Few purchases give you a sense of pride and accomplishment like buying a new home. From white picket fences and lush green grass to cookouts with neighbors and holidays with the family, owning a home is magical. Like most great things, though, enduring the home-buying process takes a lot of work. There are many steps to take and difficult decisions to make along the way. One of the most crucial decisions is what type of home loan and mortgage broker to choose. Whether it's your first time buying a home or you're a seasoned owner with multiple properties, you will need a trusted mortgage broker in Folly Beach, SC, with your best interests at heart.
If you're like most people, you need a mortgage professional whose top priority is their customers - an expert who can provide accurate advice and guidance so you can make educated decisions. That's where Mija Mortgage comes into the picture.
Whether you want the best interest rates or don't know where to start in the home-buying process, Mija Mortgage can set you up in the right direction. From getting you pre-qualified to buy a home to securing a veteran's loan, Mija Mortgage is the trusted solution you need. As Folly Beach natives, we're proud to serve the Lowcountry and all of South Carolina with trusted mortgage brokerage services.
Unlike some mortgage companies in Folly Beach, SC, we bring years of high-level experience and insight to the table. Having worked with hundreds of clients during our time in business, we know you're probably going through a range of emotions right now. Buying a new home can be a scary process, especially for first-time buyers. That's why we make every effort to make ourselves accessible and available for clients. Our primary goal is to help you make the right mortgage for your family and your budget.
We know that many home loan officers have horrible reputations. Some brokers only see their clients as transactions, and a means to make quick money. They come off as impatient and pushy, failing to understand that this is a very big decision for you. At Mija Mortgage, we take the opposite approach. We encourage our clients to take as much time as needed to ask us questions and review mortgage documents. We could say that our mission is to exceed your expectations, but we'd rather just show you. From assistance finding FHA, VA, or other loans to refinancing your current mortgage, Mija is the team you can trust.
Here are just a few reasons why home buyers choose Mija Mortgage:
Most people simply don't have access to the hundreds of thousands of dollars needed to purchase a home with cash. Instead, they take out a mortgage loan to buy a home. Unfortunately, many homebuyers are anxious to get the ball rolling and, due to their excitement, fail to shop around for the best mortgage rates. To some degree, avoiding this step makes sense, as it requires a lot of legwork and research to get the job done. For those not wanting to spend hours researching a reasonable mortgage, there's an alternative to consider - working with a mortgage broker.
To understand the benefits of working with a mortgage broker, you must first understand their role in the home-buying process.
Your mortgage broker is a third party that works to connect you with mortgage lenders. Essentially, a mortgage broker works as an intermediary between a person who wants to buy a home and the entities offering loans to buy a home. The mortgage broker works with both the borrower and lender to get the borrower approved. They also verify and collect paperwork from the borrower that the lender needs to finish a home purchase. Typically, mortgage brokers have relationships with several home loan lenders. Mija Mortgage, for example, has access to 50 different lenders, which gives us a wide range of home loans in Folly Beach, SC, from which to choose.
In addition to finding a home loan lender, your mortgage broker will help you settle on the best loan options and interest rates for your budget. Ideally, your mortgage broker will take a great deal of stress and legwork off your plate while also potentially saving you money.
If you're ready to buy a home, getting pre-qualified is a great choice that will streamline the entire process. Your mortgage broker makes getting pre-approved easy by obtaining all the documents needed to get you pre-qualified. In taking a look at your application, they will determine if you're ready for the pre-approval process. If your application needs additional items, the mortgage company will help point you in the right direction to ensure your application is as strong as it can be. Your mortgage broker will also walk you through the different types of loans, from Conventional and FHA to VA and USDA.
In order to be pre-approved for a home in South Carolina, you must have the following:
Most people choose to use a mortgage broker because they have access to different lenders and interest rates. But a great mortgage broker brings more to the table than a choice of lenders.
Save You from Unneeded Stress:One of the biggest advantages of hiring a mortgage broker is that they can find and vet loans while managing the mortgage process on your behalf. The best mortgage companies, like Mija Mortgage, hire brokers who are experts at keeping underwriting on track, coordinating with relevant parties, and handling all paperwork involved. At the end of the day, mortgage brokers save you stress and time and often expedite the closing process.
More Access: We touched on this earlier, but it bears repeating: A mortgage broker provides access to a range of loans, rates, and lenders. In fact, many mortgage brokers can get rates lower than what the average person could get from a lender.
Save You Money: There's a chance that your mortgage broker can get your mortgage fees reduced or waived by the lender, which could save you a good deal of money.
Help with Unfavorable Financial Situations: Expert mortgage brokers can often assist in challenging financial situations, like when a buyer has inconsistent income or less-than-perfect credit. Experienced brokers, like those at Mija Mortgage, are often aware of lenders willing to will work with nontraditional borrowers.
Provide Key Insights: Mortgage brokers share important insights, such as your chances for a home loan approval and exactly how much house you can afford. They can also save you from making costly mistakes based on their years of expertise in the mortgage industry.
While settling on the best type of home loan isn't as exciting as searching for the home of your dreams, it's equally important. Yes, your Mija Mortgage loan officer in Folly Beach, SC, will be happy to help explain the differences between home loans. But understanding the basics ahead of time will save you stress and time in the long run.
Conventional loans can be used to purchase a new home or refinance your current one. Conventional loans include fixed-rate mortgages and adjustable-rate mortgages. Generally, borrowers must put down a 3% down payment for owner-occupants, 10% for a vacation property, and 20% for an investment home. If you are able to pay 20% of the total cost of the home, you can avoid private mortgage insurance, which is otherwise required. Conventional mortgages are often preferred by buyers with good credit or people needing a non-owner-occupied mortgage.
FHA mortgages are issued by the U.S. government and backed by the Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD). This loan is often preferred by first-time homebuyers because it only requires a 3.5% down payment and offers more flexibility with credit requirements and underwriting standards. FHA loans have several requirements you must meet to qualify. Contact Mija Mortgage today to learn more about FHA loans and whether or not they're best for your financial situation.
Also backed by the government, these loans are insured by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and don't require money down. These loans have lower insurance requirements when compared to FHA loans, offer 100% financing if you qualify, and allow for closing costs to be covered by the seller. In order to qualify for a USDA loan, you must live in a rural area, and your household income must meet certain standards. These loans are often preferred by low-income citizens who live in rural parts of South Carolina.
Also known as VA or Veteran's Affairs loans, these mortgages are reserved for the brave men and women who served in the military. VA loans help provide our military members, veterans, and their families with favorable loan terms and an easy home ownership experience. Often, those who qualify are not required to make a down payment on their home. Additionally, these loans often include less expensive closing costs.
If you are a veteran or the family member of a veteran, contact Mija Mortgage today to speak with our Vetted VA Professional, Debbie Haberny. Debbie helps our military members, veterans, and their family members obtain home loans utilizing veteran benefits and would be happy to help as you search for a home.
Do you have questions about the complexities of mortgages and home loans? As your advocate, Mija Mortgage is here to answer any questions you have about mortgages and the home-buying process. We encourage you to call our office to speak directly with one of our mortgage experts or continue reading below for answers to some frequently asked questions.
Q. I was talking to my spouse about mortgage brokers, and they mentioned the phrase home loan originator. What's the difference between a broker and a loan originator?
A. The mortgage industry is full of confusing jobs and titles, making it easy to confuse roles and responsibilities. Such is the case with mortgage brokers and home loan originators. Though their roles share similarities, a home loan originator in Folly Beach, SC, works for a bank or credit union, while a mortgage broker works for a brokerage company. Home loan originators and mortgage brokers are both licensed by the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System (NMLS).
Q. I've heard from everyone that you must have mortgage insurance to buy a home. What is mortgage insurance?
A. Essentially, mortgage insurance helps protect lenders if a borrower forecloses on the home they bought. One advantage of mortgage insurance is that when borrowers pay it, lenders can often grant loans to buyers when they might not have otherwise. Though not always required to buy a home, mortgage insurance is often needed for down payments of less than 20%.
Q. I have just been pre-approved to buy a beautiful home in South Carolina. Is there anything I shouldn't do now that I'm pre-qualified?
A. Mortgage companies like Mija Mortgage, make getting pre-qualified for a home easy. However, as your loan process continues, your lender is required to run a new credit report before closing on a home. For that reason, it's to avoid any activity that might affect your credit score, such as:
Q. My brother-in-law recently refinanced his home in South Carolina. What is refinancing, and should I consider refinancing my home too?
A. Refinancing your home basically means you're swapping your current mortgage for a new one, most often with a lower interest rate. If you would like to reduce the term of your loan, lower your monthly mortgage payments, or consolidate debt, refinancing may be a smart option. Many homeowners also choose to refinance if they want to switch from adjustable-rate mortgages to fixed-rate mortgages or to get cash back for home renovations. To learn whether refinancing is a viable option for your situation, contact Mija Mortgage ASAP, as loan rates change frequently.
Here at Mija Mortgage, we believe that the best communities begin with the dream of home ownership. Our mission is to make those dreams come true, with personalized service, expert guidance, and good old-fashioned hard work. As one of the most trusted mortgage companies in Folly Beach, SC, we have years of experience working with a diverse range of clients, from first-time buyers and investors to self-employed borrowers and non-native English speakers.
Though every mortgage situation is different, one thing never changes: our commitment to clients. Contact our office today to get started on an exceptional home-buying experience.
FOLLY BEACH — Hurricanes Ian and Nicole in 2022 took such a toll on the shore that the federal government has allocated funds for the emergency replacement of 90,000 dump truck loads of sand here.The Army Corps of Engineers Charleston District announced the $97 million award this week from the Disaster Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act to repair damages to South Carolina beaches after recent coastal storm events.In addition to Folly Beach, the money will help rehabilitate beaches along the Grand Strand and Pawleys Is...
FOLLY BEACH — Hurricanes Ian and Nicole in 2022 took such a toll on the shore that the federal government has allocated funds for the emergency replacement of 90,000 dump truck loads of sand here.
The Army Corps of Engineers Charleston District announced the $97 million award this week from the Disaster Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act to repair damages to South Carolina beaches after recent coastal storm events.
In addition to Folly Beach, the money will help rehabilitate beaches along the Grand Strand and Pawleys Island to their pre-storm conditions.
Each project will reduce coastal storm risk and protect the beaches that “provide far-reaching economic and recreational opportunities for the entire state of South Carolina,” Lt. Col. Drew Johannes, the district’s commanding officer, said.
Sand renourishment was needed for quite a while in Folly Beach. Broadly speaking, the entire beach is erosional at this point, City Administrator Aaron Pope said.
Spots on the east end of the beach were hit pretty hard last hurricane season, “but the whole island is eroding,” Pope said.
A $27 million allocation to Folly Beach will support the removal of 900,000 cubic yards of sand from the Folly River and replace it on shore.
Pope said the emergency funding is good for a number of reasons, including creating an elevated timeline to get the work done.
Typically, the city will do beach renourishments on a 12-year cycle and be responsible for a local cost share. The beach was due for more sand in 2024 but the next dump of sand will depend on how well the emergency work holds up, Pope said.
Pawleys Island will receive $14 million in emergency rehabilitation to include repair and replacement of damaged sand fencing and vegetation as well as about 200,000 cubic yards of sand — enough to fill 20,000 dump trucks — on a 1.2-mile portion of the island’s southern end.
The barrier island on the eastern edge of Georgetown County took a nearly direct hit when Ian made landfall south of Georgetown on the afternoon of Sept. 30 last year. Sand washed into the island’s streets and under stilted houses, docks over Pawleys Creek were destroyed and a private pier collapsed into the ocean.
An October 2022 assessment by Columbia-based engineering consultant Coastal Science and Engineering found that dunes near the island’s south end “completely eroded” during the storm. The assessment also suggested that beach renourishment undertaken on the island in 2020 limited the damage to area homes from Ian.
“Some of the property owners were able to do some rehabilitation work on their own nickel, but this will allow us to do a more comprehensive repair on the south end,” Mayor Brian Henry said. “It’s a huge help to us. We don’t have the funds in our operating budget to do that type of repair.”
Town Administrator Dan Newquist said the town will find out more details about the Corps’ rehabilitation project in the following weeks. He added that he doesn’t know of a timeline for the project just yet.
“Hearing that number, that’s more than just replacing the dune vegetation and sand fencing,” Newquist said. “That’s adding volume of sand to the dune line, and that figure, that seems like a pretty robust emergency repair package, for sure.”
Extensive beach and dune erosion along the Grand Strand will be addressed, too, with the help of $57 million.
North Myrtle Beach is estimated to receive 350,000 cubic yards of sand. Myrtle Beach could get about 650,000 cubic yards of sand, and Surfside/Garden City is estimated to have 500,000 cubic yards of sand dumped on the beach.
Funding for the projects at Myrtle Beach, Folly Beach and Pawleys Island will also allow for design, permitting and other work.
Constructions contracts should be awarded in late-summer or early-fall for Myrtle Beach and Folly Beach, and in early-winter for Pawleys Island, the Army Corps said.
Mike Woodel contributed to this report from Georgetown.
Folly Beach received a significant amount of federal funding for emergency renourishment following beach damage from Hurricane Ian.FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCSC) - Folly Beach received a significant amount of federal funding for emergency renourishment following beach damage from Hurricane Ian.The September storm washed away sand dunes and caused erosion to take away parts of the beach.The $27 million of funding will work to get the beach back to normal with sand replacement.“This is not a full renourishment, but ...
Folly Beach received a significant amount of federal funding for emergency renourishment following beach damage from Hurricane Ian.
FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCSC) - Folly Beach received a significant amount of federal funding for emergency renourishment following beach damage from Hurricane Ian.
The September storm washed away sand dunes and caused erosion to take away parts of the beach.
The $27 million of funding will work to get the beach back to normal with sand replacement.
“This is not a full renourishment, but it does allow us to get a little more beach back in place for the protection of infrastructure and recreation,” Folly Beach Mayor Tim Goodwin said.
Around 900,000 cubic yards or 90,000 dump trucks of sand, will be replaced, and the city plans to use sand from the Folly River.
“That kind of does two things,” Goodwin said. “It helps us refurbish the beach with beach sand that just kind of washes around in the river, and it kind of opens up the river for the boaters, gets rid of some sand bars.”
The mayor believes beachgoers will be excited about the project, but they are not the only ones who will benefit.
Safety is a concern when the beach is in its current state.
“A lot of people don’t understand but especially in medical emergencies, we have a lot of equipment to carry, so it’s helpful when we can bring that one a cart or a four-wheeler, and with a small beach that’s impacted by the storm, it makes it pretty difficult or impossible to do, so getting this sand is a huge help for us,” the City of Folly Beach Director of Public Safety Andrew Gilreath said.
The sand is also crucial for those who rely on the beach for business.
“Just makes the beach so much deeper, so much more room for everybody, everybody’s not shoulder to shoulder stuffed on the beach, so once we get that new beach it’ll be glory days for us,” Sun & Ski Beach Service Owner Andy Pracht said.
The project most likely will not get underway till after the busy season.
“Everybody just has to work together to get through the summer,” Pracht said. “It’s going to be crowded. It kind of is what it is. Hopefully, we could have a new beach by this summer but we’re not going to. So, if we have one by next summer that would be awesome.”
City officials say this will be the first emergency renourishment Folly has needed since 2018.
They say It will be a few months before a timeline is laid out for the project.
A contract should be awarded in late summer/early fall and construction will start shortly after.
Copyright 2023 WCSC. All rights reserved.
Charleston County Parks and Recreation Officials say they look forward to formally celebrating the Edwin S. Taylor Folly Beach Fishing Pier Wednesday.FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCSC) - Charleston County Parks and Recreation Officials say they look forward to formally celebrating the Edwin S. Taylor Folly Beach Fishing Pier Wednesday.The pier will be dedicated at 10 a.m. with a ceremonial cast of fishing lines following ...
Charleston County Parks and Recreation Officials say they look forward to formally celebrating the Edwin S. Taylor Folly Beach Fishing Pier Wednesday.
FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCSC) - Charleston County Parks and Recreation Officials say they look forward to formally celebrating the Edwin S. Taylor Folly Beach Fishing Pier Wednesday.
The pier will be dedicated at 10 a.m. with a ceremonial cast of fishing lines following a quiet opening back in December.
Charleston County Parks and Recreation spokesperson Sarah Reynolds said the history of a pier in this location dates back to the 1930s.
Reynolds said Charleston County purchased the land in 1992 and built the “original” wooden pier, which opened in 1995. After it showed signs of deteriorating, officials closed that pier in 2020, tore it down and built a new one from scratch.
But Reynolds said they didn’t want the new pier to lose its original feel, so they decided to build it in the same footprint.
The structure is made from concrete, meaning it will last generations longer than the original, but the walkways, railings and fishing stations are all wooden.
“We knew it was so important to the Lowcountry and to so many visitors and people who have made memories on the pier with fishing and, I’ve heard so many stories of people getting engaged out there and going there after their weddings and stuff, so we knew it meant a lot to a lot of people. So we wanted it to be reminiscent and nostalgic of the previous wooden pier at the site,” Reynolds said.
The pier stretches 1,049 feet and is 25 feet wide and 22 feet above sea level. Charleston County Parks and Recreation says its amenities include a 7,500-sq.-ft. diamond-shaped platform at the end of the pier, beach access, accessible restrooms, showers, rod rentals, a gift and tackle shop and oceanfront dining at Pier 101 Restaurant & Bar.
She said the pier is being dedicated to Edwin S Taylor, a prominent member of their commission in the 1990s and an instrumental part of building the original wooden pier.
The new pier is being dedicated to Taylor once again along with honoring many others who played key roles in its construction.
She said the pier is an iconic landmark, and it is important to acknowledge people who have invested so much time into making the pier a reality.
Copyright 2023 WCSC. All rights reserved.
A months-long discussion came to an end Tuesday night as voters decided on the fate of short-term rentals on Folly Beach.FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCSC) - A months-long discussion came to an end Tuesday night as voters decided on the fate of short-term rentals on Folly Beach.Just 78 votes ended up separating the debate of the number of short-term rental licenses allowed on Folly Beach. The final vote rang Tuesday night after lines at the polls began at 7 a.m. officially capping the number of rentals, like condos and Airbnbs, to 800 ac...
A months-long discussion came to an end Tuesday night as voters decided on the fate of short-term rentals on Folly Beach.
FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCSC) - A months-long discussion came to an end Tuesday night as voters decided on the fate of short-term rentals on Folly Beach.
Just 78 votes ended up separating the debate of the number of short-term rental licenses allowed on Folly Beach. The final vote rang Tuesday night after lines at the polls began at 7 a.m. officially capping the number of rentals, like condos and Airbnbs, to 800 across the island.
There were more than 1,200 people that voted, which is about half of the number of registered voters on the island.
“This is probably the most people I’ve ever seen vote, even in a presidential election, that I can remember,” Goodwin said.
This special citizen vote tallies 655 voters for the cap on short-term rentals and 577 against it.
This issue stems back to October when a citizen petition to cap the number of short-term rentals came to city council, which was then put up to a citizen vote.
Ann Peets, who supports the cap, says she doesn’t want the permanent residents leaving because of disruptive renters.
“It’s a very tight-knit community and we feel like if people keep leaving that’s going to be lost,” Peets said.
Those against the cap on rentals, like Elton Culpepper, says he doesn’t want his kids to not have a rental option on inherited property.
“I feel like the property value will go down and they should be able to short term rental it,” Culpepper said.
Bill Murschel says he’s been renting on the island for over 25 years. Although he could not vote, he says he worries how this would affect his vacations.
“I don’t want to be priced out of the market,” Murschel said. “I want to have plenty of choices when I contact a local real estate office and pick my place.”
Mayor Goodwin says he signed the original petition and voted for the STR cap.
“We know they bring in tax dollars,” Goodwin said. “We never want to see short term rentals go away totally. It’s just where do you want your city to be in reference to a community versus businesses.”
He was asked if he thinks this will have any effect on people investing on Folly Beach in the future.
“I don’t think so,” Goodwin said. “You know, before this got started, like I said, the number was 800. That didn’t stop people from buying and selling out here... Nobody’s going to be totally happy with the vote. So, now it’s just a matter of the community coming back together and healing and let’s get on with the rest of the world.”
Goodwin says it will take several years for the number of current STRs to dwindle down to 800 from either people selling their property or no longer renewing their licenses. He says there’s currently around 1,200 on the island.
The vote will be certified on Thursday and will immediately take effect.
Copyright 2023 WCSC. All rights reserved.
Cyclists, walkers and joggers going through James Island to Folly Beach are one step closer to what officials hope is safer and easier travel.FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCSC) - Cyclists, walkers and joggers going through James Island to Folly Beach are one step closer to what officials hope is safer and easier travel.The Rethink Folly Road Complete Streets Initiative focuses on improving connectivity and reducing congestion on Folly Road.The steering com...
Cyclists, walkers and joggers going through James Island to Folly Beach are one step closer to what officials hope is safer and easier travel.
FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCSC) - Cyclists, walkers and joggers going through James Island to Folly Beach are one step closer to what officials hope is safer and easier travel.
The Rethink Folly Road Complete Streets Initiative focuses on improving connectivity and reducing congestion on Folly Road.
The steering committee made up of officials from Charleston County, the city of Charleston, James Island and Folly Beach held their quarterly meeting Wednesday to go over where this project stands.
As far as the phase one update, Charleston County says we are seeing “the light at the end of the tunnel.”
The state’s department of transportation and health has officially approved the permits for phase one of Rethink Folly Road, according to a Charleston County official.
Phase one is the initial phase of the bike and pedestrian accommodation project, which includes mixed-use paths or lane markings, but construction cannot start just yet.
James Island Mayor Bill Woolsey says they are thinking of beach traffic and how this would impact construction if it were to start in the summer.
In addition to less traffic, these islanders could also see a beach shuttle connecting Folly Beach to James Island, sometime in the future. The town of James Island put out a survey on this to see if people would really use it.
“There is an interest if we can make the ride feasible,” Jenny Costa Honeycutt, Charleston County District 9 councilmember, said. “That is get out there in a way that makes it, encourages people to ride it instead of simply driving and waiting in traffic on their own.”
A survey that pulled in 400 responses from people on James Island, West Ashley and beyond says 77% of people would use a beach shuttle with 23% would not.
When asked if they would take a 10-minute ride in the shuttle in an alternative lane passing traffic, 86% said yes and 14% said no. When asked if they would take a 45-minute ride in the shuttle in the same lane of traffic, 19% said yes and 81% said no.
Katie Zimmerman, executive director of Charleston Moves, says this data could create transit opportunities in the future.
“I think the results are really telling and really useful,” Zimmerman said. “And its information we keep in the back of our minds proceeding forward.”
Charleston County says they are anticipating a 300-day construction timeline for phase one. There is not a set date of when that will start as of now.
Copyright 2023 WCSC. All rights reserved.