

  4. Remove Clutter
    How can you tell the difference between clutter and décor? Remove and store objects like toys, pet supplies, shoes, books, and paperwork so that they aren't shown in the video or photographs.

  5. Relocated Outdoor Clutter as Well
    While you may be quick to store your lawnmower or gardening supplies, you can't forget about other exterior distractions. Wrap up loose hoses, fill empty flower pots, and make sure all fence gates are closed. If you can, move your vehicles down the street so they won't be shown.

  6. Be Particular With Staging Décor
    While a professional staging company may place certain pieces of décor around your home for the in-person viewings, you should limit the décor your feature for the photos and video. For instance, a fresh bouquet of flowers may be a good choice for the kitchen table, but there's no need to place scented candles around the home for image alone.

  7. Take Care of Pet Peeves
    This may sound silly, but there are a few small details that may drive buyers crazy. Make sure you perform simple tasks like putting down the toilet seat lid, hiding wires, turning off the TV, and preventing your reflection from appearing in surfaces when you take the picture.

  8. Shoot Loose, Edit Tight
    This phrase applies to amateur and professional cameramen alike. Digital cameras allow you to take unlimited photos and videos which you should use to your advantage. Take a lot of each, pick your favorites, then ask others to look over them. You'd be surprised how many small yet important things you may miss.

  9. Go Over Every Photo With a Fine Toothed (Digital) Comb
    Buyers can zoom in on your high-quality photographs and freeze-frame your videos, giving them ample time to critique the image. Look for any areas that may be dirty, cluttered, or misleading and correct them before redoing the photos or video.

Are you ready to sell your house alongside our other Richmond homes for sale? Contact us today to get started with your listing.

May
4

10 Apps to Help You Stay Connected While Social Distancing

Social Distancing Apps

It's a trying time for most of us, when not only are we concerned for our physical health and safety, but also for our economic and emotional health. But at least we have the internet and social media to keep us connected, and happily, there are a number of apps that help you do just that. Here are some of our favorite apps for overcoming social distancing and connecting with friends and family members. Plus, some are also a great way for talking to your real estate agent. 

  1. FaceTime 
    Look for this in any Apple device. You can call and talk to people around the world -- as many as 32 at one time. This app requires your contacts' phone numbers to connect with them, and only works with other Apple devices.

  2. Google Duo
    It's a video conferencing platform that allows you to make video calls to just one person or up to eight. Also, leave video messages. Plus, you can play messages over and over.   

  3. Google Hangouts
    Use Google Hangouts for messaging, or voice calls with one person or more. It's free and can be a smartphone app or Google Chrome Extension. Use it on your smartphone. Enjoy emojis, photos, stickers, and more.

  4. Houseparty
    It's another party app, but one that lets you video chat as if you're in an intimate gathering of friends— no matter the physical distance. A split-screen feature allows up to eight participants to chat face-to-face. It's for both Android and iOS.

  5. Marco Polo
    Not everyone wants to stop what they're doing to jump on a video call. Marco Polo lets users send video messages that are to be responded to at the recipient's convenience. Texts, photo messages, and live video talks are also in the mix. 

  6. Netflix Parties
    An extension of Google Chrome, Netflix Parties lets you and your friends watch movies and TV shows together. If chatting about videos in real-time is your thing, this is for you.

  7. Snapchat
    For the selfie-obsessed (and those who want them to disappear quickly), Snapchat is still a thing. But this app also has a free quick video call function, which lets you check in with far-away pals.

  8. Skype
    Skype has been around for a while, but still enjoys great popularity for video or conference calls -- and it's free. Use it on the computer, as an app, through the web, or as a smartphone or tablet app.

  9. WhatsApp
    Who doesn't know about WhatsApp? Send text messages, make phone calls, send and receive documents, videos, and voice messages (to 256 friends or acquaintances at the same time). Syncs with Android, Apple, and Windows PCs, and has free and secure messaging. 

  10. Zoom 
    Many of us have already used Zoom to get together with friends we're missing. Whether it's a group of five or a thousand, Zoom can bring you closer. They're using it in classrooms and for meetings everywhere. You can even have virtual cocktail parties. Get 40 minutes free, then up to $19.99 a month for more for one-on-one calls.

Looking for a team that will use the latest technology to help you reach your real estate goals? When the time is right for you, our real estate agents are happy to discuss Richmond homes for sale. Contact us today. 

April
27

How to Stay Productive While Working From Home

Working From Home

More people than ever are working from home in the Richmond area and around the country. If you have never worked from home before, it's normal to feel that it can be a challenge to juggle family, work, and other obligations the same as if you were going to an office on a daily basis. Our real estate agents understand the struggle and compiled these seven strategies you can apply to make working from home a bit easier.

  1. Ease into the New Routine 
    Don't feel as if you have to become a work-from-home professional overnight. It takes time to adjust to working from home. You may feel isolated, frustrated, and a bit anxious. That's entirely common, and it's alright to ease yourself through the transition gently. 
  2. Dress for Success
    It may seem silly, and while you can work in your pajamas or sweats, wearing your "work clothes" can help you maintain a professional mindset and protect your morale.
  3. Manage Your Time Wisely
    You should stick to a set schedule that mimics as closely as possible to your regular routine. Sticking to a set schedule during remote work helps keep you on schedule with work-related tasks. While you will need to make some adjustments to take care of children, don't give in to the temptation to knock off early for shopping errands, yard work, etc.
  4. Establish a Workspace
    If you're one of the fortunate few who still have a home office, this is the time to use it. If not, establish a workspace in the bedroom, kitchen, or living room where you can go to work without interruption. Make sure your spouse or partner and children understand that this is a work area and encourage them to respect that. Similarly, establish study areas for your children where they can get schoolwork done.
  5. Learn the Technology You Will Use
    Many companies already have established programs and tools for employees who work from home. However, many are jumping into the deep end without dedicated programs, computers, etc. in place. If you are suddenly using new programs and tools, set aside some time to familiarize yourself with the technology your employer wants you to use to communicate with clients and co-workers.
  6. Create Lists
    Lists are a great way to help keep your day on course. Making a list each morning can help you accomplish your goals for the day. Moreover, it can boost your morale significantly as you check off tasks and can see the progress you are making toward your goals.
  7. Stay Away From Distractions
    The news can be depressing, and distractions, such as neighbors who drop by or family members who call, can take away your focus. Stay off social media, and do your best to maintain a sustained focus on work-related responsibilities.

Looking for a home with the home office space you need? We encourage you to contact us for more information about Richmond homes for sale.

April
20

Your Guide to Starting a Garden in Richmond

Richmond Garden Tips

When potential homeowners are exploring Richmond homes for sale, they're often impressed by the availability of backyard space. Our REALTORS® find that this is a big selling point for most homes. 

Now, more than ever, homeowners are interested in learning how to turn a portion of their backyard into a garden. Being able to create your own food supply is appealing, and gardening is actually much easier than you might think! 

Follow these simple steps, and you'll have a flourishing garden before you know it. 

  1. Decide on Your Gardening Goals
    First, you'll want to decide what type of garden you want to grow. If you're a veggie-lover, you'll want to focus on a garden full of edible plants like lettuce, tomatoes, and peppers. Otherwise, an herb garden might be more your style. 
  1. Choose the Right Location
    There are a few important things to consider when choosing the perfect spot for your garden. First, look for a section of your backyard that gets plenty of sun. Most plants need six to eight hours of sunlight each day to flourish. It's also best if the garden is near your house, a shed, or a fence. This will help protect the plants from wind damage. A flat area is also easier to maintain than a sloped part of your yard. While not necessary, it's better if your garden is in a visible spot that's also nearby your water source. This will make it easier to notice when your plants need some attention and will simplify the watering process. 
  1. Get the Right Tools
    You'll need certain tools to tend your garden. This includes a hoe, a garden shovel, and some hand tools. You may also want to pick up some gardening gloves and knee pads. 
  1. Prepare Your Garden Bed
    Next, remove the grass from the area where you'll put your garden bed and turn the soil. If you're putting in a large garden, you'll want to get your hands on a rototiller. Otherwise, it's more practical to just do it by hand with a hoe and shovel. Add some organic material to make your soil as rich and fertile as possible. 
  1. Select Your Plants
    It's less expensive to start your garden from seeds, but it takes longer. If you're crunched for time, you're better off buying young plants instead. Choose the vegetables or herbs you enjoy eating, but also pay attention to the plant's needs when it comes to sunlight, climate, and soil type. 
  1. Plant Your Garden
    Your seeds or plants should come with instructions that will tell you exactly how to plant and care for them in the initial weeks. Once your plants are in the ground, it's also a good idea to add a few inches of mulch. If you choose an organic mulch, it will add a pleasant smell to your garden and will make your soil more fertile as it decomposes. 
  1. Nurture Your Garden
    Once your plants are established, the hard work is done! Now you just need to set up a regular watering schedule, pull up weeds when they appear, and deal with any bugs that try to eat your plants. 

Then, sit back, relax, and watch your garden grow! Contact us today to learn more and get started. 

April
13

6 Home Improvement Projects You Can Complete This Weekend

Home Improvement Projects

Stuck at home over the weekend with nothing to do? Our REALTORS® know how satisfying simple home improvement projects can be. Refresh your house with these easy DIY projects that can be completed in a day or two. 

  1. Replace a Window Treatment 
    Kitchen window treatments are frequently exposed to grease, food splatters, and other substances that quickly have them looking shabby. Instead of resorting to pricey replacements at retail, make an inexpensive but stylish Roman shade. Use your own choice of fabric, and you'll get a custom-made look at a budget-friendly cost. Consider making two or three sets so you can change them up when you want some variety.

  2. Paint Exterior and Interior Doors
    Doors are primarily considered functional, but their size and placement means they can make a big impact on style. The front door is a major element in curb appeal, which is an important factor with Richmond homes for sale. And after painting interior doors, you'll be surprised at the difference it makes. For best results, remove the door from the hinges and lay it flat. Don't forget to clean and sand doors before you begin. 

  3. Install Open Shelving
    Now's the time to find the solution to storing or displaying all those items you said you'd get around to "someday." Shelving comes in an endless variety of styles and colors to accent any decor. If you're feeling particularly creative, refinish some vintage shelves found at a flea market or resale shop. You could also go the extra mile and install floating shelves that don't have any visible brackets or braces.

  4. Organize the Garage
    Are you running out of room to store your car? Organizing the garage is a classic way to make good use of a weekend. HGTV and other home improvement websites are full of clever ideas to create storage using shelves, hooks, bungee cords, and other easy-to-install items. If you've always wanted to create a workspace in your garage, there's no time like the present. As a bonus, you'll be more motivated to work on other home improvement projects!

  5. Set Up a Home Office
    Technology has freed people from the constraints of a traditional office. Even if you don't normally work from home, everyone can use a dedicated spot for computer time and home administration tasks. Don't have a whole room to spare? All you need is an out-of-the-way corner, walk-in closet, or other areas that can accommodate a small desk and chair. Take advantage of wall space for shelving, baskets, and other organizational tools. Be sure to personalize the spot with a favorite piece of art or some framed photographs.

  6. Add or Renovate a Backsplash
    Backsplashes are one of the best ways to add visual interest to a kitchen or bathroom, and they're surprisingly easy to do yourself. There's a wide range of peel-and-stick options on the market to choose from. With a little research, you can come up with a "green" design to incorporate your style. Check Pinterest, Bob Vila, and other online sources for instructions on creating backsplashes from unconventional materials such as CDs, corks, recycled wood, pegboard, Mason jars, and bottle caps.

After years of experience, we've learned the best tips and tricks for adding value to a home. Contact us for more information.

April
6

7 Ideas for Your Unfinished Basement

Unfinished Basement Ideas

Homeowners often believe they have to spend big bucks to redo a basement, but in reality, you don't have to spend a lot to make your subterranean space an inviting, cozy space. An unfinished basement is a blank canvas with tons of potential, and most improvements will add to the overall value of your home. Our REALTORS® help property owners with Richmond homes for sale spruce up and stage their basements all the time. Here are a few ideas that can turn your basement into a whole new room to enjoy.

  1. Declutter
    Getting rid of stuff you don't need or use is a crucial first step before starting any project. It not only gives you more physical space, but it can also help you feel like you're making a fresh start. Take a look around your basement and decide what needs to stay and what can go. 
  2. Get Rid Of Moisture
    One reason a lot of people don't think their basement is an ideal place to hang out is because it may be musty and damp. Take care of any issues with water leakage or seepage, waterproof your basement, and invest in a dehumidifier to keep it nice and dry.
  3. Seal Your Cement Floor
    Unfinished concrete floors give off a fine dust that can get all over everything and result in more work when it comes time to clean. Sealing a cement floor is a relatively easy project that can be done in a few days. There are quite a few selections of sealers and stains available at home improvement stores. If you're considering an acid stain, make sure older concrete can handle it. If you're thinking of painting the floor, keep in mind that paint scratches and scuffs much more easily than a sealant or stain.
  4. Paint the Walls and Rafters
    Cinder block and poured concrete can be transformed with a simple coat of paint. If you have any exposed brick walls that look decent, leave them as-is for a cool, industrial/rustic look. Painting exposed beams can also make the space look more finished and modern. 
  5. Add Lighting
    Stringing lights in the rafters is a super affordable way to add a warm glow that makes your basement feel nice and cozy. Most basements don't have a ton of electrical outlets, so this type of lighting is ideal if you don't want to mess with installing more outlets or ceiling fixtures. If you decide to upgrade or add electrical outlets, seek the services of professionals who are well-versed in local building and safety codes. It's definitely worth paying an extra few bucks to make sure it's done correctly.
  6. Put Down Some Rugs or Foam Tiles
    Making a concrete floor comfy doesn't take much. Invest in some affordable area rugs that will brighten up your space and keep your feet warm. Foam tiles are great for kids' play areas and workout spaces, too. Don't hesitate to mix and match styles, colors, and décor. 
  7. Create Defined Spaces
    You don't need to use drywall to define different spaces in your basement. Hanging curtains from rafters or putting up folding screens will do the job just fine. If your basement's rather large, consider dividing it into a few areas. Do what makes you and your family happy, whether it's a workshop, home theater area, kids' playroom, or reading nook.

Ready to buy or sell a home in Richmond? Contact us to get started.

March
30

5 Things People Forget to do After They Move

Moving Tips

There are plenty of steps you need to take when moving from home to home. With so many moving parts in motions, it's best to make a list of all the details you need to address before you change your address. Our real estate agents have helped many clients move, and we often see clients forget about the following five details that tend to fall off that list.

  1. Personal Records & Mail
    If you are moving out of town, make sure you have copies of your dental, medical, veterinary, and other important records with you. This will save you time and energy down the road, and it's easy to start compiling these in the weeks and months before your move. Further, don't forget to pick up your mail and make sure that you have filed your change of address form with the post office. Lastly, make sure that you update your auto/life/homeowner's insurance providers, your bank, and other accounts with your new address.
  2. Library Books, Dry Cleaning, etc.
    Make sure you return all of your library books and pick up the dry cleaning before you head out of town. Similarly, collect any items you have loaned out and return any items you have borrowed from friends, family, and neighbors. You will also want to cancel any gym/club memberships that are not portable to your new location.
  3. Move-in Kits
    Having a few move-in kits set aside will reduce the pressure to unpack everything at once or dig through boxes trying to find what you need. Your move-in kits should include the essentials you will need when you get to your new home. One kit should consist of toilet paper and toiletries, cleaning supplies, disposable plates/utensils, and other items that you will need on the first day or two in your new home. One kit should have medical supplies, prescription medications, and other essentials. Think of it as a big First Aid kit. If you have children, give each a backpack where they can put stuffed animals, toys, snacks, water/juice, and other items to help keep them comfortable in the first few days.
  4. Turn Off (and On) the Utilities
    Schedule a utility shut off at your old home for 2-3 days after you leave, and have the utilities in your new home turned on 2-3 days before you plan to arrive. This will ensure you have hot water, heat, and the ever precious Wi-Fi the moment you walk in the door to your new home.
  5. Color Code Boxes/Furniture
    Labeling your boxes and furniture with a simple color-coded sticker will make it easy as pie to unload the truck and get everything in the right room. This will save you time and effort during the move-in process, which will significantly reduce the stress of moving day. Likewise, make sure that you label boxes containing any valuables and delicate items as "fragile." Many people often overlook this simple step that can go a long way towards protecting glass, artwork, and other precious items from breakage. 

Contact us for more information about the many Richmond homes for sale this month. Our team ready to help you find the home that is ideal for your family and lifestyle. 

March
20

COVID-19 Response from Joyner Fine Properties

At Joyner Fine Properties, we care deeply about the health and well-being of our clients, our agents, our employees, and our communities. While COVID-19 has greatly impacted our way of life, we remain open for business at this time and are ready to help you in the home buying or home selling process. We continue to closely monitor guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local health officials for guidance in making informed decisions. Because we are committed to make buying and selling your home the finest experience possible, here are some of the steps we are taking:

Safety Measures

  • Extensively cleaning on a daily basis and sanitizing high impact touch areas with the ability to conduct additional cleaning if necessary.
  • Asking our agents and staff to keep themselves safe by frequently washing their hands and requiring that they stay home if sick.
  • Encouraging employees and agents to work from home utilizing phone, text, video conferencing, and email to conduct business.
  • Eliminating out-of-state business travel for our employees and non-essential visits from outside vendors.

Office Visits

  • At this time, our offices in the Greater Richmond area are open for business and ready to serve our clients within the CDC's recommended 10-person limit in shared spaces.
  • We are happy to make accommodations for your comfort level during this time and can offer many services virtually, such as Buyer Consultations done through video chat and tours of potential houses.
  • To be connected with a REALTOR® who will provide you with the finest service and expertise, email us at relo@joynerfineproperties.com or visit us online at joynerfineproperties.com.

Open Houses

  • We are encouraging agents to show homes by appointment only.
  • If an agent and seller make a decision to hold an open house, it must be in alignment with the 10-person limit in a social space, practicing social distancing.
  • We are encouraging agents to provide alcohol-based hand sanitizers in the entryway and soap and disposable towels in bathrooms and to consider asking open house visitors to disinfect their hands upon entering the home.

We are dedicated to serving the community with the finest real estate experience and will continue to monitor federal, state, and local agencies' guidelines, providing updates as things change. We hope you and your loved ones stay safe and healthy during this season.

March
16

6 Greenhouses in Richmond for Your Garden

Richmond Greenhouses

With spring in the air, homeowners throughout the Richmond area are getting ready for all the promise of a new growing season. If winter has left your landscape looking a little worse for wear, you're not alone. Our real estate agents are here to help. These are some of our favorite local greenhouses and nurseries to get great lawn and garden plants in the Richmond area:

  1. The Great Big Greenhouse and Nursery - 2051 Huguenot Rd, Richmond, VA 23235
    A locally-run nursery that also hosts a weekly farmers market, The Great Big Greenhouse and Nursery is an incredible resource for Richmond area gardeners. They've been serving the Greater Richmond area since 1976, offering an incredible array of plants and accessories. Visit their farmers market on any given Thursday, and be sure to check out these Richmond homes for sale nearby. 

  2. Strange's Florist and Garden Center - 3313 Mechanicsville Turnpike, Richmond, VA 23223
    Voted the best florist and garden center in Central Virginia, Strange's Florist and Garden Center is known as a great source for floral arrangements for any occasion. But they also offer much more, including a full range of locally grown spring annuals, perennials, vegetables, and herbs for your landscape and garden. 

  3. Sneed's Nursery - 8756 W Huguenot Rd, Richmond, VA 23235
    Bringing a passion for local, sustainable gardening to the Richmond area since 1976, Sneed's Nursery is a great place to learn how to make your garden better. Despite being a small, independently-operated nursery, Sneed's provides a huge variety of organic garden and landscape plants, as well as gardening classes and programs. 

  4. The Greenhouse - 2500 Mountain Rd, Glen Allen, VA 23060
    The name is simple, and it says it all. The Greenhouse offers all things plant-related, from garden annuals, perennials, and vegetables to trees, shrubs, mulch, topsoil, and compost. Family owned and operated since 1958, they also have some of the most knowledgeable and friendly staff around. The Greenhouse has one location in Richmond, and another in the nearby community of Glen Allen, just down the road from these Glen Allen homes for sale

  5. Watkins Nurseries - 101 Dry Bridge Rd #7300, Midlothian, VA 23114
    Not many nurseries can claim to have been in business for over 140 years, but Watkins Nurseries isn't just any nursery. Since 1876, they've been producing field-grown trees and shrubs on their 500-acre farm in Midlothian. Just a few miles outside Richmond and minutes from these Midlothian homes for sale, Watkins Nurseries is a wholesale and retail tree nursery, plant grower, and landscape design and installation center that has everything you need to boost your curb appeal. 

  6. Ashwood Gardens and Nursery - 11374 Ashcake Rd, Ashland, VA 23005
    Nestled in the rolling countryside just outside Ashland and Hanover, Ashwood Gardens and Nursery offers one of the area's best selections of trees and shrubs, many of them grown right here in the Richmond area. The selection of plants at Ashwood Gardens changes with the seasons. And with a location right around the corner from these Ashland homes for sale, a fresh garden is never far away. 

Spring will be here before you know it. Contact us today to learn more about life in Richmond, and talk to our team about how we can help you and your family find your dream home!

March
2

Where to Play Basketball in Richmond

Richmond Basketball Courts

Sure, a lot of our real estate agents are glued to the TV on March weekends catching the big games. But the fun and excitement of your full-court action are never far away here in Richmond.

There are plenty of gyms and community sports centers where you can enjoy a game or get your brand of exercise. Basketball, softball, tennis, swimming, and more are popular here.

Because the weather is so mild most of the year, you'll find plenty of indoor and outdoor courts to choose from. Plus, many communities have adult leagues and weekend teams to join. Of course, kids, teens, and twenty-somethings will find plenty of opportunities.

Let's look at five favorites for basketball in and around Richmond:

  1. RockIt Sports – 3001 East Parham Road, Henrico, VA 23228
    RockIt Sports is just outside central Richmond and only a "full-court drive" away from Henrico homes for sale. Established in 2013, RockIt provides quality personalized instruction in a range of athletic pursuits. In addition to its NCAA regulation-size hardwood court, there's also an additional hardwood loft court upstairs, bullpen setups, and a 10"x10" indoor infield.
  2. Big Ben's Home Court – 2206 Westwood Avenue, Richmond, VA 23230
    Big Ben's Home Court is dedicated to providing the authentic basketball experience to young people. It leads a variety of basketball camps aimed at kids and teens. Not only that, but it also offers social events to have fun and build ties within the community. There's a state of the art hardwood court, men's and women's locker rooms, and bleachers. All this is just minutes from Richmond homes for sale.
  3. Woodlake Swim & Racquet Club – 5000 Woodlake Village Parkway, Midlothian, VA 23112
    Woodlake offers fitness and athletic equipment in a beautiful environment a short way outside of Richmond and close to Midlothian homes for sale. The Woodlake Swim & Racquet Club is an ideal option for an energetic adult lifestyle. Besides basketball, you can find dedicated personal trainers, one of the region's best aquatic centers, and the Kid Zone featuring age-appropriate active play outdoors.
  4. Henrico County Open Gym Programs – 6800 Staples Mill Road, Henrico, VA 23228
    Henrico County Open Gym Programs are operated by the Department of Parks & Recreation. Two different county facilities are actively offering open gym time, including Eastern Henrico Recreation Center and Deep Run Recreation Center. Both these modern, stylish facilities are fully stocked with indoor and outdoor b-ball opportunities as well as fun for the whole family.
  5. Shady Grove Family YMCA – 11255 Nuckols Road, Glen Allen, VA 23059
    Shady Grove Family YMCA is one of the most beloved of the 17 YMCA campuses sprinkled throughout the Richmond area. Conveniently located near Glen Allen homes for sale, it's been helping kids and adults build healthy habits since 1995. It currently offers seasonal sports, a weight loss program, pre-school, and much more. There is something for everyone here!

This March or any time of year, you haven't seen all Virginia has to offer until you've seen Richmond. Joyner Fine Properties will introduce you to the perfect home in the heart of this captivating city. To find out more or get started, contact us today.

February
17

Tips for Selling a Home for the First Time

Selling a Home for the First Time

No matter how many homes you've sold, there are always new challenges to face. But if you're selling a home for the first time, those challenges can feel overwhelming. Our REALTORS® understand this, and we're here to help. 

Nothing makes selling your home easier than having an experienced team on your side. If you're feeling intimidated about listing your Richmond home for sale, read on to learn some tips for selling your first home!

  1. Know Where the Stress Comes From
    A big part of eliminating the nervousness that comes with getting your home ready for sale is knowing where that anxiety comes from. Many sellers consider selling their home within the desired time frame and selling their home at the desired price point as the main stressors, along with timing the sale to coincide with the purchase of a new home. These may be the sources of your worry, or it may be something different, but it's always important to identify precisely why you are nervous. 
  2. De-Clutter Your Home
    Moving usually involves getting rid of a lot of old, unwanted stuff that's been cluttering up your old house. The sooner you can do this, the better. Start de-cluttering before you even list your home for sale, so you don't have to scramble to do it later as you're getting ready to move. Once you've eliminated clutter and try to keep your house as clean as possible throughout the whole process, so you don't have to rush to deep-clean before every showing and open house. 
  3. Don't Shy Away From Reality
    It's okay to have high expectations but make sure there's a healthy dose of reality mixed in. You might have to face some hard truths as you get ready to sell, like realizing that your home may need some real investments in cleaning, staging, and repairs, or accepting that your home might be worth a little less than you hoped. The best thing to do is to accept these realities right out of the gate. 
  4. Be Flexible
    By all means, make plans and stick to them as best you can. But remember that selling a house is a moving target, and plans often need to change. A willingness to adapt will help you avoid a lot of the anxiety that comes with selling your home.
  5. Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle
    Selling a house takes up a lot of your mental and emotional bandwidth, so it's easy to let it completely take over your life. But it's important for your own sanity and wellbeing to continue to maintain your routine and healthy habits outside the home selling arena. Stay in shape, eat well, drink lots of water, get enough sleep, and spend time with family and friends. Doing the things that make you happy and keep you healthy will go a long way toward easing the burden. 
  6. Work With an Experienced Team
    For many first-time home sellers, the hardest part is going it alone. One of the best stress-relievers of all is knowing that you have a great team working on your behalf. Your agent should be a trusted partner who has years of experience, a dedication to your specific needs, and more than a few tricks up their sleeve to sell your home. 

Looking for information on how to sell a home for the first time? Contact us to learn more!

February
10

Say it with Chocolate - Richmond Chocolate Shops for Your Valentine's Day

Richmond Chocolate Shops

Give something extra sweet this Valentine's Day with some help from local chocolatiers. Treat your special someone to luscious creations from these fine chocolate shops around Richmond recommended by our REALTORS®.

  1. Gearharts Fine Chocolates - 306 B Libbie Ave., Richmond 23226
    After serving as a cook in the Marine Corps, Tim Gearhart blazed a global trail as a pastry chef before opening Gearharts Fine Chocolates near Richmond homes for sale. The shop's signature line of chocolates includes mouthwatering flavors such as Michigan cherry, tequila lime, and brown butter caramels. Hours are 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Saturday.

  2. Chocolate Cravings - 6929 Lakeside Ave., Richmond 23228
    Encouraged by friends and family who raved about her holiday chocolates, Cathy Churcher became certified as a professional chocolatier on the way to opening Chocolate Cravings. Barks, truffles, brownies, and all other products are made by hand using premium Colombian chocolate along with the finest quality local and seasonal ingredients. Chocolate Cravings is open 10 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. weekdays.

  3. Taylor Made Chocolate - 241 E. Hundred Rd., Chester 23836
    Taylor Made Chocolates was born when a love of sweet treats met a commitment to social responsibility. Steve and Kim Taylor invested Steve's retirement savings in starting their chocolate shop, and proceeds are used to fight human trafficking both locally and abroad. The Taylors also leverage their purchasing power to support fair wages for farmers and laborers involved in growing cocoa beans. Stop by and treat yourself to some delicious artisan chocolate after a day of touring Chester homes for sale. Store hours are 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday.

  4. Chocolates by Kelly - 11800 W. Broad St., Suite 2136, Henrico 23233
    Henrico homes for sale have convenient access to the delectable sweets of Chocolates by Kelly. As the fifth generation in a long line of chocolatiers, Kelly learned from the expertise of her ancestors. If you want to change things up this Valentine's Day, why not sign up you and your sweetheart for one of Kelly's chocolate classes? For only $35, you can each make two dozen truffles customized to your particular tastes. CBK is open 10 a.m. - 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. Sunday.

  5. GODIVA Chocolatier - 11800 W. Broad St., Henrico 23233
    When it comes to world-class chocolates, GODIVA is the gold standard. Founded nearly 100 years ago in Belgium, where excellence in chocolate-making dates back centuries, the company took its name from Lady Godiva in honor of her boldness, generosity, and pioneering spirit. GODIVA's Gold Collection is the best of the best, featuring their top chocolates specially packaged in the shop's iconic gold boxes and ribbon. Experience the magic of GODIVA from 10 a.m. - 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. Sunday.

  6. Kilwins - 3115 W. Cary St., Richmond 23221
    Kilwins has been a respected name in chocolate-making since 1947. The store kitchen has a huge window where visitors can see first-hand the care that goes into their home-made confections such as fudge, caramel apples, and chocolate-dipped pretzels. Visit family-owned Kilwins from 10 a.m. - 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. Sunday.

Are you and your family looking for a long-term relationship with a Richmond home? Contact us today! 

February
3

7 Things You'll Love about Living in Richmond

Living in Richmond

There are so many things to love about calling Richmond home. While it's hard to narrow such a rich and varied city down to just a few attractions, our REALTORS® wanted to share some of our favorite things about life in Richmond. If you're in town looking at Richmond homes for sale, you'll be sure to love these things about the area!

  1. An Amazing Food Scene
    Richmond's food scene has something for everyone. From corner diners to high-end eateries, classic Southern food to global cuisine, craft brewers to small-batch coffee roasters, Richmond has a flavor for every palate. Whether you're in the mood for a great barbecue or tasty vegan treats, you'll find anything you hunger for here. 
  2. Richmond's Wild Side
    Few cities can offer a greater wealth of outdoor recreation than Richmond. More than 100 parks and trails in the metro area offer places to hike, bike and explore, while the James River cuts a path right through the heart of the city, offering everything from bass fishing to whitewater rafting. Our favorite spot of all is Oregon Hill, which offers sweeping views of the entire city. 
  3. Art for Everyone
    Richmond is home to an incredibly lively and diverse art scene, with tons of galleries, studios, art classes, and markets all over town. We're home to one of the best art museums in the country, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, which is open to the public free of charge 365 days a year. The monthly First Friday Art Walk transforms Broad Street into an art lover's paradise. Plus, Richmond's expansive mural project is bringing spectacular street art to areas throughout the city. 
  4. Affordable Cost of Living
    The overall cost of living in Richmond is lower than the national average, making it highly accessible for a city its size. Housing costs, in particular, are well below most similarly-sized American cities, making Richmond a great value as well as a fun and exciting place to call home. 
  5. The Four Seasons
    Richmond is located right in that sweet spot where you get the best climate for all four seasons. You can enjoy the hot summers of the South, the snowy winters of the North, along with abundant spring wildflowers and brilliant fall foliage. No matter what kind of weather you like, chances are Richmond has it.
  6. Small Town in a Big City
    Richmond offers all the amenities and advantages of a major metropolitan area, plus the charm and hospitality of a small town. It's the kind of place where you're likely to run into someone you know while you're out running errands any given day, and where just about anyone you meet is probably already a friend-of-a-friend. 
  7. Past, Present and Future
    You'll find remnants from every chapter in American history in Richmond. But Richmond is also a city that looks to the future, with modern condos and townhouses side-by-side with colonial mansions, and new industries right across the street from businesses that have been in the same family for generations. 

Ready to learn more about Richmond? Contact us to talk to our team about all the reasons Richmond might be the place to find your dream home!

January
27

What You Need to Do Before Listing

Before Listing Your Home

If you're considering selling your home, you should make sure that your property is ready for potential buyers. You want your home to stand out among the other Richmond homes for sale and create a fantastic first impression. Check out a few important tasks before listing.

  • Give Your Entire Home a Thorough Power Cleaning
    One of the first things you should do to prepare your home for listing is give every nook and cranny a thorough cleaning. Your house needs to gleam and be free of dirt, dust, and grime from the ceiling to the floors. If you're short on time or feel overwhelmed by the task at hand, you can hire a cleaning service to tackle the job. 
  • Declutter Your Spaces
    Once your home is sparkling clean, it's time to declutter every room in your house. Less is more when it comes to furniture and decorative items. If you aren't sure what things should remain and which items need to go in storage, call our real estate agents to schedule an appointment for personalized recommendations catered to your home. When you're decluttering, remove overly personal items. Items like bulletin boards, vision boards, and large photo collages should go in storage.
  • Complete Any Overlooked Maintenance
    If your home maintenance has fallen by the wayside, it's time to get all these maintenance tasks up-to-date. Some items that you might need to complete include:
    • Replacing light bulbs
    • Fixing leaky faucets and toilets
    • Repairing cracks or dings in your walls
    • Fixing squeaky doors 
    • Securing loose railing
    • Replacing broken or aging doorknobs, handles, shower curtain rods, and towel rods
  • Research Your Local Real Estate Market
    To assist you with getting a realistic idea of how much you can get for your home, it's essential to research your local real estate market. Look at homes in your neighborhood with similar features, and ideally, a comparable size. An experienced real estate agent is also a valuable resource for helping you set an appropriate asking price for your home.
  • Find a Great Real Estate Agent
    You want to have a fantastic real estate agent on your side when selling your home. Your real estate agent will assist you with an assortment of tasks, like staging and preparing your home for open houses and determining the asking price for your home. When you get an offer, your agent will help you decide if it's reasonable and what your counteroffer should be. Since you'll be working near your real estate agent, it's important to find someone that you trust. 
  • Create a Plan for Your Pets
    When selling your home, your family will need to leave your house during showings and open houses. While it's difficult enough getting your human family members out of the house, it's even trickier whisking away your pets on quick notice. Make sure that you have a crate, leash, or travel kennel on hand to transport your pets during showings. Prepare a bag with food, water, feeding and watering bowls, and a couple of toys. You might want to locate pet-friendly businesses or parks in your area that you can go during your home showings. 

Have more questions about preparing your home for listing? Contact us today to make an appointment. 

January
20

Richmond Wedding Venues for Your 2020 Wedding Planning

Richmond Wedding Venue

Do you dream of a small, intimate gathering of family and close friends or a spectacular event with hundreds of guests? Whatever your vision, see it fulfilled at one of these incredible wedding venues recommended by our real estate agents.

  1. The Westin Richmond - 6631 W. Broad St., Richmond 23230
    The Westin Richmond has the amenities and know-how to stage a wedding to remember. Choose from three ballrooms with various configurations to accommodate up to 300 guests. An experienced wedding planner on staff will make sure your wishes are satisfied down to the smallest detail. While the hotel is close to Richmond homes for sale, guest rooms of all sizes offer convenience for out-of-town or local guests. 

  2. Fairview Farm Events - 1626 Ballsville Rd., Powhatan 23219
    Fairview Farm Events is just minutes from Powhatan homes for sale, but you'll feel as though you're in another magical world. Family-owned for more than 100 years, Fairview Farm's 115 acres feature 20,000-square-feet of facilities, including a climate-controlled two-story barn and 2,400-square-foot pavilion. Sites such as a pond with fountain, wooded areas, gazebos, porches, and decks provide multiple options for photo-friendly ceremony locations. Weekday, weekend, and customized packages are available.

  3. The Estate at Independence Golf Club - 600 Founders Bridge Blvd., Midlothian 23113
    Golf courses are noted for their displays of natural beauty. Grounds at the Estate at Independence Golf Club, not far from Midlothian homes for sale, provide a stunning backdrop for both indoor and outdoor weddings. Hold your ceremony right out on the lawn, under the open-air pavilion, or in one of two buildings with floor-to-ceiling windows for plenty of natural light and lovely views. Also, three on-site facilities serve as overnight accommodations or site for a rehearsal dinner. Enjoy a private oasis before and during the wedding in the fully-appointed bridal suite and groom's rooms.

  4. The Dominion Club - 6000 Dominion Club Dr., Glen Allen 23059
    Based on six consecutive years being voted best wedding venue in Richmond, the Dominion Club was named to the Hall of Fame of popular wedding planning website The Knot. Foremost among 25,000-square-feet of indoor and outdoor event space near Glen Allen homes for sale is the breathtaking Rotunda. This two-level room overlooking the golf course and Dominion Lake features chandelier lighting, grand fireplace, double spiral staircase, and hardwood dance floor. Lower and upper Rotundas may be reserved separately, or the entire room is available to host weddings of up to 300 people.

  5. The Virginia Cliffe Inn - 2900 Mountain Rd., Glen Allen 23060
    Look up "Southern charm" in the dictionary, and you'll find a picture of the Virginia Cliffe Inn. The Georgian-style family home of James and Margaret Clifton now serves as a bed-and-breakfast and delightful wedding venue. Virginia Cliffe's style was inspired by a colonial designer once hired by George Washington. An in-house event coordinator is available for consultation at no additional charge.

  6. Wisteria Farms - 11825 Ivey Mill Rd., Chesterfield 23838
    Expansive fields and meadows around Chesterfield homes for sale make Wisteria Farms a top local wedding venue. The centerpiece of the 190-acre estate and horse farm is a formal Italianate garden behind the mansion with a reflecting pool and serene views of the woods. For indoor weddings, there is a beautiful brick barn.

After the wedding, continue living the dream in your perfect Richmond home. Contact us for experienced guidance with all your real estate needs.

January
6

How to be an Ideal Neighbor in Your Neighborhood

How to be a Good Neighbor

Neighbors can make a big difference in determining how happy you are in your community. Good neighbors can make your neighborhood feel supportive but bad neighbors can be a constant pain point.

One of the first steps toward having a good neighbor is to set the right tone by being a good neighbor yourself. The following tips from our REALTORS® will help you be an ideal neighbor in your neighborhood.

Be friendly.

Make it easy for your neighbors to approach you by smiling and waving at them and saying hello when you get a chance. It's also a nice gesture to make cookies and take them over if you see a new family has moved in. 

As you get to know them a little better, offer to help by babysitting or providing other small favors.

Keep noise at a minimum.

Different neighborhoods have different tolerances for noise. If you're living in a community filled with retirees, they may appreciate more peace and quiet than a neighborhood with lots of young children.

A good rule of thumb in any neighborhood is to limit loud noises to between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. Also, if you're planning a large party, talk to your neighbors and invite them to the party. Even if they don't intend to come, make sure they know they can come to you with any concerns.

Spread the news – not the gossip.

Come up with a way to share useful news, such as a neighborhood newsletter, Facebook group, or posts on nextdoor.com. This will help build a sense of community as neighbors get to know each other.

While the friendly exchange of information is a positive thing, gossip isn't. If someone approaches you with gossip, change the subject by asking them an unrelated question, such as how the garden is doing, or how their kids like their new school.

Keep your surroundings tidy.

Your neighbors have to see the outside of your home and your yard, which can affect their home values. Keep your yard regularly mown and make sure your shrubs, trees, and other landscaping don't grow over into your neighbor's yard.

Keep your yard free of excess clutter. For example, put away your children's toys at the end of the day rather than leaving them scattered all over the yard. While you're at it, keep your outdoor décor to a tasteful minimum.

Handle problems maturely.

If you have a problem with your neighbor, try addressing it directly with him or her before involving anyone else. For example, if their dogs get out or bark too much, talk about a solution instead of calling Animal Control. It's also important to refrain from gossiping with other residents about the issue.

And if your neighbors have an issue with you, listen to their concerns calmly and respectfully and try to reach a mutually agreeable solution.

Respect rules and common areas.

If you live in a condo or neighborhood with a homeowners' association (HOA), abide by its rules regarding streets, the pool, clubhouse, or other common areas. Don't be the neighbor who parks on the street if it's against the rules, leaves a mess, or lets their kids disturb other residents by being too rambunctious.

Contact us if you're interested in seeing Richmond homes for sale and finding a neighborhood to call your own. 

December
2

6 Richmond Events to Celebrate the Holiday Season

Richmond Holiday Events

The holiday season is a special time in Virginia! Richmond is one of the state's most precious gems, and it shines bright this time of year. As you fill out your calendar for the holiday season ahead, be sure to take a look at these fabulous family-friendly events coming to town.

  1. Richmond Christmas Parade - W. Broad Street / 7th Street, Richmond, VA
    One of the best things about buying Richmond homes for sale is that you are just a short drive from downtown. The charming Christmas Parade will roll through downtown on December 7th at 10 am. This is one of the largest Christmas parades in the country, and it is a perfect time to come out and enjoy the holidays with people throughout the state.

  2. Hip Hop Nutcracker - Altria Theater, 6 N Laurel St, Richmond, VA 23220
    This modern mash-up of a holiday favorite is one that's guaranteed to entertain. The Hip Hop Nutcracker blends contemporary dance with the classical sounds of Tchaikovsky. It's fun for all ages and a perfect opportunity to teach your children the true meaning of holiday spirit.

  3. Jingle Bell Run - 211 Westmoreland Ave, Richmond, VA 23226 
    The 2019 Jingle Bell Run/Walk is a wonderful way to get the blood flowing as you wrap up your holiday shopping. This 5k run/walk helps raise awareness for the Arthritis Foundation. You can dress up in your most festive holiday gear as you make your way through town, spreading cheer and hope to friends, family, and co-workers along the way.

  4. Story Time with Santa - Hopewell Community Center, 100 West City Point Rd, Hopewell, VA 23860
    Want to keep the kids busy while you search for Hopewell homes for sale? Spending a night with Santa, Rudolph, and the rest of the North Pole crowd is the way to go. On December 14th from 4 pm to 6 pm, Santa and his crew will be weaving tales and baking cookies at Story Time with Santa

  5. A Very Special Holiday Tea - Hobby Hill Farm Fresh, 2652 Anderson Highway, Powhatan, VA 23139
    A spot of tea always goes well with a holiday celebration. On December 14th from 11 am to 4 pm, you can sit back and enjoy some of the finest teas in the world. The Very Special Holiday Tea is the perfect place to sit back and relax while you discuss the Powhatan homes for sale you are most interested in scheduling for a showing.  

  6. Santa Paws - 3329 Pump Rd, Glen Allen, VA 23060
    Be sure to include Fido and Fifi in your holiday celebrations this year. At Santa Paws, your pets an get their photo taken with the big buy and enjoy plenty of playtime and treats. On December 14th from 10 am to 1 pm, Santa and his crew will be happy to have their photo taken with your pup. Be sure to stop by Glen Allen homes for sale afterward.  

Contact us for more ideas about area events you can enjoy with your family this holiday season. Our REALTORS® are happy to help you discover all that Virginia has to offer.

November
25

7 Signs It's Time to Buy a Home

Time to Buy a Home

For most renters, owning a home is the eventual goal – it's just a matter of when to make the leap. Whether you've always wanted to own a home or you're simply growing tired of renting, there are plenty of signs to tell you that now is the time. Our REALTORS® are here to help you decide, with signs that you may be ready to buy a home.

  1. Do You Daydream of Your Own Home?
    Sometimes, the signs are straightforward. When you find yourself going online frequently to scout out Richmond homes for sale and dreaming, it's time to start thinking about turning that dream into reality. If you can already afford a monthly rent payment and your credit is in good shape, a mortgage may be more within reach than you expect.

  2. Family on the Way
    Whether you're transitioning from single to married life or expecting a child, sometimes life changes are the perfect motivation to move from renting to owning. Maybe you want additional space to accommodate a family or a place to settle down in a great school district. Either way, it may be time to buy.

  3. Rising Rents, No Return on Investment
    Tired of paying rent? For the vast majority of buyers, owning a home means taking on a mortgage payment, but that shouldn't scare you off at all. With rent prices rising and the reality that your rent only pays the landlord's mortgage, the ROI isn't there when renting. A mortgage allows you to build equity in the home over time and eventually own it outright, making it a much better investment.

  4. You're in a Good Place Financially
    For many, renting is just a temporary solution on the path to owning a home. If you've been working to save money, build your credit score, and qualify for a mortgage, then you've already taken some of the most important steps. Financial security is an excellent motivator for buying a house.

  5. Falling in Love with a Community
    While you're certainly part of the neighborhood when you rent in a community, buying a house gives you a personal stake in the future of the neighborhood. If you love the place that you currently call home, then it often makes sense to consider a more permanent arrangement.

  6. Customize to Your Heart's Content
    Renting provides flexibility in some ways, but it's also very limiting in others. If you would love to be able to customize your living space, remodel rooms, and make needed additions, then owning is a better option. You're responsible for maintenance on the home, but you're also free to customize your property without permission from a landlord.

  7. You're Prepared for the Additional Costs of Owning a Home
    Buying a house is about more than saving for a down payment and budgeting for monthly mortgage payments. You'll also want to make sure you have the extra cash for moving, repairs, maintenance, and emergencies. When you're prepared for the cost of both purchasing and maintaining a home, you're ready to say good-bye to renting.

Are you ready to take your next steps to toward the dream of homeownership? Our team is here to help. Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout the Richmond, VA, area.

November
18

5 Home Improvement Projects to Increase Value

Home Improvement Projects

Keeping your home updated is one of the best investments you can make in your future, whether you plan on selling within the next year or ten years from now. A total redo of your home can be overwhelming. But if you make little improvements over time and big ones every couple of years, the return on your investment can be significant. Our REALTORS® often advise clients who are listing their Richmond homes for sale to take a look around, prioritize, and make a few improvements. These enhancements can increase the value and allow you to enjoy it for years to come fully.

  1. Landscaping
    Upgrading landscaping and keeping the outside of your home looking neat helps with curb appeal. Keep the grass cut and the trees, bushes, and hedges trimmed. It's also a good idea to add some eye-catching color. When planting, mixing heights and colors of different flowering plants can create a dramatic effect. Hydrangeas are hearty perennials, easy to maintain, and they grow into large bushes that produce flowers in blue, purple, white, pink, and green. If you're fresh out of ideas, take a look around the neighborhood to see what's out there. Local garden centers often provide free design services, which can help spark your imagination and bring your vision to life.

  2. A Fresh Coat of Paint
    Painting is one of the most affordable ways to update your home inside and out. Choose neutral colors like beige, gray, and "greige" for the inside. White is still one of the most popular exterior colors, but colors like beige, brown, yellow, green, and lighter shades of grey and blue are also favorites. It's always best to do trim and shutters in a contrasting color. To make your home pop, consider painting your front door red or another dramatic color that catches the eye.

  3. Energy-Efficient Windows
    Nobody wants to live in a house with old, drafty windows. These days, low-energy vinyl replacement windows are an affordable option that can add tons of value to your home and help with energy costs. Not only that, they'll increase curb appeal and help make your home look its best.

  4. Kitchen Remodel
    Believe it or not, you don't need to gut your kitchen and spend lots of money to get a good return. Updating cabinets, countertops, and flooring will make your kitchen look fresh and modern. If you don't want to replace cabinets, painting them and updating doors and drawers with new knobs and pulls is an inexpensive way to modernize your kitchen. If you have hardwood floors that are in decent condition, consider refinishing them not only in the kitchen but throughout the entire house.

  5. Bathroom Remodel
    Just like the kitchen, a fresh, updated bathroom can really wow potential buyers, and it doesn't have to break the bank. Updating the toilet, tub, shower, vanity, and sink and decorating your bathroom with new towels and other décor can make a huge difference. You don't have to get deluxe (unless you want to). If you're thinking of major projects, consider widening doorways, installing a walk-in shower and support bars, and lowering light switches. 

Whether you're buying or selling a Richmond home, our experienced real estate professionals can help you maximize the benefits of your investment. Contact us to get started today.

November
4

Staging Your Home for Sale During the Holidays

Holiday Home Staging Tips

The holiday season is filled with fun and festivities. While some people are shopping for presents to put under the tree, others are looking at Richmond homes for sale for a new place to put their tree. To help you get the attention of prospective home buyers during the holiday season, we recommend the following home staging strategies.

  1. Create a Warm Ambiance
    Paint your interior walls with warm, neutral colors. It is also a good idea to install higher wattage light bulbs and swap out thick curtains for curtains that allow natural light to flow into the room. Finally, lightly scented candles are a nice touch many prospective buyers appreciate.
  2. Add a Touch of Accents
    Neutral holiday accents create a cheerful atmosphere for potential buyers. Accents can include a pinecone or potpourri centerpiece on the dining room table, a wreath on the front door, or an arrangement of colorful accent pillows on the couch. You want to avoid decor that is religious or overly "Christmassy." It's best to keep the inflatable Santa, singing Rudolph, and life-sized nativity stored away.
  3. Place Plants and Flowers in Each Room
    Plants freshen up every room and create a warm touch of color. Poinsettias, natural Christmas trees, Holly, and White Chrysanthemums breathe life into chilly autumn mornings and cold winter nights that can warm the heart of a prospective buyer.
  4. Be Ready to Bake
    The smell of freshly baked cookies, cakes, loaves of bread, and treats wafting from the kitchen make a house feel like home. Add in some fresh cider, a dash of hot cocoa, and a sprinkling of specialty coffee, and you create an opportunity for prospective buyers to relax and discuss the property with your real estate agent.
  5. Tidy up the Landscape
    Walkways, driveways, and patios should be kept free of ice and snow. You will want to keep a shovel and bucket of ice salt ready to go until the house sells. It is also important to remove dead foliage and branches from the yard and trim any bushes or trees on the property.
  6. Turn up the Lights
    Many home showings in the fall and winter take place after work. As such, it is a good idea to give your exterior lighting a boost. Installing higher wattage bulbs and adjusting the position of light fixtures can lift the gloom off a darkened, overcast sky.
  7. Take Care of Drafts
    Holiday visitors to your home are going to check for drafts around doors, windows, attics, and crawlspaces. Before prospective buyers arrive, be sure to check for drafts and then apply caulk or weather stripping to seal off any drafts that are blowing through the home.
  8. Declutter the Home
    Clear out the closets, attic, basement, garage, and other areas where clutter accumulates. You can sell your clutter at a garage sale, store it in a storage locker, or give it to Goodwill. Our REALTORS® strongly recommend decluttering because it opens the home up and makes each space feel larger and more welcoming.

Contact us to discuss the staging strategies we use to sell our client's homes during the holidays. We may not have reindeer or a sleigh, but we're happy to help put a "sold" sign under the trees in the front yard.   

October
14

Tips for Selling a Vacant Home

Selling a Vacant Home

There are many beautiful Richmond homes for sale that will certainly make you fall in love at first sight. If you're like some homeowners, you'll opt to purchase your dream home before selling your current house. It's not uncommon to list a vacant property. While your home is listed, ensure you maintain the condition of the home and present potential buyers with an attractive space they can call their own.

Our real estate agents have years of experience helping homeowners sell their empty houses and compiled this list of helpful tips.

  1. Maintain the Exterior
    With so much talk about curb appeal, it should be no surprise that the exterior is one of the most important features of your home. Hire a landscaping company to ensure the greenery looks presentable. Consider adding in attractive potted plants, flower beds, or other décor. Your focus should be kept on making it look inviting and safe. Periodically clean the gutters and make sure no branches or debris is resting on the roof too.

  2. Maintain the Interior
    The inside of your vacant home must also be attractive. You can stage the space professionally through a rental company or even use the latest technology to stage the space digitally. If you decide to keep the home empty, remember to keep it respectable. Try to keep it as clean as possible for your showings. You could hire a cleaning company to give it a light dusting, sweep and mopping to keep it looking and smelling nice.

  3. Secure the Home
    It doesn't hurt to enhance your security now that you're out of the home. Lock-bars can be installed in the pane of sliding windows, and deadbolts can be added to rear or side doors. You can also install a security system — anything from a simple alarm system to video surveillance you can monitor on your phone — for added protection.

  4. Inform Your Neighbors
    One of the best ways to keep your home safe is to tell your neighbors that the property is vacant and listed. They can keep an eye out and let you know if anyone other than a real estate agent visits. They can also grab mail that comes to the home, so it doesn't appear neglected.

  5. Watch Out for Weather
    Rain, wind, and snow can wreak havoc on elements of your home, causing problems that you might not discover. If heavy storms or temperature changes occur, ask your real estate agent or neighbor to inspect the home. You need to confirm that no roof leaks, flooding, frozen pipes, or other damages have occurred.

  6. Don't Worry Too Much
    Yes, there is always an increased potential for problems to arise when a home is vacant. Whether these issues are structural or involve trespassers, you can't lose sleep worrying about what-ifs. Trust that your neighbors and real estate agent will be diligent and keep an eye on your home. You can even inform the local police station and request periodic drive-bys. The likelihood of an unfortunate event occurring is small, and if you've followed these tips, you've decreased this possibility even lower!

For more helpful tips on selling your vacant house or buying Richmond homes for sale, contact us today!

October
7

Family Fall Activities in Richmond You Don't Want to Miss

Richmond Fall Activities

Are you ready to celebrate the return of harvest season in the Richmond area? Whether you're shopping for Richmond homes for sale or already live in the area, there's plenty of local family fun to look forward to this fall. Our real estate agents know fall fun, and we've got the inside scoop on autumn activities for families in the Richmond area.

  • Outdoor Fun at Ashland Berry Farm – 12607 Old Ridge Rd., Beaverdam, VA 23015
    Start your fall family fun with a trip to Ashland Berry Farm in Beaverdam, where participating in the harvest is just the start. You can pick your pumpkins to create the perfect Halloween decorations, or take a harvest tour to see what a local working farm looks like during harvest season. Ashland Berry Farm is also home to Terror on the Farm, one of the area's most famous haunted walks. Later in the fall, you can come here to shop for Christmas trees and other decorations for your home.

  • Autumn Art at All Fired Up – 4668 Commonwealth Center Pkwy., Midlothian, VA 23112
    Looking for a fun, local place to explore the arts and create some art of your own this fall? Head to All Fired Up, where people of all ages can develop artistic skills in a fun, supportive, encouraging setting. There's a class for every interest during the fall at All Fired Up, from children's pottery classes to workshops on creating the perfect hand-print turkey. Stop by for Kids Fun Night on a Friday evening, or slip out for a date night at one of All Fired Up's fun classes for couples. The husband and wife team who operate All Fired Up strive to create an inviting, family-friendly atmosphere during every class.

  • Explore a Corn Maze at Liberty Mills Farm– 9166 Liberty Mills Rd., Somerset, VA 22972
    Outdoor fun is always on the menu during the fall season, and Liberty Mills Farm is the perfect place to stretch your legs in the great outdoors. Located in Somerset, Liberty Mills Farm is home Virginia's largest corn maze, which is sure to be a hit with the whole family. Your maze ticket allows you to explore all four unique maze trails, enjoy a haywagon ride, and visit the autumn activities area. The full maze experience takes about two hours to complete, so plan for a full day of family fun on the farm.

  • Culinary Adventures with River City Food Tours – 3199 W. Cary St., Richmond, VA 23221
    Fall is an especially good season for tasting all that the city has to offer. But where do you start when there are so many options? Plan a trip with River City Food Tours, and sample some of the best dining spots in Richmond's many unique neighborhoods. There's a tour available to suit every taste.

When you live in the Richmond area, there's always another fresh, fun, and unique activity to look forward to on the calendar. Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout the Richmond, VA, area.

September
30

Is a Multigenerational Home Right for You?

Multigenerational Home - Joyner Fine Properties

Multigenerational homes have become a popular option for buyers in recent years. When you're shopping for Richmond homes for sale, it's worth considering whether a multigenerational home is an option for your family. Of course, choosing the right multigenerational home is a huge key to keeping everyone happy. Our real estate agents put together a guide to help you decide whether a multigenerational home is right for your family.

  • Why More Families Are Considering Multigenerational Homes
    Multigenerational homes have exploded in popularity over the last decade, and the trend doesn't appear to be slowing down. Some families live under one roof to take care of older family members, while others do so for cultural reasons. The housing market crash caused many families to move in together. Also, multigenerational homes are popular for families with recent college graduates who are finding their way on the job market.

  • Deciding Who Will Be Living in Your Multigenerational Home
    Choosing a home to accommodate multiple generations under one roof has its challenges, and knowing who will be living in the house is key. Will there be young children in the home or elderly family members? How much space does everyone need? Will residents share a kitchen and other areas, or will there be entirely separate living spaces? Once you know who's moving in, you can find the right match.

  • Popular Types of Multigenerational Homes
    There are tons of options to choose from when you're searching for a multigenerational home, and the right choice will depend on your family. Duplexes are a popular option and provide entirely separate living spaces. You can also pursue a lot with two separate homes, or a home with a guest house. Some families build apartment spaces over garages, or on other parts of the property. Or you can choose a home with shared spaces, but separate master suites.

  • A Place Where Everyone Can Have Their Space
    To keep everyone happy under one roof, make sure every member of the household has the space they need. Meaning entirely separate living spaces, like in a duplex, or shared areas with private spaces to sleep. While spending time together is a perk of living in a multigenerational home, you want to make sure everyone can have privacy.

  • To Buy or To Build
    Having trouble finding a multigenerational home having everything your family needs? You can shop for a piece of land and have a home custom built to your family's needs. This option can be more costly, but it allows you to customize a home just right for your family.

  • How the Right Real Estate Agent Makes It Easier to Find a Multigenerational Home
    Your real estate should be an asset throughout the process, and it helps to have an agent who is familiar with multigenerational homes. The right agent can answer questions, help you identify prime targets, and make sure you're getting a home suited to your family.

Whether you're shopping for a multigenerational home or any other type of dwelling, our team is here to help. Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout the area.

September
9

Retail Roving Around Richmond

Richmond Retail Spots - Joyner Fine Properties

Fall is the perfect time of year to shop til you drop. Whether you're starting your back to school shopping or looking for something for yourself, Richmond has shopping centers and boutiques to help you find what you need. You can find Richmond homes for sale to keep you close to everything Richmond has to offer.

  1. Chesterfield Center, 1150 Midlothian Turnpike, Richmond, VA 23235
    Located in the southwest suburbs of Richmond, Chesterfield is an indoor shopping mall with more than 125 stores to serve your shopping needs. The mall is home to four anchor stores including At Home, Macy's, Sears, and JCPenney's. You can visit stores like Children's Place and Justice if you're looking for things for the kids. Or TJMaxx/Homegoods if you need something for the whole family or your home. Chesterfield Center also has a food court where you can take a break from your shopping adventure.

  2. Willow Lawn, 1601 Willow Lawn Drive, Richmond, VA 23230
    Established in 1956, Willow Lawn can boast that it was the first shopping center in the Richmond area. Though previously enclosed, the entire complex has been rebuilt and is now comprised solely of strip malls. Complete your back to school shopping at one of over 60 stores, and stop to do your banking, grocery shopping, or visit the children's theater!

  3. West Broad Village, 2400 Old Brick Road, Glen Allen, VA 23060
    West Broad Village is located in the affluent Richmond suburb of Glen Allen, VA. It has over 35 shops and specialty restaurants so you can make a day of it with a meal after your shopping is done. The center also hosts more than 20 family-centered events each year, ranging from concerts to holiday events. There's even a kids' club which hosts complimentary monthly activities for the little ones. It's a place the entire family can enjoy.

  4. Short Pump Town Center, 11800 West Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23233
    Short Pump Center is located in the West End area of Henrico County. It has over 140 upscale stores in the two-story open-air facility and is home to anchor stores: Nordstrom, Macy's, Dillard's, and Dick's Sporting Goods. The center features a trackless train known as the Short Pump Express, which takes shoppers to various locations throughout the property. They also host family-friendly events throughout the year, enhancing the experience.

  5. Stony Point Fashion Park, 9200 Stony Point Parkway, Richmond, VA 23235
    Stony Point Fashion Park is an outdoor shopping center located in Richmond, VA, with over 50 upscale stores and restaurants. The shopping center even hosts CineBistro, where you can find a luxury dinner and a movie experience all in one place. The anchor stores for Stony Point include Saks Fifth Avenue and Dillard's. If your family includes man's best friend, the mall is the only one in the area that is dog-friendly with comfort stations available throughout.

The Richmond area is fantastic for both shopping and fun family events.

Our real estate agents are available to assist you with the home buying or selling process, plus showing you what Richmond has to offer.

Schedule an appointment to learn more about the Richmond area and contact us today.

August
27

6 Richmond Area Food Pantries

Richmond Area Food Banks - Joyner Fine Properties

America has traditionally been known as the land of plenty, but sadly, a number of men, women, and children go to bed hungry each night. Join our REALTORS® in observing National Food Bank Day on Friday, September 6 with a donation to one of these Richmond area food pantries. 

  • GoochlandCares - 2999 River Rd. W., Goochland 23063
    GoochlandCares has a goal to make basic human services available to all area residents in need. As part of this mission, the organization operates a food pantry where registered clients shop once a week. In addition to non-perishable items and household goods, GoochlandCares accepts donations of fresh garden produce and backyard eggs. The food pantry opens each weekday at 9 a.m. and you can drop off canned goods in the on-site bins during weekends as you tour Goochland homes for sale.

  • Chesterfield Food Bank - 12211 Iron Bridge Rd., Chester 23831
    Early in their marriage, Travis and Karie Whittle struggled to support themselves and their young child but didn't qualify for Social Services. The couple eventually got on their feet, launched a successful business and used some of their profits to found the Chesterfield Food Bank. Today the food bank serves upwards of half a million meals weekly to more than 2,000 people in the community around Chesterfield homes for sale. Chesterfield Food Bank is open 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. each weekday with extended hours until 7 p.m. Friday. 

  • More Hope Pantry - 13400 Hanover Courthouse Rd., Hanover 23069
    Volunteers at More Hope Pantry were recently recognized with Hanover County's 2019 Spirit of Team Awards. Mo Hope, as it's affectionately known, accepts donations of canned and dry goods along with fresh produce and new and unused toiletries. Hours are 9 a.m. - noon Monday, Thursday and Saturday and 7 p.m. - 9 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. Donations may also be dropped off at Jackson Hewitt Tax Service and several other businesses near Hanover homes for sale.

  • Coalition of Powhatan Churches - 2500 Batterson Rd., Powhatan 23139
    In 1996, the Coalition of Powhatan Churches was formed so members could combine their resources to assist area residents with transportation, medical care, and other necessary services. The organization's food pantry is located close to Powhatan homes for sale, making it convenient to drop off food or monetary donations. Hours are Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. - noon with extended hours on Thursday from 5 p.m. - 7 p.m.

  • LAMB's Basket - 8419 Oakview Ave., Henrico
    At one time, many churches around Henrico homes for sale operated their own small food pantries. As it became difficult for the pantries to keep up with demand, the churches merged facilities into a coalition called LAMB's (Lakeside Area Ministries Board) Basket. Food items are donated by local grocery stores and purchased at a discount from food banks, but LAMB's Basket needs monetary donations for operational and supply costs.

  • Feed More - 1415 Rhoadmiller St., Richmond 23220
    Feed More is not just a food pantry nearby Richmond homes for sale. For more than 50 years, the organization has been serving Central Virginia with food-related programs including Meals on Wheels, Kids Cafe and Hunger Hotline. Donations are accepted weekdays from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m., and bins are available for after-hours drop-offs of non-perishable items.

The Richmond area is a perfect blend of urban amenities and the warm, welcoming attitude of a small town. Whether you're buying or selling a home, contact us at Joyner Fine Properties for professional assistance with your real estate needs.

August
19

Final Walk-through Checklist for Home Buyers

Checklist for Home Buyers - Joyner Fine Properties

You've found your dream home, your offer was accepted, and now you're anxiously awaiting your closing date. 

While it might seem like the hard part is over, there is one more thing you need to take care of before you sign your closing paperwork: your final walk-through. It is your last chance to make sure the home is exactly as it should be before it becomes yours. This is not something you should take lightly. 

During your walk-through, you'll want to make sure that all repairs are complete and that nothing has changed since the last time you saw the home. To help make sure you don't forget anything important, our REALTORS® have created the following final walk-through checklist. Let's get started! 

  1. Gather Up the Essentials
    You're only going to get one shot at your final walkthrough, so make sure you have everything you need before you head out. You'll want to bring your final contract and your inspection summary. Also make sure you have a pen and paper, and your mobile phone and charger (in case you need to take photos or videos). Finally, confirm that your realtor is planning to attend the walk-through with you. 
  2. Check All Repairs
    One of the most important things you'll do during your walkthrough is to confirm that all negotiated repairs have been completed to your satisfaction. Also, make sure the previous owner has left copies warranties for the work and purchase receipts. This will come in handy if you need to follow up after you've purchased the home. 
  3. Make Sure Nothing is Missing
    Your purchase agreement should note exactly what's included in the sale of the home. This includes things like blinds, light fixtures, and appliances. During your walk-through, check to make sure everything that's supposed to be in the home is there.
  4. Check the Outside of the House
    Don't forget about the outside of the home! Walk around and check the condition of the yard, landscaping, and trees. Make sure any landscape lighting, statues, or anything else that should be included hasn't been removed. Check the pool pump and heater. Finally, check the sprinkler system and inspect the fence and gates to ensure there's no damage. 
  5. Inspect Everything One Last Time
    Although you should have already had a full inspection done on your home, things can change from the time the inspection is done and your final walk-through date. It's always a good idea to repeat most of the inspection points including:
    • Make sure all appliances work
    • Make sure all windows open
    • Confirm that no windows or screens are broken or missing
    • Check bathrooms for standing water, water damage, or mold
    • Turn on all faucets and showers
    • Check that the hot water works
    • Check the kitchen for standing water or water damage
    • Test the heating and air conditioning system
    • Turn lights on and off and confirm that all outlets work
    • Check doorbells, security system, and garage door 
    • Check door locks and hinges
    • Look for signs of pests or rodents

Hopefully, everything will look great, and you can look forward to your closing date. If you notice any issues, however, you'll want to discuss them with your REALTOR® who will help you decide on the best course of action. In most cases, any problems can easily be fixed and shouldn't impact your closing date. 

If you haven't found your ideal home yet, now is the perfect time to get started. There are plenty of great properties available in Richmond, and we would love to help you find the one that's right for you. Contact us to get started. 

July
31

Joyner Fine Properties + Virginia Credit Union

Joyner Fine Properties + Virginia Credit Union

Two locally owned and operated firms are joining forces to better serve home buyers and sellers in the Richmond area. This partnership gives Joyner Fine Properties additional resources to ensure it remains the market leader in the face of growing competition which includes national real estate companies and franchises. Joyner Fine properties will retain its distinct brand and culture and continue to operate independently.

Joyner Fine Properties and Virginia Credit Union will each continue to operate normally - it's business as usual. And our business is to serve the real estate needs of Richmonders with the highest quality and excellence. For our current clients and customers, there is no interruption and our processes and marketing remains the same.

For more information about Joyner Fine Properties, please see our "About" page: https://www.joynerfineproperties.com/about
For more information about Virginia Credit Union, please visit: https://www.vacu.org/

 

July
22

6 Places Around Richmond for a Girlfriends' Getaway

Richmond Spots for a Girlfriends Getaway

Your best friends are always there to celebrate the highs and cheer you up during the lows. August 1 is National Girlfriends Day, so show your gal pals how much you love and appreciate them with an outing to one of these great places around Richmond suggested by our REALTORS®.

  1. Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa - 7204 Hancock Village Dr., Chesterfield, VA 23832
    Take time out from your many responsibilities to enjoy some pampering with your BFFs at Hand & Stone. Their comprehensive menu of services includes a full range of massage styles as well as facials, aromatherapy, exfoliation, hair removal, and hot towel treatments. New customers receive special pricing on a one-hour massage or facial. Reservations are recommended, but they also accept walk-ins. Hand & Stone is open seven days a week, so it's a perfect treat after a day of viewing Chesterfield homes for sale.

  2. Beacon Theatre - 401 N. Main St., Hopewell, VA 23860
    Beacon Theatre, centrally located to Hopewell homes for sale. began its life nearly 100 years ago hosting silent movies and vaudeville shows. Today the fully restored Beacon is an intimate venue for both contemporary and classic performers such as the Oak Ridge Boys and Blue Oyster Cult, along with tribute acts honoring Motown, Elton John, and other favorites. 

  3. Virginia Rep at Hanover Tavern - 13181 Hanover Courthouse Rd., Hanover, VA 23069
    Instead of dinner and a movie at a generic multiplex, why not have dinner and live theater at a charming tavern? It's only minutes from Hanover homes for sale to historic Hanover Tavern, a unique setting for performances staged by Virginia Repertory Theatre. The showtime menu includes Southern favorites such as fried green tomatoes, shrimp and grits, and pork cassoulet. Can't make the show? Lunch and dinner are served Wednesday through Sunday.

  4. Stony Point Fashion Park - 9200 Stony Point Pkwy., Richmond, VA 23235
    Is "shop 'til you drop" your personal mission statement? You and your BFFs will be in seventh heaven at Stony Point Fashion Park, conveniently located near Richmond homes for sale. Browse the latest in fashion at upscale stores such as Anthropologie, Lucky Brand and Talbots, then relax over a late lunch at Fleming's, La Hacienda or P.F. Chang's. Check out the classes, demonstrations, and workshops at Live 360°. Hours are 10 a.m. - 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon - 6 p.m. Sunday.

  5. Old Towne Studio 7 - 230 E. Bank St., Petersburg, VA 23803
    Everyone's an artist at Old Towne Studio 7, not far from Petersburg homes for sale. Owner Denise Tipton expands the popular "paint and sip" concept to "create and sip," in which you and your friends may find yourself pouring candles or making a macrame plant hanger as well as painting. It's ladies only from 7 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. on Wine Down Wednesdays. Fees are just $20 and bring your own beverages and snacks. 

  6. County Seat Restaurant - 3883 Old Buckingham Rd., Powhatan, VA 23139
    Weekend brunch is a traditional way to share time with good friends. County Seat Restaurant refers to itself as a "Gathering Place" close to Powhatan homes for sale, so they specialize in creating an ambiance encouraging warm and leisurely get-togethers. Weekend brunch buffets include biscuits and gravy, breakfast meats and an assortment of fresh baked goods with the addition of a waffle and omelet station on Sunday. Hours are 8 a.m. - 11 a.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. - 11 a.m. Sunday. There's also a Sunday lunch buffet from noon - 3 p.m. for late risers. 

Richmond is a great area to put down roots and nurture close relationships. If you're buying or selling a home around Richmond, contact us for personalized service.

July
16

5 Go-to Spots for Camping Around Richmond

Richmond Spots for Camping
When potential buyers are searching for homes for sale in our area, they often ask our REALTORS® where are the best places for outdoor adventures. Camping ranks high on many a person's lists of favorite outside fun. We're here with five favorite camping spots around Richmond for weekend fun or plan an extended stay.

  1. Pocahontas State Park - 10301 State Park Rd., Chesterfield, VA 23832
    At Pocahontas State Park, just minutes away from Chesterfield homes for sale, the fun isn't confined to dry land. With four pools, two water slides, a fountain wet deck and a 225-acre lake for boating and fishing, the park is an aquatic lover's paradise. Pocahontas Premieres is a family-friendly concert series hosted at the park's 2,000-seat amphitheater. 

  2. Powhatan State Park - 4616 Powhatan State Park Rd., Powhatan, VA 23139
    If you're looking for a true back-to-nature experience, Powhatan State Park is the place for you. In addition to conventional campgrounds, the park has eight primitive sites with no water or electricity, accessible only by canoe or foot. Boating and fishing are available along the 2.5-mile stretch of the James River, which flows near Powhatan homes for sale.

  3. Cozy Acres Campground - 2177 Ridge Rd., Powhatan, VA 23139
    The children and grandchildren of founders Larry and Jean Daniel literally grew up on Cozy Acres Campground, and these days they're hosting the third generation of guests as well. Days are filled with family fun such as the large swimming pool and fenced kiddie pool, catfish pond and two catch-and-release ponds, game room, horseshoes, beach volleyball and even fire engine rides. The Daniels continue to foster a community atmosphere with planned activities for all guests to enjoy. 

  4. Picture Lake Campground - 7818 Boyden Plank Rd., Petersburg, VA 23803
    Picture Lake Campground is family owned and operated, and they want visitors to feel like part of their family as well. Amenities include a large swimming pool, kids' playground and volleyball net, kayak rental, fishing, and free WiFi. Enjoy side trips to Petersburg National Battlefield and Pamplin Historical Park, all conveniently located close to Petersburg homes for sale.

  5. Richmond North / Kings Dominion KOA - 10061 Kings Dominion Rd., Doswell, VA 23407
    Whether you're a hard-core camper or glamping is more your style, you'll find the perfect accommodations at Richmond North/Kings Dominion KOA, less than 30 minutes from Richmond homes for sale. Tent sites are available with or without hookups, and there are RV pull-ins for pop-ups to big rigs. Cabins are equipped with full bathrooms, central heat and air, WiFi and flat-screen TVs with satellite programming. The park provides free shuttle service to Kings Dominion amusement park, or you can lounge around the on-site swimming pool.

Whether you prefer outdoor life or nightlife, the Richmond area offers the best of both worlds. Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties for expert assistance buying or selling a home.

July
8

Don't Throw It Away, Give It Way

6 Donation Centers in the RVA

Where to Donate Your Stuff Before Moving

Donating unused and unwanted items pays benefits beyond a clean, orderly home. Contributions help support deserving organizations and keep trash out of landfills. In honor of National Give Something Away Day on July 15, our REALTORS® take a look at six donation centers in the Richmond area to declutter your home.

  1. Regenesis Thrift Store - 24 Pickwick Ave., Colonial Heights 23835
    The namesake charity of Regenesis Thrift Store runs programs assisting people who are low-income or homeless as well as individuals battling substance abuse or recently released from prison. Their shop accepts donations of just about any item that's in reasonably good condition, including vehicles. Free pick-up is available for larger items. Regenesis is open 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. every day but Sunday, so you can drop off donations while touring Colonial Heights homes for sale.
  2. Clothes Closet - 2999 River Rd. W., Goochland 23063
    Are closets and dressers getting too full? Clothes Closet, located close to Goochland homes for sale, accepts donations of new and gently used men's, women's and children's clothing along with books, toys, and household items. GoochlandCares, a local free clinic and family services organization, provides clients and each member of their families with a $25 voucher each month to use at the Clothes Closet, but the shop is also open to the public. Donations are accepted Monday through Saturday starting at 9 a.m. and there are drop-off bins for after hours.
  3. Hope Thrift - 11260 Patterson Ave., Henrico 23238
    If you're moving into or out of one of the great Henrico homes for sale, lighten the load and donate unwanted but still good furniture, clothing, and housewares to Hope Thrift. Proceeds from the store help support local and global charities through Hope Church's outreach programs. Store hours are 10 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday
  4. Crater Community Hospice Thrift Store - 3916 S. Crater Rd., Petersburg, 23805
    In 2017 and 2018, Crater Community Hospice Thrift Store was recognized as "Best of the Best" near Petersburg homes for sale. The shop accepts donations of clothing, books, sporting goods, and household items from smoke-free and chemical-free homes. Daily specials offer 50 percent off specific categories and proceeds of all sales go toward hospice patient care. CCHTS is open 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. every day but Sunday.
  5. Goodwill Stavemill Crossing Retail Store - 1885 Stavemill Crossing Lane, Powhatan 23139
    For nearly a century, Goodwill has been serving the Richmond community by helping those in need to become self-sufficient through employment. Their Stavemill Crossing Retail Store is one of several outlets funding Goodwill's mission through sales of donated household items, from linens and dinnerware to computers and electronics. The Stavemill Crossing store is open seven days a week, so stop in on a break from viewing Powhatan homes for sale
  6. ChildSavers - 200 N. 22nd St., Richmond 23223
    Is your home full of toys, games, and books your kids have outgrown or lost interest in? Give them a second home at ChildSavers, an organization offering mental health and developmental services to children, particularly those who have suffered from trauma. ChildSavers is in need of art supplies, costumes, toys and games, pillows and small chairs for use in their programs. Contact the ChildSavers office, conveniently located not far from Richmond homes for sale, for information about dropping off your donation. 

Our experienced REALTORS® can offer a wealth of information and tips about living in the Richmond area. Contact us for professional assistance in buying or selling your home.

July
1

5 Ways to Keep Your Kids Busy This Summer

Richmond Family Fun

Celebrate National Anti-Boredom Month

Now that summer is here, are you dreading the first time you hear those inevitable words, "I'm bored?" In honor of National Anti-Boredom Month in July, our REALTORS® share this list of fun kids' activities in the Richmond area.

  1. Three Lakes Park & Nature Center - 400 Sausiluta Dr., Henrico 23227
    With a wide variety of interactive exhibits featuring air, land, and water, Three Lakes Park & Nature Center is an ideal place for outdoor summer fun near Henrico homes for sale. The impressive 6,500-square-foot Nature Center has displays of plant and animal life native to the area along with a 50,000-gallon aquarium that lets you get an up-close look at the marine world. Pack a picnic lunch and fishing poles and make a day of it. Hours through August are 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. weekdays except Monday and noon - 4:30 p.m. weekends. General admission is free for all visitors.
  2. Summer Movie Express - Regal Southpark Mall Theaters, 300 Southpark Circle, Colonial Heights 23834
    Spend a morning with Shrek, Batman, Kung Fu Panda and other animated favorites at Regal Cinema's Summer Movie Express. A pair of family-friendly movies screen each Tuesday and Wednesday through September 4 and tickets are only $1 per person for all ages. Head to the mall afterward for lunch at Chick-fil-A or Firehouse Subs before an afternoon of viewing Colonial Heights homes for sale.
  3. Pamplin Historical Park - 6125 Boydton Plank Rd., Petersburg 23803
    Pamplin Historical Park is only minutes from Petersburg homes for sale, but a visit transports you back in time more than 150 years to the Civil War era. The 424-acre campus on the site of a Civil War battleground includes so many engaging activities that your kids won't even realize they're learning some history. Tour a restored plantation, watch accurate portrayals of military life and walk the same trails used by Confederate troops. Don't miss the award-winning National Museum of the Civil War Soldier and its interactive exhibits. Hours are 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. daily through November. Admission is $15 for adults and $12 for kids from 6-12. 
  4. The Monster at Fighting Creek - 2270 Mann Rd., Powhatan 23139
    Add some challenge to the popular activity of Frisbee-tossing with a game or two at the Monster at Fighting Creek, Virginia's longest disc golf course. The 18-hole course runs two miles across varied terrain, with half of the holes measuring more than 400 feet. Fighting Creek Park, just down the road from Powhatan homes for sale, is also home to several athletic fields, walking trails, picnic sites and a large playground along with Powhatan Public Library. Park hours are 7 a.m. - 9 p.m. daily.
  5. Maymont - 2201 Shields Lake Dr., Richmond 23220
    Magnificent Maymont, one of the most beloved attractions close to Richmond homes for sale, is so rich in activities it can easily provide several summer days' worth of entertainment. Animal lovers will go straight for the Nature Center or Maymont Farm, while others will enjoy a stroll through one of the many specialty gardens. The stunning 100-acre Victorian country estate that was once the home of local financier James Dooley offers a glimpse into life during the Gilded Age of the late 1880s. Maymont is open seven days a week except for the Nature Center and Mansion, which are closed Monday. Entrance to the grounds and gardens is free, while other exhibits charge a nominal fee of no more than $5.

Are you and your family ready to put down roots in the Richmond area? Contact us for help finding the home that's right for all of you.

June
17

Best Spots for a Selfie Around Richmond

Richmond Sites for a Photo

Get your favorite filter ready — National Selfie Day is June 21st! Stroll nearly anywhere around Richmond, and you won't be able to resist snapping a photo of the diverse beauty found within our city. Our REALTORS® take a look at some of Richmond's favorite backdrops perfect spots for your next selfie session!

  1. Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden – 1800 Lakeside Ave., Richmond, VA 23228
    Any green space is sure to spruce up your photo, but the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden offers perhaps one of the most diverse natural backdrops in the RVA. Over 50 acres of gardens transform into your own runway as you fill up your camera roll with gorgeous pics. There are plenty of places for you to find the perfect light, but we suggest visiting either the Central Garden or Asian Valley first. The Central Garden features a terrace with a fountain that creates nice depth while Asian Valley offers the opportunity to get a snapshot that whispers sweet serenity.   

  2. Monument Avenue – 2501 Monument Ave., Richmond, VA 23220
    Monument Avenue is full of photo-worthy spots, and with proximity to Richmond homes for sale, it's an easily walkable route that will take you by some iconic city sites. We suggest starting at The Branch Museum of Architecture and Design. This fantastic façade is a great backdrop for your selfie and is within a few blocks from our city's historical monuments. Walk the Avenue and take selfies with historical figures like Stonewall Jackson or Arthur Ashe.

  3. Powhatan State Park – 4616 Powhatan State Park Rd., Powhatan, VA 23139
    Over 1500-acres are ready for your lens. Powhatan State Park has too many photo-ops to count. From the multi-use trails through the hardwood forest and wildlife observation area to the unspoiled views of the James River, you're going to have a tough time picking your favorite selfie. Looking for an awesome photo? Instead of letting the James fade into the background, snap a picture of its good side by rowing out into the water on a canoe. Riverside pics are great, but nothing beats a selfie on the water. Access this park at the entrance just across the street from Powhatan homes for sale.

  4. Petersburg National Battlefield – City Point Unit – Cedar Lane, Hopewell, VA 23860
    If you want a unique riverfront photo, head to where the James and Appomattox meet at Petersburg National Battlefield. Around the corner from Hopewell homes for sale, this historic area offers superb views of the water, big blue skies, and vast green fields. Snap a photo in front of the cabin where Ulysses Grant lived or let a flock of geese photo-bomb your selfie as you snap a few pics of the grounds.

  5. Great Shiplock Park – 2803 Dock St., Richmond, VA 23223
    Looking for a mix of city and nature for your selfie? Head down to Great Shiplock Park. It's along the James River and at the head of the Virginia Capital Trail so you'll be able to snap a few industrial and nature pics as you meander around this small park. It's also a great spot for fishing — a smiling selfie with your fresh catch is sure to get a lot of likes!

  6. Triple Crossing – East Byrd St., Richmond, VA 23219
    You'll probably want to hit up Canal Walk for National Selfie Day — we can't resist the street art either — but we encourage you to also make your way to the opposite side of the canal and snap some photos at Triple Crossing. You'll get great views of the city and cool shots as the trains pass you by. Best of all, the brewery is right beside the canal so you can take one final selfie with a delicious brew in hand.

Where is your favorite place to take a selfie in Richmond? Contact us and let us know or tag us in your best photo on National Selfie Day!

May
30

How to know if you're ready to buy a house

Buying a house should never be entered into lightly, and often many potential buyers may not realize just how much work it actually takes or the process involved. Doing as much research as possible can help determine exactly what is needed and required, to put a buyer in the best possible position to make a purchase.

Here are ten (10) great ways to help you identify the point at which making a home purchase becomes feasible for you:

1) Little to no credit card debt

When you're trying to get a mortgage, perhaps the most important aspect of doing so is getting your credit card debt reduced as close to zero as possible, according to Money Under 30. That's true for two reasons. First, the size of your credit card balances relative to your limits makes up a significant portion of your credit score. Second, lenders look at debt-to-income ratio. As long as you're carrying relatively small balances from one month to the next (or ideally, not carrying a balance at all), you'll be in good shape.

2) All other loans paid off

One of the biggest hurdles for the millennial generation when it comes to being financially capable of buying a home is student loans. It may not be wise to try to buy until your loan balances under control. That doesn't mean they have to be paid off in full, but they certainly need to be somewhat small relative to your income.

3) Tens of thousands of dollars in savings

Ready to buy?If you're trying to buy a home in today's market, you'll almost certainly need to make a sizable down payment. While it's possible to get mortgages with down payment requirements as low as 3 percent, the added long-term expense could end up costing you significantly over the life of the loan. Making as large a down payment as possible is going to keep your borrowing costs down.

4) A rainy day fund

In addition to the money that will go toward your down payment, it's vital to have some additional money saved just in case something goes wrong with the home, according to Mint. As a general rule, having about $1 per square foot - or 1 percent of the purchase price - in the bank will help cover some basic expenses you're likely to encounter after your home purchase.

5) A long-term plan

Whether you're buying a home for a whole family or as a single person, you need to know what your situation is going to look like two, five, 10 or even 20 years down the road. That will inform a lot of decisions about the kinds of homes you're looking to purchase - i.e. not buying a small one that you'll have to move out of in a few years when you have kids - and how much work you'll have to put in to make sure your finances are in good enough shape to do so.

6) Reliable income

Lenders also want to make sure you're going to be able to keep up with your mortgage payments in the long term, so a steady job is a must, according to Credit Sesame. While no one can predict their employers' future with 100 percent accuracy, it might not be a good idea to go house hunting at a time of turmoil. As long as you're fairly confident in your position, shopping should be no problem.

7) A comfortable cushion

One issue some homeowners encounter after buying a home is they've pushed themselves so far financially trying to get ready for the real estate sales process that they come out the other side in rough financial shape. Being "house poor" means people own a house but otherwise struggle financially because of the cost of that property. You'll need to make sure you're not buying too much house or else risk running into other financial problems even if you can technically afford the mortgage and other costs.

8) An understanding of what constitutes affordability

Along similar lines, it's vital to not only factor in the cost of the mortgage, taxes and so on themselves, but also other expenses. This may include higher electric and heating bills that come with living in a bigger space, more costly insurance coverage (especially if your new home is in an area prone to flooding) and so on. Sitting down and doing the math around the true cost of homeownership will help you avoid being house poor or running into expenses you might not have realized will crop up

9) A list of must-haves and nice-to-haves

When people actually start shopping for homes, it can be easy to fall in love with certain properties, according to Forbes. However, while it would be nice to have a state-of-the-art kitchen with stainless steel appliances, it's probably going to be expensive and not necessary to your happiness in the home. Having a list of things that you will absolutely need out of your new property - big backyard for the kids, finished basement for a home office, etc. - will inform your choices and help you get a better idea of what you can actually afford.

10) A talented and experienced agent

The key role of real estate professionals in every portion of the process cannot be overstated. They will be able to help first-time buyers as well as those who have previously been through the process get as prepared as possible so they can maximize their understanding and the value they get out of buying a home. Experienced agents have likely seen it all and can help shepherd any client through a sale - as either buyers or sellers - with ease.

 

Buying a home is usually going to be the biggest purchase anyone makes in their entire lives, so it's important to put in a lot of legwork - over a period of months or more - to ensure things go as smoothly as possible at each step of the shopping process. That, in turn, will help you feel more confident in your ability to make a purchase with confidence that you've done everything right. 

 

Brought to you by HMS Home Warranty.  HMS is an industry leader with over 30 years of creating success for clients and providing peace of mind for customers.  To learn more click

www.hmsnational.com

May
28

6 Spots for Your Favorite Doughnut in the RVA

 

Richmond Area Doughnut Shops
Get ready for the sweetest Friday ever — National Doughnut Day is June 7! Our REALTORS® are sprinkled with joy at the thought of chomping down on a box of our area's best doughnuts. These six shops throughout the RVA are the perfect places to stop on National Doughnut Day.

  1. Duck Donuts – 1601 Willow Lawn Dr., Richmond, VA 23230
    See what everyone is quacking about with a trip to the famous Duck Donuts. Offering a duckzillion flavors in their unique bakery, Duck Donuts is the fastest-growing donut shop in the country for a good reason! These made to order treats include creative concoctions like the Key Lime Icing with Graham Cracker Crumbles, Strawberry Icing with Rainbow Sprinkles & Hot Fudge Drizzle and Maple Icing with Chopped Bacon. With so many fun combinations to try, you'll wish every day was National Doughnut Day!  

  2. Sugar Shack – 1501 N. Parham Rd., Richmond, VA 23229
    Sugar Shack is a Virginia favorite with over a dozen stores throughout the state, including one conveniently located near Henrico homes for sale. Grab a cup of their fresh brewed coffee and peruse their offering of round wonders which includes classics like glazed and cinnamon sugar. Sweeten up your morning with a red velvet cake donut or get your Girl Scout fix with a Tastes Like A Samoa. Feeling adventurous? Try the pineapple serrano, blackberry lavender or fresh peach ginger!

  3. Cakes and Moore Bakery – 2112 Boulevard, Colonial Heights, VA 23834
    Life is what you bake it, so make it great with a stop at Cakes and Moore Bakery. Just around the corner from Colonial Heights homes for sale, they have several fresh baked donuts to choose from. Pick up a dozen of their ready-made flavors or call ahead and make National Doughnut Day personalized by requesting a specialty order!

  4. Sweet Shop Donuts Café – 1800 A S. Creek One, Powhatan, VA 23139
    Do National Doughnut Day your way with a stop at the Sweet Shop over by Powhatan homes for sale. Sweet Shop serves donuts all day along with their breakfast, lunch and dinner plates so you can treat yourself to a fresh donut any time of the day! From classic donuts to their unique creations, you can choose a few to take with you or dine in with a fresh Yama drip coffee. They even have donut holes available for pre-order that are certain to encourage your coworkers to celebrate National Doughnut Day with you!

  5. Country Style Donuts – 4300 Williamsburg Rd., Richmond, VA 23231
    The RVA has many great doughnut shops, but there's only one place you'll find the deliciously addictive donuts that Richmond's mouths have been craving since 1968. County Style Donuts, not far from Henrico homes for sale, is worthy of a stop even if it's not National Doughnut Day. See why even your grandparents rave that these are the best doughnuts in the RVA.

  6. Hot Diggity Donuts – 1213 Hull St., Richmond, VA 23224
    What could be better than a day full of donuts? Donuts and drinks! Hot Diggity Donuts is your go-to destination for indulgence. Right around the corner from walkable Richmond homes for sale, this modern bakery specializes in craft donuts and classic cocktails. Treat yourself to a signature donut or donut sandwich and wash it down with a cocktail. Remember, National Doughnut Day is an all-day event so a nightcap at Hot Diggity Donuts might be the ideal way to celebrate.

Some spell it 'donuts', others say 'doughnuts' — we call them delicious! Does your sweet tooth crave more sugary goodness? Contact us today and we'll be happy to show you some of the best homes for sale in our area.

May
20

Five Things to Do This Memorial Day Weekend

 

Richmond Memorial Day
Memorial Day is May 27.  Our REALTORS® know that Memorial Day Weekend is a busy time for our residents. With parades, festivals, ceremonies and other events happening around town, you've got quite the options to fill your weekend with fun. Here is our pick of five great activities you and your family can attend this Memorial Day weekend.

  1. America's First College & Memorial Day Celebration – 251 Henricus Park Rd., Chester, VA 23836
    Henricus Historical Park is celebrating Memorial Day in a very cool way on May 25th. Just around the corner from Chesterfield homes for sale, come out for a celebration where the first American formal school was formed. Interpreters will host lectures and living history presentations for visitors. They'll even fire muskets and cannons to salute the men and women of the armed forces that have sacrificed their lives throughout American history.
     
  2. The Memorial Military Murals by Charles Hoffbauer – 428 N. Boulevard, Richmond, VA 23220
    The Virginia Historical Society, in the Museum District surrounded by Richmond homes for sale, invites residents and visitors view The Memorial Military Murals by artist Charles Hoffbauer. Admission is free to see these paintings depicting Confederate soldiers during the Civil War. Memorial Day originated shortly after the Civil War as a way to honor those who fought, making this exhibit an appropriate way for your family to honor the fallen on this annual holiday.

  3. Gallmeyer Farms Memorial Day Celebration – 3622 Darbytown Ct., Richmond, VA 23231
    Take a quick drive just north of Hopewell homes for sale and spend the day on the farm! On May 25th, come out to Gallmeyer Farms for hayrides and activities for the whole family. Kids will love picking strawberries and playing on the farm as live music fills the air.
     
  4. 25th Pamplin Historical Park Anniversary/Memorial Day Commemoration – 6125 Boydton Plank Rd., Petersburg, VA 23803
    Pamplin Historical Park is one of the many gems located around Petersburg homes for sale. Join them during Memorial Day Weekend as they celebrate their 25th anniversary. They'll debut a new exhibit and host plenty of activities throughout the weekend. Visit on Memorial Day for special events including a Breakthrough Battlefield Tour, a showing of War So Terrible, an artillery salute, the presentation of colors and a ceremony honoring our fallen troops.

  5. Sandston Memorial Day Parade 2019 – 11 JB Finley St., Henrico, VA 23250
    Extend your Memorial Day weekend an extra day and join one last celebration. The Sandston Memorial Day Parade takes place on May 27th. Watch as a lively parade travels through town passed Henrico homes for sale. A ceremony recognizing veterans will be held before the parade at Seven Pines National Cemetery. After the parade, the celebration continues with music, activities for kids and plenty of vendor booths full of food and more fun!

We wish a Happy Memorial Day to all of our Richmond residents whose family members have served in the armed forces. Contact us when you're ready to make Richmond your home. Our REALTORS® are ready to help start your search for local homes for sale.

May
24

5 great ways to get your home ready for summer

With Memorial Day almost here– giving way to the fast approaching summer - homeowners are encouraged to make preparations were necessary to ensure their homes are ready for the hot weather.

Here are five (5) tips to make sure your home and family will be in the best shape possible:

1) A/C Check and Maintenance

Whether your home has a central air conditioning system or window units you'll install when the weather gets a little hotter, you have to make sure they're in good shape, according to Insurance Hub. After all, if they're going to get dozens of hours of use every week for the next several months, having them in good working condition is a must not just so they work properly, but also so they're safe.

You'll also need to check and potentially replace the air filters on all units.

2) Clean your fans thoroughly

Along similar lines, if your home has ceiling or box fans you plan to use, you'll need to clean the blades carefully. That's because lots of dust builds up on them if they're not used throughout the fall and winter, and it can make them run less efficiently and propel dust around a home. That's not just a pain to clean, but lots of dust particles can also be a health risk if there's enough of it lying around.

3) Check the attic and basement

Spring is a time when a lot of moisture can build up in a short period, thanks to rain, condensation and so on. That can really do a number on your roof, foundation or both, so you'll need to carefully inspect these spaces for any sign of dampness. This may point to a bigger issue you'll need to fix, but that kind of check is vital to make sure problems don't get worse over the course of the summer.

Ready for summer4) Maintain your yard and the tools it needs

A big part of summer is tending to your lawn, garden, trees and so on, and you'll need to make sure you know how to properly care for all of them, according to Liberty Mutual. Of course, in addition to the know-how, you also have to have the right equipment, whether that's a freshly tuned-up lawnmower or gardening tools. If, after a long winter, they need to be cleaned, sharpened or otherwise better maintained, now is the time to do it.

5) Keep gutters clear

While April showers have already given way to May flowers, you're certainly not out of the woods yet when it comes to heavy spring and summer rains. While you likely cleared out the gutters already, once winter came to an end, giving them another check well after spring has sprung is always a good idea. This can help you identify potential issues, including leaks in the gutters or downspouts, that make the systems less effective than they otherwise should be.

Brought to you by HMS Home Warranty.  HMS is an industry leader with over 30 years of creating success for clients and providing peace of mind for customers.  To learn more click www.hmsnational.com

May
6

Six Richmond Bike Trails to Explore Our Area

 

EXPLORE RICHMOND BY BIKE

May is the perfect time to be a bicyclist and Richmond is the ideal place to ride! The League of American Bicyclists sponsors National Bike Month each year during May. The month also features National Bike to Work Week (and National Bike to Work Day for those who don't want to risk getting caught in a spring shower). Our REALTORS® love telling clients about all of the wonderful things to do and see in our community.  Why not start by exploring Richmond on two wheels with this list of six top bike trails.

  1. Virginia Capital Trail
    Route: From the Corner of E Cary St./Dock St. in downtown Richmond to Jamestown Beach Events Park in Williamsburg
    Distance: 52 Miles

    We're kicking off this list with the ultimate Richmond ride! The Virginia Capital Trail takes you through some of the most beautiful places along the river while weaving you in and out of towns with plenty of food and attractions. The entire trail is paved and features restrooms, shuttle stops, picnic areas and repair stations. It even takes you through campground areas and near hotels if you want to take a full weekend to enjoy the ride! You could also pick out one of the great Richmond homes for sale on the way and travel this trail any time you wish.

  2. North Bank Trail
    Route: Boulevard Bridge to Tredegar
    Distance: 3 Miles

    Let's slow down our speed and tackle a much shorter trail. The North Bank Trail is only three miles long, but it offers riders a bit of a challenge with its rocky climbs and rugged descents. It's a quick drive from Hanover homes for sale and is perfect for a fun ride that'll give you a workout.

  3. Monument Avenue Historic District
    Route: Down Monument Avenue
    Distance: 5 Miles

    Whether you're moving down into the city or you're looking at Petersburg homes for sale, all avid bikers in the RVA area need to travel this route at least once. Take a relaxing ride through Monument Avenue Historic District and marvel at the dazzling architecture and statues. This is also a perfect ride for the family to enjoy as it has plenty of areas to stop off for snacks and to rest little legs.

  4. Valentine Bicycle Tours
    Route: Varies by the tour, areas include Forest Hill and along the James River.
    Distance: Varies by the tour, lengths usually around 2 hours.

    Looking for a great way to see the Richmond Riverside without going too far from Chesterfield homes for sale? Join the Valentine for historical bike tours around some of the most scenic parts of Richmond. Tours are offered weekly between April and October which is the perfect time to enjoy the RVA's beautiful biking weather.

  5. Bryan Park/Ginter Gardens
    Route: From Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens to Joseph Bryan Park.
    Distance: 3.5 Miles+

    Head over towards Henrico homes for sale to see a different side of Richmond. We suggest starting at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, heading south through Belmont Park then cutting into Joseph Bryan Park before stopping in Bellevue for a bite to eat. This route is a nice mix of street and scenic riding that will introduce you to a fantastic area of the city.

  6. Bucolic Battlefields
    Route: Through Richmond National Battlefield Park from Rocketts Landing to Fort Harrison Visitor Center.
    Distance: 7-10 Miles 

    Colonial Heights homes for sale are within a quick trip to a route filled with history. The Bucolic Battlefields Route will take you away from the downtown Richmond to Fort Harrison National Cemetery. You can take a direct 7-mile route by following the Osborne Turnpike or extend it to 10 miles each way by weaving through Fulton Hill towards the airport then booking it south to the cemetery.

Do you want many more miles of bike routes through Richmond? Contact us today and let our REALTORS® guide you through the best bike trails that pass by gorgeous Richmond homes for sale.

April
29

Kings Dominion Virginia's Ultimate Family Fun Adventure

 

Kings Dominion Virginia
Spring is back in Virginia, and that means one thing for thrill-seeking families: Kings Dominion is back too. Our state's biggest amusement park opened for the season on March 30, and its rides and interactive attractions just might be the most exciting things between Richmond and Washington, D.C. If your family is looking at Richmond homes for sale, head north to Doswell for a preview of the adventures you could have all summer long.

What makes Kings Dominion Amusement Park so much fun for Virginia families? Here are some of our favorite things to do while visiting this 400-acre playground:

  • Ride a World-Class Roller Coaster
    Ready to get your blood pumping? More than 60 rides are spread out across the park, but the main attraction is a collection of awe-inspiring roller coasters. Try all 12 coasters while you're there, including the aptly named Intimidator 305 (which takes you 305 feet into the air) and the Coney Island-inspired wooden beast The Grizzly. And don't miss the latest addition, Twisted Timbers! This mid-Atlantic first puts a steel track on traditional wooden supports, and it simulates the path of a mysterious 1950 disaster in Hanover Hill Orchard.
  • Join the PEANUTS™ Gang at Planet Snoopy
    Are some of your family members too small for the park's most extreme attractions? Planet Snoopy was made just for them. This 14-acre kids' area is based on Charlie Brown's world, with 20 family-friendly rides like the Great Pumpkin Coaster and the Kite-Eating Tree. Young drivers can even get behind the wheel themselves at several attractions, including the bumper car course Lucy's Crabbie Cabbies, the self-driving truck track Road Rally, and an enclosed expressway with its own traffic lights and signs.
  • Take a Refreshing Plunge at Soak City
    What would summer at a theme park be without water slides? Soak City is a sprawling water park right next door to the main amusement park, and it has 20 acres of refreshing, relaxing, and extreme aquatic attractions. Climb the 65-foot tower to slide down Hurricane Heights, take the young ones to kid-friendly Splash Island, or rent a poolside cabana for a day of pampering. Soak City has all the slides, rafting rides, wave pools, and lazy river bends you need to cool off as a family.
  • Camp Out with the Kids at Camp Wilderness
    Turn your theme park adventure into a whole weekend of fun at King Dominion's official campground. Whether you park your RV, pitch a tent, or rent a deluxe cabin for ten, you'll have access to a pool, playground discounted park tickets, and free shuttle service to and from the park. Camp Wilderness is a Kampgrounds of America site, which guarantees certain amenities and service standards, and it's a great way to immerse yourself fully in the Kings Dominion experience.
  • Sample Local Cuisine at Taste of Virginia
    One of the state's newest food festivals is giving Chicago a run for its money. Taste of Virginia takes over Kings Dominion for several weekends each May, bringing homegrown food, drinks, and music to the park. Grab a Tasting Card and choose six different dishes inspired by regions in Virginia (for example, Chesapeake Bay crab mac and cheese, or Blue Ridge Mountains apple bread pudding). Or opt for the Wine Tasting Card, and sample six different Virginia vineyards and wineries.

Are you ready to start your next adventure in Virginia? Our REALTORS® know how important it is to accommodate the whole family while you're looking for a home. Contact us today to sell or start your search for a home in Richmond, Virginia.

March
25

Married and House Hunting: Buying a House That Works for You Both

Home Buying for Couples

If you and your spouse have started researching Richmond homes for sale, you might have noticed that you have different tastes. Whether it's the size, location, or style of home, there's a good chance that you'll need to compromise on some things. Since your home is one of the single largest investments you'll ever make, it's important to make sure you'll both be happy in the long run.

Getting on the same page before you start home shopping will save you a lot of headaches. The last thing you want is to end up in a stalemate that causes you to miss out on a great buying opportunity, or, even worse, make a purchase that you later end up regretting.

Our REALTORS® have plenty of experience in working with couples to help them find a home that's perfect for both of them. Here are some of their best tips to help you get started.

  • Make Separate "Must Have" Lists
    One of the best ways to come to a compromise is to figure out which things you and your spouse agree on. To do this, each of you should make a list of 10 things that are "must-have" features, and 10 "wish list" items. It's best if you make these lists completely separately and compare them only when you're done. 

    Once you've come up with at least a few items that you have in common, you can use this is a basis to start narrowing down your options. When you come across a home that has at least some of the features you both want, you'll find that compromising on other points gets much easier.

  • Set a Realistic Budget (And Stick to It)
    Your dream home can quickly turn into a nightmare if you find out after your purchase that you really can't afford it. Before you even think about looking for a home, both of you need to sit down together and take an honest look at your finances. Consider whether you think your financial situation will stay the same for years to come, or if you need to accommodate for changes like one of you staying home with children. 

    Once you've agreed on a budget, don't fall into the trap of stretching it. It's important that you take emotion out of the equation and stick to your guns, no matter how deeply you fall in love with the home in question. Remember that no home is worth the stress of dealing with financial problems for the next 15 to 30 years. 

  • Use a Rating System
    As you're checking out houses, both you and your spouse should assign each one you see a rating of 1 to 10. This will help you keep track of how you feel about each option and is a good indicator of which ones to rule out immediately and which ones have some potential. 

  • Let Your REALTOR® Help Mediate
    Great REALTORS® have an intimate knowledge of the homes that are currently on the market and can help you find one that comes as close as possible to meet both of your needs. Don't be afraid to tell your realtor about the sticking points you're running into. In most cases, he or she will be the best one to help you find a happy solution. 

Are you ready to start looking for your dream home? We can help!  Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties to get your home search started.

March
11

Plan Your Springtime Curb Appeal at These 6 RVA Nurseries

RVA Nurseries for Spring Curb Appeal
When selling your Richmond, Virginia, home, making a good first impression is essential. Appealing landscaping can help you sell faster and get a higher price for your property. This is especially true in spring when potential buyers can explore Richmond homes for sale without worrying about snow or uncomfortably hot weather. Keep your lawn well-manicured, trim trees and hedges, and plant beautiful flowers to make your property look inviting. You can get help planning your home's springtime curb appeal at these RVA nurseries.

  1. Sneed's Nursery8756 W. Huguenot Road, Richmond
    Sneed's Nursery has had its own landscaping department for more than 30 years, and they employ two professional designers. All their designs are unique, and they can help you make sure your landscaping compliments your architecture and suits the environment. Sneed's also offers several inexpensive classes for beginning gardeners. You can learn which plants are easiest to care for, how to get rid of pests, and more. Their "We Plan, You Plant" service will give you detailed landscaping advice, and they can create custom containers for the plants on your deck or patio.

  2. The Great Big Greenhouse & Nursery - 2051 Huguenot Road, Richmond
    The Great Big Greenhouse & Nursery is a Meadows Farms location. They offer free landscape planning, but you may need to make an appointment. Just bring pictures of your property and measurements. For a fee, a designer will come to your home, make sketches, and prepare a detailed estimate. Along with plants, they can help you install new patios, decks, ponds, driveways, fire pits, stone walls, and more. They also give customers a lifetime warranty for most trees and shrubs.

  3. Lucky Roots - 612 N. Sheppard, Richmond
    Lucky Roots specializes in hydroponics and indoor gardening. They can help you choose attractive houseplants that can filter the air around them without causing allergy symptoms. They also can help you find appealing plants for your deck, porch, or patio.

  4. Strange's Florists Greenhouses & Garden Centers - 12111 W. Broad St., Richmond
    Strange's was called the Best Florist in Central Virginia by Virginia Living magazine for two years in a row. The Richmond Times-Dispatch named it the Best Garden Center in RVA in 2016, and it has received many other awards as well. They offer a variety of annuals, perennials, trees shrubs, vegetables, and herbs, and they can help you decide which plants are best for your home. Strange's also holds workshops and events about a variety of gardening and landscaping topics.

  5. Cross Creek Nursery & Landscaping - 501 Courthouse Road, Richmond
    Cross Creek Nursery & Landscaping has its own landscape design center. After an initial fee, a designer will visit your home, take measurements, and discuss your landscaping goals. Then, in seven to 10 days, you'll get a detailed design for the outdoor parts of your home. You can schedule a time to visit their nursery, decide exactly which plants and hardscape materials suit your needs best, and set an installation date. Cross Creek uses locally grown plants and has an experienced, knowledgeable staff.

  6. Glen Allen Nursery & Garden Inc. - 9107 Old Staples Mill Road, Richmond
    Glen Allen Nursery & Garden specializes in large trees and shrubs. They keep a detailed list of their inventory, and they can deliver anywhere within a 60-mile radius of their store. Their website contains an extensive library of information to help people who want to make changes without dealing with a designer.

At Joyner Fine Properties, our REALTORS® can help you with all your Richmond real estate needs. Contact us for skilled, friendly service.

March
4

Your Guide to Spring Home Maintenance

Spring Home Maintenance Guide
Spring might feel like it's a long way off right now, but it has a way of sneaking up on you. And as a homeowner, you know that it's never too soon to start planning ahead for spring maintenance. Our REALTORS® are here to offer some tips for getting your house ready for spring. 

Spring Maintenance Checklist

Every house is unique, and depending on your location and climate, your home maintenance checklist for spring may look a little different from this one. Still, for most areas across the U.S., the arrival of spring brings a similar set of challenges for your home. Here's how to get your house ready when spring arrives:

  • Roof: Shingles often wear out, detach or become damaged during winter. If you feel comfortable doing so, climb up on a ladder for a closer look. If not, do a visual inspection from ground level and contact a roofing professional for a more detailed inspection.

  • Siding: Give your home's siding a good cleaning with a high-powered hose or pressure washer to keep mold and mildew away. Check for peeling paint and fix as needed.

  • Gutters and downspouts: Clear all leaves and debris from gutters and downspouts, and reattach any sections that may be loose, sagging or disconnected. Run a hose on the roof to check for leaks and make sure water is draining properly. Fix any leaks you find. Adjust downspouts if necessary to ensure that water flows away from the foundation. 

  • HVAC: Spring is an important time to have your heating, ventilation and air conditioning unit serviced and cleaned. Call a professional to schedule your annual maintenance, and be sure to have a supply of clean air filters handy. 

  • Concrete: Walk around your house and check all concrete – including sidewalks, driveways, steps, and walkways – for cracks and other damage that may have occurred over the winter.

  • Windows and doors: Inspect all windows and doors for air leaks, worn-out caulking, and cracked weather stripping. Repair or replace caulk and weather stripping to reduce air leaks. Check for damaged window and door screens. Repair or replace the screens.

  • Outside faucets: Check exterior faucets for freeze damage by turning each one on and using a finger to block the opening. If this is enough to stop the water flow, you may have pipe damage.

  • Decks and porches: Check your deck for damage, including peeling paint and worn-out finish. Hammer in any nails that may have worked their way out over the winter, and make sure the steps and railings are secure. If needed, powerwash the deck and apply a fresh coat of finish. 

  • Basement and attic: Inspect the walls and floors for leaks, puddles, mold and other signs of water damage. 

  • Landscaping: Rake your lawn and remove leaves, twigs, branches and other debris. Tidy up shrubs and hedges, and prune any bushes that require spring pruning, especially if they brush up against your house. Apply a fresh layer of mulch as needed. 

  • Foundation: Visually inspect your foundation from the outside and inside if possible, and identify any cracks or disturbances that have appeared as a result of the ground shifting during winter. 

  • Hot water heater: Lubricate the circulating pump and motor, and schedule additional maintenance if necessary. 

Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties to learn more about maintaining your home throughout the spring and beyond as well as for all of your homeownership needs. Whether you're searching for Richmond homes for sale or you have a house that you're ready to sell, we're here to help. 

February
18

Get a Taste of Richmond: One of Virginia's Best Food Towns

Best Richmond Restaurants

At Joyner Fine Properties, our REALTORS® won't rest until you have the chance to move into one of the most appealing Richmond homes for sale. We'll help you find your Richmond dream home so you can enjoy all that this amazing, historic city has to offer.

And one of the main attractions: Delectable gourmet food.

If you're in town to look at homes, you should make time to try out some of the best local specialties. Chesapeake Bay blue crab is the headliner when it comes to Virginia's seafood, but you won't want to miss out on our oysters – or the snacks of freshly roasted peanuts.

But the menu doesn't start and end with seafood. Not by a long shot!

You'll find many different cuisines ready to enjoy when you take a closer look at the dining scene in Richmond. Our team has picked out five of our favorite places for dinner, lunch, or just about any time.

  1. Sub Rosa Bakery - 620 North 25th Street, Richmond
    Sub Rosa Bakery is a wood-fired bakery that provides delicious pastries in the midst of historic Church Hill. Organic, regional, and heirloom grains are the secrets to bread with remarkably rich, complex flavors. No matter if you're looking for something delicate like the croissant or seasonal fruit tart or a delicious indulgence like the lamb borek, everything comes from the masonry oven.

  2. L'Opossum - 626 China Street, Richmond
    Seeing is believing: L'Opossum is one of the classiest stops for your culinary tour of Richmond. In sumptuous surroundings, you'll sample the French fare of James Beard Foundation Award winner Chef David Shannon. He takes you on a journey with upscale dishes of venison, foie gras, and more. Fine cocktails and imported French vintage wines round out remarkable meals.

  3. Peter Chang - 2816A West Broad Street, Richmond
    Visit Peter Chang for a refreshingly modern take on Chinese and pan-Asian cuisine that elevates familiar tastes to a spectacular new level. Chef Chang is known for mouth-watering signature dishes including lamb chop, Szechuan-style stir-fried hotpot, and duck served in a stone pot. The chef also holds tastings and demonstrations in his restaurants throughout Virginia.

  4. Saison - 23 West Marshall Street, Richmond
    For a truly unique meal, Saison is one of your best bets in Richmond. Here, you'll find lovingly handcrafted meals that blend influences from the American South, Central America, and the Caribbean. A reservation is recommended for sampling this menu centered around delicious small plates. It also has one of the most expansive wine menus in the city.??????

  5. Maple & Pine - 201 West Broad Street, Richmond
    One of the newest arrivals in Richmond is Maple & Pine, found on the grounds of the Quirk Hotel. Led by master chef David Dunlap, it brings fresh, seasonal delights to the table blending mid-Atlantic and international flair. New American-style entrees include Great White oysters, steak tartare, Arctic char, duck breast, honey-soy glazed salmon, and many others.

Extraordinary food is only the beginning of what Richmond has to offer. Contact us at Joyner Fine Properties to discuss your real estate opportunities!

February
4

6 Ways to Tell If A Neighborhood is Safe

Neighborhood Safety
When you're searching for a new home, there are a lot of things you might be willing to compromise on. You can always change the paint color, add another bathroom, or remodel the kitchen. The area surrounding your new home, however, is something you can't control. That's why it's so important to thoroughly check out your potential new neighborhood before making a decision.

Luckily, there are a few easy ways to tell if your neighborhood is safe. While you're checking out Richmond homes for sale, take these extra steps before making an offer. This will give you the peace of mind you deserve and help ensure that you and your family will enjoy your new home for years to come.

  1. Do Some Online Research
    There are several great websites where you can research your potential new neighborhood for free. Some of the most popular include Area Vibes, Neighborhood Scout, and SpotCrime. These sites provide neighborhood-specific information including crime statistics, police reports, and a number of other livability factors.

    Also visit the U.S. Government's National Sex Offender Public Website (NSOPW), which allows you to enter an address and see photos of registered sex offenders living nearby.
  1. Talk to Your REALTOR®
    One of the advantages of hiring a great real estate professional is the expert knowledge they bring to the table. While facts and statistics are great, sometimes an inside scoop is what you really need.  

    Our REALTORS® are deeply familiar with most neighborhoods in the Richmond area and can help you make sure you choose a location where you'll feel safe and comfortable. 
  1. Consider the Number of Area Homes for Sale
    If there are a lot of homes for sale in an area, it could be a sign that current residents are fed up with neighborhood crime. Even if the crime rate in your potential neighborhood isn't currently a problem, an area with a lot of empty houses can invite unsavory activity.

    While the number of homes for sale isn't always a reason for concern, it's definitely something you'll want to note.
  1. Take a Tour of the Neighborhood
    One of the best ways to get a feeling for the vibe of your new neighborhood is to get out and walk or drive around. Take a look at the state of other houses in the area. Keep an eye out for homes with unkempt yards, broken windows, or other signs of neglect. While most neighborhoods have one or two of these, if you notice a pattern, it could be a red flag.

    Make sure you visit at different times of the day and night, as a neighborhood that looks perfectly fine at noon might have a very different feeling when the sun goes down.
  1. Check Out the Local Community
    As you check out the neighborhood, look for signs of a safe community. Children playing outside and people riding bikes or walking their dogs are indications that the current residents feel comfortable there.

    A neighborhood watch program shows that the residents are concerned with keeping their neighborhood safe, and events like block parties and farmer's markets help to create a strong sense of community.
  1. Connect with Your Potential New Neighbors
    While you're exploring the area, stop and talk to any neighbors you see. Ask them what they like about living there and if there are any concerns. Not only can this help you evaluate the safety of an area, it can also help you decide if the neighborhood will fit with your lifestyle.

Whether you're looking for a big-city vibe or a family-friendly suburb, there are plenty of great neighborhoods in the Richmond area. Our REALTORS® are experts at helping their clients find the ideal location, so why not let us help you out? Contact us today to get started. 

January
28

9 Reasons Why Living in Richmond, VA is Amazing

Richmond Virginia Living

If you are considering a move to Richmond, Virginia--a.k.a., the RVA--you'll soon come to understand there's much more to love about our hometown than just being the capital city of Virginia.  Our REALTORS® are sure that after we introduce you to the community, you'll understand what we already know:  Buying one of our Richmond homes for sale is an amazing idea.  The following are nine reasons why Richmond is considered a southern treasure.

  1. Richmond Makes the Right "Great Places to Live" Lists – Our city has made a lot of lists in recent years. It has been hailed as the "most content area" in America by the U.S. National Bureau of Economic Research, one of the best places to find employment by Forbes, and one of the world's top destinations by Frommer's, to name just a few of its accolades.

  2. Richmond is Historic – Richmond is steeped in history and isn't shy about sharing it. It is the site of Patrick Henry's famous "Give me liberty, or give me death!" speech, the stomping grounds of Thomas Jefferson, and home to the Edger Allen Poe museum.  

  3. Richmond is Modern – Richmond isn't all about the past, by any means. It is a modern city with a lot to offer, including a vibrant nightlife, diverse employment opportunities and tons of festivals, attractions and activities for people of all ages.

  4. Richmond's Unique Culture – Richmond is a large city by all accounts, but its unique culture offers a hometown feel that rivals any in small-town America, making it the best of both worlds.

  5. Richmond's Natural Beauty – The Richmond area is stunning. Its location ensures that residents experience all four seasons and that opportunities to experience natural beauty abound. There are nature trails, parks, and lovely river views. It is the perfect environment for runners, hikers, bikers, kayakers and anyone else who feels most at home in the great outdoors.

  6. Richmond is Perfect for Food Lover – Ranging from barbecue spots to fine dining establishments, old fashioned southern cooking to eateries that cater to the tastes of vegetarians and vegans, there is something for everyone in Richmond's rich and varied restaurant scene.

  7. Richmond is a Haven for Music Lovers – Music is very much a way of life in Richmond. Live music venues abound in the city, and you're sure to find your groove no matter whether it is jazz, bluegrass, folk, heavy metal, pop or hip-hop music you most enjoy.

  8. Richmond is Awesome for Sports Lovers – From the Monument Avenue 10k to college hoops and NASCAR, to name just a few, there are loads of events in and around the city to satisfy sports lovers.

  9. Richmond is Home to the Arts – Our city is home to a vibrant arts culture, promoted by the presence of a large art school. There are stunning murals, impressive theaters that host prestigious productions, galleries, art festivals and much more for art lovers to enjoy.

These nine points barely scratch the surface when it comes to reasons why living in Richmond is fantastic. If you'd like to find out more, contact us. We'd be happy to help you explore the many advantages of becoming a Richmond homeowner.

Disclaimer: All information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. All properties are subject to prior sale, change or withdrawal. Neither listing broker(s) or information provider(s) shall be responsible for any typographical errors, misinformation, misprints and shall be held totally harmless. Listing(s) information is provided for consumers personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing. Information on this site was last updated 08/20/2022. The listing information on this page last changed on 08/20/2022. The data relating to real estate for sale on this website comes in part from the Internet Data Exchange program of CVRMLS (last updated Sat 08/20/2022 1:07:52 AM EST) or Bright MLS (last updated Sat 08/20/2022 12:54:02 AM EST). Real estate listings held by brokerage firms other than Joyner Fine Properties may be marked with the Internet Data Exchange logo and detailed information about those properties will include the name of the listing broker(s) when required by the MLS. All rights reserved. --

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