Charlotte continues to be at the top of Forbes Magazine’s ‘Fastest Growing Cities In The U.S.’ list, and as with any city experiencing explosive growth, development must spread outwards. Once pastoral farmland used for growing cotton and raising cattle, Southeast Charlotte is now one of two of the city’s districts that provides the bulk of revenue to the city in both property tax and business revenue. Home to two of Charlotte’s largest business centers outside of Center City (Southpark and Ballantyne Corporate Park), where four of five of Charlotte’s largest private schools are also located, Southeast Charlotte is the hub of young professional family living. You’ll also find three of Charlotte’s largest YMCA branches in Southeast Charlotte, and it is impossible to head out errand running on a weekend and not see children in soccer, t-ball or dance gear running around with busy families. Thanks to a combination of visionary developers and strong zoning, you’ll find beautiful tree-lined winding major thoroughfares and artfully landscaped cul-de sac neighborhoods centered around private swim and tennis clubs, interspersed with well-planned mixed use developments. With everything from posh multi million-dollar homes in gated communities like SouthPark’s Morrocroft, and family neighborhoods like Barclay Downs centered around a swim and racquet club, to small townhouse developments springing up all around Ballantyne and farther south, Southeast Charlotte has access to its urban center, but it still feels like coming home. RETURN TO SOUTHEAST CHARLOTTE NEIGHBORHOOD HOMES FOR SALE SEARCH
2 cups halved seedless red grapes
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons minced shallot
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 (12-oz.) French bread baguette, cut into 15 to 20 (1/2-inch-thick) slices
3 tablespoons butter, softened
2 ounces crumbled blue cheese, softened
1/3 cup chopped toasted pecans
Garnish: chopped fresh thyme
Preheat oven to 425°. Toss together first 6 ingredients. Arrange grapes in a single layer in a small roasting pan; bake 15 to 20 minutes or until grapes wilt and liquid forms a thin syrup. Remove from oven. Increase oven temperature to broil with oven rack 7 inches from heat. Arrange bread slices in a single layer on a baking sheet. Stir together butter and cheese, and spread evenly over bread slices. Broil 2 to 3 minutes or until browned and bubbly. Spoon grape mixture over toasted bread, and sprinkle with pecans.
While it seems like winter will never leave us here in Charlotte, it’s never too early to begin thinking about spring maintenance for your townhome. While this annual chore is typically not an exciting or fun task, it’s necessary to keep your home running smoothly and efficiently throughout the year. Making a plan now to tackle these items both inside and outside of your home will allow you to get them over and done with in a short amount of time.
Warm weather can bring a variety of pests from termites, ants to bees and roaches who are looking for water or relief from the heat. To eliminate these pests make sure that all of your doors and windows are sealed properly as well as along baseboards, around pipes and behind sinks. Double check any window or door screens to ensure they don’t have any holes or tears that may allow small pests to make their way inside as well. Also, inspect the exterior of your home for any cracks or holes that may need to be sealed or filled. Pay close attention to where any utility lines or other items may enter your house from outside.
Plan to have your air conditioning unit serviced before you think you’ll use it for the first time. Be sure to change your filter at least every three months while the unit is being used. Not only will this limit dust and potential allergens in your home, but it will help your system running more efficiently which will save you money on your electricity bills.
Windows are an important item to inspect before warmer months. Ensure that they’re in good, working condition by checking that they work properly; they fit tightly and that the weather stripping hasn’t torn or cracked. Eliminating any places that air may leak into or out of your home will help to reduce your energy bills.
Inspect the exterior of your home for any places that may need new glazing compound, caulking or painting. ALERT HOA if you need them to notify the management company.
While these tasks may not seem like top priority on your weekends, it’s important to remember that saving money and stress is the goal in the long run. For more information on interior and exterior home maintenance, visit www.nahb.org/forconsumers.
Charlotte continues to be at the top of Forbes Magazine’s ‘Fastest Growing Cities in the U.S.’ list. As with any city experiencing explosive growth, development must spread outwards. Once pastoral farmland used for growing cotton and raising cattle, Southeast Charlotte is now one of two of the city’s districts that provides the bulk of revenue to the city in both property tax and business revenue. Southeast Charlotte is home to two of Charlotte’s largest business centers outside of Center City (Southpark and Ballantyne Corporate Park), where four of five of Charlotte’s largest private schools are also located. It is the hub of young professional family living. You’ll also find three of Charlotte’s largest YMCA branches in Southeast Charlotte. It is impossible to head out to run an errand on a weekend and not see children playing soccer, baseball, lacrosse, t-ball or dance gear with their busy families. Thanks to a combination of visionary developers, builders and strong zoning regulations, you’ll find beautiful tree-lined major thoroughfares and artfully landscaped cul-de-sac neighborhoods centered around private swim and tennis clubs like Foxcroft, Barclay Downs, Mountainbrook and Providence Plantation. Interspersed are well-planned mixed use developments like Morrison, Ballantyne Corporate Park and Blakeney. If living in a golf community is your pleasure, then visit Piper Glen, Ballantyne Country Club, Cedarwood Country Club or Raintree. There is everything from posh multi million-dollar homes in gated communities like SouthPark’s Morrocroft and Seven Eagles to small townhouse developments like Louisburg Square next to Whole Foods in Southpark. With many more homes and retail centers in the development stages, Southeast Charlotte has access to an urban center. RETURN TO SOUTHEAST CHARLOTTE NEIGHBORHOOD HOMES FOR SALE SEARCH
This former mill-community-turned-arts-district screams bohemian chic. The North Davidson Arts District, known by locals as NODA is just north of Center City and is home to a funky collection of galleries, independent bookstores, performance venues, boutique casual dining, live music and craft beer. Highland Park Mill and the surrounding mill village was erected in the early 1900’s and now house craft beer venues. The onset of trolley service connected Uptown to North Charlotte, which brought commuting residents and millworkers to the area. During The Great Depression, Trolley service ceased and the neighborhood fell into decay. In 1986, The Historic North Charlotte Neighborhood Association was established to redevelop the mills and improve the neighborhood. In 1989, two of Charlotte’s most visionary creatives, Ruth Ava Lyons and Paul Sires opened Center of the Earth Gallery and became actively involved in the organic growth of NODA as an arts district. Other galleries sprung up and Charlottte’s first gallery crawl began, replete with capoeira dancers, fire spinners and street artists. NODA is home to Charlotte’s most beloved French Bakery, Amelie’s, which is now open 24 hours and expanding to south Charlotte and uptown. A number of Charlotte’s more unusual dining venues are located here and many young creative professionals have chosen to call NODA home. The lavender and plum painted gingerbread and bungalow homes gives a sense of energy and vibrancy. NODA is poised for continued growth as the light-rail extension, which will run from uptown through the NoDa and University areas to UNC Charlotte gets underway. The city recently approved rezoning for the construction of of a 250-unit mixed use development, as NODA begins to mirror the explosive growth seen in the more established SouthEnd neighborhood. RETURN TO NODA CHARLOTTE NEIGHBORHOOD HOMES FOR SALE SEARCH
And so it begins. After 25+ years working with Charlotte's most outstanding purveyors, it is time to share the wealth of information I have harvested over the years in real estate, publishing and public service with friends, clients and comrades. To kick off Jan's list, allow me to introduce to you what I consider to be the finest commercial and residential landscape design purveyor in the region: Henry DeBoer and the team at DeSignia Landscaping.
As dreamily described on their website home page, the artisans at DeSignia take landscape design to new heights. You can take a virtual walk through their work through the extensive video and photo galleries on the website at designialandscape.com, and imagine taking an evening stroll on a DeSignia-built paver walkway with fragrant blossoms in the air and presence of a tranquil waterfall all within reach.
DeSignia Landscaping specializes in landscape consultation, design, installation, planting, irrigation, lighting and maintenance for both commercial and residential clients. The firm is a LEED certified landscape firm with organic programs, and they regularly create sustainable innovative designs that can transform your dream landscape into a reality. Some of their areas of expertise and experience include fireplaces and fire pits; hard-scape designs like retaining walls, walk ways pavers and patios, outdoor kitchens; water features, pergolas, arbors and fences.
Owner Henry DeBoer holds a Bachelor’s degree in horticulture and has been involved in the landscape industry for over 30 years. He began his work under the direction of his father who owned a prominent design-build firm north of Charlotte. As the team’s leader, Henry contributes his vast experience in every aspect of DeSignia and maintains a current level of knowledge by attending association seminars and programs. His networking strengths have created a diverse and growing client base for DeSignia.
DeSignia Landscaping has received more than 11 awards from the Southern Spring Show, including The People's Choice and Best of Show, Home-a-Rama at the Sanctuary 'Gold Award', and has participated twice in the WCNC Levine Charity Homes Event. Below you'll find a list of DeSignia's professional credentials and affiliations.
PLANET – Professional Landcare Network
NCNLA – North Carolina Nursery and Landscape Association
CGMA – Carolina Grounds Management Association
NCTC – North Carolina Turfgrass Council
North Carolina Landscape Contractor License #1299 – Henry J. DeBoer
Certified Landscape Designer #1803 – Mark Selles
Certified Landscape Technician: Exterior – Steve DeLuca & Matthew Posvar
026-Ground Pesticide Applicator License # 24481 Henry J. DeBoer & 24965 James H. DeBoer
Authorized Belgard Contractors
International Concrete Pavers Institute (ICPI) Certified
North Carolina Certified Irrigation Contractor License #C097 Matthew Posvar