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We've opened an All-Natural Soft Serve Ice Cream Shop in Williamsburg.

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October 7th, 2015 11:46 AM

Studio 4925 has opened in the same building as my office (4925 Centerville Road, Williamsburg, VA 23188).  It is a new store with art and gifts from local artists.  It is located in a small space but it is packed with local art, signs, wood work and gifts of all type, and it changes daily.  Next time you are on Centerville Road stop in and see what is new at Studio 4925.

Posted in:Williamsburg Virginia and tagged: Art Studio
Posted by David Hertzler, II on October 7th, 2015 11:46 AMLeave a Comment

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February 15th, 2015 11:41 AM

Hertzler Appraisals is constantly working on ways to speed up the appraisal process and lessen turn around times.  Our newest innovation is a Leica Disto 7500i laser measurer.  Although I have had several laser devices in the past (a Lowe's special), which I rarely used because of reliability, this new Disto is extremely accurate and can be used indoors and outdoors.


This device should decrease the amount of time needed on-site and reduce the number of shrubs I need to climb through. I have been using an IPad for several years, which increased the accuracy of building sketches because they are closed out on the job site as opposed to coming back to the office and making sure my numbers add up properly. 


Each year we try to add something new to the efficiency of the appraisal process.  Using mobile sketching, going paperless in the office, accepting credit cards, and now the new laser measuring device. Hertzler Appraisals is trying to stay innovative and continue learning.  These devices help speed up the appraisals process but cannot replace the knowledge we have in the Williamsburg housing market and our expertise in the art of appraising.


Posted by David Hertzler, II on February 15th, 2015 11:41 AMLeave a Comment

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February 1st, 2015 12:43 PM

When New Town was first being developed there was a rush of local businesses to the area.  Some of the older retail spaces became vacant despite their great locations and good exposure from passing traffic.

New Town is a great development and has a lot of good businesses, but it appears the rents are too high in some sections. I love walking around in New Town and enjoy the theater, restaurants and stores there.

I was happy to see Retro Daddio reopen in the shopping center across from Williamsburg Shopping Center.  I am reminded of them almost daily as I drive down Monticello Avenue.  Although they are in an older retail space, they are visible from passing traffic.  This building seems more fitting of "Retro" Daddio.  I remember this area being the center of shopping for the Williamsburg area. In high school we would go back and forth between Sal's restaurant and Milton's Pizza, and the Carmike Movie Theater which was in the same shopping center as Retro Daddio currently resides. 

Now there are discussions of government getting involved in redoing the Williamsburg Shopping Center. Why not let it naturally evolve and remodel instead of tearing down and starting over.  Use the existing structure and character of the current building.  It appears that Food Lion, Sal's, And Ace Hardware are all doing well there. 

I was sad to see the Williamsburg Outlet Mall razed.  I know the prior owners tried to make it work, but did the new owners have to start fresh again?  Couldn't they have worked with the County to use at least a portion of the building and existing parking lot?  It seems wasteful

I own the building that Aladdin Consignment occupies on Merrimac Trail and I have slowly been pumping money back into it to remodel the exterior and interior. In addition, Aladdin has made their store look great. 

I would love to see some of these older shopping centers fill up again with local businesses, and also national chains.  I think Trader Joes could have retrofitted any existing building in town and people would still flock to it.  Let's follow the lead of Retro Daddio and go retro, filling up some of these older shopping centers with good local businesses.

Posted by David Hertzler, II on February 1st, 2015 12:43 PMLeave a Comment

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January 26th, 2014 11:37 AM
Typically, Realtors are real good at valuing a home for sales purposes. However, if you don't have a sketch that lists your living area size from a prior appraisal than it is well worth your money to have your home measured by an Appraiser. Having an accurate square footage will help you price your home correctly, and also helps Realtors and Appraisers after the property has closed. Properties that sell are then used as comparable sales in future appraisals. Knowing the actual square footage, and separating above grade and below grade living areas is very helpful in pricing homes. For basics in home measuring see an archived blog of mine from December 8, 2008. Get your home measured and maybe you will find some additional square footage you didn't know you had.

Posted in:General
Posted by David Hertzler, II on January 26th, 2014 11:37 AMLeave a Comment

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I recently appraised a vacant lot in James City County.  Over the past seven years it has been difficult to find lot sales outside of planned subdivisions.  However, I was surprised to find eight fairly comparable lot sales that I could use in the appraisal.  

These lot sales, for the most part, were outside of planned subdivisions and ranged in size from 0.33 to 0.914 acres.  They ranged in price from $15,000 (needed an alternative septic system) to $85,000 (included a garage on the site). 

When I drove by the lots I was even more surprised because most of them already had a house under construction.  I counted four different builders constructing houses with living areas somewhere between 1,400 and 2,200 square feet. 

I observed the same trend in the New Kent County market.  Most of the homes, upon completion, would have a sales price of less than $300,000.  The confidence the local builders have to build speculative homes gives me encouragement for real estate in 2014.

Posted in:General
Posted by David Hertzler, II on January 14th, 2014 4:54 PMView Comments (1)

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I have been asked many times does school district dictate value? Here is the information I found concerning the three high schools in James City County and the City of Williamsburg. For the quarter ending December 7, 2013 Jamestown High School had the highest median sales price of $420,000, followed closely by Lafayette High School with $411,000. Warhill High School was considerably lower with a median sales price of $285,000, which is due primarily to the more rural location in the County. Jamestown High School has some of the higher priced subdivisions, including Kingsmill, and Governor's Land, and to a lessor extent Greensprings West and Monticello Woods. Lafayette High School has subdivisions such as Ford's Colony and Holly Hills. Warhill High School has a higher end subdivision in Stonehouse. Although Jamestown High School has a higher median price, it has a 9.8 month supply of inventory with a median days on market of 71. Lafayette has 8.8 months of inventory, with a lower days on market of 63. Warhill High School had the fewest median days on market of 53, and 8.9 months of inventory. Basically, Lafayette High School and Jamestown High School have very similar values, and although the median sales price of Warhill High School is the lowest, the homes tend to sell faster.

Posted in:General
Posted by David Hertzler, II on December 8th, 2013 4:17 PMLeave a Comment

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I have seen increased activity within Queens Lake recently.  The median sales price for the most recent quarter ($339,000) was up 4.0% from the same quarter one year prior ($326,000).  The quarter February 2013 to April 2013 was 3.1% higher than May to July 2013. 

Inventory appears in balance with a 3.9 month supply, based on 13 active listings and 3.33 sales per month.

Hopefully, this is a good sign for the rest of upper York County.


Posted in:General
Posted by David Hertzler, II on September 8th, 2013 4:53 PMLeave a Comment

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August 18th, 2013 9:49 PM

I attended the a la mode, inc. Mobile Appraiser Workshop this weekend (August 16th and 17th) in Baltimore, MD.  Since January 2012 I have been using the IPad for all of my on-site inspections, and have gotten rid of a clip board and pencil.  A harness holds my IPad around my neck so I can be hands free to measure the house.  My wife calls this my "Man Purse".  Building Sketches are made directly onto the IPad, information is gathered and entered, and photographs are also taken with the tablet.  This saves time on drawing and entering information back at the office.

Although I have been using this for about 1.5 years, the course gave many great ideas on speeding up my turnaround time on reports, and to insure accurate, quality reports in the Williamsburg area (James City, Upper York County, and New Kent). 

We, at Hertzler Appraisals, strive to make our reports better, and our turn times faster with new technology and continuing education.  Our goal is to have a paper free office.

Posted in:General
Posted by David Hertzler, II on August 18th, 2013 9:49 PMLeave a Comment

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November 19th, 2012 7:50 PM

Research using Williamsburg Multiple Listing Service was conducted for homes sold over the past year (May 2011 to May 2012) within James City County and the City of Williamsburg with Laminate counter tops, Corian counter tops, and Stone Counter tops.

Type of Counter           Number Sold            Range           Median Sales price

Laminate Counter tops         191       $41,000 to $555,000         $259,000

Corian Counter tops                 71       $187,500 to $1,285,000   $400,000

Granite Counter tops             216       $200,500 to $1,285,000    $408,375

If the searched was narrowed for homes built since 2003, the numbers are as follows:

Type of Counter         Number Sold         Range            Median Sales Price

Laminate Counter tops    58        $110,500 to $396,805         $261,500

Corian Counter tops         21         $255,000 to $1,010,000     $367,000

Granite Counter tops        94        $200,500 to $1,275,000     $408,375

This shows that new construction higher end homes are typically Corian or Granite. Houses with granite counter tops have a higher median sales price by approximately $41,000 than Corian counter tops. The median sales price for granite homes is $146,875 higher than that of homes with laminate counter tops. The highest sales price over the past year of a house built since 2003 with laminate counter tops is $396,805. It was located in the Marywood subdivision.

This information listed above does not indicate an adjustment for granite versus Corian versus Laminate; however, it does suggest what price ranges are expected to have upgraded counter tops.

Posted in:General
Posted by David Hertzler, II on November 19th, 2012 7:50 PMLeave a Comment

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