Why are people moving to South Carolina?

Why are people moving to South Carolina?

According to Realtor.com and as reported by senior real estate contributor Brenda Richardson of Forbes, three South Carolina cities rank in the top 10 out-of-state home buying search destinations in 2019 Q2. Richardson points to lower overall tax burdens, strong job opportunities, improved quality of life, and milder weather as key drivers of the trend.

Millennials and the Market

HBA of Greenville Executive Vice President and CEO Michael Dey predicts over 200,000 people will move to Greenville County in the next 20 years resulting in demand for at least 100,000 new homes. It’s not just baby boomers seeking homeownership either, as discussed at the HBA of South Carolina Annual Convention: Millennials are now the largest buyer segment in the market! They’re mostly buying re-sale homes but are increasingly pushing the market for new homes as well. Millenials have definite location preferences related to living in the city.

Millennials tend to value the community as an important amenity more than previous generations that might value in-home features more highly by comparison. If the neighborhood features common green space and walking areas, for example, this could be preferable to a private back yard and all the associated upkeep. Greenville has some of the best downtown outdoor vibes due to its multidimensional terrain, walkability, and the spectacle provided by the prominent Reedy River and Falls Park. These features are augmented through access provided by the Swamp Rabbit Trail, nearby parks, and several other top Greenville attractions.

Who is Moving to Greenville?

At Fairview Custom Homes, we see most of our clients coming from Florida, Illinois (Chicago), New York, Texas, and California and to a lesser extent, North and Mid-western states, Charlotte and Atlanta. What does that mean? Our experience directly mirrors the data, and we’re hearing a lot of the same things from our clients that are being reported nationally. About three-quarters of our customers are building primary residences with the others seeking a second home. Greenville now has three major metro areas among the top 10 moving destinations in the U.S.

If you’re thinking about moving to Upstate SC or Western NC, contact us and let our custom home builder experts help you to design and build the home that is right for you.

Trend Shift Toward Contemporary Design

Trend Shift Toward Contemporary Design

At Fairview Custom Homes, we’ve seen a shifting trend toward contemporary design preferences with our customers, so I decided to have a discussion with a top local architect to figure out what this trend is all about! Scott Crichton of Architecture 224 is a leading designer of custom homes in Upstate SC and contemporary design is his specialty. Here are some recent photos of his work at one of our job sites:

custom home features

What are the key components/features of Contemporary design style?

For my work, I tend to push openness and simplicity as key design values. Openness both with respect to interior spatial qualities as well as transparency between interior and exterior spaces. Architecture 224 houses tend to have an unusual amount of glass! Simplicity dovetails nicely with the openness in that the houses tend to be less ornamental, less busy. Large expanses of glass allow the site to become the artwork for the home, and the house becomes a vessel to enjoy the natural setting, rather than one intended to dominate or replace it.

What are the challenges or benefits/cost savings of Contemporary?

Typically, the biggest challenge is taking a project through a review board process. The majority of houses by Architecture 224 are in gated communities with stringent design guidelines, and typically, these guidelines are geared toward traditional design. The result is often a back and forth exchange with review boards convincing them of the appropriateness of a given design. It can be a difficult process, but the review boards are there for a good reason—to protect the community’s aesthetic consistency.

How long have you been working with Contemporary?

I have been working with Contemporary since the day I laid pencil to trace paper in architecture school. Growing up in a small mining town in Nova Scotia taught me the values of thrift, simplicity, and community, and these are values that I took up in school. My first school project was a fishing shed. It was good, not great. But the values that steered the design of that shed are largely the same that guide my work today.

What appeals to you most about Contemporary?

I think mostly it’s the intersection of aesthetic and cultural values. I prefer houses that reflect the era of their construction, rather than those intended to look old the day they are completed. I admire a well-crafted building that relies on proportion, scale, and organization over ornament and decoration. Houses that harmoniously engage the site, that light up in different ways as the sun passes over them and are perfect vessels for their inhabitants—for me, that’s what makes for great architecture.

outside view of a contemporary home

Where does Greenville and upstate SC fit in the trend toward Contemporary?

Well, that is a tough question. Certainly, Greenville is not an area known to be pushing the boundaries of contemporary design. For the most part, the market has been oriented toward traditional design. But things are on the upswing! That is the hope for Architecture 224—as demand for contemporary houses grows, the firm will become a leader in the Upstate providing thoughtful solutions that feature openness and simplicity. And I look forward to teaming with Fairview Custom Homes on many more houses of that character!

Where is Contemporary most popular?

No question that modern architecture is most prevalent in the centers of fashion—big cities like New York, Los Angeles, or closer to home, Atlanta. But I enjoy practicing architecture outside of these centers of fashion—big cities are too big for me. I like Greenville.

Where can people see Contemporary in upstate SC?

There are lots of places to see it, some easy to find downtown, some in more remote parts of the Upstate. Contemporary design has a century-long lineage with many examples in the Upstate. City Hall, the Peace Center Addition, the Liberty Bridge, the architecture school at Clemson are just a few institutional examples. Examples of contemporary houses are a bit trickier to find, though they are out there. Frank Lloyd Wright’s Broad margin is a good place to start. There are a number of mid-century modern houses in the city and surrounding areas as well. Hopefully, there will be more contemporary houses to come!

We appreciated Scott taking the time to speak with us about contemporary design. If you are looking for a custom home builder or interested in a home renovation services, we invite you to contact us to start a conversation about your dream home ideas.

Fairview Wins 2019 Pinnacle Award for Best Logo

Fairview Wins 2019 Pinnacle Award for Best Logo

Chris and Drew Hamblen with Pinnacle Award

When Chris and Drew Hamblen set out to form their identity as a second-generation family business, designing a sharp logo that told the right story immediately followed the decision of the name itself: Fairview Custom Homes. The brothers wanted a clean and classy symbol that would evoke all necessary elements of a high-end custom homebuilder: excellence, stability, focus, precision, trust. To achieve this effect, the mark needed to include: proper symmetry, effective proportionality, unique detail, attractive font, and complimentary colors.

For help with the graphic design, Chris contacted a former Clemson classmate, Jordan Fretz, to begin exploring design concepts. The iterative process started with discussing the elements noted above and comparing a multitude of slightly different variations. The final version is packed with symbolism. Did you catch it all?

The blue and gold form a powerful combination that speaks to the deliberate process, worth, and freshness you would expect from an award-winning custom home builder and its products. It’s also a tie to the colors Drew wore during an 11-year active duty service as a Naval Aviator. The font includes a unique alteration of one letter which harkens to the builder’s discrete and intentional focus on one of a kind features in homebuilding. For the icon, you’ll notice the Blue Ridge Mountains where Fairview’s projects are found in North and South Carolina- or maybe you saw a framer’s square or the prominent letter in the company name? These are intentional, and they’re arranged in a non-linear but well-balanced grouping. This level of thought and attention is what Fairview is all about- from the logo to the finished product.

Home Builders, Remodelers Achieve High Honors at State Awards

Columbia, SC – Home building industry professionals were awarded the Home Builders Association of South Carolina’s most prestigious awards on Hilton Head Island, S.C. The 15th annual Celebration of Excellence awards ceremony, sponsored by Norbord and Builders First Source, was held to honor the recipients of the Pinnacle Awards. The Pinnacle Awards recognize the craftsmanship of the best home builders and remodelers in the Palmetto State. The Pinnacle Award winners will be highlighted in the upcoming S.C. Builder Journal and presented on the S.C. Department of Commerce and the S.C. Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism websites to emphasize the craftsmanship and quality of S.C. residential builders.

2019 HBASC Pinnacle Awards Winner
Best Logo Builder/Developer
Fairview Custom Homes
(Member of the HBA of Greenville)

About the Pinnacle Awards

The Pinnacle Awards were created to honor those in the home building industry who have achieved the highest standard of quality craftsmanship, innovative problem solving and customer satisfaction. This competition is a privilege of membership, as well as a means of challenging our members to greater levels of achievement.

Labor Availability in Today’s Market

Labor Availability in Today’s Market

It should come as no surprise that skilled labor is in high demand in the residential construction industry in the Carolinas in 2019. But what is driving that trend in recent years? Three main reasons continue to appear in construction journals, news stories, and industry expert presentations:

  1. Lack of trades focus in US secondary and post-secondary school programs
  2. Impact of the sub-prime lending crisis / Great Recession on existing construction workers
  3. Impact of immigration policy changes or uncertainty

Our industry still faces the lingering impact of significant loss of skilled workers from the recession of 2008 in which large numbers of construction workers were laid off- some never to return to the sector. Combine this event with a vacuum of new entrants to the field due to an intense push for all (or most) high schoolers to go to college for an expensive 4-year degree and you’re left with a real shortage. So how does Fairview Custom Homes operate in this environment?

  1. High quality products attract high quality labor
  2. Quick subcontractor payment
  3. Clean and safe job sites
  4. Focus on relationships

At Fairview, we’re fortunate to build the most spectacular homes in our industry, and these projects are especially attractive to the best subcontractors in our region. Think about it, if you were a framer, mason or electrician, wouldn’t you prefer to perform your artistry on the best canvases in town? If you knew you’d be treated fairly and could come to a clean job site every day, wouldn’t that make a Fairview job opportunity more valuable to you?

That’s what we hear every day and is why we put such a premium on job site cleanliness and protection of finish items like floors, windows, countertops and paint. Our subcontractors know what to expect for interaction with our project management team throughout the job and for prompt payment of their services rendered.

We love building and renovating custom homes and the personal interactions we have with tradesmen is one of our favorite parts of what we do. We’re people people, and that’s a big reason why we’re able to continue building our hand crafted custom homes despite the tough labor market around us. Visit a Fairview job site today to see the difference!

Drew Hamblen Joins the Fairview Team

Drew Hamblen

The wait is finally over and we’re thrilled to have Drew Hamblen back since he left home in 2003 for military training and service. He’s settled right in as Fairview CFO and looks forward to meeting you. In conjunction with adding Drew to the team, we are pleased to announce the creation of Fairview Custom Homes, LLC and sharp new branding seen here on our site!

Here’s more about Drew:

Having served for 11 years as a United States Naval Aviator and recently exiting at the rank of Lt. Commander, Drew joined Fairview in early 2018 to partner with Chris and Steve in business. He transitioned from a promising military career as a Seahawk Weapons and Tactics Instructor pilot, in order to bring his creative energies to Fairview in a more family-focused enterprise here in the Carolinas. Drew hopes to help fulfill our multi-generational commitment to enhancing the quality of life for our homeowners, many of whom have served our country as well. Drew majored in International Affairs at Georgetown University, completed his MBA at the University of North Carolina’s  Keenan Flagler business school and specialized in contingency operations and safety programs in the Navy to prepare him to be an effective company manager and CFO at Fairview.