NEWS

30 Days of Giving!

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This year we are sponsoring a new charity for Christmas, Lowcountry Orphan Relief. Lowcountry Orphan Relief, Inc. (LOR) is a non-profit organization that provides goods and services to children who have been abused or neglected. To learn more about this organization, please visit Lowcountry Orphan Relief.

In the lobby of the 960 Morrison office, we will be posting the “stockings” for 50 boys and girls ranging from 3 to 9 years old. The stocking states what size clothes and shoes they need. All donations are due in the downtown office by December 9th.

For every stocking sponsored, Ravenel Associates will donate $50 to One80 Place, another wonderful local organization, working to end homelessness in our community.

Again this year, we will be collecting non-perishable food for the Lowcountry Food Bank . The most needed items are canned tuna and meats, low-sugar cereals, baby food, peanut butter, whole grain rice, pasta and oats, 100% fruit juice, low-sodium soups and stews, canned fruits and vegetables. Collection boxes will be in place this week in the lobby of both offices.

To learn more about the programs we’ve chosen, please click on their link. Please visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ravenel-associates-... to make a donation to the Lowcountry Orphan Relief.



A Message from HomeWise Docs

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New Questions Added to HWD Questionnaires

Condominium/Cooperative Safety, Soundness, and Structural Integrity Announcement

The tragic collapse of the Champlain Towers in Florida has forced lenders and other industry stakeholders to look for clear and standardized guidance on how to analyze ongoing risk in residential buildings with aging infrastructure and significant deferred maintenance. This concern is expected to grow in the future as most of the nation’s stock of condominium and cooperative projects was built more than 20 years ago.

Fannie Mae has already taken the lead in this matter and has established temporary guidelines for all whole loan and MBS pool purchases taking effect on January 1, 2022 which will continue until further notice. Loans secured by units in condo and cooperative projects with significant deferred maintenance or in projects that have received a directive from a regulatory authority or inspection agency to make repairs due to unsafe conditions are not eligible for purchase. In addition, condominium or cooperative projects that do not pass local regulatory inspections or recertifications are not eligible for Fannie Mae financing. Waivers of this policy will not be granted by Fannie Mae.

Not only are projects with deferred maintenance conditions ineligible, Fannie Mae makes it clear that the project is also ineligible simply if a lender can’t make a determination if deferred maintenance or unsafe conditions exist. This is where the real estate community stakeholders must come together to provide information so lenders can make safety and soundness determinations. Obviously, lack of financing options for older condominium and cooperative projects will have a negative effect on marketability and, ultimately, valuations.

Fortunately, Fannie Mae is suggesting a variety of ways for lenders to make project safety and soundness determinations and has not made this a burden for community management companies alone. Fannie Mae is suggesting that detailed reviews of monthly financial documents, budgets, reserve studies, board meeting minutes and special assessments will be critical in their policy. For those management companies that are unwilling, unable or uncomfortable in providing this type of information, Fannie Mae has issued guidance on how lenders may be able to obtain it from other sources.

HomeWiseDocs.com (HWD) is currently reviewing Fannie Mae’s policy regarding project safety and soundness. On October 25th, the following questions that major lenders are now requiring on their forms will be added to the Condominium and Cooperative Lender Questionnaire templates in the Eligibility Questions section for your associations:

Is the HOA and/or management company aware of any conditions or project-wide deferred maintenance within the project that may negatively impact the safety, structural soundness, habitability, or functional use of the project as a whole or any individual units?

If yes, describe and provide supporting documentation, e.g., architect’s and/or engineer’s reports, insurance inspections, notices of pending or active building code violations, fines or liens from local building authority, special assessments levied for repairs related to these issues, reserve study prepared by an independent third party.

Initially, responses to these new questions will be optional. This will give you time to gather and enter this new information without delaying the processing of questionnaire orders. We plan to make the responses required in December 2021. If you need assistance with a default response for these questions, please contact our Level 2 support team.

Additionally, you might want to review and update the following association documents so lenders have all the information they need:

  • Monthly financial documents (Current Unaudited Financials)
  • Budgets
  • Reserve Studies
  • Board Meeting Minutes
  • Special Assessments

We appreciate the privilege of working with you as your “Proven Partner” in all matters of community management success.

HomeWiseDocs

Susan G. Komen- More Than Pink Walk

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On October 2nd, 2021, our Ravenel Associates team participated in the Komen Lowcountry MORE THAN PINK Walk. The 2021 Susan G Komen walk/race event took a virtual spin this year and we were able to participate by tracking our 6,000 steps over the Ravenel bridge through an app. We also exceeded the initial fundraising goal in support of a charity we feel so passionately about. We all know someone affected by this cause on some level, including some of our own team here at Ravenel Associates.


Covid-19: Delta Variant

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Covid-19: Delta Variant

Dear valued clients and friends of Ravenel Associates,

As we continue to monitor Coronavirus (COVID-19) developments closely, the health and well-being of our clients and employees is of utmost importance to us. We would like to share an update on how Ravenel is responding to the rapidly changing environment caused by the continued spreading of coronavirus (COVID-19) - Delta Variant.

Our firm is devoted to the health and safety of our people, clients, and communities we serve. With safety as our primary concern, Ravenel is taking all necessary precautions with each decision oriented around our people and our clients..

As a precautionary measure, Ravenel Associates has implemented the following control measures designed to minimize the risk of impact to our services:

  • Enabling work from home capabilities for essential employees
  • Requesting heightened levels of hygiene. To facilitate, we offer hand sanitizer and liquid soap for handwashing.
  • Restricting office entrance to individuals who have a fever or other flu symptoms or have visited a Coronavirus hotspot in the last 14 days.
  • Mask required to be worn by employees and visitors, vaccinated and non-vaccinated, while in common areas.
  • Limiting all non-essential business travel
  • Implementing additional control measures as events unfold.

We will continue to monitor this fluid situation and will work to ensure essential services remain operable. For decades, Ravenel Associates has demonstrated unwavering support to our clients in past emergency situations, and in dealing with the present circumstances, we will continue to use every effort to deliver uninterrupted essential services to all our clients.

Thank you,

Jules Deas
President

It’s almost Back to School time!

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It’s almost Back to School time!

For some children, the standard supplies needed for a successful school year are hard to come by. We have collected supplies to fill bookbags for 14 HALO children who are in court ordered protective custody due to abuse or neglect. HALOS is a program that helps children in kinship care. Please visit www.charlestonhalos.org to learn more about this wonderful program.

We’ve “adopted” 7 elementary and 7 middle school aged children.

Community Blood Drive-March 5th

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Ravenel Associates will be hosting a community blood drive at our downtown location on Thursday, March 5th from 10AM - 3PM. All donors will receive light refreshments and $20 Visa gift cards provided by The Blood Connection.

Please consider donating blood. Your donation could save three lives.
Click here to schedule your appointment today!


Should anyone choose to donate their gift card to The Lowcountry Food Bank, Ravenel Associates will match your donation dollar for dollar. Since every dollar donated helps provide 6 meals, the difference we can make together is exponential.

Additional Blood Drive Info.pdf

The Top 5 Exterior Areas to Fix up Before Listing Your Home this Fall

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You’ve probably heard that spring and summer are the best times to sell your home, and we’ll be honest: they do have their perks. But with mortgage rates remaining low and motivated buyers steadily flowing into the market, this fall is shaping up to be a pretty profitable selling season.

If you’re gearing up to list your home soon, then you’ll need to pay extra attention to your outdoor areas. Here are the top five spaces to give a little TLC to before you sell!

The Lawn

An old rake leaning against the wall of a home.

Once you’ve raked up the leaves, you might think your lawn is all taken care of. But there’s much more to fall lawn care than bagging up leaves! If temperatures haven’t majorly dropped by the time you list, you’ll need to keep mowing your lawn—it’ll continue growing until the first hard frost.

If you’ve got a few bare spots in your yard, fall is also the perfect time for overseeding! Since the ground is relatively warm but the sun isn’t quite as powerful as in the summer, growing conditions are better than ever. Just be sure you’re providing your lawn with plenty of water, and those sparse spots should start to fill in.

The Garden

Pumpkins and gourds sitting on a table.

Since you’re planning a move, you probably don’t want to start planting new veggies, but there are other ways to give your garden a fresh look. First, you’ll want to make sure all of your leftover plants from spring and summer are cleared out, and your plot is weed-free. Once that’s taken care of, it’s time for the fun part!

Picked up a few pumpkins or gourds from the farmers’ market? Set them out near your doorstep. Need a home for a scarecrow or two? Give them a perch on either side of the garden. You can fill in any blank space with potted plants like mums or sunflowers or a decorative holiday banner!

The Roof

Leaves in a gutter.

With trees shedding leaves and dead branches, you’ve probably got a decent amount of brush and foliage dotting your roof. Now’s the time to pull out the ladder and do a clean sweep. Plus, it’s the perfect chance to get a look at the condition of your shingles and see if any need replacing!

While you’re up there, be sure to sweep out your gutters, as well. There’s a good chance the extra debris has them more clogged up than usual, which could lead to flooding or exterior damage. Clearing them out will prevent any issues, and show buyers that you go the extra mile in maintaining your home.

The Porch

Fall decor including a wreath, potted plants, and gourds, all placed around a small bench.

The crowning glory of your home’s exterior, the porch should act as the first taste of what the inside of the home has to offer. You want to strike the perfect balance between warm and welcoming and clean and clutter-free!

First, take care of spiffing the space up by sweeping the floors, ringing out the welcome mat, and dusting off any outdoor furniture. If you have one too many chairs or a crowded collection of potted plants, you should remove some of the clutter.

Then, add a little character! Put a few pumpkins by door, set out a scented candle or two, swap out your porch light for a warmer wattage, and update your throw pillows—just be careful not to overdo it. Since your porch space is likely relatively small, a little goes a long way.

The Front Door

A welcome sign and a small wreath on a white front door.

It’s only a small portion of your exterior, but if you play your cards right, your front door can be one of the most eye-catching parts of your home. Nothing draws attention like a fresh coat of paint, so you should consider picking a shade that pops and matches your siding—like a warm red or a bold blue. At the very least, you should use furniture wax or dish soap to scrub out the dinginess.

Once you’ve revamped your door, it’s time to accessorize! Since it’s fall, you should be able to easily find a seasonal wreath to hang. If you really want to go the extra mile, think about replacing your house number or knocker with some shiny new hardware.

For more useful tips CLICK HERE to visit RARECharleston.com.

Kicking Clutter to the Curb: Transform Your Home with These 4 Decluttering Tips

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We’ve all been there. One day, you look around your house, and there’s just So. Much. Stuff. Stuff in boxes, stuff on the walls, stuff in the corners—just…stuff. If you’re gearing up to sell your home, you’re going to have to deal with all that accumulated clutter eventually. Luckily, there are plenty of simple strategies for getting the job done!

Arm yourself for the Crusade Against the Clutter, and use these top tips to transform your home before selling.

Start Early

A to-do list.

If you aren’t prepared, things can quickly get overwhelming. After all, you’re not only getting your home ready to sell, but you’re also packing things up, finding a new home, and dealing with your finances. It makes sense that decluttering your home isn’t first on your list, but it’s one of the most important steps!

Before you list your home, you want the space to be ready to wow buyers from the second they walk through the door. If you kick off your decluttering months in advance, you’ll be in much better shape come listing time.

Expand Your Storage

An organized silverware drawer.

For many people, clutter accumulates simply because they don’t know what they actually have. An easy way to fix this issue and make your home more organized is by coming up with an intentional storage solution.

Hit the store and pick up some sliding storage and plastic tubs, then label each unit and keep it stored anyway until needed. That way, you’ll know exactly what you have and where it is. Never worry about misplaced holiday decorations or a surplus of school supplies ever again! Plus, a lot of your stuff will already be neatly packed away come moving time.

Take It Little by Little

A man and woman carrying boxes.

Decluttering can be a long process, filling up nights and weekends and free time—especially if you put it off until the last minute. Luckily, if you start ahead of time, you’ll have the luxury of taking it little by little. And not just one room at a time—we mean really little, like an hour or two hours spent on just the kitchen cabinets or bedroom closets.

You can even make it fun! Get everybody in the house together and play a game of 12-12-12. The rules are simple: walk through the house and find 12 items you want to keep, 12 items you want to get rid of, and 12 items you want to sell/donate. You’d be surprised how quickly you can reduce your clutter after a few rounds, and it only takes a couple of minutes!

Make it FAST

Clutter.

For the last tip, we’ve gotten the inside scoop from professional organizer, Peter Walsh. Walsh says that decluttering is as simple as remembering this short acronym:

Fix a time. Plan ahead, and find a time that works for everyone in the house—and make attendance mandatory!

Anything not used in twelve months. If you haven’t used it in a year, then you probably don’t need it. Ask yourself a few questions: Do I need it? Is it valuable to me? Is it worth the space it’s taking up? If no, then kick it to the curb.

Someone else’s stuff. Still have that borrowed tupperware? Give it back. Holding onto things that family members have left behind? Send it their way. If it’s not yours, find a new home for it!

Trash. It’s easy to get sentimental and hold onto things that are well past their expiration date (metaphorically speaking). Don’t be afraid to take the plunge—and maybe even go overboard—and trash some of your older belongings. If you don’t want to go full in and trash it, then you can always donate it to a good cause.

CLICK HERE to read more or

Don't forget your Fall maintenance!

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Autumn is officially here!


Related imageWith the changing of the leaves come Fall festivals, the Coastal Carolina Fair, pumpkin patches and hay rides. With so many exciting festivities its easy to forget winter is just around the corner. However, its important to complete your fall maintenance checklist now before the days get too short and the weather too cold. Most Fall maintenance items don't take long and you can rest easy this winter knowing your home is prepared. Plus, the sooner you finish the sooner you can get back to the candied apples and Halloween crafts!

If you don't yet have a check list we recommend "Your Fall Home Maintenance Checklist" on Forbes.com to get you started. Happy Fall!

Mosquito Control

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The Charleston County Mosquito Control Program utilizes several methods to treat mosquitoes in our area in an effort to protect public health. To request service in your area or to simply learn more, visit the Charleston County Public Works.

Excerpts from https://www.charlestoncounty.org/departments/publi...

Ground Operations Notification:
Charleston County Mosquito Control (CCMC) may be conducting ground adulticide operations using ultra low volume spray trucks throughout the County of Charleston from May 13, 2019 to May 28, 2019. These operations will be conducted based on comprehensive surveillance results. Daily schedules will be posted on this site and citizens on CCMC’s call list will receive notifications of scheduled spraying in their area.

Quick Mosquito Facts

  1. 50+ species of mosquitoes live in Charleston County
  2. 30 of these species bite people and pets
  3. The two salt marsh species occur in the greatest numbers
  4. Dredged material disposal sites can produce up to 80 million mosquitoes per acre per rainfall
  5. Natural sites can produce up to 8 million mosquitoes per acre per rainfall or tide event

Mosquito Control

Phone: (843)202-7880
For service requests or to be added to the notification list (allergies, bees, etc..) please complete a work order request.

What You Need to Know About Low-Maintenance Communities

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Picture this: It’s winter. It’s freezing. You still need to clear the last of the leaves from your lawn, but you’re finding every excuse to stay huddled inside your warm home and out of the cold, biting air. More than ever, you’re wishing your yard work would just do itself.
fallen leaves on a lawn in the winter

Sound familiar? Maintenance and lawn care can be tedious and exhausting chores, especially on the coldest or hottest days of the year. But there are types of residential developments that take care of these chores for you.

The Many Faces of Low-Maintenance Living

Low-maintenance communities, in general, are neighborhoods that provide services such as lawn care and exterior maintenance through an association fee. In a maintenance-free community, especially, little — if any — maintenance is required on the homeowner’s part.

As is the case with any neighborhood, different communities offer different amenities, especially when it comes to low- or no-maintenance living. So to give you a better idea about what to look for in a low-maintenance home, we’ve come up with a quick guide.

Low-Maintenance Townhome Developments
properties along a wide street

If you want all the space of a single-family home but don’t mind sharing a wall, a townhouse is a great option for low-maintenance living. Though the amenities many vary from community to community, townhome developments typically provide common area maintenance and landscaping.

Low-Maintenance Condominiums

Think of condos as upgraded rental apartments: you have your own space, you can access community amenities, and you can count on someone else to take care of the most mundane chores. It’s important to note that condos are a type of ownership: when you own a condo, you own everything within the walls of your home. Unlike with townhomes, you aren’t required to care for the exterior. In addition, condo associations typically maintain the common areas and provide services like trash removal and pest control. Depending on the association, the community may also provide utilities, phone service, and cable or Internet.

No-Maintenance Residential Communities

house common in a maintenance-free community
Some communities, like 55+ communities, take care of more than just the common areas. True maintenance-free communities may also take care of your home’s exterior maintenance, lawn care, landscaping, and services like trash or snow removal.

Real estate options in these no-maintenance communities can include condos, townhomes, and/or single-family homes.

Where to Do Your Research

If a community has an association, check the rules and regulations to learn about what services the association provides. Not sure where to look? It never hurts to ask a trusted real estate agent.

Reposted with permission of .
Please visit blog.rarecharleston.com for a comprehensive list of articles pertinent to home-ownership in the Lowcountry.

Transform Your Home with These Timeless Seasonal Color Schemes

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Nothing can transform a home quite like a simple seasonal color palette. Whether you want to embrace the fall foliage, some holiday whimsy, or a little winter coziness, you can do all that with a few coats of paint and some well-placed splashes of color. The best part of all? Not only are these color schemes great for seasonal home decorating, they work wonders when staging your home to sell, too! Here are a few irresistible color schemes you can blend into your home this fall and winter.

Down to Earth: Rust Red and Terra Cotta

Connect with nature in the fall season using rich tones of red and brown. For an added touch of earthiness, incorporate natural elements like wood to really pull the look together.

Rustic: Persimmon and Oatmeal

orange wicker couch next to coffee table

Play up the autumn harvest theme with muted orange, shades of beige, and decorative elements like apples and pumpkins.

Cozy: Cream and Espresso

room with wood bed and beige walls

Neutral hues can make your home feel warm and inviting in the chilly fall and winter months. For a fun and functional look, add floor-length window coverings, which will keep the cold out and the coziness in.

Cheerful: Turquoise and White

gray couch with blue decorative pillows

Even if the weather outside is frightful, your home doesn’t have to be! Pair bright shades of blue with white to achieve a relaxing yet cheerful look. On a gray couch (like in the image above), turquoise accent pillows add a fun pop of color to the room’s neutral surroundings.

Small splashes of color here and there can go a long way into decorating a room for all seasons. All you have to do is switch out a few decorations and you’re set for the next season!

Merry and Bright: Snow White and Holly Green

stark white kitchen with greenery

While we typically think of red as a traditional holiday color, you don’t need bold hues to achieve a dramatic and trendy look. Stark white is becoming more and more common in interior design. To achieve this minimalist winter look, paint your space bright white and add pops of color with greenery.

When Selling a Home, Stay Neutral

The art of home staging is all about catering to the buyer. But since home buyers have drastically different tastes in color schemes, staying with a neutral color palette is the best way to appeal to the greatest number of buyers.


Reposted with permission of RARE Charleston.
Please visit blog.rarecharleston.com for a comprehensive list of articles pertinent to home-ownership in the Lowcountry.

6 Important things to ask when considering a community with an HOA

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Choosing the right association can be as important as the home style. After all it not just about the amenities offered, but what type of guidelines you will be expected to adhere to. In this business we often encounter new homeowners that purchase without considering the HOA's role in the community and how it may affect them. While HOAs can help maintain home values and may provide fantastic amenities they may also prevent you from constructing that 20 ft rock climbing wall you've been dreaming of building in your backyard. To make sure the community is a good fit for your family be sure to ask these 6 questions before you buy.

RARE Charleston: 6 Questions to Ask When Considering a Neighborhood with an HOA

Choosing an Electric Grill

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While we all love to grill, communities that share common walls such as condos and townhomes often have regulations prohibiting open fire grills. But that doesn't have to ruin your summer barbecue plans. Read on to learn about bobvila.com's top three pick for electric grills and their advice for picking the one that is right for you.

Bob Vila's Buyer’s Guide: Electric Grills

Proud Sponsor of the Sea Island Habitat of Humanity

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Ravenel Associates is proud to announce we are a Tier 1 sponsor for the Sea Island Habitat of Humanity’s National Women Build Week 2018. This week is meant to spotlight the homeownership challenges faced by women and invite them to devote at least one day to help families build strength, stability and independence through housing.

This year’s home is being built in the Heritage Oaks community on James Island. The proud new owner is Leland, a single father and hardworking employee of the Kiawah Island Community Association. The progress on this home is quite amazing. Follow along on Sea Island Habitat’s Facebook page or on their website at http://seaislandhabitat.org. Below is a picture of the Donor board posted at the jobsite. Our logo is also on the t-shirts worn by volunteers.

Ravenel Associates wouldn’t have been able to make this contribution if it wasn’t for all of our wonderful employees that make our continued growth and success possible.