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March 2024 Market Update

Sat, Apr 13th 2024 10:30 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

March is the beginning of the Spring market and in coastal South Carolina, there was a lot of change!

According to the Coastal Carolina Multiple Listing Service, average sales price increased by more than $13,000 from $370,366 to $383,428.

Almost every metric went up: the number of homes that went under contract increased by 6.4 % and the number of closings went up in March by 14.3%.

Interestingly, the number of new listings being added to the market went up by 14.5% while overall supply dipped slightly. That means that despite more homes being added for sale, the overall net number of properties for sale didn’t keep up with consumer demand and went down.

What does this mean for selle...

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Maximalist Design: Go Big and Bold

Wed, Apr 10th 2024 10:00 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Maximalist design is a bold and expressive style that embraces lavish colors, patterns, textures and decorative elements to create visually vibrant spaces. It's all about creating a sense of luxury, personality and eclecticism. Here are some tips on how to incorporate maximalist design into your home:

Embrace color

Maximalist design thrives on vibrant colors. Don't be afraid to use bold and contrasting hues throughout your space. Mix and match colors to create an energetic atmosphere.

Layer patterns and textures

Combine complementary patterns and textures to add depth and visual interest. Mix floral prints, geometric designs and textured fabrics to deliver a lively and eclectic look.


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Taking It Outside: Inspiring Trends for Outdoor Living

Tue, Apr 9th 2024 8:49 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Homeowners seeking a greater connection with the outdoors need look no farther than their own backyards. Here is a roundup of some of the latest trends in outdoor living that you will want to use to give your own backyard a fresh style.

Outdoor fireplaces and fire pits have grown in popularity over the past few years. Who doesn't enjoy the coziness of entertaining friends and family around the warm glow of a fire? Beyond the aesthetics, fire pits and outdoor fireplaces allow us to linger longer outdoors during the cooler months. There are many styles available, ranging from smaller fire pit tables to large fireplaces. With safety a concern, buying a fire pit table made from weatherproof ...

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Can a Home Equity Loan Pay for College Tuition?

Sun, Mar 31st 2024 11:00 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

One of the perks of owning a home is building equity, the difference between what you owe on your mortgage and what your home is worth. If your home is worth $340,000 and you owe $200,000 on your mortgage, you've built $140,000 in equity.

You can borrow against that equity in the form of a home equity loan. When you take out one of these loans, you'll receive a lump sum of money you can use for anything, whether you want to pay for the renovation of your kitchen, pay off high-interest-rate credit card debt or cover a child's college tuition.

How much you get depends on the equity you've earned. Most lenders will give you up to a certain percentage of the equity you've built. If you have...

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Updating an Out-of-Date Bathroom

Sat, Mar 30th 2024 9:00 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Not all bathrooms are modern spa experiences. And in some cases, old and out-of-date bathrooms can be frustrating to use. They often have a lack of storage or space. But what can you do to make the space more functional and work for your family? Here are some tips to get you started:

A fresh coat of paint

There is nothing a fresh coat of paint can't fix. It's simply the most affordable option to transform a room. Choose a color that matches your design aesthetic. Choose something in a light shade if you want the room to feel more open. Dark and jewel-tone colors can  make the space pop for a more dramatic effect.

Install wainscotting or tile board

Installing wainscotting or tile board...

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Comfort in Every Climate

Thu, Mar 28th 2024 10:00 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Heating and cooling systems are different across the country depending on the needs of the area. What works in the Southeast won't work in the Northwest. So what are the best ways to heat and cool your home wherever you live? Here are some things to consider whether you're in the Northeast, Southeast, Southwest, Northwest or Midwest:

Heat pumps

Heat pumps are highly efficient systems that heat and cool your home. They work by transferring heat from one place to another, either extracting heat from the outdoor air to heat your home in winter or removing heat from your home and releasing it outside during summer. Heat pumps are suitable for moderate climates and can be a cost-effective op...

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Swedish Death Cleaning: A Decluttering System

Wed, Mar 27th 2024 9:00 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Move over, Marie and Martha. There's a new tidying up expert in town – Margareta Magnusson – the bestselling author of The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning: How to Free Yourself and Your Family from a Lifetime of Clutter. Although the title may sound a bit morbid, the advice the book dispatches on decluttering is anything but. In a nutshell, the Swedish method asks us to put ourselves in the shoes of family and friends who are tasked with the unpleasant work of cleaning out all the belongings we have left behind at our death. The method is a way to organize and declutter so that you reap the benefits of an organized home here and now. In other words, you will only hold on to the thing...

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Should you wait to buy real estate?

Tue, Mar 26th 2024 5:19 pm by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Questions to ask yourself:

Can you afford it? Can you afford the monthly payment and the costs of maintenance and upkeep? If the answer is no, you should wait.  

Do I really want this? Does this purchase bring you joy? Does it accomplish a goal that is important to you? If the answer is no, you should wait. 

Questions you should NOT ask yourself:

What about the interest rates? If you can afford it at a high interest, you can refinance later if/when rates come down. DO NOT purchase it betting on rates coming down. They probably will but it’s never a good plan to put your financial future in the hands of the Federal Government. 

What if the market crashes? Other than a small blip when ...

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Understanding Supply and Demand

Sun, Mar 17th 2024 10:00 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Whether you are selling a beanie baby or a house, low supply with high demand means increased prices. If you have a lot of supply combined with low demand, prices are lower. How does that relate to houses? If you ignore supply and demand when buying or selling a home, it’s like trying to jump off of a cliff and ignore gravity. Whether you acknowledge it or not, you’ll end up dealing with it. We’re here to help you understand the market forces so you can make the best decision possible for you and your family.

Interest rates can impact both supply and demand. Here’s how: low interest rates means buyers have more purchasing power which drives up demand for more properties to sell. This inc...

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February 2024 Market Recap

Sat, Mar 16th 2024 9:00 am by Rosette Garcia Market Updates

The month of January almost always reflects the New Years Resolutions of sellers to put their home on their market with a large increase in supply. February is the reaction to that supply and also the fulfillment of buyer’s resolutions to purchase a property. Since a closing period on a real estate transaction is 30-45 days, buyer activity in January reflects in February closings. Closings were up by 10% last month. Pending sales are up as well following a normal seasonal trend as the sales increase to the historically busy spring and summer market. 

Average prices dropped by more than $24,000. This is a strong indicator of seller motivation from January. Sellers were willing to reduce t...

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Up on the Roof: What's Trending in Roofing Options

Fri, Mar 15th 2024 2:00 pm by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Sustainability and energy efficiency are the key drivers in many of today's decisions regarding home renovations and remodeling. Because the roof covers a large and visible area of a home, homeowners need to be mindful of the roofing materials they choose when replacing a roof. As one of the most expensive components in a house, a roof is expected to last some 20 years before it needs to be replaced. Of course, this time frame will depend on a few variables. Some factors include the climate in your area, the quality of the roofing material used and the maintenance over the years. According to Forbes Home, the cost to replace the roof on an average-size home is $11,500.

Finding the right ...

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10 Interior Decorating Trends We Are Leaving Behind

Thu, Mar 14th 2024 10:00 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and for some of you it would be hard to part with a beloved Tiffany-style lamp that has long passed its decorative prime. Maybe it has sentimental value, and if that's the case, in your eyes Tiffany is timeless and will never go out of style. Certainly, it can be artfully blended with other decorative elements to make it look colorful and interesting.

All whites and grays

In a recent 1stDibs on-trend hues report, white received the largest decline (down 10 percentage points) over last year in terms of its popularity. Gray showed a similar favorability decline. Where white kitchens were once all the rage, reassuring colors that are found in nature su...

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Your Property Insurance Bill? You Have More Control Over It Than You Think

Wed, Mar 13th 2024 12:43 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

If you financed the purchase of your home with a mortgage loan, you have homeowners' insurance. That's because lenders won't approve you for a mortgage loan if you don't first buy one of these insurance policies. The cost of your homeowners' insurance policy will vary, depending on your home's location, size, age and other factors. Bankrate, though, reported that the average cost of this type of insurance in the United States stands at $1,428 a year for a policy that offers $250,000 in coverage.

These policies pay out if your home is damaged or destroyed by  a natural disaster. You'll also receive a payout if someone steals items from your home or if someone is injured on your property a...

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Kitchen Islands: Sailing Back into Popularity

Wed, Mar 13th 2024 12:42 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Kitchen islands are a wonderful way to add much-needed storage, counter space, meal prep areas or seating to your kitchen. Islands are available in all sizes and materials to fit all budgets, ranging from ready-made versions to customized designs. There are five distinct types of kitchen islands to choose from:

Small rolling cart island — The least expensive option, the cart works well in any size kitchen, and is a great solution where space is limited. The cart can be rolled to the spot when needed and some carts can be folded up and stored away when not in use.
Small stationary island — This island works well in hardworking kitchens with limited space. Since it is stationary, it will n...

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How To Really Clean Your Carpets

Sun, Mar 3rd 2024 10:00 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Cleaning carpets effectively requires a systematic approach and proper techniques and tools. Here's a step-by-step guide to help you thoroughly clean your carpets:

Supplies you'll need:

  1. A vacuum cleaner
  2. Carpet cleaning solution (commercial or homemade)
  3. A bucket
  4. Clean towels or microfiber cloths
  5. A soft-bristle brush or carpet rake
  6. A spray bottle (if using a homemade solution)
  7. A wet/dry vacuum (optional)


Before you begin, vacuum the entire carpet to remove loose dirt, debris and pet hair. This step is crucial as it prevents larger particles from getting trapped in the carpet fibers during cleaning.

Spot treatment (if needed)

Treat any visible stains or spots us...

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Let Your Home Equity Fund Your Retirement

Sat, Mar 2nd 2024 10:00 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Strapped for cash? You might be able to liquify some of your home equity to cover expenses by using a home equity conversion mortgage, which is essentially a reverse mortgage backed by the Federal Housing Administration. The organization is federally insured by HUD; the agency guarantees the lender will be repaid.

These products, which have been gaining traction over the past five years, peaked in popularity in 2009. They work best for seniors who need more income and credit and intend to remain in their homes for the rest of their lives.

Playing by the rules

There are two main requirements for holding an HECM: You must be at least 62, and the principal must be repaid if you move out, ...

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Great New South Strand Listings!

Fri, Mar 1st 2024 9:12 am by Rosette Garcia Listings to Check Out

We have amazing new listings available in the South Strand! From Surfside to Murrells Inlet, check out these great homes!

1580 Gibson Avenue in Deerfield, Surfside Beach!

This 4100+ square foot home sits on a lakefront .34 acre lot and offers 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, office, game room, flex room, and a true Mother in Law suite. You have to see this gorgeous home today! Incredible opportunity now available in well loved Deerfield sitting between 17 Business and 17 Bypass in Surfside Beach!

Click here to know more...

8553 Hopkins Circle, Unit E in Southbridge Villas, Surfside Beach!

Welcome home to Southbridge Villas at Hopkins Circle! This 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom, top floor, end unit co...

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What's New in Bathroom Tubs

Wed, Feb 28th 2024 12:21 pm by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

Relaxing in a bathtub of warm soothing water is truly one of life's small pleasures. As the largest element in the room, the bathtub is also a key player in creating the desired ambiance and style for your bathroom upgrade or remodeling project. Whether you choose a classic clawfoot or a modern whirlpool tub, the bathtub is the place for destressing and relieving tense muscles. Of course, it also functions as the place we enjoy soaking and washing ourselves.

There are four basic tub styles to choose from: Freestanding, alcove, drop-in and corner. Each has its advantages and disadvantages:

Freestanding tubs command attention as the focal point in a bathroom. These tubs can be placed anyw...

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Perfectly Imperfect: Wabi-Sabi Decor

Wed, Feb 28th 2024 12:19 pm by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

For those of us seeking to live more peacefully and more simply with nature, the wabi-sabi world view is one you may be interested in learning more about. Some Americans will be familiar with the wabi-sabi art of kintsugi. Kintsugi's acceptance of imperfection by restoring or repairing damaged decorative objects is right in step with today's focus on sustainability.

What the kintsugi technique offers is a second chance for ceramics that have been broken or cracked by filling in the damage with urushi lacquer dusted or mixed with powdered gold, silver or platinum. The result is an imperfect piece of art that is stronger and more beautiful than the original. Wabi-sabi is all about embracin...

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Consider a Fannie Mae HomeStyle Renovation Loan

Wed, Feb 14th 2024 10:00 am by Rosette Garcia Buyer Tips

A Fannie Mae HomeStyle loan lets you wrap both the price of the home you are buying and its estimated repair costs into a single mortgage. Say you are buying a home that costs $235,000 and you are putting a down payment of $23,500 on it. Say, too, that a contractor estimates that it will cost an additional $50,000 to renovate this property.

You would take out a Fannie Mae HomeStyle loan for $211,500 — the amount you need to finance after subtracting your down payment from the home's purchase price — plus the $50,000 you'll need for renovations and repairs. That will leave you with a total mortgage of $261,500.

You would use the $50,000 from this loan to fund the cost of your home repair...

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