Moving to Onslow Co? 13 Great Online Helpful Sites 8/9/2017

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Here you go!!

  1. Onslow County Schools 
  2. Onslow County Private Schools
  3. Onslow County Emergency Services 
  4. Onslow County Government 
  5. Jacksonville NC Parks and Recreation 
  6. Camp Lejeune NC  
  7. MCAS New River 
  8. Albert J Ellis Airport 
  9. Jacksonville Transit  
  10. Jacksonville Movie Theatres 
  11. Jacksonville Mall 
  12. Search Area Rentals 
  13. Search area Homes for Sale 

Please feel free to share this post- or give me a call if you need any additional information.  As a local from the area- and a Real Estate Professional, I would love to welcome you to my hometown.

Christina

 

 

How to prepare for a Hurricane

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How to Prep Your Home for Hurricanes

Hurricane season is lurking, and homeowners across the country are prepping for summer storms by protecting their largest investment: their home.

Preparing for a storm in advance is vital to your home’s safety, especially if your family will be forced to evacuate, leaving your home empty during the storm.

Below are five ways you can prep your home for hurricanes.

Seal windows and doors. Windows and doors are often the top culprits for leaks and cracks during storms, so make sure yours are adequately sealed.

Take inventory. Make sure you have a detailed inventory of what you have inside your home, with photos. This information is critical should you need to file an insurance claim post-storm.

Make sure you’re covered. Before you begin boarding up windows, make sure your homeowners insurance covers hurricane and storm damage. Pro tip: Make sure your policy will cover the entire cost of rebuilding your home if you lose it to storm damage.

Consider flood insurance. Do you have insurance that covers flooding and flood-related damage? If your area is at high risk for hurricanes, this can save you big should the season be a wet one.

Have your roof inspected. Make sure your roof is in top condition, and patch or re-seal where necessary. If you live in a high risk hurricane state, look into adding roof straps for extra protection.

As a Member of the Top 5 in Real Estate Network®, I have a wealth of real estate and homeownership information that may be of help to you. Feel free to contact me any time to learn more about this important information, and be sure to forward this article on to any friends or family that may be interested as well.

Sincerely,

Christina Tompkins Wright
Christinatompkinswright@gmail.com
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Hometown, REALTORS
Office: 910-478-2637
Mobile: 910-330-5803
http://www.ChristinaTWright.com

 

4 Unexpected Household Items to Clean With

Cleaning products

Did you know you can clean your home with toothpaste? How about ketchup? Whether you’re trying to avoid harsh chemicals, or are just looking to get creative with what you have, below are four strange items you can clean your home with.

Toothpaste. Do you notice hard water stains on the exterior of your home or car windows? A little toothpaste can take care of that. Choose a non-gel variety, squirt a bit of paste onto a clean, damp rag, and rub in a circular motion to remove the stains. Wipe down with a clean, wet sponge or cloth to remove paste residue.

Vinegar. There are myriad ways to use white vinegar to clean your home. Make a mixture of half vinegar, half water to clean your walls, counters, shelves, fridge, and more. Have a pesky clogged drain? Skip the harsh chemical-ridden products. Simply dump two tablespoons of baking soda down the drain and follow it with a cup of vinegar for a fizzy, clean effect.

Ketchup. America’s favorite condiment also makes a terrific cleaner for brass, jewelry, and silver. Why? The tomatoes in ketchup boost its acetic acid content to around 4 percent.

Olive oil. Is your coffee or dining room table riddled with rings from cold or warm beverages? Buff it out with a mixture of olive oil and salt. Stay patient. After you remove the mixture, it can take several hours to show its magical effect.

As a Member of the Top 5 in Real Estate Network®, I have a wealth of real estate and homeownership information that may be of help to you. Feel free to contact me any time to learn more about this important information, and be sure to forward this article on to any friends or family that may be interested as well.

Sincerely,

Christina Tompkins Wright
Christinatompkinswright@gmail.com
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Hometown, REALTORS
Office: 910-478-2637
Mobile: 910-330-5803
http://www.ChristinaTWright.com

Summer Safety: How to Make Your Pool Safer

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Backyard pools can provide hours of endless summer fun for your friends and family. But as the owner of a swimming pool, it’s your responsibility to keep safety top of mind. Below are some helpful hints for making your swimming pool safer so you can splash around all season long.

1. Install a fence. A safety fence is the No. 1 thing you can do to up the safety of your pool. Make sure the fence has a locking gate and is high enough that it would be difficult to climb over. If you have kids, talk to them about not opening the fence without an adult present.

2. Install a safety cover. Just like the fence, having a retractable cover that slides over your pool can heighten poolside safety.

3. Consider a perimeter alarm. If you’re worried about your kids or animals falling into the pool when you’re not around, install a perimeter alarm that will sound if something crosses over it. This is similar to an invisible fence, and can go a long way toward ensuring you know who is hopping in and out of your pool.

4. Invest in safety equipment. Even the simplest of safety equipment can be a huge asset in an emergency. Consider getting a floating life saver with a rope that ties to the edge of the pool and a shepherd’s hook you can extend if someone is in trouble.

As a Member of the Top 5 in Real Estate Network®, I have a wealth of real estate and homeownership information that may be of help to you. Feel free to contact me any time to learn more about this important information, and be sure to forward this article on to any friends or family that may be interested as well.

Sincerely,

Christina Tompkins Wright
Christinatompkinswright@gmail.com
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Hometown, REALTORS
Office: 910-478-2637
Mobile: 910-330-5803
http://www.ChristinaTWright.com

Choosing Durable Laminate Flooring

Laminate wood flooring is one of the most popular flooring choices available today. Affordable as well, especially in the long run. Because laminate wood has great durability, it is often an excellent option for families with children and pets. With proper care, laminate wood can last for decades! No need to sand and re-stain like regular hardwoods. Laminate wood has a protective top layer, protecting against UV rays and making it much less expensive to maintain than other flooring options. It can also be more scratch resistant than hardwood, and much easier to clean!

No wonder so many home buyers covet this type of flooring!

207 shady willow

PrimoFlorz USA Designer Series laminate wood in 207 Shady Willow Lane, pictured above.  This particular brand has a 30 year wear, fade and stain warranty.

When choosing your laminate flooring, be sure to look at the warranties! There are price ranges that work for all budgets, but sometimes it is best to pay a little more for a higher quality and more durable product that will last for years to come.

Christina Tompkins Wright
Christinatompkinswright@gmail.com
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Hometown, REALTORS
Office: 910-478-2637
Mobile: 910-330-5803
http://www.ChristinaTWright.com

What to do with an unused fireplace

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5 Things to Do With an Unused Fireplace

Whether you’re closing down your fireplace for spring or simply never use it, that hole in the wall need not be wasted. Below are a handful of functional ways you can make use of your fireplace in the off-season.

Find a graphic screen. If you want to cover your fireplace, there are tons of fireplace screens with interesting, unique prints. Choose one that supports or embellishes your design scheme and turn that unused fireplace into a piece of art.

Add shelves. If you will truly never use your fireplace again, build shelving into the back of your fireplace to display photos, art, books and the like.

Book nook. If you don’t want to build shelves, or if you do plan to use the fireplace again come winter, you can still use this section of your living space to store or display books. Cluster a small selection of books on the floor for a minimalist vibe, or stack them high to show off your collection.

Vase space. Similar to the idea of clustering books in your fireplace, you can add vases or other statement pieces to make the most of that dead space.

Stacked wood. If you’re just waiting for winter, purchase some firewood and stack it symmetrically in your fire place. It will look cozy, and you’ll have dry wood come wintertime.

As a Member of the Top 5 in Real Estate Network®, I have a wealth of real estate and homeownership information that may be of help to you. Feel free to contact me any time to learn more about this important information, and be sure to forward this article on to any friends or family that may be interested as well.

Sincerely,

Christina Tompkins Wright
Christinatompkinswright@gmail.com
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Hometown, REALTORS
Office: 910-478-2637
Mobile: 910-330-5803
http://www.ChristinaTWright.com

Property taxes in Onslow County 11/18/2016

2dfd37_79be056999dc4aeda0d944b13936ece7How Do Property Taxes Work?

As a homeowner, you’re getting hit with annual property taxes. But have you ever stopped to think about what these taxes are, and why you should pay them?

Property taxes are assessed by city and county governments to generate the bulk of their operating revenues. The taxes help pay for such public services as schools, libraries, roads, and police protection.

Unlike the income tax and the sales tax you pay, the property tax is not based on how much money you earn or how much you spend. It is based solely on how much the property you own is worth.

The real property tax is an ad valorem tax, or a tax based on the value of property.

This can change over time. Re-valuations of the tax are often done periodically, although the time interval varies from state to state or, in some states, from town to town, and can range from annual reassessments to periods of ten years or more.

Ideally, the owners of property of equal value pay the same amount of property taxes, and the owners of more valuable property pay more in taxes than the owners of less valuable property.

But how does your property tax amount come about? The tax is calculated using a variety of formulas and is based on a property’s assessed value – its full market value or a percentage thereof – and the tax rate of the taxing jurisdiction, minus any property tax exemptions, such as those offered for the elderly or veterans.

As a Member of the Top 5 in Real Estate Network®, I have a wealth of real estate and homeownership information that may be of help to you. Feel free to contact me any time to learn more about this important information, and be sure to forward this article on to any friends or family that may be interested as well.

Sincerely,

Christina Tompkins Wright
Christinatompkinswright@gmail.com
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Hometown, REALTORS
Office: 910-478-2637
Mobile: 910-330-5803
http://www.ChristinaTWright.com

5 Tips for Home Improvement

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Home improvement is always a costly endeavor. However, if you plan ahead, you can save yourself some money, and a couple of headaches along the way.

1. Plan ahead. The more prepared you are, the less likely you are to make hasty—and costly—decisions down the road. Choose the time of year you want to start your project and do your research on the best professionals for the job.

You may also want to pursue your home improvement in stages, if you can’t afford to pay for the entire project at once. If your construction project is large, try isolating construction areas so you can avoid long hotel stays or too many take-out meals while the kitchen is being revamped.

2. Create a realistic budget. Decide on the items and materials you would like to have in a room. Then, choose less expensive products that will help you achieve the look you’re trying to obtain.

3. Scrutinize your design. To save costs, avoid labor intensive design features, such as tiled floors. You can also do some prep work or detailing yourself, like trim work when painting. This will save the money you would have to pay for a professional to do the job

4. Leave room for the unexpected. The experts suggest setting aside 10-20 percent of your budget to cover unforeseen problems and miscellaneous charges. While this may seem like a hefty percent, you will appreciate the wiggle room when that material you have your heart set on rises in price.

5. Find discounted material. When possible, purchase surplus, secondhand, or discounted materials from other contractors, warehouses or classified websites like www.build.recylce.net to reduce costs.

As a Member of the Top 5 in Real Estate Network®, I have a wealth of real estate and homeownership information that may be of help to you. Feel free to contact me any time to learn more about this important information, and be sure to forward this article on to any friends or family that may be interested as well.

Sincerely,

Christina Tompkins Wright
Christinatompkinswright@gmail.com
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Hometown, REALTORS
Office: 910-478-2637
Mobile: 910-330-5803
http://www.ChristinaTWright.com

What Should You Know About Property Zoning? October 14, 2016

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Whether you’re buying a new home or building on to your existing one, it’s important to be aware of property zoning. Zoning is the government’s way of controlling the physical development of land and the kinds of uses to which each individual property may be put.

Zoning regulations establish how the land can be used, either for residential, industrial, commercial, or recreational purposes – although they can also allow for more than one use in a given jurisdiction.

Designed to protect you, your neighbors, and the community from undesirable, or inappropriate, land uses and/or construction, zoning laws in many communities can be very rigid and inflexible.

On the other hand, zoning can protect your property value and give you peace of mind. This is particularly true in instances where the community debates whether to locate a prison in your neighborhood or a neighbor illegally builds a second story onto his home that blocks your view of the lake or mountains.

Before you begin any remodeling jobs, determine how your local zoning laws might affect your project. How can you check on your zoning? Zoning ordinances and maps are a matter of public record. Visit your local zoning office, city hall, or some other local planning board and get a copy of your local ordinance.

In some areas, if you have a legal description of the property (name, address, tax map, and parcel number), you can call the zoning office or city hall, or even e-mail your request for information.

Some communities also have their zoning maps and ordinances online and in local libraries.

As a Member of the Top 5 in Real Estate Network®, I have a wealth of real estate and homeownership information that may be of help to you. Feel free to contact me any time to learn more about this important information, and be sure to forward this article on to any friends or family that may be interested as well.

Sincerely,

Christina Tompkins Wright
Christinatompkinswright@gmail.com
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Hometown, REALTORS
Office: 910-478-2637
Mobile: 910-330-5803
http://www.ChristinaTWright.com

Why Hire a Home Inspector?

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When gearing up to buy a home, there are likely a million things on your mind, and hiring a home inspector may not be one of them. However, hiring a home inspector is a critical component of a successful home purchase, and not doing so could have major repercussions. Why?

A home inspector is a paid professional – often a contractor or an engineer – who checks the safety of a home. Home inspectors search for defects or other problems, focusing particularly on the home’s structure, construction, and mechanical systems.

A home inspection typically takes place after a purchase contract between the buyer and seller has been signed. Always include an inspection clause in your written offer. This clause gives you an “out” from buying if serious problems are detected. It also gives you another chance to negotiate the purchase price if repairs are needed. The clause can even specify that the sellers fix any problem that is uncovered before you settle, or close, on the home.

Buying a home without getting expert advice is risky. Once a home inspector uncovers major plumbing and electrical problems, for example, you may decide you do not want to spend several thousand dollars on repairs.

In addition to major structural issues, consider hiring experts to inspect the home for a number of health-related risks like radon gas, asbestos, or possible problems with the water or waste disposal system.

Hiring a home inspector can save you from accidentally purchasing a money pit. Never purchase a home without first having it examined.
As a Member of the Top 5 in Real Estate Network®, I have a wealth of real estate and homeownership information that may be of help to you. Feel free to contact me any time to learn more about this important information, and be sure to forward this article on to any friends or family that may be interested as well.

Sincerely,

Christina Tompkins Wright
Christinatompkinswright@gmail.com
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Hometown, REALTORS
Office: 910-478-2637
Mobile: 910-330-5803
http://www.ChristinaTWright.com