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hilton head island beach driftwood

Creatures began arriving on Hilton Head over two and one-half million years ago.

When I set about developing this article on Hilton Head Island’s other than human population of creatures and critters and their introduction to the Lowcountry, I had no idea of the dimension of the objective.

I first learned that the Island itself evolved in two distinct segments. The north end of the island is a sea island dating to the Pleistocene epoch, a period begun 2,580,000 years ago. The south end is a barrier island that appeared as recently as the Holocene epoch, an era that began when the Pleistocene epoch ended, some 11,700 years ago. Broad Creek, which is a land-locked tidal marsh, separates the two halves of the island.

So, when I started

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When I have the opportunity to be on a beach, particularly an ocean beach, I find my thoughts drifting to the history of that piece of land. I cannot help but visualize the various people and cultures that were in the same place that I am, on that surf pounded bit of sand, thousands or hundreds of years ago. This is one of the factors that contribute to my being a true beach lover.

I am a very fortunate beach aficionado in that I reside in the South Carolina Lowcountry, in a town called Bluffton, less than a half-hour drive from the most spectacular island one can imagine, Hilton Head Island.

With twelve miles of magnificent beaches along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, there is a lot of opportunity to meander throughout millennia and imagine the

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Benefits of a 1031 Tax Deferred ExchangeIRS Section 1031 states, "No gain or loss shall be recognized on the exchange of property held for productive use in a trade or business or for investment, if such property is exchanged solely for property of like-kind which is to be held either for productive use in a trade or business or for investment."

Plainly put, 1031 exchanges allow investors to defer capital gain taxes as well as facilitate significant portfolio growth and increased return on investment. A 1031 exchange allows an investor to sell a property, to reinvest the proceeds in a new property and to defer all capital gain taxes.

What is Like-Kind Property?

What is considered like-kind property? The IRS does not limit this to certain types of real estate. Rather, the term refers to

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ACE Basin - Hilton HeadHilton Head Island, bordered by the beautiful Atlantic Ocean, Calibogue and Port Royal Sounds has a deep and broad history in its land—as well as in its neighboring waters, forested wetlands, fresh, brackish and salt water tidal marshes, barrier islands, and pine and hardwood uplands.

The Ashepoo, Combahee and South Edisto (ACE) Basin, consisting of approximately 1,000,000 acres of diverse habitats along the South Carolina coast, represents one of the largest undeveloped estuaries in the United States.

After centuries of agriculture, timber harvest, and construction of managed wetlands, this large section of the state has been spared from commercial and residential development. A model for conservation throughout the country, the ACE Basin Project

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Hilton Head real estate - coastal sunsetWhile all real estate is local, as the saying goes, "local" does not accurately describe the Hilton Head Island real estate market. We are local, of course, but our boundaries are not limited to the geographical limitations of the island's landmass.

Hilton Head Island appeals to a diverse and sophisticated buyer whose interests go beyond simply seeking a home or villa in a luxury market. That said, the Island's physical size and limited number of properties further define it as a niche market with a limited number of prospective buyers seeking treasures in the form of luxury homes, beachfront mansions, family homes, beach bungalows, condos, villas, and lots on which to build a dream home down the road.

Discover the Best in Hilton Head Real Estate

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The Hilton Head Island real estate market is defined as a luxury market.  However, the definition of luxury in our market is not solely identified by a pricing structure, age, condition, finish or square footage of the property, land value, lot size, the neighborhood in which the home or villa is located, or even amenities of the community. Luxury is all around us; our real estate market is a mere product of our environment.

If you look at it from a wider perspective, it's the life that we are afforded in this sultry and salty South Carolina Lowcountry that makes our properties luxurious. It's about the good life we live here on the coast—from quiet sunrises on the beach, to the grassy footpaths and shaded leisure trails that wind through the majestic

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If you know me, you know I am not a “tell-all”---but I do want to introduce you to the “who’s who” of Hilton Head.
Hilton Head’s Friendliest Resident: The Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphin.  These guys are intelligent, charming and playful. Easily identified by their short, stubby beak and gray upper body (it’s pale or pink underneath), they are typically 6 – 12 feet long and weight anywhere from 300 – 1400 pounds. Their curved mouths give the appearance of a permanent smile---but don’t get too close, they have 80 – 100 cone-shaped teeth which they use to trap their prey and then swallow it whole!

Hilton Head Bottlenose Dolphin

Dolphins are not involuntary breathers (as we humans are), so they must consciously come to the surface to breathe air. This means they can never fully sleep

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When I was growing up, my family vacationed at the beach.  The summer vacation was the “real” vacation and the winter vacation to the mountains was, well, more of a getaway, even though the duration of each (always a week) was the same.  There is a certain magic in the beach that stays forever close to your heart.  Many of life’s memories which we hold so dear were made at the beach during that hiatus of being we call vacation---perhaps because the days were longer during the summer, granting us more time to relax and ponder as time passed with the ebb and flow of the tides.  It is also possible that the daily grind was intentionally set aside by the adults in favor of allowing the children to experience that spiritual drifting and sea-washed optimism

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The world was a different place in 1949. The United States had emerged from World War II in jubilant victory a mere four years’ prior, and post-war production and employment were at extraordinarily high levels. The country lead the world in manufacturing, and land was cheap, plentiful and productive---especially in the rural south. Logging camps were sprouting up as Southern timber operations sought to acquire large tracts of virgin pine forest, for lumber was needed to truss the increasing housing demands and fuel the growth of our nation.

It was that year that a 20-year old visionary, Charles Fraser, not yet graduated from University of Georgia, was working in a logging camp set up on Calibogue Cay, an island unto itself---literally, its legal name

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Pound out a Google search for buying a resort property on Hilton Head Island and you’ll be presented with a number of canned tips on how to decide if that’s the right move for you. The articles offer generic advice for a generic buyer seeking a generic property in a generic locale. Likely included in the four or five bulleted paragraphs will be advice on affordability, stuffer content that reminds you to put a little bit more into your piggy bank each week. The vast majority of these articles are generated as filler with links to lenders and are so non-specific that you come away with more questions than answers, not to mention just a little insulted.

The good news? If you are reading this, you are beyond that point. I know it and you know it. You

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