Keeping Mosquitos Away

We all know about using bug spray and citronella candles. But what about other ways to keep those pesky mosquitos away? As if they weren’t annoying enough before, the threat of the Zika Virus has made mosquitos even more dangerous. So we’ve scoured the web for the best tricks for keeping the buggers away.

1. Plant a garden. There are several plants that are known to be mosquito repellants, including lemongrass, lavender, and marigolds.

2. Grow your own herbs. One of the best is something you might want to grow for other, tastier, reasons as well.
“Basil is so effective at repelling mosquitos (and adding a delicious flavor to Italian fare!) that you’ll want to grow it all around your house,” said POPSUGAR. “Windowsills, porches, the garden…the possibilities are endless!” Not only will it keep those nasty flying things away, but you’ll also be able to make some killer pesto!

3. Make your kitty cat happy. “Some studies report that catnip is 10 times more repellent to mosquitos than sprays, so this plant is a big win for gardeners,” said POPSUGAR. “Bonus: if you’ve got a cat, they’ll get plenty of entertainment from any catnip you plant!” And, it’s pretty to boot!

4. Trap them. You can easily make an effective mosquito trap with a plastic soda bottle or milk jug and bait made from brown sugar and active dry yeast. Get directions here.

5. Make yourself smell delicious. Dabbing vanilla extract on your pulse points has been said to help repel mosquitoes. Beware the urge to bake cookies later!

6. Recycle your coffee grounds. Turns out, they make a great mosquito repellant. “That’s right, old dried up coffee grounds work as an effective repellent for mosquitoes, according to the EPA,”

How Big Of A Home Do You Really Need?

When it comes to homes, most would say that more is better. Right?

Well ask yourself this – is this my “forever” home, or is “right now” good enough?

We can’t predict the future but it is possible to evaluate the likelihood of moving in the coming years. If this is the case then maybe you don’t need to buy that perfect “forever” home may be a “right now” home is good enough.

Lots of times people feel that when searching for that “forever” home they want to get the all the space they might ever need. Well, this often leads buyers to purchase something that is just too big.

Largest Zoo In The World Is Now in North Carolina!

Did you know that our state-owned zoo is actually the largest walk-through zoo in the world? It currently sits on over 2,000 acres of land mass with over 1,600 animals from 250 different species.

Open 364 days a year, the zoo receives 700k+ annual visitors.

There are two main sections, Africa and North America.

The North Carolina Zoo is also one of only 2 state-owned zoos in America.


These lions @nczoo are beautiful.

A post shared by James LaCorte (@gasparphotos) on

Have you been to the NC Zoo yet?

Charlotte’s Light Rail Extension Officially Opening To The Public This Month

No more walking in the rain! The new LYNX Blue Line Extension is finally opening to the public.

The Charlotte Area Transit System took its first official ‘revenue service’ trip on March 16th.

The finished Blue Line now spans the entire diameter of Charlotte. There are 19 total miles from South Blvd. and 485 in the South West to UNC-Charlotte in the North East.

There will be a total of 11 stations and 4 large park-and-ride structures. It’s expected to carry an average of 25,000 riders per day.



Which Brings In The Highest Returns?

  • Front door replacement: 96.6 percent
  • Wood deck additions: 87.4 percent
  • Attic bedroom or efficiency garage conversion: 84.3 percent
  • Garage door replacement: 83.7 percent
  • A minor kitchen remodel: 82.7 percent

Which Brings The Lowest Returns?

  • Home office remodel: 48.9 percent
  • Sun-room addition: 51.7 percent
  • Bathroom addition: 60.1 to 85 percent
  • Backup power generation: 67.5 percent

Master suite addition: 67.5 percent

Here’s A Place In Charlotte That Appeared In A Famous Movie

The Hunger Games starring Jennifer Lawrence, Woody Harrelson, Lenny Kravitz, Josh Hutcherson, and Liam Hemsworth, was filmed exclusively in North Carolina, and primarily around the Charlotte region. Charlotte’s Convention Center was the setting for the underground loading dock served as the platform where Katniss became “the girl on fire.” The Knight Theater was the stage for the tribute.


Tiny homes are freaking everywhere. They’ve taken over cities roads, and, more importantly, the television, replacing important and compelling searches for private islands in the Caribbean with a quest for as little square footage as possible. People are actively and happily seeking to live in mouse houses.

According to Google, they’re about as popular as they’ve ever been. But why? It stems down to becoming a homeowner and enjoying a life without a mortgage.

They are pretty neat looking though, aren’t they?


Yes – there is another solution to slopping adhesive on the wall. Peel-and-stick tiles! You actually peel off the backing and stick them to your wall, or even to existing tile. And they stay there until you want to peel them off and put something else up. If you can place a sticker, you can tile your kitchen.


Quick fact about Charlotte:

Charlotte was originally founded back in 1768 at the intersection of two native American crossroads. This would end up being at the corner of Trade and Tryon streets or what is currently Independence Square.


Since the founding, there have been several major growth periods. These included the gold rush, the building boom of the 1920’s with the last major growth starting back in the late 80’s. The last major growth actually still continues today.

This is what Charlotte looked like in 1920


Depending on where you live, outdoor living could be a year-round reality. Or, maybe once December hits, the backyard is generally off-limits until the first signs of spring. But, no matter what your address, an outdoor fireplace can bring added enjoyment to your home, extend the usability of your outdoor space, and maybe add some value to at the same time.

One of the benefits of outdoor fireplaces is “their ability to add extra square footage to your living space by becoming an extension of your home’s interior,” said TMS Architects. “To enhance this effect, continue the style and color scheme you have used in your home and provide ample comfortable seating.”