Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Lake Murray Water Level Update

Sunshine Today at Lake Murray and in Columbia!   
We have had rain and cloudy days every day in the Lake Murray area since September 24th.  Then the low pressure system and some effects from Hurricane Joaquin caused historic rain and flooding from  October 1st through yesterday.    The heaviest rain was from the coastal areas of Charleston to Myrtle Beach and up through the middle part of the state and through Columbia.    Some parts of Columbia and Lexington have had very heavy and damaging floods.  Unfortunately, there have been drowning deaths, mostly in cars.

At Lake Murray, water levels are at near historic highs, but NOT over the 360' flood stage.  On October 1st, the water level was at a normal seasonal level of about 356.52.     On this date, the owner of the lake, South Carolina Electric & Gas Company, began lowering water levels with increased flow through the hydro plant.   This took the water level to about 356.2 on October 3rd.  The normal summer time water level is about 358' and the normal winter time water level is about 354'.

SCE&G had to release additional water from the emergency spillway gates on Sunday, October 4th and Monday October 5th.    As I understand, these gates had not been used to release water (except annual testing) since about 47 years ago.   Water levels continued to increase during this time as SCE&G worked to balance water release at the lake with concerns for increased river flows downstream.  As of October 6th, water releases from the Dreher Shoals dam on Lake Murray have been significantly reduced to aid in downstream river flows.

The water level today, Tuesday October 6th,  is 359.31.  This is an increase of 3 feet just since last Saturday, October 3rd.  It appears this may be near the peak as the rains stopped yesterday and we have sunshine today.  This is the highest level of Lake Murray we have seen during our 12 years of living on this beautiful lake.

SCE&G has to carefully monitor and manage water levels with two primary concerns - water inflows from the Saluda River watershed and Lake Greenwood AND how it releases water as it impacts downstream in the lower Saluda and the Congaree Rivers.  

Link to Lake Murray water levels

Lake Murray Water Levels - Sep. 29 - Oct. 6

Note stake in water just beyond and to right of birdhouse.  The bottom of this stake is the normal summer high waster elevation.   The lake level as of October 6th is about 3-4 feet above normal for this time of year.

Sunshine at Lake Murray!

Mel Coker
Lake Murray Resident & Realtor
RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants

Monday, September 14, 2015

Keep Lake Murray Litter Free!

Please Help Keep Lake Murray Clean

Yesterday, I rode my jet ski out to Bear Island to do a cleanup on my "adopted" island.  Unfortuntely, I did find a good bit of litter around two campsites.  It's certainly depressing to see that some folks choose to litter such beautiful sites.  The camping on Lake Murray's islands is even free!   Thank you to those that help keep Lake Murray's waterways and islands clean.

My adopted island:  Bear Island

If you want to help against the fight against litter in the Midlands, join the KEEP THE MIDLANDS BEAUTIFUL organization (like I have done).   It's only $25 per year.

Trash pickup on Bear Island - September 13, 2015

Ready to Leave Bear Island With the Trashbag

Mel Coker
Realtor - RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants
(803) 318-2007
Lake Murray MLS Search

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Lake Murray MLS Search

Lake Murray is South Carolina's Beautiful lake!

Why?  Approximately 50,000 acres and over 600 miles of shoreline and the Dreher Shoals Dam is located just 12 miles Northwest of Columbia.  Great fishing, fun recreation, friendly people and reasonable home prices on and near the lake make it a popular place for relocation.   There are more great reasons to move here: good weather, excellent schools in the area, reasonable taxes and convenience to medical facilities and shopping.

Ready to move?  Contact Mel Coker at (803) 318-2007.   Mel is a life-long Columbia area resident and lives on Lake Murray in the Chapin area.

CLICK HERE for Lake Murray MLS Search.

Mel Coker
RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants
Chapin, SC

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Mel's Lake Murray Overview

Watch my Lake Murray ANIMOTO video - it's just 2 minutes with a quick overview of Lake Murray.

Or, click this link for YOUTUBE.

Mel Coker
Lake Murray Realtor
RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants - Chapin, SC
(803) 318-2007

Lake Murray MLS Homes Search

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Selling at Lake Murray

Selling at Lake Murray?

This past week, I had the pleasure to finish out a closing for the home of Mr. Rudolph Wittemann.   Mr. Wittemann had lived in his home in Newberry County for 17 years.  He needed to sell to downsize a bit.   Mr. Wittemann decided to list his home with me after subscribing to my Lake Murray blog several years ago and following my real estate activities on this blog.

Thank you again Mr. Wittemann for allowing me to assist you in the marketing and sale of your home on Lake Murray.

My client and friend, Mr. Wittemann

View from Mr. Wittemann's former home

Ready to BUY or SELL at Lake Murray?

Mel Coker
RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants
(803) 318-2007
Lake Murray MLS Home Search

Monday, April 27, 2015


Digging At Your Property at Lake Murray or in South Carolina?

South Carolina 811 is a FREE service to contact to have underground utility services
marked prior to anyone doing large or small digging projects.  Safe digging is everyone’s responsibility. Notifying SC811 of your planned excavation can help prevent damages that can result in fines, utility service interruption and physical injury – even death.  And, it's the law.

Every digging project requires a call to 811.  Hitting an underground utility line while digging can harm the environment,cause serious personal injuries, disrupt service to an entire neighborhood and potentially incur fines and repair costs.

You can reach South Carolina 811 by dialing 811 within SC or calling our toll free number 888-721-7877 or visit the website:  www.sc811.com 

For a normal notice, the locate request must be entered into our system three full business days, not including the day the notice was submitted, before digging may begin.  SC811 does not physically mark the underground utility lines, but notifies the member facility operators and they are responsible for having the lines located. Facility Operators only mark the lines they install and maintain, which does not include privately owned lines.

Diggin'?  Always contact SC811.com first!
More information for Homeowners
Don't be THAT GUY!

Mel Coker
Realtor, ABR, CRS, GRI, ePRO
RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants
(803) 318-2007
Columbia / Lake Murray MLS Search

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Great HOT DOGS in the Chapin/Lake Murray area

My "go to" place in the Ballentine/Hilton/Chapin area for great hot dogs and other good lunch specials is the Get-N-Go at 2101 Wessinger Road (U.S. Highway 76 in Hilton).   

Get in there thru the end of April (2015) and tell them (Sunny or Jaya) that you want the MEL COKER  HOT DOG SPECIAL and get two hot dogs, a regular sized bag of chips and a regular sized drink for only $5.  It's a Deal!  It's a great lunch!

They have other good food too - chicken, fish, pork chops, french fries and vegetables.

Stop in soon to see my friends at the Get-N-Go in Hilton (formerly the PDQ).

GREAT HOT DOGS AT GET-N-GO in Hilton (near Chapin)

Get-N-Go at U.S. 76 and 2101 Wessinger Road

Mel Coker
Realtor and Hot Dog Enthusiast

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

NEW Lake Murray listing

JUST LISTED.  Beautiful Lake Murray Waterfront Home.
Beautiful.  Priced to Sell.
791 Living Inn Road  |  Prosperity, SC

All brick construction, four bedrooms with large master down, beautiful kitchen, living room, bonus room (FROG) upstairs, extra storage in garage, deck, sprinkler system and a nice private dock on Lake Murray for your fun on the lake.  Just over 2900 square feet.

Offered at $439,500.  Priced right.

CLICK HERE for all the details and pictures

Lake Murray Waterfront Home only 8 miles from Chapin, SC

Living Room
Lake Murray Dock (year round water)

View from Dock to 791 Living Inn Road

Ready for an appointment to see this home (don't wait too long) or have any other Lake Murray real estate question (buying, selling, relocation)?  Contact Mel Coker.

Mel Coker  (Lake Murray Resident & Realtor)
RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants
(803) 318-2007
Lake Murray & Columbia MLS Search
email:  melcoker@remax.net

Monday, March 9, 2015

Great Southern Lake & Tax Friendly State

A Great Lake & (Relatively) Low Tax Burden State?
Yes, it's possible.  Get to know Lake Murray in South Carolina.

KIPLINGER online recently named the 10 LEAST FRIENDLY STATES BY TAX BURDEN.  And, they are: 10.)New York, 9.) New Jersey, 8.) Nebraska, 7.) California, 6.) Montana, 5.) Oregon, 4.) Minnesota, 3.) Connecticut, 2.) Vermont, and the worst offender at #1 is Rhode Island.

Most of these heavy burden tax states share another burden: lots of cold weather and snow.
Escape the snow and high taxes - Move to Lake Murray!

MOVE South to friendly Lake Murray in South Carolina.   Our state is listed by KIPLINGER as a tax friendly state.    There are a number of retirement income exemptions, an overall low(er) state tax rate, and lower overall property taxes with tax breaks for seniors 65 and over.

Lake Murray is exceptional too!  It's the place I call home for my family.  BOATING MAGAZINE has named Lake Murray as one of the TOP TEN LAKES IN THE UNITED STATES FOR LIVING AND BOATING.

Ready to make the move to or near Lake Murray?  Call Mel Coker (803) 318-2007.

Lake Murray from my yard

Mel Coker
Realtor, CRS, ABR, GRI, e-PRO, MilRES
RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants
(803) 318-2007

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

NEW Home Listing Near Lake Murray

12 Hilton Glen Court
Chapin, SC  29036

This all brick home is beautiful!  It's priced to SELL at $279,900.  Located in Village at Hilton subdivision, this home is only 3.7 miles to a free public boat launch ramp on Lake Murray.

For Sale in The Village at Hilton - near Lake Murray

Great Room with Fireplace

Summary Features:
  • 4 bedrooms, 2 1/2 bathrooms
  • app. 2500 square feet
  • Great room with fireplace
  • Master bedroom on main level
  • Deck overlooks nice backyard that adjoins natural area
  • Community pool, pond and walking pathways
  • Excellent Chapin area schools (Lexington District 5)

For more information and pictures:
CLICK HERE for online tour

Call Mel Coker for a showing appointment on this home or any other home near or on Lake Murray.  Lake Murray is South Carolina's awesome lake!  Call (803) 318-2007.

Mel Coker

Lake Murray Realtor & Resident
RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants
(803) 318-2007
Lake Murray & Columbia Homes - MLS Search

Monday, February 2, 2015

Ready to BUY (or SELL) at Lake Murray?

Ready to BUY or SELL at Lake Murray?
Call Mel Coker at RE/MAX.
(803) 318-2007

The final numbers for 2014 are in...
My office, RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants, was:
  •  the #1 RE/MAX sales office in ALL of the Greater Columbia real estate market (and with only 12 agents too!)
  • the #1 real estate Chapin office in closed sales production 
  • Averaged $1.3 million in closed LAKE MURRAY sales volume PER AGENT

Mel knows Lake Murray!
  • Mel lives on Lake Murray
  • Mel can assist with selling, buying, relocation and building on your lot
  • Mel had over $2.2 million in sales volume on Lake Murray last year
  • Mel owns and maintains this blog and a Lake Murray website

Call Mel at (803) 318-2007  |  email to Mel Coker

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Best Online Photography Course

I love taking pictures out on Lake Murray.   I have recently tried some new digital photography skills and I want to learn more.  The best course I have found online is at 123di.com . I'm signing up!

Ready to take your photography skills to a new level?  Check this online course out now.  The extensive course is only $49.95 for the online access price.

CLICK HERE to check out the 123di Online Photography course.

Here are some of my recent Lake Murray pictures.

Mel Coker
Lake Murray Realtor & Resident
(803) 318-2007
Lake Murray MLS Search

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Lake Murray Market Analysis

What's Happening At Lake Murray?

The Most Comprehensive Lake Murray Market Analysis Follows...

The Golden Year (The Standard)
The Year was 2006...
  • The average closed price in 2006 was $558,387.  This was an all-time high and represented a 19.2% price increase over 2005.
  • The all time high in annual sales was in 2005 with 162 closings (at that time) and 2006 saw a slight decrease to 141 closings.
  • The average days on market (DOM) was "only" 125 days in 2006.
  • There were 11 homes sold for $1 million or more
  • The year 2007 began the downturn with slightly lower numbers for sales and average sales price

The Downturn (The Bad)
2008 - 2012
  • 4 straight years of average closed price decreases (2007 - 2010)
  • Average closed price during this period $488,604 (a 12.5% decrease) with the lowest point being in 2012 at $457,489 (an 18.1% decrease from 2006)
  • Average annual closings decreased to 113 with a low of 88 in 2009
  • Average DOM was up significantly to 208 days with a high in 2011 of 243
  • During this period just 4 homes per year (on average) closed at $1 million or more

The (Partial) Recovery (The Not So Bad)
  • Average closed price during this period up 5.98% over 2012
  • Average price in 2014 was at $479,951 - still down 14.0% from 2006, however, this is up 4.9% over 2012
  • Closings averaged 180 per year, up 59.3% over the previous 5 year period
  • Average DOM down to 196 days - down 5.8%
  • During this period, 7 homes per year closed at $1 million or more
  • 183 closings in 2014, an all-time high
Home closings criteria for analysis:  Waterfront on Lake Murray; minimum 75 feet water frontage; single family home with minimum 1200 square feet; minimum price $150,000.

More interesting data:
There are four Multiple Listing Service areas:  Irmo/Chapin, Lexington, Newberry County, Saluda County - the Lexington and Chapin areas accounted for 79% of all closings on the lake.
Prices in the Lexington / Chapin areas were 55.9% higher than the average for Newberry and Saluda counties combined.

Lake Murray Living is GREAT!

  • 151 homes for sale waterfront on Lake Murray
  • Average asking price is $665,632 - notice this is significantly higher than the closed average for 2014
  • In 2014, for the homes closed, the final average asking price was $514,839 (compare to the current overall asking price).   The average price reduction was 6.78%
  • Conclusions: many homes are overpriced and buyers are drawn to the homes priced to sell; lower priced homes attract more buyers
  • 20 homes for sale at $1 million or higher - enough to last almost 3 years at recent sales

To view or print my detailed Lake Murray market analysis, CLICK HERE FOR PDF REPORT.

The most important NEWS here is that NOW still is the time to BUY a home on or near Lake Murray.  To BUY or SELL on Lake Murray, Contact Mel Coker.  I know Lake Murray.  I SELL Lake Murray.  I live on Lake Murray.

Mel Coker
Mel Coker on Lake Murray

RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants
(803) 318-2007
email:  melcoker@remax.net

MLS Internet Search

Mel Coker on the Internet

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Happy New Year from Lake Murray

Happy New Year from beautiful Lake Murray!

Is this the year you move South to Lake Murray?  Lake Murray is South Carolina's beautiful lake located just outside Columbia, SC.  Make your SMART move in 2015... move to Lake Murray and contact MEL COKER for Lake Murray real estate professionalism.

Contact Mel Coker - your Lake Murray Realtor & Lake Murray Resident
RE/MAX Real Estate Consultants
(803) 318-2007
email Mel Coker

SEARCH Lake Murray MLS