Your Crystal Coast NC Home Maintenance To-Do List for March

clover-445255_960_720March is here and as we gear up for the official start of spring here on North Carolina’s Crystal Coast, there are a few maintenance tasks you will want to complete around your home. From cleaning the gutters to tending to your yard and flowers, preparing for the spring season now will allow you to relax and enjoy later!

Below are four tasks for your to-do list this month:

Clean the gutters
Clogged gutters can cause major issues both inside your home and out if left unattended. Take the time to remove any debris like leaves, sticks and dirt that may have accumulated there over the past several months. After you’ve finished, flush water through to ensure all clogs are gone and water can flow through freely.

Clean your A/C exterior
Your A/C condenser, like your gutters, can become home to dirt, dust and debris if not cleaned regularly. Find the unit outside of your Crystal Coast home and spray with a garden hose to remove the debris. Be careful if pressure washing as you could bend or damage the exterior of the A/C unit.

Prune and prep your yard
If you have rose bushes in your yard, now is when you’ll want to begin pruning them for the most beautiful blooms as the season progresses. Remove sticks, branches and rocks from the yard or garden beds and if you find any dead or diseased buds on your floral bushes, remove them to avoid spreading to the others.

Clean the siding
Dirt and grime can shorten the life of your home‘s siding, not to mention dull its appearance. Use a pressure washer to quickly remove the build-up and get your home look spic and span for the spring— or potential buyers if you’re ready to sell.

March is a great month to take care of the above tasks at your North Carolina home, but also to consider selling and beginning your home search if you’re interested in moving to a new property in Atlantic Beach, Beaufort, Emerald Isle, Morehead City, Havelock, or Newport.

Give Gena Gilbert Real Estate a call today with any questions!

Mistakes to Avoid When Shopping for a Crystal Coast NC Home This Winter

traffic-cone-1027881_960_720Despite what many believe about the winter season, opportunities still abound when the temperatures dip below their usual along North Carolina’s Crystal Coast! Both sellers and buyers are constantly motivated to move, no matter the time of year, and continue to browse homes online via their smartphones, tablets or computers— even in the winter! But if you’re shopping for a home in Coastal Carolina this winter, that doesn’t mean it’s always smooth sailing. Below are a few mistakes you’ll want to watch out for along the way.

Don’t acquire too much holiday debt
Tis the season for gift giving and holiday shopping, however it’s important that you don’t get too carried away! Avoid taking out new lines of credit this time of year and racking up debt on current credit cards. If you must put your purchases on credit cards, make sure you’re careful to pay them down or off right away! Even those with good credit can drastically change their debt-to-income ratio (a factor lenders look at when determining your eligibility for a mortgage) in a short time.

Look past the winter drab
While homes do tend to show their best during the holiday season, the winter months can tend to dull typically bright greenery, flowers and landscaping. If you come across a Crystal Coast NC home with a lawn not looking its best, do look past it. It is wise to envision what the property may look like during the spring and summer to make sure you’re not skipping over a great home!

Don’t make a lowball offer
Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean lowball offers are a must. In order to determine if you may be able to score a deal on a home in Atlantic Beach, Beaufort, Emerald Isle, Morehead City, Havelock, Newport, you’ll need to consider how long the home has been on the market, its location, condition and many other factors. Remember that inventory is lower, while buyer demand remains high, so your lowball offer may be tossed right out the window.

Give Gena Gilbert Real Estate a call today if you’re ready to call Atlantic Beach, Beaufort, Emerald Isle, Morehead City, Havelock, Newport the surrounding communities your home! We can provide more information about the current real estate market, available homes and steps to take to ensure homebuyer success!

We look forward to hearing from you!

Holiday Events on North Carolina’s Crystal Coast!

While you may still have a refrigerator full of leftovers, Thanksgiving is over and the holiday season has officially begun! Lucky for us, North Carolina’s Crystal Coast is a great place to kick off the festivities! Events like Christmas parades, art walks, train shows and tree lightings abound in Atlantic Beach, Emerald Isle, Beaufort, Newport, Havelock the the surrounding areas and we’ve listed a few of them below!

Gena Gilbert Real Estate is happy to share a few of the many ways to celebrate the holidays in Coastal Carolina below:

13th Annual Emerald Isle Christmas Parade
November 26, 2016; 3 PM
Highway 58, Emerald Drive
Emerald Isle NC

This holiday parade will begin on Highway 58 in Emerald Isle, with Santa Claus appearing on a float the end of the parade! You can also join in the fun after the parade for the Christmas tree lighting at Merchant’s Park! There will be refreshments, caroling, Santa visits and more.

Morehead City Christmas Art Walk
December 2, 2016; 4 PM to 7 PM
Downtown Morehead City
Morehead City NC

If you’re an art lover, you won’t want to miss this Christmas walk featuring downtown Morehead City art galleries, as well as other participating restaurants and businesses.

22nd Annual John Costlow Christmas Train Show
December 2-4, 2016
Old 1907 Train Depot, 2015 Pollock Street
Beaufort NC

It is the 22nd year for this holiday train show offering a glimpse into the past with antique working model trains of all varieties and sizes. No matter what age you are, you will find something to love from simple train circles around a Christmas tree to giant, detailed systems.

Christmas Tree Lighting
December 2, 2016; 6 PM
Katherine Davis Park, 6th and Arendell Streets
Morehead City NC

Start your holiday season with this Christmas tree lighting downtown Morehead City at Katherine Davis Park. You can find Santa and Mrs. Claus, holiday music and activities for the kids!

As always, do not hesitate to contact us with any questions about the current real estate market, buying or selling a home in Beaufort, Emerald Isle, Atlantic Beach, Morehead City, Havelock, Newport and the surrounding areas.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Preparing Your Home for the Holidays in Atlantic Beach, Beaufort, Emerald Isle NC

lights-163883_960_720We’re well into November now and the holidays are just around the corner along North Carolina’s Crystal Coast. If you haven’t already, you may soon begin to jot down your holiday menus, make plans for travel and who you will host in your Atlantic Beach, Beaufort, Emerald Isle or Morehead City home.

There is no time like now to prepare your home for the holidays and as your local real estate experts in Coastal CarolinaGena Gilbert Real Estate has provided the following four tips for planning ahead.

Check your oven
You will undoubtedly be doing a lot of cooking and baking over the next month in anticipation of the holidays, so why not check that your oven is running properly? Check behind the appliance to remove any dust or debris that could have fallen onto the cords, clean the inside racks and door with a degreasing spray, and if necessary, change the light bulb.

Create an entryway
When you welcome guests into your Crystal Coast NC home, you should have a place to corral jackets, shoes, and luggage. Create an entryway with a coat rack—or clear space in your closet—and a designated spot for shoes to sit.

Stock your guest rooms
After you take the luggage to your guest rooms, they should be properly stocked with toiletries, sheets and blankets for your holiday visitors. Take inventory of your guest rooms now and purchase extra toothbrushes and pillows, if you don’t have more to spare. Launder sheets and pillow cases, make beds and consider setting out a bouquet of fresh flowers.

Clear out the kitchen
The kitchen will be a popular place this holiday season, so now is the time to clean off countertops, storing any small appliances that currently live out in the open. You will want to create a proper work space for cooking and gathering! Make sure all mail is placed in one area, catalogs and other papers have been organized elsewhere and all of your holiday serving ware and dishes are within reach.

As always, if you have questions about buying or selling a home in Beaufort, Emerald Isle, Atlantic Beach, Morehead City, Havelock, Newport and the surrounding areas, give Gena Gilbert Real Estate a call today!

Your Crystal Coast NC End of Summer Home Maintenance Checklist

water-815475_960_720There’s no doubt about it— summer is coming to an end here on North Carolina’s Crystal Coast. Well, the official end of summer, that is. We may have plenty more beautiful weather in store in Beaufort, Atlantic Beach, Emerald Isle, Morehead City and the surrounding areas, but that doesn’t mean your home doesn’t need a little extra attention before fall begins.

Gena Gilbert Real Estate is happy to share a few of the many ways you can make sure your Crystal Coast NC home is in shape for the end of the summer and enjoy smooth sailing as we head into the next season!

Clean your gutters
Gutters filled with debris can cause major problems if not tended to regularly. Remove any limbs, leaves, seeds and brush from your gutters and run the hose through them to confirm they can do their job. If necessary, replace any leaky spots or call a professional to assist you.

Clean and repair windows
As we head into the cooler months, you will want to know if there are any spots in your windows where air can escape. If you find gaps, a simple caulking job can do the trick, but if you find your windows in need of replacement, now is the time to do so.

Inspect and treat your deck
In beautiful Beaufort, Atlantic Beach, Emerald Isle, Morehead City and the surrounding areas, you likely spend a lot of time on your deck or patio. Take the time to remove any buildup of grime or dirt on your deck, cleaning all of the boards as thoroughly as possible and applying a stain or sealant afterwards. If any boards are loose, replace them now so you can continue to enjoy the great weather!

Inspect and repair your roof
Test your roof for any soft spots that may signal future leaks and identify loose shingles that need replacing. Curling shingles are also another sign that your roof needs attention. Replace these now to avoid any major water problems when the fall and winter rains arrive.

Clean your outdoor garbage cans
A change in the seasons can bring out a variety of different animals— many of which may take an interest in your outdoor garbage cans. These animals have a strong sense of smell, so hose off your garbage can’s exterior and give the inside a deep cleaning. After all, animals around your garbage could eventually cause bigger problems in your home!

As always, do not hesitate to contact Gena Gilbert Real Estate with any questions about buying or selling a home in Coastal Carolina! We look forward to hearing from you!

Fourth of July Events on North Carolina’s Crystal Coast

sparkler-1149641_960_720It’s that time of year again! The Fourth of July is already next weekend and if you’re planning a firework-filled weekend, you can count on Gena Gilbert Real Estate to fill you in on all of the special events on the Crystal Coast! Below is just a sampling of the Independence Day celebrations planned for Coastal Carolina so you can start your long, holiday weekend off with a bang!

Alive at Five Outdoor Concert, July 1, 2016; Jaycee Park on the Morehead City Waterfront, 5 PM to 8 PM. This FREE outdoor concert series features various bands and musical genres all summer long! On July 1, Punch will be performing from 5 PM to 8 PM.

Carteret County Arts and Crafts Coalition Summer Show, July 2-3, 2016; Grounds of the Beaufort Historic Site at 100 Turner Street in Beaufort NC, 10 AM to 5 PM Saturday and 12 PM to 5 PM Sunday. This outdoor arts and craft show only takes place three weekend a year— one of them being Fourth of July weekend! Browse the work of Coastal craftsman and artists and enjoy the summer weather.

Musket Firing Demonstration, July 2-3, 2016; 2303 Fort Macon Road in Atlantic Beach NC, 11 AM and 3 PM. What better way to spend the Fourth of July weekend than a musket firing demonstration, noting the Civil War era musket’s history, loading procedures and firing.

Atlantic Beach Independence Day Weekend Fireworks, July 3, 2016; the Circle in Atlantic Beach NC, 9 PM.

Beaufort July 4th ParadeJuly 4, 2016; Begins on the corner of Gordon and Front Streets, 11 AM. This Beaufort tradition will begin along the waterfront at 11 AM, including pets, wagons, flags, music and more!

Beaufort July 4th FireworksJuly 4, 2016; Grounds at Gallant’s Channel, 6 PM. Enjoy live music, hot dogs and other refreshments at this Fourth of July celebration!

Bogue Inlet Pier FireworksJuly 4, 2016; Bogue Inlet Pier in Emerald Isle NC, 9 PM. Starting at 9 PM on July 4, the Bogue Inlet Pier fireworks will begin! They will be visible from Bogue Sound as well as the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway.


 

Contact Gena Gilbert Real Estate will any questions about the Coastal Carolina real estate market, home buying or home selling! We look forward to hearing from you!

May Events on North Carolina’s Crystal Coast!

last-summer-1564021Spring has arrived, but summer is just around the corner! North Carolina’s Crystal Coast offers dozens of fun-filled activities and events this time of year, from music festivals to golf tournaments to boat shows and beyond. Now is the time to get out and explore everything that our local communities have to offer here in Coastal Carolina and we have included a few of them for you below!

You will want to mark your calendars for the following events on the beautiful Crystal Coast:

1st Annual Beach Keepers Event – May 13, 2016, 7:30 AM; 612 Front Street, Beaufort NC. Help keep the Crystal Coast litter-free with this beach clean-up event on Shackleford Banks!

Friday Free Flicks May 13, 2016, 9 PM; 7500 Emerald Drive, Emerald Isle NC. These family-oriented movies are free and open to the public. Chairs and blankets are encouraged.

6th Annual Crystal Coast Run/Walk for Autism – May 14, 2016; 500 Front Street, Beaufort NC. Proceeds from this event will fund the local programs of the Autism Society of North Carolina. Participants can join in the 5K competitive race, awareness walk or kids dash.

Bogue Banks Kiteboarding Festival – May 17-22, 2016; Atlantic Beach NC. Along Bogue Banks on the Crystal Coast, this festival is open to both experts and beginners alike!

28th Annual Beaufort Music Festival – May 20-21, 2016; Beaufort NC. The festival will be held downtown Beaufort, is free to attend, and will feature a variety of North Carolina bands.

9th Annual Crystal Coast Boat Show – May 21-22, 2016; Morehead City Waterfront. This event attracts thousands to Morehead City NC every year with in-water and on-shore boats, vendors, vintage car show, as well as the ARTrageous Art Event.

Alive at Five Outdoor Concert Series – May 27, 2016; Morehead City NC. This is the first of a free, summer-long concert series at the Jaycee Park on the Morehead City Waterfront from 5 to 8 PM.

If you are new to the Crystal Coast NC or are simply looking for more ways to enjoy the area, Gena Gilbert Real Estate can be your guide! Give us a call today!

Things to Do on North Carolina’s Crystal Coast This March

clover-leaf-1403936March is here! Spring is in the air, flowers will soon begin to bloom and with warmer weather on the way, there will be many events to enjoy on North Carolina’s Crystal Coast— beginning as early as this weekend! If you’re looking for ways to get in the spring spirit or simply enjoy a beautiful afternoon exploring Atlantic Beach, Newport, Beaufort, Morehead City and the surrounding areas, you’re in luck! Coastal Carolina has so much to offer this time of year!

You will want to add the following events on the Crystal Coast to your calendar this month:

28th Annual Coastal Home and Garden Show
When: March 5, 10 AM to 5 PM and March 6, 11 AM to 3 PM
Where: Crystal Coast Civic Center, Morehead City NC

A great place to find inspiration this spring! The Home and Garden Show will have over 12,000 square feet of exhibits from local builders, landscapers, interior designers and more! You can gather ideas for your own Crystal Coast NC home by learning about the latest trends and tips for your home projects!

25th Annual Emerald Isle St. Patrick’s Festival
When: March 12, 9 AM to 6 PM
Where: Emerald Plantation Shopping Center, Emerald Isle NC

Living near a community called Emerald Isle, you know there are St. Patrick’s Day celebrations to be enjoyed! This year’s festival will have over 75 arts and crafts vendors, food, amusement rides and dozens of other family-friendly activities. There will be a Little Ms. and Mr. Leprechaun Contest for kids ages 2-3 and 4-5 judged on the most original and creative costume, as well as festive food like corned beef and cabbage, shrimp burgers and more! Admission and parking for the annual festival are free!

Emerald Isle’s Easter Egg Hunt
When: March 20, 12 PM Noon
Where: Emerald Isle Parks and Recreation, Emerald Isle NC

In addition to an egg hunt, there will be sidewalk chalking, face painting, music and more! The egg hunt will begin at 1 PM when the starting whistle will be blown! Participants are encouraged to bring their own basket to enjoy this free activity.

BHA’s Annual Easter Egg Hunt
When: March 26, 11 AM
Where: Beaufort Historic Site, Beaufort NC

The Beaufort Historical Association will present their annual egg hunt for children ages seven and younger this month! All participants need is to bring their own Easter basket to enjoy the free hunt for candy-filled eggs!

Do you have questions about moving to Atlantic Beach, Newport, Beaufort, Morehead City or the surrounding areas? Do not hesitate to give us a call! The Gena Gilbert Real Estate team can provide information about our current real estate market, available properties and the communities you’ll find on the Crystal Coast!

We look forward to hearing from you!

What To Do This January On North Carolina’s Crystal Coast

violin-1418622Now that the new year is here, it’s time to say goodbye to the holiday hustle and bustle and hello to the countdown to spring! Lucky enough for residents (and visitors!) of North Carolina’s Crystal Coast, there are many fun events to attend in the meantime to help you avoid those winter blues that tend to set in this time of year.

As your local real estate experts, we at Gena Gilbert Real Estate are happy to share some of those events you’ll want to add to your calendar over the next month, including the following:

Free Admission to NC Aquariums
When: January 18, 2016; All day 9 AM to 5 PM
Where: North Carolina Aquariums

Take advantage of free admission for all to the North Carolina Aquariums (the closest is located in Pine Knoll Shores!) on Martin Luther King Day!

5th Annual Clam Chowder Cook-Off
When: January 22, 2016
Where: North Carolina Maritime Museum, 315 Front Street, Beaufort, NC

This local clam chowder cook-off is now in its fifth year and invites four volunteer guest cooks to compete at the Harvey W. Smith Watercraft Center in Beaufort! What’s more, this year’s event will also include a cornbread taste-off! Attendees of the event will all receive tasting-sized portions of each of the chowders and then vote on their favorite. All proceeds go to support the Friends of the North Carolina Maritime Museum and tickets are now on sale.

American Music Festival Series
When: January 23, 2016; 8 PM
Where: The History Place, Morehead City, NC

This music-centered event is part of a greater series of five memorable evenings! The American Music Festival presents a variety of artists and ensembles, exploring some of the greatest composers and classical music in history. Guests can enjoy Beethoven’s early, middle and late works and specifically in the January 23 performance, Calidore including Beethoven, Mozart and Brahms.

As always, do not hesitate to reach out with any questions about our local real estate market in Beaufort, Atlantic Beach, Havelock, Newport, Morehead City or the surrounding areas!

We look forward to hearing from you!

 

What May Be In Store For Crystal Coast NC Real Estate Market in 2016

closer-look-5-1431644By now, residents on North Carolina’s Crystal Coast are likely making new year’s resolutions and preparing for the fresh start just two weeks away— We’re doing the same in the real estate market! 2015 was a great year for real estate in Coastal Carolina (the best since 2007, according to Realtor.com!) and we’re looking ahead to a new year and a new set of trends we may be likely to see here in Atlantic Beach, Morehead City, Beaufort, Havelock, Newport and the surrounding communities.

The latest real estate market forecast from Realtor.com has the following in store for 2016:

“Normal” Real Estate Conditions
We may be looking forward to a stronger real estate market in the new year, with healthy growth in home sales and prices at a slower pace than we saw in 2015. The market has slowly been returning to normal over the past few years of erratic trends and growth at lightning fast speeds, but it seems as though 2016 will be the year stability makes a comeback.

“New construction is expected to return to historic levels and home prices are expected to follow at more normal rates consistent with a more balanced market,” said Realtor.com’s chief economist.

Higher Mortgage Rates
This is one of the reasons now is such a great time to purchase a home on the Crystal Coast as rates are only going to go up from here! In fact, the recent move by the Federal Reserve to push interest rates higher will likely do the same to mortgage rates in the new year. Economists are predicting the 30-year-fixed-rate mortgage to end 2016 about 60 basis points higher than today’s levels.

Higher Rents
If you’ve been in the market for a new condominium or even second home in Coastal Carolina, you may like to consider buying instead of renting! Rents have been rising at significant speeds over the past year and will continue on that path in 2016. In fact, more than 85 percent of the nation’s markets have rents that exceed 30 percent of the renter’s income. Where home prices are normalizing, rents are accelerating!

As your local real estate experts in Atlantic Beach, Morehead City, Beaufort, Havelock, Newport and the surrounding communities, we’re here to answer any questions you have about the market as we head into 2016!

Do not hesitate to give us a call!