Real Estate Information Archive


Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 14


by Jay Hufnagel

Wow! It looks like the year is starting off pretty good for Lake Hartwell Real Estate (source: SC Western Upstate MLS). So far (as of 4-8-2010) 26 waterfront homes have sold in 2010 and 18 are currently under contract (out of 397 homes active on the market). As you can see by the link below, the majority of the activity is below $350,000 with some great deals under $200,000.  From experience and knowing what has been on the market in earlier years, some of these Lake Hartwell Homes have sold for half of what they were on the market less then 2 years ago. Click on the link below to see the actual "sold" listings.


2010 Lake Hartwell Waterfront Home Sales

Note: The above link has been updated to 6-12-2010. Currently there are over 440 Active Lake Hartwell Waterfront Homes for sale.


Lake Hartwell Waterfront lake lots haven’t had the success that homes have had. Only 2 waterfront lots have sold and 3 are under contract (out of 340 lots active on the market). Buyers are finding that they can get such a great deal on resale homes right now with great interest rates, that buying a lot doesn’t make that much sense to them, unless they’re getting a huge discount.


2010 Lake Hartwell Waterfront Lot Sales


Whether you’re buying a home or lot, “now” is a wonderful time to buy.


Note: The statistics above do not reflect For Sale by Owner (FSBO) activity or non SC Western Upstate MLS listings.


By Jay Hufnagel, Keller Williams Realty Atl Prtnrs, Lake and Home Group,  , 770-757-2799.

Lake Hartwell 660 Coalition Kicks Off Meeting May 9th

by Jay Hufnagel

Mark your calendar to attend the first organizational meeting for The Lake Hartwell 660 Coalition organization. The meeting will be held May 9th in the Lonnie R. Burns Fine Arts Center at the Hart County High School in Hartwell, Georgia.


Here is a short video and a Press Release explaining why there’s a need for this organization:


Lake Hartwell 660 Coalition Seeks Answers to Outdated Lake Level Management Policies


First organizational meeting to be held May 9th at Hart County High School

For those who have enjoyed the beauty and recreational opportunities afforded by
Lake Hartwell, it has been a painful experience to see the level of the lake drop so dramatically in recent years.  But few who see the lake’s exposed docks and dry inlets understand that the drought that brought on the problem is not the sole contributor to conditions as they are today.  Worse, most do not understand that as the drought comes to an end, the lake’s water level management is still a matter of uncharted waters.


To address this concern, the steering committee of the newly formed Lake Hartwell 660 Coalition invites all interested citizens, businesses and stakeholders to participate in the initial launch of a new grassroots organization on Saturday, May 9. This informative session will be held from 10 – 12 pm in the Fine Arts Center of the Hart County High School and will address critical problems associated with recent drought issues and the impact of lake level management on the economy and ecosystems of Upstate South Carolina and Georgia.


The Lake Hartwell 660 Coalition currently includes a diverse group of volunteer business leaders representing northeast Georgia and upstate South Carolina who have long recognized that the current lake level management plan adopted by the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) does not satisfy the current or future needs of stakeholders along the Savannah River Basin. One critical goal of the 660 Coalition is to facilitate the scientific research needed to develop an updated plan that will provide elected officials with the information they need in order to change the almost 50 year-old Corps plan.

Most agree that If Lake Hartwell were at full pool today, it would be no less vulnerable
to the next dry weather cycle or lake level management philosophy and that any plan update must reflect lessons learned from the current drought situation.

A key issue to be explained at the inaugural May 9 meeting will be the need to
revise the current lake level management policy by using full pool (660 feet) as
the trigger point for implementation of the drought management plan.


Mike Gray, owner/broker - Hartwell Lake Prop Realty, has been a tireless advocate for retooling lake level management policy on Lake Hartwell. Gray claims
that there is little or no rationale for current lake level output.  

“Why do we drop our water level 14 feet during a severe drought before decreasing the output to an agreed upon minimum level? Would you believe we can’t find anyone downstream who can document scientifically or with engineering studies what their water flow needs are? That’s why we want to organize a group of people from both states to question and provide documentation,” Gray said.


The Lake Hartwell 660 Coalition will be created as a 501c4 tax exempt organization

and will be enlisting all stakeholders at the grass roots level from both states in the
Upper Savannah Basin. It is dedicated to maintaining water levels in Lake Hartwell

that sustain water supply, recreation, and economic prosperity through the advocacy
of appropriate, science-based water releases necessary for the Savannah River Basin.
All attendees are encouraged to become regular supporters and if possible, to serve
on the communications, research or education committees that will be formed to focus on future lake level policy.


Additional information is available by calling John Noell @ 706.377.4660.


As with Lake Lanier, north of Atlanta, every foot we are down has a significant impact on the economies of all the counties and cities that border the lake. Like the 1071 Coalition Group (Lake Lanier's Organization), the 660 Coalition organization and its stakeholders will be proactive in making the public and our leaders more aware of the need to “retool” Lake Hartwell and The Savannah River Basin Lake Level Management Plan. 


As Lisa Kishoni (a lake home owner) stated recently, “Lake Hartwell is the economic engine for a large part of Northeast Georgia and Upstate South Carolina”.  

Also, check out what M.J. Kneiser stated in the Independent-Mail on April 27, 2009. 


I hope to see you there!


By Jay Hufnagel, Keller Williams Realty, , or 770-757-2799.



“Nobody’s buying lake property, the lake level is at record lows, the economy is terrible and will get worst, lending guidelines are too tight, we’re not at the bottom yet” …. these, and other statements, we’re hearing everyday. But, as you can see below, not everyone is listening. There are still deals to be had. Buyers are few and far between, but those that are realizing their dream of owning their own “little slice of heaven” are doing so at great prices.
Here are statistics of the Second Quarter and Year-to-date “waterfront” activity on Lake Lanier. This list does not include condos and townhouses. (source: FMLS and does not include FSBO and non FMLS listings):
                                                                           2nd Quarter         Yr-to-Date
Homes Sold                                                              29                       55  
            Average Days on the Market                         58                    81
            Average List Price                                      $599,170       $666,147  
            Average Sale Price                                       555,434         603,416  
            Sale vs. List Price                                             92.7%              90.5%
            Current Active Listings                                               428                
            Current Homes Pending (under contract)                13
Waterfront Lots Sold                                                 1                       2
            Average Days on the Market –                         24                    101
            Average List Price –                                    $450,000         $350,000
            Average Sale Price -                                      425,000          312,500
            Sale vs. List Price –                                          94.4%              89.3%
            Current Active Listings -                                               217
            Current Lots Pending (under contract) -                       0
If you’d like to receive an actual list of the homes/lots that have sold, please email Jay Hufnagel, Keller Williams Realty, Lake and Home Group, at
The time to buy lake property is now ….”they’re not making any more of it”.   
By: Jay Hufnagel, 770-757-2799, just “Say Jay” for Real Estate

Lake Hartwell 2008 First Quarter Real Estate Sales

by Jay Hufnagel
Thanks to recent rain, the lake level is only about 9 feet down from full pool and rising. And, like the weather, lake property buyers are warming up and getting more serious about their search. This is welcome news and hopefully the start of a great trend.
Here is the 2008 First Quarter “waterfront” Real Estate activity on Lake Hartwell (source: SC Western Upstate MLS and does not include FSBO and non Upstate MLS listings):
Homes Sold (excludes Condos/Townhouses) – 16
            Average Days on the Market – 139
            Average List Price - $507,230
            Average Sale Price - $475,406
            Sale vs. List Price – 93.4%
            Current Homes Active on the Market – 288
            Current "Under Contract" - 7
Waterfront Lots Sold - 7
            Average Days on the Market – 161
            Average List Price – $327,128
            Average Sale Price - $286,428
            Sale vs. List Price – 87.6%
            Current Lots Active on the Market – 170
            Current "Under Contract" - 5
The time to buy lake property is now ….”they’re not making any more of it”.   

Are you ready to see some Lake Property? Here's some tips.

by Jay Hufnagel

How should we prepare when we go out with our Real Estate Agent to look at lake properties?                


    1. First of all, do your homework on what listings you’ve reviewed, prioritize them by your favorites, and send them to your Agent. This will allow him/her to prepare and make appointments prior to the date you go out. Usually, 4 – 6 listings are appropriate to visit in a 4 hour time frame depending on the distance between the homes or lots. Usually, I add other listings or non-listed homes to the list, if they’re in the vicinity and with similar criteria.
    2. The Agent should provide you with a package when you meet that will have various information on the lake and listings that you’ll be visiting.
    3. Consider taking the following items: a camera to film special aspects of the home or lot so you won’t forget what it looked like, a notepad to jot down questions or notes that you want to discuss with your Agent, a compass to see what direction the sun sets, a measuring tape to check the depth of water at the dock, and your check book (for earnest money) if you think you’re at the point of making an offer.
    4. Wear comfortable clothes and shoes. You’ll be walking down to the lake where some paths may be slippery and steep.

               For a copy of Q&As for Lake Property Buyers, please email Jay Hufnagel at



By Jay Hufnagel, Keller Williams Realty, Lake and Home Group, just "Say Jay" for Real Estate

Are you ready for some Crappie?

by Jay Hufnagel
  As you can see by the picture of my 80 year old mother, it’s time to catch some Crappie. This picture was taken by our dock on Lake Hartwell, but the Crappie are biting on Lake Lanier as well. Most of the Crappie we caught we’re hitting on minnows and yellow/green jigs with a minnow hooked by it’s lips (“as if minnows have lips”, but you know what I mean). We had dropped a couple of Christmas trees off our dock earlier in the year and now they’re producing slab size fish in about seven (7) foot of water.  
  My neighbor fishes on Lake Lanier and parts of the Chattahoochee River, and as you can see, he knows how to fish Crappie as well. What’s nice about fishing this time of the year for Crappie is that they are getting ready to spawn. They’re aggressive, and you can catch them in large numbers. And, they’re just starting. During the next two weeks the water will warm up to about 60 degrees and full moon is scheduled for March 21st. If you like to fish, don’t miss this exciting event.
Don’t forget to bring a net. Most of the Crappie we caught were slab size (1 to 2 lb). When they’re that big, you’ll have a hard time lifting them out of the water without tearing their lips and watching them swim away. Good Luck!
By Jay Hufnagel, Keller Williams Realty, Lake and Home Group, just “Say Jay” for Real Estate.

Lake Hartwell 38th Bassmaster Classic, February 22-24

by Jay Hufnagel
 Don’t forget – The 38th Bassmaster Classic kicks off this Friday on Lake Hartwell. Boats will launch at Portman Marina, off South Carolina, exit 14 (I-85). This event is more than bass fishing. Many of the national qualifiers consider this the grand championship of Bass Fishing.
This year it’ll be a little more interesting with the lake down about 12 feet. Fishermen will have to be more creative on where to fish and what to use for bait. ESPN2 is suppose to provide daily coverage. You can bet, I’ll be down on my dock giving some tips to the fortunate sole that tries to catch “Bubba” that’s made his home under my ramp.
By the way, the picture in this blog isn’t a Bassmaster Champion (in his dreams). It’s my brother-in-law, Todd, with a fish he caught near our home.
By Jay Hufnagel, Keller Williams Realty, Lake and Home Group, just Say Jay for Real Estate

2008 Lake Lanier Waterfront Home and Lot Sales

by Jay Hufnagel
Here’s some sale statistics for “dockable” waterfront Homes and Lots on Lake Lanier so far in 2008 (source: FMLS and does not include FSBO and non FMLS listed properties):
Waterfront Homes Sold (does not include Condos/Townhouses) – 5
            Average Days on the Market – 125
            Average List Price - $923,960
            Average Sale Price - $778,780
            Sale Price vs. List Price – 84.3%
                        Note: Most expensive Home sold for $1,650,000
                                   Least expensive Home sold for $169,900      
Waterfront Lots Sold – None
Please email me at if you would like to see the actual properties that were sold.
It’s very apparent that Buyers are still watching the housing market and waiting to see where the bottom is. The good news for Buyers …. lake property inventory is climbing, interest rates are low, and Sellers are starting to realize that if they want to sell then they need to be realistic on price. All we need now is three things …..some rain, rain and more rain.
Don’t forget the Lake Lanier Super Shore Sweep on April 12th. For more information, contact Vicki Barnhorst ( ) , Executive Director of The Lake Lanier Association.  I urge everyone that has interest in Lake Lanier to visit The Lake Lanier Association website as soon as possible. Here you’ll find links to various websites that are devoted to saving our lake.
By Jay Hufnagel, Keller Williams Realty, Lake and Home Group, just "Say Jay" at 770-757-2799

Have we hit the bottom yet?

by Jay Hufnagel
I’m getting more Buyers asking this question, “Have we hit the bottom yet in the housing market”? Personally, within the last three weeks, I’ve seen a tremendous increase in internet activity of potential lake home buyers looking for that “great deal”.
Joe O’Kelley, Managing Partner of O’Kelley & Sorohan Attorneys at Law, LLC, spoke today at a Keller Williams Realty award ceremony. Joe stated that March will let us know what 2008 will be like in the housing industry. He also felt that “now’s the time to buy”. Interest rates are going down, the home inventory supply is at 10 months, and home prices may not go much lower. Compared to the rest of the Nation, Atlanta and the Southeast is in great shape. Joe made another interesting comment, “people need to go back to thinking like in the old days where you bought property and held on to it for a while”. Things have changed. Homes aren’t appreciating like they did a few years ago.
So, maybe we have hit the bottom. What do you think?
By Jay Hufnagel, Keller Williams Realty Lake and Home Group, 770-757-2799

I'm Taking a Day Off

by Jay Hufnagel
What do Real Estate Agents do when they’re not showing property? Well as you can see, some of us take a Snow Day.
Might as well have some fun, don’t you think? Over the last few years, agents have been working 24/7 non-stop. But today, things have changed. Many agents are leaving the Real Estate field because of the housing industry slow down and challenges. Yesterday, at one of my closings, another agent told me that their office had lost over half of their agents over the last few months. I can understand that, but I think those that survive the current market will come out stronger. Since the first of the year, I’ve seen a positive trend of activity. Hopefully with interest rates coming down, lakes filling up with water, and more optimism with the economy, the housing market will improve.
In the meantime, maybe we should have a “Hug your Real Estate Agent” day”. Don’t you think?
By: Jay Hufnagel, Keller Williams Realty, Lake and Home Group, 770-757-2799

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 14

Contact Information

Lake and Home Group
Keller Williams Realty
4878 Manhattan Dr.
Buford GA 30518
GA: 770-757-2799
SC: 864-287-7530
Fax: 770-504-5509