Southeastern North Carolina Real Estate News and Insights

Welcome! We created this blog as a way to keep you informed of the latest news and updates happening in Wilmington NC real estate as well as real estate news throughout Southeastern North Carolina. Our agents have years of experience handling real estate transactions and we want to share our insights about the current state of the market, neighborhood updates and developments, local events, and featured listings.

Check back often for updates and please contact us with any questions or comments.

April 1, 2019

April is Awesome


Good things happen year round in Wilmington, it's true. But, April is sort of a local favorite. The Azalea Festival calls people from around the world to join in on a southern weeklong celebration like no other. And, locals wrap up in dreamy weather; the creative, productive energy that only spring can bring; and weekends and nights spent with friends and family about town, on the beach, on mini-road trips and in the garden.


Here are a few things we suggest getting on your radar this month! 


Riverfront Farmers Market

March 23- November 23

Downtown Wilmington


37thAnnual Juried Spring Art Show and Sale

March 30th- April 7

Community Arts Center


The North Carolina Azalea Festival & Garden Tour

April 3-7


North Carolina Symphony Concert

April 11th7:30

Wilson Cener


Star Party 

April 12 at 7:00pm

Carolina Beach State Park


25thAnnual Pleasure Island Seafood, Blues and Jazz Festival 

April 13-14

Kure Beach


Book Signing Event! Meet Author and Poet Al Russell

April 19th


Coastal Select Properties!

213 N. 2nd St.


Apollo II

April 22-24

Thalian Hall



April 26-27
Wilson Center


Carolina Beach Wine & Beer Walk

April 27that 1:00-6:00


Earth Day Celebration 

April 27th12-6

Huch McRae Park


An Evening with Rick Springfield

April 25that 7:30

Wilson Center



Posted in Current news
March 21, 2019

Meet Steve Swart, Broker, Realtor



Steve Swart New Agent


Steve Swart with his wife, Kelly Godbey


Steve Swart, lifelong Wilmingtonian, recently joined the Coastal Select team, and he was gracious enough to fill us in recently on what makes him tick and a few of his favorite things. Take a minute to get to know Steve. We’re pretty thrilled that we did. 



Why did you choose real estate? 

Steve: I chose real estate for two primary reasons.  First, I really enjoy people and like spending time getting to know them. And secondly, I was looking for a job that wasn’t necessarily based in an office.

What’s your favorite thing to do?

Steve: Eating, drinking, or otherwise communing with family and friends. But, if the weather is warm and the waves are clean its hard to beat surfing.

Why did you choose to stay in Wilmington?

Steve: I think the more appropriate question is why not Wilmington?  I’ve lived in and around Wilmington all my life.  When I was in high school everyone I knew was ready to get away but by the time I finished college that flow seemed to reverse and most people were looking to stay and those that left wanted to come back. I stayed because it's home. My family is here - parents, siblings, and a great big extended family.  I have always loved the beach, but as downtown rebounded in the early 90’s it has become my top choice for places to live here. I have always thought Wilmington is kind of the city that feels like your own town. I’ve traveled extensively and love many places throughout the world but only Wilmington feels like home.

What made you choose Coastal Select Properties?

Steve: I met with many agencies in the area and all of them were wonderful. It was a difficult choice, but I was looking for a place with a tight cadre of dedicated people focused on the customer. Coastal Select had just the right vibe. 

What’s your favorite food?

Steve: It is impossible to beat roasted oysters with hot pepper vinegar on a cold winter afternoon. I also became a huge fan of smoke during a visit to Austin Texas and so have taught myself how to make incredible ribs.

What’s your favorite thing about yourself?

Steve: I think the fact that I don’t take myself to seriously and I can find humor in almost everything.

What’s your favorite thing to do in Wilmington?

Steve: Spend time outside, especially with friends. I love being downtown anytime and love summers at the beach.

What motivates you to do what you do everyday? 

Steve: Fundamentally, I want to help people. 

What do you hope your work with Coastal Select will accomplish? Both on a grand scale and a micro-level?

Steve: I really don’t think much about a grand scale too much in regards to my work at this point. I want to focus on each person and each transaction. Do the little things well and the big stuff will handle itself.

What do you hope to contribute to the world/community?

Steve: I pick up trash and recyclables when I walk in my community not just because it’s the right thing to do but I hope people might notice. I try to say hello and offer a smile to everyone because it costs me nothing and you never know when someone needs to be seen. I also just try to be nice to everyone. It is simple, free, and the world always needs a little more joy. Also I’m involved with several charities and am on the board of The Full Belly Project which provides sustainable engineering solutions to people around the world.



Posted in Current news
March 1, 2019

March-ing On


Wilmington marches to its own beat, always. And, March in Wilmington is a primary example.


Around here, March is full of fun surprises. You could be in your bathing suit on the beach one day, and the next be surrounded by snow flurries (very rare - but, it happens). It's that awesome month when the excitement of spring bubbles just below the surface of everything while occasional reminders that we, too, have four seasons make us fall in love with where we live all over again.


March is a happening month in Wilmington, culturally and otherwise. So, plan to get out on the town to get in on all of the good pre-spring energy around here.


Events to Add to the Calendar: 


Always… Patsy Cline

March 1- 10


Thalian Hall


Arturo O’Farrill and the Afro Latin Jazz Ensemble

March 5th


Kenan Auditorium- UNCW


Made in NC

March 9-10

Saturday- 10am-5pm

Sunday- 12pm-5pm


9thAnnual Cape Fear Beer & Wine Festival

March 9th


Wilmington Convention Center- 515 Nutt Street


St. Patricks’s Day Parade & Festival

March 16th

Parade starts at 11:00am

12:00pm- 6:00pm

Water Street at Princess- Riverfront Park


4thFriday Gallery Night

March 22nd


Various Venues Downtown


16thAnnual North Carolina Black Film Festival

March 21-24

Various Venues Around Town


NC Azalea Festival: Dogs on Parade

March 23rd


Greenfield Lake Amphitheater


TEDxAirlie: The Bridge 

March 29th


Thalian Hall


Cape Fear Craft & Cuisine 

March 30th


Airlie Gardens




Posted in Current news
Feb. 22, 2019

Coastal Caddy Encounters of the Video Kind Episode #2


We love film. And, we especially love film in Wilmington, NC. The Port City has long been a hub for independent filmmakers given the big business that film has been in this Hollywood-worthy coastal town. 

Tricia Ireland, our broker in charge, is a huge supporter of a local female filmmaking collaborative, Wilmington Female Filmmakers Collective, so much so that she chose to sponsor the 3rd Annual Cinema Sisters International Film Festival's feature film this year, Half the Picture.

So, to get to the point (a little faster)...when considering our top pick for our first big Coastal Caddy interview and name reveal, we didn't have to think too hard. 

We were thrilled to have Rebecca Busch and Barbara Dolny-Bombar who run the festival in on this. And, we're even more thrilled to head to the festival this weekend! Stay tuned for a Film Festival recap and more on Wilmington Female Filmmakers Collective next week. Take a minute to watch this video and the Half the Picture trailer...we feel confident you'll be glad you did. (Then, meet us at the festival!!) 



Click here for a full festival schedule. 




Friday, March 1st - Opening Night:

Film Screening Only:  $10

Films and After Party: $18

Saturday, March 2nd - Workshop and Films

 Workshop with Erica Dunton: FREE


 Films - Per Block:  $9 general / $5 students w/ID


Full Festival Pass:  $30








Posted in Current news
Feb. 2, 2019

The Coastal Select Caddy is Officially Cruising

Video blog: Episode #1


What do you get when you put a bunch of Realtors® in a sweet 1973 orange caddy? Lots of friends. 

Stay tuned for our video blog to keep up with the local real estate market, meet cool locals doing awesome things, and to hear what strangers have to say about this town we love. 

Feel free to stop by or comment here to let us know what you think or what you'd like to see in upcoming episodes!  


Posted in Current news
Jan. 18, 2019

6 Hot Tips for Sellers


Six Things That Could Make or Break the Sale


Listing your house can be overwhelming. You suddenly see every blemish along with all the little things you meant to fix or change over the years. 


It’s important to remember though, that, as with anything, it’s the little things that go a long way with potential buyers. 


One thing our agents have noticed through the years is that homeowners have a tendency to get so wrapped up in perfecting the home itself, that they fail to consider the ever-important first impression, which usually occurs from the moment a buyer sees the listing to the time they get to the first room of the house. And, it’s the little things (and a couple of really big ones) – listing price, flowers lining the walkway, a dog poop-free yard, an eye-catching paint job, and clean baseboards – that tend to be either conscious or  subconscious decision influencers.


So, here’s a quick list of things that may not be top-of-mind or deemed deal-breakers to sellers, but if left unattended to, could become deal breakers for buyers.


1 - Choose the Right Realtor®

This an obvious one, but one many people take for granted. Finding the right realtor takes time and research, so not many actually do it. But, it's often vital to a smooth selling process. So, take some time, first, to consider whether or not working with a larger firm or a boutique agency is right for you and your situation. Then, when choosing an agent, consider the agent's breadth of experience, their knowledge of the area, and whether or not attention to detail is their strong suit.



Coastal Select's broker-in-charge, Tricia Ireland, says that getting the listing price right trumps  all other details. Be sure to work thoroughly with your agent to determine the price that matches the market and gets you closer to your goals. 


3 – Scoop the poop

This may seem ridiculous and obvious enough, but it’s also something that tends to fall to the end of long to do lists. 


Coastal Select agent, Teresa Krebs, had this experience:


“I was showing a house recently and my client stepped in poop when he walked through the yard. He couldn't even walk back through the house. It was definitely a pretty serious turn off,” Teresa said. 

We rest our case. 


4 – Ditch the Dust 


Layers of dust can appear like layers of dirt when left hanging on baseboards and ceiling fans, which can be a real deterrent for otherwise interested buyers. Don’t forget that a good scrubbing can go a long way when showing your home and attention to detail is a next step that won't go unappreciated.


5 – The Color Cure


Coastal Select Properties agent, Jordyn Rice, says that color is key. She said that a fresh coat of paint works wonders, but a fresh coat of a color more apt to evoke positive emotion, she says, can often make the statement you need to seal the deal. Don’t be afraid to take a shallow dive into color psychology for some helpful hints (yes, shades of red, orange, and yellow evoke feelings of happiness, optimism and energy!). Or better yet, find a realtor with enough experience and research under their belt to help determine this and other factors for you.  


6 -  Tap into Texture 


Adding a few textural touches to the exterior can be both eye-pleasing and inviting. Rice says that natural elements- wooden, flowers, plants, and rocks can add a sense of comfort and calm. She suggests adding scalloped siding, cedar shakes to dormers, and/or shutters to spice things up a bit. 


Posted in buying tips
Jan. 10, 2019

Buy One Give One in 2019


10 Ways to Get and Give in 2019 


Capitalism you can wrap your heart around.


Most of us are familiar with TOMS, the shoe industry game-changer with a buy-one-give-one business model. TOMS, now worth more than $650 million, has drawn a bit of attention over the past decade. The company has successfully given 86 million pairs of shoes to people in need to date, and has made a pretty significant profit to boot. The one-for-one concept alone has successfully fueled hundreds of buy-one-give-one businesses and startups over the last 9 years, and has inspired thousands of young entrpreneurs.  Subsequently, TOMS and “like-minded” companies have given conscious consumers a more satisfying shopping experience. Knowing that a company is going to give the equivalent of a purchase to those in need in honor of the purchaser is a apparently a pretty big deal. 


Two of Wilmington’s own, brother and sister team Carmin and Christian Black, happen to think so.  Carmin completed an internship fresh out of college with TOMS shoes and was so inspired by the one-to-one philosophy that she and her younger brother, Christian, decided to develop a brand of their own in 2009.


Initially an online apparel and jewelry shop, Half United now has their very own brick-and-mortar store in Wilmington’s up-and-coming Container District.  


Naturally, Wilmington's own buy-one-give-one retail shop is first on our list of ways to get and give this year. All others on the list are based in various locations across the U.S. 


Feel free to add to what you see below in comments! 


1 – Half United

Products: Apparel, bracelets, jewelry, bags

Promise: For every HALF UNITED product you purchase, you provide 7 meals for a child in need.



2 - This Bar Saves Lives

Products: Granola bars

Promise: 150 “nutrient packets” (aka granola bars) = one child saved



3 – Project 7

Products: gourmet candies; gummies, gum, and organic “chewies”

Promise: A specialty gum and mint brand dedicated to bringing great flavor back into your day while at the same time giving back to 7 areas of need. 




4 – State

Products: Designer bags and backpacks for men and women

Promise: To make beautiful, well-made, inclusively cool product while using the power of business to give back and shift narratives around social injustices.



5 – BetterWorldBooks 

Products: Books and more

Promise:Every time you purchase a book from, they donate a book to someone in need. 



6 - Bombas

Products: socks

Pomise: One pair purchased = One pair donated.



7 - Toms

Products: Shoes, sunglasses, apparel

Promise: For every product purchased, a pair of shoes is given to someone in need. 



8 - SoapBox

Products: soap, hair & skin care products

Promise: For every Soapbox product purchases, a bar of soap is donated to someone in need either in the U.S. or abroad.



9 - Smile Squared

Products: toothbrushes 

Promise: For every Smile Squared® toothbrush purchased, one is donated to a child in need.



10 – Bixbee

Products: kids bags and backpacks 

Promise: For every bag purchased, a backpack full of school supplies is sent to a child in need around the world. 



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Posted in Current news
Jan. 9, 2019

About Town in the New Year

January Events: Pencil it in

But, don't wait too long to sell fast around here.

Wilmington is rarely not hopping, and January's no different in this cultural hub of a town. The weather looks like it may be anything but frightful this month, so plan to get out in sunshine or into a cozy art museum or theatre to catch some of these fabulous events.  


January 10th – Jazz at Cam


La Fiesta Latin Jazz Quintet is kicking off the New Year at The Cameron Art Museum with a Latin Jazz beat. Click here for info and tickets.


Where:  Cameron Art Museum

When:  6:00pm


January 10th-January 19th: Mamma Mia! 


Opera House Theatre Company presents Mamma Mia! at Thalian Hall Center for Performing Arts, Wilmington’s oldest theatre. The show has received rave reviews, so might want to grab tickets while you still can. Click here for tickets. 


January 13th from 4-7pm: Floating Lantern Ceremony


*Rescheduled date*

Lucky for all of us, the Floating Lantern Ceremony at CAM’s reflecting pond was rescheduled! Write or draw your New Year wishes or last year’s memories on lanterns and watch them float onto the pond in a collective expression of Remembrance, Reflection and Gratitude. Click here for more information.


Where:  Cameron Art Museum Reflecting Pond

When:  Decorating begins at 4pm and floating begins at 5pm. 


January 18-20: Wilmington Antique Show & Sale


A Wilmington antiquing tradition continues! The Antique Show and Sale will celebrate 49 years this year at the Wilson Center. Click here for tickets or more information.


Where:  Wilson Center

When:  Friday & Saturday – 10am-5pm; Sunday 11am-4pm


January 25th: Fourth Friday Gallery Night 


One of our favorite Downtown Wilmington events, Fourth Friday is a perfect opportunity to meet and support local artists, and to find and buy gorgeous local art! Wine and hors d’ouevres are offered at select galleries. Find more information and maps here


Where:  Galleries throughout Downtown Wilmington

When:  6:00 – 9:00pm


January 26th: The Wilmington Coffee Crawl


Feel the buzz as you hop from coffee shop to coffee shop supporting the local baristas who fuel our days! Click here for tickets and more information.


Where:  Participating downtown cafes and coffee shops 

When:  10am-4pm



January 31st-February 2nd: North Carolina Jazz Festival


The 39thAnnual Jazz Festival will open with The Great Grenoldo Frazier on Thursday at 7:30pm, and it will jazz up from there with Brazilian artists and more. Expect seven sets each night! Get tickets asap.


Where:  Hotel Ballast

When:  Thursday, January 31 – Saturday, Febrary 2nd7:30pm-Midnight


Posted in Current news
Dec. 22, 2018

We Give a Wreath Photo Contest

We proposed a little contest for National Wreath Day this year. Initially we said that there would be three winners, each of whom would receive a $100 Amazon Smile Gift Card and a $100 check tucked in a lovely holiday wreath and delivered to their nonprofit of choice. 

In honor of #nationalwreathday we decided to go all out with a little neon green on this awesome machine, hosting this contest! All we had left on our list this season was to give part of the commission that kept coming in this month, and we needed some help finding the best homes for it. 

So, we asked our Facebook audience to do the following: 

• TAG a local nonprofit of choice

• TELL us how this nonprofit helps to strengthen our community in your comment

• INCLUDE a photo of your favorite holiday wreath 

• TAG A FRIEND and invite them to join in!

One winner was chosen for each of the following three categories:1 - MOST BEAUTIFUL
3 - MOST ELABORATE Winners were announced December 19th at 5pm with a little twist...EVERYBODY WON! Well, every nonprofit anyway. With the help of Suites on Front and Nacho Mama's matching donations, we were able to give $100 to all nonprofits suggested, and $200 to the three nonprofits mentioned by our winners.  Once the winners were chosen and announced, we decided to hit the road to deliver donations in person in this beautiful machine...


And, there's truly too much to say about this awesome journey to contain it all in a blog. We had no idea how much joy posting a little Facebook contest could bring. Our trek around town to some of the organizations we were able donate to reminded us, again, what all of this is about.

Coming together, giving back, creating community - however you describe Tricia's intention in the way she runs this company we love, the result is that everyone who works with her feels good, laughs a lot,
and is inspired to give more. And, that's saying something you don't hear everyday. We're so grateful to be a part of all of this and to all of those who participated in our "We Give a Wreath" Photo Contest. You gave us the greatest gift - the opportunity to give. We also want to give a special shout out to former clients and now close friends, Lena Maximova Sutherland and Pennie Ellis Coussit, for joining us. Stay tuned for our next contest. Coming soon in 2019...Hint: We need a name for the Orange Flame!


Return to our blog...

Posted in Current news
Dec. 12, 2018

Home for the Holidays


Home is Sweeter During the Holidays 


First-time homebuyers, Kim and Matt Garippa, knew a few things when they started shopping around for a house. One, they wanted to work with a realtor they trusted; two, they wanted to live in a “far enough, close enough” location surrounded by woods; and three, they wanted to be in by the holidays! 


Kim, a nurse, and Matt, an architect, were in their mid-30s and were “tired of throwing their money away”. They both wanted to live in a place where Matt could spend free time on dirt bike trails and they both could live the quieter life that comes with a more rural setting like Boiling Springs.


“We’d met Jennifer (Jennifer Davidson) through a friend, and I instantly knew that she would be the one that we would call when we were ready,” Kim said. And, when they did call, they were so ready, that they found their dream home within a few weeks.  


“Jennifer did the work of two realtors. She was never pushy, she always had time for us, and when the hurricane came before we could close, she checked in with us and reassured us that it was all still happening. And, we never doubted her. Despite the mess and a little damage, she was able to help make everything happen. The damage the house had was fixed within weeks, and, well here we are.”


The Garippas closed just in time to start fixing the place up to host their first Thanksgiving Dinner ever for over 20 family members. 




“It was amazing,” she said. “To be cooking in my very own kitchen, with appliances that I picked out, surrounded by walls that I got to paint exactly like I wanted to paint them.” 


Because they plan to travel for Christmas, their house was in full holiday décor pre-Thanksgiving. 


“There’s nothing like being in your own home for the holidays,” Kim said. “And, I made my first mortgage payment today, so it’s a done deal!”  

Posted in first time buyer