December and the holiday season is upon us. Most of the events in town this month are holiday related. The Sound of Charleston from Gospel to Gershwin will be at the Circular Congregational Church all month. The Holiday Festival of Lights at the James Island County Park is always a favorite. There will be plays, music, parades, and tree lightings all month. What a great time of the year in Charleston with temperatures in the mid 60’s. Here is your December calendar of events:
1-3: Holy City Messiah, CSO, Various Lowcountry Churches
2: Melissa Etheridge’s Holiday Trio, Chas Music Hall
2-4: 4th Annual Made in the South Weekend, Charlestowne Landing
3: N Charleston Christmas Parade and Festival
3: IOP Holiday Street Festival
3: 26th Annual Reindeer Run, starts at Southend Brewery
3: Holiday Swing w/ Chas Jazz Orchestra, Chas Music Hall
3,4,10: 33rd Annual Spirituals Concert, Drayton Hall
3: Pint of Hope, Hoppy Holiday Market, Freehouse Brewery
4: Charleston Christmas Parade and Tree Lighting
8-21: 21st Annual Charleston Christmas Festival
9-11: Nutcracker by Charlotte Ballet, Gaillard
10: Folly Beach Christmas Parade
10: Holiday Parade of Boats
11: Mt Pleasant 21st Annual Christmas Light Parade and Tree Lighting
11: Summerville Christmas Parade
14: Elf, Chas Music Hall
15: Skylark Vocal Ensemble Christmas, Grace Cathedral
15: CSO String Quartet, Historic Library Society
15: The Tenors, Gaillard
17: CSO Holiday Pops, Gaillard
17: Night Before Christmas by Charleston Chamber Music, Sottile Theater
20-21: Christmas in Wales, Circular Congregational Church
21: Special Holiday Extravaganza, Gaillard
21: It’s a Wonderful Life, Chas Music Hall
28: Blue Dogs, Chas Music Hall
30,31: Shakey Graves, Chas Music Hall
31: 4th Annual Charleston Rose Ball, Johnson Hagood Stadium
31: 5th Annual Yorktown Countdown
31: Folly Beach Flip Flop Drop
Jan 1: Bill Murray Look-a-Like Polar Bear Plunge
The Charleston real estate market continues to do extremely well and reflects the wonderful state of the economy overall here. Overall, we are up 10% year to date in the number of transactions and we may sell over 17k home this year. It will either be the busiest or the second busiest year ever. And median sales price is up almost 5% to $244k. 40% of the properties currently under contract are new construction. And this new construction is spread out over the entire tri-county area from Summerville to Johns Island and from Mt Pleasant to rural West Ashley. The Volvo plant has brought several new subdivisions to the Summerville area and a new interchange on I-26 is being added. Boeing is continuing to expand and seems very pleased here. Some people are just beginning to figure out that they call us Silicon Harbor because there are so many software and digital IT companies here. Of course, new restaurants and breweries continue to open daily and the cruise ships continue to bring new tourists into town.
In rescindable transactions, the Closing Disclosure must be given separately to each consumer who has the right to rescind under TILA (see § 1026.23), although the disclosures required for adjustable rate mortgages need only be provided to the consumer who expresses an interest in a variable-rate loan program. (§ 1026.19(b)).
In transactions that are not rescindable, the Closing Disclosure may be provided to any consumer with primary liability on the obligation
Of course, all of this makes the real estate market here go crazy. But not too crazy. Things seem to be very sustainable. At midyear through June, we are up 10% in the number of transactions over the same time period from 2015. We will most likely have over 16k transactions this year and it will be the 2nd busiest year ever. Only 2005 will be better. Median sales price is only up 5.4% at $243,500. That seems very reasonable. We are actually slightly undervalued according to the trend line going back to 1991 when we started keeping the MLS on the computer. Inventory is still low and it’s a seller’s market in most of our MLS areas. Mortgage rates are low and it’s allowing everyone to buy more home than they normally would. What used to be considered rough areas of town are now being transformed into gathering places where great restaurants and businesses are opening up with abandon. Our new mayor, John Tecklenburg, seems energetic and there are new projects all over the area. A new bike lane just got approved over the Ashley River Bridge into downtown. It’s a very exciting time for Charleston!!
When can you qualify for two FHA loans?
Exceptions to the FHA Policy Limiting the Number of Mortgages per Borrower The table below describes the only circumstances in which a Borrower with an existing FHA-insured Mortgage for a Principal Residence may obtain an additional FHA-insured Mortgage on a new Principal Residence.
A Borrower may be eligible to obtain another FHA-insured Mortgage without being required to sell an existing Property covered by an FHA-insured Mortgage if the Borrower is:
· relocating or has relocated for an employment-related reason; and
· establishing or has established a new Principal Residence in an area more than 100 miles from the Borrower’s current Principal Residence.
If the Borrower moves back to the original area, the Borrower is not required to live in the original house and may obtain a new FHA-insured Mortgage on a new Principal Residence, provided the relocation meets the two requirements above.
Increase in family size
A Borrower may be eligible for another house with an FHA-insured Mortgage if the Borrower provides satisfactory evidence that:
· the Borrower has had an increase in legal dependents and the Property now fails to meet family needs; and
· the Loan-to-Value (LTV) ratio on the current Principal Residence is equal to or less than 75% or is paid down to that amount, based on the outstanding Mortgage balance and a current residential appraisal.
Vacating a jointly-owned Property
A Borrower may be eligible for another FHA-insured Mortgage if the Borrower is vacating (with no intent to return) the Principal Residence which will remain occupied by an existing co-Borrower.
A non-occupying co-Borrower on an existing FHA-insured Mortgage may qualify for an FHA-insured Mortgage on a new Property to be their own Principal Residence.
(3) Required Documentation The Borrower must indicate on the URLA (Fannie Mae Form 1003/Freddie Mac Form 65) that the Property will be the Borrower’s Principal Residence and certify to that fact on form HUD-92900-A, HUD/VA Addendum to URLA.
The Hilton Head real estate community lost a great one last week. Lottie Woodward was one of the great local female agents when it was still very much a man's world. Coming up in the seventies and into mastery in the eighties, nineties and 21st century she held her own against the best men in the business. Raising three kids on her own she developed lifelong friendships and admiration of her peers. She was never afraid to flaunt her success in a classy way. I had the pleasure of attending her funeral which was a cocktail party where they served cheeseburgers and fries. I don't know about you but that's the way I want to do it. Her effect on the local business will be felt for a long time.
# Is there a minimum square footage requirement for a home to be eligible for FHA financing?