Sophie, Home Buyer in Denver, CO

We are moving to Charlottesville to attend UVA Law School and are considering buying a condo or home versus renting an apartment.

Asked by Sophie, Denver, CO Mon May 7, 2012

We are unfamiliar with the area and were hoping to get information about where the real estate market is right now and if it's a smart time to buy.

Help the community by answering this question:


Margaret Dorrier Mais’ answer
I work for Ryan Homes & the real estate market has taken off in Charlottesville. We have taken 3 price increases in the last 3 months, interest rates are at record lows. SO, I'd say there's never been a better time to buy around here.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 27, 2013
I can offer owner financing on a newer condo within commuting distance to UVA. 5.75% interest rate with nothing down, 3.99% interest rate with 10% down. Call me at 540 487 0480 for more details!
Jeremy Vogan
Countryside HomeCrafters, LC
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 16, 2014
It's a good time to buy a townhome, or condo if it is in a lendable complex, not all condo's are lendable. The complex must have a higher percentage of owner occupied units, and be compliant with lenders. So that said, townhomes are always lendable, but best to buy a foreclosure or one that is less costly. Rentals are easy to come by now, but three weeks from now the story could be a bit different. There are some opportunities near UVA, and that is where I would send you an automated search from. Let me know if i can be of help.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 2, 2012
Great opportunity to do it now. Rent when you leave or sell, but condo's are a tough sell. SIngle family home may be a better idea. Townhome would work well too. Let me know if I can be of help.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 29, 2012
I would be very cautious about buying if you don't plan to be here long term. Many people do not expect price appreciation for the next couple of years, so you will be taking a significant gamble.
The area is full of people who bought during their school years, thinking they had a "can't miss" investment. Many of those people in recent years have been unloading their homes at a loss, if they can unload them at all.
Just be cautious, and don't go into the process with the notion that you will make money.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 14, 2012
Whether renting is better than buying depends on many factors particularly how fast prices and rents rise and how long you are planning to stay in your home.

Is it a good time to buy? Definitely. Interest rates are excellent and it's still a buyers market. So if you choose the right property, buying smart is definitely the winner. However, I would suggest using this link to help you make a better decision.

Best wishes and welcome to Charlottesville.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun May 13, 2012
Hello Sapphire,

Right now there are some excellent buys on condos in #Charlottesville. I have had many clients choose a condo because they are wanting maintenance free living, and to be located close to everything. We even have condo developments here that are FHA approved. I would love to help you in this exciting chapter of your life :)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 7, 2012
Thank you for your call
I went to Graduate school in Denver
please callme to discuss
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 7, 2012
please callme to discuss 434.981.0289
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 7, 2012
Welcome to Charlottesville, you're going to love it. Please look at my website and see all that Charlottesville has to offer. Congrats on UVA Law School acceptance, it's extremely competitive to get in and one of the top schools in the country as I'm sure you're aware.

Yes it is a good decision to purchase a condo or home, in fact your payment for the condo/home probably will be less than renting, and with the tax ramification as well, it's a certain win-win for you.

With interest rates at an all time low of 4% and very well priced properties in this area, you will be certainly pleased with your choices. I can share, show and sell you any property on the market and I've got 30 yrs. of Cville real estate to assist you in all your real estate needs.

email me or cal anytime
Karen J. Kehoe, RE/MAX 100% Club Hall of Fame, ABR,CRS,CDPE,CLHMS,SRES
RE/MAX Excellence Team of RE/MAX Assured Properties
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 7, 2012
Renting may be a better option if you're not confident you're going to be in the Charlottesville area for at least 5 years -…
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 7, 2012
The best general advice I can give is that if its cheaper to buy than rent, you should consider buying. You can enjoy it while you live there and then enjoy the benefits of a rental when you leave. At these interest rates, its possible to get several hundred dollars a month in positive cash flow as a rental. Its a great time to lock in really low long term leveraged debt. When you buy, the most ideal strategy is to make both an equity play and a cash flow play. By something distressed, renovate to force up the value and create equity. If you need an FHA loan, which is only 3.5% down, the best way to do it is with the FHA 203k loan http://( If you want to go conventional with 20% down, Wells Fargo is the only lender with a conventional renovation loan. The reason these loans are so powerful is that lending is so strict in this environment, homes need to be move in ready in order to qualify for financing - that means no broken windows, no holes in drywall, no plumbing leaks, etc. Little issues like that can create big discounts. Since no one can get a loan for the property, the price drops, Anywhere from 2-3x the cost of the renovation when you are doing new kitchens, bathrooms, or dealing with mold. The bigger the problem, the bigger the discount and the bigger the profit.

Depending on how you feel about renovations, if you want to just keep it simple, the cash flow rule is the easiest analysis tool - if its cheaper to own than rent and you want to keep it as a rental, buying is a good way to go. Not only for the cash flow but for the tax benefits.

Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 7, 2012
Here is our latest market report for the area :

Hope this helps?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 7, 2012
Many factors come into play in making such a decision, but there are lots of options currently available for sale for which your loan payment would be less than rent. Feel free to contact me if you would like mote info.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 7, 2012
It is a great time to buy. Interest rates are low and prices are too. If you are going to be in Charlottesville for 3 years it maay make sense to purchase rather than rent. Not to mention that if you move out of the Charlottesville area you will have a ready made investment property. I wish had bought one when I was attending UVA. There are several condo complexes not far from the law school. I have two on the market now. Let me know what you are looking for and I can send you some units to consider.

Mandy Yancey
Licensed to sell Real Estate in the Commonwealth of Virginia
Roy Wheeler Realty
1100 Dryden Ln
434-760-1882 (cell)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 7, 2012
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