Costello Real Estate & Investments Blog | Costello REI

A Closer Look at the History of Ballantyne

A very affluent neighborhood found in Charlotte, Ballantyne is filled with history. It covers about 2,000 acres of space found very close to the North Carolina/South Carolina border. This popular area was developed by Bissell Companies Inc. and has become one of the largest mixed-use communities in the southeast.

A Hunting Tract, Originally

Ballantyne wasn't always a residential community. It was originally a place for hunting owned by the Harris family. The Ballantyne Corporate Park was the beginning of the change and was started in 1992. This corporate park was started by Johnny Harris and Smoky Bissell.

The Ballantyne Corporate Park becomes one of the most successful master-planned communities in the country. In order for it to be developed 2,000 acres had to be rezoned, which was the largest rezoning in the history of Mecklenburg County.

Crescent Resources had also purchased about 610 acres, at about the same time. This parcel of land would later be turned into the Ballantyne Country Club, along with a residential development.

Ballantyne was established in 1995 when Smoky Bissell payed $20 million for Johnny Harris' shares in the project. Bissell named the community in honor of his great aunt. He later developed The Ballantyne Hotel, which was opened in 2001.

An Art Installation & Recognition

The intersection of Ballantyne Commons and Johnston Road provides a unique art installation commissioned by Boris Tomic, a Yugoslavian artist. It took three years to craft the 30-foot monuments found here, which represents finance, transportation, technology, and the human spirit of Charlotte.

The Ballantyne Corporate Park was named as the International Office Park of the Year in 2010 by the Building Owners...

A Closer Look At Downtown Davidson

A pedestrian-friendly spot to enjoy all kinds of fun, Downtown Davidson is the favorite destination of many. In fact, several homebuyers moving to the Charlotte area choose to live in Davidson because of the charm of the downtown area.

The northern section of Downtown Davidson is known as "restaurant row" due to the many dining options, many of which are nationally acclaimed with Kindred leading the way. In addition to dining, downtown offers plenty of shopping, art, and so much more.

Downtown Davidson Dining

Some of the best restaurants in the area are found in Downtown Davidson. If you're considering relocating to Davidson, here are a few of the dining options you'll get to enjoy.

Kindred

The very best restaurant in all of Davidson, Kindred offers the #7 rated restaurant from Bon Appetit's list in 2015. This is a family-owned restaurant with seasonal menus and a fine dining atmosphere. They use local farmers for ingredients and offer some of the finest dishes you will find in the area.

Pickled Peach

Another great dining option, the Pickled Peach is a bit more casual. They offer salads, soups, and sandwiches with plenty of options for gluten-free diners and vegetarians. The patio seating is a great choice and they also offer several excellent desserts.

Summit Coffee Company

The right choice for a cup of coffee and breakfast, the Summit Coffee Company offers plenty of great options. They provide the best coffee in Davidson and have been open since 1998. You will also find live music here a few nights a week.

Famous Toastery

This is a brunch hot...

A Quick Home Buyer's Guide for 2019

Buying a home doesn't change dramatically from one year to the next. However, it does change a little bit. Interest rates change, the way homes are marketed evolves, and the market can certainly shift in favor of buyers or sellers from year-to-year.

With prime buying season for 2019 right around the corner, it's time to prepare yourself for the journey. Here's a quick home buyer's guide for 2019 to help get you up to speed.

You Don't Have to Put 20% Down

While homes are still expensive, you can get into a new home without as large of a down payment. If you're currently renting, you probably understand the challenge of coming up with a down payment. In fact, the down payment is the biggest challenge for more than half of renters according to the 2019 Housing Market Outlook Research Report

With supply pushing prices up, that 20% down payment keeps getting higher and higher. However, you don't have to put 20% down. In fact, you can get into a new house with just 5% to 10% down and some buyers are even getting into a home with 0% to 3% down.

Speak with your real estate agent and they will be able to recommend a lender with alternative options outside of the traditional mortgage choices. You may qualify for an FHA or VA program, which may come with a much lower down payment. There are also down payment assistance programs you may qualify for, which can make it much easier to get into a new house.

Be Financially Prepared

While the down payment is one of the top obstacles for renters looking to become buyers, if you plan to buy a house in Charlotte, you should also consider...

A Guide to Home Inspections For Buyers & Sellers

Any transaction as large as a home sale needs to be dealt with cautiously. A home inspection is vital to the process and every buyer needs to get at least a general inspection. Other specialized inspections may also be necessary, depending on the property.

Whether you're the seller or the buyer, you should understand what will happen during a home inspection. Here's a look at what both sides of the deal should know about getting a home inspection done.

Home Inspection Guide for Buyers

The home buyer will be the one ordering the inspection as one of the contingencies in their offer. Rarely will a buyer purchase a home without a home inspection and it's certainly not recommended.

Choosing a home inspector may depend on your lender. They may have a list of approved inspectors you must choose from. If not, getting a reference from your real estate agent is a good idea.

You want to make sure you can go through the house with the inspector as it will give you a much better idea of what's going on. It's also a good idea to get a sample report before hiring the right inspector for you.

When the inspection is finished, you and your real estate agent will have a unique opportunity to negotiate. Depending on the repairs needed or what shows up on the inspection, you may be able to negotiate a lower price or having the issues repaired before you move in.

For the buyer, it's better to get a credit than having the repair handled by the seller. Getting a repair done takes time and it can be a hassle. Credits are easier to deal with and often benefit both parties.

Let Your Real Estate Agent Handle Negotiations

When you get a home inspection report back, let your agent handle the rest. They negotiate...

Solutions To Concerns When Selling Your Home

When it's time to sell your home, you probably have concerns. You may be wondering how you will be able to sell your home even though it's a bit outdated or you spent too much on upgrades. There are always concerns, but your house is likely sellable if you hire the right real estate agent.

Selling a home in Charlotte is all about the right marketing approach. It starts with an honest real estate agent willing to tell you what to expect. Then, it continues with the right marketing strategy to put the home in front of the right buyers. Here are the answers to how to sell your home when you have a specific concern.

It's Outdated

You've thought about updating your home, but you haven't had a good opportunity. Financially, it just wasn't in the cards and now you need to sell.

An outdated home isn't the preferred choice of many buyers, but there is still a market for this type of home. However, you will likely need to price your home based on the current condition or it will be a struggle to sell.

It's also important to make sure it's incredibly clean. There may be a few small and cheap updates you can do that will make a big difference, too.

Make sure you hire an agent with experience selling outdated homes. If they know what they are doing, your home has a fighting chance of getting sold within a reasonable timeframe.

Not the Best Location

Maybe when you purchased your home, it was an up-and-coming neighborhood. Years later, it never made it out of this category and now it's not the most desirable location. However, this doesn't mean you cannot sell your home.

There are ways to make your home desirable enough that it makes...

Does Charlotte Have Any Kid-Friendly Breweries?

A brewery may not seem like the best place to take your kids, but breweries have changed quite a bit over the years. Today's brewery offers far more than just beer and some cater to families. Here's a look at a few great kid-friendly breweries found throughout Charlotte.

NoDa Brewing Company

An outdoor haven for kids and adults, the NoDa Brewing Company has plenty to offer for the entire family. Enjoy disc golf, corn hole, bocce ball and so much more. For the adults, award-winning beer awaits and for the kids, a free juice box.

While they don't offer their own menu, they do offer food trucks, which serve up great food for all to enjoy. There are two locations with one at 2921 North Tryon Street and another at 2229 North Davidson Street.

The Davidson Street location is temporarily closed but will reopen, while the Tryon Street location is open from 4pm to 9pm, Monday through Thursday, from 3pm to 10pm on Fridays, from 12pm to 10pm on Saturdays and from 12pm to 7pm on Sundays.

The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery

A German spot with kids getting special options on the kids menu including lemonade and grilled cheese, The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery has plenty to offer. There are picnic tables in the biergarten and plenty of grass for children to roam and run. They also offer corn hole for the entire family to play.

The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery is found at 4150 Yancey Road in Charlotte. They are open from 11am to 10pm, Sunday through Thursday and from 11am to 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays.

Free Range Brewing

Located in Noda and, maybe the most kid-friendly brewery in Charlotte,...

What You'll Find at the Ballantyne Village

One of the most popular spots for shopping, dining, and entertainment in the Ballantyne neighborhood, the Ballantyne Village offers a great location. It's a charming spot with plenty of things to do and places to go. Whether you love events, awesome shops, or you're looking for the right restaurant for date night, you'll find it here.

Shopping at The Ballantyne Village

It's not a mall, so it's not packed with dozens of shops. However, you will find a few good shops here to enjoy. Ballantyne Village is home to the GoldKloth Boutique, Nouveaux, Tinder Box Cigars, Abraham Joseph Fine Jewelers, and The Cheeky Bean.

The GoldKloth Boutique is a very popular spot for locally made gifts and plenty of unique items. It's known for on-trend fashion for women of all shapes and sizes.

Another local gem found at the Ballantyne Village, The Cheeky Bean offers plenty of women's clothing. It's a contemporary clothing boutique with plenty of options for women to choose from.

Along with these local shops, the Ballantyne Village is also home to a FedEx Office store and a Verizon Wireless store.

Services at the Ballantyne Village

While shopping can certainly be found at the Ballantyne Village, it's even more well-known for the many services offered. Whether you want to get a massage or you need to get your hair cut, you'll find the right service business here. Some of the businesses found here include:

  • 1890 Blow Dry Bar
  • Ballantyne Village Nail
  • Code Ninjas
  • Massage Envy & Spa
  • Salon Lofts
  • Shear Excellence Men's Salon
  • ...

Top 15 Mortgage Terms You Should Understand When Buying a Home in Charlotte

When it's time to buy a home, you want to make sure you understand the process. One of the smartest things you can do is hire a good local real estate agent to help you. However, you want to take things a step further and have a basic understanding of what you're getting into.

A big part of the home buying process is getting pre-approved and approved for your mortgage. When you're going through this process, there are certain terms you should understand. Here are 15 of the top mortgage terms every Charlotte home buyer should understand.

Appraisal

Every mortgage will require an appraisal. This report is a written estimate of the value of the home based on the current market conditions. Most lenders will have a list of approved appraisers they use for appraisals.

The goal of an appraisal is to show the lender the current market value of the home being used to secure the financing.

APR (Annual Percentage Rate)

The APR is the real cost of borrowing money from the bank. It will include the interest over the life of the loan, along with the cost to secure the financing. Compared to the interest rate, the APR shows a more complete picture of what you're paying.

When you start searching for a lender and a mortgage, make sure you compare both the APR and the interest rate. Fees can vary quite a bit from one lender to another and you must look at the full picture, not just the interest rate.

Closing Costs

The hard costs you will need to pay to secure the loan are known as closing costs. These may include...

Indoor Bounce Houses & Trampoline Parks for a Rainy Charlotte Day

It's raining and your trip to one of the many great outdoor attractions in Charlotte has to be canceled. This doesn't mean you can't take your kids and have plenty of fun in Charlotte.

When the rain comes, or you just need an indoor day, there are plenty of things to do with kids in Charlotte. One of the best rainy day activities is an indoor bounce house or trampoline park. Charlotte happens to offer several options to choose from.

Sky Zone Trampoline Park

The original and one of the best trampoline parks you will find in Charlotte, Sky Zone Trampoline Park has plenty to offer. It's a great place if you want to enjoy wall-to-wall trampolines and other attractions, such as:

  • Ultimate Dodgeball
  • Skyladder
  • Skyslam Basketball
  • Trapeze & Swing
  • The Toddler Zone
  • And More!

When you need a way to run off, or bounce off, that pent up energy your children have Sky Zone offers a great way to do it. They even offer special programs for toddlers. During specific days of the week, they actually offer a Family Special. You can also book the facility for an event, such as a birthday.

There are two locations found in the Charlotte area found at 7325 Smith Corners Boulevard. The other location is in Pineville at 10200 Centrum Parkway.

BounceU

Maybe a trampoline park is a bit too intense for you and you just want to enjoy bounce houses for younger children. BounceU has you covered with plenty of great playdates and open bounce sessions on the calendar.

You may think bounce houses are just for birthday parties and events, but BounceU wants you to be able to...

Tips To Sell Your Home With a Tenant in It

When it's time to sell your home, you may be worried it won't go smoothly because you have a tenant living in your Charlotte house. Just because you rented out your house doesn't mean you cannot sell it.

A tenant-occupied property can be sold, even before the lease is up. However, there are some things you have to be aware of when selling a home with a tenant in it. Let's look at a few of the things you should consider when you're in this situation.

Keep Your Tenants Informed

The first step in selling your home if you have tenants is to let them know you plan to sell the home. You can send notice, talk to them in person, or call them over the phone. It's best to send a certified letter and speak with your tenants in person. This protects you legally and allows you to keep the personal touch with your tenants.

Don't Renew the Lease

When you have a tenant with a long-term lease, it can slow down the selling process. A month-to-month lease is a bit easier to work with, but it's not impossible to sell with a long-term lease. However, if that lease comes up, don't renew it.

Selling a vacant home is much easier than a tenant-occupied home. If you get the chance to get out of the lease with your tenants, take it, as it will make it much easier to sell the property.

Let the Tenant Buy the House

Maybe your tenants are thinking about buying a house and really love where they live. If so, you may want to sell your home to the tenant. This can provide plenty of benefits including the ability to use owner financing to help them buy your home from you.

Even if your tenants cannot get approved for financing or are not interested in...

Lake Norman Secrets: What You May Not Know About Lake Norman

Known by many as the "Inland Sea" Lake Norman is a special place. It was created in the late 1950s and early 1960s as the largest freshwater lake found in the entire state of North Carolina. In fact, most of the power found in Charlotte comes from Lake Norman.

While the size of the lake and the ability to provide power are great, most locals know Lake Norman as the place to go for swimming, boating, and all types of water activities. It's also a very popular spot for home buyers seeking waterfront properties in the greater Charlotte area.

You may be familiar with Lake Norman, but do you know all the secrets of this area? There are several things you may not know about Lake Norman. Let's look at just a few.

Trees Are Planted Yearly

Did you know Duke Power actually has a team of foresters and their job is to plant trees every year? While this isn't their only job, they plant more than 1,400 trees every single year. They also stock the lake with fish and take care of other parts of the lake.

Mosquitoes are Kept in Check

Another thing you may not know about Lake Norman is how the mosquitos are kept in check. Yes, we all know, if you spend time near water and trees, you're bound to end up with mosquito bites, unless you bring a repellent.

The foresters at Lake Norman help you out by using an organic compound to kill those nasty bugs before they ever bite you. This compound is used near shorelines where mosquitos tend to breed and it's not harmful to the environment since it's organic.

Lake Norman is a Four-County Lake

Another little Lake Norman secret, it touches four different counties....

The Differences Between An Online Home Search & an In-Person Search

Shopping online is far past the fad stage. No longer are people just shopping for gifts at the holidays online. Today, many home buyers perform an online home search before they ever see a single property in person.

In fact, some buyers never see the property in person before agreeing to buy it. With so many options to choose from, narrowing down the possible properties online makes sense. However, when you get ready to search for your next home, it's a good idea to understand some of the differences between an online home search and an in-person home search.

The Feel of the Neighborhood

It's impossible to get a feel for the neighborhood if you're searching for a property online. Sure, you can search the neighborhood for information about it, but you won't actually be able to feel the vibe or walk the area to see how you like it.

With an online home search, you just don't have the option to see how the neighborhood feels to you. It's best to take your online search and turn it into an in-person search when you think you have a good choice. Then, you'll get to experience the neighborhood and see how you like it.

Photos May Not Be 100% Accurate

Online pictures are great and help you get a feel for the property. However, they are not always the most accurate representation of the property. Often, the online images you see represent the very best of the property and don't show off the home the same way it shows during an in-person search.

Some of the rooms may look bigger through online pictures. You may also only get to see the home from a specific angle. It's also likely the home was staged for the picture and it can be hard to separate the staging from the actual home without seeing it in person.

Seeing the home in person will...

What to Expect if You Sell Your Home to an I-Buyer

It's not uncommon today, for a home buyer to buy a house without ever seeing it in person. This happens with military men and women often because they must move whenever they are re-assigned.

Many others in business also must relocate quickly and may not have the time to find a buyer before they relocate. Carrying a mortgage on two properties can be difficult and if you're not there to find a buyer, it can become a stressful situation.

Not only will most home sellers count on the funds from the sale for the down payment on their next home, but they may also struggle to get approved while carrying another mortgage. The answer, for some, maybe to sell to an I-buyer.

What is an I-buyer?

An I-buyer is a company online willing to make an offer on your home without wasting much time. Often, they will make an offer sight unseen, based on the valuation model for the home. While these types of buyers are usually larger companies looking to flip the property, sometimes, they are individual buyers.

An I-buyer can be defined as someone that only saw your property online and is willing to make an offer very quickly. Maybe they are in a similar situation as you and need to relocate quickly. In other circumstances, it could be a company in the business of buying homes sight unseen, putting in a little work, and reselling the home.

Convenience: The Major Benefit Provided By I-Buyers

I-buyers provide many benefits to those needing to sell their home quickly. However, the main benefit they provide is convenience. When you need to move your home quickly, an I-buyer can step in and make this possible.

Typically, when you sell a home, you take the time to hire a real estate agent, make repairs, do a little remodeling, stage the home, have pictures taken, and...

A Closer Look At Quail Hollow Club

An incredibly prestigious country club found in Charlotte, you may spend some time on the waitlist before you become a member of the Quail Hollow Club. This isn't a typical country club and doesn't cater to families as much as many others in Charlotte do.

Instead, Quail Hollow Club is all about men and golf. It's an expensive club and it's incredibly difficult to become a member, compared to other Charlotte country club options.

History of Quail Hollow Club

It all began in 1959 when James J. Harris held a meeting to mark the beginning of Quail Hollow Club. The club was founded by 21 men and filed its certificate of incorporation in 1960. The club started with just over 257 acres of space to provide all the club activities.

The clubhouse was designed by Charles W. Connelly & Associates and opened in September of 1967. It was designed with a southern style with a white exterior. Later in 1999, the clubhouse was redesigned to provide a more open feel. It features a grand ballroom, a library, a card room, a main kitchen, 15 fireplaces, locker rooms, lounge areas, grills, and more.

A members' pavilion was constructed in 2008 near the 18th green. This pavilion offered a members-only area during the Wells Fargo tournament. The building features a large gathering space, a kitchen, a bar and oak paneling throughout.

At the same time, the swimming pool was re-done and connects to the members' pavilion. There's also a tennis shop, which was rebuilt at the same time.

The history of Quail Hollow Club includes the golf course opening in 1961 with modifications made to 4 holes by Arnold Palmer in 1985. The course was reconstructed by Tom Fazio in 1997 and the practice facility was reconstructed in 2001. Rock walls were added to both hole 7 and 17, as well.

The...

Top 10 Ways to Boost Your Home's Curb Appeal in One Weekend

When it's time to sell your Charlotte home, curb appeal matters. You have to make your home as appealing to buyers as possible or you may not get the offers you desire.

Creating incredible curb appeal isn't always easy, but it doesn't have to be expensive or difficult. There are several ways to go about creating incredible curb appeal before listing your home. Here are ten ways to boost your Charlotte home's curb appeal in just a weekend.

Paint

If it's time to sell your home, you will find that paint will quickly become your best friend. While it's probably necessary to paint some of your interior rooms, painting the exterior access areas is one of the fastest and cheapest ways to boost curb appeal.

Painting the entire exterior would be great, but you don't have to go this far. If you simply paying the doors, shutters, and trim, you can add plenty of curb appeal to your home.

Make sure you consider the current color trends for home exteriors and match the right color to your home's style. Since paint is typically around $20 to $30 per gallon, this job can be done for less than $100 and in just a few hours.

Replace Exterior Light Fixtures

If your exterior light fixtures are outdated or simply not in good shape, you can replace them for more curb appeal. You will need to make sure the new lighting fixtures have the same type of mounting system or this could become a frustrating job in a hurry.

Most outdoor sconces can be found at home improvement stores for about $20 or $30 each. You don't need an electrician to replace the outdoor lights as this is certainly something a good DIYer can handle on their own.

If you don't want to buy new lights,...

Charlotte Receives the Gateways for Growth Award

The New American Economy (NAE) recently selected Charlotte to receive the very prestigious "Gateways for Growth" award. This award is given to cities with specific qualities and Charlotte is one of the 14 cities receiving the award.

In order to receive this award from the NAE, a city must show a wide range of resources for developing strategies for the following:

  • Integration of immigrants
  • Promoting the inclusion of all residents
  • Fostering economic growth

The cities receiving the awards will also be given technical assistance, matching grants and research grants from the NAE and Welcoming America. The grants will help to support the city's welcoming strategies. In addition, the Gateways for Growth helps to serve as a network for local communities to help each other with their strategies.

Cities Receiving the Gateways for Growth Award

Along with Charlotte, NC, the following cities will be receiving this award:

  • Bowling Green, Kentucky
  • Cedar Rapids, Iowa
  • Flint, Michigan
  • Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Lexington, Kentucky
  • Lowell, Massachusetts
  • Memphis, Tennessee
  • Northern Kentucky
  • Roanoke, Virginia
  • San Antonio, Texas
  • Toledo-Lucas County, Ohio
  • Wayne County, Michigan

Cities will gain plenty of benefits and resources from this award. Some of the resources given to these cities will include:

Planning grants from Welcoming America and the NAE

Research reports from the NAE customized for each city based on economic and demographic contributions from immigrants in the communities

Technical assistance from Welcoming America and the NAE in each city to ensure the city can draft, execute, and communicate their immigrant integration...

Interest Rates Hit a New 12 Month Low!

Interest Rates Hit New 12 Month Low!

Interest Rates Hit New 12 Month Low! | MyKCM

According to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey, interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage are currently at their lowest for 2019. Rates like these haven’t been seen since February 2018!

Last week’s survey results reported an interest rate of 4.35%. This is a welcome change from the near 5% rates seen in mid-November. At 4.32%, the second week of February 2018 was the last time rates were this low. This can be seen in the chart below.

Interest Rates Hit New 12 Month Low! | MyKCM

Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist, Sam Khater, had this to say:

“Mortgage rates fell for the third consecutive week, continuing the general downward trend that began late last year.

Wages are growing on par with home prices for the first time in years, and with more inventory available, spring home sales should help the market begin to recover from the malaise of the last few months.”

Bottom Line

If you plan on buying a home this spring, meet with a local real estate professional who can help prepare you for today’s market before rates increase!

 

...

A Closer Look at The Charlotte Country Club

With the golf season just around the corner in Charlotte, it may be time to consider your options when it comes to joining a country club. While the Charlotte Country Club is the most respected and hardest of the country clubs in the area to get into, maybe this year is your year.

Even if you don't get into this club, you can at least get your name on the waiting list.

How it All Started

The Charlotte Country Club wasn't always known by that name. It was started as The Mecklenburg Club and was the first club found to the west of the city. When it first opened, the activities only included fishing, boating, picnics, and card games.

The name of the club was established in 1910 as the Mecklenburg Country Club. However, it was changed in 1917 to the Charlotte Country Club. At the time of the club's establishment, golf was just beginning in the United States. In fact, in 1910, there wasn't a single golf course within 50 miles of the city.

When the club first opened, it included a red brick house, which was remodeled and enlarged to become the clubhouse. A new clubhouse was completed in 1931 and held a gala opening event with more than 1,000 members in attendance. In 1989, this same clubhouse was remodeled and additions were made to make it even better. Another grand opening event was held with an open house and a formal dinner dance.

The first nine holes of the golf course were established, along with tennis courts, but the second nine wasn't completed until 1915. The original course was designed by Donald Ross and later renovated by Robert Trent Jones, Sr., Tyler Rae, and Ron Prichard.

The original golf course measured 6,226 yards, which was very long for the time. It provided plenty of variety and was a very...

Take a Mountain Day Trip from Charlotte Year-Round

Do you love the mountains? Are you thinking about relocating to Charlotte or do you already live in the Queen City? You can take a mountain day trip from Charlotte any time of the year. Here's a look at a few of the best options.

Hendersonville

The right time of the year for a day trip from Charlotte to Hendersonville is during the NC Apple Festival. This event offers plenty of fun and it's one of the best in the area. Hendersonville is known as the apple capital of North Carolina and even if you don't come during festival time, there are plenty of places for apple picking.

You can also enjoy the Downtown Hendersonville area and the fall season will provide plenty of hayrides, pumpkins and so much more. This small mountain town is less than two hours from Charlotte and has plenty to offer for a great mountain day trip.

Asheville

Of course, you cannot go wrong with a day trip to Asheville. The only issue you might find is that you may want to stay for a week instead of just the day. If you live in Charlotte, however, you can visit Asheville often as it's just two hours from the Queen City.

When you arrive in Asheville, you will want to enjoy plenty of scenic views. You will also want to eat at one of the fine restaurants here and you may even want to relax at the Grove Park Inn spa. The area is filled with great hiking and incredible art galleries. It's also known for the Biltmore Estate. There's so much to do here you'll likely want to come back over and over again.

Linville

A wonderful little mountain town, Linville offers the incredible Linville Gorge. This is one of only two wilderness gorges in the entire country. It's found right inside the Pisgah National Forest and offers tons of hiking options, along with incredible...

Top 10 New Charlotte Restaurants for 2019

Charlotte Magazine spends plenty of time each year creating buzz around new restaurants, new chefs, and fun new food trends. They actual visit many of the restaurants and they only rank locally-owned choices. With that in mind, here's a look at the top 10 new Charlotte restaurants for 2019, in no particular order.

YUME

The menu is filled with unique options at YUME, but the flower-shaped Sakura sushi roll may be the dish they are most known for. They also offer a Sora box sushi, which is square-shaped and they provide unique ramen dishes, too. Whether you're vegan, vegetarian, or a meat-eater, you'll find something great on the menu to enjoy.

Along with the great food at YUME, diners also enjoy more than just standard domestic beers on the drink menu. They offer a Japanese lager and plenty of great cocktails to try. The restaurant is found at 1508 Mint Street in Suite A.

The Waterman

A new oyster bar found in the South End neighborhood, The Waterman offers lobster rolls, oysters four ways, fried fish sandwiches, and more. The appetizers are excellent and the dinners are even better. They also have a rooftop terrace perfect for the sunset.

If you're looking for a great view of Uptown Charlotte, head to the rooftop for a cocktail. The Waterman is found at 2729 South Boulevard.

Zeppelin

While Zeppelin is best-known for the incredible cocktails, this isn't a place to overlook the food menu. They offer some unique options, such as the Notorious P.I.G. and the fried green tomato capers....