What to Expect When Buying a Home: Please, please just give us the keys!

by seacoast_ashley 25. September 2015 07:41

 

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If you have been following along on our family adventure, you already know that moving and buying our new home has faced some unique circumstances. My family and I are located in the US, the seller of our soon-to-be home is based in the United Arab Emirates. This meant that throughout the buying process our agent had to be knowledgeable on the longer than usual buying process. It meant that my family had to practice patience, because any communication with the seller resulted in a longer than usual response time.


My family and I had succeeded. We had a closing date! We set up utilities, changed our mailing addresses, and contracted various businesses to begin renovations (all for a closing date start date).  We should have closed and been happily nestled into our new home within 3 weeks of close. There was a bubble of excitement bobbing over all of our heads.


The night before the closing date, I carefully coordinated outfits for our family of five to pop against the purple front door of our new home. We would head from the attorney’s office and head straight to the house for a quick sweet family pic. As soon as the last sock was placed on the last set of clothing my husband and I received a text....a very disappointing text. Our agent needed to speak with us asap.


BAM! The happy bubble had burst. Closing would be pushed back a week. The sellers had not properly signed the deed. We are a pretty "roll-with-it" family, so after a few muffled curse words (the kids were all in bed) we accepted that life would happen and we would go on.


Cue closing date Number Two. This time I decided to save myself some laundry time and just go with our regular everyday clothes. Cue call Number Two. Again, the closing would be delayed. The deed, which we were now assured had been re-signed, had not arrived as promised. There was talk of the sellers being on holiday, taking a special trip to London because the legal process is smoother there, and long courier times. I really am not sure what the details were. All I knew was that once again I was going to have to call all of the contractors and reschedule. The I was going to have to tell three children under the age of 7 years that our day was not going to include going to the new house. I was crushed.


My husband and I stayed up late that night. We went through every possible scenario, and decided that if the house did not close on the next scheduled date we would have to walk. We were both paranoid that there was something bad going wrong, despite the assurance from our agent that this was not terribly uncommon when dealing with overseas sellers.


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The Door looks red here, but I assure you it is a very interesting shade of purple...


Closing date Three...YES! WE BOUGHT A HOUSE!!!! And the kicker, our awesome agent was able to negotiate our first full month of bills paid by the seller due to the long delay! Our family skipped the matching outfits. We drove to the house and played in the yard. We walked around and guessed at where Santa might leave Christmas gifts. We introduced ourselves to neighbors through the fence posts. We were a family who was finally home. Memories multiplied, and all was right with the world.


Tell us about your home-buying experiences! Did all go smoothly, or were there hurdles to jump along the way? You can join the conversation on our Facebook page

https://www.facebook.com/seacoastrealty


Ready to jump into the home-buying adventures? You’ll need a rockstar agent, like my own, and you can find one here

http://www.seacoastrealty.com/



What to Expect When Listing Your House: Step 3 - Papers, Open Houses, and Showings..Oh My!

by seacoast_ashley 12. June 2015 10:02

The two most important decisions that we have made, thus far in our house-selling adventures, have been choosing our realtor and preparing our home for listing.  I am going to hit the three topics listed in the title above, and hopefully you will see why! Lets go in order, and if you are feeling a little lost it might be because you missed the first two blogs in this series. You can go back and read them here http://www.seacoastrealty.com/blog/.


Before, during, and after listing your home for sale there is a mountain of paperwork that must be read, checked over, filled in, and signed. I love words. I love writing. I love reading. However, there is nothing I dislike more than contracts. Every contract that I have ever received or signed immediately sends me into a full-stress overdrive. I worry that I missed something, or that I didn’t read the technical or legal language correctly. I worry that I have just signed my children away on accident!


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Pick a good one! These people will be your new best friend.


This contract/ legal-form dread has one antidote. That would be, a really great Realtor! My realtor has filled-out and read over hundreds of these contacts. He knows exactly what the form is saying in layman’s terms. I have texted, emailed, and called him so many times just to make sure that I am getting it right. To make the form-life even easier, my realtor utilizes a program that allows for me to sign all paperwork online. He can instantly see what I have done, and either congratulate me on finally understanding that “property” is referring to the house and land, or gently remind me that this is the year 2015 not 2014. DotLoop (the program that I am speaking of) also allows for my Husband and I to look back over anything that we have already signed. It lets us each sign individually, so even when we aren’t together we can sign and don’t have to meet and drive to a certain place. This is one of the major differences this time around from the last time we bought or sold a house.


These are just a few of the forms, contacts, etc that we have filled out or signed thus far (3 weeks in). I am sure that there are more, but these are the ones that are living in my DotLoop “Loop”.


Working With Real Estate Agents

Professional Services Disclosure

Exclusive Right to List

Lead Based Paint Disclosure Form

Mineral Oil/Gas/Rights Disclosure

Residential Property Disclosure


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Our realtor was on-point with advertising!


As soon as we crossed the mountain of paperwork, we were ready to go go go! Our agent knew the importance of a fast sell, so he immediately set up an open house within our first week on the market. This ended up being not quite as nerve wracking as I had expected. The house was already clean (due to our prepping to sell). Our only obligation was to make sure the house looked good, and to leave (yes leave, with 3 small kids and a dog) for 4 hours. The turnout was great, and he went ahead and scheduled another open house for the following weekend.


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What the days looked like.


It was hard to get ourselves and then keep ourselves (we have a dog that gets extremely car-sick) out of the house for a good chunk of the weekend, but it was well worth it. We got great feedback from agents. Requests for showings started pouring in. This told us two things. We were priced right, and people liked the house! All of the cleaning and housework, and our realtors hard work was paying off!


Because we were getting so many requests for showings, we needed to plan our “showing method”. After planning our showing method (how would we receive request, what lead time we required, what would need to be taken out of the house) life became a race. We were racing from work to home, home to the park, and back again. We really got to know our current city better, because we were forced to spend so much time out of the house.


Our agent set our phones up with an app called ShowingTime. This app was incredibly helpful. My husband and I would each receive a text message alerting us that there was a request to view our home. We were able to respond with a simple “Y” or “N” or suggest a different time. We loved that we were able to find out as soon as there was interest in seeing the home, as it gave us extra time to get the house cleaned-up and plan where we will take the kids and dog during the showing.I would suggest that you speak with your realtor about how he/she plans to notify you about your showing request.


No matter when the showing was requested we always made it work. This was not easy, but well worth the effort. We received an offer after only 6 days on the market! Next week’s blog will fill you in on the offer and negotiating process!


As always, I love hearing your listing stories! And, can easily direct you a person that might be able to answer your real estate questions and calm your listing fears!

For a great realtor(like mine) look here...

http://www.seacoastrealty.com/


To join in the selling conversation visit us here

 

https://www.facebook.com/seacoastrealty

10 Things to do in Eastern NC This Weekend!

by seacoast_ashley 23. April 2015 15:21

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As the weekend approaches our coast is gearing up for activities galore! Whether you have guests in town, or are visiting our area you will surely find something fun! Here are 10 things to do on the NC coast this weekend!


1. 2015 Parade of Homes

If you are exploring your home buying options here in the Cape Fear, or just love to look at beautiful homes then this is the activity for you! Over 70 homes will be on display this year. See some of the options offered up by our local homebuilders. The event runs for two weekends April 25-26 and then again from May 1-2. Homes are open for viewing from 12pm-5pm. For more details visit

http://wilmingtonparadeofhomes.com/event-information/


2. Southport Paint the Town Plein Air Paint Out

The town of Southport will be hosting the Plein Air Paint Out. Both beginner and seasoned artists alike will be practicing the art of plein air painting (painting in the outdoors). Visitors will be able to meander the quaint town of Southport, have the chance to speak with the artists, and the opportunity to purchase paintings on site. The event runs from 9am-5pm April24 - April25.For more details, check out the Star News article

http://www.starnewsonline.com/article/20150421/articles/150419797


3. Celebrate the Flytrap!

The NC Coastal Land Trust sponsored event Flytrap Frolic will be held Saturday from 9am-1pm at 3800 Canterbury Road. This is a freeevent with activities the whole family can enjoy. After treating the kids to a carnivorous plant lesson, drop them with the sitter and head out to one of Wilmington’s newest watering holes. Head to  Flytrap Brewery for live music and dinner from the Vittles Food Truck. Cheers to our region and the unique plants that grow here! http://www.coastallandtrust.org/Flytrap  

http://www.flytrapbrewing.com/home.html

4. The Star Party at Carolina Beach State Park

Star gaze on April 24 from 7:00pm-10:30pm. Telescopes will be set up for viewing our beautiful night sky, and astronomy related activities will be available for all to enjoy. This is a state wide event happening all along our coast. You might also be interested in the event happening in Jacksonville. In the event of rain the event will be held the following night April 25. To learn more about the event or to find a Star Party closer to you, visit

http://www.ncsciencefestival.org/2015_event/ssp2015-carolinabeach/


5. The Carolina Cup

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Head out to Wrightsville beach this weekend to catch the tail end of the Carolina Cup! This weeklong event will wind up on Saturday. Wrightsville Beach is one of the premiere locations for SUP (Stand-up Paddling). There are sure to be some amazing sites and most likely include a ride home filled with plans for buying your first SUP. Events will be in full swing April 24 - April 25. For information about this event

http://wrightsvillebeachpaddleclub.com/


6. Earth Day Celebration at Hugh MacRae Park

Celebrate our Earth with your family in a beautiful setting. This annual event will be held April 25 from 12pm-6pm. The event is free to attend. Food and beverages will be available for purchase. This is a family friendly FUN event. The offerings include live music, a kids zone, and exhibitors galore! This event is designed to honor our Earth, educate, and inspire eco action!

http://www.wilmingtonearthday.com/celebrate_2015.html#more


7. Wilmington Riverfront Farmers Market

Yay! The market is back until November. Stroll downtown, maybe catch a yummy breakfast at The Dixie Grill, then head down to the Riverfront to scoop up plenty of fresh local foods, flowers, and crafts. This is a nice place to meet the people in your community and explore the amazing things that our farmers grow! The market is open April 25 from 8am-1pm.

http://www.wilmingtondowntown.com/events/farmers-market


8. Coastal Cluck Coop Tour

April 25 from 10am-3pm visitors will be able to tour the many cool coops of Wilmington chicken owners! The event is free with a donation of non-perishables for Mother Hubbard’s Kitchen. If you have been thinking about owning and raising your own chickens, or just want to see some of the coops around town then this is the event for you. Coop owners will answer questions and educate the public on raising chickens. Many of the stops on the tour will be selling various chicken or farm related products, think fresh local eggs! For more information about the tour check out their Facebook Page

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Coastal-Cluck-Coops/218543004885713


9. Walking Tour of Historic Churches in Wilmington

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Wilmington has some of the most beautiful churches in the state. This is a chance to take a 2 1/2 hour long tour of seven of the historic churches located downtown. The tour starts at the Latimer House at 1:30pm April 26. What a great way to meet people, explore some amazing sites, and get your exercise in!

http://www.hslcr.org/

10. Coast in and Win!

While out and about exploring our area stop in at one of Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage’s open houses on Sat or Sun. By stopping in and viewing the house you will be entered into the monthly drawing for $500! Pretty easy way to pay for all of those weekend activities!

 

http://www.seacoastrealty.com/property/property-list.asp?VAR_SearchType=openhouse&VAR_MapStatus=LISTMAP

Taxes and the Aftermath!

by seacoast_ashley 16. April 2015 03:54

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On April 15th whether you were happy, neutral, or upset by your 2014 tax filing one thing was for sure; you were impacted. Every year millions of dollars are given or received. Millions of people feel the responsibility of living in the greatest nation in the world.


Homeowners experience a greater impact. As homeowners we have extra taxes, extra credits, extra ways in which we are tied to our government. Oftentimes we blindly pay or receive, because at the end of the day it is what it is. For many the money we pay is deducted from paychecks or rolled into monthly mortgage payments. It is money that we never see in the physical sense. It is money that we never feel in our hands, and never fork over to the pizza delivery person, so we don’t think about it.


Tax day forces us to think about that money, even if only to sign our tax filings. For my family April is often a time that we reevaluate our spending habits of past year and vow that this year we will be wiser, more learned, and thus more active in our own government and the choices that it makes.


This year I followed through on my education. One of the first things that I did, after guidance of an extremely knowledgeable realtor, was to check out the website http://www.nchomeownersalliance.org/. North Carolina Homeowners Alliance is an organization with a super simple website that allows me to read up on what is happening in the General Assembly with regards to homeowner’s rights. The best part is that I am able, with a couple of clicks, to add my name to petitions that end up straight in the hands of the people that I have voted to speak for me and my family.


I got fired up by reading some of the posts and have vowed to remain an active part of the decisions that are made on my behalf. This is not a post aimed at politics in the Republican / Democrat sense. It is a post emphasizing that knowledge is power.


What websites, organizations, actions help you to feel more connected with your government and finances? Share with us

 

https://www.facebook.com/seacoastrealty

So Much Good #2015RAD

by seacoast_ashley 10. April 2015 04:41

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It is no secret that real estate agents like people. It is ingrained in them to like to talk, share, listen, and observe. Real estate agents are extremely social creatures. When my family has dinner out or spends a weekend exploring our town it is often an agent that we end up talking to at the table beside ours or on a walking trail at the park. Agents are movers and shakers. They are the people about town.


Last week our agents (over 100 of them) participated in Realtor Action Day. Agents from many offices and many different real estate companies gathered to perform different services for the benefit of our community. There were projects such as building 18 community garden beds at Devon Park United Methodist Church. These beds will be used to grow fresh foods for the community surrounding the church. In just 2 hours, an empty space was transformed to a working garden space.

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Many Realtors headed out to the beach to plant sea oats. For visitors to our area, it is often questioned why we need to plant sea oats? The answer is pretty simple and one that locals can give quite quickly. The sea oats prevent erosion of our beautiful beaches. More sea oats equal more sand and protection. Sea oats have extensive root systems that oftentimes are the “glue” holding sand dunes together.


There were crews of Realtors cleaning our local Azalea Festival parade route, crews picking up trash and pinecones in one of our beautiful parks, there were crews crews everywhere! Every person that helped that day had one goal, to better the best community in the world!

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My most favorite moment came when I visited the Autumn Care nursing home. I had hopped from site to site all morning watching all the good take place, but I was ill prepared for the beauty of people just connecting with people. The moment that touched me so deeply came when I was witness to some elderly women being pampered by some of the volunteers.  What I believe was the craft room at the facility had been transformed into a  “spa” for the morning. The residents waited with the nail polish of their choosing for their turn at having their fingernails painted.


One elderly lady was so excited. She was animated and gestured wildly while telling stories. Everyone sat in rapture of her. I couldn’t help but think that she must have been so fancy as a younger woman. This spa treatment seemed 100% up her alley. I felt so proud watching as my co-workers made human connections and gave someone a reason to smile.


Community is an extension of family. I am grateful for my community. My community supports me both emotionally  and financially, through the jobs that I have worked. The pride that I had for Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage during the 2015 Realtor Action Day was almost palpable. Many friends were made, many environments were beautified, and there was so much good!


We have amazing Realtors here at Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage. They are people who care. If you are looking to buy or sell your home we would love to share our skills with you!

http://www.seacoastrealty.com/

DENISE KINNEY AWARDED CRB DESIGNATION

by seacoast_ashley 12. November 2014 10:02

 

Denise Kinney, Vice President, Director of Sales for Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage,

has earned the prestigious Certified Real Estate Brokerage Manager (CRB) Designation presented by the Council

of Real Estate Brokerage Managers, a non-profit affiliate of the National Association of Realtors™.

The CRB is recognized as the industry’s measure of success for real estate brokers and managers.

According to the Council, the median gross personal income of a CRB designee is 57% more than their Realtor™

colleagues without the designation. To earn the CRB designation, agents must complete a comprehensive program

combining experience with management education.

Kinney is a 7-year veteran of Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage and was promoted to Vice President,

Director of Sales in July of this year. In this position, she manages the Brokers-in-Charge who oversee each of the

company’s 11 offices, and assists them in developing and executing new ideas to increase production, streamline

operations and help the company’s 375+ agents to better serve their buyers and sellers.

“We applaud Denise for earning her CRB designation,” said Tim Milam, president of Coldwell Banker Sea

Coast Advantage. “Denise has an incredible work ethic and a very successful track record with our company. In

each of the four Sea Coast offices she managed before becoming VP, she increased sales volume, agent

recruiting, agent retention and agent production. This new CRB designation is another step forward in her

successful career.”

STAR NEWS SHORE PICKS We Made the Top 3 Finalists!

by seacoast_ashley 17. September 2014 10:03

Voting for the annual Star News Shore Picks - Best of the Cape Fear Region is underway! The goal is to honor "the best bites, businesses, locations and personalities in Brunswick, New Hanover and Pender counties."

We're so excited that we made it into the Top 3 Finalists!

We'd Love Your Support!

www.StarNewsOnline.com/shorepicks

 

Coast In & Win Open House Weekends Put The Fun Back Into House Hunting!

by seacoast_ashley 26. August 2014 08:41

Every 3rd weekend of the month, one fortunate potential homebuyer will win $500 when they visit any area Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage open house.

Statistics show that over 90% of today's savvy home buyers are doing their own research online and over 70% of them will attend one or more open houses as a part of the process.

The Coast In & Win program has become a powerful tool and allows us to connect these buyers with our top performing agents.

Our lucky August winner was Nancy Opsahl from Annandale, NJ who toured an open house with Patricia Wisdo in our Brunswick office! Congratulations Nancy!

 

 

What is the No. 1 Tip for Home Buyers?

by seacoast_ashley 20. August 2014 05:33

What is the No. 1 Tip for Home Buyers? Our very own Wilmington agent, Jessica Edwards shares her advice via Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC!

http://blog.coldwellbanker.com/1-tip-home-buyers/

 

 

 

NORTH CAROLINA #4 IN TOP 10 NEW HOME RESIDENTIAL SALES IN 2014

by seacoast_ashley 25. July 2014 08:17

According to Builderonline.com, new home sales data from the Census Bureau showed a slight drop on a seasonally-adjusted basis in 2014.

But some markets are Hot!

NORTH CAROLINA IS #4 NATIONWIDE!

 

 

 

 

Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage is proud to represent some of the finest builders in Southeastern North Carolina.

Check out great new home communities:

www.cbseacoastnewhomes.com  (Wilmington / Southport / Leland / New Hanover County / Brunswick County / Pender County)

www.newhomesofjacksonville.com  (Jacksonville / Hampstead / Onslow County / Pender County)

 

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