Summer Real Estate Activity – “On Track!”

The Seabrook Island real estate market continued to be quite active over the summer and I would call it “on track” with our goal of 150 sales on the island in order to beat last year’s 141 sales.

The current 10-year average of sales on the island is 130. This includes all of the lean years during the recession, but not the “Bubble” year of 2005. With a successful final quarter, we have a good chance of having the sixth straight year of sale increases on Seabrook. At the mid-August point, when this was written, there were 109 properties either closed or under contract waiting to close, versus 101 when I was writing this same edition one year ago.

It is these sales that are helping to drive Club membership to its current all-time high of 1,765 and creating the financial success story that is Seabrook Island and Island One. The numbers include 43 villas with an average sale price of $283,000, 47 homes with an average sale price of $677,000 and 19 building lots with an average sale price of $238,000. All of these categories show increases over last year.

The most interesting category is building lots where the average sales price went from $167,000 to $238,000. The vast majority of these home sites were purchased by buyers with imminent plans to build a new home. One could surmise they represent buyers who are at the higher price range and chose to build a new home rather than purchase an existing home. This tracks with the trend of buyers looking for “newer.” This can mean either new construction or an existing older home that has gone through major renovations. Either way, it shows the continued growth of confidence in both Seabrook Island and the overall state of the real estate market.

The downside is that there remains a high inventory of about 100 home sites for sale. This speaks to the lack of demand from the “pure investor,” spec builders and buyers with longer range plans to eventually build.

The success of the new construction Salt Marsh Townhomes, as well as several 2015 re-sales of townhomes in that community, also tracks with both the trend of buyers looking for “newer” and building of confidence. The “Salt Marsh At Seabrook” developers have now applied for an additional building permit to begin more new units in Phase II of that community.

Hope ya’ll had a great summer! As always, please feel free to call me to talk about the Seabrook real estate market.

Joe Salvo
Broker-In-Charge
843.768.7796 • jsalvo@seabrookislandclub.com

Announcing our #MakeItUniquelyYours Photo Contest!

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Proud to announce our #MakeItUniquelyYours photo contest!

This is your chance to show us how you make Seabrook Island Uniquely YOURS!

Enter on our Facebook pages, or visit our website www.discoverseabrook.com/news-and-media.php and add your pictures! You can also enter on Instagram or Twitter by simply hashtagging #MakeItUniquelyYours

Deadline to enter is October 15th. Winners will receive a Seabrook Island Gift Bag filled with goodies! Make sure to hashtag #MakeItUniquelyYours and VOTE for your favorite pictures!

End of Summer Update

Except for a weird two week period in early July, the Seabrook Island Real Estate market continued to be quite active over the summer. Right now there are 101 properties either closed or waiting to close in 2014, with almost four full selling months remaining in the year.

The most improved portion of the market is single family homes. In 2013, a total of 46 single family homes were sold, while in 2014 that number is already 44 and is on a track to be about 60 by year end. Villas are on track with 2013’s numbers, when 61 were sold. So far there are 46 villas either closed or waiting to close, again with four sales months remaining. Continuing on this track would mean an increase in residential sales of about 10% by year end. At the writing of this article, there were 91 single family homes on the market and 96 villas. This translates to about a year and a half supply, well down from the highs.

Sales of homesites are lower than last year with 13 sites closed or waiting to close. There were 30 closed homesite sales in 2013 and now 105 homesites on the market.

In the meantime, our marketing efforts and those of our Sales Executives continue to bear fruit, and your real estate company has generated the highest market share of sold properties in the history of the company. Real Estate produced a healthy profit for the first half of the year and helped to generate a significant increase in Club membership. We expect that to continue in the 2nd half based on the number of sales already waiting to close at this time.

A detailed comparison of the first half of the year shows that the Seabrook Island Real Estate market was in line with or better than our main competitor communities in the Charleston area and significantly better than competitors South of us in the Hilton Head/Bluffton markets. Inventory backlogs are also in line or better than in those markets.

As an added service to our current and future clients, Seabrook Island Real Estate is looking into programs to help owners of older properties, those built in the 1980s and 90s, to find ways to efficiently upgrade features of their homes in order to generate a higher return when they are ready to sell and to get their homes sold quicker. You will hear more about this in the near future!

Hope y’all had a great summer and as always, please feel free to call me to talk about the Seabrook Real Estate market.

You Are Our Best Ambassadors.

Recently a very nice, happy couple came into our lobby in the middle of the mid-February ice storm. Of course, I immediately apologized for the weather. They let me know that it was all relative and that, back home in Cleveland, it was 5 degrees and they were perfectly happy with 35 and raining, knowing that by Saturday it would be 65 and sunny.

This was their first time on Seabrook and they were staying for a week. They told me they were blown away by the beauty and friendliness of the island. During their bike ride the day before, at least five friendly Seabrookers along the route stopped to talk with them. On that ride, they also happened to meet a couple who were looking at property with a Seabrook Island Real Estate agent. That couple invited them to join in as they looked at villas.

So here they were, 9 o’clock the next day, in a driving rain and sleet storm going out with that same Seabrook agent to find their Seabrook dream property. As a friend of mine often says, “you never know who is watching” or in this case, with whom you will be talking. The biggest concern people have when making a major move to a new community is how will I fit in and will I make friends. We are learning this more and more as we talk with prospects at the Ideal Living Expos. So, we offer to set up conversations with Seabrookers who have recently purchased, knowing they will have the same experience as this couple from Cleveland.

I want to thank all of you for your help! Whether it’s talking with guests at the Lake House, Island House, Pelican’s Nest, or just on the beach, you are our best ambassadors.

We have had a very active January and perhaps that can be attributed to the even worse weather up North. Feel free to call anytime if you would like to talk about real estate on Seabrook!

Joe Salvo, Broker-In-Charge
(*excerpt from the Veranda – March)

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2014.

We here at Seabrook Island Real Estate are excited to wish you and your families a happy 2014!
The island is buzzing with excitement this new year and we are anxious to see where 2014 will take us.
2013 ended with no new surprises in numbers, we ended with about 136 closings vs the 121 in 2012. A healthy 14% increase, which makes this the 4th straight year of sales increases since 2009!
Here are the numbers from 2012 and 2013.

2012 Homes: 46 Villas: 52 Lots: 22 Total: 121
2013 Homes: 46 Villas: 58 Lots: 29 Total: 136

This makes the average sale price of the 46 homes this year about $750,000, villas about $290,000 and lots about $240,000.

We will continue to keep you updated, so keep checking back! Also be sure to “like” our Seabrook Island Real Estate page on Facebook for weekly updates on listed and sold houses!

Happy New Year!

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Market Trends that will lead us into the New Year

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Even after the government shutdown, and a less than ideal economy standing, the housing market has made great improvements in the last months of the year. The housing market will see this increase continue through the end of the year and into early 2014. So despite the economic pitfalls, our housing market continues to chug along. Freddie Mac’s vice president, Frank Nothaft, says that the housing recovery should continue to absorb the economic shocks in stride and improve next year.

As of right now, the house price index has increased 12.8% since last year, which is the biggest increase since before the bubble burst. A slow increase in housing prices is not a bad thing though. To avoid another housing bubble burst, the increase is better left in a slow state. The prices are still relatively lower, but by the end of 2014, it is expected to increase enough to get everyone above water.

For buyers, this is the best market to buy in. Even though the inventory is tight, the buying market is looking at it’s best options now. There are plenty of good interest rates available for the interested buyer.

Thanks for reading!

Why Seabrook Island Real Estate?

It’s an interesting question. Why would you choose Seabrook Island Real Estate over national real estate brands such as Coldwell Banker, Century 21 or other local real estate agencies like Pam Harrington, or Akers Ellis?

National brands have preference in many situations because they are usually more trusted. It is simple marketing 101. Brand recognition generates a feeling of trust, especially if you’ve never bought in such a market before. Big branded companies put a lot of money into making sure that their agents are trained and educated on the current market and trends. These brand companies also put a lot of money into marketing and exposure. It’s natural that the question about how efficient Seabrook Island Real Estate can be for you.

Seabrook Island Real Estate prides itself on being more than just a brand. Seabook Island Real Estate is part of this community. Seabrook Island Real Estate has a leg up, so to speak, on national and other local real estate agencies because almost all of our agents live and work on the island. This real estate company is more than just your real estate agency, they’re your neighbors, they’re your bridge team, your golf partners, and your weekly dining group. This real estate company offers more than just basic information, when you choose our company, you’re choosing to hear it from the horse’s mouth. Who are you going to trust more, someone that visits Seabrook Island occasionally or someone who’s life is already here? When you choose us, you’re learning about the island from real islanders.

As for marketing and exposure, Seabrook Island Real Estate puts big money into trainings, and marketing. Our marketing staff puts tremendous effort in making sure that your listings and are getting maximum exposure and your options for buying are specifically geared towards your preferences.

So when you’re deciding on which agency to choose, and why, keep these things in mind. And most importantly, keep in mind that almost 90% of homes sold on Seabrook Island are listed and sold with us!

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Thanks for reading! Comment below!