One Thing is for Certain: 

Time Passes, Whether We're Ready for It or Not!

This year feels different and is undoubtedly unique as people are spending more time than ever at HOME. 

Holiday decorations adorned houses earlier than normal, beginning with Halloween decor blowing in August's wind.   Some Christmas trees even went up directly after All Hallows Eve.  White lights lined roofs, as they twinkled in the nights before Thanksgiving.  

People are craving something to celebrate, whether it's around a holiday or not.  This year has just been one huge reminder to CELEBRATE;  to learn from the bad and enjoy the smallest of moments;  to support and love on each other;  to ask for help;  to be more giving;  to remember we're human but always…

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“2020 will be known for a lot of things, and a record-breaking year for real estate will certainly be one of its more unexpected legacies,” prominent economist Daryl Fairweather said.1 And he’s right: most of us would have expected the housing market to suffer from circumstances like a once-in-a-hundred-years pandemic and historic inventory shortages.

 

But, rather than a slowdown, we are continuing to experience a surprisingly robust real estate market across the country. And experts estimate that these conditions are likely to last well into the new year. Fannie Mae Senior VP and Chief Economist Doug Duncan predicts that existing home sales will ultimately “be up a percent or more in 2021.” He believes home prices will continue to rise…

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3 Steps to Ready Willing and Able Certification

 

We are continuing to see the slight shift to a Seller's Market in the Florida Keys.  New inventory has consistently been equal to or less than exiting inventory (properties sold or pending to sell). The market sways between being balanced and shifting slightly in favor of sellers.  If you know you'd like to Buy or Sell, OR you have been contemplating it, consider becoming RWA Certified.

With the help of your Local Realtor...it really is as easy as 1, 2, 3!

  1. READY- Sellers, is your house literally ready to sell?  Has whatever needs to be fixed/updated been done?  Will it pass inspection to the best of your knowledge.  Having thought about this and taking action now, saves time later…

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For years now, virtual home tours have helped real estate buyers far and wide find the perfect home. From long-distance military personnel being relocated, to investors expanding their portfolio, to homeowners looking for a vacation getaway, this technology makes finding a house that’s a bit out of driving distance much easier. And for real estate agents, virtual tours have been a useful way to help buyers with their home search and to assist sellers in creatively marketing their listings.

 

Because of the pandemic, virtual home showing options recently experienced a huge spike in popularity. One survey found that nearly 33% of recent home tour requests were for virtual tours, as compared to just 2% pre-pandemic.1 And it’s easy to see…

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The pandemic has changed the way many of us live, work, and attend school—and those changes have impacted our priorities when it comes to choosing a home.

 

According to a recent survey by The Harris Poll, 75% of respondents who have begun working remotely would like to continue doing so—and 66% would consider moving if they no longer had to commute as often. Some of the top reasons were to gain a dedicated office space (31%), a larger home (30%), and more rooms overall (29%).1

 

And now that virtual school has become a reality for many families, that need for additional space has only intensified. A growing number of buyers are choosing homes further from town as they seek out more room and less congestion. In fact, a recent…

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In July, the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell below 3% for the first time in history.1 And while many Americans have rushed to take advantage of this unprecedented opportunity, others question the hype. Are today’s rates truly a bargain?

 

While average mortgage rates have drifted between 4% and 5% in recent years, they haven’t always been so low. Freddie Mac began tracking 30-year mortgage rates in 1971. At that time, the national average was 7.31%.2 As the rate of inflation started to rise in the mid-1970s, mortgage rates surged. It’s hard to imagine now, but the average U.S. mortgage rate reached a high of 18.63% in 1981.3

 

Fortunately for home buyers, inflation normalized by October 1982, which sent mortgage rates on a…

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#6 Aspects to Consider When Purchasing Investment Property in the Florida Keys

  1. Location!  It’s no secret to YOU how magnificent the Florida Keys are.  And lucky for an investment property owner here, it isn’t a secret for the rest of the world either!  The Florida Keys, as a whole, are a Top Tourist Destination resulting in vacation and short term rental price increases.  Additionally, monthly and longer term rentals are also increasing in year round demand (not just the typical “high season” months of Jan-May).  Limited properties in general, drive up appreciation of rentals and overall home values year after year.
  2. Financing! If using financing to purchase, keep in mind you will have to bring more money to the table of an investment property…

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Pre-Approvals:  7 Things You Need to Know Before You Buy

Have you talked to a lender and obtained your Pre-Approval Letter?

  1. It’s important to talk with Lenders or Mortgage Loan Originators and find the one that best suits your needs. This is the FIRST STEP you should take before looking at properties to purchase.   

  2. When speaking with lenders, have basic financial information at the ready (think bank and other financial statements, tax returns, paystubs, security IDs etc). 

  3. Pre-Qualification vs Pre-Approval:  Just about anyone can get a general Pre-Qualification Letter.  If you really want to buy a property, push for a Pre-Approval.  This carries more weight for you as a Buyer, and is only given to those who show proof of…

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As a Seller, aren't you looking for Top Dollar

To do so, it's imperative to set your home apart.

 It's 2020---->Time to Get SMART!

10 Things you NEED TO KNOW now about Smart Homes:

1.  A smart home uses internet-connected devices for remote monitoring and management of appliances and systems.

2. You can't just install a Smart thermostat and call it a day.  The following requirements outline how a property can fall in the "Smart Home" category:

      • A Smart Security Device (like a smart lock or camera), a Smart Temperature Feature (like a smart thermostat), AND of course an area capable of securing Wireless Internet Connection.

      • Additionally,  two more Smart features are mandatory. However, these can range from lighting…

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