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Classic Home Mortgage Providing Trustworthy Mortgage Guidance for Over 30 Years

Buying a home is one of the most significant investments that you will ever make. Like most good things, finding the perfect home comes with a lot of work. From your initial search online to your home tour and finally closing, there are many difficult decisions to make along the way. The bottom line is that the entire home buying process can be very stressful, especially when it comes to finding the right mortgage broker and loan for your new home. Since market conditions and mortgage programs change frequently, you have a lot riding on your broker's ability to provide quick and accurate financial advice. Whether you're a first-time homebuyer or own several residential properties, you need a mortgage broker in Isle of Palms, SC, who can educate you on mortgage rates and provide trustworthy guidance to help you make an informed decision.

My name is Dan Crance - Isle of Palms's most trusted mortgage loan officer with more than 30 years in the mortgage industry. I bring unparalleled insight and decades of experience into your home loan process. If you're looking for a new home loan, are interested in refinancing your current mortgage, or need information regarding FHA, VA, or other types of loans, Dan Crance is Your Mortgage Man.

Unlike some mortgage loan officers in Isle of Palms, my primary goal is to help you make the right mortgage choice for you and your family. Mortgage lenders have a horrible reputation for turning over clients quickly to expedite cash flow and make the most money possible. While some mortgage brokers come off as pushy and impatient, I encourage my clients to take as much time as they need to ask questions and review their mortgage agreements. I'm here to help answer those questions and provide you with easy-to-understand advice so that you can rest easy knowing you made the right choice. I could say that I strive to provide service that exceeds your expectations, but I'd rather show you. In the end, I want you to leave feeling confident in the loan you've selected, as well as in your choice of broker.

Service Areas
Mortgage Broker Isle Of Palms, SC
 Refinance Isle Of Palms, SC

Why Choose Dan Crance As Your Mortgage Lender in Isle of Palms, SC?

Clients choose my mortgage company because I truly care about helping them navigate the often-confusing landscape of the mortgage process. I am fiercely dedicated to my clients and make every effort to provide them with trustworthy advice and an open line of communication.

In my business, I work for two different customers. On one hand, I have the buyer: the person entrusting me with the responsibility of guiding them through one of the most important decisions ever. Serving homebuyers is not a task that I take lightly. I work with them daily to help them through the process and provide timely updates and news on their mortgage status. On the other hand, I have the realtor: the person who works with my client to find their dream home. Since their commission is in my hands, working with realtors is also a very important task. I update these agents on the status of their customers weekly. Only when I take care of both parties can I say my job as a mortgage loan officer is complete.

As a mortgage broker with more than 30 years of experience, I pledge to give you the highest level of customer service while providing you with the most competitive loan products available. That way, you can buy the home of your dreams without second-guessing your decision.

 Conventional Mortgage Isle Of Palms, SC

Home Financing in Isle of Palms, SC

At Classic Home Mortgage, our team works diligently to close on time without stress or hassle. Whether you're a seasoned homeowner or are buying your new home in Isle of Palms, we understand how much stress is involved. Our goal is to help take that stress off of your plate by walking you through every step of the home loan process. Because every one of our clients is different, we examine each loan with fresh eyes and a personalized approach, to find you the options and programs you need.

With over 30 years as a mortgage professional in Isle of Palms, Dan Crance will help you choose the home loan, interest rate, term options, and payment plans that fit your unique situation.

 FHA Mortgages Isle Of Palms, SC

When you work with Classic Home Mortgage, you can always count on our team to:

  • Put your needs first.
  • Work efficiently and quickly. Many of our home loans close in 30 days or less.
  • Offer you a variety of home loans to choose from, and help you make an informed decision.
  • Provide you with competitive rates that make sense for your budget and lifestyle.

While no two loan terms are the same, a few of the most common loan types include:

30-Year Loan - This loan is often considered the most secure option to choose. With a 30-year loan, you can lock in a low payment amount and rest easy knowing your rate won't change.

FHA Loan - If you're not able to make a large down payment, an FHA loan could be the right choice for you. With an FHA loan, many of our clients have successfully purchased a home with less than 4% down.

VA Loan - This loan is reserved for military veterans and active-duty men and women. Those who qualify may be able to purchase a home with no down payment and no Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI).

Choosing a home loan is an important step in the home buying process. At Classic Home Mortgage, we are here to make choosing a loan as easy as possible, so you can focus on the joys of being a homeowner. Contact our team of experts today and ask how you can get pre-qualified for your home loan in Isle of Palms, SC.

Refinancing in
Isle of Palms, SC

Because home mortgage rates in the U.S. have been so low over the last year, many current homeowners are opting to refinance their home loans. Simply put, refinancing is replacing your existing mortgage with a different mortgage under new terms. Homeowners who refinance their homes enjoy lower interest rates, lower monthly payments, and even turn their home's equity into cash. If you're interested in refinancing your home, it all begins with a call to your mortgage broker in Isle of Palms, SC - Dan Crance.

Here are just a few reasons why more homeowners in the U.S. are taking advantage of lower rates and refinancing their homes:
 Home Ready Mortgages Isle Of Palms, SC
Shorter Term Loan

Shorter Term Loan

Refinancing from a 30-year to a 15-year mortgage might seem counterproductive on the surface because your monthly payment usually goes up. However, interest rates on 15-year mortgages are lower. And when you shave off years of your previous mortgage, you will pay less interest over time. These savings can be very beneficial if you are not taking the mortgage interest deduction on your tax returns.

Do Away with FHA

Do Away with FHA

FHA loans are notorious for paying premiums for the life of the loan. Mortgage insurance premiums for FHA loans can cost borrowers as much as $1,050 a year for every $100k borrowed. The only way to get rid of mortgage insurance premiums is to refinance to a new loan that the Federal Housing Authority does not back.

Switch to Fixed Rate or Adjustable-Rate Home Loan

Switch to Fixed Rate or Adjustable-Rate Home Loan

Sometimes, borrowers with adjustable-rate mortgages refinance so they can switch to a fixed rate, which lets them lock in an interest rate. Doing so is beneficial for some homeowners who like to know exactly how much their monthly payment is each month. Conversely, some homeowners with fixed rates prefer to refinance to an adjustable-rate mortgage. Homeowners often go this route if they plan on selling in a few years and don't mind risking a higher rate if their plans fall through.

 Mortgage Banker Isle Of Palms, SC

Common Questions About Home Loans

Finding the right loan can be a difficult proposition, even if you have been through the process before. This is especially true since mortgage rates and market conditions change frequently. If you're like most of my clients, you probably have questions about interest rates, refinancing options, and a litany of other topics. To help alleviate some of your stress, here are just a few common questions with answers so that you can better educate yourself as we work our way to securing your loan.

Generally speaking, you should consider refinancing when mortgage rates are 2% lower than the current rate on your home loan. For some homeowners, refinancing makes sense when there is only a 1% difference. Reducing your mortgage rate is a great way to save money or apply your savings to a home upgrade. The money you save on your refinanced loan depends on your loan amount, budget, income, and charges from interest rates. It's crucial that you work with a trusted mortgage loan officer in Isle of Palms, SC, to help calculate your refinancing options.
This is one of our most frequently asked questions at Classic Home Mortgage. In simple terms, points let you make a tradeoff between the upfront costs of your loan and your monthly payment amount. Points are essentially costs that you have to pay to your mortgage lender to get financing under specific terms. A point is defined as a percentage on your loan amount. 1-point is equal to 1% of the loan. So, 1 point on a loan worth $100,000 is equivalent to $1,000. When you pay some of the interest on your home loan upfront, you use discount points to lower your interest rate.
If you plan to live in the property for a few years, it makes a lot of sense to pay points to lower your interest rate. Doing so will help lower your monthly loan payment, which you can use to save money. Paying points may also increase the amount of money that you can borrow. If you do not plan on living in the property for at least a few years, this strategy might not make financial sense because you might not be able to make up the amount of the discount points you paid up-front.
In short, yes, your mortgage lender will need to know your credit score. Credit scoring is a system that creditors use to decide whether they will give you credit. Your credit score helps creditors decide how creditworthy you are or how likely you will repay your loan. In most circumstances, creditors will use your FICO scores during the loan process. Your score will fall between high risk (350) and low risk (850). Your credit score plays a big role in the loan process, and as such, your score must be accurate before submitting a credit report when applying for a loan.
The answer to this question depends on how money you choose to put as a down payment on your home. On a conventional loan, if your down payment is less than 20% of the price of your home, your mortgage broker in Isle of Palms may require you to get Private Mortgage Insurance or PMI for short. This insurance protects your lender in the event you default on your mortgage. The best way to avoid paying for this insurance is to make a down payment of 20% or more of the purchase price of your home.
 Mortgage Company Isle Of Palms, SC

Trust Dan Crance

Your Mortgage Lender in Isle of Palms, SC

Whether you're selling, buying, refinancing, or building the home of your dreams, you have a lot riding on your home loan specialist. When you need a mortgage broker who works tirelessly for you, answers your questions, provides guidance, and does so with a genuine smile, Dan Crance is your mortgage man. Contact Dan today at 843-478-5612 to get pre-approved and discover why Isle of Palms loves Classic Home Mortgage.

After hours by appointment only. CONTACT DAN

Latest News in Isle of Palms, SC

Isle of Palms renegade group Palm Republic seeks parking fight in SC Supreme Court

ISLE OF PALMS — As the new year approaches, the fight over public beach parking remains unsettled with a court case awaiting a decision by the state Supreme Court.The Palm Republic group created by Isle of Palms’ former mayor and a current councilman has asked the court to hear a constitutional challenge to a 2021 state law that says free beach parking along state roads can’t be removed without the state’s permission.It’...

ISLE OF PALMS — As the new year approaches, the fight over public beach parking remains unsettled with a court case awaiting a decision by the state Supreme Court.

The Palm Republic group created by Isle of Palms’ former mayor and a current councilman has asked the court to hear a constitutional challenge to a 2021 state law that says free beach parking along state roads can’t be removed without the state’s permission.

It’s a law created by Sen. Larry Grooms, R-Bonneau, and signed by Gov. Henry McMaster in the spring of 2021, following the island’s attempt in 2020 to remove much of the beach parking on the island and charge for the parking that would remain.

The S.C. Department of Transportation had already rejected the island’s plan to eliminate hundreds of parking spaces, and later stepped in to increase the amount of free parking near the beach on the island — “unilaterally and illegally” according to the Palm Republic lawsuit.

Those actions prompted Councilman Blair Hahn and former Mayor Jimmy Carroll to declare the island “The Palm Republic” in an airing of grievances that included a declaration of independence, signed in costume at a local bar.

At the time, Hahn was declared to be The Palm Republic’s “attorney general, also known as His Beaudacious Highness, Admiral and Grand Ruler of All Seas Less than 1 Fathom.” But he says the legal issues in play are not joke.

Carroll and Hahn have said the state law is an affront to home rule and the power of municipalities.

“We want our home rule back,” said Carroll. “We just want them to hear the case.”

State Rep. Joe Bustos, R-Mount Pleasant, agrees.

“There’s either going to be home rule, or there’s not,” he said.

The issue now is whether the Supreme Court will take what’s known as “original jurisdiction” and agree to hear the case, as Palm Republic LLC has asked.

The state, through Attorney General Alan Wilson’s office, and the DOT have both urged the court to not take the case. Both said there’s no urgency to rule on a law that’s been in effect for more than 18 months, and the case should be heard in a lower court.

“If the Supreme Court does not take the case, we’ll file the case in Charleston County,” Hahn said. “The only issue is, is the statute constitutional or not?”

He said the case would end up before the Supreme Court one way or another.

Like many barrier islands, Isle of Palms has sought to manage the flood of beach-bound traffic that arrives during the warm months. Conflict over the parking issue flared up in 2020 when the island prohibited non-residents from using the hundreds of free parking spots near the beach, citing COVID-19 concerns.

The attempt to eliminate parking and charge for what remained came the following year, prompting the creation of a nonprofit group that sued the city, the new state law, and action by SCDOT.

The Palm Republic group has been urging residents to write to local and state lawmakers, and the Supreme Court, to ask that the high court take the case.

A Great White Shark Gets Up Close and Personal

Captain Jim Hutson, a fishing guide, wildlife photographer, and conservationist based in Charleston, South Carolina, saw a great white shark swim under his boat four years ago, but the moment happened too quickly for him to document it. That was not the case Wednesday, when he and two friends boated thirty miles off the coast of Isle of Palms and pulled up over a shipwreck.“Right when we started getting lines in, I saw this fin that I thought was a sunfish,” Hutson says. “I went up to the bow, looked over, and said, ...

Captain Jim Hutson, a fishing guide, wildlife photographer, and conservationist based in Charleston, South Carolina, saw a great white shark swim under his boat four years ago, but the moment happened too quickly for him to document it. That was not the case Wednesday, when he and two friends boated thirty miles off the coast of Isle of Palms and pulled up over a shipwreck.

“Right when we started getting lines in, I saw this fin that I thought was a sunfish,” Hutson says. “I went up to the bow, looked over, and said, nope, that’s a giant great white.” During winter, great white sharks appear off the coasts of South Carolina, Florida, and Georgia, where there are warmer waters, but it’s still extremely rare to see one. “We were all just amazed at this animal that makes you feel so small.” Hutson estimates that the shark, which he later identified as a female, was at least thirteen feet long and nearly as wide as his boat.

He was able to get drone footage before she swam away, and the trio headed off to a few more fishing spots before returning to the wreck just in case she decided to reappear. Sure enough, “she popped right up” as they arrived, and this time, she circled the boat, taking a special interest in the motor, and allowed Hutson time for more footage, some underwater. “We had a live well of bait, so there was definitely a scent trail,” he says. “And she doesn’t have any predators, so she probably felt she could do whatever she wanted and check out whatever was going on.”

The footage reveals a whole school of fish traveling with her—“an animal this big has its own zip code,” as Hutson puts it—plus curious scratch marks on the face, possibly from prey like a seal fighting back. All told, the great white spent a half hour around the boat, giving the three friends the experience of a lifetime. “We caught grouper, snapper, triggerfish, and amberjack, but I would have taken seeing that shark over anything,” Hutson says. “I’d seen one great white in the past fifteen years of guiding, and yesterday, we got to hang out and observe this one for so long. Absolutely incredible experience.”

Isle of Palms council discussing limiting development in Wild Dunes

The City of Isle of Palms is holding the first of two public hearings to discuss limiting future development and protecting the golf courses in the Wild Dunes pISLE OF PALMS, S.C. (WCSC) - The City of Isle of Palms is holding the first of two public hearings to discuss limiting future development and protecting the golf courses in the Wild Dunes planned development district on Tuesday.The discussion stemmed from a 1975 agreement that would make it possible for there to be over 300 more rooms built in the Wild Dunes between hote...

The City of Isle of Palms is holding the first of two public hearings to discuss limiting future development and protecting the golf courses in the Wild Dunes p

ISLE OF PALMS, S.C. (WCSC) - The City of Isle of Palms is holding the first of two public hearings to discuss limiting future development and protecting the golf courses in the Wild Dunes planned development district on Tuesday.

The discussion stemmed from a 1975 agreement that would make it possible for there to be over 300 more rooms built in the Wild Dunes between hotels and condos.

According to Mayor Phillip Pounds, it all started back in February when a group of residents asked the council to take a look at the decades-old agreement to see if they could make some changes. Anthony Santiago says he was one of those residents.

“We thought we were developed already after The Sweetgrass Inn,” Santiago said. “We don’t even have parking for that. And then through the due diligence we discovered the capacity to expand this more than double.”

Santiago and others who are against future development in Wild Dunes say that more development would overwhelm public safety and public works resources, cause more drainage and sewage issues, and make traffic and parking on the island more of a nightmare.

“Every city municipality has the right to rezone as you develop,” Santiago said. “This is almost fifty years ago when we did this. Nobody thought we’d be as big as we are.”

The Isle of Palms City Council now has five ordinances up for discussion that would preserve public and private facilities and put a cap on density in the planned development district.

Beverly Miller is the executive director of the Barrier Island Preservation Alliance, a nonprofit formed to address challenges unique to the barrier islands. She said she wanted to show support for the ordinances through a petition. It now has over 750 signatures.

“When that was written, this island was erratically different, and it’s so different now that we need to amend those zoning ordinances so that we are up to today and the demands that are on the island today that were not here in 1975,” Miller said.

Pounds said the Wild Dunes agreement was one of the first of its type in the country.

“Unusual maybe, but as areas get built out there’s certainly an opportunity for cities to revisit the zoning and the density and the future development,” Pounds said.

Pounds said the city has received many phone calls and emails from concerned residents worried how much the island could take. He says there’s confusion about the slow process, but he says with the public hearing, that will stop development even though they aren’t completely through the process.

“When you’re on an island where you have such little landmass to develop anything, the ability to put 300 plus units in Wild Dunes today, I don’t even know where they would put them because there’s not that kind of landmass,” Pounds said. “But some of the concern was, could they do something on the golf courses, could they do something on the tennis courts. That’s some of the ordinance that we’re looking at during this process is protecting those areas.”

Tuesday’s public hearing will take place at Isle of Palms city hall at 5 p.m. Another public hearing will take place Nov. 1 at 5 p.m. at the city’s recreation center. The city’s planning commission will take a look at the ordinances and give feedback to city council. Then, it will be up to city council to schedule a second reading which would solidify the ordinances.

Copyright 2022 WCSC. All rights reserved.

Extreme weather on a holiday weekend created a water crisis, with lessons for the future

Joseph Stelluti’s phone started ringing as dawn broke Dec. 24, the first sign that the East Cooper plumber would be working a series of 14-hour days as water pipes froze and cracked across much of South Carolina.“There were a lot of frantic people who didn’t know where their main water shutoff was,” he said this week. “The phone is still constantly ringing, with people who have an issue.”Stelluti said he’s been running from job to job, thawing pipes and tankless water heaters and repair...

Joseph Stelluti’s phone started ringing as dawn broke Dec. 24, the first sign that the East Cooper plumber would be working a series of 14-hour days as water pipes froze and cracked across much of South Carolina.

“There were a lot of frantic people who didn’t know where their main water shutoff was,” he said this week. “The phone is still constantly ringing, with people who have an issue.”

Stelluti said he’s been running from job to job, thawing pipes and tankless water heaters and repairing broken water lines.

“I was supposed to take off this whole week, but, no,” he said. “I’ve been working from about 6 a.m. to 8 o’clock at night.”

Utility crews have faced much the same. The Christmas weekend freeze caused damage to thousands of homes and businesses and strained water systems across the state. Coastal areas unaccustomed to sub-freezing temperatures appear to have suffered the most.

Elevated homes with exposed pipes proved particularly vulnerable. That’s one reason the town of Edisto Beach lost water pressure and had to advise residents on Christmas Day to boil any water they planned to consume — an advisory that lasted until Dec. 29.

“We’re in the hundreds, in terms of how many (homes) we shut off,” said town Administrator Iris Hill. “We were out working Christmas and the day after, going house to house.”

A key factor that contributed to the widespread water problems was the timing.

The sub-freezing temperatures arrived the night of Dec. 23, at the start of a holiday weekend when many homeowners had left town, and many second homes and vacation rental properties were sitting empty. Not just on Edisto Beach, but in towns and cities across the state.

“We were caught off guard by the number of empty homes,” said Michael Saia, spokesman for Charleston Water System. “We just didn’t realize the perfect storm was heading our way.”

In too many cases, those empty homes had not been prepared by shutting off the water and draining the lines, or leaving the water on and letting faucets drip. In some cases, homes had been prepared, but irrigation systems, pools and outdoor showers were overlooked.

“Because we don’t often experience severe freezing temperatures in South Carolina, I believe that many residents have a false sense that freezing conditions never occur here,” said Becky Dennis, Director of Operations at Kiawah Island Utility. “Although there was ample warning on local and national news outlets about the weather, it seems many residents were still caught off guard.”

About 100 customers on Kiawah had problems with leaks. The Charleston area’s largest water utility, Charleston Water System, shut off service to about 1,700 customers with weather-related leaks. That does not include customers who shut off their own water. Greenville Water had nearly 300 emergency service requests for frozen or broken pipes, and over the holiday weekend produced 30 percent more treated water than usual.

Problems with damaged pipes were reported from the upstate to the coast, and utilities pumped tens of millions of gallons of extra water into their systems to make up for the water pouring onto the ground.

Columbia Water was producing more than 86 million gallons on Dec. 26, about 34 million gallons above average for the time of year, and handled about 330 emergency meter shut-offs. Charleston Water System was at its peak putting out about 50 million extra gallons daily.

“We never found one particular smoking gun,” Columbia’s Assistant City Manager Clint Shealy said. “It was really death by tens of thousands of cuts, we think.”

If water systems pump more water than treatment plants can handle, the water can become unsafe, leading to boil-water advisories. Charleston came close, officials said.

Problems reported in South Carolina included boil-water advisories in Ridgeville (Dorchester County), Florence, parts of Hopkins (Richland County), parts of Winnsboro (Fairfield County), and a brief system outage in Andrews (Georgetown County).

Crews at St. John’s Water Company, on Johns Island, worked overtime for four days handling emergency calls, Assistant Manager Colleen Schild said. Isle of Palms Water and Sewer Commission shut off about 80 water meters at homes with leaks, according to General Manger Chris Jordan.

As in January 2018, when another “bomb cyclone” storm swept through the area, the Christmas freeze reminded Lowcountry residents that winter weather along the coast is rare, but not impossible. And the impacts can be great for the unprepared.

The 2018 storm would have been manageable by Northeast standards — about 5 inches of snow and ice that arrived Jan. 3 — but it closed roads, bridges, government offices and Charleston International Airport for 5 days, mostly due to a lack of snow plows and road salt.

Instead of melting, the snow thawed and then froze, covering roads with ice. Water pipe issues weren’t as widespread that year, and utility officials think the main reason is that people weren’t away from home when it happened.

Some local governments in 2018 responded to the ice storm by purchasing snow plow attachments and salt-spreading equipment, to avoid being caught off guard again. This year, after this storm, water utilities and plumbers are urging homeowners to be better prepared for winter weather in the future.

“This is an event that was caused by our customers, and could only be solved by our customers,” said Saia. “This was not a utility infrastructure issue.”

The takeaway from multiple water utilities is that customers should do these things:

The Mount Pleasant and Isle of Palms water utilities had one advantage during the frozen pipe crisis, and that was their Automated Meter Infrastructure systems — “smart” water meters that allow the utilities to remotely detect unusual water flows.

“When things began to thaw, we utilized our AMI metering system to generate reports for continuous usage — leaks due to broken pipes — and sent out our operators to investigate the issue,” said Jordon, on Isle of Palms. “If it was verified that there was a broken line, we turned off the water at the meter.”

Mount Pleasant Waterworks brought two idled treatment plants back online to handle an increased demand for millions of gallons of water daily, but said water leaks would have been worse without the AMI meters.

“Without a doubt, we were able to stop the bleeding quickly because of the AMI technology we invested in a few years ago,” said MPW spokeswoman Jennifer Lawrence.

MPW General Manager Allan Clum said the system made it easy to identify leaking irrigation systems, because it’s unlikely anyone would be using 400 gallons an hour to water a lawn at this time of year. The utility shut off meters to hundreds of irrigation systems following the freeze event.

Post and Courier reporters Connor Hughes in Greenville, Asia Rollins in Spartanburg and Skylar Laird in Columbia contributed to this report.

Editorial: Isle of Palms officials have given no good reason to shrink council. Vote no.

Ever since the Isle of Palms incorporated in the 1950s, voters have elected eight at-large council members and a mayor. In the coming month, these city voters will decide if that’s two council members too many.We don’t think it is. More specifically, we don’t see any big advantage that shrinking City Council would provide to residents, and we see a few disadvantages.The idea of reducing council’s size has been batted around quietly for several years, Mayor Phillip Pounds tells us, partly because the city...

Ever since the Isle of Palms incorporated in the 1950s, voters have elected eight at-large council members and a mayor. In the coming month, these city voters will decide if that’s two council members too many.

We don’t think it is. More specifically, we don’t see any big advantage that shrinking City Council would provide to residents, and we see a few disadvantages.

The idea of reducing council’s size has been batted around quietly for several years, Mayor Phillip Pounds tells us, partly because the city does seem to have a rather large council for its size, about 4,400 residents. Only about 4% of South Carolina municipalities have more than seven council seats, and most of them are much larger. For instance, Charleston, North Charleston and Mount Pleasant have 12, 10 and 8 council seats, respectively.

The debate has remained fairly quiet, even as the council added it to the Nov. 8 ballot, and with less than three weeks remaining before early voting starts, no one has offered a compelling reason to vote “yes.” The conservative approach to any referendum question is to maintain the status quo unless there’s a compelling reason to make a change.

The primary upside of shrinking the Isle of Palms council apparently is saving a little time for council members and staff. Not to knock efforts to improve efficiency, but that strikes us as pretty thin gruel. It’s true that voters still would have six council members representing them (all seats are at-large), but who’s to say that the seventh or eighth council member wouldn’t be the one who listens to particular voters’ concerns most closely — and does the best job representing them?

Because of the way the reduction is planned, if voters approve it in the referendum, the City Council would be a mess for two years. The slim-down would be phased in with voters electing just three rather than four seats in the 2023 city election and then doing the same thing in the 2025 election. That would leave the council with an even number of votes (including the mayor’s) for two years. That might make a big difference, delaying important action on an important issue. Or not. But why take the risk?

This issue seems to be important mainly inside City Hall. While Mayor Pounds tells us he supports the idea, he acknowledges that the average Isle of Palms resident seems to have little skin in this game: “I can’t imagine they would notice a blip if we have five council members or seven or nine.”

If City Council members believe the current city governance is inefficient, then perhaps they should come up with changes that don’t affect the voters’ ability to elect council members. And if council members believe the job requires too much work — about 10 hours of work a week, on average — for too little pay (council members make $1,500 a year, but do qualify for health insurance benefits), perhaps they should either reexamine their work schedule or step aside for someone else to serve.

The council’s relative size might make the job of its members more time-consuming, but that also might work to ensure that their consensus, once they arrive at one, will better stand the test of time.

The city is grappling with big decisions, from the future of its marina to possible adjustments in its short-term rental rules to the logistical headaches involved in managing summertime crowds. We’re unconvinced City Council would make better decisions with fewer council members.

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