News Room – – Rent vs. Buy Index

News Room – – Rent vs. Buy Index.

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What Makes Autumn So Special in the Triangle

It is official, autumn, my favorite season is underway.  I love the coolness of night whilst being able to enjoy the warmth of the day.  I love that football season is in full swing.  I love the changes in the tree leave and vegetation colors; creating such striking display of southern scenery.  But there is so much more to the fall, especially in the Triangle area of North Carolina.

Autumn’s arrival to the Triangle brings with it the State Fair and the Parade of Homes; two entertaining and exhilarating events that are family friendly and really are a must to be a part of.  The State Fair gets underway on October 14 and runs for 10 days to


NC Maple Tree Leaf in Autumn

NC Maple Tree Leaf in Autumn


the 24th of the month.  Apart from the great rides, wonderful food (I can smell those funnel cakes and deep fried Twinkies now), and amusing games, this year’s fair will also offer some greats entertainers from the music industry.  Artists such as Danny Gokey, Chris Tomlin, Darius Rucker, Chris Young, Easton Corbin, and groups such as Casting Crowns, and Honor Society, promise to make this year’s fair a unforgettable one.

If you are thinking about attending the fair, one of the best nights to go on is Preview Night; usually the first night of the fair.  On Preview Night, you will find great discounts on rides, food, and entertainment.  Also the lines for events should not be too long as the fair will be less crowded on this night.  Preview Night this year falls on a Thursday so if you have young children who have school the next morning, you might want to get their early.  Advance tickets can be purchased at a descent discount at

Parade of Homes

Being a real estate consultant, I really look forward to the Parade of Homes, which will run on October 2nd and 3rd, October 8th – 10th, and 15th – 17th in Wake, Durham, Orange, and Chatham Counties.  That pretty much covers Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, and everything surrounding or in between.  Parade of Homes offers a great opportunity to find out what’s the latest and greatest in new home design and construction.  It also gives you an opportunity to talk directly with home builders as they usually float around their properties at the ready to answer any questions prospective clients (and Lookie Lous) may have.


People at a Parade of Homes home

People at a Parade of Homes home


As always, when there are a lot of potential buyers in large quantity, you will find Realtors there too looking to pounce (we don’t pounce, do we?) on the first thing with a pulse….times are that tough.  But seriously, you will find Realtors moving about assisting the home builder and seeking clients they can assist in the home buying/building process; whether this be to answer a simple question or helping customers compare one builder’s product to another.  Realtors are honestly here to be a valuable resource to the customer/client if they can fully grasp the value Realtors bring to the transaction table.  Unless you are highly versed (and I emphasize highly) in real estate, purchasing property without a Realtor would be like diagnosing your own medical ailment and operating on yourself.  I think you get the point so enough about Realtors.

The Home builders Association or Raleigh-Wake County; the organization responsible for hosting the Parade of Homes each year, is the largest, single county homebuilders association in the nation with over 3,200 members and growing.  Lasts year Parade of Homes had nearly 200 representative properties and we are expecting a great showing for this year.

Pack up the family and check out this year’s Parade of Homes, or the State Fair, or both, and you are sure to have a superb experience.

———————————Thoughts on My Daughter and Son ———————————

So my son is at the point where he is able to stand on his own; actually he has been here for some time, but is too afraid, or does not know that he can.  I’ve caught him letting go of something that he was using to hold himself up and then begin bouncing up and down on his toes.  Once he realized that he is supposed to be bracing himself with something, he slowly dropped down to his knees and crawled away.  In my child I see a clear example of the potential each one of us has in us to go beyond what we think our abilities will allow.

If you are interested in a private viewing of any Parade of Homes property, email us at

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Loan Officer vs. Mortgage Broker…There is a Difference

Banks vs. Mortgage Brokers

If you plan on purchasing a new home, more than likely you will be looking to obtain a mortgage (unless of course you are a big wig and can pay cash) to finance the purchase of your home.  Before obtaining this mortgage, many people go into the process not understanding the difference between a mortgage broker and a bank loan officer.

I will attempt to shed some light on the issue.

Bank Loan Officers

If you go into a bank, credit union or other such lending institution and work with a loan officer, understand this; that officer is an employee of the lending institution and their sole objective is to sell and process mortgages and other loans initiated by their employer (the institution).  These loan officers often have a surplus of loan types to choose from, but every single loan starts out from one lending institution.

After your loan application is taken by the loan officer, he or she will work to find a suitable home loan for you.  Should your personal credit be acceptable, the loan officer will begin to process the purchase.  If there are issues with your credit, the officer will advise on steps you can take to clean up your credit, thus putting you in a position for approval in the future.

Mortgage Brokers

Mortgage brokers connect lenders with borrowers and are paid a fee to do so.  As freelance agents, as opposed to employees, they typically work with dozens or even hundreds of lenders.

Think of mortgage brokers as scouts or sniffers. They find home buyers; evaluate their situation, and analyzing their credit condition to determine which lender is the best fit for that person’s needs.  After evaluating all the necessary criteria, the broker submits the home buyer’s application to one or more lenders in order to sell it.  Once a lender is identified, the mortgage broker will work with said lender until the loan closes. A mortgage broker worth his or her salt can find a lender for just about any type of credit condition.

Bear in mind that for his or her work in securing your loan, the mortgage broker will earn a fee for the transaction.  The sweeter the deal they are able to obtain for the lender, the more money they are paid so they are quite eager.  Let the mortgage broker convey to you the terms they will be able to secure for you and do not be so anxious to disclose to them the interest rate you are seeking or willing to accept.  I recommend shopping around with three to four different lenders to find the most reasonable terms acceptable to you.

The majority of the mortgages companies that advertise on the internet are mortgage brokers.

What Does All This Mean to Me?

Because of the nature of their business, mortgage brokers, both local and online, may find you a lender in another part of the country.  Understand that an online bank might not have a local office where employees can help you one-on-one.

There may be incongruence with how one lender classifies or understands something in one state as opposed to another.  The online or out of town lender may not, for instance, understand the types of heating or cooling systems used in specific areas.  They may not be familiar with private septic systems, nor know the difference between the various types used in a specific locale.  They also may not directly understand common classifications and terms used by local appraisers. The examples above are just a few of the problems that can cause significant slow-downs in loans made by an out of town lender working with a mortgage broker.

On the flip side, using a local bank can sometimes be a plus because their employees generally understand the specifics of local properties and help move towards an expedited closing.  A distant lender who doesn’t understand the intricacies of local real estate will more than likely delay closing until their questions are answered.

However, mortgage brokers will often find a lender who can make those difficult loans that a bank will outright refuse.  Case in point is problem credit. Mortgage brokers might also be able to more easily secure unique or commercial property loans.

Nine times out of ten you should make your choice of a lender based on the best loan terms you can find. Always ask questions about the expected time-frame it will take to close your loan. And ask your real estate consultant, friends, colleagues, etc. who have recently bought a home for a referral of a lender or broker.

Pull Your Own Credit Reports

It is always a good idea to know your credit standing before starting the mortgage search process.  You should order your credit reports and scores from all three major credit reporting agencies before visiting a bank or broker.  The U.S. government entitles every person to a free credit report from each credit bureau once a year.  You can go to to obtain your free reports.  A personal copy of current reports should provide enough details for a lender to give you a good idea of the types of loans they can offer you.

The lender you decide to use will access your full credit files with their accompanying score before presenting you a hard offer.  This does not mean you should not take your personal copies with you to the initial interview because this will avoid your credit being pulled multiple times, which can lower your scores.  Requesting your own credit reports does not affect your scores.  Also having your reports pulled by numerous companies in the same industry (i.e. car, banking, furniture) and within a certain timeframe (usually 2 weeks) does not affect your score as much either.

————————Thoughts on My Daughter and Son ————————-

Attachment is a very funny thing.  When my son was just a few months old, we used to prop him up in his bassinet against a soft, stuffed, toy kitten.  As he grew he became fond of anything that had the same texture as that kitten; blankets, clothing, you name it.  Even now as he is well into crawling, he will locate that kitten on the floor and scuttle over to it and, while still on his knees, lie his face down on the kitten for a few minutes.  It so amazing how we get attached to things and this attachment can’t be seen any clearer than in a little child.


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I’ve heard of a monkey on your back but this one takes the cake!

I found the above picture on someones Facebook page and thought it was quite interesting……actually quite funny.  What do you all think of it?  Let me know of any interesting photos that you have seen lately.


If you are looking for a place to raise your goats or any other animals in or around Raleigh, North Carolina, I can help.  Click here to search for properties

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Sprint Really Understands Customer Service

In yesteryears Sprint’s customer service was a dreadful thing that people avoided at all


Sprint Logo


costs.  I remember too often sitting on phone for almost an hour only to get an incompetently rude customer service agent who (as I am convinced) were clearly figureheads planted to frustrate customers even further and who knew nothing about Sprint’s products let alone how to troubleshoot a problem.

Well that was years past, today it seems Sprint has placed all of their efforts into their customer service.  When you call, you are kindly greeted and a feeling of worth and value just exude from the conversation.  Representatives are great listeners and really do strive to help resolve your problems expediently.

In the Cary/Morrisville/RTP market, there has been an outage in a cell tower since August 30th.  It has now since been resolved (since about one and a half weeks ago) but this outage caused me great turmoil as I was not able to receive any calls, make calls, or get on the internet effectively; being in real estate you can imagine how this can be a problem.  I had been calling Sprint since I first noticed the problem to make sure my calls were document.

Now that the issue has been resolved, I called in to see what Sprint would do about my inconvenience.   The tier 1 customer support specialist was not able to do anything but she did warm transfer me to an Account Services Manager who took great care of me.  After listening intently to my concerns, she placed me on hold to investigate the account.  Within a few minutes she returned and offered me a free month of service.  Expecting to have to get into a verbal fisticuff over why I think I am due compensation, I was dumbfounded to find this not to be the case.

In this economy, when businesses are trying everything to hold onto every single penny possible, to cut corners, and to scale down on employees, Sprint seems to be taking the road less traveled.  Kudos to you Sprint…Keep up the good work.

Post your experience with your current cell phone provider.  Why do you like them and if you are leaving them, why?

P.S. I suggest that if you were affected by the tower outage of the Cary/Morrisville, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina area and you are a customer of Sprint, that you give them a call.  Who knows maybe free months of services will be going around.

———————–Thoughts on My Daughter and Son ————————–

So this morning I was feeling a need for a little affection from my daughter.  I asked her “Sihiyona, do you want daddy to give you a kiss?”  Without skipping a beat she replied “no thank you daddy”.  So heartbroken yet the cuteness of the whole matter did make my heart smile just a little.


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Far from mainstream dining but close to magnifique. Unaabi Grill Afghan restaurant in Cary, NC is a must!

What you are missing

Unaabi Grill Dish

If you like exotic or non-traditional dining, food cooked with the freshest of ingredients, and décor that reminds you that you are not in your average cliché establishment then Unaabi Grill located at 914 Kildaire Road in Cary, North Carolina is for you.

The minute you walk into the door you are hit with such sensually tantalizing aromas that you almost want to bombard the kitchen and start ravaging.  If you can hold back this temptation, you will be welcomed by a hospitable host who will show you to your seats.  Your eyes will be treated to the interior decoration which is authentic Afghani.

When it’s time to order you have a fair selection of appetizers to choose from and for those of you who are quite indecisive when it comes to food choice (shout out to my sister here), there is a combo platter that will give you a sampling of all the appetizers.  The main dishes are variants of tenderly cooked halal beef, chicken, lamb, or fish coupled with organic vegetables and rice.  There is a lot to choose from (personal favorite is the Chicken Naringe) as the chicken category alone runs to seven listings, from boneless breast to wings to half a bird.

Ummm Ummm Good!!!!

Mango Lasi drink

Afghanis love to use nuts so expect pistachios, almonds, or pine nuts mixed throughout your rice servings.  Of course, if you do not fancy nuts, you can always request they be left out.  For beverage, I never deviate from the Mango Lasi or the fresh Mango juice; which comes with unlimited refills by the way.  I could go on about the health benefits of Mangoes but will save that for another post.

Vegetarians need not worry as they will find a varied offering at Unaabi Grill; from a simple stew of okra and tomatoes to palau Baudinjan, an elaborately spiced medley of eggplant, onions, tomatoes and green peppers.  Even if you’re not a vegetarian, one of these dishes makes a gratifying side dish.

Afghan hospitality is renowned.  When you are a guest in the home of an Afghani, typically all the best will be laid out and certainly Unaabi Grill has not deviated from this tradition.  Check out Unaabi Grill in Cary, NC today….you won’t be disappointed.

Please let me know of your experience with this establishment or any unique dining experience with another restaurant you’ve recently has within the Triangle.

Visit Unaabi Grill Website

Search Cary, NC homes for sale

————————Thoughts on My Daughter and Son ————————-

So the other day I asked my daughter, who is 2 & 1/2 years old now, to go potty after she came out of the bathroom.  She looked at me with the most innocently sweet expression and said “I can’t pee pee daddy, pee pee all gone”.  It is so amazing how quickly children learn to conjugate once they began to speak.

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Introducing Mark Pelshak’s Blog

Hello world.

This is my very first post and I would like to take the time to welcome you to The Raleigh Factor (not to be mistaken with The O’Reilly Factor as seen on Fox News).


According to merriam-webster, the first position definition of factor is: one who acts or transacts business for another: as a broker. That is who I am; a real estate broker (I like to use the term consultant) servicing the Triangle area of North Carolina which comprises of Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and surrounding.

Within this blog you will find information on just about anything regarding the Triangle.  But let’s be of understanding that this is a real estate blog so the majority of the posts will have something to do with real estate in my area….hope you don’t mind!

I also love my family (I have a wife and two kids)The Pelshak's …they come right after my faith.  My lovely wife is Named Niles, my daughter is named Sihiyona – which means Zion, and my son is named Nanchin – meaning God has done it for us.

We love to take drives through the countrysides in close proximity to our area.  That is a wonderful thing about the Triangle…and the South in general; how it juxtaposes metropolis with rural.  We love how, within 15-20 minutes we can escape to fields of waving wheat, single lane dirt roads, and forests the likes of a Mark Twain novel.

Enough about me.  As you can see Carolina is always on my mind.   I do hope you will check back in and update yourself about everything Raleigh.  And if you just so happen to be interested in real estate in the Triangle or surrounding area, I think I can can certainly help you with that too.

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