Friday, December 20, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Coastal Design Builders!

Thank you for making 2013 a wonderful year and we look forward to working with you in 2014!

Friday, December 13, 2013

Festive Food!

This time of year often means getting together with friends and family. When you own a new home, often you become the host as curious well-wishers are excited to get a peek!

Take some of the stress out of hosting by serving some of these easy holiday appetizers! Then enjoy celebrating the season in your brand new home!

Organize your cheese tray into the shape of a Christmas tree!

Make a grinch out of grapes, strawberries, bananas and a marshmallow!

Fill up bread bowls with spinach dip and use Rye bread to form the hat!

Don't forget to invite Santa to the party! Use ricotta cheese, crackers, capers, pepperoni and celery to form the jolly old St. Nick!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Now Is The Time!

The Commerce Department released the new home sales figures for October this week and the numbers look great!

New home sales increased by 25.4% over September - the highest level in 6 months!

Interest rates remain at historic lows and the pent up demand for housing means homes are moving faster. Nationwide the new home supply level is at a little less than 5 months.

The South experienced the largest gains with a 40% increase in new home sales.

Interest rates are expected to rise slowly as the economy improves so now is the time to buy!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

A very Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Coastal Design Builders. We so value our home buyers and the relationships that we have made through the years. Thank you for choosing Coastal Design.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Builder Confidence in November

Each month for the past 25 years the National Association of Home Builders and and Wells Fargo send out a national survey to builders trying to gauge their confidence levels in current and future sales.  Builders are asked to determine how they see the housing market now and how they predict it will be in six months.

November's numbers are in and builder confidence has stabilized after dropping off the past two months. Even with the lower numbers the past two months, the previous 6 months in a row saw more builders optimistic about the market than before.

Consumer interest in new homes remains steady because of low interest rates and pricing although it has been dampened by policy and economic uncertainty.

Increased builder confidence is a positive sign for the recovering housing market at this time and going forward into 2014.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Staying Safe at Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is right around the corner and plans for the big meal are well underway!

According to the National Fire Protection Association, Thanksgiving Day is the busiest day for home fires, of which the leading cause is cooking.  Keep your holiday safe and happy this year by following these tips below.

- Stay in the kitchen when you're cooking. Don't leave food unattended.
- Keep children away from the stovetop - by at least 3 feet
- Wear short sleeves while cooking
- Have pot holders and kitchen towels sit away from heat sources
- Make sure the floor is clear from toys and pocketbooks
- Keep all lit candles above the reach of children and make sure they are blown out when the evening is over
- Test all smoke detectors and fire extinguishers

Follow these safety tips and keep your home and family happy this Thanksgiving! 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Visit Us On Youtube

Coastal Design Builders has a library of informative videos about building a custom home or remodeling a home. Take a look at our previous videos and then submit your own question. You may just inspire our next educational series!

Click below to check it out!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Bath Design

The bathrooms of yesteryear were often overlooked as functional rooms without much style.  That has changed greatly over the years with the importance of the master bathroom following only the kitchen in resale evaluations.

So what to today's baths look like?  Here are some of the trends builders and remodelers across the nation are reporting.

White and off-white remain the top color schemes followed by beige or brown. Rising in popularity are colors in the grey family.

Granite has typically been the go to surface material but quartz is narrowing the gap dramatically.

Ceramic tile flooring remains the most popular floor option followed by natural stone flooring.

New bathrooms are better lit - both with natural and artificial light.

Grab bars, once only installed on an as-needed basis are being requested more frequently. Many at-home accidents occur in the bathroom and as the Baby Boomers age they are planning ahead with safety in mind.

His and hers vanities are extremely popular even in smaller baths. Storage options are essential with more drawers and dividers being incorporated into the layout.

What would your dream bathroom look like?

Friday, October 25, 2013

Custom Kitchen Designs

The kitchen is often referred to as the heart of the home. It remains one of the most important areas in home design and warrants a lot of thought before building your custom home.

Some trends designers are seeing in kitchens these days are:
  • More square footage. Kitchens are getting larger as they become the focal point for entertaining.
  • Increase in detail. Molding, millwork and paneled doors are some examples of how to dress up the kitchen.
  • Designer islands. More than just functional space, islands are taking on a life of their own with a unique style or color that stands apart from the rest of the kitchen.
  • Less clutter. Kitchens are being designed with extra storage space to hold rarely used appliances and free up precious countertop space.
  • Glamorous lighting. While some elements of the kitchen are becoming more clean and streamlined, buyers are adding in touches of upscale decor in chandeliers or oversized light fixtures.
What are your ideas for your custom kitchen space?

Friday, October 18, 2013

Fall Entertaining

Hard to believe but there are less than two weeks until Halloween!  Once you get settled in your new home by Coastal Design Builders, it's natural to want to show it off - maybe with a Halloween or Fall Party?  Here are some easy but eye-catching Autumn recipes to use at your big event!

Click on the images below to get step-by-step instructions!

What are some of your favorite recipes?

Friday, October 11, 2013

News Release

Local Custom Builder Shares Insight and Experience with Community

Alan Wheeler of Coastal Design Builders will share his knowledge of home building with the community through regular appearances on Lowcountry Live, a program on local ABC affiliate, Channel 4. Alan is scheduled for at least 13 appearances on the program that airs at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday mornings.

Alan answers questions from the audience and visitors to his website on topics such as “How to choose the right builder”, “How to pick the best lot” and “Why are there construction delays”. He also touches on hot button topics in the home building industry such as code changes and flood regulations.

“I love sharing what I’ve learned and being pushed to learn more through questions from potential customers and those interested in home building,” says Wheeler.

Alan is owner and founder of Coastal Design Builders, a custom home building and renovations company serving the Lowcountry. His over 25 years of experience make him a frequent guest speaker at the Charleston Custom Home and Remodeling Show as well a regular contributor to industry publications.

Previously aired episodes are available on his website at

Friday, October 4, 2013

Choosing Your Color Palette

Building a custom home involves many decisions, maybe none more important or difficult than choosing your color palette.  Here are some tips from the experts on how to make that decision just a little easier.

  • Start with your formal areas first - dining room, living room and entry way. 
  • Rule of thumb - use darker colors on the floor, medium shades on the wall and lighter colors for the ceiling
  • Think about the colors you wear. People typically buy clothes in colors they like or look good in. Keep these colors in mind for your home as well.
  • Use this ratio - 60 percent dominant color, 30 percent secondary color and 10 percent accent color
  • Work within the same hue if you find a color you love
  • Consider your lighting. Observe your room or space in morning, afternoon and evening light. Light will greatly affect paint colors.
  • Decorate for yourself. It's okay to get opinions from friends or family but ultimately it's your home and you have to live there. Choose what you like even if other people don't.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Things are looking up!

Here's a look at improving numbers from the South Carolina Association of Realtors. These figures are based on August MLS data.

New Listings in South Carolina increased 5.9 percent
Pending Sales are up 6.7 percent
Inventory levels shrank 6.6 percent

Median sales price increased 6.5 percent to $164,950
Days on market down 13.6 percent to 111 days

Housing sales increased as the mortgage rates increased and encouraged buyers who were on the fence to make a decision. Rates are still at historic lows and now is a great time to buy as the market is on the upswing.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Fall Lawn Maintenance

Sunday is the first day of Fall - a very important season for your lawn health. That's right, if you prepare your lawn for going dormant this winter you'll be rewarded in the spring with a lush vibrant yard!

Mowing and watering are still important tasks to keep up in the fall. Temperatures are cooler but if you aren't receiving regular rainfall you will need to continue to water your lawn.  Mow on a higher setting to provide some extra insulation for your yard before the winter sets in.

Fall is also time to plant your spring bulbs, reseed the thin patches in your yard and go after those pesky weeds. 

Once the leaves start falling make sure to rake them up so they don't cut off your lawn's supply of sunlight and oxygen.

What lawn care tips do you employ to take care of your yard for the Fall and Winter?

Friday, September 13, 2013

Sell Your Home This Fall!

Need to sell your current home before you can buy your new Coastal Design home?  You may have picked a good time. Mortgage rates are low and home values are going up. Potential buyers are looking to be settled before the Holidays.

Here are some tips for selling during the Fall season.

1. Strong Web Appeal
Home buyers are going online to search for homes. Make sure you have plenty of photos and information available about your home. As always keep the clutter to a minimum so the potential buyer can get a good look at each room.

2. Move-In Ready
Today's buyers want the home in move-in condition. Take care of any minor improvement issues before buyers come to see your home. This includes issues with paint, flooring, and the exterior. Curb appeal is so important!

3. Lots of Light
Let the Fall light and fresh air inside! Open your blinds and windows if the weather permits. Keep the overall home temperature comfortable.

4. Create Cozy
The Fall is the perfect time to take advantage of all those cozy things that make us feel at home. Purchase a lightly scented candle, accentuate your fireplace if you have one, decorate the entryway with some potted plants.

What are you doing to sell your home this Fall?

Friday, September 6, 2013

The Closing Process

Once you’ve found your new home and construction is almost complete, it’s time to start thinking about the last step in your home buying journey – the real estate closing or settlement.

At the closing is where ownership will be transferred from the seller to the buyer.  This involves some time, patience and paperwork, but if you plan ahead you can make this a smooth process.

Talk with your Lender or Realtor about a week before closing to make sure you understand what paperwork you are responsible for bringing.  If there are costs involved such as a down payment, escrow or mortgage fees, you may need a certified check so find out the exact amount you will need to provide. 

Give yourself plenty of time! You’ll want to review the documents and make sure there are no typos or errors.  Allowing for a good block of time will help to alleviate some of the stress of that process.  Also, in case of delays, don’t arrange for your moving truck on too tight a schedule. Create some overlap so you don’t have to be out of one house the same day as you move in to another.

Remember, once you finish signing that mountain of paperwork you’ll be the owner of a brand new home!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Housing and Labor Day

As hard as it is to believe it is Labor Day weekend – the unofficial end to summer.

This Labor Day, AAA is predicting that 34.1 million Americans will hit the road and travel at least 50 miles this weekend, making it the busiest Labor Day in the last four years.

Part of the reason for this increase in travel is actually – housing.

According to the AAA study, consumer confidence is increasing as their home values increase. With the improvement in the housing market, consumers feel that their largest asset, their home, is more valuable. This increase in confidence leads to more spending and this weekend – more travel. 

This is just another piece of evidence that points to the importance of the housing market in our overall economic recovery.

Will you be traveling this Labor Day?

Friday, August 23, 2013

Rainy Day Home Maintenance

It's been a wet summer.

Don't let those rainy days get you down. There are some great home maintenance items that can be done when the weather has you trapped inside.

  • Check smoke detectors and replace batteries if needed
  • Clean out dryer vent
  • Make an itemized list of valuables, electronics, etc in case of emergency. Take photos and get model information.
  • Read through the instruction manuals on your home appliances and systems
Then relax and enjoy the sound of the rain!

What home maintenance items do you like to take care of on a rainy day?

Friday, August 16, 2013

Housing Market Improving

According to a report by the South Carolina Realtors based on July 2013 figures, sales across the state of South Carolina increased by 21%. Home prices increased by 5% to a median price of $163,063.

The number of available homes and standing inventory has dropped to a 9 month supply of single family homes and 9.5 month supply of condos. A six month supply of homes is considered normal.

As the economy improves and consumer confidence increases home sales continue to rise. This bodes well for the future of the SC economy and housing industry.