Keen Investing: Apartments in McLean, Va.

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Relocating or purchasing a rental property in McLean, Va., could be a lucrative investment in the current market. The community is home to some of the nation’s hottest zip codes, with government officials, diplomats, and members of Congress living there because of its suburban environment and proximity to Washington, D.C.

McLean is home to some of the country’s priciest real estate, especially when looking at single-family homes. Many apartments in McLean, Va., are affordable, though, creating opportunities for savvy investors. This guide looks at McLean’s current real estate and rental markets.

An Overview of McLean

Over 50,000 people live in McLean, but the community is part of the National Capital Region and its 6.3 million inhabitants. McLean offers a slightly slower pace of life than Washington, D.C., and, along with neighboring Tysons and Arlington, it has numerous amenities for its residents.

Much of McLean’s popularity is due to its abundance of luxury homes and the high-profile shopping destinations in Tysons. The community’s median household income of over $242,000 also drives property values and attracts businesses to the area.

Market Trends to Watch in McLean

Buying new apartments in McLean, Va., or any property for that matter, can be an excellent investment. Keeping an eye on the market is crucial to timing your purchase right. Here’s how the market is currently shaking out:

It’s a Buyer’s Market

McLean is entering a buyer’s market, as some property values are dropping. The median sale price in the community remains high at $1.2 million, but one-bedroom properties have dropped in value by 2.5% from 2021 levels and currently have a median sale price of $295,000. There are also more homes on the market than this time last year.

Rents Remain High

Due to McLean being a high-income area, rental prices are far greater than you’d find in neighboring communities. Studio apartments typically rent for around $1,900, while luxury apartments in McLean, Va., with multiple bedrooms, can cost renters $6,000 or more per month. Owning real estate here can be incredibly lucrative, especially if you can take advantage of the buyer’s market.

Homes Are Selling Quickly

The slight downturn in some property values means buyers are quickly snapping up apartments when they see a good deal. The average sale time is currently 21 days, down over 47% from 2021. You’ll have to act quickly if you notice any tempting apartments for sale.

Market trends can change quickly, but the abundance of available properties in McLean makes it possible to find a deal. The result could be an apartment that pays for itself or appreciates rapidly in the coming years.

Five Reasons You Want to Live in McLean

Understanding why McLean is such a high-profile destination can help with your decision, especially if you’re looking to relocate to the community full-time. Many of D.C.’s best-known individuals live in McLean because of everything it offers. Here are some of the reasons:

1. It’s Close to D.C.

A suburb in Northern Virginia probably wouldn’t attract some of the world’s most influential people on its own, but the community’s proximity to Capitol Hill and other government entities makes it popular with the region’s elites. McLean is only about 11 miles from the U.S. Capitol, which is accessible via the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge, making it an easy commute for government officials. 

2. A Commuter Train Is Available

Traffic can be an issue when commuting to D.C., but taking the metro can eliminate some of the stress. The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority’s Silver Line treks directly from McLean Station to downtown Washington in about 24 minutes, making it an efficient way to travel. Taking the train also means you won’t have to find parking while spending time in D.C.

3. McLean Has Jobs

McLean relies on its proximity to Washington, D.C., for much of its economic development, but the community has some significant employers, too. The global headquarters for Capital One, Hilton Hotels, Freddie Mac, and Mars are all in McLean, creating high-paying jobs in the community. McLean is also home to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Central Intelligence Agency headquarters and is just nine miles from the Pentagon.

4. The Shopping Is Great

Downtown McLean is a small neighborhood with a few shops and some excellent local restaurants. Tysons Corner Center and the Tysons Galleria have legendary shopping scenes, though, with each mall featuring hundreds of boutiques, department stores, and eateries. Many visitors to the D.C. area venture to the McLean area to experience the shopping at these venues.

5. Outdoor Activities Are Nearby

The Greater D.C. area isn’t known for its outdoor activities, but there’s a surprising abundance of ways to get out into nature once you enter Virginia. Great Falls National Park extends into McLean and offers terrific hiking trails and waterfall viewing opportunities on the Potomac River. You can also head to Scott’s Run Nature Preserve for some hiking or Clemyjontri Park if you have kids looking for a playground, as you’re never far from an outdoor experience when living in McLean.

Buying an apartment in McLean, Va., ensures you can take advantage of all these amenities. These features are also why you’ll likely never have trouble finding a renter if you purchase an investment property in the area.

Get Help Finding Apartments in McLean, Va.

McLean’s real estate market remains pricey, but we’re entering a buyer’s market that could make it possible for more investors to get involved. It’s also a wonderful community in which to live, thanks to the high-end amenities it attracts. Those who rent their apartments out can use professional assistance to make the process easier.

Nomadic Real Estate offers property management services in McLean and throughout the Greater D.C. area. Our experienced team will vet tenants for you, handle essential maintenance, and collect rent, ensuring your time as a landlord goes smoothly. Contact Nomadic Real Estate to learn more about our property management services.

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Enhanced Reporting

Your portal includes a selection of extremely useful reports. Reports are available in the “Reports” section, and are distinct from the financial statements. Unlike financial statements which are static records, Reports are dynamic real-time records that will update with current data every time you view them. 

Scroll down to learn more about Reports:

Navigate to the "Reports" module in your portal:

  • Keep in mind, these reports are dynamic records. They will refresh to display current information every time you view them. 

Enhanced Rent Roll Report:

  • The Enhanced Rent Roll Report will show the rent amount, last payment date, move-in date, lease expiration date, and security deposit amount for each of your tenants. 
  • It will also show a portfolio summary with occupancy percentage, vacancy loss, and more!

Unit Comparison Report:

  • If you own multiple units (or buildings) with Nomadic, you’ll get access to the Unit Comparison Report. 
  • This report enables you to quickly compare financial performance between your units at a glance without toggling between individual reports. 

Income Statement Month-Over-Month:

  • The Income Statement Detail – Monthly Report serves as a month-over-month record of portfolio performance. You’ll see itemized income and expense categories and can track monthly. This report will update with fresh data every time you view it. 

Financial Statements

Financial statements will be published to your portal on a monthly basis. The statements are found in your Documents library, and provide a historical record of all financial performance. The statements serve as a snapshot of financial performance over a given period, and are static documents (unlike Reports, the statements do not update/change in real-time). 

Scroll down for more info about the Financial Statements in your Documents library:

The Documents area contains monthly financial statements:

  • The statements in the Documents are are static documents. They are posted to the portal once a month to serve as a historical record of financial performance. 

Download a statement to see month and YTD financials:

You'll also find a month-over-month operating statement:

Portal Communication Tool

You can use your owner portal to communicate with our team. Any messages you send through the portal will go straight to your Account Manager. When we reply, you’ll get an email notification and you’ll also see the message in your portal next time you log in. 

Here’s an overview of using the communication platform:

Click "Communications" and navigate to "Conversations":

  • The communications module will contain a record of all messages that you create through the portal. 

Click the "New Message" button and send your message:

Responses will show up in the conversation ticket:

  • You’ll get an email notification whenever you get a response, and you’ll also see the message in your portal next time you log in. 

You can reply in-line using the comment box:

Each conversation will be logged in its entirety:

Understanding the Ledger

Your portal includes a ledger with all transactions. The ledger is populated with data in real-time as transactions flow through our accounting software. Much of this information is also available in the Reports area, as well as the Statements in your Documents library, but the ledger is the most comprehensive resource for diving into the details. 

Please scroll through the sections below to get a better understanding of how to interpret the ledger. 

By default, transactions are sorted chronologically:

  • The date reflected in the lefthand column is the actual transaction date, not the “bill date”. This is the date the transaction was actually processed. 

If you have multiple properties with Nomadic, you'll see the address for each transaction in the "Location" column:

  • You can filter the ledger to look at just one property, all properties, or specific sets of properties. 
  • If you only have one property with us, you’ll just see the ledger for that property. 

The Description column displays the transaction type:

  • BILL: this is an expense transaction, such as for repair costs or management fees.
  • CHARGE: this is a transaction  billed to the tenant, most typically a rent payment. 
  • NACHA EXPORT: this is a credit we processed to your distribution account. This type of transaction is how you get paid! 

The Amount column shows the dollar value of each transaction:

  • Positive Amounts: if an amount is positive, it reflects a transaction that is payable to you. Typically, this will be a rent payment that we collected from your tenants. On occasion, a positive number could also signify a journal entry or credit adjustment. 
  • Negative Amounts:  if an amount is negative, this is a transaction that is either payable to Nomadic or is an amount that has already been paid to you. Typically this will be for repair costs or management/leasing fees. Owner draws (net distributions into your checking/savings account) also reflect as negative amounts, since they have already been paid to you. 

The Account Balance column shows a sum of positive/negative transactions at a given point in time:

  • Account Balance should always equal zero after a net distribution has been processed. When the balance is zero, this means that all expenses have been paid and you’ve received the remainder as net operating income, leaving a balance of zero (meaning: no one is due any money, as all funds have been distributed appropriately). 

Navigating the Propertyware Owner Portal

Your portal includes some extremely useful features that help you understand your property’s financial performance at a new level, with real-time transparency into every transaction.

Scroll through the snapshots below for an overview of portal navigation! If you need more help or have specific questions about using the portal, you can reach out to your Account Manager any time for a screen share. 

You can filter all info by date range or property:

View a snapshot of income and expenses on your dashboard:

See every transaction in real-time on your ledger:

Statements and forms will be posted to your documents library:

View a suite of real-time financial reports:

See a running list of all bills, and drill down for more detail:

Under Bill Details, you'll find dates/descriptions/amounts and more:

You can also communicate with your Account Manager through the portal:

How do net distributions work?

Net distributions keep your accounting clean and simple. Each month we’ll collect rent from the tenants, deduct any repair expenses for the previous month and any management/leasing fees for the current month, and credit the remaining net operating income to your account. 

You’ll receive a statement via email each time a net distribution is processed, and can view all transaction details in your Propertyware owner portal.