Where the Pros Chose to Purchase

Where the Pros Chose to Purchase

Find out which Durham neighborhoods our “Best of Durham" real estate agents picked out for themselves, plus their advice for navigating our hot housing market

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Best real estate agent winner Courtney James in her Forest Hills home. Photo by Briana Brough.
Best real estate agent winner Courtney James in her Forest Hills home. Photo by Briana Brough.

Bill Stevenson, Keller Williams

Bill-1Where did you choose to purchase? Woodcroft

Why? Back [in 1994] it seemed that anybody who could afford it would live in Chapel Hill, and the rest of us huddled as closely as possible to the border, hoping to bask in the warm Chapel Hill glow. My how things have changed! Now central Durham is definitely the hot spot and southern Durham is emerging as the new hipster enclave since downtown has gotten pricey. We feel very fortunate to have landed in Woodcroft, possibly the hottest neighborhood in town right now.”

What’s your best advice for someone tackling the Durham market today? Avoid the huge national websites. They are just too inaccurate, and you don’t have time to waste. Use something hyper-local like locationdurham.com (which happens to be my website, but there are many others).

Paula Walls, Coldwell Banker Howard Perry and Walston

2015 paula pic (1)Where did you choose to purchase? Croasdaile

Why? It’s a lifestyle neighborhood with an entertaining country club, golf course, pool and tennis. … A wonderful community with great people along with young families and children. It’s refreshing to see children playing together in the neighborhood. [I chose to live here because of its] proximity to Duke and downtown Durham.

What’s your best advice for someone tackling the Durham market today? Get pre-approved – not pre-qualified – and keep the pre-approval letter up to date.

Courtney James, Urban Durham Realty

Courtney JamesWhere did you choose to purchase? Forest Hills

Why? Though we’ve moved three times, I’ve never left my home neighborhood of Forest Hills. For me, it offers the perfect combination of a park setting with great proximity to all the exciting things happening downtown.

What’s your best advice for someone tackling the Durham market today? It’s probably obvious that I would recommend establishing a relationship with a knowledgeable agent, but it’s critically important in an intense market like this one. An agent should be actively working on your behalf to find homes coming on the market and should also be able to educate you regarding offer terms, as they tend to be a moving target these days.

Justin Burleson, Fonville Morisey Realty

Justin 077high rezWhere did you choose to purchase? South Durham

Why? We chose this location because I also help people buy and sell in Wake and Orange counties, and South Durham is very convenient to all parts of the Triangle. Plus, my wife works at Duke Hospital; she’s only 15 minutes to work.

What’s your best advice for someone tackling the Durham market today? It’s vitally important to trust your agent. You need to align yourself with someone who will take your needs and requirements as their own and make it their mission to see them through. You want a partner for this decision.

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Laura Zolman Kirk
Associate Editor Laura Zolman Kirk is a Kentuckian turned North Carolinian who can't get enough of this buzzing community.