Friday, June 28, 2019

Piedmont Growth – Too Much Too Soon?

piedmont growth - too much too soon
Mark III Properties proposed subdivision
Residents and developers are clashing again in Southern Greenville County. Mark III Properties, from Spartanburg, has plans for a new 147-lot subdivision on 54 acres in Piedmont.

Residents already living in the area are expressing exhaustion with the constant development happening in recent years and the lack of infrastructure.

For Mark III Properties to build those homes, they will need to get Greenville County to agree to allow more dense zoning for this development along Furr Road. Under the current zoning of (R-S), Mark III can have 96 total lots and about two houses per acre.

Under the Mark III proposal, if they get the new zoning approved the number of houses per acre would go up to 2.7.

Residents who showed up for a recent meeting with the developer express concerns in that they want to preserve the rural atmosphere. They believe 96 homes is enough and that the developer just needs to settle with the larger lots. More than 300 signatures were collected from residents opposed to the denser housing.

The developers were asked about open space built into the design, but they responded vaguely saying they had not found a builder or drawn a final plan.

The County Council members rejected a previous version of the development citing that Furr Road just could not handle all the traffic. The developer got around that by adding assistance to pay for road improvements.

When asked what was acceptable, the residents replied in unison “R-S” which is the original zoning for the area.

The developer is pushing for an FRD or flexible review district. This would require them to submit a detailed plan which once signed off cannot be deviated from without requiring further zoning changes. It allows the county to require amenities like special lighting, walking trails, special architectural design, and green spaces but allows the developer to build the neighborhood with smaller lots.

The residents at the meeting also stated that they wanted larger homes built on larger lots with higher prices. A representative for Mark III said that is not what the market statistics are telling us to build.

The county planning director, Sarah Holt, did state that the development fits in with the county’s comprehensive plan and the southern Greenville area plan. And that housing density on either side of the site is already dense at ¼-acre and 1/3-acre lots.

Seems that the residents will be sending the developer back to the drawing board but only if the county government agrees. I believe that gone are the days when people wanted to live in largely rural areas. All the statistics on the younger upcoming groups are showing that they want to live in denser more populated areas with amenities within walking distance around them. They want to walk or pedal to work, walk or pedal home, walk or pedal to the grocery store and their entertainment.

Could it be that years of crying out for us to save the planet has finally taken root in the minds of our younger generation? Only time will tell.


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, June 21, 2019

Growth in Mortgage Payments Down


Growth in Mortgage Payments Down
Experts from all real estate associated companies have been predicting home values would keep rising and that mortgage rates would follow suit. But according to CoreLogic, some rate and price forecasts may suggest that mortgage rates may only rise slightly or even dip a bit lower. They say this may help spur home sales.

Also notable, is that the median U.S. sales price in March 2019 was up 3.5% over last year but down from an annual 8% gain in March 2018. The typical mortgage payment only rose 1.9% this March due to an approximate 0.1 percentage point decline in mortgage rates from the previous year.

The CoreLogic Home Price Index (HPI) and the HPI Forecast suggests an average gain in home prices from month to month until next March of 4.3%. A modest increase in value. If we combine that forecast with the average among six mortgage rate forecasts, the annual change in the typical mortgage payment month over month will average out to 0.9% including five months where a slight decline is predicted.

One thing I find interesting is that CoreLogic talks about inflation as it applies to mortgage payments. It seems we may have reached the point economically where we are no longer in a depression but have come full circle and are hedging into an inflationary economy. Watching Freddie Mac’s average rate on a 30-year mortgage can help you determine where the rates are headed. By taking a year’s worth of data and averaging that out, you can get a good feel for the future. Those rates do not take into account for local taxes, fees or insurance payments but are a good interpretation of whether buying a home can be affordable.

Growth in Mortgage Payments Down
The image above is very interesting in that since 2006, lower rates have kept mortgage payments low. Those who were or are upside down on their 2006-2007 purchased a home should have refinanced by now or sold outright taking a loss. The government did give us a refinancing program which ended in 2016 however Freddie Mac is still offering an Enhanced Relief Refinance Loan and many independent banking institutions are offering a HARP-like solution.

Will this be the end of mortgage rate increases? Who knows, but the historical data above shows that for the time being mortgage rates should remain steady over this year. My advice…buy now, build equity, don’t wait for that rainy day when inflation will be on the increase and so will mortgage rates and payments.

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 - 220-B Virginia Ave, Greenville, SC 29611

220-B Virginia Ave, Greenville, SC 29611
220-B Virginia Ave, Greenville, SC 29611
Bedrooms: 4
Bathrooms: 3
Levels: 2
Square Feet: +/-159
Type: Detached Single Family
MLS # 1394463
Price: $158,800

Welcome home to this 4 bedroom, 3 bath home with spacious rooms. In the past 5 years, the home was renovated. The kitchen is bright and open with tons of cabinets and counter space, a pantry, stainless steel appliances, new counter tops, new white cabinets with a window over the sink looking out over the backyard. There is laminate flooring throughout the family room, kitchen & dining rooms.

The Master bedroom is on the main floor newer carpet and has its own private bathroom featuring a double sink vanity, 2 decorative mirrors, a nice walk in shower, and a private wall toilet area, updated fixtures & ceramic flooring. There is another bedroom with a newer carpet, another full bath on the main, with a large vanity area, ceramic tile and a tub/shower combo. Upstairs there are two gracious sized bedrooms (approximately 17x17 each) with a spacious bathroom with ceramic tile updated vanity and fixtures. The roof on the home was replaced in July 2015 to Architectural shingles. The home is nestled in a cul-de-sac with no through roads. Taxes are accessed at 6% due to the fact the property is not a primary home and was not lived in by the current owner. Great home and location minutes all within walking distance to the desired West End Art district & The Shoeless Joe Jackson Park, to include minutes from downtown Greenville, hospitals, doctors, shopping & eateries!

For more photos and details, click the link below.
220-B Virginia Ave, Greenville, SC 29611

The interactive map below shows 220-B Virginia Ave but not necessarily the exact location of the home itself. Directions: I-385 N into downtown Greenville, take a right on Academy St. Academy St
will turn into Easley Bridge Rd when you cross over Pendleton, go 1.5 miles turn right on Virginia Avenue, the property will be on your right.


Thursday, June 20, 2019

Just Listed - 9 Bufflehead St, Taylors, SC 29687

9 Bufflehead St, Taylors, SC 29687
9 Bufflehead St, Taylors, SC 29687Bedrooms: 3

Bathrooms: 2
Levels: 1.5
Square Feet: +/-2808
Type: Detached Single Family
MLS # 1394785
Price: $348,800

Welcome to this beautiful all brick with concrete plank accents is a custom-built home that is in the beautiful lakeside community of Blue Ridge Plantation at Lakeside at Lake Robinson.

The wrought iron rails that lead you up to the beautiful detailed solid wood door with sidelights. Once inside your greeted by gorgeous red oak hardwood floors flowing throughout most of the main living area. The Office/Living Room area is to the right with built-in bookcases that have a hidden surprise of a murphy bed, if for no other reason for unexpected guests to lay their heads. Across the Foyer is the bright open Dining Room with picture & crown molding. The flow continues into the Great Room with vaulted ceiling, recessed lights, windows stretching across the back of the home allowing in lots of natural light, a floor receptacle, gas fireplace with tiles surround, and a detailed mantle.

Breakfast room 19x12 large enough for a second dining room. Step inside this gorgeous spacious kitchen with a large pantry with designer door, lots of cabinets and counter space, custom kitchen cabinets with a coffee highlight, adorned with crown molding, high end backsplash, granite counter tops with decorative edge, there are Frigidaire stainless steel appliances that include a DW, Smooth Top Slide-in Range, Built-in MW. The home has a split floor plan with two bedrooms (13x12) and a full bathroom on the right side of the home. The Master Suite (16x16) with a double pan ceiling extensive crown molding, recessed lighting. Proceed into the Master Bathroom With recessed lighting over tub and shower, Large vanity and decorative glass mirrors, cultured countertops with dual sinks, and a vanity sitting area, large walk-in There is a tiled shower and a jetted garden tub, ceramic tile flooring, a private water closet, then a nice walk-in closet. There is a 7x5 walk-in laundry room and across the hall is the powder room. The massive21x13 Bonus room great for storage, craft room, pool table,

For more photos and details, click the link below.
9 Bufflehead St, Taylors, SC 29687

The interactive map below shows 9 Bufflehead St but not necessarily the exact location of the home itself. Directions: From Hwy 29 Wade Hampton Blvd towards Greer left on Hwy 101/ 290, right
on 101, left on Milford Church Rd., right on Groce Meadow Rd. Lakeside @ Blue Ridge Plantation subdivision is on the right.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Just Listed - 22 Falcon Dr, Taylors, SC 29687

22 Falcon Dr, Taylors, SC 29687
22 Falcon Dr, Taylors, SC 29687
Bedrooms: 3
Bathrooms: 2
Levels: 1
Square Feet: +/-1519
Type: Detached Single Family
MLS # 1394504
Price: $138,800

This all-brick 3 Bedroom 2-bathroom home is situated on 2.5 acres and in addition, the acreage to the left of the home with address 100 Millbrook Circle at .77 acres is being sold with the home. So even though the home is being sold as-is let's talk about the items that were completed since 2003.

In 2003, all the windows were replaced with thermal vinyl windows, the wood trim was capped with aluminum, then vinyl was installed at the end of the gables and crawl space door. A new HVAC system was installed as well as the ductwork, All the copper piping was replaced with PVC/CPVC. The kitchen was completely remodeled with custom cabinets by Lee Waters, Whirlpool appliances were installed along with new light fixtures and ceiling fans updated throughout the home. The bathrooms were rebuilt from the floor up to include the flooring, cabinets and vanity tub/shower also by Lee Waters. The Family Room/Kitchen had paneling which was taken down and sheetrock was put up. Last item in 2003 a new front door was adorned on the home.

In 2013 A new 50-gallon water heater was moved from under the home to inside the house. Then the end of the porch was closed in to make a garage enclosure and then added the garage door. In 2015/2016 Laminate flooring was laid down in the Family/Living/Hall and Master Bedroom. Ceramic tile was installed in the Bathrooms/laundry/kitchen. Finally, in 2017 French doors were installed to lead out the 18x10 patio. This home will not qualify for VA or FHA Loans unless there is a rehab loan associated with the loan. There are two parcels being sold together Tax Map ID 0525020103000 (22 Falcon Drive Brick Home & 2.5 Acres) plus Tax Map ID 0525020103001 (100 Millbrook Circle .77 Acres).

Great Location with the feeling of being rural but still so convenient to Doctors, Hospitals, Shopping, Eateries, Golf, not to mention Wade Hampton, 85, & I-85, & downtown Greenville.

For more photos and details, click the link below.
22 Falcon Dr, Taylors, SC 29687

The interactive map below shows 22 Falcon Dr but not necessarily the exact location of the home itself. Directions: From Highway 29, headed toward Spartanburg... Take a Left onto Reid School Road. Then Turn Right onto Falcon Drive - House is on the Left.


Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Just Listed - 2 Stapleford Park Dr, Greenville, SC 29607

2 Stapleford Park Dr, Greenville, SC 29607
2 Stapleford Park Dr, Greenville, SC 29607
Bedrooms: 3
Bathrooms: 2.5
Levels: 2
Square Feet: +/-1925
Type: Detached Single Family
MLS # 1394417
Price: $228,800

Welcome to this well-kept two-story home with a brick accent that is situated on a corner with a fenced-in backyard. The home has pride of ownership and it shows from the minute you walk in the front door.

Open the front door and come on into a two-story foyer, with all the windows in this home you have tons of natural sunlight lighting up the home. Updates have been done over the past five years. The two-story foyer has a chair rail and picture molding accents, then the open floor plan comes together starting with the beautiful Brazilian Cherry Engineered Hardwoods that flow throughout most of the main level of the home. The Formal Living Room has picture molding, chair rail and a large palladium-topped window allowing extra sunlight into the room. The Formal Dining Room features chair, crown and picture molding.

The kitchen was completely gutted and fitted with new maple cabinets topped with crown molding, quiet close cabinets, and drawers, some of the cabinets have the pull-out drawers, then the countertops were adorned with exquisite quartz counter tops, then an added touch of a stone backsplash to bring it all together. The Stainless-Steel Appliances are Whirlpool that includes the dishwasher, smooth top slide in range, built-in microwave, lots of cabinets and countertops to include a pantry for storage options. The kitchen opens into the breakfast room then into the family room, in this home no one will be left out.

The great room the perfect space to land any time of the day with its two-story ceilings, spacious layout, a brick surrounded gas fireplace, plenty of wall area, and tons of natural light. Proceed up the stairs to the bedroom areas, the Master Bedroom (15x13) also has a sitting area (8x6) and plenty of space for your furniture or even a chair to relax. The Master Bathroom features double sinks, two new decorative mirrors, a soaking garden tub with a decorative tile surround, and a private area for the water closet.

For more photos and details, click the link below.
2 Stapleford Park Dr, Greenville, SC 29607

The interactive map below shows 2 Stapleford Park Dr but not necessarily the exact location of the home itself. Directions: From downtown Greenville- I-385 S to Butler Road, left on Butler, Right on
Tanner Road, Right on Old Hall Drive. Tanners Mill S/D, left on Stapleford Park Drive, home on the right. LOOK FOR KW Sign!


Monday, June 17, 2019

Home Renovations - The Low Down

Home Renovations – The Low Down
Photo by Skitterphoto from Pexels
When it comes time to sell a home, a lot of sellers as me…”Should I spend the money to make upgrades?” “Will it increase the value of my home?” “Will I get back what I put into the renovation?”

These are common questions from homeowners and home sellers. So, I found a report that puts out information that just might answer these questions. The 2019 U.S. Houzz & Home report gives us the median renovation spending amount, how the renovations were paid for and much more.

To begin, a typical renovating homeowner spent $15,000 on home renovation projects in 2018 according to the aforementioned report. The interesting thing is these numbers are about what has been spent over the last two years. So renovations are a steadily increasing business. And more than half the homeowners who subscribed to Houzz are planning renovations for this year.

Now, you may ask, what are they spending all this money on? In 2018, homeowners renovated an average of 2.8 rooms in their home, upgraded 2.7 systems in their home like electrical, plumbing and A/C; and performed 2.4 exterior upgrades. A surge in kitchen remodeling spending which is the most popular and most expensive room in the home. A typical kitchen renovation cost around $14,000. Guest and master bathrooms came in as the third most popular rooms to renovate. Security system upgrades continue to be a popular option with millennials leading the charge over baby boomers.

Top Funding Sources

Cash is still the primary way homeowners are paying for these renovations but credit card use is on the rise. During 2018, 37 percent of homeowners used a credit card compared to 33 percent in 2017.

It was also discovered that as the renovation costs rise, homeowners became more likely to take out a secured home loan, equity loan or use saved cash from a previous home sale, a gift, an inheritance or insurance payout.


Who is Renovating?

Baby Boomers and Gen Xers make up 81 percent of the renovation homeowners spending around $15,000 a piece. Millennials are about 14 percent and spending around $10,000. Gen Zers are still only a small share of renovating homeowners and spending around $7,000.

Why Does it Cost so Much?

Houzz speculates that the trade war with China is the likely culprit for costs continuing to increase. Just for kitchens, the median spending jumped 27 percent between 2017 and 2018. Master bathroom spending was up 14 percent and non-master bath spending increased 17 percent. These trends are expected to continue.

So, why is this so important? With so many homeowners remodeling and upgrading their homes, they may be choosing to stay in the home longer than anticipated when they first bought the home.

Checking the Cost vs Value Remodeling website, for the South Atlantic region which includes Greenville South Carolina, an upscale master suite addition will cost around $253,821 with a resale value of $131,035. An upscale major kitchen remodels of $126,307 will get you $82,677 resale value. A midrange master suite addition of $121,799 will get you $72,388 resale value. A midrange major kitchen remodel of $63,387 will get a resale value of $40,094. The website goes through various other types of remodels, cost and resale values and will give you a good general idea of what you will spend and what your resale return will be. It also indicates how much of the cost was recouped and whether the change is higher or lower than in 2018.


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, June 7, 2019

Market Update – You Should Buy This Summer

market update - you should buy this summer
Home prices will continue to rise. CoreLogic just released its latest Home Price Insights (HPI) for April 2019. Home prices were up in April 3.6 percent over last year same time. The annual price growth shows an acceleration since March 2018. The HPI Forecast is for prices to increase by 4.7 percent by April 2020.

Projected to increase – mortgage interest rates. All the experts, Mortgage Bankers Association, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the National Association of Realtors are projecting that rates will increase by this time next year. However, Freddie Mac’s current report shows the 30-year rate at 3.99% which is down 0.07 from last week and 0.57 from 1 year ago. Although there was a spike at the end of April in the 3-year rate, it has been steadily dropping. Could this be a leveling off of the interest rates? In the same report, it shows the 15-year FRM and the 5/1-year ARM both down also. Freddie Mac is also reporting that both existing and new home sales have picked up recently.

Renting or Buying, you are paying a mortgage. Unless you are living rent-free with family, you are paying someone’s mortgage. Why not make it yours? As a homeowner, paying on your own mortgage will force you to save money. As you pay down the principal, you will gain equity.

It’s time to make the leap. With both home prices and mortgage rates predicted to rise, the time is now to get into a place that is yours. Take a look at your need and determine if owning a home is right. Are you raising a family? Need stability? Family safety on your mind? These are all good reasons to make the leap and buy your own home.

No matter what your situation, if you are flirting with the thought of buying a home, do it now because when mortgage rates and home prices rise it will cost you more on your monthly payment. Stop paying someone else’s mortgage for them and build your own equity in your own home.

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.