IvesterJackson Distinctive Properties & Blackstream International
are the exclusive affiliates of Christie’s International Real Estate in Asheville, North Carolina.
Asheville tells the tale of two cities by bringing together a historic mountain community with a modern urban downtown.
Land of the Sky
Nestled in a thermal valley of North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains is a city the locals call Asheville, or, “Land of the Sky”. Poised at the confluence of the French Broad and Swannanoa Rivers – not far from where the Blue Ridge meet the Smoky Mountains – this verdant paradise is home to the oldest mountain range in the world. At an elevation of 2,500 feet, the moderate climate and four distinct seasons make this mountain paradise the perfect place to enjoy year-round.
Once part of the Cherokee Nation, the first the first Europeans came to the area in 1540, but it was not until 1784 that the history of Asheville as a town, began. A century later, at the height of the Gilded Age, George Vanderbilt’s vision brought the renowned talents of architect, Richard Morris Hunt, and landscape architect, Fredrick Law Ulmsted, to the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Together, Hunt and Ulmsted transformed the rugged terrain along the French Broad River and created Biltmore House,
America’s largest home. Today, the 250-room chateau continues to attract guests to the area from around the world, just as it did when it was first opened to Vanderbilt’s guests on Christmas Day in 1895.
In 1889, Asheville was the first city in North Carolina with electric rail streetcars. From the 1910s through the roaring 20s, Asheville grew to become the third largest city in the state, but that growth quickly halted with the crash of the stock market in 1929. At the time, Asheville had the largest municipal debt from infrastructure projects of any city in the US. It was not until the 1980’s, when that debt was finally repaid, that Asheville began to grow again. While slow to recover, the prior epoch ensured that the most complete collection of art decobuildings in North Carolina remained intact – the impetus for its future revival.
Where The Tale of Two Cities meets Tales of the City, the area boasts a literary history of triumph and tragedy as home to poet, Charles Sandburg, birthplace of novelist, Thomas Wolfe, and where F. Scott Fitzgerald retreated to the legendary Grove Park Inn to write in seclusion. While Armistead Maupin could easily have written any number of stories in Asheville’s progressive atmosphere, and Charles Dickens could have found inspiration in the cotswold-esque, Biltmore Village – the original township adjacent to the estate built to support the large workforce required to realize Vanderbilt’s grand endeavor – Wolfe never could have imagined the cultural jewel that Asheville would become.
Where bluegrass licks meet the aristocratic culture of the past, Asheville offers the best food, accommodations, and recreation. The verdant mountainside of the National Parks and Forests that surround the city provide great trails for walking, hiking, and mountain biking. Not far from town, rushing waterfalls and scenic waterways are perfect for fishing, kayaking, and canoeing. The walkable urban core, public transportation, and any number of taxi or ride-share solutions provide easy access to the surrounding neighborhoods and main attractions.
From micro-breweries to farm-to-plate cuisine, diversity is the key to Asheville. The cosmopolitan city center with its sidewalk cafes, bistros, museums and architectural masterpieces has been referred to as, “The Paris of the South.” It’s renovated and rehabbed bohemian West side is now a vibrant socially-conscious hub for young creatives and families. Blending new with the old, many buildings and properties from the 30’s and 40’s that have been
transformed over the last decade. Bike shops, boutiques, pubs, and live performance venues on Haywood Street, the main thoroughfare, provide the best mix of urban and suburban amenities.
Colleen Ludington has a deep love of real estate and a passion for helping people buy and sell homes. With an eye towards staging and design, she can walk her clients through the process of turning a house into a home. She also has a love for helping children in her community.
That interest began while living in Nashville, TN in her late 20’s, when Colleen started spending her Saturday mornings volunteering with an organization called “Kids Klub.” During her 3 years of volunteer work, she was inspired to write a children’s book, which went on to become a best-seller. She traveled the US speaking to kids groups, and donating books wherever she went.
First Book, Charlotte
When she relocated to Charlotte in 2004, she decided to harness her passion for serving under-resourced kids and began an internet search for how she could marry her love of reading and philanthropy. She discovered First Book, a nationwide nonprofit that has provided more than 125 million books to children, and launched a local all-volunteer chapter in Charlotte in 2005.
First Book’s research bore out what she had seen first-hand in Nashville; in the average middle-income family, there are 13 books per child, yet in the average low-income neighborhood, there is only 1 book for every 300 children.
Over the last 11 years, Colleen has Chaired First Book-Charlotte,
advancing their mission of helping kids fall in love with reading through the ability to own their own new books. The local chapter of First Book is the most successful in the nation, and Colleen now also Co-Chairs the National Advisory Council of First Book.
The 11th Annual Spring Gala will be held Friday, April 28th at The Peninsula Club. This event, an upscale yet fun celebration of reading and the magic of books, raises the lion’s share of funding for the group. Because they are an all-volunteer board, 100% of the funds raised by First Book-Charlotte stay in the community and help to provide new books to local children. At a cost of around $3 for a new book, sponsorships and donations go a long way towards changing the life of a child.
Ivester Jackson | Christie’s agents are very involved in the local community, serving dozens of charities around the region.
Each month we spotlight one of our brokers who is helping to make Charlotte a better place. Today we’re highlighting Michelle Campos, who works with the Ada Jenkins Center in Davidson. “The reason I got involved with the Ada Jenkins Center was to help make a direct impact on our community. While most look at our area as an affluent community, there are many people in need,” says Michelle, who is serving on the sponsorship committee for center’s 2017 Spring Gala.
A native of Charlotte, Michelle grew up in the SouthPark area and attended UNC Charlotte as a Division 1 scholarship tennis athlete.
After graduating, she moved on to a Fortune 500 sales career and soon became a successful business owner; owning both a large CrossFit gym as well as an athletic recovery business in the Lake Norman area.
Drawing from her experience in high-level athletics, and from growing multiple successful businesses, Michelle brings an analytical, and results-oriented approach to her real estate
Ivester Jackson I Christie’s brokers have dominated the market of luxury homes listed at $2 million or above, representing sellers or buyers in a whopping 15 of the 24 closed transactions over the past year in the Lake Norman area.
Firm Records Highest Priced Transaction
The firm recorded Cornelius’s highest priced transaction (a 3.8 million dollar transaction in which it represented both the seller and an international buyer), as well as 9 of the 16 homes that sold over $2 million in Cornelius. Ivester Jackson I Christie’s agents Lori Ivester Jackson (6) and Tracy Davis (4) recorded multiple transactions in the ultra-luxury market with Bill Moore, Reed Jackson, and Patty Howe all involved in ultra luxury closings.
Agents Dominate in Mooresville
In Mooresville, The firm once again dominated the action, closing 5 of the 7 homes above $2 million and 4 of the 6 in The Point. Doris Nash and Jessica Simpson led the way with 4 deals, while Annie Livingston, Alison Smith, and Lori Ivester Jackson all participated in ultra luxury closings.
Highest West Shore Transaction
Over on the west shore, Ivester Jackson I Christie’s agent Laura Pegram represented an out of state buyer on that area’s highest value transaction, a $3 million dollar estate home with expansive views on Governor’s Island.
All told, the firm’s agents participated in 63% of ultra luxury transactions at Lake Norman over the past 12 months.
The Charlotte luxury market surged forward in 2016, bolstered by a strong performance in the $1 million to $2 million dollar price range which showed a 30% annualized increase in Charlotte, and a whopping 59% increase in Union County.
The entry luxury range below $1 million, also showed strong performance in both areas, posting a 17% increase in Charlotte, and a 23% increase in hopping Union County.
Pre and Post-Election Activity
Pre-election surveys reported as much as 45% of high net worth individuals indicated they had parked money on the sidelines, making the yearly results all the more impressive. Not surprisingly, post-election showing activity jumped, particularly in the million dollar range, with showings in Union County jumping 39% over the same November/December period last year, while Charlotte posted a 33% increase, a clear indication that first quarter 2017 looks to post strong results.
The range above $2 million continued to see a competitive resale market due to custom build options and infill/tear down activity striking a popular chord with ultra luxury buyers. Sold resale results in this range were down slightly compared to 2015.
When hiring a real estate agent do your research, read online reviews, ask friends for references, and make sure they have certain traits; such as honesty and integrity, knowledge of your local housing market, and focus.
Ivester Jackson | Christie’s has more than 50 highly successful agents in the Charlotte market ready to help you today.
Two of our agents, Kim Raymond & Lisa McCrossan, were just named “Rising Stars” in Charlotte real estate by The Charlotte Observer.
Here’s a sample of just a few positive reviews you will find online.
“Lisa is a true professional. We had our house listed with 2 other agents who like most real estate agents come in tell you all about their marketing programs “that will sell your home quickly”. They both fell short of expectations. Lisa however came in with a solid plan, brought in a interior designer to help stage the house. She made several suggestions on painting and removing wallpaper that made all the difference in the world. After 9+ months on the market with other realtors. Lisa had an offer within 30 days!
It is amazing what a little extra work will accomplish.
Lisa is the best realtor I have worked with in 25 years.”
“If we had to do it all again I would not hesitate to list our home with Christy Chaffe, Ivester Jackson. We were well represented from start to finish: our agent’s expertise, the amazing marketing materials created for our home to a smooth closing with no unexpected surprises. Thanks again, Christy Chaffee!” twoangelsrus
“We worked with Leslie to purchase our first home about a year after we moved to Charlotte. She spent several months with us, driving around and just looking at houses and very quickly helped us figure out what we wanted. Over this time, we developed a great relationship with her. She was open and honest with us about all of the houses we looked at, and at no point in time did we feel any pressure to make offers or speed up our buying process. Once we decided to make an offer, Leslie’s key strengths kicked in– she is VERY organized and a tough negotiator.”
“Jackie was great from start to finish! From both the seller and buyer aspect she listened to our wants and needs and left very little work on our end. We always new she had our best interest in mind. When issues arose, she calmed our fears and guided us through it with ease. She comes highly recommended by us!” Kaitlyn Richer
“The epitome of professionalism and personalized service. Dee was great and so vital to us finding the house that was a perfect fit. We truly cannot say enough great things about all that Dee did to make finding and buying a house easy and painless. A+++ with everything.” Jay S.