The Liz Moore Market Watch Blog

Liz's Predictions for the 2018 Williamsburg Real Estate Market

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Tue, Feb 06, 2018 @ 02:02 PM


2017 was a solid year for local real estate. Here in Williamsburg, closed sales finished up 2.1% for the year, with pending sales up over 8%, which indicates a strong start to 2018. Much like last year, we did not experience the typical holiday slowdown, which also bodes well for sales activity in the New Year, despite some
early snow events in January. And, I must brag a little bit on our office, we outpaced the market 5 fold last year!

We are entering 2018 with less than 4 months of active inventory, and homes selling, on average, in only 39
days. That is good news for sellers who are priced properly and in good condition, or for prospective sellers who are thinking about diving into the market. Nationwide, most markets are experiencing inventory shortages,
which is the single biggest factor keeping a lid on the number of sales.

The exception here is the luxury market, where sellers need to be significantly more patient – there is currently 18 months of inventory priced at $750,000 and up in Greater Williamsburg.

Prices remained remarkably steady during the past 12 months, with the median sales price in Williamsburg
slightly above $300,000 for most of the year, and finishing up at $314,900.

Here is what I see in the coming 12 months:

Consumer confidence has been our biggest challenge in recent years, especially during
the contentious presidential election. With that now behind us, activity levels have definitely regained
momentum. Record activity in the stock market has also translated to increased real estate interest.

My expectation is that there are many sellers who have been waiting for more favorable market conditions
to list – and that will continue to happen as we move toward Spring. We have seen a significant jump in
new listings over the past few months, signaling that wise sellers recognize the importance of beating the
competition to the Spring market.

As prices continue to climb due to the inventory shortage, consumers will realize that moves need to be made
ASAP in order to take advantage of an 8 year streak of historically low rates and home values. It’s important to
note that the market can shift quickly, and it will not surprise me to see a highly competitive Spring season for
homes selling below $500,000.

Interest rates will begin a slow and steady climb this year.
Interest rates have been perplexing over the past 12 months. Most predicted the inevitable ascent would begin as the economy gained steam, but rates remained lower than predicted, most likely because the feds were hesitant to do anything that might inhibit the momentum of the recovery.

I believe that 2018 will be the year that interest rates incrementally increase, but the question remains by how much and how frequently. The good news is that this is a sure sign of a strengthening economy, but the bad news is that each hike raises the bar on home affordability. My prediction is that this will add some urgency to the market this year, particularly in the lower price ranges.

Prices will finally begin to show improvement in many neighborhoods.
Prices are neighborhood specific, and some areas are definitely improving faster than others. The overall Greater Williamsburg market appreciated 3% in 2017, and I expect will continue to trend toward more normal appreciation rates (5 to 6%) in 2018 and beyond.

If a home purchase is on your New Year resolution list, buy early in the year, as interest rates have a much greater impact than most realize. For instance, waiting for prices to drop 5% to save $12,500 on a $250,000 purchase may cost you an extra $225 per month in payments; if rates increase from 4% to 5.5%, then your payment increases from $1194 to $1419. For most buyers, the affordability index of monthly payments is a more critical consideration.

We were fortunate to participate in 1 out of every 6 home sales in greater Williamsburg in 2017, insuring our position as the #1 agency in the local market. Your support and referrals are much appreciated, and we promise to deliver the extraordinary client experience that has become our hallmark!

*All stats based on Broker Metrics for WMLS, 23188, 23185, and 23186 residential home sales in 2017

If you are looking to buy or sell a home this year, email us at  We'd love to help!

Tags: Buyers, Sellers, Williamsburg, lizlocal, lizlocal-Williamsburg, relo-williamsburg-news

My Village Park Experience - "They made sure everything was taken care of before we moved into our dream home"

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Fri, Jan 12, 2018 @ 08:27 AM

26230206_10155903941034223_2262678914345279487_n.jpg"Working with Wayne Harbin and his company was a wonderful experience!! We couldn't imagine our home in a more perfect way! They helped us pick everything out and answered any and every question we could think of. Shirley Hammond with Liz Moore was beyond amazing. She and the Harbins made this process of building a new home so easy and fun. We never had any problems throughout this whole process and they all made sure everything was taken care of before we moved into our dream home. Thank you all again!!"

- Jordan and Chris McDougal

Village Park of Poquosona community of 26 town home units, is masterfully crafted by Wayne Harbin Builders and located in the heart of Poquoson. Offering a small town atmosphere with friendly neighbors who have a common interest in the well-being of the city and their families, Poquoson is near major employment sites including Langley Air Force Base, NASA, Fort Monroe, and The Newport News Shipyard.

Interested in Village Park of Poquoson?  Click below to download the price list.

Download the Village Park Price List


Tags: Buyers, Poquoson, New Homes

Can you Guess the Industry's Forecast for the 2018 Color of the Year?

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Wed, Dec 27, 2017 @ 10:56 AM

Every year around the end of the year, paint manufactures, designers, fashion editors, and printers all announce what they believe will be the color or colors of the upcoming year. These selections are derived from many sources including art, architecture, museums, gardens, travel, fashion, food, and cocktails; even pop culture, politics, technology, and social issues can influence these color selections.

In 2016, simple, understated white hues like Benjamin Moore’s Simply White and Sherwin Williams’ Alabaster White that went with everything were trending, and are still great choices for a bright neutral paint.

In 2017, we saw a shift to darker neutral shades. Deep greyish blues and purples, along with some warm neutrals and even a bold yellow made the list.

The forecast for 2018 is even deeper and bolder colors. The Pantone Color Institute predicts intense colors over pastels for the coming year. “Intense colors seem to be a natural application of our intense lifestyles and thought processes these days,” says Leatrice Eiseman, Pantone Color Institute executive director.

One of the first companies to release their prediction was PPG Paints, who for the first time in history picked a black paint as their color of the year. PPG named Black Flame as their Color of 2018 and they describe it as an “unprecedented, statement-making black with deep tones of indigo.” This dark shade evokes feelings
of privacy and classic modernism.

You can expect to see more announcements in the twilight color palette like dark blues, greens, and charcoal tones paired with the ever-popular warm neutrals like golden yellows and muted pinks.

But you won’t only see dark hues in 2018. In Sherwin Williams’ Colormix® Forecast 2018, they predict next year will be about three bright color palettes which they've dubbed Unity, Connectivity, and Sincerity. All of these combinations are surprising and guaranteed to pack serious happiness into a room.

Behr announced “In the Moment” as their 2018 Color of the Year. Behr says, “This cool, tranquil spruce blue is inspired by nature and is a soothing, restorative coalescence of blue, gray and green.”

color of the year.jpg

Buyers can think about using these bold saturated colors in smaller doses, such as for an accent wall, in a niche or on the ceiling only, rather than on all four walls in a room. Paint manufacturers also release of palette of several trending, complimentary colors every year, many of which include more neutral shades of white, grey, and tan.

Homeowners are in no way expected to change the color scheme of their home with each passing color trend. Where these selections can be useful, however, is when there's a particular color being touted that you really like. It becomes much easier to find furnishings and decorative accessories that coordinate with the favorite hue because it's trending.

Another interesting aspect of the Color of the Year announcements are the names of the hues themselves.

The process of naming these colors in rigorous and well thought out, often involving color specialists, marketing professionals, and lawyers to name a few contributors. Where you once saw a shade named Bright Red, today you'll see a similar red named Heartthrob or Spirit Warrior. In today’s competitive paint market, manufacturers want consumers to connect with their colors. Color names can typically be divided into four categories: visual, geographical, emotional, and experiential. Studies have shown that paint names are often the ultimate tie breakers with so many similar color choices on the market.

So, next time you’re shopping for paint colors, consider what’s trending and how those colors and names make you feel. Want to learn more? Visit: 

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Tags: Buyers, Sellers, New Homes, relo-peninsula-news, relo-williamsburg-news, relo-richmond-news

What's New in the Market?

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Fri, Oct 13, 2017 @ 11:15 AM

We are seeing a lot of encouraging statistics coming out of our three markets!

An increase in homes sold on the Peninsula:


An increase in median sales price in Williamsburg:


And a drop in days on market in Richmond:


It's a great time to buy and sell!  If you are thinking about making a move, email us at and we'll be happy to put you in touch with an agent who specializes in your area. 

Tags: Buyers, Sellers, Richmond, lizlocal, lizlocal-Richmond, lizlocal-Williamsburg, lizlocal-Peninsula

Ford's Colony Beer & Home Tour - October 7th

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Mon, Oct 02, 2017 @ 02:39 PM

logo-3.jpgJoin us for a fun-filled afternoon in Ford's Colony, Virginia on Saturday, October 7, from  1-4pm. Tour gorgeous homes for sale & enjoy hand-selected beers by local, domestic & international brewers. There’s no better way to celebrate the arrival of fall! Visit 4 or more homes for your chance to win a $100 gift card to Opus 9!

Download a List of Participating Properties

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Tags: Buyers, Fords Colony, Locals - 101 Reasons, Williamsburg, event, event-Williamsburg

How Does College Debt Affect Homeownership?

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Wed, Sep 20, 2017 @ 02:03 PM

Eighty-three percent of millennials in a recently released report by the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) say they are delaying their home-buying plans by a median of seven years as a result of their student loan debt. 

Homeownership is not the only thing being affected by student loan debt.  Millennials are also postponing career changes, children, marriage and retirement savings. Forty-one percent of millennials have put off marriage; 61 percent have skipped a retirement savings payment; and 86 percent have stayed in an unsatisfying job, or taken on a second job or one outside of their field, as a result of student debt.


(Image Source)

Are you looking to start the home buying process but aren't sure if you qualify because of college debt? Email us at, we'd love to help!

Download Our FREE Home Buying Guide


Tags: Buyers

Neighborhood Spotlight: Woodlake, Midlothian

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Wed, May 24, 2017 @ 02:11 PM

I73A0928.jpgHave you ever dreamed of life on a lake? The Woodlake Community in Midlothian, VA is a suburban neighborhood located close to the city of Richmond. While it is nearby popular dining and entertainment options, Woodlake maintains the serene lifestyle that accompanies lake-front living. Woodlake is home to over 7,000 residents, and provides quick access to local schools, playgrounds, trails, and activities for the entire family.

The Woodlake Community Association is a board tasked with maintaining the community and providing programming to engage residents.

I73A0850-1.jpgWoodlake features unparalleled amenities and facilities for its residents that distinguish the community above others in the area. Not only are there recreational spaces always available for use, Woodlake residents can rent or reserve different facilities throughout the community. The Woodlake Community Clubhouse is located at the Swim & Racquet Complex, and the clubhouse, patio, and pool can all be rented for events. The Woodlake Community Association also facilitates a boat rental program where individuals can rent out paddleboards, canoes, kayaks and more. Another unique feature of the boat rental program is their famous Pontoon boat rentals that hold up to 14 adults. This program is exclusive to Woodlake residents and can be reserved for anytime during the day or evening. No other community in the area provides such an extensive list of recreational options, rental facilities, water activities, and more.

East West Legacy Park is one of the finest locations within the Woodlake community. It boasts some of the best views of the lake, and offers a pavilion with picnic tables perfect for any gathering! The Pavilion itself can be reserved but is otherwise open to community members to relax, enjoy the views, and spend time with loved ones. East West Legacy Park is one of many facilities and amenities that make Woodlake an incredible community to live in.  

For more information, click here to download our Woodlake neighborhood guide.

Download Our Woodlake Neighborhood Guide

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Tags: Buyers, Neighborhood Spotlight, Richmond, Woodlake, Midlothian, lizlocal, lizlocal-Richmond

It's Back...The Liz Moore Summer Open House Extravaganza!

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Tue, May 23, 2017 @ 02:10 PM

Calling all house hunters!  Visit a Liz Moore open house between May 26th and August 26th, 2017 and you'll be entered into a drawing to win some amazing prizes.  


House hunters can register for the drawing at every Liz Moore open house.  The more you visit, the better your chances are of winning!
Click below for a list of open houses and to view complete contest rules.
Summer Open House Extravaganza Participating Properties

Tags: Buyers, Williamsburg, Richmond, lizlocal, Peninsula, event, event-Peninsula, event-Williamsburg, event-Richmond

Where Did Buyers Find Their Home in 2016?

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Fri, Apr 21, 2017 @ 03:09 PM

The 2016 National Association of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers reports on where buyers found the home they purchased.  

Click Here to Download Our Free Home Buyer's Handbook

Internet - 51%
The number has consistently increased year after year, starting at just 8% in 2001.

Real Estate Agent - 34%
Ranging between 38% and 33% since 2004, this number was at its highest in 2001 (48%) and its lowest (33%) 2013-2015.

Yard Sign/Open House Sign - 8%
This number stayed between 15% and 16% from 2001-2008, and started to drop in 2009.

Friend, Relative, Neighbor - 4%
Jumping back and forth from 7% to 8% from 2001-2008, this number dropped to 6% in 2009 and is now at its lowest.

Home Builder or Their Agent - 2%
This number stayed the same for the last few years and is now at its lowest.

Directly From Sellers - 1%
This number has remained between 2% and 3% since 2005 and dropped to 1% in 2016.

Print Newspaper Advertisement - 
This number started at 7% in 2001 and has consistently dropped year after year, currently being too low to calculate.

Where Buyers Found Their Home_Flyer.jpg

Are you looking to start the home buying process?  Email us at, we'd love to help! Or, click below to download our free Home Buyer's Handbook.

Download Our FREE Home Buying Guide

Are you interested in hot real estate topics, tips and trends?  
Click below to subscribe to our blog


Tags: Buyers, Sellers

Eight Tips for Buying Your First Home

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Tue, Jan 31, 2017 @ 03:11 PM


By Virginia Lascara, TowneBank Mortgage

1. Check your credit.
A homebuyer’s credit score is a crucial factor when it comes to qualifying for a loan. Before starting the mortgage process, scour your credit reports for mistakes, unpaid accounts or collection accounts. If you find a mistake, write to the credit issuer and the credit reporting bureau and tell them what information you believe is inaccurate, and include copies of documents that support your position, and request a deletion or correction. If your credit isn’t so stellar, you should be sure to start making all your payments on time. Your credit utilization, or how much credit you’re using relative to your available balance, is important to your credit score as well. Keep your utilization score low, only using and only using up to 30 percent of your available credit. Realize that it could take several months to get your credit score back in order.

2. Get your finances together. Keep track of how much money you have coming in each month, and how much is going out. Once you assess your monthly cash flow, you’ll have an understanding of how much you can afford for a monthly mortgage payment. If you don’t like the number you’re left with, think about how you can change your spending habits. Gather all the necessary financial documents, such as your two most recent pay stubs, the previous 2 years’ W-2 forms, tax returns and the past two months of bank statements.

3. Calculate all costs and determine how much you can afford. A lot of first-time homebuyers forget to factor in added expenses to their mortgage payments. Your monthly mortgage payment will include principal and interest, real estate taxes, insurance, and private mortgage if you put less than 20 percent down. Don’t forget to factor in homeowners association dues, maintenance, and higher electric and water bills.

4. Get preapproved. After you’ve discovered what your comfortable spending on a home, talk to a TowneBank Mortgage loan officer to see how much you’re qualified to borrow. By obtaining a letter of preapproval, you can start the home buying process with confidence that you can obtain financing. Plus, you won’t waste time shopping for houses out of your price range. Just remember, just because you’ve been preapproved for a certain amount, doesn’t mean you have to spend that amount.

5. Don’t spend all your cash on the down payment. Although a big down payment can help slash your monthly mortgage payments, it’s important to not deplete your savings account. When something breaks, you need to make sure that you have enough funds to fix it. There are also additional costs associated with buying a house, such as moving costs, utility down payments, or the purchase of maintenance items such as tools or lawn movers.

6. When you’re looking at houses, focus on what’s important. Come up with a checklist of must-haves, and another checklist of nice-to-haves. Make sure you don’t sacrifice a must-have for a nice-to-have. Maybe you’ll have to live without the granite countertops to achieve your perfect location.

7. If you’re buying into a homeowners association, know the rules. Ask the homeowners association for their contract before you make a decision. Your HOA can govern how many or what type of pets you have, what type of alterations you can make, or the color of your home’s exterior. Take a look at their finances, insurance policies, fees, rules and fines, and meeting minutes to gain some insight. If your neighbors fail to pay their fees each month, you could be on the hook for their payments. Ask neighbors about their opinion of the HOA and any concerns they have.

8. Don’t finance any new purchases. Once you’ve been approved for a loan, you should not take out any new loans or open new lines of credit. You might be tempted to finance a new dining room table or leather sectional for the living room, but doing so could result in higher interest payments or even the loss of your loan. Wait until your loan closes before making these purchases.

Are you thinking about starting the home buying process? Talking to a local lender is a great first step! Contact McKim Beale, with TowneBank Mortgage, at and he can help get you started.

Tags: Buyers