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IKEA starts selling solar panels for homes (access required)

Swedish flat-pack furniture giant IKEA will start selling residential solar panels at its stores in Britain, the first step in its plan to bring renewable energy to the mainstream market worldwide. The company started selling solar panels made by China's Hanergy in its store in Southampton on Monday. It will sell them in the rest of Britain in coming months, it said.

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FAA: Charlotte airport to stay with city – for now (access required)

FAA: Charlotte airport to stay with city – for now <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/10/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

A federal agency said Thursday it will stay out of the fight between Charlotte and North Carolina lawmakers for control of the nation's sixth busiest airport until legal issues are resolved in court. In a letter to the city, the Federal Aviation Administration said "who governs an airport is a local decision." But the agency has to ensure that airports "remain safe and financially self-sustaining."

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Wall Street taps Main Street: Investment firms looking for return on Charlotte’s rental homes (access required)

Wall Street taps Main Street: Investment firms looking for return on Charlotte’s rental homes <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/10/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Led by the behemoth Blackstone Group, the largest alternative investment company in the world, institutional investors are buying a lot of single-family homes in Charlotte, fixing them up, renting them out and holding onto them to see if they rise in value. One of every five houses sold in May, June and July in the Charlotte market went to big investors, a higher percentage than in any other market but Atlanta.

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Apartment developers: Renting growing as ownership declines (access required)

Apartment developers: Renting growing as ownership declines <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/10/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Whether it’s Class A apartments, value-added properties or workforce housing, the Queen City’s apartment market is expected to remain strong in the foreseeable future. Five apartment industry leaders said so on a panel Tuesday morning at Bisnow’s third annual Multifamily Summit held in a ballroom at the Omni Hotel in uptown Charlotte.

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Year’s largest single-family permit pulled for Peninsula home (access required)

Thanks to a building permit worth $755,872, a property owner on the Peninsula soon will be able to boast, “I can see Denver from my house.” That property owner, Ramzi Abul-Hajj of Huntersville, on Tuesday pulled the most valuable Mecklenburg County single-family home permit of the year to build a 10,000-plus square-foot waterfront home on the very westernmost tip of the county’s extension into Lake Norman, according to county records.

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