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Apr 15, 2016
Southern Trend


(HILTON HEAD ISLAND, SC) Turn on your TV this weekend and take in the beautiful views of Hilton Head Island on CBS’ coverage of the RBC Heritage in Harbour Town. That is if you haven’t already moved to this little piece of paradise in South Carolina’s Lowcountry. Seems like plenty of people are heading this way, according to new Census Burea data. RealtyTrac flushed out the trend in a new report called "The Next Great Migration of 'Housing Refugees' On the Move." They say a rising number of Americans are heading to southern states, lured by a combination of warmer weather, affordable housing, lower taxes, and less congested cities. Since 2014 alone, more than 1.4 million people have moved to the Sun Belt, mostly from the Northeast and Midwest. Looks like they are fleeing pricey coastal states like California and New York and heading to states considered more affordable, such as Texas, Florida, and the Carolinas. The Snow Belt-to-Sun Belt migration has always been popular, but the real estate recession a decade ago saw the numbers decline. No longer. Time to make room for our new neighbors

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Apr 13, 2016
Disney Golf


(LAS VEGAS, NV) The old adage “golf is a good walk spoiled” could soon become “golf is a walk in the park” if Wynn Resorts’ plans to create a Disney-like park around its Tom Fazio-designed Wynn Golf Club come to fruition. According to Bloomberg.com, Wynn will convert the club into a lake resort featuring water skiing, paddle boarding, and white sand beaches. The resort, which would feature a 38-acre lake/lagoon and a mile-long boardwalk, would offer ice cream and a fireworks show every night.  The property, tentatively called Wynn Paradise Park, could be “just like Disney,” Steve Wynn, the company’s founder, chairman and CEO, said in a presentation to investors in Las Vegas. The new resort, which would feature 1,000 hotel rooms and 250,000 square feet of meeting space, could cost as much as $1.6 billion. “This is the most fun project in my 45 years,” Wynn told investors. “Somebody take the other side, tell me what’s wrong with this idea? We’ve all drunk the Kool-Aid.” We’re not sure about he Kool-Aid reference, but we’re all for a little fun après golf.

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Apr 11, 2016
Happiest Community in America


(TRAVELERS REST, SC) Don’t worry. Be happy. They certainly are at The Cliffs where the collection of seven private luxury mountain and lake communities was recently recognized by Real Estate Scorecard as the "Happiest Community in America." The award took into consideration rave reviews from property owners, who praised The Cliffs' quality of life and unique blend of family recreation, entertaining, well-being and life-enriching experiences. Most likely helping to keep a smile on their faces is the real estate roll they have been on. A total of 146 real estate transactions closed in 2015, representing a 20-percent increase over 2014 sales, and year-to-date sales in the first quarter of 2016 are up 16 percent over last year. The Cliffs continues to see an increase in land and home values across all seven communities, and sales leads with prospective buyers have increased 129 percent since 2014. To date, there are 1,532 completed homes and 111 homes under construction. The happiness doesn’t end there. The Cliffs was also honored in the February 2016 issue of GOLF Magazine as one of the "25 Best Golf Communities in North America."

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Apr 08, 2016
Cashing in at Augusta


(AUGUSTA, GA) Like everything else about the Masters, they have the rental housing market down to a science. While Augusta National has been busy over the years gobbling up (and tearing down) neighboring homes, the Masters Housing Bureau has been busy going about the business of coordinating the rental market for patrons. There are millions of dollars at stake during this week. The Masters Housing Bureau—among others—operates an online database to manage their listings. The Bureau, operated by the Augusta Metro Chamber of Commerce, collects seven percent on every contract. In exchange, they help homeowners advertise and negotiate rates. The returns for homeowners, especially those with multi-bedroom homes, can be lucrative, bringing in over $10,000 for the week. According to The Augusta Chronicle, independent rental company, Corporate Quarters, rents primarily to corporations and fetches up $25,000 for an eight- or 10-bedroom house. But here’s the surprising news…in recent years supply has exceeded demand. Might to pay to shop around if you're looking for a place to stay at your next visit to the Masters.

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Augusta House

Apr 06, 2016
Last House Standing


(AUGUSTA, GA) If you’re lucky enough (or spent enough money) to get a badge to this week’s Masters and find a parking space in the lot across from Gate 6-A, give a little wave to Herman and Elizabeth Tucker. That’s their house at the edge of the parking lot, sitting incongruously all by itself. And that parking lot you’re walking through? Augusta National spent over $40 million buying up all the Tucker’s neighbors’ houses and bulldozing them down so you could have a convenient place to park. But the world’s most powerful golf club couldn’t convince Herman and Elizabeth to sell their little three-bedroom home. Nope. Not even enticing seven-figure offers could pry their little piece of paradise away.  “Money ain't everything,” Herman told NJ.com. Don’t feel bad for the Tuckers though. They once owned another nearby home that they sold for nearly a million dollars to Augusta National. Makes it a bit easier to say “no.”

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