New Year’s Greetings!  2016 has been presented to us ….bare, open, empty as the beach, erased by today’s tides of all of yesterday’s scribbling.  “The shore will provide its treasures in its own time” Anne Morrow, Gift from the Sea.

As we anticipate 2016, we long for peacefulness, law and order, public safety, common sense, good public schools, strong leadership and good government.  We understand that faith, patience, creativity, and real focus will be required from each of us.  When things go awry during the year, we acknowledge that the joy, hope, and promise of Christmas 2016 can see us through this New Year!

The celebration of personal, community, state, and national achievements should be celebrated with focus, rather than allowing our media to flood us with negative defeatism. We do have great resources in our citizenry, institutions, infrastructure, business, natural resources, and entrepreneurial spirit.

Our Area Development Partnership just recently released some very impressive community growth and factual statistics:

  1. Restaurant growth ranked 24th in the nation.
  2. Retail Sales ranked #2 in the State.
  3. Home Sales increased 18% since 2012.
  4. Cost of our housing is 32% lower than national average.
  5. Population growth is 2X the state rate.
  6. 4,000 new jobs announced in past 5 years.
  7. 480 permanent jobs and 900 construction jobs announced in 2015.
  8. Two of the Top 5 Best Public High Schools in Mississippi – Oak Grove #2, Petal #4
  9. William Carey University named #1 value among Regional Universities in the South.
  10. Hattiesburg named America’s Top 10 Historic Neighborhoods.

Additionally, it has been a great source of pride to  watch our Golden Eagles soar in 2015!  As Todd Monkin put it last weekend when he said, this year’s class of seniors at Southern Miss will always be revered ..”for bringing our  program back.” Kudos to Coach Monken and those USM seniors.  Inspiring accomplishments!

Our team recently met to celebrate our “Hits” and to acknowledge our “Misses” for 2015.  Topping our list of “Hits” was the return of Jennifer Upton as our marketing director, and the welcoming of Ame’ Karoly, as Client Care Specialist; Paula Claret as Closing Coordinator; and Gatlin Hubbard as photographer/sign specialist.  Other hits noted were the fun shopping day in New Orleans this spring, July 4th celebration and picnic, and pre-Thanksgiving pie days.  Several of you have commented that you  “like” our new sign on Highway 98 Wet at our Oak Grove Office.

Our gratitude goes to each of you for adding to the success and fulfillment of 2015.  It has been a privilege to help 361 families with the buying and selling of their home this past year – our second highest number of closed sales.

During January, the team will be rolling out new marketing strategies, sharpening skills with  “nuts and bolts” basic training sessions, and working enthusiastically toward our “best ever” achievements in 2016!

Our mission remains clear as we begin 2016 – to impact the lives of the families and clients we serve positively and financially, to bring added value to you – our clients, as you buy and/or sell property.

With  every good wish for your best year ever,