Friday, December 28, 2018

Equity Stakes and New Year’s Quakes

This year has been a good one for the real estate market across the U.S. and especially in South Carolina. Homeowners who bought when the market went crazy are just now realizing some equity in their homes. Here are a couple of stats from the CoreLogic Quarter 3 Equity Insights report.

South Carolina has a 3.7% negative equity share when compared nationally.
South Carolina has had an average equity gain of $8,095.

Frank Martell, President and CEO of CoreLogic says, “The number of homes in a negative equity position have remained around 2.2 million for two consecutive quarters this year.”

Frank Nothaft, Chief Economist at CoreLogic states, “On average, homeowners saw their home equity increase again this quarter but not nearly as much as in previous quarters. During the third quarter, homeowners gained an average of $12,400 compared to the second quarter when the average home equity wealth increase was more than $16,000. This lower year-over-year gain reflects the slowing in appreciation we’ve seen in the CoreLogic Home Price Index.”

If we refer back to my last article about the increasing Greenville SC economy, then we can assume that homeowner equity will continue to increase through the first quarter of next year. With the FED raising rates once again, homebuying may taper off a bit. With fewer buyers in the market, homeowners may be holding on to their homes a bit longer. We will see what 2019 brings.

equity stakes and new year's quakes
Speaking of 2019, here are some places to celebrate New Year’s Eve at in Greenville, SC.

For a more complete list The Greenville News has a more detailed article online.

And remember if you, a friend or family member need assistance with selling or buying a home I can help. Referrals and people needing relocation assistance are welcome! Search Single Family homes in Greenville. Search Condos and Townhomes in Greenville.

Friday, December 21, 2018

Out with 2018...In with 2019

out with with 2019
In the latest video from CoreLogic, they talk about their outlook for economic growth nationally, so I wondered where Greenville SC fits into their numbers.

Here are some key factors I found on how the economy in the City of Greenville SC is cooking along.
  • Unemployment rate is 3.9%. The national average is 5.2%. 
  • The job market in Greenville SC has seen an increase of 2.8% over 2018. Ten-year predictions place job growth at 41.2%, which is higher than the national average of 38.0%. 
  • Sales tax rate for Greenville SC remains at 6.0% which meets the national average. 
  • Income tax rate is 7.0% which is higher than the national average of 4.6%. 
  • Greenville SC resident average income is $31,043/year. The national average is $28.555/year. 
  • Median Greenville SC household income is $41,147/year. The national average is $53,482/year. 
  • Personal income is projected to grow 4.3% in 2019. 
Looking at the unemployment rate which is below national average, we find that health care and social assistance lead the way at 14.3%, followed by educational services at 11.6%, followed closely by manufacturing jobs at 11.5%. Professional, scientific & technical services follow up with 9.7%, then accommodation & food services at 9.6% and retail coming in at 9.4%.

If job demand for the top three stay consistent there will be a trickle-down effect into the other categories and below. Thus, possibly dropping the unemployment rate even further below national average.

Other areas showing this lower unemployment rate include Travelers Rest, Taylors, Greer, Mauldin, Gantt, Parker, Five Forks, Simpsonville, Fountain Inn, Wade Hampton, Berea, and Welcome. Cities further from Greenville SC are showing higher unemployment perhaps because they are too far to commute or most of the companies prefer to locate in the larger Greenville SC metro area.

Rising lumber costs due to an imposed import tariff on Canadian lumber has slowed the housing industry a bit this year. Builders are incurring higher costs for new development. But despite the costs, single family residential building permit activity was up across the state including in Greenville SC. Spartanburg, Florence and Myrtle Beach had the most significant gains reaching near 20 percent.

And remember if you, a friend or family member need assistance with selling or buying a home I can help. Referrals and people needing relocation assistance are welcome! Search Single Family homes in Greenville. Search Condos and Townhomes in Greenville.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Tariffic Effects Around Greenville SC

tariffic effects around greenville sc
What do you do when America doesn’t produce the steel you need to run your business and make your product? You import it from Europe. However, President Trump imposed tariffs on imported steel among other imports. The family-owned business of KnifeSource in Fountain Inn has felt the squeeze. They have reduced their work force from 42 to 28 people. Paying the forced tariffs has had a huge impact on their income.

Using the legal system, KnifeSource has been spending money to get exemptions from the tariffs which have been granted but they are also hoping to get back the nearly $100,000 in already paid tariffs. Under current U.S. Commerce Department rules, KnifeSource has had to apply for 60 exemption requests where before it took only one. The company does support the President’s policies and speaks to the fact that steel manufacturing in America is not what it used to be. If you can help support this local company, please do.

On other tariff news, China is moving toward cutting its tariffs on imported U.S.-made cars. The proposal would reduce the tariff from 40 percent to 15 percent and bring the U.S. back in line with what other countries are paying. This would be good news for BMW. Their U.S. Spartanburg SC production plant exported more than 100,000 sport-utility vehicles to China in 2017. Out of the top 10 American-made cars, 4 were made at the BMW plant. Any reduction from China on tariffs will revert into a boon for U.S. automakers who export to China. Other than the BMW, Mercedes, Lincoln and Ford Explorer rank up there in exports to China.

Looks like Greenville county is back in court. An organized contingent of rural residents is working to block a 45-home subdivision called Howard Farms of Fairview Road. One of the major complaints is that developers are dropping in high-density subdivisions in rural areas. This “urban” sprawl is happening in both north and south Greenville county. A big opponent to Howard Farms is a local farmer who says people are polluting the ground and surface water and using her land as their own “green-space.” Her animals have been shot, stolen, mailed and killed by subdivision residents and their pets.

Greenville county has adopted new Land Development Regulations (LDR) and did reject one subdivision for density. In the case of Howard Farms, the developers use of roads pushed the county to approve. Either way a good neighborhood development should consider the surrounding land use and neighboring “feel.” Instead of high-density developments maybe a development of mini-farms or 1-2 acre lots would be more accepted and appropriate. Development, although needed, should make as little impact as possible on its neighbors.

To end on a light note, here are some ways to eat, drink and be merry at local bars and restaurants on Christmas Day. Here is the list.
  • Aloft WXYZ Bar 
  • Barley’s Taproom & Pizzeria 
  • City Tavern 
  • Chicora Alley 
  • Connolly’s Irish Pub 
  • Dave & Buster’s 
  • Handi 
  • Jack in the Box 
  • Local Due 
  • Mimi’s Steakhouse of Japan 
  • On the Roxx 
  • Roost 
  • Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse 
  • Saffron Fine Indian Cuisine 
  • Spare Time 
  • The Radio Room 
  • Up on the Roof 
  • Waffle House (do they ever close?) 
And remember if you, a friend or family member need assistance with selling or buying a home I can help. Referrals and people needing relocation assistance are welcome! Search Single Family homes in Greenville. Search Condos and Townhomes in Greenville.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Just Listed - 349 Archway Court, Moore, SC 29369

349 Archway Court, Moore, SC 29369
349 Archway Court, Moore, SC 29369
Bedrooms: 4
Full Bathrooms: 2
Partial Bathrooms: 1
Levels: 2
Square Feet: +/-2053
Type: Detached Single Family
MLS # 1381661
Price: $222,700

You instantly feel welcomed as you drive into the neighborhood headed towards your next home. This 2-story has four-sided brick and vinyl accents on second story and is situated in a Cul-de-Sac with level yard. Let's talk about additional privacy at no cost to you, the vacant lot next door is common area and won't be built on, now that's a great perk!

This beauty has a rocking chair front porch with full yard irrigation and features 4 bedrooms 2.5 bathrooms, Family Room, Dining Room, not to mention the Bonus Rec Room. Once inside the home you are instantly wowed by the beautiful Dark Cherry Stained Hardwoods that flow throughout the main living areas. Your Family Room is spacious with the HDMI hookup in place for your entertaining pleasures. The Dining Room has Picture and Crown molding and a new chandelier. The kitchen is adorned with stainless steel appliances, tile backsplash, Granite Counter tops, Under Cabinet Dimmable Lighting, Recessed lighting, Walk in Pantry with custom storage racks, great cabinet and counter space, then over the sink there is a window that overlooks the fenced in private backyard.

A 17x15 Master Bedroom which is on the First Floor with nice walk-in closet is off in its own hide-away for a great retreat and Crown Molding. Master Bathroom has Granite Counter comfort high vanities with dual sinks and cabinet drawer storage. There is a garden tub great for relaxing and taking away the days stress, an is accompanied by approx. 4-foot walk in shower with seating. Laundry Room is on the main floor and is a walk-in with plenty of shelving that was added to include an area to drop jackets and shoes. As you venture upstairs you will find three more bedrooms and the 15x13 Bonus-Rec Room. Once inside the garage you have garage door opener with remote, a key pad entry to enter from outside. There are plenty of storage options from the pull-down attic stairs, to the high ceilings so you can install racks and hooks for more storage options.

For more photos and details, click the link below.
349 Archway Court, Moore, SC 29369

The interactive map below shows 349 Archway Court but not necessarily the exact location of the home itself. Directions: From 1-85 exit 63 towards Moore/Spartanburg. Go app. 3 miles and TR onto
296 (Reidville Rd) near Ingles store. Sweetwater Hills is on 296 1/2 mile up on the LT. TL into Sweetwater Hills, TL onto N. Sweetwater, TL onto Bayshore, TR onto Archway home on LT.

Developing Story…Literally

Coming Soon Holland Park!
Dateline: December 2018 in Greenville, SC.

Breaking ground in early 2019 will be a new 12-acre mixed-use development at 813 Laurens Road in Greenville, SC.

Anchoring this new development will be nationally recognized Home Team BBQ and Double Stamp Brewery. The development called Holland Park also plans for a half-acre of shaded green space and 18,000 sq. ft. of office, restaurants and retail space. The green space will be saving 12 existing 100-year-old oak trees. Getting a nationally recognized tenant like Home Team BBQ is a big win and helps elevate Greenville, SC’s rising culinary scene. This will be their six location.

The future Swamp Rabbit Trail extension will provide direct access to Holland Park and there will be 175 parking spaces. This will provide residents another access to the recreational trail within Greenville, SC and places to park.

There will be two phases of development for the land. The back portion, bordered by the Swamp Rabbit Trail extension, will undeveloped until the first phase is complete. The developer is looking to find the right use for this land and is considering all options.

Laurens Road is becoming a major corridor with growth that was predicted. It hosts the Hollingsworth Park Verdae Development near I-85. Near downtown, Willy Taco Feed & Seed has opened. And many other projects are underway such as Think Tank Brew Lab.

All these projects are the results of the proposed Swamp Rabbit Trail extension in the works. Greenville County is heading the extension and they have removed the old rail lines. Plans are to place a flyover bridge near Willy Taco to go over Laurens Road and tie into the city-owned property north of the Spinx gas station and connecting to Cleveland Park.

The Swamp Rabbit Trail expansion has become an incentive for developers thus opening Laurens Road development. Holland Park has taken about 18 months to get started hinging on land purchases.

The developer sees Holland Park bringing new and interesting choices to Greenville, SC. The idea is to bring brands and concepts that we have not seen before in our market.

And remember if you, a friend or family member need assistance with selling or buying a home I can help. Referrals and people needing relocation assistance are welcome! Search Single Family homes in Greenville. Search Condos and Townhomes in Greenville.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Holiday Happenings This Month in Greenville SC

holiday happenings this month in greenville sc
Once again it is the Christmas season and there are events galore planned for this month. Here is a list of some of them. 
  • Greenville Poinsettia Christmas Parade. December 1st on Main St in downtown Greenville. 6pm to 7:30pm.
  • Mauldin’s 12 Days of Christmas. December 1st through December 10th. Several holiday happenings during this time.
  • A Christmas Carol. Showings through December 22nd weekly on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. See link for times and prices.
  • Ice on Main returns this year on December 2. Hours Monday-Thursday 3pm to 8pm. Saturday 11am to 9pm and Sunday 11am to 7pm.
  • Merry Christmas Charlie Brown! The traveling exhibition from the Charles M. Schulz Museum at the Upcountry History Museum until February 10th, 2019. See link for times and prices.
  • Christmas Carolers will stroll and sing holiday favorites along Main Street the weekends of Dec 8 and 15.
  • Come out to see our downtown merchants transform their windows for the holiday season. Vote for your fav Dec 1-15.
  • Wednesday, Dec 12th Fidelity sponsors A Christmas Story in Falls Park.
  • NOMA square will be transformed for the holiday with lights and decorations.
On the real estate front, latest numbers from CoreLogic for South Carolina shows that home prices rose 0.4 percent in September and show signs of continuing to rise despite the lag nationally.

CoreLogic continues to show the Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin metro areas being overvalued and is predicted they will stay that way through 2023.

Meanwhile, Greenville gets a local economic boost hosting two major soccer events. This results in 4,000 hotel room nights and lots of money spent on eats and gas. The economic impact is expected to be around $6 million.

And remember if you, a friend or family member need assistance with selling or buying a home I can help. Referrals and people needing relocation assistance are welcome! Search Single Family homes in Greenville. Search Condos and Townhomes in Greenville.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Thanksgiving in Greenville SC

thanksgiving in greenville sc
A yearly holiday that occurs on the fourth Thursday in November. It is based on the original colonial Pilgrim’s harvest meal from 1621. But what did they really eat?
  • Turkey. No records exist stating what the original meal contained however there is a journal left by pilgrim chronicler Edward Winslow that states William Bradford sent four men on a “fowling” mission. Wild turkey was plentiful in the region and would be a common food source for settlers and Native Americans. But the team could have returned with other birds such as ducks, geese and swans. Locally found items such as herbs, onions or nuts would have been used for extra flavor. There is also notes by Winslow that the Wampanoags arrived with an offering of five deer. If roasted over a open fire the colonists could have used the prepped version to create a hearty stew.
  • Fruits and Vegetables. The first Thanksgiving might have also contained local fruits and vegetables available to the local natives. These would have been onions, beans, lettuce, spinach, cabbage, carrots and maybe peas. Corn was plentiful but most likely ground into a cornmeal and pounded into a thick mush or porridge and sweetened with molasses. Indigenous fruits would have included blueberries, plums, grapes, gooseberries, raspberries and cranberries.
  • Fish and Shellfish. Culinary historians think that a lot of the first Thanksgiving was made up of seafood. Mussels were abundant in New England and easily gathered. Other options could have been lobster, bass, clams and oysters.
  • Potatoes. Potatoes were originally introduced to Europe from South America when the Spanish brought them back around 1570. But by the time the Pilgrims headed out they were not popular enough for the Pilgrims to take them along. Native Americans ate other tubers like Indian turnips and groundnuts.
  • Pumpkin Pie. Without an oven or wheat and flour, early Pilgrims lacked the amenities for making pumpkin pie. But they could have hollowed out the pumpkins, filled them with milk, honey and spices to make a custard and then roasted the gourds in hot ashes.

 Our Thanksgiving today is much more refined than what the pilgrims had available to them. Our current traditions are more based on what has been passed down from generation to generation in the form of family traditions. Most often the women of the family carry on the traditions of their mothers, grandmothers and great-grandmothers with input from their spouses in the form of favorite items.

Nearly 90 percent of people today eat turkey in one of the many preparations. Other traditional foods include stuffing, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie with whipped cream. Communities also put a lot of effort into providing the less fortunate with a “traditional” Thanksgiving meal. In many cities, local food banks and volunteers give out the ingredients to make the meal or work in a shelter fixing and serving meals.

Use this opportunity to give thanks this year for what you have and make it a point to be happy on our day of thanks when you spend it with family or friends.

And remember if you, a friend or family member need assistance with selling or buying a home I can help. Referrals and people needing relocation assistance are welcome! Search Single Family homes in Greenville. Search Condos and Townhomes in Greenville.

Just Listed - 203 Spring Meadow Rd, Simpsonville, SC 29680

203 Spring Meadow Rd, Simpsonville, SC 29680
203 Spring Meadow Rd, Simpsonville, SC 29680
Bedrooms: 4
Bathrooms: 2.5
Levels: 2
Square Feet: +/-2398
Type: Detached Single Family
MLS # 1379996
Price: $200,000

This 4 Bedroom/2.5 Bathroom ~2400 HSF traditional-style home is situated in a mature neighborhood with trees and space between you and your neighbors. Located in the quiet neighborhood of Foxwood, you are in the city limits of Simpsonville with the feeling of a country setting. The layout of this home allows you to spread out and not feel cramped for personal space. There is a Formal Dining & Living Room, Family Room with a gas fireplace, with doors leading to the back deck and yard. This is a well-maintained home featuring the following items updated: Master Bedroom was painted, and new faucets and new light fixtures were installed over both sinks. In the Secondary bath was painted, and a new light fixture, new faucet and towel racks were installed. The 4th bedroom measuring at 19x18 could double as a Bonus Room. The spare bedrooms, living room and dining room were painted, then crown molding was added to spare bedroom that faces the back yard. In the Kitchen, it was painted and updated with Stainless Steel appliances, the stove was recently purchased in March 2018. There is tons of cabinets and counter space in this kitchen. The Family Rm was painted, then added the hardwood floors (extra planks are in the garage), installed a new ceiling fan, gas logs were installed. Piedmont Natural Gas came out on November 6th, 2018 checked and fireplace is working as intended. The recently-stained deck has been expanded and is great for entertaining, grilling, or enjoying a quiet moment. The garage was painted and a new garage door unit with a keypad and 2 remotes was installed in October 2018. In the backyard, fencing for a dog pen was installed. September 2018 a new downstairs HVAC unit was installed, and the Upstairs Unit was serviced, and is in good working order. The Roof is adorned with Architectural shingles and was installed in 2010. Great Area, Great Home, Great Neighborhood, near 385 for easy access, close to Downtown Greenville, and Shopping.

For more photos and details, click the link below.

The interactive map below shows 203 Spring Meadow Rd but not necessarily the exact location of the home itself. Directions: 1-3855 to Fairview Rd Exit - Turn Right then Immediately Right on
Grandview; 1st left on Davenport just pass Church; 2nd Right on Spring
Meadow Rd; Home on Left.

Monday, October 29, 2018

Cool Vibes in Greenville SC

cool vibes in greenville sc
Greenville SC’s culinary scene is red hot according to visiting writers and publications like The New York Times and Cooking with Paula Dean magazine. Greenville SC has earned 79 media stories during the second quarter of 2018 and 33 media stores during the third quarter of 2018.

The September issue of Raleigh magazine highlighted Greenville SC as a “getaway.” The article stated that our onetime industrial town has transformed itself into a mecca of fine eateries, upscale hotels, hip breweries and has become a destination for arts and cultural activities.

Modern day Greenville SC has become greener over the years by adding beautiful parks and greenspaces between its buildings. There is also a gorgeous view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Although our city is growing, it remains a good example of southern hospitality.

Southern Living talked about the “11 Mountain Girlfriend Getaways to Take This Fall” in their online article. Although they talk about other places, they mention Greenville SC as a girl’s mountain weekend with an urban twist. Head out for the day to enjoy outdoor adventures and then return to your cozy comforts in downtown Greenville SC. They talk about having a life-changing meal at Soby’s specializing in southern classics with a modern twist. reports that Greenville SC is #5 in their Guide to America’s 10 Greenest Cities. Noting that pedestrians and bikers rave about the Swamp Rabbit Trail which takes you 20 miles along the river past the zoo to the college. They also mention the waterfall downtown which we all know resides in Falls Park with the sky bridge.

Forbes magazine calls Greenville SC “a trend-setting market with the power of retail mix.” They call Greenville SC the fourth fastest-growing city in the country. Noting that there are several mixed-use projects in Greenville SC and the surrounding communities. They also noted a Topgolf is coming to our area. The Greenville SC building will have 72 hitting bays.

Orbitz online magazine talks about how Greenville SC is one of the best places for a bachelorette party. With a very walkable downtown and 120 restaurants and bars scattered throughout. Or rent bicycles from Pedal Chic and hop on the Swamp Rabbit Trail.

So, it seems our small town is getting lots of attention around the country as a place to live, visit and vacation. Make sure you get out and enjoy some of the mentions in this post and give a nod to the publications that are putting Greenville SC on the map!

And remember if you, a friend or family member need assistance with selling or buying a home I can help. Referrals and people needing relocation assistance are welcome! Search Single Family homes in Greenville. Search Condos and Townhomes in Greenville.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

How High is Too High for Your TV?

how high is too high for your tv
Had an interesting thought today when looking through house articles. How high should your TV be mounted? Nielson Co. reports that 96.7 percent of homes in the U.S. have television sets. I would venture to say that most homes have at least two to three TVs.

Often a big decision when designing a living space in a new home is where to place or hang the TV. Should it be a focal point, should it be just accent or left out all together? Remember you can use apps to play photos on your TV and turn it into a rotation piece of art work.

So, there is one general rule that you should follow when mounting or placing your TV; the ideal center of the screen should be at eye level for the viewer. To find this number, you may have to do some math but if we use averages then the average height is around 42 inches for viewers seated on a couch.

In turn, optimum viewing distance from the set has been 2.5 times the diagonal length of the TV screen historically. But with the advent of larger and larger screens, viewing distance is not as critical as it used to be. I would consider the age of viewer. Usually as you get older, it is nicer to have a larger screen to view.

If you select a 60-inch TV which is around 32 inches high, the ideal center is 16 inches from the bottom. Eye height for a relaxed adult viewer would be about 24 inches above the seat on the couch. Which puts your optimum viewing height at 42 inches, so your 60-inch TV would be installed 26 inches above the floor.

Now, there are lots of parameters to consider when mounting a TV. Is it the only one, is it your main set, what position will most of the viewers be in when they watch, etc. Main sets should be set up for more optimal viewing but smaller sets over bars or in kitchens or even in bedrooms have different requirements. Will the viewer be standing or laying on the bed? Playing a game or using a pillow?

A lot of newer construction places TVs over the fireplace but fireplaces don’t look like they used to. A lot of newer fireplaces are gas and are linear in design as opposed to an open hole in the wall that you throw wood into.

However, it is your home and whether the TV is your focal point or just an accent piece, it is your decision on where to place it. If you do plan on placing it above the optimum viewing height, consider tilted the TV at a downward angle so your perception will be closer to an optimum angle. The worry is straining your neck by always looking up which is funny since most of us are always looking down at our smartphones.

Conclusion, in today’s society, try to think about the health of your neck. I hear a lot about how people are visiting massage experts and chiropractors with neck injuries that have resulted “tech neck”. Here are five exercises you can use to combat this issue.

· Baby Cobra

· Floor Cobra with External Rotation

· Wide Supermans

· Upward Facing Dog

· Bird Dog

All of these movements should be slow and controlled and done about 10 times twice a day. These movements help to improve the muscle imbalances that are caused by sitting behind a computer or staring down at our smartphones for hours at a time.

And remember if you, a friend or family member need assistance with selling or buying a home I can help. Referrals and people needing relocation assistance are welcome! Search Single Family homes in Greenville. Search Condos and Townhomes in Greenville.