Pandemic

Home closings increase in 2020 along coastal SC counties despite COVID pandemic | Myrtle Beach Business

Myrtle Beach Realtor Travis Muir put a condo up for sale in September at Blue Water Resort on Ocean Boulevard and within an hour, it was sold.

Not an every day occurrence, the realtor for The Hoffman Group admits. But, after all, it’s 2020 and anything can happen.

“The biggest thing is pricing it within realistic market price,” Muir said, adding 2020 has been his best year for sales, pushing nearly triple what he normally does.

“With this one being an investment property, the price point for the rate of return… I think one of the biggest things, too, is the interest rates are lower than they have been in a very long time. That gives people more incentive to go ahead and make that jump. They were thinking of buying in a two- or three-year window, but now with the interest rates so low, people are moving faster.”

Closed sales of single family homes and condos have increased along the southeastern coast of South Carolina, and real estate agents are pointing to low interest rates and the COVID-19 pandemic expediting retirement plans as the reason for the increase.

It has also caused a tight market for available single-family homes and condos, leading one real estate expert to call it the tightest market she’s seen in a decade.

The Coastal Carolinas Association of Realtors released a report that showed a gradual increase of closings from June to August.

Closed sales for single-family homes and condos rose from May to June by 6.7 percent, then by 22 percent from June to July and finally by 11.9 percent from July to August. 

The median sales price for single family homes dipped slightly in June to $242,995, and gradually grew to $260,000 in August. Condos increased from $145,000 in June to $161,500 in

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Wellness Home Design Tips For Weight Management During The Pandemic

Hundreds of headlines blare daily warnings about the dreaded “Covid 19” pounds packed on during these long pandemic months. Americans are locked out of their local gyms and yoga studios, locked down in their homes, and locked away from friends and family members for support. What isn’t locked down are the refrigerator and pantry, and comfort food eating is on the rise. What impact is this having on your health, and what can you do about it?

Weighing In

First, the good news: “Much like the myth of the ‘Freshman 15,’ which has been disproven through numerous studies, the ‘Covid 19’ phenomenon is more myth than reality,” declares Jennifer Lombardi, a certified eating disorder psychotherapist at Kaiser Permanente’s Eating Disorder Intensive Outpatient Program in Sacramento.  That doesn’t mean there is not a problem though.

“Since the shelter-in-place orders took effect across the country, what we have seen is a significant spike in both disordered eating and diagnosable eating disorders. As a clinician in this field for more than 17 years, I have never seen [this] level of critical acuity, and I hear the same sentiments from my colleagues across the country,” Lombardi shares, referring to the scope and severity of the problem.

“With the pandemic, we have the perfect storm: isolation, change in structure and routine, and boredom,” she observes. “For those who have already been struggling with depression and anxiety, these factors can be the tipping point.” For some individuals, she notes, bingeing and mindless eating follow.

What can you do? “For individuals struggling with their relationship with food, one of the first recommendations is to take a step back and observe what has shifted and when. 

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Facebook Moderators Told to Return to Office Amid Pandemic

Facebook contractors tasked with sifting through some of the most heinous and traumatizing content on the internet faced a new hurdle this week when they were told to return to company offices to do their work in person as a pandemic runs rampant around them. Audio obtained by The Intercept suggests that their employer, Accenture, is downplaying the risk of indoor exposure to Covid-19.

When the United States began a patchwork national lockdown in March, Facebook contractors, paid a relatively low hourly wage with few of the generous perks afforded to the company’s full-time staffers, began to feel even more acutely dispensable to the $750 billion company. Beginning this week, as first reported by The Verge, these contractors must now resume working in the same facilities that Facebook’s full-time can safely avoid, having been told that they’ll be permitted to work from home through July 2021. “Based on guidance from health and government experts, as well as decisions drawn from our internal discussions about these matters, we are allowing employees to continue voluntarily working from home until July 2021,” a Facebook spokesperson explained to Business Insider.

Facebook has said that the contractors in question, who must wade through so-called priority zero content encompassing the worst of child sexual abuse and graphic violence, can’t safely do this work from home. Three Facebook moderators employed through Accenture who spoke to The Intercept on the condition of anonymity, because they are not permitted to speak with the press, expressed a profound worry that the company, and their ultimate bosses at Facebook HQ, are once again ignoring their safety in the name of keeping the social network running smoothly.

An October 2 virtual meeting, a recording of which was obtained by The Intercept, did little to lessen moderators’ dread over resuming indoor work at

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Upcoming home improvement show at Expo Center to meet spike in projects during pandemic

ROYAL PALM BEACH — Taking advantage of this prolonged stretch at home to make some changes to your surroundings? 



a group of people standing in front of a store: The Expo Center at the South Florida Fairgrounds, seen here during an Antiques Festival in 2009, will play host to the Home Improvement and More Show on Oct. 23-25.


© Palm Beach Post File Photo
The Expo Center at the South Florida Fairgrounds, seen here during an Antiques Festival in 2009, will play host to the Home Improvement and More Show on Oct. 23-25.

You’re not alone, and the staff of the South Florida Fair wants to help.

The Home Improvement and More Show is Oct. 23-25 at the fairgrounds’ Expo Center, 9067 Southern Blvd. The event features more than 60 vendors across 35 categories related to home improvement, said Tim Pachis, corporate sales manager for the South Florida Fair.

More: No stickball in Wellington this year, but Wycliffe league has terrific plan for $60 dues

The show will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, Oct. 23 and Saturday, Oct. 24 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 25. Admission and parking are free. 

The expo comes as recent surveys show a spike in home improvement projects in the U.S. since the country essentially shut down in late March because of the novel coronavirus pandemic. 

A Porch.com study released in July found that nearly 80% of homeowners in the U.S. plan to launch a home improvement project in the next year.

More: This Wellington business opened during the pandemic — and it’s thriving

Most home shows since the pandemic were canceled, Pachis said, making the Home Improvement and More Show a rare standout.

While keeping an eye on the increase of demand for home improvement services and products, organizers have the coronavirus in mind for other reasons.

Attendees are required to wear masks, and social distancing is encouraged in the Expo Center, said Vicki Chouris, president and CEO of the South Florida Fair and Palm Beach County

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Home Improvement Market Sees Surge During Pandemic

PALM BEACH,  Fla., Oct. 13, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Analysts expect home improvement spending to reach $439.9 billion in 2020 – In the time of a global pandemic, there is indeed no place like home. As millions of Americans practice social distancing while working and learning remotely, the home has become the focal point of our lives. The desire to make residences safer, more comfortable and more enjoyable has led to a home improvement boom.   Mentioned in today’s commentary includes:  NeoVolta (OTCQB: NEOV), Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA), Home Depot (NYSE: HD) and Lowe’s (NYSE: LOW).

The Home Improvement Research Institute predicts Americans will spend $439.9 billion on home improvement products in 2020. The online home remodeling platform Houzz reports that demand for kitchen and bath remodeling was up 40% year over date in June 2020, while home additions increased 52% and fencing projects jumped 166%. Pool and hot tub installations are seeing a wave of strong demand across the country. 

Home renewable energy is also seeing a surge as storage batteries are being installed in more households. According to the U.S. Energy Storage Monitor, the energy storage industry saw record-breaking deployments during the second quarter of 2020, and rapid expansion is expected to continue. A total of 168 MW and 288 MWh of energy storage was deployed in the quarter, second only to Q4 2019 as the highest on record, according to the joint report by Wood Mackenzie and the U.S. Energy Storage Association.

With Americans nesting like never before, four of the companies active in-home improvement are: NeoVolta (NEOV), Tesla (TSLA), Home Depot (HD) and Lowe’s (LOW).

NeoVolta (OTCQB: NEOV) – San Diego based NeoVolta, whose stock is trading around $4 per share, is the only pure-play energy storage company on this list. Recently NeoVolta announced an exclusive distribution

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