Real Estate Information Archive


Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 93

Look Who's Turning 200 - Happy Anniversary Chapel Hill!

by AH for Masha Halpern

November 20th marks 200 years since the establishment of the Town of Chapel Hill! Multiple programs have been planned to commemorate this milestone anniversary. Events and projects will focus on town government programs and partners that have shaped our community. 

Want to get in on the fun? Try your hand at town trivia or take your kids to touch a truck. View the full calendar of events at

Happy Anniversary Chapel Hill!

Durham’s Connection to the Hit Netflix Show, Stranger Things

by EM & AH for Masha Halpern

Amid much anticipation & excitement, Netflix’s Emmy-winning show Stranger Things returned July 4, 2019 for its third season. Watch the trailer here!

The series follows a group of adventurous middle school-age friends that encounter supernatural forces and government secrets. Inspired by 80’s books and movies like “The Goonies,” “E.T.,” and “It,” the show pays homage to pop-culture classics from that era to create a nostalgia-filled, action-packed fan-favorite. 

As some local watchers have noticed, the show also pays tribute to Durham, North Carolina. The fictional town of Hawkins, where the story takes place, is laced with references to Durham. This is no coincidence as the hit sci-fi show is written, directed, and produced by Durham natives, Matt and Ross Duffer. 

The Duffer Brothers, as they are professionally known, attended Duke School from elementary to middle school and later Charles E. Jordan High School. Growing up, they made videos in their neighborhood during the summer using a camera their parents gave them and attended films at the Carolina Theater. Drawing inspiration from their own childhoods in Bull City, the characters are seen trick-or-treating in Lochn’ora neighborhood and riding their bikes along Cornwallis and Kerley Roads. The Eno Rock Quarry, Jordan Lake, Lover’s Leap, Mt. Sinani Road, and even their neighbor growing up gets a mention! 

Joining in on the fun, the Durham Bulls will host a “Stranger Things” night for the second year in a row. This year, it will take place on July 11 and fans are encouraged to wear ‘80s clothing or dress up as their favorite characters. The team will sport uniforms that reference the character Eleven’s, proclivity for flannel shirts and waffles and they will be auctioned off after the game with proceeds benefiting Children’s Flight of Hope. More info about the event can be found here

However you choose to experience the Upside Down, whether you are starting from season one, bingeing season three, or headed to the Bulls tribute game, a strange adventure awaits you this summer! 

KW Cares - Florence Disaster Relief

by AH for Masha Halpern


“There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up.”

John Holmes


Being a part of the Keller Williams family is a wonderful experience in many ways. Amidst the devastation in our home state of North Carolina from Hurricane Florence, we are astounded at how our market center and international company come so quickly to the aid of others and really put into practice the idea that giving back to the KW Family and the broader community is so important.


KW Cares is an organization of Keller Williams that provides assistance and relief to KW families and associates in need. Currently we have agents from our Chapel Hill Market Center, along with others from the Carolina region, stationed in Eastern North Carolina helping assess needs and distributing supplies to all those affected by the flood waters from Hurricane Florence. You can find out more about their efforts here.


In additional, Keller Williams sponsors Red Day (Renew, Energize, Donate) each year on the second Thursday of May. “ It embodies the generous spirit and commitment associates have to “giving back" to the cities and towns they live and work in. This observance defines who we are and is a natural extension of our commitment to the highest level of professional customer service.” Learn more here.


As part of the Keller Williams extended family, Masha Halpern & her team find various ways to give back and get involved with our community.  We are proud to belong to such an amazing organization.


We hope that you weathered the storm with minimal issues. Please do reach out to us if there is anything you need.



Masha & April

Hurricane Florence - Get Prepared!

by AH for Masha Halpern

As of this post on Sept 10, 2018, the National Hurricane Center has labeled Hurricane Florence “a category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Further strengthening is anticipated, and Florence is expected to be an extremely dangerous major hurricane through Thursday.”


Although in the Triangle region we are somewhat inland, hurricanes are large storms and we will likely feel the effects of any massive storm that hits our coast. High winds, flooding and loss of power are potential threats that require preparation well in advance of the storm.

Download this useful app called Ready NC to help you stay informed:

Here are some tips that we’ve collected from the Red Cross, the National Weather Service, The National Hurricane Center and  Links will follow so you can access even more detailed information.





Preparedness Tips

  • Make sure you have access to NOAA radio broadcasts; Find an online NOAA radio station; you can purchase a battery-powered or hand-crank NOAA radio in the Red Cross Store
  • Store important documents in a fire and water proof container: insurance papers, medical records, bank account numbers, social security cards, deeds or mortgages, birth & marriage certificates, stocks & bonds, recent tax returns, wills.
  • Unplug small appliances to reduce potential damage from power surges that may occur.
  • Fill bathtubs and sinks with water for flushing the toilet or washing the floor or clothing.
  • Fill your car's gas tank, in case an evacuation notice is issued. stock your vehicle with emergency supplies and a change of clothes.
  • Restock your emergency preparedness kit. Include food and water sufficient for at least three days, medications, a flashlight, batteries, cash, and first aid supplies.
  • Charge your cell phone now so you will have a full battery in case you lose power.
  • Turn your refrigerator or freezer to the coldest setting and open only when necessary. If you lose power, food will last longer.
  • Freeze containers of water for ice to help keep food cold in the freezer, refrigerator, or coolers in case the power goes out. If your normal water supply is contaminated or unavailable, the melting ice will also supply drinking water.
  • Declutter drains and gutters.
  • Take action to keep your food & water safe:

Not sure what supplies you need or how to put together an emergency kit? Start with the basics: Cash, water, food (enough for 3 to 7 days), paper products & plastic utensils, radio, batteries, first aid kit, and prescription drugs.

For a more comprehensive list, check out these links:

And don’t forget about kids and pets. These resources will help you discuss hurricanes and other emergencies with children and offer lists of supplies & tasks needed to make sure your pets are secure during a storm.

Learn more about how to prepare for a hurricane, stay safe during a hurricane, and what to do after a hurricane from these organizations:

Red Cross


National Weather Service

National Hurricane Center


Stay safe!

Durham Ranked Top 5 for Best Housing Market

by AH for Masha Halpern


Following up on our recent blog about the American Tobacco Campus in Durham, WalletHub has voted Durham the 5th best housing market in the U.S.!

Like many cities in America, Durham is shedding its industrial roots and experiencing a bona fide renaissance. Durham’s vibrant quality of life and commitment to arts & culture contribute to its ever growing popularity. Learn more about this city we love here or read our previous blog about the American Tobacco Campus.


You can also read or watch the ABC News report about the Wallethub ranking at this link.










Thinking of buying or selling in Durham? View the latest market statistics. These are updated weekly and are interactive with tons of valuable information. Here’s a sample…

Masha Halpern and The Boutique Real Estate Team is your ultimate real estate resource for Chapel Hill, Durham, Carrboro and surrounding areas. Visit my website at for detailed information regarding today’s real estate markets.


Masha is a certified member of The Luxury Home Marketing Institute, participates in its annual Leaders in Luxury Conference, and works with The Institute’s thousands of members worldwide to share information about current listings.


Masha is also a certified member of Keller Williams Luxury International and is Chapel Hill & Durham's EXCLUSIVE  member of Cyber Stars International – Top Realtors Using Technology – a group dedicated to taking the best and latest technological advances and applying them to real estate advertising and marketing for her clients in all price points. Masha Halpern can be contacted for a private consultation by calling 919-414-0337 or by visiting


For over 100 years, the tobacco industry reigned supreme, spurring growth throughout the city of Durham. Thus, when large cigarette manufacturers like Lucky Strike and Bull Durham closed the doors of the American Tobacco factory in 1987, it triggered a wave of economic decline. With the goal of preserving the rich history and revitalizing Durham, Capitol Broadcasting Company, the owner of the Durham Bulls, purchased the 16-acre American Tobacco Campus in 2002. After investing $200 million in design and renovation, the historic area re-opened in 2004, catalyzing the Durham Renaissance.

Now, the American Tobacco Historic District includes office, residential, and commercial spaces, a barber shop, salon, spa, and numerous art centers. Deemed “The Startup Hub of the South,” the American Tobacco Campus houses the American Underground, an area for entrepreneurs on the cutting edge of technology to build progressive companies while paying homage to the entrepreneurial success stories of the past. However, the American Tobacco Campus isn’t all business, networking, and conferences. Between broadway shows at DPAC, baseball games at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park, and the Full Frame Theater, the American Tobacco Campus focuses on creating spaces for artists to thrive and the public to enjoy.

American Tobacco Music hosts On the Lawn, an outdoor concert series celebrating North Carolina’s unique music heritage. Sponsored by WUNC (91.5), the concert is free and open to the public. The grammy-nominated Americana band Yarn and The Road Band will perform in the next show on Thursday, August 23 at 6:00 pm. You’re encouraged to bring your own lawn chairs and picnic blankets, but you can always grab a seat at nearby restaurants like Cuban Revolution or Tyler’s Restaurant and Taproom. Also, keep an eye out for upcoming concerts in the nearby area. The On the Lawn concert series has expanded to the outfield section of the Durham Bulls Athletic Park and the Down Under Patio near Saladelia. Bring your dog and kids, relax by the stunning water feature, and enjoy the best of what Durham has to offer at the American Tobacco Campus!

For more information on the concert series click here!

A Tar Heel Treasure: The Carolina Inn & Fridays on the Front Porch

by EM for Masha Halpern

Located on the western perimeter of the University of North Carolina campus, the Carolina Inn offers 12,500 square feet of pure Southern charm and summer fun. This historic landmark was established in 1924 by UNC alumnus John Sprunt Hill and designed by the award-winning architect, Arthur C. Nash. Together, they created an elegant, Southern haven, drawing inspiration from plantation homes with Georgian and neoclassical features. In 1935, Hill gifted the Inn to UNC on the condition that all profits go towards supporting the university library. Today, the Inn is still owned and maintained by the university and continues to fund the North Carolina Collection at the Wilson Library.

Since its original construction, a series of renovations have taken place to bring more amenities and a modern aesthetic to the Inn. Although modernizations have been made, the Inn’s rich history has remained and the Inn is still considered the “University's living room” to many. At the heart of the hotel, pictures of the campus throughout the years line the walls and just beyond are three ballrooms, a banquet space, and a Mobil four-star winning restaurant. With large spaces that provide flexibility of use, the Carolina Inn frequently hosts weddings, academic conferences, business meetings, and other significant events. The Carolina Inn is undeniably woven into the fabric of Chapel Hill’s community and is a popular destination for UNC families, alumni, and locals.

In 2003, a local bluegrass band composed of Chapel Hill natives and UNC graduates called Big Fat Gap, garnered the attention of Allal Kartaoui, the Director of Food and Beverage at the Carolina Inn. Inspired by the cheering crowd and friendly atmosphere in nearby Fraternity Court, Kartaoui created Fridays on the Front Porch (#FOFP), an outdoor concert series hosted by the Carolina Inn that is now celebrating its 16th season. This popular, end-of-work-week celebration occurs April to October from 5 - 8 p.m. with no reservations required. And did I mention it’s free too? Enjoy live bluegrass music, relax under the shady oaks and magnolias, and maybe even grab a cocktail or two. Whether you spread a blanket for a picnic, treat yourself to food truck fare and refreshing beverages, or wander into the Crossroads Chapel Hill Restaurant for gourmet cuisine with a contemporary Southern flair, you simply cannot go wrong. Join the crowd of music fans, dancing toddlers, alumni, friendly dogs, and locals to experience a piece of the Carolina Inn’s magic for yourself. Check out the 2018 schedule here!

Need a reason to eat pie?

by AH for Masha Halpern

Who do you know who wants to buy, sell or invest in real estate? Let us know by clicking here!

We’d love to provide them with Genuine Support, Qualified Experience & Personalized Service.

Spring Fever? Enjoy These Local Nature Escapes.

by AH for Masha Halpern

Nothing could be finer than springtime in the Triangle Area!  Blue skies, colorful flowers, budding trees and gentle breezes make spending time outdoors a pleasure. Our part of North Carolina boasts a large number of opportunities to enjoy the natural beauty of this season. Here are a few highlights...

The NC Botanical Gardens located in Chapel Hill has free admission and offers a large variety of native plants, including the venus fly trap. Families can enjoy the education center, giant outdoor chess set, and the original cabin of playwright, Paul Green.

The Botanical Gardens also maintains Coker Arboretum, which is located on campus at UNC-Chapel Hill. This shaded garden with meandering pathways is located near Morehead Planetarium and Franklin Street. It’s a great place for a picnic lunch or a quick game of frisbee while visiting the university.

The Sarah P. Duke Gardens, adjacent to Duke University, is a beautiful place for picnics, special occasion portraits, and wildlife sightings. Terraced flower gardens, arched bridges and open spaces provide for hours of exploration and recreation. The Duke Gardens offers a terrace shop & cafe on site. Find out more about special programs and nature camps here.

Photo courtesy of NCMA.

The NC Museum of Art features a park that “connects art, nature and people.” With miles of recreational trails, visitors can picnic, jog, bike or stroll while enjoying the beauty of nature and art. From March 22-25 this year, the Art in Bloom festival will feature exhibits, presentations, workshops, a walking tour, and a special gift shop & trunk show. It’s the perfect place to spend an afternoon with your favorite garden enthusiast.


The annual Orange County Garden Expo and Plant Sale in Hillsborough is May 4-5 this year. The show includes both public and private gardens, and features a plant sale. The Hillsborough Gardening Club’s website provides lots of helpful information about area events, native plants & pollinators, and vegetable gardening.


Looking for an escape from urban life? Look no farther than Duke Forest. This serene escape is over 7,000 acres and spans across Durham, Orange & Alamance counties. The forest is used for education, research and recreation. The Pine Cone Pacer is a 5K Run/Walk event that is being held April 14th. Learn more about  recreational opportunities, such as fishing, picnics, horseback riding, by checking out their website.


Roses rule at the Gene Strowd Rose Garden. Located in the heart of Chapel Hill this garden is adjacent to the Chapel Hill Community Center & Park. The labyrinth-style brick pathway winds around 130 different varieties of roses grown in over 350 bushes.  The colors and fragrances will make you “stop and smell the roses”. This small garden is a perfect outing when you are short on time.

Plan an outing to one (or more) of these beautiful sites and enjoy what nature - and our local area- has to offer! And if you find another favorite place that we should feature, let us know.

We're Not The Only Ones Who LOVE Chapel Hill!

by AH for Masha Halpern

February is the month of love….and we are not the only ones who LOVE Chapel Hill! Find out why one of Great Britain’s news organizations considers Chapel Hill one of the best small towns in the USA!

A great compilation of all the things that make Chapel Hill’s culture so unique, this article is featured in the travel section of The Guardian. Read it for yourself…here.

And one more reason to love Chapel Hill? The following photos are decadent desserts from Sugarland on Franklin Street - a must stop on your list of places to visit when in town!




Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 93




365 Things To Do In...

Share This Page

Contact Information

Photo of Masha Halpern - Boutique Real Estate Real Estate
Masha Halpern - Boutique Real Estate
Keller Williams Realty
101 Cosgrove Avenue, Suite 200
Chapel Hill NC 27514
Direct 919-951-1780
Toll Free 877-478-4669
Fax: 919-928-9030

Masha Halpern of Keller Williams Realty provides real estate services in the Chapel Hill, Carrboro and Durham, North Carolina area including real estate services for buyer, sellers and those relocating to the surrounding areas of Apex, Bahama,Cary, Efland, Hillsborough, Holly Springs, Mebane, Raleigh, and Wake Forest. Search for homes in Chapel Hill, Carrboro, Durham or the surrounding communities.  Request a market analysis for your North Carolina property.  I list and sell residential real estate, investment property, vacant land, lots for sale in Chapel Hill, Carrboro and Durham, North Carolina area.

Chapel Hill, Carrboro and Durham, North Carolina real estate and homes for sale in North Carolina - Masha Halpern & The Smart Move Team