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March 26, 2019

To Upsize or Downsize, That is the Question

Perhaps you’ve decided it’s time to simplify your home life, or maybe you’ve grown tired of small-scale living and have your sights set on a bigger place with room to grow and entertain. Regardless of your motivations, phase in life, or other factors, deciding to move into a bigger or smaller home brings many of us to a crossroads.   For some, it is purely a financial decision, and for others, the variables are vast. Here are a few key factors that often drive decisions to upsize or downsize:   Location If high-rise, downtown living is where you want to be, there are obvious sacrifices that need to be made in order to accommodate your location preferences. While you may […]
March 19, 2019

Have You Gone Ygrene?

There’s no getting around it. It’s expensive to live in South Florida. Living here means we have to pay a premium on a lot of things, like keeping our homes cool from the intense sun and heat and protecting our properties from damaging hurricane winds. All of these necessities come at a cost, which can most commonly be seen in the form of energy bills and homeowners insurance premiums.   Fortunately, there is a solution that can help make an immediate impact that won’t necessitate massive changes to your monthly budget. In Miami, homeowners can make energy-efficient improvements to their homes through low-cost, long-term financing. Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE)-eligible home improvement projects include everything from upgrading your HVAC system […]
March 12, 2019

4 Small Things to Increase Your Home’s Value

Whether you’re considering selling your home in the near future or are looking to make small upgrades that you can enjoy yourself now, taking steps to meaningfully increase the value of your home is something many homeowners look to do. The question often is whether the effort is worth the payoff.   Starting small will give you the opportunity to evaluate your home and your goals from a fresh perspective. Here are some easy places to start if you’re looking to boost your home’s value.   Start from the outside in Everyone knows the power curb appeal can hold in luring potential buyers. It also can go a long ways in boosting your home’s value. Make a good first impression […]
March 5, 2019

Coral Gables Featured Listings

If you’re looking for charm, sophistication, and casual elegance, look no further than “The City Beautiful.” Unique and stunning architecture is the name of the game, and the city’s civic leadership helps ensure the community is always looking its best. When conjuring up images of Coral Gables in your head, think original 1920s-era Old Spanish-style homes complete with intricate details, arched doorways, elaborate fireplaces, and more. Its location is also unbeatable – just southwest of downtown Miami. If you want to learn more about the Gables and its residential real estate history, check out these blog posts: The Chinese Village The Dutch South African Village The French Normandy Village The French Country Village The Italian Village   Featured listings in […]
February 26, 2019

Home Selling 101: What to Know When You’re Ready to Sell (Part 2 of 2)

In part 1 of this blog series, we discussed some useful tips for first-timers to home buying. When you’re selling your home, similar advice comes into play, but there are also specific things sellers need to consider when putting their home on the market.   Consider the “When” While there are certain occasions like a job relocation when owners may be forced to speed up the sale of their home. There are other instances when sellers are afforded the luxury of slowing down and determining the when. While numerous factors will go into this decision, the right time is ultimately a matter of when it’s right for you and your family.   Get in touch with your realtor Once you’ve […]
February 19, 2019

Home Buying 101: What to Know if You’re New to Buying Real Estate (Part 1 of 2)

If you’re new to real estate or even new to a market, there are some important things to keep in mind as you embark on a new home buying adventure. In this post, we’ll break down some of those helpful things to remember.   Finances first Before you can even begin to get serious about buying a home, you have to take a hard look at your finances and understand your realistic monthly budget. More than just the mortgage payment, other hidden costs[link to previous blog about hidden costs of homeownership] can quickly make that mortgage payment a lot more than you may initially think.   The rule of thumb for getting pre-qualified for a mortgage is that your monthly […]
February 12, 2019

State of the Market: Palmetto Bay

The market in Palmetto Bay continues to thrive, and it will likely remain in high demand for years to come, particularly because of its top-notch schools. Moreover, Palmetto Bay offers numerous parks and recreation spaces plus an enviable location just 20-minutes south of downtown Miami. Given this, it’s no surprise that Palmetto Bay consistently ranks near the top of “best places to live” lists.   This “Village of Parks” offers families everything they need in a community and more. Expand your search and see what Palmetto Bay has to offer you.   Featured listings in Palmetto Bay   7455 SW 170thTER– This 4-bedroom, 3.5-bath home is 4,021 square feet and located in the gated enclave of Old Cutler Palms. Featuring […]
February 5, 2019

Uncovering the Hidden Costs of Home Ownership

Many first-time home buyers come to the market with a great deal of enthusiasm for making their purchase. However, even the most savvy and prepared buyers can be caught off guard by some of the less-obvious costs of owning a home which, taken together, can add up to more than $9,000 per year in expenses. As you plan your budget, be sure to factor in more than just the home’s list price or mortgage payment. Keep the following considerations in mind as well:   Required costs Certain costs are unavoidable, like homeowners insurance, property taxes, and utilities. While they vary by property, they can quickly add up and may increase that mortgage payment more than some first-time home buyers expect […]
August 28, 2018

What You Need to Know About the New Closing Disclosure Form

A closing disclosure form simply outlines the terms and costs of your mortgage, but it’s one of the most important pieces of paperwork to check before closing on a home. Look at the closing disclosure form as a follow-up form to the loan estimate document you received when you first applied for your loan. The loan estimate outlined the approximate fees you would need to pay if you chose to move forward with the lender. Your closing disclosure is the real deal version of that. So, it’s important to scrutinize and look over the closing disclosure form very carefully. Here are a few tips to help you when you look over your closing disclosure form: Closing disclosure vs. settlement statement  […]