What to Expect with Savannah’s Housing Market in 2017

Posted: January 25, 2017

A New Year is here and it’s time to take a look at what the housing market forecast shows for 2017. Buyers always want to know what to expect when a new year comes. Whether you’re planning to buy or sell in Savannah, this year, it’s important to look at a few key factors first.

While there’s no way to completely predict what the market will do in 2017, there are some things that can help us see what we might be in store for. Here’s a look at the forecast for the housing market this year.

Interest Rates on the Rise

interest-rate-hikesSince we have already seen the federal funds interest rates rise, its likely interest rates for 2017 will experience a couple more hikes. Those with ARM or adjustable rate mortgages will take a hit. Any type of home loan tied to the prime rate will see a hike, but it won’t be noticeable in most cases.

Even with the rate hike in December, interest rates are still historically low. You may want to act quickly if you plan to purchase a home, but don’t let the potential of another rate hike scare you off. This won’t have an impact on some buyers, but those on a tighter budget may need to purchase sooner or they may see higher monthly payments and lower loan amounts.

According to the National Association of Home Builders, if mortgage interest rates go from 4% to 4.25%, about 965,000 potential buyers will no longer be a part of the buying pool across the United States. However, the rate hike can be mitigated by shopping for a lower-priced home, saving a larger down payment or choosing a fixed-rate mortgage with a longer term.

Home Prices Still on the Rise

Experts don’t see home prices rising as much as they did in 2016, but they still expect to see about 3.5% higher home prices by the end of 2017. Some believe smaller homes will see faster rises in home prices, while larger homes will not rise nearly as fast. Competition is expected when it comes to smaller homes, especially those on the lower side of the pricing spectrum.

Lower Inventories Cause the Prices to Rise

buying-a-home-2017The major reason home prices are expected to rise and have risen in the past year is the lower inventory of home. It doesn’t help that new construction has also been lacking across the country. However, the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Hosting Market Index was at its highest in December since the summer of 2005. This means, there is more confidence in homebuilders to start building more homes, which is good news for home buyers.

What Does it All Mean?

When looking at the key factors for the Savannah housing market for 2017, it can be a bit confusing. With the expectation of a couple of interest rate hikes, prices going up about 3.5% and inventory remaining lower, it’s expected that the market will continue to strengthen. However, it all depends on many other factors, as well.

housing-market-2017A new president in office could have some effect on the market, especially if President-elect Trump creates new jobs as he has promised. There is still quite a bit to consider and plenty of factors that could turn the 2017 housing market one way or another. However, most believe it’s going to remain stable and continue to push forward through at least the first half of the year.

Those with tighter budgets may want to find a home earlier in the year as the potential interest rate hikes will affect these buyers the most. If you don’t find a home before the hike, you may be shopping for a lower-priced home or waiting until you can afford to put more money down.

Rare Free-Standing Circa 1846 Home

Posted: January 25, 2017
__________________________________

11

Rare free-standing circa 1846 home with beautiful views of the greens of Pulaski Square. One of only a dozen or so pre-1850s masonry homes south of Liberty Street, this was the first one built facing Pulaski Square.

Spectacular new kitchen and updated baths, and a three story elevator for aging in place. Of the four fireplaces, two are beautiful Egyptian black and gold marble mantles, which accent the double parlors.

Great neighborhood steps to renowned restaurants and a short walk to everything Historic Savannah has to offer.

First saved and renovated in the 1960s — the early renovation at that time included the use of native pink Georgia Granite (now depleted) for the substantial front stairs and bathroom showers, which continue to grace the home today.

Enjoy the attached covered off-street parking with direct access to the elevator, which is very convenient on shopping days.

Special side Camelia garden with beautiful lacy Iron work, and sunny laid back courtyard with a large saltwater swimming pool. The garden level of the home is separately metered in case one would like rental income. Otherwise, the floor plan allows for each of the three bedroom levels to be separate suites, and the parlor level, with large balconies overlooking the pool, for everyone’s enjoyment.

See all the images, virtual tour and current pricing here: www.215WestCharlton.com

Top Museums Found in Savannah

Posted: January 19, 2017

Savannah, Georgia is full of history. It’s a popular place for those looking to learn about the Civil War and many other important times in the history of the south. One of the best ways to discover the history of Savannah is through the many great museums. Here’s a quick look at some of the best museums you will find throughout the city.

Georgia State Railroad Museum

georgia-state-railroad-museumA rather unique museum showing off trains and locomotives, the Georgia State Railroad Museum is one of the highest rated of its kind in the entire nation. It’s found within the old Central of Georgia Railway Savannah Shops and Terminal Facilities. You can explore boxcars, take an actual ride on a steam or diesel locomotive and discover plenty of history here.

Massie Heritage Center

This is the oldest school still in operation in Georgia. You can visit the Massie Heritage Center and discover all kinds of collections from the past. The exhibits cover some of the architectural history of the area with many artifacts from both Savannah and from the state of Georgia.

Savannah History Museum

Of course, if you want to discover history from Savannah, the Savannah History Museum needs to be very high on your list. The museum celebrates history dating back to 1733 including exhibits from the Civil War, American Revolution and many other significant times.

You can also visit Battlefield Memorial Park, which is found across the street. This park commemorates the 8,000 brave soldiers that fought back in 1779 at the Battle of Savannah. This battle was known as the second bloodiest of the American Revolution.

Ralph Mark Gilbert Civil Rights Museum

Known as the father of the modern day Civil Rights Movement in Savannah, Dr. Ralph Mark Gilbert has been honored through tis museum. It’s found on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and covers the struggles towards civil rights for African-Americans. The building is rather old itself and used to be the largest bank serving African-Americans in the United States.

SCAD Museum of Art

When you step into the Savannah College of Art and Design, SCAD, Museum of Art, you will enjoy plenty of beautiful works of art. This is a contemporary art museum with plenty of pieces from students and other area artists. Many exhibits showcase the history of the city and state.

Telfair Academy

telfair-academyDesigned by William Jay, the Telfair Academy was opened in 1818. Today, it displays one of the best collections in the area of American and European art. Those loving works from Childe Hassam and Frederic Frieseke will love this museum. It also contains 19th century period rooms.

Andrew Low House

As one of the most beautiful homes found in the area, the Andrew Low Hose is a historic home from architect John Norris. It was built in the mid-19th century and has been preserved and restored to its original style. You can tour the house and get a glimpse at how life was in Savannah many years ago.

Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum

The Savannah River has been a very popular choice for major ships and barges for many years. The Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum shows off many artifacts from the 18th and 19th centuries. It’s a museum dedicated to the aquatic and naval side of Savannah with nine galleries and plenty of ship models to enjoy.

There are several great museums found throughout Savannah. If you want to take a step back in time and learn about the history of the city and of the south in general, visiting the many Savannah museums is a great way to do it.

Top Craft Breweries Found in Savannah

Posted: January 10, 2017

savannah-breweriesIf you love beer, you’ll love discovering the top craft breweries found in Savannah, GA. There are plenty of great choices with excellent local brews you can try. As the craft brewery scene continues to explode, you may find a brewery in your neighborhood very soon.

For now, there are four excellent breweries you should consider throughout Savannah. Here are the top four craft breweries found within the city and each one is worth a try.

Service Brewing Company

A socially conscious local business founded by a former Army commander, Service Brewing Company provides excellent choices for all thirsty individuals. They have helped to raise thousands for local, regional and national organizations helping to assist veterans throughout the country.

Not only does the brewery create great beer, but they also have a way of getting local artists involved. Many patriotic themed tap handles were designed by local artists for the brewery. Service Brewing Company also keeps their own bees in a private apiary, which gives them their own honey for test beers and a unique house strain of yeast.

The brewery features both year-round beers and seasonal brews. They also do some small batch beers. Some of the most popular year-round brews include the Ground Pounder Pale Ale, Scouts Out Honey Saison and the Rally Point Bohemian Style Pilsner.

Moon River Brewing Company

Probably the most recognizable of the Savannah brewing companies, Moon River is known for the large Beer Garden, which is dog friendly. They provide more than just beer with great food, rustic decor and so much more.

The brewing company actually took over an old hotel in 1999, which was turned into a brewpub. They serve up fresh foods with many unique choices. You can even ask for a pairing to get the perfect brew to match your dish.

Some of the most popular beers from Moon River include the Yoga Pants, Swamp Fox, Boucane and the Captain’s Porter. They also provide seasonal and specialty beers on rotating taps.

Coastal Empire Beer Company

It didn’t take long for Coastal Empire to make a splash in Savannah. They launched n the first night of the First Annual Savannah Craft Beer Week and within the first week the Savannah Brown Ale had already placed first at the Savannah Craft Brew Fest.

The company started as a contract brewery, but became a production brewery after incredible popularity for their beers. They provide regular tastings and tours with plenty to offer the craft beer community. Their brews have won medals at the US Open Beer Championship multiple times and even at the Great American Beer Festival.

Some of the most popular beers you will find from Coastal Empire Beer Company include the Savannah Brown Ale, Inshore Slam IPA and the Southern Delight Praline Amber. They also provide many events throughout the year with limited release brews.

Southbound Brewing Company

southbound-brewing-companyAs the first production microbrewery in Georgia, Southbound Brewing Company has set quite the standard for custom beers produced in small batches. It’s a relaxed atmosphere featuring plenty of fun events throughout the year with live music. They offer regular tours with tastings and you don’t need a reservation to enjoy the fun.

Since this brewery handles many small batches, they are best known for the incredible limited releases. You’ll find something different here just about every single time you go.

If you love beer, these four Savannah breweries are a great place to go. You can enjoy tours, tastings or just grab a pint of something unique. Whether out on a date or just enjoying time with friends, head to any of these four breweries for a great time.

A Look Back on Savannah’s 2016 Accolades

Posted: January 4, 2017

The year has come to a close and as we turn the calendar to 2017, it’s always nice to look back. Savannah was given many accolades throughout 2016. Here’s a look at just a few of the many awards this amazing city received throughout last year.

#3 on “Best Cities in the U.S.”

savannahTravel & Leisure magazine publishes an annual list of the “Best Cities in the U.S.” In 2016, Savannah, GA was named to this list in the #3 spot. The city was even listed in the top 10 on the “World’s Best Cities” list from Travel & Leisure. This was the first time the city made it so high on the list and Savannah came in at #9 in the world.

The main reasons the city received both of these accolades have to do with the history, charm and beauty. Savannah has become a cultural place for those looking to learn about the south, enjoy the outdoors and experience some incredible shopping and dining.

Favorite Place in America to Visit

Another list published by Travel & Leisure Magazine is the favorite places in America to visit. This is actually a poll allowing readers to vote for their favorite places. Savannah, of course, made this list, but it was also named at the #11 spot on the Travel & Leisure list of America’s friendliest cities.

#5 on List of Best Romantic Getaways in the USA

While it’s not surprising that a city known as The Hostess City would be named to the list of best romantic getaways, it came in rather high at #5. Savannah has long been known as a popular destination for travelers, but the reputation has spread. The list was published by U.S. News Travel and cited the charm of Savannah.

The Telegraph in London included Savannah in their list of 50 US Experiences you Must have on your Bucket List. It was also one of the top 12 recommendations on Mashable for a future trip. Not only has Savannah made a splash with those already in the United States, but it’s also spread the reputation to those across the pond.

Top Place for Moviemakers

Savannah has been a hot spot for movies and TV shows for many years. However, it’s not just a great place to shoot a movie. Movie Maker Magazine published a list of the best places to live and work as a moviemaker and Savannah took the top spot.

With world-class filmmaking facilities, beautiful Historic Districts and plenty of incredible islands, this really doesn’t come as much of a surprise.

#9 for Retirement

savannah-georgiaMany new residents move to Savannah, GA every single year, but it hasn’t been known as a top retirement destination like the many spots found a bit further south in Florida. However, in 2016, Conde Nast Traveler ranked Savannah as the 9th best city to retire in the United States.

This was based on a poll of readers age 68 and older. With the temperate climate, slower than normal pace and the beauty of the city, many are starting to see Savannah as a great place to live out their days in retirement. Of course, the top rated golf courses and amazing art scene also play a part in this.

Savannah, Georgia is one of the top destinations in the United States for visitors and for those looking for a new place to call home. It has been named to the top of many lists from travel magazines and other publications. The above accolades are just a few given to the city in 2016. Many other publications recognized the city for the beauty, charm, affordability and many other incredible attributes.