one of the nations largest real estate web sites released their most recent quarterly report on the relative value of renting versus buying in the fifty largest cities in the United States. Here's a link to Trulia's Rent vs. Buy report.

In general they found when comparing rental prices to purchase prices on comparable 2 bedroom units that in fully 72% of the urban areas they looked at that it was highly likely to make more financial sense to buy rather than rent. In 8% of the cities they looked at it still made more sense to rent rather than buy and in the remaining 20% it was neutral. In other words not sure what you'll be doing or where you be in the next five years you'd be better of renting, thinking you'll be in the same place with a…

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I cannot begin to count the number of times I’ve had conversations with clients and customers about property tax values, both here in Chapel Hill and Durham as well as in Vermont where I worked prior to relocating here to North Carolina almost 7 years ago. Most property owners think their tax valuation is too high, though I’ve gotten calls from many through the years who actually were concerned that a new valuation was too low. The common factor in each instance was that the property owner didn’t understand why focusing on the tax value was as unproductive as trying to pick the right card in a Three-Card Monte game. They were trying to focus on one card and while not paying attention to the other two. Most homeowners tend to focus exclusively on their…

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Kitchen photography Long ago I realized the value in having my listings photographed by a professional. The reason is simple, they have both experience and equipment that I do not and it’s important when marketing a property for sale that it looks it best. Below is a list compiled by one of my preferred home photographers Cat Wilborne who works throughout Chapel Hill, Durham, Wake and north Chatham County.

These are great tips for anyone either trying to sell their own home or for listing agents who still want to take their own photos. Kitchens are probably the single most important consideration of Buyers when looking for a new home, so these tips are particularly valuable.

Remove The Clutter

Get rid of everything on the countertops. Start by removing everything on…

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Summer is around the corner, and here in North Carolina that often means an abundance of ticks and the problems they can bring like Lyme Disease and Rocky Mountain Fever.

While I am unaware of any method of completely avoiding ticks I do have some suggestions for minimizing the likelihood of your having a problem.

How To Protect Your Pets From Ticks

Pets need to be protected, and you have a number of options including products like Frontline, Bio-spot etc. If you typically put your pet out during the day in a fenced in yard you might also want tot consider treating the entire area. I tend to prefer natural or organic methods for broad application and have had good luck with diatomaceous earth. (sometimes sold under the name of PermaGuart) This is…

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How To Know Who The Market Is Favoring

Building floorplanA frequent question I am asked by my Buyer clients is, "Given that the local market is favoring Buyers at this time with more than 6 months of inventory* on the market in most price ranges, do you think it makes more sense to build, buy a new already constructed home, or buy a re-sale home and improve on it as needed?"

As is almost always the case there's no one answer that works best for everyone, but I do have some thoughts that I feel apply in most instances.

Opting To Build A New Home

Given the amount of existing homes currently on the market, I believe the least cost effective answer is to build new. While building new certainly gives you the utmost ability to customize your home, in today's…

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