Myrtle Beach Real Estate Blog

Aug. 16, 2018

Organic, DIY Mosquito Repellant!

There are so many incredible, awesome reasons to live here on the Grand Strand...don't let a couple mosquitos bug you!

Check out this video...all organic, DIY mosquito repellant. You're welcome. :)

 

Aug. 14, 2018

Home Inspection "Do's & Don'ts!"

The Home Inspection...it can cause anxiety in buyers and fear in sellers! Either way, it's a crucial part of the home buying process. Follow these simple guidelines and don't get "tripped up" by the Home Inspection

 

#1 Don't be Cheap

Hire an experienced inspector, even if it means a little higher rate than the newbie.

 

#2 Be Present

Make sure you are there during the inspection so you understand what is being documented. If you can't be there, ask your real estate agent to be there for you.

 

#3 Don't Interfere

It's important for you to be there and to ask questions, but don't offer your "advice" to the inspector. He's a paid expert.

 

#4 Don't Expect Perfection

Don't freak out over flaws. No home is perfect and items that need repaired can be negotiated.

 

#5 Inspect Repairs

After repairs are made, make sure an inspector signs off on them.

 

#6 Don't Bypass the Inspection

It's tempting to think you may not need a detailed inspection, but that's not prudent. Even new construction homes can have problems!

At Jeff Casterline Properties | Beach Realty Group, we're dedicated to making your Myrtle Beach Real Estate transaction as smooth as possible!

Aug. 2, 2018

Professional Photography Matters When Selling Your Home

Why Professional Photography Matters When Selling Your Home

So you're ready to list your home for sale and you've started interviewing Real Estate Agents. If the Agent you're talking to is not a firm believer in hiring a professional photographer to take the listing photos of your home, you may want to move on to the next agent asap. 

In the past, photos didn't matter as much, but today photographs matter! A lot! A large majority of buyers today are Millenials. They've grown up in an online, fast-paced, scroll-until-something-catches-your-eye world. There is an abundance of information and competition online. And the one thing that gets buyer's attention in this online atmosphere is great photos. A set of beautiful photos online will capture a potential buyer's attention better than anything else. It will get them to pause, it will get them to click on the property, it will get them to want to take a look at the property.

 

Real Estate Agents are typically not professional photographers and iPhones are not professional photography equipment. And it's not just that professional photographers have better equipment. They also understand lighting, composition, and angles. They understand editing, staging, and cropping...all things that are crucial to making your home as appealing as possible to buyers online. And the more people who want to look at your property, the quicker you will see an offer. More traffic means a better, quicker offer. It's really that simple. 

 

Myrtle Beach Homes for Sale

 

July 27, 2018

6 Great Myrtle Beach Seafood Restaurants

The Myrtle Beach area is full of restaurant options! In fact, there are so many that sometimes it's hard to decide where to go. But being the team players that we are here at BRG, we'll continue to take on the challenge of trying as many as we can and reporting back to you. :) Here are some of our top selections for Seafood Restaurants up and down the Grand Strand. Let us know if you have some additions to make to the list!

Sea Captains House

Once a privately-owned family beach cottage, this picturesque oceanfront restaurant serves up excellent seafood dishes with a side order of wonderful view. Featuring a combination of Southern cooking and Lowcountry seafood, the cuisine is award-winning and has been featured in numerous national publications. For more than 60 years this "temporary" eatery, which was slated for demolition to make room for a high-rise hotel, is still drawing huge crowds. While taking in the beautiful views, try any one of their delicious platters including oysters, shrimp and rock lobster. Also served are a variety of chicken and steak dishes, all accompanied by fresh seasonal vegetables.

 

Chestnut Hill


Located on Restaurant Row, this place is known for all its food, but the seafood takes center stage. All of the fish and seafood they serve are fresh. How fresh? The restaurant owns and operates its own fishing boat. But for those with more terrene tastes, there are delicious steak, chicken, lamb and veal selections, helping Chestnut Hill stand as one of the Strand's most versatile dinner choices. If you have the chance, their Sunday brunch is a "can't miss" that features everything from grilled quail to Southern fried chicken. Reservations are not required but are recommended during the summer months.

 

Flamingo Grill

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Flamingo Grill has done well pursuing the cutting edge of food trends, especially with gluten-free. The two owners, both named Dino, are local boys who grew up in restaurants back in the days when Myrtle Beach was a two-lane, three-month-resort, dotted with mom and pop guest houses and a couple beach-ball shops. “We owe all our success to continuously attracting some of the Beach’s best people to work with us. We find classy, hardworking young people with a sense of humor. Our dedicated staff at both restaurants have made our 30+ year careers a pleasure.” Locals rave about the Blackened Prime Rib, Seared Tuna, Lowcountry Crabcakes, Lobster Tail, Cajun Oysters, and their one of a kind Fried Lobster Chunks. If you’re feeling Italian, they offer Pasta Scallops, Grouper Picatta, Pasta ala Vodka and nightly specials.

 

Mr. Fish

The Seafood Market now has seating. Oh, and it's possible they will drive you to and from their restaurant free of charge ( if you're reasonably close! ) Mr. Fish has been serving the Myrtle Beach area fish market since 1994, Mr. Fish has dedicated his life to providing local, fresh seafood to anyone with a love for delicious fish and seafood. Now a popular Myrtle Beach seafood restaurant and fish market, the Mr. Fish seafood restaurant offers a full seafood menu with the highly requested steamed or fried shrimp and oysters. You can also order appetizers and specialty rolls from the sushi menu or stop by for the freshest happy hour on the beach!

 

Bonefish Grill

Bang Wednesday

Founded in 2000 in St. Petersburg, FL, the Bonefish Grill experience is the perfect recipe marrying simplicity, quality and consistency in food, service, ambiance, and value. Bonefish Grill specializes in market-fresh fish and other wood-grilled specialties. They combine this with a 'big-city bar' that offers fresh cocktails and an affordable wine list.

 

Wahoo's Raw Bar and Marina

Wahoo's Raw Bar & Marina is a Murrells Inlet dining hotspot, an energetic gathering place right off the Murrells Inlet Marshwalk. If you're looking for a fun spot to enjoy fresh Murrells Inlet seafood and look out into the marsh. The food here is simple but memorable, the atmosphere is laid back and quite often there's live music to be heard.

 

We're always on the lookout for our next favorite Myrtle Beach area restaurant so let us know who we should add to the list!

July 24, 2018

Check out one of the most breathtaking estates in South Carolina



Sometimes we forget that we have such stunning estates in our area. This Pawleys Island home in Waverly is truly something special:

"Rarely does the opportunity occur for one to acquire such a remarkably unique, South Carolina Lowcountry estate. A place where the convergence of natural setting, tasteful architecture and quality of construction combine to both stir the senses and soothe the soul. Thoughtfully situated among the centuries-old Spanish moss draped live oaks on a high bluff overlooking the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway and the historic ricefields of the Waccamaw River, elegantly stands a timeless structure more reminiscent of an English/Dutch Manor house than a southern plantation home. The size of the approximately 59-acre estate, bordered by pasture lands on one side and the broad river on the other, ensures tranquility and privacy yet doesn’t require a full-time staff to upkeep and maintain. Virtually every room and most certainly the expansive, but comfortable rear porch, offer magnificent views of the peaceful waterway. Designed by noted South Carolina architect Mark Maresca and constructed by the highly regarded local BEC Construction firm, the home is the distinguishable product of the coming together of discerning owners and a great design and construction team. The subtle design touches were exquisitely executed during construction. Quality of living captivates you upon entering the broad foyer and looking through the home down to the river. The right wing offers a private sitting area prior to entering the master suite with its generous closet and elegant bath. The central parlor is stately yet harmonious with the Lowcountry environment. Attention to detail is noted throughout. Enjoy the grand fireplace, as you admire the vast windows and natural light. The kitchen offers all the amenities a chef may need and opens up to its own gathering area and fireplace, a perfect common place for friends and family. The second floor has two lovely bedrooms each with a private bath. You will find a cozy balcony providing more views of the rice fields and Waccamaw River. The garage is attached to the main house. Above it is a spacious guest cottage with a full bath. Additional features include a private office, large utility room, the perfect space for a wine cellar, artist studio (or small guest cottage), pastures, and a barn.This rural plantation feel is in the heart of Pawleys Island and just a few short minutes drive to the beach."

Large Oak Trees Draped in Spanish Moss



Gorgeously Chic Large Living Room and Fireplace

 

Beautiful screened in porch with views of the Intracoastal Waterway

This PERFECT kitchen

Victorian / Bohemian Offices



And many breathtaking bedrooms.


Check out the size of this closet!

And also this beautiful bathroom


For more pictures and information click here!

Listing courtesy of Peace Sotheby's Intl Realty GT

July 19, 2018

The Best and Worst Day to List Your Home

Earlier this year, Redfin.com did a random sample of 100,000 listings that went on the market between January 1, 2017 and September 20, 2017. They broke the data into comparable variables such as property type, zip code, price range, and size and organized the comparable homes by which day of the week they were listed. 

The results are surprising!

In short - If you want to sell for the highest price, Wednesday seems to be the go-to day. Homes listed on Thursday seem to sell the fastest and Sunday appears to be the absolute worst day to list a home. Since Sunday had the worst averages, Sunday was used as a baseline to compare how much better homes do when listed on the other days of the week. 

There's no hard evidence to answer the question of 'why' these trends emerge but speculatory theories typically fall around the idea of 'buyers house hunting schedules.' Maybe having your listing sit at the top of the 'recently added' search filter right before the weekend means that buyers who are scheduling a weekend trip to scout out potential homes have a better chance of seeing it and adding to the list. Homes get five times more online views the day they go on the market than they do a week later, so making a positive online debut is incredibly important. 

As evidenced in the chart below, homes listed on Wednesday had an average advantage of $2,023 higher sale price than Sunday which is a 0.5% increase.  
Wednesday Price Advantage
As far as getting your house sold, Thursday appears to have quite an advantage! On average, homes listed on Thursday found buyers 5 days faster than the Sunday baseline. 

Speed and Certainty


Posted in Sellers
July 17, 2018

Mortgage Interest Rates Projected to Rise Slightly

Hovering at 4.5%, interest rates remain at record lows. when you look at the graph above, it's incredible how much difference your rate can make in your monthly payment...and consequently, how much house you can afford to buy.

According to FreddieMac, rates are projected to climb to 5.1% by this time next year. Still incredibly low, but if you're thinking of buying a home, now might be the perfect time to lock in a lower rate!

Contact us to get started!

 

July 11, 2018

10 Cool Ways To Beat The Heat On Your Porch This Summer

Well, the Fourth of July has passed us and now we move into the second half of summer. Which, if you live on the southern coast - is the hottest, most humid, make-you-wish-for-fall season of them all...though we still love it! But don't worry, we've come up with a list of 10 cool ways to beat the heat on your porch this summer. 

Image result for indoor green house patio

Plants

In growing plants, water is continuously evaporating from the surface of leaf cells exposed to air. The water released is replaced by water absorbed from the soil - which is typically shaded and a good bit cooler than the ambient temperature. The cool water travels from the soil, through the plant and to the leaf's surface where it is turned into a gas through the process of evaporation and released into the air. This process is called transpiration. So, not only will plants purify the air, and liven up your porch, they will also help bring the surrounding area's temperature down!

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Outdoor appliances radiate heat


Do you have an outdoor fridge on your porch? Or maybe a TV? A Radio that's always plugged in? Be wary and beware the radiant heat these appliances put out and your placement of them. LED televisions put out the least amount of heat, LCD's and Plasmas though, they release quite a good bit of radiant heat and could easily boost the ambient temperature by several degrees and fridges can be much worse! 

Image result for margarita


Cut back on alcohol 


Alcohol is a diuretic, it will dehydrate you while simultaneously interfering with your body's ability to regulate its own temperature. If you didn't know, heat exhaustion is caused by dehydration. But to make matters even worse, Alcohol and warm weather also dilate your blood vessels, making you way more susceptible to passing out.

 

Image result for concrete patio

Concrete patios absorb and radiate heat

Concrete surfaces that have absorbed too much heat can have a dire effect on comfort, environment and energy use. When outdoor concrete surfaces absorb UV rays from the sun, they release them into the atmosphere through what is referred to as "Heat Island Effect." This effect is something we all learned intuitively as children, attempting to walk on the asphalt in our bare feet or that hot run on the concrete by the pool. The heat that ends up trapped in the concrete can keep the concrete warm for hours into the evening, which is nice during the cooler months, but miserable during the warmer months.  

Image result for Iced coffee


Caffeine 

Just like alcohol, caffeinated drinks are another drink to be wary of when out in the heat of summer. Caffeine dehydrates you similar to alcohol but to a much lesser extent. Yet, studies have found several links between caffeine use and heat illness, especially in higher doses. So, in retrospect, your sweet tea is probably no problem at all, but that refreshing iced coffee may be working against you this summer.

Image result for solar screen porch


Create Shade

Its pretty common sense, but sometimes things are so obvious we look right past them. Plant some trees, hang up a solar screen, even some netting will do wonders the ambient temperature of your porch during the day.

Image result for LED summer lights


LED Lights

Incandescent light bulbs create light by heating a metal coil inside the bulb up to 4000 degrees! The heat makes the filament white-hot, thus, producing light. Halogen light bulbs use the same method and because they both generate light through heat, naturally, they put out of a ton of it! Approximately 90% of the energy they consume is used to generate heat. Fluorescent light bulbs use an entirely different method to produce light and use approximately 30% of the energy they consume generating heat. LED lights, despite marketing claims, still generate heat (as does every electrical appliance) but they are - by far - the most heat efficient light source available. So be sure to check those hanging porch-lights and make sure they aren't making your summer any hotter than it has to be!

 

Image result for cross ventilation cooling

Create a Cross Breeze With Fans

Similar to how obvious shade is, fans are equally obvious. But less obvious is the concept of a cross breeze. Consider this - would you like to circle around the same ol' batch of warm air you've been exhaling into for the last hour? Or would you prefer to have fresh air being pulled in and old air blasted out? As tempting as it is to point all the fans at you on a hot summers day, it may be in your interest to have on pulling air into your porch and one blasting air out. Have the fan that pulls air in set as low to the ground as possible with the fan that pushes air out as high as possible (heat rises). This can have a significant effect on your comfort!

*All images from Pinterest

Posted in Miscellaneous
July 11, 2018

Home Loans for Veterans

VA Loans - Helping Veterans and Active Duty Service Members Buy A Home.

The VA Home Loan was created in 1944 to help service members purchase homes when returning from duty without the standard requirements of a down payment or excellent credit score. VA Loans are issued by private lenders, guaranteed by U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and available to veterans, active duty service members, National Guard members, and reservists who meet the basic service requirements set forth by the Department of Veterans Affairs. Spouses of military members who died while on active duty or as a result of a service-connected disability may also be eligible.

You may be eligible for a VA Home Loan if you meet one or more of the following conditions:

You have served 90 consecutive days of active service during wartime, 

OR

You have served 181 days of active service during peacetime, 

OR

You have more than 6 years of service in the National Guard or Reserves, 

OR

You are the spouse of a service member who has died in the line of duty or as a result of a service-related disability.

Benefits of a VA Loan:

Down Payment

VA Loans require 0% Down for qualified borrowers. Conventional Loans vary but many require up to a 20% Down payment.

PMI (Private Mortgage Insurance)

Since VA Loans are government backed, banks do not require you to buy Private Mortgage Insurance. Private Mortgage Insurance is a requirement for borrowers who finance more than 80% of their home's value, tacking on additional monthly expenses.

Interest Rates

The VA guaranty gives lenders a greater degree of safety and flexibility, which typically means a more competitive rate than non-VA loans. Without government backing, banks are taking on more risk which, in turn, can result in a less-competitive interest rate on a conventional home loan. Even with interest rates on the rise, VA Loans consistently have the lowest average interest rates of all loan types.

Qualifying

Because the loan is backed by the government, banks assume less risk and have less stringent qualification standards for VA Loans, making them easier to obtain. Conventional options hold stricter qualification procedures that can put homeownership out of reach for some homebuyers.

Closing Costs

There are limitations on VA Loan closing costs. Sellers can pay all of a veteran buyer's loan-related closing costs and up to 4% in concessions in some cases.

At BRG, we're honored to help our veterans and military members with their home-buying needs. For more information or to find out if you or a loved one would qualify to use the VA Home Loan Benefit, don't hesitate to contact us! Thank you for your service!

 

 

 

 

July 7, 2018

You Have To See These Charming Oceanfront Homes!

Surfside Beach, SC

With two miles of pristine oceanfront, Surfside Beach is dotted with beach homes, hotels, condominiums, restaurants and a popular fishing pier. The beaches are cleaned daily and supervised by lifeguards and security. The Pier is a perfect setting for live music and walks down the beach and of course, fishing. Also, there are 30+ beach access ramps in the area as well as several public parks, a library, and tennis courts. 

The beachfront community is small but lively year round and gives you all the benefits of Myrtle Beach without so much of the 'rush' considering Myrtle Beach is about a 15-20 minute drive away. Once a privately owned Sweet Potato Plantation, the property was divided up and became known as 'Floral Beach' in the 1920s and upon incorporation in 1964, the town was renamed 'Surfside Beach'.

Surfside Beach has been known as a family-friendly vacation town and a great spot to retire for almost 60 years now!
The community has embraced this reputation and you can definitely see the 1950's - 1960's style still incorporated in the new ocean-front development today. The coastline is covered with rows of pastel beach homes and vintage hotels, an old arcade still has children playing in it and the original Sams Corner is still serving up hot dogs and cheese fries.

Just check out how gorgeous these homes are! 



1411 A N Ocean


1019B S Ocean Blvd

 


321-B S Ocean Blvd



For more Oceanfront homes in Surfside Beach CLICK HERE.

For more Oceanfront homes in the Grand Strand area CLICK HERE.