Monday, April 21, 2025

THANKS FOR VISITING POOK'S SUN CITY CAROLINA LAKES NEWS!

Pook's Sun City Carolina Lakes News is both a website and a blog.  It contains up-to-date information about Sun City Carolina Lakes, a premier 55+ Active Adult Del Webb golf course community located in the panhandle of Lancaster County South Carolina, just a short distance south of the Ballantyne Area of beautiful Charlotte, North Carolina.  Looking for an affordable active lifestyle?  Sun City Carolina Lakes is the 55+ community for you!

The tabs above provide access to a wealth of information about Sun City Carolina Lakes and include up-to date stats for real estate sales in the community, as well as links to places and resources that you'll want to visit often.  

Want to search for homes for sale in Sun City Carolina Lakes?  Begin your search for Sun City Carolina Lakes resale homes right here!  Using the same property search tab, you can also search for homes for sale at two nearby 55+ Active Adult communities - TreeTops by Lennar and Carolina Orchards by Pulte.  Or, better yet, contact me to create a personalized search for you through the Carolina Multiple Listing Service (CMLS).  Doing so will create a portal that will allow you access to all that's out there.  If you would like me to create a personalized search for you with automatic updates, please contact me. 

As a blog, this site contains great articles and infographics about real estate and other topics of interest.  You'll want to come back regularly to see what's new!  

Blog postings are found just below this message, with newer postings at the top and older postings further down.  Since there is a limit to how many postings appear on a page, you will need to click on "older posts" (lower right corner of each page) to see older posts that do not currently appear on the main page. There are lots of posts hiding there... don't miss them!  You can also find postings by going to the ARCHIVE on the left sidebar.

Please be sure to go to my HELEN ADAMS REALTY website for more great information.  That website also allows you to search for homes, as well as check out mortgage and warranty information, and much more!
 

Thursday, April 10, 2025

LET ME INTRODUCE MYSELF...


I’d like to take this opportunity to introduce myself. My name is “Pook” Bellini and I’m a REALTOR® with HELEN ADAMS REALTY.  I am licensed in South Carolina and specialize in our beautiful Sun City Carolina Lakes community.  Prior to moving to South Carolina, I was an active REALTOR® in the Scottsdale/Paradise Valley, Arizona area since 2005.  

Please click on the "ABOUT POOK" tab above for my entire bio.

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BLOG POSTINGS BEGIN BELOW
Since there is a limit to how many postings appear on a page, you will need to click on "older posts" (lower right corner of each page) to see previous posts. There are lots of posts hiding there... don't miss them!  Alternatively, you can go to the BLOG ARCHIVE on the left sidebar and search for postings by date and title.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Why Have Interest Rates Jumped to a 7-Year High?

Why Have Interest Rates Jumped to a 7-Year High?
Article Courtesy of Keeping Current Matters/The KCM Blog

Interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage have climbed from 3.95% in the first week of January up to 4.61% last week, which marks a 7-year high according to Freddie Mac. The current pace of acceleration has been fueled by many factors.
Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist, had this to say:
“Healthy consumer spending and higher commodity prices spooked bond markets and led to higher mortgage rates over the past week.
Not only are buyers facing higher borrowing costs, gas prices are currently at four-year highs just as we enter the important peak home sales season.”

But what do gas prices have to do with interest rates?

Investopedia explains the relationship like this:
“The price of oil and inflation are often seen as being connected in a cause-and-effect relationship. As oil prices move up or down, inflation follows in the same direction.”
You may have noticed that filling your gas tank has become substantially more expensive in recent months. The average national gas price has climbed nearly $0.50 from the beginning of the year, leading to the highest price for Memorial Day weekend since 2014.
As rates go up, your purchasing power goes down, but don’t worry; rates are still well below the averages we’ve seen over the last four decades.
“Freddie Mac said this year’s higher rates have not yet caused much of a ripple in the strong demand levels for buying a home seen in most markets, but inflationary pressures and the prospect of rates approaching 5 percent could begin to hit the psyche of some prospective buyers.”
Buying sooner rather than later will help lock in a lower rate than waiting, as the experts believe rates will continue to climb. Even a small increase in interest rates can have a big impact on your monthly housing cost.

Bottom Line

If you are planning on buying a home this year, keep an eye on gas prices the next time you’re at the pump. If you start to feel a big jump in price, know that rates are probably on their way up too.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

How Current Interest Rates Can Have a High Impact on Your Purchasing Power

How Current Interest Rates Can Have a High Impact on Your Purchasing Power
Article Courtesy of Keeping Current Matters/The KCM Blog

According to Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey, interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage are currently at 4.61%, which is still near record lows in comparison to recent history!
The interest rate you secure when buying a home not only greatly impacts your monthly housing costs, but also impacts your purchasing power.
Purchasing power, simply put, is the amount of home you can afford to buy for the budget you have available to spend. As rates increase, the price of the house you can afford to buy will decrease if you plan to stay within a certain monthly housing budget.
The chart below shows the impact that rising interest rates would have if you planned to purchase a home within the national median price range while keeping your principal and interest payments between $1,850-$1,900 a month.
How Current Interest Rates Can Have a High Impact on Your Purchasing Power | Keeping Current Matters
With each quarter of a percent increase in interest rate, the value of the home you can afford decreases by 2.5% (in this example, $10,000). Experts predict that mortgage rates will be closer to 5% by this time next year.

Act now to get the most house for your hard-earned money.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Home Inspections: What to Expect

Home Inspections: What to Expect 
Article Courtesy of Keeping Current Matters/The KCM Blog

So you made an offer, it was accepted, and now your next task is to have the home inspected prior to closing. Oftentimes, agents make your offer contingent on a clean home inspection.
This contingency allows you to renegotiate the price you paid for the home, ask the sellers to cover repairs, or even, in some cases, walk away. Your agent can advise you on the best course of action once the report is filed.

How to Choose an Inspector

Your agent will most likely have a short list of inspectors that they have worked with in the past that they can recommend to you. HGTV recommends that you consider the following 5 areas when choosing the right home inspector for you:
  1. Qualifications – find out what’s included in your inspection and if the age or location of your home may warrant specific certifications or specialties.
  2. Sample Reports – ask for a sample inspection report so you can review how thoroughly they will be inspecting your dream home. The more detailed the report, the better in most cases.
  3. References – do your homework – ask for phone numbers and names of past clients who you can call to ask about their experiences.
  4. Memberships – Not all inspectors belong to a national or state association of home inspectors, and membership in one of these groups should not be the only way to evaluate your choice. Membership in one of these organizations often means that continued training and education are provided.
  5. Errors & Omission Insurance – Find out what the liability of the inspector or inspection company is once the inspection is over. The inspector is only human after all, and it is possible that they might miss something they should have seen.
Ask your inspector if it’s okay for you to tag along during the inspection, that way they can point out anything that should be addressed or fixed.
 
Don’t be surprised to see your inspector climbing on the roof or crawling around in the attic and on the floors. The job of the inspector is to protect your investment and find any issues with the home, including but not limited to: the roof, plumbing, electrical components, appliances, heating & air conditioning systems, ventilation, windows, the fireplace and chimney, the foundation, and so much more!

Bottom Line

They say ‘ignorance is bliss,’ but not when investing your hard-earned money into a home of your own. Work with a professional who you can trust to give you the most information possible about your new home so that you can make the most educated decision about your purchase.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

SCCL TRAIL MAPS

The following information was shared by FirstService Residential in their April 27, 2018 Friday Flash.  The links go to the SCCL website.

Trails Maps
Thanks to the Trails Sub-Committee and friends, color booklet-like SCCL Trail Maps are now available for purchase at the Lake House front desk. They are being sold at cost, for $3.  SCCL residents can also download a copy from the website and print at home.
A special thank you to Jerry Burtcher for sharing his map drawings with the Association.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

SUMMIT HOMES UPDATE 4/24/18

The link below is an update for the Summit homes collection at Sun City Carolina Lakes.  It includes information about currently active listings, homes currently under contract, and homes that have closed since March 1, 2018.  While the information is for anyone interested in Summit homes, it has been created specifically for the Grey Hawk neighborhood, highlighting Grey Hawk homes that are currently listed.  If you are interested in receiving regular updates on any particular collection of SCCL homes (Manor, Summit, River, Villa, or Carriage Homes), or a general update on the community, or if you would like a personalized property search, please contact me.  

CLICK HERE:  SUMMIT HOMES UPDATE
You can download and/or print this document from the above link, however, feel free to contact me if you would like me to send you a copy as an attachment.  
NOT INTENDED TO SOLICIT BUYERS OR SELLERS CURRENTLY UNDER CONTRACT WITH A BROKERAGE

Please note that you can always go to the PROPERTY SEARCH tab above for links to preset searches for both single family homes and Villas & Carriage Homes, or go to the UP-TO-DATE STATS FOR SCCL tab above to check out a variety of stats for all of Sun City Carolina Lakes.  Stats for currently active, under contract, and recently closed properties are updated daily.  The interactive graphs for New Listings, Homes for Sale, Pending Sales, Closed Sales, Average Days on Market, Months Supply of Homes for Sale, Average List to Close Days, and Average Percent of Original Price are updated monthly.

Friday, April 20, 2018

HOME BUYING MYTHS SLAYED (INFOGRAPHIC)

Information below courtesy of Keeping Current Matters/The KCM Blog

Home Buying Myths Slayed [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:


  • The average down payment for first-time homebuyers is only 6%!
  • Despite mortgage interest rates being over 4%, rates are still below historic numbers.
  • 88% of property managers raised their rents in the last 12 months!
  • The credit score requirements for mortgage approval continue to fall.

Monday, April 16, 2018

GETTING PRE-APPROVED SHOULD ALWAYS BE YOUR FIRST STEP

Getting Pre-Approved Should Always Be Your First Step
Article Courtesy of Keeping Current Matters/The KCM Blog

In many markets across the country, the number of buyers searching for their dream homes greatly outnumbers the number of homes for sale. This has led to a competitive marketplace where buyers often need to stand out. One way to show you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search.

Even if you are in a market that is not as competitive, understanding your budget will give you the confidence of knowing if your dream home is within your reach.

Freddie Mac lays out the advantages of pre-approval in the ‘My Home’ section of their website:
“It’s highly recommended that you work with your lender to get pre-approved before you begin house hunting. Pre-approval will tell you how much home you can afford and can help you move faster, and with greater confidence, in competitive markets.”
One of the many advantages of working with a local real estate professional is that many have relationships with lenders who will be able to help you with this process. Once you have selected a lender, you will need to fill out their loan application and provide them with important information regarding “your credit, debt, work history, down payment and residential history.”

Freddie Mac describes the ‘4 Cs’ that help determine the amount you will be qualified to borrow:
  1. Capacity: Your current and future ability to make your payments
  2. Capital or cash reserves: The money, savings, and investments you have that can be sold quickly for cash
  3. Collateral: The home, or type of home, that you would like to purchase
  4. Credit: Your history of paying bills and other debts on time
Getting pre-approved is one of many steps that will show home sellers that you are serious about buying, and it often helps speed up the process once your offer has been accepted.

Bottom Line

Many potential home buyers overestimate the down payment and credit scores needed to qualify for a mortgage today. If you are ready and willing to buy, you may be pleasantly surprised at your ability to do so.

A TALE OF TWO MARKETS

The generalized information contained in the infographic below is based on stats provided by the National Association of REALTORS® and is not specific to a particular area.  
 
Remember that every market is different and sales in one community may vary greatly from other nearby communities.  For the most current stats for Sun City Carolina Lakes, click HERE.

A TALE OF TWO MARKETS
INFOGRAPHIC courtesy of Keeping Current Matters/the KCM Blog
A Tale of Two Markets [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights:

  • A trend that has been emerging for some time now is the contrast between inventory & demand in the Premium & Luxury Markets vs. the Starter & Trade-Up Home Markets and what that’s, in turn, doing to prices!
  • Inventory continues to rise in the luxury & premium home markets which is causing prices to cool.
  • Demand continues to rise with low inventory in the starter & trade-up home markets, causing prices to rise!