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November
29

Find the perfect gifts for your friends and family with these Southport shops.

The Christmas season is here, and it's time to find those special holiday gifts for your family and friends. Our real estate agents know that Southport is a wonderful place to call home, and it's also filled with an abundance of great gift shops for holiday shopping. We want to recommend some of our favorite shops where you'll find a variety of special Christmas gifts for everyone on your list.

  • Coastal Cottage Shop
    If you're looking for a gift with coastal flair, head over to the Coastal Cottage Shop, where you'll find an assortment of lovely gifts that are everything coastal. This shop is filled with unique gifts, including upcycled furniture that's painted and upholstered, home decor items like china, linens, kitchen items, lamps, and household accessories. You'll also find an assortment of good coffee table books, custom jewelry items, artwork by local artists, and special holiday-themed gifts to celebrate the season.
  • Mad River Studio
    If you're currently living in Southport or looking for Southport homes for sale with coastal views, be sure to make Mad River Studio your first stop. This store specializes in home design for coastal living. When you walk into the store, you'll be greeted by furniture and accessory items that reflect a comfortable coastal cottage interior. You can browse the showroom for floor items or request an in-home design for someone special on your Christmas list. Before you leave, be sure to say hello to Sailor and Fish, the two adorable shop dogs who just love getting treats.
  • Magnolia's of Southport
    Magnolia's of Southport is a family-owned business that specializes in home decor and garden items, ladies' apparel, handbags, and accessories, custom jewelry from local artists, delightful greeting cards, and a variety of gifts. Magnolia's is a small comfortable shop that offers a personalized touch with lovely owners who will help you find the perfect holiday gift for family and friends. Magnolia's is open year-round, so plan a holiday visit this season to find a special Christmas gift for the lady of the house.
  • Olde Southport Village Shops
    If you want to explore some unique shops with a charming atmosphere, don't miss a visit to the Olde Southport Village Shops. You can spend a relaxing afternoon browsing through a row of quaint little houses that contain everything from home décor, antiques and collectibles, artwork and hand-made pottery, hand-made jams and jellies, food and beverages, and Christmas candies and cookies. During the holiday season, you can even enjoy a Christmas festival with music, Santa, and some special holiday goodies.
  • Southport Wine Rack
    For that person on your list who has everything, plan a shopping trip to the Southport Wine Rack located in the heart of historic downtown Southport, just across the street from the Southport Water Tower. This is a quaint shop that offers a big selection of wines from around the world, as well as tasty craft and imported beers. For a special holiday gift, take a friend to a free wine-tasting event or gift them a membership to the Wine Club, which offers invitations to "Members Only" events and special discounts on bottles of wine. The Wine Rack is the perfect place for a unique holiday experience and world-class Christmas spirits.

If you're thinking about a move to Southport, contact us to explore available properties with coastal views and great amenities. Let us help you find the home of your dreams this holiday season.

November
14

The kitchen is the perfect place to wow prospective buyers. Here are the upgrades you should make when selling your home.

The kitchen has often been called the most important room in the home, and that statement holds true when it comes time to put your home up for sale. Our real estate agents have learned that one of the first things prospective buyers look at is the kitchen.

That's why we always recommend that homeowners make sure their kitchens are up to par before listing their Southport homes for sale. If you're planning on selling your home, consider these affordable kitchen upgrades before you do so.

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November
7

Enjoying a night out with great food and drinks is easy in Southport. Here's where you can find the best local lagers and ales.

Southport is a historic city filled with old-world charm, maritime museums, and coastal communities with waterfront views. Although it feels like a small seaport town, our real estate agents know Southport offers homeowners a relaxing lifestyle with job opportunities, excellent schools, and a variety of outdoor activities.

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November
7

Just bought a home? Here are the home improvement projects you need to look out for.

There's a unique form of satisfaction that comes with owning and maintaining your own home. But as you're preparing to become a homeowner for the first time, all that maintenance can feel more intimidating than inspiring.

Our real estate agents are here to help with that. Read on to learn about the most important maintenance tasks that all first-time homeowners should take on as they're moving into their new residences.

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November
4

Brooke Rudd Gaglie Broker REALTOR GRI Appointment to NC REALTORS Risk Management Committee

Oak Island, NC – Margaret Rudd & Associates, Inc., REALTORS® (MRA) is pleased to announce that Brooke Rudd-Gaglie, Broker, REALTOR®, GRI and past President of the Brunswick County Association of REALTORS® was recently appointed to the 2023 NC REALTORS® Risk Management Committee as the Region 2 Vice President Liaison for the NC REALTORS® Executive Committee. According to the NC REALTORS® organization, this committee identifies current and potential areas of liability to REALTORS® in order to assist in managing said risks when conducting business. Mrs. Rudd-Gaglie will serve in this capacity for a 1-year term.

As an award winning licensed broker who specializes in luxury homes, retirement homes, first time home buyers and investment properties, Mrs. Rudd-Gaglie is consistently a top performing real estate agent. She leads a successful team of real estate professionals known as the Rudd Sold Group. Her recent accomplishments include the 2018 REALTOR® of the Year Award with the Brunswick County Association of REALTORS® and her 2019 graduation from the state-level William C. Bass Leadership Academy. In 2019, she served the NC REALTORS® as vice chair of its Forms Committee and as a member of the Diversity Conference Subcommittee and Diversity Committee. In 2020 Brooke Rudd-Gaglie served on the NC REALTORS® Executive Committee as the NC REALTORS® Presidential Appointment, and was then elected Region 2 Vice President for the organization in 2022.

Prior to joining Margaret Rudd & Associates, Inc., REALTORS®, Mrs. Rudd-Gaglie graduated with honors from North Carolina State University. She has happily raised 3 children in Oak Island and spends her free time as an avid equestrian, competing in numerous competitions from the World Equestrian Center in Ocala, Florida to Tryon International Equestrian Center here in North Carolina. She is active in Taekwondo and still enjoys running. For more information on Mrs. Rudd-Gaglie or to inquire about her personalized and professional services, please visit https://brookerudd.margaretrudd.com.

Margaret Rudd & Associates, Inc., REALTORS (MRA) is a second-generation, family-run business offering a full range of real estate services including sales, property management, vacation rentals, development, land sales, commercial properties, relocation services and long term rentals. With a reputation for exceptional customer service and dedication to strong professional ethics and integrity, MRA is the most respected full-service firm in Brunswick County with three offices to service your property management and real estate needs.

October
31

Waking up early has its advantages: here's where you can watch a stunning sunrise in Southport.

There's an undeniable sense of serenity that comes with living in the Southport, NC area. Whether you're a visitor or a longtime local, it seeps into your bones. Never is it more fully experienced than when you're watching the sun rise over the Atlantic Ocean.

You can take it from our real estate agents; watching the sunrise in the Brunswick Islands never gets old. See for yourself at one of these spectacular sunrise spots in the Southport area.

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October
24

Making your home appraisal-ready is simple with a little effort. Here's what you need to do.

Selling your home is a process and has many steps. One of the first things you will need to take care of is the appraisal. Before you schedule an appraisal, you will want to make sure your property is ready for the intense scrutiny it will soon have to endure. The following steps are just a few that our real estate agents recommend to help our clients get their homes ready for an appraisal.

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October
27

Cherokee, NC – Margaret Rudd & Associates, Inc., REALTORS® (MRA) is pleased to announce that Sue Franks, Broker, REALTOR®, GRI and member of the Brunswick County Association of REALTORS® was recently inducted into the NC REALTORS® Hall of Fame. According to the NC REALTORS® organization, this prestigious award recognizes REALTORS® who have made significant contributions to the real estate profession through the areas of development, environment, government and leadership.

Over the years, Mrs. Franks has been a champion associate for MRA. She has lent her expertise to the NC REALTORS® Legislative and Issues Mobilization committees, and has previously served on both the Brunswick County Department of Social Services Board and the Brunswick County Planning Board. She fulfilled duties as a member of the Guardian ad Litem program, and also performed as the Federal District Coordinator for former Congressman Mike McIntyre.

Mrs. Franks' Hall of Fame induction occurred during the 2022 Annual NC REALTORS® Convention and Expo in Cherokee, North Carolina. This event, held October 16 to 19, traditionally serves as the place to share industry information, network with fellow real estate professionals, and to take advantage of educational opportunities.

REALTORS® or consumers interested in learning more about the annual awards or the NC REALTORS® should visit www.ncrealtors.org while information on the local Brunswick County Association of REALTORS® may be found at www.bcarnc.com. Buyers, sellers, and investors looking for a real estate specialist may contact the Southport or Oak Island office of Margaret Rudd & Associates, Inc., REALTORS® at (800) 733-5258 or (800) 733-5213, respectively.

Margaret Rudd & Associates, Inc., REALTORS (MRA) is a second-generation, family-run business offering a full range of real estate services including sales, property management, vacation rentals, development, land sales, commercial properties, relocation services and long-term rentals. With a reputation for exceptional customer service and dedication to strong professional ethics and integrity, MRA is the most respected full-service firm in Brunswick County with three offices to service your property management and real estate needs. Interested parties or those looking for real estate
assistance may visit www.margaretrudd.com and/or www.rudd.com to learn more about the real estate sales and property management services the company offers its clientele.

October
10

Sometimes a pending home purchase doesn't go according to plan. Here's why.

With rising mortgage rates, high home prices, and a shortage of inventory, buyers and sellers are facing issues. Home buyers are up against bidding wars and all-cash buyers, and sellers are seeing offers that fall through. Our real estate agents realize that today's market is challenging, and we have some tips to help you navigate the hurdles.

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September
26

Living rooms can be tricky to arrange. Use these pointers to make your living room the hub of the house.

For every homeowner, the living room is an important space. It serves as the first impression of your home and a gathering place for entertaining family and friends. Our real estate agents think your living room is one of your home's most important spaces that can make or break a real estate deal.

Living room spaces come in all shapes and sizes with different ceiling heights, materials, and special features. Whatever the size and style, you can create space and ambiance just by changing up your room layout. Take a look at some layout ideas that can shake up your living room's design appeal.

Matching Sofas

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September
19

Fried Rice is a favorite dish among many Asian restaurants. Here's where you can find tasty fried rice in Southport.

Southport, NC, offers a wealth of dining options, including flavors and cuisines from all over the globe. There's great food here for every taste, and if you have a hankering for some next-level fried rice, be sure to check out our real estate agents' favorite Asian restaurants in Southport!

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September
12

Homes come in all different ages. Here's how to determine if you should buy an older or newer house.

If you're looking for a new home, it's important to look at a variety of properties before you make a final decision. Whether you're drawn to new homes with the latest amenities or old homes with charm and character, advice from our real estate agents can help you find the right home for you.

If you want bells and whistles, updated style, country charm, and waterfront views, you'll find all of them in Southport homes for sale. However, an important thing to consider is the age of the home. Let's take a look at some pros and cons of buying new homes vs. old homes that may impact your lifestyle and finances.

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September
5

It's hard to beat a classic cheeseburger. Here's where you can find the best in Southport.

National Cheeseburger Day is one of those holidays that our real estate agents can really get behind. We're lucky to have some really exceptional burger restaurants here in the Southport, NC area, and in honor of National Cheeseburger Day on September 18, we're here to share our favorites!

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September
5

Home improvement projects are great as long as they pay off. Here are the best and worst projects for return on investment.

Home improvements are a great way to make repairs and upgrades that create a more comfortable home; however, the costs to make them can be significant. Before you start renovations, our real estate agents suggest that you take a close look at your ROI — your return on investment.

A return on investment is calculated by dividing your gain by the costs of your investment. ROI is the profit you recoup from a repair, upgrade, or renovation when you sell your home. In Southport homes for sale, ROI can vary significantly depending on the type of renovations you do.

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August
29

Southport has an abundance of interesting sights. Here's where you can capture them forever with your camera.

Attention, shutterbugs! Southport, NC is a great place for sightseeing, and our little corner of the Carolina coast has a landscape like no other, with lots of great local sights for photographers to capture. 

Whether you're building your portfolio or looking for Insta-worthy selfie spots, our real estate agents are here to help. These are our favorite scenic spots to practice your photography skills in the Southport area!

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August
1

An outdoor picnic is a perfect way to spend an afternoon or evening. Here is where you'll find the best spots around Southport.

With the warm summer temperatures and bright sunny days, the month of July is an excellent choice for National Picnic Month. It's a fantastic time to pack a basket full of food and beverages while you enjoy the lovely summer weather.

Southport is home to numerous locations that make a terrific spot for your next picnic. Our real estate agents suggest checking out these scenic picnic spots. 

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July
11

Home improvement projects that can save you money in the long run are the best. Here are the ones you should focus on this summer.

Summer is here, and with it comes a chance to save some serious money through preventative home maintenance. Our real estate agents are here to show you how!

Every season brings opportunities to improve the quality of your home and hopefully save some money in the process. Summer is no exception. Some of these summer maintenance tips will start saving you some cash right away, while others are more like long-term investments.

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July
6

Looking for a fresh start in an amazing community? Look no further than Southport NC.

While upwards of 50,000 people travel to Southport each year, our real estate agents know that this charming city is much more than a popular tourist destination. The town is full of gorgeous natural scenery and Southern charm, in addition to a high quality of life for its residents. Here are a few of the best reasons to make the move to Southport.

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June
21

Looking for an unforgettable evening out? Here are the local restaurants to make a reservation.

Now that you're settling into the house you chose from Southport homes for saleyou're going to want to get out and see what's available locally — particularly when it comes to wining and dining. Maybe you did some scouting before you bought your home, just so you'd know what's a short drive from home base for dining and entertainment. But if you've been too busy getting moved in to explore, our real estate agents can help. Have a look at some of the top spots for wine and dinner in Southport.

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June
8

Buying a home typically requires some upfront costs. Here's how much you'll need to put aside.

You want to become a homeowner, but you're not sure if you have enough money saved to buy a house.

It's important to understand the costs associated with buying a home to understand how much money you need to save. Our real estate agents suggest considering the following costs when calculating how much you need to save:

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May
31

If you're in the exploratory mood, take one of these compelling Southport tours to learn about its history.

Southport is a lovely spot for vacationers and individuals interested in making this quaint spot their first or second home. See all the natural beauty and interesting spaces that Southport and the surrounding areas have to offer by taking one of these local tours. 

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May
11

Southport is full of creativity and artistic expression. These are the spots to see Southport art on display.

Whether you're searching for a new home or making improvements to your existing residence, creativity helps you open your mind and expand your problem-solving skills. Tap into your creative side by visiting some of Southport's top destinations for art, music, and crafts. Our real estate agents suggest exploring these inspired spots in the Southport area.

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May
2

If you need easy home improvement projects to boost your home's value this spring, check these off your list.

A home improvement project doesn't need to be expensive or time-consuming to make an impact on the look and feel of your home.

Our real estate agents know that small, easy projects can have a significant effect on the atmosphere and appearance of your home's indoor and outdoor spaces. Here are a few easy home improvement projects to complete this May. 

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April
26

Want to keep your dog active and experience some local scenery? Here are the spots to visit.

April is Active Dog Month, and it's time to celebrate with your pup. Southport is home to a variety of gorgeous locations that are perfect for enjoying outdoor time with your four-legged family members. Our real estate agents suggest exploring these places in and around Southport.

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April
18

Selling a home for the best price is tricky to pull off. Here's how you can ensure you sell at the price you want.

Sooner or later, most homeowners will face selling their home and moving elsewhere. Many life situations can necessitate the sale of a home — change of jobs, marriage, divorce, retirement, or simply the quest for a "dream home." Regardless of the reason, you may be contemplating listing your home among Southport homes for sale.

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April
11

Golf requires lots of practice to really hone your skills. Here are the Southport country clubs and courses where you can improve your swing.

If you've been shopping around for Southport homes for sale, you probably want to explore the nearby amenities as well. You'll be looking at shopping, schools, eating out, perhaps a place of worship, gyms, as well as recreational opportunities. Among the many recreational activities you can find in Southport is golfing.

Are you among the 24 million-plus Americans who like to head to the links for exercise and enjoyment of a challenging game? Then Southport may have just what you need. Our real estate agents have compiled a list of some of the best golfing venues nearby.

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April
4

Buying your first house is a huge milestone. Here's how you can help prevent issues coming up during the process.

You've been shopping among Southport homes for sale, and you've got a home in your sights. Maybe this is your first home, and you're not sure about the ins and outs of buying. Our real estate agents have some valuable advice for first-time buyers, so read on.

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March
28

The local sights are one of the biggest draws for why people move to a certain place. Here are some of the great things you can expect from Southport.

For those new to the Southport area, congratulations! Not only do you have your new home from Southport homes for sale to enjoy, but you've also got myriad attractions nearby. The area is a gateway to wonders, with beaches, a maritime town, fishing, golfing, kayaking, and exciting historical and cultural attractions. Whether you're outdoorsy or more of a shopping/dining aficionado, you can find something that will call to you at Southport.

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March
28

Managing your home improvement projects can feel like a full-time job. Here's how to make it a little easier.

Oftentimes, home renovation projects start out fun and then quickly become overwhelming. Managing a DIY home renovation yourself is a great way to save money and become more invested in your home... but it's a lot of work!

Our real estate agents are here to help. We've had a lot of experience when it comes to keeping renovations on track, and we've learned that, with the right tips, managing your home renovation project can be a lot easier than you might think.

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March
14

Are you celebrating St. Patty's Day this year? Here are the Southport spots you don't want to miss for the holiday.

Looking for a place to celebrate this Saint Patrick's Day? You're in luck. The Southport area is home to some great local watering holes. These are our real estate agents' favorite places to enjoy a frosty pint on St. Patty's Day in Southport!

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March
7

Smart technology can save you money in the long run. Here are the devices you should integrate into your home.

Want to reduce your home's utility expenses, but feel like you don't have the time or energy to make your goal a success? Invest in smart home technology that helps you save money and monitor your home expenditures!

Our real estate agents know that adding a few pieces of technology can make a significant difference in your ongoing utility expenses. Here are a few tech additions that will help you save money and reduce your home's energy and water consumption.

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February
28

Brunswick County has some great options if you're in the mood for Mexican cuisine. Here are the restaurants to visit.

One tends to work up an appetite when they spend a day by the beach. Fortunately, the Southport area offers no shortage of great eateries. Today, our real estate agents are excited to highlight their favorite local Mexican restaurants right here in Brunswick County, North Carolina.

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February
14

New flooring can be a big investment, so it's best to know your options before making a decision. Here's how you can choose the right flooring.

When a visitor enters your home, our real estate agents know that one of the first details they notice is your flooring.

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January
19

If you're looking for new ways to enhance your home in 2022, try completing these home improvement tasks for your New Year's resolutions.

New Year's resolutions can be challenging to keep, especially when we seem to be busier than ever. We get that, particularly if it involves going on a diet or hitting the gym more frequently. But resolutions don't have to be strictly personal — they can involve your home too! It's even possible to improve something that would boost the value of your home among Southport homes for sale.

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January
5

The colors of the year have arrived,  so start prepping how you can revolutionize your home using color in 2022.

One of the favorite things our real estate agents look forward to at the end of the year is when the colors of the year get announced. Each year, the top paint companies task their interior design experts with predicting what colors will be trendy in the new year. They don't just pick colors at random either — they look at everything from past trends to current events to decide colors that not only look good but colors that you'll be happy with. Here's what they chose:

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December
20

American cuisine is all about comfort. Here are the best local spots to visit as the cold weather rolls in.

Thousands of people love to travel to Southport each year, and some even make it their home. Southport is famous for its charming atmosphere, serene ocean breezes, and gorgeous scenery; it's also a fantastic spot to grab delicious American eats.

Our real estate agents suggest taking a few hours to enjoy some of Southport's top eateries. Here are a few can't-miss spots.

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December
14

Holiday decorations and treats are that much more special when you can make them yourself. Here are some to you can make in your home this year.

The holiday season is here, and it's time to celebrate with your family and friends. One fun way to ring in the season is with a few hours of holiday crafting.

Not only do you get to explore your creative side, but the end result is often a tasty treat or charming decoration perfect for gifting or enjoying in your home.

Our real estate agents know that you can have a memorable holiday crafting session from the comfort of your home. Check out some of the best holiday crafts that you can make at home.

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November
22

Most of us haven't hosted a party in a while. Here are some mistakes you want to be sure to avoid this holiday season.

With holiday parties, dinners, and gatherings rapidly approaching, it's time to think about your hosting plans. Our real estate agents recommend a little preparation to ensure your get-together is a fun, memorable event. Here are some holiday hosting mistakes to avoid. 

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November
18

Brunswick County is full of little spots that are perfect for an afternoon out. Here are some you should plan to visit.

Tourists and permanent residents love the scenic beauty of Brunswick County. Thanks to the presence of the Cape Fear River, Intercoastal Waterway, and the Atlantic Ocean, there's no shortage of breathtaking panoramic water views. 

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November
8

Before the bustle of the holidays, make sure you finish up these 5 home improvement projects.

The holiday season is fast approaching, and now is the perfect time to get your home in shape before your guests arrive. Taking the time to tackle a few home improvement projects will help you make the most of the season and give you the peace of mind that your home is ready for the winter months. Our real estate agents have 5 home improvement projects that you'll be happy you took care of before Thanksgiving this year.

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October
4

No need to hide indoors! There are plenty of fun things to do in Brunswick County this haunted season.

Fall is upon us in the Southport area, and that can only mean one thing... Halloween is not far behind! The arrival of autumn brings not only some of the best weather of the year on the North Carolina coast but some of the spookiest and most fun-filled fall events. If you're looking for ways to enjoy the season in Brunswick County, then you're in luck. Our real estate agents are here to share their favorite spooky fall events!

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September
27

The living room can be a difficult space to organize. Here are the most common mistakes to avoid.

Your living room is one of the focal points of your home, and probably one of the most lived-in rooms, after the kitchen. This makes it important to decorate in ways that are both functional and attractive, yet our real estate agents see a lot of homes that fail at achieving either one. As you're decorating your home or staging it to sell, make sure you don't make these common decorating mistakes.

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September
21

Local businesses are one of the best ways to get to know a place. Here are Howe Street staples you should visit in Southport.

One of our real estate agents' favorite things to do in Southport is perusing the many great local businesses in the city. Local business is often one of the biggest factors that makes a place unique, with one-of-a-kind products, and more importantly one-of-a-kind people you just can't find anywhere else. This is true for Southport, and the best place you can see this for yourself is on Howe Street. Cutting straight through the heart of Southport before finishing right on the water, Howe Street is the perfect display of what makes Southport so great to the people who live here. And if you're in the mood for shopping or just for finding something new, look no further than these uniquely Southport businesses.

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September
15

Before you embark on a massive home renovation project, make sure it will be worth the effort.

Our real estate agents have seen it all when it comes to home remodels. We've seen run-down houses transformed into palaces, and we've seen homeowners get lost in the weeds and wind up totally in over their heads.

That's why we're always eager to offer our assistance and advice when it comes to renovation. Whether you're fixing up a house you just bought or are getting ready to list your Southport home for sale, these are the biggest DIY home improvement mistakes to avoid.

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August
16

Hummingbirds are one of the most exciting things to see in your garden. Here's how you can help them show up more often.

It's hard to explain why the appearance of a hummingbird in our gardens always makes us so happy, but there's no denying that it does. At least 9 species of hummingbirds have been spotted in North Carolina, and while most are rare, ruby-throated hummingbirds are a common sight here in summer and fall. 

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August
2

It's easy and smart to protect your home from electrical surges. Here's how you can make sure your property isn't in danger.

If you've been busy exploring Southport homes for sale or you've finally found your dream home, you'll be looking forward to moving in and getting settled. As you start setting up your electronics and appliances, you might wonder whether you should be taking steps to protect them. After all, the Southport area experiences many thunderstorms, and it only takes one lighting strike to damage your devices.

Other things, like a downed power line or even your appliances turning on and off, can cause power surges. The good news is, you can protect your home by using a three-phase protection plan. This includes a whole-house surge protector, an external surge protector, and strip surge protectors. Here's a closer look at each one.

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July
26

Looking for fun ways to fill your summer? Here are some things to do in Southport!

Summer is a time for relaxing, spending time outdoors, and enjoying fun adventures with family and friends. If you've been thinking about buying one of the beautiful Southport homes for sale, you'll want to take some time to get to know the area and explore the local culture.

There are many ways to enjoy some summer fun in the Southport area. We asked our real estate agents about their favorite things to do on their days off, and here's are a few of their recommendations.

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July
19

Your breakfast bar can act as the perfect centerpiece for your kitchen. Learn how with these decorating tips.

We spend a lot of time in our kitchens. Whether it be for cooking, socializing, or unwinding after work, the kitchen is often the heart of the home. That's why the design and decor in your kitchen are so important. You won't want to spend time in a room you think looks cluttered or bland, and you won't get the most enjoyment out of it if you don't like how it looks. One easy way to change up your kitchen is by decorating your breakfast bar. Our real estate agents love when Southport homes for sale have breakfast bars, especially when they're decorated. Here are ideas you can use to decorate your breakfast bar.

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July
12

Is the summer sun a little too warm? Cool off with these local Southport ice cream shops.

Things really heat up during summertime in the Southport area, and our real estate agents have the perfect solution. Cool down and satisfy your sweet tooth at one of these great local ice cream shops!

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July
5

Who said your window sills have to be bland and boring? These tips will make them shine.

If you have deep window sills, you have the perfect spot to increase your home's functionality and extend your decor. Although often overlooked, window sills are a great place to explore design ideas.

Our real estate agents love imagining how different Southport homes for sale can be decorated. Here are their tips for using your window sills to get a little more out of your decor.

  1. Display Holiday Decor
    When the holidays arrive, your window sills provide a great space for festive holiday decorations. You can use your window sills to display small Christmas trees or wreaths, twinkling lights, Thanksgiving pumpkins and candles, or flags on the 4th of July. If you're throwing a party, you can fill your window sills with snacks, party favors, or presents for guests.

  2. Grow Herbs For Your Kitchen
    If you're kitchen windows get natural light throughout the day, you can grow a variety of herbs and vegetables that will flourish, even during the winter months. Even if they don't, you can get some grow lights to help herbs and veggies along. They are available at most home improvement stores and nurseries in a variety of designs, so you might find one that fits your kitchen decor flawlessly.

  3. Display Your Favorite Reads
    Window sills provide a great place to display your favorite books, especially if you're an avid reader with limited editions or special collections. Whether it's in your family room, master bedroom, or kitchen, books on display provide convenient access for reading, as well as a visual appeal from vibrant colors and textures on bindings.

  4. Create a Window Garden
    Live plants and greenery add natural beauty and oxygen to indoor spaces. Window sills provide the perfect place for sunlight and fresh air that is necessary for healthy plant growth. By decorating your window sills with clay pots, glass jars, or colorful containers and baskets, you can showcase your green thumb and add organic design appeal to your home. Succulents can be the best option if you want the least amount of maintenance.

  5. Collage Your Family Photos
    If you have a lot of family photos, window sills are a great place to showcase groups of framed photos in various frame styles, colors, and sizes. You can create eye-catching displays, collages, or even theme a group of photos together. You can also rotate out sets of photos to keep the same functionality but change up the look.

  6. Design a Place To Relax
    If you have 2 to 3 feet deep sills, you might think this space a nuisance. But these deep sills make it easy to design a comfortable sitting nook where you can enjoy your morning coffee, curl up with your favorite book, or seat guests at parties. Depending on where the window is located in your home, you could make it entirely your own space or one that should be shared with the whole family.

If you're interested in buying or selling a home, contact us about available properties. We have a variety of properties that are sure to be the perfect fit for your lifestyle.

June
28

Bald Head Island is the perfect destination for adventure, relaxation, and finding your dream home. Here are the best things to do.

There's always so much to do on the water. Whether you like surfing, relaxing on the beach, or hiking through breathtaking scenery, Bald Head Island is the perfect destination no matter what you love to do. If you're looking at Bald Head Island homes for sale, you might as well make a trip out of the day and explore these spots and activities our real estate agents recommend.

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June
21

Minimalism can clean up your home and improve your interior design. Here's how.

It's not easy to pull off a minimalist decor style, but when it works, it can completely transform your space. Unfortunately, when it's not done right, it can leave your space feeling cold, empty, and unlived-in. 

Luckily, our real estate agents have a lot of experience with minimalist decor styles, and we've learned how to do it in a way that highlights the simple, uncluttered beauty of your space. It all starts with these simple minimalist style tips:

1. De-Clutter Your Space

Before you start thinking about bringing in any new decor, look at what you have and decide what can be removed. Old magazines, coffee table books, unnecessary decor items and knickknacks can go. Even some furniture might be eliminated. Does anyone ever really sit in that chair? When was the last time you used turned on that lamp? You may not need them at all. 

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June
14

Downtown Southport has a character of its own, one you should explore now! Here are the places to visit.

There's a lot to see and do in Southport! With a vibrant Downtown district just footsteps away from the water, Southport offers all kinds of fun shopping and dining options. Sometimes our real estate agents just like to walk around Downtown Southport and take it all in, and these are some of our favorite local businesses to check out.

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June
9

It is with deepest regret and our greatest sorrow that we share the passing of S.R. Buddy Rudd, Jr., Vice President with Margaret Rudd & Associates, Inc., REALTORS.

The news of Buddy's passing reached all of us with heavy hearts. He was not only a beloved and long-time member of the Southport-Oak Island community, a leader in the North Carolina real estate industry, and champion for Rudd's property management department, Buddy was a devoted husband and partner, loving and attentive father, and loyal friend to many.

After obtaining his NC Real Estate license in 1983, Buddy was hired by Margaret Rudd & Associates, Inc., REALTORS in 1986, and was charged with leading the company's property management division. He was later appointed Vice President of the company in 1999.

Commitment & Devotion

He wove his commitment to exceptional customer service, professionalism and community into everything he did. Over his 38-year career, he served on a number of Association and Chamber of Commerce boards and committees as well as in numerous positions with local and state governments. He was frequently recognized with various awards and accolades for his unwavering commitment and devotion. While the list is extensive, a few notable appointments include:

  • Appointment to the North Carolina Real Estate Commission (2007 - 2014)
  • North Carolina Association of REALTORS: Board of Directors (1998 - 2000, 2003, 2006 - 2007); Property Management Division Chair (2000) and Vice Chair (1999); Hall of Fame Award Recipient (2005); Kemp C. Clendenin Award "NC REALTOR of the Year" Recipient (2007)
  • Brunswick County Association of REALTORS: REALTOR of the Year Award Recipient (1998); President (1999); Legislative/RPAC Committee Member (2012 - 2021)
  • NC Vacation Rental Managers Association (NCVRMA): Board of Directors (1997 - 2000)
  • Southport-Oak Island Area Chamber of Commerce: US Open King Mackerel Tournament Founding Member & Chairman (1981 - 1982) and Board of Directors (1981 - 2021); Vice President, Tourism Committee (1996 - 1999)
  • Brunswick County Tourism Development Authority (TDA): Board of  Directors (1999); Vice Chairman (2000 - 2007)

Never Met a Stranger

On a personal level, Buddy enjoyed boating, golfing, a nice cold Miller Lite and hot dogs, and, you could likely catch him enjoying a drive down the beach. He was always quick to offer a smile and a positive message. He never met a stranger as everyone became a friend and truly loved him. Above all, he loved his work and his family. No other man has ever been harder working, more dedicated, humble and kind. While he will be missed tremendously, his legacy will live on.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Brunswick Family Assistance, Special Olympics and the NC REALTORS Housing Foundation. A Celebration of Life will be held at the 801 Ocean event center located at 801 Ocean Drive, Oak Island NC 28465 on Thursday, June 24th from 5pm to 8pm.

Condolences for the Rudd family may be shared online at www.peacocknewnamwhite.com or by email to jfuller@rudd.com.

June
7

We all want family photos that aren't cluttered together, but it can be challenging. Here are some tips for stunning family photo displays.

What makes a home a home? Is it the furniture, the curb appeal, or the market value? Really, there's only one thing that makes a home what it is: the people who live in it. As you move from house to house throughout your life, each one of those places is still your home, even though you may be states away from the house you grew up in. That's because your home is where you and your family are. And what better way to demonstrate that than by putting up photos of the people who mean the most to you. But nailing up a picture here and there doesn't always make for a great display. Our real estate agents have some pro tips for making your family photo displays the best they can be.

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May
24

Brunswick County is overflowing with breathtaking spots to take memorable photos. Here are some of our favorites.

All of May is National Photography Month. The holiday, first implemented in 1987, offers an opportunity to celebrate the impact photography plays in modern society and all of our lives. It's one of our real estate agents' favorite times of the year.

The reason for that is simple. We live in an extraordinarily photogenic place. North Carolina's Brunswick County is a photographer's dream come true, and if you're looking to snap the perfect shot for your photo album or your Instagram account, we have some ideas about where in the Southport area you should look!

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May
17

Make the right first impression with a show-stopping foyer by using these pro tips.

If our real estate agents have learned anything over our many years in the business, it's that first impressions are everything. That means your foyer has a big job to do.

Foyers tend to have a lot of room for furniture and decor, which means you have an abundance of possibilities — but also some hard choices to make. Whether you're getting ready to list your Southport home for sale or just want to wow your guests, these tips will turn your foyer into a showstopper.

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May
10

You never know what you'll find in an antique store. But with these Southport shops, you'll definitely find something special.

Our real estate agents love talking to clients about their plans for decorating their new homes. While there's nothing wrong with modern decor, it's always so much fun to visit local vintage and antique stores searching for one-of-a-kind finds. Whether you're still exploring Southport homes for sale or you're already settled into your home, we recommend taking a look at some of the great shops in the area. Each shop listed below is located near Waterfront Park. We recommend stopping by to visit each one and making a day of exploring the area.

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May
3

Before you enjoy your outdoor spaces, you should accomplish these DIY projects.

Our real estate agents are always talking to clients about the importance of curb appeal. As the weather starts to warm up, now is a great time to start thinking about sprucing up your outdoor space. Whether you're getting ready to sell your home or you just could use a bit of a refresh, these simple outdoor projects are a great place to start. 

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April
26

The right work of art can completely transform a room. Shop at these local Southport stores to find the best art.

Whether you've just found your dream home or your current home needs a bit of a refresh, a new piece of artwork can go a long way! If you're in the area exploring Southport homes for sale, we suggest stopping by one (or more!) of the nearby art galleries for some inspiration. Our real estate agents often enjoy exploring local galleries on their days off. Here are a few of their favorites. Check them out — you won't be disappointed!

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April
19

Gardening isn't always easy, but it's certainly rewarding. Here are some tips to jumpstart your garden.

Now that you're settling into the special home you chose from Southport homes for sale, you're probably thinking about how to make your home stand out. 

There are so many ways you can make your property a show stopper: tree and shrub removal or cutting back; building up raised beds; restoring sidewalks; repairing or installing an irrigation system; or rebuilding hardscapes such as garden walls, garden bed paver edges, or a pond. You may have to hire a crew to take care of these major jobs, but in the meantime, you can make the rounds at local garden stores and find inspiration for your overall garden scheme.

Here are some hot trends for 2021.

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April
12

Learn about the beautiful Brunswick County homes by the water just waiting for you to find them.

Adventure is never far away in Brunswick County, North Carolina. From our many islands and beaches to incredible local restaurants, our real estate agents wouldn't change a thing about life on the Carolina coast! Here's what you can expect when you visit these charming beachfront communities.

Southport

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April
5

Not sure where to start your spring cleaning? Use this guide to clean fast and efficiently.

Spring is in the air in the Southport area, and you know what that means! It's time to shake off the dust and doldrums of winter, and get into some serious spring cleaning. Our real estate agents look forward to this all year!

We understand not everybody gets as excited about spring cleaning as we do, which is why our team is happy to share their expertise. Check out these tips and tricks to make your home spotless this spring!

One Room at a Time

Trying to clean your entire home can feel overwhelming, so it's important to start out in the right mindset to make it more manageable. First and foremost, break it down and tackle one room at a time. Second, you don't have to do it all in a day. If you want, you can spend the next several weekends cleaning a single room each day until the whole house sparkles. 

Clear the Clutter

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March
22

The Southport, NC area offers no shortage of outdoor adventure. For anyone looking for ways to stay active and enjoy some time in the great outdoors, it's hard to imagine a better place. From lush forests and rugged trails to beautiful parks and beaches, there's so much to choose from on the North Carolina coast. Our real estate agents are delighted to share some of their favorite outdoor destinations in the Southport area.

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March
15

Want to channel your creativity and spruce up your home? Try out these easy DIY home improvement projects.

March is National Craft Month, and with spring in the air, there's no better time to tackle some fun DIY projects around the house. If you're looking for some quick, crafty, and budget-friendly DIY home improvement projects this season, our real estate agents have some great ideas to share!

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March
1

It can often be difficult to find new storage solutions in your home, especially if the places you normally use for storage are full. One often overlooked storage area is the attic, for a number of reasons. Some may be hesitant to put their cherished belongings up in the attic because of the potential dust and unchecked climate. But this seldom-used space can aid in your storage efforts if used properly. Our real estate agents recommend that you try the following things to optimize your attic for storage.

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February
22

Southport has some great locations for fishing and relaxing by the water. Here are some great Southport docks you should visit.

Do you believe a bad day of fishing is better than a good day at work? Then grab your rod and reel in some fun in Southport. North Carolina is an awesome place for fishing enthusiasts to lose track of time and let loose some line. Whether you're an avid angler or just someone who loves to relax by the water, our real estate agents believe that these fishing docks in Southport won't fail to lure you in.

  • Kingsley Street Park — E. Bay Street/S. Kingsley St., Southport, NC 28461
    Living in Southport means living near plenty of fishing spots. Unfortunately, though, that means that you'll be sharing much of the shoreline with other anglers. For a less crowded place to drop a line, head on over to Kingsley Street Park. This park includes a small yet sufficient dock that extends into the Intracoastal. We love Kingsley Street Park because it's a great compromise: it's close enough to downtown without all of the noise, but it's far enough to feel like you've got the dock to yourself somedays.

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February
15

Did you know you can show your pet some love with your home improvement? Here are some home upgrade ideas perfect for your pet.

Family members come in different shapes and sizes. Some are two-legged others are four-legged. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, more than 48 million U.S. households have dogs, and 31 million others have cats. With such figures, it's no wonder that many homeowners keep their furry family members in mind when renovating their homes. Considering Fido's or Fluffy's needs can provide a pampered environment that will make everyone happy. And if you decide to sell your home down the road, the improvements can appeal to pet lovers looking for Southport homes for sale. Here are 5 practical and visually appealing renovation ideas your pets will love.

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February
8

Having trouble planning your home improvement projects? We've got you covered with expert tips for budgeting your projects.

Budgeting for home improvements has always been a challenge. It's impossible to know exactly your expenses because new issues can arise and call for additional purchases. Unexpected challenges such as previously unknown plumbing issues are common, so it's important to have plans in place to keep costs under control.
  
Our real estate agents suggest budgeting for home improvement projects using the following tips:  

  • Have a plan.  
    Figure out what your priorities are when you're planning to renovate your home. Make a list of the most important changes while also putting down some bells and whistles that would be nice to have. You may for example, desperately need new flooring, or perhaps you've decided that while new flooring would be nice, you may be able to clean and buff your existing ones if needed. This prioritized list can be adjusted as needed along the way as you learn your estimated costs.

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February
1

Southport Takeout

Is that love we smell in the air…or just the amazing cuisine of Southport? Perhaps a bit of both! Valentine's Day is right around the corner, and our real estate agents encourage you to start thinking about your dinner plans ahead of time. As Cupid draws back his bow, peruse the menus at these Southport restaurants perfect for couples planning to celebrate Valentine's Day with takeout.

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January
26

2020 Reflection - The View from Here

It's been a challenging year with no exceptions for all of us at Margaret Rudd & Associates.  

When I wrote my last article, "2020 Vision – the Outlook," Hurricane Isaias was headed up the coast.  The hurricane is long gone, but we are still pushing sand back onto the beach.  And by now, everyone thought we would be over with COVID, but we are not.  However, we did have some bright moments in 2020, and I would like to tell you about one of them.

Nine years ago, one of our owners, Margaret Rudd Bishop, rode a bicycle into the banquet room for her installation ceremony as President of the Brunswick County Association of Realtors.  That began our involvement in Bucks 4 Bikes.  

We teamed up with Brunswick Family Assistance, a nonprofit 501(c), and its devoted team of volunteers to distribute holiday bicycles, scooters, wagons, and helmets to the needy children of our county.  Through our efforts that first year, we were able to give 60 bicycles to Brunswick County children at Christmas time.  Every year we have grown the program.  This year we raised over $60,000, our largest fundraising total to date.

The challenging part this year came when we were unable to buy the bicycles from Walmart due to restrictions on imports.  In addition, the warehouse space that was donated to us in the past was unavailable.  However, these problems did not stop our efforts.  One of our team members sent a letter to the President of Walmart explaining our problem, and we promptly heard from Walmart and from the Huffy Corp. headquarters in Dayton, Ohio, lining up 780 bicycles, 100 wagons, 5 scooters, and 50 tricycles for this year's distribution. We found a warehouse, which was generously donated, for setup. Additionally, three Walmart stores in Shallotte, Southport, and Leland kindly pitched in to assemble the bicycles.  Eventually 935 beautiful, new, kid-powered vehicles were distributed.

So many people opened their hearts in 2020.  The Brunswick County Association of Realtors' 2020 Holiday Giving fundraiser and Bucks 4 Bikes program raised $59,252, which is nearly $15,000 more than 2019.  The Margaret Rudd management team personally donated an additional $800 to be added to the $59,252 to achieve our goal of $60,000.  

Cynthia Walsh, BCAR CEO said, "This year's Holiday Giving fundraiser surpassed all expectations, 2020 has been a whirlwind, and there is no better way to end the year than by putting smiles on the faces of Brunswick County children.  It's safe to say that COVID-19 has not hampered our members' desire to give back to the community in which they work, and we are grateful to everyone who supported this effort."

In the coming years, we plan to expand our efforts into the Toys for Tots program and local food banks.  The need is there and it's clear that many of our colleagues, friends, and neighbors are happy to help.  My personal thanks go out to our team members, the Brunswick County Association of Realtors (BCAR) and a number of our local communities, who made donations and volunteered their time.  The need is there...challenging yes, but impossible, no!

Jim

January
18

Southport Home Decor

With the arrival of a new year comes an opportunity for a fresh start. And not just for you, but for your home too. After a year like 2020, it's safe to agree that we can all use a new beginning. 

If you're anything like our real estate agents, you've probably spent a lot more time at home over the last year, possibly even working from home. You might be ready to stop staring at the same old walls and furnishings every day, in which case, redoing your home in one of these unique design styles might be just the pick-me-up your home needs for the new year!

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January
11

Historic Sites Brunswick CountyOur real estate agents invite you to explore the storied shores of Brunswick County. North Carolina's barrier islands are charming, particularly the Brunswick Islands, which have a history dating back to more than 250 years ago. The towns Southport and Sunset Beach are excellent destinations to relax, unwind, and learn about the past with a stop at these historic sites.

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January
4

Energy Costs Southport

While your energy bill isn't your biggest bill each month, it's one you have some control over. Cutting your energy costs can help you save money, even during the worst winter cold and the most miserable summer heat. Here are five tips our real estate agents recommend for cutting back on your energy usage in the new year, saving some money, and doing your part to help the planet.

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December
28

Southport Homes Near Water

When you buy a home near the water, it can feel like a vacation every day. The smell of the sea, the sound of waves, beauty, serenity, and endless water recreation opportunities – there's nothing like it. However, having a home near the water is unique in many ways, and there are more factors to consider before choosing your dream home. Here are our real estate agents' tips for buying a home near the water.

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December
14

Holiday Decorating Brunswick CountyThe holiday season is upon us and one thing is for sure - this year is going to be a little bit different. With so many of us spending a lot of time indoors, there really couldn't be a better time to step up your holiday decorating game. After all, if you're going to spend so much time in your home, you might as well make it look good. Additionally, great holiday decor can serve as a much-needed mood booster at a time when many of us need it the most.

We were so inspired after seeing the holiday decorations at these Southport homes for sale that we decided to pull together some recommendations for how you can make your home a bit more festive this year:

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November
2

Brunswick County Art Gallery

National Go to An Art Museum Day is coming up on Monday, November 9th, and our real estate agents want to be sure you know your options!

Brunswick County isn't only known for the famous lighthouse you'll find a short distance from Oak Island homes for sale. As a resident here, there's always more to see and do. Galleries and museums allow you to learn while enjoying the works of contemporary and historic artists from around the area.

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October
19

Organize Kitchen PantryEven in large modern homes, the pantry is usually a pale shadow of what it was in historic times. Generally, there were two -- one for dry goods and one for food preparation. These days, you're lucky indeed if you have a walk-in pantry where you can organize cans, containers, jars, and whatnot for easy access. But even in a smaller space, you can employ some organizational tips that will help you make the most of what you have.

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October
12

Fall Decorating Tips

Have you fallen in love with autumn? Our real estate agents love this time of the year, particularly because so many homeowners embrace the season by decorating their porches. If you're looking for a way to celebrate the season with festive décor, consider these five decorating tips for your front porch.

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October
5

Brunswick County Seafood Markets

October is National Seafood Month, so what better time to enjoy savory sustainable seafood straight from the North Carolina coast. One of the best things about living in Brunswick County is the easy access to some of the best seafood in the country. With so many seafood markets and retail stores serving-up fresh-caught seafood, you can easily get high-quality products to make your favorite dishes. If you're looking for recommendations on where to pick up seafood this October, check out these local favorites.

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September
21

Tourism in Southport

Sunday, September 27th, is World Tourism Day and our real estate agents have your passport to fun! Even though we may not be able to jet-set around the globe, you can still set a course for adventure close to home. Southport is full of interesting attractions, many of which residents know about but surprisingly haven't visited. Play tourist for a day and see a new side to Southport by visiting these five local attractions.

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August
17

Sea Turtles Brunswick County

Every year from the beginning of May through September, the beaches of Brunswick County are visited by a variety of sea turtle species that come ashore to create nests and lay eggs. Many of these turtle species are endangered, so it's crucial to help hatchlings survive and reach the sea. Local sea turtle protection programs, staffed by volunteers from Brunswick County communities, work throughout the nesting season and beyond to protect sea turtles. Our REALTORS® have put together a list of 6 local programs, where you can help to preserve these majestic creatures.

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August
3

Lighthouses in Brunswick County

There's plenty to love about North Carolina's Brunswick Islands. From relaxing beaches and quaint maritime towns to the many parks, museums, and fishing spots, there's never a shortage of fun ways to pass the time. 

Since National Lighthouse Day is coming up soon, our REALTORS® thought it was only appropriate to take a moment to highlight another attraction that makes our area truly unique -- the incredible historic lighthouses. Whether you're looking for an Instagram-worthy photo-op from the ground or you're willing to make the climb to the top so you can soak in the stunning 360-degree views, you'll definitely want to add these nearby lighthouses to your summer bucket list. 

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July
20

Summer Bugs

As the summer heats up here in the Southport area, our real estate agents have been hard at work showing off the best Southport homes for sale. But there's one thing about the warm weather no one looks forward to, and that's summer bugs!

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July
13

Ice Cream in Southport

The first frozen treats date back thousands of years, when people of the Persian Empire poured grape juice over handfuls of snow and stored it in underground chambers to prevent melting. Ice cream has come a long way since then, but we still enjoy its creamy sweetness year-round.

Our real estate agents are looking forward to one of their favorite holidays when National Ice Cream Day occurs on Sunday, July 19th. Join the celebration with a trip to one of these popular ice cream spots around Southport.

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July
6

Myths About Real Estate

Ask anyone who has bought or sold a home for real estate advice, and you're likely to hear some interesting answers related to that person's own experience. But no matter how good the intentions of the friend, family member, or colleague providing that advice, it can be hard to separate myth from fact. The stakes are high when buying or selling a home, so it's important to have the facts before you engage in the process. Our real estate agents are here to help, by debunking five common myths that you have likely heard about the real estate market.

June
15

Transplanting During the Summer

Our real estate agents know one of the best reasons to own a home is to have a garden or lawn for planting your favorite flowers, veggies, or fruits. A garden is great for hours of enjoyment all throughout the year. Plenty of Southport homes for sale offer ample space for any gardener to get started.

Even true "green thumbs" can find themselves slowing down a little on outdoor chores during the heat of summer. But sometimes, a plant simply won't wait: For one reason or another, you need to transplant it right away.

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June
8

Features Buyers are Looking forThe real estate market sees numerous changes each year with new trending features to entice homebuyers. The coronavirus, homeschooling, and working remotely have many families looking to expand their living space to accommodate all the changes. Whether you are selling or viewing Southport homes for sale, it's important to know the current trends.

When looking for a new home, every buyer has a specific list of essential features. Your home is more than just a house; it's your sanctuary. Right now, buyers want specific features for a comfortable and efficient living space. Check out the following five growing trends for homebuyers in 2020.

  1. Extra Space
    Before the recent health crisis, working remotely at home was a growing trend. Now to stay healthy, more individuals are working from home. For cost efficiency, many employers will continue to have their employees work at home in the future. Meeting the demands of working from home requires a private area to conduct business and close off the rest of the household. Homebuyers are looking for houses with extra bedrooms or other areas to transform into a home office.
  2. Two Bathrooms or More
    With everyone at home, the bathroom is a busy location. Increased use means a lot of traffic. If your current home only has one bathroom, the extra use may be overwhelming for your system to handle. Numerous homebuyers want at least two full baths or an extra half-bathroom to meet the needs of the family.
  3. Large Kitchen Space
    With the preparation of more meals at home, kitchen space is essential to meet the demands of daily cooking. The ideal kitchen would have extra space off to the side for a large pantry to stock up on necessities. A spacious kitchen is a growing trend taking over the preference of sizeable formal dining areas. A kitchen is an ideal location for family meals with quick and easy cleanup. The extra space is also an excellent area for doing schoolwork or entertaining.
  4. Backyard Space
    Spacious backyards are a welcome feature for numerous homebuyers. After all, when staying close to home, your outdoor living space is essential. Homebuyers want space for family entertainment and maybe a patio for enjoying summer evenings and meals. 
  5. Energy Efficient
    Home's with energy-efficient upgrades were already gaining popularity with homebuyers. Now with more people working at home and using electricity all day long, these features are even more desirable. A highly efficient HVAC system helps reduce your energy consumption and saves money. Plus, windows should be Energy Star qualified to help reduce heat or cooling loss. 

When selling your home, it's important to know what homebuyers are looking for in their search. 

Starting a search of your own? If you need help finding the right home for you and your family, our real estate agents are ready to help. Contact us today. We will find the ideal home match for you.  

June
1

Takeout Options

These days, it feels like cooking dinner night after night is almost impossible. Trust us, our real estate agents are also getting a little bored with the same skillet servings and microwave meals. Thankfully, so many of our favorite restaurants around Brunswick County are saving the day with their takeout services. Close your kitchen for the night, and treat your family to a delicious dish from one of these popular Southport eateries.

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May
18

Brunswick County Greenhouses

Anyone with a green thumb has a lot to look forward to in the Southport area this spring. Our REALTORS® are always excited to see young plants popping up all over town, and now is a great time to revamp your lawn and garden. 

If you're looking for some new additions to your garden this spring, be sure to check out these great local greenhouses in and around Southport, NC.

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May
4

Spring Cleaning Tasks

It's spring cleaning season -- so jump on those big projects that will make your home fresh and clean and ready to stand out among Southport homes for sale. But don't forget those other tasks -- you know, the ones that ensure your home is spic and span in every nook and cranny. These are the jobs, so many of us forget about among the many other spring cleaning tasks on our to-do list. Make your home sparkle inside and out with this helpful list compiled by our REALTORS®.

  1. Vacuum Between the Mattress and Box Springs
    Dirt and other pollutants can lurk everywhere in your home, not just on the floor and exposed flat surfaces. Start your quest for a deep-cleaned home by vacuuming your mattress top with a HEPA filter to get rid of dirt, dust mites, and pet dander. Then turn it over and vacuum the box springs and back of the mattress. Rotate your mattress regularly every six months or so. Pillow top mattress? Flip it from head to toe.

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April
27

Dog Friendly Neighborhood

Finding a pet-friendly neighborhood is an important consideration for homebuyers with pets. But how would you know whether your new neighborhood will be truly welcoming to your furry friend? Our REALTORS® have prepared some tips on what to look for while hunting for a new home for you and your pets.

  1. Vet Care Professionals and Groomers
    As a dog owner, you'll need an excellent groomer. Go through the reviews of groomers in the neighborhood to get an idea of their work. Consider areas with reputable groomers with standards such as vaccination requirements and positive first-hand reviews. A nearby veterinarian is another critical factor to consider. You'll need to access regular care and a clinic that provides 24-hour emergency care.
  2. Specialty Pet Stores
    It can be a huge plus to find a neighborhood with at least one specialty store that stocks a wide range of pet foods and products. Most brands have been more on board with producing natural, healthy options. It's a sure sign that your dog will continue enjoying his favorite meals and a healthy lifestyle.

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April
13

Downsize Your Home

Your home is your castle. It's a comfortable, peaceful retreat from the pressures of work and the world outside. It's where you raise your children and send them off into the world with fond memories of backyard bbq's, holidays, and family gatherings. As the years go by and your lifestyle changes, it's entirely possible that your once comfortable home will simply be too large for your needs. If you find yourself wondering if now is the right time to downsize, the following are seven signs that it's time to make your move into one of the smaller Southport homes for sale right now.

  1. Maintenance is Taking its Toll 
    The bigger the home, the more it takes to maintain the landscape and everything else. Some tasks such as fixing the roof or climbing ladders to clean gutters can be downright dangerous the older you are.

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April
6

Clean Stainless Steel

Stainless steel appliances have grown in popularity in recent years, thanks to their unique look and sleek, shiny finish. If you own a stainless steel appliance, then you know that the one key challenge is keeping that finish looking sleek and shiny. Through normal use, stainless steel appliances often attract smudges, fingerprints, and streaks, which aren't always easy to remove. Not easy, but certainly possible. If you're planning on doing some spring cleaning, like our REALTORS®, then you'll want to take a look at our tips for how to clean stainless steel.

  • What Not to Do When Cleaning Stainless Steel
    Whether you're polishing up your kitchen to help your home compete with other Southport homes for sale or making your space look its best for your use, there are some things you don't want to do when cleaning stainless steel. The key is to avoid using any type of harsh cleaning products, including bleach, oven cleaners, ammonia, abrasive cleaners, and steel wool. Some manufacturers recommend against using certain other cleaning products as well, so it's always a good idea to read the instructions that came with your appliance for a full list.

  • Don't Expect the Same Methods to Work on Every Appliance
    While the cleaning tips below rely on techniques that won't harm your appliances, getting just the right results may take a little bit of trial and error. Each stainless steel appliance is a little different, and if your appliances come from different manufacturers, then you may have to tweak your techniques a bit to bring out the best in each one.

  • Try Vinegar and Olive Oil for a Homemade Solution
    Two of the most popular options for cleaning stainless steel can likely be found in your pantry or kitchen cabinets. Start by using a spray bottle with white vinegar to spray down and wipe off your appliances. Once you have cleaned the whole surface, dip a soft cloth in olive oil and use that to polish your stainless steel to a shiny finish. With a little practice, this technique can have your stainless steel surfaces looking brand new.

  • Gentle Dish Soap Is Also a Great Option
    If you wish to use a more traditional method, a soft cloth and warm water mixed with gentle dish soap can also get the job done. Use one cloth to clean the surface with that mixture, then another clean, dry, soft cloth to dry and polish the surface when you're done cleaning.

  • Always Use a Soft Cloth or Towel
    No matter which products you use to clean your stainless steel surfaces, remember that it's always best to use something very soft, like a microfiber cloth, to wipe down and polish the surface. Paper towels can also work in a pinch, but the key is to avoid using older, heavily used cleaning cloths that may cause damage or an uneven finish.

  • Polish "With the Grain" for the Best Finish
    If your surface isn't quite looking how you want after cleaning, then you may be polishing against the grain. It's usually best to move your towel in one direction when polishing to go with the grain, and finding the right direction may take a little experimenting. 

Are you searching for a new home, where you can create the kitchen of your dreams? Our team is here to help. Contact us today.

March
30

Southport Plants

Spring is beginning, and it's a perfect time to plan your garden. The weather is warm enough that you can plan your garden outdoors, even if the lawn isn't as lush and green as it will be in a month or two. While exotic greenhouse blooms win flower shows, if you select plants suited to the local climate, you'll have multiple choices for beautiful blooms and plants that require relatively little intervention to thrive. Whether you've never planted a seed or win gardening prizes every spring, consider the following plants when planning a garden for your Southport home. 

  1. Peace Lily
    The peace lily is a tropical plant that thrives in Southport's hardiness zone, classed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture as zone 8A. Its dark, glossy leaves spread out over the ground, helping to maintain the soil moisture it needs, and the ivory blooms give the peace lily its name, despite not being a true lily. It's an excellent plant for novice gardeners, but not for those with small children or pets, as several parts of the plant are toxic.

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March
23

Dream Home in Southport

At some point in your house-hunting process, you may begin to wonder if you'll ever find just the right home. But then one day, like magic, there it is...your dream home. A little later, though, doubts set in, and you second guess yourself. Need some help? Our REALTORS® can advise you on discerning when you've found your ideal home among all the Southport homes for sale that you've looked at.

Here are seven signs you have found just the right home for you and your loved ones.

  1. You're willing to overlook flaws.
    You know how you've felt in so many houses when you've encountered flaws. You know they can be repaired or negotiated over, but you're just not willing to do so. In your dream home, however, it's a different story. As the real estate agent points out flaws, you are mentally finding ways to fix them.

  2. It's within your budget.
    Sometimes house hunters get so excited over a home that they forget it's not within the budget they have set themselves, and they start looking for ways to make it happen anyway. It's a bad idea to go over budget; otherwise, you could end up with buyer's remorse when you remember things like property tax, home insurance, closing costs, and renovations. Concentrate on saving as much as you can and then plan on investing that amount in your home, but staying strictly within your means.

  3. It's the right location.
    You have in mind the locations you're willing to live in. Maybe it's about proximity to your job, to schools or amenities, but if the home is in one of your primary choices for location, it's checking an important box. There's not much reason to consider homes that aren't where you want to be.

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March
9

Dog Friendly Southport

Dining out is even more special when you can share the experience with your best friend. Our real estate agents have put together a list of their favorite dog-friendly restaurants in the Southport area.

  1. Fishy Fishy Café - 106 Yacht Basin Dr., Southport, NC 28461
    Seafood is the centerpiece of North Carolina cuisine, and it doesn't get better than Fishy Fishy Café. Dine on coconut shrimp, lobster mac and cheese or Cajun crab cakes as you and Fido enjoy a stunning sunset view from the waterfront deck. Stop in after a Saturday of touring Southport homes for sale to get the prime rib special. Hours are 11 a.m. - 8 p.m. daily except Friday and Saturday when closing time is 9 p.m. 

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February
17

Movies Filmed in Southport

Since the 1980's, the Brunswick Islands, Southport, Wilmington, and other local areas have been prime locations to shoot major motion-picture films and televisions shows. Southport and surrounding areas are often affectionately referred to as "Hollywood East." It's easy to see why film history has been made here—the area's natural beauty, architecture, walkability, proximity to the water, and picturesque sights make it the perfect place to shoot stunning scenes. Not only that, the cost of shooting on location in Southport allows lower-budget and indie filmmakers to get more for their money. Next time you're out taking a stroll or looking at Southport homes for sale, check out some of these popular production spots.

Wilmington

Best-selling author and screenwriter Nicholas Sparks loves the coastal towns of North Carolina. Based on his novel by the same name, the film Safe Haven was shot in Wilmington, Southport, and throughout the Brunswick Islands in 2012. This romantic thriller brings the story of lovers Katie and Alex to life against a beautiful backdrop, including the Wilmington Riverwalk.

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February
10

Making new friends can be tough, especially when you are new in town. Our real estate agents share some tips for meeting people in your new community. Trying these fun ways to connect might take you out of your comfort zone and into some friendships that last a lifetime.

Ask Around

If you're looking at Southport homes for sale but wondering how you'll make new friends in the area, ask your current friends if they know anyone who lives or works in the local beach towns. There is lots to do, so reach out and say hello! 

Join a Gym or Exercise Class

Gyms often have members who are part of a supportive, encouraging community. Working toward your fitness goals will also make you feel good about yourself, and in the process, you might just gain a few friends who will also be your cheerleaders. If a gym is not your style, you may want to join a local sports league or try a yoga class to branch out and network with others.

Shop Local

Spending time chatting with local business owners can help you build a sense of community, even if you're new to town. Most business owners and their employees love getting to know their customers, so become a regular at the farmer's market, the diner down the street, or hit your local bar for a drink once in a while. You just might strike up interesting conversations with other patrons as well.

Check out Coffee Shops

Coffee shops are often the heart of the neighborhood or a small town. If you want to get to know your neighbors, spend some time chatting with the local baristas, grab a table, and settle in for some people watching. The other thing that's critical to check out is the bulletin board or table full of flyers in your local coffee shop. That way, you can get the scoop on local interest groups and cool events.

Attend Cultural Events 

One of the best ways to meet new friends is to participate in local food, music, and arts festivals. The vibe at festivals in and around the Brunswick Islands is usually communal and casual, which makes it easy to strike up conversations with those around you. Not only that, if a festival is specific to something you like, you'll probably meet some people who share other common interests, too! Check out your town's chamber of commerce website or peruse the local paper to find out what's going on.

Get Outside

Nature's not only good for the body and soul, but it's also a great way to meet people who share common interests. Do you have a dog? If the answer's yes, get to your local dog park to meet new furry friends and their humans. Or take some time to meander along the beach and settle down in the sand with a good book. Who knows, maybe someone will ask what you're reading and invite you to join their book club….where you can meet even more new friends!

Are you ready to take the leap and find the Southport home of your dreams? Our skilled real estate professionals at Margaret Rudd & Associates can help. Contact us to learn more today.

January
27

Art around Southport

Whether you're inspired by a beautiful painting or love the look of blown glass in your home, art is something that brings people together and sparks our imaginations. Southport has a unique, thriving arts community that's bound to pique your interest. There's no better way to celebrate Inspire Your Heart with Art Day on January 31st than by visiting local galleries and studios. Art lovers searching for Southport homes for sale often ask about where to find the perfect piece to help make their new house a home. Our real estate agents enjoy supporting local artists, so here are a few of our fave galleries and studios.

  1. Southport Mudpuddle Pottery Studio, 4002 Executive Park Blvd SE, Ste. 600B (rear), Southport, NC 28461
    This cool co-op features six local artists who make unique handcrafted pottery. Check it out and pick up a one-of-a-kind piece mug or vase to complement your kitchen or living room. Mudpuddle Pottery Studio is open by appointment and the first and third Saturdays of each month from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm, and Tuesdays from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm.
  2. Uncorked by the Sea Wine Shop & Gallery, 602 N. Howe St., Southport, NC 28461
    Sip on a glass of vino or a beer while checking out all types of artwork by hand-picked local and regional artists. Want to connect with other art and wine lovers in the community? Enjoy wine, art, and good company Thursday nights at Uncorked by the Sea's weekly wine tasting events! Donations support local Brunswick County charities.

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January
20

Oceanfront Home Maintenance

Having a home on the ocean is many people's idea of paradise. After all, you can't beat views of the sparkling water, the sound of the surf, and an instant destination for fun or relaxation. Owners should be aware that oceanfront homes require different care since humidity, the sun, sand, and salty air can all take their toll on your home.

Our real estate agents suggest the following maintenance tips for your oceanfront home:

  • Clean regularly and thoroughly
    Sand and humidity can take a severe toll on your home, so you'll need to be especially diligent about cleaning. Clean every bit of your home regularly – particularly the exterior – to prevent problems like mold. Mold thrives in damp, humid coastal areas, so you'll need to inspect your home for it frequently.
  • Have frequent termite inspections
    Your oceanfront home can be a target for termites that can wreak havoc on the structure of your home. Sign up for a quarterly pest prevention program that includes spraying for termites as well as other pests, since many thrive in this type of environment.

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January
6

Southport January Events

You will have plenty of time to rest, relax, and recharge your batteries once the holiday hubbub wears down. But why would you? There is so much happening in January that you will have plenty of fantastic opportunities to keep the fun going. As you sort through your options, the following are some activities our real estate agents recommend this January.   

  1. Run Holden Beach - 0 Jordan Blvd, Holden Beach, NC 28462
    The fabulously fun Run Holden Beach half marathon starts at 7 am on January 18 and will be followed by the 5k marathon, which should begin around 7:15 am. You will run past some fabulous scenery and a few Holden Beach homes for sale, so it's a great way to get a good idea of what you can expect when you move into the community.  
  2. 3rd Annual Spring Lake Shiver - Pine Road, Boiling Spring Lakes, NC 28461
    If you would rather go for a swim than a run on January 18, head on over to the 3rd Annual Spring Lake Shiver at Spring Lake Park. From 12 pm to 2 pm, the Jack Helbig Memorial Foundation invites you to show off your costumes and compete for top prizes as you raise funds for scholarships and water safety. There is plenty of fun to be had and you'll meet people who live near some of the Southport homes for sale you are considering.
  3. Living with NC Wildlife - BLS Community Center, 1 Leed Rd, Boiling Spring Lakes, NC 28461
    You will see plenty of wildlife from the front porch of many Boiling Spring Lakes homes for sale. And, you can learn all about them by stopping off at the Living with NC Wildlife presentation on January 21 from 6:30 pm to 8 pm. You will learn all about the alligators, coyotes, and even the cockaded woodpeckers.   
  4. Coffee with the Girls - Joe's Golf Simulator, 8073 River Road, SE, Southport, NC 28461
    Looking for a place to discuss Leland homes for sale? Look no further than Coffee with the Girls hosted by the Southport-Oak Island Area Chamber of Commerce. Open to chamber members, Coffee with the Girls is an excellent opportunity for women to network with other business owners in the area. If you have a female-owned business and have a desire to make your mark on the community, this is the perfect opportunity to move forward towards your goals.  
  5. Wilmington Symphony Beethoven 5k - 2701 Brunswick Forest Pkway, Leland, NC 28451
    Looking to burn off a little extra energy in January? Maybe you want to work off that extra helping of mashed potatoes? You're in luck because the Wilmington Symphony Beethoven 5k is happening on January 12, 2020. This 5k and 10k run is a perfect chance to get in shape after the holidays. 
  6. Anniversary of the Battle of Fort Fisher - 1610 Fort Fisher Blvd S, Kure Beach, NC 28449
    On January 12, reenactors will gather to honor the anniversary of the Battle of Fort Fisher. If you love history and want to learn more about what life in North Carolina was like during the Civil War, this is one of the best events you can attend. 

Contact us to learn more about the many fabulous events that are happening in 2020. The region's calendar is filling up with races, presentations, parties, and celebrations that everyone in the family will enjoy. 

December
16

Real Estate Photos

A picture is worth a thousand words, and when you're taking real estate photos, you want your buyer to have only two words in mind — dream home.

Our REALTORS® know the importance of high-quality photography for your real estate listing. The question is, do you know how to stage your home for these amazing photos? We've gathered this list of 7 tips to help you stage your home in a picture-perfect way.

  1. Let's Talk About Lighting
    Lighting is one of the most vital elements in photography, and it's just as important in real estate photos. Natural light will always be your best resource, so schedule your photographs during a time late morning or early afternoon. Open all curtains and blinds as well.

  2. Crop Out Clutter
    Clutter can be very distracting in photographs so minimize it as much as possible. Ideally, you should see no clutter, which includes items like dishware, clothing, or pet supplies. When you take your photos, your home should look as presentable as it would be if buyers were walking it in person.

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December
2

Saving for a Down Payment

Saving up for a down payment on one of our beautiful Southport homes for sale is quite a feat, especially during the holiday season. With gifts to buy and end-of-year bills on the horizon, saving for your down payment can be tough during the holidays. Here are a few tips from our REALTORS® to help you spend and save wisely.

  • Estimate your Down Payment Range
    To get a good idea of a firm down payment estimate, you need to first determine the price range for your home and your monthly mortgage payments. Once you've discovered a down payment range meeting your financial needs, you'll know exactly how much you need to save.

  • Create a Budget Around Your Down Payment
    Now that you have a goal, it's time to create a budget to control your spending. Determine when you believe you'll be ready to put an offer in on a home and identify how much you'll need to save each week to meet that timeline.

  • Track Your Bills
    As winter weather moves in, your utility bills will increase. Research your monthly averages from the previous year and strive to keep them the same or lower. If you can, try to reduce your utility consumption.

  • Eliminate Impulse Purchases
    You'd be surprised how much you'll save by drinking and eating out less. Purchase cheaper items at the grocery store and enjoy coffee, meals, and snacks at home without racking up impulse purchases.

  • Use Cash As Much As Possible
    Swiping a credit card is easy and effortless — which means racking up debt or draining your account is just as swift. By using cash as frequently as possible, you can keep track of every dollar you spend. Consider taking out your gift budget in cash, so you know when you've reached your limit.

  • Limit Gift Giving
    While we all want to show our friends and family members, how much we care, it's quality that matters, not quantity. Limit the number of gifts you're hoping to buy and instead focus on getting a small number of presents that are truly meaningful.

  • Shop Sales
    Throughout the holiday season, many shops will have deals in-store and online that will help you save hundreds. A few hours of researching and couponing can help you create an unforgettable holiday without foregoing your strict budget.

  • Get Creative
    Who says a gift needs to be a store-bought item? You can save money and make your presents more meaningful by handcrafting a few gifts for your loved ones. You can also consider engaging in an activity together to create wonderful memories that last longer than any physical gift.

  • Shop Early in the Year
    So many purchases in a short time can strain your finances. Get into the habit of shopping for holiday gifts throughout the year, especially when you find items on sale. This will stretch out your spending and allow you to focus on saving during the holiday season.

  • Save Actively
    The act of not spending money is admirable, but the real difference-maker is how you choose to save it. Get into the habit of actively putting money aside each week in a down payment account. Whether it's a few dollars a day or a few hundred every month, these deliberate savings will snowball into a down payment for your dream home.

For more help buying homes in Southport during the holiday season, contact us.

November
11

Time to Buy Your First Home

You've rented numerous apartments and homes up to this point, but there was always a personal element missing. Perhaps it's time to stop renting and start looking for a more long-term place of residence to call your own. Southport homes for sale offer many luxuries and amenities for your everyday lifestyle, and with several locations to choose from, you're sure to find the perfect place for you. Even though you may not be consciously aware of it, there may be several signs that it's time to buy your own home.

Financial Signs You're Ready to Buy A Home

If you've ever been asked to move because your lease expired or your rent increase was too high, you may have thought about other options. Buying your own home will eliminate this from happening in the future. In some cases, your monthly mortgage may even be less than the amount you've been paying for rent. If you have good credit, you can apply for a loan for the down payment, which is usually around twenty percent. If your family is growing and you don't see relocating in the foreseeable future, then buying may be the best option. Other signs you may be experiencing when deciding on purchasing your own home are:

  • You have a steady stream of monthly income
  • You can afford (and are able) to perform the necessary upkeep and repairs
  • You're just tired of the hassle of renting
  • You want to plan for the long-term

Buying a home is a monumental task to take on, but the signs may already be telling you that it's time to take that next step in doing so.

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November
4

Selling During the Slow Season

Winter can seem like a slow time to sell a home, but that doesn't mean you should wait to list your house or condo. While it may seem like a slower season, there are still homebuyers opting to move during the holidays due to changes in family size, income, or a change in jobs. When selling your home during the winter season, there are some strategies you can employ to make your house stand out among other Southport homes for sale.

Attract Out-of-Towners

Moving is one of the top reasons a buyer will be searching for a home in the offseason. Use this information to tailor your listing to out of town buyers. Highlight your year-round home features as well as access to local amenities and community events. Include information that is local-only knowledge to give them the inside scoop. 

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October
19

SHALLOTTE, N.C. [September 26, 2019] – Brunswick County REALTOR® Margaret Rudd Bishop received the N.C. REALTORS®' Ben Ball Community Service Award for 2019 at the state association's recent conference in Pinehurst. According to the N.C. REALTORS® website, the award honors a REALTOR® who deserves recognition due to their continuous and extraordinary contributions to the betterment of their communities through outstanding public service.

Bishop has been a leader in the community and the real estate profession throughout her 45-year career. She has served as president of the Brunswick County Association of REALTORS® (BCAR) twice, first in 1982 and again in 2012. She also served as BCAR vice president and secretary and on the N.C. Association of REALTORS® board of directors. She was inducted into the N.C. REALTORS® Hall of Fame in 2010 and has received the BCAR REALTOR® of the Year Award, Lifetime Service Award and Constant Flame Award. She served as president of the Southport Oak Island Chamber of Commerce and as a board member for N.C. Citizens for Business & Industry (NCCBI). She also served on the Brunswick County Schools Business Advisory Council, the Brunswick County Tourism Development Authority and the executive board of the Cape Fear Council of the Boy Scouts of America. Bishop earned the Life Member Award from the NC REALTORS® Political Action Committee. She received both the Small Business Award and Small Business Person of the Year from the Brunswick Community College Small Business Center and the Brunswick County Distinguished Woman Award from Hope Harbor Home. An avid bicyclist, she recently completed a 34-day ride from Vancouver, British Columbia to Tijuana, Mexico down the Pacific Coast Highway.

"Margaret Rudd Bishop has been a leader in both Brunswick County and the real estate industry over the entire span of her career," said BCAR CEO Cynthia Walsh. "Her seemingly infinite supply of energy and constant devotion to our profession and community have positively impacted the lives of many and made Brunswick County a better place."

October
28

 

Southport Wooden Boat Show

Are you considering a move to Southport? If so, you'll probably be spending some time in town getting familiar with the area and checking out Southport homes for sale. If those pursuits will bring you here this November, there is a special event happening that you won't want to miss; The Southport Wooden Boat Show.

An annual tradition in Southport, the Wooden Boat Show will be held on November 2, 2019, in and around Southport's Old Yacht Basin. It starts at 10 am and runs until 4 pm. It is a tremendously popular local event that offers plenty of entertainment and activities for people of all ages.

This year's Southport Wooden Boat Show will be the 10th annual show. It is an event that is free to the public and is held to celebrate the art of wooden boat construction and the region's maritime and boat building history.

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October
7

Southport Beach

Who doesn't dream of living close to the sand and surf of the ocean? The Atlantic coast of the United States is home to unbelievable beaches that offer incredible views and unrivaled opportunities for relaxation. If you're ready to live a life of leisure along the sandy shore, our real estate agents encourage you to explore Southport homes for sale in one of the prettiest beach towns in the U.S.

  1. Southport is regularly voted one of the prettiest beach towns in the country. Officially and unofficially, hundreds of locals, visitors and journalists alike have fallen in love with Southport's charm and character. Included in lists of the best beach towns and prettiest beach towns in the country, Southport continues to be a must-visit destination along the east coast.

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September
30

Decorative Trends to Avoid - Margaret Rudd

You've spent many hours over the years picking out every fixture, paint color, and piece of furniture to make your house a home.

Now you're ready to put your house on the market, but you have to be prepared for future potential buyers. Our REALTORS® are experts at getting your home to sell as quickly as possible. Here are some decorating trends to avoid and updates you can make to give buyers of Southport homes for sale exactly what they want.

Bold Patterned Walls
Big, bold wallpaper patterns have become extremely trendy in recent years for places like bathroom spaces and accent walls in living spaces throughout your home.

However, while you may love those giant pandas with the bamboo forest background, they might turn potential buyers away. You buyers may see a project they have to take on if they purchase your home.

What to Do Instead: Paint your walls in neutral colors. White will always help give the buyers a blank space to envision how they would make the space their own. Or consider warmer neutrals to give the space a cozier feel. Neutral colors also help the rooms look brighter and larger, appealing to a broader range of potential buyers.

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September
23

Welcome a Neighbor - Margaret Rudd

Everyone wants to have a good relationship with their neighbors. After all, you'll probably be living near each other for many years to come. National Good Neighbor Day on September 28 is the perfect opportunity to say hello to your new neighbors and make them feel welcome and at home.

National Good Neighbor Day was made official in 1978 to celebrate the bonds of communities, neighborhoods, and family that keep us all together. So when you see Southport homes for sale in your area, you can start making a plan to welcome your new neighbors. Our REALTORS® suggest trying one of these thoughtful gestures to break the ice.

  • Stop by and introduce yourself. You could bring the rest of the family or a few other neighbors with you too. You may or may not become fast friends, but taking the time to say hello will start your relationship off on the right foot.

    Click Here to Read More...

September
16

Southport Burgers - Margaret Rudd

National Cheeseburger Day will soon be upon us! (September 18th, to be exact) There are countless variations of this quintessentially American treat. In Southport, many places serve up substantial, savory cheeseburgers. So while you're around town, checking out Southport homes for sale, take a break and get a taste at one of our REALTORS® favorite burger joints!

  1. Fat Andy's Burgers - 4655 Long Beach Road SE, Southport, NC 28461
    Fat Andy's simple menu features hot, juicy burgers and fries. Also, if you're more of a hot dog person, they have those too. With fast, friendly service and an outdoor dining area, it's the perfect place to grab lunch or dinner.
  2. Old Bridge Diner - 132 Country Club Drive, Oak Island, NC 28465
    From omelets to salads to a patty melt that's to die for, this local diner has something for everyone. In addition to classic burgers, they offer southern specialties like fried okra, biscuits and gravy and hushpuppies. Old Bridge Diner is open for breakfast and lunch, so stop by and fill up before peeking at some fabulous Oak Island homes for sale.
  3. Loco Jo's Bar & Grill - 602 N. Howe St. # E, Southport, NC 28461
    A laid-back bar & grill that's a local favorite.

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September
3

Credit Score Improvements - Margaret Rudd

If you're looking at buying a new home in the Southport area, you're likely going through one of the most common home-buying processes: mortgage application and pre-qualification. No matter who your lender is, they'll use your credit score as a reliable scorecard to gauge your creditworthiness and extend a line of credit to you.  

Our REALTORS® are aware of the challenges new homebuyers face. You're probably asking yourself, "How do I raise my credit score?" Read on to find out!

  • Eliminate Petty Debts
    Your credit score is made up of several different criteria. These factors include how large debts are, how long you've had them, and how well you've paid them off, among other things. One of the most significant criteria and one you have the most control over is how sizable your debts are and how long you keep them.  

    You may be thinking that those little debts (small medical bills, old store credit cards, or paltry sums in collections) are nothing to be concerned about. In the big scheme of things, maybe they aren't, but you can raise your credit score several points by paying off those debts. 

    Several small debts can add up in the eyes of credit reporting agencies, so do yourself and your credit score a favor and settle up those smaller sums.

    Click Here to Read More...

August
26

Brunswick County Neighborhood Shopping - Margaret Rudd

When you're in the market for a new home, the neighborhood you choose is just as important as the house itself. After all, the location of your home will impact your shopping and dining choices, commute times, and your lifestyle. 

With such an important decision on the line, how do you make sure the community you're considering is right for you? Our REALTORS® help home buyers find their ideal neighborhoods every day and have gathered up a list of their favorite tips. 

  1. Consider Your Personal Preferences
    Start your search by making a list of the features you want in your new neighborhood. Is it important that your new home is close to work, in a great school district, or gives you access to a community pool? Do you want to live in the center of the city, or would you prefer the type of lifestyle that comes with living in a waterfront home? This "must-have" list will help narrow down the areas you'll explore. By listing out your requirements from the get-go, you'll save yourself the time and frustration of finding a home that seems perfect but is in a less-than-ideal location. 

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August
19

Go Jump in the Lake 5k - Margaret Rudd

It's almost time once again for Labor Day weekend festivities in Brunswick County, and the fun starts with one of our area's favorite annual events. Go Jump in the Lake, a 5K run and day filled with festivities is the perfect place to have some healthy, local fun as summer winds down. The event is organized by the Southport Rotary Club and supports a variety of good local causes. It's a fun, family-friendly event, and a great chance to give back to the community. Our REALTORS® are lacing up their running shoes, and we've got all of the details on Go Jump in the Lake for 2019.

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August
12

Homebuying Hindrances - Margaret Rudd & Associates

Don't think you can afford to own your own home? Not so fast. There are plenty of people out there who want to buy a home but go into a panic after looking over their finances. So you're definitely not alone.

If there's one thing our REALTORS® believe, it's that home ownership should be within everyone's reach. Watch out for these common myths that keep people from becoming homeowners, and remember not to let them stop you!

  1. You can't afford the down payment
    Worrying about saving for a down payment is one factor that keeps a lot of people from buying a home. It's usually recommended that you pay 20 percent of the home's value upfront, but let's face it—20 percent of even a low-priced home is quite a big chunk of change. 

    Fortunately, it's possible to buy a home with a smaller down payment, and according to the National Association of REALTORS®, 81 percent of American homeowners do just that. The downside of making a smaller down payment is that you end up with a bigger mortgage (and more interest in the long run), but for a lot of new homeowners that's a very worthwhile trade-off.

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August
5

Southport, NC Oyster Bars - Margaret Rudd & Assoicates

Are you considering a move to Southport? If so, you'll probably be spending some time in town shopping our great selection of Southport homes for sale. Given the beauty of the area and its coastlines, it would be a shame to make that visit all about business. You'd certainly be missing out if you didn't make time to sample the local cuisine while you're here, most especially the fresh seafood for which our area is known. If you're particularly partial to oysters, you'll find them in abundance at local eateries, including these 5 Southport restaurants:

  1. Moore Street Oyster Bar, 110 E. Moore St., Southport
    A very popular and modern eatery, Moore Street Oyster Bar offers a great selection of delicious oyster creations. If you have trouble choosing among them, you can try them all by ordering their generous sample platter, which features two of every hot-topped oyster variety on the menu.

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July
29

Self-Employed Mortgage Process - Margaret Rudd & Associates

Being your own boss and building your own business is one of the most satisfying things you can ever achieve. When the long hours and hard work pay off, you are most likely going to want to invest the spoils of your labor into one of the many fabulous Southport homes for sale. While you're no doubt eager to start reviewing listings, the first thing you should take care of is securing mortgage pre-approval. For the self-employed, this critical approval is easier when you take the following steps.  

  1. Document Your Income
    It's crucial to document your income and establish that you have sufficient resources to make mortgage payments. To do this, you'll want to provide at least two years of tax returns. It's also a good idea to prepare a profit/loss statements since the lender may ask for this. Further, if you have been self-employed for a few years, you can use your income records and profit/loss statements to establish patterns in your business profile.

    Conversely, if you have been self-employed for less than two years, you can provide one year of W-2s if you worked in the same field as your current enterprise. You should note that when you do this, it's essential that you can show the same amount or greater income from your business when it's compared to the W-2. You should also prepare a quarterly statement for your asset accounts, including all bank accounts, CDs, IRAs, stocks, etc.

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July
22

Selling Vacant Home - Margaret Rudd & Associates

People often ask our REALTORS® if it's a better idea to list their Southport homes for sale after everything has been moved out and it's vacant. The reality is that homes can sell just fine either way. Sometimes the seller's situation requires one choice over the other, and there are advantages and disadvantages to both. If you're not sure what might work for you, consider these pros and cons.

Reasons for Selling a Home Vacant

There are a lot of reasons selling a vacant home might be the best or only option for a seller. These are just a few of the reasons a home might be vacant:  

  • Relocation out of town or out of state
  • Elderly homeowners that have had a sudden change in their living situation
  • Home that needs major renovations before selling
  • Homeowner has health problems, mobility issues, or a disability that would make it difficult to leave for showings

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July
15

Brunswick County Picnic Spots - Margaret Rudd & Associates

Summer will be here before you know it, and our REALTORS® are excited about all the possibilities that warm weather brings to the Brunswick County, NC area. This quiet, picturesque region along the Carolina coast offers ample opportunities to experience the outdoors. 

If you're looking for some fun in the sun this season, start with one of these Brunswick County Parks. They're some of our favorite places to enjoy the outdoors, and since July is National Picnic Month, you might want to bring some friends and family along—not to mention some hamburgers and hot dogs!

  1. Waterfront Park – 146-176 E. Bay St., Southport, NC
    The name says it all. This 9-acre park just a few blocks away from numerous Southport homes for sale is the ultimate place to enjoy the sights and sounds of Brunswick County's waterfront. Waterfront Park overlooks the Intracoastal Waterway and the Cape Fear River, making it a mecca for fishing, as well as watching the fishing boats coming and going from port. Ample picnic tables, park benches, picnic shelters, and grills make it a perfect picnic spot as well, and with a little luck at the park's fishing pier, you might just find yourself catching lunch.

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July
1

Final Walk-Through - Margaret Rudd & Associates

Congratulations! You've found the house after looking at many wonderful Southport homes for sale and made it to the final walkthrough. You're about to officially become a homeowner! You're probably excited to get into your new home, but take the time to make sure everything is right before you sign the papers and get the keys. Our REALTORS® recommend you look for these five things on your walkthrough.

  1. Verify repairs. Many people request repairs after a home inspection. Bring along your inspection report so that you can confirm repairs were made and done to your satisfaction. The seller should have provided documentation as well, and you'll need that in case you would have a problem covered under the contractor's warranty policy. Construction debris and materials should have been cleaned up.

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June
25

Home Valuation - Margaret Rudd & Associates

Our REALTORS® are experts when it comes to determining the best price to set for a home. Southport homes for sale can go for a wide range of price points. Many factors go into the final calculation and having outside help is essential. When sellers choose to set their own price, they often overestimate. It's easy to price a home out of the market simply because the value it has for you will influence your thinking. Of course, your feelings about a property do matter! And you want to find someone who will pay you enough to reach your goals and make saying goodbye worthwhile. That's where a REALTOR® comes in.

With years of experience navigating the Southport real estate market, a good REALTOR® is your best ally in setting the perfect price for your home. When you attract attention from motivated buyers, you'll often get more at closing than you expect. Buyers compete—you stay focused on what matters to you. Wondering how a REALTOR® makes the call on a property's value? This quick crash course will give you the basics:

  1. Amenities of the Home
    It's no coincidence that the number of bedrooms and bathrooms is one of the first things people look at when they check a listing. Amenities can add value by lowering cost of ownership—as with efficient appliances—or matching a buyer's lifestyle. Be mindful of trends: An on-trend layout can entice buyers, but some amenities that might look fun, such as a pool, can turn them off.

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June
17

NC 4th of July Festival and Fireworks - Margaret Rudd & Associates

The maritime community of Southport is well-known for having one of North Carolina's most popular 4th of July Celebrations, with nearly two full weeks of events that draw visitors from throughout NC and beyond. Thanks to the popularity and long history of Southport's Independence Day celebration, it was declared the NC 4th of July Festival in 1972.

The festival features tons of patriotic activities, fun attractions for the whole family, great opportunities to explore the community, and of course a spectacular fireworks display when the big day arrives. Our REALTORS® are ready to celebrate, and we've got the details on what to expect from Southport's NC 4th of July Festival and Fireworks this year.

Festival, Food, and Fireworks in Southport

The Event: NC 4th of July Festival

Dates: June 23 through July 4, 2019

Admission: FREE

  • Family Fun at the 4th of July Festival
    Every member of the family will find something to love about the NC 4th of July Festival, with fun activities and one full day of children's games. On July 3 at Fort Johnson Garrison Lawn and Waterfront Park, kids will have the chance to participate in a day of fun-filled activities. There will be watermelon rolling, sack races, and other old-time games that never go out of style. On July 2, kids can enjoy free face-painting, creative activities, crafts, and more at Keziah Park.

    Click Here to Read More...

June
10

Shelling Around Southport, NC - Margaret Rudd & Associates

The first day of summer will be here soon, and with that comes National Seashell Day, a reminder to take a break from the hustle and bustle of daily life and appreciate the natural beauty that's all around us. 

Families looking at Southport homes for sale often ask Our REALTORS®  about local waterfront activities. We think that shelling is one of the best ways to enjoy a day on the water, and, best of all, you can use some of the treasures you find to decorate your new home! 

Using Southport as your launching point, you can easily reach some of the best beaches for shelling either by boat or by car. Here are a few great destinations you'll want to visit this summer. 

  1. Oak Island / Caswell Beach
    One of the easiest shelling destinations to reach from Southport, Oak Island/Caswell Beach is a short 10 to 15-minute drive from the heart of the city. There are multiple beach access points, making it a convenient spot for day-trippers to spend a couple of hours searching for shells. 

    Try to plan your shelling adventures during the spring, fall, or winter months when the beach is far less crowded. This will give you the best chance to find unique shells, and you're likely to have stretches of beach all to yourself. Before you head home for the day, take a drive around so you can familiarize yourself with some of the great Oak Island homes for sale.

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June
3

Brunswick County Summer Concerts-Margaret Rudd

There's something about warm weather and sunshine that makes music sound even better. Our REALTORS® have the lowdown on the best concerts taking place around Brunswick County this summer.

  • Ocean Isle Beach Concert Series - 5 W. Third St., Ocean Isle Beach 28469
    This year, the popular Ocean Isle Beach Concert Series has a new home. Festivities are moving to the spacious lot next to Town Hall, right across the street from the previous site at the Museum of Coastal Carolina. The series will move to its permanent home once the exciting upgrades are completed at Ocean Isle Beach Park, which will also be an advantage to buyers of Ocean Isle Beach homes for sale.

    Several of this summer's featured performers, such as Band of Oz on July 5 and the Embers on July 12, offer the best in iconic Carolina beach music. Other highlights include the Legacy Motown Revue on June 28 and the high-energy dance tunes of the Extraordinaires on July 26.

    Shows take place from 6:30 p.m. until 8 p.m. every Friday night through September 6. Admission is free, but bring lawn chairs or blankets and a cash donation for the local food pantry.

    Click Here to Read More...

May
27

Energy Efficient Home-Margaret Rudd & Associates

With experience working with both home buyers and sellers, our REALTORS®  have an in-depth knowledge of what buyers are looking for in Southport homes for sale. By far, the most sought-after features are those that increase the energy efficiency of a home. 

Everyone Benefits

Energy efficiency is the one thing that adds value for everyone on both sides of the house-buying equation. For sellers, having proof that you installed energy-efficient features in the home you're selling will increase the appeal to buyers. It will also enable you to ask for, and usually receive, a higher selling price. Some sellers question the initial cash investment they need to make to increase their home's energy efficiency, but when we point out how this investment can help them realize a better selling price, they understand the benefit.

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May
20

Yoga Studios Around Southport-Margaret Rudd & Associates

Our REALTORS® know all the things that make the neighborhoods we represent great places to live. There are unique places to dine out with friends and spend an evening. Places to enjoy nature or the beach. And plenty of places to get in a little exercise.

Practicing yoga has been linked to many health benefits. It can increase flexibility, balance, and strength. It can help with weight loss. And probably one of the most significant benefits is helping to reduce stress and anxiety. Whether you're a long time enthusiast, looking to change up your fitness routine, or just want to take a break from looking at Southport homes for sale you can find the class that's right for you.

  • Southport Yoga Dock - 317 W Bay St., Southport, NC 28461
    Southport Yoga Dock
    offers Hatha and Vinyasa yoga classes with local instructors. Classes are held on a covered open-air dock with the sound of gentle waves and ocean breeze as a backdrop. It's a great way to help you relax and connect with nature. Choose a morning class or a sunset class.

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May
13

Exterior Home Features-Margaret Rudd & Associates

There's no denying that curb appeal is essential, but what exactly does that mean to homebuyers these days? Our REALTORS® are well-versed in the latest outdoor trends in Southport homes for sale and recommend that sellers pay particular attention to the outdoor spaces of their home. Here are a few exterior features that can make your home more attractive to buyers, increase its value, and help it sell faster.

  • Good Exterior Lighting: Properly illuminating the outside of your house and the best features of your yard is a great way to attract attention before buyers step through the front door. Placing attractive lighting along walkways and stairs and strategically-placed motion-sensor lights not only look nice, but they are also a safety feature for your home. No one wants to fumble with their keys trying to unlock a door in the dark, so good lighting at entry points to your home is also a must.

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May
6

Mother's Day Waterfront Dining in Southport-Margaret Rudd & Associates

Mother's Day is coming up soon, and you might be wondering how to show the special moms in your life just how much you care. Our REALTORS® recommend taking them out for lunch or dinner at one of the area's excellent waterfront restaurants. Here are five locations that are guaranteed to give you a memorable experience. 

  1. Provision Company - 130 Yacht Basin Drive, Southport, NC 28461
    Located in downtown Southport, Provision Company (called Provisions by the locals) overlooks the Old Yacht Basin and provides excellent views of the Intercoastal Waterway. This casual dining spot is great for enjoying a cold beer with some crab cakes and conch fritters. While you're in the area, we suggest taking a drive around to look at some of the beautiful Southport homes for sale.  

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April
29

Home Inspection Report-Margaret Rudd & Associates

Our REALTORS® can't stress enough how important a home inspection is before buying. An inspection can save you a lot of money and some major headaches. But what happens next, especially if the home inspection turned up some serious issues?

The most important thing is not to panic. Home inspection issues might make you think twice about a house, but they shouldn't be an automatic deal breaker. When you get less-than-stellar home inspection results, here's what you need to know about how to proceed. 

Common Inspection Issues

We see a lot of the same inspection issues pop up again and again. If you're looking at Southport homes for sale, keep an eye out for some of these issues and necessary repairs on the inspection report: 

  • Roof damage, from minor leaks and missing shingles to full replacement
  • Electrical problems, including frayed wires, and wiring not being up to code
  • Plumbing issues, like leaking pipes and failing water heaters
  • Termite damage
  • Mold issues
  • Presence of asbestos or lead paint
  • Foundation issues, such as cracking or sinking

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April
22

Southport NatureFest-Margaret Rudd & Associates

The diverse natural beauty of Brunswick County is a major attraction for so many people shopping for Southport homes for sale and long-time residents alike. The parks, docks, beaches, wetlands, swamps, and waterways that surround Southport make for beautiful vistas and ideal habitats for a variety of local wildlife. It's no surprise that residents love to both enjoy and protect the area's abundant natural beauty, which makes the annual NatureFest a perfect opportunity to celebrate spring in the area. The festival, spread over two days, is filled with exciting speakers and opportunities to appreciate local natural sites. Our REALTORS® have all the details on how to celebrate NatureFest 2019 in Southport this spring.

Southport: Celebrate NatureFest 2019 April 26 & 27

The Event: NatureFest 2019

Dates/Times: April 26 – 4 p.m., April 27 – 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Location: Downtown Southport

Southport's NatureFest has been a local favorite for years, with a wide variety of family-friendly activities that allow you to experience the natural side of the community. There will be one free event Friday evening, followed by a full day of activities on Saturday. Learn from knowledgeable, local experts, participate in nature-themed Q&A sessions, pick up plants for your garden, or set out to explore some of the area's most popular natural attractions.

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April
15

Painting to Sell-Margaret Rudd & Associates

The marine beauty of coastal towns in North Carolina makes the ideal backdrop for a calm and happy life. Use the unique natural charms of the Southport, NC landscape to sell your home more quickly.

One way to make your seaside home stand out is by choosing the perfect color to complement the seaside terrain. Our REALTORS® at Margaret Rudd and Associates use these secrets when finding just the right hue when placing a Southport home for sale.

  • Harness the Power of Optical Illusion

    Seeing isn't always believing. Different colors absorb varying amounts of light. The brain interprets the presence of light with a sense of space. For that reason, it's possible to use color to change the way potential buyers perceive your property.

    Lighter colors are the best for making small spaces feel roomy. White paint reflects the most light. However, all-white walls can be off-putting. Shades of all colors mixed with white is a great way to incorporate personality and still take advantage of optical illusion.

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April
8

Easter Brunch-Margaret Rudd & Associates

Our REALTORS® know how important the Easter holiday is to so many of our clients. Southport families adorn their homes with colorful decorations and cherish the moments spent watching their young ones find their Easter baskets. If you're considering browsing our Southport homes for sale, we invite you to get to know the area on a Sunday morning by visiting one of these amazing Southport eateries for brunch.

  1. Locals Family Diner - 832 N. Howe St., Southport, NC 28461
    What are your family's Easter traditions? Church service, egg painting or basket hunting? Locals Family Diner invites you to create more memories with your kids with a delicious brunch at one of Southport's favorite restaurants. Try their delicious Eggs Benedict or a classic dish order of biscuits and gravy. With special menu options for children and seniors, Locals Family Diner is the perfect place for Easter breakfast with the entire family.

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March
25

Spring Home Bidding-Margaret Rudd & Associates

Buying a home in the spring means more competition among buyers, so being prepared is a must. Getting your finances in order, deciding on a neighborhood, and brushing up on your bidding strategy are key ways to make sure you get the home you want. Making your offer stand out is an absolute must. Our REALTORS® can be a big help during the entire process, but especially when you're making an offer or stuck in a bidding war. Here are some tips to navigate the process.

  1. Make your first offer incredible. Don't go into the process expecting that you'll pay below list price or assuming you can make a low offer then negotiate. There is competition in the spring, so sellers won't necessarily be willing to negotiate. And when there's competition, bidding low is a surefire way to get your bid ignored. Your agent can show you a comparative market analysis from other Southport homes for sale and help structure your offer right the first time.
     
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March
18

Bald Head Island Coastal Reserve-Margaret Rudd & Associates

There are plenty of beautiful places to visit in North Carolina, but few can compare to the majestic grandeur of the barrier islands and the N.C. Coastal Reserve & National Estuarine Research Reserve. Their peaceful serenity has lured everyone from sailors to scholars for centuries.

The past year was an eventful one for the area, and while the winds and waves of Hurricane Florence left their mark, it wasn't enough to dampen the spirit of residents or dissolve their resolve to make Bald Head Island the state's most popular destination. It is because of their efforts that demand for Bald Head Island homes for sale is as strong as ever.  

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March
11

Spring Home Maintenance-Margaret Rudd & Associates

There's something timeless and boundless about watching the ocean and feeling that salty wind in your face. Maybe that's why we're so enamored with living near it, taking in all the sea has to offer.   

But for a North Carolina house, being by the sea can be damaging, with exposure to salt, sand, and wind. Salt is corrosive and ever-present in the air and water. Wind, carrying tiny grains of sand, batters and scours your home's exterior. You should be mindful of the extra attention it may need and make sure your maintenance schedule includes specific tasks.  

If your home is one of the Southport homes for sale, our REALTORS® recommend regularly doing the following. 

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March
4

Oak Island Lighthouse Run & Walk-Margaret Rudd & Associates

The Oak Island Lighthouse stands at the mouth of the Cape Fear River, an iconic fixture of the North Carolina coast, where it has helped guide ships to safe harbor since 1958. Every year, the lighthouse is the focal point of the Oak Island Lighthouse Run & Walk, which offers an opportunity to stay fit, enjoy the gentle ocean breeze and picturesque scenery of Oak Island, and help raise money for a good cause.

For our REALTORS® on Oak Island, the annual Oak Island Lighthouse Run & Walk is one of the most anticipated events of the year. The 2019 race is just around the corner, so read on to find all the info you need to watch or participate in the race!

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February
25

Relocating with Pets - Margaret Rudd & Associates

Moving comes with a lot of stresses, big and small. For pet owners, making sure your furry friends are safe and sound during the move and adjust well to their new home is a big priority. The good news is, moving with a pet doesn't have to be stressful! Our REALTORS® share 7 tips for relocating with a pet that will make the move much more manageable, and help your pet learn to love your new home.

  1. Get them used to the kennel before the move
    If you're using a kennel or pet carrier to move your pet, it's a good idea to make sure they're comfortable inside it. Train them to sleep inside the kennel using treats as a reward. If they love their kennel, being inside it during the trip will make them much more comfortable.

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February
18

NC Maritime Museum Southport-Margaret Rudd & Associates

You can discover North Carolina's rich coastal heritage and culture with a stop at the NC Maritime Museum at Southport. Here you'll find year-long exhibits and monthly events that children, families and nautical fans will love. Our REALTORS® recommend that those considering moving to the Southport area take a moment to visit this important local landmark. Open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m., a trip to the Maritime Museum is sure to be a fun and engaging experience for everyone!

A Sea of History

As one of North Carolina's three state-sponsored maritime museums, the NC Maritime Museum at Southport highlights the history of the lower Cape Fear River. Their collection of artifacts display the history of the area dating back nearly 2,000 years. Exhibits on the history of maritime life, as well as relics from Southport life from the age of piracy through the Civil War and beyond, have made the NC Maritime Museum a treasured local landmark that visitors and locals cherish.

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February
11

Home Seller's Anxiety-Margaret Rudd & Associates

No matter how prepared you are, selling your home can create an emotional whirlwind. There's the excitement of getting your home in amazing shape, the relief of finally getting the right offer, and the anticipation of what comes next. On the other hand, there's also concern about whether you'll find a buyer, uncertainty about which offers to accept, and the major stress of waiting for the deal to finally go through.

While there's always going to be some anxiety involved in the home selling process, our REALTORS® want you to relax and enjoy the ride. The following five tips will help you sell your home without the stress. 

  1. Get Your Home in Tip-Top Shape
    There are a ton of great Southport homes for sale, so you'll want to make sure yours stands out from the crowd. This means putting in some elbow grease to improve your curb appeal, make necessary repairs, and freshen up your space.

    Once your listing goes live, you'll have peace of mind in knowing you've done everything you can to make sure potential buyers fall in love with your home.

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February
4

Holden Beach Turns 50 - Margaret Rudd & Associates

Our REALTORS® at Margaret Rudd & Associates would like to wish a very special Happy 50th Birthday to Holden Beach! Whether you're a frequent visitor or you're lucky enough to call Holden Beach your home, you know that any time spent in this fantastic town becomes an unforgettable memory.

The History of Holden Beach

For half of a century, the town of Holden Beach has been a favorite vacation destination for thousands of visitors. As a perfect place on the North Carolina coast for outdoor and watersports, Holden Beach is regularly ranked one of the top beaches for families in the United States. From kayaking and surfing to volleyball and sunbathing, Holden Beach has sandy and salty fun for everyone.

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January
28

Moving to Brunswick County-Margaret Rudd & Associates

According to U.S. News & World Report, North Carolina is among the top 10 fastest-growing states in the country. Homes for sale in Brunswick County, with its desirable location and plentiful mix of attractions for all ages, are a driving force behind North Carolina's appeal.

What draws families and individuals from around the country to Brunswick County? Our REALTORS® draw on their experiences helping satisfied home buyers to offer five main reasons for Brunswick County's popularity.

  1. Scenic Location
    Sunshine, fresh air and spectacular scenery make coastal areas like Brunswick County the most sought-after places to live. Studies show living near the ocean provides significant benefits for mental and physical health. In addition, Brunswick County's proximity to cities such as Wilmington and Myrtle Beach creates the best of both worlds.
     
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January
21

Southport Marsh Walk - Margaret Rudd & Associates

If you're touring our Southport homes for sale, you'll want to be sure you check out everything else that makes the coastal area a fabulous place to live. With over 30 years' experience in Brunswick County, Our REALTORS® can tell you the Carolina coast is one of our country's most charming areas to live.

Its history, cuisine, and the natural areas for recreation and relaxation are among the best anywhere. And everything comes together in Southport. One of the hidden gems of Southport you won't want to miss is our Marsh Walk

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January
7

Buy a Home in Southport
According to the National Association of REALTORS®, approximately one-third of homebuyers are purchasing for the first time. Will you be joining those ranks soon? Our REALTORS® offer some valuable tips to streamline the process and help you get the home of your dreams.

  1. Review Your Credit Record
    A good credit score lets lenders know you're a worthwhile risk, and it can also make the difference in obtaining better interest rates. Request copies of your credit record from the Big Three reporting agencies and clean up any errors or misinformation. Don't apply for any other credit during this time to avoid lowering your score.

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December
31

Brunswick County Fitness Centers
Starting the New Year in a new home is the best way to get 2019 off on the right foot. As you ponder the possibilities of new curtains and furniture, there is a good chance you are also thinking about creating a new you. As you consider the physical fitness goals you want to achieve in the coming year, the following are five Brunswick County gyms that can help make your dreams a reality.

  1. Crossfit Ocean Isle Beach - 570 Meadow Summit Drive, Suite 17, Ocean Isle Beach
    Crossfit Ocean Isle Beach offers more than just exercise; they provide a way of life. When you sign up for this rigorous program, you will find yourself surrounded by a team of people who will help you reach your goals. The workouts are intense, and the results are undeniable. Crossfit works every muscle and organ, the most important of which is your brain. As your training progresses, you will adopt a mindset that will help you settle into one of the many Ocean Isle Beach homes for sale.

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December
17

Brunswick County Bakeries-Margaret Rudd & Associates

Every neighborhood has its hidden (and sometimes not-so-hidden) gems that make the area a great place to live. Here are seven delicious bakeries in Brunswick County that will tempt, delight, and tantalize your taste buds. 

  1. SeaSide Wine & Gourmet — 6600 Beach Drive SW, Ocean Isle Beach
    So there you are, cruising around on the lookout for Ocean Isle Beach homes for sale when you realize you are famished (or perhaps you're parched?). A stop at SeaSide Wine & Gourmet is just the pick-me-up any house hunter needs. 

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December
11

Brunswick County Open House
Holding an open house is a great way to make sure a variety of potential buyers see your home. However, as our REALTORS® will point out, for this to be a useful marketing tool, your home must be in great shape for showing. So what do you need to know to make sure your home is well-prepared to wow potential buyers? Here are six things to do before an open house to sell your Brunswick County Home.

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December
5

Brunswick County Christmas Shopping Spots
The holiday season is brimming with joy and excitement, and along with the merriment comes the hustle and bustle of seasonal shopping. Make your shopping endeavors a bit brighter this year by visiting some of Brunswick County's shops and boutiques. With gifts for practically everyone on your list (don't forget yourself!), these shops are our absolute favorites for holiday decor and more.

  • The Christmas House - 104 W Moore St., Southport, NC 
    After you've looked at homes for sale in Southport, be sure to visit The Christmas House and discover a magical shopping adventure full of all things Christmas. Find a fantastic selection of decorative Christmas items including wreaths, garland, and ornaments, as well as a huge assortment of rustic and whimsical gift ideas. The Christmas House has fun and engaging toys for the little ones on your list, and you won't want to miss their great variety of old-fashioned candy to satisfy the sweet tooth and bring back memories of yesteryears.

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November
27

Holiday Home Security
The holidays are here and while you can't stop Jack Frost from nipping at your toes, you can stop thieves from putting a chill on your holiday spirit. As you prepare to celebrate the holidays with your friends and family, some simple additions to your shopping list will go a long way towards securing your home.

Our REALTORS® recommend the following smart security measures for your North Carolina home. Each of these home security features are efficient and effective at outsmarting the burglars who may be lurking on the other side of the door.     

  1. Smart Locks
    Smart locks make it easy for you to lock/unlock the door even when you can't reach for your key. Simply enter the code and the door opens then press a button to lock it behind you. The locks can also be set to open/lock automatically based on the proximity of your phone to the door. 

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November
19

Brunswick Buy a Home Holidays
You probably have a lot of activities on your to-do list this holiday season. Holiday parties, nights out, community events, and shopping are all great ways to spend your time. But during all the festivities and hustle and bustle, don't forget about that one big item on your wish list…a new home! Many buyers just don't think about shopping during the holidays but it really can be a good idea. Our REALTORS® share why.

  1. There's less competition.
    If you've shopped in the spring or summer and had offers repeatedly turned down or gotten stuck in bidding wars, shopping when there's less competition will greatly increase your chances of getting into a home.

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November
13

New Homeowner Gift Ideas
Do you have friends or family members that are spending their very first Christmas in a new home? If so, you're probably looking for just the right gift to celebrate this landmark in their lives. So what is the right sort of gift for such an occasion? The options range from practical and functional items to decorative or personalized ones that can help them make their new house a home. Our REALTORS® can offer a few tips, having lots of firsthand experience with first-time homeowners. Here is our list of top holiday gifts for the new homeowner.

  • Kitchen Items
    If the new homeowner in your life likes to cook or entertain, practical and attractive items for their new kitchen can be very welcome gifts. If they are coffee lovers, an espresso maker or French press can be a great gift, especially when paired with a set of unique or personalized mugs. If they enjoy baking, a quality stand mixer will likely be appreciated, as might a good marble pastry board/rolling pin set. If they are first-time homeowners, kitchen basics, like toasters, a slow cooker, cutting boards, cooking utensils, or a set of kitchen towels and potholders may be good gift ideas. Other possibilities for the kitchen include cheese boards, stylish serving bowls, wine glasses or cocktail shakers, all items that will come in handy for new homeowners during the holiday season.

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October
23

Buying a House - Walkability
Deciding to buy a home is a huge step, and along with that choice comes the decision of where you want to live. Picking a geographic location is one thing, but deciding on the type of neighborhood you want to call home is equally important. While some home buyers prefer to live in the suburbs or even a rural area where commuting is the norm, the walkability of a neighborhood is becoming a more important factor to many. Our REALTORS® can help you pinpoint Brunswick County communities that are more walkable and show you area neighborhoods that fit your lifestyle.

Why Walkability Matters? 

While a walkable neighborhood isn't ideal for everyone, a community that promotes getting out on foot certainly offers plenty of benefits. Perhaps one of the most apparent advantages of walking versus driving is the boost it provides for your health. Walking provides exercise that helps keep the extra pounds off, promotes good circulation, keeps muscles toned, and provides a fresh intake of air for your respiratory system.

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October
17

Bolivia Homes - River Sea Plantation
Our REALTORS® are on a mission to help more of our clients move to the beautiful area of Bolivia, North Carolina. Bolivia homes for sale often come on spacious parcels of land and have charm to spare, too. Bolivia is quiet and peaceful – in fact, it has less than 200 residents overall.

If you want to experience the Bolivia lifestyle, one of the best ways to go about it is River Sea Plantation. This 400-acre community positioned on the banks of the Lockwood Folly River stands between the city of Shalotte and the picturesque waterfront community of Southport.

This beautiful gated development is in high demand, and it's not hard to see why.

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October
8

Buying a House Does Commute Time Matter

Drive Time Shouldn't Be Overlooked

When you're in the market to buy a home, there is a laundry list of things to consider in addition to the house itself.  Real estate insiders advise to add factors like the neighborhood, walkability, schools, and commute time to work.  If you do not work from your home, adding commute time to and from your job should be at the top of your wish list when you're house hunting. When you find a home, make sure your drive time doesn't turn your dream home into a nightmare.  

Our REALTORS® are here with this help for factoring your commute time into your house hunt to find the right home for you and your family.

Why You're Buying a House

Many people opt to purchase a home for increased financial security or lower long-term housing costs. If buying a house increases your commute time, make sure you're not canceling out the benefits of homeownership.

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September
27

Buy Don't Rent
Owning a home, and the freedom that comes with it, remains a crucial part of the American dream, even as more and more Americans find it more difficult to achieve homeownership. Our REALTORS® are here to make that process easier, and if you've been thinking about making the leap to owning your own house, we have several reasons why now might be the right time. 

  1. Renting is more expensive. In the long run, renting may ultimately take away a much larger chunk of your income than buying. What's worse is that at the end of the day you have nothing to show for it; no rental property will ever be yours, no matter how much money you sink into it. And while it is generally assumed that renting is cheaper in the short term, even that is not always the case. Mortgage payments often cost less than monthly rent in many communities. 

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September
20

Bolivia NC River run Plantation

River Run Plantation homes may be the best-kept secret in the area, but they're not likely to remain a secret for very long! More and more home buyers exploring the homes for sale in Bolivia have been attracted to the unique charm of River Run Plantation. 

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September
7

Saving for Your First Home
Deciding that you want to become a homeowner is a big step that comes with lots of questions. One of the first you'll need to address is how to save for your down payment. Don't worry, you can do this! Our REALTORS® offer these tips to get you started saving today. 

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August
23

Buying Oceanfront Homes
If you have always dreamed of living on the beach and are finally ready to find your dream o