Costello Real Estate & Investments Real Estate Blog

Costello Real Estate to surpass 100 brokers, opens Raleigh, launches studio and partners with Giveback Homes


Costello Real Estate to surpass 100 brokers, opens Raleigh, launches studio and partners with Giveback Homes

  • Costello REI peopels into 2018 with a team of 100+, an increase from 20 a year ago, establishing the agency as one of the fastest growing brokerages in North Carolina

Costello Real Estate has reached a significant milestone, surpassing 100 team members in the beginning of 2018. Last year, the firm relocated its Charlotte HQ to a state of the art office and dynamic South End location. Costello REI Raleigh is now open and the firm is developing markets in South Carolina and western North Carolina.

“Zillow ranked Raleigh and Charlotte increasingly hot North Carolina markets second and fourth on its list for 2018,” quotes Natalie Costello, Costello REI Owner/Broker-In-Charge. “We are strategically serving these markets of increasing demand and specifically Charlotte as the number one city attracting millennials.”

Costello REI’s remarkable growth can be attributed to a platform of broker empowerment, ownership and a culture of Winning Together. “We have established a creative culture and are constantly evolving tools and technologies to educate and equip the team to better serve clients and market properties,” says Costello REI President John Costello.

Supporting the expanding team of brokers attracted to Costello REI’s unique referral model, the agency has launched various programs including a studio dubbed “Costello Content,” “Costello Women’s Initiative (CWIN),” a highly engaged task force focused on advancing the work of female Realtors within the organization and “Costello...

Costello Real Estate & Investments Builds Social Good Program With Giveback Homes

Charlotte-based real estate firm partners on giving initiative with community focus

CHARLOTTE, NC., February 6, 2018 -- Costello Real Estate & Investments, with offices in Charlotte and Raleigh is committed to bringing turn-key solutions to buyers, sellers, and investors, has announced that it is a brokerage-level partner with Giveback Homes, real estate’s social good leaders. Giveback Homes and Costello REI will develop both local and international giving programs to deliver safe housing for those in need.

“As my husband John and I have built our company, we’ve focused on listening to the needs of our clients and delivering value. We know that giving back matters as much to them as it does to us. We are excited to be working with Giveback Homes and can’t wait to collaborate on social giving,” said Natalie Costello, Owner and Broker-In-Charge of Costello REI.

Costello REI knows that investing in real estate can build wealth and provide a safe and comfortable place to live. Agents at Costello REI are experts in the buying and selling transaction process and leverage best-in-class marketing strategies and cutting-edge industry technology.

“The world’s most progressive companies understand that social giving is a key part of doing business in today’s world. We are honored that John Costello and his team selected Giveback Homes as their giving partner,” added Blake Andrews, Giveback Homes founder. “We applaud their commitment to aligning their business success with a social good component.”

Giveback Homes has worked on over 50 affordable housing projects throughout the United States and has built over 200 complete homes for families in need around the globe. Through their partnership...

How to Make the MOST out of your next Open House!


5 best practices for launching your home-buying journey.

Open houses are classics! They've been around for years and will continue to stay throughout the buying and selling process for years to come! 

But as a buyer, are you making the most out of your open house experience?

Here are some best practices and helpful questions for buyers at all ends of the home-buying spectrum

1- Open Houses are a great way to learn the market!

For the most part, open houses are just that — open. They make it possible for anyone to see a property in a certain time period, without an appointment or even being a very serious buyer. New buyers can use this opportunity to get a feel for the market before committing to an agent.

2- You don’t have to sign in (but don’t be rude)

The biggest fear of some newer buyers is that a real estate agent has to grab their information and call them all the time. For safety reasons, the agent is keeping a look out for who is coming and going. It’s polite to say hello and introduce yourself to the agent, but you can also politely decline to sign in and let them know you’re just looking.

 3 - Watch the other buyers

If you observe a lot of people walking in and out quickly, the home probably has some issues. However, if you notice the buyers are hanging around and asking questions, it could be a sign this is a well-priced and “hot” listing. If you’re interested,  this could help you learn about the competition.

4 - Ask the agent questions

Real Estate Agents are happy to help! Their goal is to answer questions and ensure you are well informed about the property!

5 - Be open to meeting your future...

Upcoming Events this Fall For You and Your Friends!

Upcoming Events in Charlotte, NC for You and Your Friends

Upcoming Events in Charlotte This Fall

Charlotte, NC hosts many different events throughout the year. This fall, there are many events in and around the area that are perfect to take family or friends to. In the next week alone there are endless lists of things to do in Charlotte, NC.

Charlotte is a very inclusive city for music lovers; there are a wide variety of singers that perform in Charlotte. From hip-hop to country, rock, indie and the blues, you can find the right kind of musical event for you. It’s also a great city to experience culture.

Here, we break down a wide variety of events coming up in the next few weeks!

Chinese Latern Festival – Now through October 29

Experience a whole new culture when you visit this festival in October, these aren’t your ordinary lanterns either; they’re huge! It’s a perfect place for a weeknight activity because events start at 5:30 and end early in the evening. From food trucks, to Kung Fu shows and even lessons, you’ll take something home from this festival.


World of Outlaws World Finals – November 2 – 4

This three-day dirt racing event is sure to keep you on the edge of your seat. The event is held at Charlotte Motor Speedway and each day holds a different type of racing and events. If you’re not familiar with this type of racing, don’t...

The Top 5 Playdate locations in Charlotte, NC

The Top 5 Playdate locations in Charlotte

If you're new to Charlotte and want to learn about  great locations for your little ones, check out these top 5 locations below. 

Freedom Park - Located in Uptown Charlotte, Freedom park has a wide variety of fun activities. This includes a huge jungle gym set, basketball courts, soccer fields and more. They even have a play area that resembles the Carolina Panthers training camp activities.

Discovery Place Science is located in uptown Charlotte! This is a great exploratory area for your kids to be hands on and check out interactive, exciting exhibitions. While they learn, you can enjoy a location that offers a wide variety of activities for your little one.

Discovery Place Kids - Huntersville

Skyzone is fun trampoline park that is age friendly. On Saturday mornings they host toddler time and offer separate locations for children of all ages. If you’re looking to have them bounce around and get all of their wiggles out, Skyzone is the place for you!

Romp n Roll  in Harrisburg NC!  A wonderful location that offers gym related activities...

10 of the Hottest Restaurants in Charlotte!



Charlotte, North Carolina, a vibrant city in the South, is well-known for plenty of things: home Johnson and Wales University’s newest campus, emerging as America’s second largest banking town, and, most recently, rising as one of the most popular cities for foodies to explore.

What was once a town where you could only find steak and potatoes, is now an ocean of endless possibilities, thanks to Charlotte’s multi-cultural population.

The city’s recent banking boom attracted a diverse workforce, which in turn, created a taste for international foods. Food lovers from near and far come to this Southern city and have an out-of-this-world culinary experience.

These are 10 of the hottest Restaurants in Charlotte you should not miss out on:

Futo Buta

Futo Buta is a modern take on a Japanese Izakaya, which is essentially a low-key pub where people can sit and unwind after a long day of work.

Joe’s Doughs


5 Easy Ways to Volunteer in your Community!

As we approach the Fall season and near the holidays, we all enter a time of giving and helping others. While we hope to maintain this feeling all year around, what better time to jump in and give back then right NOW.

Costello REI recently embraced this feeling by connecting with the Second Harvest Foodbank of Metrolina. Our goal is to create ongoing volunteer opportunities that allows our team to grow and give back. We want to be in a giving mindset and maintain that focus throughout the year.

Do you want to get involved but not sure where to get started?

Check out 5 great ways to support the areas we live and love.

1. The Second Harvest Foodbank of Metrolina – “This organization strives through education, advocacy, and partnerships to eliminate hunger by the solicitation and distribution of food” .

It’s easy! You can go to the above website, click on give time and sign up for a variety of shifts that meets your schedule and needs.

2. Hands on Charlotte: This is a one-stop shop! If you want to learn about a variety of...

3 great ways to reduce your AC bill this summer!

Here are 3 great ways to keep your AC bills low:

1 - Replace or Maintain your AC Unit

Technology can play a role on the  AC efficiency. "If you swap your older air conditioner for a newer unit, you could reduce your energy costs by half", according to the Department of Energy.

Look for a high-energy-efficiency ratio, or EER, or an Energy Star-qualified unit. Higher EER ratings mean a more efficient air conditioner. Energy Star refers to a system adopted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Energy to identify energy-efficient products.

If you’re looking to maintain it, it’s important to keep the filter clean to allow good air movement and keep the unit leveled so the condensation properly drains.

2 - Use a fan!

“The key is to circulate air inside the house. If possible, operate fans on your home’s upper level and open the windows on a lower level. If you live in a one-story house or apartment, you should close windows near the fan and open windows in rooms far from the fan, preferably on your home’s windward side", according to the U.S. Department of Energy.

3 - Do you have a green thumb – start planting!

Planting leafy trees around the building’s exterior will stop the sun from shining inside your home. 

 “Most heat that accumulates inside a house comes directly from the sun shining on to the roof or through windows, and heating the house directly,” says John Krigger, owner of Saturn Resource Management, which offers energy conservation training in Helena, Montana.



Zumba Fitness

Have you ever wondered what the excitement, passion and love is ALL about around this hit fitness phenomenon called “ZUMBA”?

Why is Zumba fitness so popular among kids, adults and seniors?  Zumba is truly a unique class that allows you to “Ditch the Workout” and have a party ! It is a combination of choreographed dance moves representing Latin and Caribbean rhythms.  These dances are fun, energetic and upbeat! It truly makes you want to smile the whole time.

The best part is, it doesn’t feel like a workout! Zumba  is a dance based fitness class where you can enjoy a fitness party without feeling judged on your dancing abilities and choreography! You burn a ton of calories without realizing it because you’re letting loose and having fun!

The Zumba music includes Merengue, Salsa, Cumbia, Reggaetone, Samba and many more! It’s a great opportunity to learn about the various culturals while having fitness fun. 

The instructors tend to be full of energy to keep the classes creative and authentic! They are licensed instructors that are required to learn the Zumba styles and take intense training to ensure they understand the choreography!

The Colors are intense! You’ll find neon greens, yellows, pinks and much more! The colors “wow” your senses to ensure you’re ready to wake up and have a good time!

 My favorite part about Zumba is the diversity! Zumba appeals to all walks of life, culturals, genders and other demographics! We all want to be healthy and fit! Zumba is a fun, exciting way to get you there! You should check out a Zumba dance party the next time you consider a fitness class! 


5 Ladies Night Events to do with Friends

5 Great Ladies Night Events to Enjoy with Friends!

In honor of the Costello REI Ladies Night Out event this month, I'd like to share 5 fun outings to do with your girls!

1 - Wine & Painting! This is a huge hit for bachelorette events, corporate outings and bonding moments with friends. We're all busy during the week, so it's great to take time to relax with a paint brush, arouse our creative minds and drink a glass of wine with friends. A few locations include: Wine & Design, Paint & Sip and Wine & Canvas! Check them out. 

2 - Check out a Cooking Class! Sample a new cuisine, enhance your cooking skills or learn a new recipe with your friends. A great local place is Chef Alyssa's Kitchen! You can try a wide array of cuisines including: Thai, Italian and Tex Mex

3 - Movie Night! This is an oldie but goodie. It's so fun to invite your friends over for a popular movie or tv show in the comfort of your own home. 

4 - Go for a hike or a Zumba class! We all know a great way to let out energy is to exercise! Invite a few of your girlfriends out for a fun fitness class to have a blast and burn calories. 

5 - Spa Night! It's always fun to pamper yourself and unwind from a long, work week. Massages, nails and hair treatments are great ways to bounce back and get relaxed. A spa night coupled with your favorite girls = a recipe for a memorable evening!



Let's Eat Healthy Together

Let's get healthy together!

Check out a few healthy eating tips, that gives us a variety of ways that we can incorporate an overall nutritious and balanced lifestyle. 

How to Eat Healthy

It's easier than you think to start eating healthy! Take small steps each week to improve your nutrition and move toward a healthier you.

Eight Healthy Eating Goals

Small changes can make a big difference to your health. Try incorporating at least six of the eight goals below into your diet. Commit to incorporating one new healthy eating goal each week over the next six weeks. You can track your progress through PALA+.

Make half your plate fruits and vegetables: Choose red, orange, and dark-green vegetables like tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and broccoli, along with other vegetables for your meals. Add fruit to meals as part of main or side dishes or as dessert. The more colorful you make your plate, the more likely you are to get the vitamins, minerals, and fiber your body needs to be healthy.


It’s Not too late To Create the perfect Mother’s Day Gift!

It’s Not Too late to create the perfect Mother’s Day Gift!

 Thankfully, technology has made it fun and easy to create the perfect keepsake for Mom!

Here are 3 quick tips to make her day super special:

YOU – Moms are so happy to be with the ones she loves most. If you live at a distance you can Facetime, give her a phone call or send her a special thank you message.

Movie App – There is an amazing movie app where you can add memorable photos, collages and videos at the touch of a button. You can also add music and use the tunes you think she'll love most. 

Audio Message – It’s not too late to send her a special song, a voice text or have your kids say something sweet to mom via audio! This way she can play it all time and have a memorable keepsake that will last throughout the years!  


5 Simple Convenient Lifestyle Tips

Convenience is Key! 

Does it ever feel like there’s not enough hours in the day to get everything done? Between family life, working life and our personal lives, it can be challenging to take care of small necessities while making time for yourself.

Check out 5 Simple ways to make your busy lifestyle more convenient:

Online Grocery Shopping: There are a variety of companies that will grocery shop for you! This is a convenient way to type in your items and have them delivered directly to your home.  Publix offers Instacart, Harris Teeter provides Express Lane  and  select Walmart locations offers online grocery store shopping.  

Additionally, there are creative grocery options where you can have select items mailed directly to you such as Hello fresh!

Cleaning Services:  What a great idea to outsource a well-needed yet time consuming weekly task! If it becomes cost prohibitive to have a weekly cleaning service, perhaps you can check into a quarterly or annual option that will allow you to maintain your home in-between deep cleanings.

 Au Pair – This is an option for parents looking for extra hands! An Au Pair is a young adult from overseas who provides childcare services in exchange for room/board. This can provide your child with a live-in cultural enriching childcare option.  

FabFitFun boxes! A great way to experience new products conveniently is having different items sent to you!  I am a busy mom of 2 and getting to the mall to test new products has become nonexistent; however, I ordered a fabfitfun box and stumbled upon great products that I truly enjoy.

Whatever option you like, there’s a lot of different convenient boxes that will inspire you to try new products...

5 Relation Tips

1. Take A Walk – Now that the weather is warming up it’s time to put on your sneakers and head outside. It’s great to break up your routine and walk around your neighborhood, favorite greenway or local trails. Walking is a wonderful way to reflect on exciting moments, enjoy natural scenery and relax your mind! It’s also known to improve your circulation, maintain a healthy weight and lighten your mood.

2. Go to bed early – It’s ideal to strive for a consistent bed time. Making time to go to bed early and stick to a routine allows you to rest your body from a long day. This will ultimately prepare you for the next morning and help avoid late night snacking. We must make time to recharge!

3. Stretch – Stretching before bed can ease your muscle tension, help you relax and allow you to sleep better! Since we tend to frequently text on our phones, carry diaper bags and sit at computers throughout the day, it’s a great idea to be kind to your muscles and help stretch them. Check out the following link for a few stretching ideas:

4. Journal – This is a personal favorite! It’s relaxing to jot down your favorite memories read them a month or 2 later and reflect on positive and happy thoughts.

5. Laugh – Everyone deserves a great belly laugh! Laughing is relaxing for your body and great for your health. Find that special person, movie, TV show or book that always keeps a smile on your face! 


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 Flourescent (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.