Friday, August 1, 2008

Charlotte Oktoberfest Beer Festival September 27, 2008

Tickets are now on sale! Please visit

This event will feature 300 different beers from 100 different breweries from around the world including many fine craft brews.

Ticket prices are as follows:
Premium tickets: $50.00
Regular admission tickets: $35.00
DD tickets: $20.00

Premium tickets allow the patron to enter the festival an hour early and receive 50% off the price of an Oktoberfest t-shirt while supplies last.

Order now, and online only, as this event will sell out fast.


Thursday, July 24, 2008

Catching up is hard to do, Part II

I didn't realize it had been so long since my last post. Whew, it's been a busy time.

Ok, to catch up. The young lady who I had been showing houses to for about a month, chose a home in the Willowmere subdivision. She fell in love with the house, made an offer which was easily negotiated, and went under contract.

The young man in seminary(who is currently spending the summer in Scotland) closed on his condo last week and is anxious to get back and move in.

I've spent time with 3 other buyers since my last post. A young lady and her fiance' had been looking for homes in the Concord, NC and north Charlotte area. After seeing several houses, they found one they really liked, however they decided to wait a while longer before making any decisions. That's the frustrating part of this business, but there are no guarantees. Hopefully we will get back together in early 2009.

I also began working with a gentleman from NJ who just moved to Charlotte. He's looking in the Uptown area as well as Dilworth, Myers Park, and Eastover areas for a condo. We spent a lot of time over the July 4th weekend looking at properties. We looked at approximately 50 condos in a span of about 4 days. Lots of work and tired feet. Depending on what happens with his house in NJ will determine whether or not he purchases. I'm keeping my fingers crossed!!!

I nice lady who I met at an open house. We developed an instant repor. After explaining to me that she had seen a house in Dilworth that I am familiar with, we went to take another look. It's a cute place and has a lot of potential. So, we made an offer and after day long price negotiations, we are under contract. Only 4 days from first meeting to going under contract. That's the satisfying part of this business!!!

My Roggenbier is still in the secondary fermenter. I hope to keg it this weekend. I desperately need to get another batch of beer going!!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Charlotte Oktoberfest 2008

I wanted to offer an update on this event. We have chosen 2 charities for this year's event:
1. National Multiple Schlorosis Society
2. A Child's Place

We will be donating to the local chapter of N.M.S.S. and dedicating the money go to assist local families in whatever needs they may have.

A Child's Place serves children of homeless families in the CMS school system.

Please visit these folks and donate if you are able.

Our website has been updated, but not fully operational. We expect to have it 100% by mid-July and you will be able to purchase tickets at that time

Also, if you are looking for a homebrew supply store, please visit

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Catching up is hard to do

Wow, what a past couple of weeks it has been. A busy real estate market has kept me hopping!

Over Memorial Day weekend, I had the pleasure of meeting a family relocating from Denver, CO. We spent 2 days looking at available homes in Charlotte. What a great time we had! It's always nice in this business to have clients who keep me as entertained as I try to keep them. They returned to Denver with a better understanding of Charlotte and they hope to be here within the next 12 months.

I also helped a young man who is currently enrolled in seminary here, find the home he has been looking for!!! We have been looking on and off for about a year. Sometimes it just takes awhile. However, this wasn't an easy one. We submitted our offer and were negotiating price when another offer came in. Uuuugh! We went through the same exact thing a year ago(almost to the week) on another property that we ended up losing out on. While it's great to see the Charlotte market still strong to support multiple offers on properties, it's just a very emotional time. Luckily, we hung in there, beat out the other buyers and got this one under contract!

During this same time, I am also assisting a young lady(who I've mentioned in an earlier blog) look for a home. Poor thing, she had to put up with listening to me negotiate on behalf of my clients. As much as I apologized for putting her through this while we were out house hunting, she was very understanding. I told her she not only got a crash course in Real Estate 101, but she was witness to how I fight for my buyers!!!

On another note, the Roggenbeir that I brewed several weeks ago(mentioned in a previous post), did not ferment out all the way, which left me very dissapointed. I transferred the beer into a secondary fermenter along with all the yeast, in hopes it may ferment out a little more. If not, it will still be a good beer to drink, it just won't be competition worthy.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Charlotte home prices gaining

Posted on Wed, May. 28, 2008

Home prices here still gaining
The Charlotte region again ranks among the nation's urban markets with appreciating real estate.
The Charlotte region notched its third month Tuesday as the only one of 20 urban markets nationwide still showing rising home prices.
Area prices rose a little less than 1 percent for the 12 months through March, according to the widely followed S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index. That's less of an increase than in previous months but compares favorably with a 14 percent national decline on what is often a person's largest investment.
In addition to the annual gain, Charlotte also was the only one of two markets in which March prices rose slightly compared with the previous month. The monthly upticks in Charlotte and Dallas are the first for any of the 20 markets since September, according to the reports.
The two hardest hit areas – Las Vegas and Miami – have seen annual declines of about 25 percent. Phoenix, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco also posted drops of more than 20 percent.
By another broad measure, Charlotte area home prices gained 6 percent during the same time frame. That put the Charlotte region at No. 14 out of 292 markets ranked by the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight, which evaluates a somewhat different pool of sales. Both indexes evaluate repeat sales of single-family homes, an important gauge of changes in value.
The OFHEO quarterly index released last week shows Charlotte with a five-year return of 29 percent. The index also shows that markets with recent declines still have much higher long-term gains than Charlotte. Miami, for example, has a five-year return of 92 percent while Las Vegas is up 65 percent.
Charlotte has so far been spared steep declines because the area didn't experience the sharp gains during the nation's real estate bubble.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Charlotte named top place to live

Charlotte named best place to live ranks top 100 cities in its annual list By Amy Hoak, MarketWatch Last update: 5:37 p.m. EDT May 15, 2008 CHICAGO (MarketWatch) -- Apparently, there's just something about North Carolina. For the second year in a row, America's best city in which to live lies within its borders, according to's annual list. This year, Charlotte, N.C., is in the top spot, the site announced this week. Last year's winner was Asheville, N.C., which slipped to No. 7 on this year's list. "North Carolina is very active on our radar," said Steve Nickerson, president and CEO of HomeRoute. "It continues to get a flood of interest from all over." HomeRoute is the real estate firm that operates, a source of community information and real-estate resources for those who are relocating. Each year, the site ranks the top 100 places to live in the country.

Areas need to be nominated on the site in order to be eligible for the list; more than 2,000 were nominated this year, Nickerson said. Special efforts are made to prevent spamming campaigns from influencing the results, he added. But the site's editorial team also takes into account an area's growth, its educational and employment opportunities, crime rates and housing options before granting it a spot in the top 100. Environmental highlights also play a role, with a city gaining points for good air and water quality or the strength of its recycling efforts, Nickerson said. Home-price appreciation does get some consideration, however it's only one piece of the analysis, Nickerson said -- explaining why some struggling real estate markets in California and Florida, for example, still made the top 100. Areas that offer a comfortable climate and economic opportunity tend to be the most sought-after communities on the site, he said. Charlotte's diversity of housing options and home affordability were two of the reasons users nominated the city, Nickerson said. The city's strong economy, boosted largely by the banking industry, was another selling point. Second on this year's list was San Antonio, Texas, which people praised for its cost of living, recreational opportunities and diversity, he said. Chattanooga, Tenn., came in third place, noted for its vibrant downtown and affordable home prices in the nominations.

Below are the top 10 cities in's 2008 list:
1. Charlotte, N.C.
2. San Antonio, Texas
3. Chattanooga, Tenn.
4. Greenville, S.C.
5. Tulsa, Okla.
6. Stevens Point, Wis.
7. Asheville, N.C.
8. Albuquerque, N.M.
9. Huntsville, Ala.
10. Seattle, Wash.
Read the full list at

The firm also plans on releasing a coffee table book on the top 100 in the near future, Nickerson said. Proceeds will benefit American Red Cross and Habitat for Humanity, he added. The view from the top Certainly, being ranked as the top city to live in has its benefits, mainly as a marketing tool for the area to use, said Tony Crumbley, vice president of research for the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce. An email blast sent news of this list to thousands of residents, and the chamber actively keeps track of where Charlotte falls in many of the lists that are published. "They are important," Crumbley said of the good rankings the city receives. But he also knows that these rankings come and go and that they're somewhat subjective; the city's appeal can change from one day to the next, depending on who is writing the list. There weren't any significant changes in Charlotte during the past year that would account for boosting the city to the top of this particular list, he said. But the city definitely gets recognized a lot more today than it did 25 years ago, he added. Bank of America and Wachovia have their headquarters in Charlotte, and it's also a hub for US Airways -- all of which seem to have increased the visibility of the city outside its boundaries, Crumbley said. The addition of professional sports teams since the 1980s has also helped. In recent years, Charlotte has been successful in attracting young, educated workers to relocate there, he said.

Asheville, on the other hand, has become a popular choice with retirees, he added. But cities can easily make it to the top of one list and rank poorly on another, he said. Case in point: One recent list ranked Charlotte as one of the country's most miserable cities, a ranking, not surprisingly, that Crumbley and others disagree with. Forbes also ranked it as one of the best places to invest in foreclosures, in part because the real estate market there is relatively stable. "If they're good, you use them. If they're bad, I won't tell you you should ignore them -- you look at them," he said of the lists on which Charlotte appears. But negative rankings aren't likely to end up getting used as a marketing piece for the city. Amy Hoak is a MarketWatch reporter based in Chicago.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

A long day

Well, I decided to play "hooky" today and take a little personal time to brew a batch of beer. My recipe was a German Roggenbier which is a German Rye Beer. I began around 10:00 and everything was going to plan. When it came time to boil the beer, I had the burner going and stepped away for a couple of minutes to attend to something else. When I looked back outside, everything was boiling over! I freaked! Oh no, I'm losing beer! As it stands, I lost about 1.5 gallons(out of a 5 gallon batch), which broke my heart. You spend all that time to develop a recipe, get ingredients, prepare everything for your brew day, then you lose beer. I was bummed!

Anyway, I finished the batch and transferred to my fermenter letting the fermentation begin.

Shortly thereafter, I received a phone call from my wife informing me that we had someone call in off of one of our yard signs and was interested in seeing the property. Awesome! A possibility of a new client! I was once again excited.

So, I called this person and scheduled an appointment to see the house. I met a very nice lady and her young son who had just moved to Charlotte 6 months ago and is now ready to begin a home search after renting. It was a refreshing visit and am glad I had the opportunity to meet them. I am looking forward to spending time with them and assisting in finding them a new home.

It was a great way to end what was a stressful day.