Maps are Great for Directions-Not for Home Buying Decisions

By
Real Estate Agent with Integrity Real Estate Group

Some of us are old enough to remember maps, the free ones that you picked up at the gas station and opened up wide on the kitchen table to plan out your vacation.  The fun was watching your parents trying to refold them and stuff them in the glove compartment.  Today most people bypass the old fashion map for on-line for directions and often overlook the fact that a map only contains a small amount of the information you need to know about an area.

For someone getting ready to relocate to Northern Virginia checking out the map can give you a sense of where you are going and put locations in perspective.  You can get an idea of distance and learn the names of the local towns but a map can't take you to the next level.  A map doesn't know the difference between neighborhoods or the best commuter routes.  A map doesn't know where the shopping centers are or help you research schools for your children.  This is where a knowledgeable local Realtor® comes into play.

A recent call from a family getting ready for a move to Fort Belvoir put this in perspective.  The family had been looking at listings on line and felt they had narrowed down the areas they were interested in.  Their requirements were specific and the areas they selected made sense to a point.  When we started talking in more detail it became clear though that studying the the map and knowing the areas they were considering as the top places to live didn't match  reality.  In fact some of the neighborhoods they had eliminated from their list based on where they were on the map were the ones I would have suggested they consider first. 

After talking for awhile they began to understand that 45 miles on a Northern Virginia map didn't mean a 20 minute commute.  That more expensive didn't necessarily mean better value and I-95 wasn't the only way to commute to Fort Belvoir or to DC.   So they put the map away and decided they would trust the  advice of a "local" and though we will look at their top choices, we will also look at some of my suggested neighborhoods as well.

So when you pull out your map to make a decision about your upcoming move to Northern Virginia, pair it with the knowledge Realtor® and you may find that the two of us make a great combination.

Prince William and Fairfax County Map

 

©2008.  Cindy Jones  ""Maps are Great for Directions-Not for Home Buying Decisions"  All Rights Reserved

Posted by

                                   Real People*Real Lives*Real Estate

If you are interested in learning more about the Northern Virginia Real Estate market including Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax and Prince William Counties give Cindy Jones and Integrity Real Estate Group a call at 703-346-2213.

Military Relocation Specialist serving military families relocating to and from the Pentagon, Fort Belvoir, Quantico MCB and all of the Military District of Washington installations. 

Military Relocation Professional


Check out www.varealestatetalk.com and www.cjrealtygroup.com for more information.

Integrity Real Estate Group
 
Real People*Real Life*Real Estate

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia



 

 

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Rainmaker
246,317
Palm Properties l La Jolla Real Estate
La Jolla, CA

I agree!  Maps are for finding locations, not for finding out information about a community.  A real estate professional who is familiar with an area is a great source of information!

Sep 05, 2008 12:52 PM #1
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651,346
Courtney Cooper
All Seattle Homes for Sale: CooperJacobs.com - Seattle, WA
206-850-8841

This is so true!  Good info:) A map never tells the story.

Sep 05, 2008 01:02 PM #2
Rainer
21,127
Ed Lopez
Vantage Realty Group - New Bedford, MA

There is no substitute for a knowledgeable agent

Sep 05, 2008 01:48 PM #3
Rainmaker
478,987
Ritu Desai
Samson Properties - Ashburn, VA
Virginia Realtor-Fairfax/Loudoun/PW-703-625-4949

Hopefully this message gets to the buyers who are relocating. We the traffic in our area they depend on these maps to figure out their commute. No one can outsource real estate its needs a local /professional Realtor to help buyers understand the local area.

Sep 05, 2008 02:07 PM #4
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Susan-absolutely.  Most buyers figure this out but some who decide to go without representation can end up with an unpleasant surprise after settlement.

Sep 05, 2008 07:31 PM #5
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Courtney-thanks for stopping by.  I love maps I just know that when I want the real scoop I"ve learned to talk to someone who lives in the area to get the real scoop

Sep 05, 2008 07:36 PM #6
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Ed-you are absolutely correct!

Sep 05, 2008 07:36 PM #7
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Ritu-our area is notorious for strange traffic patterns and learning as many alternative routes as possible and public transportation will save you a lot of time and energy.

Sep 05, 2008 07:38 PM #8
Rainer
153,304
Ken Montville
RE/MAX United Real Estate - College Park, MD
The MD Suburbs of DC

The flip side to the map phenomonon is the "my firends tell me such and such is a good neighborhood" but they want to be 20 minutes from work or near Metro or in a good school district. Between the maps and the firends (who lived here 20 years ago) we really seem like we know what we're talking about.

Sep 05, 2008 08:42 PM #9
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Ken-nothing like a local to tell the true story of the area.

Sep 06, 2008 11:36 AM #10
Rainer
7,117
Sheila Santini
Waterfront and Boaters paradise Realtor! - Tarpon Springs, FL
GRI

Cindy, very well put, and with GPS and Google, Maps are definitely on there way out.

Sep 06, 2008 01:36 PM #11
Rainmaker
287,629
Pippa Mac
Chevaux Group Realtor, The Woodlands and Spring - The Woodlands, TX
The Woodlands TX Real Estate

Cindy ... how right you are!  Realtors have the specialized knowledge to help clients find the perfect home!

Sep 08, 2008 04:07 PM #13
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Sheila-I haven't sucumbed to a GPS yet but the old fashioned maps are long gone.  However none of them can replace a Realtor when it comes to the real knowledge of a community

Sep 08, 2008 04:33 PM #14
Rainmaker
104,848
Grace Keng
Keller Williams Realty Cupertino - Cupertino, CA
CRS, CDPE (408) 799-8887

You are right. Map is good but local advice is not there.

 

Sep 08, 2008 06:02 PM #15
Rainer
9,732
Marisa Whisel
Social Marketing Savvy - Viera, FL
Social Marketing for Real Estate Professionals

You definitely need the advice of a local real estate agent when moving to the DC suburbs. Having lived in Northern VA for many years, I get where you're coming from. Here near Scott AFB in IL, we get a lot of people who move here from Virginia and they are always amazed at our lack of traffic problems here! When I tell people that they can live 15 miles away and be on the base in 15-20 minutes, they can't believe it!

Sep 10, 2008 09:11 PM #16
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Cindy Jones
Integrity Real Estate Group - Woodbridge, VA
Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News

Marisa-looks as if you are living the military life and getting to know lots of great areas to live across the country.  Glad you landed at a location where the pace of life is slower and traffic jams don't mean hours stuck on the beltway.

Sep 11, 2008 12:23 AM #17
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Cindy Jones

Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News
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