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5 Things You'll Love About Living In Summerville

The Lowcountry is such an amazing place to live that it’s difficult to choose which area is the best to call home. Since there are such great choices in tri-county region, we thought we’d start a series on the best things about living in each area. Today, we’re taking a look at five of the reasons you’ll love living in Summerville, South Carolina.

Recent Growth

It wasn’t all that long ago that residents of Summerville had to drive into North Charleston, Downtown, or other surrounding areas for the best restaurants and shopping. But Summerville has grown by leaps and bounds over the last few years. Several major chains along with local boutiques and restaurants have chosen to open their doors in what has often been called the bedroom community of Charleston. Why the recent growth? Transplants and natives alike have been flocking to Summerville for more affordable housing, lower tax rates, and a smaller town feel, which brings us to our next point.

Small-Town Feel

Even with the amount of expansion that’s taken place in Summerville, there’s still a quaint, small-town feel about the area. Thanks to the preservation of antebellum homes and the shops and buildings around Hutchinson Square and Town Hall, residents and visitors in Summerville can enjoy the charming ambience of an older, smaller town when visiting local favorites like Guerin’s Pharmacy and the James F. Dean Community Theater, and Eva’s Restaurant.

History

Downtown Charleston is renowned for its distinctive history and architecture, but did you know Summerville has just as much of a rich history? 18th-century residents of the peninsula, coastal areas, and the many plantations along the Ashley River trekked to Summerville in search of respite from unbearably hot summers, mosquitoes, and diseases that tended to run rampant in more populated areas. In fact, it’s how the town got its name. Summeville has received lots of historical recognition over the years and has even been named “The Birthplace of Sweet Tea.” We encourage you to learn a bit about Summerville’s history and tour its gorgeous architecture and parks.

The Flowertown Festival

Every year since 1972, residents and tourists flock to Summerville during the first weekend of April for the annual Flowertown Festival. It’s the prime time of year to see the gorgeous blooming azaleas, wisteria, and dogwoods that earned the town its nickname of the Flower Town in the Pines. The three-day Flowertown Festival is free to attend and includes a giant arts and crafts fair, vendor tents, delicious foods at the Taste of Summerville, a kids’ carnival, the weekend farmer’s market, and numerous entertainment opportunities. It’s a don’t-miss event, and living in Summerville makes it simple to enjoy the Festival all weekend long!

Parks and Green Space

A benefit of living a bit more inland is the vast availability of green space. Summerville is home to several great parks and playgrounds, including the well-known and beloved Azalea Park, Doty Park, Saul Alexander Park, Shepard Park, Gahagan Park, and Hutchinson Square, just to name a few. In addition to the numerous parks and playgrounds, there are several nature trails, golf courses, and running/biking trails to be enjoyed throughout town.

Thinking about calling Summerville home? This beautiful town is where our roots are, so we’d be happy to provide you with the expertise you need to make a final decision about moving to the Summerville area. Give us a call today for help finding your dream home in your perfect community.

Your To-Do List For Moving Into A New Home

Even if a house is listed as “move-in ready,” there are a few tasks you’re going to want to complete before you move into your new home. Whether they have to do with safety, cleanliness, or aesthetics, most of these to-do’s can be accomplished easily right after closing. Read on for our basic to-do list for moving into a new home.

Change the locks.

There’s no real way to guarantee that keys to your new home aren’t floating out there among the masses. For peace of mind and safety’s sake, changing the locks should be the very first thing you do before moving into your new house.

Check for leaks, drips, and running toilets.

Honestly, this should have been done during your home inspection, but sometimes things show up after the fact. Keep an eye on your water meter during the hours when no water is used to make sure there’s no unexpected leak somewhere.

Familiarize yourself with the breaker box.

Breakers should be labeled, but if they’re not, you should dedicate some time to finding out which breakers control what and labeling them yourself. This will save you time and trouble later on.

Check the air filter.

Air filters should ideally be checked monthly to see if they need changing, but not everyone remembers to do this. Check to make sure the filter is clear. If it’s not, check the dimensions and go stock up on replacement filters so you’ll have them on hand. Change the filter immediately and make a note of when to check it next.

Clean carpets.

Sometimes the previous owners will have the carpets cleaned before closing, but if not, it’s always a good idea to do it yourself before you move in. Rent or borrow a steam cleaner, or have professional cleaners come in to do it for you.

Give the kitchen a wipedown.

Make sure to wipe out the cabinets. This is an area that sometimes gets neglected, but cabinet interiors can gather unnoticeable dust over time. They can also show signs of any hidden pests, especially if the house was vacant for a while. Give the inside of the fridge and stove a wipedown as well.

Remove toilet seats.

You don’t have to replace the toilet seats unless you really want to, but it’s a good idea to at least take them off and do a thorough cleaning of all parts. You just never know when their last deep cleaning was.

Recruit a pest control company.

Even if you don’t have pests now, prevention is the best cure. We have a saying about termites in South Carolina. There are two types of houses: ones with termites, and ones that will have termites. Now refer to that thing we just said about prevention and make friends with your local pest control guy. You’re going to want to find a great deal on quarterly pest prevention.

How-To Tuesday: Decorate for Christmas Without Overwhelming Your Small Space

If you’re short on living space, you already know you have to be careful with home decor and how much space it takes up. The thing about Christmas decorations is that they tend to take up a little more space than your everyday decor. Even in a larger home, putting up the Christmas tree can sometimes mean rearranging furniture to make room. So how do you decorate your small space for Christmas without overwhelming it? Try these simple ideas for going all-out for the holidays while still keeping your decor to a minimum.

Buy a smaller tabletop tree.

No room for a traditional Christmas tree? Try a tabletop tree instead. If a tiny tree is still too big for your space, try a few branches of greenery in a jar filled with water. Miniature strands of lights and small ornaments can make for a beautiful minimalist tree.

Capitalize on height.

If you have high ceilings, this is prime real estate for your holiday decor. Hang mistletoe, garlands, ornaments, or snowflakes from high ceilings and moldings to draw the eye up and keep decorations out of the way. Hanging swags of greenery above windows and doorways is also a great way to add traditional Christmas decor without taking up living space.

Use soft light.

Christmas lights always make a house seem warm and cheerful. Using strands of white lights adds to the cozy feel of a smaller home without accentuating the lack of space. Candle light, whether it’s real or battery operated, also makes things feel warm and inviting.

Keep centerpieces small.

Just say no to big, flowery centerpieces. Mason jars and cylindrical vases are your friends. Fill with cranberries, peppermints, ornaments, or mini pinecones and add a candle, a painted branch, or a bit of greenery.

Use color.

We all know neutral color palettes make a small space seem bigger. If your home is decorated in a neutral theme, using a few brightly colored decorations can make it feel festive and cheerful. Red and green are the traditional colors of the season, of course, but go as colorful as you want!

Hang tiny wreaths.

Small, plain wreaths of greenery hung with a red or burlap ribbon (depending on your taste and theme) dress up a space easily without being in the way. Try hanging them on cabinets and the backs of chairs to add holiday cheer to your kitchen and dining area.

Make way for stockings.

No room on the mantle to hang your Christmas stockings? Try hanging a curtain rod from the mantlepiece. If you don’t have a fireplace or mantle, create one! Hang a small shelf somewhere in the main living space or add ribbon or twine to an existing one and string up those stockings.

Swap out everyday decor.

If you’re short on shelves and other horizontal space, try packing away your regular, everyday knick knacks and books to make room for all those Christmas decorations you covet. Trade regular throw pillows for holiday ones, or just use pillow covers.

Simmer a pot of Christmas cheer.

Smell is the most powerful sense when it comes to conjuring up memories and good feelings. Set a pot of Christmasy scents to simmer on the stove to create a cheery holiday atmosphere. Toss whatever ingredients you want into a pot of water, bring to a boil, and let it simmer away for hours. One of our favorite recipes uses cinnamon sticks, cranberries, cloves, ginger, a small pine branch, and vanilla. The best part is that you can keep reusing it by adding more water once it boils off.

Decorate the door.

If you’re super short on space or like to keep things neutral year round, feel free to go all out with your exterior decorations! Lights, garlands, ribbons, a big ol’ festive wreath—you name it. Set the tone with your outside decor to welcome guests in a joyful way.

 

5 Cheap and Easy Ways To Stage a Home

Staging a home is a surefire way to attract more interest from prospective buyers, but some sellers don’t have the extra cash to pay a professional home stager. If you want the benefits of home staging but can’t afford to consult a pro, try these five cheap and easy methods to make your home look as clean and organized as a professionally staged listing.

Clear clutter. You can’t expect potential buyers to get a good look at your home if there’s stuff everywhere. Remove items from kitchen and bathroom countertops. It might be a annoying to take them out every time you need them, but the impact of a clean, clear counter is always positive on buyers. Pack away any items that you can spare until you sell and move into a new house.

Put away personal items. Buyers want to visualize how their lives would look if your house were theirs. This is a difficult thing to do with family pictures, kids’ artwork, and sports memorabilia everywhere. You’ll be packing these things once it’s time to move, so go ahead and do it now.

Rearrange and neutralize rooms. Tour a few model homes in nearby neighborhoods to see how the professionals do this. Take note of how furniture is arranged to create inviting spaces. Make sure each room has a clear purpose. In addition, make sure to give each room a neutral look that buyers can personalize. Keep trendy decor to a minimum and repaint any rooms that have non-neutral wall colors.

Clean and deodorize. Odors are a number one turnoff for anyone touring a home. A home with a distinctive pet odor or musty smell stays in the forefront of buyers’ minds…and not for a good reason. Smell is the most powerful and memorable of all the senses, so make a good impression on potential buyers by giving your home a deep clean. Bake cookies, light candles, or simmer yummy spices on the stove before a showing.

Enhance curb appeal. Don’t forget to spruce up the exterior of your home. It’s the first thing buyers see, and the old adage about not judging a book by its cover doesn’t apply here. Landscaping and exterior decor set the mood for the entire showing. Make sure the lawn and flowerbeds are tidy and the exterior and roof are free of any signs of mold, dirt, and leaves. Paint the front door and trim if they need it. Plant seasonal flowers or shrubs. Store any outdoor toys and games when not in use.

These five easy—and free, in some cases!—tasks can be completed in a single weekend and are sure to help your home make a great first impression when it hits the market. If you need a little help or an unbiased eye, be sure to contact us. We’re always happy to advise our clients on the best ways to make their homes more appealing to buyers.

 

Friday Five // December 1, 2017

 

Johnson & Wilson Real Estate Company wishes you a safe and happy weekend! Believe it or not, December is already here, and the holiday events are many and varied. This is our favorite time of year, so you’ll be sure to catch a few of us taking in the holiday festivals, tree lightings, and craft markets. What events will you be attending this weekend?

Christmas 1860 at the Edmonton-Alston House at Middleton Place takes place on Friday, December 1 and December 8. Theatrical performers in traditional costume reenact the period in Charleston just before the Civil War. From the event website: “Adorned in period costumes, they reflect on the events of the day and how their lives would soon be forever changed.”

Beginning Friday, December 1, the Flowertown Players present A Christmas Story. Based on the beloved classic motion picture, the play follows 9-year-old Ralphie Parker’s quest to own a genuine Red Ryder BB gun. Audiences will undoubtedly be delighted by the infamous leg lamp, bunny suit, and tongue-versus-frozen-lamppost debacle.

The Exchange Park in Ladson presents the 25th Annual Christmas Made in the South this weekend. Pay admission once and get in all weekend! Christmas Made in the South is focused on keeping the world of fine artisans and craftspeople vibrant.  Exhibitors will be there all three days demonstrating and selling their handcrafted works.

The 2017 Reindeer Run 5K takes place on Saturday, December 2. Break out your most festive gear and run or walk this family-oriented, pet-friendly 5k through the lower peninsula of downtown Charleston. There will be a  costume contest including categories for Adult Individual, Child Individual, Group and Dog. Proceeds benefit the Charitable Society of Charleston and the campaign to build the new MUSC Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital.

One of Boone Hall Plantation’s most popular events, Wine Under the Oaks, takes place this Sunday, December 3rd. Admission includes but is not limited to a wide variety of wine samples, complimentary food and wine pairings, desserts, wine and cooking demonstrations, and the opportunity to see the house decked out in its Christmas finery!

 

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