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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Selling Your Home Requires Three Ps..... and one is not patience!

I have previously written multiple articles about the Three Ps of selling a home.    Briefly, the Ps involve three critical components of the marketing process.

First, of course, is pricing.  Price within the competition, consider motivation and the circumstances surrounding sale (estate, short sale, transfer, down-size, etc.).

The second is preparation which really needs very little explanation.  This involves the obvious - deferred maintenance, de-cluttering, cleaning, etc.

The last is just as important as pricing - presentation.  Presentation is a broad category.

Presentation covers the obvious areas like the way a house looks.  But a more important aspect of presentation is the "presenting" or ability of prospective buyers to actually view the property.

[There is another "P" but it is up to a seller's real estate agent to handle that one - promotion.  Your real estate agent must possess the knowledge to get the property information in front of as many potential buyers as possible.]

I was showing homes in the Suntree area of Melbourne earlier this week.  One of the homes my customers wanted to see was unavailable because the seller only allowed showings for limited hours on Sundays.  This particular arrangement makes me wonder about second showings should a prospect narrow their choices to a couple of houses.  

By the way, what does a second showing really mean?  It could mean several things, such as:
  1. An offer is in the works, 
  2. You are in the running with several properties, 
  3. Your house is being used to justify an offer on another house or condo.
Of these possibilities the first two are positive.  Number three is a bad signal.

Second showings are usually a good sign. 

In this case will a prospective buyer have to wait until the next Sunday to get back inside?  My guess is probably not!   I would like to think a seller would accommodate a second showing outside of the window of opportunity defined as Sunday, Sunday, Sunday!  If not, then perhaps motivation (or lack thereof) is the issue.

Motivated sellers try to accommodate all reasonable showing requests.  The more people who see a home increases the chance an offer arrives (and shortens the disruptions caused by the selling process).

I believe there is a golden period when a listing creates the most excitement.   The "golden period" is a term I coined to describe the first two weeks a property is listed.   This is when a seller needs to dazzle them early!

Most real estate agents and motivated buyers watch for new listings.  The first sign a home is not priced right is no showings during what I call the "golden period."

It is during its first two weeks a listing will garner the most activity. Restricting showings is a waste of time!  If your home is not getting the traffic you desire read this "There is a Reason Why Your Home is not Being Viewed!"

Ready to sell your Viera, Florida home?  Call or text me at 321-693-3850 and lets get the ball rolling!

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Heritage Isle in Viera, Florida - Florida 55+ Community Market Activity January 2017

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, January 22, 2017.

What is currently for sale in Heritage Isle?

Currently there are eighteen homes for sale in Heritage Isle.  Listing prices range from $239,900 to $435,000.   There are four homes priced over $400,000 with two being new construction scheduled for completion in February/March time frame. 

Half of the current listings in Heritage Isle are priced below the $300,000 mark.   All nine of the lowest priced homes are three bedroom two bath two car garage homes built mostly in the 2005/2006 period.  As is the case in most areas of Viera all are standard sales.  There are another eleven homes under contract as well awaiting closing.

What has recently sold in Heritage Isle?

Over the past six months there have been thirty homes sold in Heritage Isle as reported in the Brevard MLS system.  Selling prices ranged from $210,000 to $445,000.  Since December 1, 2016 there have been thirteen sales.

Since January 1, 2017 there have been five homes sold.   These recent sales included:
  • 6934 Lovington Way - Standard sale, built in 2005, 3 bedroom 2 bath 2 car garage with 1,658 sq.ft. sold for $258,000
  • 7187 Broderick Way - Standard sale, built in 2006, 4 bedroom 3 bath 2 car garage with 1,978 sq.ft. sold for $270,000
  • 6259 Van Ness Drive - Standard sale, built in 2015, 3 bedroom 3 bath 2 car garage with 2,032 sq.ft. sold for $290,000
  • 3242 Balboa Place - Standard sale, built in 2015, 4 bedroom 3 bathroom 3 car garage with 2,287 sq.ft. sold for $350,000
  • 3423 Russ Place - Standard sale, built in 2012, 4 bedroom 3 bathroom 3 car garage with 2,302 sq.ft, pond front, old for $368,000

Read more about these three age restricted communities in central Brevard County, Florida  as well as about the differences between the 55+ communities of Viera

For information on homes for sale in Viera, Florida, call or text me at 321-693-3850.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Selling Your Home - There is a Reason Your House is Not Getting Traffic!

I spoke with a gentleman yesterday who was in the process of relocating to Florida.  He had done all the right steps.

He has his current home on the market.  Actually, he has had his home on the market for about five months.

I asked if he had any offers yet.  No.  I asked if he is having a lot of showings.  Some people are looking (paraphrased).

Treading very lightly I asked if he thought the price was an issue.  He said yes and he was thinking about lowering the price some.

It was at this point I encouraged him to communicate with his real estate agent I do not know his home's market but his local real estate expert should know the prices, trends and where the prospective buyers will likely come from ( retiree pool).

Because he has his own agent I did not go into what I call the 30-10-1 rule.  Briefly,  I believe that, if  in 30 days you do not have at least ten showings and one realistic (even if not accepted) offer then look at the listing price.

One final key reminder about pricing your home to sell....You can't price too low, really!  You are not required to accept any offer.  If you price low, you may receive multiple offers with buyers competing with each other. 

Thinking about selling your Viera, Florida home?  Call or text me at 321-693-3850.

If you have a real estate agent already and your home is sitting, call your agent and ask about issues.   Be direct.  There is a reason a house is not getting the traffic

It could be price.  It could be an accommodation issue.  It could be preparation (or lack).  It could be you really are not motivated to sell right now. 

Communicate with your real estate agent.  He or she works for you!

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Buying Your Florida Home - Should a Buyer Ask for Repairs?

Over the past year or more the Brevard County, Florida residential market has favored sellers.  A seller's market is simply an environment where there are more qualified buyers than available desirable properties for sale.

In a seller's market there are very often multiple offers.  In a multiple offer situation it is essential for the best offer to be put forward first because second chances may not be an option.

How does a buyer improve their chance of having an offer accepted?  First of all, it always comes down to price

Offering a reasonable price with the most supporting documentation like mortgage pre-approval, proof of funds letter and fewer contingencies with a quicker closing is a great start.  An experienced buyer's agent can guide prospective buyers to making their offer (within budget and time constraints) as competitive as possible.

Read about the differences between a mortgage pre-approval and a mortgage pre-qualification.

Here in Florida there are two standard contracts most often used by Realtors.  One is the standard contract and the other is an "as is" contract.  While both have the same inspection contingency option (always recommended) the standard contract also provides an opportunity to ask for potential repairs based on the inspection.  This can be in the form of a dollar amount or a percentage of sale price.

My experience has been that if there are real serious issues most buyers walk.  And if there is something uncovered at the inspection that needs addressing many sellers will deal with it at the time either in the form of a repair or price consideration. 

I have seen many contracts with dollars allowed for repairs become a punch list of nickel and dime issues.  These added headaches for a seller can be a reason to reject the potential buyer with a repair amount within the offer.

But, as alluded to above, buyers are not always out in the cold.   Even though an "as is" contract sounds like a take it or leave it condition that is not always the case.

Read:  Why would a seller makes repairs on an "as is" contract?

If you are getting ready to buy a home in Florida read this Cheat Sheet For Florida Home Buyers. 

The Florida home buying process is not really that confusing.  Read Contract to Closing in Twenty Steps!

Key point:  Anyone considering buying a home in Viera or Melbourne, Florida, hire a local knowledgeable real estate.

Need a Viera, Florida real estate agent, call or text me at 321-693-3850.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Buying a Home in Florida: Serious Buyers Take Serious Steps

I spoke with a couple recently who stopped by my open house.   While showing them the house our conversation turned to their target budget.   I was surprised they were looking in this neighborhood as the budget was at the upper end of most home prices nearby.

Then I asked if they had spoken with a lender.  The response was "not yet until" they found the house they liked.

That is when I realized they were not really interested in buying a such as looking!

Serious buyers take serious steps when preparing to buy a home.

What are serious steps?

First of all, it comes down to ability to purchase.   Unless one has a sizable amount of cash available most buyers seek a mortgage.

Key point:  If one is considering a home purchase anytime in the near future, it is never to early to consult a mortgage lender.

Ask your lender to provide a mortgage pre-approval letter.   This is different from a mortgage pre-qualification which means absolutely nothing! 


Read about the difference between a mortgage pre-approval and a mortgage pre-qualification.


The next step is to choose your Realtor.  Your real estate agent will guide you through the process.  Here are some helpful articles about the home buying process.

If you are looking for a home in Viera or Rockledge, Florida, give me a call or text me directly at 321-693-3850.

Considering selling your Viera, Florida home?  Call me for your free market analysis.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Buying Your Florida Home: There are real reasons for price differences.

"The house down the road is bigger and priced lower.  Why is your house so much higher?"  That was the question I was asked yesterday by a person who stopped by an open house I was conducting.  First of all, the house was not down the road but in a different development.

My response was simple.... two cars parked in the same auto dealership parking lot are not automatically priced the same either.

When it comes to buying a house most buyers ultimately narrow their search down to perhaps a couple of houses, maybe three if inventory is available.  

And most often the main comparison criteria becomes price.  But there are reasons prices can be different.  When comparing properties consider the differences such as.....
  • Location.  Is one in a more desirable location? Could be the busy street, the nearby properties, proximity to community resources.
  • Condition.  This is one of the primary reasons similar properties are priced differently.  One house with a two year old roof is likely priced more than a home with a fifteen year old roof.  How old is the HVAC system?  Has the kitchen been updated withing past few years?  Does one have a trussed roof screened porch while another has an aluminum screen enclosure?  Flooring and paint may not be expensive updates but if one has it and the other doesn't then the pries will be different. 
  • Age of construction.  Homes in the same neighborhood may be ten or more years different in age.  That is the case if one is looking in the Viera area east of I-95 and west of I-95 in Brevard County, Florida.  Also building codes have been updated over the years so more recent construction may be considered safer, have lower insurance costs and be more desirable.    
  • Builder.  In our area there are subdivisions where the homes are very similar with very little upgrades (cookie cutter homes).  Then there are neighborhoods where the homes are semi custom or even custom built.  Design changes and upgrades do make a difference.  This can be seen in some of the homes in the nearby Heritage Isle 55+ community.  Some sections were built by other builders aside from the primary builder-developer Lennar Builders. 
  • Motivation.  One of the greatest influencers of home price is a seller's motivation.  In the end the market sells the price.  That means the buyer.

The key take away for buyers is this.... When your Brevard County, Florida home search has been narrowed down to a couple or three homes take a real look at the differences

If prices are close then really consider the differences and make sure you are comparing apples to apples.  Because two cars on the car lot are priced differently for a reason.

Ready to buy a home in Viera, Florida?  Call or text me at 321-693-3850.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Rockledge, Florida Home For Sale - $169,000

No one wants to air condition or heat unused space.  I saw a home recently that was about 3,000 sq.ft. but the owners had never lived in the top floor.  While having a big house is nice, in Florida the cost of cooling can climb!
There is a home for sale in Rockledge - located at 897 Brunswick Lane - that is compact and efficient.  It is not too small (1,338 sq.ft. under air) but very livable.  While there are only two "full time" bedrooms there is a third room which can be used as a bedroom (probably a guest room ideally). 

The sentence underlined above is to emphasize the layout.  The third room is off the kitchen (double french doors) and has a glass door that leads to the porch. Sure there is a closet but it is not very usable as a full time bedroom.

The two bathrooms have been completely renovated by the owner.  The garage door and opener were replaced in the recent past. 

The popcorn ceilings are gone with knock down applied.  The doors and frames were replaced.  The carpet in the bedrooms is a few years old but the carpet in the "third bedroom" and living room are recent.


The roof was replaced in 2015.  There is an inside laundry room (with tub sink) that is not included in the sq.ft. under air.  There is a huge patio to the west side of the house and a huge covered patio/screen porch out back.

Another unusual feature is he concrete block stucco building out back.  It is about 10 by 15 and has electric and AC.  This building is also not included in the square footage.

Call me at 321-693-3850 to see this house.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Realtor Brian Waters Joins Waters Realty of Brevard

Brian Waters, Realtor
Waters Realty of Brevard proudly announces the addition of Brian Waters to our real estate team.

Brian Waters is an experienced real estate professional specializing in the central Brevard County area including Rockledge, Viera, and Melbourne. If you are looking for an island or beach side property in Merritt Island or Cocoa Beach, he can help!

If you are buying or selling a Brevard County home please give Brian Waters a call to discuss how he can help you reach your real estate goals.

Brian can be reached directly at 321-458-3284 or by email.

Buying a Home - There are no shortcuts to success.

There is no shortcut to success.  This is especially true when it comes to buying a home in Florida. While buying a home is not really a complex process it is an orderly process.

Here are a few tips to consider if buying a home in Florida is in your future.

Start early.  The process of locating a home and closing may take a month or two at the most.  However the initial preparation takes time as well.  .

Unless one is paying cash then the mortgage pre-approval is the first major hurdle.  Even if one is not buying a home for a year or two away it is imperative the credit report be pulled, monitored and if there is anything whatever, address it.

Order your free credit report here.

Get your own agent early.   Another decision that needs to be made early is the hiring of your buyer's agent.  The buyer's agent is the best deal a buyer can make...the agent works for you but you do not pay them!   By the way, going to the seller/listing agent will not result in a better deal.  The seller's agent works for the seller.

Who pays for your real estate agent?

Choose a buyer's agent who knows your target are and not just the one with the most signs up or your friend's son!   In Brevard County, Florida there are areas to the extreme north and south parts of the county I do not work in because I don't really know the area.

The best cheat sheet for home buyers!

Your real estate agent has one goal - finding you to the right house within your budget and time frame and helping you close.  

If you are considering a home purchase in Melbourne or Viera, Florida, call or text me at 321-693-3850.

Saturday, January 07, 2017

Ventura at Turtle Creek in Rockledge, Florida - Condos for Sale January 2017 Market Update

The Ventura at Turtle Creek is a gated condo complex near the Turtle Creek Golf Course in Rockledge, Florida built by Pulte Homes in 2006/2007 time frame. With easy access to I-95 as well as US1, Ventura at Turtle Creek is ideal for commuters (Melbourne and Cape Canaveral easy drive, Orlando about 45 miles).

Also nearby is the shopping and healthcare facilities offered at Viera (The Avenues at Viera, Viera Hospital).   With excellent nearby schools as well as a short drive to the beaches, Ventura condos should be considered by anyone considering a move to central Brevard County, Florida.

What does Ventura at Turtle Creek offer?

There are four floor plans offered within the complex by the builder included these:
  • Napa, 1,112 sq. ft. under air, 2 bedrooms Sonoma, 1,247 sq. ft. under air, 3 bedrooms/2 bath
  • Santa Rosa, 1,412 sq. ft. under air, 3 bedrooms/2 bath
  • Santa Cruz, 1,391 sq. ft. under air, 3 bedrooms/2 bath
  • Santa Anna, 1,447 sq. ft. under air, 3 bedrooms/2 bath
The Sonoma model is a corner unit and the Napa an end unit. Although the buildings are four stories, elevators make it easy to get up and down! Some units offered single car garages and others have single carports with storage.

The homeowner's association fee (now about $350 a month) includes the community pool, 4 pavilions, clubhouse, gated entrance, lawn maintenance, insurance (buildings), water-sewer and maintenance of the building.

What is currently for sale at Ventura at Turtle Creek?

Currently there is only one unit for sale at Ventura at Turtle Creek.   The standard sale offered at $149,900 is a Santa Cruz floor plan with a carport.

What has recently sold at Ventura at Turtle Creek?

Over the past six months there have been six units sold.  Selling prices ranged from $126,000 to $150,000.  All six sales were standard (fair market) sales.   It should be noted five of these sales sold for $140,000 to $150,000.

More recent sales (since December 1, 2016) included three units:
  • 1626 Peregrine Circle #104 - Sold for $142,000,3/2 with garage, 2006 built, 1,391 sq.ft.
    1576 Peregrine Circle #203 - Sold for $145,000,3/2 with garage, 2007 built, 1,247 sq.ft. 
    1576 Peregrine Circle #208 - Sold for $150,000, 3/2 with carport, 2007 built, 1,247 sq.ft.
For information on condos and homes for sale in Rockledge, Florida, call or text me at 321-693-3850.

This Waters Realty of Brevard blog is about ten years old with over 3,300 different posts.  Readers are encouraged to pay attention to the dates of posts on here as well as any other real estate website.  

For the most current market information call, text or send me an email.

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Foreclosures often represent a great way to get a fantastic deal on a home.....

The title of this post was taken from an article I read earlier today.    While bank foreclosures often can represent a great way to get a fantastic deal on a home foreclosures are not for every buyer.

More correctly, foreclosures are not for most buyers.
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles /

Foreclosures are generally not move in ready properties.   Many times they have been neglected, stripped of major components (AC, for example) and even vandalized.  Some have been boarded up for a year or more.  Many have had issues neglected for years before the actual foreclosure resulting in further damage (roof leaks, for example.).

Foreclosure properties are more likely a consideration for experienced buyers, investors and cash buyers.

First of all, cash buyers don't need financing.  Financing most often requires move in ready, non-project properties.  One caveat about financing and repairs...there is such a thing as an FHA 203(k) loan which allows repairs even with financing. Look up FHA approved lenders.

Investors have a purpose beyond living in a property.  Most investors have the funds and experience to evaluate a property, estimate repairs and understand other considerations.  Investors take a business view and are less emotional toward a property.  For investors, it is all about return on investment.

Experienced buyers with available funds and time can find bargains in foreclosures.   Even if a buyer intends to live in a property there is often a period of time between purchase, repairs and habitability.  The reality is most foreclosure properties are not remotely move in ready!

The foreclosure purchase process often involves operating in the dark.   Due diligence takes on additional meaning when dealing with foreclosures as the usual disclosures are usually absent.
The lender/seller will usually never provide any information about a property.

If there is an association it is up to the buyer to find the answers.  Sometimes the electricity and water are unable to be turned on. 

Buying a foreclosure requires extra effort by the buyer.  There can be significant reward going the foreclosure route for the right buyer!

Monday, January 02, 2017

Plantation Point in Rockledge, Florida - Homes For Sale - Market Report

Plantation Point is one of Rockledge, Florida's most popular neighborhoods.  Located just off Barnes Boulevard (with easy access to major routes I-95 and US1), Plantation Point offers larger, newer homes in a location very convenient to  shopping, restaurants and several golf courses. major routes (US 1 and I-95).
Nearby medical facilities are plentiful with Wuesthoff Hospital in Rockledge and Viera Hospital both nearby as well as medical offices. 
Many major employers are within a short drive as well as the beaches and Orlando.  Association fees are less than many of the other newer neighborhoods as there is no community pool or clubhouse. 
What is currently for sale in Plantation Point?

Currently there is one active listing in Plantation Point.  The listed property is a bit smaller  than many nearby homes (less than 2000 sq.ft. under air) with a slightly unusual layout  (courtyard).  Listed at $399,900 the price may be a bit optimistic in my opinion!

By the way there is another listing coming in Plantation Point.  I do not have the price but it should be in the same neighborhood as the above property however it offers about 3,200 sq.ft. under air plus a  pool!  Email me if you are looking for a home in Plantation Point.

What has recently sold in Plantation Point?

Since April 2016 there have been ten homes sold in Plantation Point.  Selling prices ranged from $250,000 to $425,000.   Average selling price was $305,000 and median selling price was $291,500. 

All of the homes sold in Plantation Point were built in the 2004 and 2005 time period.   All of these recent sales were standard sales.   Distressed sales are less common in Brevard County as 2016 comes to an end.

The most recent sales in Plantation Point (as reported in the Brevard MLS system) included:
  • 438 Wynfield Circle - 4 bedroom 3 bath 3 car garage pool with 2,507 sq.ft. under air home located on a pond sold for $425,000
  • 3990 Waterford Drive - 2,256 sq.ft. 4 bedroom 3 bath 2 car garage pool home sold for $347,000
  • 320 Pebble Hill Way - 5 bedroom 3 bath 2 car garage two story home with 2,692 sq.ft.  sold for $293,000.   
For information homes for sale in Plantation Point and other Rockledge, Florida areas, call or text me at 321-693-3850.


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