(Courtesy of Interface Multimedia)

Evolving plans for The Wharf neighborhood in Southwest Washington now include the redevelopment of the St. Augustine Church site and a 108-unit condominium building adjacent to a 3.5-acre waterfront park overlooking the river.

PN Hoffman recently announced plans to build a new church for St. Augustine’s facing Maine Avenue across from Arena Stage with an adjoining condo project called 600 Water Street.

The residential building will have four floors along with a penthouse level with private terraces. Planned building amenities include 94 parking spaces, a club room with a bar and kitchen, and a landscaped courtyard with fountains. Residents will be able to walk to restaurants and entertainment currently in the area and under construction at The Wharf.

Sales at 600 Water Street are anticipated to begin in the second quarter of 2015 and construction should be completed in 2016. For more information, go to www.thewharfdc.com.

Zillow acquires Trulia but to retain both brands

Prospective homebuyers, homeowners looking to sell and consumers looking for rental housing will continue to be able to use both the Trulia and Zillow Web sites for free access to information about homes and real estate in spite of an acquisition announced Monday.

Zillow says that it has entered into an agreement to purchase Trulia, but the combined company plans to keep both the Zillow and Trulia brands. The transaction is expected to close in 2015.

Both companies generate revenue by selling ads to real estate professionals eager to reach consumers who view the sites online and on their mobile devices. In June, Zillow reported 83 million unique users across mobile devices and on the Web; Trulia reported 54 million unique users that same month.

Zillow reports that only approximately half of Trulia’s visitors also visit Zillow, and that approximately two-thirds of Zillow’s visitors don’t use Trulia. Keeping the brands separate allows the companies to offer different products and user experiences and to continue to reach consumers who are already loyal to one site or the other. For more information, visit Zillow.com or Trulia.com.

‘Hot Homes’ feature helps buyers act quickly

Competition for homes in the “hot” neighborhoods in and around D.C. leaves many buyers frustrated when they’re shut out by offers from another purchaser who jumped faster when the home came on the market.

Now real estate brokerage Redfin has introduced “Hot Homes” in the D.C. market, a feature that identifies homes that are likely to go under contract quickly. The brokerage’s algorithm analyzes hundreds of attributes such as the square feet of the house, bedrooms, baths, lot size, views and location and then adds buyer preferences for those attributes to estimate how long it will be on the market.

Homes are identified as “hot” when there’s an 80 percent chance that they will go under contract within two weeks of being listed for sale.

For more information about Hot Homes feature, click here.

(Courtesy of Washington Property Company)

Bethesda to get more upscale apartments 

Washington Property Company started construction recently on Solaire Bethesda, a 12-story, 139-unit apartment building on the site of the former Eastham Exxon Servicecenter, a location within 800 feet of the planned southern entrance to the Bethesda Metro station and Purple Line light rail station.

The transit-oriented development will include 6,400 square feet of retail space on the ground level and is within walking distance to shops, restaurants and entertainment on Bethesda Row and throughout downtown Bethesda.

Solaire Bethesda, at 7100 Wisconsin Avenue, is anticipated to be complete in 2016. Planned building amenities include a residents’ lounge with billiards, a bar, a fireplace and games; a club room, a cyber café, a fitness center and outdoor terraces with space for parties and grills.

Each unit will have up to nine foot high ceilings, oversized windows, walk-in closets and wood-laminate floors. The kitchens will include granite counters, stainless steel appliances and contemporary-style cabinets, while the baths will include soaking tubs and natural stone counters and floors.

For more information, click here.

Tip of the week

NeighborWorks, an organization that seeks to reduce foreclosures and promote middle-class homeownership, recently launched its “Know Your Numbers” campaign aimed at getting Americans to be as familiar with their financial numbers as they are their blood pressure and weight.

The four key numbers to know for homeownership include:

1. How much mortgage could you comfortably afford? Your housing expense should be no more than 30 percent of your gross income, according to NeighborWorks.

2. What are current mortgage rates? Higher rates mean higher payments when you take on a new loan.

3. What is your credit score? The lower your score, the higher your mortgage rates will be.

4. How much do you have for a down payment and closing costs? In addition to saving, look into down payment assistance programs and low down payment loans.

Michele Lerner is a freelance writer. To pass on a tip or news item, contact us at realestate@washpost.com and put “Town Square” in the subject line.