The celebrated Children's Museum of the Upstate is set for a grand opening this Friday on July 31st, and will delight children and adults alike. I attended the grand opening gala last week, and with no children there, brought out the kid in me. There is large variety of extraordinary displays that will grab the attention of kids generally 6-11, but with a few exhibits designed for preschoolers and toddlers. I especially enjoyed the interactive water table where you will surely get wet experimenting with locks, water lifting devices and erector set style piping. The TV broadcast booth allows you to record a weather segment, a music room can show you visually how the frequency of guitar strings vary, you can race a formula one race car with software that is designed for actual racers, or even land a space shuttle simulator. There are plenty of other activities involving recycling, energy conservation, shopping and cooking, paper airplanes, wind tunnels, levers and pulleys, lasers, and much more. Don't miss this museum that will bring in kids from all around the Upstate. Normal admission is $12 per person, but on the third Thursday of each month, everyone get in for $2 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. You can learn more at The Children's Museum of the Upstate.
Click here to see our album of Children's Museum Gala Opening - Photo Album
Greenville Real Estate Foreclosures
Residential foreclosure sales in the Greenville market have remained steady over the first two quarters of 2009, but have not taken off as reported in some parts of the country. The South Carolina Supreme Court instated a moratorium on some of the state’s foreclosure sales until the distressed owner could determine if they qualified for federal relief. Red tape has slowed down the qualification process, so many of the properties are in limbo. However, many banks forecast that there will soon be a deluge of properties coming on the market. In the Greenville area, foreclosure sales in 2009 that were listed by the local MLS system have been running around 200 properties per month. Many of these sales were at prices under $100,000 with a median price of $78,500. Cash buyers accounted for 33% of these sales with a median price of $46,750. Condo foreclosure sales have been weak and have contributed for only about 7% of total sales.
Church Street Renovations via Federal Stimulus Funds (Falls Park runs under Church St)
We have been hearing about the plan to upgrade Church Street into a tree-lined boulevard for almost 10 years, but it looks like the project is underway thanks to funds from the federal stimulus package. All those years of planning paid off and made the project "shovel ready", thus creating eligibility for the funds. You can expect to see a landscaped median, two lanes and a bicycle lane running in each direction, and sidewalks set back from the road. The improvements fit into the adjacent Haynie-Sirrine master plan, a community that links the nearby West End and Falls Park with the attractive Augusta Road area. In recent activity, a section of old homes near Sirrine Stadium was demolished last year and is now for sale, ready for development. The stimulus funds will also kick start a similar upgrade to Fairforest Way that serves JL Mann High School off of Mauldin Road. Work should begin on these projects in the spring of 2010.
Truth in Lending Regulation Altered
The Federal Reserve Board is looking out for mortgage consumers and has modified its Truth in Lending Regulations (Reg Z), intending to cut down on lenders that change their fees after an initial "good faith estimate" of costs pertaining to the loan, then forcing the consumer to pay additional, undisclosed fees at the closing table. All loan applications filed on or after July 30, 2009 will require lenders to provide an early disclosure of loan costs within three days after loan application, then wait at least 7 days to close after the early disclosure. In addition, if the annual percentage rate (APR—an indicator of interest rate plus additional costs associated with settlement) changes by more than 0.125%, the lender must provide a corrected disclosure and wait another three business days before closing. Most importantly, lenders are prohibited from collecting any fees up front with the application except for a reasonable charge for a credit check. That way, you are not out of pocket for hundreds of dollars for fees like an appraisal or application fee before you get the disclosures and decide if you like the terms. Also, the consumer must have the appraisal in hand three days before settlement. This will empower the consumer with information they may not have had in the past, but will certainly throw a kink into the timing of making your settlement date as per contract. With a recent new federally mandated system that lenders follow to order appraisals, receipt of these documents have often been delayed; so expect for many closing dates to be pushed back as well. The consumer can however waive the 3-day appraisal rule if you do not think receiving an appraisal in necessary. If you are still confused over the implications of this ruling, please contact The Cunningham Team; we will be happy to go over them in more detail.
You can expect to see a few good light shows this week as thunderstorms march across the area. Temperatures will be somewhat mild with highs in the mid 80s.
Please visit our websites at Greenville SC Real Estate and our second site at Greenville SC Homes
For our Foreclosure Properties check out our Greenville Foreclosures Page
The family on our recent trip to CO. for a friend's wedding. Gorgious scenery.