Fixtures Can Add Beauty, Value And Convenience To Your Home

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Little things do count — sometimes a lot! Adding or replacing some of your home’s fixtures — which will stay with it when you eventually sell — can give your home an attractive up-to-date look, more functionality and a higher market value. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Distinctive exterior light fixtures, perhaps with motion sensors or timers. Think about floodlights and path lights, too!
  • A new mailbox and address plate.
  • A new water hose holder or winder.
  • A beautiful sounding doorbell.
  • A polished brass door plate, door knocker or handle-and-lock set for your front door.
  • New knobs or levered handles for interior doors.
  • Up-to-date interior light fixtures — chandeliers, sconces, ceiling globes, under-cabinet lights in the kitchen, etc.
  • Fresh faceplates for wall outlets and light switches (especially replacing the painted-over ones!)
  • Decorative curtain and drapery fixtures and rods.
  • Attractive kitchen and bathroom drawer pulls and cupboard handles.
  • Shiny new water taps and faucets for sinks, tubs and showers.
  • New towel racks (why not towels too?).
  • Quieter bathroom exhaust fans.
  • A sturdy, unstained laundry tub.
  • A pegboard and clips for hanging tools in the garage or work room.
Categories: Uncategorized

Great City of Wilmington NC | State of The City 2014

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State of The City Address Wilmington NC 2014



Mayor Bill Saffo:

State of City
January 27, 2014
City of Wilmington

Good evening.  On behalf of the Wilmington City Council, I come before you tonight to
report on the state of our city.

I want to thank all of you for being here tonight, and those who are watching at home
on TV.

I know that the entire Council joins me in thanking our families for their patience,
support and sacrifice as we serve our community.

This Council would also like to thank City Manager Sterling Cheatham, his leadership
team, and the 1,000 employees of the City of Wilmington for their hard work and
dedication this past year.

The accomplishments we will talk about tonight could not have happened without
them, or the many volunteers who worked together to fulfill the goals and objectives of
this Council.

Again this year I am proud to report that we have:

 A balanced budget
 A double A+ bond rating
 And $29.2 million in our savings account.

Along with maintaining a balanced budget, the city has also completed a number of
projects this year.

We have continued to focus on what our citizens have told us is their number one
priority – street paving and repair.

In 2012, this Council made a commitment  Read more here…..


Categories: Investment Property Wilmington NC, State of the City Wilmington NC 2014

Miliken Report : Wilmington NC Ranks High In Report For Economic Productivity

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Wrightsville Beach NC

Wilmington NC makes another list!  The 2013 Miliken report just released that our great town ranks high in report for economic productivity.  We jumped ahead 37 spots above last years report.  We are at an overall rank of 77.


For full report please visit

To learn more about Wilmington NC and it’s people, please visit

We love to show off….especially when it comes to the people who live here. We invite you to visit and would love to greet you with Southern hospitality at it’s finest.


Categories: Waterfront Wilmington NC, waterfront wrightsville beach, wilmington beach homes, Wilmington NC homes, Wilmington NC makes top towns 2014, wilmington nc miliken report, wilmington nc real estate, wilmington nc relocation, wilmington real estate stats, Wrightsville Beach NC

Guard Against One Of The Greatest Dangers In Your Home

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Do you know the leading causes of death in the home? According to the National Safety Council, poisoning at home (from drugs, medicines, other solid and liquid substances, and gases and vapors) killed 11,500 people in 2001 (the most recent year for which statistics have been compiled). The second most-likely cause of death in the home is from falling. Falls at home claimed 9,000 lives in 2001, and 80% of those who died were older than 65. Injuries resulting from falls in the home number in the millions annually.

If you have an older relative in your home, or young children, you can protect them from the risk of falling in a variety of ways. Take inspiration from National Safety Month to follow these recommendations from the National Safety Council.


  • Keep the floor and stairways clear.
      Reduce clutter and safely tuck telephone and electrical cords out of walkways.
  • Keep the floor clean.
      Clean up grease, water and other liquids immediately. Don’t wax floors.
  • Use non-skid throw rugs
      to reduce your chance of slipping on wood floors, tile or linoleum. Or, use foam carpet backing, double-sided tape or a rubber pad to keep other rugs from slipping.
  • Install handrails
      along stairways.
  • Install grab bars
      in bathroom by toilets and in the tub or shower stall.
  • Make sure living areas are well lit.
      We can all trip and fall in the dark.
  • Use a sturdy step stool with handrails
      when reaching into high places.
  • Follow medication dosages closely.
      Using medication incorrectly may lead to dizziness, weakness and other side effects. These can all lead to a dangerous fall.
  • Fill-in holes
    and depressions left in the yard after plants or trees have been removed. Make sure walkways offer an even walking surface.


  • Don’t leave babies alone on beds,
      changing tables or sofas.
  • Always strap children into highchairs and strollers.

  • Don’t let children play alone
      on fire escapes, high porches or balconies.
  • Use safety gates
      if there are infants and toddlers in your home. At the top of the stairs, attach the gate to a wall. Avoid accordion gates with large openings—a child’s neck can get trapped.
  • Keep your windows closed and locked when children are around.
      When opening windows for ventilation, open windows that a child cannot reach.
  • Set and enforce rules
      about keeping children’s play away from windows or patio doors. Falling through the glass can be fatal or cause serious injury.
  • Keep furniture away from windows,
      including anything a child could climb.
  • Never depend on an insect screen
      to keep your child from falling out of a window. Screens are intended to keep insects out, not children in.
  • Use window guards
      to prevent windows from being opened more than four inches, so children can’t crawl through them. Be sure to check with your local fire department and building code official to make sure guards or security bars comply with all applicable requirements.
  • Install rubber mats or slip-resistant stickers in tubs and showers.
      Never leave a child unattended in the tub.
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Gone Fishing | Tax Rules For Vacation Homes | Wilmington NC

Be the first to comment on this post                      MORE DEDUCTIONS

Take All The Homeowner Tax Deductions You Deserve In 2013 And Beyond
Here are some more deductions you won’t want to miss.

Property Taxes

Real estate property taxes, as well as state and local income and personal property taxes, are fully deductible. If you sold or bought property during the year, you may have paid or been refunded real estate taxes without being aware of it. See your closing statement for any prorations.

Energy-Efficiency Tax Credits

In 2013, the 10% tax credit — up to $500 — for homeowners making qualified energy improvements to existing homes was extended through 2013 and was made retroactive to cover tax year 2012. Qualified improvements include approved high-efficiency AC and furnaces, windows and doors, roofs, insulation, water heaters and biomass stoves. This credit is reduced by the amount of energy credit taken in prior years.

There’s also a 30% federal tax credit (available through 2016) for some major energy-saving installations — solar systems, geothermal heat pumps, small wind turbines — with no upper limit on the cost.

Look for more information about these credits at

Mortgage Insurance Deduction

In 2013, the deduction for mortgage insurance premiums — which had expired in 2011 — was extended to apply to tax year 2013 and retroactively to tax year 2012. (If you qualified in 2012 but didn’t take the deduction, you may want to file an amended return.) Taxpayers below certain income limits may deduct payments for mortgage insurance on a principal residence or a qualified second home. Rules are summarized in IRS Pub. 936, Home Mortgage Interest Deduction.


Tax Rules For Vacation Homes Available
A residence is defined as a vacation home (rather than a “rental”) if the owners used it personally more than 14 days or 10% of the days it was rented during the year (if rented more than 140 days). For a vacation home, all mortgage interest and property taxes are usually deductible, either as rent expenses or as additional itemized deductions.

If there was rent income from the vacation home, other property expenses may be deductible, including depreciation, but only up to the amount of the rent income (losses are not allowed). If you rent your vacation home (or principal residence) for 14 days or less a year, you do not have to pay taxes on that rent income. See IRS Pub. 527, Residential Rental Property for more information.


How To Handle Insurance Pay-Outs, Loss Claims
If you lost property in 2013 due to an accident, storm, fire, flood, drought or other unforeseen occurrence, you may not have to report insurance proceeds if you use the proceeds to replace the property within a specified time. Additionally, if the home was located in a federally declared disaster area, you can claim the loss on your tax return in the year of the loss (2013) or for the preceding year.

Tip: Local and state property taxes may also be abated in some cases. Consult IRS Pub. 547, Casualties, Disasters, and Thefts to find out more.


Welcome To 2014!

Please keep us in mind this year for all your real estate needs. We’re ready to assist you in any way we can — whether you’re just looking for information or you’re ready to buy or sell a home. Be sure to consult a tax professional for complete information applicable to your specific tax situation.


Categories: Wilmington NC homes, wilmington nc real estate, wilmington nc relocation, wilmington real estate stats, Wrightsville Beach NC

TAME YOUR TAXES Take Advantage Of All The Tax Breaks Your Home Provides

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9f90493ef94d2a0916c5e4f14c930df9With the New Year upon us and tax season off and running, it’s time again to devote our newsletter to various tax issues that concern homeowners — whether you own now, recently owned a home or are looking forward to becoming a homeowner. Homeownership still carries some of the best tax advantages available. And make no mistake: Homeownership is all about advantages — for your long-term financial wealth as well as for your housing security, your commitment to community, and your freedom to create on a canvas of walls, floors and landscape.

As you know, tax rules are constantly changing. Unfortunately, a few tax breaks disappeared at the end of 2013 for 2014, but you’ll still want to take advantage of them — if you qualify — on your 2013 federal return, due April 15. Some other tax breaks were modified (see inside), affecting your 2013 return and beyond. The good news is most home-related tax deductions remain as they have been for years. We’ll remind you about them in this issue.

As of this writing, Congress is still wrestling with budget and spending issues that might introduce further changes to home-related tax breaks. If changes occur, we’ll be sure to update you in future issues of our newsletter.

Because of possible changes and since we can’t include every detail in this newsletter about every tax rule that affects every homeowner, be sure to consult the IRS at their website — — or at the toll-free IRS tax-assistance line — (800) 829-1040. Other resources for today’s filers are a range of excellent tax-software programs that can guide you, step by step, through your tax return. Of course, having a good tax advisor on your speed dial never hurts (though you may have more trouble getting their attention the closer you get to April 15).

Wishing you many happy deductions!



Deducting Loan Discount Points


For home buyers, deductible expenses include settlement charges for loan discount points. Deductible points are upfront charges for the use of money; think of it as prepaid interest. One point equals 1% of the loan amount. Points paid by either the buyer or seller can be deducted by the buyer for the tax year of the purchase. (Although some closing service fees are quoted as “points,” they are not deductible.) If you purchased a home in 2013, you’ll receive IRS Form 1098 from your lender/loan servicer detailing any points you or the seller paid for your home purchase.

If you paid discount points to refinance your home, you may not deduct them in full during the tax-year of the refinancing. Instead, you must prorate the deduction over the life of the loan. So $3,000 in points paid for a 15-year-term refinancing would equal a deduction of $200 per year ($3,000 ÷ 15 = $200) — unless the home is sold before the end of the loan term or refinanced with another lender, at which time all remaining points can be deducted on that year’s return.

See IRS Pub. 936, Home Mortgage Interest Deduction.

For more information, please visit


Categories: #Taxes, waterfront wrightsville beach, wilmington nc real estate

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.