Know the Facts: Buying a Home vs Renting


The Facts About Renting:

According to the 2015 Rental Marketing report:

  • 88% of property managers raised their rent in the last 12 months, there does not appear to be any signs of stopping.
  • 66% of property managers predict that rental rates will continue to rise in the next year by an average of 8%.
  • 53% of property managers said that they were more likely to bring in a new tenant at a higher rate, than negotiate and renew a lease with a current tenant they already know.

Why Buy Your Own Home:

Making the leap to purchase your own house can be scary, we know that. Buying a home doesn’t have to be a terrifying experience. Renting can be tiring and stressful, year to year not knowing where you are going next or how much you will be paying per month. We are here to help guide you to the home of your dreams and the security you deserve. Remember the top three reasons to own a home are:

  1. The opportunity to build equity
  2. A stable and safe environment
  3. The freedom to choose your own neighborhood

If you are interested in where the Bluffton / Hilton Head Island real estate market is going? Give Jo Anne or Tony Rizza (843-301-5825) a call to better understand the current market, see the latest available properties, or to list your own home!

With over 25 years of experience, our team is ready to help!

Hilton Head Real Estate Partners
Partnering with you every step of the way.

Fannie Mae’s Housing Forecast [INFOGRAPHIC]


Some Highlights:

  • 30-year fixed mortgage rates are projected to increase steadily over the next year.
  • Housing Starts will well surpass 2015 numbers.
  • Home Sales will reach an annual rate of over 6 million by the fourth quarter of 2016.

If you are interested in where the Bluffton / Hilton Head Island real estate market is going? Give Jo Anne or Tony Rizza (843-301-5825) a call to better understand the current market, see the latest available properties, or to list your own home!

With over 25 years of experience, our team is ready to help!

Hilton Head Real Estate Partners
Partnering with you every step of the way.

New Construction, New Home Sales Surge


According to the latest report from the US Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, newly constructed home sales jumped 5.7% month-over-month and 21.6% year-over-year to an annual pace of 552,000.

Many buyers are looking to the new homes market to make up for the lack of existing home sales inventory. National Association of Home Builders Chief Economist David Crowe explains:

“Today’s report indicates the release of pent-up housing demand as the overall economy strengthens, consumer confidence grows and mortgage interest rates remain low. The housing market should continue to move forward at a modest but more persistent pace throughout the rest of 2015.”

Regionally, the Northeast led the way with a 24.1% increase in new home sales, followed by the South (7.4%) and West (5.4%). Sales in the Midwest declined by 9.1%.

The inventory of new homes for sale currently sits at a 4.7-month supply down slightly from July (4.9) and significantly from August 2014 (5.4).

Buyers who purchased a new home were willing to spend more to get the amenities that they wanted. The median home price for new homes was $64,000 higher thanexisting homes in August at $292,700!

Approved applications for building permits increased 3.5% over July and 12.5% over this time last year. Permit applications are seen as a strong indicator of builder confidence in the market.

Bottom Line

Buyer demand continues to outpace inventory of homes for sale. If you are thinking of selling your house this year, now may be the time to list before builders have a chance to replenish the supply of new homes.

For more information on new construction or available properties in the Bluffton/Hilton Head Island area, give Jo Anne or Tony Rizza (843-301-5825) today to find out more about new construction in the Bluffton/Hilton Head Island area.

With over 25 years of experience, let our team help you find your dream home!

Hilton Head Real Estate Partners
Partnering with you every step of the way.

Feature Community: The Haven at New Riverside

The Haven_NRThis month we are happy to feature another great gated community in Bluffton, S.C. which offers residents the best of town and country life is The Haven at New Riverside.

Minutes away from historic downtown Savannah, Old Town Bluffton, and Hilton Head Island’s beautiful beaches, this active-adult community by Del Webb offers 8 different two and three bedroom ranch home models on wooded or lagoon view lots to choose from.

Haven-Hillcrest Room

Built on over 340 acres, residents of The Haven at New Riverside have access to the community’s clubhouse (complete with zero entry pool, bocce ball court, walking trails, and tennis courts), lounge, fitness center, art studio, lending library, computers and meeting spaces.

Additionally, The Haven at New Riverside employs a full-time Activities and Lifestyle Director who organizes additional social events for residents throughout the year.




  • Outdoor Pool
  • Clubhouse
  • State-of-the-Art Fitness Center
  • 4 Clay Tennis Courts
  • 2 Pickle Ball Courts
  • 2 Bocce ball Courts
  • Hobby room
  • Billiards
  • Dog Park
  • Gated Community
  • New Riverside bike and walking trails


Current Social Clubs: 

  • Book Club
  • Bridge
  • Walking
  • Golf Club
  • Sewing
  • Train Dominoes
  • House of Cards
  • Tennis
  • Aqua Golf
  • Lunch Bunch
  • Coffee Talk
  • Yoga 101
  • Bunco

To view current listings in The Haven at New Riverside, click here or for additional information on this great community, contact Jo Anne or Tony Rizza at 843-301-5825 to view available properties today!


Hilton Head Real Estate Partners
Partnering with you every step of the way.

Home Equity: How Much Do You REALLY Have?

CoreLogic recently released their 2015 2nd Quarter Equity Report which revealed that 759,000 properties had regained equity in the last quarter. That means that 91% of allmortgaged properties (approximately 45.9 million) are now in a positive equity position. Anand Nallathambi, president and CEO of CoreLogic, reported:

“For much of the country, the negative equity epidemic is lifting. The biggest reason for this improvement has been the relentless rise in home prices over the past three years which reflects increasing money flows into housing and a lack of housing stock in many markets.”

Obviously, this is great news for the financial situation of many homeowners.

But, do they realize their equity position has changed?

A recent study by Fannie Mae suggests that many homeowners are unaware that their equity position has changed…in some cases dramatically. For example, their study showed that 23% of Americans still believe their home is in a negative equity position when, in actuality, only 9% of homes are in that position.

The study also revealed that, though 69% of homes had “significant equity” (greater than 20%), only 37% of Americans realize it.


This means that 32% of Americans with a mortgage fail to realize the opportune situation they are in. With a sizeable equity position, many homeowners could easily move into a housing situation that better meets their current needs (moving to a larger home or downsizing).

Fannie Mae spoke out on this issue in their report:

“Homeowners who underestimate their homes’ values not only underestimate their home equity, they also likely underestimate 1) how large a down payment they could make with their home equity, 2) their chances of qualifying for mortgages, and, therefore, 3) their opportunities for selling their current homes and for buying different homes.”

Bottom Line

Every homeowner should be aware of the true equity in their house and realize the opportunities that go along with it. If you are unsure of the savings you currently have built up in your home, call Jo Anne or Tony Rizza (843-301-5825) to help ascertain how much you have really accrued. You may be surprised!


Hilton Head Real Estate Partners
Partnering with you every step of the way.


Ready to Buy a House? Ask Yourself These 3 Questions


If you are debating purchasing a home, you are surely getting a lot of advice. Though your friends and family will have your best interest at heart, they may not be fully aware of your needs and what is currently happening in real estate.

Let’s look at whether or not now is actually a good time for you to buy a home.

There are 3 questions you should ask before purchasing in today’s market:

1. Why am I buying a home in the first place?

This truly is the most important question to answer. Forget the finances for a minute. Why did you even begin to consider purchasing a home? For most, the reason has nothing to do with finances.

A study by the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University reveals that the four major reasons people buy a home have nothing to do with money:

  • A good place to raise children and for them to get a good education
  • A place where you and your family feel safe
  • More space for you and your family
  • Control of that space

What non-financial benefits will you and your family derive from owning a home? The answer to that question should be the biggest reason you decide to purchase or not.

2. Where are home values headed?

When looking at future housing values, Home Price Expectation Survey provides a fair assessment. Every quarter, Pulsenomics surveys a nationwide panel of over 100 economists, real estate experts and investment & market strategists about where prices are headed over the next five years. They then average the projections of all 100+ experts into a single number.

Here is what the experts projected in the latest survey:

  • Home values will appreciate by 4.1% in 2015.
  • The cumulative appreciation will be 18.1% by 2019.
  • Even the experts making up the most bearish quartile of the survey still are projecting a cumulative appreciation of over 10.5% by 2019.

So what does that really mean for you and your family?

The chart below was made using the Home Price Expectation Survey’s predictions:

Family-Wealth-KCM (1)


If the experts are right and you were to purchase a home by January 2016 for $250,000, that home would appreciate by over $34,000 over the next four years! As we have reported before, homeownership is one of the best ways to build your family’s wealth.

3. Where are mortgage interest rates headed?

A buyer must be concerned about more than just prices. The ‘long term cost’ of a home can be dramatically impacted by an increase in mortgage rates.

The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), the National Association of Realtors and Freddie Mac have all projected that mortgage interest rates will increase by approximately one full percentage over the next twelve months as you can see in the chart below:



Bottom Line

Only you and your family will know for certain if now is the right time to purchase a home. Answering these questions can assist in making that decision.

If you are ready to move forward with your house hunt in the Hilton Head and Bluffton SC area, give Jo Anne or Tony Rizza a call at 843-301-5825. Great Hilton Head / Bluffton properties are available & waiting for you!