May 4, 2023

History of Georgetown

Georgetown, South Carolina, is a captivating place brimming with history and allure. Its rich heritage dates back to 1526, when it is believed to have witnessed the first European settlement in North America. Today, Georgetown stands as a vibrant city with a population of 9,000, renowned for its warm hospitality and quintessential Southern charm.


Established in 1729, Georgetown holds the distinction of being the third oldest city in South Carolina, following Charleston and Beaufort. It gained official port of entry status in 1732, relieving the region's merchants and planters of the need to pass through Charleston for all foreign imports and exports. This designation allowed direct trade with all ports, bypassing Charleston and eliminating the additional duties and freight costs associated with it.


The initial English settlers in the area were actively involved in the Indian trade, followed by French and Scots settlers who joined an expanding English community. During these early settlement years, the primary occupations revolved around trade, plantation farming, and naval stores production.


Georgetown flourished from its early settlement period through the Revolutionary War and leading up to the onset of the Civil War. Indigo and rice emerged as the dominant crops in the region. Before the Revolution, the British Parliament encouraged indigo production by offering a bounty, resulting in rapid wealth accumulation for planters due to the high demand for the blue dye. However, with the Revolution, the bounty ended, prompting planters to shift their focus to rice cultivation to sustain their economic well-being.


Georgetown played an active role in the American Revolution, with notable figures such as Thomas Lynch, Sr. and Thomas Lynch, Jr. representing the city in the Continental Congress, and the latter signing the Declaration of Independence. British troops occupied Georgetown from July 1780 to May 1781, and numerous skirmishes between Francis Marion, known as the Swamp Fox, and the British forces occurred in Georgetown County.


As indigo lost its profitability after the Revolution, local planters turned to rice production. The region's abundance of swamps and low-lying areas along tidal rivers, coupled with the availability of African labor, made rice cultivation highly lucrative. Enslaved African laborers played a crucial role in clearing the dense cypress swamps and employing intricate methods such as flooding the fields from rivers through canals, ditches, or floodgates. This process required extensive knowledge and engineering skills, encompassing planting, hoeing, winnowing, pounding, as well as land clearance, water management, and harvesting techniques.


By 1840, the Georgetown District (County) contributed nearly half of the total rice crop in the United States, making it the world's leading rice-exporting port. The local strain known as "Carolina Gold" garnered international demand. The labor-intensive nature of rice cultivation resulted in substantial wealth for the planters. Georgetown's enslaved African workers emerged as the primary rice producers in pre-Civil War America.


African slaves excelled not only in strenuous labor, such as land clearing, but also showcased their skills as bricklayers, butchers, carpenters, coachmen, farmers, fishers, and herdsmen, leading to a significant increase in their importation. These skilled craftsmen constructed large houses, rice mills, slave cabins, barns, floodgates, and even the plantation fleet of flats, rowboats, and dugout canoes.


The great upheaval known as the Civil War wrought profound transformations upon the very fabric of this region's existence. It was a period of societal, political, and economic tumult, marking the onset of a new era: the Reconstruction. In the aftermath of the war, the once thriving economy of Georgetown suffered a severe blow as the rice crops failed, rendering them unable to sustain the local trade. A convergence of factors, including the disruption of free labor, competition from rice growers in the Southwest, and the relentless onslaught of devastating hurricanes, culminated in the demise of the once-prosperous rice industry by the advent of the twentieth century.


However, the pressing need for an alternative economic foundation paved the way for a significant transformation, and the timber industry emerged as a beacon of hope. In 1903, the Atlantic Coast Lumber Company was duly incorporated, swiftly ascending to become the largest lumber producer along the Eastern seaboard by 1914. Alas, the winds of fate were not kind, and in 1932, the Atlantic Coast Lumber Company declared bankruptcy, plunging Georgetown into a period of profound economic decline.


Nevertheless, the indomitable spirit of resilience ignited a flicker of hope, and in 1936, the International Paper Company constructed a plant within the region. Within a span of six years, this very plant burgeoned into the largest kraft paper mill in the entire world by 1942. Georgetown, in its ardent pursuit of recovery, also witnessed the emergence of Georgetown Steel and a myriad of smaller industrial establishments, thus diversifying its industrial foundation. Furthermore, the art of commercial fishing emerged as a vital sector within the local economy.


In recent times, the influx of retirees and vacationers has played an instrumental role in bolstering the region's prosperity. The allure of Georgetown's rich historical tapestry, with its interwoven threads of diverse cultures, symbiotic relationship with the sea, as well as its victories, defeats, and subsequent revitalizations, has endowed this area with an exquisite charm and resplendent beauty. It is no wonder, then, that tourism has burgeoned into an increasingly vital component of the region's economic landscape.


Georgetown stands as a testament to the enduring passage of time, the evolution of cultures, and the cyclical nature of triumphs and setbacks. It is a place where history unfolds its enigmatic pages, leaving an indelible mark upon its landscape, and beckoning visitors to embrace its captivating allure and timeless grace.

May 3, 2017

Buying a newly built house in Myrtle Beach


New Construction - Why You Shouldn't Use the On-Site Agent to Buy Your New House

If you are looking for new homes for sale in the Myrtle Beach or Murrells Inlet area, then selecting an agent like Jake Lee to represent you may be foremost on your mind. However, there are some who argue that you do not need a realtor to represent you when you are purchasing a brand new home. While this is technically true, it is to your great benefit to chose an independent realtor to help you with your new home purchase. There are many reasons not to use the builder's agent, and use your own realtor instead.

  • Make Sure Your Agent Introduces You to the Builder

It ensures that you aren't put into any high-pressure sales tactics on the part of the builder without representation there to help you. Many builder's agents are paid less than traditional realtors and have an incentive to pressure you to sign a contract as soon as possible. Don't let them!

CLICK HERE to Search New Homes in Myrtle Beach

  • In Most Cases Your Realtor is Free

It is the builder who has a responsibility to pay for the agent that you use, so why not use your own when it's at no cost to you? Typically, the commission is built into the price of the home and you don't get any additional savings by not having a Realtor.

  • Builder's Agents Don't Represent You

A builder's agent does not have your best interests in mind. They have the best interests of the builder in mind. This is important to remember when considering whether to use your own realtor. The builder's agent is there to help the profits of the builder and is not going to disclose anything negative about the house that could hinder its sale. In other words, they are far from impartial. A realtor, on the other hand, has a legal and ethical responsibility to tell you about all of the features of your potential new home, whether they are positive or negative.

  • New Construction Companies May Not Provide Inspections

A thorough inspection is essential in any home purchase. It must be performed by a licensed inspector and be completely impartial. Some people assume that since they are new homes for sale that there won't be anything wrong with them, but this is a risky assumption. On top of that, many builders' agents try to get potential buyers to believe that they don't need an inspection or they have their own inspectors, which are, of course, biased in favor of the builder. Having your own realtor puts you in touch with resources, like inspectors. Your realtor will fight to make sure a home inspector's approval is part of your contract as a condition of the sale.

  • Contingencies to Sell Before Buying are Best Dealt With by Realtors

In some cases, your contract to purchase a new house may contain a contingency to sell your current house before moving into the new one. If this is the case for you, then it is definitely in your best interest to have your own realtor. Not only can your realtor help you to sell your current home, but he/she can also help you to bargain for a good price on your new one. It is very difficult to have much leverage for hard bargaining once you have fully committed to the idea of moving out of your current home.

Click Here for a list of the newest homes in Murrells Inlet

  • You May Be Forced to Use the Builder's Lender

Many building companies use the same lender to finance every home they sell in a new development. This is an easy way for the builder to save time and money. However, the lender that the builder has chosen may not be the best lender for you. A seasoned realtor, however, can point out the strengths and weaknesses of many different lenders and steer you in the direction of the ones that have been the most helpful to their previous clients in years past. This is priceless information to have since the last thing you want to do is give your builder a monopoly over which institution you borrow money from.

  • A Good Realtor Can Put You in Touch With a Good Real Estate Attorney

Getting advice from a real estate attorney is something that is recommended before anyone signs a contract to purchase a home, new or otherwise. The good news is, a realtor often knows a good one that they can recommend to you. Having the right attorney can provide many benefits, such as removing contingencies from your contract and making sure that the contract is worded in such a way that it protects the buyer.

  • Your Realtor Helps Ensure the Future Value of Your Home

Many builders have a habit of selling too many properties to investors and thereby creating what are called "rental neighborhoods." Brand new construction can devalue your property in the long run. It is important to know what the comps are for the neighborhood you will be investing in. Knowing the value of the other properties in your area is essential in pricing your home's value and this is something realtors do every day. A good realtor will be able to tell if the builder is overpricing their houses by checking this information against what other homes in the area sell for. Since they are working for you, and not the builder, you can trust their judgment. Knowing this information also keeps your tax burden lower since your property taxes are based on your home's value. Make sure that you get an experienced realtor to make sure the building company isn't trying to rip you off.

  • Deciding if the Upgrades are Worth It

Some builders make most of their profits from the upgrades that they sell. It's not uncommon for a building company to sell the base model of their houses for cost and make their money selling the upgrades. This is where having your own realtor becomes a must. They can tell whether the upgrades add value to the house or not. They can tell you which upgrades are worth the money and which ones aren't. They can also let you know if the builder has structured their contract in such a way as to make you purchase a home with upgrades you may not want or need. Remember, the builder's agent is there to make the builder more money. He may not care if the upgrades benefit you.

As you can see, choosing a realtor for yourself is a win-win situation. The Myrtle Beach and Murrells Inlet areas abound with great opportunities for a new home purchase. Make sure you make a wise choice and use your own realtor when looking to purchase your dream home.

Dec. 29, 2016

Top Places to get married in South Carolina

Best Places to Get Married in Myrtle Beach

Many couples dream of a romantic ocean- side wedding. Some of the most popular destinations for a beach wedding are Myrtle Beach and areas around Pawleys Island and Murrells Inlet. Whether you want a simple ceremony right on the beach or a lavish celebration in one of the area’s luxurious reception halls, you can find what you want. There are venues that will fit any wedding plan or budget. There are certain municipal and county rules that govern outdoor ceremonies, so be sure you get all the information you need when planning your wedding.

Do not be surprised if you fall in love with the area. Lots of couples have their weddings on the beach and decide to make it their home. The real estate market is ripe for new buyers. For the beach wedding of your dreams, you may consider some of these fantastic venues:

Litchfield Beach and Golf Resort

Visit the venue at 14276 Ocean Highway in Pawleys Island SC

If you plan on having a lot of out-of-town guests, you may want the Litchfield Beach and Golf Resort for your wedding venue. The resort has extensive experience in hosting wedding parties. Their staff can recommend vendors you may need for your cake, flowers, or other wedding services. The golf clubhouse will host up to 300 guests. You will feel like Cinderella as you celebrate your nuptials in the gorgeous Tara Ballroom. Your guests will not have to stay in other hotels, since the resort has rooms and luxury amenities for them to enjoy. Everyone will be together for the celebration of a lifetime.

Brookgreen Gardens

Visit the venue at 1931 Brookgreen Drive in Pawleys Island South Carolina

This scenic garden was created by the Huntington family in 1931. It is one of the premier venues for garden weddings in the country. Your guests will be dazzled as they watch you exchange your vows amidst breathtaking sculptures and landscaping. In order to have your wedding at Brookgreen Gardens, you do have to purchase a membership. It is well worth your money. You will get to choose from several settings in the garden. Additionally, you will have the friendly staff to help with all the details for a perfect day.

Marina Inn at Grande Dunes

Visit the venue at 8121 Amalifi Place in Myrtle Beach SC

If you are planning a large wedding, then the Marina Inn at Grande Dunes can help you in a grand way. You will have room for up to 700 guests. They will be able to watch the ceremony and dine in style with awesome views of the Intracoastal Waterway. The Marina Inn uses cutting-edge technology to create a custom website for guests to peruse that will give them the information they need about the ceremony. The couple can also take advantage of the resort’s checklist for hosting a wedding. The Marina Inn offers wedding specials as well as sporting entertainment such as tennis tournaments and golf outings. Your guests will have a lot to do during their special stay. Condos for Sale at Marina in at Grande Dunes

Sea Watch Resort

Visit the venue at 161 Sea Watch Drive in Myrtle Beach South Carolina

You can have exclusive ocean views in the Sea Watch Resort’s Calypso Ballroom. It would be an ideal place for a reception of up to 300 guests. Your guests will also have cozy accommodations and modern amenities to enjoy during their stay.  Condos for Sale at Sea watch

North Beach Plantation

Visit the venue at 719 N Beach Blvd in North Myrtle Beach

Let the wedding planners at North Beach Plantation make your beach wedding dreams a reality. They have gorgeous venues for the ceremony and the reception. Just imagine a ceremony on the sand with a courtyard reception. Your guests will enjoy sumptuous food and drink under the reception tent. It has to be exceptional to have received AAA’s Four Diamond rating. The plantation has a grand penthouse suite, as well as modern cottages and condos.

Kingston Plantation

Visit the Venue at 10000 Beach Club Drive in Myrtle Beach

Come see why WeddingWire gave Kingston Plantation a Couple’s Choice Award for 2016. You can have the best of ocean views and verdant lawns. The Hilton MB is on the grounds and offers a rooftop ballroom for your reception. You will receive all the help you need from the friendly and experienced staff at the Kingston Plantation. They can help you create a wedding that you will never forget.

Pine Lakes Country Club

Visit the Venue at 5603 Granddaddy Drive in Myrtle Beach

You will feel like characters in Gone With the Wind when you have your ceremony in this stunning mansion, called the Granddaddy. Ornate fireplaces and gorgeous crystal chandeliers fill the ballroom venues. No wonder couples have chosen Pine Lakes for nearly 100 years! You might also choose a canopied reception on the lush lawns of the club. Photo opportunities will be abundant at Pine Lakes Country Club. Homes for Sale in Pine Lakes Country Club

Ripley’s Aquarium

  Enjoy your experience at 1110 Celebrity Drive in Myrtle Beach

For a unique venue that features the ocean kingdom, why not host your wedding at the Ripley’s Aquarium! They have hosted weddings and other special occasions for many years. You will definitely have one-of-a-kind wedding photos. Ripley’s Aquarium can host small ceremonies or large ones. They offer a specialized menu of gourmet foods for your reception.

The Dunes Golf and Beach Club

Visit the venue at 9000 North Ocean Blvd in Myrtle Beach

There is something magical about weddings and an ocean view. You and your guests will enjoy beautiful ocean vistas while celebrating in the club’s ballroom. It can hold up to 500 guests. The Dunes Golf and Beach Club has special discounts that you can take advantage of during off-season months. Want to live in the Dunes Club ?

Thompson Farm & Nursery

1625 Bucksville Drive, Conway, SC 29527

Many couples dream of a simple, country wedding. You can have it when you book your wedding at Thompson Farm & Nursery. Your guests will be thrilled with the open-air barn that is decorated with hay bales and vintage carts to ride. The farm offers various packages and special rates during the winter and weekends.

There is a lot of prime real estate in the Myrtle Beach area, such as the Carolina Forest. You can find your perfect home to start your new life as a couple. You may also consider properties in Murrells Inlet or Pawleys Island. You can fulfill your dreams of getting married and living in an ocean paradise

Dec. 28, 2016

7 Features that sell your home faster

7 Features That Will Sell Your Home Faster in Myrtle Beach

When it comes time to sell, many homeowners either don't think about spending or aren't willing to shell out the cash.  In many cases updating / remodeling a property can mean the difference between getting multiple bids or not getting a single offer. What does that mean for your wallet? When a house sits, you're still paying the mortgage, staging, and maintenance costs.  Using a study based on what buyers want as of 2016, we've put together the list of 7 features home buyers want most in Myrtle Beach so that you can upgrade now and sell fast!

**Warning** Always be sure to consult your Realtor, Jake Lee, before doing any renovations. In some cases Jake may advise selling your home without repairs if it makes more sense for your personal situation **

The Laundry Room.

Rank: 92% of buyers on the market want this feature.
Installation Costs: $1,000 - $10,000 depending on the size

This tops our list of features home buyers want most in Myrtle Beach. With such busy schedules, people are desperate for someplace they can offload clean clothes until they have time to put them away. From all ages, having a separate laundry room came on top of the National Association of Home Builders' list of desired features. Having a separate room for your laundry helps to keep the mess out of your living area and Potential buyers will see that as a major benefit. If you don't already have a laundry room, a cheap and easy way to add one is by using part of your basement. Basements are usually unfinished and already have utility lines, meaning you won't have to demolish anything to begin. You can expect to spend between $5k - $10k to add a Laundry Room, but in some cases the cost could be as little as $1,000. Be sure to consult #JakeLeeRealEstate for a free valuation of your home

The Exterior Lighting.

Rank: 90% of buyers on the market want this feature.
Installation Costs: $60 - $140 each fixture

Not only does providing a luminance well-manicured lawn help to capture your home's beauty even at night, it can hook potential buyers without them even having to step inside your home. According to NAHB, exterior lighting tops the charts as the number one outdoor feature home buyers want most. Be creative, as there are tons of options. These include pendant lights walkway lights, and spotlights.
Though they do add to the aesthetics of your home, exterior lights also add an extra layer of security and safety to your home, according to Hurst Design-Build-Remodel's Daniel Hurst. Everyone feels a little safer when they can see their surroundings clearly, and a well-lit home has long-since been proven to be less targeted than a house that is dark.

Energy Efficient Windows & Appliances

Rank: Also, 90% of buyers on the market want this feature.
Installation Costs: varied for appliances, $270 - $800 per window

Buyers are extremely impressed with smart in general. Energy-efficient choices that in no way limit their comfort, but save them cash in the long run are also big pluses. Potential buyers are already adding to their outgoing expenses by investing in a house. They are looking to cut down on utility bills and will find the idea of Energy Star appliances and windows very attractive.
Upgrading your windows to be energy efficient may seem like a small and unimportant task, but energy efficient windows can take up to 12% off of cooling and heating costs. And for every appliance you upgrade to an Energy Star qualified equivalent, you can expect to save $40 annually on energy costs.


Rank: 84% of buyers on the market want this feature.
Installation Costs: $961 per 120 sq ft, if making a concrete patio

Remember your backyard area when getting ready to resale your home! Having an outdoor living space is becoming a coveted commodity. For some homes in some areas having a killer patio is equally as important as having a plush living room. When most buyers see a house with a really nice backyard, they start to envision themselves sitting outdoors with friends, having drinks.. AND that's exactly what you as the home seller should want! Having an outdoor living area offers homeowners more space for fun without adding to badly to the costs of remodeling. Be creative, and keep in mind what features home buyers want most in Myrtle Beach.

Hardwood Floors.

Rank: 82% of buyers on the market want this feature.
Installation Costs: $1,473 per 120 sq ft, if using unfinished hardwood

Simply put: Hardwood floors make your home feel more open and give it a cleaner look. They also last longer than options like carpet, which should be replaced every few years. In contrast, Hardwood can be refinished periodically potentially lasting a lifetime.  If you're upgrading your house on a tighter budget, you can save roughly 10% by purchasing prefinished hardwood flooring. The difference being that it comes already color-treated from the manufacturer. This will put your costs closer to $1,353.  ( As a side note: Most of the hardwood flooring you will find in Coastal South Carolina Homes are actually engineered or per-finished. This is due to humidity concerns in the south and the fact that a majority of houses in this area are built on monolithic concrete slabs)

Garage Storage Space.

Rank: 81% of buyers on the market want this feature.
Installation Costs: $2,025 - $2,363 for a 380 sq ft space

This is especially important if you're selling to a growing family, as they typically need a lot of storage space. Adding additional storage spaces in the garage help to keep the main living areas free of clutter, which makes this one of the features home buyers want most in the Myrtle Beach area. Garage storage space is unique in that it's incredibly accessible, usually only a few steps from the rest of your home. This makes it much easier for the family to utilize it. Consider a peg wallboard, cabinetry, electrical circuits, and improved lighting when planning for garage storage space.

Eat-In Kitchen

Rank: 80% of buyers on the market want this feature.
Installation Costs: $1,000 - $10,000

Another way to appeal to families looking to buy is to have an eat-in kitchen. These are must haves for families with children, as it's an easy place to spend time together before and after work or school.
These are also great because they're easier to clean and there's less chance for mess when carrying meals from the stove to the table.
While this project can be as easy as removing a wall to the tune of a mere $1,000, it can easily cost $10k if it's a load-bearing wall. Load-bearing walls support the weight of a home, as opposed to non-load-bearing walls which just separate rooms. Be sure to determine which kind of wall you plan on knocking out to create your eat-in kitchen. Another thing to consider is whether here's any sort of electrical wiring, duct work, or plumbing in the wall.


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Dec. 27, 2016

How to Sell a House Without Going Through Probate

How to Sell a House Without Going Through Probate
With the death of a loved one, comes not only dealing with the loss but also the estate and the handling of all of the issues that are involved with that. For many this can be a complicated process.

One of the first steps that is frequently required after the death of someone is to open what is called a probate. The purpose of probate is to prevent fraud after a death. Basically probate freezes the estate to verify the will is valid and to make sure all the family members and beneficiaries have been notified of the death. Usually a person, which might be the surviving spouse, other family member of attorney is appointed by the court if there is no will or the court nominates the person that is outlined in the will. This person then becomes the executor or Personal Representative of the estate and is then able to manage the assets as well as handle any bills, expenses real estate and the sale of any assets including real estate.

When real estate is involved, attempting to sell property prior to completing the probate process is difficult. However, depending upon the estate, there are a few possibilities to be explored that would enable real estate to be handled and sold outside of the probate process, saving time and money for everyone!

One option for handling estate issues and property is the creation of what is called a “living trust”. In fact, living trusts were specifically created as a means to avoid probate after a death. Living trusts generally hold large assets of an estate such as real estate.

For those of us in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina the assets within a living trust won’t have to go through probate with one exception - if the assets in the estate that are outside of the living trust, and not included, exceed South Carolina’s small estate’s threshold limit. That threshold is currently set at a $25,000 limit. In that instance, probate would be required prior to the assets and estate being transferred to the heirs. Making sure that the assets outside the trust do not exceed the maximum level is critical.

If your property is in a living trust and meets the criteria, then selling the assets does not require going through probate.

Jointly Held Real Estate
A very common practice for estate management of real estate is what’s called joint tenancy. Jointly held real estate, or joint tenancy with right of survivorship, are assets where if one party or “joint tenant” dies, the surviving joint tenant or tenants become the owners of the entire asset. This is called the “right of survivorship”. This right of survivorship makes it a popular option for estate planning and is commonly used.

Legally, any property held in joint tenancy with the right of survivorship would not fall within the handling of the estate and would also not be included in probate since the property automatically becomes the property of the survivors. The key point in this option is to insure that “the right of survivorship” is included and specified.

The remaining “tenants” are able to manage, maintain or sell the property without incurring any of the costs of probate.

Transfer on Death
For some assets, South Carolina allows you to set up the assets so that the accounts or assets “transfer on death”. Bank accounts and stock or other securities are eligible for that type of transfer. Unfortunately, real estate is not included in that list of eligible assets.

Small Estate
If you are handling the estate or are the Executor of an estate of a South Carolina resident who died, you might avoid the costs and time involved in going through a lengthy probate process if the assets of the estate are worth less than a certain dollar amount.

Under this scenario having a will is not part of the equation, simply the dollar value of the estate. If it fits within what is termed a “small estate” you can go through what is called “summary probate” – a simplified probate process. You could potentially avoid going into court and simply have to fill out a few forms and affidavits and submit them before moving forward with the estate.

Current dollar value of the estate for South Carolina must be under $25,000 in order to qualify for meeting the small estate rule. Assets held in joint tenancy, retirement plans or any asset that is payable-on-death or transfer-on-death do not need to be included.

While probate was setup and designed to protect the assets as well as the heirs of the estate, it can be time consuming and costly to go through. Exploring options that might enable you or your heirs to avoid the process is definitely a financially wise decision.

Whether the estate does go through probate or not, once the estate is “settled”, the Executor is then able to transfer or sell assets including real estate. In order to obtain the best value for any asset it is important to speak with experienced professionals and for real estate, getting an expert such as Jake Lee to assist would be a smart move!

To learn more, check out,  or call your local real estate expert ( #JakeLeeRealEstate ) at 843-240-0431
Dec. 19, 2016

Estate Sale - Selling your Family Home - Myrtle Beach

Selling the Family Home That You Inherited in The Myrtle Beach - Pawleys Island Area

The passing of a loved one brings a myriad of emotions as well as changes to the lives of their living relatives. Death is confusing by itself, and adding the inheritance of a family home that may have been in the family for generations only complicates the issue. Many family homes are in the family for generations, and the heir to the home is responsible for deciding the future of the family home following an inheritance. Whether the home was in the family for decades or it’s a new home parents or grandparents recently acquired, many heirs haven’t the desire or ability to maintain a second home. This is why so many heirs choose to list and sell the homes they inherit when a loved one passes.

How Inheritance Works

When a loved one passes and leaves a home to someone in the family, it’s fairly straightforward. If there is no Will or trust set up, an estate is created. The estate is handled by the next living relative, whether it’s a spouse or the children or living grandchildren of the deceased. If there is more than one child of the deceased, they all become equally responsible for the home. Belongings are sold, donated, distributed to the remaining family members or churches or charities the deceased was close to, and the house is either listed or rented. 


Since most loved ones have no interest in becoming a landlord to a home filled with so many memories, a realtor ( Jake Lee ) is called and the home is listed. If there is more than one heir to the home, they must agree on a list price, the minimum offer they’re all willing to accept, and the other minor details assumed when listing a home.

Click here for a list of recent sales in Myrtle Beach

Call Emma Lawrimore at 843-359-9590 if you are looking for someone to conduct a tag sale or estate sale of the contents of your home. Emma, will also help clean-out any unwanted items.

Selling a Home Inherited Through Death

Before a home is listed, the new heirs must make several decisions. The home can be sold as-is for a lower price if it requires updates or repairs. It can be fixed up a bit and then sold, too. The first major decision is to hire a real estate agent and an estate attorney to find out the answers to several questions.

- What is the home worth?
- Is there a mortgage on the home?
- Does the home need any updates or repairs?
- If the heirs do any upgrades or updates to the home, will it sell for more?

Most heirs are required to pay any debts the deceased has incurred if they sell the home, which might include creditor claims and the like. An estate attorney is here to help with this information, to provide personal financial aspects from the deceased, and to help with the legal sale of the home. The real estate agent is there to guide the heirs on the best course of action when it comes to selling.

Making upgrades or changes to the home takes time, and it must be paid for somehow. Heirs must decide if they can afford those changes, or if they’d rather just take the sale at a lower price and sell as-is. The Probate Estate handles the legal aspect of a home sale, but it’s up to the heirs to handle the listing and other minor details of the sale.

Quick online valuation of your house in Myrtle Beach - CLICK HERE

Call Terrence Real at The Floyd Law Firm in Surfside Beach at 843-353-1760 to handle your South Carolina Estate

The Emotional Process

When heirs inherit a home after the death of a loved one, emotions run high. Those who are usually level-headed and mature can become emotional and unwilling to work together to make decisions. If this is the case, a Probate or Estate attorney is required to handle the process legally. Once the final decisions in the legal process have been made, the house is listed for sale at a price everyone can agree upon. If there is a mortgage, the price must cover the cost of that. If the mortgage balance is higher than the value, please consult your Myrtle Beach Real Estate Expert, Jake Lee, for your options. 

During this process, there is a lot of emotional upheaval, and it can take a toll on the relationships of surviving heirs. If any unsettling information is found by the Probate or Estate attorneys or the real estate agent, it can become even more emotional.

- Title issues
- Easement issues
- Land issues

If any of these issues should arise, it becomes imperative they are handled by the court prior to the sale of the home. Once all issues are handled, which usually occurs within six months of the date of death since insurance agencies aren’t happy to insure vacant homes, sale may commence.

One of Jake's preferred real estate attorneys is The Janes Law Firm. The contact person at Janes Law Firm is Elizabeth Pitcher at 843-238-8836. Elizabeth is also a Pawleys Island, SC native.

The Sales Process

Once a price is agreed upon, the heirs must agree to let the realtor show the house and begin considering offers. This can become complicated if one heir is finding it difficult to let go of the home. It’s crucial at this point to let the realtor take over the process to make it easier on everyone. The realtor is an impartial party who is willing to show the house to anyone, rather than declining offers because the sellers want a specific type of person or family to buy the home. This sometimes happens when an heir simply doesn’t want to sell a home and will find any reason to deny an offer, such as the house is too big for a single person or couple without kids or an older couple might not love the house as much as their own family.

The realtor is the voice of reason in this process. When the house finally sells, the profit is used to pay off any mortgage on the home, it’s used to pay any debts filed against the deceased, and the remaining money is then paid out in equal parts to all heirs. Once it’s been paid and the house is sold, many heirs find it becomes easier to move on and recover more adequately from the death of their loved one.

Death is devastating to families, and the sale of an inherited house often helps living loved ones on their path to closure. The emotions found in the house of a deceased loved one are often overwhelming and scary, and many people find it difficult to go through the sales process with so many memories so prevalent in their lives.

Recently Sold Property in Pawleys Island

Recently Sold Property in Murrells Inlet

Recently Sold Property in Surfside Beach




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Dec. 19, 2016

Staging your home to sell, on a budget

Trying to sell your home in Myrtle Beach? 

So you've called Jake Lee and you've made up your mind that you're house is going to sell before months end. While the right Realtor is important.. staging your home is equally as important and that's the first thing that Jake will advise you to do when he comes over.

Below is a list of 30 budget friendly tips to get your home show ready !

1. Get Rid of the Grime - Dirt, mold, and grime can accumulate over the years. Get rid of it with a 1:1 parts solution of water and bleach.

2. Make Your Glass Shower Door Shine Again - Use 10 parts water to 1 part muriatic acid and a lot of elbow grease to get rid of filmy residue without replacing the door. For best results use a steel wool pad.

3. Paint Over Dated Tile - Yes, you can paint tile! You’ll need to coat them with high-adhesion primer first. Then, use a ceramic epoxy covering to get a whole new look.

4. Replace Cabinet Sinks with Pedestals - This can instantly increase the visual space in a tiny bathroom and make it seem bigger. Need help with remodeling ? Call All American Restoration in Myrtle Beach at 843-222-1662

5. Decorate for Him and Her in the Bedroom - You want prospective buyers to visualize themselves living there. If the bedroom is too girly, the guy won’t like it and vice-versa.

6. Make Your Old Brick Fireplace a Star Again - Red brick can stick out like a sore thumb in modern decorating schemes. To update the look, simply rub a light coat of pain from a rag or brush onto each individual brick, without covering it completely. This will create an entirely different color effect. You can even match the paint on adjoining walls for a textured look that matches.

7. Update Fireplace Screens Too - Remove the screen and tape the windows off. Then, use a $5 can of heat-resistant spray paint in the color of your choice to bring it back to life.

8. Bring Your Stone Fireplace Back to Life - Remove the screen or update it. Use stone color enhancer to bring the stone surface back from the dead. Make sure everything is as clean as possible too.

9. Stain Cabinets - Instead of replacing or refacing cabinets, see if you can stain them first. Add new hardware too.

10. Faux Steel Appliances - It’s easy to fake steel appliances by adding stainless-steel stick-on coverings.

11. Fill In Holes - Whether it’s plaster for the wall or wood glue for filling in holes in wood furniture, make sure they are filled.

12. Use Stone Remnants - Want a high-end look at a fraction? Use stone remnants for granite or marble counter-tops on select areas of the kitchen. Call Affordable Granite in Conway SC at (843) 286-7355 to see what they might have available

13. Add “New” Appliances - Check out craigslist or buy secondhand newer appliances and replace old or non-functioning ones.

14. Create Your Own Window Treatments - You can use placemats sown together or create your own custom window treatment at a fraction of the cost of new curtains.

15. Refinish Wood Floors - You may need to sand and polish them, but they pay back in the “wow” factor.

16. Stage Built-Ins with Neutral Things - Make sure to only put a few things in built-in bookcases so as not to make them too personal or cluttered.

17. Maximize Curb Appeal - Add flowers, paint shutters, and upgrade the look of stonework by cleaning and sealing it.

18. Stage the Deck - Sand it, clean it, and add some outdoor furniture.

19. Liven Up Outdoor Brick Patios - In the same way you livened up a brick fireplace, you can also dab paint on bricks outdoors too.

20. Maintain a Neutral Tone Throughout - Wall paints should be neutral and clutter should be removed from sight.

21. Cover Up Wood Panels - Add wood filler to the cracks and sponge off the excess. Then, paint.

22. Use Painter’s Tape and Your Imagination - Outline where you want to move furniture and you’’ll be able to visualize it better in your head without the extra effort. Once you have the perfect spot, move it.

23. Mix Vinyl Up - Vinyl tiles places in exact patterns can come off rather artificial. Mix it up a bit for a more natural effect.

24. Bring the Sun In - That can be done with see-through curtains or just opening the blinds. Have your open house during daylight hours.

25. Give Each Room a Unique Purpose - If you’re not sure what a spare bedroom might be, make it a spare office.

26. Get Rid of Weird Smells - Pull up smelly carpeting and seek to eliminate all foreign odors in the house.

27. Less Is More - Get rid of most possession, storing them away from the home when you’re doing a showing.

28. Reduce Clutter in Closets and Storage Areas - You want the prospective buyer to see storage space, lots and lots of it, not your possessions. Storage space sells.

29. Create Better Flow - That can mean changing out rectangular dining tables for rounded ones to give the illusion of more space or rearranging your furniture in better ways for foot traffic.

30. Create a Bigger Floor Space - By using the same flooring material in adjoining rooms, you create the illusion of more floor space. Use same vinyl tile in the kitchen and dining area, for instance.

Want to know more? Call Jake Lee at 843-240-0431. Jake offers professional grade staging advice to get your home sold in Myrtle Beach in less than 30 days.

What If You Don’t Have the Time to Stage Your Home?

Obviously, all these things take time and effort. Sometimes, time is at a premium and you need to sell fast. If you are in a pinch and don’t have time to sell your home, Jake Lee is able to bring immediate cash buyers to purchase your home in as-is condition in less than 24 hours. Call today.

Oct. 26, 2016

Real Estate and Divorce - What to do with the house?


How To Deal With Your House During A Divorce

A divorce can turn your life upside down and force you to deal with financial problems that you may never have anticipated. Your Myrtle Beach property may be a major concern as far as wondering who owes what and who owns what. A mortgage is usually the largest liability for a married couple, and figuring out the logistics can feel extremely daunting. Most people assume they have to either sell their real estate or refinance it, but there are a few other ways to settle the issue.

Sell Your Myrtle Beach Property

Many divorcing couples choose to sell their homes and split the profits equally. If the home was acquired during the marriage, most states will classify it as communal property, especially if the couple paid for it together. It’s also considered to be communal property if the original owner added a spouse’s name to the deed later on.

The sales option is typically the most common choice if the breakup is acrimonious and there is no prenuptial agreement. Agents usually share the fact that the home is a “divorce sale” after an accepted offer, but should get permission from both parties before revealing personal information. Buyers should understand that the particular circumstances may mean the sellers need a few extra days for signing paperwork. Oftentimes the divorcing couple will decide beforehand who will be the primary contact for the agent, although the agent should also keep the other party in the loop with emails and/or phone calls.

Refinance Your Real Estate

Another popular option is for one person to stay in the home while the other vacates it. The party that chooses to stay in the home may ask to buy out the other person and refinance. Some people find this choice to be a bit more complex than simply selling the house. Usually, the party with the higher income can afford to stay in the home as he/she will have to refinance it as a singleton. Other considerations include one’s credit score, debt load, child support, and outstanding loans or payments. Refinancing is a common option if the couple has young children who need to stay in the same schools, but empty nesters tend to want to sell the home as quickly as possible.

Move Out While Staying on the Mortgage

A less popular choice is for one person to move out of the home while continuing to help make mortgage payments on the property. This is only a suggested course if the two trust each other to keep making payments. Many lenders actually won’t allow couples to remove names from the deed unless they refinance. They can later choose to sell or refinance when their financial situations are more favorable. The downside to this type of arrangement is that the future housing market may be uncertain. You never know if the value of your home will drop when you are finally ready to sell it.

A quitclaim deed may be filed to transfer interest, although the person who moved out still has mortgage obligations. Some lenders allow the mortgage to be assumed by the person remaining in the home.

If both parties remain on the mortgage after the divorce is finalized, problems can arise. For example, if one partner keeps the home post-divorce and the other dies, the deceased person’s extended family may have a valid claim on the property. This possibility should be discussed with your attorney before making any final decisions.

Both Stay in the Home

In certain cases, an amenable couple might continue to live together in the home while they divide up other aspects of their lives. It could be a viable option for a while, especially if the home is large enough for two people to have their privacy. “Nesting,” as it’s now called, may be an acceptable arrangement for financial reasons or if there are minor children in the home.

A famous example occurred when newly divorced couple Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner continued to co-parent while remaining in the same home to provide a more stable situation for their young children. Obviously, their home was large enough so that they rarely had to interact with each other, so this type of case is more uncommon in mainstream America.

The couple needs to be amicable if they want to try nesting because nothing is more aggravating than having to face one’s ex every day if the relationship is contentious. The couple can either trade-off on living at the house for weeks or months at a time, or a spare bedroom can be fashioned from a former guest room or office room. Before agreeing to this arrangement, the couple should specify rules such as bill splitting, grocery shopping, and bringing home dates. Ideally, they should figure out exactly how long they will be living together and what the plan should be afterward.

Sept. 16, 2016

Cypress Keyes Homes For Sale , Murrells Inlet, SC

Cypress Keyes Homes For Sale , Murrells Inlet, SC

Cypress Keyes is a smaller community located just off of Tournament Players Blvd in Murrells Inlet, SC. Cypress Keyes features Mediterranean style homes ranging in price from $160,000 to $230,000 based on 2016 prices. The size of the houses for sale in this neighborhood range from 1300 heated square feet to larger plans offering close to 2000 heated square feet. Enjoy a community pool, fitness center, Cable TV, and Trash Pickup. If you looking for something with a fantastic location, close to the Marsh Walk and lots of other things to do Cypress Keyes is a wonderful place to call home. 

Cypress Keyes Homes For Sale in Murrells Inlet
Cypress Keyes Homes For Sale in Murrells Inlet

Recently SOLD in the neighborhood

$168,500  6040 Andros Lane                    3BR/2BA

$175,000  7967 LEEWARD LANE        2BR/2BA


$229,900 144 Keyes Circle                      3BR/2BA


 FOR A REAL TIME LIST OF Homes for sale CLICK Here 


Sept. 16, 2016

Kings Grant Homes Murrells Inlet, SC

Kings Grant Homes Murrells Inlet, SC

Kings Grant is a fantastic family community. Being located just of Highway 17 Business near the Garden City Connector you couldn't ask for a better location. Just minutes from multiple sunny beach's the Pier at Garden City and quick ride to one of the many golf courses there is no place else you will want to be.  With a median home age between 15-25 years old each home is uniquely different home than the rest. This is not your cookie cutter community. Homes in Kings Grant average between 1400 through 2100 square feet and offer a wide of variety of styles and floor plans. This is definitely a community that you will want to put on your must see list. Kings Grant homes Murrells Inlet, SC is great for families with children, lots of other children to play with and located in the Saint James school district. Mature landscaping, community pool and club house area, a scenic lake and fountains are just what makes this community special.

Kings Grant Homes Murrells Inlet, SC
Kings Grant Murrells Inlet, SC

Recent sold homes in the community

$78,750      9702 Kings Grant Drive                                   3BR/2BA
$119,500    9686 Kings Grant Drive                                  2BR/2BA
$132,000    9664 Middleton Court                                    3BR/2BA
$133,000    9621 Kings Grant Drive                                  3BR/2BA

$140,000    9603 Drayton Ct                                              4BR/2BA
$143,500    9642 Kings Grant Drive                                  3BR/2BA
$144,000    9604 Drayton Ct                                              3BR/2BA

$144,400    9602 Drayton Ct                                              3BR/2BA

$153,000    9701 Rutledge Ct                                             3BR/2BA


$155,120    9679 Kings Grant Drive                                   3BR/2.5BA

Murrells Inlet Marsh Walk
Murrells Inlet Marsh Walk