So how can a burned-out decrepit house be beautiful? I’ll show you.

I pass by this bright pink house often. It is on my way home, and on my walk to the sunset bench. Years ago it was just a couple doors down from where I lived and I could often hear the students porch-sitting on the hot evenings, playing music, talking to their dogs.  Lucky them. Getting to live in that house - 12,000 square feet of history. All that changed when in May of 2014 it suffered a major electrical fire. Blocks around it were closed down for quite some time, but fortunately only one of the 12 people there at the time was hurt.  The house did not fare so well with most of the interior ...click to read more...
Posted in Charleston Architecture, Charleston Peninsula Real Estate | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Is the Third Time a Charm for the Sword Gate House?

The allure of the Sword Gate house is real. A massive, magnificent mystery behind a towering brick wall, seen only through hand-wrought iron gates featuring two brawny swords. Who owns it? Only a few are privy - otherwise the rest of us are left wondering who in the world is Bear Gate Realty Limited - the name listed in the tax records. This Sword Gate mansion has just come on the market, listed for an easy $19,500,000 - the second highest price ever asked for a home in Downtown Charleston. But this is not the first time this home has been offered for sale - it's actually the third in the ...click to read more...
Posted in Charleston Peninsula Real Estate, Luxe Life, South of Broad | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

An Insider Look at HARLESTON row | From Vision to Completion

If you have been a subscriber to this blog for more than a year, you may recall in August of 2015, I launched a huge new construction project I had been working on since December of 2013 with the incredible team of JJR Development, Dow Inc, and Architect Julia Martin - HARLESTON row.  HARLESTON row is a collection of six new luxury rowhomes in the heart of historic Harleston Village. Not only are they contemporary in design since the area context allowed for it, but also the homes incorporated what is the largest installation of private residential living roofs in Charleston, and possibly the ...click to read more...
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How much will you pay in Property Taxes in Charleston?

This is one of the most commonly asked questions by those of you who are thinking about moving to the Charleston Metro Area, or those of you who are moving from a rental in Charleston to your very first home!  Not only are you seeing all kinds of numbers that don't make sense online, but also you are hearing things like "it's 4% or 6%", and take that to mean for a $500,000 home you'd be paying $20,000 or $30,000 annually. Right?? Not so. Not even close. So let me shed some light on what you will pay in property taxes in Charleston County. FIRST THING TO REMEMBER - the taxes you see online, ...click to read more...
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Tracking 10 Years of the Real Estate Market in Charleston

Every day I am asked the question - do you think we are in a real estate bubble? How much do you think values will rise over the next few years? Will there be a crash?? I wish I could have a magic looking glass, but I've been instructed never to make predictions. However, I can give you some key information and pretty graphs that will possibly help you decide the answer for yourself.  So let's look at a couple important items, comparing 2006 to 2016, and then play with some charts tracking 10 years of the real estate market in Charleston. The way I see it, two things are different between 2006 ...click to read more...
Posted in Statistics | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Only the Pelicans are Enjoying Colonial Lake – A Renovation Update

It has been just over a year since the $5,000,000 renovation of Colonial Lake began, though it seems like eons. I miss the Lake, the people strolling around, the dogs, the sunsets. That's all been temporarily replaced by mudpits and mudpiles, fences, pounding, beeping, growling engines, and a constant film of dirt on my car.  However, lest you think I am complaining, I'll say that the renovation is coming along swimmingly, and I am excited for the big reveal! Right now, only the pelicans are enjoying our favorite Harleston Village park because over the past several days, they have drained the ...click to read more...
Posted in Harleston Village, Urban Life | Tagged , | 2 Comments

The Journal Says Charleston is Luring the Young and the Restless

When I popped open my favorite section of the Wall Street Journal this morning - The Mansion section (of course!), this headline caught my eye - "Charleston Lures the Young and the Restless." My first thought was that the story was going to be about Millennials moving here, but I was dead wrong. It's all about the GenXers and young Boomers coming to Charleston - not to retire, but to live - vivaciously and delightedly. After all, isn't 40 the new 20?  Yes, this article speaks the truth. I encounter scads of people in their 40s and 50s, tired of the noise and the rat race of larger ...click to read more...
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Incredible Income Producing and Short-Term Rental Opportunity in Downtown Charleston

I can't tell you how many calls I receive asking the question, "Where can I buy a place where I can do short-term rentals" or "What can I buy that has the potential to cash flow?"  And always, for the most part, I have to disappoint. Positive cash flow is tough because of high insurance and taxes on historic buildings compared to purchase value. Short Term Rental is even tougher, because, the reality is, only ONE neighborhood in town (outside of the Accommodations district) currently allows them, and then only specifically zoned properties within that neighborhood. So here's an opportunity that ...click to read more...
Posted in Developments, For Sale | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment