Enjoying the Foods of the Low Country

by carolinaone_marketing 23. November 2015 09:40

Earlier this month, Anthony Bourdain focused one of his episodes of CNN'S Parts Unknown on the great city of Charleston. If there is something that the Low Country is known for more than anything else, it could be its legendary cuisine. Bourdain had conducted a show in Charleston once before, but he felt that he didn't get it done right the first time. For example, he had champagne with his oyster pie.


For the purposes of the episode, Bourdain met with a number of different chefs and celebrities in order to fully capture the Low Country cuisine. He spent a majority of the episode with Chef Sean Brock – a culinary superstar who is the executive chef of Huck and a previous recipient of the James Beard Award for Best Southeast Chef. You might have seen him on The Mind of a Chef if you were a fan of that show.


The biggest star seen on the show was Bill Murray. Bill Murray is a part owner for the Charleston RiverDogs. He is also an active member of the Charleston community. Murray, Brock, and Bourdain discussed some of the nuances of Low Country cuisine and the laid back lifestyle that makes Charleston, South Carolina such a wonderful place to visit. If you want to relax by the beach, check out amazing historical attractions, and eat some of the best food in the country, Charleston has it all

What Is Low Country Cuisine?


As Chef Sean Brock pointed out, one could say that Low Country cuisine is America's first cuisine. It has connections to New Orleans cuisine and Cajun cuisine, but it is certainly a cuisine of its own. It comprises the food cultivated by farmers and chefs along the South Carolina coast and into Georgia. We call it the Low Country because it is the area of South Carolina below the Sandhills. Any part of South Carolina above the Sandhills is appropriately called the Up Country.


The Low Country and Up Country are somewhat different in regard to cuisine. The Low Country incorporates much more in the way of seafood. Some of the cuisine's most famous dishes include She-crap Soup, the aforementioned oyster pie, shrimp and grits, crab cakes, Lowcountry boil, and Frogmore stew. Seafood is typically offered at most meals as it is readily available and fresh. This is why you won't find as much seafood-heavy dishes in the interior parts of South Carolina. Before refrigeration and modern forms of shipment, you couldn't get seafood in these parts because of the spoilage risks.


Besides seafood, vegetables, beans, Charleston red rice, and grits are all major components of Low Country cuisine.  You can also find baked mac and cheese, black-eyed peas dishes, fried okra, and much more. Whatever your diet preferences are, you're sure to find something you like in the Low Country.



If you are looking at vacation rentals in Isle of Palms, SC remember to bring your appetite when you come to the Low Country. In addition to the amazing beaches, Southern hospitality of the residents, and beautiful architecture, people come to the Charleston area for the delicious food. Consider Charleston, SC for your next vacation spot for a culinary experience like no other. 

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vacation rentals in Isle of Palms, SC

Why a Vacation Is the Perfect Holiday Gift

by carolinaone_marketing 20. November 2015 10:21

The holidays are just around the corner, and husbands, wives, girlfriends, and boyfriends are trying to think of the perfect gift to get their sweetheart.  You’ve already given them jewelry, they seem to have every Blu-ray and DVD they could want, and it seems like as soon as you give them an electronic it’s already out of date.  Did you know that there’s a perfect gift you give your special someone that’s guaranteed to be something they’ll want?  Instead of giving them A materialistic item, think about getting them a getaway for the holidays.  A vacation, whether you take it during the holidays or a different time, can be the ideal gift for your partner.  It can to their favorite vacation destination, somewhere new, or even local.  It doesn’t matter where you go, because vacation gifts have these characteristics in common.


They’ll have a gift that will last



Novelty is something that almost every gift comes with, but it’ll eventually wear off.  Your boyfriend or girlfriend may love the video game that you got them, but they’re going to eventually beat it and move on to something else.  Jewelry can last for years, but rings and necklaces can eventually go out of style.  The memories from their vacation will last for a lifetime.  They won’t get bored with them, they won’t go out of style, and they can’t return it.


They can make it their own


If you’re worried about your loved one not liking their vacation, you don’t have to plan it all out before you start booking flights and rentals.  You can easily say that you’ve set money aside, and then you can both go about planning their perfect vacation.  If they want to lie on the beach all day and read a book, they can plan a getaway to somewhere peaceful and tropical.  If they always wanted to see the Carolinas, you can look for houses for rent in Charleston, SC.  Whatever they want, you can make it possible. 


It’s a gift you can share


There’s something to be said about sharing experiences with somebody that you love.  You can buy your wife a diamond bracelet, but you both can’t wear it.  You could take turns reading a book or playing a game, but one of you will always be ahead of the other.  A vacation is the ultimate gift you both can share.  You’ll be able to plan the ultimate vacation, and then spend it with the one you love.  What could possibly be a better gift than that?



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Charleston, SC rentals

Don't Make These Mistakes for Your Home Inspection

by carolinaone_marketing 18. November 2015 09:07

Once you agree to a deal with the seller of your prospective home, one of the biggest hurdles that still remains is the home inspection. Although a home inspection isn't mandatory to purchase a home, it is recommended by all realtors as it can be a way for prospective homebuyers to identify potential problems before they purchase a home. It can also help with negotiations. Potentially, if there is an issue with the home that requires fixing before moving in, a home inspection can provide the evidence necessary to negotiate with the seller to make repairs. However, in order to ensure you have the right information, you'll need a quality home inspection. Here are several mistakes to avoid:


Go with Your Home Inspector to Inspect the Home: One of the worst mistakes you can make is not going to the home inspection. While it's not mandatory and it might be tempting to skip with all of the other things you need to do, viewing the home with your home inspector can provide the insight necessary to make decisions on your home. Although your home inspector will provide you with an in-depth report and pictures, attending the home inspection can provide invaluable information.


Don't Have a Friend or Family Do Your Home Inspection: Another issue that frequently comes up with home inspections is the issue of amateur inspection. Do you have a friend or family member that is a handy man? They can help you when a problem arises but don't use them for your home inspection unless they are licensed and have the proper training. Although you might want to use a friend or family member to save some money, you could lose much more in the long run if he or she misses anything serious.


Don't Skimp on Services: The typical home inspection doesn't include things like termite inspection or radon inspection. When compared to the actual home inspection, these services are pretty miniscule, so it might be worth it to pay for these services as well. In the grand scheme of things, what's a hundred dollar more when compared to any long-term issues that you might not be aware of when choosing to not get these services.



Carolina One Real Estate is dedicated to providing prospective homeowners with the information needed to make informed buying decisions. We can provide a Charleston real estate guide to help you know what to do to secure a home, how to make the process as easy as possible, and what you should look for in a home inspector. Visit www.carolinaonerealestate.com today to check out listings in the Charleston area. 

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Planning for Retirement? 6 Things to Consider when Buying a Charleston Home

by carolinaone_marketing 9. November 2015 07:03

If you are retiring soon or simply trying to plan ahead, Charleston may be your desired destination. We're not surprised. Our city combines just the right amount of culture and comfortable climate with easy access to everything to attract seniors in droves. However, these are not the only things that you will be thinking about when buying a retirement home for yourself and your spouse. Here are some of the major issues that you should address before making any final decisions:

senior couple on the beach


Consider your mobility, now and in the future. You may be really active now but as you age, things that were easy to navigate may become more of a challenge. With that in mind, choose a home that will be easy to get around in once you start to slow down a bit.

This could mean buying a rancher or at least a home with a potential bedroom and full bathroom on the ground floor; it could also mean looking for a walk-in shower so that you don't have to strain yourself getting over a high tub, non-slip floors for safety, lever door handles to avoid arthritis pain, large doorways and open design in case you ever need a walker or other assistance, etc.

Also, give some thought to how you'll get around. Are there senior services or bus routes in the area that can transport you if driving becomes a problem? Make sure that your new home is either near some form of transportation or within walking distance of a number of shops, restaurants, and other locations.

Medical Facilities

Even if you are in perfect health at the moment, aging naturally involves extra medical attention. When the time comes and you need to visit a doctor, clinic or E.R. on short notice, it will be good to have some quality options in your immediate vicinity. Being closer could make a major difference in an emergency, but it will take a lot of the stress out of those regular checkups, as well. 

Friendly, Safe Neighborhoods

Finding a friendly, safe neighborhood is a big part of ensuring a happy, healthy retirement. As you become older, choosing a new community carefully, with safety in mind, will not only protect you from most threats, it will offer you peace of mind. And while, at Carolina One, we're proud to say that our city is a very safe one in general, no place is perfect. When looking for real estate in or around Charleston, SC, visit the districts you are considering and talk to your potential neighbors. They will give you a good indication of the general vibe of an area and how approachable and caring everyone is.


It's important to calculate your post-retirement budget very carefully before you start to look at homes. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Will you be selling your current home, handing it over to your children, or keeping it to live in for some of the year?
  • How much should you factor in for unforeseen expenses, like medical bills and repairs?
  • What will the new cost of living be like in your new location? For instance, are groceries and gas more or less expensive where you will be?
  • Does the home you are looking at have an updated heating system, or will you need to fix it? This applies to the roof, the electric, etc.
  • Will the home be paid off by the time you actually hit retirement?

The answers to all of these questions, along with an estimated future income, will help you to determine your buying power, as well as how much cushion you'll have after retirement. Talk to a financial planner about your possible plans – they can help you to determine a budget based on all of these factors and more.


If you're settling on Charleston in the first place, presumably you are doing so with family in mind. If your children and grandkids have a home nearby, that's great! On the other hand, maybe you picked Charleston more for your own convenience and your children are a bit further afield.  Or perhaps they are scattered and you're picking a convenient midway point. No matter what the case, you'll need to decide whether or not you'll be hosting them overnight when choosing a home. They may not want or be able to pay for a hotel every time they visit. Decide how much space you and they will need, how long they would be likely to stay, and whether or not you can afford the extra square footage in the first place.


One of the major problems that people have when they retire is finding things to do. Many seniors will tell you that after working a 9-5 job for 40+ years, doing nothing makes them stir crazy. Because of this, it's crucial that your new home offers some kind of outlet for your energies. This can be something like a large yard with a lot of space for planting a garden or perhaps a work shed in which you or your spouse can take up woodworking, sculpting or painting.

Charleston parkIn addition to space for at-home hobbies, your neighborhood should provide easy access to other activities. For instance, look for places with bike paths and parks in the near vicinity, beach access, or perhaps a gym or yoga class that you can walk to. A local art gallery or movie theatre will give you a way to get out and enjoy the arts, or perhaps you can find a nearby bar or restaurant that features live musical acts every week. Look for a location that will keep you engaged with life!

Retirement is complicated, but living in Charleston provides enough rewards to be worth the effort. Contact us at Carolina One Real Estate to start your search!


Real Estate in Charleston SC

What Happens AFTER Your Offer Is Accepted?

by carolinaone_marketing 5. November 2015 05:29

woman closing on homeWe help lots of people find great homes in Goose Creek, SC. A big part of that job is helping potential buyers navigate their way through the real estate process. Every step, from choosing neighborhoods to look at and setting a budget to making the offer itself, can be complicated. But all too often, that's where the advice ends. What happens next—after the seller has accepted your offer?

Once the offer is accepted, there are some basic steps you should expect. Most of these require action on your part, and while your realtor can walk you through them, it helps to know what to plan for. Here is the buying process from offer acceptance to moving in, in eight simple steps. 

1.  Earnest money – "Earnest money" serves as proof you are serious about the house and gives the seller some assurance you will follow through. It's a small amount by real estate standards, typically $1,000 and rarely more than $5,000. You pay this in cash immediately when the offer is accepted. The seller will keep this money even if you walk away—it serves as a form of compensation for their lost time on the market (though they may have other legal options as well). Assuming you follow through, it will be deducted from the amount you pay at closing.

2.  Home inspection – Most offers are made contingent on a home inspection. You should schedule the inspection right away when your offer is accepted. Ideally, search for and talk to a local inspector before the offer is accepted, so you can move quickly (your realtor can recommend a reliable local inspector). Be sure you ask the inspector what is and is not checked for on their inspection. If you pull out of a contingent offer due to inspection results, you will get your earnest money back.

3.  Mortgage paperwork – As part of the offer process, you signed a sales contract. Immediately when this is signed you should notify your lender. Presumably, they have pre-approved you for at least this amount, and they will now start the mortgage process. They will ask you for a lot of paperwork—make a checklist and get them everything as quickly as you can.

4.  Title commitment – A title commitment is an official review of the property title and its legal history. This is conducted by a title company that may be named in the sales contract. Your lender or realtor can refer you to a title company if needed. This report will show any liens on the property. If there is anything unexpected you should consult with a lawyer—do not take the seller's word for it.

5.  Appraisal – Your lender will start an appraisal process for you, but only when you tell them the inspection is complete and that the offer is going forward (so keep them in the loop). They will order the appraisal so that they can verify the house is worth the value being discussed.

6.  Insurance & warranty – Home insurance and a warranty is required by your lender, but you must obtain the insurance yourself. If your down payment is less than 10% of the price, you will likely also need mortgage insurance. Find out exactly what insurance and warranty your lender needs, then shop for quotes from multiple insurance agencies before you choose one.

7.  Closing date – The closing date is determined in the sales contract and is the "deadline" by which the above must be done. However, you will need the title company present at the closing, so you should call well in advance to make sure they have an opening. The closing itself is easy, as the paperwork should already be done and there should be no surprises.

8.  Utility transfer – You will want to either transfer utilities to your name or have them turned on if they were disconnected. In some states, there will be a list of utility transfer information in the Seller's Disclosure. If this isn't the case in your state, be sure to ask the seller for the info you need.


That's all it takes—the house is officially yours and you're ready to move in!


Home in Goose Creek, SC

Which Charleston Suburb is Right for You?

by carolinaone_marketing 5. October 2015 04:47

When you are moving to the Charleston, SC area and looking for real estate, you'll have a lot of decisions to make. You'll be trying to find a good value for your money, enough space for everyone, quality school systems, and many other things. However, the first thing you'll have to consider is whether or not you want to live in the city or in one of the many suburbs. If you have kids, don't like being kept up at night by loud city noises, like to garden, or appreciate fresh air and breathing room, then a suburb is the way to go.

But which one? There are many suburbs around Charleston, each with its own unique personality and advantages. At Carolina One, we want you to make an informed decision when choosing a new home. In this blog, we'll go over the pros and cons of four of the most popular Charleston suburbs to help you narrow the search.

Mt. Pleasant

Mt. Pleasant home

Mt. Pleasant has a lot going for it. It's a large town of over 60,000 people (big enough to be considered a city itself), most of whom commute to Charleston – and for good reason. Mt. Pleasant is the closest to Charleston of any of the suburbs listed here, at only about 3 miles at the shortest point (though it can be ten miles or more, depending on where you work in the city and what side of Mt. Pleasant you live on).

As such a large town, the area has many amenities and attractions, and offers easy access to the beach through smaller adjacent towns like Sullivans Island and Isle of Palms. However, the ease of commute and the fact that this town was named one of the top places to live in the U.S. does mean that it costs a bit more. The median home value here is about $382,000*, the most expensive of the four locations that we are detailing here. However, if you have the money, the varied community and ease of access are well worth it.

Goose Creek

Goose Creek is about 20 minutes northwest of North Charleston and about 30 minutes northwest of the downtown area, depending on traffic of course. It is a little over half the size of Mt. Pleasant, population-wise, at 36,000 residents, and offers a quaint, small-town vibe that it has retained despite its burgeoning population. The home values in this town are among the lowest of any Charleston area suburb, at a median of about $171,000, so if you are looking for an affordable place that's not too far from the city and offers a vibrant local community, Goose Creek is a great option! They also boast a highly-rated school system and a number of festivals and activities for residents and visitors alike.


Summerville is known locally for its beautiful flowers and pine trees and, in the past, was a well-recognized summer retreat and spa town for city dwellers looking to escape the mosquitoes and heat. It's located just a bit further away than Goose Creek – taking about 35 minutes to get to from downtown Charleston – and has about the same population as well (about 3,000 fewer). The town boasts loads of historic buildings, easy access to plantations and gardens, and lots of shopping in picturesque village areas. Summerville is also similar to Goose Creek in terms of home value, as the median here is roughly $184,000, making it a good choice for new families or couples.

Johns Island

Johns Island property

Johns Island is the least populous of the suburbs on our list, at only about 20,000 people. However, this lack of buzz means that the island is peaceful and has retained a great deal of its natural beauty. Many of the vistas are of tidal creeks and backwater, with the homes here nestled among them.

All of this is surprising, since Johns Island is located at a cozy ten to fifteen minute drive from the downtown area of Charleston. Again, however, the closer you are, the more you pay. While the median home values here are a little lower than those of Mount Pleasant, at about $227,000, they exist in less abundance. In other words, there are simply fewer homes here, but if you can nab one for a reasonable price, you will always love the view! Also, with a number of empty lots available here, the island is an ideal location in which to build your dream home.

If you want more information on these or the other suburbs of Charleston, contact us today at Carolina One Real Estate! Our expert real estate agents will guide you towards the right property for your budget and preferences.


*All median values as of 2013. 


Charleston SC Real Estate

4 of the Best Breakfast & Brunch Places in Charleston

by carolinaone_marketing 18. September 2015 06:45

When moving to Charleston, South Carolina, you aren't just looking for a good neighborhood and school system (although those may be your primary concerns). Most people don't want to live in a place with nothing to eat, and one of the things that draws people to this city is its eclectic food scene. With cultural influences like English, Scottish, French, and Cajun, there is a particular flavor to Charleston that is all its own. Carolina One has already listed some of the best all-around city restaurants in this blog, so we thought we'd cover something a little more specific and review some of our favorite picks for breakfast and brunch. Here they are:

1.  The Hominy Grill
– What's more southern than grits . . . and what's more Charleston than the Hominy Grill? They offer a breakfast menu for weekdays and a special brunch menu on weekends. Their breakfast menu offers a number of standard staples like shrimp and grits, omelets, and biscuits and gravy, but clearly they're incredibly good at making them or the place wouldn't be such an establishment in the city. If you go for brunch on the weekend, they offer such delectable items as she-crab soup with sherry, a Low Country omelet with red rice and shrimp gravy, and a fried green tomato BLT. Yummm! And get a side of their famous grits to go with anything!

2.  Poogan's Porch – Though they only offer brunch on weekends from 9 A.M. to 2:30P.M., Poogan's Porch is well worth it! They have unique offerings like the fried alligator with honey Jalapeño dressing, Blackend catfish with bacon, black-eyed pea, and butter bean succotash, and cinnamon French toast with strawberries and pecans. In addition, they offer essentials with a twist, like chicken and waffles with blueberry Texas Pete maple syrup, and locally-inspired Charlestowne Fry (an omelet with fried oysters, gouda, bacon, and remoulade). The restaurant also has a killer atmosphere, being set in a restored Victorian home and named for a dog that used to live on the porch – in other words, the perfect vision of an idyllic southern brunch! 

3.  Gaulart & Maliclet – This casual establishment reflects the French influence on the city, offering a breakfast every morning (except Sundays) starting at 8 A.M. with a number of basics that will be great for eating in or taking on-the-go. Have a ham and cheese croissant, a fruit salad, or a filled PB&J croissant with made-to-order French press coffee. How many places offer that? And all of these come at an impressively low price that will definitely have you coming back to Gaulart & Maliclet on days when you forgot your lunch.

4.  The Park Café – A local neighborhood establishment right off of Hampton Park in north Charleston, the Park Café emphasizes local, fresh ingredients and unassuming, yet flavorful dishes. They offer both breakfast and lunch menus, replete with distinctive offerings like «Ębleskiver (Danish popovers), Veggie Mess (scrambled eggs, cheddar, avocado and veggie curry), creamy kale with parmesan, and the Park Burger with bacon, aioli, tomato and cheddar. All of this is offered in a sunny, spacious building surrounded by trees and filled with indoor plants and rustic, but modern décor.

These are just some of our picks for breakfast and brunch in Charleston. What are yours?


If you are considering moving to our great city, the many fantastic food options may convince you. Check out our Charleston SC homes for sale at Carolina One and the many other restaurants that you will experience here today!



Charleston SC homes for sale

Goose Creek, SC: The Perfect Environment for Young Students

by carolinaone_marketing 4. September 2015 05:26

Can you believe it's already time to start another school year? It seems like summer just began! This can be a stressful and overwhelming time for both students and parents alike – especially parents who are trying to enroll their children in a new school system. However, if your child will be going to school in Goose Creek, you're in luck! Goose Creek, SC is the perfect environment for young students. Here are three reasons why:

kids learning together 

1.  Highly Regarded School Systems – One of the biggest concerns that parents have when enrolling their children in a new school is the value of the education they will receive. It can be hard to find a good school in a new area that you are unfamiliar with, but Goose Creek's is one of the best. The teachers here are uniquely dedicated to ensuring that each student gets the attention that they need. Goose Creek schools always rank well above average in the area for quality education.

2.  Safe, Small Town Community Feel – Your child should have no problem making friends in this town, both at school and outside of it. Goose Creek prides itself on the friendly citizens and small-town community feel. It has 36,000 residents spread out over 32.5 square miles, which helps to keep everyone in town rather close-knit without the crowding of a larger city. The historic town also has a very low crime rate, which means that your children will be able to make friends and walk around town with very little fear for their safety.

 man sitting by the water

3.  Fun Community Events and Activities for Everyone – Goose Creek, SC may be a small town, but that doesn't mean that it's boring. There are always plenty of community events and activities that your child can partake in. Your child can play at the many nearby parks, enjoy the annual Fall festival, and much more! Goose Creek is also famous for its historic churches, which your family can visit for a day of educational fun. And, if you are religious and looking for a church to attend, the area has an abundance of them in several different denominations. You'll have no problem finding a welcoming congregation that you and your child can get involved with.

Do you currently live in Goose Creek, SC? What do you love the most about it and what do you think makes it the perfect place for raising school-aged children? Leave a comment and let us know your thoughts! 


Home in Goose Creek, SC

Five Things to Know before You Purchase a Second Home in Charleston, SC

by carolinaone_marketing 27. August 2015 06:21

If you have visited the Charleston, SC area, you may have fallen in love with it. We have, and we know many homeowners who knew they had to have a home in the Charleston area after visiting it a few times. The beaches are beautiful, the weather is great all year round, and the food is fantastic. Plus, there is a ton of history here, and the people are so friendly. They don't call it Southern Charm for nothing!

However, before you immediately go out and buy a second home in Charleston, SC, we wanted to provide you with a few words of wisdom. As experts in real estate in Charleston, SC, we have sold homes to many people who were using them as a second vacation home. Most have not regretted the decision for a second, but all of them had a clear understanding of what went into home ownership before they agreed to a contract. Here are five things you think about before looking at homes:

Get a Real Estate Agent that Is Local: If you don't live in the area that you want to move to, no matter if it's Charleston or anywhere else, you will definitely want to find a local agent who can help you find homes in the area that meet your individual needs. An agent can provide you with up to date information on new homes on the market that you may not be able to get if you're hundreds of miles away. He or she can also make you aware of any local information that you should know before you schedule a visit.

At the Same Time Get to Know the Area as Well as Possible: Like we said, we haven't encountered anyone who has had buyer's remorse purchasing a second home in Charleston, SC. Still, if you have only been to Charleston once or twice, we would recommend coming out for an extended visit. Make sure that this is really the place you want to spend your summers or winters, depending on where you are. Talk to the locals too. We're pretty sure they'll sell you on the area, but insider information can really help you know if Charleston is right for you.

Figure Out What Kind of House You Want to Buy: If you're purchasing a second home to spend time in occasionally, you may not require a lot of space. A smaller home or condo will certainly save you money on maintenance costs. However, at the same time, if you will have friends and family over when you do come to Charleston, space could be tight. Then there's the question of whether you're going to retire there. What kind of a home do you want to retire in? It's crucial to do an evaluation of what your needs are in order to make an educated decision.

Are You Going to Rent Out Your Home? If so, you will need to learn more about what your tax benefits and obligations are. For example, if you rent out your home less than 15 days out of the year, then you don't have to report that rental income. However, you can't deduct any rental expenses like upkeep, cleaning costs, etc. However, if you rent more than 15 days out of the year, you do need to report that income. However, you do get to deduct your rental expenses on your tax bill. If you wish to make a little money on your home when you're not there, renting is an option.

Examine Your Plan, Both Short Term and Long Term: If you are planning to retire there, is the home near quality healthcare facilities and does it have reliable transportation options? Obviously, if you are going to choose a home in Charleston, SC, the answer to that question will be yes. Is your second home close enough where getting there won't be a hassle if you plan on making a weekend trip? Why do you want a second home in the first place? By examining your goals and reasoning to purchase a second home, you should be able to make the right decision.

Carolina One real estate associates can help you find the home of your dreams in Charleston, Isle of Palms, Mount Pleasant, and many other parts of the Charleston metropolitan area. If you fell in love with Charleston and want to make your home here, contact us today at (800) 342-2105.



Charleston Real Estate

Understanding Charleston's Shotgun Homes

by carolinaone_marketing 24. August 2015 04:09

There are all kinds of homes for sale in Charleston, SC, from historic manors to brand new townhomes, suburban ranch houses to city bungalows. But one of the most distinctive styles of Charleston house—and one of the most misunderstood—is the "shotgun." Shotguns are by no means the most prevalent houses for sale today, but they are definitely on the market and few styles are so distinctly Southern as a shotgun.


Here is everything you need to know about Charleston's shotgun homes:

  • They are a classic of Southern architecture – Shotguns aren't unique to Charleston. Probably most famous in New Orleans, the shotgun style home is found as far away as Texas. These homes are so named because each room opens onto the next, all in a single line, so you could fire a shotgun from the front door to the back door. This style of home was popular for two reasons: first, because it lets you make optimum use of a long, narrow lot (which is more affordable than a home with lots of street front); secondly, because the narrow construction does not require long timbers to build—the same reason that cottage-style properties are popular. For much of Southern history, the urban middle class preferred shotguns.
  • Shotguns and privacy are compatible – To many people, the word "shotgun" conjures up the image of tip-toeing through one bedroom to get to another, or hanging sheets over the doorways for privacy. This dorm room style living is not the reality in most shotguns. In the olden days, there was some truth to this (with every room opening onto the next, it was inevitable). But these days, many shotguns have private side entrances installed, or have even been remodeled so the rooms no longer open onto each other.
  • Shotguns are not the same thing as "railroad" homes. A railroad home has the same basic layout as a shotgun, but with a single hallway running the length of the property. This makes the house wider (and potentially makes the rooms narrower) but ensures privacy for each room.
  • The kitchen is usually in the back. Originally, shotguns had outdoor back kitchens or an indoor kitchen at the rear of the house. The front of the house is typically a bedroom. Why does the front door open onto a bedroom? Explanations vary from getting the most fresh breeze on a hot night to Southern hospitality, entertaining guests in the most cherished room of the house. These days, most people use the front room as a living room.
  • They're easily modified. Because shotguns have such a simple layout, they can easily be remodeled in all sorts of creative ways. Common choices include adding bathrooms, increasing privacy between rooms, expanding with more rooms in the back, or adding a large porch on the front.

Some of Charleston's most well-preserved historic districts are full of beautiful vintage shotgun homes just waiting to be purchased. They are not the only homes for sale in Charleston, but they are great investments. Check out our listings at Carolina One Real Estate to find shotgun homes or any other home in the neighborhood of your choice. 


homes for sale in Charleston SC