Northern Virginia Real Estate by Darren Robertson






Aug. 4, 2022

JUST LISTED! 13822 Rampant Lion Ct, Centreville - $534,900

Beautiful 2-level Townhome with Functional Open Layout & Huge Deck! Fantastic Location. Now for Sale in Centreville!

13822 Rampant Lion Ct. - JUST LISTED

3 Bedrooms | 3.5 Baths | 1900+ Fin. Sq. Ft.

Call us at 703-462-0700 or email us at to schedule a time to view this stunning property!

Special Features & Updates


  • Spacious & functional open layout
  • Welcoming foyer entry
  • HUGE eat-in kitchen features:
    • Stainless steel appliances
    • Pass-through window to dining room
    • Plenty of room for kitchen table, island, & more
    • Pantry
    • Walkout to deck
  • Living room opens to large dining room
  • Plantation shutters
  • Bay window
  • Half bathroom
  • Soft neutral paint colors


  • Expansive primary suite
    • En-suite bathroom
    • Dual closets
    • Plantation shutters
    • Lots of windows!
  • 2 additional spacious bedrooms
  • 2nd full bathroom


  • Finished walkout basement
  • Huge family room w/ cozy fireplace + room for home gym, home office & MORE!
  • Full bathroom
  • Full size washer/dryer
  • Bonus unfinished storage space


  • Entertainer's dream! Huge deck with stairs down to massive lower level patio.
  • Fenced rear yard
  • 2 reserved spaces + extra visitor tags


  • Pool, walking trails, tennis courts, basketball courts, & tot lot!
  • Just minutes from shopping, groceries, dining, & entertainment!
  • FANTASTIC location! Convenient to commuter routes & major highways.
  • Minutes from Bull Run Park/Winery
Aug. 19, 2021

JUST LISTED! 11149 Rock Garden Dr, Fairfax - $274,999

Bright and Charming 2-level Townhome-Style Condo - RARE 952 sq ft Unit - One of the LARGEST in the Complex! Now for Sale in Fairfax City!

11149 Rock Garden Dr

Call us at 703-462-0700 or email us at to schedule a time to view this stunning property!


  • 2-level townhome-style condo!
  • One of the LARGEST models in the community!
  • Updated kitchen features:
    • Granite counters
    • NEW luxury vinyl plank flooring 
    • White shaker cabinets
    • Breakfast bar w/ pendant lighting
  • Fresh neutral paint!
  • NEW carpet upstairs!
  • PREMIUM window treatments throughout!
  • Spacious primary bedroom w/ dual closets
  • Updated main-level 1/2 bath w/ wainscoting
  • Large, fenced private patio - backs to courtyard!
  • NEWER furnace (2020) & A/C (2018)


  • Assigned parking just steps from front door!
  • Ample guest parking
  • Fitness center, pool, & tot lot!
  • FANTASTIC location - lots of shopping, dining, & entertainment options nearby!
  • Commuter's dream - quick & easy access to I-66, Rt 50 & US-29!




March 16, 2021

What Are The Average HOA Fees In Northern Virginia?

Updated March 2021

average hoa fees in virginia

One of the most common questions clients ask me is about the average HOA fees in Northern Virginia.

An HOA fee, or homeowners association fee, is a monthly or quarterly payment for services and amenities provided in a particular community. It may be a neighborhood of single-detached homes, or a townhouse community. The HOA is commonly operated by a board of property owners elected by a majority of the other property owners.

Services typically include maintenance of and repairs in common areas, garbage disposal, and community security systems and personnel. Amenities vary depending on the community, but can include features such as swimming pools, tennis courts, walking trails, and tot lots.

It’s good to know the average HOA fees you’ll encounter as you begin your home search in Northern Virginia. Lots of homes in this area don’t have HOA fees, but some do. It is essential to factor in this information because it directly impacts your housing budget.

Average HOA Fees In Northern Virginia Neighborhoods

I sell a lot of properties with homeowners associations, and the average HOA fees I see are anywhere from $600 to $1,500 per year. These are considerably lower than condo fees, which are almost always considerably higher than HOA fees.

This number varies based on a lot of factors, including how many amenities the community has, and it doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with whether or not a community has more or less expensive homes. For instance, I recently sold a home for just under $1 million in an older community that had HOA fees of around $120 per year.

Square footage, however, does matter in some communities. For instance, a homeowner with a larger residence may pay higher HOA fees than a homeowner in the same community with a smaller property. This is based on the assumption that a bigger home requires more maintenance, such as a wider lawn area to mow and lodges more occupants that use the community’s services.

The location and the level of community upkeep required also play major roles in an HOA board’s decision on the amount property owners are charged.

Darren RobertsonLooking to buy or sell a home in Northern Virginia?
Contact me. Tel. (703) 462-0700

What Exactly Do HOA Fees Include?

The coverage of HOA dues varies as widely as the range of the fees mentioned above. An average homeowners association management fees typically involve these services: trash collection and snow removal, and landscaping and grounds maintenance.

If your community offers common recreation areas, such as a clubhouse with a swimming pool, park, or playground, then you may expect higher HOA fees. These would cover the electricity, water, Wi-Fi, pest control, and other utilities needed in the common areas.

An HOA board also needs to set aside reserve funds for emergency major repairs like replacing the old, worn-out clubhouse roof, or projects like parking resurfacing, swimming pool and exterior lighting repairs and replacements, etc.

In addition, the fees could involve HOA rules enforcement to ensure each residence’s curb appeal is properly maintained. This aspect is important in preserving or even increasing the value of properties within the community.

Are HOA Fees The Same Every Year?

Regular HOA fees are generally predictable because they follow current rates of utilities, salaries, and vendor prices in the county where the community is located. These expenses make up the bulk of the fees. Thus, an increase will be minimal, but is to be expected over time.

In some cases, an HOA board can authorize a special assessment, which is an additional amount that goes to the community’s fund reserves. It covers emergency repairs of damages occurring in common areas due to natural disasters or structural age. This fee can be added by the board by passing a resolution and then notifying the community. A poll among homeowners is not necessary.

Depending on the preferences of the homeowners, a special assessment can be charged either in a lump sum once a year or in increments on top of the regular monthly or quarterly dues.

What Kinds Of Homes Don’t Have HOA Fees?

Lots of communities with older homes don’t have HOA fees. For instance, as you get closer to D.C., you’ll find many neighborhoods with homes built in the 1940s and 1950s that don’t have homeowners associations.

Although most Northern Virginia townhome communities have homeowners associations, you can find some that don’t. For instance, in many areas of Arlington and Alexandria, it’s common to find brick duplexes and older brick row houses built in the 1940s and 1950s that don’t have HOAs. I recently helped some buyer clients find an awesome brick row house in the Del Ray area with no HOA.

Average HOA Fees In Northern Virginia FAQs

How Do You Calculate HOA Fees?

An HOA board makes a list of expenses related to maintenance, repairs, and utilities of all the common areas in the community, employees’ compensation, vendor services, and HOA management fees. Insurance is also considered an expense.

The total amount is then divided by the number of homes in the community. Some HOAs base it on each property’s size. Thus, homeowners occupying larger pieces of land would pay higher fees.

Is It Good To Buy A House With HOA?

It depends on your household’s needs and preferences. Some homeowners prefer to have the last word on the style and design of their home and yard, which may not align with an HOA’s rules. Others would pay for the convenience of having a well-maintained swimming pool, park, and playground within the neighborhood.

Do Renters Pay HOA?

Most landlords pay the HOA fees because delinquent payments can prompt the HOA to penalize or even foreclose on a property. This is a risk that very few homeowners are willing to place in the hands of their tenants.

What Is An HOA Initiation Fee?

Also called the buy-in fee, the HOA initiation fee is the amount charged to a property within the community upon transfer to another owner. This fee varies greatly - some communities don’t charge more than a small admin fee, while some communities charge a larger initial fee.

Who Pays The HOA Transfer Fees, The Buyer Or The Seller?

Usually, the buyer pays the HOA transfer fees, but sometimes, a seller absorbs it as part of their property’s purchase price. In certain instances, the buyer and the seller split the fee between them.

Is There A Penalty Imposed On Late Payments On HOA Fees?

Yes, delinquent accounts incur penalties. The amount differs per HOA, so it’s advisable to read the fine print on the board’s governing rules to set your expectations.

It’s also important to know that an HOA can issue a foreclosure on your property when payments are delayed for an extended period. However, most HOAs are open to payment plans. Thus, if you are going through financial challenges, it would be best to inform the board ahead of time and negotiate your payment terms.


Living in a community governed by a homeowners association has more advantages than disadvantages, and with a wide range of HOA fees available, you have plenty of options when choosing a home to purchase that fits both your lifestyle and your budget.

If you’re interested in comparing average HOA fees with average condo fees, you can check out this other article on my blog.

Email me at for a free list of the top 10 homes with zero HOA fees that are for sale in the area of your choice!

Darren RobertsonLooking to buy or sell a home in Northern Virginia?
Contact me. Tel. (703) 462-0700
Dec. 18, 2020

How Much Does A Home Inspection Cost In Virginia?

Updated December 2020

home inspection cost virginia

Incorporating the home inspection cost in Virginia into your budgeting when purchasing a home is very important. Many people forget to account for these costs when they are planning to buy, and that can lead them feeling overwhelmed when it comes time to handle the inspection.

Your home inspection costs in Northern Virginia will vary, depending on the quality of your inspector and the type and size of property you’re purchasing.

No matter which inspector you choose, you should always get a home inspection when purchasing real estate in Northern Virginia. You worked hard to save money for your home, so you should protect your investment when you go into your purchase contract.

To make sure you can make the most out of your home inspection, it’s important to understand how much they cost on average, what goes into a home inspection, and who is paying for the inspection.

A Table Of Contents For Home Inspection Cost In Virginia

How Much Is A Home Inspection In Virginia?

Many buyers have the same question: how much does a home inspection cost in Virginia?

The average price is going to depend on a number of factors:

  • Property size
  • Inspector experience
  • Type of home
  • Home location

Let’s break down the average costs based on the size and type of property you are having inspected.

How Much Is A Home Inspection In Virginia?

The biggest factor is going to be square footage, but single-family homes that have their own electric, plumping, and other systems that are completely separate from others will also cost more because of these factors. Townhomes and condos sometimes cost less when there are fewer systems to inspect, but this will depend on the specific property.

If you’re buying a single-family home, you should expect to pay anywhere from around $450 to $900, depending on the size of the property. For homes that are under 3,000 square feet, $450 to $600 is common, and townhomes that are around the same square footage often have comparable home inspection costs.

For larger homes that are over 4,000 or 5,000 square feet, your inspection will probably run you around $750 to $900. For a one-bedroom condo in Northern Virginia, $350 to $450 is common, and for a larger condo, it’s typical to pay around $400 to $500, depending on the square footage.

The range of home inspection costs in Virginia is likely to fall in the range of $350 to $900 depending on the specifics of the property. This is slightly above the national average.

Darren RobertsonLooking to buy or sell a home in Northern Virginia?
Contact me. Tel. (703) 462-0700

Home Inspection Fees FAQs

What’s Included In Home Inspection Fees?

Generally speaking, home inspection fees typically cover investigative inspection of the four major things:

  1. Roofing
  2. Structural/foundation
  3. Plumbing
  4. Electrical

Beyond these things, the inspection will usually cover included appliances as well as any other glaring safety hazards the inspector may come across.

Structural / Foundation

While inspecting, the inspector will be checking the structure to ensure there are no water leaks or cases of water intrusion in the home. Leaks can be a serious issue that leads to many problems, so this is incredibly important.

Roof Condition

The roof condition is important for the overall integrity of the home as well, so the inspector will evaluate the roof’s condition and ensure they do not see any leaks.

What’s Included In Home Inspection Fees?

Electrical System

Electrical problems can be a severe safety hazard and they can also be very costly to repair if they are left for too long. For this reason, inspectors typically take extra time and care while inspecting the electrical system to catch any problems early.

Additional Systems

While those four areas listed above are the most important systems that home inspections should include, the complete report needs to cover a lot of ground:

  • Heating and cooling systems
  • Plumping
  • Electrical system
  • Roof condition
  • Attic
  • Insulation safety
  • Walls and ceiling condition
  • Floor condition
  • Windows
  • Doors
  • Safety codes
  • Foundation
  • Basement
  • Other structural components

Some homebuyers may also want to consider adding specialty inspections to their inspection. These inspections are not necessary for every property but can be helpful in special cases:

  • Septic system
  • Well water supply
  • Radon risk
  • Asbestos risk
  • Termite risk
  • Foundation specialist

These specialist additions will add on to the inspection cost, and the cost can vary widely.

Who Usually Pays For Home Inspection Fees?

In most situations, the buyer is the one who will pay for the home inspection fees. The buying process is, however, a negotiation. It’s possible for a buyer to ask the seller to take on the cost of the home inspection as part of their offer, but this wouldn’t be typical.

How Do Condo Inspection Costs Compare?

When thinking about buying a condo in Northern Virginia, you might be wondering how the home inspection costs are going to compare to the usual home inspection costs.

Condo inspection cost can vary a lot depending on the type of condo, the layout of the condo, the size of the condo, and the structure of the building. Additionally, you will need to decide if you want to do a full condo inspection or just an interior inspection.

Interior inspections for a 1,000-square foot condo may cost as little as $300 to $350. Condos that have attached attics or garages will cost more. Contact a local inspector to get a more specific idea of what you can expect.

Is A Home Inspection Required In Virginia?

While most lenders will not require a home inspection for a buyer who is getting a home loan, home inspections are advisable in all cases to ensure you know what you are getting into with a new property.

Inspections Will Save You Money!

Though a home inspection is going to cost you upfront because of home inspection fees, you can expect to save money in the long term. Inspections may help you to identify problem areas to get the sellers to fix the issues before you buy, or you may be able to negotiate a better deal on your dream property thanks to the inspection.

Are you thinking of buying a home in Northern Virginia? Email me for a list of the top 10 homes you can buy for zero money down in your favorite neighborhood!

Darren RobertsonLooking to buy or sell a home in Northern Virginia?
Contact me. Tel. (703) 462-0700
Nov. 11, 2020

Just Listed! - 11717-C Karbon Hill Ct #708B, Reston, VA 20191

Spacious Ground Floor Condo w/ Stunning Wooded Views! - Now For Sale in Reston, VA!

Reston, VA Condo for Sale - Stunningly Updated 2Bed/1Bath

Call us at 703-462-0700 or email us at to schedule a time to view this stunning townhome!



  • CORNER unit w/ spacious & inviting open floorplan!
  • Gorgeous wide plank LVP flooring throughout!
  • Dramatic wood panel accent wall
  • BEAUTIFULLY updated kitchen featuring:
  • Creamy off-white cabinets
  • Stunning granite counters
  • Stainless steel double door refrigerator & range!
  • On-trend neutral paint
  • Huge primary bedroom w/ large walk-in closet, separate vanity area, & walkout to private patio!
  • Large dual-entry bathroom w/ gorgeously updated shower tile
  • Built-in bookcase
  • Washer/dryer in unit 
  • Expansive private patio w/ serene wooded VIEWS!


  • Gorgeous wooded condo community w/ lots of trees!
  • Amenities include:
  • Tennis courts 
  • Woodland trails
  • Tot lot
  • Access to FANTASTIC Reston Assoc. amenities, including pools, walking trails, tennis courts, lakes & more!
  • Pet-friendly community
  • Assigned parking
Oct. 29, 2020

Under Contract! 2772 Manhattan Pl, Vienna, VA 22180

Stunning End Unit Townhome Steps from Metro! - Now For Sale in Vienna, VA!

Vienna, VA Townhome for Sale - Stunningly Updated 3Bed/2.5Bath

Call us at 703-462-0700 or email us at to schedule a time to view this stunning townhome!


  • Inviting open layout FLOODED w/ natural light!
  • Gleaming hardwood flooring throughout THREE LEVELS!
  • Cozy gas fireplace
  • Elegant 9 ft ceilings
  • Neutral paint throughout 
  • Crown molding
  • Chair railing
  • Updated light fixtures
  • Recessed wall accent niches 
  • TONS of windows throughout!
  • BRIGHT & ROOMY open kitchen featuring:
  • Granite counters
  • ALL stainless steel appliances
  • Kitchen island
  • Pantry cabinets
  • Desk nook
  • Expansive master bedroom w/ large walk-in closet & en-suite full bathroom
  • Second master w/ walk-in closet & attached dual entry bathroom
  • Large third bedroom w/ walk-in closet
  • Welcoming foyer entry w/ half bath, coat closet, & secure garage access



  • Private balcony - perfect for grilling out!
  • Attached TWO CAR GARAGE 
  • Attractive brick front exterior
  • Low HOA fee!



  • FANTASTIC location - short walk to Dunn Loring Metro!
  • Walkable to shopping, dining, & entertainment at the Mosaic District!
  • Harris Teeter just steps away; MOM's Organic Market & Target very nearby!
  • Minutes from commuter routes including I-495, I-66 & Lee Hwy!
Oct. 28, 2020

Just Listed! - 1034 Valley Dr, Alexandria, VA 22302

Spacious Top Floor Condo with Wooded Views! - Now For Sale in Alexandria, VA!

Alexandria, VA Condo for Sale - Stunningly Updated 1Bed/1Bath

Call us at 703-462-0700 or email us at to schedule a time to view this remodeled condo!

**OPEN HOUSE: Saturday, October 31st: 1-3PM**


  • Spacious open floorplan offering lots of natural light!
  • GLEAMING hardwood floors throughout!
  • Fresh neutral paint throughout!
  • BEAUTIFULLY remodeled kitchen featuring:
  • Fresh white cabinets
  • Stunning granite counters
  • All stainless steel appliances!
  • Huge bedroom w/ large closet
  • TONS of storage space - coat closet & walk-in hall closet!
  • Washer/dryer in unit 
  • NEW light fixtures & updated white blinds
  • Serene wooded VIEWS
  • Private entrance to unit
  • Gorgeous community w/ lots of GREEN SPACE!


  • TERRIFIC amenities:
  • 3 swimming pools
  • 7 tennis courts
  • 2 volleyball courts
  • Basketball court
  • Exercise facility
  • Woodland trails
  • Tot lots
  • Pet-friendly community
  • FANTASTIC Alexandria City location - near Shirlington, Potomac Yard, Reagan Nat'l Airport & more!
Oct. 23, 2020

Under Contract! 7598 Lakeside Village Dr #I, Falls Church, VA 22042

Newly Remodeled Condo in Serene Lakefront Community - Now For Sale in Falls Church, VA!

Falls Church, VA Condo for Sale - Stunningly Updated 2Bed/2Bath

Call us at 703-462-0700 or email us at to schedule a time to view this remodeled condo!

**OPEN HOUSE: Saturday, October 24th, 1PM-3PM**

**OPEN HOUSE: Sunday, October 25th, 1PM-3PM**


  • Spacious open floorplan offering lots of natural light!
  • Expansive living/dining room w/ cozy wood burning fireplace & walkout to patio
  • GORGEOUSLY remodeled open kitchen featuring:
  • NEW stainless steel appliances
  • NEW quartz counters
  • Fresh white cabinets
  • Custom kitchen island bar w/ quartz counter & built-in wine storage
  • Gleaming hardwood floors throughout
  • FRESH neutral paint 
  • Custom faux-wood blinds
  • Huge master bedroom w/ en-suite bathroom, separate vanity area, built-in storage, & lots of closet space!
  • In-unit washer/dryer
  • High-end lighting controls throughout
  • Large private wood patio w/ beautiful VIEWS!


  • STUNNING lakefront community
  • Exclusive access to outdoor community pool & lakefront community center
  • Ample parking - 1 owner space & 2 visitor passes
  • Pet-friendly community


  • FANTASTIC LOCATION inside the Beltway!
  • Steps from Providence Rec Center; convenient to Dunn Loring Metro & Mosaic District shopping & dining!
Sept. 24, 2020

Just Listed! - 6574 Weyanoke Ct, Alexandria, VA 22312

Enchanting Cape Cod on Lush Half Acre Lot! - Now For Sale in Alexandria, VA!

Alexandria, VA Home for Sale - 3Bed/2Bath

Call us at 703-462-0700 or email us at to schedule a time to view this gorgeous home in Alexandria




  • Charming open layout w/ lots of character!
  • Gleaming hardwood flooring
  • Dramatic exposed wood beams
  • Cozy brick fireplace
  • Remodeled kitchen
  • On-trend gray cabinets
  • Granite counters
  • All stainless steel appliances
  • Stunning stone backsplash
  • Under cabinet lighting
  • Fresh neutral paint throughout
  • Spacious family room off living room w/ terra cotta tile flooring
  • Lots of windows bringing in tons of natural light!
  • Sought-after main level bedroom & updated full bathroom
  • Plantation shutters



  • Two additional large bedrooms 
  • Spacious, updated full bathroom 
  • Plenty of storage space



  • Bright finished basement
  • Fresh neutral paint throughout
  • Huge rec room w/ recessed lights
  • Large bonus/guest room w/ closet 
  • Finished laundry room w/ concrete double utility sink, separate vanity, & storage closets
  • Lots of extra storage space!


  • STUNNING private lot! Half acre of lush grounds w/ green grass, mature trees & flowering shrubs - your own private oasis!
  • Expansive deck w/ pergola - an entertainer’s dream!
  • Large, picturesque front yard 
  • Long driveway for plentiful off-street parking



  • FANTASTIC location - easy access to freeways, shopping, dining & more!
  • Short walk to Thomas Jefferson School for Science & Technology!
Sept. 24, 2020

Sold Over List! - 6402 The Parkway, Alexandria, VA 22310

Gorgeous One-Level Living in Your Own Private Retreat! - Now For Sale in Alexandria, VA!

Alexandria, VA Home for Sale - 4Bed/3Bath

Call us at 703-462-0700 or email us at to schedule a time to view this stunning updated home in Alexandria

**OPEN HOUSE: Saturday, September 26th: 1-3PM**

**OPEN HOUSE: Sunday, September 27th: 1-3PM**



  • Open layout w/ lots of natural light
  • Gleaming engineered hardwood flooring throughout
  • Neutral designer paint throughout
  • Recessed lighting 
  • Crown molding
  • Fully remodeled, roomy & inviting kitchen:
  • Rich wood cabinets
  • Granite counters
  • Subway tile backsplash
  • LED under cabinet lighting
  • All stainless steel appliances 
  • Pantry cabinet 
  • Breakfast bar
  • Bay window
  • Walkout to back patio
  • Large laundry room w/ newer GE washer & dryer (2018)
  • Spacious master bedroom w/ large walk-in closet & STUNNINGLY renovated en-suite bathroom:
  • Luxurious, oversized walk-in shower w/ glass enclosure & premium tile
  • Double vanity w/ marble top
  • Stylish tile flooring
  • Updated on-trend fixtures
  • Two additional bedrooms
  • Second updated bathroom
  • Huge in-law suite (w/ 4th bedroom):
  • Updated full bathroom
  • Full kitchen
  • Separate entrance
  • Lots of space - great to use as a vacation rental or guest suite!



  • Picture-perfect front porch!
  • Your own private retreat w/ lots of privacy- peaceful & secluded!
  • Professional landscaping & hardscaping throughout the front & back yard
  • Expansive, low maintenance paver & gravel patio area (2018), as well as concrete patio off kitchen
  • Expanded 2-car wide driveway (2020)
  • Newer wood privacy fence (2019)
  • Large 10’x8’ shed (2018)
  • Slate walkway on side of house (2019)
  • Newer roof (2017)
  • Newer Andersen glass storm door (2019)
  • Newer screens throughout exterior windows/doors (2019)
  • Many newer exterior light fixtures
  • Newer sewer line leading to street w/ two new cleanouts (2019)
  • 160 ft French drain leading out to the driveway (2018)