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    Newsletter – February 2013


    Baby, its cold outside and we are fighting a serious case of spring fever!  Let’s hope Punxsutawney Phil’s predication is an accurate one and that spring will be here soon!

    As usual, January proved to be a busy one for us here at Collins Group Realty and we’re all very excited about what the balance of 2013 will bring.

    Here’s hoping this newsletter finds you and yours doing well and looking forward to fun Mardi Gras and Valentine’s Day celebrations!

    Real Estate News

    See our latest Market Pulse report


    Market Reports
    Our annual Sea Pines and Windmill Harbour Market Reports are in the mail to owners of those plantations with a fresh new look for 2013! Also new for this year is the Palmetto Bluff edition of our report! If you’re not a resident in one of these neighborhoods and would like to read an e-copy of the reports, please email us at and we’ll be happy to send one your way!

    Online Real Estate Searches on the Rise
    The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reports that a recent survey reveals real estate related searches on Google have grown 253% over just the past four years.  The survey, a joint study between the NAR and Google, found that buyers utilized “specific online tools at different points during their home search process. Buyers tend to rely on search engines and general websites when they begin their search, use maps more in the middle of the process, and engage mobile applications most toward the end of their search.” The survey also revealed that the five states searching for vacation homes were Florida, Ohio, Oregon, South Carolina and South Dakota. To that end, Collins Group Realty can report that our website –  – had over 500,000 visitors last year alone!

    4 Reasons to Buy Now
    If you’re on the fence about when to buy your first or next home here are five things to consider:

    • Prices are Headed Up. Home prices have finally started to inch up and experts expect that trend to continue over the next five years.
    • Interest Rates are on the Rise. Rates have increased by 2/10 of a point over the course of the last two months and the Mortgage Bankers Association predicts rates could creep up to 4.4% this year.
    • Rents Will Continue to Skyrocket. If you’re a renter looking to buy a home or if you’re an investor considering purchasing a rental property, consider this: rents, on average, have jumped by 4.2% over last year – a trend that shows no sign of slowing down.
    •  New Mortgage Regulations are On the Way. HUD and the SEC are currently drafting the new Qualified Residential Mortgage Rule which may tighten the minimum requirements for down payments and FICO scores.

    Team News

    Happy Birthday Carrie!
    A belated Happy Birthday to Carrie Collins, who celebrated on January 19th! Hope it was the best one yet Carrie!

    Happy Birthday Anne!
    Happy Birthday to our Client Care Manager, Anne Wingfield, whose birthday is February 20th!

    Team Advance
    Collins Group Realty recently held our annual January Team Advance. This year’s event, held at the beautiful Sea Pines Country Club, was a first for several team members and, as always, proved to be an outstanding opportunity for idea sharing, goal setting and continuing education.

    A Truck Story
    Once upon a time there was an old, tired ugly duckling Collins Group Realty 15-foot box truck.  It was a good truck….it worked hard for anyone who used it, moving homes, helping non-profit organizations aid those more unfortunate, and collecting donations to help disaster-hit areas or the hungry or poor.  It loved helping, but it never felt very special or particularly loved or appreciated. It wanted to give up.
    Then this old workhorse got a wonderful gift for the holidays!  A makeover and finally a name: RESULTS!    WOW!! It had never felt more beautiful or wanted before!!  It wanted to get right out there achieving RESULTS for CGR clients, friends and the communities of Hilton Head and Bluffton and show off its sleek new look along the way.

    It was so happy!  All its wishes had come true.  Can we make your wishes come true and provide RESULTS for you and your family?  Help your non-profit, church or school?  Call CGR today and see how we can get RESULTS for you.

    Local News

    Winter Farmer’s Market Open
    The Bluffton Farmer’s Market is back in business and is open each Thursday in historic downtown Bluffton on Calhoun Street. Winter hours of noon to 4pm will be in effect through March 14th. The market features delicious local produce, prepared foods, flowers, music, entertainment and MUCH more.

    Ground Breaking on New Medical Facility
    Hilton Head Hospital has broken ground on a new outpatient medical facility in Bluffton near the corner of Buck Island Road and 278 (in front of Publix) .  The facility, which is expected to open sometime in 2014, will include women’s health services and diagnostic imaging as well as occupational and speech therapy services.

    Demolition Begins at Mall at Shelter Cove
    After years of debate and delays, demolition has finally begun on the Mall at Shelter Cove. The area that used to house Off 5th Saks Fifth Avenue has been torn down to make way for a Kroger grocery store. Additional plans include a community park, nearly 300,000 square feet of commercial space and more than 200 apartments.

    Area’s First Catholic Middle & High School Under Construction
    The Lowcountry’s first Catholic middle and high school is now under construction in Okatie near Oldfield.  Pope John Paul II Catholic School will be located just off Hwy 170 and will open in August 2013 with approximately 120 students in grades 7, 8, 9 and possibly 10.  The school will add one grade each year until it serves 500 students in grades 7 through 12. For more information, please visit:


    Lowcountry Living

    Bluffton Specialists John Friday and Ryan Stefonick recently spent some time at Turkey Hill Plantation in Ridgeland, South Carolina for a fun day of sporting with John’s young son.  John writes…
    “As the days get cooler and shorter, what else can one do outside when you don’t want to golf or play tennis and the water is too chilly to swim?  Ryan and I recently enjoyed a Sunday of Sporting Clays which is a form of clay pigeon shooting. For those unfamiliar with this sport: Targets are thrown as singles and pairs. A pair of targets may be thrown as a true pair, as a following pair, or on report. Numerous hunting conditions can be simulated by combining various speeds and angles with different types of clay targets and each station is unique. Throughout a course, the shooters might see targets crossing from either side, coming inward, going outward, flying straight up, rolling on the ground, arcing high in the air, or thrown from towers. The possible target presentations are limited only by safety considerations, the terrain, and the imagination of the course designer. The configuration of the stations is often changed to maintain interest for the shooters and for environmental preservation of the course.”