Selling Spectacular Waterfront properties in the Florida Keys

Why Waterfront Homes Rent Better and for More Money added 8-1

You’ve heard it before and will encounter it time and again, that is, “real estate is all about location, location, location.” Redundant, yes it is at that, but true, it is most certainly. There’s a good reason that a two bedroom, two bath home sells for a lot more money when it’s on an island beach than a home twice its size or more, that’s located in the middle of nowhere.

Location matters big time because it’s what largely dictates what a property is worth. Sure, there are other factors, such as neighborhood, surrounding developments, on-site and nearby amenities, but location trumps them all in a big way. Residences that sit within destination locations are just more inherently valuable than properties that are not in the same place.

Why Waterfront Homes Rent Better and for More Money

If you are considering purchasing a rental property, even one that will serve as a vacation home for a few days or weeks of the year for you personally, think strategically. One of the single biggest mistakes would-be turned disappointed rental home investment owners make is not to look at the big picture. They are just too myopic, caught-up in the excitement of generating a new revenue stream. The trouble that comes with that is not being realistic about the home’s condition, it’s potential, and its location.

If the point is to rent it out for generating a new source of income, then, the home has to be worthwhile. That means it has to be attractive to renters, which in-turn means, having a captivating allure. Waterfront homes certainly possess this enticing quality. So, let’s look at why waterfront homes rent better and for more money:

● Waterfront homes are almost always in destination locations. Human civilization, that is to say needs and trade are all about location. Water is a wonderful resource, and, real estate values bear this out. A home with a waterfront view will rent more often and for more money, simply because of its location.
● Land is at a premium and new building regulations are a reality. By definition, waterfront means a finite amount of land, which is demonstrated in values. Because homes located near or on the water are at a higher risk for damage, new regulations pop-up now and again. That limits new construction, making existing homes all the more valuable.
● A waterfront home is in a prime location. This translates into many recreational opportunities, which are highly valued with renters. They want the convenience of easy access and to take advantage of all that is offered.

What to Know about Florida’s Homestead

Exemption ADDED 5-5-2015

Florida is one of the most affordable and beautiful places to live in the entire country. The Sunshine State is a peninsula that extends down from the southern states into the tropical Florida Keys, situated between the majestic blue waters of the Atlantic Ocean and the aqua-marine calm waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Not only is it the home of thousands of miles of beach, it’s also home to fishing, boating, hiking, camping, golf, tennis, horseback riding, and many other outdoor activities.

In addition to these, there’s the wonderful weather, which is filled with balmy breezes, short and mild winters, and best of all, plenty of sunshine. What makes it all even better is the low cost of living. Vehicles enjoy a longer lifespan because there’s no destructive ice and snow. There’s also no need for purchasing costly home heating oil, and goods and services are also less expensive. Topping it off is the state’s very business friendly environment and property owners have the benefit of taking advantage of what’s known as homestead exemption.

What to Know about Florida’s Homestead Exemption

In the state of Florida, a person’s home is quite literally his or her castle. This is because the homestead exemption does such much to owning real estate in the Sunshine State so attractive and affordable. Not only is Florida a state income tax free zone, it’s also a place to own a home with some very nice advantages, which include:

● Pay less in property taxes. The great thing about claiming homestead exemption in the state of Florida is the fact that you qualify for the money saving benefit from the very first day you occupy the property. There is no waiting period or qualifying time needed, you get to file for homestead exemption as soon as you move into your home.
● There are practically no limits. It doesn’t make a difference if you purchase a condo for $125,000 or a mansion for $3.5 million. The monetary worth has no limit but there are restrictions on property size, which cannot be more than half an acre.
● Double the advantage for married couples. If you are married, both spouses are eligible for homestead exemption, doubling the benefit. Should finances go awry, both spouses are still protected by homestead exemption when filing for bankruptcy.
● Protection from creditors. If you own a homestead exempt property in the state of Florida, you have a home that’s off limits to creditors. This means even if a person or company files a lawsuit against you, and wins a judgment, you can’t be forced to sell your property.

As you can clearly see, when you purchase a home in Florida, you not only get great weather, but plenty of peace of mind.


What to Know about Relocating to Marathon Florida

Relocating is a time that can be an exciting one and one that can also be the source of much anxiety. People generally relocate for their careers or to start a new chapter in their lives. One great destination is one that many people either don’t consider or believe out of reach, and that’s Marathon in the Florida Keys.

The Middle Keys consist of several small islands in the archipelago that spans from the southern coast of Florida, running between the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico. These islands, particularly Marathon, are among the most picturesque and offer some of the most invigorating weather in the country.

What to Know about Relocating to Marathon Florida

The single largest reason purchasing a home in Marathon is a great investment is because it is just that--a terrific investment. Because land is sparse, building codes are strict, and the climate is so wonderful, the appreciation rate is markedly better than practically anywhere else in the nation. What’s more, you can use a residential Marathon home as a rental property, which will have little to no vacancy since it’s in a worldwide vacation destination.

When you move to Marathon, Florida, you’ll need to do more than just find a home, you’ll need a real estate professional that’s familiar with the area and is in-the-know about relocation. Here are some things you can do to make your relocation go smoothly:

● Find the right real estate professional. Do a bit of research and speak with each one to get a feel for their style and to learn how they approach relocation situations. Ask about their network and how they will hone-in on properties most interesting to you.
● Hire the right moving company. This is going to be one of the most critical aspects to your relocation. A bad company will be time consuming, more costly, and hard to resolve issues with as they arise. Do your homework and check out their BBB rating, their licensing, ask for referrals, and get everything in writing.
● Establish your residency. When you move to Florida, you’ll have thirty days to transfer your driver’s license, update your insurance, get your car’s license plate, and update your voter identification and mailing address. You’ll also need to apply for homestead exemption to take advantage of the property tax savings.

Another thing you can do is To create a game plan. By putting into writing a schedule and having a bit of flexibility for contingencies, you’ll do yourself a big favor and save yourself significantly from becoming stressed out.

The Florida Keys: Incredible Destination Resort

Real estate is currently a shaky investment, given the fact that prices have plummeted and unemployment is high. In fact, there is so much uncertainty about the future, that it's enough to scare off most real estate investors these days.

The situation is precarious in most segments of the real estate market, except for owning vacation rentals, and in particular those located in destination resort areas.

Destination Resort Locations

The Florida Keys is a shining example of promising destination resorts, especially in Key West. Others include Nassau, along with ski vacation areas like Aspen and Telluride. One of the main reasons why the Florida Keys is one of the premiere resort areas is because it offers a year round destination to vacationers. Although Nassau is also a cruise destination, Key West and the remainder of the Keys to a lesser extent, offer spectacular year round vacation attractions.

This is the main advantage the resort properties in the Florida Keys enjoy compared to ski resort properties in Utah, California and Colorado. Florida's winter vacation season begins in late January and lasts until April. The summer season begins in June and lasts until Labor Day. During the so-called "off seasons," however, if you were to walk down one of the main streets in Key West, you would see plenty of tourists enjoying the experience that old Key West provides, fishing from the pier and taking plenty of photos. Typically cruise shops are in port in Key West year around, probably even more so than in Nassau even.

Other Resort Areas In The Florida Keys

Other Florida Keys destinations shouldn't be overlooked, like Islamorada, which is located approximated 53 miles from Miami and 78 miles away from Key West. To get to the airport is a one hour drive. (There is an airport in Key West, although it does have limited service and is somewhat small). The main advantages offered by Islamorada are its funky night spots, excellent restaurants, easy going way of life and its incredible beauty.

The Keys has other locations that are worth mentioning, particularly Key Largo, which is close to Miami, and offers great fishing and diving. Marathon, along with some of lesser known Keys, are also definitely worth considering for investment opportunities. They also provide owners with nice places to stay when the properties are not rented out. However, the major draw of the Keys is still Key West, in terms of being a profitable vacation area and income producing location.

Investment Points For Your Consideration

It is true that Florida residents own over fifty percent of vacation properties (private homes and condos). Another fact that is interesting regarding the Keys is over 55 percent of Florida Keys properties sold are sold to individuals who visited the area and loved it. The main point here is that the Keys are one of the important vacation areas for individuals wanting to own a piece of paradise that they can return to.

Also, the rentals on a majority of the properties can help to defray all, or most of, vacation property ownership costs. In fact, the average vacation owner, after a couple of years, will have a net positive vacation rental income. Of course, there's always a trade off: how much income does an owner want to generate from the property versus how much do they want to use the property for personal use?

Compare Owning Investments In Non Vacation Areas

One of the main reasons why individuals choose to rent property in non vacation locations compared to vacation properties is because they think that individuals who rent a house or an apartment are less like to causes damages to a property that they live in. This is a false argument, notwithstanding problems that may arise from renting to college students on spring break. Usually, if you are careful about who you rent your condo or home to, and thoroughly screen potential renters, the chances of major damage occurring will be very low.

The reason why is because people visiting Florida Keys vacation properties will be spending a majority of their time outdoors swimming, diving, fishing, sightseeing and doing other activities. By contrast, people in non vacation areas spend most of their time inside the home. Statistically, is it more likely for damage and breakage to happen, due to family issues, along with wear and tear on properties that are used on a daily basis. Socioeconomic status can also be another factor. When people spend $1,000 or more a week on a vacation rental, along with having to pay a large security deposit, they're much less likely to cause damage to a vacation rental that is well maintained. They also tend to be people who are more advanced in their jobs or careers.

The Keys Are Better

Destination properties in the Florida Keys, in most ways, are definitely on the same level as Nassau or Telluride. However, the added benefit that the Keys offer is that of a year round vacation season. Also, whether you are interested in Key West (Lower Keys) or Islamorada (Upper Keys), property values haven't depreciated anywhere near the same extent as most other areas in the country or other parts of Florida. There are two very good reasons for this: 1) Islamorada and Key West are vacation destinations that will likely produce income on a regular basis. 2) Throughout the U.S., there is a glut of vacation properties as houses go into foreclosure.

As the recession continues, Florida vacations are more attractive vacation options compared to leaving the country. Therefore, investment properties in the Florida Keys will be income producing properties (as long as zoning permits) now and into the foreseeable future. In terms of having a place to have "fun in the sun" and have an investment vehicle at the same time, there are few vacation destinations in the world that can beat Florida Keys real estate.

Cost of Living in Martin County, Florida

Located on the Treasure Coast, a stretch of land which runs along the east coast of Florida and is so named because of the many Spanish galleons which sunk nearby, is Martin County. With a population of approximately 150,000 residents, about 92 percent being urban and 8 percent being rural, the county has seen steady growth in its economy, thanks in large part to its tourism along the Atlantic Ocean, combined with its corporate and real estate development growth inland.

Martin County, Florida, is home to some of the best beaches on the tropical peninsula, such as Jensen Beach and Jupiter Island. It’s also home to places of wonderful natural beauty, like the Atlantic Preserve State Park and Jonathan Dickinson State Park.

Cost of Living in Martin County, Florida

Unlike large, urban metropolises such as Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, and Miami, Martin County enjoys a modern, urban lifestyle, complete with a healthy dose of a subtropical living climate. This means residents in the area enjoy outdoor recreational opportunities practically every day of the year.

It also means that tourism is a big industry, which helps to keep the unemployment level low. The current unemployment rate is 5.7 percent, at parity with the national U-3 level, according to the United States Bureau of Labor and Statistics. This places such locations as Stuart, Florida in a prime spot for skilled workers, and is also just 1.1 percent above the rate known as “full employment,” by economists.

What’s more, the job growth rate is nearly four percent, currently at 3.69 percent, besting the national job growth average of just 1.18. Projections estimate future job growth in the county to increase to approximately 41.7 percent, outpacing the expected national outlook of 36.1 percent. The largest sectors of skilled or professional labor are in business, finance, and management.

The median household income in the area is more than $55,000 per year, and the income tax rate is 0.0 percent, while the national average for state income tax is about 4.72 percent.

Compared to the national average in cost of living, with a rating of 100 being the most expensive, Martin County comes-in at a rate of 87. Housing and utilities are also lower than the nationwide rating, being 57 and 96, respectively.

Home appreciation from the end of 2013 to the present has risen an impressive 12 percent, with the median home cost coming-in at $180,700. This is due to sustained affordability, low mortgage interest rates, greater availability of home loan products, and rises in wages. For help finding Real Estate in Martin County Florida please Contact me. Use my experience to find the perfect situation.


Benefits of Relocating to Martin County Florida added 11-4-2014

Now that that cold has fully begun to descend across the northeast and Midwest, it serves as a chilling reminder of what’s to come. Yet another fight against freeze, shoveling snow, scraping ice, and commuting to and from work in the dark

For the next several months, this will be the reality, and it’s why so many residents in cold weather climates seriously start contemplating a move to somewhere where summer practically never ends. One such location is Martin County, Florida. Part of the Treasure Coast and home to the beautiful Atlantic Ridge Preserve State Park, this tropical paradise running between Lake Okeechobee and the Atlantic Ocean includes such highly desired areas as Stuart, Hobe Sound, Palm City, Jensen Beach and Jupiter Island.

Warmer Weather means Better Health

Did you know that cold weather climates actually affect your health? It’s true as scientific studies have found that as the cold sets-in, the body requires more “insulation.” That’s another word for “fat,” and it’s why people gain weight during the winter. It’s also why heart disease is more prevalent in the northeast and midwest than it is in places like the Sunshine State.

Mental health is also negatively impacted by cold weather climates, especially in congested, non-stop urban cities. Big city stress puts its residents at-risk for high blood pressure, stress, anxiety--all of which can lead to heart attack. Speaking of stress, moving to a place where normal attire is tee shirts, shorts and sandals means a more laid-back lifestyle, which means a lot less frustration.

Recreational Opportunities equal a Better Quality of Life

The beaches are obviously the main attraction, because of the fun under the sun they deliver. It doesn’t end with walks along the sand watching the sunrise or sunset, there is plenty more to do. Recreational opportunities, what’s more, they’re available practically every day of the year. Because of the warm climate, outdoor play is in-play all year. The choices are quite numerous: hiking, biking, canoeing, kayaking, fishing, water skiing, jet skiing, volleyball, golfing, tennis, boating, sailing, skating, horseback riding, the list goes on and on and on.

Do More, Spend Less in Martin County

Another huge benefit of relocating to the area is the cost of living. Say goodbye to home heating oil and the money it drains from your pocket every winter. Your car would certainly thank you if it could talk because it won’t be exposed to those brutal conditions which rack-up costs for trips to the repair shop.

Property taxes are typically lower than most places across the country and there’s no income tax. What’s more, properties appreciate at a higher rate because Florida is one of the most desirable states in which to live. Enjoy lower utility costs, as well as less to spend during the winter not having to deal with the snow and ice.

With so much to offer, it’s little wonder why Martin County is the place so many people chose to call home. For Help finding Real Estate in Martin County please Contact Me.

Health Benefits of a Lifestyle Change to a Warmer Climate

The big city and the rural landscape in cold weather climates, both do more than make you suffer through the ravages and annoyances of scraping off ice and driving to work and back home in the dark. That cold weather is actually not to good for your health--both physical and mental.

You might wonder how sleet, snow, and ice, crisp fall temperatures included, can be detrimental to your wellbeing. Well, the wonderful delight of changing leaves and the glimmer of fresh snow quickly wear-off when you are tasked with raking a yard full of leaves and shoveling out your driveway.

Cold Weather withers Your Health

Okay, so you’re likely thinking about the strain raking leaves and shoveling snow puts on your back and joints. What you may not think about is how your body responds to being in a cold weather climate like the northeast or midwest.

More fat is how it adapts, doctors say. Over time, your body needs more insulation as you age, and that’s why you pack on more pounds year after year. If you begin or are in an exercise regimen, you’ll at some point wonder why it’s evermore difficult to keep the weight off.

That’s just part of the bad news. With extra weight comes extra strain on the joints, back, and of course, heart and lungs. Obesity also carries an increased risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, and heart attack.

Then, there’s the mental health aspect. Research has shown that people living in cold weather climates, especially urban ones, are more prone to depression and anxiety attacks. All that stress takes its toll, again, on you mentally and physically.

Health Benefits of a Lifestyle Change in a Warm Weather Climate

The reason so many people chose to escape the cold and move to places like Stuart, Florida or Martin County is because they are not only waving goodbye to the cold, but saying hello to better health.

A warm climate is where your body needs less insulation (read: fat) and because there’s more sunshine and temperatures are very pleasant nearly every day of the year, so, you can do more outside. Increased outdoor recreation means it’s easier to stay fit and you can also say goodbye to seasonal affective disorder or the winter blues.

Yet another reason for living in a warm climate is, it’s good for your attitude. Sunshine plays a large role here, but also, you’ll have the benefit of always being near the beach. The serenity of the ocean and a warm, balmy breeze does a lot for your mental health.

The fact of the matter is, the human body isn’t really that adept for cold weather, it can tolerate it in short bouts, but being exposed to it year after year adversely affects your physical and psychological health. For more information about Stuart Real Estate.


About Stuart Florida Real Estate added 9-3
Located on the sunny peninsula of the state of Florida near the central east coast lies the town of Stuart. With a population of about 16,000 residents, this Treasure Coast municipality is one that offers a great place to call home, to live, work, and play. Part of Marin County, Stuart is comprised of dozen neighborhoods, served by sixteen public and private schools, which go from the preschool level to elementary, to middle, to high schools. There are also a few colleges and universities nearby.

The St. Lucie River is enjoyed by residents of the area, where they can boat, fish, water ski, jet ski, and sight-see. It's also very close to the Atlantic Ocean, popular for such things as deep water fishing, surfing, scuba diving, parasailing, pleasure boating, sailing, and much other activities. That likewise means that there's plenty of beach to enjoy, for picnicking, volleyball, sunbathing, and so much more.

Real Estate in Stuart, Florida

The real estate market in Stuart is one that is quite diverse. The average listing price comes-in at just under $560,000, with a median sales price of $147,250. This puts the average price per square foot at $115, making it quite affordable.

Housing options are also diverse, with buyers having their choice between single family properties, townhomes, villas, and condos. The median home value in the area is approximately $102,000, which makes it accessible to first time homebuyers and those looking for an investment property.

Things to See and Do

Being located in such a great area, residents have many recreational opportunities, from relaxation to sports, to hobbies, to new discoveries.

Hit the links at one of the golf courses, which include Willoughby Golf Club, Monterey Yacht and Country Club, Mariner Sands Country Club, Miles Grant Country Club, Champions Club at Summerfield, and Hammock Creek Golf Club, just to name a few of the many nearby.

Explore nature up close and untouched at Shepard Park, Halpatiokee Regional Park, Seabranch Preserve State Park, and Saint Lucie Inlet Preserve State Park.

For those who like to shop, there's the Regency Square Shopping Center, Pineapple Commons, Cedar Pointe Plaza, Stuart Centre, and Ocean East Mall, for all your retail therapy needs.

Travel back in time and experience the many exhibits at the Stuart Heritage Museum, Elliott Museum, House Of Refuge Museum, Children's Museum of the Treasure Coast, Historical Society of Marin, and the Maritime and Classic Boat Museum. Go to the Lyric Theatre, Sunrise Theatre, and the Maltz Jupiter Theatre are where you'll find all kinds of performing arts and live entertainment


Why Florida Beachfront Real Estate is so Popular with Foreign Investors

Florida is one the largest recipients of foreign investment in residential real estate. Just last year alone, about 23 percent of all real estate transactions in the Sunshine State were Canadians buying property on the peninsula and throughout the Florida Keys.

Our neighbors to the north are not the only ones who are purchasing waterfront property in the state. Buyers come from Asia, the United Kingdom, and South America. Some Middle Eastern countries are even contributing to the rather large pool of foreign real estate investment purchases. If you're wondering why this is happening, there are some very good explanations.

Florida Beachfront Real Estate is a Prime Investment

One of the more obvious reasons for foreign investors to purchase beachfront property is it's a guaranteed, healthy, return on investment. Beachfront property is prime real estate and many savvy and affluent investors like owning something that isn't subjected to the stock market. They can rent it, vacation there, and even relocate, to boot.

The Sunshine State Offer Plenty of Wonderful Weather

There are few places on the planet, which offer better weather so many months of the year. Canadians like to escape for three to four or more months, avoiding the cold, harsh winters up north. Other foreign investors are buying to escape inclement weather. For instance, the infamous "English summer", which brings daily downpours and gloomy evenings. With such great weather throughout the year, and the ability to enjoy outdoor recreation practically every single day of the year, Florida is a prime location to own a home.

Schools and Universities are Top-Notch

Some foreign investors are also investing in their children and want them to get the best education. Florida has some of the most recognized universities in the country and a college degree comes-in at a far more affordable price than an Ivy League institution. There are also plenty of private and public elementary, middle, and high schools to choose from.

Low Cost of Living and Low Taxes

Savvy foreign investors salivate at the low cost of living in the state, as well as the low property taxes. What's more, many are putting their own businesses in a prime location, because Florida has a very business-friendly environment with plenty of incentives and low taxes. The fact there are no income taxes just makes it all the better of a deal.

Finally, another reason for so many foreign investors is they're planning ahead. Wanting to become citizens of the United States, they are purchasing property to make the transition permanent and call the U.S. home. Here, they can raise a family and a new generation of Americans.


Real Estate Investment Ideas And Advice

Real estate investing can be a tricky market to enter into, no matter if the person has experience or not. If you want to learn solid tips about real estate investing, you have come to the right place. Continue reading this article for some good ideas about becoming a successful real estate investor.

Take time to properly access the market before you go out and make a real estate purchase. You want to take a close look at a group of properties, taking notes as well. You need to be looking at how much you'll make in rent, what kinds of repairs need to be done, and how much the current prices are. This will help you sift through the deals to sort good from bad.

You should know that reputation is of the utmost importance when it comes to real estate. This is why you should stick with your word while being sure you don't tell potential clients lies. They will allow you to boost your credibility since they may refer you to others.

When you're trying to come up with a strategy for business, know that the costs that are sunk go further than a home's general price. You may have to pay closing costs, legal fees, and staging costs, along with many other potential expenses that will impact your bottom line. Consider all costs involved when determining your margin.

Locate and speak with other investors that are into real estate. You should reach out to these investors that are more experienced for some great advice. A few friends knowledgeable about real estate investment can be handy. The Internet makes discovering new friends and contacts quite easy. Try joining some real estate forums to engage meetups.

If you're considering real estate investing, you should contemplate the amount of time you can apply to managing your investment. Tenant problems can really kill your time. If you cannot juggle the responsibilities, think about hiring a property manager.

Find a group of other interested investors or read up on blogs from successful real estate investors. You can learn a lot this way about how to do business. You could even speak with these individuals one-on-one.

As the previous information shows, you must understand the market if you want to succeed at investing in real estate. Now that you have this information, you should be able to recognize a good investment. You will be successful as long as you follow the advice here and keep these tips nearby.



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Brenda Alexander Broker
East Coast Waterfront Properties
2580 SE Aviation Way, #102
Stuart, FL 34996
E-Mail Me
(772) 486-5156 -office
Cell: (305) 481-5156
Fax: (772) 781-0650