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Here you will find various postings on Palm Beach Gardens and Jupiter events, real estate news, and community sales with statistical information.

Nov. 22, 2019

5 Ways to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

Energy efficiency is the key phrase with just about anything you buy that uses electricity or any type of energy. We like to look at how much money we're saving over the course of several months or a year, especially when buying an appliance. But did you know that you can make your home more energy-efficient without revamping the entire construction? Many home buyers are looking specifically for these types of energy-efficient fixes and this could add value to the overall cost of your home.

Here are five ways to make your home more energy-efficient.

#1. Energy-efficient windows.5 Ways to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

Windows are one of the biggest sources of heat gain and heat loss in a home. For the Florida area, we're also looking at heat intake. The harder our air-conditioners run the more expensive it's going to be on the electricity or gas bill. By replacing the windows or at least weatherizing them, you can save hundreds of dollars a year depending on how much you're losing. Air leakage around the frame can transfer through windowpanes as well. When you choose a window, consider the frame, not just the glass. The material, design and type of glass all affect energy loss.

#2. Upgrade insulation.

Regardless of whether you're trying to keep heat in or cold air in, insulation plays a huge factor. Most homes only have the minimum required insulation or may even fall short of that minimum. By adding insulation to the attic or the crawlspace, you can save yourself a lot of energy and money over the life of your home.

#3. Use smart programmable thermostats.

Programmable thermostats have been around for years but now with new "smart technology," these thermostats sense whether people are home or not. If you choose to go on vacation for a couple of days, these programmable "smart" thermostats can actually recognize that there is no one in the home and either turn the heat up or turn the air conditioning down depending on what is needed to save energy. Plus, many of these thermostats can be controlled by your smartphone so that you can turn on the air conditioning several hours before you get home.

#4. Pay attention to the home's thermal envelope.

Natural energy will escape through the home's exterior but an air filtration system could make your heating and cooling system work harder to maintain climate control. You might want to schedule an energy audit with an HVAC company to point out and correct any noticeable leaks. They will find leaks around door frames and windows, underneath baseboards and around chimneys and vents. This is a great place to start with energy efficiency.

#5. Buy energy-efficient appliances.

Now, I'm not saying you should run out and spend tens of thousands of dollars on new appliances but each time an appliance gives out consider purchasing a better efficiency unit than the one you had before. Over time, these energy-efficient appliances could save you hundreds of dollars a year.

For more information on updating your home's efficiency please contact my office today. I can offer tips and suggestions on what home buyers are looking for and if you're planning on selling provide valuable keys to staging your home and getting it sold quickly.


Did you know that even new construction should be inspected?  Here's what you should know about home inspections on new construction.

We're always looking to save money. Here are 15 smart and sneaky ways to save on your energy bills this year.

Even if you're not selling, increasing your home's value is important. Here are 5 simple ways to increase your home's value.


Posted in Real Estate
Nov. 12, 2019

Thinking of Selling? What Affects You Right Now

Surprisingly, the interest rates have been going down slightly this year, a contradiction to what some economist predicted. This is great news for both buyers and sellers! However, nothing lasts forever and it will continue to creep, even ever so slowly. Thinking of Selling? What Affects You Right Now

The Palm Beach Gardens and Jupiter real estate market is improving greatly and because of this, it will be more expensive to buy a home. This is why I and numerous other real estate professionals feel that your home will most likely sell for the maximum price in 2019 - 2020. 

I know, we all say, that now is the best time to buy, sell - - - whatever! but inventory is very slim especially in the Jupiter area and waiting could result in more homes on the market. There are already new subdivisions like Sonoma Isles and Alton well underway, some of the first of their kind in years, and these will push out many resales over the next couple of years. 

Homebuyers are looking to buy now before interest rates rise too much and the same home will no longer be affordable. With every 1% rate hike, the chances of affording a particular home slip further away for many home buyers and especially first time home buyers. 

This is why buyers will probably be making motivated offers and in some cases multiple offers. Jupiter and Palm Beach Gardens are both hot seller's markets right now. Most homes increased in profit this year already and these increases are only set to rise higher in 2020. If you've been on the fence about selling or wonder how much your Jupiter or Palm Beach Garden home is currently worth, don't wait. Because I know the market, pay close attention to the minor fluctuation in market values, supply and demand, I can offer you a more accurate price of what your home may be worth, both now and potentially in 4-6 months should you wait. It pays to trust the experts when it comes to pricing and selling your home for top dollar. So, what are you waiting for?

Start here for free!

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Oct. 30, 2019

What's Trashing Your Home's Value Right Now?

The last thing most homeowners want to do is to devalue their property but they may be doing it without knowing it. Whether it's the location, the eyesore of a roof or something on the outside that is deterring buyers, here are 10 items that may be unknowingly trashing your home's value.What's trashing your home's value right now?

#1 Sinkhole.

While this is not quite the norm in southern Florida, we are seeing more and more of these unique sinkholes around the country. They can damage of property or completely take one out. Any of these damages can knock as much as 30% off of the value of a home. You want to make sure that your home structure is sound and that the property around the home is secure and not losing altitude at all. If need be, you might call in an expert to do a survey of the property and make sure there's no loss of ground around the property.

#2 Landfills.

While this is something we cannot change, the location of a home can severely devalue a property, especially if it's near powerplant, multiple power lines or the city dump. It could lower property up to 7.3%, which is why you'll need to emphasize the positive features of the home if you live close to a landfill.

#3 Bad neighbors.

Again, this is something you may not have any control over but messy yards, orders or properties that are just cluttered with "stuff" can really detract from the appeal on the entire neighborhood. Studies show that it can knock up to 10% off of the sale price of your home. Pretty much the only thing you can do without alienating yourself from your neighbors is to put up a fence.

#4 Foreclosures.

Foreclosures around the home can devalue your property as well. If you lived in a neighborhood that had a lot of short sales and foreclosures, those properties are probably in disrepair and may not have recovered. This can bring down the value of all the properties in the neighborhood about 2%.

#5 Fracking.

No, this is in a sci-fi curse word; fracking is a controversial method of extracting shale gas and your property may be threatened by it. We don't have a lot of this in Florida but people in Pennsylvania lost up to 24% of the property value if they lived within about a mile of a fracking well. This is something to consider if you plan on buying in this area as well.

#6 Crime rate and sex offenders.

Properties located next to registered sex offenders can drop up to 12%. Buyers can look up these registered sex offenders and find where they are located in a particular neighborhood in this could be detracting from your property's value.

#7 Advertising.

You might not think advertising would devalue a property but items such as large billboards, multiple political advertising, and industrial areas can detract from your home's value and deter homebuyers. Communities that have implemented strict Billboard controls have had higher median incomes, lower poverty rates, and lower home vacancy rates.

#8 Poor schools.

The southern Florida area has a lot of great schools but they are those pockets of school that may not have as great of ratings. These may have large class sizes, not as much budgeting or simply in a shadier part of town. This can detract from your home's value unbeknownst to you and out of your control.

#9 Odd renovations.

This might be something that you can control. If your home has an odd layout, bathroom right off the kitchen or unusual walk-throughs, it might be time for remodel to increase your home's value.

#10. Odd coloring.

While you want your home to stand out in the neighborhood as being attractive you don't want to be the odd duck out with strange house colorings, odd front lawn ornaments or excessive paraphernalia out front. You want to be able to fit into the general look of the neighborhood but still stand out just a little by improving the look, rather than going so opposite from your neighbors that is an eyesore.

So what can you do if your home has any of these problems? The idea is to de-emphasize the negative and emphasize the positive and the good features of the home. Perhaps you have a pool in the backyard, a nice fenced, quiet yard with a great outdoor living space, an updated kitchen, anything on the interior that would want a homeowner to spend more time inside instead of focusing on the negative outside. This is really one of the only ways that you can increase the value of your home instead of losing it from external sources out of your control.

For more specific tips on your home and how to emphasize the positive or to discuss concerns you may have on external sources devaluing your home feel free to give me a call at any time



What's Your Home Worth Right Now?


More Advice for Sellers:

Posted in Real Estate
Oct. 16, 2019

Halloween Events Around Palm Beach County

Pumpkins are lining porches, the ghosts are in the windows, and I've seen a rogue broomstick flying through the air, yes, it's Halloween season and there are a lot of really fun hollowing events going on around Palm Beach County this year. Here are some of our favorites.Halloween Events Around Palm Beach County

October 18 Spookyville at South Florida Fairgrounds – October 18 through the 31st at 9067 Southern Blvd. in West Palm Beach Florida is an old-fashioned Halloween for families and children 12 and under. There will be safe trick-or-treat's, contests, rides, games, haunted houses and more.

October 25 Halloween at the Y – on Friday, October 25 from 6:30 PM to 9 PM at the DeVos- Blum family YMCA of Boynton Beach you can grab your favorite costume and had to the YMCA for this year's theme Toy Story Land. Little ghosts and goblins are welcome to join in the hayrides, activities, haunted houses, and trick-or-treating.

October 18 at the River Center in Jupiter Florida is the Madcap science Lab and Halloween Party. Grab your lab coat and safety goggles for fun activities such as trick-or-treating, science experiments, campfire and s'mores, crafts and games and even a hayride.

October 26 is the Fall festival at the Garden Districts Parks on Saturday from 6 PM to 9 PM located at 5101 117th Court N. in Palm Beach Gardens. There will be live music, inflatable's, outdoor movie screens, photo booths, food trucks, trunk or treat, and lots of crazy adventures. Dress up in your best costume and come prepared to eat and have fun all evening.

Spooky Sharkey Hollowing Party on October 26 from an 11 AM until 3 PM at the shark wake Park. Enjoy a costume party, DJ, trunk or treat, and more located at Okeeheelee Park at 1440 Eshleman Trail in West Palm Beach Florida. This event is free and open to the public.

Halloween at the Addison presents "Neon Nights" – on October 31 starting at 7:30 PM at 2 E. Camino real in Boca Raton Florida is a fantastic open bar, live entertainment, and delicious catered event. Tickets are $110 for early birds and $125 for general admission. VIP tickets available as well and include food, open bar, and entertainment. There will be glow-in-the-dark seem events styled by Daniel Events.

Boo at the Zoo – October 18 from 9:00 AM until 9 PM enjoy this 21st annual Spooktacular with safe and fun trick-or-treating event for kids of all ages. This is happening at the Palm Beach zoo at 1301 Summit Blvd.

There's plenty more to check out around Palm Beach County but these are some of our favorites. For a list of all hollowing events going on around Palm Beach County click this link.

Posted in Things to Do
Oct. 4, 2019

Top Mistakes Most Buyers Make on Home Inspections

Top Mistakes most home buyers make

Nobody wants to make a mistake so if you can prevent them before they occur then you can be ahead of the game and march confidently into homeownership. Having a home inspection is a huge part of the home buying process. Here are some top mistakes many buyers make on their home inspection.

Home Inspections#1. Not inspecting new construction.

Many home buyers feel that if it's new construction there can't be anything wrong with it. They'd rather save that few hundred dollars and not have the inspection. However, just because it's new construction doesn't mean it's perfect. Many homebuyers are notorious for not having new construction inspected. They assume everything is okay and up to code. However, some inspectors can find hundreds of mistakes in a new construction home. You cannot rely on your builder or contractor to make sure that everything is done correctly. Having that unbiased home inspector go through the entire home and property will give you peace of mind.

 #2. Not showing up for your own inspection.

While this is not a requirement it is a crucial part of the home buying process. While we don't recommend hovering over the inspector and simply stepping back to let him do his job, we do recommend being there to ask questions, find out as much as you can and understand the general construction of your home. Written reports after the fact may leave you with many questions and confusion so being there at the time to get your questions answered can put you in a much better position later on. It is optional for your real estate agent to be present during the inspection but you can certainly ask your agent at any time if they feel they need to be present during the inspection.

 #3. Choosing the wrong inspector.

As a professional and experienced real estate agent in the Palm Beach County area I have seen far too many homebuyers use a family member, friend or even just a handyman to look through a house. The problem with this is that this is a huge investment you are purchasing so you need to choose someone that understands all of the nuances, construction and materials of the property. We recommend several qualified and reputable real estate inspectors throughout Palm Beach Gardens in Jupiter Florida but you are welcome to choose whomever you want. However, not using a skilled, knowledgeable and seasoned home inspector could cost you later on.

 #4. Not taking recommendations seriously.

The job of the home inspector is to lay out all of the issues in an unbiased manner. They are not to be alarmists or scare you out of buying the home but simply explain any issues of concern. The problem comes when you don't take serious recommendations into account. No matter how much you love the home, if there are serious hazard or safety issues, this is something to consider. Other items, such as a missing plug-in plate or light switch plate, missing baseboard or a rip or tear in a window screen is not that big of a deal, but larger issues such as a leaking roof, crumbling foundation or faulty wiring are things not to overlook.

#5. Understanding the home inspector does not know everything.

Most home inspectors know a little bit about a lot of different items, and they have too in order to provide accurate information to the best of their ability. However, they don't know everything and they cannot predict every faulty issue or future breakage that will occur.  You cannot hold them responsible for missing items that will happen later in the future.  The best that they can do is to provide accurate information on what condition the property is currently in.

Buying a home should be fun but you'll also want to take into consideration these crucial steps in the home inspection process. Learning as much as you can about your investment can put you steps ahead in saving for future replacements. 

 For more information feel free to contact us at any time. Stay tuned to our website and our blog for local listings, events, news and information about real estate throughout Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and Juno Beach.

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Posted in Real Estate
Sept. 2, 2019

How Homeowners Can Recover From Hurricane Damage

Hurricanes on Florida's east coast are nothing new but when we get reports of a pretty serious one, we start to look at our insurance policies, battening down the hatches, and what to do after a hurricane. Here are a few ways homeowners can recover from any hurricane damage.How Homeowners Can Recover From Hurricane Damage

If your home is damaged what do you do first?

When it's safe to do so, make any temporary repairs to prevent further damage of possible. This might mean putting tarps over holes in the roofs or plywood over broken windows.

Document as much as possible to ease your claiming process Make sure you understand what your policy covers and take pictures of everything.

Limits of your homeowner insurance policy depend on property damage from wind, but flood damage may not be covered through a standard homeowners policy even though flooding is a pretty common effect of a hurricane. Homeowners should consider purchasing separate coverage through the National Flood Insurance Program.

Renters policy may only cover renters possession inside while the landlord can ensure the building's structure. Any damage to personal vehicles from wind and flooding is typically covered under your auto insurance policy.

What might not be covered?

Lost wages, temporary housing, or money to cover living expenses while your home is being prepared may not be covered so it's important to understand your policy and have a backup.

Be aware of scammers. Scammers come out in droves after damage from natural disasters. You'll want to contact your insurance company before signing anything and only work with licensed and insured contractors. Make sure you get more than one estimate and get everything in writing. As for identification from sales representatives and never pay a contractor in full or assign a completion certificate until the work is completed.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency or FEMA can provide various forms of financial assistance after a disaster but it must be declared a federal disaster first. Visit the disaster assistance.gov and enter your address and they can point you toward FEMA disaster recovery centers.

Posted in News
Aug. 30, 2019

Best Way to Prepare Your House for a Hurricane

It was Hurricane Harvey and then Irma - Now we have Dorian. We can have some doozies around here.  Nobody wants the reality of what might happen but it's important to understand and be prepared as much as possible.

One of the biggest things to prepare and plan for is to evacuate when you're told to do so even before. There's just no point to risk it if there's any chance of death or injury.

That being said, there are some things to help prepare your home just in case it gets hit.

How to prepare your house for a hurricane

#1. Review your insurance policy. 

Ask your insurance company what they will cover. Many insurance companies will handle general fire or theft but may not have coverage for natural disasters. Also, you might have hurricane insurance but not flood insurance. Many people may not even be able to get flood insurance so it's important to understand what you have, what it covers, and talk to them about your concerns so that you are covered or have a plan of action if you need to.

#2. Take an inventory of your property.

Go throughout your house and take pictures of each room. Take specific pictures of high-priced items or high to get personal materials such as pianos, jewelry, high-end furniture and other items. Make a list of all of these things and have them in the cloud so that you can access them should your home get destroyed.

#3. Secure and seal your roof if you can.

The roof is one of the largest potential openings on the house and wind and water can do a tour of damage to a roof. Try to inspect your roof ahead of time to make sure that all the shingles are secured and that there are no broken or missing tiles. You may have to spend about $500 to seal the roof deck, but it could help.

#4. Consider roof straps. 

Florida requires builders to attach home's roof to the walls with metal straps. So make sure that those roof straps are in good working condition and have been installed properly.

#5. Seal windows and doors.

Check the seals around your windows and doors. You might just get a little bit of wind and rain but you certainly don't want any of that coming in through the cracks in and around the windows. This could lead to rot and mildew inside the walls. This also includes sealing any additional holes from electrical wires or cabling coming into the house.

#6. Clear the lawn and deck.

Make sure you're not leaving anything lying around such as lawn furniture, pots, vases, chairs, anything that could be blown around and used as a missile heading toward your windows or your doors and the side of your house. Make sure everything is stored indoors or secured to the ground.

#7. Reinforce your garage door.

Garage doors can blow in and if you have an attic above the garage it can blow up and tear the house apart. Strengthen your existing garage door by installing a vertical garage door brace and reinforcing it with horizontal wooden beams. [Source]

#8. Have an emergency pack ready to go.

This will include all first aid supplies, a battery-powered radio and extra batteries, flashlights and batteries, chargers for your phone, cash, food and supplies for your pets. You may also need about 1 gallon of water per family per member per day.

#9. Put things up that you want to save.

It's hard to prop up couches and chairs, but try to put everything up at least 5 feet or higher in the room to protect as much is possible. Put computers and power supplies up into closets and pick anything up off the floor that you want saved such as books, rugs, shoes, blankets, and chairs if you can.

Hold on tight Florida, Dorian is coming for us. But, we can try to be as prepared as possible both for our own safety initially and for the rebuilding of our homes later on. But, let's all pray we don't have to go that far.

Posted in Real Estate
July 25, 2019

Going from Renting to Buying is Not Quite the Same Thing

Going from Renting to Buying is Not Quite the Same Thing

There are a lot of real estate articles out there telling you that if you can afford a rental payment you can afford a house payment. Heck, I've probably written some myself, but is that really true? If you can afford a $2000 rental payment does not mean you can afford a $2000 mortgage payment? Well, there are differences. For starters, if something goes wrong in a rental, you typically have a landlord you can call to fix, repair, or replace items. When you own the home, those responsibilities fall to you. But there are also other costs involved in homeownership.

The major difference is what the mortgage includes. While rent is simply a once a month fee, mortgage payment includes four different things called PITI.

Principle: The principle is the amount of payment that goes towards the balance of your mortgage loan. This pays down the actual mortgage loan that you took out.

Interest: This is what the loan cost you.  This is determined by your interest rate and most interest rates are amortized, which means that the longer you pay the less interest you have.

Taxes: You'll need to pay property taxes as a homeowner and they are usually blended into your mortgage payment through an escrow company but can be paid by annually or annually out-of-pocket.

Insurance: You will need homeowners hazard insurance, which can also be paid through an escrow company to cover your home in case there is the weather damage, theft, or other potential issues.

It's important to know what goes into your mortgage payment. If you have an FHA mortgage or you obtained a mortgage that was close to 100% of the loan value, you will also have to add on private mortgage insurance or PMI. This can be canceled after a couple of years if the loan to value ratio drops below 80%. But this could add anywhere from $100-$300 per month. 

And again, you will have the responsibility of repair and replacement if necessary. So while the actual monthly housing payment might be similar, there are other factors involved. But remember, you are building equity. Your home is probably gaining just as much is you are paying out every single month and it's kind of like an investment that you can live in at the same time.

For more information please browse my website or contact my office today to schedule a showing of any Palm Beach Gardens or Jupiter home for sale.

Posted in Real Estate
July 9, 2019

Should I Buy a Home in Florida in the Summer?

Should I Buy a Home in Florida in the Summer?

It's hot outside but that's totally normal around here. I think we're hitting a high of 90° today and that can make homebuyers a little sluggish but it's actually a great time to buy. 

Summer in Palm Beach County Florida is usually our slow time when it comes to real estate. When we have comfortable temperatures in the 60s and 70s in the middle of winter it can be easy to buy a house as you're going from one place to another and the outside temperatures don't bother anybody. But, you also have to deal with holidays, the middle of school, and relocating from other places in the country if you're doing so. Selling or buying in one place and relocating to another may not be the easiest unless you're doing it all in Florida. So what are some of the pros and cons to buying a Florida home in the summer?

#1. Florida agents have nothing but time.

Because summer is our slowest time, real estate agents can spend all their time focusing on you and your needs. During the busiest times, real estate agents can take on 10+ homes at a time, which leaves very little time for each buyer or seller. In the summer, we have fewer clients so your priorities and interests get more of our attention.

#2. Less competition.

Because summer is not a busy time, you'll have less competition in the market. Most buyers will either wait until spring, fall, or winter to buy a home so you won't need to compete with a lot of multiple offer situations.

#3. Motivated sellers. 

Because there are not as many buyers, you won't have a lot of competition, which means that sellers will be more motivated and may be more likely to take her lower-priced offer or offers with more incentives to the buyers.

#4. Quicker close.

Many sellers will want to close before school starts, so you're likely to get a faster closing time then when the escrow, mortgage, and real estate industry is really jumping in the winter and fall.

#5. More daylight.

Most people have a day job and can't look at homes all day, every day, but when you're looking for a home in the summer, you may have daylight until 9 PM or later. It makes it nice for those that work during the day to see homes and the neighborhood even up until 10 PM.

#6. No school.

This may or may not affect you but if the seller has children, they're probably looking at summer to sell. It's easier and a little more carefree to move during the summer when you don't have to worry about kids starting into a new school or transitioning out in the middle of the year.

There are a lot of great reasons to buy a home in the summer in Florida said don't let the weather turn you off when there are so many other benefits.

For more information or to get started looking at homes in Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter, or surrounding communities give me a call today or start your online search here for free.

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Posted in Real Estate
June 25, 2019

The Mirasol Foundation - Community Services

The Mirasol foundation was established in 2016 as a nonprofit civic organization in Palm Beach County. This volunteer charitable organization is supported by the residents of the Mirasol Country Club in Palm Beach Gardens Florida. It's mission is to provide financial support for qualifying 501(c)(3) agencies that provide critical programming for the underserved residing within Palm Beach County and surrounding counties. At the end of their first fundraising season over $120,000 of financial grants were awarded to this and other nonprofit agencies.The Mirasol Foundation - Community Services

Mirasol Country Club has been involved within the community since 2014. The foundation's Board of Directors is thankful for tremendous financial support from residents and surrounding communities as well as hands-on community involvement. This past April 2019, the Mirasol foundation awarded $200,000 to 24 worthy nonprofit and civic organizations around the communities. Their goal is to raise, administer, and distribute funds to civic, cultural, educational, social, and health-related nonprofit organizations throughout Palm Beach County. Residents and members can donate online here and find out more information on grants and the application process.

To be considered for an annual grant, your organization must be a tax-exempt, nondenominational organization, with a demonstrated financial stability and strong leadership. The foundation does not fund individuals, organizations outside of Palm Beach County, national organizations that do not have an active local chapter, religious or sectarian organizations, general animal and environmental programs except for educational outreach, grants to lobby legislation or multi-your grants. All proposals for funding are reviewed by the committee and those selected will be invited to complete the full grant application.

The Mirasol Country Club is always finding new and innovative ways to reach out to the community and become an integral part of our County. If you're looking to be a part of Mirasol please start your online search here for all real estate in Mirasol Country Club or simply contact my office at any time for more details.

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Posted in Mirasol