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Friday Five // August 2nd, 2019

It’s the first weekend of August, which means summer break will be wrapping up soon. But don’t fret! There’s still time to get out there and have some fun in the summer sun. You'll be sure to find the perfect activity in this week's Friday Five, our weekly roundup of five fun events happening in the Charleston area during the weekend. Enjoy outdoor movies and music, shop a huge multi-store warehouse sale, go nuts at the ballgame, and more. No matter what you choose to do, the staff and agents at Johnson & Wilson Real Estate Company hope you have a very happy and safe weekend!

Looking for a relaxing way to wrap up the work week? Head out to Hutchinson Square in Summerville this Friday evening at 6pm for Sounds on the Square, brought to you by Nexton and the Town of Summerville. Enjoy smooth country tunes from Lowcountry natives Outshyne. This five-man band has been making music together since their high school days and have shared the stage with the likes of Keith Urban, Jake Owen, and Gary Allen. Treat yourself to some yummy eats from Squeals on Wheels and Samira’s Gyros and More. 

If you’re in Mt. Pleasant on Friday evening, be sure to check out Waterfront Music & Movies, presented by Y102.5 and Starling Chevrolet. Bring your blankets or chairs to Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park and bask in the sunset while listening to local musicians Sol Food and savoring dinner or snacks from food trucks bits-n-bytes and The Golden Pineapple. This week’s movie, Captain Marvel, will start at sundown, approximately 8:30pm. Admission and parking are free for this event. 

Calling all shopaholics and fashionistas! Gather at the Omar Shrine Temple at Patriots Point this weekend for the Charleston Boutique Warehouse Sale. CBWS is a semi-annual event for boutiques, designers, and online shops to show and sell their merchandise at discounted, end-of-season prices up to 90% off. All your favorite Charleston boutiques will be on hand with their sale items under one roof, including clothing, accessories, jewelry, shoes, home goods, and more. Hours are 5pm until 9pm on Friday, 10am until 7pm on Saturday, and 10am until 5pm on Sunday. 

Back by popular demand, the Charleston RiverDogs will transform into the “Charleston Boiled Peanuts” for one night only this Saturday. The Boiled Peanuts will celebrate the second annual events with this one-night rebrand, which includes new nutty merchandise on sale at the ballpark and online. The first 750 fans to arrive at the game will receive a complimentary cup of boiled peanuts, and the first 1,000 fans will also receive their very own Boiled Peanuts bowtie. Linger after the game for the post-game Fly-In Helicopter Ball Drop, presented by Chuck FM and Fox 24. If their numbered bouncy ball lands on the target at home plate, one lucky fan could walk away with a $4,000 grand prize!

Sometimes we all feel the need to stretch, breathe, and re-center ourselves after a weekend of fun. If this sounds like you, head out to Folly Beach on Sunday for Sunday Morning Folly Flow at the Wiki Wiki Sandbar beginning at 10am. This gentle yoga flow is great for beginners and seasoned veteran yogis alike. The session takes place in the sunset room, and if the weather cooperates, they’ll open the doors to the relaxing and inspiring ocean breeze. Bring your yoga mat, a water bottle, and a towel if you’d like. Brunch menu options will be available right after class (not included in the $15 class price). Pay in advance at Meetup or bring cash to the class. Namaste!

Friday Five // July 26th, 2019

It’s Friday once again, which means it’s time for the Friday Five, our weekly roundup of five fun events happening in the Charleston area throughout the weekend. Sample a slew of margaritas, celebrate Shark Week, enjoy a family movie day, and more. No matter what you choose to do, the staff and agents at Johnson & Wilson Real Estate Company hope you have a very happy and safe weekend!

If you’re a lover of margaritas, you’ll want to be at Brittlebank Park this Friday evening at the 2019 Charleston Margarita Festival. The festival features more than twenty margaritas to sample from Charleston area restaurants and bars, delicious food, beer, music, and a beautiful waterfront setting. General admission tickets include entry to the event, entertainment, and fifteen margarita samples. Available for purchase will be food, beer, and full-sized margaritas. Early admission tickets include access to the event one hour earlier than general admission as well as a souvenir cup and one free full-sized margarita or beer.

Shark Week at the South Carolina Aquarium starts this Saturday and runs through August 4th. Celebrate the weird, explore the wild, and discover the wonderful side of the ocean’s most misunderstood creature, the shark! Shark-themed activities will be found happening around every corner of the aquarium. Check out the special dive shows and programs, and photo opportunities, all free with Aquarium admission or membership. Activities include shark tooth digs, shark talks, shark feed video viewing, and much more. 

“Some people are worth melting for…” but we’d rather not melt in the July heat, so let’s enjoy an indoor movie day instead! Head to the Charleston Music Hall for Family Movie Day this Saturday. Doors open at 11:30am with the first film, Frozen, beginning at noon. Finding Nemo will be shown at 3pm, and Shrek will be shown at 6pm. Candy and snacks will be available for purchase, and there will be a bar for the adults. Anyone who dresses as their favorite character from the movies will receive a special prize!

Newly engaged? Already in the wedding-planning process? Just looking for ideas for the future? Then you’ll want to check out the Charleston Bridal Show at the Omar Shrine Temple in Mt. Pleasant this Sunday. Visit with hundreds of Charleston best wedding vendors under one roof in one day! Enjoy samples from some wonderful caterers, wedding cake bakers, and signature drink-makers. There will also be door prizes and free wedding bands for all brides and grooms! Bring your to-do list and check off multiple items in just one afternoon. 

Summerville DREAM and local musician Dan Riley Music have partnered this summer to organize “Downtown Getdown,” a new music series in Downtown Summerville. Bring your family and friends and enjoy live music on Hutchinson Square from 10am until 1pm on the fourth Saturday of each month during the summer. Bring a picnic, a blanket or chairs, and stay awhile! This Saturday’s musical lineup includes songwriter Ron Daniel, Michael Kaltofen, Ben Somewhere, Thompson Faulk, and Eldritch Root. 

Dear First-Time Homebuyers: Never Apologize for These Things

Buying your first home is a big deal. It’s a major life event that comes with a multitude of new and difficult decisions, mixed feelings, educational experiences, and more. No matter what goes on when you’re in the midst of your very first real estate purchase, you should never apologize for any of the feelings, opinions, or questions that crop up along the way. Let’s take a look at some of the unexpectedly common feelings you might be questioning as a first-time buyer.

Anxiety 

Your house will most likely be the biggest purchase you make in your entire life. It’s completely normal to have some anxiety about buying your first home. New buyers constantly find themselves subjected to others’ horror stories about homeownership and their buying experiences, which will do nothing to quell the fears that might already be lurking in the back of your mind. In addition to signing up to spend a good amount of money on a mortgage payment each month, you’ll encounter a lot of new jargon and legal terms and learn a ton of new information. Rest assured that your anxiety and fears are completely valid. Lean on your Realtor® to help guide you through them!

Asking Lots of Questions

This is your first adventure in real estate. No one expects you to know everything, and there definitely won’t be a pop quiz at the end. When you buy your first home, there will be a whole team of experts at your disposal, from your Realtor® to your mortgage broker to your home inspector and beyond. They’re there to help you and guide you through the process. Feel free to ask as many questions as you need to. Any question you come up with is probably one they’ve all heard before and will be more than happy to answer. 

Sticker Shock

In the long run, owning a home will be a much better investment than renting, but it might seem a lot more expensive at first. First there’s the mortgage payment, then the property taxes, homeowners insurance, utility bills, furniture to fill all those rooms, upkeep and maintenance… Then there’s the issue of having to pay for every little problem that arises—a leaky pipe, air conditioning that’s not cooling properly, a broken water heater…you name it. But trust us: pride of ownership and the equity you’ll build in your home are well worth the up-front expenditure.

Buyer’s Remorse

It happens. You compromise, you settle, and you end up moving into a house you don’t absolutely love but told yourself you can tolerate for the time being. You find yourself dreaming about your next home and constantly thinking about what’s not quite up-to-par in your current house. Don’t feel guilty. This isn’t strictly a first-time buyer thing; it can happen no matter how many times you’ve bought and sold houses. But don’t let it get the best of you. Focus on all the positive things your new home has to offer and figure out a way to change the negatives.

Not Getting Everything Done Right Away

There’s so much to do when you move into a new home, from unpacking and hanging window treatments to replacing countertops and buying new light fixtures. Don’t feel like you have to get it all done right away, and don’t feel bad if it takes you a while. You’ve earned some couch time after the hard work of finding a home, making it to closing day successfully, and moving in. No one says you have to have everything organized and finished right away. Take your time and enjoy the process. 

Feeling Proud

Never let guilt creep in and cast a shadow over your pride. You should absolutely be proud of yourself for taking such a big step! So go ahead: throw yourself a housewarming party and bask in the pride of ownership you’re feeling at this moment.

How-To Tuesday: Create a More Tranquil Home Environment

Life is crazy busy for most of us these days. When we get home, all we want to do is chill out and relax. The problem is that sometimes, home can be just as chaotic as the outside world. How unfair is that? Everyone deserves a tranquil spot at home where they can unplug, destress, and recharge for a bit. With that in mind, we created a list of ideas to help you create a more tranquil home environment. Use them all, or just take one or two and make them your own!

Create a Nook for Relaxation

Find a room or a corner of your home that you can tailor to your relaxation needs. This spot can be indoors or even outside on a patio or balcony. Add some comfortable seating, light a candle or diffuse an essential oil in a calming scent, and add things that just make you happy. You can bliss out as needed, read a book, or even take a little catnap in your peaceful nook.

Establish a Fail-Safe Organization System

It’s incredibly difficult to relax in a messy house. Believe it or not, clutter in the home promotes clutter in the brain. Find an organization system that works for you (because we all know there’s no perfect, one-size-fits-all tactic out there), and resolve to keep to it. Get rid of any items that you don’t use or need anymore, and organize what’s left. Make a concerted effort to put everything back in its place as needed, keeping up with it throughout the day and making a final sweep through the house before bed.

Make Your Bed

Okay, so this one might be a little simplistic. But making your bed each morning is one of the easiest ways to help your bedroom feel like a tranquil retreat, and not just a place where you spend a lot of hours sleeping. Getting into a made-up bed at night is more restful than untangling a heap of blankets and sheets before you can lie down and relax.

Separate Work Life and Home Life

Leave your work worries where they belong, and enjoy the peace and quiet your home affords you. This is notoriously difficult to do if you work from home, but it’s so important for your sanity’s sake. If you work outside of the home, store your work gear in a place where it’ll be out of sight until the next day. If you work from home, find a way to separate your workspace from your living space. It could be a home office that enables you to literally close the door on your workday, or it might just be a charging station where you can place your electronics and other work-related items until it’s time to pick up where you left off.

Keep Windows Easily Accessible

Natural light is more rejuvenating and relaxing than artificial light, and it’s always nice to get a glimpse of nature when you’re unable to get outside. Make sure you can open the drapes or blinds and let the sunshine in whenever possible. Never block windows with furniture or other items.

Add Some Flora

Breathe easier by adding plants and flowers throughout your home. Not only are they nice to look at, but plants literally help to clear the air in your home. What a great excuse to buy pretty plants and flowers for yourself!

Create an Inspiration Board

When you’re trying to relax or get focused, visualization can work wonders. Create an inspiration or mood board to help you focus when you need it. Your inspiration board could be a painting, a collage, or just a collection of things or photos that make you happy and remind you of why you do what you do. Come back to your board when you need a visual reminder of your goals and achievements, and let go of whatever internal mess is holding you back.

Don’t Bother Fixing These Things Before Selling Your Home

When the time comes to sell your home, you might find yourself overwhelmed by your to-do list. When you do a walkthrough of your home and property with your trusted Realtor®, you’ll no doubt find several things that need to be addressed before your home is in “show ready” condition. For starters, you might need to freshen up your exterior paint (First impressions matter!), update the kitchen cabinets, and have all the hardwoods refinished and the carpets cleaned. The list could go on and on, and as the fixes start piling up, you might wonder, How am I going to finish all this?! The fact of the matter is that fixing up a house takes money, especially if you aren’t particularly handy and need to pay someone else to do it all.

But here’s the good news: you don’t really have to check off every little item on your honey-do list before you put your home on the market. Of course, you’re still on the hook for any defects or conditions that affect the function of any major aspects of your house. For instance, you will need to take care of any leaks, built-in appliances that may not be functioning correctly, insect infestations, safety hazards, et cetera. Beyond that, any repairs that serve to make your house more appealing to buyers are completely up to you. Let’s take a look at a few issues that you aren’t required to fix before you put your home on the market.

Cosmetic Damage

A house that’s been lived in for any amount of time is bound to have some form of cosmetic damage, whether it’s scuffed floors, peeling paint, chipped trim work, or stained carpets. None of these issues has anything to do with function, so it’s purely up to you if you want to fix them. While fixing them will make your home look more polished, most buyers are able to look past small cosmetic flaws. As long as a house has good bones, and all the major systems are up-to-date and in working order, most buyers will be fine addressing smaller imperfections on their own.

Kitchen or Bathroom Overhaul

Kitchens and baths are two of the main rooms that buyers take into consideration when deciding whether or not to buy a home. But unless your kitchen or bath is horribly outdated and a complete eyesore, don’t worry too much about upgrading it. Buyers have their own opinions and tastes. Even if you do a complete update on your kitchen in the popular yet neutral farmhouse theme, who’s to say the buyer won’t come in, knock out a wall, and completely change it? As long as the kitchen and bath are clean and functional, most buyers can look past any outdated fixtures and will actually be excited to update the rooms themselves.

Partial Repairs or Upgrades

If you just can’t let your house be put on the market without addressing those outdated rooms, you need to go all the way. Don’t just replace the cabinets and call it a day. Those sleek, brand new cabinets will only serve to highlight the old, stained laminate countertop and used-to-be-white appliances. Likewise, shiny new faucets and new tile in the bathroom will make it obvious that the sink and bathtub could use repairs or replacement.

Non-Neutral Paint Color

Unless you’re going to refresh your home with a coat of neutral-colored paint, don’t bother painting. Paint colors are highly personalized choices, and even if you use a super trendy, of-the-moment color, chances are the new homeowners will come in and repaint anyway. Always use neutral colors if you’re going to repaint. That said, we don’t recommend painting the walls white. Go with an off-white, a light gray or greige, or even a very light, neutral blue to offset trim work.

Any Project Without a Good ROI

Don’t forget that in the end, any cosmetic repairs or projects you complete should ultimately be to your benefit. If a project isn’t going to net a decent return on your investment, forget about it. It’s not worth spending $3,000 to update a bathroom if you can’t raise your asking price by $10,000. Before you decide to start a project, do the math and decide which will be more beneficial: spending the money on a specific cosmetic repair, or lowering your asking price a bit to reflect it? You might find that your home will sell faster if you lower the price by $10,000 instead of remodeling the bathroom.

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