Updated: Oct 19
You may be surprised to learn that the housing market in North Carolina is the best it's ever been. Demand is high and the competition is ramping up. If you’re a seller, you want your home to appeal to potential buyers. If you want to catch their eye, you’ll need to invest into the landscaping of your home. A good-looking home will attract buyers and invite them to inquire more. Landscaping rocks and decorative stones are soaring in popularity especially in North Carolina, a state that is already known for its stunning natural environment. Property owners recognize how beneficial these stones are, both for practical and aesthetic purposes. In this guide, we’ll discuss how decorative stones, landscape boulders, and other rocks can be used outside of your home.
Real Estate Landscape in North Carolina
Current Market Overview
In recent years, North Carolina’s real estate market has steadily flourished. Due to the state’s natural beauty, North Carolina has become a desirable place for many to live. After a period of rapid growth in 2022, the housing market has begun to slow down in 2023. Home prices are still rising, but at a slower pace. According to NC Realtors' latest market report, the median sales price for a home in North Carolina was $302,549 in April 2023, an annual increase of 4.4%. However, the number of homes sold decreased by 16%. The median days on the market increased by 10 days compared to the previous year, reaching a total of 36 days. Still, it’s the median sale price of homes that serves as a significant indicator of the health and affordability of a housing market. The steady increase in median home prices indicates the market's strength and the evolving affordability landscape.
Certain North Carolina cities have seen remarkable growth in their sales. The top ten cities with the fastest-growing sales prices include Holly Ridge, Hope Mills, Wilson, and more. Holly Ridge leads the pack with an impressive 38.6% increase in sales price, highlighting the burgeoning demand for homes in these areas. This growth suggests a favorable market for sellers and potentially competitive conditions for buyers.
Since 2010, North Carolina has grown by more than a million residents. For over a decade, the state’s housing market has been expanding and has been on the steady rise. This has led to exciting new construction projects in this growing state. Suffice it to stay, North Carolina has been a hot spot for both sellers and buyers.
The North Carolina housing market continues to show resilience and promise, with a consistent trend of growth and demand. North Carolina’s real estate market presents a compelling landscape for buyers and sellers. Still, economists and experts are predicting a national housing slowdown. North Carolina is not exempt from this either. But it’s not expected that there will be a housing market crash in North Carolina. The small recent decreases point to the market adjusting, not crashing.
Local Natural Stone and Landscape Materials
Types of Stone Available in North Carolina
DeFeo Materials has a wide variety of stones that we offer in North Carolina. The following types of stones are available for purchase:
New England River Rock:
New England River Rock is a multi-colored round stone. This rock serves as an excellent replacement for Delaware River Jack. New England Rock is a lot more unique than Delaware River Jack. Our stone has more colors and is more vibrant. Additionally, New England River Rock’s roundness makes it better than traditional stone when it comes to drainage.
Alabama Sunset is a stone made up of silica and quartz. It’s a naturally rounded stone with a smooth texture. When wet, it looks beautifully polished. In fact, its roundness makes it particularly apt for drainage. Alabama Sunset comes in a range of beautiful hues, so it can definitely add a delightful pop of color to any property. Overall, this stone has an appeal and utility that catches the eye of many customers.
Palomino Creek Rock:
Palomino Creek Rock are rounded stones that have recently soared in popularity. In fact, this stone got its name from the palomino horse due to its beautiful color. Palomino Creek Rocks are available in a range of lovely whites, tans, and golds. It’s their eye-catching and unique color that has made them so popular with customers.
Coral Beach Pebbles:
Coral Beach Pebbles are quite similar to ocean pebbles. They are a great alternative to river rock and gravel, especially if you are looking for a pop of color. Coral Beach Pebbles are named after the paint color “Coral Pink” because of the hints of pinks and reds they possess. These rocks are found naturally within the environment and can bring a real beach-like feel to any property.
Alabama Brown Gravel:
Alabama Brown Gravel is a semi-round stone. Its brown color is similar to that of the Tennessee River Rock. Between its rounded edges, smooth texture, and beautiful color, this stone is especially pleasing to the eye. Because of its shape, texture, and color, brown gravel has many purposes and is used for many landscaping projects.
Slate is a stone produced by crushing and screening large deposits of slate. It’s considered the best alternative to mulch because it doesn’t deteriorate and is less likely to blow away. Because its color is fade resistant, you won’t need to replace it annually. This decorative stone can be used for flower beds and around walkways.
Benefits of Using Local Materials
Fortunately, North Carolina has an abundance of local materials to build with. Because these materials require little processing or transporting, the environmental and economic costs are low. Some materials are renewable resources while others are so abundant that their supply seems inexhaustible. Another benefit of using local materials is that they naturally fit well with the feeling of any place in the area.
Why Choose DeFeo Materials
At DeFeo Materials, we offer more varieties, sizes, and colors of stones compared to any of our competitors and we can deliver stones to you or your wholesale yard by the truckload. We provide the highest quality river rock on the east coast. Our premium river rocks have a smooth, polished texture that is admired and loved across North Carolina. We have been serving North Carolina since 2016 and built a dedicated base of happy customers. We have supply yards all throughout several towns and cities here. You are guaranteed to find a stone that will fit your tastes and needs.
Decorative Stone in North Carolina Homes
Understanding Decorative Stone
Decorative gravel can totally elevate the appearance of your home. Decorative stones come in a range of colors and styles. You can use decorative stones to create warm and cozy looks, take a naturalistic approach, or go towards a modern, minimalist style. It all depends on the stones that you choose. Not only can you create certain aesthetics with decorative stones but you can also use them for a variety of other applications. Before selecting a stone, you should consider what your ultimate goals are. What function do you want the stones to serve?
Decorative gravels are commonly used for pathways, walkways, and even driveways. Stones are incredibly durable and will resist any degradation from being walked on. Gravel or river stones are an option if you want to enjoy the pleasant crunch when you walk on it. If you prefer silence, flagstone is a great option to be used as natural-looking pavers.
Decorative stones are also used to cover garden beds, borders, and planting beds. These rocks are often between ¾ inch to 3 inches in diameter, and they cover the ground in layers no less than 3 inches thick. Using decorative stones in a garden can be hugely beneficial in that they offer weed protection and moisture control. Rocks can help retain moisture around shrubs, trees, and other plants, while adding drainage to control natural erosion around your home.
Lastly, a lot of decorative gravels are used around ponds and other water features. Some stones are naturally suited to water and can offset your garden. River rocks and beach pebbles are naturally suited to water and will offer ponds and other water features a serene and natural look.
Beach pebbles can also be a great canvas in which to showcase your collection of plants.
Selecting the Right Decorative Gravel
When selecting the right decorative stone, you’ll want to stay attuned to your home’s aesthetic as much as possible. Decorative stones should enhance your home’s appearance rather than detract from it. Matching the stones to your local environment is a good place to start. North Carolina already has a beautiful, natural landscape. This landscape accommodates homes of varying architectural styles and aesthetics. Some of the most popular home styles include: Cape Cod & Colonial Revival, Modernist, Victorian, Tudor-Style, Bungalow, Traditional & Ranch, and Farmhouses. As you can see North Carolina presents a diversity in styles and cultures. So, DeFeo Materials offer a wide variety of stones for North Carolina customers to choose from in return. And if you’re feeling unsure as to what stone will look best, here’s a little cheat sheet to help:
Modern and contemporary homes tend to stick with flagstone or chipped rock, which offers a clean appearance.
Spanish homes often have a cobblestone driveway.
Colonial homes add boulders to the yard for an edge to an old frame.
Boho-style homes look great with multicolored stones that show off their fun style.
Installation Tips and Techniques
Landscaping has a huge impact on the impression a house makes as curb appeal can improve your home’s value. The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) claims professional landscaping can increase a home’s price tag 15% to 20% more at the time of resale. So it is worth it to prioritize the outdoor maintenance of your home and you can do so by utilizing decorative stone. Not only does stone add more value to a home but its longevity is unmatched. Stone does not break down and can stand the test of time. When it comes to decorative stones, you can complement your patio, create a pathway, build steps, construct stone veneers, replace your mulch, and more!
Landscape Boulders in North Carolina Homes
Understanding Landscape Boulders
Landscape boulders can be used in a variety of different projects. DeFeo Materials offer high quality boulders that are incredibly durable. Our boulders can be used to build walls, add texture, create an ambiance, and more. Our boulders also come in a wide range of sizes from small to extra large. And you have your pick of round and non-round blends. The boulders we offer can match a variety of aesthetics, so when thinking about what type of landscape boulder will suit your needs, consider the rock’s features. Many of our customers prefer the charming look of weathered boulders. Weathered boulders look great on any property. A weathered boulder typically has more moss and texture to it so it looks older and has more character. Weathered boulders are especially great for building a rock wall or seawall.
Choosing the Perfect Landscape Boulder
Choosing the perfect landscape boulder depends on a few significant factors:
How your boulders will be used
What aesthetic you’re going for
What you’re willing to spend on them
The type of rock itself is less important than the look you’re seeking. Landscape boulders come in all sorts of unique colors. But what we will say is that choosing local rocks will typically ensure that you can keep costs down while staying true to the colors of your region.
Installation Tips and Techniques
You should definitely come up with a plan before installing landscape boulders. Boulders can be very difficult to move so you’ll want to know where you’re placing them beforehand. If the boulders are being placed in your front yard, they will be much easier to place than if they need to be hauled to the backyard. Figure out where you want to set your boulders and what position you will put them in ahead of time to avoid any heavy mistakes. Additionally, it’s best to place boulders in clusters and have them slightly buried. Landscape fabric should also be placed underneath them for stability and weed prevention.
Palletized Stone in North Carolina Homes
Understanding Palletized Stone
There are many advantages to buying stone by the pallet. Purchasing palletized stone can eliminate the mess of bulk stone. It’s easier to handle palletized stone because there is no clean up like there would be with bulk products. Pallets of stone can easily be transported on a flatbed trailer or in the back of a pick up truck. Specifically here at DeFeo Materials, you are able to purchase an assortment of different stone varieties on one truckload instead of only getting one type on a truckload. Additionally, pallets of stone are smaller than bulk stone, which can better help you order the correct amount. You know exactly how much product is on each pallet which can give you assurance that you are getting exactly what you paid for.
Choosing the Right Palletized Stone
When it comes to choosing palletized stone, the best advice that we can give you is to see it in person. To an extent, stone does change over time so it’s strongly recommended to see it in person before you buy it. Like decorative stones and landscape boulders, you want to ensure that the palletized stone matches your property’s aesthetic. The aesthetic and the function are the biggest factors in the selection process.
Installation Tips and Techniques
Similar to landscape boulders, you should work out your plans with placement first. Before moving forward with installation, you should know where you want to place your palletized stone. You can always make smaller adjustments later on but the installation process will be smoother if you’ve already made your major decisions about placement and design. Once you know your intended placement, you’ll need to take careful measurements. Accurately measuring width, length, and depth of the intended location can help you order the right number of palletized stones. Finally, make sure the soil beneath the stones is firm. Before you place your palletized stones, tamp down the soil to create a firm base. Landscape fabric can also be used to prevent the stones from sinking and weeds from growing underneath them.
Recap: Why North Carolina Homes Are So Unique
The housing market in North Carolina is thriving and the market continues to boom. If you’re a seller, now’s your chance to capitalize on this opportunity. You want your home to stand out to buyers. You can achieve this by investing in the outside landscape of your North Carolina home. Decorative stones, landscape boulders, and palletized stones can elevate the overall appeal of your home. By using local materials and embellishing the architectural style of your home, you can create a frontrunner on the market. If you have any questions or concerns about personalized solutions, we encourage you to reach out to us!