Every home has a story
John Womeldorf knows that every home has a story. As an experienced realtor with a deep love for Williamsburg, John looks beyond the basic features of the homes he sells. In his “Every Home Has a Story” series, John introduces potential buyers to the aspects of a home that they can’t see by viewing it online or attending a showing. By interviewing the sellers and writing about what makes each home so special, John helps his clients go from trying to see themselves living in an unfamiliar house to envisioning their family moving into their dream home.
Gracious condominium living with a sought-after address
Sherrie Oliva bought her Williamsburg Woodlands condo 20 years ago. She says that one of the selling points at that time was the condo community’s close proximity to everything. As the saying goes, “location, location, location” and the location of this home cannot be beaten.
Located off of Jamestown Road less than two miles (and one traffic light) away from Merchants Square and Colonial Williamsburg, Sherrie was delighted to find a place that was so conveniently located to everything. The development is barely one block from Route 199, so it’s easy to jump on the interstate. For closer destinations, sidewalk and bicycle paths run the entire distance from the neighborhood to Colonial Williamsburg, so residents of The Woodlands can easily walk or bike into town.
“The location of this neighborhood was important to me,” says Sherrie. “I was working right down the street, near the crossroads of Jamestown Road and Route 199, and it just felt like you could get anywhere you wanted to go very quickly, but at the same time you are off the main roads. In fact, lots of people don’t even know this community is here!”
After the location, Sherrie says the home’s best feature is its view and open concept floor plan which lends itself well to entertaining.
“When you walk up the stairs and arrive at the top, the condo is just huge. There is no going from one small room to another small room. Instead, it’s a beautiful and open, airy space accented with a fireplace at one end and beautiful windows throughout.”
The Woodlands is a small and private community that consists of 44 condominiums. Home to a variety of people who live there, the accessibility of the units makes it a popular spot for retirees, but it also appeals to William & Mary graduate students given its close proximity to the university’s campus.
This particular condo is located on the second floor, so the views are especially lovely.
“I see trees, not tree trunks,” says Sherrie.
What it has to offer
The condominium is a single-level, second-floor unit with a wonderfully open floor plan, perfect for hosting family and entertaining friends. Boasting nearly 1,500 square feet, the elegant, neutrally decorated two-bedroom, two-bathroom home is enhanced by wooden accents, a recent kitchen renovation, and lighting upgrades.
“In addition to adding canned lights in the kitchen, I added lights in the coat closet and the second bedroom closet,” says Sherrie. “There are also ceiling lights over both the tub/shower and shower stall in the bathrooms.”
The floor plan features a spacious living room, complete with gas fireplace. The living room flows into a spectacular sunroom with floor-to-ceiling windows.
“The sunroom is a nice little nook area, but it also extends the living area,” says Sherrie. “So, there’s a nice feel of long flowing room with a lot of natural light.”
For many, the heart of a home is its kitchen and this one is no exception. A recent renovation combined the kitchen and dining room into a more expansive space by removing a wall between the two rooms. Then, coffered ceilings were added as was hardwood flooring throughout the kitchen and dining area. Farmhouse white cabinetry is complemented by granite countertops and a lovely tile backsplash. Brand-new appliances (including a stainless refrigerator and stove) were added to complete this warm gathering place.
“I do feel like the kitchen renovation elevated the desirability of the entire condo,” says Sherrie. “In addition to opening up that area, there was also a counter-height bar that kind of closed off the view into the kitchen area. I chose to decrease the height of the bar and add a curved extension so you can easily pull up two bar stools.”
There is wall-to-wall carpet in the rest of the condo’s abundant living spaces. The condo also boasts a den with built-in bookcases and entertainment armoire. This space could easily be used as a home office or a combination den/home office. Accent lighting enhances the den’s bookshelves and the fireplace, and canned lights in the kitchen area are dimmable which Sherrie says made a big improvement.
“In addition to the woodwork that was done in the kitchen/dining area, I also added crown molding because I think it adds such a lovely accent.”
Each room is beautifully and naturally enhanced by the soft sunlight that comes streaming in throughout the day. The well-lit and spacious primary bedroom features a walk-in closet and its own en suite bathroom with beautifully tiled floors.
The coup de grace, however, is the storage that comes with this condo. Because it’s a second-floor model, the unit has a walk-up attic, most of it with finished floors.
“I have had shelves built, and installed for storing clothing,” she says. “So, there is a lot of usable storage up there.”
A new HVAC system was installed approximately five years ago.
Condominium living in a neighborhood like The Woodlands differs in several respects from other forms of homeownership. Condominium unit owners own only the inside of their unit, and each owner also shares in the common property, including the outside of the building and the surrounding grounds, roadways and walkways.
The monthly HOA fee of $310 covers a Master insurance policy, water, trash pickup, all exterior maintenance and landscaping as well as the roof replacement and snow removal.
If you are searching for gracious and maintenance-free living with one of the best addresses in town, The Woodlands is a perfect choice. It’s hard to imagine condominium living in the city, with such a great location, but at the same time it feels somehow off the beaten path.
“There are so many plusses to this home and community,” says Sherrie. “There’s the convenience of being so close to town, while at the same enjoying the peace and quiet of the Woodlands and a feeling of being tucked away from it all.”
With this gem of a home, the community’s friendly neighbors, and maintenance-free living, you are bound to want to call The Woodlands home!
“My neighbors here have been so nice. I didn’t get to know everyone as well because I worked full-time, but people here know they can rely on each other.”
With a little park in the middle of the “woods,” the grounds are lovely as well. For those interested in birding or nature, it’s the ideal place.
Parking at the home is directly in front of the condo, allowing for easy access.
Schools: Residents of The Woodlands attend Williamsburg-James City County schools. This includes Mathew Elementary, Berkeley Middle and Lafayette High. Walsingham Academy, a private Catholic school for K-12 is within walking distance.
Psssst! I wanted to let you in on a little secret. While I am a real estate agent…I am a different kind of real estate agent. I am creating a revolution in realty by combining everything you love about this area all into one place. Known around town as Mr. Williamsburg, I combine my extensive knowledge of the Williamsburg, Richmond, Northern Neck and Hampton Roads areas with my expertise in helping buyers and sellers navigate the ever-changing local real estate market to create a top-notch experience that checks all of your boxes.
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Your real estate journey is just that…yours. I get that it’ll be unique. It needs a marketing plan and a committed real estate professional to guide you every step of the way. To talk further, you can reach me via phone or text at 757-254-8136 or through email at [email protected].
I look forward to serving your real estate needs and welcoming you to this place that I’m lucky enough to call home!
John Womeldorf, Mr. Williamsburg