Thursday, October 17, 2013

Myrtle Beach Real Estate - Are Short Sales Back?

It is hard to have discussions about short sales in Myrtle Beach when we have had such an active selling summer. As  a local real estate agent, I have been getting a lot of phone calls from people that are giving up on their mortgages and getting rid of their unwanted real estate. Most of us thought the recent real estate activity across the country was a sign that recovery was here and short sales and foreclosures were gone. Many real estate markets have experienced a decline in inventory as well as slight increases in selling prices. Again, all signs that we are on the way up again.

Whenever I get a lot of owners asking similar questions, I do more research. I was looking at the Notice of Default figures and they appear to be rising again. Myrtle Beach Notice of Defaults (NOD) is the official notice that an owner is given when the bank is looking to foreclose. An owner usually has a lot of time between receiving a NOD and actually being foreclosed on.

Now that consumers are educated on the option of short selling, more owners are going this route as soon as they get notice that the bank is going to foreclose on them. This may seem obvious but in the past, many owners would get a NOD and do nothing to find out that they were out of time and selling via short sale was not longer an option.

If you are keeping your eyes on the real estate market along the Grand Strand then you may want to research this a bit more. It is likely that we are going to see an increase in distressed listings and an increase in inventory altogether.

I am not one to focus on politics yet the uncertainty in our government is also hurting consumer confidence. I have talked to some people that have stopped making payments because they have lost hope that the economy will recover anytime soon.

There is not enough data to support the fact that a new trend has formed but there is enough information out there that says we need to be on the look out.

If you want to discuss the real estate market in Myrtle Beach, then please contact me via email or phone. I am committed to keeping our clients updated on the changes that take place, and how those changes will impact your investment.

~Greg Harrelson

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Market Statistics Worth Knowing

As you know, I do a bit more research on our market than the average real estate agent. Knowing the market inside and out helps us make better buying and selling decisions.

There are a few things that we MUST understand about the market right now.  There are times when we think the market should do one thing yet it never seems to happen. Right now, most people think the market should have appreciated at a much higher rate and the following is likely to be the reason this hasn't happened.

1) New Construction represents 30%- 35% of all MLS closed transactions.
Why is this important?
A lot of property owners are hoping that their properties value would rise after the foreclosures were gone. Builders and developers are now creating more inventory to compete with re-sale listings.
So, instead of inventory levels decreasing, the number of new listings hitting the market actually increased.

2) New Construction sales are projected to represent 50% of all closed sales in the market – This projection was made by a local real estate analyst and tells us that inventory levels will likely continue to increase.
Why is this important?
New construction is competition to anyone that is trying to sell a pre-owned property. Does this mean you will have a problem selling? Not at all! It does mean that buyers are comparing your property to something new. This can impact your price and limit appreciation.

3) It may not be a fact that interest rates are going to rise but I think we all believe this will occur sometime in the near future.
Why is this important?
If interest rates increase, the ‘purchasing power’ of the buyer decreases. As the cost of borrowing money increases, the amount the buyer will be qualified to borrow will decrease. It is a fact that when interest rates increase by 1%, the price of property the buyer can qualify to purchase will decrease by 10%.  This will affect demand!

4) Building Permits from January to June this year increased by 118% compared to that same timeframe in 2011. And, a 41% increase over that same timeframe in 2012. This is one more piece of data that tells us we have competition coming up the pipeline.
Why is this important?
Building permit levels are a good indication of future supply. So many people have been waiting for supply to decrease hoping this would be the time where they could recoup some of their losses. It appears that inventory is not going to decline quickly and that could limit appreciation. Basically, builders are taking advantage of the buyer activity in the market and they are producing product that competes with your property.

You may not find a need to react to this information. But, if you are thinking of selling in the next 3 years, you may want to make your move. We can see the new construction wave building. What is likely to happen is that the builders will over-build and then start offering incentives to buyers. This will create more demand for new construction than there is for pre-owned properties. To compete with new construction, there is a great chance that you will have to lower the price…Something none of us want to do.

I am always looking for ways to protect your equity. If you find this information helpful and would like to discuss a selling strategy for your property, please give me a call immediately.

Thank you for allowing me to be your Realtor.

Myrtle Beach Real Estate
Charleston Real Estate

Monday, July 29, 2013

Pawley’s Island Real Estate – Finally starting to Sell!

Everyone knows the name Myrtle Beach, yet very few have ever heard of Pawley’s Island, SC. For those that have not taken the time to explore the most southern tip of the Grand Strand, you must put it in your schedule soon.

Pawley’s Island is one of those unique towns that people visit and never leave. Most recently, real estate sales in Pawley’s have really taken off. Much of the town is considered a luxury-type area, yet since real estate prices have dropped so much, Pawley’s Island real estate has become affordable. As a matter of fact, many people believe that this area offers the best value on the South Carolina coast. Although separate from the actual city of Pawley's Island, the beaches of North Litchfield and Litchfield Country Club are part of the community, and what makes it so attractive to those looking for the privacy and luxury that is not found anywhere else.

Not only do you have many of the top golf courses and their country clubs, but you also get to walk on the most private beaches and breathtaking marsh walks. These are some of the pristine natural attractions that homebuyers fall in love with. Add to that a sense of community unlike most of the tourism-based beaches, and a collection of the finest restaurants known to man - it isn't hard to understand why people choose to live there.

Some of the most popular communities in here include Pawley’s Plantation, Wilbrook Plantation, and the beachfront areas with beautiful oceanfront homes for sale. Along the beach you find luxurious brand new beach houses as well as the grand old historic homes that line the boulevard in the unique area called "the point", where the ocean and inlet meet each other in a dramatic display of nature's beauty and wonder.

If you are looking for a place to call home, you need to look at Pawley’s Island real estate before you decide. Start your visit by walking through some of the eclectic local markets, get a bite to eat in a cozy local restaurant and take a walk on a beach that remains more private than any of the others along the Strand. Call or contact us and we'll take you on an extended tour of one of the most beautiful areas the SC coast has to offer.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Will Increasing Interest Rates Slow the Myrtle Beach Market?

I think everyone knows that the Myrtle Beach Real Estate market has been on fire. MLS statistics show a decrease in supply, increase in prices, decrease in ‘days on market’ and more building permits being pulled in years. All of this is indicative of a healthy real estate market.

Mainstream news has not been talking much about interest rates yet I bet it is something they will be talking about soon. Most people are not aware that interest rates have been moving higher. This is something that we all expected yet there are some concerns that buyers and seller need to take into consideration.

  1. If interest rates increase by only 1%, that equates to about $10,000 more in interest payments on the buyer’s loan. So, paying 1% more is often the same as paying $10,000 more. Of course, it could be a lot more for properties above $200,000.

  2. When interest rates increase, the payments of the buyers new mortgage increases also. If the payments increase, buyers cannot qualify to buy as much property. In other words, the buyer's buying power decreases.

  3. If the buyer cannot spend as much because of higher interest rates, then that could decrease demand for existing listing inventory. A decrease in demand eventually has a negative impact on pricing.

  4. Remember, prices have already increased - forcing the buyers to spend more for the same home. Now that we see higher listing prices, here come the higher interest rates. Combine a higher price with a higher interest rate and we have something we need to pay attention to. In this situation, the buyer has to pay more, yet it is not going in the seller’s pocket…It is going in the bank's pocket.

This is not information to panic about, but it is always good to be informed. There are already buyers that are being denied financing due to payment increases. We have had a great 12 months in the Myrtle Beach real estate market and we hope this will continue.

We feel it is our duty to keep the public informed and this is one more attempt to fulfill our commitment. If you  feel you are in need of additional discussions, we are happy to answer questions and serve you.

~Greg Harrelson
Your Resource for SC Coastal Real Estate

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Selling a Home in Myrtle Beach

Tips on How to Get a Good Price When You Sell Your Home

Now that the real estate market in Myrtle Beach is improving, a lot of property owners are wondering if this is the time to sell a home and get a good price. The truth of the matter is that getting a good price has more to do with the marketing of the home than it does the market itself.

Of course, a busted real estate market doesn't help yet a good real estate agent can always out perform the market if they have the right strategy. Here are a few Simple steps for getting your home sold for Top Dollar in Myrtle Beach:

1. Choose a qualified Myrtle Beach Realtor. Think about this, you have a choice to hire an agent that is a beginner or part timer just as easy as you can choose an agent that has a proven track record and lots of success. No matter your choice, the commission is likely going to be the same. Why pay more for less service when you can pay the same and get more service?

2. Choose the right price. The market dictates the selling price for your property yet you have to determine the market trends to see if you can price it a bit higher knowing the market will catch up with your price over a short period of time. I am not convincing you to over-price your property, yet we see a lot of agents telling owners a price that will sell it in two days - when they could have gotten $5000 more if they would have waited one month.

3. Ask questions. Ask agents what they do to sell homes. I know this seems obvious yet agents never get this question. Owners always ask what price but fail to ask about the agents. This is setting yourself up for failure because some agents will tell you any price to get your listing. You do not want that. 

4. Request a list of marketing strategies your agent will implement. If your agent is only going to put in the MLS and wait then you are wasting your time. Get a list of 3 things your agent will do to market your property within the first 30 days.

Selling a home in Myrtle Beach for a good price is not the challenge. Finding an agent willing to market your property aggressively so you can get top dollar is the challenge.

At Century 21 The Harrelson Group, we are committed to getting you a good price for your property. We are not in the business of giving away your home.

Let us know how we can serve you better.
Greg Harrelson+

Monday, April 15, 2013

The Truth about Infusionsoft for Real Estate Agents

                     The Best Tool for Managing Leads - Infusionsoft

In the real estate industry today, there are so many companies creating the "next BIG thing" - and promising  that it will change our business forever. Of course, each of these new ideas come with a heavy upfront cost and ongoing monthly charges. The most common outcome is that the agent takes on this new system to later find out that it does not produce the results they were promised.

Automating to increase the number of leads you are getting is becoming a huge topic. I predict that agents will spend more money this year than ever before on drip systems, campaign software and websites that are optimized to capture internet leads. I will breakdown how true automation for lead generation works...

How does Infusionsoft work?

1) Assuming you already have a website, you simply take the lead that you captured and enter it into an Infusionsoft account.

2) Once in Infusionsoft, you activate a drip campign specific to the type of lead that you just uploaded into the system. Infusionsoft will allow you to create as many different campaigns as you need. I suggest you do this for every lead type you can think of.

3) Now that your campaigns are working, Infusionsoft will allow you to monitor the clicking activity of those in your database.

4) When you see one of your leads clicking on a lot of your content, you then have Infusionsoft trigger an alert that reminds you to call this lead.

Imagine having 1000 people in this system. It may seem far-fetched today, yet building a database can happen sooner than you think. Take all of your old buyer leads and place them in the system. Add your COI and past customers as well as every attorney or mortgage person you have ever worked with. Next thing you know, you have 1000 potential leads in your system.

Okay, I admit, there are a few additional steps necessary to execute on this plan.  I am trying to give you a very brief idea of how this works. Go to Infusionsoft for real estate agents to read more about it and learn how to use it.

Warning! There is a big difference in an autoresponder and an automated lead generating tool. I will explain more on that topic in an upcoming blog which will be posted on

Posted for Greg Harrelson

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Myrtle Beach Homes Scarce in $200k Price Ranges

Myrtle Beach Homes under $200,000

Finding a home in the Myrtle Beach area under $200,000 is starting to get tough. These homes do exist yet the supply is shrinking every month. When you combine this price range with the low interest rates available, these are the most affordable option in our local real estate market.

There are many communities you can choose stretching from Myrtle Beach to the North Carolina border and out to Conway. Here is a list of just  few of these neighborhoods:

Bellegrove in Carolina Forest - These are great starter homes located in a great school district and close to shopping, hospitals, and restuarants. There are still homes here for under $160,000.

Avalon in Carolina Forest - Also located in this popular part of town, you can find homes in this community under $150,000.

Rosehaven in Conway - This is one of the best values on the Strand. These Conway homes are offered at $119,900. For more information, give us a call.

Pines @ St. James - Homes priced under $100,000. Located in the Socastee section of Myrtle Beach. Call us for info on these super low-priced homes.

This is a short list of homes for sale in Myrtle Beach under $200,000. The good news is that we have many homes for you to look at in this price range. If you are interested in a complete list of available homes in this price range or any other price range you may be looking then please give us a call.