The H.I.T. List – Hardware Style

Posted On June 30th, 2015 by McEnearney | No Comments


An easy and transforming DIY project – add style to your home by updating your hardware. This month’s HIT LIST (Home Improvement Tips) offers the ultimate style update, when small changes make a big difference!

Kitchen Fixin’ – Do you love your cabinets but are tired of the same old look? Transform a traditional style kitchen by adding some modern flare. Upgrade your cabinet pulls to give the room new style and a fresh look. You can also mix and match handles for a true custom look.

Touch of Vanity – Looking for a quick and easy bathroom upgrade? Try replacing the knobs or handles on your vanity. Simple to replace, and it’s a quick and easy weekend project to tackle.

Spray It – Don’t have the money to spend on new hardware but you’re still dying to spice up your space? Spray it. That’s right, they actually make a special metal paint for hardware projects like this. Sand it, spray it, let it dry and just like that you have a budget-friendly new look!

First Impressions – are lasting impressions! If your front door is looking dated, maybe all you need is new hardware. There are so many great options and styles available today that there’s no excuse for lackluster handles and knobs anymore.


Arrangement 101

Posted On June 26th, 2015 by McEnearney | No Comments

Furniture Sketch

Furniture arrangement may come easy to some, but it is a difficult art to master. It is easy to overcrowd a room with furniture or have it spread out too far and look bare. There is a technique for everything, and if you want to have a flowing design, then take a look at how rearranging can redefine your space.

Space Constraints – Let’s face it, the size of the room trumps all. It is what it is and you can’t do anything about it. If you are working with a small space, give careful consideration to measurements and number of pieces. Also consider wall-mounting lights to create more floor space. Finding the right size furniture and arranging it to accommodate the traffic pattern of the room will make it feel large.

Cut and Play – Find your best layout by measuring the room and all of your furniture, and then transfer this to paper – one quarter inch equals one foot. Cut out small shapes of your furniture and move the pieces around on the paper until you find the best positioning.

Odd Window – Is there a wall in the bedroom with an off-centered window, and it’s the only place for your bed? Hang floor length drapes behind the bed to center the room and still allow light to peak through. So long, awkward window.

Order in the Bedroom – When you arrange your bedroom, make sure to start with the bed first. After all, this is the most important piece of furniture in the room. Once the bed is placed, then you will see how easy it is to incorporate other pieces.

How’s it Hanging? – Your dining room’s biggest eye sore is an off-centered light. Either get a cool chain and swag it over to the center of the table, or get yourself a handy drywall professional to move it over and patch up the ceiling. The ceiling light needs to hang over the dining or breakfast table rather than the center of the room.

Correct arrangement makes a big difference in getting a home sold.

David Howell

Here’s why your home may be languishing on the market

Posted On June 25th, 2015 by David Howell | No Comments


We’ve had a very healthy spring market in the Washington area. Of course, some areas are faring better than others, and pockets in the District and in some of the nearby suburbs are seeing multiple offers and homes selling for more than list price.

By almost every measure, this is a seller’s market. And in a seller’s market, everything sells — right?

Well, not exactly. Despite a strong spring market, there are still plenty of properties that have not sold, and there are three market indicators that can help explain why the wannabe sellers are not getting their homes sold.


The first is the fall-through rate. Those are the homes that go under contract and, ultimately, do not go to settlement. As hard as this may be to believe, one in every eight homes that have received ratified contracts this year has not make it to closing. This may be due to home inspection issues or purchaser financing. But whatever the cause, 13 percent of sellers who initially think they have their home sold find that is not the case.

The second market indicator is homes that linger on the market. Right now, there are more than 3,000 homes in the immediate metro area that have been on the market for 90 days or longer. And it is not just the homes at the upper end of the market. More than 500 of those homes are priced under $300,000.

The third indicator is homes that are removed from the multiple listing service (MLS) without selling. In April, there were almost 1,000 homes that were on the market for at least 90 days that had expired as unsold or were withdrawn. Some of those may be relisted. However, to put it in perspective, there were just over 4,000 homes that went to settlement in April and 1,000 that were taken off the market.

Here are some tips for sellers with homes lingering on the market:

• Condition: Make sure everything is in ready-to-show condition. All the appliances and systems should be working properly, and the property should look great. Most buyers aren’t looking to take on projects, and a change in the condition of the home will have impact on marketability.

• Marketing: Sit down with your agent and take a fresh look at how the home is being marketed. If the condition of the house has changed, get new photos in the MLS and on the Internet.

• Consider taking the house off the market: Homes that have been on the market get “stale,” and buyers may think it isn’t selling because there’s something wrong. Let’s face it: People like what other people like and are wary if others haven’t made offers. In our market, taking a house off for at least 90 days resets the calculation of days on market in the MLS. That isn’t going to fool many people, but when it comes back on there will be a fresh group of prospective purchasers.

• Price: There’s an old saying that price fixes everything, and it does. Take an objective look at how your home stacks up against the competition, and get the price right. (If it had been priced right, it would have sold already!) Don’t do modest, frequent and incremental price reductions, because that actually hurts your chances and communicates to prospective purchasers that they can wait until you get it to a price they like. It’s harsh, but the house isn’t worth what you think it is — it’s worth what a ready, willing and able buyer thinks it is. Price your house to be able to say “no” to offers you may not like rather than not seeing any offers at all.

Does this mean that the market is shifting? No. In fact, we continue to see positive indicators across all jurisdictions. However, it does mean that proper marketing matters. Negotiating skills matter. And above all, price matters.

The price at which a home comes on the market is critically important. That requires careful research by a real estate agent and a seller who is willing to avoid the trap of believing that everything sells and they can ask whatever listing price they want. It requires listening to what the market is saying and making a price adjustment sooner rather than later if an offer doesn’t materialize.

Yes, it is a very good market, but don’t go in assuming everything sells. An appropriately priced home is guaranteed to get the seller’s home off the market faster.


Power Washing – Feel the Power!

Posted On June 23rd, 2015 by McEnearney | No Comments

Power Wash

It’s that time of year again where you may be wondering, should I replace my siding, the deck, or re-pave the driveway? Well, you might not have to do any of that. Instead take a trip to the local hardware store or consider hiring a professional to power wash away the grime. A pressure washer can remove years of build-up and reveal your home’s original shine.

Increase Value – According to the National Association of Realtors, when you pressure wash your entire house, it could possibly add significant value. We aren’t just talking a couple hundred, but potentially thousands of dollars; an affordable and easy way to bump up your home value.

Reach New Heights – It may not be a magic wand, but it will seem like it when you can finally get to those tough to reach areas. Keep the ladder in the garage and your feet placed safely on the ground. The high pressure in power washing can do wonders for hard to reach windows and higher walls.

Friendly to the Environment – The pressure of the water is all you need to get the job done! Power washing offers a chemical-free solution that is safe for your home and the environment, including the beautiful plants that surround your home.

Protect from Bacteria – Pressure washing is considered preventative maintenance for your home. Over the years and changes in seasons, your home can accumulate bacteria buildup of algae, mold, dirt, and mildew. This is something you want to keep off your home, especially since it can be health-threatening should it creep its way inside.

Curb Appeal – If you are thinking of selling your home, then it would be wise to have your home or parts of it, like sidewalks and porches, power washed to enhance your curb appeal. Potential buyers will walk up to the house and easily spot the oil stain on the driveway, mildew near the door, and dirt crawling up the siding. Get it done before putting it on the market and you won’t be the only one impressed.


Happy Father’s Day

Posted On June 21st, 2015 by McEnearney | No Comments

Ties and Bows

A dad is a little girl’s first love and a young boy’s dreams of what he wants to be. He is a hero and a protector, and he has a story to tell for every question in life. Today we honor all fathers and fatherhood and the importance of this role in our families and our home. It takes a special man to be a great dad. Whatever your celebration activities may be, we hope this Father’s Day is memorable and special.

…and may someone always be there to run to the door when you come home.

Happy Father’s Day
McEnearney Associates


Who’s Got the Summer Bug?

Posted On June 16th, 2015 by McEnearney | No Comments

Cartoon Bugs

And we hope it’s an itch to go the beach and not those nasty critters eating the garden. We know you thought carefully about what to plant in that garden, but not about those unexpected pests. Every bug has a purpose, and it just so happens there are some with a mission to ruin your hard work. Take into consideration these home remedies to help take control of those pesky pests.

Aphids – Be careful of these little buggers (wink wink), these guys are destructive. Also known as plant lice, aphids are pear-shaped, winged or wingless, and have a green or white-cottony form. They love to gather in clusters on the growing stems where they suck out the sap and spread like a virus. Get rid of them with a simple strong spray from a hose.

Japanese Beetles – Metallic blue or green with coppery colored wings, these beetles may be pretty but can do some hefty damage. They are voracious eaters consuming flowers and leaves, and will leave behind just the veins of the leaf. Roses and hibiscus are key targets. You can hand pick them and dispose in soapy water or set up beetle traps away from your precious beauties.

Snails and Slugs – The only thing snails are good for is escargot. Otherwise, get rid of them. Small, slimy and sneaky, snails and slugs tend to feed at night and on cloudy days leaving rasp holes in flowers and leaves. Snails are easy to pick up and dispose of at dusk, but another method is setting saucers of beer under plants. Laying copper strips in your flower beds will also do the trick.

Mealybug – Small cottony, sap-sucking insects secrete as they eat – gross! The secretion leads to plant disease as well as ants and mold. Grow nectar plants, such as sweet alyssum, to attract natural predators like ladybugs. (Great for the garden, you can even buy ladybugs at some stores!)

Tent Caterpillar – These hairy caterpillars are dark with areas of blue, white, black and orange. They build conspicuous silk nests in branches of host trees and are more of a nuisance than a gardening threat. A bad infestation can defoliate trees. Remove the nests with a high-pressure sprayer.

Enjoy the summer months and don’t let the pests bug you!


Perk Up Your Patio

Posted On June 9th, 2015 by McEnearney | No Comments

Potted Plants

Summer is here – but is your patio looking drab? City or the burbs, big or small, our outdoor space is a retreat away from the stresses of life and an opportunity to enjoy the beautiful outdoors. Perk up your patio, and perk up your down time. Give your outdoor space a fun, fresh new look with these easy and affordable decorating ideas.

Add Life – Every outdoor space needs life! Add some plants in color-popping pottery for a splash of color. Choose your pots and plants in differing heights and texture. Potted plants and flowers can fill an empty spot on the deck and provide a colorful background to an otherwise boring setting.

Cushion Comfort – Add some cushions to those uncomfortable and hard outdoor chairs! When you enter this space, you want to be able to enjoy it – comfortably. Outdoor cushions are a quick and easy way to transform a space with comfort and color. Select from numerous color and pattern options, and don’t forget to mix and match.

Rug it Out – Outdoor rugs are very popular and work great to bring together an outdoor area. This is a key item to visually create an outdoor room. Plus, it can hide or cover imperfections in cement pavers, brick, or wood planking that over time can become washed out, stained and cracked.

Private Oasis – If you have structural support within your patio, you will be able to create this whimsical look. Go out and purchase weather resistant drapes, a rod, or hooks and hang drapes outside. Depending on your privacy standards, you can completely enclose an outdoor section or add privacy to a patio to help set an entirely new mood.

Light the Night – Whenever you add luminaries to the mix, it will always create a beautiful ambiance. Create this look with hurricane glasses filled with sand or lanterns on the ground, flickering pillar candles on the tables, and stringed white lights on your outdoor greenery. Pour yourself a glass of wine and enjoy good conversation over a luminated night.


The H.I.T. LIST – Bathroom Rescue

Posted On June 3rd, 2015 by McEnearney | No Comments


Making a splash in this month’s HIT LIST (Home Improvement Tips), we show you how to take a bathroom from blah to Ahhh. Do you still have gold faucets, Hollywood lights over the mirrors, or how about a large flimsy mirror that came with the house when you bought it? Even in the smallest space, here are some tips to give any bathroom a new updo.

Add the Glam – If your bathroom or powder room is already updated but missing that one small touch, add some glam. Make a trip and find a unique mirror. Toss up some new accent shelves and refresh the items on your counter space to complete the new look.

Detail is Everything – Want to add more dimension to your space? Create a wainscoting wall covering with white painted bead board and paint the upper half of the wall in a fresh, rich color.

Vanity Do Over – Does your vanity have defined lines, awesome storage, good construction, but lacks design? It is an easy fix, by simply sanding it down, staining, priming, and painting it. Don’t be afraid to try a bright pop of color, like a cool blue, coral or green. Change out the hardware and viola! Looks brand new.

Tile Up – Create a low-cost transformation to your bathroom by adding simple white tile. Take it beyond the shower and tile up around the lower portion of the bathroom walls. This will create a fresh, modern, yet sophisticated feel and will appease even the smallest budget.

Rustic for the Win – Search for a farm house style console table. Wake up early on a Saturday morning and check out some local flea markets. This unique piece will add extra height and dimension to the room and is also sturdy enough to install a vessel sink. Add a touch of rustic with modern in this one-of-a-kind look.

See the Light – OK, it’s time to toss those Hollywood lights above your mirror. See your bathroom in a whole new light and swap out those drab fixtures for something sophisticated and dramatic. Keep it glamour by adding a chandelier and wall sconces.

If you are thinking about adding value to your home, now is a great time!


June Events

Posted On June 2nd, 2015 by McEnearney | No Comments


Fill your hot summer days with cool fun! There’s no excuse to stay indoors. Check out these great events happening around you and have the best summer yet.

Boating in DC
The docks are open! With multiple locations along the Potomac River, you can paddle board, kayak, canoe, or paddle boat. Depending on the location, you can even take classes like sunrise yoga on a paddle board.

The Source Theatre Summer Festival
June 5 – 28
Art is awesome. This three week-long event is brought to you by CulturalDC. Performances are located at Source Theatre on the U Street Corridor, where you will see brand new shows from across the nation. Tickets $15-20.

DC Jazz Festival
June 10 – 16
If you are a lover of jazz or want to listen to some cool tunes with some good friends, check out this year’s DC Jazz Festival. You can hear over 100 jazz performances at multiple venues and clubs around DC. Check the calendar for artists and dates.

Taste of Reston
June 19 – 20
Wine, dine and maybe do a little shopping. Enjoy live music, activities, food, and sunshine as you taste some of the region’s finest eateries at the Reston Town Center. Tickets $20.

Northern Virginia Brewfest
June 20 – 21
Brew-ha-ha! Experience more than 60 breweries featuring the best of American beers. You can also learn to brew your own and indulge in some serious comfort food, including chili, wings, barbeque… oh, and you might leave with an airbrushed tattoo. Tickets $25 in advance.

World Children’s Festival
June 30 – July 4
This event comes once every four years and should be on the top of your list. Watch the National Mall transform into a showcase featuring young artists and performers from around the world. Guests can also take part in crafts, activities and workshops.


We Joined U.S. Military on the Move

Posted On May 27th, 2015 by McEnearney | No Comments

 MOM Web Graphic

At McEnearney Associates, giving back is important to us. And who better to give back to than to those who protect our homes.

To honor our late founder, John McEnearney, and his many years of service in the military, McEnearney proudly joins forces with Leading Real Estate Companies of the World to offer the men and women of our military a unique rebate program to aid with the financing of buying or selling a home.

You protect our homes, now we can help you when you are ready to buy or sell yours. The U.S. Military on the Move rebate program is available to all active duty, retired military (20 years), and wounded warriors. It can be used with ANY lender and is based on the actual home sales price, not a range of values, resulting in higher rebates for you! What’s more? The credit is issued at settlement.

Local military markets served include: Joint Base Myer Henderson Hall, Pentagon, Marine Barracks, Fort Belvoir, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters, Washington Navy Yard, and Marine Corps Base Quantico.