Wednesday, February 29, 2012

2824 Wilmot in Shandon. #Winner

The house in the pic above has Realtors and a lot of Shandon residents perplexed, to say the least. 2824 Wilmot has been sold three times in the last few years, which isn't that unusual in itself. The neighborhood head scratcher is, as of today, it's now sold/closed twice in the last four months. We've had a Coldwell Banker sign in this yard for many of the last 12 months, with most of those enjoying the red "UNDER CONRACT" sign rider. Clearly, the sign is the culprit of the confusion, and I can see why.

In case you live in Shandon and are curious, here's the rub. A few years ago, Amanda sold this home to one of her buyer clients. Summer'ish 2011, we listed the house, and my buyer client traded his house on Kathwood Dr. for this property. Fast forwarding to January 2012, a new sign went up, as the new homeowner decided to move to New York, NY. That explained, we put the house back on the market, and procured a contract a few weeks later, and it closed today. There you go! It's a pretty simple explanation, but I can see why my fellow Shandon'istas are perplexed given all of the signage activity.

You may ask, "How can this house turnover so frequently?" The easy/short answer is the attractive curb appeal, combined with a stellar "block" of Shandon makes for a popular target. In short, it's a solid product in a great location.

Congrats and kudos to the new owner, and the sellers. 2824 Wilmot Ave. is a win/win/win a few times over, and it's sales record is a solid testament.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Craftsman Look @DowntownColumbia

Best Townhome @ Primo Community Is For Sale
Some neighborhoods are just more popular than others, and that's just that. When it comes to new/fresh, easy living downtown Columbia townhomes, Hampton Forest is probably the primo product.

Developed by Inspired Communities, I was impressed the first time I saw this development. I mean seriously, take a good look at the cottage(ish)/craftsman style. Frankly, the attractive design kinda grabs everyones eye. Combine this with the color scheme of the neighborhood, and you have a kaleidescope Rainbow Row sort of look.

Notwithstanding the design of the facade, Hampton Forest is all about "community." The entrance and border hills are attractive, the large pool is awesome, and the movie theater at the clubhouse is just plain smart and cool. Everytime I park the car and walk around, I'm impressed with the community feel.

This all said, 715 Garden Forest may be the best unit available in the entire development. An open floor plan complete with granite slab, this home is sharp, polished, and ready to move in.

It gets better. Just beyond Target, Panera Bread, and Starbucks, Hampton Forest is only minutes to downtown Columbia, USC, Midlands Tech, VA, and only seconds to I-77. I've sold a few homes @ Hampton Forest, and every buyer seems extremely happy. Given ALL this, the best facet is probably the price point: $135,000.

If you or anyone you know is looking for an awesome townhome and easy living, please call or email or . Take a look at the pics, or cruise around the development and you'll see what I'm typing about. Hampton Forest is a good, fun product and this particular home is best of the bunch.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Fun, Interactive Crowd @Greenville, SC

Today was pretty cool, as I got a glimpse of another top shelf Coldwell Banker franchise @CBCaine, in Greenville, SC. As you may know from last night's post, the Coldwell Banker/Realogy brass asked me to attend the company's Recognition Banquet, and share a few things.

The pic above is a quick shot from my vantage point just before hitting the stage. CB had us stashed in the corner, and I was nestled snugly against the wall/rail you see.

I assume we gave the crowd some good meat as to how we 'do' our respective businesses, as there were a good number of questions, and even more laughs. It was very interactive and informal, and a good time seemed to be had by all.

I'd like to type a quick blurb regarding Coldwell Banker - Caine, so here goes... My vibe of this group was that I was with a top flight real estate firm, and all around good/fun Realtors who loved their jobs, and proud of their company. That said, I'm certain that if Jennifer/Finley and I moved to Greenville, SC, this is where I'd want to be. In short, I was impressed.

Thanks to the Coldwell Banker execs and the staff of CBCaine for allowing me to attend and share. I'm proud to have been asked, and flattered beyond this keyboard that someone might be interested in how we do things.

Congratulations to Jacob Mann. Jacob was named the Top Producer for this fine Upstate company. Well done, Jacob. Let's do a deal!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Spending Night/Half Day @Greenville

As you can see it's pretty late, so I can't type too long. I'm a little off routine tonight, as I'm sitting in a hotel room on Main St. in Greenville, SC.

Wednesday morning, Coldwell Banker Caine - Greenville, SC, will hold their awards banquet to recognize their 2011 Top Producers. After all the hardware is handed out, they have a couple other Realtors and me scheduled to take the stage to share how we work our real estate practices. Hmmmm...slight pause..... as earlier in my career I probably would have somehow snuck out of such sharing sessions. While I'm great friends with all the downtown Columbia Realtors, it doesn't mean I'm anxious to share what we do or how we do it. I put it in perspective, I still don't have any Realtors on my Facebook page.

Fast forwarding a few years, I seem happier to distribute any information they feel might be helpful. Perhaps it's because Greenville is a completely different market from Columbia, perhaps I've learned that no one will do it "our way" anyway, or maybe it's just plain ole' professional growth. Who knows?...but I'm happy to be here, and flattered to have been asked.

I'm anxious to learn a few things from my Coldwell Banker friends @CBCaine.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Two Sides @ Every Real Estate Deal...

The pics above are a quick collage of what Amanda and I presently have Under Contract, in downtown Columbia, SC. Scrolling through, you may be curious as to why I chose these particular homes to blog about. Here's the easy answer.... This collection of homes is a good/quick snapshot of where we represent the BUYER.

No question, we have a lot of signs in Columbia and proud of our market presence. That said, I feel compelled to convey that we represent Buyers, just as hard as Sellers.

"Listing" Realtors get a ton of credit for their listings that pop (sell), but the public never realizes the Realtors that bring Buyer's to a transaction. Sometimes Realtors that prefer to focus on Buyers exclusively don't get the credit they deserve, as drive-by traffic only sees the Listing Realtors sign in the yard, while never realizing who actually brought the qualified Buyer.

I suppose this enigma won't change anytime soon, as if Buyer's agents were interested in personal marketing/PR, they'd focus more on Sellers and market "presence." Neither way is better, BTW, as most Realtors simply find their comfort zone or niche, and go with it. This all typed, given the amount of Sellers we represent, think of all the Buyers this, in theory, morphes into.

I simply posted the pics above to solidify we proudly represent both (Buyers & Sellers), and work ragingly hard no matter what side of the transaction we're charged.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Pretty Funny & Close To Nail On Head!

If you haven't seen this yet, it's a poster that's going around Facebook at a pretty rampant pace. The first occupational poster that crossed my feed was, "Political Operative," which is pretty freekin' spot on for my "statehouse" friends. Tonight, I caught the pic above from a Greenville Realtor's page, which I thought was pretty funny.

First pic - Guilty as charged, admittedly (although, I can't hang out anymore). I'm not sure about pic #2, but I can see where they're coming from. Pic #3 is perfect, as syndication websites force Realtors to pay big money for information they got from us in the first place. Pic #4 is a perception that all Realtors flip. Pic #5 is exactly the type image I cast out for my Sunday open houses.

Ahhh....Pic #6! Some friends and clients recognize what happens behind the scenes, but most of the public doesn't see it. Perhaps this is a good thing.

At present, Amanda and I have scores of listings around Columbia, SC, and X "sides" under contract. Take a peek at pic #6 above, and think of the open house luncheons, open houses, three inspectors for each home under contract and the negotiations for each, pictures, offers, counteroffers, lock boxes, signs, painters, landscapers, boarded dogs, buyers schedules, sellers schedules, seller's baby's nap schedules, insurance quoters, dumbarsers, listing appointments, lender conditions, closing attorney demands, appraisals, contested appraisals, ad folks, phone calls from recruiting brokers, fellow Realtors, calls, "Will They Rent?" inquires that we field every day. Like the photo suggests, it's a load!!!

This all said, we wouldn't have it any other way. We love our job, and revel in the challenge every day presents. We try our best to be the ultimate hustler/pleaser Realtors that our clients expect.

I'm typing in jest, as the pic above is a fun snapshot of the balance between perception and true effort of what really goes on. As I mentioned in the last paragraph, we wouldn't have it any other way.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Greenville=Showplace, & Getting Better

As most readers of this blog know, it's hard for me to type about places other than Columbia, SC (perhaps because I rarely leave the city limits). After all, as a Realtor, I often feel like it's part of the job to be the front line of recruitment and retention. That said, I have to give credit when I see it.

This weekend Jennifer, Finley and I escaped to the Upstate to subtly celebrate our fifth wedding anniversary. Glad we did.

As I was looking for pics to share, I couldn't find any that do Greenville justice. With that, I thought I'd give props to a little part of what makes Greenville a happening place.

Before I do, however, let me be clear. We're big fans of Garibaldi's "Crispy Flounder," and everyone in Columbia knows, any tuna dish or Ribeye Mr. Friendly's brings out, is TOP shelf consuming: #DisclaimerNowTyped. Now, last night we enjoyed what is probably the best room service I've had to date. To be sure, I'm not incredibly well traveled, but you get the idea. The Lazy Goat is awesome!

This morning, the three of us strolled a few steps from our hotel, to High Cotton. Everything was, well, High Cotton... including the venue and service.

I'm proud of what the folks of Greenville, SC have accomplished. As a kid growing up in Anderson, I never in a million years (well, about 20ish) thought Greenville would become what it is today. My eyes have been opened, again.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Blog Love: One More Day For Shady Ln.

Given I hooked this blog post to the Seller's Facebook 'Walls' earlier tonight (Big hit spike, BTW), and since the front pic was switched a few mins ago thanks to a cooperating Thursday sunshine, I'm sticking with this post for another day.

Thank you for your patience, as this is a hot house. #4ShowingsToday. FJ

1442 Shady Lane-Lake Katherine Now On Market
Take a look at the address, and you'll know it's a contender. Click the pics, and you'll know it's a winner.

Given the designer touches, and the location, you're sure to realize that 1442 Shady Lane is all that, and a few bag of chips. At just under 2,000 sf and 3 beds/2 baths, there's not much in town that can compete with this one.

"Shady" features hardwoods, smooth ceilings, granite slab, designer lighting/paint throughout, a huge master, and a brand new deck that floats into a perfectly flat backyard. #BeatThatForTheMoney

Adding to all of this, 1442 Shady Lane is zoned for Brennen Elementary. Further still, the owner of this home has the option to join Quail Lane Racquet Club (pool w/lifeguard and 3 tennis courts), which is just down the street/around the corner. #Winner

Please call or email or if you'd like more information, or to schedule a showing of this sharp, move-in ready home on Shady Lane. In the meantime, click the link for a few pics. Combining location w/ price, I think you'll be pleased with what you see.

Monday, February 6, 2012

CBUR-Midtown Crushed January 2012

If you're on Facebook or Twitter, no doubt you've read that the world of real estate sales is experiencing an uptick. Who knows what's true these days, however, as we're all subject to so much fluff and spin, that sometimes we don't know the difference. That's OK, because just like in politics, all real estate is local.

I may not know what's going on with the rest of Earth's sales, but I'm well aware of what's going on within our real estate market. That said, the pic above is the 'Sales Board' of Coldwell Banker United's Midtown office for the month of January, 2012. #Impressive

To explain, the line items in the pic above are properties that received a written contract where a Realtor @ CBUR-Midtown is involved in the transaction, either as the Listing Realtor or Selling Realtor. Hopefully, my officemates and I can see these contracts to smooth closings, respectively.

Congrats to my fellow officemates and their Buyers and Sellers. This snapshot is a perfect microcosm of how CBUR-Midtown dominates the downtown Columbia, SC, real estate market.

Given the results above, I'm going to take a client recruitment liberty. Here goes: Coldwell Banker-Midtown has the best brand, best marketing, most hit-nationally branded website, enjoys the latest technology, employs the top producing Realtors in Columbia, dominates the downtown market share, and has started 2012 ON FIRE! In a sentence... if you're not using Coldwell Banker-Midtown to sell your house, then you are, for one reason or another, fighting what's happening around you. #JustSayin

No question, there are agents outside of CBUR-Midtown doing a nice business. All in all, however, I'm glad to be a part of the dominant office in the Midlands, as in my mind, activity generates activity. Further, I'm certain being with this group only adds to our practice/results.

Well done, Coldwell Banker United, Realtors-Midtown. As you can tell, I'm proud to be a part of the premiere sales force in downtown Columbia, SC. #WeRockedJanuary #KeepItUp

Friday, February 3, 2012

Downtown Columbia's MLS Hotsheet!

Columbia's Newest MLS Listings: January, 2012
This edition of The Hotsheet seems to be a little inflated, as some sales folks like to use a trick where they re-list a property, hoping to put a "fresh face" on it. This method gives a property a new MLS#, and gets it back on The Hotsheet. As you can imagine, January is a natural fit for such a strategy.

I think everyone tries this method to some extent, but it seems to be compounded when the new year turns over for obvious reasons.

In short, there are more new listings on The HotSheet this month, than most others.

Click and scroll!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Druid Hills Has A New Flagship Sale :)

Friends and neighbors of Druid Hills will be ecstatic to learn that 2501 Craig Rd, 29204, closed the other day at $150,000. Yep... you read me right!

At 1,156 square feet, this 3 bed/1 bath home is full of goodies. While it doesn't have "granite," 2501 Craig is neat, clean, updated, and full of curb appeal (pic doesn't do justice). It also features cool outdoor stuff, like a big new barn and sprawling deck off the back.

Druid Hills is a small pocket of homes flanked by Harrison Rd, Forest Dr, and Beltline Blvd. Quoting my directions, "It's on the downtown side of Forest Acres. You know... behind Zesto's and Morganelli's." Most buyers respond to my verbal map with, "Oh, OK... I know where that is."

Over the years, we've done a pretty good business in this neighborhood, to be sure. I describe the area as, "A good fit for those who like the smaller Shandon/Melrose Heights style bungalow look, but don't want to pay for (or aren't ready for) a Shandon price point and for whatever reason don't prefer Rosewood." It's an ideal place for folks who want to live downtown "for less."

Congratulations to the buyer and seller of this cute corner lot home. Congrats to Druid Hills, too, as this transaction is a big deal for any property owner in the neighborhood. At $129-$130/ft, 2501 Craig Rd is the new flagship "comp," and will be used on most appraisals for the next 12 months.

If you or anyone you know is interested in Druid Hills, please call or email or

We'd love to be your Realtors! FJ