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by PoP Sponsor January 5, 2018 at 12:15 pm 0

For being the first week of the New Year, there’s a surprising amount of open houses occurring this weekend–nearly 200. While this single digit weather isn’t too enticing for touring homes, the fact that those homes are on the market mean these places need sold ASAP. Throw on that long underwear, parka and 3 pairs of socks and go out and find your new home today.

For the entire DC Open House List click here.

  • 1623 11th Place NE — $725,000 — Trinidad
    Open Sat. 12-2PM — Erika Parker
    More blue in this house than a Smurf hut.
  • 800 4th Street SW #S104 — $275,000 — Southwest Waterfront
    Open Sun. 1-4PM — Scott Carpenter
    Zero bedrooms, 1 bathroom & 2 balconies.
  • 50 Florida Avenue NE #221 — $801,950 — Eckington
    Open Sun. 12-4PM — Jennie Mann
    If the condo is as nice as the renderings, this place will be incredible.
  • 3454 Nash Place SE — $595,000 — Penn Branch
    Open Sun. 1-3PM — Ann Young
    “Stunning Top-Down New Renovation.”
  • 2016 Hillyer Place NW — $2,250,000 — Dupont Circle
    Open Sat. & Sun. 1-3PM — Nora Burke
    Only 3 bedrooms, but it does have a fireplace in the master bathroom.

by PoP Sponsor January 4, 2018 at 12:15 pm 0

This column is written and sponsored by D.C. real estate agent and Edgewood resident Jessica Evans. Email her questions at  [email protected].

Whether you are planning to buy a house in 2018 or 5 years from now, it’s never too early to start planning. I’m sure that I sound like a broken record when I say that buying any kind of real estate is one of the biggest financial investments you will ever make, and that careful planning and preparation will help to ensure that your investment fits your objectives.

Knowing where to start when you are thinking about buying a home can be more than a little overwhelming, but let’s take it one step at a time. Like many aspects of buying a home, I can’t promise that it will be fun, but I can promise that it will be worthwhile.

Over the next few weeks I’ll be sharing with you my recommendations on each step of the home buying process, from planning and figuring out how you will pay for the house to the actual search.

Step 1: Define your objectives

I know that those email alerts that you get from Zillow or Redfin are super tempting, but I would caution that until you have a clear outline of your objectives it’s really easy to get off track and distracted before you ever even begin your search (If you’ve already done this, thats OK too, we can always work backwards if you’ve gotten ahead of yourself).

It’s completely natural to be excited and want to jump right into a home search, but I can’t caution strongly enough that in order to have a successful experience and outcome, planning is needed. (note: for the purposes of this post, and all of my posts, a house or home is not defined by a specific type of physical structure, whether its a condo, tiny house, McMansion or anything in-between).

The number one mistake that I see buyers make is getting ahead of themselves, finding a home that they think they want to buy before they have clearly defined their objectives. I definitely understand that the charm and character are irresistible, or the location is amazing, and that you will feel like you have found a once in a lifetime opportunity. (more…)

by PoP Sponsor January 3, 2018 at 12:15 pm 0

Real Estate Fresh Finds is a weekly selection of newly-listed properties in the District, brought to you by Real Living At Home. 

We’re now 3 days into 2018 and while that holiday break never feels quite long enough, it’s time to embrace the new year and begin focusing on making 2018 better than 2017. We know many of your New Year’s Resolutions are to purchase real estate. Check out some of our Fresh Finds to just hit the market and get to completing those resolutions before the rest of the world gives up their gym memberships come Feb. 1:

by PoP Sponsor December 29, 2017 at 12:15 pm 0

The District is still on its holiday hiatus with Christmas falling on a Monday and New Years Eve not until Sunday. If you’re one of the few still here enjoying the excess parking, light traffic and lack of tourists, why not take advantage of all the empty roads to visit some of the (few) open houses this weekend:

And finally, Happy New Year to all the PoPville readers!

by PoP Sponsor December 27, 2017 at 12:15 pm 0

Real Estate Fresh Finds is a weekly selection of newly-listed properties in the District, brought to you by Real Living At Home. 

While Buzzfeed and Huffington Post assemble their ‘top lists’ of the year for their Netflix series or biggest liars of the year (take one guess who’s #1), we decided to join in on the fun since there’s very few houses hitting the market 2 days after Christmas. So instead of our favorite Fresh Finds of the week, here’s a look back at some of our favorite homes to be sold in the District in 2017:

by PoP Sponsor December 22, 2017 at 12:15 pm 0

Christmas weekend brings us one of the lowest counts of open houses in the District all year. If you’re in the market and you see one, you should know that the seller is extremely motivated. As we’re closing down our offices early today, we’ve included some simple live-feed links below to help you find some of the few opens and go house shopping this weekend.

  • For those few Saturday open houses in DC click here.
  • For those few Sunday open houses in DC click here.
  • And for your typical, PoPville, afternoon animal fix: Christmas Edition

And finally, Happy Holidays to all of the PoPville readers!

by PoP Sponsor December 21, 2017 at 12:15 pm 0

This weekly column is written and sponsored by D.C. real estate agent and Edgewood resident Jessica Evans. Email her questions at  [email protected].

For the first time in a long time, buying a home in DC has gotten less expensive! While it may not offset rising prices, every little bit helps. In October 2017 a new benefit to first time homebuyers in DC went into effect, reducing the recordation tax that eligible buyers pay when they purchase their first home in DC.

The reduction is between 1-1.3% depending on the sales price, which is not a small amount of money with DC prices being what they are. In my research, there doesn’t seem to be a great deal of information available on this subject, so I wanted to share with you the specifics.

What is recordation tax?

Recordation tax is a one time tax that is paid at settlement on the purchase or sale of a property. This goes by different names and is a different amount in different areas, but in all cases it is essentially a tax on the sale that goes to the state, county or other jurisdiction that is calculated as a percentage of the sales price. This is different from property taxes which are paid annually or semi-annually. Recordation tax is one of the closing costs of purchasing real estate.

In DC, it is customary for a seller to pay the transfer tax and a buyer to pay the recordation tax. Before the first time home buyer (FTHB) recordation tax reduction, the amount paid for the transfer and recordation taxes were equal.

What is the new recordation tax amount?

How to Qualify

This gift doesn’t come without restrictions and is not automatically applied, rather buyers need to apply and qualify for the reduced recordation tax. The application with additional details can be found here. The main requirements include:

  • First-Time District Homebuyer
    • Either a current DC resident or plan to immediately become a DC resident after purchasing
    • Has not owned a residential property in DC
  • Income Restrictions
    • Calculated by the combined federal adjusted gross income for anyone who will live in the home
    • Maximum income limits based on number of people in household
      • 1: $139,140, 2: $158,940, 3: 178,740, 4: $198,540
  • Eligible Property
    • Property purchase price must be $625,000 or less
    • Houses, condos and co-ops are all eligible
  • Homestead Deduction Application must be included in application
    • Applicants must simultaneously apply for and qualify for the Homestead Exemption
    • Verifies that the property will be used as a primary residence and owner occupied

(more…)

by PoP Sponsor December 20, 2017 at 12:15 pm 0

Real Estate Fresh Finds is a weekly selection of newly-listed properties in the District, brought to you by Real Living At Home. 

Since the Christmas/Holiday season can be a bit slow for new listings, we figured rather than giving you a blah list of the few homes to hit the market this week, we’d highlight some notable sales that closed on either Christmas Eve or Day. We went back 15 years in the MLS to see what and how many were really closed on the holidays and while the average per year is fairly low, several years have boasted 10+ closings just in the District.

An average of just over 5 properties have closed per year over the last decade and a half on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. We’re betting that almost none of those actually had one of those dates originally written up in the contract.

For the (small) list of homes that actually hit the market this week, click here.

by PoP Sponsor December 18, 2017 at 1:15 pm 0

The Midlands Beer Garden in Park View is gearing up for a really fun New Years Eve party (early-bird tickets are $55) offering endless prosecco, a dinner buffet with tacos and other delicious treats from their kitchen and live music by the local reggae band, FeelFree!

Sip boozy hot cocoa around camp-fire tables, or cheers with bubbles inside with a 100 inch projector screens showing the NYC ball drop to toast 2018. The very next morning at 11 a.m. they are opening back up to cure that NYE hangover with an endless breakfast taco buffett and bottomless mimosas & bloodies for $20. Both projectors will be on along with all the HDTV’s showing the bowl games with sound.

New Years Eve will be ticketed event only, and you can purchase tickets here. New Years Day will be open to the public, but you can purchase tickets here ahead of time.

The Midlands Beer Garden has also been open for a year now, and to celebrate, they are offering a brand new happy hour, “BoGo local drafts & cocktails from 4 p.m. until midnight Monday through Thursday.”

by PoP Sponsor December 18, 2017 at 12:15 pm 0

This column is written and sponsored by Alan Lescht and Associates, PC, an employment litigation firm in Washington, DC, that handles cases involving contract disputes, wage and hour issues, discrimination and retaliation, wrongful termination, whistleblower retaliation and security clearances.

If you work for a staffing company, you may be entitled to overtime pay.

A federal court recently ordered a major staffing company, Randstad, to pay employees overtime. Four former employees sued for unpaid overtime. The employees’ job duties included marketing and selling Randstad’s services, recruiting and placing workers, overseeing placements and performing administrative and clerical tasks. The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ordered Randstad to pay these employees, as well as any others who performed the same job duties, overtime pay for all hours worked in excess of 40 per workweek.

Am I entitled to overtime?

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is a federal law that requires employers to pay certain employees overtime pay, which means employees must be paid at a rate of 1.5 times their regular hourly rate for any hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week. For example, say you make $10 per hour and worked 50 hours this week. Your employer must pay you $10 per hour for the first 40 hours, and $15 per hour for the remaining 10 hours.

However, certain employees, including some executives, administrative and professional employees, do not get overtime. These employees are considered “exempt.”

Whether an employee is exempt depends on several factors, including primary job duties. What matters is the employee’s actual day-to-day activities, rather than his/her title or position description. For example, in the Randstad case, the employees performed a mix of exempt and non-exempt job duties. However, the court decided that the employees were entitled to overtime because they spent the majority of their time on non-exempt tasks.

Other factors also determine whether you are exempt under the FLSA. These may include whether you are paid a salary or an hourly wage, and how much you earn.

Am I an exempt administrative employee?

Administrative employees are exempt if: (1) their primary duty is performing office or non-manual work that is directly related to management or general business operations; and (2) they exercise discretion and independent judgment about important matters. (more…)

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