Fun in the Sun on the Outer Banks

Whether you like to simply spend a week or two lounging by a pool or stepping outside your comfort zone and doing something exhilarating, there are so many endeavors that keep you outside and active. While the OBX offers so many outdoor fun activities, as locals, here are a handful of the things we love to do.

Bike Riding

Yes, you can ride bikes most anywhere you live but there is something different about riding bikes on the Outer Banks. Whether you want to hop on a beach cruiser to casually ride along the bike paths or along the surf, or you are a serious cyclist who intends to head out every morning for a three-hour ride, the OBX is a great place to spend time exploring the barrier islands as it is mostly flat with a few bridges. A couple of suggestions for casual and family bike rides are to stick to the paths that traverse through the different areas of the OBX. Some go from town to town making it a great mode of transportation for heading out to eat. Also, be aware of those on foot and extend them some courtesies. For intense cyclists, stay off the bike/foot paths as there are wide shoulders along the roads on the OBX – just make sure to ride with traffic as you are treated as a moving vehicle and must abide by the same rules of the road as motor vehicles.

Kayaking/SUP Boarding

“Water, water everywhere” is the mantra for most of the OBX activities. There is nothing like gliding through the water either in a kayak or on a SUP board to see sea life swimming below you. The amount of waterways that crisscross through the barrier islands offer tons of places to climb aboard and have some fun all while getting a great workout. The inland waterways (sounds) that separate the OBX from the mainland as well as the waters through the wildlife refuges are perfect for casual excursions and tours while the Atlantic provides some exciting action for experienced SUP surfers and kayakers. Both activities deliver great workouts without feeling like you are working out… at least until the next day.

Kiteboarding (Kite surfing)

Have you ever just sat on the beach to watch someone kiteboarding? As an observer, it always looks so easy but it is a very hard work out that like SUP boarding or kayaking is just as fun as it is hard. Kiteboarding on the OBX is as popular as surfing. In fact, the OBX is home to the Triple S Invitational in Cape Hatteras. But do not let the extreme sport on the ocean scare you. The Outer Banks has so many sounds that are ideal for beginners who want to kite surf with winds and currents that work well to get you in the groove with a kite board. Then, when the true adventure seeker in you comes alive, head over to the coast and really kick it up a notch.


Of course, we have to mention this age old activity (and sport) on the OBX. There are so many places to fish and so many ways to do it. From simply taking a rod and some bait out to the end of one of the piers to spending the day out in the waters deep sea fishing, this is always a favorite activity for locals and visitors. From several of our vacation rentals Nags Head Pier is a short walk and a great place to take the kids. A more recent way to fish is to go out into one of the sounds on a SUP board and fish off of it. When out on a SUP board, it is absolutely amazing what you see so why not take advantage of it, stand up in calm waters and catch dinner – all while getting a great core work out!

Too Many Activities to Mention

While we listed a few of our favorite things to do, there are truly too many activities to mention. The best thing to do is think about what you really enjoy and what you want to do, then make a plan. Most importantly, since you are on vacation, no matter what you do, have fun!


Why Your Realtor May Not Want to Sell You a Bank-Owned Home – Part II

Basically to have your bank-owned offers accepted you simply need to follow directions. What follows is a list of tips from REO agents on how to get more offers accepted.

1. Be realistic with your offer. If the property is priced right for its condition and location, do not offer fifty cents on the dollar, you’re only wasting your time, your realtor’s time and the REO agent’s time.

2. Make sure your offer was received in it’s entirety however, do not let your agent make more than 1 phone call to the REO listing agent regarding your offer. The best way to ensure your offer has been received is to hand carry it to the listing agent’s office or have your agent do it.

3. Do exactly what is asked for in the MLS. You can ask your agent to show this to you so that you know you are in compliance. The REO agents are only doing what the bank who hires them to sell the property wants. If you do not provide all the information listed in the MLS your offer will be ignored or tossed out. Typically banks want the following:

  • Pre-Approval from a direct lender and the lender required by the bank.
  • Bank Statements (proof of funds)
  • FICO Scores/Credit Report
  • HUD1 (closing statement)

4. Get a pre-approval from a direct lender as well as the REO agent’s or banks lender. If the REO agents lender is not listed in the MLS have your agent contact their office for that information. You will be able to get your loan from the lender of your choice but the bank simply wants to verify that you will qualify and can close the escrow.

5. Make sure all pages are correctly completed, initialed and signed where required. An offer with missing or incorrect information will not be considered.

6. Make sure all the funds you are using to close the escrow are in your name. You will be required to show proof of funds to close as part of your offer. Many buyers receive a gift from a family member. This is often acceptable in a traditional sale but not with a bank-owned property.

7. In a traditional sale it is customary to include a letter of introduction so that the seller has a little information on the buyer. Often this letter is written by the buyers agent to inspire the sellers to consider the buyers offer. The letter will talk not only about the offer but also about how much the buyer loves their house, how they plan to raise their family in the home, etc. Banks do not care. They only care about the bottom line. I recommend including a closing statement (HUD1) as well as a cover letter from your real estate agent with only the pertinent points of your offer, e.g. purchase price, FICO scores, and down payment.

8. Once your offer is accepted, you or your agent may have some expenses. For example, you will want the utilities turned on for inspections, rather than waiting for the listing office to do it, just handle it yourself. It’s a small price in the big picture and will make the transaction move forward faster.

9. If there are major repairs, e.g. a hole in the roof or no kitchen make sure your lender is aware of this in advance so that a solution may be devised and your loan will not be rejected or delayed.

10. Keep in mind REO properties are sold in strictly “as-is” condition. The bank will not do repairs but they may also not be aware of damage, especially if it is recently. When dealing with damage I recommend that you also include photos of major repairs with your initial offer as the bank and sometimes the listing agent may not be aware of them. Having this knowledge may convince the bank to accept a lower offer.

If your offer is not accepted, don’t talk it personally. The bank is only interested in their bottom line. Unfortunately, there are plenty of bank owned homes out there so you will likely find another deal in no time.