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Alexandria City is an independent city located in the Commonwealth of Virginia, along the Potomac River's western bank. It is the northernmost piece of the collective known as Alexandria. Arlington County is at its northern border, and the rest of the city borders Fairfax County. It is only seven miles from downtown D.C., which makes homes in Alexandria the perfect option for commuters.
This vibrant city has seen some rapid growth in the past few years and many new residents have been drawn to homes for sale in Alexandria, VA, for its beauty, charm and convenience. In fact, the hardest part of your home search will likely be narrowing down the great selection of homes for sale in Alexandria, VA.
Alexandria City has been ranked 10th of 228 American cities for young professionals, 22nd of the best places to live in America, and 25th of the healthiest cities. Over the past few years, the Alexandria real estate market has seen quite a bit of economic growth. Alexandria has a bustling job market and is home to a few high-tech corporations, including the new headquarters for Amazon.
Alexandria City has a rich history that dates back 13,000 years. It was first settled by Native Americans and became one of Alexandria's busiest tobacco trading posts. It was home to the Nacotchtank and Tauxenent tribes in the 1600s, then settled by Scottish merchant John Alexander in 1749. It is mainly famous for its rich Colonial history. U.S. President George Washington called it home, and many of our founding fathers frequented sites that are still standing today, like Gadsby's Tavern. In 1791, Alexandria got swept up as part of the District of Columbia but was returned to Virginia in 1846. The City of Alexandria became an independent city in 1870.
Alexandria also served as a supply center during the Civil War, becoming a staging area for Union troops and remaining under the occupation of the military until the war ended. Between the late 17th century and early 18th century, several plantations were established. As Alexandria grew into a town, it became a major trading hub and was a staging area during the French and Indian War. The 20th century saw the town grow into what is now Alexandria City.
You can see how well preserved the history of Alexandria City is in its original architecture and museums, such as Carlyle House, known as the country's narrowest home; Gadsby's Tavern Museum, an inn from the revolutionary era; and Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museum, which is home to a huge array of herbs, medicines, and reagents of historical significance. When you run out of historical places to visit in Alexandria City, you can take a quick trip over to D.C. and its many historical offerings.
While Alexandria City is independent, it is also linked to other neighborhoods in Arlington and D.C. The heart of the city sits within the Capital Beltway (I-495) and is connected to the Metrorail service that takes you into D.C. You have access to three Metro stops that service the area: Braddock Road, King Street and Eisenhower Avenue. With its easy access to the rest of metro D.C., Alexandria homes for sale are the perfect place to live for commuters.
There are a lot of great homes for sale in Alexandria, VA. Whether you are looking for a recently constructed single-family home that provides a lot of space for you and yours to spread out, such as those on the market in Braddock Heights, or you prefer a cozy condo with endless amenities, you can find it in the Alexandria real estate market. At the same time, you can rest assured that there are homes on the market that fit every budget, including multi-million-dollar estates as well as single-family homes and townhomes priced much lower.
Alexandria homes give you the best of both worlds. You can rub elbows with the movers and shakers in D.C., then cross the river to relax at home in a quaint neighborhood of the Alexandria real estate market.
The Alexandria City real estate market includes diverse neighborhoods that will suit everyone. For those who want to live in an urban area, Del Ray and Old Town are popular options. If suburbia is more your thing, you should definitely visit the neighborhood of Rosemont. There are plenty of detached homes for sale in Alexandria, including historic homes in Old Town, where some properties were built as early as the 18th and 19th centuries. Offering 1,000 square feet or more of living space and private outdoor space, most of these Alexandria homes have been renovated yet maintain their original charm.
Old Town Alexandria is one of the most attractive neighborhoods in the Alexandria City real estate market. Founded in 1749, Old Town is entrenched in historical charm and considered to be the heart of Alexandria. You can almost hear the whispers of times past as you walk along its brick-lined streets and touch the walls of its 18th century architecture.
Old Town is one of the most walkable areas in the nation and home to more than 200 art galleries, vintage shops, boutiques, eclectic bistros, red brick buildings and cobblestone paths. The homes in this area range from 18th-century row houses to more modern single-family and condominium dwellings. Being so close to the Potomac River means you can enjoy waterside parks, scenic paths and bike trails. The community is also known for its musical shows, festivals, live theater performances and a number of other annual celebrations. Old Town is also home to Market Square, a marketplace that has been running since 1753.
If a close-knit community is what you are looking for, Del Ray is a picturesque and idyllic area of the Alexandria real estate market featuring beautiful homes set along tree-lined streets. Here you can find Colonial- and Tudor-style homes, townhouses, quaint arts and crafts bungalows, and condominiums. The hub of this neighborhood is Mount Vernon Avenue, which is home to a diverse blend of coffee shops, eateries, unique boutiques, and health and wellness businesses. The year-round festivals, events and parades allow residents to enjoy local music and art. In 1900, Del Ray only had a population of 130. Today, it is home to more than 20,000 residents.
If you are interested in Alexandria homes that provide easy access to public transportation, Rosemont is a great option. Homes range from smaller bungalows for people who need less space to large Craftsman-style homes with yards featuring mature trees, gorgeous landscaping and the occasional pool. There are also new homes being constructed in this conveniently located neighborhood, which potentially gives you the opportunity to customize the home to your specific tastes.
West End sits eight miles from downtown D.C. and has easy access to I-395. It's also home to Alexandria City's craft beer scene. From its historic parks to the bustling downtown area, this neighborhood of the Alexandria real estate market brings the best of both suburbia and the city. Single-family homes sit along winding roads and cul-de-sacs.
The Landmark neighborhood is the most dense residential area in West End. It was developed in the 1950s and consists of single-family homes, garden-style apartments, high-rise condominiums, and a few townhome communities that were built in the 1970s. The area also includes Seminary Valley, Brookville and Cameron Station. The well-known Landmark Mall that was developed in the mid-1960s was closed in 2017 but is set for redevelopment in the near future, which includes a public transportation connection to the Metro station at Van Dorn Street.
This lovely planned community is home to Colonial-style townhomes and condos. The area used to be home to an army installation that housed the Defense Logistical Agency. At the time of its planning, it sat just outside of Alexandria City's limits. This neighborhood of Alexandria homes is surrounded by beautiful city parks, including Ben Brenman Park, which has a dog park, athletic fields and picnic areas to enjoy. The park is also home to the West End Farmers Market.
The communities of Seminary West are located just within the Alexandria City limits and home to a variety of residential developments, including single-family homes, townhome communities, high-rise and garden condos and apartments, and three large living centers for seniors. In the midst of all this is Mark Center, a large commercial area that is home to Northern Virginia Community College's Alexandria Campus. There is also a Concert Hall and Arts Center, and two nature preserves. The Buddy Ford Nature Center and Dora Kelley Nature Park combine the largest area in Alexandria City for enjoying strolls in its many natural areas, hiking, bike trails, and year-round exhibits and programs for all ages to enjoy. This neighborhood is a good choice for multi-generational households seeking homes for sale in Alexandria, VA.
If you prefer the advantages of living in a townhome, such as enjoying the use of outdoor space without worrying about the upkeep, one of the many townhomes for sale in Alexandria is sure to be the perfect answer.
If you are on a budget, the townhome-style condos in Mayflower Square, ParkFairfax and Parkside at Alexandria offer a great place to start your search for Alexandria real estate. These Alexandria homes, built between the 1940s and 1960s, are anywhere from around 700 square feet to more than 1,000 square feet. Many of the townhomes in each community have undergone updates and renovations, and they all offer plenty of high-quality amenities, including swimming pools, tennis courts and common outdoor space.
If your budget is a bit more flexible, you have even more townhomes for sale in Alexandria to choose from. For example, Skyview Park has two- and three-story units available in several floorplan options. These spacious townhomes include an attached garage, large balconies and tons of living space. As an added bonus, the community offers outstanding amenities, including routine bus service to the Huntington Metro Station. Island Creek is another townhome community that has units available with as much as 2,200 square feet of living space, huge balconies overlooking the gated backyard space, and of course, all the amenities you could possibly want.
You can also find brand new townhome communities in the Alexandria real estate market, such as Cameron Park, a modern townhouse and single-family home development that is currently under construction in the West End. Alexandria homes in the community usually include between two and five bedrooms, making them a great size for a variety of home buyers.
Condos in Alexandria vary from cozy studios to multi-million-dollar condos with more than 2,000 square feet and stunning views of the Potomac River, such as those at The Oronoco in Old Town. Whether you are looking for a brand new condo or prefer one with a unique history, the Alexandria real estate market is sure to have the condo you are looking for.
You can find communities with less than 100 units, where you have the opportunity to really get to know your neighbors, such as Rosemont Station; or high-rise condo communities spread across several different towers, such as Carlyle Towers and River Towers. Historic condos with unique architectural features only found in homes built during the 19th century, such as those located in Swann Daingerfield, as well as newer buildings, including Isabella at Monticello Mews, can also be found on the Alexandria real estate market. (On a side note, Isabella at Monticello Mews offers residents the use of a large dog park, which is a definite plus if you are a dog owner or want to be.)
There are opportunities for potential buyers interested in buying land and building custom Alexandria homes with the help of the excellent builders and architects in the area. Most plots of land range in size from a quarter to a half an acre of land. Occasionally, you may even be able to find land for sale sitting along the banks of the Potomac River.
Alexandria is truly a great place to call home. Whether you are a first time buyer looking for homes for sale in Alexandria, VA, or you have purchased and sold so many homes that you have lost count, you'll find something in the Alexandria real estate market that meets your needs.
Home to some of the best shopping, art galleries, acclaimed museums and fine dining, Old Town Alexandria exudes a true blend of old world charm and cosmopolitan flare. Sitting on the majestic Potomac River waterfront, Old Town is the dining mecca of Washington D.C.’s social elite. Establishments that served America’s first president, George Washington, and other historic figures such as Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and James Madison are still in existence and thriving today.
You'll find a balanced mix of big-name chain stores, outlets and unique specialty boutiques in Alexandria City for all your shopping needs. Start at Old Town's walkable shopping center and then grab the free trolley to King Street’s mile-long strip of unique shops that range from antiques to high-end fashion shops. Visit Del Rey and its year-round farmers market for locally-sourced produce, home-baked goods, artisan foods and drinks, and much more.
From upscale restaurants to casual establishments, residents of Alexandria homes have a large variety of places to eat, including Magnolia's and its well-known brunch menu, or Lena's Woodfired Pizza. If breweries are your thing, you'll find many top-notch brewery stops, such as Port City Brewing Company, the oldest craft brewery in the D.C. area. Or you can check out Captain Gregory, a doughnut shop with a cocktail bar in the back.
Sweet Fire Donna is famous for its BBQ meals, melt-in-your-mouth cornbread, and spicy macaroni and cheese dishes. Or you can head over to Sunday in Saigon for truly authentic Vietnamese meals. Balkan Grill is another cozy, well-hidden place to enjoy a night out, and Aldo's Italian Kitchen is well-known for its generous portions of your favorite comfort foods. Vegetarians can visit Namaste for their specially made Nepalese and Indian vegetarian options.
There are so many places to visit in and around Alexandria City. One of these is Old Town Alexandria, a culturally diverse center for both Alexandria and D.C. Walk the cobblestone-lined streets to historically significant sites and famous restaurants. You'll see beautiful historical buildings alongside upscale and trendy shops, with more than 100 retail stores along King Street, a mile-long avenue of rich culture that will take you down to the waterfront.
Old Town sits on the eastern and southeastern area of Alexandria City along the Potomac River. It's the oldest section of the city. You can easily navigate around Alexandria on the free King Street Trolley, by bike, by boat or on foot. You can also access D.C. from the Metrorail on King Street in 17 minutes or take a 45-minute boat cruise to Georgetown.
Gadsby's Tavern is one of Alexandria's oldest and most famous taverns. Gadsby's consists of three buildings: the tavern itself, which was built in 1785; the Hotel, built in 1792; and the addition to the hotel that was built in 1878. It was the central part of Alexandria's economic, social, educational and political life. In 1963, it was designated as a National Historic Landmark and today is home to the famous Gadsby's Tavern Restaurant, the Taverns Museum, and Post 24 of the American Legion. The tavern operates out of the original dining area built in 1792 and serves up both modern and period food dishes.
Visiting the apothecary museum is like stepping into a Harry Potter book, with its odd bottles and medicinal remedies. It was owned by several generations of Quaker families and operated up until the Great Depression. Immediately after its closing, it was reopened in 1939 as the museum we know today. The artifacts on its shelves are exactly where they were on the day the apothecary closed its doors, from herbal remedies to the famous “hot drops'' cough syrup used by sick Union soldiers. You will find many interesting old-time remedies, some of which are the basis of what we use today.
Also known as the narrowest house in the nation, the Spite House was built … well, out of spite. The house was built in 1830. It is only seven feet wide, 25 feet deep, and has 325 square feet of space in its two stories. The painted brick walls of the homes on each side make up the interior walls for the home's living room. The reason it was built was to stop both people and horse-drawn carriages from loitering in what was then the alley of one of the adjacent homes. It's a much-loved home in the area and still in use today. You can find it on Queen Street in Old Town Alexandria.
Whether you are an aspiring artist or an art lover, you will find a lot of local art in the area. The Torpedo Factory Art Center is located in an old munitions factory. It was shut down after WWII, then bought 40 years later by the Art League of Alexandria. The art center is the nation's largest collection of more than 165 artist studios that are spread across a three-story campus. You can actually visit and watch while art is being created and buy pieces from the artists themselves.
Of the many amenities that Alexandria City has to offer, its beautiful green spaces and nature trails are loved most. Residents of Alexandria homes have about 950 acres of natural landscape to enjoy. This is spread across 30 recreational centers and 70 parks, making it a dream for lovers of the great outdoors. There are many paths for running and biking, many of which connect to other parks that border the river. The Mount Vernon Trail takes you through historic Old Town, or you can enjoy the water park at Cameron Run Regional Park. Huntley Meadows is a historic area and wildlife preserve, where you can watch local birds from viewing stations, and other animals in their natural habitat. Golf fans have their pick of several country clubs, golf courses and water-based recreational activities. Lastly, you have a wide range of events, festivals, and celebrations throughout the year for Alexandria real estate residents of all ages to enjoy.
Right now, the Alexandria City real estate market is a very competitive hot seller's market. We have been seeing a rise in the number of homes going on the market in the area, which is great news for buyers seeking a home for sale in Alexandria, VA. The low interest rates of 2020 had a hand in driving prices upward, and we are still seeing homes moving fast. There is a higher interest in townhomes and single-family homes compared to condominiums. We've also seen the value of homes in the D.C. area rising for some time, with many people migrating to the ever-growing tech center. Experts predict Alexandria home prices to keep rising steadily for a while, so now is a good time to buy if you've been waiting out the market or are looking for an investment that could have a potentially great return.
Alexandria City is known for its high concentration of top-rated public schools. The top-grade school for the area is Lyles-Crouch Elementary School, the top middle school is Key Middle School, and the top high school is T.C. Williams High School. There are also Charles Barrett Elementary and Maury Elementary Schools. The colleges in and around the area include Stratford University Alexandria Campus, Virginia Tech, and George Mason University. Plus, Alexandria’s close proximity to D.C. opens the door for even more educational options.
Property taxes will vary in Northern Virginia depending on what county or city you live in. Alexandria City is an independent city and the Alexandria real estate tax rate was set in 2019 to $1.13 per $100. This is a bit above the national average of 1.08 percent.
We've shared just a small part of everything that you can enjoy in the Alexandria real estate market and its variety of neighborhoods and communities. With its close location to many public transportation options and main roads, its top-rated schools, and its growing job market, Alexandria real estate is a great option for those who commute into D.C. or other areas for work. Whether you are looking to live in the quiet of the suburbs, the bustle of the city, or somewhere in between, we will help you find the right home for sale in Alexandria, VA.
If you’re in the market for real estate in Alexandria, give me a call at 703-462-0700 so I can help you find the right property. I grew up in Northern Virginia and know the area well.
If you own an Alexandria home and are considering selling in the next 12 months, contact me for a market analysis of your property and surrounding neighborhood. This will give you a good idea of its value in the current Alexandria real estate market.