Tag Archives: Go Brent Team

#GivingTuesday 2018 in Silver Spring

Black Friday. Cyber Monday. Giving Tuesday.

Today is #GivingTuesday, celebrated on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving as a global movement that celebrates giving, generosity, and change for people throughout their communities. #GivingTuesday allows us to unite as one and to encourage more small acts of kindness.

Here are a few Nonprofits celebrating #GivingTuesday in our local community today:

Silver Spring Village

The mission of Silver Spring Village is to build and sustain a supportive network of neighbors helping neighbors remain in their own homes and be engaged in their community as they age.

Residents of various close-in Silver Spring neighborhoods serve on a volunteer basis on the board of directors and on the board’s committees.  Our (part-time) Executive Director develops strategies and plans and, together with our (part-time) Director of Volunteer Services and many volunteers, ensures their implementation.

[wolf_button url=”https://www.silverspringvillage.org/content.aspx?page_id=22&club_id=902719&module_id=144102″ color=”yellow” type=”flat” size=”small” target=”_blank”]Donate today![/wolf_button]

A Wider Circle

This #GivingTuesday, whatever you give will be DOUBLED or TRIPLED. All donations will be matched dollar for dollar – with gifts of $1,000 or more receiving a 2-for-1 match, up to a total of $30,000 to support our new Partnership to Independence Program!

[wolf_button url=”https://donatenow.networkforgood.org/awidercircle” color=”yellow” type=”flat” size=”small” target=”_blank”]Donate today![/wolf_button]

ArtStream, Inc.

Few theatres provide challenging arts opportunities for adults with disabilities and fewer still encourage them to be artists as well as audience members. ArtStream’s six Inclusive Theatre Companies invite actors with intellectual and developmental disabilities to collaborate with theater professionals and trained volunteer mentors to develop and present original musical theatre productions. Participants can also take theatre-based classes to boost self-confidence and strengthen communications and social skills. And the arts can heal, just as they can educate and entertain. Partnerships with schools, community organizations, and others ensure that adults and children can access the arts in a way that is meaningful, powerful, and healing. Your contribution makes it happen.

[wolf_button url=”https://www.cfp-dc.org/cfpdc/nonprofit-campaign.php?i=95251-1229″ color=”yellow” type=”flat” size=”small” target=”_blank”]Donate today![/wolf_button]

Friends of the Silver Spring Library

Friends of the Library, Silver Spring Chapter (FOLSS), is an all-volunteer organization of people who care about our library. FOLSS raises money to augment public funding for programs, materials, and equipment at the Silver Spring Library. We raised funds to pay for the state-of-the-art Early Literacy Center on the Silver Spring Library’s fifth floor; we also fund programming for Summer Reading, Library Lovers’ Month, and various other teen and adult programs during the year. Every dollar of donated funds goes directly to programming, materials, and services that benefit our local community.

[wolf_button url=”https://www.folmc.org/donate/” color=”yellow” type=”flat” size=”small” target=”_blank”]Donate today![/wolf_button]

Crossroads Community Food Network

Crossroads Community Food Network is building a healthier, more inclusive food system in our community. At the heart of this integrated network of food growers, makers, and consumers is Crossroads Farmers Market, where nutrition incentives make healthy food more affordable and at the same time helps support local farmers and vendors — 3/4 of whom are immigrants themselves.

[wolf_button url=”https://www.crossroadscommunityfoodnetwork.org/civicrm/?page=CiviCRM&q=civicrm/contribute/transact&reset=1&id=3″ color=”yellow” type=”flat” size=”small”]Donate today![/wolf_button]

Shepherd’s Table

Shepherd’s Table is using #GivingTuesday to expand their food service program that provides those in need with nutritious meals 365 days a year. Join their effort to DOUBLE their impact in the community!

[wolf_button url=”https://shepherdstable.networkforgood.com/projects/33988-it-s-a-new-day-transforming-lives-growing-our-community” color=”yellow” type=”flat” size=”small” target=”_blank”]Donate today![/wolf_button]

To find more local community programs to help support on #GivingTuesday, visit: Silver Spring Cares and for organizations world wide, visit https://www.givingtuesday.org.

FREE First-Time Homebuyer Seminar – Saturday, October 27

Join Go Brent’s Debbie Gerald and Caliber Home Loans’ Ramez Fahmy for a free First-Time Homebuyer Seminar.

We’ll discuss the ins and outs of purchasing and financing your first home/condo. If you’ve been thinking about buying in the near future, this is a great opportunity to ask questions and learn about the buying process.

When:    Saturday,  October 27 from 10:00-11:30AM
Where:   Silver Spring Civic Center in downtown Silver Spring

Please sign-up in advance.

There is no cost or obligation, just plenty of information! Can’t attend but want to know more about the home buying process? Contact Debbie for more information.

Dockless Bikes have ARRIVED!

image via TheWashCycle

Guest post by Silver Spring resident, Lauren Lee.

You’ve seen them around – maybe lined up in an organized row in downtown Silver Spring, maybe in a heap of a pile blocking a sidewalk or a bus stop. They come in all different colors! Green, Yellow, Orange, Red! Two things are for sure, they are making their way around the community and there are lots of opinions.

How do these bikes work? Generally, you download the app for the appropriate bike rental company – LimeBike for example, put in your information, create and account, etc.  Then when you are interested in riding – you scan a bike, and it gets unlocked releasing the wheel.  After your ride, you scan it again to lock it up and complete your ride.  You don’t have to leave it in the same place as where you picked it up. For the rider looking for a quick trip from work to an appointment, or a ride to the bus stop from home these bikes seem like the perfect solution.

But of course there couldn’t be convenience without a dissenting inconvenience.

There have been bikes reported as being in the middle of sidewalks, fallen over, blocking a path for pedestrians, people with strollers or those in wheelchairs. Other bikes seem to have been left in more off the track places making them less apt to be ridden and often stay there for quite some time.  WTOP just this weekend reported people parking bikes on the frozen C&O Canal. WHAT IS GOING ON?!

photo via TwoWheelsDC

Dockless bikes aren’t for everyone it seems. There is a percentage of people that generally can’t use the bikes, those that travel and are responsible for young kids can’t easily run errands on dockless bikes. There’s also a risk that you get stranded and someone picks up the bike you left for your way back home. An argument also is that those that are avid bikers likely own bikes already.

Vicki King Taitano, a Silver Spring resident, is frustrated that a bike has been in her yard for over two weeks. The burden then falls on her to call the company and have them remove it. She mentions that she thought about putting in her narrow street but is afraid of causing an accident. “It sort of illustrates the point that this company expects me to participate in its business whether I want to or not. I don’t have the app and no one in my family rode the bike to my house, yet there it is unless I do something about it,” Taitano states.

After riding dockless bikes several times from her home to run errands in downtown Silver Spring, Liz Brent started a Facebook group called “Silver Spring’s Battle of the Bikes.” In this group, members frequently comment on both the positive and negative impact of these bikes.  The pictures of kids riding the bikes and the convince of getting around downtown Silver Spring has been highlighted and lauded.  It seems to be getting people to ride a bit more than normal.  The environmental benefits also do not go unnoticed. Downtown Silver Spring is notorious for being frustrating to navigate in a car, especially during rush hour. By adding an easy bike option, many can get around without polluting or contributing to traffic.

Furthermore, it’s been noted that just because there are complaints and frustrations with the way that some of the companies handle the bikes being strewn about or where they are located, that doesn’t automatically translate into disliking the dockless bike programs as a whole.  A general sentiment is that it’s a cool program but has lots of kinks to work out. Hopefully, the business model will only improve and expand to address needs and concerns.

“I think it’s odd that the rollout for the dockless bikes was in October, just as things would be getting cold here. On the other hand, on average our winters are usually so much milder than this, and the companies may have been counting on that,” notes Sandra Schmidt, a new rider and downtown Silver Spring resident. One would think that anyone familiar with the DC area knows how unpredictable the weather can be and how could it can become, deterring the casual bike rider.

As of now, there are many unanswered questions that we look forward to figuring out in the coming months as the weather warms, and bikers are more inclined to ride again.  Will there be more bike accidents as drivers and riders get used to one another? Will a lack of helmet-wearers impact this? Will there be a more mainstream plan to move disruptively located bikes?

What do you think about the influx of dockless bikes in our community? Do you have a success story or an interesting anecdote? Let us know! If you’re interested in learning more about the different types (yes, there are plenty!) take a peek at their websites for more information. Montgomery County is open to questions or comments regarding the Dockless Bikeshare Program; residents can contact MC311 or email Commuter Services at mcdot.commuterservices@montgomerycountymd.gov.







FREE First-Time Homebuyer Seminar – Saturday, January 27

Join Debbie Gerald with Go Brent Team of Keller Williams Capital Properties and Ramez Fahmy, Branch Manager at Caliber Home Loans for an informative seminar on how to purchase your first home. The seminar is offered on Saturday, January 27 from 10-11:30am at the Silver Spring Civic Center in downtown Silver Spring. There is no cost or obligation, just plenty of information! Please register in advance.

Homebuyers are invited to come discuss the ins and outs of purchasing and financing your first home. You’ll also have the opportunity to ask questions and learn how to start the home buying process.

A little more about your hosts:

As a member of Go Brent Team, a top-ranked DC Metro area team helping 40 clients to buy homes last year, Debbie Gerald specializes in educating first-time homebuyers on the home buying process and the many avenues available when purchasing your first home. Debbie is an expert in the marketplace and an experienced contract negotiator; she also provides clients with superior service. Buyers know they can count on Debbie to guide them as they search for the right home.

Caliber Home Loans Branch Manager Ramez Fahmy offers buyers 20-years experience in mortgage lending. Ramez is dedicated to providing superior service and expert guidance to first-time buyers throughout the home financing process. Caliber Home Loans offers competitive rates and fees along with innovative mortgage solutions to first-time homebuyers. Last year Ramez helped over 100 clients finance their home purchase. (NMLS#: 476394)

Can’t attend but want more information about home buying process? Email Debbie or call 301.873.0422.

Check out our Community Partners

Go Brent Team is proud to be on the forefront of the local scene, serving our neighbors in this wonderfully diverse and interesting community. We’ve been working here for almost two decades now and we’ve forged strong and long-lasting relationships with other nearby friends, helpers, and businesspeople. Check out our Community Partners page featuring a few of the dependable locals we count on to keep things running smoothly. Are you ready to spruce things up or take care of needed repairs in 2018? Our page is a good starting place if you’ve got a “honey-do” list that needs attention, need a paint color consult, are planning a home renovation or garden make-over,  or just looking for someone nearby who’s reliable. And remember, if you are looking for expert advice on the real estate market, reach out to Go Brent Team. Of course, we work with buyers and sellers, but we also offer homeowners free consultations. We can discuss topics ranging from home renovations to mortgage refinancing to selling vs. renting and more. Need info on a free consult? Click here!

When Is The Best Time to Buy or Sell a Home?

Since November 1, Go Brent Team has assisted 5 buyers and 13 sellers go UNDER CONTRACT!

While many consider the spring season as the prime time to buy or sell, it’s important to note that homes sell all year long. And while homes with spring blooms do look pretty, homes sell when there’s snow on the ground and yes, over the holidays too. The best time to buy or sell a home is when it’s right for YOU.

We are currently working with a number of clients who are preparing for a move in the beginning of 2018. How can we help you next year? Contact us for a no-obligation consultation to discuss your timeline. And if you are thinking of buying or selling during the spring market, now is the time to start planning!

Contact Us Today!

Why Good Property Photography Matters

You’ve seen them and laughed – horrible real estate photos. Those really outlandish property photos will be featured on blogs and lists, but what about those photos that just look dark, are taken from the wrong angle, or look as if the real estate agent just didn’t care?

Bad Photography Examples

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Photographer in the Photo



Bad Angle Photo


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Sad Living Room Photo


According to the National Association of Realtor, 95% of all buyers actively looking to buy a home search via websites and almost 90% of all buyers use photos and virtual tours to gather information about homes in which they have interest.

So that means photos and virtual tours are extremely important. In most cases, they are the buyers FIRST IMPRESSION!

That’s why Go Brent Team agents walk with sellers through their own home to discuss how to prepare for photographs and ensure the house is photo and web ready. From de-personalizing to de-cluttering to furniture placement, our agents work to present your home at it’s very best – both for online and in-person visitors.

We work with professional photographers to draw floor plans, photograph rooms, and produce virtual tours. Sure, iPhones take great photos but we’re real estate agents, so we leave photography to the experts. We also accompany the photographers during the photo shoot to ensure they capture your home’s best features.

Check out our recent listings and you’ll see how amazing our clients’ homes look!

Thinking of selling and interested in talking to us about our marketing strategy, which includes top-notch photos? Contact us today!

Great Community Events in November!

With Halloween gone and passed, the Holiday season is approaching us fast! This month, we’ve gathered together some of our favorite community events in the area from local craft markets to the Annual Montgomery County Thanksgiving Parade. We’re ready to get into the spirit and we hope you are too.

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Silver Spring Craft Market

When: Sunday, 11/5
Where: Denizen’s Brewing Company
Address: 1115 East-West Hwy, Silver Spring
Time: 12pm – 4pm
Cost: FREE


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Crafts and Drafts pop-up artisan market in the beer garden. Pop-up craft market of local artisans selling jewelry, ceramics, candles, children’s décor, home accessories.

Learn more: Silver Spring Craft Market Facebook Event

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photo via east MoCo

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Silver Spring Tree Lighting

When: Saturday, 11/11
Where: Fountain Plaza, DTSs
Address: 916 Ellsworth Drive, Silver Spring
Time: 6pm-9pm
Cost: FREE

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Join us on Saturday, November 11th from 6-9pm as we unveil and light this season’s exciting, one of a kind, holiday tree display on the Fountain Plaza.

  • Guest Host Tommy McFly from 94.7 Fresh FM
  • A capella performance by UMD’s PandemoniUM
  • Beer and Seasonal Sangria Cheer Stations
  • Fun grown up games: Giant Light Bright, Cornhole and Foosball
  • Meet Maryland Youth Ballet dancers and Nutcrackers
  • Food Tasting, Drink Specials and more!

Learn more: Silver Spring Tree Lighting

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Montgomery County Thanksgiving Parade

When: Saturday, 11/18
Where: Veteran’s Plaza, DTSS
Address: 8523 Fenton Street, Silver Spring
Time: 10am – 12pm
Cost: FREE


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The streets are being overrun with turkeys, dinosaurs, penguins, and reindeer! No, the zoo hasn’t opened their gates – it is the Annual Montgomery County Thanksgiving Parade! With marching bands an Latin dancing groups, floats, giant characters and balloons, and over 120 units, the Montgomery County Thanksgiving Parade is the only Thanksgiving Parade in the metro DC area.

Held in downtown Silver Spring, the exciting parade traditionally heralds the start of the holiday season. The parade steps off from Ellsworth Drive and Fenton Street and proceeds south on Georgia Avenue, ending at Silver Spring Avenue. It also is televised live on News Channel 8 and rerun on Thanksgiving Day.


Learn more: Montgomery County Thanksgiving Parade

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Photo via Montgomery Parks


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Brookside Gardens: Garden of Lights

When: Saturday, 11/24 – 1/1
Time: Sun-Thurs 5:30pm – 9:30pm / Fri-Sat: 5:30-10pm
Where: Brookside Gardens
Address: 1800 Glenallan Avenue Wheaton, MD 20902


Step into a magical winter wonderland illuminated with more than one million dazzling colorful lights shaped into hand-crafted, original art forms of flowers, animals and other natural elements. Stroll from garden to garden enjoying twinkling tree forms, sparkling fountains, and whimsical winter scenes. The Garden of Lights celebrates its 19th season as a Baltimore/Washington, DC area family holiday tradition.

The night wouldn’t be complete without a visit inside the Conservatory to enjoy watching G-Scale model trains wind through a seasonal landscape. Afterward, warm up inside the Visitors Center while you sip hot cocoa and listen to one of the nightly musical performances.

Learn more: Brookside Gardens: Garden of Lights

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Small Business Saturday Community Fair

When: Saturday, 11/25
Time: 12pm – 6:30pm
Where: Montgomery Blair High School
Address: 51 University Boulevard East


This Nov 25, we want to share Small Business Saturday® with you! It’s a holiday shopping tradition that celebrates small businesses. And it wouldn’t be a celebration without customers like you joining us to Shop Small.

So mark your calendars for Nov 25 – the Saturday after Thanksgiving – for the Silver Spring Small Business Saturday Community Fair and get ready to Shop Small® with us. Grab a friend (or two) or the whole family and join us for shopping and family fun between 12 noon and 6:30 pm on the big day.

You can help get the word out and celebrate Small Business Saturday by sharing this event using the hashtag #SHOPSMALL with your friends and family on Facebook and all of your social networks.

This year we’ll be featuring more than 40 small business owners, FREE face painting (1 pm – 4 pm), a children’s craft center, holiday gift wrapping station, food, music, FREE professional headshots for small business owners and lots of family fun. This event is FREE to the public. Eventbrite tickets are not required but highly recommended! Register on Eventbrite to receive a free Shop Small tote at the event full of awesome swag from small businesses around the area (while supplies last).

Learn more: Small Business Saturday Community Fair

The Annual Winter Clothing Drive is Back!

via Silver Spring Cares

The weather is starting to turn and we just had our first frost! Finally, it’s time to turn over our winter closets! Should you find yourself with items you no longer need, consider donating to our first Annual Winter Clothing Drive to benefit Linkages to Learning at JoAnne Leleck Elementary at Broad Acres!

Linkages to Learning is a school-based collaboration among the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services, the Montgomery County Public Schools and a community-based service providers. YMCA Youth & Family Services is the proud provider of the Linkages to Learning program at JoAnn Leleck at BAES.   The program provides accessible services to at-risk children and their families to improve adjustment to and performance in school, home, and community. Prevention and early intervention services include health, mental health, social services and educational support.

Items accepted: Winter Coats,  Jackets, Hats, Gloves, Scarves, Boots, Sweatshirts, Sweaters, Pajamas, Pants, Fleece, Socks, etc! Basically, if it’s warm and in great condition, it’ll happily find a new home this winter! Please only consider donating items that are in great to excellent condition. Please do not donate items that missing buttons, have stains or tears. Our neighbors deserve the best too. Afterall, we’re a good looking community if you ask me!

Silver Spring Cares will be hitting the streets to collect your donations. Simply place your clean and gently used donations in a bag and place on your porch for pick up. Sign up here when you’re ready for pick up. You’ll receive a confirmation email once your pick up is on our schedule.

Thank you for helping to ensure all Silver Spring residents have a warm and healthy winter season!

The Latest on the Purple Line Project

photo via The Washingtonian

After years of planning and design, the Purple Line project has begun construction. This work includes the removal of trees and underbrush, establishing fences and environmental protection along the work zone. Utility investigations will also be taking place at many locations along the corridor.

Here’s a wrap-up of work that is underway:

  • The Georgetown Branch Interim Trail is closed until the new trail opens in 2021.
  • Arliss Street in Silver Spring between Flower Avenue and Walden Road is scheduled to be closed through 2020 to allow the construction of the east side of the Plymouth Tunnel. This site, adjacent to the Giant Food Store, will have a fenced construction yard. Access to the Arliss Knolls Townhouses will be maintained.
  • Plymouth Street will also be temporarily closed during the construction of the west side of the tunnel and Manchester Station. However, access for local traffic will be maintained.
  • Work has begun on the site of the Bethesda Metro South Entrance located on Elm Street in Bethesda. This station will eventually provide a connection to Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA). This operation will continue for several years.
  • General preconstruction work, including tree removal and site prep, has started along the western side of Veterans Parkway in Riverdale.

Stay up-to-date!

You can subscribe for Purple Line updates here or visit these pages for more info:

Additional responses from the state and the PLCC, the private construction consortium, are expected later this month. You can check the Council website; new items will be added to the “Frequently Requested Documents” section.


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