Our brand-new residential and commercial affiliate map displaying Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices affiliates and locations is now available. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Great Smokys Realty covers Graham, Haywood, Jackson, Macon, Swain, and Transylvania County, providing you with full-coverage and exclusive access to prime Western North Carolina real estate. Are you looking to buy or sell outside the area? No problem. We can connect you with a Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices office near you!
From timely editorial to spectacular property listings, enjoy perusing the pages of Prestige – Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices’ Luxury Collection & Resort Properties magazine.
AMERICAN DREAM PERSONIFIED
by Camilla McLaughlin
Log homes were brought to the United States centuries ago, but the once modest and rustic structures have evolved into sophisticated and often luxurious properties. Whether it’s the home immortalized by Laura Ingalls Wilder, the image of Abraham Lincoln doing school work by candlelight in front a of hearth, or the sylvan ideal of a cabin in the woods, log homes have a charisma all their own. Few other types of dwellings have been adapted in so many regions of our country or in climates as diverse as Maine and California. Nor have they evolved to offer so many variations of what began as a simple one-bedroom dwelling. Read more…
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An open house for 298 S. Country Club Rd is being held on Sunday, June 25th, from 1:00pm-4:00pm. Berkshire Hathaway HomesServices Great Smokys Realty agent Jan Newsome will be hosting and serving **Mango Champagne and Chocolate Truffles**. Stop by and take a tour!
Welcome to 298 S. Country Club Rd
Nestled high on a knoll among 2 acres of rolling hillside, this landmark home emanates Old World English revival architecture throughout its 5300sf featuring 4+ bedrooms, 5.5 baths, inclusive of an elaborate guest suite in lower level. Boasting arched doorways, high ceilings, a showcase kitchen of black walnut cabinetry, prep island, butler’s pantry plus 2 fireplaces & huge living areas, this home is an entertainer’s masterpiece. Enjoy Owners’ Retreat with marble bath, hardwood floors, massive decks, extensive winding driveway & more. Tremendous value for $725,000.
Confidence in Real Estate Market Rises; Interest Rate Concerns Remain in
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices’ Latest Homeowner Sentiment Survey
Survey also finds that satisfaction with the U.S. economy increased across all age groups, and homebuyers report a surprising key factor in the home-buying process.
Optimism toward the U.S. economy and real estate market rose across all generations of current and prospective homeowners in Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices’ latest Homeowner Sentiment Survey released today. However, rising interest rates continue to be a concern among prospective homeowners – Millennials in particular – who reported a sense of urgency to buy before mortgage rates rise further.
Overall, 62% of prospective homeowners and 61% of current homeowners said they are satisfied with the U.S. economy, with respondents from both groups overwhelmingly reporting that the general economic outlook is a critical factor impacting their real estate decisions. When looking at views toward the real estate market, 68% of prospective homeowners and 70% of current homeowners hold a favorable view, an increase of 5 percentage points and 4 points, respectively, from the last wave of the survey . Nearly half of current homeowners cited lower interest rates as the top reason for their favorability toward the market; 43% of this group also pointed to the increased value of real estate as a factor driving favorability.
Respondents are also encouraged by accelerating home construction, with three out of four citing a rise in available homes created by new construction as a factor contributing to market momentum. Additionally, 75% of current and 83% prospective homeowners cited increased construction in urban centers, offering homeownership options close to places of employment, as a top factor.
“Optimism in the real estate market and economy are at levels we have not seen since we first began fielding this survey in 2015,” said Gino Blefari, president and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices. “Mortgage rates remain near historic lows even with recent upticks, and we’re seeing rising wages, job growth and construction rates, which continue to make homeownership a compelling and realistic investment for many Americans.”
Interest Rates Remain Top Concern; Housing Inventory Still Tight
Optimism notwithstanding, uncertainties related to rising interest rates persist, especially among Millennials (defined in the survey as people ages 18-34). A full 68% of prospective Millennial homeowners said they feel a sense of urgency to buy a home as interest rates may continue rising, and one in five reported a desire to buy a home before mortgage rates increase. Moreover, 55% of this group also reported “feeling discouraged” about buying a home due to the prospects of rising rates.
“The sense of urgency expressed by Millennials shows they understand the advantages of locking in a low mortgage rate now,” Blefari said. “However, we also recognize rising interest rates can make the home-buying process feel challenging. It’s important to remember that interest rates and mortgage rates remain low by historical standards, and with guidance from a skilled real estate professional, prospective buyers can be empowered to find a home that meets their needs and financial objectives.”
A tight supply of available homes in many markets – particularly at lower and entry-level price points – presents another challenge for buyers. Builders this year are responding with more focus on lower-priced homes, according to builder-trade groups, which may serve as an important nudge to hesitant Millennials. In the survey, 70% of prospective homeowners said they are willing to wait – even with the likelihood of rising mortgage rates – to buy a home that suits their needs now. “Younger buyers are telling us they don’t necessarily want a traditional starter home you fix over time,” Blefari explained. “They want move-in ready without the hassles and hammers.”
Most Important Neighborhood Feature
Respondents made a surprising top choice for the most important neighborhood feature: friendly neighbors. Prospective homebuyers ranked “friendly neighbors” (50%) ahead of financial considerations such as the “accurate market value of a home” (39%) and “confidence that the home will be a good investment in the future” (37%). Other neighborhood characteristics valued by prospective homebuyers included walkability (45%) and a good school district (41%).
Large, walk-in closets topped the list of home amenities sought by current and prospective homeowners, ahead of patios/balconies and hardwood floors. Respondents cited energy-efficient appliances and smart-home features such as learning thermostats and automated lighting as the most important trends in home interior design.
“It will be interesting to see how rising consumer optimism plays out in the spring and summer home-buying buying seasons,” said Blefari. “All real estate is local — each market has its own characteristics and conditions. Contact your local real estate professional to learn how you may take advantage in the current environment.”
The full survey details are available upon request.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Homeowner Sentiment Survey Methodology
Interviews with 2,521 respondents were conducted online by Edelman Intelligence in March 2017. Respondents captured were either current homeowners (individuals who currently own a home as a primary residence) or prospective homeowners (individuals who do not currently own a home and are likely to buy a home as their primary residence in the next six months). The margin of error is +/-2.18% for current homeowners and +/- 4.36% for prospective homeowners.
It won’t be hard to smile for these photos. You’re invited to our Mugshots & Margaritas event on Thursday, June 15, 2017 from 4:00 – 6:00 PM. For only $5, come have your head shot updated by a professional photographer while enjoying drinks and appetizers.
The event will be held at our Waynesville office:
36 South Main St, Waynesville, NC 28786
This event is brought to you by Atlantic Bay Mortgage Group & Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Great Smokys Realty.
We will be opening doors soon at our new Brevard location and the slinky reception desk (click here for a video preview) has sparked some fun conversation in the office. The counter has a concrete base with glass and pigment poured on top. The top has been sanded to a beautiful glass-like finish and sealed. It is less penetrable than granite and changes color over time. It also sparkles like jewels when the light hits it. The curved front of the reception desk will be brushed aluminum.
Our mantra in building out the office space is #notyourboringrealeststeoffice, and needless to say this desk fits with our vision.
So here’s our question for you, what creative design concepts have you built out at home or in the office? We would love to feature some real world examples of homes and offices in our area that have turned four corner spaces into creative places that people like to gather. Complete the form below to share your projects and ideas!
Share Your Creative Design Project
The 2017 Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Love Your Home $50,000 Sweepstakes has started! The sweepstakes, held in conjunction with HGTV’s new hit series Good Bones, runs through June 16.
Enter for a chance to win the $50,000 grand prize to renovate the good bones of your home.
AND we’re giving away 12 weekly prizes of $2,500.
The first winner will be announced early this month followed by weekly announcements through June 16. The grand prize winner will be named in early July. Click below to learn more and enter to WIN!
Every year approximately 1,100 cyclists swarm the area to participate in the Assault on the Carolinas. This event is the annual fundraiser for the Rotary Club of Pisgah Forest and all proceeds are donated to charity. The event consists of a 40K, 60K and 100K bike ride through beautiful terrain, grueling inclines, amazing descents and miles of curves traversing through the river valleys of Scenic Transylvania Country. The 100K (65.8 miles) travels through South Carolina as well with elevations reaching 3,157 ft. The climb is 1.1 miles with grades reaching 15%. On the return trip, riders reach the bottom of Caesars Head, then begin a challenging 6 mile climb to the top. Once over Ceasars head, it’s 15 miles back to Brevard with more descents, flats and a ride back through the river valley.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Great Smokys Realty was one of the sponsors. It was a beautiful day, though only 35 degrees in the morning by mid afternoon it felt like 80 degrees as the sun was strong. (We think it only topped out at 65 degrees.)
Our table was very colorful with our Easter theme, bubble blowing and promotional give-aways. Our carrot jump rope contests was a big hit with the kids. The boys weren’t too coordinated, but this little cutie won the basket with the white fluffy bunny & big ears!
According to Energystar.gov, the average American household spends more than $2,200 a year on energy bills, with nearly half of that amount spent on heating and cooling. Here are six easy, low-cost ideas to cut those bills down.
- Change your air filters. It’s a chore that’s easily forgotten, so put it on your calendar every one month to three months. Dirty filters slow air flow causing your heat and air units to work harder and break down faster.
Wash clothes in cold water. This one’s a surprise, but energystar.gov claims cold water is just as effective as hot and will get your clothes clean without damaging fabrics.
- Seal and insulate your heating and cooling ducts. Air ducts can waste energy, so sealing and insulation can save as much as 20 percent on our energy bill or more.
- Seal windows and outside doors. All it takes is a little caulk and you can stop small leaks that add up to big money. Test for leaks on a windy day by lighting a candle and holding it near window seals. If the flame moves, you’ve got a leak.
- Upgrade to a programmable thermostat. If you’re gone at the same time every day, a programmable thermostat can lower or raise the temperature which saves energy… and saves, you nearly $200 a year.
- Have your HVAC serviced regularly. A service check once in the spring and once in the fall can improve efficiency and possibly prevent equipment breakdowns. The technician will test air flow and parts that may need replacement.
Today’s kitchens are filled with all kinds of gastronomical gadgets, but if you want to show your kitchen to its fullest advantage, here are five ways to keep clutter down:
- Store unused equipment. Which appliances do you use the most? Chances are they’re not vegetable curlers or pasta makers. Store those appliances somewhere else, such as a butler’s pantry, food pantry or the garage.
- Build an appliance garage. Many cabinetmakers offer an appliance garage that can be closed when not in use. You can also customize an appliance garage to extend the length of the counter.
- Update appliances. If you need a microwave, get one that’s also a convection oven. Commercial-grade mixers have attachments that can make pasta and knead bread. The newest coffee machines can make tea, hot chocolate and all kinds of coffee shop specialty brews.
- Mount what you can. Under cabinet mounting is easy to install. Paper towel racks, electric can openers, and task lighting can all be mounted under the cabinets to free up counter space. Throw out smelly dishrags and sponges, and store fresh cleaning aids in caddies under the sink.
- Invest in organizers. Corner cabinets can be better utilized with swing out organizers. Drawers on rollers allow better access to all your storage. One charging station should serve multiple devices. Try installing one in the hall or utility room.
Once your kitchen is better organized, you’ll find it easier to prepare for showings and buyers will have an easier time seeing the kitchen’s best features.