Fourth of July Article Written for The Cherokee Scout’s Country Roads Magazine by John Poltrock

Likely the greatest American holiday is the Fourth of July. It celebrated across our great land and offers tremendous opportunities for family and friends to get together in celebration. It’s a federal holiday that is celebrated in a variety of different ways. Spectacles of light and sound, explosions, gun shots, flags, smoking grills, delicious foods, and so much more are spread across the country in festivities that are second to none.

Interestingly enough, it was July 2, 1766 that Congress actually declared the legal separation of the Thirteen Colonies from Great Britain. In fact, John Adams wrote to his wife:

“The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.”

His prediction of celebration was absolutely correct. However, the day of the celebration was off by two days. Congress declared the Fourth of July as our Independence Day because on that day in 1776, Congress approved the final version of the Declaration of Independence.

It’s important to remember that the day we celebrate was not lightly won. Many sacrifices have been given. Families have been destroyed, lives and minds have been lost, and things have been taken that we can’t even begin to tally or imagine. Although it was the Revolutionary War separated us into our own country, the sacrifices did not stop there. Our country has endured many wars and conflicts that has kept our freedoms alive and fully intact. Nor is done – our servicemen and women will continue to fight to protect what our Founding Fathers have laid out for us.

While we all enjoy our freedom and all we have in our lives, let us not forget our roots, our duties, and those who both make and made our country great. There’s no doubt we live in the best country in the world – the United States of America. May God bless America.

Written by John Poltrock – The Poltrock Team – REMAX Mountain Properties – Murphy NC – – Call us Toll Free at 1-866-Murphy-NC or 1-866-687-7496 – Murphy’s #1 Real Estate Team

Among Worldwide Uncertainty, You’ll Find Consistency Here in Murphy NC – An Article for the Cherokee Scout

Here’s an article I wrote for the Cherokee Scout (Murphy NC’s local newspaper) and is scheduled to be published in their next edition of their magazine, Country Roads. I hope you enjoy! 🙂

No matter where you look, it seems as though there is constant bad news… a new prospect of disaster throughout the World. Whether it is the Greek debt crisis, the threat of rising fuel costs, Iranian nuclear testing, US debt, you name it.  There’s something on every horizon that leads to an uncertain future that seems to grow at an almost exponential rate.

It seems that no matter what news makes you most uncomfortable, one thing is certainly true: human nature generally seeks stability and reliability. When I look through the news to find out what is happening in other areas even just within the United States, there are natural disasters that decimate entire towns – hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, flooding, and so many other events that quite simply are scary. Destruction of property, loss of life, and years to rebuild are imminent. Combined with crime that plagues other areas, I must say we are blessed to live in one of the greatest areas of the United States.

Every day I drive through the streets of Murphy and count blessings. We generally don’t have major natural disasters – and you can usually tell that on your home insurance! Instead of thousands of dollars that many from other areas pay, it’s generally in the hundreds range. On every corner you see someone you know… a neighbor, a friend, a family member. When you park your car, you can rest easy knowing it won’t be on blocks when you come back. We truly live in a wonderful place!

It’s a blessing to be able to help share our area with folks. People come from far and wide to vacation, retire, get away, camp, and celebrate here with us. It’s always amazing to be showing homes to someone not from here and learn the reason of what brings them to Murphy in the first place. Over the years, I’ve heard many different reasons.  So here are couple stories I’ll share with you showing that things remain constant in Murphy.

I’ve talked to many folks who would come up over the summer to Bear Paw as a kid with their parents. They would fish on the lake, swim at the pool, play tennis, and surely chase the long lost summer love. A couple decades later, they return here to keep those memories alive with their spouse and give the opportunity for their kids to create their own memories.

Weather is a constant hot topic. Being in the Westernmost corner of North Carolina certainly has its advantages. Folks who want to be able to enjoy the four seasons without major heat or cold extremes find Murphy to be the best spot. Not only do we have great seasons and temperatures, the Western mountains bypass many heavy storms to the North and South of us. I even spoke with a gentleman who told me they settled here simply because those mountains not only diverted storms, but air pollution too. He said that gave us far better air quality than many other places.

One of the most unique and medically interesting reasons I have heard is some doctors are apparently saying that Murphy is a great place for those diagnosed with MS (Multiple Schleoris). I have spoken with a couple people now who have been diagnosed with it who swear that moving to Murphy was one of the best things they ever did. The combination of a variety of factors we have has even caused their disease to reverse and made them get better. I certainly cannot explain it, yet it apparently is a huge reason for those with the disease to come to the area.

Water – yes water is always a favorite in the mountains. Creeks, rivers, Lake Hiwassee, or the fishing and sports that come from them, water is a constant favorite. There’s nothing like water crashing over a rocky creek bed, a boat on the lake, or a kayak on a river to soothe your soul.

Being a Realtor, one aspect of Murphy that makes me proud is the fact that we have the greatest real estate values in the mountains. I’ve worked with many people that have chosen to buy a home in Murphy as opposed to other mountain towns simply because they feel they can buy a better home for their dollar. Perhaps they want a larger home for the same amount of money, more features, or simply save some money for a similar property, it comes down to the fact Murphy has a little bit of everything to offer.

So when you look around in the newspaper and it reads, “Imminent fear around the corner” or “so-and-so did such-and-such,” rest assured there is a place where there is a getaway from the incessant bad news. There’s a place where great weather, gorgeous views at every turn, or the best people you could ask for are all around. Yes, Murphy is the greatest place in the world to hang your hat and call your home away from home.

The Poltrock Team – REMAX of Murphy NC – www.MyMurphy.comJohnPoltrock@gmail.comCall us Toll Free at 1-866-Murphy-NC or 1-866-687-7496 – Murphy’s #1 Real Estate Team



The Fall Captivates the Mountains of Murphy NC – An Article for The Cherokee Scout

Here’s the most recent article I wrote for The Cherokee Scout’s (our local newspaper) magazine, Country Roads. I hope you enjoy!

There is a time of year that is unlike any other. It’s a plethora of sensations which bring folks from thousands of miles away to enjoy everything Fall brings to us in the Mountains. It’s a blessing, no doubt, to have all the vibrant colors, smells, and the cool temperatures to embrace us this time of year. It’s just now barely beginning and we’ll have month or so to enjoy everything God gives us.

I absolutely love all the celebrations of Fall, and it’s not just me. Lots of people from our community come together and bring our famous festivals to life. There are many – such as the John C. Campbell Folk School’s Fall Festival which attracts thousands to their grounds with live dancing and music, excellent food, crafts and vendors galore, horseback riding, demonstrations, and an incredible amount more. Couple that with the Sorghum Festival in Blairsville, GA (only 15-20 minutes from Murphy), Wild Ramp Festival in Robbinsville, NC, the Pumpkin’ Chunkin’ in Hayesville, the Pumpkin Fest in Franklin, the RE/MAX Client Appreciation Picnic (of course it’s one of my favorites!), Halloween at Duke Street, and so much more. There are countless celebrations of every shape and size that make things so exciting.

Fall is not all about celebrations and activities. It’s about nature’s show of fireworks that marks the end of a season. The hardwoods combine to give us an exceedingly vibrant show of colors that’s arguably better than any man-made fireworks show ever seen. The maples are my favorite, and they burst with a radiant red that can’t be duplicated. Not to be outdone, the oaks, birch, gums, and all others combine in a blanket of color fit for a king.

There’s no doubt that this time of year brings folks to the mountains of North Carolina… and ultimately come to call it home. There are so many clients and friends we’ve met and had come to Murphy over the years. And when they come in the Fall, it truly mesmerizes them into buying a home and making the mountains their home. I’ve seen it happen time and again, and I must admit, I completely understand it because every year I look more forward to Fall than the year past – and this year is no exception.

John Poltrock – The Poltrock Team – REMAX of Murphy NC – – – Call us Toll Free at 1-866-Murphy-NC –  1-866-687-7496 – Murphy’s #1 Real Estate Team



The Poltrock Team at REMAX in Murphy NC Outsold Real Estate Offices in Cherokee County

The Poltrock Team sold more real estate than 90% of real estate offices in Cherokee County. When you take all our agents in RE/MAX Mountain Properties, we outsold every real estate company. You got it – nobody sold more real estate than RE/MAX.

When you want your home or land sold in Murphy NC, contact Murphy’s #1 Real Estate Team to get the job done.

Check out our advertisement on the back cover of The Cherokee Scout’s magazine, Country Roads! Be sure to click the image to see a larger version.

The Poltrock Team at REMAX in Murphy NC – Murphy’s #1 Real Estate Team – – – Call The Poltrock Team TODAY Toll Free at 1-866-Murphy-NC or 1-866-687-7496

Spring Break in Murphy NC

Here’s an article I wrote for the Cherokee Scout, our local newspaper. It was published in theirs magazine – Country Roadson Wednesday. Enjoy! 🙂

Spring Break – it’s the things legends are made of. Countless Hollywood movies have been created capturing hilarious Spring Break family vacations and college excursions. Here in the mountains, it’s a perfect opportunity for families to come and enjoy the bountiful selection of things to do that bond memories together forever.

On our website,, I wrote an article on Bear Paw Resort here in Murphy NC that said, “It is surprisingly common to have a middle-aged person come who spent their summers as a kid in Bear Paw and want to purchase a property so they can continue to enjoy and prolong those great memories that have captivated them for years.” I received a call from a gentleman a week or so ago saying, “I’m one of those guys!” Now, he wants to come back to Murphy, NC to create the same fond memories in the minds of his young children so they too can look back at family vacations and Spring Breaks in the mountains.

However, fond memories are certainly not confined to Bear Paw. There are lots of opportunities throughout Murphy and Cherokee County. Fortunately, we are not a “Panama City Beach Spring Break” type partying place. We are the retreat for both couples and families.

There are so many things to do here in Murphy NC! In fact, I have quite a comprehensive list on our website. Things like ATVing, hiking, camping, fishing, boating, antiquing, farmer’s markets, festivals, Field of the Wood, zoo, flying, and so much more leave something everyone can enjoy. Whether you’re an adult or 5, you’re bound to find something to do and build those memories that last a lifetime.

So many folks come here on Spring Break, or another vacation, and find they absolutely love it! Murphy is one of the few places on earth that the more you come, the harder it gets to leave. It grows on your soul and becomes part of you. That’s why so many people choose to buy land or a permanent/vacation/retirement home. Land offers the opportunity of owning a sliver of the place you love.  A home provides instant use so on the few times per year you can break away, you have that special place to come to awaiting your arrival. Or, if you’re lucky enough, you can move here full time and become a true Murphy-onian.

No matter your age, no matter the ages of your family or lack of, I hope you have a wonderful Spring Break. Make it something that touches the heart and soul of those around you. Be certain to explore the opportunities that lie close to you. Leave no rock unturned and genuinely enjoy the time off to recharge your batteries and create memories that last decades.

John Poltrock – The Poltrock Team at RE/MAX – Murphy’s #1 Real Estate Team – – John – Call us Toll Free at 1-866-Murphy-NC or 1-866-687-7496

Snow Days are a Blessing in Murphy NC – A Cherokee Scout Article by John Poltrock

Here’s the most recent article written by John scheduled to be in The Cherokee Scout’s upcoming magazine, Country Roads.

As I write this on a quite cold winter day, snow gracefully falls from the sky. My daughter is even excited at the prospect of not having school – something a child always looks forward to – a snow day! Snow days are sporadic in a year, only gracing us a few times a year. But when they do, it’s magical. Folks get time to spend with their family, get a few well deserved hours away from work, a warm cup of coffee or cocoa, and always, snow angels. Lots and lots of snow angels.

Snow FlakeAlthough an unlikely comparison, the falling snow reminds me of the blessings in real estate we have seen from winter to winter. Yes, despite the bombardment of bad news from the media and everywhere else you turn, real estate has the ability to bless people like a snow day – only better.

We worked with a couple this year who purchased a property that is now their home. And by that, I don’t literally mean it has a house on the property – it’s their home. In fact, it is currently only a vacant piece of land now, but it is going to be their home and where they spend many years together making it that much more of a home. It brings them hope for the future – a place they will come to enjoy their lives.  The feelings that wash over them and the excitement the property brings to them is better than that of any snow day. It will literally last them a lifetime and be the place they will enjoy a few brilliantly white snow days together.

On an opposite token, we worked with a couple who were in serious danger of losing their house. In fact, it wasn’t just a danger, it was eminent. Foreclosure notice had already been served and the writing was on the wall. This couple’s house went from a home, to a house, and finally to a huge burden. It was a weight on their chest that can’t be picked up no matter how you try. And for those of you who have been blessed enough to not have experienced a foreclosure, it’s one of the worst feelings and emotions you can possibly imagine. It’s one of the most terrible, most embarrassing things that can happen to you. With this couple, we were able find a buyer and come to an agreement with the owners and their bank. Although that statement sounds simple, it was one of the hardest, most challenging transactions we’ve ever worked on – and also one of the most rewarding. For the homeowner when it was over, it was far sweeter than a snow day from work. It was a feeling of full relief to know that stage of their life was over with and complete.

Snow is a gift that we only get to enjoy a few times a year. Real estate is an opportunity to enjoy the feelings that snow days bring not just a few times, but every day. So while winter grasps hold of us and the cold weather keeps us by our fireplaces, enjoy yourselves, your family, your home, dream of your future home, and know that we are blessed to be in mountains, in God’s Country.

If you have real estate needs, give us a call. We work hard for you to get you the results you need. And no matter your situation, whether buying or selling, we strive to get you to the day where the job is done and the good feelings you remember from a snow day wash over you from a job well done.

Written by John Poltrock, Certified Residential Specialist – – Call Toll Free 1-866-687-7496

Invest in the Mountains of Murphy NC – Especially Now!

With the Holiday season coming to a wrap and 2009 young and vibrant, we all are looking forward to a year of progress. President Obama’s term is getting ready to begin, and regardless of whether you are a supporter or not, I’m certain we are all hopeful for an improved economy and a prosperous nation.

Real Estate is a huge opportunity for investment prosperity as our economy continually shows signs of improving. Not only that, there are many choices for homes and land.  The hardest part is just picking which is your favorite! As Donald Trump said, “It’s tangible, it’s solid, it’s beautiful. It’s artistic, from my standpoint, and I just love real estate.” You’ll always be able to stand on it, touch it, enjoy it, and ultimately sell something that is real – not just a paper investment.

Real Estate is a low cost opportunity right now as interest rates are continually dropping. You should be certain to contact one of our many local lenders to find the opportunities in place right now. Feel free to visit our “Gotta Guy” list to find several local lenders (that’s our local recommended contractor list). Cost of ownership is extraordinarily low with very favorable county tax rates. For example, current rates for a home assessed at $200,000 will be in the neighborhood of $800 for the year. Homeowner’s insurance runs in the same neighborhood as well. If you purchase land, you shouldn’t need to pay insurance for it since your current homeowner’s policy should protect you for most things under personal liability coverage (be sure to check your own policy to see what specific coverage is offered).

There are many different types of real estate investments in Murphy NC available suitable to practically every budget. We have land opportunities as low as $10,000 and with sizes ranging from lots to parcels with thousands of acres. Looking for a home you can enjoy now or don’t want to build? We have brand new cabins and homes in the low 100’s, and from there, the sky is the limit. You can also search the Murphy NC MLS for free.

The investment standpoint is always a good way to look at it, and with a degree in financial planning, I tend to look that way first. Truth is, that’s only a very small portion owning a property in the mountains. Waking up with a warm cup of coffee overlooking a stunning mountain view is something you cannot even begin to put a price on. Living on a cool mountain river watching trout swim around catching flies is something that simply can’t be replaced. Sitting on a soft leather couch in the evening watching the sunset on the Appalachian Mountains right beside a crackling fireplace is of no comparison.

Now is the time to move from dreaming and to start planning. Come to Murphy! There are many great cabin rental companies and hotels to choose from so you can come and truly enjoy yourself. Curious about the area and want more information about weather, what to do, and more? Contact us and we’ll send you our FREE Murphy NC Information Packet; it’s filled with tons of information about the weather and climate in Murphy NC, things to do, and much more! And until you get here, keep dreaming of mountain views, comfortable weather with four seasons, and great people!

***Be sure to read this article in the January 2009 Edition of our local Cherokee County Newspaper, The Cherokee Scout. You’ll find it and our full page ad in Country Roads.***

John Poltrock, Certified Residential Specialist – Murphy NC – The POLTROCK TEAM at RE/MAX Mountain Properties – – – Call us Toll Free at 1-866-Murphy-NC or 1-866-687-7496.

What’s Happened to the Value of My Real Estate in Murphy, North Carolina?

Real estate in Murphy NC, as for most of the United States, is a high topic of conversation. Whether it’s about an individual home or land or the prices of them, you can expect to hear about it at any local hangout. Now, most folks don’t walk around and openly say, "my home is worth a gajillion dollars," but they do watch what’s selling and for sale in their neighborhood.What's the value of my Murphy NC Real Estate???

So it’s natural to wonder, "What’s happened to my property value over the last few years?"

Since Murphy, NC doesn’t have subdivisions with 100’s of the exact same house, it’s difficult to track a definite percentage of how much our market has adjusted. Fortunately, there’s still a good way to calculate it based on a popular style of houses. Like most areas, we do have a popular style. And nope, it’s not stucco, brick, or any of the common houses you see in primary markets. We have a popular home style called the chalet.

Because we have many chalets for sale and in turn help families buy a lot of them, we can get a rough idea of what the market has done. Without a doubt, these numbers will not apply to every home – especially unique ones. This is intended to give you a benchmark.

Market Summary





2006 to 2007 Difference

2007 to 2008 Difference

2006 to 2008 Difference

List Price




 Up 6.37%

 Down 11.68%

 Down 6.05%

Sales Price




 Up 5.26%

 Down 16.15%

 Down 11.74%

List to Sale Ratio




 Down 0.37%

 Down 5.17%

 Down 5.53%

Days on Market




 Up 99%

 Up 1.8%

 Up 102.70%

*Based on an average of all 2/2 chalets on a basement sold in Cherokee County in the given year as sold across the Mountain Lakes Board of Realtors®. You can view more market statistics on our Murphy NC State of the Market Reports.

The large and short of it is that we have seen sale prices decline about 11.74% over the last 20 months. The stock market has lost 13.3% in 2008 alone (based on the DJIA index). With that said, it appears your money is far more stable and secure in the tangible asset of real estate rather than stocks.

This chart is a great indicator as to how the market trends. The year 2007 was our transition year where values began to decline. One of the largest indicators as to this is that days on market practically doubled while prices still increased. This indicates that although there was appreciation, it took longer for buyers to find and buy homes on the market. Since days on market is remaining quite stable, it shows a strong sign our market is reaching the "trough" (or bottom) of the business cycle.

Since it looks like we’re riding the wave at the bottom of the market, now is a great time to buy. You can purchase your real estate at low prices that we haven’t seen in years. If you’re waiting for the market to go up, you’ll miss out on huge amounts of appreciation that’s in store for us soon.

Are you considering selling and want to know what this data means for your individual property? Contact your local Cherokee County Realtor® for a free market analysis to interpret what your home is now worth. If you’d like us to research it for you, please feel free to call us or use our FREE Online "What’s My Home Worth?" form. 

Are you considering buying and want to find the best buy on the market? Be sure to contact a local Realtor®. They’re the ones living and breathing real estate and you should rely on their expertise. You can also call us to find your new property or use our FREE Online "Find My Dream Home!" form.

Written By: John Poltrock, your Cherokee County Certified Residential Specialistwww.MyMurphy.comCall Toll Free (866) 687-7496 and demand The POLTROCK TEAM! – Real Estate in the Mountains of Murphy, North Carolina – Email me at – RE/MAX Mountain Properties

*Watch for this article in the upcoming issue of the Cherokee Scout’s Country Roads, which is the *new* real estate section of Cherokee County’s newspaper. Be sure to subscribe to the Scout newspaper and have it delivered at your home for 38 cents per week!