The Crystal Coast is 85 miles of gorgeous coastline on the southern most part of the Outer Banks. It’s known for its sparkling waters and wide sandy beaches, with lots to do, but also filled with serenity. A quick commute from the Triangle area is about to get even shorter with the current construction of Interstate 42. Raleigh to the Crystal Coast will be just two hours!
The southern facing beaches of Crystal Coast are made up of several different desirable towns:
Emerald Isle was recently rated #2 must see beaches in the South by USA Today and historic Beaufort is often listed on the favorite small town list by Travel and Leisure. Atlantic Beach and Morehead City have lots of amazing restaurants and family fun. Pine Knoll Shores features secluded beaches, the North Carolina aquarium, and the untouched reserve known as Theodore Roosevelt natural area. Nearby Indian beach and Salter Path also offer lush, coastal forests and beautiful beaches.
It’s exciting to know that your bank balance will get a boost from an anticipated tax refund! But remember, a refund isn’t a bonus -- it’s YOUR hard-earned money being returned to you, which is why you should make the most of it.
If you’re thinking of buying a new home this year -- whether it's your first home or the one you plan to retire in -- financial planning is critical.
Expecting a refund? Make a bigger impact on your home purchase with these tips:
1. Lower Your Mortgage Rate: Did you know you can pay “points” up front to lower the interest rate of your mortgage? If you plan to stay in your home for a long time, this could result in significant savings over the life of your loan.
2. Pay Closing Costs: Closing costs average about 2 to 5 percent of the purchase price. Many buyers roll it into their mortgage and pay it off over the life of the loan. But you could use your refund to pay it up front and avoid paying interest.
3. Save for a Down Payment: In some cases, your refund could cover your entire down payment. Some loans only require 3 percent down, so this is more realistic than you might think.
4. Boost Your Credit Score: Paying down your debts can have a significant impact on your credit score and the mortgage rate you’ll qualify for.
5. Update Appliances: Many buyers are tempted to open a line of credit to pay for these purchases, but that could negatively impact your mortgage loan. Using your refund is the smarter move.
6. Renovate: Homes that are a little “ugly’ and have longer days on market can be a great opportunity for you to have instant sweat equity. A little paint or a new slab of granite can be purchased with your refund and make a significant transformation in your new home.
Remember, a tax refund is only one factor to consider in your home buying budget. Get in touch today for a referral to a financial planner or mortgage lender if you need help preparing your budget. Let’s work together to plan your path to homeownership.
“Spring Cleaning” doesn't just apply to items to be done “inside” of the home– this time of year there are many helpful tips for early Spring gardening (February and March) that can set you up to have the best lawn on the block when warmer weather arrives! Here are some of the top gardening tips to be done now during the cooler spring months.
For Your Flowers
Know your potential last frost date. For Raleigh NC, we are in zone 7B and our typical last frost date is April 10th. You can check a Farmers Almanac like this one First and Last Frost Dates by ZIP Code | The Old Farmer's Almanac. Knowing your last frost date will help you know when it is safe to directly germinate seeds outside and/or transfer non cold-hardy plants to the yard.
For Your Fruits and Veggies
For Your Lawn
For Your Trees and Shrubs
For Your Sanity