FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
Columbia, South Carolina Real Estate
by Mel Coker, Realtor

INDEX
Page 1: Your Realtor * All About Columbia * Schools * Lake Murray
Getting Started * Towards Closing * Buying a home, Mortgage, Inspections, Closing
Mel Coker's Real Estate Website

Columbia, SC Realtor - Mel Coker Ready to relocate and buy a home in the Greater Columbia, SC area? MY FAQ will give you quick answers to frequently asked questions. Please contact me when you are ready to buy a home. I would be very happy to assist you.

Mel Coker
Realtor, CRS, ABR, GRI
RE/MAX Metro Associates
Office: (803) 223-6214
email: Mel Coker


Mel Coker, Columbia real estate Who do I use for a Realtor in the Greater Columbia area?
You should choose Mel Coker as your Columbia area Realtor. Your choice of a Realtor/Buyer's Agent really does make a difference. I have a strong committment to friendly service and effective buyer representation and I'm a life-long Columbia resident. I'll assist you with Columbia information and all of the right services to choose and close on the right home for you and your family. I sell many new and resale homes each year to relocating clients. I work in most areas of Columbia, including: Northeast Columbia, Blythewood, downtown Columbia, Irmo, Chapin, Lake Murray, Lexington, West Columbia and the Fort Jackson area.

I hold the ABR, CRS and GRI real estate designations and am a member of the RE/MAX Platinum Club and Greater Columbia Association of Realtors Circle of Excellence.
More information about Mel Coker


Greater Columbia Information
What is the population of Columbia?
The Ciy of Columbia's population (2000) is 116,278. The Greater Columbia area population, including
Richland and Lexington counties is 536,691.

General description of areas
Downtown Columbia is home of the University of South Carolina, state government, Congaree Vista and more.

Northeast Columbia is the area closest to Fort Jackson and home to a great number of new home communities. (Richland District 2 schools)
Lexington (pop. 9,793) is a town and county seat of Lexington County and near Lake Murray. (Lexington District 1 schools)
Mel Coker's LEXINGTON Market Conditions Report

Irmo (pop. 11,039) is a town located Northwest of Columbia along I-26 and near Lake Murray. (Lexington Richland District 5 schools)
Mel Coker's IRMO Market Conditions Report

Chapin (pop. 628) is a small town located northwest of Irmo and near Lake Murray. (Lexington Richland District 5 schools)
Mel Coker's CHAPIN Market Conditions Report

Lake MurrayOne of the BEST lakes in all of the Southeast!
Mel Coker's LAKE MURRAY Market Conditons Report

What's the Weather like in Columbia?
It's GREAT! July is the average warmest month with 95 as average daytime high and 72 as average nighttime low. January is the average coolest month with 58 as average daytime high and 36 as average low. July is the average wettest month with 5.2 inches of rainfall. On an annual basis, the average high temperature is 76 and the average low temperature is 51.
More WEATHER information and links

How much rain and snow do you have?
The average annual precipitation is 48.7 inches. Snowfall is realtively uncommon in Columbia with average annual snowfall at 1.9 inches.

Do you have hurricanes?
The South Carolina coast (at least 100 miles from Columbia) has fewer hurricanes than Florida, the Gulf Coast Region and North Carolina. The biggest hurricane to ever hit the South Carolina coast, Hugo, was a tropical storm by the time it arrived in Columbia and caused only mimimal damage. The Greater Columbia area is far enough inland to not be severly impacted by any major hurricanes that infrequently hit the South Carolina coast.

What are some of the area's largest employers?
State government offices, Federal government offices, County government offices, Six major hospitals, The University of South Carolina, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, SCANA (South Carolina Electric & Gas Company), UPS, Michelin North America, Wachovia Bank, BellSouth, Westinghouse Nuclear Fuel, Square D, Siemens Diesel Systems, FN Manufacturing.

Is Steve Spurrier really in Columbia?
Yes! Coach Spurrier is now leading the University of South Carolina Gamecock football team! Go Cocks!


Columbia area Schools Information
SC public schools information Are there really nice public schools in the Columbia area?
Yes. Columbia has some of the highest ranking school districts in South Carolina. Five districts (Lexington 1, Lexington 2, Lexington 3, Lexington 5, Richland 2) exceed the SC SAT average and two districts (Lexington 1 and Lexington 5) exceed the National SAT average.

Is there a South Carolina merit-based scholarship program?
Yes, it's called the LIFE Scholarship. The award amount is up to the cost of attendance at a four year public SC institution, not to exceed $4700. Life Scholarship info link * SC Commission on Higher Education Life Scholarship

Where do I get more information or links to public and private schools?
SC Department of Education * 2005 Report Cards by District * Mel Coker's School Information Page


Lake Murray
I hear one of the nicest lakes in the South is near Columbia? How big is it and what's happening there?
Lake Murray is certainly one of the nicest lakes anywhere! It's a BIG lake... approximately 41 miles long, 14 miles wide at the widest point and 640 miles of shoreline. It's popular for boating, fishing, sailing, swimming and water-skiing.

Can I live on the waterfront on the lake or have lake access?
Yes, you have all sorts of options. Waterfront homes and lots are available for sale (somewhat limited availability). Also, there are communities/subdivisions at the lake with boat ramps and/or boat slips available on a lease basis.

What are typical costs for a waterfront lot or home?
The average price for a waterfront home (min. 100 ft. waterfront) is $772,000. The average waterfront lot price is $251,000.
Click here for Mel Coker's Market Conditions Report for Lake Murray

What do I do if I want to live on Lake Murray or near Lake Murray?
It's EASY! Call or email your Lake Murray Realtor, Mel Coker.

Are there snakes or alligators in Lake Murray?
NO to alligators. Yes to snakes. Where can you live on the water and not have snakes? In my 4 years of living on Lake Murray, I've only seen two snakes. Don't worry, enjoy the lake. The lake is popular and safe for swimming and water-skiing and all other water activities.

What kind of fish are waiting to be caught in Lake Murray?
Largemouth and smallmouth bass, striped bass, crappie, bream, catfish and more.

More Lake Murray information?
Mel Coker's Lake Murray website


How do I get started with buying a home in the Greater Columbia area?
Call or email Mel Coker:
email:
melcoker@remax.net
Office: (803) 223-6214
Home Office: (803) 388-8011
Internet: Columbia, SC real estate
Can Mel help me with ANY home for sale in the Greater Columbia area?
Absolutely. I'm a member of the Multiple Listing Service and I have access to ALL homes for sale.

Can Mel help me with buying a NEW home or building a new home?
Absolutely. There are large national and local builders and custom builders in Columbia. I sell lots of NEW homes.

Do you recommend a home inspection and can you suggest someone to do this?
I highly recommend a home inspection. While you can choose anyone you wish for this, my clients over many years have followed my suggestion and used Joe Boyle with HouseMaster Home Inspection Services.

Can you suggest mortgage professionals?
Yes. I know really nice and competent mortgage professionals. It is a GREAT idea to get pre-qualified BEFORE you start the home search with your Realtor, Mel Coker. I also highly recommend using a local Columbia area mortgage professional. CLICK HERE for Mel Coker's recommended mortgage professionals

Can you suggest personnel for quality termite and HVAC (heating & air) inspections?
The real estate contract used in this market requires a termite and heating and air inspection and a resulting "clear" letter. These are very important inspections. Some "buyers" agents do it the easy way and write contracts for their clients allowing the Seller to provide this letter. I highly recoommend that you the Buyer be in control of these important inspections. While you can choose anyone you wish for this, I highly recommend Bugman Pest Elimination for the termite inspection and State Mechanical for the heating and air (HVAC) inspection.

Can you suggest a competent moving company that will handle both ends of our move?
Contact Cherie McDonald at Smith Dray Line in Columbia for a FREE quote. Call Cherie at (803) 754-2653 ext. 26 and let her know that Mel Coker referred you.

Mel, I'm ready to visit you. Can you provide diretions?
Click here for directions to Mel Coker's office

Contact MEL COKER
Excellence in Real Estate Service

CLICK HERE to Fill-in my "instant service" e-mail form

"Selling Columbia, Lake Murray, Irmo,
Northeast Columbia, Lexington!"

Mel Coker
CRS, ABR, GRI
RE
/
MAX Metro Associates
Each office is independently owned and operated
690-B Columbiana Drive
Columbia, SC 29212

Office : 803-223-6214
Toll-free : 888-528-2258
Home Office: 803-
388-8011

e-mail: melcoker@remax.net

Click here for Columbia real estate information

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