Realtors came out in force to a redistricting public hearing Thursday, in part to serve as a resource to the committee and in part to advocate for more local representation.
Rep. Alan Clemmons, R-Myrtle Beach, the chairman of the S.C. House of Representatives Election Law subcommittee, who led the hearing, had asked that Realtors attend should the panel of congressmen have questions, said Steven Neeves, the government affairs director of the Coastal Carolinas Association of Realtors.
"We were there to make ourselves available," he said. "We're out there in the field and see how neighborhoods interact with one another."
Few Realtors spoke, but Neeves made a few points - urging the committee to keep Horry and Georgetown counties together in one U.S. Congressional district and to keep the Socastee community in one house district, despite the waterway splitting the community.
Neeves said Realtors have a vested interest, especially in the additional congressional district South Carolina gains.
"We think that's going to be good for the area and for property values," he said. "Having someone fighting for the infrastructure specifically that you need for your district always affects property values."
More roads could improve transportation and help draw businesses to the area and economic improvements would help raise property values, Neeves said.
Grand Strand real estate sales didn't fall as much in February as the initial numbers indicated.
Single-family homes sales were down 1 percent, instead of 7 percent, in February when compared to the same month in 2010, according to the Multiple Listing Service. Condo sales rose 2 percent, instead of falling 6 percent, when compared to February 2010, according to the MLS.
The number of sales adjusts as Realtors update their data in the MLS, which sometimes is later than it should be, leading to changes from initial reports, said Tom Maeser, a real estate analyst with the Coastal Carolinas Association of Realtors.
The median price for single-family homes - the price at which half sold for more and half sold for less - was down 12 percent to $163,500 in February when compared with the same month last year, instead of being down 13 percent to $161,500. The median condo price was down 8 percent to $105,000, instead of being down 9 percent to $104,500, according to the MLS.
Statistics on how the real estate market faired in March will be released on Monday, so check TheSunNews.com on Monday or Tuesday's Sun News for more details.