Showcasing: Set The Stage For A Quick Sale | Wilmington NC real estate

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Remember the last time you visited a new home development? How did you feel touring the model? Usually, pleasant memories come to mind about how well the home looked. That’s because it was “showcased” properly.

You can do the same thing when you prepare your own home for sale.

Home showcasing is not about remodeling, fixing up or making your home look sterile. Instead, it focuses on amazingly simple steps to make your home show like a model without spending a lot of money. The secret is setting the stage, which helps potential buyers imagine themselves and their families at home in your “home for sale.”

Strip Down And Build Up

The first step is to clear the set. Take out extraneous furniture, decorations, pictures, etc. Take each room down to its most basic form, opening up the living space as much as possible. Then build it back up to the way you want it to look, as simply as possible, and without clutter.

Make the strip-down process simpler by stowing packed boxes in a staging area like the garage, or by renting a storage space to hold extra furnishings while your home is on the market. In essence, pack up early.


{short description of image}When building the set, try to make each room tell a story. Help potential buyers see themselves in each room. A clever arrangement of props will make it easy for buyers to imagine writing a letter at the desk in the kitchen, clicking on the television and enjoying a bowl of popcorn, turning on the stove and preparing a holiday repast.

Themes for a room can help you narrow down how to display it. You can, of course, stage the room as you use it now, or choose a particular motif, i.e. Southwestern, country style, international. Or you could pick an activity to illustrate on your stage, i.e., relaxed office or library, gourmet cooking, resort or vacation living. What would you like to do in that room? Place the props needed for those activities throughout the room.


Lots of lights open up a room and gives it a larger appearance. If you’ve been using 50 watt bulbs, move up to 100 watts. If a large living room has only one lamp, move in another. Open curtains. Add mirrors. When it’s being shown, the home should be bright. Brightness gives a showy feel. And your home is now center stage!

Do Your Homework

Ask what buyers are looking for in your community. What are they saying about the homes they don’t buy? And what is it about the homes that are selling that makes them so popular? By determining your ideal target buyer, you will better understand how to merchandise your home. Our experience in your specific neighborhood can help you answer all these questions and more.

Aroma Therapy

Almost as important as how a home looks is how it smells. Ask a close friend to walk through your home — objectively — and take a whiff here and there. Are there any offensive odors? Is it too perfumy? Too drab? Stale? Musty? Are there pet odors (which should be fixed — not covered up!)? What can you do to impress potential buyers with aroma therapy?

When it comes time to sell your home, you’ll want to work with a real estate professional who knows all aspects of the selling process — including showcasing. Call us today to talk about how we can help you display your home to sell for the best possible price!  Look for ideas on

Categories: Showcasing your home, Wilmington NC Market Statistics, Wilmington NC Neighborhoods, wilmington nc real estate, wilmington nc relocation, Wrightsville Beach makes Top 20 Surf Towns

Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage does it again! | Wilmington NC real estate

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Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage does it again!  The Wilmington office on 1001 Military Cutoff just won a listing contest that was sponsored by Coldwell Banker Corporate.  The combined effort of all of our agents help win this honor.  The market has picked up and homes are selling.  The interest rate is below 4% so the buyers are starting to realize that now is a great time to buy.  To search all Wilmington NC real estate and to get seller and buyer advice, please visit or on your phone   

From Corporate:

Dear Tim:

 Coldwell Banker Real Estate recently completed a national listing contest in response to the trend of increased buyer demand and dropping inventories.  Led largely by your company’s efforts, the program helped generate more than 72,000 new listings from April 16 through June 15, 2012.

 As  you may recall, we segmented the contest by office size and Coldwell Banker region and I am very pleased to let you know that your Coldwell Banker Advantage/Sea Coast Realty Wilmington office won the contest for all Coldwell Banker Southern Region offices with over 100 agents!  Thanks again for your dedication to the Coldwell Banker brand and continued good luck in 2012.

 Budge Huskey

President and Chief Operating Officer| Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC

Categories: coldwell banker sea coast advantage

Qualified: How Much House Can You Really Afford? | Wilmington NC real estate

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Chances are, you’ve heard it before: Start your search for your next home with a clear idea of how much you can afford to spend. But how do you figure that out? Here are some guidelines:

1. Lenders often use the 28/36 method of qualifying buyers.

The monthly payment cannot exceed 28% of your monthly income, and the total of all debt payments is limited to 36% of income.

2. The lender percentages are usually maximums.

Not everyone can afford the largest home they qualify for. You need to look carefully at your expenses and lifestyle to see whether you can and are willing to pay the maximum month after month. Families with high medical expenses, auto repair bills or educational costs, for example, may decide to take out a smaller mortgage rather than borrow the most they can.

3. Ask us what the monthly principal and interest payment would be for the loan amount you qualify for at the prevailing interest rate.

Add in the monthly amounts for property taxes, homeowners insurance and homeowner association dues, if any. Estimate utility, credit-card and car payments. Add all these items to the monthly mortgage to get your total fixed expenses. Also figure in some routine maintenance costs. Subtract the total from your monthly income to get an idea of how much discretionary spending money you will have left at the end of the month in your new house.

4. Don’t put all your money into the new house.

Plan to have several months’ worth of income in a savings account for emergencies after you pay closing costs. Also, allow for new-home start-up costs such as new furniture and draperies, paint and wallpaper, new tools and equipment, etc.

5. Look into the crystal ball.

If you foresee a loss of income or a growth in family size, you may want to be more conservative in the amount you spend on a new house. On the other hand, if you expect your income to rise, enabling you to reach a comfort level after stretching your budget for a year or two, you may want to borrow the maximum.

6. Consider moving up to a bigger house in steps, rather than all at once.

After considering all the figures, you may decide to move to a better home, or your first home, now, even if it is not your dream home. In a few years, your dream home may be within a comfortable reach.

Buyer’s Planning Guide

The table below shows how much 28% is at various income levels.

Annual Income
Gross Monthly Income
Affordable Monthly Payment
*For incomes over $100,000, add together the two appropriate lines.

We’re experts at putting people together with homes they love and can afford. Call or e-mail us today to see how you can get started.  Check out our mortgage calculator here to get started.


Categories: wilmington nc real estate, wilmington nc weekly events

Positivity | 12 Signs Housing Recovery Is Taking Hold | Wilmington NC real estate

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Good News and Positive Numbers For Wilmington NC real estate ( click on graph for more statistics)
Call us if you are thinking about selling your home.
We will be glad to give you advice

12 Signs Housing Recovery Is Taking Hold

If you’ve been one of those would-be home buyers on the proverbial fence, now is the perfect time to get off and make your move! All signs point to right now being a great time to buy in our local housing market — for far more reasons than historic low interest rates alone. We can work with you to take advantage of these truly extraordinary conditions to buy now. From discovering how much home you can afford to uncovering the best deals in our area, we will share with you the insider info you need to buy your next home today. Here are 12 signs why it’s a great time to make a move toward buying in this market.

1. Incredible Interest Rates
Interest rates are at historical lows. It’s hard to walk away from fixed-rate mortgages with low interest rates that can keep your monthly payment manageable for the life of the loan. Because your interest rate is low, you can afford more home than you would otherwise be able to buy.

2. Financing Back On Track
If you need a loan, lenders are ready to help. Once you provide evidence of your income and job history, a down payment and good credit score, you’re more likely to get a loan than at any time during the recent past.

3. Motivated Sellers
Whether it’s a homeowner who needs to relocate quickly or is being forced to short sell or it’s a bank selling their foreclosure property, there is no doubt that many sellers today are motivated. They want to get their homes sold and will consider your offer seriously, putting you in the driver’s seat during negotiations!

4. Fewer Buyers
Because so many would-be homeowners are still sitting on the fence waiting or don’t have the credit score needed to qualify today, your competition for buying now is going to be less than in the near future. Take advantage of that to start shopping!

5. Wide Selection
The number of homes available is still good, giving you a selection to choose from and some negotiating power. (Availability varies by price. Ask us for the latest listings.) Tip: If you feel like taking your time finding a home, beware that the true gems in the real estate marketplace are being snapped up fast!

6. High Affordability
The mortgage payment on a median-priced home at today’s average interest rate is the smallest percentage of median income in years, according to the National Association of REALTORS® Housing Affordability Index. Your home-buying power today is near an all-time high!

7. Home Prices Are Trending Upward
The days of rock-bottom prices are already history, especially for move-in-condition homes. You can still find a great deal on a home, but you need to act fast because the best-priced homes in the best condition don’t last long in our area.

8. Owning Vs. Renting
Rents continue to rise, often putting mortgage payments (principal and interest payments) below the average rental rates. For you, homeownership costs can be lower than renting!

9. Mortgage Deductions
The deductions for home mortgage interest and many other homeowner-favored tax breaks create a range of more great reasons to buy a home and get money-saving tax benefits every year.

10. Fix-Ups Abound
If you’re handy around the house and don’t mind if the home you buy isn’t in perfect move-in condition, you have even more options as a buyer. There are many homes that need work — sometimes just new paint and carpeting — and are available at a discount.

11. National Trends Are Not Ours
What you hear on the national news about “average” home-price trends simply does not apply when you look closely at our area. We know our real estate market best and can tell you exactly what is going on here in the neighborhoods you’re most interested in moving into.

12. The American Dream
Owning a home is still a goal of many Americans. To have a place to call your own, to customize it to your likes and to be able to show pride of ownership is what it’s all about. The American Dream is still attainable. Contact us and let us show you how!

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Oh To Be At Wrightsville Beach | Makes National Geographics Top 20 Best Surf Towns

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click on photo for slide show

Wrightsville Beach NC National Geographic Top 20 Surf Towns

Wrightsville Beach is one of the prettiest, cleanest beaches on the coast.  There are days when the water looks turquoise, the sand white and the breeze perfect.  Those who live here and in Wilmington, know that it is the best kept secret.  Well, National Geographic has just let the secret out of the bag.   Wrightsville Beach NC made the Top 20 Best Surf Towns in the Nation.  Laid back beautiful beach, quaint  homes and just a couple shops.  The John Nesbitt loop around the island is a perfect walk/run spot. ” Mike Barden, a native and owner of the seminal East Coast surf shop Surf City Surf Shop, which has been in business since 1978. “We have a pretty laid-back, understanding attitude.”

The best part of the island and Wilmington is the people and their attitudes.  After swimming in the channel this morning with the full moon still on the horizon and running on the beach you pass many tourists looking for shells.  It is mandatory to say “good morning or hey” .  There is surprise on most of their faces that a “stranger” would have a smile or a “hey” for them.

There are so many options for fun at Wrightsville Beach.  Surfing, swimming, fishing, boating, sailing, stand up paddle boarding, kayaking, kite boarding and just plain walking on the beach and collecting shells. We love our town.  You are welcome to enjoy it, please leave it the way you found it and don’t forget to say “hey”.

To see what the Wrightsville Beach real estate market is visit on your phone and search by street, price etc.  Or go online www.cbbaker. com and search away.  Enjoy….

 Read article here…

Categories: Uncategorized, wilmington nc real estate, wilmington nc relocation, wilmington nc weekly events, Wrightsville Beach makes Top 20 Surf Towns, Wrightsville Beach NC

Kay Baker Associates | 1001 Military Cutoff | Ste 101 Wilmington, NC 28405 | | 910-202-3607 | Fax 910-338-2428

Copyright © 2017 Wilmington NC Real Estate Guide. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: All content on this blog is my own opinion and should not be treated as fact or relied upon when purchasing or selling real estate.