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5 Frequently Asked Real Estate Questions for Home Buyers

Photo of our real estate office with blog title over it

5 Frequently Asked Real Estate Questions for Home Buyers

Whether you are looking for your first home or an investment property, it might be difficult to figure out where to start. The process of buying a home is daunting; that’s why real estate professionals are here to help. Our knowledgeable agents at Bluewater are experts on the Crystal Coast real estate market and will share everything you need to know about the buying process. We know you have questions, so here are a few frequently asked real estate questions and answers to get you started:

1. What is the First Step in the Home Buying Process?

So you want to buy a home on North Carolina’s Crystal Coast but don’t know where to start? Well, begin by contacting a local mortgage lender to find out your loan options. Your financial history and overall credit score will help you determine your mortgage budget and price range for your home. 

2. When is the Best Time to Buy a Home?

One of the most challenging aspects of real estate is that it’s constantly changing. That’s why our experienced real estate agents offer a free property analysis for homebuyers within the Crystal Coast sales market. Learn about rental projections and stay up to date on the newest properties for sale so we can help you determine the best time for you to buy a home.  

3. What Should I Know About Coastal Real Estate?

Buying property on the Crystal Coast presents unique challenges for buyers. When buying oceanfront real estate, you should be aware of shoreline erosion and flooding effecting your property’s boundary. Another challenge you should be aware of is wind damage caused by coastal storms and the Beach Plan policy coverage. Anyone looking to buy oceanfront should research how North Carolina insurance companies cover these specific coastal hazards. 

4. Should I Order a Home Inspection?

The short answer is yes. After you have found a property you are interested in purchasing, you should schedule a home inspection. An inspector will evaluate the home’s plumbing, roofing, electrical, and foundation to ensure everything is up to the state’s requirements. Home inspections save you time, money, and prevent those headaches that come with repairs. Read detailed information about home inspections on our website.

5. What is an Earnest Money Deposit?

An earnest money deposit also referred to as the “good faith deposit,” is money a buyer gives to the seller to show they are serious about purchasing. This deposit is usually a small percentage of the purchase price and is held in an escrow account until the deal is complete. Next, the money from the account will be used toward a down payment, and you are one step closer to being a homeowner!

Learn More About Crystal Coast Real Estate with Bluewater

Read more information about Crystal Coast real estate questions or browse our current real estate listings at Bluewater. Our team is happy to help home buyers navigate the local real estate market every step of the way. Please contact one of our agents and discover why Bluewater has been the number one real estate company along the Crystal Coast for 15 years! 

Do you have a specific question about buying real estate on the Crystal Coast that we didn’t cover in today’s “Frequently Asked Real Estate Questions” article? Leave a comment below, and we’d be happy to answer it for you!

Tips for Home Stagging

Tips for Staging Your Home

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5 Reasons To Choose a Property Management Company in North Carolina

Blog title banner image of a small wooden house a hand counting coins beside it with the blog title 5 reasons to choose a property management company over the picture

5 Reasons to Choose a Property Management Company in North Carolina

Putting your investment in the hands of someone else can be a daunting task, and choosing the right property management company can be just as tricky. At Bluewater Real Estate, we bring 30 years of knowledge and experience to ensure your property maximizes its potential. Why choose Bluewater? First off, we are one of the top property management companies in North Carolina. Next, we care and are committed to your success. Finally, our services are all designed to make managing your property as easy as possible. Our marketing team, in-house services, free property analysis, and insurance coverage sets us apart from our competitors. Without further ado, here are five reasons why a property management company is a great idea:

1. Knowledgeable Marketing Team 

Our Marketing Operations and Data team strive towards your success. Beyond featuring your property on our website with a detailed description and professional photos by our in-house photographer, the in-house marketing team provides constant exposure for your property. Some examples include print and digital advertisements, email blasts to engage potential guests, social media promotions, a 24-hour reservation call center, and more – all driven by available market data and rising industry trends. In short, our knowledgeable marketing team makes advertising your property a breeze. 

2. In-House Services

Our in-house services and exceptional team make managing your property a breeze. We have our very own housekeeping and maintenance staff. Our maintenance technicians are on call 24/7 to ensure any problems with your property can be fixed in a timely manner. In addition to the maintenance team, our housekeeping team coordinates everything from deep cleans to upholstery cleaning while our linens team works to supply specialized linen service and laundering based on your property’s unique configuration and even offers off-season comforter cleaning. Finally, the pools division team can also provide cleaning and maintenance services if you have a private pool or spa. As a result, our property services are just one reason why our property management company is a great idea.

3. Free Property and Market Analysis

If you are interested in buying, selling, or getting a feel for the local market, our free property and market analysis is the perfect place to start. You can get a personalized vacation market analysis from our property analysis specialists here. Next, our property management team can provide an analysis of rental projections and the newest properties for sale to keep you informed and on top of the ever-changing market. Finally, Get your free property analysis here and read on to discover our easy insurance options and mission of success.

4. Easy Insurance Options

Furthermore, we offer a variety of coverage options for your property through our insurance division. Our dedicated team will help you protect your investments. Consequently, we have a variety of coverage options including coastal homeowner, builders risk, commercial property, and general liability. Request a free crystal coast insurance quote from our team here. 

5. We Care About Your Success 

With 30 years of experience, we know the Crystal Coast market better than anyone else! Our full-service property management company has successfully managed over 900 vacation and long-term rentals. In addition to exceptional in-house services, our longstanding experience makes Bluewater Real Estate one of the best property management companies in North Carolina. We will help you every step of the way, from our marketing strategies and housekeeping and maintenance services. Our team will also work diligently with you to make managing your property as easy as possible. 

Property Management Companies in North Carolina

In summary, don’t hesitate to reach out directly if you have any questions about our in-house property management services. You can visit us at our real estate offices in Atlantic Beach or Emerald Isle. You can also call our property managers directly at 252-354-1322.

photo of plants inside living room

Simple Home Makeover Ideas: 5 Plants for Your Home

photo of plants inside living room

Simple Home Makeover Ideas: 5 Plants for Your Home

If you’ve been looking for simple home makeover ideas, look no further. We’ve compiled a list of plants that will brighten up any room. Indoor plants not only liven up a room but also have incredible benefits for your overall well-being. Having just a few plants in your home has been shown to boost moods, reduce stress, and eliminate air pollutants. And don’t worry, you don’t have to stress about killing your new plant with these five low maintenance houseplants: 

Photo of a cast iron plant

Cast-Iron Plant

The Cast-Iron Plant is as indestructible as its name. This low-maintenance plant loves low light and can survive even if you forget to water it for weeks! The Cast-Iron plant is great for brightening up darker corners of a room. This incredible plant is also known for its ability to improve air quality by absorbing harmful chemicals from cleaning products. 

Photo of a Chinese evergreen plant

Chinese Evergreen

The Chinese Evergreen plant is one of the most durable plants you can get. This plant thrives off humidity, making it a perfect plant for your bathroom. But this plant can grow pretty much anywhere. The Chinese Evergreen is also referred to as the “lucky plant,” so it just might bring you good fortune. 

Photo of a spider plant in a hanging basket

Spider Plant

Spider plants are one of the most common household plants because of their adaptability. This plant is hardy and near impossible to kill, even if you were born without a green thumb. This dangling plant looks great in a hanging basket in any bedroom. One of the best things about this plant is that it is non-toxic to pets.

Photo of a Broadleaf Lady Palm plant

Broadleaf Lady Palm

Broadleaf Lady Palms are a great choice if you are looking for a hardy plant to fill up a large area of space. These exceptional plants can grow between eight and 12 inches a year but can easily be pruned to a smaller size. This plant also removes airborne toxins in your home, including ammonia, formaldehyde, and carbon dioxide. The broadleaf lady palm is an excellent plant for a simple home makeover in any room. 

Photo of Pothos plant

Pothos

Pothos plants are incredibly popular for beginners because they can survive pretty much anything. This vining plant looks great in hanging baskets, plant stands, or on a bookshelf. Because the Pothos plant is so tolerant of low-light, they are a great addition to any room. 

Even More Simple Home Makeover Ideas

Adding plants to your home is one simple home makeover idea to enhance your space. You can read all of our tips, suggestions, and ideas on our blog to help give your home a makeover. 

If you liked this article be sure to read Simple Tips to Make your Home Guest-Friendly, and 7 Simple Steps to Revamp your Home’s Curb Appeal. Be sure to let us know what topics interest you! We’d love to know. 

Guest friendly-homes made simple

Simple Tips for a Guest-Friendly Home

Whether you frequently have people over or plan on creating an inviting vacation rental, it’s always nice to know a few simple tips to make your home guest-friendly and welcoming to those who come to visit.

Simple Tips for a Guest-Friendly Home

One great tip to make your home an inviting space is to make sure it’s organized and clutter-free. No one wants to come into a home that’s messy and crowded. You can use a variety of storage bins to organize clutter and even use some decorative bins to hide away the things you’d like your guests to have easy access to (think games, books, etc) without making your home appear messy. 

Stock your guest room with items that your guests may have forgotten like toothpaste, toothbrushes, deodorant, etc. You can find travel-sized versions of these items and more at your local drugstores, big box stores, and even some grocery stores. 

Add a little tray and a clock radio with a charging station to the nightstands, just like they have in hotels. This will help create a stress-free space where your guests won’t have to worry about waking up late and missing all the activities they have planned and it will also keep all of their personal items corraled in one place. If you really want to go the extra mile, add a few extra phone chargers and adapters in the bedrooms for anyone who forgot theirs. 

Create a cute sign with the wifi password and important numbers your guests should know. Place in an area where everyone can see it and have access to it.

Tips for a guest friendly home

Comfort and Aesthetics Count, Too

When finding furniture for your living room be sure to find a couch that is welcoming instead of something that would be considered a work of art. No one wants to sit on something that looks like it came from a museum. Choose comfy cushions as well as soft pillows and blankets to go with the couch.

Next, be sure to choose a decent-sized coffee table and fill it with things that may have useful information for guests. For example, magazines, photo albums, and great reads to keep your guests busy. You can fill the coffee table with candles, flowers, or something to serve coffee or tea.  

If you feel you don’t have enough seating you can add other comfy chairs to the mix. If you remember the show ‘Friends’  they had a good mix of comfy chairs on the show. 

For the bathroom add cute towels, nice soap, and other useful things like cotton balls or Q-tips. Candles also make for a great addition in the bathroom as well!

If you enjoy having people over for the occasional get-together try a mobile bar, too! This will help not only transform your space but the get-together as well!

For some ideas to get you started check out the Pinterest board we created! What tips would you add?

spring front porch header

Swing into Spring with your Spring Front Porch Glow Up!

Are you ready to kick the Winter blues and get your front porch ready to greet the Spring? We sure are!

We have come up with a list of things you can do to kick your porch up a notch and show your neighborhood that you are ready for warmer weather! If you don’t have a porch, most of these tips can be applied to your patio or even your stoop! Heck, if you don’t want to swing your whole porch into Spring or you are looking for a smaller project, you can apply these tips to something as small as your front door! 

Spring front porch makeover

 

Spring Front Porch Glow Up Tips

Step One – Spring Front Porch Clean Up

You want to start out with a blank canvas before you can really spruce up anything on your front porch. Putting a few stems on a dirty worn-out surface will barely help you reach your vision!

I recommend you clear any furniture or large debris off your porch, stoop, or patio, and give your space a good power washing. Don’t have a pressure washer you can buy one (they’re fairly inexpensive). Not in the budget? Borrow from a neighbor, browse Facebook Marketplace to get one second-hand, or see about renting one from your local hardware store!

front porch clean up

Step Two – Add Seating and Personality

Now that your porch is truly a clean slate, you can start adding things (but not too many) to make it the Spring front porch of your dreams! Let’s talk outdoor furniture: I am a sucker for a good porch swing. I find that they give your space such a relaxing atmosphere. Plus, you can actually swing into spring with one of these beauties.

Porch swings can be such inviting and cozy nooks to sip your morning coffee and check out the morning dew as you begin a beautiful Spring day! They are also a great spot to capture photos of the kids and make beautiful and everlasting springtime memories!

Throw some bright and colorful pillows on there and the charm is endless!

If literally swinging into Spring isn’t what you had in mind, you can also get these crisp and cool spring vibes with a small table and chairs, a cute little bench, or maybe even an outdoor sectional… it depends on your personal style and how much space you are working with.

If you already have furniture out there, even better! You will just need to get ready to decorate and celebrate Spring!

Step Three – Flowers Galore

BLOOMS, BLOOMS and did we mention… BLOOMS? Obviously, when I think of springtime, I think about all of the beautiful and colorful flowers I know and love. I can’t get through the first week of spring without bringing bouquets of daffodils and tulips into my home! The porch is no exception. I love decorating with fun window boxes and adding all of my favorite seasonal blooms! Between your favorite florals and maybe a small herb garden (my favorites are basil, parsley, and cilantro), you’ll be greeting spring with all of its wonderful staples. Lastly, throw a few of your favorite stems in a small vase on a table or sill!

front porch flowers

Step Four – Finishing Touches

It is time for the finishing touches to your Spring front porch! For me, this includes a layered welcome mat; I love throwing a colorful rug under my regular mat to make it pop a little bit! This also includes some sort of wreath on the door; it can be anything from a wreath of your favorite blooms to a DIY project you create with the kids to a personal touch like a monogram!

I like to finish off my spring front porch with a couple of hummingbird feeders – I love watching those tiny beauties visit to get their afternoon snack! Having them around makes me truly feel like I have achieved my vision of swinging into springtime! Not a hummingbird fan? Any bird feeder will do to welcome our beautiful avian friends back from wherever they vacationed for the cold winter months! Another option is a wind-chime that can be strummed by the nice breezes to remind you that in fact… Spring has arrived.

The most important thing about your Spring front porch is that it makes you inspired to embrace the warming weather. If you adore the beauty you’ve created on your porch, you will want to spend your Springtime taking it in and you have ultimately swung into Spring and completed your Spring front porch glow-up! 

Now It’s Your Turn

If you have put these tips into action, share what you have created with us on Twitter! We can’t wait to see your springtime visions BLOOM.

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7 Simple Steps to Revamp Your Curb Home’s Appeal

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Revamp Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Spring has sprung and now’s the perfect time to revamp your home’s curb appeal. First impressions count. This especially holds true with your home. So ramp up your home’s curb appeal with a few simple updates. Potential home buyers will remember your home long after they view it if your home puts its best foot forward.

7 Simple Steps to Revamp Your Curb Home’s Appeal

Did you know that 63% of homebuyers will stop by after seeing a house they link online? Make sure your home is ready with these simple steps – 

  1. Plant with colors – Update your landscaping with colorful flowers or plants to give your home a bright and cheery update.
  2. Paint your mailbox – Giving your mailbox a fresh coat of paint is a great way to freshen things up.
  3. Pick up anything outdoors that clutters the look of your home – Keep it simple outdoors. Pick up kids’ toys, move garbage cans out of site, etc.
  4. Paint your door and update your doorknob – Your front door deserves to be a show stopper so update the color or make it glossy and update your doorknob.
  5. Clean your light fixtures – If it’s been a while since you gave your light fixtures some attention, be sure to clean them up or update them for extra curb appeal.
  6. Clean your windows – You’re putting in the work everywhere else, make sure your windows are clean and bright inside and out.
  7. Powerwash your patios, decks, and walkways (and your home if it needs it) – Powerwash to remove mold and mildew and to give these areas a pop!

Add curb appeak checklist

Just imagine yourself as a buyer pulling up to your home for the first time. What would you want to see? Now make as many of those updates as possible based on your budget. 

Are you adding to your curb appeal this Spring? What are you doing to stand out? Let us know in the comments below. We’d love to hear from you.

2020 sales awards

Celebrating Success with Our Real Estate Sales Awards

2020 sales awards

This year, celebrating our success during our annual Real Estate Sales Awards Dinner looked a little different than in previous years. This year’s awards ceremony, which took place on February 18th, was virtual!

Every year, we gather our Sales Team together for an opportunity to look back on the progress of not only each of our individual agents but our company as a whole.

Virtual-Sales-Awards-Dinner

Once again, we had so much to celebrate and be thankful for during our Real Estate Sales Awards Dinner, especially after such a trying year. With almost all of our Bluewater Real Estate Agents and staff members in attendance, we celebrated our top producers, learned some interesting facts about our fellow co-workers as we played trivia games, and thoroughly enjoyed each other while we took advantage of the virtual setting from the comfort of our homes and offices.

Virtual-Real-Estate-Sales-Awards-Dinner

It was a great evening and we’re already looking forward to next year’s event. 

Our Real Estate Sales Awards Winners

Copeland and Bernauer Team – Top Producing Team in 2020

Copeland-and-Bernauer-Real-Estate-Team

Congratulations to the Copeland and Bernauer Team for being the Top Producing Team in 2020! Join us in congratulating them.

Kitch Ayre – Top Producing Agent for 2020

Kitch-Ayre-Real-Estate-Agent, Kitch-Ayre-Top-Real-Estate-Agent,

Congratulations to Kitch Ayre for being the Top Producing Agent for 2020! Join us in congratulating her.

Laina Collins – Most Closed Sides in 2020

Top-Real-Estate-Agent-Laina-Collins

Congratulations to Laina Collins for having the Most Closed Sides in 2020. Join us in congratulating her.

Previous Year’s Real Estate Sales Awards

If you’d like to take a look at who some of our award winners were in previous years, you can click through the following links – 

We look forward to sharing more details from our awards dinner with you in upcoming posts. Stay tuned!