Scott Smolen Blog

Oct. 26, 2016

Experience the Magic of Autumn in Anne Arundel County

When people think late of October and the onset of autumn, they envision colorful leaves, cool yet comfortable temperatures, pumpkin patches and Halloween happenings, but this idealized picture of the fall season isn’t a reality in most places. However, as a new homeowner in Anne Arundel County, you will realize quickly that you’ve landed in a postcard setting that offers all of the wonderful aspects of this special time of year.

The leaves on the trees are reaching peak color and business at area pumpkin patches is in full swing. The temperatures are also becoming much more comfortable, cool and crisp. Life in Anne Arundel County is wonderful any time of year, but there’s something extra special about Autumn in this part of the country.

Are you wondering how you can get out and take advantage of the wonders of Autumn in your new community? We’ve got some great tips for you!

Pick the Perfect Pumpkin

Halloween is just days away, and there’s nothing like picking out a pumpkin and carving it to celebrate the season.

A number of area pumpkin patches offer families the chance to pick their own pumpkins, but that’s not all! Many local farms provide rides, corn mazes and a number of other recreational opportunities for all members of the family this time of year.

Visiting a pumpkin patch is also a great way to escape the hustle and bustle of daily living.

Some local favorites include:

Knightongale Farm
Greenstreet Gardens
Homestead Gardens
Lighthouse Shelter
Pumphrey’s Farm

Halloween Happenings

When Halloween approaches on the calendar, there’s a definite scare in the air! But it’s all in good fun here in Anne Arundel County.

Whether you plan on dressing up this year or not, there are a number of ways for you to get caught up in the excitement of the season without straying too far from home. The Halloween spirit is strong here, and with the holiday right around the corner, here are some of the attractions you should consider visiting:

Special Historic Hauntings Ghost Walk
Halloween Happening (At Anne Arundel County Fairgrounds)
Halloween Pet Parade

Learn More about Life in Anne Arundel County

Anne Arundel County is a great place to live, regardless of the season, and if you’re considering a move to this area, I’m here to help you! I know this special part of Maryland like the back of my hand, and I can’t wait to show you around and help you locate the perfect home for your family. Call me, Scott Smolen, today at (301) 651-1261 to learn more.

Posted in Uncategorized
Oct. 25, 2016

NFL Football Season in Anne Arundel County -- A Rivalry for the Ages

When autumn comes, it arrives carrying a number of well-known characteristics in its arms. The temperatures drop to become much more comfortable and cozy. The leaves on the trees change from green to the familiar oranges, yellows and reds, and kids are back in school. One of the other key signifiers of fall is the kickoff of the NFL football season, and for residents of Anne Arundel County, two teams dominate -- the Baltimore Ravens and the Washington Redskins.

The I-95 Football Rivalry

Are you a new resident of the area, or are you planning a move to the region? You should know that sports fans here take their football seriously! And when it comes to the professional game, there are two distinct teams to root for. But you’ve got to choose wisely because the two teams have a unique rivalry with fervent fans on either side.

For fans of the Washington Redskins and Baltimore Ravens, there are bigger rivalries. After all, the Ravens are in the AFC, while Washington plays in the NFC. As a result, the teams don’t play each other that often. Ravens fans are known for their intense dislike of divisional rival, Pittsburgh, while Redskins supporters look forward to beating the Cowboys and Giants. But when Washington and Baltimore play each other, there’s something about the proximity -- just 33 miles between the teams’ home stadiums on I-95 -- that gives the rivalry an added boost.

If you’re a football fan who is relocating to Anne Arundel County, there’s no doubt that you’ll be bringing your love of your favorite team with you. However, it’s good to put some effort into your decision of which local NFL franchise to root for.

Baltimore or Washington?

Baltimore has had more recent success, having won the championship as recently as 2013. But the team is fairly new, by National Football League standards; they used to be the Cleveland Browns, but the team moved to Baltimore and changed its name back in 1996, effectively becoming an expansion team.

Washington is one of the oldest, proudest franchises in the league, and its history includes some of the legends of the sport, including former coach Vince Lombardi, for whom the championship trophy is named. Unfortunately, the team hasn’t provided fans with much to feel good about in recent years.

Football Sundays in Anne Arundel County

Whether you lean more toward the Ravens or the Redskins, it’s good to make a choice so you know what side you stand on when these two giants battle on the gridiron. Football season is here, and if you’re planning on a move to the region, you also have to make an important choice about where you and your family will live!

Let me help you! I know this area extremely well, and I can make the process of finding your ideal home easy. Just give me a call at (301) 651-1261, or email me at to find out how I can take you to the house (of your dreams)!



Posted in Uncategorized
Oct. 18, 2016

Finding Paradise in Piney Orchard

Odenton, Maryland is fast becoming one of the prime locations for area families to live, work and play. Its ideal location makes it a wonderful community for families whose members work in Baltimore, Washington, D.C. and Fort Meade, home to the National Security Agency (NSA). But it’s also a terrific town in its own right!

Once a farming settlement, Odenton transformed with the installation of Fort Meade, which is just 20 miles away. The location of such a key US Army installation nearby necessitated growth and development, which goes on to this day. As a result, Odenton continues to grow and develop. Thankfully, Odenton is aware of its status as one of the best places to live in Maryland for those who work in the greater region, and its planners have created some wonderful developments for families who want to experience a safe, comfortable and fulfilling life.

One such development in Odenton is the lovely and amazing Piney Orchard.


Get to Know Piney Orchard

Piney Orchard is the largest planned community within central Maryland’s Anne Arundel County, with a variety of home types available for those who are new to the area -- and those area residents who simply want a change of pace. With nearly 4,000 condominiums, single-family homes and townhouses, it’s the ideal community for those seeking a nice, easy commute to and from Fort Meade, Washington, D.C., or Baltimore.

Piney Orchard provides the ideal place to live for homeowners who want a great commute, but it also features a wide range of amenities to serve its residents, including:

  • The Piney Orchard Ice Arena
  • Patuxent Research Refuge/National Wildlife Visitor Center
  • Odenton Park Recreation Area
  • Waugh Chapel Towne Centre (featuring shopping, movies and much more!)


Getting Away from it All in Piney Orchard

Amazingly, even though Piney Orchard gives residents such easy, instant access to the big cities and installations that power the region, it serves as an oasis of sorts to the people who live there, as well as its visitors. The community is filled with numerous green spaces to enjoy year-round, as well as a network of walking and biking trails for those who want to stay fit and enjoy the fresh air. There are also community centers and pools with all the amenities to satisfy those hardworking residents who need a refreshing break from the hustle and bustle of daily life.


Learn More About Life in Piney Orchard

To really get a sense of what life in Piney Orchard will be like for you and your family, you’ve got to come visit and see for yourself.

Let me show you around and help you find your dream home!


Call me at (301) 651-1261 or send me an email at to learn more! I’m looking forward to showing you exactly why Piney Orchard has the best homes for sale in Odenton to buy your new home!

Posted in Homes in Odenton
Oct. 11, 2016

Ocean City -- One of the Country's Great Getaway Spots

Living in Eastern Maryland, it's easy to take for granted the many amazing locations that exist within a short drive from home. The area's numerous sites of historical significance reflect the region's focus on service and commitment to strong values. But the area is also home to some amazing spots where the focus can shift to rest, relaxation, leisure and quality family time.

Ocean City represents the ideal destination for many vacationers.  Fresh Chesapeake Bay style seafood, gorgeous sunrises, a historical city center and proximity to the ocean are just a few of the highlights of this beach town. People from all over the world have come here to escape their busy lives, but residents of communities like Odenton, Fort Meade, Crofton and more have the opportunity to take advantage of it any time they're able to take the quick, two to three-hour drive.

It's truly something special!

More Than a Storybook Summer Vacation Spot
Ocean City, Maryland features something for everyone:

  • The historic, three-mile Ocean City Boardwalk
  • Amusement park rides and attractions to delight the little ones
  • World-class fishing adventures
  • Restaurants serving the finest, freshest seafood
  • A number of championship-caliber golf courses
  • Boat and kayak tours for nature loves and sightseers
  • Gorgeous sunrise and sunset views!


Ocean City -- A Different World Just a Short Drive Away

Ocean City has earned its reputation as a summer getaway spot thanks to its wonderful weather and amazing attractions, but it's also a great place for day trips away from the city during the summer.  The pace of life is more relaxed and the friendliness of the people can remind you of a simpler, easier time.

Posted in Uncategorized
Oct. 4, 2016

Find Your Home in Crofton, MD -- More Than Just the Ideal Location

The old adage that touts, "location, location, location!" as the key indicator of a property's value has become something of a cliché, but it's as true as it's ever been. These days, people are living busier lives, with more time being spent in the car than at home. Balance is becoming more important than ever for families around the country, but finding it has become increasingly difficult.

However, for those who live and work in Eastern Maryland, it's possible to build a balanced life that places equal emphasis on work, play and family time.

Crofton, Maryland. Not only is it a beautiful community with lovely homes; it's one of the more perfectly situated towns in the entire eastern part of the United States!

If you're looking to buy a home in Anne Arundel County, and you desire a life of balance in an ideal location, you should consider taking a look at Crofton.

There's No Better Location!

Crofton is a town of just over 25,000 residents.  It lies in very close proximity to the places where so many area residents make a living.

Crofton is:

  • Less than 10 miles west of Annapolis
  • Less than 25 miles south of Baltimore
  • Less than 25 miles east-northeast of Washington, D.C.
  • Less than 20 miles from N.S.A Headquarters in Fort Meade

Imagine living in a quaint, quiet and friendly community, enjoying easy access to work, meetings, culture, dining and so much more. That's what Crofton is all about!
Crofton Has So Much to Offer

The location of Crofton has proven to be quite convenient.  The town itself has a lot to offer its residents and visitors.

Newcomers to the area love that Crofton's schools are held to a very high standard. Four elementary schools, a middle school and a brand new Crofton high school that is getting ready to be built are all well-funded by a community that values higher education. And some of the best post-secondary educational opportunities exist just down the road within commuting distance at the University of Maryland.

Crofton also features a number of historical landmarks.  Convenient shopping centers, a gorgeous golf course and a reliable public transportation system are just a few of the reason residents enjoy living in Crofton.
Learn More About Homes in Crofton, MD

If you're interested in learning more about finding your new home in Crofton, MD, I am happy to help! Just give me a call or send me a text today to (301) 651-1261 or email me at to learn more.


Posted in Uncategorized
Sept. 27, 2016

4 Back to School Tips for Newcomers to Anne Arundel County

Summer is winding down and kids here in Anne Arundel County are already back in class. If you are new to the area, you might be wondering how you can ensure that your child has the best chance of succeeding in an unfamiliar environment. Starting school in a new area is a notoriously difficult challenge for kids, and if your family is still getting settled, it can seem like every single day is full of overwhelming obstacles.

You've got a lot on your mind, and it's important to prioritize. Thankfully, there are some great pieces of advice you can use to help simplify life for you and your children as you get settled this fall.
Tip #1 -- Meet the Teachers

There's no doubt that you have a huge list of things to do as you start your new life in Eastern Maryland. To ensure that your children get started on the right foot in their new school, it's crucial that you get involved and meet with the people who will be teaching them during this school year.

By meeting directly with your child's educators, you can open a dialogue of understanding that will help you make sure that your child is comfortable, at ease and ready to learn. It also a great way to connect with people in your new community!
Tip #2 -- Find the Right Supplies

School kids today -- especially those in Anne Arundel County, where expectations are so high -- are often required to have some specific tools to be properly prepared for class. It's a lot different from when you went to school, so be sure to familiarize yourself with the list of items required for your kids' success in class.  Many of the local PTA’s offer prepared school supply kits for the children that are custom tailored to their school, grade level, etc.  Most of these need to be ordered at the end of the school year for the following year.  These can save both time and money.  More importantly it assures you that your child will have the correct supplies.
Tip #3 -- Locate the Right Home

Hopefully you've found your dream home in the area already, but if you are still searching for the perfect home in the ideal school district, help is available. I've helped numerous families like yours locate their ideal homes!  I’m happy to help, so give me a call today at (301) 651-1261, or email me at


Posted in Uncategorized
Sept. 23, 2016

Things To Do This Weekend: Sept 23-25

This weekend marks our first "official" weekend of Fall, and with the weather looking nice, it would be a great time to enjoy being outside!  Along with the multiple farms starting to open for their weekend activities there's plenty more to do!  Beginning Friday, the Inner Harbor in Baltimore will be hosting the "Baltimore Book Festival" featuring authors both locally & nationally, plus cooking demonstrations, workshops, children's activities, live music & much more!

SunFest is also starting this weekend in Ocean City at the Inlet parking lot offering live music from some of the area's best bands, plus headliners like Chris Janson, Eddie Money & more!  There's also plenty of food & activities for the entire family!  Free admission to SunFest (headlining concerts are extra and require tickets) and it's open from 10-10pm Fri & Sat, and 10-6pm on Sunday.


Posted in Things to do
Sept. 20, 2016

3 Key Tips for Selling Your Home this Fall

Kids are back in school, leaves are changing colors and the air is getting much cooler. Yes, it's true: fall is here! It's a great time of year in our part of the country -- the heat of the summer has dissipated and there's a sense of change and renewal all throughout the area. It's also one of the more popular and competitive times of the year for home sales here in Anne Arundel County.

Are you trying to sell a home in a competitive market that's about to become even more challenging with the change in season? You might be finding that generating interest is a bit more difficult than you anticipated. Buyers have a lot of properties to choose from, but sellers like you can take advantage of the activity, too.

Sell Your Home This Fall -- 3 Tips for Success

I have a lot of experience with this market, and I understand what it takes to sell a home in this area.  Regardless of the season and the associated market conditions, I know what it takes to help you buy and sell in any market.

Here are some tips I'd like to share with you:
Be Patient

This is simply one of the busiest times of the year in the area; not just in the real estate market, but for everyone. Activities and errands take on a fast pace, and family schedules become loaded with events, meetings and much more.  Kids are back in school and schedules become even tighter. It's easy to fall into a mood of panic when your home seems to be just sitting there, waiting for the perfect buyer.

It pays to be patient. People who are out searching for their dream homes are taking their time, knowing that the ideal property will emerge through diligent searching and a thorough approach. Your home is right for someone out there, so as long as you're putting forth the proper effort in selling your home, you can be sure that the market will lead the ideal buyer to you.

Consider Professional Staging

It's important to pull out all the stops when it comes to the presentation of the home you're selling in a competitive market. Staging the home inside and out allows potential buyers to see the true potential of the property, sparking their imaginations with ideas about how the home will serve them. If you're looking for help with this crucial part of the process, I can help!  I offer FREE staging consultations for each listing, just ask.
Trust a Team of Professionals

You are focused on what you do in order to live your best life -- as you should be. There are others who are focused on their lives and professions. Some are experts in the local real estate market, and they're ready to help you achieve your goal of selling your home in this competitive arena.

I am happy to offer my expertise in the local market along with my extensive business knowledge.  Over the past 18 years, I have been able to develop a team of very reputable professionals and contractors that I gladly refer for any service that you may need.  My goal is to provide the smoothest and most successful selling experience possible for you and your family.
Learn More!

If you're ready to learn how you can get your home sold in a competitive market, call me today at (301) 651-1261 or email me at and we can get the process started.  I offer a free, no obligation market analysis if you are interested in what your home is worth.

Posted in Uncategorized
Aug. 9, 2016

Relocating to Fort Meade? Consider Amazing Odenton!

When work and life has come together to bring you to the Fort Meade, MD area, you can look forward to some amazing possibilities. The area is known for a number of important characteristics, most notably its history, proximity to major cities and attractions, as well as its opportunities for men and women serving the country. These days, the National Security Agency (NSA) has a number of families relocating to the area, and for many of these families, the best place to find their dream home is in Odenton, where opportunities to explore all of the area's amazing possibilities abound!


A Life of Beauty and Balance in Odenton
Relocating to Anne Arundel County might seem daunting. The region is exploding with growth, and the people who are arriving in the area to add their talents to our nation's ability to protect itself are all looking for the best possible home for their respective families. With such conditions, where will you begin to look for your family's home?

Odenton is a true jewel in western Maryland. Just minutes away from Fort Meade, Odenton is also situated remarkably conveniently for trips to Washington D.C. and Baltimore. Additionally, BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport is just five minutes away! Your daily commute will be the envy of people living and working in more congested areas, and you'll always have an easy time getting to and from your ideal Odenton home.

Above all, Odenton provides a life of balance and beauty for its residents. It's close to large urban areas, major employers and all of the hustle and bustle of the city. But it's also an oasis that provides relaxation and all of the comforts one can expect from a cozy, small town.

Odenton also represents the perfect mix of old and new. A number of amazing historical sites are just a stone's throw away, giving your family a wide range of terrific, educational excursions. But the area is also on the cutting edge, with developments such as Odenton Town Center leading the way for establishing the ideal communities of the future.

Odenton Town Center -- Could It Be Your New Home?
Odenton Town Center, or "OTC" will be one of the more impressive communities in the region. Combining all of the comforts and community of a quaint, small town with all of the amenities that modern families demand; it is absolutely ideal for those who are relocating to the area for new opportunities. Imagine your perfect life -- travel to work takes just minutes and you're always within reach of the amazing culture this unique and historical region has to offer. But you also have a home in a safe, secure and beautifully comfortable part of Maryland. That's Odenton!

Call Scott Smolen Today!

Are you relocating to the Fort Meade area soon? Are you stressing about finding the best possible home for your family in the region? Consider Odenton and what Scott Smolen can do for you. Scott understands the needs of families like yours, and he knows the area like no one else! Call him today at (301) 651-1261 to learn what he can do to help you find your dream home in one of the country's most desirable places to live -- Odenton!

Feb. 11, 2016

Life in Historic Odenton Town Center

One of the most appealing aspects of living in Anne Arundel county is proximity to locations that hold historical significance. Washington, D.C. is just a stone’s throw away, and the region teems with monuments to the tremendously important events that happened in conjunction with the birth, founding and expansion of the United States. Odenton Town Center, which is a highly anticipated development in the western part of the county, not only provides amazing access to the many historical sites in the region; it’s the home of many such sites itself!

A Commitment to Remembering the Past

These days, developments like Odenton Town Center are being designed and built differently than they were in the past. OTC, for example, features its own Historical district, and its leaders understand the significance of preserving historic sites and pieces of the culture. In fact, the OTC encompasses commercial, residential and institutional properties of unique historical significance.

OTC also includes numerous buildings that display important architectural styles such as:

  • Queen Anne
  • American Foursquare
  • Bungalow
  • Gable
  • Vernacular Style

An Even Deeper Heritage

The region in which Odenton Town Center is situated is notable for its proximity to sites that are crucial in American history, but it’s also historically significant in terms of its past status as a center for Native American life. The region is an archeologist’s dream, with several resources located directly within the OTC.

Many of these sites are located nearby the streams and waterways that course through the area, and others are located just outside of the official Town Center limits. Recently performed surveys of the grounds the Piney Orchard community and Fort Meade have uncovered evidence of Native American settlements dating as far back in history to the period c. 7200 B.C. through about 1650 A.D. There is even evidence of the earlier occupants of Anne Arundel County dating back as early as 12,000 B.C. Anne Arundel County has been the “Land of Pleasant Living” for a very long time, as it turns out!

A Deep Connection to the Past with an Eye on the Future

The historical roots of the region in which Odenton Town Center is situated go back very deep and far, but the developers and visionaries who have planned the OTC understand that to preserve history, they need to keep an eye on the future.

To that end, a number of environmental initiatives have been implemented so that the area can be preserved for the enjoyment and education of future generations. New building projects are also being considered as much for their impact on the local economy as for their ability to protect the historical significance of the area. For those who want to protect the planet and the past, there are few places as ideal as Odenton Town Center!

Learn More about Life in OTC

Scott Smolen knows the area like the back of his hand, and he’s here to help you if you’re interested in finding a home in historic Odenton Town Center.

Call Scott today at (301) 651-1261 or send an email to for more information.

Posted in News