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Reston Real Estate: How to Spot a Hidden Housing Gem

by Eve Thompson — March 16, 2016 at 2:00 pm 1 Comment

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This is a sponsored post by Eve Thompson of Reston Real Estate.

In Reston, we have a number of apartments that were built in the 1970s that converted to condominiums in the late 1980s. Vantage Hill, Park Crest, and Ivy Oak are just a few of them.

11603 Vantage hillAs a Realtor, I always find them interesting. They are mostly tan brick with the ever-present Reston Brown trim. They tend to be a little on the boxy side, a little on the plain side; but most of them are set on really large land parcels. Some are set in the woods, others have open parklike areas, but they all have a lot of open space.

Vantage Hill sits on 15 beautifully wooded acres that have been designated a Backyard Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. That’s 15 acres for 152 units — or more than 4,000 square feet per unit. I don’t know where else you’d find anything approaching that amount of open space in a more recently built condominium.

The other surprise of these 1970s conversions is on the inside. By today’s standards, these units are really large. Ivy Oak units range from 1,760 to 1,875 square feet. Ivy Oak is also unique because the units are townhouse-style condominiums: they are on two levels so you don’t have someone living above you. The floor plan on the main level is very open and they have wood burning fireplaces.

When you look at the money for the space and the physical settings of these communities, they stack up pretty well against their more contemporary counterparts.

We all know the old saying of not judging a book by its cover — the same is true for property. You do yourself a disservice when you refuse to view a property based solely on your response to the outside. Take a look, and then decide.

Vantage Hill, Parkcrest, and Ivy Oak owners: tell us what you love about your neighborhood.

Photo: Remodeled kitchen in large Vantage Hill unit.

  • Guest

    Well, at these prices, there are precious few hidden gems in Reston. House hunters are finding, however, plenty of overpriced townhomes in sketchy condition because the current owners failed to update their properties or even perform basic maintenance over time. Figure the true cost of purchase plus necessary renovations and remodeling, and there are few true bargains.

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