Fairhope and Baldwin County Area Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

Aug. 24, 2020

Rock Creek News

Great News for Fairhope residents and Area Golfers 

Rock Creek Golf Course Has New Owners

For several years there has been quite a bit of uncertainty regarding the future of the Rock Creek Golf Course and facilities. The Golf course has been for sale for over a year but it's future is now known. The Rock Creek Golf Course in Fairhope has officially sold to new owners. GolfCoPartners, Inc. of North Carolina purchased the course and clubhouse from Honours/Troon on August 16th, 2020.  Brothers and business partners, Scott and Patrick Schneider, are excited to invest in and serve the Eastern Shore Community by providing a great place for individuals, groups and families to socialize. Their philosophy with Rock Creek is simple and transparent – to operate as a public golf course, restaurant, and social gathering center that serves the local community and surrounding Eastern Shore / Mobile Bay area. GolfCoPartners plans to improve the golf, dining, and social experience at Rock Creek. Already, within 2 days of this purchase, Rock Creek now has a new fleet of golf carts. 

Here is A Letter from New Owners to the Community Members at Rock Creek that was sent on August 16

Today, we are happy and excited to assume ownership of Rock Creek Golf Club.  We know it has been at least a year of uncertainty for the community as it relates to what might happen with the golf club.  We are excited to be the new owners and look forward to serving the community through providing a great place for folks to play golf and enjoy social time together…even in these challenging times.  We are especially excited for the community as we believe through working closely with the community, we can positively impact property values and community spirit.  

To quickly introduce ourselves –   

Scott Schneider – COO at Golfcopartners.  Scott is a lifelong golf professional and operator of courses and clubs including municipals, semi-privates, resort, and high end private throughout the US.  Scott is the former CEO of Ken Venturi Golf Academies where he delivered a high-end destination golf school at locations in the US and Caribbean.  In 2016 he became a co-founder of Golfcopartners and focused on identification of acquisitions of golf clubs.  Recently Scott served as the interim GM at our other club in Fernandina Beach, Florida, The Golf Club at North Hampton.  Over the coming months, he will be spending his time at Rock Creek bringing our culture and approach to this club.  This will include managing and enabling the current and new staff with what they will need to deliver a great experience for everyone and provide Rock Creek as a destination to play golf and gather socially. 

Patrick Schneider – CEO/CFOat Golfcopartners.  After retiring from a 35-year career as a partner with some of the world’s largest management consulting companies, Patrick co-founded Golfcopartners with Scott.  Golfcopartners is a golf company focused on the acquisition and turnaround of golf clubs.  Additionally, Golfcopartners offers a virtual business process outsourcing solution for other clubs in the industry.  Patrick will focus mainly on the business and financial operations at Rock Creek making sure there is sound financial structure and discipline around the operations of the club and how capital will be allocated to projects to enhance the club.  

Behind us are a cache of hand selected individual investors and Board members who support our vision and provide additional expertise to our operations as needed.

Our philosophy with Rock Creek is simple and transparent.  Our intent is to operate as a golf course and social gathering center that serves the local community and surrounding area.  The degree to which the local market financially supports the business will drive our ability to provide more value and preserve/enhance property values in the community.  Ultimately, our mutual success depends upon each other.  We have a proven model that works.

We recently met with representatives of the leadership of the 3 POAs that surround Rock Creek.  There were many questions about what was going to happen and what the future of the club might be.  The following summary illustrates our near-term focus:

Golf Course.  Aligned with our philosophy of providing the right product at the right price point for the market, It will take some time to fully evaluate the course and prioritize projects to introduce areas of improvement.  Scott will be working closely with the maintenance team through this process to develop a list of prioritized projects 

General Manager.  Steve Harris has graciously accepted the challenge of carrying forward as General Manager of the club.  He brings a deep history of experience in the food and beverage industry and over the recent past has been building his understanding of the golf business.  Most importantly, he brings an ‘ownership mentality’ which works well with the culture we like to instill in our teams. ·

Memberships.  For the remainder of 2020, we will continue forward with the existing program that is in place.  We will be evaluating the membership structure, offering, and pricing over the remainder of the year and introduce changes for 2021.  We will be introducing new point of sale technology from day one which will handle the billings and collections of member accounts as well as provide new means to make tee times, research your account, communications, etc. ·

Carts.  We intend on replacing the existing cart fleet shortly after closing.  There will be a temporary fleet for the first few weeks while we wait on the arrival of new carts in September. ·

Maintenance Equipment.  We will be working with the superintendent and our vendor partners to evaluate and prioritize replacement of antiquated maintenance equipment needed for the course.  We know the current fleet is old and needs modernization.  As critical pieces are identified for retirement, they will be selectively replaced.  The desire and outcome is to implement improvements on the course. ·

Clubhouse.  We know the clubhouse is tired.  What we have not determined is which strategic direction to take given the current impact of the pandemic crisis.  We have been working with a strategic partner to help us understand what other clubs in the US are doing, to evaluate the clubhouse/grounds, and determine next steps.  We will be working on this over the next few months to inform decisions on how we will move forward.  We would not expect any substantive change to the club house this year. 

Staffing.  All current employees will be offered positions.  Those who accept to continue will be evaluated for the next 3 months to determine if there is a good fit moving forward for us, the membership, the community, and other customers. ·

Communications.  We will prepare and distribute monthly newsletters and other weekly/daily communications via email to our members to inform them about activities and events at the club.  We anticipate providing the same or similar content to the POA organizations to distribute within their respective community. ·

Programming.  Scott and his team will begin to introduce programming for members as it relates to the golf offering.  It may take some time to get things rolling, but be assured that new programming will be introduced to generate interest and fun for those to enjoy the club  

Feel free to connect with either of us once we get on site.  We probably have as many questions for you as you do for us.  

Cheers!  

Scott and Patrick Schneider 

Golfcopartners, LLC

Facts:

  • The 18-hole Rock Creek Golf Course is open to the Public, seven days a week. 
  • The Rock Creek Clubhouse restaurant is also open to the public.  A new menu will be introduced on Monday, August 24th.   During this COVID crisis, the restaurant hours are from 10am-3pm, seven days a week.
  • The Rock Creek Community Pool is not owned by the Golf Course.  The pool was purchased/built by the Rock Creek POA in 2017 and available only to Rock Creek (Phases 1-4) residents and guests.
  • The Rock Creek community has three neighborhoods/POAs surrounding the golf course: Rock Creek (Phases 1-4, 442 lots), Eastern Rock Creek (Phases 5-6, 177 lots), and Sandy Ford (126 lots) – many houses, of all sizes and price ranges, are currently on the market.
  • Lots are still available for new builds in all three neighborhoods.
  • Here is the Rock Creek golf course website, if you want more information or have questions:  https://www.rockcreekgolf.com/index.php
  • Here is the GolfCoPartners website:  https://golfcopartners.com/
June 2, 2020

Fairhope's Newest Premier Subdivision

Fairhope's Newest Subdivision

Fairhope has a new premier subdivision with beautiful lots available to build your next home. Click here for details and all of the available lots for sale

 

 

 

 

 

May 21, 2020

New Daphne Listing with pool- 801 Pinewood Court

 

801 Pinewood Court, Daphne AL 36526

Great home with a sparkling pool, large .82 acre lot and new roof

 

Click here for details and pictures

 

 

 

Posted in New Listings
Aug. 8, 2019

Baldwin County Property Values Increasing

Baldwin County Median Sales Price Up 6.4%

Aug 02, 2019

The number of homes sold in June was 11.1% above the five-year June average of 605 sales. (iStock)

 

Sales: According to the Baldwin County Association of Realtors/Multiple Listing Service, Baldwin County residential sales totaled 672 units during June, down 8.7% from 736 sales in the same month a year earlier. June sales were also down 8.2% compared to 732 sales in May. Results were 11.1% above the five-year June average of 605 sales. Two more resources to review: Quarterly Report and Annual Report.

 

For all of Baldwin County’s housing data, click here.

 

Inventory: Total homes listed for sale in the Baldwin County area during June were 2,899 units, an increase of 1.2% from June 2018’s 2,865 units but a decrease of 2.5% from May 2019’s 2,974 units. June’s months of supply totaled 4.3 months, up 10.8% from June 2018’s 3.9 months of supply. June’s months of supply increased 6.2% when compared to May 2019’s 4.1 months of supply. June’s months of supply was 14.9% lower than the five-year average of 5.1 months of supply.

 

Pricing: The Baldwin County median sales price in June was $259,200, an increase of 6.4% from one year ago and an increase of 1.8% from the prior month. This direction is consistent with historical data (2014-18) indicating that the June median sales price on average increases from May by 0.6%. The differing sample size (number of residential sales of comparative months) can contribute to statistical volatility, including pricing. ACRE recommends consulting with a local real estate professional to discuss pricing, as it will vary from neighborhood to neighborhood. The average number of days on the market (DOM) for homes sold during June was 83 days, unchanged from one year ago, and an increase of 6.4% from 78 days in May 2019.

 

Forecast: June sales were 51 units, or 5.8%, below the Alabama Center for Real Estate’s (ACRE) monthly forecast. ACRE projected 713 sales for the month, while actual sales were 672 units. ACRE forecast 3,577 residential sales in the Baldwin County area year-to-date, while there were 3,521 actual sales through June.

 

ACRE’s statewide perspective: Statewide residential sales increased slightly in May, extending the streak to 5 consecutive months of year-over-year sales gains. Statewide residential sales increased 1.4% from 6,306 closed transactions in May 2018 to 6,392 in May 2019. Year-to-date, sales are up 3.2% from 2018. Home price appreciation in the state continued to climb as the median sales price in May increased 4.3% year-over-year from $165,688 to $172,864. The statewide median sales price is also up 3.4% year-to-date. Although nationwide inventory levels are trending upward, Alabama’s residential listings decreased 11.6% from one year ago. Low inventory levels were a significant factor contributing to rising sales prices throughout 2018 and in the spring buying season of 2019. With low inventory levels, it is not surprising to see homes selling more quickly than in previous years. Homes selling in Alabama during May spent an average of 88 days on the market, an improvement of 12 days from May 2018.

 

NAR’s national perspective: Existing home sales rebounded in May, posting their first year-over-year gain since August 2018. Nationwide sales increased 0.9% from approximately 535,000 closed transactions one year ago to 540,000 currently. The nationwide median existing-home price increased 4.8% in May, marking 87 consecutive months of year-over-year gains. Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, said, “The purchasing power to buy a home has been bolstered by falling mortgage rates, and buyers are responding.”

 

 

Source: Alabama Center of Real Estate

Aug. 6, 2019

Best Value on Mobile Bay Front Home!

Sit on the dock of the bay and wake up on vacation with a different sunset every day.

12501 County Road 1, Fairhope AL 36532

Experience the beauty of daily sunsets over Mobile Bay from your porch, deck, or pier. Now you can enjoy that wonderful waterfront lifestyle that you have always dreamed about with fishing, boating and family entertaining. This beautifully appointed home is now available at the very affordable waterfront home price of $719,900. Better call today because this great value will sell quickly. Call me at 251-591-2386. John Fowler

Spectacular views await you at this custom built magnificent bay front home! One of a kind in New Orleans style with over 1300 sq ft of wrought iron covered balconies and three stories totaling 3063 square foot of luxurious living! Enter into an open space first floor for entertaining with a gourmet kitchen to satisfy even the most picky chef. Featuring beautiful maple cabinetry, built in microwave,trash compactor, tile flooring, pantry, center island and gas range. Dining area and living area boasting elegant crown molding and floor to ceiling windows to appreciate all the beauty around you! Second story features hardwood flooring, crown molding, laundry room, 2 nice bedrooms with ample closet space and full bathroom . The master suite with a fantastic view consist of a walk in closet and private full bath. Third floor was finished with a large sitting area, bedroom, full bathroom and crows nest balcony that must be seen to appreciate. Three stories of front and back covered balconies and a private lift for your convenience!! Large open space under house for parking and outdoor entertaining including a full RV hook up. Long dock and boathouse to enjoy all that bay front living has to offer!! Upgrades include new exterior paint, new roof and new dock!

April 1, 2019

Trends in Landscaping Design to Try This Year

Feb 28, 2019

The following is a guest post by Cat Murphy.

 

Whether you’re trying to sell your home or update the one you recently bought, there are plenty of ways to modernize your landscaping and add a touch of refreshing curb appeal. The latest trends include homeowners stepping outside the box with landscaping designs that have Mother Nature’s best interest at heart. Here’s a list of this years most up and coming popular trends.

 

Growing Produce

If you’re going to add plants to the garden, you might as well also grow something to eat. Planting edible options, like fruits and vegetables, is a great way to add interest and beauty to your landscaping that also offers plenty of health benefits. Growing food in your yard is a trending design that allows you and your guests to appreciate how food is grown. It’s also great for the environment and helps cut down on the weekly grocery budget. Choose fruits and vegetables that thrive in your community for an easier way to manage your garden.

 

Privacy

Speaking of privacy, you don’t have to install an ugly wooden fence. Plant a quick growing hedge or shrub to provide an extra barrier between your outdoor living space and your neighbors. Even a low growing shrub, like a boxwood, can create a semi-private feel to an area without hindering the view. Planting trees is another excellent way to add privacy and natural beauty to compliment a house.

 

Asymmetry

Shapes found in nature are rarely perfectly straight lines. Many homeowners now prefer the creativity of nature by reflecting curved or slanted lines in their landscaping. Slight curves on the outside edge of a garden bed and curved walkways are trending right now. These asymmetrical lines not only make your home more appealing, but they also create a softer overall look that embraces nature’s shapes. You can also include a free formed garden bed in the middle of a large lawn space that will add value to your home as well. Be sure to use a weed eater to properly trim all edges for the best look possible. 

 

Xeriscaping

So you want a beautiful lawn and garden, but what if you don’t have time to keep it maintained? Xeriscaping is both a popular landscaping technique and design that incorporates plants acclimated to a specific region and decreases the amount of maintenance by using less turf. These plants are typically locally native plants that require little to no added water. They do well in the current climate conditions of the area and can be left alone for the most part.

 

Xeriscaping also encourages homeowners to replace lawn areas with non-organic mulching options, like stone, to create a truly unique look. While xeriscapes are more common in arid regions of the country, some homeowners use this type of landscaping in smaller portions of their yard that are either hard to access or have trouble growing other plants.

 

Adding any one of these landscaping techniques to your yard will help raise the overall curb appeal of your home. Consider changing a problem spot in the yard to a xeriscape or adding plants that provide nutritious food options. Creating privacy with quick growing plants as well as incorporating curved lines into your yard are other trends in landscaping design to try this year.

Source: Coldwell Banker Blue Matter

Posted in Owning a Home
April 1, 2019

Baldwin County Feb. home sales up 15% from 2018

Apr 01, 2019

The Baldwin County median home sales price in February was $237,272. (iStock)

Sales: According to the Baldwin County Association of Realtors/Multiple Listing Service, Baldwin County residential sales totaled 472 units during February, up 15.1 percent from 410 sales in the same month a year earlier. February sales were also up 32.2 percent compared to 357 sales in January. Results were 3.4 percent above the five-year February average of 345 sales. Two more resources to review: Quarterly Report and Annual Report.

For all of Baldwin County’s housing data, click here.

Inventory: Total homes listed for sale in the Baldwin County area during February were 2,872 units, an increase of 2.6 percent from February 2018’s 2,798 units and an increase of 1.3 percent from January 2019’s 2,836 units. February’s months of supply totaled 6.1 months, a decrease of 10.8 percent when compared to February 2018’s 6.8 months of supply. February’s months of supply decreased 23.4 percent from January 2019’s 7.9 months.

Pricing: The Baldwin County median sales price in February was $237,272, a decrease of 0.4 percent from one year ago and a decrease of 5.1 percent from the prior month. This direction is inconsistent with historical data (2014-18) indicating that the February median sales price on average increases from January by 1.2 percent. The differing sample size (number of residential sales of comparative months) can contribute to statistical volatility, including pricing. ACRE recommends consulting with a local real estate professional to discuss pricing, as it will vary from neighborhood to neighborhood. The average number of days on the market (DOM) for homes sold during February was 96 days, an increase of 1.1 percent from 95 days in February 2018 and an increase of 4.3 percent from 92 days in January 2019.

Forecast: February sales were three units, or 0.6 percent, below the Alabama Center for Real Estate’s (ACRE) monthly forecast. ACRE projected 475 sales for the month, while actual sales were 472 units. ACRE forecast a total of 901 residential sales in the Baldwin County area year-to-date, while there were 829 actual sales through February.

ACRE’s statewide perspective: After a strong 2018, statewide residential sales in January increased 1.1 percent year-over-year from 3,320 to 3,358 closed transactions. Home price appreciation in the state continued to climb as the median sales price in January increased 5.5 percent year-over-year from $143,152 to $151,015. Although nationwide inventory levels are trending upward, Alabama’s residential listings decreased 7.4 percent from one year ago. Low inventory levels were a significant factor contributing to rising sales prices throughout 2018. With low inventory levels, it is not surprising to see homes selling more quickly than in previous years. Homes selling in Alabama during January spent an average of 106 days on the market, an improvement of 10 days from 2018.

NAR’s national perspective: During January, total existing-home sales nationwide declined 9 percent from approximately 313,000 closed transactions one year ago to 285,000 currently. Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, said, “Existing home sales in January were weak compared to historical norms; however, they are likely to have reached a cyclical low. Moderating home prices combined with gains in household income will boost housing affordability, bringing more buyers to the market in the coming months.”

Click here to view the entire monthly report.

The Baldwin County Residential Monthly Report is developed in conjunction with the Baldwin County Association of Realtors to better serve Gulf Coast consumers.

Source: Alabama Center for Real Estate

Dec. 5, 2018

New Fairhope Listing at 115 Echo Lane

New Listing at 115 Echo Lane Fairhope

Great home in beautiful setting close to Bay and Downtown Fairhope

Nestled under the canopy of a classic live Oak tree, welcome to this wonderful home on a peaceful cul-de-sac in Fairhope. Echo Lane is one of the better kept secrets in Fairhope and is adjacent to the Fruit and Nut area but doesn’t have the higher prices. 115 Echo Lane Details. You can take a quick stroll down Fig Avenue to the park on Mobile Bay or take a quick ride into town to enjoy everything that is great about Downtown Fairhope. This charming home has been well maintained and nicely updated and is in move- in condition. The beautiful wood floors are throughout the home. They were installed this year and there is no carpet. The kitchen is roomy and has tile floors, newly painted cabinets and beautiful marble counters were installed last year. The refrigerator stays with the home. There are 2 very large bedrooms and either one could be a master. The 3rd bedroom makes a great small den area. The dining room off the entrance could also be an excellent sitting/office area. There is a very large laundry room off the kitchen with laundry tub and additional storage. The washer and dryer are also included. Sit on your front porch and look out over your beautifully landscaped front yard and hydrangea gardens under your glorious Live Oak. Or sit on your back patio and enjoy the peace and quiet of the gardens and fountains and the fenced yard which backs up to a wooded area for additional privacy. A new roof was installed in 2016. There is an oversized carport and a storage building out back.

 

Nov. 30, 2018

Preparing Your Home for a Spring Sale

Preparing Your Home for a Spring Sale

Nov 30, 2018

How to Prepare Your Home This Winter for a Successful Spring Sale
Here’s our go-to list of what sellers should be doing now to ensure for a successful sale next spring.

SHARON LEE

NOV 13, 2018

Guest post by Patti Stern

If you are planning to sell your home next spring, why not get a jumpstart during the fall /winter season so you have more time and less stress while preparing? An added plus is that your home could potentially be ready to list in time for the early spring selling season at the end of January when the market is less crowded. It’s a win-win! Here’s our go-to list of what sellers should be doing now to ensure for a successful sale next spring.

1. Assess Your Home’s Condition – Inside & Out

The first step is to do a thorough walk-thru with an objective eye. Does it have “move-in ready appeal” that will “wow” young, savvy buyers? Is there chipped paint on moldings and trim? Is the front entry carpet runner worn and could benefit from replacing? Look at your property through the lens of your buyer and determine what needs the most attention so that Millennials with families can immediately connect and envision themselves living there with minimal work to do when they move in. 

2. First Impressions Go a Long Way

With the changing seasons, try to tackle exterior repairs and landscaping while you can by keeping gutters clean, lawn raked, shrubs trimmed and driveways/walkways shoveled. For an inviting front porch with curb appeal, maintain a polished look each season with welcoming accents such as potted evergreens or berry branches, a beautiful wreath on the door, glowing lanterns, and a colorful welcome mat.

Living Room Staged by PJ & Company Staging and Interior Decorating

3. Remove Distractions & Get Organized

Tackle clutter one room at a time and decide whether to keep or purge items based on when you last touched or used it. Remove personal items, collectibles and excessive furniture that distract from the room’s key features as well as its perceived size and flow. Then organize the remaining items with efficient storage solutions such as baskets and containers for closets, drawers and cabinets.

Library Staged by PJ & Company Staging and Interior Decorating

4. Make it Fresh & Bright 

Ask yourself if the color on the walls and cabinets is too dark? Does wallpaper need to be removed? Are window treatments dated and heavy? Does worn carpet need replacing? Do hardwood floors need polishing? Simply adding a fresh coat of neutral “greige” paint to dark walls will brighten the room by creating a backdrop to showcase the other elements in the room, such as the white trim, new carpeting, wall art, and furniture (as shown in library above).

Living Room Staged by PJ & Company Staging and Interior Decorating

5. Create the “Wow Factor”

Once you’ve invested in the necessary upgrades for move-in ready appeal, buyers still need to emotionally connect by envisioning how their furnishings will look in the space. Staging a home is an investment in getting the property sold and for top dollar. Professional stagers can create the “wow” factor that might be needed after all of the repairs and upgrades are finished. Complete the look with strategically placed modern furniture paired with pops of colorful and inviting accents that will make a lasting impression as pictured in the living room photo above. 

For more examples of interior decorating and home staging, visit www.pjstagingdecorating.com.

Source: Coldwell Banker Blue Matter

Posted in Selling Your Home
Nov. 4, 2018

Great Daphne Home with Pool

9383 Chamberlain Pass, Daphne AL 36526

Wonderful 5 bedroom family home with swimming pool in the Daphne school area. Home has been beautifully updated and well maintained. There is a large media room upstairs that that is ideal as a recreation room. Screened back deck looks out to inviting pool area. Triple garage with the 3rd garage ideal for a workshop. The large kitchen offers granite counters and stainless appliances. Spacious master suite with whirlpool tub, separate shower and 2 walk-in closets. The home is close to all Daphne schools.