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With the current lending market facing unprecedented changes, and now more than ever, underwriting guidelines leave no room for interpretation.  Submitting a loan application that is complete with all the required documentation will ensure your loan is funded quickly.


As a general rule, most banks are working on an approximately 45 day turn around time for processing and underwriting, so to ensure the most time efficient handling of your loan application, here are some items you will need to make the process go smoothly:


  1. Two to three consecutive months of bank statements. These should be complete statements and include all pages, front and back. In addition to your regular checking and savings accounts, you will need to provide the most recent quarter of your stocks, bonds and retirement accounts.


  1. Copies of your most recent pay stubs covering at least 30 days of employment.


  1. Copies of your 2007 and 2008 W2s along with your signed tax returns.  If you happen to be part owner of a business, the underwriters will want to see that you own less than 25 percent of the business or they’ll want your corporate returns as well.  Your K1’s will show this percentage so include them, 1099’s, and your personal tax returns.  In the event that you haven’t filed taxes for the previous year, you’ll need to provide the extension and one additional year of tax returns. 


  1. The name and contact information for the attorney handling your closing.


  1. Copies of your homeowners insurance policy for refinance transactions


  1. If you have your old Title Policy, this may save you some money as well.  Not with your lender, but with your attorney.  They often cut you a deal if they have a copy of the old title and only have to “reissue” the policy rather than search for a new one.  Every penny you can save counts!


These are just a few of the items that are required to get the loan process started.  Some programs may require less documentation, providing your loan officer with the items mentioned above will greatly speed the application process. By starting the process off on the right foot, your loan officer will have the necessary data to quickly submit the required documentation for your loan and get you an approval faster than a loan without these materials.


David Woldman is SunTrust Mortgage’s Top Producer company-wide. His specialty is renovation and construction to perm loans. He has been in the mortgage industry for over 23 years. He can be reached at 704-651-8377.


Nature is coming inside! The use of products from nature is a hot design trend. Examples would be bamboo flooring, leather tiles, concrete counter-tops, tables/furniture made of products from nature (wood, rope, cork, shells, etc), paper products/light fixtures, carpet made from cardboard, fabrics/wallpaper made from feathers or natural products, etc…

Mid Century Modern 220090630_UH_Cloisters_LOWWW-0378

Our feature home for the October issue is a beautiful mid-century showplace in The Cloisters neighborhood. This home has a wonderful floor plan, artwork form dozens of local artists, and decorating that is chiq and sophisticated. Here’s a sneak peek at the home.


It’s almost time to crack open the Bourbon and Scotch. Well, wait a minute, the bourbon has been open all summer for those mint juleps, but hey, it’s almost time for Scotch! So what is the best way to entertain now that the cool weather is right around the corner? This was a great posting from House Beautiful.

Mitchell Crosby is one of those people for whom entertaining is second nature. And not just any ol’ entertaining. I’m talking about entertaining with Style. I suppose that you would expect this from a man who is one of Charleston’s preeminent event planners (JMC Charleston), but there is a reason that Mitchell went into the event planning business. Perhaps it’s because he’s a native Charlestonian- you know, they especially love the social life- but I think it’s also a result of his graciousness and his desire to make people feel special. (That’s Mitchell at top. You can just tell that he knows how to mix a great martini.)

I’ve been thinking of writing a few posts in which people share with us their thoughts on entertaining. But what I wanted to make clear was that I wasn’t talking about a seated dinner for 16. Personally, I enjoy entertaining like that but I’m also a glutton for punishment. I wanted to do something more along the lines of having people over for drinks. I think that this is the way most people entertain nowadays. It’s really quite easy, and there’s no excuse not to have people over for some fun. And perhaps if we’re armed with some sage tips from the pros, we might actually get over our fears and have people into our homes- and actually enjoy it too!

So, on to Mitchell’s thoughts on drinks, food, and the good life:

Do you have a bar cart or drinks tray in your home? Do you let people mix their own drinks, or do you do the honors? Also, do you ever serve a festive cocktail to your guests? Or, do you stick to the basics?

All of my friends know where the bar is in my home. As I think of it as a destination, it must be well stocked for the event at hand. I usually let my guests know if I will make more than “the first one” or if that one will they be on their own! This usually depends on whether or not there are “out of the inner circle” friends there. In that case, I make the drinks.

The stocked bar always has:

  • lots of linen napkins as I feel a fresh napkin is as important as a fresh glass
  • wonderfully heavy double old fashioned glasses and extra large wine glasses
  • lots of ice in a handsome padded bucket with tongs
  • nice size wedged fruit (who can squeeze a slice?), tasty stuffed olives
  • good vodka, bourbon, blended whiskey, scotch, gin, dry vermouth
  • red wine only if I know someone drinks it during cocktails

If one is going to serve a “theme drink” or set the tone for a set style of drink, I usually announce that in the invitation – verbal or written. “Come for Mimosas and Drivers”, “Come for Martinis and Manhattans”, “Come for Prosecco in the Garden”. That sets the expectation and clears the air for anyone who may wish to ask for something else in advance.

Case in point – at a Summer White Party I hosted for a friend’s 50th, I chose to have a full bar and “White Cosmos”, made with White Cranberry Juice. A guest looked me right in the eye and said “I suppose I will be the designated driver tonight as I ONLY drink champagne”. Begrudgingly, I pulled two bottles of Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame out of the chiller and placed them with the bartender and informed him to keep them under the bar and serve them in a wine glass to her as not to start a stampede. She drank them both!

What about food? Is there one hors d’oeuvre that you like to serve? Or, do you just put out a bowl of nuts or crackers?

When sitting for cocktails in the living room where we can all reach the coffee table, or standing in the kitchen while cooking, I like educating people about cheese and accoutrements. I take the label from the monger and use a glue stick to place it on a place card and attach it to a bamboo pick so as to identify said cheese. I ask the monger for their recommendations for jams (quince, pear, fig are the expected) and then dried fruits and nuts. I place the cheeses together with what is suggested so that guests will have an opinion about what they are trying. This is nice with certain wine pairings and just fine with cocktails as well.

When in the garden, I tend to offer passed items due to the bugs in the South. Deviled Eggs, Pimento Cheese in Celery Sticks or on Ginger Snaps!

Sunday Brunch cocktails always call for something poured over Cream Cheese – I love to try at the Farmers Market different condiments like Peach Chutney, Green Tomato Relish and such. Also, fresh Charleston Blue Crab and a Louie Sauce over Cream Cheese is divine!

Any other tips?

  • NEVER RUN OUT OF WHAT YOU ARE SERVING. These items do not go bad, so why not stock your bar and be ready for the next event?
  • Always have good sparkling water on the bar and have it well chilled. If it is hot, I will often offer guests a glass of sparkling just to quench their thirst. If you offer a vodka tonic to someone who has just worked, showered and may be a bit dehydrated, they will get drunk quickly and pay for it the next day.
  • Keep the bar tidy. Keep a lovely towel there for spills, have a back up wine tool should yours break, and inspect the glasses ahead of time for lipstick and smudges. A great cocktail starts with a clean glass; not one that might have a bit of dust and a dog hair on it!

In closing, if you are serving dinner, I enjoy after dinner drinks very much. Port, Madeira, Cognacs….dinner is not dinner until you have ascended to withdrawing for the after dinner drinks! That sounds like a line from Doris Duke or Dorothy Parker, but I swear it is not!

(>Jennifer Boles, contributing editor to HOUSE BEAUTIFUL)

Girls Rooms

Stylish girl power designed by Lucy & Company: 704-342-6655

Kitchen and Bath: Design Innovations
Free Decorative Hardware with Aristokraft Purchase:
Order any Aristokraft cabinet and receive free standard hardware through August 31st.

Kitchen and Bath: Ferguson
Receive $50.00 off any purchase of $500.00 or more.

Outdoor Living: All South Supply
Outdoor Appliances on Sale!
Homeowners take 10% off retail price on all Bull stainless steel outdoor grills and accessorie

Click to view these and all Local Advertiser Coupons & Promotions.
Local Promotions

September 18-September 19 Dilworth Home Tour
The 37th Annual Dilworth Home Tour will feature a splendid mix of the truly historic and charming homes of Dilworth.  Several of the fully renovated homes have done an admirable job of retaining their historical integrity while adding modern conveniences.

October 3Antiques Street Fair
More than 300 dealers display their antiques and collectibles in their village shops and along streets in the Historic District of Cameron.

October 3-October 4Elizabeth Home Tour
The Home Tour features six homes and two gardens in the Elizabeth Neighborhood and provides a unique opportunity to contribute and help one of Charlotte’s Historic neighborhoods.

October 23-October 25 East Coast Antique Show
Our three day outdoor event has proven to be a huge success for both the novice antique shopper and the seasoned full time antique dealer with dealers from New York to Florida! Event time: 8am – until.

October 24-25, October 31-November 1, November 5-6Luxury Lifestyle Home Tour

November 4-8 •  Annual Fair Barn Antiques Show
The Fair Barn is the oldest surviving early twentieth-century fair exhibition hall in North Carolina.  Sponsored by Moore County Historical Association, the show features antique dealers from New York to Florida with thousands of items for sale.

November 6-November 8 Fall After Market Event
High Point
The Marts most popular event, this event takes place a few weeks after the wholesale market in High Point, NC. Come see one of a kind market samples and find out what is hot in furniture trends! Showroom displays and overruns are available for purchase at marked down prices.

November 21-November 22Annual Piedmont Crafts
Opportunity to purchase fine handmade crafts from more than 130 of the Southeast’s most talented artisans working in clay, fiber, glass, leather, metal, mixed media, jewelry and wood. Ongoing craftsmen demonstrations, educational programs, on-site food.

November 21-November 22 Seagrove Pottery Festival
This festival emphasizes hand-made pottery and traditional crafts displays and demonstrations and features first choice on new designs made especially for the event, limited edition special commemorative pieces, and their popular Sunday Auction at 4 pm.

March 3-March 7Southern Spring Home & Garden Show
Imagine Spring, with all its beauty and potential, at the 49th annual Southern Spring Home & Garden Show.  Discover beautiful landscapes created by 26 top professionals, inspiring designer rooms from the Interior Design Society, exquisite displays of bonsai, Ikebana, and orchids, and over 300 companies with the best and latest in building and home improvement, outdoor living, kitchen and bath, decorative arts and crafts, green building, and interior décor.

One of the things that’s great about being on vacation at the beach is to have a house with an outdoor shower. There’s something way more refreshing about being outside in a shower than inside. So last year we decided to make one of our own in our backyard, in a little used part of the yard. Here it is. We got some really cool tiles from Crossville Tile for the floor—a breeze to install because they were matted on a backing of sorts and in a sheet—hopefully by next summer the vine will grow over and cover it over…the shower head is a regular shower head, just the pipes run directly overhead–a tip—we put in a diverter and one of those little hand held shower wands—perfect for  washing kids, dogs and dirty legs after mountain biking or yard work. Anyone have anything similar?

backyard fountainLooking for a fun and beautiful addition to your backyard? This is an easy DIY project and we got all the materials from The Royal Gardens—the fountain sits in a square hard plastic tub that gets buried in the ground. A few cinderblocks in the bottom support the pot. A pump runs from the bottom of the plastic tub up in to the pot. A hard plastic screen supports the river rocks and other stones at the base–it makes it look like the fountain is sitting on the river rocks as you never see the tub. It’s a great way to add the sound of moving water to your backyard and the birds love it. We got everything from the Royal Gardens—maybe cost $300 to built—easy and a great addition.

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