10 Best Reasons to Move to Oak Island NC

With summer behind us and the arrival of autumn comes cooler temperatures. It’s a great time to go house hunting in Oak Island NC and there’s less competition from families during the autumn months.

What also makes this a good time to locate real estate is that sellers will be more willing to negotiate as the months draw closer to the holidays.

Oak Island offers the convenience of having Southport and Wilmington close enough to provide you with everything you need close by. But if you need other reasons to finally make that move to Oak Island North Carolina here are 10 good ones for you.

1. Oak Island has 10 miles of uncrowded beaches!
2. More than 60 public beach-access points
3. Two fishing piers open for the public’s use
4. Two marinas
5. Three public boat and canoe ramps that boating lovers will sure to enjoy.


6. Oak Island Golf Club with 18 holes
7. Over 6 more courses to play in near by Southport.
8. Some of the best fishing along the eastern seaboard is right here.
9. Plenty of specialty shops, art galleries and local craft boutiques
10. Lots of affordably priced Oak Island NC real estate sure to be perfect for your next home.

If you’d like to speak to us or arrange a time to look at properties, just give Sloane Realty a call at 910-579-1144. We’d be happy to show you around.
 
 

How to Bring Autumn Into Your Home

Homeowners often wait until the high temperatures of summer break and cooler weather arrives to begin any outdoor work around their home. Conveniently, home improvement companies mark down many products at this time of year to prepare for the new season. This allows homeowners to take advantage of some great deals as autumn begins.

Popular home improvement projects at this time of year include fencing, interior and exterior painting, window work, flooring, and roof repair.
 
How to Bring Autumn Into Your Home
By getting these projects done before winter, you can put your home improvement projects to rest until spring without worrying about leaky roofs or cold air coming through cracks in the windows, while maintaining the value of your home with something as simple as new fencing or a fresh coat of paint.

When the weather begins to turn cold, take cues from the weather to warm up your world. Think about the decorating styles that appeal to you and use the following tips for guidance:

Look to Elemental Colors: Air, Earth, Fire and Water. Nature inspires the most beautiful colors. Colors reflecting air will make your home breathe. Earth inspired colors will ground and calm a room. Colors pulling from water inspire playful fun, and lastly those reflecting fire will display bold confidence.

Take Cues From Nature: Look at the fall foliage and you’ll see vibrant colors of golds, rich reds, deep chocolate browns and toasty oranges. These colors inspire life and energy as the days get darker and cooler. Look for ways to incorporate these colors and scenes into your room decor.

How to Bring Autumn Into Your Home
Go Natural: There are abundant products available today that are good for the environment. These products often incorporate earthy colors and textures; a perfect theme for fall. Choose eco-friendly shades that are PVC-free and 100 percent recyclable.

Decorate for the Season: Carve out a tall pumpkin and use it as a flower vase or use small pumpkins to hold candles. A throw pillow or a bouquet of cut flowers are inexpensive ways to provide some color pop while entertaining your guests.

Come Close: Rearrange your furniture to set your fireplace as the focal point of the room. Footstools, ottomans, and floor pillows add to the inviting, warm atmosphere. If you don’t want the hassle of starting and maintaining a fire, try placing tall white candles in the fireplace for a similar glow.

How to Bring Autumn Into Your Home
Go Vibrant: Add a few splashes of vibrant color to your walls or decorations. The vibrancy of color enriches any look and keeps things from feeling drab. Deep colors inspire confidence. Use an area rug to add warmth and personality to any room.

Don’t wait until that first autumn leaf falls to get started. Begin now to bring autumn into your home and you’re sure to come up with many more ideas! Please feel free to share them in the comments section below.

Preparing Your Home For Sale

If you’ve decided you want to sell your home and move onto something or somewhere else you will need to prepare your home for sale. It would be best to do these before listing your home so that when that first person that is home shopping walks through your front door, you and your home are 100% ready for them.

Preparing Your Home For Sale

Whether you are preparing for an Open House or just want your home to show at its best, it is necessary to view it from the eyes of a buyer. Money spent in this area could very well result in increased profits as well as a faster sale. Before potential buyers even see what your home has to offer, they view its exterior. As a result, a cluttered home or an unattractive view of the outside of the home (curb appeal) could potentially result in a missed opportunity.

Preparing Your Home For Sale

First Impressions: An inviting exterior insures inspection of the interior. Keep your lawn mowed and edged, flowerbeds weeded, and the yard free and clear of trash and toys, etc.

Paint Now For a Faster Sale: Faded walls and worn woodwork are just depressing. A coat of paint in a neutral color will make your home look great and a quicker sale at a higher price may result.

Preparing Your Home For Sale

A Clean Home is a Happy Home: Bright, cheery windows without spots and unmarred walls will assist your sale. Check locally for a window cleaning company to come and aid you.

Fix That Faucet: Dripping water discolors the enamel and calls attention to faulty plumbing. If you neglected that then what else might you have neglected, the home shopper will ask. Hire a local handyman!

Preparing Your Home For Sale

A Day With the Carpenter: Loose doorknobs, sticking drawers and warped cabinet doors are noticed by the prospect. Have them fixed.

Spacious Closets Matter: Clothes properly hung, shoes, hats and other articles neatly placed, will make your closets appear adequate. Remove half of what is in any closet then pack and store them off site.

Preparing Your Home For Sale

Kitchens Get Scrutinized: Have the appliances shining inside and out. Clear off the countertops and make the cupboards look spacious by removing excess items.

Spotless Bathrooms: Bright and clean bathrooms sell many homes. Keep toilet lids down and everything sparkling. Keep things off the countertops.

 

Light up your house

Light Up The House: People like light, especially natural light. They want to walk in the front door and see daylight shining in (if it’s daytime). Open the curtains and pull up the blinds in all the rooms. For evening showings, turn the front porch in light on and all of them in every room and hallway.

Be Aware of Odors: People will linger in a fresh, pleasant smelling home. Stale air or bad odors, make them want to get out and can ruin the sale. Ask your Realtor to critique the smell of your home.

Trust Your Realtor: Do not discuss price, terms, possession or other factors with friends and neighbors. Refer them to your Realtor. As the seller, most anything you say could compromise your position. As a third party, a Realtor can better bring the negotiation to a favorable conclusion.

We’re confident that if you follow these tips on how to prepare your home for sale before you list, your home will be ready for that first family that comes to see it with hopes that it’s the dream home they’ve been searching for.

 

 

Negotiating Home Prices

Getting to Yes

People have been negotiating with one another since time began. Ordinarily we think in terms of buying and selling when we think of negotiating so that is what we will focus on here and not the other kinds of negotiating, like with our teenage children or spouses. There are so many things to consider when you are purchasing or selling a home.

Weigh things out

Sellers will have to weigh how badly they want to sell their home against whether they can afford to delay their dreams of selling and just stay put a little longer.

Buyers might be hard pressed to decide whether to take on more debt than they’d originally planned to in order to make that dream home their own.

Be prepared

One of the areas that is important is the structuring of the real estate deal itself. With that said there are many aspects involved in how many of us approach the closing of the deal. For example, do you enter into negotiations well prepared? How does direct conflict make you feel? Try not to personalize the negotiating process. Remember, you have a house you want to sell. The Buyers want to buy your home. You need to be willing to meet in the middle.

Keep your eye on the prize

Do you look at negotiating as a highly competitive event or an opportunity for both parties to win? If you turn it into a sport it will be way more stressful than it needs to be. You’re buying (or selling) a home, oftentimes a family home. Are you a good listener and how do you feel about things that you cannot control? Go into negotiations being willing to listen and to keep an open mind. Instead of trying for top dollar consider getting fair dollar.

All these things need to be taken into consideration before you begin the negotiation process and our Realtors have been trained to assist you with this process and all other parts of the real estate transaction. At Sloane Realty, we know how to close the deal so that everyone wins.

6 Things to Look For in a New Home

Beautiful Beach Homes

If you’re getting ready to start looking for a new home (or your first home) there are some basic things you’ll want to look for. At Sloane Realty we offer a large assortment of homes and more are coming onto the market every day at this time of the year. Never settle for less than what you want in a home.

Purchasing real estate is one of the most financially sound things you can do. We realize that buying a new home can feel intimidating when it is your first time. It is understandable that you’d want to make the best decision possible. Below are the Top Six Things to Look for in a New Home that can help with your decision.

Top Six Things to Look for in a New Home

  1. Efficient HVAC System

    Because heating and cooling count for a large percentage of a home’s monthly operating costs you’ll want to make sure a home comes with a newer HVAC system. An outdated heating and air conditioning system will drive up your bills in short order. Make sure the HVAC system is one of the newer efficient models and has been well maintained.

  2. A Layout That Works

    Decorating a home is easy and relatively inexpensive, but large renovations like knocking down walls or adding rooms can be quite expensive. It is better to buy a home that already has a layout that works for you and your family. Pay attention to how one space flows into another, ceiling height, number of rooms and the amount of natural light.

  3. The Roof is in Good Condition

    Many homebuyers forget to check out this important home feature. A damaged roof can indicate water damage and mold problems elsewhere in the home. A professional home inspection will provide you with important information you need to know about structural and roofing issues. Keep in mind that you can get a home that needs a new roof at a reduced amount and still have the seller contribute funds at closing for a roof replacement.

  4. Upgraded Plumbing

    Old homes can possess a lot of charm, but if you are considering buying a piece of vintage real estate, make sure the plumbing has been updated. Old metal pipes can leak or might be corroding and adding visible sediment to the water supply.

  5. A Great Kitchen

    The kitchen is one of the most important rooms in a home. Even if you don’t plan to spend a lot of time there, you will want to make sure the kitchen adds value to the home for when the day comes that you put the house back on the market. Renovating a kitchen can be costly, so it is better to start out with a kitchen you know you can live with and enjoy.

  6. How Many Bathrooms

    Adding a bathroom is not cheap. Don’t settle for a home that lacks the right number of bathrooms to match your family’s needs. Two bathrooms at a minimum are ideal.

Follow these tips and we think it will streamline the house shopping experience for you. If you want to look at properties and are in need of a Realtor, don’t hesitate to Contact Us at Sloane Realty. We’re happy to help!

Buying Your First Starter Home

When you transition from renting to owning your own home it opens up a wide range of opportunities in your life. Sad but true is that it also requires some sacrifices. It’s important to decide up front whether the first house you shop for is one that you want to live in for your whole life or if it’s more of a starter home.

Starter Home

While you may be wary about giving up too many amenities for a home you can afford, try to remember that some demands will cost you more than you should invest in a place you will only be staying for a few years. Following are six things you might need to sacrifice when buying your first home. Prepare yourself now, and you will feel less anxiety during the actual house hunting process.

1. Large Yard – If you’ve been living in an apartment for several years, it’s only natural to dream of a house with a big yard for you to enjoy. Unfortunately, most starter homes are built on relatively small lots. Property is expensive, so to get a house with a big yard you may have to sacrifice major interior amenities. Consider if you’re able to assume the responsibilities associated with owning a large plot of land. Between routinely mowing the lawn and maintaining plants and trees, many young homeowners find a big yard is actually more trouble than it’s worth.

appliances

2. New Appliances – You should never rule out a house just because you walk in and see an ancient dishwasher or refrigerator. While almost all first-time home buyers dream of finding a place with brand new stainless steel appliances, the truth is that the benefits of those machines are mostly cosmetic. A white fridge will keep your food just as cold as the stainless steel version, and you may be able to get a better deal on a house because it has older appliances.

3. Master Bathroom – Everyone wants a home with an en suite master bathroom attached to the bedroom because of the added convenience and privacy. However, most people looking for starter homes are either single adults or childless couples. If you don’t have kids yet, then there’s no real reason why you will need a master bathroom. Most couples can survive just fine sharing one bathroom in a home, especially when it affects the sale price significantly.

4. Updated Kitchen and Bathrooms – Similar to new appliances, updated kitchens and bathrooms are mostly cosmetic and you probably will not find an affordable starter home with granite countertops and rain shower-heads. It’s common knowledge among realtors that kitchens and bathrooms are the most expensive rooms in the house to redo, which means that sellers aren’t likely to put the money into refinishing them in a starter home. It’s important for first-time buyers to focus on functionality over appearance. As long as everything in the bathroom works, you can live with it for a few years.

5. School District – If you don’t have kids (or even if you do have very young children), you shouldn’t worry too much about finding a home in a good school district. Desirable school systems make housing prices skyrocket, so you should only put that extra money into a house if you know you’ll be living there when your children begin their education. For many buyers, it’s better to buy a cheaper starter home now and work on saving money so that you can afford to move into a good school district when it comes time for your little one to enter kindergarten.

6. Move-In-Ready – So many first-time home buyers are scared of doing any sort of renovations on their starter homes. For this reason, some people rule out perfectly good properties just because they don’t like the color of the walls or the type of flooring. As long as your house is structurally sound, you can change any cosmetic issues — and many fixes cost next to nothing when compared to the overall price of a home. Do your best to look past anything that can be easily changed, and you may be able to find a diamond in the rough.

When you’re ready to look at properties, give us a call at Sloane Realty. We’d be happy to help you find your first starter home!

 

Our Ocean Isle Beach North Carolina Rentals are #1

When you choose Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina, as your vacation destination you’ll want accommodations that will provide you with more than just the basics of home. The Ocean Isle North Carolina rentals that Sloane Realty has provide accommodations just like that. They also allow you to venture to the beach at your own leisure while enjoying the beauty of the amazing coastline.

Our Ocean Isle North Carolina Rentals are #1

The best way to thoroughly enjoy these spectacular surroundings is by staying in our spacious Ocean Isle North Carolina rentals that sit oceanfront and provide you with an unimpeded view of the ocean. You can start your day with breakfast on the deck watching the sun rise and end your day relaxing on the deck as the setting sun casts a radiant glow over the water. Watch as the magnificent waves make their way towards the shore, and then retire until the next day when you get to do it all again.

Our Ocean Isle North Carolina Rentals are #1

Ocean Isle Beach is a town designed for family fun along the gorgeous Atlantic coast. Stretching seven miles long and sitting on North Carolina’s southern coastline, this island provides the perfect family beach environment for making memories. Whether this is your first visit or it’s an annual trip to the coast, you’re sure to be awestruck by the sheer beauty that is Ocean Isle Beach.

Our Ocean Isle North Carolina Rentals are #1

The pristine, sandy beaches that run along the island are the perfect place for a stroll or a run along the water’s edge. The beaches have low traffic flow, do not have bright lights, and are generally an all-around great family area. The island has some of the best swimming conditions on the North Carolina coast due to the gentle surf that typically does not have strong currents and a water temperature that averages about 10 degrees warmer than the beaches of the Outer Banks region.

Come check out our Ocean Isle North Carolina rentals. We know you’ll be delighted by what you find.

 

This Year Why Not Show Your Home Some Love on Valentine’s Day

It’s that time of year when thoughts turn to love and Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. Have you considered that your home needs love, too? A home that is cared for and appreciated will give back to you tenfold. Take advantage of this time of the year to show your home some love in the following ways and just watch how it lights up your life!


1. Flowers: We’re not talking about the kind you plant outdoors though that kind is wonderful and keeps on giving. Why not pick up an inexpensive bouquet or potted plant at the grocery store or flower shop and place in the middle of your living room. It will surely brighten up not just your home but your spirits as well.

2. Bathrooms: With a brand new shower curtain it’s an easy, quick, and inexpensive way to rejuvenate your bathroom as well as the whole experience of bathing.

3. Countertops: A normal scrubbing will make your countertops look good, but a bit of extra care will make them look great. Whether laminate, granite, marble or stainless steel, there are great products on the market to maintain the countertop material in your kitchen at a higher level.

4. Cabinetry: If your stained or painted wood cabinets have seen better days, give them a facelift. A fresh coat of paint or a different color will affect the look of your kitchen in a positive way.

5. Artwork: Art can transform a room in an instant. Choose artwork that appeals to your taste, complements your existing décor and speaks to you on some level.

6. Furnaces: It’s easy to keep buying replaceable fiberglass furnace filters, but if you really want to treat your HVAC system well, consider stepping up to a model that improves air quality and energy efficiency.

7. Closets: While it may take some serious effort, putting your closets in order will not only make you feel better, but will also make your life easier. Take it over the top with a fresh coast of bright white paint. You’ll be glad you did every time you open the door.

8. Carpeting: Hire a professional to steam clean your carpeting. While a carpet may look clean enough, a thorough conditioning not only removes dirt, but also redistributes the pile, making the carpet appear new again.

9. Walls: Whether you’re painting an entire room or just one wall, a fresh coat of paint is always a super idea. For the price of a can of paint, it’s one of the easiest home improvement projects you can tackle that will have a big impact.

10. Entry: Take the time to decorate the entrance to your home so that when you arrive home it gives you a pleasant feeling and relaxes you. It doesn’t take much to decorate with something simple and nice to look at.

What You Should Know About Credit Reports

Your credit score is one of the most valuable things you own but it can quickly turn itself around and work against you. A low credit score will directly affect your ability to borrow money and may get you rejected for that mortgage loan you applied for. With a low score you may get your loan but at a higher interest rate because the lender sees you as a high risk. A credit report will show you what your score is, good or bad. It’s very important to know what it is as this could prevent you from buying your dream home!

Many people either don’t understand the ins and outs of their credit score or they have inaccurate information about what it is. If you are about to start your search for real estate, you should prepare ahead of time and work to increase your credit score. The following information should pave the way for you to do that.

1. Credit reports aren’t always accurate. Many have errors or mistakes — 80 percent, actually. Regularly check your credit report. Everyday we hear about thousands of credit cards being compromised through the hacking of large retailers’ security and payment systems.

If your personal information gets compromised, a thief will open up financial accounts in your name. However, they will not pay the bills, and this will ruin your credit. Those unpaid bills will be reported to the credit agencies and will affect your ability to buy a car, rent a home, purchase real estate or even find a job. It pays to keep a close eye on your credit scores and your credit card accounts then report any suspicious charges immediately.

2. Pulling your credit score may lower it.
A “soft” pull is done yourself for personal reasons; it will have zero effect. A “hard inquiry” is when a lender pulls it up for loan approval. It will have a negative impact, but small. Multiple hard inquiries within a 14 day period many not impact your score but spread over a longer period it definitely will.

3. A higher income does not equal a higher credit score. Income is not relevant to credit score; paying bills on time (or not) is what matters as is the amount of debt you’re carrying.

4. Credit scores and credit reports are not the same. Credit reports are just one piece of the equation. Many factors go into calculating your credit score. What matters is making sure the three large credit bureaus have similar information and scores. The three big credit reporting agencies are Equifax, Experian and Transunion. You can get one free credit report a year from each. Take advantage of this to protect yourself and stay current with your score.

5. Debt settlement will not remove debt from your credit report. Debt settlement doesn’t fix bad credit. Late payments, bad information and other smears remain for up to seven years following the first “infraction” date.

6. Cash-only payments will not help you build credit. You can’t build good credit unless you use credit, and use it wisely. Get a couple small loans or credit cards and pay them off as you use them.

7. Closing your credit card accounts will not improve your credit score. Closing a card lowers your amount of disposable income: the ability to pay off other debt. You don’t want to lower “credit utilization” by closing out a card.

8. Smart management of your various banking accounts is not reflected in your credit score. These are not reported to credit bureaus and thus have no impact. But smart management means you are probably paying your bills on time.

9. Dispute inaccurate information to remove it from your credit report. You can dispute only errors. A valid dispute will result in deletion of inaccurate information. Disputing negative, but accurate, information will be a waste of your time.

10. Missed payments will affect your credit score. Any missed or late payment can be reported to a credit bureau and probably will be, thus affecting your credit score negatively. There is no undoing this once it’s done.

Do everything you can to get your credit score as high as it can be then when you’re ready to look at real estate, give us a call at Sloane Realty. We can be reached by calling 866-931-5201.

 

Tips for Relocating to North Carolina with Children

So you’ve made the decision to relocate your family to North Carolina. Congratulations! Winter will never be the same for you again – and that’s a good thing. When your plans involve searching for a new home to purchase you’ll like the North Carolina coastal real estate we have available. Families and retirees alike love this coastal area not just due to the lower cost of living but also because of the more temperate weather than they’re used to. If cold temperatures are something you can ever get used to then this is the place for you.

A Stressed out Child - No More with a North Carolina moveAs exciting as a new home is, the move itself can be stressful if you don’t plan ahead. While moving can be a labor of love for adults, it can can be stressful for children. It’s not easy for them to say goodbye to all of their friends. A long distance move to a new area and a new school where they won’t know anybody, might be more than they’re ready to handle. We have some tips on relocating to offer you that may help things go a bit smoother with the kids.

Talk to Your Kids about the Move

Kids playing on a North Carolina BeachTalk to your kids early on about the family moving to a new area. If you’re fairly certain you’re going to be buying a new home then take the time to gather information of all the advantages to living there and the fun things there will be to do once you become residents.

Use a Map or Globe

Use a map or a globe, especially for younger kids, to show them where you live now and where you’ll be moving to. Don’t forget to also point out where other family members live that may not be nearby.

Do Research Online

online research

Do research online with your children ahead of time and again after you’re moved in. Let them help you with the Google searches of the area and you might be surprised at what they’ll discover. Assign them a research task like where the family will get their groceries, how close the schools are to where you’ll be living, and where the parks are in the area.

Check out the Local Schools

local schools

Check out the schools your children will be once you’ve moved in. Visit the school ahead of time – first on their website and then in person. Don’t make their first visit to their new school on their first day of classes.

kids talking

We think you’ll find that once your kids begin talking to their friends about their upcoming relocation to North Carolina the input their friends provide will turn things in a good direction. Their friends will be excited for them and are going to want to come and visit — the ocean, water parks and amusement parks, too. In fact, it might be a good idea to mention that early on in the process.

Experience has shown us that once your children start telling their friends all about North Carolina they’ll look forward to the move filled more with excitement than with stress. If you have any questions about the local area or would like to see some properties, just get in touch! Give us a call at Sloane Realty, 800-237-4609.

We look forward to hearing from you today!