Charlotte NC Real Estate Blog by Steve Lonnen, Realtor

3 Tips Before Reducing the Price of Your Home

The demand for residential real estate in the Greater Charlotte area remains high while lower inventory levels (2.4 months) continues to facilitate a favorable selling conditions.  This fact along with the many growth drivers have been well documented, and there are many good reasons to believe this market will continue to experience buyer demand and rising home values.   

While optimism remains high and transactions steady there has been a noticeable shift in buyer urgency in the past 2 months.  There could be many reasons (time of year, price points, location, rising rates lowering buying power, lack of inventory, etc.), but these in no way indicate a bubble is bursting.  In fact there isn't any indication there are fewer buyers yet each day I review my dashboard I observe an increasing number of sellers "Reducing Price" on their homes. 

What can be done to avoid this?  The best piece of advice is to make sure the home is appropriately priced to begin with; assuming that is the case here are 3 things to do before Reducing the Price:

  1. Ensure all Marketing efforts have been executed, these can include: professional photos and video, property website or landing page, drone footage to capture the home and community, social media advertising (boosted campaigns, marketing to both the agents and sellers personal network, neighborhood pages), open houses, mailers or flyers to neighborhood, printed marketing material in and outside the home, community spotlights and name a few.
  2. Stage it and Raise it:  Is the home properly cleaned, prepped, and staged?  Do the property photos, video, website, and marketing material reflect the best look?  What is the curb appeal of the home?  Basic lawn maintenance,...

Inside the Home and Outside the Box - Finding Near From Afar

Like a snowflake no two clients are exactly a like, and outside of the uniqueness of the individuals we serve the opportunities, challenges, and solutions are also varied.  Combining creative problem solving and experience to serve others is what make the world of real estate so exciting for me.  Leading Bobby and Cheryl through their home buying expereince proved to be another example of the of how we could accomplish the ultimate goal using an outside-the-box approach. 

Expecting to relocate to Charlotte for work they had a firm date to be in town; one they had never been to (outside of an interview).  Without meeting, a planned visit, or much knowledge of the area the challenge was to do this remotely - determine the best location and home!

The solution began with to learn their needs, expectations, lifestyle requirements, and budget.  From their educate them on the locations that would meet their needs (i.e. commute, schools, taxes, shopping, etc) and from there dial in on homes that were a positive match.  Consistent communication was the most essential element in this process, and over the following weeks we toured homes and neighborhoods over Skype. This process takes more time and requires more patience for everyone because the questions they can answer for themselves and intangible things that give buyers an immediate feel for the home don't translate as easily over video.  

Ultimately we found the one; however...

Together and Growing; That Plaza Midwood Life

Have you ever had one of those years when everything happens at once?  Many of those marker events that take us to the next stages of life are strung together.  The combination of anticipation, preparation, and party is continuous like running a series of hills with little downtime.  

That was certainly the case for these two with a lot of exciting and impactful life moments.  As we had the chance to work together we understood those events shaped a present and future state lifestyle they could enjoy together.  New to Charlotte we set our sites on finding them a great home in an area inclusive of community, convenience, originality, fun, proximity, and local flare.  

You put all those ingredients in a blender, hit mix, and out pours a cool funky flavor called Plaza Midwood!  Like much of Charlotte this area continues to evolve while staying true to  an alternative spice that elevates the profile of our city.  Whether it's a walk down through the canopied neighborhoods, shopping cutom boutiques, supporting local artists, absorbing a local craft beer or cocktail, or sitting down to a casual or cultured meal...this area has it all!  

The location was settled, the search was on, we found a beautiful home with a few unforseens; however like the area we were able to get alternative, craft solutions to get it done, and a year later their still rocking!  Happy Home-versary!


Be Prepared! Mecklenburg County is Assessing Values to Impact Property Taxes.

Taxes...nobody's favorite subject! However Mecklenburg County is currently conducting property assessments, and we will all experience an impact. I got my hands on some preliminary information and wanted to pass along. Please keep in mind this isn't final but based on the information currently available in effort to help prepare for what to potentially expect.
A major commercial firm hired one of the top tax consultants in North Carolina to help understand the upcoming Mecklenburg County Tax assessment that is looming in 2019. The tax consultant shared their view on potential increases in values based on average sales prices relative to current assessments among ALL property types.
Preparations for the 2019 revaluation in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina (Charlotte) are in full swing. 2019 marks the county’s first opportunity to adjust values since the last reassessment in 2011, and Ryan is anticipating significant increases in value across most commercial and residential property classes. Mecklenburg County officials have indicated that based on their research to-date, single-family residential values...

Every Closing is an Opportunity to Give Back!

As my clients allow me to help them achieve their home buying and selling goals I feel an incredible sense of opportunity and duty to give back.  In that one of my great privileges at each closing is to offer a donation on behalf of my client(s) to a very special cause - Madelyn's Fund.

Madelyn's Fund serves families who experience a stay in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) with their newborns. During their time these infants see many doctors, specialists, and undergo testing that all contribute to the health of the child. Many families also have to travel and may find themselves taking on extra expenses and having to take time off from work. Madelyn’s Fund exists to help NICU families in need with expenses related to their stay, as well as funeral costs for those who lose a child.

The need Madelyn's Fund serves is close to my heart as two of my nephews experienced the need for resources and care of the NICU.  My oldest sister had...

Success Story: New Country, New Home, The American Dream

A New Home and the American Dream

It's been a year since Daniel and I had a chance to work together in helping him find an purchase his first home.  As we came up on the anniversary of the day he officially received the keys to his new home, I began to reflect on his story.  It's one of ambition, action, and the pursuit of the American Dream.

When we had first met he told me he had moved from South Korea to the United States 4 years ago, and from there he began his endeavors to learn a new language, land, and community.  He got a job in retail and began to work his way up the ranks into management.  An opportunity to run a store in the Charlotte brought him to the area and provided the right time and situation to begin searching for a home.  

Understanding his unique needs and expectations allowed us to target the right areas and home options, and we quickly landed on the best fit for Daniel.  We worked together throught the offer, negotiation, and inspection phases to get him to the closing table on time and on budget.  With that Daniel became a first-time homeowner, moved his parents in and united them under one roof, and today is continuing his journey in living out the American Dream.

The home buying/selling experience isn't simply a transaction but part of a life story!  The opportunity to hear and have a role in so many interesting and unique stories is one of the most rewarding aspects of real estate, and Daniel's is one I'm proud to be a part of!

- Steve Lonnen


Tips to Save Energy and Add Value

When it comes to energy efficiency, look for smart features and expertise to help you save energy and money and add value to your home.

1. Begin with a Right-Sized Home.

If the home you buy is simply too large for you or your family’s needs or plans, you stand a good chance of wasting energy through excessive heating and cooling costs. If it’s too small, you’ll feel cramped and uncomfortable. It’s a big investment, so seek balance and buy it “right” from the outset. 

2. Purchase Energy Star Appliances Such as Your TV, Dishwasher, Washer and Dryer, and Microwave.

And especially the refrigerator, as it alone contributes about 10 percent of the energy use in a home. Also, unplug electronics not in use or turn off power strips to avoid phantom charges. 

3. Install Efficient Lighting Such as Compact Fluorescent (CLF) or LED Bulbs in Every Fixture.

Lighting accounts for about 6 percent of an energy bill each year.

4. Get an Energy Audit and Have Tests Performed to Identify Ways of Improving Your Efficiency.

You can always upgrade your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system as well as your thermal envelope, which includes insulation, windows, and doors  and the seals or weather stripping around them. Visit for more tips.