If you fancy morning beach walks in Port Royal Plantation, you might see Charter One Realty agent, Christina Forbis, and her husband with their two dogs in tow. It's a daily ritual, and Christina says her home wouldn't be a home without them.
We spoke with Christina about her path to real estate success, favorite Lowcountry restaurants, and what she loves about her neighborhood on Hilton Head Island.
Charter One Realty: When did you know that you wanted to pursue a career in real estate?
Christina Forbis: About 20 years ago my husband and I started investing in small, long term rental properties. I was happy in my career as a Conference Sales Manager but often thought I'd like to one day have my own business.
Charter One Realty: Tell us about your start in the business. How did the first year go?
Christina Forbis: It was a scary transition, I was leaving a great career in Conference Sales and loved my job but wanted a new challenge and more flexibility. I had planned for a year with the knowledge that it may take 2 years to get my Real Estate Business up and running. My 1st year was surprisingly successful, I worked hard, stayed focused, and surpassed my goals.
Charter One Realty: What’s kept you in the business after your initial success?
Christina Forbis: I love this business, I meet the most interesting people, it's always changing and I learn something new every day. It's my privilege working for buyers and sellers as they navigate the process.
Charter One Realty: What’s one common mistake you see prospective buyers make?
Christina Forbis: I would not say buyers make mistakes....after the 1st visit it is easier to help them narrow their search. I work hard to help them focus on "how" they will live, not necessarily the house they will "live" in.
Charter One Realty: How has technology changed the industry, and what does it mean for buyers?
Christina Forbis: Yes, every buyer I work with now has seen the homes they are considering online, however, they very seldom purchaser without personally viewing the home.
Charter One Realty: If you weren't working in real estate, is there anything else you could see yourself doing?
Christina Forbis: Not at this stage of my life. It's a perfect fit for me and my skill set. It took a long time but I finally found my dream job.
Charter One Realty: What advice do you have for buyers looking in the Lowcountry?
Christina Forbis: Port Royal is a unique community, it's private, ocean-oriented, and short term rentals are not permitted. If the buyer does not have the desire to use the home as an investment property, (weekly rentals) but wants ocean/golf access, then Port Royal is it!
Charter One Realty: Where are you from originally, and how did you come to live in the Lowcountry?
Christina Forbis: I am from Southern New Jersey, I joke that I've been a "Southerner" all my life. I visited Hilton Head after I graduated College and loved it. A dear friend invited me to join her sales team at the Mariners Inn, that's going way back. During that time, I met my husband Scott here, he is from outside of Boston. I moved back to NJ after about 2 and a half years. We got married, bought a little house in NJ, and visited Hilton Head often. One day we decided that the timing was right and we moved back to Hilton Head.
Charter One Realty: Please tell us about your neighborhood and your home.
Christina Forbis: It's dumb luck we landed in Port Royal, we were looking for a small home and the only criteria was we wanted to be able to walk to the beach. We were lucky, found our little home just before the market went crazy in 1998. I love all of Hilton Head, but for our active lifestyle, 2 dogs, love of the beach and privacy, Port Royal is perfect for our primary home.
Charter One Realty: Can you tell us why your community is so special to you?
Christina Forbis: We love the beach and to exercise outdoors so the miles of beach access & leisure trials make it a wonderful place for our lifestyle. Port Royal has only 900 homes so the size is perfect. It's a laid back, warm, friendly & active community. A place where you can get involved if you want, but if not, neighbors respect that too.
Charter One Realty: How would you describe the vibe in the Lowcountry?
Christina Forbis: I love the Lowcountry, it's the South but very much a melting pot. So many interesting characters, from the true locals to the transplants and newcomers. It's a happy place to live, most people live here because they want to!
Charter One Realty: How have you seen the Lowcountry change — from both a personal and professional perspective — over the years?
Christina Forbis: The Lowcountry has changed very much in the 22+ years I have lived here. I can remember when there were only 2 lights and nothing between here and 170. The growth has been well managed, it brought diversity and experiences. I still get that feeling driving over the bridge when I'm coming home!
Charter One Realty: What are your favorite shops and restaurants in our community and why?
Charter One Realty: Do you have a personal motto or mantra that guides you?
Christina Forbis: Community Connections....Client Commitments and "Acta Non-Verba" - "Actions Not Words"
Charter One Realty: Please complete the sentence: “Home wouldn’t be home without . . .”
Christina Forbis: Daily sunrise beach walks my husband and dogs, Lexi & Tello!