In the mid 1970s, the King family nestled into life in the sleepy little town of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Michael King was only 11, but he was immediately enthralled by the coastal area’s charm. By the early 1980s, both his parents had enmeshed themselves in the Myrtle Beach community, actively engaging in its favorable real estate market. He fondly recalls their conversations about exciting transactions, imagining that one day he too would contribute to the growth of this little piece of paradise.
The pivotal moment came in 1984. Michael was 19 and studying at Coastal Carolina University. He decided that he could no longer postpone what he knew to be his destiny and began what would become a dynamic career founded in, and focused on, his beloved city.
Over the next 21 years, Michael’s popularity and reputation among clients grew. With a combination of Southern hospitality, infectious enthusiasm, and a genuine desire to help others, he can easily be credited with contributing to the Myrtle Beach real estate boom.
But in stark comparison to many in his field, Michael didn’t want to get more, he wanted to give more. “I learned a long time ago that if you help others achieve their goals, you’ll never have to worry about you achieving yours,” he shares. And so, in pursuit of his altruistic ambitions, Michael founded KingOne Properties International in 2006. The company would specialize in the development and sale of residential and commercial properties, allowing Michael to further indulge his desire to share the joys of life in Myrtle Beach.
Today, he leads a thriving enterprise with offices not only in Myrtle Beach, SC, but also in Toronto, Canada; Fort Lauderdale, FL; Charleston, SC; and the South Brunswick Islands, NC, and a client roster that stretches over a significant portion of the Eastern Seaboard. Equally important to Michael, every office, and with every client, his signature Southern hospitality trademark endures. It is more of a “culture” than an acumen, and one that has been willingly adopted by each of the 70 agents who now work for Michael. “I’ve never recruited,” he shares. “Agents come to me because they know my character and want to be part of a company that is supportive of their goals and growth. I am happy to post signs or accompany them to meet a client—and I often do.”
Who better to learn from than someone who has exceeded $1.7 billion in sales during his career and put grand-scale luxury housing developments such as the Grande Dunes and developers like Heritage Communities in the national spotlight? Yet, despite having every reason to brag, this Myrtle Beach proprietor remains humble and continues to focus on increasing his pledge, not his presence. Whether that comes in the form of nurturing his agents or preserving the natural habitats of the city through responsible development, Michael made a commitment to his community, and it is one he continues to honor. “I feel that I’ve been blessed in my life, and giving back is not something I consider an obligation. I want to do it. I sincerely enjoy passing on the values I learned, and the experiences I’ve had,” he explains.
Apart from the many ways through which KingOne Properties supports the community, Michael is personally active in numerous philanthropical projects. On the holidays, he and his family supply meals and gifts to the less fortunate. “We have shared ourselves and our resources with more than 17,800 children to date—and we don’t take credit for that. Whatever we give, we do so in the name of parents and guardians, or Santa Claus. We try to focus on 13- to 19-year-olds because they are often overlooked by many other charitable groups, who focus on children under 12,” he expresses. Yet, that is not the extent of Michael’s generosity. He is co-chairman of fundraising for Horry County Domestic Violence Shelter, a founding member of Myrtle Beach Chapter of Vistage Worldwide Inc., a board member of the WALBER Foundation, and past president of 2 Live Beyond, all 501 c3 charities.
As a man of many talents known for his integrity, kindness, and compassion, it’s no surprise that Michael would be the recipient of numerous and noteworthy accolades. In 2022, he was nominated for the National Realtor’s Good Neighbor Award, which recognizes the top U.S. realtor for their charitable works. That same year, he was named Entrepreneur of The Year by the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce and received the Realtor’s Image Award by Coastal Carolina Association of Realtors. He was also nominated by Inc. Magazine as one of the Top 100 Most Influential Realtors in America. KingOne Properties International won Best Real Estate Company in the Myrtle Beach area for the past six years, as well as Best Residential Developer, Best Commercial Developer, and the 2020 Business Innovation Award. He also serves as chairman of the Grant Center in the Wall School of Business at Coastal Carolina University.