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Posts Tagged ‘Southport Realty Companies’

House Prices are on the Rise – It’s Time to Buy!

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Home Prices Up 5.67% Across The Country!

Home Prices Up 5.67% Across The Country! [INFOGRAPHIC] | MyKCM

Some Highlights:

  • Across the country, home prices are up by 5.67%.
  • Each state is appreciating at a different rate, however, which is important to realize if you plan on relocating to a different state.
  • Regionally, prices have appreciated year-over-year by as high as 8.15%.

Let the Coastal Realty Connections team help you find your next real estate purchase. Contact us today.  910-279-9398.

5 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Pro

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5 Reasons To Hire A Real Estate Pro


Whether you are buying or selling a home, it can be quite an adventurous journey. You need an experienced Real Estate Professional to lead you to your ultimate goal. In this world of instant gratification and internet searches, many sellers think that they can For Sale by Owner or FSBO.

The 5 Reasons You NEED a Real Estate Professional in your corner haven’t changed but have rather been strengthened due to the projections of higher mortgage interest rates & home prices as the market continues to recover.

1. What do you do with all this paperwork?

Each state has different regulations regarding the contracts required for a successful sale, and these regulations are constantly changing. A true Real Estate Professional is an expert in their market and can guide you through the stacks of paperwork necessary to make your dream a reality.

2. Ok, so you found your dream house, now what?

According to the Orlando Regional REALTOR Association, there are over 230 possible actions that need to take place during every successful real estate transaction. Don’t you want someone who has been there before, someone who knows what these actions, are to make sure that you acquire your dream?

3. Are you a good negotiator?

So maybe you’re not convinced that you need an agent to sell your home. However, after looking at the list of parties that you need to be prepared to negotiate with, you’ll realize the value in selecting a Real Estate Professional. From the buyer (who wants the best deal possible) to the home inspection companies, to the appraiser, there are at least 11 different people that you will have to be knowledgeable with and answer to, during the process.

4. What is the home you’re buying/selling really worth?

It is important for your home to be priced correctly from the start to attract the right buyers and shorten the time that it’s on the market. You need someone who is not emotionally connected to your home to give you the truth as to your home’s value. According to the National Association of REALTORS, “the typical FSBO home sold for $208,700 compared to $235,000 among agent-assisted home sales.”

Get the most out of your transaction by hiring a professional.

5. Do you know what’s really going on in the market?

There is so much information out there on the news and the internet about home sales, prices, and mortgage rates; how do you know what’s going on specifically in your area? Who do you turn to in order to competitively price your home correctly at the beginning of the selling process? How do you know what to offer on your dream home without paying too much, or offending the seller with a low-ball offer?

Dave Ramsey, the financial guru, advises:

“When getting help with money, whether it’s insurance, real estate or investments, you should always look for someone with the heart of a teacher, not the heart of a salesman.”

Hiring an agent who has their finger on the pulse of the market will make your buying/selling experience an educated one. You need someone who is going to tell you the truth, not just what they think you want to hear.

Bottom Line

You wouldn’t replace the engine in your car without a trusted mechanic. Why would you make one of the most important financial decisions of your life without hiring a Real Estate Professional? Contact us today and let us help you buy or sell. 910-279-9398.

Is it time to buy or sell my home?

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New & Existing Home Sales Climb


Some Highlights:

  • Both New Home Sales and Existing Home Sales are up month-over-month and year-over-year.
  • Inventory remains low which continues to drive home prices up as demand continues to exceed the 4.7-month inventory.
  • The median price of new homes is up 12% from March 2015, while the median price of existing homes is up 6.3% from April 2015.

Take advantage of today’s market by contacting us. 910-279-9398.

Low interest rates – Now is a good time to buy

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Mortgage Rates Remain at Historic Lows


The latest report from Freddie Mac shows that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.61% last week, slightly down from the week before (3.66%), and nearly 20 points lower than a year ago (3.80%).

This is great news for homebuyers who are dealing with rising prices due to a low inventory of homes for sale in many areas of the country. Freddie Mac expressed their optimism for the rates to remain low throughout the spring in a recent blog post:

“We expect mortgage interest rates to stay well under 4% as we head into the heart of the spring homebuying season. We’re predicting it to be the best one in 10 years, which should provide even greater opportunities for first-time homebuyers.”

Below is a chart of the weekly average rates in 2016, according to Freddie Mac.

Mortgage Rates Remain at Historic Lows | Simplifying The Market

Rates have again fallen to historic lows yet many experts still expect them to increase in 2016. One thing we know for sure is that, according to Freddie Mac, current rates are the best they have been since last April.

Sean Becketti, Chief Economist for Freddie Mac recently explained:

“Since the start of February, mortgage rates have varied within a narrow range providing an extended period for house hunters to take advantage of historically low rates.”

Bottom Line

If you are thinking of buying your first home or moving up to your ultimate dream home, now is a great time to get a sensational rate on your mortgage. Let Coastal Realty Connections put their expertise and excellent customer service to work for you. Contact us today. info@coastalrealtyconnections.com / 910-279-9398.

Why it Makes Sense to Buy A Primary & Second Home

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Billionaire: Buy a Home… And if You Can, Buy a Second Home!


Three years ago, John Paulson gave a keynote address at the CNBC/Institutional Investor Conference. In his speech, he told those in attendance that he believes housing will continue its strong recovery for the next 4 to 7 years, saying that:

“The housing market has bottomed. It’s not too late to get involved. I still think buying a home is the best investment any individual can make. Affordability is still at an all-time high.”

When asked how the average person could take advantage of the current real estate market at the time, Paulson said:

“Buy a home and, if you can, buy a second home.”

Two years ago, Paulson reiterated his statement, saying:

“I still think, from an individual perspective, the best deal investment you can make is to buy a primary residence that you’re the owner-occupier of.”

Who is John Paulson and why should you listen to him?

Paulson is the person who, back in 2005 & 2006, made a fortune betting that the subprime mortgage mess would cause the real estate market to collapse. He understands how the housing market works and knows when to buy and when to sell.

What do others think of Paulson?

According to Forbes, John Paulson is:

“A multibillionaire hedge fund operator and the investment genius.”

According to the Wall Street Journal, Paulson is:

“A hedge fund tycoon who made his name, and a fortune, betting against subprime mortgages when no one else even knew what they were.” 

So… Is what he said still true?

The core reasons behind Paulson’s statements still ring true today, but why does he believe homeownership is such a great investment?

Paulson broke down the math of homeownership as an investment:

1. “Today financing costs are extraordinarily low.”

The latest numbers from Freddie Mac show us that you can still get a 30-year mortgage at historically low rates of under 4%.

2. “And if you put down, let’s say, 10 percent and the house is up 5 percent,” as many experts predict, “then you would be up 50 percent on your investment.”

How many are seeing a 50% return on a cash investment right now?

Paulson goes on to compare the long term financial benefits of owning versus renting:

3. “And you’ve locked in the cost over the next 30 years. And today the cost of owning is somewhat less than the cost of renting. And if you rent, the rent goes up every year. But if you buy a 30-year mortgage, the cost is fixed.”

Bottom Line

Whenever a billionaire gives investment advice, people usually clamor to hear it. This billionaire gave simple advice – if you don’t yet live in your own home, go buy one.

Let the team at Coastal Realty Connections help you find the right primary or second home. Specializing in coastal real estate from New Bern, North Carolina to the beaches of Brunswick County. Contact us today and let us put our knowledge to work for you.

The housing marketing is heating up! List your home with Coastal Realty Connections

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Thinking of Selling? The Market Needs Your Listing!!


The housing market is really heating up and buyer demand is dramatically increasing as we enter the spring season. However, one challenge to the current market is a major shortage of inventory. Below are a few comments made in the last month by industry experts.

Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist of NAR

“Looking ahead, the key for sustained momentum and more sales than last spring is a continuous stream of new listings quickly replacing what’s being scooped up by a growing pool of buyers. Without adequate supply, sales will likely plateau.”

Jonathan Smoke, Chief Economist of Realtor.com

“Low inventories and tight credit will limit the gains we will see in 2016. However, given the level of pent-up demand evident in web activity and stated buyer intentions for 2016, we should see this spring materialize as the busiest season of sales since 2006.”

Rick Sharga, Ten-X’s EVP

“Inventory is too low to support much higher sales. There’s virtually no inventory available at the entry level, and single family housing starts and permits continue to languish at levels far below where they should be at this point of the recovery.”

David Crowe, Chief Economist of the National Assoc. of Home Builders

“Many sellers may not have an absolute decision as to whether to buy an existing home or a new home. So the low inventory of existing homes is locking them in place.”

Freddie Mac

“Challenges remain, with low housing supply and declining affordability being a key concern in many markets.”

Let us help you get your home ready for sell. Contact us for a free market evaluation at info@coastalrealtyconnections.com / 970-279-9398.


Brunswick County Luxury Home Market Strong

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Brunswick County, North Carolina, Coastal Connection Realty

Brunswick County, North Carolina

According to a recent article in the Wilmington Business Journal, luxury home sales ticked upward as November came to a close.

Six homes in the $1 million range sold in Brunswick County and three in the same category in New Hanover during the month of November, according to a luxury home market report released this week.

As of Nov. 30, there were 164 homes for sale in New Hanover and 84 in Brunswick with asking prices exceeding $1 million, stated the report, compiled from local MLS statistics by Wilmington-based firm Just For Buyers Realty.

In Brunswick, 33 of those listings were on Bald Head Island, while New Hanover’s were also in locations known for higher priced property: 31 in Landfall, 29 in Wrightsville Beach and 23 on Figure Eight Island.

The luxury market in general has been healthy in recent months in the Wilmington area and surrounding communities, Realtors say.


Thanksgiving Holiday Home Preparations

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      With Thanksgiving only three weeks away, many families are using the time from now to Thanksgiving Day to clean their home for guests, gather their recipes, and purchase ingredients. However, when hosting family and friends for Thanksgiving, it is crucial to be prepared for an assortment of issues that may arise. After all, there’s more to the holiday than just eating turkey and watching Football, and taking the necessary precautions can alleviate stress and ensure that guests have a memorable Thanksgiving holiday!

Before Guests Arrive

Evaluate All Appliances:

-Make sure that all appliances you are planning to use on Thanksgiving are in working order to avoid any malfunctions when preparing Thanksgiving dinner.
-Research the life expectancy of your most used appliances. Replace or fix any that may pose a threat.
Don’t use your oven’s self-clean cycle in the week before Thanksgiving, as it can be stressful on the appliance. Instead, use damp cloths to clean it to avoid a last minute break down.
-Check your oven’s temperature gauge. Place a thermometer on the middle rack, set the oven temperature, and when it heats up, verify that the temperatures match. If they don’t, make necessary repairs.
-Put less stress on yourself and your oven by using alternative appliances for side dishes, such as a microwave, toaster oven, crock pot, or grill. If there are no alternative options, ask your guests to bring a side with them.

Perform Basic Cleaning and Maintenance:

-Refrigerator: Clean condenser coils in the fridge with a coil brush, wipe down interior and door gaskets with baking soda and water, apply a thin layer of petroleum jelly to gasket at hinge, clean the water and ice dispenser and soak the spill shelf in vinegar. Clear out old food to make room for leftovers.
-Dishwasher: For stainless steel tubs, run potscrubber cycle without dishes or detergent for 15 to 20 minutes. Then, interrupt the cycle and pour two cups of white vinegar to the bottom of the dishwasher. Close the dishwasher, and complete the wash. For plastic tubs, fill the detergent cup with three to four ounces of citric acid crystals and run the normal wash cycle. Follow up with a second wash cycle and include detergent.
-Microwave: Heat up one cup of water for three minutes on full power, and let it stand for five minutes after it is finished to allow the steam to soften the food. Then, wipe up the caked on food!
-Pantry: Organize and remove old food, spices, etc. not only to make sure you have enough room to store ingredients for the meal and other miscellaneous supplies, but also so that you don’t ruin the food with outdated, poor tasting spices.
-Overall: Tidy up bedrooms, bathrooms, and common areas that will accommodate your guests. In addition, make sure your home, especially your kitchen, is safe. Put household cleaners, sharp objects, lighters, and other harmful objects where they belong. Unplug appliances that aren’t being used, and wrap up the cord. If children are present, use backburners of the stove as much as possible, cover electrical outlets, or invest in a child safety gate to keep them out of harm’s way if necessary.

Take Inventory and Create a Detailed Grocery List:Turkey Meal

-Food: Organize the recipes that you plan to use in one book, and write a detailed list of ingredients you will need for each recipe. Look through your pantry, fridge, and freezer, and cross the items that you already have off your grocery list. Remember to check the expiration dates of all food products and spices, and replace expired items as needed.
-Cleaning Supplies: Make sure to have a full supply of cleaning products on hand in case any accidents occur. This includes laundry detergent, carpet cleaner, dish soap, kitchen and bathroom cleaner, etc., baking soda, non bleach detergent, ammonia, bleach, rubbing alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, club soda, lemon juice, etc.
-Cookware and Utensils: Look through your cabinets and determine if you have enough Tupperware containers, plates, spoons, forks, knives, bowls, pots, and pans necessary to cook each meal, store leftovers, and accommodate each guest. Repair or replace any broken items that you need to use, retrieve items that you loaned out but were never returned, and sharpen dull knives.
-Seating and Eating Space: As soon as you have a head count on the number of guests you can expect on Thanksgiving, inventory your tables and chairs to make sure that they all have a place to sit and eat! If necessary, rent or buy tables and chairs, and repair defected items. Also, consider other tables, chairs, and household items throughout your home, and see if there is a way to convert them to temporary eating spaces.
-Storage: Before guests arrive, make sure any large scale projects in the kitchen are complete and do not occupy needed space. If applicable, create more room by adding temporary storage, such as a rolling island or mini fridge, or improvise with what you have, and use spaces such as the laundry room to store food and supplies.
-Prepare a Detailed Grocery List: Aside from food, spices, cleaning supplies, cookware and utensils, etc. there are other essential items that you don’t want to forget at the store, including garbage bags, aluminum foil, plastic wrap, coffee filters, batteries, etc.
-Make a note of store hours so last minute supplies can be purchased if needed.

Prepare Guest Rooms:
-If the rooms have not been used very often it may be helpful to change sheets.
-Check to make sure ample towels are in guests bathrooms (2 per person).
-Update toiletry items by ensuring lotions, etc. are still in date.
-Replace batteries as needed in clock radios, etc.
-Ask guest ahead of time if they have any special needs and prepare accordingly.

Thanksgiving Day Cleaning Tips:

Garbage Disposal:
-Remove build up in your garbage disposal by grinding harder items, such as fruit pits, ice, or small bones, that scrape the inside of the disposal and pipes before grinding any other foods.
-Flush food waste through the plumbing system and prevent debris from settling in pipes by running cold water for 30 seconds before and after each use.
-Throw away non-food items, grease, and fat that can clog the disposal.
-Take your time when cleaning up.

-Set up stations of plastic tubs, and fill them with soapy, lukewarm water. When you run out of room in the dishwasher, place dishes in the tubs until you can clean them or run another cycle through the dishwasher.
-Line baking dishes and pans with foil before you start preparing the food. Then, when you are finished and remove the foil, the dish will be nearly spotless and require minimal cleaning!

Then sit back and enjoy the time with your family and friends.

Thanksgiving Table Thanksgiving Porch Dining

Today’s Hottest House Trends May Surprise You

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featuredPropertyWhen most people think about housing trends, they think about wall colors, cabinet styles and materials. As lives become more complicated, priorities shift and the definition of family has changed significantly. In response to these shifts in society, the housing trends change and adapt. The economic situation for many homeowners has also caused adjustment to future housing plans.

Location, Location, Location! Yes this has always been the most important aspect of choosing a home. In the past, people focused on a location because of family, job or cost of living. Now the number one priority in regards to location comes down to the walkability of restaurants, shopping and services.

We are all familiar with “green” building however the shift to “well” building is right around the corner. “Well” building continues the avoidance of harmful materials and the highlight of water and energy conservation with a new focus on design that enhances the life of the occupants. “Biophilic” design involves window and door placement to strive for a seamlessness between the home and the great outdoors. Increasing natural light and adding LEDs with dimmers and colors that can be changed according to time of day or weather. The lighting can simulate circadian rhythms in the body to improve sleep patterns which in turn is a boost to your health. In similar terms, a “well” home is all about being healthy in your body and in your mind.

In one of our early posts, we discussed the ever growing sustainable movement which has thousands of yards adorned with edible landscaping, backyard chickens and even bee hives. Going a few steps farther is a new housing trend called “Agrihood”. These are planned communities with a “nod” to communal living. The idea is to incorporate farming into planned neighborhoods where homesites are larger, community gardens and livestock herds cover the common areas and neighbors work together maintaining the needs of the farm. You may even see community kitchens and dining rooms instead of tennis courts and pools. The shared work and “fruits of labor” create a sense of pride and connection between neighbors. We expect to see more of these communities popping up as the sustainable movement spreads.

Managing power usage continues to be a top concern for home owners. In addition to solar panels there has been a huge boost in the number of “smart homes” which help to manage usage by automatically adjusting heating/cooling settings and lighting to accommodate time of day as well as weather. Most of the “smart home” technology can be accessed and manipulated by a cell phone app.

Consumers are demanding low maintenance features and materials as they no longer want to spend their weekends mowing grass and painting the deck. The focus has shifted to materials and systems with a greater longevity and durability. A good example is hand built brick walls, they will last for centuries rather than just one owner. This goes along with the push to build structures to withstand severe weather. Many builders and homeowners are “opting to go beyond what is required” says Philadelphia developer Nino Cutrufello.

To further to the low maintenance push, folks are choosing to build smaller, more open floorplans. Including creative use of space and smaller bedrooms allow for overall smaller structures. Since the bedroom is typically where we spend the least amount of time it makes sense to make these rooms smaller. This also is the case for families housing multiple generations. Private entrances offer a feeling of separation and independence while still being cost effective and family oriented.

With such a shift in housing trends it will be interesting to see what effect if any these changes have on the resale market. We may start to see more and more renovations to retro fit homes for the “new style” of living.

Why we have the Cape Fear River Pilots

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Since Europeans first viewed the area, the river known ominously as the Cape Fear has been vital to the fortunes of both buccaneers and businessmen. History shows it was the pirate Stede Bonnet – by most accounts a poor sailor who already had been convicted as a pirate and pardoned – who may have realized the river’s name. After returning to piracy, he tried to escape capture in the early 1700’s by hiding up the Cape Fear. But he forgot the first rule of pirates – always have more than one escape route. Bonnet was caught as soon as the British reached the mouth of the river.

Union vessels didn’t have as much luck with the blockade runners of the Confederacy, who continued to escape capture and bring needed supplies back to the port at Wilmington during the Civil War. In fact, Wilmington was the last port open to blockade runners. When it finally fell in early 1865, it signaled the end of Confederate hopes.

Since then, though, most seagoing traffic hasn’t needed an escape route – merely a North Carolina berth. That meant the Cape Fear River in Wilmington, and the deep water harbor at Morehead City. When North Carolina’s first major port development began in the 1850s at Morehead City, harbor pilots began bringing in ships through Beaufort Inlet.In Wilmington, the river pilots became crucial during the Union blockade of the South during the Civil War. They would steam down the coastline and bring back needed supplies to the port, making Wilmington the last port open to blockade runners.Graphic Cape Fear Pilot Assoc (2)

In the years before modern dredging and channel deepening of the river, known ominously as the Cape Fear, captains used local pilots to maneuver the sandbars at the entrance of the harbor and of Frying Pan Shoals, more than 20 miles offshore. “Think of the captain of a large ship at Cape Fear as a blind man entering an immense, strange house, cluttered with unfamiliar furniture and other hazards, with only one entrance and one exit,” writes Jim McNeil in Masters of the Shoals.

Because of the pilots’ daring runs and narrow escapes, they often were romanticized in publications as “dandies of the town,” according to an article excerpted in Masters of the Shoals. “They wore fine ruffled shirts, tight fitting boots, long black coats and plug hats,” the author writes. “Every boy hoped someday to become a pilot.” “Without pilots, captains would be burdened. There is so much paperwork involved in every port visit, and (captains) go to so many ports around the world that they can’t know each river and port,” says Kirby. Federal regulations say that all “coastwise seagoing vessels propelled by machinery and subject to inspection” must be under the direction of a qualified pilot, along with vessels “not authorized by their certificate of inspection to proceed beyond (a specified) boundary line which are in excess of 1,600 tons, propelled by machinery and subject to inspection.” In more understandable terms, that means: “Every freighter, every big ship you see coming in this port has got a pilot in it,” said Scott Aldridge, river pilot and former president of the Cape Fear River Pilots Association.

In the Port of Wilmington 90 miles south of Morehead City, eight river pilots guide ships from a sea buoy in the Atlantic Ocean, past Bald Head and Jaybird shoals, and up the Cape Fear River.
“You have to navigate all the turns and bends in the river,” said Wes Kirby, then president of the Wilmington/Cape Fear Pilots Association. “Every bend has localized shoaling.” As river pilots bring the ships close to their berth in the Wilmington port, the docking pilots take over and use tugboats to push the vessel alongside its berth. Docking pilots also use tugs to undock vessels and turn them around so they can head down the river and out to sea.

Pilots have been around North Carolina ports for hundreds of years.

“Without pilots, shipping would come to a halt.”

sourced: Cape Fear Pilots Association – Wilmington,NC