Lake Norman Real Estate Blog

What increases the value of one home might not increase the value of another. A resort-style pool and outdoor kitchen in Wyoming might not hold as much value for buyers as the same resort-style pool and outdoor kitchen added to a home in South Florida. What works and what doesn't is dependent upon the current market conditions in your area, what buyers in your area want, and the overall feel of your neighborhood. It's not to say you cannot add something no one else has, but you have to add the right thing.


Building a 4,000-square foot addition to your 1,200-square foot home in a neighborhood that consists of all small starter homes is not a wise home improvement. If you're looking to add some value to your home, try one of these five easy

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Practical Uses for Your Tax Refund

Close up pink notepad with word

April 18th is the United States tax deadline. Americans with tax refund checks may be starting to wonder how to spend their money. Rather than using your tax refund for an impulse purchase this year, why not plan a practical use for the money? There are many awesome options that would allow you to invest wisely.

Down payment on a house – If you are considering purchasing a home, this could be an excellent time! Use your tax money toward a down payment on a new home. The more money you can put down, the less you will have to finance.

Pay off your credit card bills to raise your credit score – If you have high balances on your credit cards, use your tax refund to pay them off. This will do both your wallet and

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Hunting for a house that will work for you now and allow you to stay safely and comfortably in your home as you grow older is no easy feat. If you’re looking to age in place, consider putting these 10 things on your home buying wish list to ensure you can happily stay in your home for many years to come.   1. Covered, zero-step entry. A well-lighted, step-free approach to the house is essential to allow access for wheelchairs and walkers. Also, look for an entry that is sheltered from the elements and has room for seating both outside and inside the door, for resting or setting down bags. Traditional Exterior by Karnak Pro Builders   Bonus: Lever door handles. Lever handles are easier to use than knobs, so if the house already has these installed, it’s a plus. If not,…
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Forget the Snow: Spring Has Sprung in the Nation's Housing Markets


Much of the country is looking at one more very big bite of winter before spring officially begins, but for the residential real estate market, spring is already underway—and new home buyers are sprouting everywhere.

Job creation so far this year is 30% stronger than in the same period last year. Unemployment is close to a low of more than nine years. Wages and income are also starting to pick up to growth levels we haven’t seen since 2009.

And with more money in their bank accounts, consumers are feeling a boost in confidence that leads to big purchases … like homes! This year’s economic growth gives them another reason to buy sooner rather than later,…
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Landscape Tips To Help With Finding Home Buyers

  Landscape Tips To Help With Finding Home Buyers  

A functional and beautiful kitchen, flowing floor plan, plenty of storage, and spacious master bathroom will help win buyers' hearts.

However, often before they see those areas, they see your landscape. It's the curb appeal theory that I'm talking about. Some buyers will decide based on the look of the outside of your home whether they'll even bother to come inside.

If your front yard is cluttered, your exterior paint is chipped, driveway cracked, you'll find that the for sale sign in your yard won't attract as many buyers as it could if you spent some time to clean up and create curb appeal.

Fortunately, you don't have to hire a landscape company to come and…
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Shipping Container Homes: Yay Or Nay?

Shipping Container Homes: Yay Or Nay?  

Shipping container homes were born, at least in part, out of a desire to live efficiently and affordably. After all, a skilled DIYer can build a home out of a couple of containers for about the price of a mid-size car. But what if you love the idea of living in a container home, but building one…not so much? Or maybe you're not so keen on the way the containers look, even if you embrace the idea for other reasons.

With the growth in popularity of container homes, you have options. Lots of them, from inexpensive pre-fab tiny units to sprawling customs that bear little (or no) resemblance to big metal boxes.


Pre-fab means prefabricated. That means the house is not

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What You Can Expect Your First Year In A New Home

What You Can Expect Your First Year In A New Home  

Moving can be exciting, and it can also be scary. It can be smooth sailing or so wrought with silly (or serious) issues that your cat peeing in the box of towels because you haven't unpacked his cat dish yet sends you into the kind of rolling-on-the-ground, slapping-your-leg, crying-big-fat-tears laughter that makes your family wonder if you need medical intervention. And that's just the beginning of the adventure.


In the first year in a new home, you'll likely experience the full spectrum of human emotions, sometimes in the span of a few minutes. And while you can't know everything that's going to happen, you can prepare yourself for some of the inevitabilities, of both

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You’re DIYing this real estate thing, and you think you’re doing pretty well—after all, any info you might need is at your fingertips online, right? That and your own sterling judgment.

Oh, dear home buyer (or seller!)—we know you can do it on your own. But you really, really shouldn’t. This is likely the biggest financial decision of your entire life, and you need a Realtor® if you want to do it right. Here’s why.



1. They have loads of expertise

Want to check the MLS for a 4B/2B with an EIK and a W/D? Real estate has its own language, full of acronyms and semi-arcane jargon, and your Realtor is trained to speak that language fluently.

Plus, buying or selling a home usually requires dozens of forms,

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Despite the regulations imposed by the Truth-in-Lending/RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TRID) rules and disclosure forms in October 2015, some homebuyers still say their final closing costs caught them by surprise.      When asked what surprised them about their closing costs, 31 percent of homebuyers were not surprised at all about their closing costs because their loan estimates and closing fees matched. However, 35 percent expressed surprise that their costs/fees were higher than expected while 17 percent said they hadn't expected they would be required at all.  (sidenote: how does that even happen?!)

The top five closing costs that most surprised homebuyers were:

1.         Mortgage insurance (24 percent)

2.         Bank

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When Buying, Selling and Renovating, it’s an Animal House, Say Realtors

When making decisions about buying, selling or renovating their homes, Americans, by and large, take their pets' needs into account, according to a new report from the National Association of Realtors®. The 2017 Animal House: Remodeling Impact report found that 81 percent of respondents said that animal-related considerations play a role when deciding on their next living situation.

"In 2016, 61 percent of U.S. households either have a pet or plan to get one in the future, so it is important to understand the unique needs and wants of animal owners when it comes to homeownership " said NAR President William E. Brown, a Realtor®

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