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Date published: 1/11/2013

By Bill Freehling

Fewer homes for sale in the local region

The number of homes actively listed for sale in the Fredericksburg area fell to its lowest point since June 2005 last month, according to Metropolitan Regional Information Systems data released Thursday.

There were 1,326 homes for sale through the Multiple Listing Service at the end of December. With 290 houses sold through the MLS that month, there was about a 4.6-month supply of homes.

Any ratio under five months is considered a healthy balance between supply and demand. The low inventory of existing homes could bode well for builders.

The median sales price in the Fredericksburg area last month, $211,500, was about flat from December 2011. Homes spent about 70 days on the market before selling on average, and sold for about a 6 percent discount to the list price.

The Fredericksburg area comprises the city and Caroline, King George, Spotsylvania and Stafford counties.

Silver stops mining on land in Caroline

The Silver Cos. stopped mining and transporting sand and gravel from a 1,209-acre property off U.S. 17 in Caroline after county officials told them to do so this past fall.

Silver had been taking the materials to a site next to the Spotsylvania Regional Medical Center where the company is constructing a memory care facility, said company executive Jud Honaker.

Silver didn't have a permit for the mining on its property near Moss Neck Manor and Fort A.P. Hill, and Caroline officials verbally told the company to stop. Silver complied with the verbal order, and no written notice was issued.

Silver is now working on an application that would allow Waldorf, Md.-based Chaney Enterprises to mine sand and gravel on a portion of the property. Silver also wants to build a small, high-end resort on the property that could be used for corporate retreats.

Marlin & Ray's brand shut down by parent

Ruby Tuesday Inc. has decided to immediately close all of its 13 Marlin & Ray's seafood restaurants, the company announced Wednesday.

A Marlin & Ray's restaurant opened this past May in the former Ruby Tuesday location in Doc Stone Commons in Stafford County.

"While this was a difficult decision to make, we have determined the Marlin & Ray's brand is not an optimal conversion vehicle for us going forward," the company said in an earnings release.

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