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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Residential Home Sales in Brevard County, Florida–August 2011

As of August 31, 2011 there have been 480 residential properties sold in Brevard County,
Florida this month.
  • The average selling price $156,946 is down from July 2011’s $169,881. 
  • The median selling price dropped from July’s $118,000 to $104,200.
  • The average number of days on the market remained consistent at 120 days (118 in July).
These numbers will most likely change a little over the course of the next week as end of the month closings are entered however I am doubtful of any major shifts.

Brevard County, Florida remains a buyer’s market as August departs!

Homes Sold, Short Sales and Foreclosures - August 2011 Brevard County Florida

This is a brief summary of the single family homes sold in Brevard County, Florida during August 2011.  
This data extracted from the Brevard MLS system on August 31, 2011 and will likely change as new closings are entered over the next week. 
  • Total Number of Single Family Home Listings - 2,631
  • Number of Listings Under Contract - 1,706
  • Number Single Family Homes Sold - 429
  • Percentage Short Sale Listings - 27.3%
  • Percentage REO/Foreclosure Listings - 4.4%
  • Percentage Short Sale Sold - 26%
  • Percentage REO/Foreclosure Sold - 16%
About 72% of all properties under contract are distressed properties (short sale or REO).  One positive is that the number of short sale listings is only about one in four!

If you have any questions about homes for sale in Brevard County,  call me directly at 321-693-3850 or email me.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Brevard County Florida Real Estate: Buy Low, Sell High… in an ideal world...

Regardless of commodity, in an ideal world, buying low and selling high is golden.

With the 2011 housing market in Brevard County, Florida (and elsewhere), unfortunately, that is not very likely.

It does seem some investors looking for rental and investment properties are finding opportunities in short sales and foreclosuresEven at nicely discounted prices this down market is not a risk for the novice investor.

Still here is the new twist on buy low, sell high…

Bought high, Sold lower, Bought a lot more lower

If you are in a position to sell your current home, there are opportunities that offer move up homes at great prices.  There may be losses on the selling end of the current home but an opportunity to purchase more house for less money can be a positive in this market!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Selling Your Brevard County, Florida Home: "I reviewed your market analysis and now I'm ready to sell."

I just read an article written by Maryland Realtor® Richard Iarossi who had a prospect call him and tell him “your CMA [market analysis] shows we can get the highest price so we’re ready.”    Of course in this case the CMA was oldfive years old!

If you are considering selling in a downwardly trending market,  remember the time spent making a decision delays the prospective market value of your home.

If you approach your listing price with the attitude of “we can lower the price later” the eventual incremental reductions will be seen getting desperate.

Two truths to consider when selling your home…
  1. The market determines the selling price of your home.
  2. You decide if the time is right.
If you are ready to sell your Viera, Suntree or Rockledge, Florida home, call me at 321-693-3850 or email me.

I will be happy to provide a free, no obligation market analysis...just don't wait five years to list! 

    Can you send me some listings? Need a 3/2 with 1,800 plus sq.ft. in Viera or Rockledge, Florida area.

    As a real estate agent who works extensively in Viera, Suntree and Rockledge, Florida, I am always happy to forward listings and information to anyone moving to Brevard County, Florida.

    My initial response to such an inquiry is usually a request for additional information because there is a great deal of variation within those parameters…including price.

    A similar question I get occasionally is "How much does a 3 bedroom 2 bath home run down there in Brevard County?

    Just for your information the lowest priced 3/2 with 1800+ sq.ft. in Viera or Rockledge is $89,000 while the highest priced on the market is $649,000.

    When you begin a home search, once you have chosen the area and have an established (mortgage pre-approved) budget,  you need to prioritize your needs.   Initially the parameters can be a bit more broad and be narrowed as the search progresses.

    What are some of the initial search parameters?  Things like...
    1. Identifying space requirements and budget.
    2. General location (Suntree, Viera west of I-95, etc) or even subdivision. 
    3. Bedroom count
    4. Formal dining or not
    5. Gated community or not 
    6. golf course or not 
    7. 55+ or not 
    8. Homeowner Association
    9. Pool - private or community  
    10. Garage size 
    11. Age of structure 
    12. Construction - if frame/wood is not a consideration, decide before viewing home.
    Most of theses initial search parameters involves things that difficult, expensive or impossible for a homeowner to change later.   Things like flooring, paint, appliances, etc. are characteristics that will eliminate properties as the search progresses.

    If you are considering moving to Viera, Rockledge, or Suntree, Florida, drop me an email.  You have read this so you will have an idea of what I will ask!

    Sunday, August 28, 2011

    Buyers must show sincerity - Even in a buyer’s market.

    Sure there are fewer buyers in Brevard County, Florida these days.  And although sellers face intense competition they are not falling all over themselves in a mass dash to get just any buyer while concurrently disregarding common sense.

    It is a given - in a buyer's market a buyer has the upper hand from a negotiation position.   By
    the way, "Take it or leave it" is not really a negotiation strategy.

    But, even in a buyer's market, I believe any legitimate offer should include:
    • reasonable, "let's negotiate" price, 
    • deposit/escrow check with amount that shows buyer is serious, **
    • Mortgage Pre-approval letter - in other words qualified not hopeful (buyers financial statement/proof of funds if a cash offer)
    **There are times when a copy of the check is acceptable until the offer is accepted.  At that time the deposit check must be delivered for deposit with escrow agent.
    First time home buyers (as well as those retiring or re-locating to Florida) often have lots of questions regarding the home buying process in Brevard County, Florida.   If you have questions, please call or email them to me.

    Buying and selling a home can be stressful for all parties.  If I can assist in any way, let me know.

    Friday, August 26, 2011

    It’s Two O’clock and You Have a Deadline! What can you do? Call Gary L. Waters Realtor® Viera Florida

    It is 2:00 p.m. and your deadline is 3:00 p.m. You need a real estate agent who knows and works in Viera, Florida especially with those looking for 55+ communities like Heritage Isle and Grand Isle.

    What you do: Google search 55+ communities in Viera

    I received a call from someone wanting to sell me a print ad in a publication I had never heard of that was sent to residents in the 55+ communities in Viera.   And the price was only $600 for  a choice location next to the crossword puzzle.

    I think not
    as I do very little print advertising.  I tell my seller clients the buyers are using the Internet and that is where they must be!

    Most home buyers and sellers in Viera Florida (and everywhere else) start their search on the Internet….

    Just as she did.....

    When you are ready to sell your Viera, Suntree or Rockledge Florida home, you need someone who knows where the buyers are and how to reach them!

    Thursday, August 25, 2011

    Selling Your Brevard County Home: Neutralize sounds so harsh…

    I was reading an article this morning on “What not to do when your home is on the market” and one word I read made me wonder if its use is too harsh.

    The word – neutralizing.

    The intent of staging a home to sell is to remove many of the the elements that make a house a home in order to allow buyer prospects to focus on the property characteristics and not the many family pictures, knickknacks and tchotchkes (not familiar with the word, here is the definition).  Removing the mauve paint, the floral wallpaper, the 60s shag carpet is what it is all about as well.

    Maybe neutralize is not really such a harsh word, after all.

    And timing is everything as well.  Prepare before listing your house!

    When you are ready to to sell your Viera, Florida home call me and let's work together!

    Are the banks OK with losing an additional 20% on foreclosures?

    Just read an article that states foreclosures made up about one-third (31%) of all home sales in the second quarter.

    That 31% reflects homes in the foreclosure process and foreclosed properties.  The article states 19% of all sales were bank owned.

    The most significant issue pointed out in the article was bank owned homes sold for 40% less that the average price of other homes while short sales sold for about 21% less.

    I am no expert but it seems the banks are giving away about 20% by not calling owners in default and suggesting a short sale!   Make up your mind for yourself though. Read the article.

    If you own a home in Brevard County and are facing challenges making your mortgage payment due to a real hardship, maybe a short sale should be considered.

    Drop me an email or give me a call at 321-693-3850.

    Selling Your Brevard County, Florida Home: You can’t handle the truth….

    Colonel Nathan Jessep, portrayed by Jack Nicholson, utters those words and a few others in the movie “A Few Good Men.”   It was a rather dramatic moment – very similar to when a prospective home seller asks “What’s my house worth?”

    Of course I am kidding. The intensity and emotions are usually much less.

    The real estate market is what it isa buyer’s market.  When you are ready to sell your Viera home consider very seriously the question Who sets the selling price?

    The price a home will sell for is controlled by the buyernot the seller or the seller’s real estate agent.

    When you are interviewing  any real estate understand they should be doing what is best for YOU – not themselves.  And that starts with recommending a realistic marketing price.  Remember there is nothing wrong with pride in your home but don’t let the pride get in the way of the real price.

    And, what is best for you is to be told upfront a realistic likely selling price for your home – not a hope to get the listing price.

    To mislead a potential seller to get a listing is wrong.  Back on January 17, 2008 I wrote “Can I buy your listing? No!”three and a half years later I still subscribe to the same philosophy.

    When you are ready to sell your Viera, Suntree or Rockledge, Florida home, call me at 321-693-3850 or email me.

    I will be happy to do a no obligation market analysis on your home.   And then, if you would like me to work for you, just let me know.

    Wednesday, August 24, 2011

    Selling Your Brevard County Florida Home: It’s a buyers market so I am not worried about the lack of showings….

    While it is true the real estate market in Brevard County, Florida is a buyer’s market, sellers should not rationalize the lack of showings is not a problem. The truth is your house will sell in a buyer's market. 

    As of August 23, 2011 there have been 298 single family homes sold during August 2011 in Brevard County, Florida.

    Of these 298 homes sold in August 2011 almost 30% (that is 87 homes) have been on the market less than 85 days. 

    In Brevard County, Florida, sellers who expect to sell will take a legitimate real estate selling strategy and not just "hope and pray."   By the way I do not see anything wrong with some prayer as well!

    When you are ready to sell your Brevard County, Florida home, please contact me to discuss how I can help you sell your home.

    Sunday, August 21, 2011

    Buying a house - An organized process

    Although it is not a science buying a home is, or at least should be, an organized process.  You don't just end up at the closing table.

    The initial home buying step must be focused on the finances.

    Here are links to several articles I have written over the past few years on buying a home in Brevard County, Florida. 
      Buying a house or condo is not really that complicated.

      The key is having the right assistance.  In Viera, Suntree and Rockledge, Florida call me at 321-693-3850 or email me for home buyer and seller assistance.

      Gary L. Waters, PLLC
      Florida licensed real estate agent
      Century 21 Baytree Realty
      Rockledge, Florida 32955

      Saturday, August 20, 2011

      Real Estate Advice: Why won't my real estate agent answer all my questions?

      Buyers and sellers place a great deal of trust in their real estate agent.   Sometimes buyers and sellers present questions and the agent's response sounds like they are dodging the issue.

      There are some areas where your real estate agents' advice should never be ignored including the times they don't answer your question such as little things like...
      • Get an inspection done.  
      • Get your inspector to return for a re-inspection of repairs made by the seller.  
      • Get estimates for major repairs from the appropriate service provider ( roofer for roof repair, AC/Heat expert for AC issues, etc.) 
      • Get a survey done and title insurance - even on a cash transaction
      • Consult an attorney, CPA/tax specialist for legal and tax questions.
      • Obtain insurance estimates from a local insurance agent.
      • Read the association rules and bylaws and consult an attorney for issues/questions.
      • Research association financial position.
      These are only a few of the many areas where buyers or sellers should rely on expert.

      Real estate agent are experts but like, most experts, they also know their limitations and scope of practice.  That is why they tell you to consult an attorney, etc!

      When you are ready to buy or sell a house in Brevard County, Florida,call me directly at 321-693-3850 or email me.

      Gary L. Waters, PLLC, Florida licensed real estate agent, Century 21 Baytree Realty, Rockledge, Florida.

      Thursday, August 18, 2011

      Schools matter–Even if you don’t have a student in the household.

      The quality of nearby schools is an important consideration even if one is an empty-nester!

      Selling your home is a challenge now as well as in the future.

      Buyers should take into consideration the quality of schools when shopping for a home as it will impact home value and neighborhood desirability if they ever when sell.

      Here are some consideration, although not all inclusive, to use when checking out the neighborhood.

      We have no way of knowing what the future holds as far as school quality goes but I still believe that prior performance is a pretty good indicator of future performance.

      When you are ready to buy a home in Brevard County, Florida, call me at 321-693-3850 or email me!

      Wednesday, August 17, 2011

      Selling Your Florida Home - There is a right way and a wrong to make yourself be remembered!

      Some things you remember for the positive feelings they bring while others your remember for the negative.  Some things just have a certain characteristic you remember like this 

      car I saw in front an Orlando restaurant....   

       or this guy I saw in this St. Augustine Wal-Mart (surprised?)...

      When you decide to sell your house or condo, think of the way it is dressed.  Is it dressed to be unique, show your personal style?

      What will prospective buyers remember?

      Will folks remember the clutter?  Or all those pictures on the walls and refrigerator?  Will they be so distracted 100_1827by the pictures they forget to notice anything about he house?  What about the outdated wallpaper with floral patterns (or my favorite chickens and roosters) or the highly personalized paint?

      Will they remember your house as the one that was clean, neutral colors, fresh paint on the walls, that nice landscaping, or the refreshing smell?
      And, finally, think about this....

      The most important thing to really be remembered by…
      the one that looked nice with the right price!

      When you are ready to sell your Viera, Rockledge or Suntree, Florida home, call me at 321-693-3850 or email me.

      Tuesday, August 16, 2011

      Buying the Biggest Home in the Neighborhood - Is it worth it?

      I know there will be those who disagree with me premise – biggest is not best!  Let me re-phrase this - highest priced” is not best.

      While reviewing homes for sale or recently sold in Rockledge, Florida’s Ashwood Lakes and Ventana neighborhoods several things stood out pretty clearly.

      But the characteristic that stood out the most was,  Ashwood Lakes and Ventana remain, in August 2011,  neighborhoods primarily driven by distressed sales.   Of the four active listings, two are short sales and two are over-priced (for the neighborhood) listings.

      To further illustrate the distressed nature of the Ventana and Ashwood Lakes neighborhood  (I treat these subdivisions as one as they border each other and share community amenities – pool, tennis, basketball facilities), six of the nine properties under contract at this time are short sales.

      It is only my opinion but when two-thirds of the contracts are short sales, the neighborhood is a distressed market.

      And in this case like many other distressed neighborhoods in the Viera and Suntree areas, the most expensive home on the market may not be the best purchase!

      At $329,900 in Ventana the priciest is likely not the most prudent buy when nine of the homes under contract or active are under $170,000.

      So, although the largest and most expensive home is nice (3,800 sq.ft., pool, on pond, nice location),  I have always believed,
         it is always better to buy near a neighborhood’s mid-point as it pertains to price and size.
      As with every position there is an opposing viewpoint.  Still, the only home that has sold in Ventana or Ashwood Lakes in August 2011 (we are only at the middle of the month) sold for $125,000.

      Let me say though I do wish the sellers much luck and, if they sell for a high price, it would be good indicator of a major shift in the Brevard County, Florida housing market!

      Monday, August 15, 2011

      Selling Your Viera, Florida House: Interviewing Real Estate Agents

      When you are ready to sell you Viera, Florida house I recommend you interview at least three real estate agents.  I also want you interview me last.

      Why do I want to be last?   So you can ask me those lingering questions that may remain.  So you will have a reference by which to judge my marketing plan and recommendations.

      I have the ability and resources to market and sell your Viera, Florida home or condo.

      Call me directly at 321-693-3850  or email me if I can help in any way.  If you just want to ask a question, send me an email.  It's free!   Then, when you are ready to sell your Viera, Florida house or condo, call me!

      Summer Lakes in Viera–Just Barely Any Million Dollar Homes Remain In This Market–August 2011

      Summer Lakes, the gated executive community in Viera, has taken a tumble through the years.  There were at least 15 properties I could find that selling for more than a million dollars since 2005.  Only one of these sales has been in the past year though.

      The last two properties to sell in Summer Lakes closed in May 2011 – three months ago!

      The largest home selling in May 2011 was at 3133 Bellwind Circle.  It had 3,926 sq.ft. under air, four bedrooms/four bathrooms/three car garage with a pool on .81 acres sold for $929,500.   It was on the market 330 days and sold for a hefty amount less than the original list price of $1,199,000.

      The other sold property was 2922 Bellwind Circle which sold for $815,000 after being on the market for only 59 days.  Obviously the original list price of $850,000 was in the “let’s talk” range! It was also a 4 bedroom 4 bath 3 car garage home with a pool.

      Currently there are six homes on the market listed for prices between $1,100,000 and $789,000.  One of these listings is a short sale.

      Besides being large (3,100 – 5,300 sq.ft. under air), all these homes come with the expected pool (nice!) and spacious .7+ acres with three or four car garages.

      For information on homes for sale in Viera’s gated executive communities including Wyndham at Duran, Summer Lakes, Charolais Estates and Fairway Lakes at Viera, please contact me at 321-693-3850 or email me.

      Seller’s Want Feedback - Everyone has an opinion but no one wants to give it to you!

      As one who dabbles in collectibles I try to sell occasionally on ebay.   For those not familiar with the web site it is an online auction site where, upon completion of a transaction, buyers and sellers rate each other – either positively or negatively.

      As a seller I like to get feedback.  Similarly, home sellers want feedback.

      My experience on ebay is I get feedback from perhaps 50% of the buyers.

      My experience as a real estate agent who works with sellers in Brevard County, Florida is maybe 25%  give sellers feedback.

      And, of the feedback received, only a small portion is what I would consider useful or constructive.

      As a seller, don’t expect to receive much and you will not be disappointed.

      Just know the best feedback….a solid offer!

      Sunday, August 14, 2011

      Is there such a thing as being too truthful? Not if your are selling your house!

      As a seller you can never be guilty of hiding anything if you disclose and document!

      Florida real estate agents provide their seller clients with a Seller's Real Property Disclosure Form which will ask a lot of questions about their house.   This is the place to document their disclosure. 

      The Seller's Real Property Disclosure Form will be reviewed and signed by prospective buyers as part of the contract offer process.  Buyers should not submit an offer on any property until they have reviewed this disclosure.

      When asked by sellers if they should put something down they think is minor I like to put them in the position of the buyer.  If they were buying their home would they like to know the information?  Most often they say yes.
      It should be noted as well that the seller's real estate agent does not complete the disclosure form.

      I also like to point out a simple but critical thing about the real estate transaction - it is stressful enough on all parties so open and honest communication is key. 

      The bottom line is buyers can respond like a cornered animal if they discover something was left out of the disclosure!   Don't alienate your buyer or break the trust! 

      Saturday, August 13, 2011

      Home Sellers: Know Your “Real” Competition

      They always ask the question.  Most of the time they already have their own answer to the question.  And the question is...“How much can I get?

      Of course my initial response to the question is is pose this question to the seller candidate... “How much do you think your home is worth?”

      At this point many sellers will list the reasons why their home will be the best on the market.  I think it is very important to find out what a seller believes their home’s greatest asset.  These are key points for consideration during marketing.

      But ultimately an owner can only get what the market thinks their home is worth.

      Pricing a home to sell involves knowing who the real competition is - not just what is for sale!

      By competition I mean under contract and selling.   There can be many similar homes on the market but if they are not selling there is a problem.

      Pricing a home to be competitive with homes that are sitting and not selling is not a strategy but rather a recipe for disappointment.

      When you are ready to sell your Viera, Rockledge and Melbourne, Florida home, call me to discuss your real competition.

      Rental Home in Rockledge Florida (Zip Code 32955)–977 Whetstone Place

      This four bedroom three bath two car garage home located at  977 Whetstone Place, Rockledge, Florida is available for 12 month lease at $1,800 a month.
      This almost new (built in 2007) has it all – immaculate condition, a great location, convenient to excellent schools, shopping, several golf course, I-95/US1.  It is only about 15 minutes Patrick AFB, maybe 20 minutes to the beaches.

      Check out the neutral colors in this youtube video.  It is all electric, with over 2800 sq.ft. under air!  A second floor media room, a full bath down stairs and another two upstairs!

      Spacious kitchen with island, granite counters, stainless appliances and lots of working surface.  Enjoy the great views overlooking the lakes from the breakfast nook.

      This is a large home with lots of windows for plenty of natural light.  Nice thing about all those windows is the window treatments remain as does the washer and dryer!

      And if you have a pet, the owner will consider allowing pets!

      Call me at 321-693-3850 or email me if you are looking for a rental home in Rockledge and Viera, Florida.

      Home Buyer Tips: "Closed" is a long way from having a contract signed...

      Getting an offer accepted by the seller is only the first step in the home sales/purchase process.  And there are lots of steps remaining, and potential roadblocks, along the way. 

      Little issues like...
      • Offer Approval (by the lender if it is a short sale).
      • Home Inspection.
      • Wood Destroying Organism Inspection (Termite Inspection).
      • Appraisal.
      • Final Loan Approval.
      • Final Walk Through.
      • The Weather.  We are in hurricane season. Having a "named storm" in the Gulf of Mexico or Caribbean or Atlantic can put everything on hold. 
      While going through the process everything a buyer does can potentially become an changes in employment, loan applications, large purchases, etc.   

      This is the time for open communication with your Realtor® and loan officer.

      Buying or selling a home in Viera, Florida?  Call me at 321-693-3850 or email me.

      Friday, August 12, 2011

      Homes for Sale in Viera, Florida – It would be nice if you could buy a porterhouse steak for the price of hamburger....

      Based on many contact I get from people outside of Brevard County, Florida, there is a perception out there that you can get a really nice house in a really decent community in Viera, Florida for low about $80,000.

      Likewise, there is a pretty widely held belief that a very nice condo on the beach or even Merritt Island can be purchased for less than $50,000.

      I do not know the source of these perceptions arise.  There are short sales.  There are some foreclosure sales.  There are more fair market sales (standard sales, regular sales) than distressed properties for sale in Brevard County, Florida.

      One thing I do know is there are no fire sales in Viera or even beach side!

      Amazing how it is always the case - consumers always want more for less!  

      It would be nice if you could buy a porterhouse steak for the price of hamburger.....but you can't!   Just stop down at the market and ask the market manager if he will re-price the porterhouse at burger prices!
      If you are interested in homes for sale in Viera, Florida, the going prices, outside of the Indian River Colony Club, are in the low $100,000s and upward over a million dollars.

      If you are interested in condos for sale in Cocoa Beach, Florida, the going prices are around $60,000 for a 1960s shoebox to over a million dollars.  If you are looking for really nice - go much higher!

      If you are interested in buying a house or condo in Brevard County, Florida, give me a call or send me an email.   I will be glad to send you some listings so you can see what the prices are for your desired home.

      Gary L. Waters, PLLC, Florida licensed real estate agent, Century 21 Baytree Realty, 1211 Admiralty Blvd, Rockledge, Florida 32955.

      Thursday, August 11, 2011

      Home Inspections: I am not a doctor but I know the symptoms of a heart attack!

      As a real estate agent I know my limitations when it comes to evaluating properties.  That is exactly the reason why I always recommend a professional home inspection.

      Still, I know some of the warning signs of a potentially bad property.

      What are some of the warning signs?

      How about things like exposed wiring or wiring connections with tape, stains on the ceiling, cracks along the side of the house, or an electrical panel made by Federal Pacific Electric?   What about obvious add-ons and do it yourself jobs that look a bit questionable?   There are plenty of red flags buyers (and their agents) need to pay attention to when viewing properties.

      Here are a few links to good information on home inspections and how they can impact buyers and sellers.
      Sometimes the excitement of finding the perfect house can blind a potential buyer to some of these red flags.   It is at this point, once you have a signed contract, it is imperative you hire a home inspector.

      Not all hazards or potential dangers have a sign posted!

      When you are ready to buy or sell a home in Viera, Suntree or Rockledge, Florida , call me at 321-693-3850 or email me.

      Wednesday, August 10, 2011

      Rockledge Florida Home for Rent–Westwood Subdivision 4 Bedroom 3 Bath $1,800

      This four bedroom three bath two car garage 2007 built home is spacious and ideally situated in Rockledge, Florida's Westwood development at 977 Whetstone Place.

      This home is in immaculate condition and has never been leased and is available for $1,800 per month (one year lease).   With about 2,800 sq.ft. under air, there is plenty of space for a large family.  The owner will even consider pets!

      With window treatments remaining with home, and all appliances including the washer and dryer (upstairs laundry room), 977 Whetstone Place is ready for someone to move in.   Most owners want someone in right away but in this case the owner is negotiable on possession date.

      Enjoy the lake views from the covered back porch or the bay windowed breakfast nook! With the Space Coast Iceplex  just up the street, it is ready for the skaters and hockey players!  Close to shopping, golf courses, medical facilities, excellent schools, restaurants and with easy access to I-95 and US1, it is ideally suited for those who commute to Melbourne or even Orlando (45 miles away).

      Look at all this home offers - neutral colors, stainless appliances in the kitchen, granite counters, all electric, a sprinkler system and more.  If you are in the market for a rental home in Rockledge or Viera, take a look at this one!

      For information on this rental property and others in the Rockledge and Viera, Florida area, give me a call at 321-693-3850 or email me.

      Short Sales, Hardships…and the truth

      "Short sale" is a pretty common real estate term these days.  Most people considering the purchase of a home in this market runs across it pretty soon after the search begins.

      For those unfamiliar with the term a short sale is basically a situation where the seller is anticipating the proceeds from the sale of a house to be less than the monies owed (thus short) and will be required to get third party (lender) approval on the sale.

      Short sales occur when there is a real hardship impacting the homeowners ability to pay their mortgage - not just because the market value went down and an owner is upside down.

      A key part of the short sale process will involve the hardship letter a homeowner will need to provide with their request. The homeowner must be factual and honest.  Later on the lender will likely ask for things like a tax return ( a couple of years at least), bank statements, etc.

      Don't let your your pride or fear of being turned down stop you from pursuing a short sale if it is justified.   However, know in advance, you will need more than a well written letter to get the lender's approval!

      If you are facing a hardship and a short sale may be a consideration, call me at 321-693-3850 or email me 

      I am not an attorney, CPA or tax adviser.   If you have specific questions that require their services, please contact the appropriate professional

      Tuesday, August 09, 2011

      Considering selling your Brevard County, Florida home as a FSBO (For Sale By Owner)? Did the founder of do it?

      Somewhere along life's path I am sure you have heard someone say "Do as I say not as I do."  More often than not most children have heard that at least once from mom or dad.

      When it comes to selling your home there are those who promote the do it yourself approach (for sale by owner).  After all, how difficult could it be to sell a house?

      I used to ask myself why FSBOs dislike real estate agents?  With many short sales on the market I have seen where some consider selling their short sale home as a FSBO (Why?).  I recall writing on this blog about the benefits of buying from a FSBO.

      If you are considering selling your Viera, Suntree or Rockledge, Florida homes as a FSBO I ask you to consider this one sentence -

      If the founder of the For Sale By Owner web site hires a real estate agent to sell his own home what does it say to you if you are considering selling your Viera, Florida home yourself?

      When you are ready to sell your Viera, Florida home call me at 321-693-3850 or email me.

      Or, if you are a Viera FSBO seller and you are ready to let someone else handle it for you, call me, please.

      Sunday, August 07, 2011

      July 2011 Residential Sales in Viera and Suntree (Melbourne) Florida–A comparison of Standard Sales, Short Sales, and Foreclosure Sales

      When one speaks of homes for sale these days there is always an additional qualifier, specifically, is it a short sale, a foreclosure or a standard sale (also called fair market sale).

      There is an expectation that each of these takes differing amounts of time with short sale taking forever (OK, maybe six months or more!).

      There is an expectation that a short sale or foreclosure will be discounted significantly from the fair market sales in the same area.  After all, the foreclosure and short sale are distressed properties.

      So how did these expectations play out in the Viera and Suntree areas of Brevard County Florida during July 2011?

      For residential short sales in Viera and Suntree during July 2011:
      • 10 sold, 
      • Average days on market (DOM - list date to contract date) 143 days, 
      • Average listing price $166,250, 
      • Average selling price $155,900,
      • List/Sell Ratio 94%
      For residential foreclosures in Suntree and Viera sold in July 2011:  
      • 4 sold, 
      • Average DOM 14 days, 
      • Average listing price $286,650, 
      • Average selling price $254,038, 
      • List/Sell Ratio 89%
      For fair market sales (standard) residential sales in Viera and Suntree that were NOT SHORT SALE or FORECLOSURE selling in July 2011:  
      • 47 properties sold, 
      • Average DOM 113 days, 
      • Average listing price $286,628, 
      • Average selling price $269,699, 
      • List/Sell Ratio 94%
      I will let the reader interpret these for themselves.  To me, some things look obvious.  Like, contrary to popular belief, there are more fair market sales than distressed properties.  Everybody is not selling under duress.  Foreclosures go under contract a lot more quickly and sell for less. Foreclosures sell for an average of 11% below list price (and there is likely a really good reason for it).

      Buyers and sellers should be careful with their generalizations and expectations.  Every house, every transaction, every closed deal is unique although they have common elements.

      For information homes for sale in Viera, Suntree and Rockledge, Florida, call me directly at 321-693-3850 or email me.

      Brevard County Florida Real Estate: Buyer and Seller Expectations - real or imagined?

      All of us can be so judgmental.  Whether it is the search for a new home or the process of selling a home we judge.

      How does a seller judge?

      Many sellers I have met will tell you why their house is better than the same one down the street in the same neighborhood.   And, in many cases, the neighboring house is one which the seller has never spoken to the owner much less been inside.  Yet sellers know their home is so much better!

      Regardless of the specific price range, buyers have an expectation of what they will find in a home within their budget.

      The reality is many, if not all sellers, have an expectation much greater than the price range can deliver!

      As a real estate agent working with buyers and sellers in Viera, Suntree and all of Brevard County, Florida, my challenge is to deliver results.

      Sometimes the desired results are not possible.

      More often though, the desired results are achieved only after the expectations are brought in alignment with the real offerings with a given price range.

      If you are considering buying or selling a house in Brevard County, Florida, call me to discuss your expectations. If you prefer, drop me an email.

      Seems like common sense these days...use a Realtor® to sell your Brevard County Florida house.

      Using a Realtor® to sell your house makes more sense now than ever.

      • It is a buyer's market. There are fewer buyers out there and more sellers.
      • Sellers must be competitive to be successful.
      • Realtors® know the market.  Market knowledge is more than just what one reads in the local newspaper or hears on the major news networks.
      • Realtors® know the process as they deal with it daily.  How often does the usual person buy or sell a house? 
      When you are ready to sell your Brevard County Florida home, call a local Realtor®.

      If you are in Viera, Suntree, Rockledge or anywhere in central Brevard, call me at 321-693-3850 or email me.

      Buyers - remember the seller pays the buyer's agent so why not have professional representation?   Call me when you are ready to buy a house or condo in Viera, Rockledge and Suntree.  And that includes new construction as well!

      Friday, August 05, 2011

      Buyer Question: I heard you can really get a good deal with a foreclosure. Is this something I should consider?

      I received an email question this morning from someone who had heard about the good deals you can get buying a foreclosure.

      I appreciate questions and the opportunity to respond personally.  Sometimes my response contains information I believe others may find useful as well.  This is one of those times.

      I have written a number of articles on my web logs about short sales and foreclosures in the Brevard County, Florida area.  A few of these are listed here...

      Why a foreclosure is cheap(er) than a short sale
      Who is in charge of a short sale transaction - not the buyer
      Buying a foreclosure - "A Blank Canvas"

      These are just a few of the posts on my main blog Florida Homes for Sale but if you check it out you will find others among the 1,800+ posts.

      My opinion - foreclosures are not necessarily the best option.  Rather, if you have the time to wait in limbo then I would possibly look at the short sale inventory.

      What is a short sale?

      As for opinion is, most should avoid them.

      As for short sales, consider them if you can wait up to six months or more for approval.

      If you have any questions about buying or selling a home in Brevard County, Florida email me.

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