Monday, April 27, 2015

The Ultimate Waterfront Home: 13 Leamington Lane

It's hard to imagine finding a more perfect combination of fantastic floor plan, incredible neighborhood amenities, and breathtaking water views than you'll find at 13 Leamington Lane.  THis 4 bedroom, 4 bathroom home is perfect for entertaining and offers plenty of thoughtful details to make your Lowcountry living a dream.  With more than 3200 square feet, this beautiful home is ready for you to personalize, creating your ultimate dream home.

Loving Leamington

What truly makes this property special is its location.  The Leamington neighborhood is nestled within Palmetto Dunes but offers its own unique amenities along with spectacular views and easy access to the beach--with affordable annual dues.  Leamington can be accessed by a special gate on 278, which makes it easy to commute or travel between Hilton Head and Bluffton/Savannah/Beaufort. 

This beachfront community offers an enormous number of amenities.  Beyond the traditional pool, golf, playground, and clubhouse amenities that other neighborhood offer, Leamington also sits on an 11-mile navigable lagoon system that allows for each use of kayaks, canoes, and small electric boats (the amenities center even offers kayak and canoe storage options!) and a historic lighthouse that offers charm and beauty. All residents are also welcome to use the Palmetto Dunes amenities center as well, which includes tennis and a number of clubs that will allow residents to meet people and explore new interests, especially perfect for those who are relocating to the area.

Leamington is the only neighborhood in the Palmetto Dunes complex that allows residents to use their own golf carts throughout the community, on the golf course, and as transportation to the private beach entry gate.  Residents have access to a beach pavilion that can be used for private parties for up to 80 people; small parties of less than 15 friends or family are welcome without reservation or deposit.  The area where this property is located does not allow short-term rentals, which keeps the "best kept secret" reputation of Leamington intact.

Waterfront Views

13 Leamington Lane is situated one of the best lots in the neighborhood, right on the lagoon, with stunning water views from most of the first floor living areas and both master suites.  The home has a large deck perfect for entertaining, a screened in porch, and a bulkhead on the lagoon that could easily have a dock added to it.  Imagine yourself sitting on your deck, enjoying the gorgeous Lowcountry summer evenings, and watching the sea birds as you enjoy your time together.  It's a stunning picture that can be yours in this home.

Thoughtful Floor Plan

This four bedroom home features a thoughtful floor plan that makes it the perfect home for a large family or a homeowner with lots of frequent house guests. The double master suites offer an enormous amount of space and the two other bedrooms, with attached baths, make for perfect, private guest quarters.  A combination of formal and casual living spaces also offers a tremendous amount of versatility in this home and the way it can be used.

The heart of any home is the kitchen, and this one is no different.  The finishes throughout this home need updating, but the space and bones of it are truly stunning. This open kitchen features a beautiful view to the lagoon, as well as ample counter space with the built-in island and a bright eat-in area near the windows. 

One thoughtful detail in this kitchen is this office addition, which could become a perfect place for bill paying, homework in the afternoon, or a staging area for the family computer.  It offers quite a bit of extra storage as well. 

Both master suites are remarkably spacious with lovely upgrades, like jetted tubs and double sink vanities.  Again, the finishes need to be upgraded but you can see that the space is generous and well-planned. 

The main floor features a wealth of living spaces, including a bonus room that could make a great office, hobby room, or library.  With a beautiful and lush landscaped view, it would be a great place to lose yourself in a project or a great book.

The back of the home, facing the lagoon, offers two large living areas which offers you both casual and formal living spaces. Both have impressively large windows, allowing plenty of light and blocking very little of the waterfront views, and one opens directly onto a screened porch and the other onto the deck, which will make both of them perfect for entertaining. 

The home screams spaciousness and adaptability--you can truly make it serve whatever needs you have without changing the floor plan at all. The floor plan is timeless, the finishes are simply waiting to be updated to your style, and the views cannot be beat. You will simply not find another home with these views, amenities, and proximity to the miles of Hilton Head beaches at this price--and especially not with these affordable POA dues. 

To learn more, take a look at the listing and give Kristy Gonzalez a call at 843-298-3808. 

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

SOLD! Charming Starter Home: 824 Bakers Ct.

It's often quite difficult to find a three bedroom home for sale at this price point, especially in one of the most popular communities in Bluffton. This quaint home in The Farm, close to the Bluffton School Complex, local shopping and entertainment, and nature trails and sports parks, is the perfect starter home or retirement/investment property for someone who is looking for simple but beautiful.

The exterior of this home is beautiful, with a bay window and mature trees and the convenience of having the front entrance on the side which offers additional privacy and security.
This home offers an open floor plan, with a combined living and dining area that features durable and beautiful manufactured wood floors throughout.  Vaulted ceilings open up the space, and multiple windows bathe the area in natural light. 
The kitchen is open to the rest of the living space, making this the perfect home for busy family life or the slower pace of entertaining.  The kitchen offers plenty of cabinet space, as well as a pantry, with a convenient laundry room right inside the kitchen. 

The home's three bedrooms also offer vaulted ceilings and ceiling fans, along with the beautiful flooring that extends throughout the home.  The master bedroom features a beautiful bay window. This home also features two full bathrooms. 

 One of the features that sets this home apart is its privacy-fenced courtyard.  This space is perfect for safely letting pets or kids out to play, and opens out to part of the yard just off the living room. The sliding doors open onto a patio that's perfect for grilling or playing, and the natural area offers plenty of room for small two or four-legged friends to roam safely. 
The bonus area behind the home offers plenty more greenspace to play in or cultivate, and new homeowners could easily expand the reach of the privacy fence to include the entire yard. 
You may not even need to do that expansion, though, because this home is just a quick walk to The Farm's expansive amenities center, which includes a large pool and a beautiful playground.  This is the perfect home for a growing family, an active retiree, or someone who simply wants to live a simpler life with less maintenance.  At this price, this home will not last!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Why Staging Might Be the Most Important Part of Selling Your Home

If you've found yourself binge watching HGTV at any point in your life--and, admit it, we all have--you are probably fairly familiar with the idea of staging a home for sale.  In fact, some popular home shows spend their time teaching people how to transform homes that aren't showing well into quick-selling masterpieces. 

The research supports the effort and sometimes small additional expense behind staging your home when you're serious about selling.  Most buyers are looking for something that's "move-in ready" and staged homes tend to sell for higher prices and move off the market faster than those that have not been staged.  But how can you do it yourself? I have been very blessed to work with a brilliant home stager, Shirley Marbach, who I considered to be the Queen of Staging. She has taught me, over the years, some great tips that I have seen work for my sellers over and over again.

Less is More

When you are selling your home, your goal is to appeal to as many possible buyers as you can, and clearing the clutter is the key way to do that.  Since you're already moving, pack away the extras and store them.  Think especially of knick knacks, extra books and personal items, anything fragile or valuable, and anything that features your family. 

When a potential buyer walks into your home, you want them to be able to picture themselves and their family living in your home.  As hard as it may be to take down those adorable fingerpaintings or pictures of the grandkids, you don't want the cute kids to distract from the spacious kitchen or the incredible views of the backyard.  

Set Up Every Room For Its Intended Purpose

Take a look at this kitchen.  All that's been done to it is a bit of staging, to help you see the possibilities of each space. Even if you aren't using that breakfast bar as anything other than a place to drop your keys and cell phone, it's a great selling point. Turning on lights, showing the spacious counters by placing nice looking canisters, and adding some greenery suddenly turns that beautiful place into a kitchen you can see yourself cooking in.

 I have seen a lot of rooms used for a lot of purposes that don't match their intended use--a dining room that has been used as an office, a home gym, even as an extra bedroom. While that's fine if it works for your family, what happens when you sell is that it confuses buyers.  If you have a bedroom in the dining room, does that mean that the room is too small? If your gym is in the dining room, where will that family host holiday gettogethers? You have to get your idea of the home out of the way of your potential buyers'--and you can do that through staging.

I love this picture, because it shows that staging doesn't have to be expensive or even time-consuming.  If you have a guest room that has been used as something different, perhaps as a home office or a hobby room, but want to showcase it for what it can be for a buyer, do you have to buy a lot of extra furniture? No! This simple, inexpensive solution allows a visitor to see the room for what it is without costing you a lot of extra money.

One of my most recent sellers did an absolutely beautiful job of staging their home. When you watch this virtual tour, you can see that they have beautifully simplified their home. No clutter, no personal touches that might distract from the buyer's experience--just a beautiful home that demonstrates the space and the purpose of each room. 

It can be hard to see your home as no longer your own, but that attitude, combined with the right staging, is what's going to help you sell your home and move on to your next adventure as quickly as possible.