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Friday, October 28, 2016

Chelsea Park Subdivision in Rockledge, Florida - Market Update October 2016

Rockledge's Chelsea Park subdivision provides homeowners an excellent location near top quality schools, shopping (The Avenue Viera), several excellent golf courses, restaurants, medical facilities (including the VA Clinic at Viera) and much more!

Chelsea Park offers owners room to roam.   Unlike many of the newer developments, lots are larger with  no zero lot line parcels here.   While Chelsea Park offers a playground and basketball court it does not have a community pool which helps keep association fees lower. 

Typical house in Chelsea Park
Conveniently located near I-95 and US 1, Chelsea Park provides commuters easy access to major employers in Melbourne and Orlando (45 miles).   

With its proximity to US Highway 1 and Interstate 95 this neighborhood is well suited for those who commute to Patrick Air Force Base, Cape Canaveral or many other major employers  in Melbourne, Florida.

Additionally, Chelsea Park's proximity to Orlando (40 minutes), the Rockledge and Viera areas make it an excellent choice for "long distance" commuters as well!

It should be noted that currently Barnes Blvd in front of the subdivision is being upgraded to a four lane street so there is some obstacles however once the road work is completed, access to I-95 and US 1 will be even quicker! 

What is currently for sale in Chelsea Park?  

Currently there are seven homes for sale in Chelsea Park.   Listing prices ranged from $299,900 to $425,000.  All of these homes are standard sales.   The prices of five of these listings run from $365,000 to $425,000 - another indication of how much listing prices have risen in the Brevard County, Florida market.

These homes are not small (sizes ranging from 2,3000 sq.ft. to over 3,700 sq.ft.).   Most of the homes were built between 1998 and 2004 (one built in 2015).

Coincidentally, all seven listings have a private pool which is probably influenced by the fact the Chelsea Park development does not have a community pool.  (No community pool is also a reason why the HOA fees are lower).  There are also three homes under contract.

What has recently sold in Chelsea Park?

Over the past six months there have been 14 homes sold in Chelsea Park.  Selling prices ranged from $212,000 to $368,000. 

Since September 1, 2016 there have been six homes sold in Chelsea Park.  All were standard sales with selling prices ranging from $212,000 to $350,000.   The four most recent sales (data extracted from Brevard MLS system) included:
  • 369 Cobblewood Drive - 2004 built 1,586 sq.ft. 3 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage sold for $212,000.
  • 428 Cobblewood Drive - 2000 built 1,586 sq.ft. 3 bedroom 2 bath 3 car garege  sold for $215,000.
  • 332 Castlewood Lane - 2002 built 2,416 sq.ft. 4 bedroom 3 bath 2 car garage pool home sold for $332,500.
  • 470 Stonehenge Circle - 2001 built 3,142 sq.ft. 5 bedroom 4 bath 2 car garage pool home sold for $350,000. 
For information on homes for sale in Rockledge, call or text me at 321-693-3850.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Florida Golf Course Homes: Fairway Lakes at Viera - Market Update October 2016

Fairway Lakes at Viera (Brevard County, just north of Melbourne) is one of two gated executive living communities offering custom built homes on Viera's Duran Golf Course.  The other is Wyndham at Duran which has a manned gated entry with homes priced a higher (custom built, with larger lots and more desirable views).

Fairway Lakes at Viera is convenient to Viera High School, shopping and restaurants at The Avenues Viera, Viera Hospital, Brevard Zoo and much more.  Fairway Lakes offers a central location with easy access to I-95 with Orlando less than an hour away.

What is currently for sale in Fairway Lakes at Viera? 

Currently there are ten properties for sale in Fairway Lakes at Viera.   List prices range from $464,000 to $799,000. 
All of these homes for sale in Fairway Lakes are standard sales (most common in market).   The sizes of these homes vary considerably from just over 2,200 sq.ft. to almost 3,800 sq.ft. under air.  
Seven of the ten listings offer private pools.  The average listing price is just below $610,000.   Most of these home were built in the 2006-2007 time period with only three built after 2010.  There are also another three under contract awaiting closing.

What has recently sold in Fairway Lakes at Viera?

Over the past six months there have been seven reported sales in the Brevard MLS system.  Selling rices ranged from $454,500 to $750,000 (average of these seven was about $587,000).

More recent sales included the following homes.
  • In August 2106 3078 Lamanga Drive sold for $565,000.  With 3279 sq. ft. this home had five bedrooms four and a half baths with a two car garage plus pool.
  • In September 1, 2016 there was one home sold in Fairway Lakes.  Situated on .33 acres of golf course frontage the home located at  3032 Sallisbury Ct sold for $720,000.  This 2009 built home offered 3,041 three bedroom three baths and three car garage with pool.
For information on homes for sale in Fairway Lakes at Viera, call or text me at 321-693-3850.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Rockledge, Florida Home For Rent - $1350 3 Bedroom 2 Bath 2 Car Garage

This three bedroom two bath two car garage home in  the Huntington Lakes subdivision in Rockledge, Florida will be available for new tenants on November 1, 2016.

With 1,706 square feet under air, this 2005 built home is being offered for $1350 per month with twelve month lease. 

Tiled kitchen, office, baths.  Laminate in living/dining room.  Bedrooms are carpeted.  Located near good schools, parks, and major highways (I-95 and US1 convenient). 

Smoke free. No smoking allowed in house.   Also, no pets allowed so please don't ask.

Good credit required.   Move in requires first month, last month and security deposit ($1000).


Monday, October 24, 2016

Strom Park in Central Viera, Florida - Market Report October 2016

Strom Park is  one of Viera's newest communities and the first community of the new Central Viera Villages.

Strom Park offers residents a large playground, several smaller playgrounds, a splash park and a dog park.   Strom Park's convenient location is near the new Viera Hospital, Viera High School, The Avenues Shopping, Pro-Health Fitness Center, restaurants and several golf courses including the Duran Golf Course.  Nearby (almost across the street from the development) is Quest Elementary School.

What is currently for sale in Strom Park at Central Viera?

Currently there are two homes for sale in Strom Park.   Both of these are 2016 built new homes although one appears to be a re-sale (although never lived in).

List prices range from $336,704 to $415,000.  One is a smaller (approximately 2,100 sq.ft.) 3 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage while the other is a much larger (just over 2,500 sq.ft. ) with additional bedrooms and bath as well as a three car garage. 

There are also five homes in Strom Park already under contract and awaiting closing.  List prices for these range from about $347,000 to $429,900.

What has recently sold in Strom Park?

Over the past six months there have been 30 homes sold in Strom Park.  Selling prices ranged from $328,519 to $429,100  Since August 1 2016 there have been seven homes sold in Strom Park.  
A few examples of home size and selling prices (as reported in the local Brevard MLS system) include:
  • 8092 Strom Park Drive - 2016 built 4 bedroom 3 bath 2 car garage home with 2,425 sq.ft. under air sold for $422,892.
  • 7918 Quimby Court - 2016 built 4 bedroom 3.5 bath two car garage home with 3,177 sq.ft. sold for $433,018.
  • 7999 Marquette Drive - 2016 built 4 bedroom 3 bath 3 car garage home with 2,600 sq.ft. sold for $380,477
For information on homes for sale in Viera, call or text me at 321-693-3850.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Will Pokemon Go Help Your Sell Your Viera Home?

Pokemon Go seems to be the big rage these days.  So how can you use Pokemon Go to help sell your Viera, Florida home?

What is selling a house?  It is a process where real people interact with real people to sell a real product.

What is Pokemon Go?  It is a game where players interact between the real and make believe.

While Pokemon Go has apparently stirred the interest of those playing virtual games it likely will not sell your home.

Selling your home is not a game. 

It is a serious process.  It does not involve collecting multiple various characters and getting points or whatever. 

It involves collecting one character (a buyer) and getting real money.

Want to use make believe with your real estate marketing?   Have your agent utilize virtual designs in staging your vacant home.  

Ready to sell your Rockledge, Florida home?  Call or text me at 321-693-3850 or send me an email.

Image courtesy of basketman at

Grand Isle in Viera, Florida - 55+ Gated Community - Market Update October 2016

There are three 55+ communities in the planned unit development of Viera (Melbourne), Florida
While all three are gated and offer some of the same amenities, each is still different and has their own personality.   The differences in some cases are subtle, but they do exist. 

Still, if one is looking for a Florida 55+ community, one is probably just right for anyone looking at Florida retirement communities.

This post provides a market report for the gated Grand Isle community for October 2016.

What is currently for sale in Grand Isle?

Currently there are five properties for sale in Grand Isle.   Listing prices range from $264,500 to $339,000.   Average list price in Grand Isle is about $290,000.   

Average home size about 2,100 sq.ft. under air (3 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage).  These homes were all built between 2002 and 2004.  All of the homes for sale are standard sales.  There is also one home under contract awaiting closing.

What has recently sold in Grand Isle?

Over the past six months there have been seven properties sold in Grand Isle.   Since August 1, 2016 there have been three homes sold in Grand Isle.  

Homes recently sold in Grand Isle include:
  • 1564 Boca Rio Drive - 2004 built, 3 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage with 2,011 sq.ft. sold for $287,000.
  • 1557 Grand Isle Blvd -  2004 built 4 bedroom 3 bath 3 car garage with 2,271 sq.ft. sold for $330,000.
  • 1710 Lago Mar Drive -  2003 built 3 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage pool home with 2,034 sq.ft. sold for $270,000.
For information on homes for sale in Grand Isle as well as Heritage Isle in Viera call or text me at 321-693-3850.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Brevard County, Florida Townhouse and Condo Market Report September 2016

Provided below is a quick recap of the Brevard County Townhouse/Condo market for September 2016 compared to September 2015:
  • Closed Sales are down -7.9% for September 2016 in which the number of units closed was 220 compared to 239 in September 2015, with a decrease in cash sales of -2.2% compared to September 2015.
  • New Pending Sales are up 13.4%.
  • New Listings are down -4.4%.
  • Median Sales Price for Townhomes/Condos is up 15.6% to $138,700 compared to a year ago, which was $120,000.
  • Months Supply of Inventory is up 6.2% to 3.4 months compared to 3.2 months in September 2015.
  • Traditional Sales are down -4.1% with a median sales price of $141,500.
  • Foreclosure/REO Sales are down -47.4% with a median sales price of $81,650.
  • Short Sale Closings are down -33.3% with a median sales price of $135,000.

Brevard County, Florida Residential Market Report September 2016

Provided below is a summary of the Brevard County single family home market for September 2016 compared to September 2015.
  • Closed Sales Just barely lower by 0.7% for September 2016 with 849 units closed  vs. 855 in September 2015.   There was a decrease in cash sales by -23.7%  this September.
  • New Pending Sales Increased  are up 4.3% in September 2016.
  • New Listings Increased 5.6% which is needed in this seller's market!
  • Median Sales Price for Brevard Single Family -  Climbed 15.9% to $197,100 compared to a year ago which was $170,000.
  • Months Supply of Inventory - Continued the current trend by going down -3.8% to 2.5 months vs 2.6 months last September. 
  • Traditional Sales -  Went up 8.2% with a median sales price of $200,000.
  • Foreclosure/REO Sales Decreased -60.2% with a median sales price of $141,000.
  • Short Sale Closings -  Also down -6.7% with a median sales price of $123,500.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Selling Your House - Dress for Success!

When a house goes in the market - even in a seller's market - there is a golden period.  This golden period is the initial first week or two when the new listing generates the most interest.  

In a seller's market a home that is priced reasonably well and presents well will likely get an offer - even if not accepted - during the first thirty days. 

If an offer is not received during the golden period consider whether the price violates the 30-10-1 rule (if a house does not have at least  ten showings and one offer (not necessarily accepted) in the first thirty days then the price may be a problem).

There are really only three Ps to selling a house... pricing, preparation and presentation.   The title of this post tells it like it is whether selling a house or going on a job interview....dress for success (preparation)!  

Getting a house ready for success is not that difficult....your real estate agent should be your number one resource! 
This blog has over 150 articles discussing home sellers and the process.  Here are ten articles that might just help if one is looking to sell their Melbourne, Florida home.

The above articles focus more on presentation than the actual process of selling your Brevard County, Florida home.   If you have questions regarding the process or want a free market analysis, call or text me at 321-693-3850.

Gary Waters (Waters Realty)  is a one person brokerage in central Brevard County providing personalized advice to customers one at a time

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Home Buyer Tips: Some overlooked areas when shopping for a home....

The parts of a property that get the most attention with home buyers are kitchens and bathrooms.  After all, these spaces are pretty much going to be used the way they are unless additional remodel money is in the budget.  

And while these ares are key there are some other less glamorous areas that can get overlooked during the home shopping process.   

What are these areas?

In a nutshell...think storage. 
  • In the kitchen consider pantry size and location (I have seen a few homes recently that did not have a pantry at all and relied on kitchen cabinet storage). 
  • Consider the closet space.  While the master bedroom closets often get the first look consider the other bedrooms - especially if there are kids.  And while smaller children and smaller closets may be fine think long term!
  • Check out the garage completely.  What are the overall dimensions?   Is there shelving or room to install shelving later?  Is there attic storage?  How much space is available after the vehicles are placed in the garage?   If a buyer has a large pickup truck with extended cab, etc. then will the garage be long enough as well as tall enough?   Be especially mindful of three car garages...most don't hold three cars!    Inside parking is a requirement in some places.  For example, there are some developments here in the Viera and Suntree are that do not allow a car or truck outside at night.    I have had several deals go through only after the garage test! 
  • Lastly, consider the usable floor space.  While the room sizes may look good on paper consider the location of doors and angles.  How much space will be needed to open doors (thereby reducing usable floor space for furniture).  A tape measure can be a valuable tool when looking at homes.

While the general layout, presentation and "feel" may say "yes" buyers need to consider the less awe inquiring aspects of a house - like basic space.

Clothes Hanging on Rail in White Wardrobe Image courtesy of khongkitwiriyachan at

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Home Buyer Tips: Which comes first, lifestyle or house?

For some this is almost like the "Which came first the chicken or egg?" question.  However the answer is more dependent on the individual than anything else.

When I ask most prospective home-buyers about their desires the focus is almost always on the house.  This is great for me because it helps narrows the search.

However, there is more to the decision for most people than the usual size, age, price stuff.  

There are the lifestyle issues.  Of course, "lifestyle" covers so many characteristics.  

For some it could mean community characteristics (55+ community, gated golf course community, water front living, hobbies).   For others it could mean proximity to work, shopping, restaurants, places of worship.  

For commuters it may mean ease of access to major airports or major highways.  Still, for others it could be focused on school quality and colleges.   And then some like the freedom to do what they like (i.e. absence of association rules and fees).

Lifestyle encompasses almost all things including economics, habits, attitudes, tastes, etc. 

It is how one lives their life.

Ready to buy a home in Melbourne, Florida and the surrounding area (Cocoa Beach, Viera, etc.)?  Give me a call or text me at 321-693-3850.

Lets talk about the lifestyle you seek and the best place to buy that Florida home!

Image courtesy of kkojang at

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Heritage Isle in Viera, Florida - Market Update October 2016

The 55+ gated community of Heritage Isle located in Viera (Melbourne, Florida) offers residents several choices of property style including condos, townhouses and single family detached houses. Heritage Isle offers residents a 21,000 square foot club house, heated pool, fitness center and much more. 

Presented below is a snapshot of the Heritage Isle real estate market as of today, October 12, 2016.

What is currently for sale in Heritage Isle?

Currently there are fifteen single family homes for sale in Heritage Isle.   List prices range from $249,000 to $433,175 (new construction).   Most of the homes for sale are resales with construction in 2005 and 2006 (eleven of the listings).   Most listing are 3 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage homes although there are some offered with 3 car garages plus a few 4 bedroom properties.  

All of the homes for sale in Heritage Isle are standard sales which mirrors most of the properties for sale in the general  Brevard County real estate market.   

There are also three townhouse (villa) style properties for sale with list prices around $200,000.   All three of these units are two bedroom two bath one car garage properties with 1,407 sq.ft. under air.

What has recently sold in Heritage Isle?
Since September 1, 2016 there have been three patio/townhouse style properties sold in Heritage Isle.  All three were two bedroom two bath one car units with just over 1,500 sq.ft. under air.  Selling prices ranged from $195,000 to $210,000 (updated, granite, etc.).

There were two half duplex properties sold in this period as well.  Units sold included:
  • 7242 Halleck St - 3 bedroom 2bath 1 car garage with 1,529 sq.ft. sold for $220,000.
  • 3763 Carambola Cir - 3 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage with 1,835 sq.ft. sold for $265,000.
There were five single family homes sold since September 1 with selling prices ranging from
$216,000 to $384,500.
  • 6987 Floristana Dr - 2 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage with 1,697 sq.ft. sold for $240,000
  • 6645 Pacheco Lane - 3 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage with 1,594 sq.ft. sold for $229,000
  • 3384 Moonstone Lane - 3 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage with 2,127 sq.ft. sold for $216,000
  • 6229 Van Ness Drive - 3 bedroom 3 bath 2 car garage with 2,050 sq.ft. sold for $278,000
  • 3453 Carambola Cir - 4 bedroom 3 bath 3 car garage with 2,607 sq.ft. sold for $384,500.
For information on homes fro sale in Heritage Isle in Viera, call or text me at 321-693-3850.


Sunday, October 09, 2016

Selling Your Florida Home After a Hurricane - The Sign Out Front Survived!

It is Florida and yes, hurricanes happen.   Thankfully not frequently but often enough to make buyers question every house they view.

Just last week I was showing homes and my buyers ask about the roof.   Specifically, they wanted to know if the roof had been replaced since the last hurricanes.  Those hurricanes were in 2004.

Many buyers research the building/construction codes for the latest updates and then search for homes built to those standards.

Now we have had a new encounter named Matthew.    So, for the near future, prospective buyers will ask about damage from hurricane Matthew.

If you are considering selling your house anytime soon  (or in the next ten years) do some documenting now!

If your home is currently listed call your agent and discuss having an inspection performed as soon as clean up has occurred.  Even if there is no apparent damage an inspection can be reassuring to prospective buyers.

Go one step further... take pictures and videos now

While videos and photos are excellent for insurance claim documentation they could also serve to reassure prospective buyers of the property's ability to handle a hurricane encounter.  Don't forget to take pictures of the areas ability to handle a large amount of rainfall (or not).  Just because a home is not in a flood zone doesn't mean the drainage is slow.

If there is water damage, get it repaired correctly (professionally).   Remember, sellers are required to disclose non readily visible repair issues. 

If your home is already on the market update the seller property disclosures now.    What happens when a home under contract is damaged?

I remember not long ago seeing a property disclosure that said no roof problems.   Then I found an old listing from the same seller with a disclosure that said "roof damage repaired from previous hurricane."

Sellers do forget so that is another good reason for documentation now.   Buyers remember this as well:  sellers disclose, buyers verify.

Buyers, if you are considering a home a particular area, it may be worthwhile to take a drive through the area (when it is safe to do so). 

Hurricanes, hot weather, slow drivers....the price we pay to live in Florida!

Image courtesy of Vlado at

Sunday, October 02, 2016

Thinking of Selling Your Home... Read This First!

When I work with buyers I always urge them to think long term about when the time comes to sell.    This is especially important when a property has some distinguishing quality that may not be appealing to most others.  Still, many times, the realities (and challenges) of selling a home do not become clear until well into the process.   

I have put together this list as a resource for anyone who may sell a home in the future.  Review it  before the time comes.  

Better yet, review it before you buy your next home!   Many of these are the opinion of the writer, only.  Some are common sense.
  • Being healthy (condition) is always better than an insurance policy that helps deal with problems later.   Offering a home warranty (insurance, sort of) does not compensate for poorly maintained/prepared homes. 
  • Add ons and improvements should be done without an expectation of an expected return of investment.   It is all about what an owner likes now when it comes to improvements. 
  • Over-improvements don't mean much.  If a simple pool (no screen enclosure, no salt system, end of life equipment)  adds 22% to the price of your home then consider it an over-improvement.  Prospective buyers will!  There is never a 1:1 return on investment. Buyers do not care what you paid for anything!
  • Not everyone wants a pool, really!   Just because someone is moving to Florida does not mean they absolutely must have a home with a pool.
  • Real estate brokers are not created equal.   Being a "big box" brokerage does not mean there is an audience size advantage.   Size does not matter - its the message and method of delivery. 
  • Functional obsolescence must be priced out and not explained in.  Trying to rationalize  (marketing as vintage, retro, etc.)  structural design and preferences of decades ago rarely translate to value today.
  • Colors and style do matter.  Tacky rarely sells.  Of course, tacky is in the eye of the beholder!    Buyers know what they want and understand what they see.  Piecemeal (found) updating and rehab looks like piecemeal updating.  
  • Staging can help sell your home.  When getting your home ready for selling remember a great staging job will not overcome deficiencies in design, structure or condition.  Your house is what it is.
  • Outside often reflects inside.   The outside of a house is almost always an indicator of how well the inside is maintained.   If the yard is neglected, paint is fading, plants are dead it is quite likely the inside will show neglect.  It all starts with curb appeal.
  • Location can't be changed unless its an RV.    A new coat of paint will not change the zip code.  The house may look great but it will always be location, location, location. 
  • Price should reflect three things if a seller is motivated: condition, location and competition.  Proper pricing takes into account issues.   If your house is just like the rest, then the price will be pretty much just like the rest!  
  • Quick closings are always preferable.  The longer the time between the contract and the scheduled closing the greater the chance something will happen to derail the transaction.
  • Memories are mobile.    Sometimes sellers attempt to price in their memories when they are trying to sell their home.  If memories could have a price tag associated with them you can be sure the seller's price will not be anywhere near a prospective buyer's value.
  • Emotions must be contained.  Selling a home requires sellers to keep emotions in check. When deciding on a listing price for your home an unemotional cost-benefit analysis is a good starting point.
Value, much like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. 

When buying, prospective buyers will find reasons to pay less.  When selling, prospective sellers will find reasons to price their home higher.  A good, local knowledgeable Realtor, whether working with buyer or seller, is critical. 

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