Tag Archives: Charlotte Market

How to Submit a Successful Architectural Review Application

Screenshot 2018-09-07 12.36.28Every season brings a new opportunity to express your individuality as a homeowner through colorful expressions of flowers and hardscapes as well as changes to your home’s exterior.

Beautiful landscaping, exterior color refreshes or changes, adding creature comforts such as shade trees or screen porches, or to make necessary repairs or updates to your yard or home can maintain your property’s condition and increase property values, if done correctly. If you live in a neighborhood with a home owner’s association (HOA), you must abide by the bylaws and covenants of the community with any changes to your lot or structure to avoid penalties and fees. The purpose of the HOA approval process isn’t control but protection. To protect all homeowner’s property values, every neighbor must apply for approval of projects that influence the overall appeal and value of the neighborhood. The process of getting approval to make your desired changes is easy!

Although different homeowners associations and community subdivisions have different rules and regulations, they all aspire to maintain and increase the property values of the neighborhood to the benefit of the homeowner, the community, and the local real estate market. Before making a request to your Architectural Review Committee (ARC), be sure that you understand what’s required of your specific community. Most associations require that before you make any changes to your lot or building a request for architectural review must be submitted to the board of directors and/or its appointed ARC.

Screenshot 2018-09-07 12.56.21ARC members are volunteers from your own neighborhood who have a vested interest in maintaining property values. Most ARC’s have the right to automatically deny incomplete forms or requests. And generally your time line for consideration begins only with a complete application. Once a complete application is received, written approval should take fewer than 30 days.

Approval of an application is subject to your association account being up-to-date with no outstanding fees in order to for your application to be considered by the ARC. No work on a project should be started until approval is received in writing from the ARC. Once approved, the homeowner is responsible for the timely completion completion of the project and the prompt removal of any debris. It’s also the homeowner’s responsibility to comply with zoning building codes and laws of all governmental authorities and to be aware of any easements that exist on your property. A land survey will reveal any easements (areas not to be disturbed or built upon) or encroachments (areas where other people’s property such as fence or building extend onto your property).

The architectural review committee has a higher authority than that of any county or city codes.

Most architectural review committees have an online application process but they may also have a street address to send the application to as well.

A completed application consists of the filled Architectural Request Form, a detailed description of your project showing the nature, kind, shape, height, and materials of the project. Color samples and representative photo are also usually required. If you are making any permanent changes such as installing a shed, fans, or pool a certified land survey is required showing the location of your home, property lines, and any easements on the property.

If you are installing an in-ground pool, additional patio area, or other concrete areas, the impervious surface calculations are also required. Be sure that you are staying within the maximum allowable percentages for impervious surfaces allowed by your county and/or city. Realize that this might also impact your water bill as the runoff will be increased.

When installing a fence, your adjoining neighbors signature is required agreeing to the installation.

The best way to avoid any delays to your application and project is to have the required checklist items included and application completed with no open items. The application will require your name, your phone number, your address, your email address. Also required is the name of the person or company performing the work, their contact information, as well as your desired start and completion dates.

Screenshot 2018-09-07 13.07.39Following these guidelines and using the provided checklist for required items will help you submit a successful ARC application. Your neighbors will thank you for beautifying your home and lot and helping to preserve and increase property values.

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CSR headshot 2017

Chrystal Safari Roy

Chrystal Roy is Broker-in-Charge of Real Estate Realty LLC (RER) and Principal and Broker-in-Charge of The Safari Group LLC of RER as well as on the Architectural Review Committee of her neighborhood.

Her favorite things about the neighborhood include its diversity, friendliness, small size, empty pool (usually) and convenience to all the necessities that make life easier. When she isn’t glued to the computer screen or driving around in her mobile office selling real estate, she enjoys spending time with her husband, six sons, her first sweet smelling year old baby granddaughter, fur grands, swimming and water aerobics in the neighborhood pool, writing inspirational and professional help books, streaming her favorite movies and cooking homemade meals. You can reach her at Chrystal@TheSafariGroup.com

Why are Some Homes in Your Neighborhood Not Selling?

There are three reasons a home will not sell.


One reason a home fails to sell is price.  Right pricing is critical to a making the sale versus having a listing.  Though you and I didn’t create the market, the market controls price.  In every market, right pricing is important.  Pricing reflects the perceived and true values of a property and is based on many factors including location, condition, method of build, curb appeal, floor plan desirability, and materials used, to name a few.

Within a given neighborhood, prices range depending on all the factors mentioned above, including recent sales values established by buyers, supported by appraisers.  A property is only as valuable as what a buyer’s willing to pay for it.



You have maximum control over showings, with the ability to prevent and counter all showing objections.  The greater limits you put on showings, the fewer buyers will be able to see your property to consider it for purchase.  Ideally, you’ll have no restrictions as to when and for how long a showing is scheduled, with no advance notice needed, but sometimes life doesn’t work that way.  If you do need to block off times or require advance notice, such as 24 Hours Notice, before approving a showing, be flexible when possible.  When an agent schedules a tour, you might have a problem with agents who have tight tour arranged for clients whose schedules might not permit revisiting your listing before a decision is made.

It’s always best to live by the 10 Minute Rule when listing a house for sale.  That means, if you can’t put it away in 10 minutes, don’t bring it out.  And while you’ll most likely still need to cook, eat, entertain, and well, live, while your property is listed, keep in mind that holidays bring in a lot of visitors who are interested in moving and who might find a holiday the perfect time to tour.   If you’ve decorated for the holidays, what better way to show off your property!  Flexibility and readiness are the keys to a successful showing.

3. Marketing

The National Association of REALTORS® study shows nearly 90% of buyers begin their home search online before they consult a REALTOR®.  37% found the actual house they purchased online.  It’s been nearly a decade since LA Times discontinued its real estate section of the newspaper.

My job is to expose your listing with the best possible photos and copy to the agents and buyers who are ready, willing, and able to make the purchase.

Great exposure includes Agent to Agent marketing, including electronic and paper flyers, virtual tours, REALTOR and office meetings, and constant communication.  Once your property is shown, follow up is essential.  If not on the buyer’s top 3, I ask this question:  “Is there a price at which your clients would buy this house?”

My Buyer-Targeted online marketing includes my brokerage website, the local MLS Board members-only website, and over 320 local, national and international portals such as Zillow.com, Craigslist.org, etc., and social media outlets such as twitter, linkedin, facebook, blogs such as wordpress, ActiveRain and others, signs and flyers, Open Houses, and neighbor-to-neighbor advertising, and other networking, in addition to strategic print advertising.   The goal is to get your listing in the top of google and other search engine searches.  I’m specially trained to do just that.

I know you’re thinking that because of everything that I do, much more than what other agents do, that it would be more expensive.  It doesn’t cost you anything more to list with me than with an agent who only puts the listing in the computer.

If you’re in my market and are seriously considering hiring a real estate agent who specializes in getting homes sold quickly and for a high price, give me a call.  You’ll be glad you did.


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I love what I do, I’m good at it, & I’d love to work with you! My personal best is 8th with foreclosure bid; we not only won (it was NOT more $), but listing agent complimented me on my complete package, & asked permission to use my secret weapon!

My listing was on Google, first page, number three position, ‘above the fold’ within minutes of my blog post featuring it!

Chrystal is a REALTOR® and principal of The Safari Group, a local, homegrown real estate firm, specializing in all phases of the residential and small business real estate market, including New Construction, Finance, Marketing, Objection Handling, Relocation, Technology, Foreclosures, Short Sales, and Luxury Homes and GREEN Features.  Contact her at 704.562.1030  TXT/PH or Chrystal@TheSafariGroup.com




May 12, 2010 (Charlotte, NC)  Chrystal Safari, real estate broker and principal, announced today the launch of The Safari Group, a local, homegrown real estate firm, specializing in all phases of the residential and small business real estate market, including New Construction, Finance, Marketing, Objection Handling, Relocation, Technology, Foreclosures, Short Sales, and Luxury Homes.

The Safari Group consults on all aspects of real estate ownership from acquisition to liquidation, portfolio development, and property management.  As an internationally recognized Certified EcoBroker®, Chrystal offers guidelines to assist home buyers and sellers in evaluating true green features and their benefits to real property value, home ownership, tax savings and mortgage closing table capital contributions.  Chrystal is backed by certified and insured professionals to assess and protect your energy utilizing investments based upon your personal needs.

Seasoned homeowners Rick and Scherel Fisher shared, “Chrystal’s suggested listing price had us a showing and an offer within hours of the house being listed.  We had no trouble getting an adequate appraisal for the house and added on closing costs.  She helped us get to closing with difficult buyers with bad credit that we could have never managed on our own.  We highly recommend her real estate services.”

About Chrystal Safari:

Chrystal Safari has over 16 years experience in personal property management and residential real estate sales and is a licensed REALTOR® in North and South Carolina.  As a MASTERS Designation holder, she is a specialist in New Construction, Finance, Marketing, Objection Handling, Relocation, Technology, and is a multi-million dollar producer.  Chrystal is a member in good standing of the Charlotte Regional Association of REALTORS®, North Carolina Association of REALTORS®, and National Association of REALTORS®.



Chrystal Safari
The Safari Group
PO Box 1192
Pineville, NC 28134

Tips for Getting the Highest Appraised Value for Your Property

Daily Real Estate news reports Chicago Tribune, Mary Umberger’s (08/02/2009) findings on how to assure the highest value is calculated for your home by an appraiser.

Maureen Sweeney, a Chicago-area owner of an appraisal firm, gave several tips on getting an accurate and fair appraisal of your property. This is more important than ever due to our declining market-influenced neighborhood values and since foreclosures are now included among the comparables.

No one knows your home better than you, so naturally you should be present during the appraisal. Follow the appraiser around, pointing out improvements you’ve made to the home and provide him with a written list to take with him as well. Provide a copy of the most recent tax bill, any pending assessments, an HOA declaration which shows the amenities and HOA responsibilities to your community, and a copy of the survey to the appraiser.

No one knows your market better than your REALTOR®. Make sure your REALTOR® is present during the appraisal and is asking good questions. Your REALTOR® should make sure the appraiser is aware of the correct neighborhood boundaries and that the appraiser is truly comparing the home to similar properties. Your REALTOR® should provide his or her own list of comparable homes most like yours in the same condition, neighborhood, size and type that have sold and closed in the last 6 months. Your REALTOR® is the best person to offer a professional opinion about what makes your property worth more than any other properties in the immediate area.

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Chrystal Safari’s job? she gives great advice! She is a full-time real estate broker with Peters & Associates, a boutique firm in Charlotte, North Carolina, specializing in luxury homes from $700,000 and up, and is a MASTERS Designee specializing in New Construction, Finance, Marketing, Objection Handling, Relocation, and Technology. Visit ChrystalSafari.com for more information on luxury real estate, and Mark it your new Favorite!

Charlotte Market 4th Smallest National Drop

‘Even with the current market downturn, the multi-faceted strength of our market has traditionally been reasonable appreciation, affordability, and transition.  While there are many deeply discounted homes available now in the form of builder inventory and foreclosed homes, our strong market has resulted in great news for most homeowners,’ adds Chrystal Safari, Luxury Home Specialist with Peters & Associates, Incorporated, Charlotte, NC.  

The Charlotte Business Journal reported June 30, 2009, Charlotte-area home prices are down 10% in April from a year earlier. Prices rose 0.5 percent in April from March.

The 10 percent price decline for the past 12 months was the fourth-smallest among the 20 markets tracked by the Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Index.

Denver had the healthiest market of the 20 cities, with a 4.9 percent drop in home prices from April 2008. Dallas ranked second (down 5 percent). Boston was third (down 7.7 percent). The overall index of the 20 cities saw an 18.1 percent price decline. Phoenix was the weakest market, with a price drop of 35.3 percent, followed by Las Vegas (down 32.2 percent) and San Francisco (down 28 percent).

The index says as of April, average home prices across the United States were at similar levels to what they were in the middle of 2003.

From the peak in the second quarter of 2006, average home prices in the 20 markets are down 32.6 percent. The S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index tracks sales prices of typical single-family homes in leading metropolitan areas.

Chrystal shares, ‘Affordability is still key.  Many homes at all price points are ready now.  Rates are still great.  There are loan programs out there with 85% Loan to Value, with no MPI.  If you’re in the market for your next owner occupant home or would like to add to your rental/investment portfolio call me.  I’m at your service.’

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Living, playing, and working in south Charlotte for over 27 years, and with over 14 years experience in the real estate field as an investor and Luxury Home Specialist, I have the knowledge, experience and discretion you need to maximize your return on investment whether for your personal home, investment portfolio, or small business property.  Contact me at Chrystal.Safari@gmail.com

Builder Wade Jurney expands to Charlotte by taking C.P. Morgan lots

Friday, June 19, 2009

The Charlotte Business Journal’s Laura Youngs reports that Triad builder Wade Jurney is expanding to Charlotte by taking C.P. Morgan lots.

Wade Jurney, president of the Greensboro-based company, says he has 351 lots — all from defunct Indiana builder C.P. Morgan Homes Inc. — under contract throughout 30 Charlotte neighborhoods.

The company also has 52 C.P. Morgan lots under contract in the Triad, including five developments in Rural Hall, Burlington, Greensboro and Winston-Salem.

Jurney says he hopes to close by early July on all of the properties. Three model homes in Charlotte were part of the deal and already have opened as sales centers for Jurney Homes.

Jurney declines to give the price of the lots, since the sale is not complete. But he says he is getting a discount on the $33,000 per lot that C.P. Morgan paid. Jurney is putting together an equity group that would finance the majority of the project. An official with C.P. Morgan confirms the deal is pending.

So far, three sales consultants have been hired to run the Charlotte offices, and Jurney has added a construction superintendent here.

By the fourth quarter, the company plans to have up to 13 employees in Charlotte.

Jurney says the company will offer the same starter-home product it builds in the Triad, which often runs between $100,000 and $200,000.

He says he harbors some concerns about expanding into Charlotte, which has been hit hard by losses in the banking sector and foreclosure issues.

However, he says he wanted to move now to take advantage of discounts, as well as a strong available labor pool. The expansion also will mean Charlotte and the Triad will share fixed overhead costs, such as administrative operations.

Jurney hopes his homes will appeal to the sought-after first-time buyer, who is eligible for an $8,000 tax credit before year end.

“We’re going in looking to be the lowest-priced and best-value builder,” he says.

Jurney is one of several Triad builders looking to take advantage of bargains on land in a slow market. With some builders going out of business and their property left behind, development and construction firms that have survived the downturn are increasingly interested in buying.

‘With complimentary elevations and modern floor plans, Wade Jurney looks like a good fit for current homeowners in existing CP Morgan communities,’ adds Chrystal Safari of Peters & Associates, a boutique firm specializing in luxury homes in the Charlotte Metro area.

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A Charlotte area native, and licensed in NC & SC, Chrystal is very experienced with international relocation, home buying and selling and with rental portfolio development and holds MASTERS Designation specializing in New Construction, Finance, Marketing, Objection Handling, Relocation, and Technology and is a member in good standing with Charlotte Regional Association of REALTORS®, North Carolina Association of REALTORS® and National Association of REALTORS®