May

20

Great News for Charleston, SC!

Posted by michellewhitbeck under Uncategorized

The Charleston, SC area has had some great news so far this year.

Daimler-Chrysler will invest $500 million their existing Sprinter plant in the N. Charleston area which will create 1300 new jobs.

Volvo just announced that they will invest $500 million in their first U.S. car factory to be located in Berkeley County in Ridgeville creating 4000 jobs.

Dig South Conference gave the Southeast national attention and had 1470 registered attendees this year.

Charleston County’s Academic Magnet School is ranked #7 in the nation for best high schools by U.S. News & World Reports.

 

Spoleto USA and Piccolo Spoleto are scheduled for May 22 – June 7.

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May

20

Low Resale Inventory Causing Buyers to Build

Posted by michellewhitbeck under Uncategorized

With resale inventory being low, frustrated buyers are turning to new construction which now makes up over one third of all the under contract listings in the Charleston area. To learn about the new construction communities, give me a call. It’s in your best interest to have a buyer’s agent and not just allow the developer’s agent to handle all the negotiating. Afterall, they work for the seller, not you!

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May

20

Charleston Area Rental Market Snapshot

Posted by michellewhitbeck under Uncategorized

Investors who are looking to buy property and lease out for a while before cashing in on anticipated appreciation will first look at the avg. cost to rent in the area of interest. All expenses including mortgage, 6% property tax, higher cost of insurance, and HOA/regime fees are all factored when determining how much rent to charge tenants.  Here is a list of avg. $/sf that investors can expect to receive.  The low inventory of rental properties coupled with the increase in tenants has caused rents to go up…a good thing for landlords, but not so good thing for tenants.  Give me a call if you would like me to analyze an area or community for you to see if the ROI is good.  Let me help you get started on making a good investment for your future.

Daniel Island – 7 active rental listings

Avg. Rent – $1.22/sf

Typical tenants include families or Boeing executives.

Downtown – 75 active rental listings, 36 have at least 2 bdrms and 2 baths

Avg. Rent = $2.11/sf

Typical tenants include MUSC or CofC students.  Also, short-term tenants that like to spend lengthy vacations.

Mt. Pleasant – 5 active rental listings; 31 have at least 3 bdrms and 2 baths

Avg. Rent = $1.28/sf

Typical tenants include families moving into the area before they decide to buy or young professionals.

Summerville/Ladson – 156 active rental listings; 126 have at least 3 bdrms and 2 baths

Avg. Rent -=$.79/sf

Typical tenants include Boeing employees.  Also military stationed at AFB, and low-income working families.  Keep an eye out for Volvo employees in this area!

Goose Creek/Hanahan – 52 active rental listings; 39 have at least 3 bdrms and 2 baths

Avg. Rent = $.78/sf

Typical tenants include families and/or military stationed at Weapons Station.

West Ashley/James Island – 80 active rental listings; 43 have at least 3 bdrms and 2 baths

Avg. Rent = $1.00/sf

Typical tenants include young professionals or retirees.

North Charleston – 43 active rental listings; 26 have at least 3 bdrms and 2 baths

Avg. Rent = $.74/sf

Typical tenants include singles, young couples just starting out, and low-income working families.  Boeing employees also.  Keep an eye out for Daimler-Chrysler employees in this area!

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The Charleston area had 3015 homes sell first quarter of 2015.  This is a 21% increase over the same time last year when 2492 homes sold.  The tri-county area also had a 2% increase in the median sales price of homes that sold first quarter of 2015 ($225,000) over those that sold same time last year ($220,000), according to the Charleston Multiple Listing Service.  Looking at the areas individually below, we see that the areas excelling this year by median price are Daniel Island, James Island, Johns Island, Moncks Corner, and N. Charleston.  The areas that had the highest number of sales are Goose Creek, Mt. Pleasant, N. Charleston, and Summerville.

AREA MEDIAN % CHANGE OVER 2014 1ST QTR $/SF % CHANGE OVER 2014 1ST QTR # OF SALES AVG. DAYS ON MKT
DANIEL ISLAND $615,950 +20% $234 +8% 80 80
DOWNTOWN $483,000 +3% $350 +11% 136 128
FOLLY BEACH $464,296 +2% $256 -2% 32 188
GOOSE CREEK $168,476 +5% $91 +3% 290 72
IOP/WILD DUNES $627,000 -7% $389 +2% 57 184
JAMES IS. $290,000 +18% $162 +9% 190 80
JOHNS IS. $246,000 +16% $140 +6% 109 49
KIAWAH/SEABROOK $535,000 +2% $312 +8% 29 285
MONCKS CORNER $158,000 +33% $81 +11% 56 91
MT PLEASANT $392,500 +3% $189 +6% 487 81
N. CHARLESTON $153,500 +14% $90 17% 303 71
SULLIVAN’S IS. $1,710,000 +4% $506 -7% 7 93
SUMMERVILLE $183,800 +5% $96 +8% 753 71
WEST ASHLEY $219,215 -1% $132 +12% 324 65
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Apr

29

Realtor.com gave the following five real estate predictions for 2015.

  1. Millenials will drive household formations.  In other words, an increased number of people born in 1980’s to 2000 will head households, and they will drive ? of household formations over the next five years.

  2. Existing home sales will increase by about 8%.

  3. Home prices will gain by about 4-5%.

  4. Mortgage rates will end the year by about 5%.  The Mortgage Bankers Association also projects mortgage rates to be about 5% by the end of 2015.

  5. Home affordability will decrease 5-10%.

Realtor.com 2015 Housing Predictions

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Apr

29

Mortgage Rate Quote for Charleston, SC as of 4/29/15

Posted by michellewhitbeck under Uncategorized

Adam Kernen and Tamara Vandiver of Guaranteed Rate are offering the following home mortgage interest rates.  You can reach Adam at (843) 810-1675 and Tamara at (843) 412-2577 or visit www.guaranteedrate.com/Adam/Kernen.

·         30yr Fixed Conventional is: as low as 3.875%

·         15yr Fixed Conventional: 3.00%!

·         Our popular 5% down Conventional with NO PMI is 4.25%

·         VA 30yr Fixed: 3.625%

·         FHA 30yr Fixed: 3.625%

·         $1 million Jumbo 30yr fixed: 3.625%

*Assumptions:  740 credit score, 30 day lock, with escrows, and other factors may apply depending on program details.   Prices subject to change at any time without notice.  All loans subject to approval. Equal Housing Lender.

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The following are handy links that will calculate the tax estimate on property you may be considering to buy in the Charleston area.  Remember that 4% rate is for primary residence; 6% is for 2nd homes or investment property; and if you are 65 years or older your primary residence may qualify for the homestead exemption which would lower the tax by about ? or more.   

Charleston County

Berkeley County

Dorchester County

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I’on is a mixed-use neo-traditional style community located in Mount Pleasant off of Johnnie Dodds Blvd. about three miles from the Arthur Ravenel Bridge and downtown Charleston. Founded in 1995, it was one of the earliest full-time residential new urbanist communities developed in the country.  What makes I’on so special is its luxury homes built with a blend of Old South and European architecture.  It’s like entering a mini-version of downtown Charleston, only you’re in the suburb of Mount Pleasant.  The neighborhood has over 750 homes, all custom-made with Southern charm and details.  The homes are built very close together and most have back alley ways for parking behind.  The streets are narrow and designed in a grid-like pattern which creates a calm traffic flow.  Green space and lakes are strategically placed throughout the neighborhood to promote community interaction.  The lot sizes are quite small in relation to other Mount Pleasant neighborhoods (most are .10 acres or less), but what the yards lack for in space, the neighborhood makes up for in common green space.  Two large lakes that are at the center of many annual events, a wildlife refuge called The Rookery, winding walk/jog trails along the marsh and throughout the neighborhood, sidewalks along the streets, a beautiful private clubhouse along the marsh, and a private swim and tennis club.  I’on’s uniqueness is also found in its business community, called I’on Square, located at the main entrance.  Here the residents can walk or bike to the nearby restaurants, shops, spas, and local inn.  There’s even a chartered Montessori School with grades 1-8, and a couple of churches within the neighborhood.  Homes sizes range from about 1000-7000+ square feet.  Home prices range from mid-$400,000s up to about $2 million.  To view all available listings, visit www.MichelleWhitbeck.com.
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I attended probably the coolest neighborhood preview luncheon today at Summerville’s new community called NEXTON. Over the next 20 years, this mixed-use community will have 10,000 homes built on 4500 acres, including 2000 apartments, 6 million sq ft of commercial space, 2000 acres of parks and nature, and over 50 miles of trails. The new elementary school will open this Fall. Oh, and did I mention it’s SC’s first gigabit community? Let me know if you would like a tour of this incredible new development.

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Southern climate and no termite bond can equal real damage to a house for sale.  Not only can termites easily gain access to the property and start wreaking havoc on the structure, but a buyer may decide not to buy a property that doesn’t have an existing bond.  Real estate buyers from other parts of the country, in particular, seem to always be puzzled and concerned about termite bonds.  They are not accustomed to the humidity here and what follows moisture.  Maintaining a termite bond with a reputable company is basically insurance in case termites enter the house, and it also will help give a buyer extra confidence that the home is well protected.  I recommend to all homeowners I work with in the Charleston area that they provide a transferable termite bond to a buyer when selling their home.  The cost to start a bond initially can be quite expensive (typically $700-$1000).  But the cost to maintain it annually is fairly nominal (about $200).  The key is to MAINTAIN it.  Schedule the annual appointments to have the termite company come out and inspect the property for termites and potential points of entrance.  Also, make any repairs or recommendations that the company writes up on the report to prevent termite activity.  If you fail to correct a problem that they’ve noted, and a termite infestation occurs, the company will not be responsible for any damage.   And if you have had termite damage and had repairs done, be sure to keep documentation so that you can disclose everything properly to buyers.  This will help alleviate any concerns they may have about your property.

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