Real Estate Information Archive


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It's Fall And Triangle Real Estate Statistics Are Still Improving

by Masha Halpern

It's Fall, kids are back in school and the Triangle real estate statistics are still improving.  

According to TMLS, (compared to the same time one year ago), this is what we are seeing:


1. Sales in the Triangle region were up 26.4% percent to 2310.

2. New listings in the Triangle region increased 7.5% to 3240.

3. Pending Sales were up 26.4% to 2310.

4. Inventory levels shrank 25.3% to 13,052 units.

5. Prices moved higher. The Median Sales Price increased 3.8% to $192,100.

6. Days on Market was down 8.8% to 115 days.


Click here for the latest statistics on video.


Election Day is less than 2 months away. There will be extra emphasis on jobs and unemployment as we move closer to the election. Because there is a relationship between jobs and housing, it's important for those in real estate to stay tuned in to what the politicians and economists have to say. With that being said, 2012 has been a good year in the real estate market so far and there is good reason to remain optimistic from this point forward.


If you are looking for a home this Fall, there are plenty of great homes to choose from. Give Masha Halpern & The Smart Move Team a call and we can help find the right home for you.


By the way; Are you registered to vote?





Rethinking Your Garage

by Masha Halpern

Somewhere, there's a book with a rule that says a garage must be white with bare walls and a dull grey concrete pad. No one is ever confused when they go through a door into the garage. But, is that always a good thing?  The answer to that question is no, of course. 

While keeping our cars safe from the environment is the stated purpose of the garage, that's very seldom all we do with the space. A peek inside a random, representative garage shows a variety of lawn and garden tools and supplies, a garbage can, household and car tools, shelves with sports equipment and an old tent, and the singing fish birthday gift from 1997. And, as you can guess, it's an amazing mess most of the time.

With a weekend of work and some creativity, you can give your garage a makeover and turn it into an extension of your living space instead of just an afterthought.

The first step is to take a hard look at what you store in your garage. Is there a better way to organize that stuff so it takes up less space? Shelves, either free-standing or on the wall, are an obvious way. Look to the walls! Where shelves aren't an option, hardware to hang yard tools, power cords and hoses can get things up off the ground and out of the way. While some of that will go with you if you move, the rest, if done well, can be a great selling point.

After you get things cleaned up and organized, why not start to look at ways to brighten and color the space? There's no reason you can't add a touch of decorative styling to the garage. Or to put the space you may have gained by organizing to use in other wise. You'll find some great tips on and (with before and after pictures!) And take a look at the fantastic ideas in the Lowe's Ultimate Garage Makeover video below.

Have you found unique ways to utilize your garage for something more than auto storage? What's hanging on your garage walls? Have you decorated the space to give it a little style? Hey, if you did, share some pictures and ideas in the comments below or email me. Meanwhile, I'm going to plan my own garage makeover!

This blog is maintained by Michael of Kim Hughes & Company.
Photo courtesy Rubber Maid Products/

I recently read an informative article from by Stacy Rapacon about changing your name and this is what she shared:

If you are getting married or have been married and are getting divorced, we all know what a pain it is to change your name. Paperwork and more paperwork! "You need to change your Social Security Card, get certified copies of your marriage certificate or divorce decree, change the name on your passport, voter registration card, as well as some professional licenses. Those are the most important ones however you also need to make changes with your employer's benefits office, clients, vendors, U.S. Post Office, banks, lenders, brokerages, utility providers, insurers, doctors' offices, family, friends, social network sites.

At and, name-change packages provide you with all the necessary government forms and notification letters. You answer some questions once, and all of the documents auto-fill with your information. The services (each costs $30) also include detailed instructions for filing each form."

After a divorce, once you've registered your new identity, be sure your finances are no longer joint. Open individual accounts under your new name, including credit cards.

I just moved. I wish it were that easy changing my mailing address!





Quick Fixes for Those Pesky Holes

by Masha Halpern

Before you put your house on the market, you have to address a variety of issues. Not the least of which is making the house look fantastic. So as you survey your home, you'll start to see little problems that have to be dealt with. For example, damage to drywall where you have hung artwork or secured tall furniture pieces. And that's what I want to talk about with you. If you've got something larger than small holes, you'll probably need some professional help. It's pretty remarkable what a contractor can do to make repairs. But, if you've just got some small holes, you can save yourself some money by doing it yourself.

It's not going to take long, but we need to get some tools. You’ll need to have spackle, a putty knife, a sanding block, primer, paint and a paint brush. I’ll wait while you go get them.

Fill – Okay, we’re going to use the spackling paste to fill the hole itself. Spackle is just a putty made of plaster and glue. Fill the hole and then use the putty knife to scrape off any spackle sticking up out of the hole.

Sand – A tiny hole won’t need much, if any, sanding. But, if you can You’re going to want to use a sanding block or even a dry wall sanding screen to make sure the result is perfectly flat. Just using sandpaper by hand won’t cut it.

Paint – Again, with a small enough hole, you don’t really need to prime, but it’s not a bad idea. Then you’re going to want to find the paint that was used to cover the wall you’re working on. Usually, when an interior is painted, the contractor will leave a can of the color they used in a storeroom or garage.

If you can’t find the right paint, you’re best bet is to repaint the entire wall: Any odd color patches are going to really stand out when the room is empty of furniture. And, if the hole is a bit bigger, you can find self-adhesive patching kits that include a metal mesh and come in a variety of sizes. You’ll still need to sand, prime and paint.

If your walls are bare, you can tackle this chore quickly. And a lot less expensively than a contractor will do it!

This blog is maintained by Michael of Kim Hughes & Company.
Photo courtesy idoverman/

Displaying blog entries 1-4 of 4




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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