10 Things You Need to Know for a Quick and Easy Move

Does anyone actually like moving? Well no, but soon you’ll have the excitement of moving into your new home. However, packing and moving your boxes is a pain. If you have a lot of items, you will need a lot of manpower. Here are 10 quick and easy tips to help you move into your new home smoothly!

1. Start by getting rid of unused and old items. The fewer items you have to move, the quicker you can move them!

2. Begin to collect boxes, bubble wrap and old newspapers to cushion your valuable belongings.


3. Think about what perishable food you have and start eating it so you aren’t carting around fresh and frozen items.

4. Pack your non-essential items first such as books, non-season clothing, DVDs, etc.

5. Arrange for your mail to be forwarded to your new address.

6. Use the bigger boxes for the lightest objects which will prevent the boxes from becoming too heavy to lift.

7. Label your boxes for each room. You can use markers, colored tabs with a key sheet, or smart move packing tape!


8. Put moving essentials in clear plastic containers or bags for easy access, including nails, screws and other parts for objects to assemble items in your new home.

9. Label all electronic cords with a small piece of duct tape and wrap them so they don’t get tangled.

10. Last but not least – thank those who helped you move!


For more great moving suggestions – check out our Tips and Helpful Hints Pinterest Board!

Posted in DC Metro | Leave a comment

Ambrose Hills: Abundant in Improvements

Work began more than a year ago to transform what used to be a couple of auto body shops into a vibrant 76 lot townhouse neighborhood inside the beltway in Falls Church called Ambrose Hills. Land development has progressed at a slower pace than usual due to the challenging topography of the site and the additional upgrades needed to the public infrastructure. As part of the development we are excited to be improving the storm water and sanitary infrastructure in a private-public agreement with Fairfax County.

The additional storm sewer work will solve some the flooding issues that have plagued this stretch of Columbia Pike over the years. The new sanitary and storm lines run along a steep hill and through a section of Park Authority land. Our efforts in protecting the natural resources during the land development process made Ambrose Hills win the Best Protected Environmentally Sensitive Site award of the 2015 Fairfax County Land Conservation Award Program. When the work is complete close to 4 acres of land will be dedicated as open space.

February 2015 Infrastructure Work

February 2015

December 2015

December 2015

Some of the infrastructure work also involves improvements along Columbia Pike. We are widening and improving a section of the paved trail that runs along the frontage of our site which will link to the new sidewalk running along Powell Lane, improving the connectivity between neighborhoods. Phase 1 of the trail work is complete and the trail is currently open in an interim condition. We are also thrilled to be installing a new traffic light on Powell Lane which will make it a much safer intersection for both pedestrians and drivers.


Ambrose Hills is being built in 4 sections. Section 3 is currently complete and the first homeowners moved in a couple of months ago, how exciting! There is nothing more rewarding than to see years of planning slowly transforming into a neighborhood wHere families make their lives.

Ambrose Ext lo res_01

Ladysmith lo res_09

Posted in DC Metro | Leave a comment

Marlboro Riding: Beautiful New Homes, Close to Everywhere You Want to Be!

The rural feel of this neighborhood charms and surprises many, especially because it’s only six miles from the Capital Beltway. Located to the east of Washington, DC, it is popular among federal government employees and with personnel at Joint Base Andrews which is only about 6.5 miles away!


The Town of Upper Marlboro has a historic downtown area along Main Street, which is home to a variety of local businesses, as well as the Prince George’s County Courthouse, County Administration Building, the Board of Education and has a lake with walking paths that you can enjoy with your family in the springtime.


Just to the south of town is the Show Place Arena and Prince George’s Equestrian Center. The Show Place Arena will host the CAA 2016 Women’s Basketball Championship, concerts, boxing and professional wrestling events, trade shows, county fair and equestrian events. Woodmore Towne Center, anchored by Wegmans, is nearby. The area will get a boost in conveniences with the planned Westphalia Town Center which will offer abundant retail shops, restaurants, and cinema.


If you are looking for amazing function as well as style, look no further than Stanley Martin’s floorplans and home styles at Marlboro Riding. Traditional exterior architecture combined with contemporary open and airy floor plans are designed to comfortably host all your friends and family.

The Crosby

The Crosby

The Crosby

The Crosby

Marlboro riding has gorgeous homesites situated amidst trees and open green spaces are generously sized allowing you to maximize your space inside and out. There is an exquisite clubhouse in the heart of the community. Host a game night with family and friends, elegant private functions or exercise class to keep you in shape. Enjoy the quaint walking trails or watch the kids make new friends while playing on the playground. A great family lifestyle is just one of the benefits you’ll receive living in Marlboro Riding.

The  Crosby

The Crosby

Visit our website for more information on these homes!

Posted in DC Metro | Leave a comment

5 Steps for the Perfect Bath

Everyone tries to find ways to relax in the evenings or after a long work week. Everything in life seems to stress us out these days. Some find it in working out or going for a long walk, some even find it in music or a hobby of theirs, but you could find it in taking a nice long bath and have some alone time. We want to give you some tips for the perfect bath so you can fully relax after a stressful day!

The Travis at Westlake at Foothill Crossing in Charlottesville

1. Get rid of harsh lighting
When you are trying to relax do you want to do it with all of the lights on shining bright in your face? No. If you have a dimmer in your bathroom, turn the lights down. If not, turn them completely off.

2. Light a few candles
If you just turned off the lights, you may need some dim light to enjoy a good book or simply to make sure you don’t fall asleep. Candles are wonderful for any situation but especially when you’re taking a bath. Use certain scents that will help you de-stress and relax such as including baby powder, vanilla or lavender. Lavender has been shown to reduce anxiety levels which should help you fully let go of your stress.


3. Who doesn’t like a little salt?
Epsom salts will do wonders for the body especially in a bath. They sooth aches and pains, relax the nervous system and draw toxins from the body. They are said to create a relaxed feeling, improve sleep and help muscles function properly. I would recommend lavender or green tea salts.

4. Wine down
Have a glass of wine! Relax and take a load off. It’s been a long day you and deserve a treat. Pick your favorite red or white and pour a glass to enjoy while soaking. Try these cute wine glass holders that will keep your wine within an arm’s reach and out of the bathtub! https://www.etsy.com/listing/222663637/bathtub-shower-wine-glass-holder-pick


5. Turn on some tunes
If you’re the type who likes to zone out to music when you’re trying to relax check out Spotify for a ton of playlists to listen to. Try the “Bubble Bath and Wine” playlist or the “Bubble Bath” playlist. They are full of relaxing songs that will allow you to sit back and enjoy!

The Morgan at Glenmore in Charlottesville

For those of you who live in a Stanley Martin home – we have Kohler to thank for their amazing bathtubs!

Posted in DC Metro | Leave a comment

Preparation and Snow Removal Tips for Winterstorm Jonas

As the forecast continues to call for a significant amount of snow across the region, we wanted to share some tips for staying ahead of the weather. These will help with preparation and during the storm.


• Make sure all garden hoses are removed from hose bibs. Be sure to shut off and drain all hose bibs.

• Keep your garage overhead doors closed. Open them only as necessary to allow the automobiles in and out of the garage. It is also advisable to shovel snow away from your garage door.

• Plan for incremental removal of snow every two to four hours. This will help make the significant amount of snow more manageable.

• Don’t forget your decks when clearing off snow. These should also be cleared every two to four hours depending on snowfall.

• Be sure to keep snow clear from all exterior doors.

• Keep exterior heat pump units clear from significant snow buildup to prevent freezing of the unit.

• Remember that the plowing companies will have a hard time keeping up with the snowfall they are predicting. Be patient, they will get to your streets.

• If any power outages occur, please make sure to contact your electric utility company for updates.

• As the snow starts to melt, make sure to keep areaway drains and window wells clear of debris

Stay safe and warm!

Stanley Martin Homes Warranty Department

Posted in DC Metro | Leave a comment

Olive Chapel Park: Raleigh’s Pride and Joy

With only 10 new single family homes remaining, Olive Chapel Park offers an intimate community with excellent amenities for families of all sizes. Summer is still a few months away, but when it is finally here, there is one of many reasons you will wish you lived at Olive Chapel Park: the amenities!


Along with the clubhouse and adjacent meeting rooms, homeowners will enjoy other amenities such as a movie room with theater style seating, and exercise gym.

Clubhouse OCP 032

Clubhouse OCP 031

Homeowners can also head outside to enjoy an outdoor pool and tennis courts. At Olive Chapel Park, you can spend your summer days relaxing without even leaving the neighborhood – how amazing is that?

Clubhouse OCP 034

Clubhouse OCP 039

Olive Chapel Park is in an incredible location in the heart of Apex, NC. It is within just a few miles of the best shopping and dining of the city including the popular Beaver Creek Crossings.

Olive Chapel Park is just minutes from Apex Jaycee Park (insert link), where you can stroll through the park, hit some balls at the batting cages, or grill out with your friends and family. With this 23 acre park just down the road, you will not run short of fun, outdoor things to do with the family.


Just a few miles away, homeowners will enjoy the ambiance of historic Apex. In addition to its year-round shopping and dining, Downtown Apex hosts many unique events and programs throughout the year. They host a farmer’s market in the spring and summer along with different festivals throughout the year that include dancing, music, art and food. You can find a list of their year round events here.


Visit our website for more information on Olive Chapel Park.

Posted in DC Metro | Leave a comment

50 Years and Counting: New Stanley Martin Communities for 2016

Thinking about purchasing a new home in 2016? You’re in luck – Stanley Martin Homes has many great communities that are planned to open this year. Stanley Martin Homes has been building new homes and neighborhoods for 50 years and is excited to offer some of our best homes and locations in 2016. Here is an exclusive sneak peek at this year’s projects. Stay tuned to our website to learn more about these communities and to join our VIP lists.

Embrey Mill

Located in Stafford County, Embrey Mill will be comprised of 56 Single Family Homes. This community will be located across the street from one of our communities that is currently open for sale, Westgate, on Austin Ridge Drive. Embrey Mill will be opening this month and will include two brand new single family home floor plans: The Middleton and The Clayton. The Middleton will feature a large open floor plan on the main floor with four additional bedrooms on the upper level. With a pool, clubhouse, cafe, walking trails, fitness center, playgrounds and more, there are amenities for everyone to enjoy.

From EmbreyMill.com

From EmbreyMill.com

Read More about this community.

William Square

William Square is also scheduled to open this month. William Square is a community of 30 condominiums and will sport 2 new floorplans: The Beekman and Gramercy. Each condo has 3 bedrooms and a 1 car garage. These new homes in Prince William County are in a great location! William Square is in close proximity to I-95 and many shopping centers including: Crossing West Shopping Center, Crossing East Shopping Center, Prince William Shopping Center and Potomac Mills.

From simon.com

From simon.com

Chesterfield Landing

We will be opening Chesterfield Landing for sale in February. Located off of Crozet Avenue just outside of Charlottesville, this new home community is comprised of 25 single family homes. We will be offering 4 of our most popular home designs: The Carey, The Pennington, The Farmville, and The Travis. These homes include both craftsman style facades and first floor living. The both of best worlds are offered at Chesterfield Landing.

Free State Run

Free State Run is scheduled to open in March and will be located in Charlottesville, VA. This community will consist of 26 single family villa style homes. We will be featuring a brand new floor plan at this community, The Gardiner. This new home features a first floor master, 2 car garage and 2 additional bedrooms upstairs. Located near Rio Road, homeowners will experience the luxuries of new construction amidst the charm and conveniences of Downtown Charlottesville.

Gardiner Elevation B

Gardiner Elevation B


Approximately 1 mile from I-495 and Andrews Air Force Base, Parkside is scheduled to open in the summer of 2016, and will be a very attractive location for many! Located in Prince George’s County, Maryland, Parkside is made up of condos, townhomes and single family homes. This community of new homes in Prince George’s County allows homebuyers to enjoy a convenient lifestyle near shopping, dining and major commuting roads. Parkside also offers numerous amenities such as a community center, swimming pool, baseball and soccer fields, tennis courts and an outdoor amphitheater! Parkside will have everything you want and more.

Windsor Hill

Windsor Hill is going to include 27 single family homes in Prince William County and will be open for sales in July this year. This neighborhood is located in Triangle near the intersection of Fuller Heights Road and Windsor Road. Home designs offered in this neighborhood include The Harrison, The Carey, and The Westover. With I-95 less than 3 miles away, residents will enjoy a commute that allows for more time spent shopping and dining at popular destinations such as Dumfries Shopping Center and Dumfries Plaza Shopping Center.

Posted in DC Metro | Leave a comment

Icing on the Cake: Finishes That Make Your New Home Shine

We have some exciting news! We have just built our first ever Travis home design in Charlottesville. The Travis was built in Westlake at Foothill Crossing which resides in Crozet, Virginia – just outside of Charlottesville.

Not only is the outside of this home gorgeous, but the inside is just as phenomenal. We worked with Reico Kitchen and Bath to design our kitchen and bathrooms and their finishes came out amazing!


In the Travis kitchen, there is a combination of two finishes – the darker finish is a stain called Dusk on Maple and the painted finish is Cotton on Maple. Kristol Faucheux, a Design Consultant at Reico told us that both finishes are very popular right now, but the Cotton has always been a classic.

She said, “With grey tones being so trendy right now in home décor and elsewhere, the Dusk finish is definitely becoming more and more desired.”

In the master bathroom, the finish is a stain called Kona on Maple. This finish, which is an Espresso/Wenge looking color, along with the Dusk is also very popular. According to Kristol, new homebuyers are loving the rich look these two darker tones provide.


As Andre Morrison said from L&L Flooring, “What is demonstrated in the model is the new wave of what homebuyers envision in their homes.”

bathroom wall

L&L Flooring created this gorgeous accent wall in the bathroom seen above. The product is Daltile stacked stone Dynasty Mountain to the ceiling – gorgeous!

bar sink

The most amazing area to me in that house was the Wet Bar, with that Gorgeous Woodstone Leather granite for the countertop and full height backsplash. The different colors and patterns will really wow your guests!

Visit our website to find out more about our new homes for sale in Charlottesville and tour our new decorated model homes.

Posted in DC Metro | Leave a comment

Cute Halloween Recipes

Halloween is right around the corner and along with the holiday come the holiday treats. We have gorgeous kitchens to bake in especially because of our amazing amount of counter space and the option to have a double oven in your new kitchen.

Here are some cute Halloween recipes to make in your new Stanley Martin kitchen!

Playful Pumpkin Sandwich Cookies

- Ingredients
-1 package Pillsbury™ Ready to Bake!™ pumpkin shape sugar cookies
-1 container (1 lb) vanilla or chocolate creamy ready-to-spread frosting
-Assorted candy sprinkles

- Directions
1.Preheat the oven to 350°F and Bake cookies as directed on package
2.Take the cookies out when they are done and let them cool
3.Add 2 tablespoons of frosting to one cookie, and sandwich with another cookie
4.Roll edges in candies


Candy Corn Pretzel Hugs

-Circle or square-shaped pretzels
-Hershey ‘s Kisses Hugs (or any flavor Kiss)
-Candy corn

1.Preheat oven to 250F degrees.
2.Line baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Align pretzels on the sheet. Unwrap Hugs and place one on each pretzel. Stick in the oven until the hug begins to melt down. Mine takes about 4 minutes.
3.While the Hugs are melting in the oven, get your candy corn ready because you will have to move quickly once the pretzels are out of the oven.
4.Remove pretzel hugs from oven and gently press a candy corn down on each one. The Hug should flatten out when you press the candy corn on it. If it is not flattening out, place the pretzel hugs back in the oven for 30 more seconds.
5.Let the pretzel hugs cool completely and let the chocolate set for about 10 minutes in the refrigerator. These are a great make ahead treat: make them 1-3 days before you need them and store covered in the refrigerator.


Halloween Bundt Cake

-1 box (15.25 oz.) white cake mix
-Ingredients listed on box to make cake
-Orange, purple, black and green food coloring
-1 container (12 oz.) white frosting
-Halloween sprinkles

1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease a 12-cup bundt pan and set aside.2. Make the cake batter as directed on box using water, oil and eggs. Pour one cup of cake batter into a small bowl; stir in orange food coloring until well mixed. Pour another cup of cake batter into a separate small bowl; stir in purple food coloring until well mixed. Repeat with one cup of cake batter and the black food coloring. Tint the remaining cake batter green.
3. Pour the orange cake batter into the bottom of the pan. Carefully pour the purple batter over the orange batter. Carefully pour the black batter over the purple. Carefully pour the green batter over the black batter. These layers do not necessarily need to “cover” each other. Just pour it in so the colors don’t mix, but rather, just rest on top of each other in the pan.
4. Bake as directed on box for a bundt pan or until a toothpick inserted near comes out clean. Cool cake in the pan for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, place a cooling rack over a cookie sheet. Turn the cake pan upside down onto the cooling rack. Cool the cake completely, about 30 minutes.
5. When the cake is cooled, divide the frosting evenly into 4 microwaveable bowls. Add one color of food coloring to each of the bowls; mix well. Microwave one bowl of frosting uncovered on HIGH a few seconds until smooth enough to drizzle over the cake. With a spoon, drizzle all of the first bowl of the microwaved frosting all over the cake, back and forth around the cake in a striping pattern. Repeat with remaining bowls of frosting. Make sure you can see the layers of frosting colors as you make the cake. Top the cake with sprinkles.


Follow our Holiday Fun board on Pinterest for more awesome recipes!

Posted in DC Metro | Leave a comment

The Luxuries of Yates Mill Estates

Raleigh, North Carolina is one of the most beautiful up and coming neighborhoods on the east coast – and for good reason! Downtown Raleigh offers amazing innovative restaurants, cute retail shops, and countless events featuring the arts and lots of live music!

What an amazing place to visit – and even a better one to live! The fun doesn’t end in the city though – Raleigh has some great little towns just outside of the city like Cary – featuring an even more artsy atmosphere and small local business that really make this area feel close knit and small-town.

Downtown Raleigh

Downtown Raleigh

Just outside of Cary is where we have decided to build our most recent neighborhood with a gorgeous new model home – Yates Mill Estates. This new neighborhood features our most desirable single family homes – larger ones for families looking to grow, as well as smaller ranch style homes for those looking to downsize!

Yates Mill Estates is located off of Yates Mill Pond Road near the Cary Crossroads Shopping Center; just 10 minutes from downtown Raleigh, 5 miles from North Carolina State University, and 10 minutes from Research Triangle Park. The perfect location for living the city life during the day and the country life after work and on the weekends!

Cary Crossroads

Cary Crossroads

The best thing about this community is the vast amount of mature trees with homesites measuring over an acre! The options with your new home in this area are virtually endless with the ability to expand the square footage by adding incredibly desired features such as morning rooms, guest suites, screened porches, spacious decks, and 3-4 side car garages.

Enjoy your morning coffee on the deck or the screened in porch while your husband cooks up a fabulous breakfast in your brand new kitchen, then head out to Cary for some shopping and a dinner with friends! Life at Yates Mill allows you to enjoy all there is to do in and around this beautiful neighborhood!

Attractions nearby: Cary Crossroads Shopping Center, Lake Wheeler, Yates Mill County Park, Triangle Aquatic Center.

Posted in DC Metro | Leave a comment