The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Big houses, short commutes draw buyers to N.Va. cul-de-sac

16 single-family houses are planned at development near Falls Church. Prices start at $1.9 million.

A view of the open floor plan in a model single-family house at the Enclave at Aylors Overlook development near Falls Church, Va. (Benjamin C Tankersley for The Washington Post)

For Arien and Kyle Masher, the Enclave at Aylors Overlook, near Falls Church, Va., checked all the boxes: the right location, good schools and an appealing cul-de-sac where all the houses are new.

The Mashers, who recently relocated from across the country for work, saw the community of 16 large single-family houses while checking out several properties over the Memorial Day weekend.

“Our top priorities were a great school district for our 12-year-old daughter,” Arien said, “and a short commute time to work.” They also liked “the large, mature trees” lining the street, she said, and “the convenient location, with airports, restaurants, shopping and children’s activities nearby.”

“We’re thrilled by the access to the W&OD Trail,” just steps away, she added.

Ray Carney discovered Aylors Overlook — which is in Fairfax County but has a Falls Church mailing address — in May while training for a triathlon. He lived less than a mile away and was running on the W&OD Trail when the trees cleared and he saw the project.

D.C. townhouses away from the ‘hustle and bustle’

“I thought we’d live in our townhouse the rest of our lives, but when I saw the community, I thought, ‘That wouldn’t be a bad place to live,’ ” Carney said. He and his wife, Beth Carney, “checked out the community and liked it more and more.” They loved the location and the two single-family house models, the Abbott and the Birch.

“We thought that this is the kind of home where our 13-year-old twins will have more space to grow and where our parents can come for stays,” Ray Carney said. The couple signed a contract in early June.

When the Mashers explored the four-bedroom Abbott model home, “we really, really loved it,” Arien said. Among the pluses, she said: The owner’s bedroom has large walk-in closets; the laundry room is on the second floor; the appliances, fixtures and finishes are high-quality; the rear deck provides outdoor living space; and each bedroom has its own bathroom, “a perk our daughter is eagerly looking forward to.”

When the Mashers bought their house, construction was almost complete, but they had a list of about 10 items they wanted to customize. “The builder gave us nearly all of them,” Arien said. The changes included a built-in bookcase in the living room, which the Mashers intend to repurpose as a second home office; a fence along the back property line; black painted accents in the front roof peaks “to add pop”; and a painted floor in the large basement mechanical room, which the Mashers intend to use as a home gym.

The price of the house, including upgrades, was $1,946,100.

The Carneys also chose the Abbott, largely for the optional main-floor bedroom-bathroom suite. “Our parents can stay there when they visit,” Ray said. Their other upgrades include a basement bedroom-bathroom suite, a basement exercise room with rubber flooring, and a deck off the family room.

With those and other upgrades, the price came to just over $1.9 million.

Sales manager Jim Patton said the Aylors Overlook land, with one house, had been owned by one family for 60 years before Madison Homes acquired it. “It’s remarkable to find” such a large undeveloped tract inside the Capital Beltway, Patton said. Elementary school property borders the site on one side, and a residential community is on the other.

Aylors Overlook home sites average one-quarter acre. Eleven of the 16 have sold. Prices start at $1.9 million.

Both the Abbott and the Birch designs have an open-plan family room and kitchen on the main level, with a kitchen island, a breakfast room and access to a rear deck. The main level also has a foyer, a dining room and living room flanking the foyer, a butler’s pantry, a mud room, a powder room (half-bath) and a rear office. The Birch has a den.

An extended kitchen with large island has been a popular upgrade to the Birch, Patton said. The front porch can be extended on both models. All the houses have a two-car garage, and buyers have several facade choices.

Depending on the model and options, the second floor has four or five bedrooms — most with a separate bathroom and a walk-in closet — as well as a loft area and a laundry room. The owner’s bathroom has a free-standing bathtub, a large shower enclosure and two vanities. The lower level includes a recreation room with optional wet bar and optional gas fireplace. A media room and bedroom-bathroom suite are other basement options. A basement exercise room is standard or optional, depending on the plan.

Nature preserve is pleasant surprise for some Broadlands, Va., buyers

Throughout the houses, nine-foot-high ceilings are standard, with seven-foot interior doors and eight-foot exterior doors. Optional tray ceilings are offered to enhance the dining room and owner’s bedroom.

One thing Ray Carney said he didn’t like, at first, about Aylors Overlook was that the cul-de-sac provides only one way into and out of the development. Now he favors that, too. “There are no through streets that people will speed through,” he said. “The only reason to go back there is because you live there.”

Schools: Shrevewood Elementary, Kilmer Middle, Marshall High

Transit: The West Falls Church Metro station, on the Orange Line, is about 1.5 miles away; the East Falls Church station, on the Orange and Silver lines, is 3.3 miles away. There is easy access for vehicles to I-495, I-66, Route 7 and Route 29.

Nearby: Aylors Overlook is about a five-minute drive to downtown Falls Church and a 10-minute drive to the Tysons shopping area in Fairfax County. It is less than a 10-minute drive to the Mosaic District shopping area, also in Fairfax County. The development is across the street from the W&OD Trail and close to numerous parks.

The Enclave at Aylors Overlook

2529 Remington St., Falls Church, Va. 22046.

The project has 16 single-family houses on a cul-de-sac close to Falls Church; 11 have sold. Prices start at $1.9 million.

Builder: Madison Homes

Features: The houses have nine-foot-high ceilings; Jeld-Wen aluminum-clad wood windows; James Hardie prefinished siding; prefinished oak floors on the main level and in some upper-level areas; gas fireplace; LED lighting; JennAir stainless-steel kitchen appliances; undermount stainless-steel kitchen sink with Kohler faucet; maple kitchen cabinets; and quartz countertops in the kitchen and bathrooms.

Bedrooms/bathrooms: 4 to 7 / 4.5 to 6.5

Square-footage: 4,740 to 5,800

Homeowners association fee: $170 a month

View model: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends and by appointment

Sales: Jim Patton,, 703-844-8484