5 Home Improvement Projects for Summer

With temperatures rising and the kids out of school for the season, summer is a great time to reconnect with each other as well as the outdoors! Here in coastal North Carolina, there are tons of opportunities to enjoy the longer days and summer sunshine, all with a refreshing breeze to keep things cool and comfortable.

One way you can work on your tan is to make some home improvements that winter’s chill kept on the back burner! It may not be an afternoon spent reclined on the sand, but you’ll be glad you took the time to improve your home before the seasons change again.

Lawn Care

In winter, lower temperatures and sometimes even frost or snow can remove taking care of your yard from your to-do list entirely. But once the sun’s back out and rain encourages plants to grow, it’s time to break back out the lawnmower, the weed eater, and your work gloves! Take summertime as an excuse to get out and work up a sweat while you beautify your home.

Patio and Porch Maintenance

It’s the perfect time to bask in the lazy summer warmth, especially if you have a porch or patio to set up as your relaxation hub! But in order for you to get the most out of the experience, you’ll want to make sure it’s well-equipped and in prime condition. Take a moment to check on any stone or woodwork for chips or splits and make the necessary repairs as soon as possible. That way, when you’re ready to unwind, everything is just as it should be.

Clear Out Those Gutters  

Autumn, winter and spring weather can cause a lot of buildup in your house’s gutter system. Before the leaves start to fall again, hop on a ladder and clear out the debris from neighboring trees. Here on the coast, summer can also usher in some rainy periods, so it’s important to know that your house will be protected from any intensive downpours.

Apply a Fresh Coat of Paint  

Despite our region’s tendency for summer humidity, it’s still a great time to get outside and touch up any lackluster paint jobs on the exterior of your home or on outdoor furniture. Before you get started, just be sure to check on the upcoming weather forecast in order to choose the best possible day to devote to your efforts. In doing so, the results will be glossy coats of new paint, and you may be able to save yourself some time (and paint) in the future!

Refortify Your Fence

If you have a fenced-in yard, you know that the perimeter occasionally needs to get checked out for weak areas or broken posts. Before your next backyard pool party or barbecue, walk along the fence, both inside and out, to be sure it will hold up through the season. Winter weather can be rough on wooden posts and moisture wears down metal or chain-link fences, so it never hurts to take advantage of warmer weather and sunshine to get it all back up to par.

If you need some help in making these or any other summertime repairs, we’ve got a list of handy local service providers that can help you get started on your home improvement projects. For more local tips and news from the real estate market here in southeastern North Carolina, stay tuned to Intracoastal Realty’s blog!

Grilled Peaches and Vanilla Ice Cream

Image source: ©Gaby Dalkin from her website http://whatsgabycooking.com

This months recipe comes from a California cooking blog called What’s Gabby Cooking? With Summer already here, its time to light up the charcoal and grill some ripened peaches or nectarines. The intense flavor is packed in when heated and there’s even a magical caramelization that happens when placed on the grill. Enjoy!


    • 2 ripe peaches
    • 2 ripe nectarines
    • canola oil
    • 8 large scoops vanilla ice cream
    • Honey and sea salt for finishing


  1. Heat grill to medium-high heat.
  2. Brush the peach and nectarines halves with a touch of with oil and place on the grill for a few minutes and then rotate 90 degrees to continue to cook for about 3-4 minutes total grill marks appear and the fruit starts to caramelize.
  3. Remove from the grill with a pair of tongs and serve with a scoop of ice cream in the center of the fruit. Drizzle with honey and a sprinkle of flaky sea salt.

Download the recipe here: Grilled peaches and Vanilla Ice Cream – July 2018

July Local Events 2018

1-Jul      NC Symphony Orchestra – Stars & Stripes · 7:30 PM · Wilson Center – Cape Fear Community College

Wilmington Sharks vs Morehead City Marlins · Buck Hardee Field-Legion Sports Complex
Paws-Ability Double YOUR Donation till 10/1/18 · Paws-Ability · Ocean Isle Beach

2-Jul     Freedom Fest – 3rd Annual Block Party · 2:00 PM · Waterline Brewing Company · Wilmington

Ribbit the Exhibit · Arlie Gardens

3-Jul      Independence Day Fireworks by the Sea and Boardwalk Music · Carolina Beach Boardwalk

The Ocean Clean Up · 11:00 AM · Museum of Coastal Carolina · Ocean Isle Beach

 Ocean Isle Beach Fireworks · 8:00 PM · Ocean Isle Beach Pier · Ocean Isle Beach, NC

4-Jul      City of Wilmington 4th of July Celebration · Downtown Wilmington — Riverfront Park

Uncle Kracker’s 4th of July BBQ & Fireworks Bash · 6:00 PM · Pier 33 Entertainment · Wilmington, NC

July 4th Island Parade · 10:00 AM · Museum of Coastal Carolina · Ocean Isle Beach

NC 4th of July Festival · Downtown Southport

5-Jul      Ladies Night Sip & Paint Watercolor · 7:00 PM · Hot Mess Studios · Wilmington, NC

Open Mic Comedy · 7:00 PM · Dead Crow Comedy · Wilmington, NC

6-Jul      Downtown Sundown Concert · Downtown Wilmington — Riverfront Park

Airlie Summer Concert Series · Airlie Summer Concert Series

7-Jul      Port City Reggae Music & Art Festival · Greenfield Lake Amphitheater

Riverfront Farmers’ Market · Riverfront Farmers’ Market

8-Jul     Summer Movie at the Lake · Carolina Beach Lake Park

Movies In The Park presents Jumanji (1995) · 8:00 PM · Ocean Isle Beach · Ocean Isle Beach, NC

9-Jul     Wrightsville Beach Farmers’ Market · Wrightsville Beach Farmers’ Market

Play Time! · Cape Fear Museum

10-Jul     Kure Beach Market · Kure Beach Market

 Touch Tank Tuesday · Coastal Education Center

11-Jul    Incredible Insects · Pleasure Island Library

Nature Play Grand Opening · 10:00 AM · NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher · Kure Beach, NC

12-Jul    Concert in the Park ·  Soundside Park · Surf City

Live Music and Fireworks by the Sea · Carolina Beach Boardwalk

13-Jul   2018 East Coast “Got-Em-On” Classic King Mackerel Tournament · Carolina Beach – Kure Beach

Bird Hike at Airlie Gardens · Arlie Gardens

14-Jul    G. Love & Special Sauce Greenfield Lake Amphitheater 7/14 · Greenfield Lake Amphitheater

Outdoor Concert: The Imitations · RiverLights Community

Used Book Sale · Magnolia House II

15-Jul     Twelfth Night · UNCW Cultural Arts Building

Historic Downtown Artisan Market · Historic Downtown Marketplace

16-Jul     Pirates, Privateers and Blockade Runners of Early NC · Federal Point History Center

17-Jul    All About Butterflies · Northeast Regional Library

               Live Standup: Eric Schwartz · Dead Crow Comedy Room

18-Jul    Lumina Festival: Audrey Ochoa and the UNCW Jazz Faculty Big Band · 7:30 PM · UNCW Presents · Wilmington, NC

               World Cup Futsal Camp · 9:00 AM · Wilmington Basketball Center · Wilmington, NC

19-Jul    Crafteen: Mini Gardens · Northeast Regional Library

               Museum After Dark: Food · 7:00 PM · Cape Fear Museum · Wilmington, NC

20-Jul    Water Works · Fit For Fun Center

               Die Fledermaus · UNCW Cultural Arts Building

21-Jul    Summer fundraiser for the Special Olympics · 8:30 AM · CrossFit Ocean Isle Beach · Ocean Isle Beach, NC

              Wilmington Sharks Baseball · Buck Hardee Field-Legion Sports Complex

Food Truck Roundup · Poplar Grove Plantation

22-Jul    Summer Movie at the Lake · Carolina Beach Lake Park

BBHA SHOW · 8:00 AM · Lake Waccamaw

23-Jul    Wrightsville Beach Farmers’ Market · Wrightsville Beach Farmers’ Market

 Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon · 8:00 PM · Ingram Planetarium · Sunset Beach, NC

24-Jul     Brian Wilson Presents Pet Sounds · Wilson Center

 Touch Tank Tuesday · Coastal Education Center

25-Jul     An Evening with Gladys Knight · Wilson Center

 Wednesday Evening Summer Nature Series · Halyburton Park

26-Jul     Concert in the Park · Soundside Park – Surf City

 Fireworks by the Sea and Boardwalk Music Featuring Trainwreck · 6:00 PM · Carolina Beach Boardwalk

27-Jul     Breakfast Club (80’s) · Downtown Wilmington — Riverfront Park

 4th Friday Gallery Night · Various Venues

28-Jul     Little Explorers Nature Program · Halyburton Park

  FUNDRAISER: Rockin’ Reptile Bash · Juggling Gypsy Cafe

29-Jul     Lumina Festival Closing Reception · UNCW Cultural Arts Building

                Lizzy Lou’s Family Farm: Hands on Field Trip for Kids · 4:00 PM · Lizzy Lou’s Family Farm · Currie, NC

30-Jul     Blockade Runner Beach Sweep · Blockade Runner Beach Resort · Wrightsville Beach

                Movies In The Park presents Coco · 8:00 PM · Ocean Isle Beach · Ocean Isle Beach, NC

31-Jul     Walking Tour of the Historic Carolina Beach Boardwalk · Carolina Beach Boardwalk

                NC Arts Council’s Artist Fellowship Exhibition · Cameron Art Museum


Luxury Property Spotlight: Asheville, St. Barthelemy, and Cancun

Intracoastal Realty’s luxury listings are featured on LuxuryPortfolio.com, the award-winning website that attracts over 3 million high-net-worth visitors.  We often spotlight outstanding listings from around the world on this blog.  This month’s property selections showcase stunning architecture and exceptional interior and exterior design in exotic locations!  We hope you enjoy learning more about these three extraordinary properties.


A remarkable architectural achievement, villa Artepea was designed to fully optimize its environment in the heart of the Domaine de Lurin. Johannes Zingerle’s project  is harmoniously integrated into the land thanks to a bridge, a unique feature in St Barths, a lift and a building set over three levels.  The surrounding nature blends beautifully with the lovely tropical garden, where you can through the stone paths and across the beautiful lawn, smelling the delicate scent of jasmine.

For the design, stone floors and customized wood furnishings provide a natural, mineral atmosphere, where elegance and simplicity prevail.

For the layout, the main floor has a fully open lounge/dining room that extends onto the terrace where you can laze in the sun next to the long emerald pool, facing St Jean bay. The kitchen, a TV lounge and a first bedroom can also be found on this level.

The master bedroom occupies the 1st floor, with a huge sofa facing the panoramic window, a designer desk, and height of luxury is an outdoor bathtub and shower, nestled in an alcove.  The garden level offers two bedrooms and the technical rooms. The villa also has  high-tech equipment, including a home control system and curved flat screen televisions.

Modern and refined, yet still warm and inviting, villa Artepea ideally reflects tropical elegance.

See it!


Spectacular designer home in Puerto Cancun.  This unique residence of 6512 Sq.ft on a 6000 Sq. ft lot offers three bedrooms, canal front and is a ‘one of a kind’ opportunity for owning a fully furnished ‘turn key’ home. It’s prime location on one of the best spots in this gated community and a well thought out architectural concept gives it great privacy.

It is located inside Cancun’s modern high end gated development ‘’Puerto Cancun’’, one of Mexico’s most exclusive Marinas, which offers residential and commercial amenities. A new spectacular Marina Mall has just opened its doors offering the best international and local stores and many new restaurants and bars offer great food and entertainment around the marina walks. Puerto Cancun is right between Cancun’s famous ‘Hotel Zone’ and Down Town’ in the very best location.

The residence is very well thought out and designed with a lot of luxury details, and furnished with great taste. It’s in ‘’ready to move in’ condition.  The location of this canal home is inside a private gated residential development with 24 hour security control.  The large terrace has a pool and a wooden sun deck and offers a very private outdoor dining area.  A 75 foot dock is right next to the terrace area.

It is definitely worth to take a look at this property if you are looking for a luxury residence in Cancun.

See it!


Historic 1926 home in highly desirable community of Lake View Park.  Restored and renovated while keeping the coveted detailing that make this era’s homes so in demand. Get your daily exercise on the trails or use the non-motorized boat access on Beaver Lake less than a half mile from your door.

Updated mechanicals, including central AC. Historic charm: stone fireplaces, arched doorways and incredible lush, mature landscaping. Conveniences for today’s lifestyle. Stonework by Grove Park Inn masons.

This 3-story home, which features approximately 7,525 square feet, is situated on 1.8 acres of land.

See it!

Breaking Down the Zestimate

When it comes to purchasing a new home, or selling the one in which you currently reside, the initial process can be confusing and overwhelming until you get the assistance of a good real estate professional.  So, it stands to reason that when beginning the process, buyers and sellers might do some preliminary research using a third-party site like Zillow.

Zillow is known for price estimates, both for buyers and renters, as well as providing limited community information for those who have never visited the neighborhood. On the outside, it seems like a handy resource when dipping a toe into the waters of real estate.  However, the property information and price estimates are often inaccurate, which can create major issues for buyers and sellers.  In other words, if you decide to use these big third-party websites, proceed with caution or forgo them altogether and get accurate data from a trusted, local real estate website and resource.

When you need assistance in your pursuit of the perfect home, there are several reasons to turn to an established agency with local knowledge and experienced real estate agents on its side. Otherwise, you may find yourself relying on the Zestimate, a computer-generated estimate that is not always the best measure of a home’s value.  Zillow knows this, and discloses this in small print on their site.

How is the Zestimate made?

As Zillow states, the Zestimate is meant only as an expression of the estimated market value, not an actual appraisal. The site is actually a computer program that automatically generates its report based on what is available to anyone: data and statistics that can be accessed with relative ease by the general public. As such, the program doesn’t take into account the additions you or its previous owner might have added while in residence. This can affect the Zestimate, putting the home at a lower or higher value depending on the extent of repairs or damage.

In Southeastern NC, we’ve seen Zestimates on some properties be off by as much as 45%.  For illustration purposes, evan a 15% margin of error on a $400,000 home results in a difference of $60,000 in value!  Further, the same algorithm to estimate the value of a home in a Detroit suburb is used to estimate the value of a home on the water in our region.  That’s pretty telling, isn’t it?

Even more telling is this article, which features information about the home of Zillow’s founder and CEO.  The day before his home sold for $1.05 million, the Zestimate for his property showed $1.75 million.  Need we say more?

How can your agency help clear the air?

When it comes time to sell or buy a home, don’t always trust that the Zestimate has given your house enough credit for what it’s worth.  Instead, broach the subject with a trusted real estate agent.  He or she can walk you through the criteria in further detail, help you get a professional appraisal and, for sellers, pull a list of comparable properties that have recently sold.  And while Zillow does have access to area information to prep you and your family for relocation, a local real estate agent has the insider knowledge that can never be replaced by statistics alone.

When it comes to your home, whether you’re buying or selling one, it’s important to have all the information available to you. With the help of well-established agencies like Intracoastal Realty, you can be sure you’ll have all you need to get settled. Contact us today to help you with the process!