Six Things to Consider Before Buying Real Estate Property in South Florida

When someone mentions real estate, what commonly occurs to most of us is something that is of high value, and this value will keep on increasing as time goes by. In real life, it naturally does, but not all the time.

Real estate properties in South Florida vary in value, and they do increase, but depending on the location and other factors, not all of them do. That is why taking a step back to consider a few things is a wise move before jumping into a decision of purchasing a real estate property.

  1. Purpose of the purchase

Is the main purpose of buying the property for personal or business use? Do you intend to use it right away or this is for future use? Asking these questions will help you narrow down your options so that you can save time in choosing the right property based on your need.

  1. Location

Where do you exactly prefer the property to be located? If you have already known about some potential properties, is the location appropriate and accessible for your purpose? Does it meet your requirements for the specific uses that you have in mind?

  1. Price

We always want the best value for our money, and this is a smarter move if I may say. Now that you have established the purpose and preferred location of the property that you are planning to buy, check the price. Does it fit your budget? Is the price reasonable for its location and your purpose?

  1. Condition of the property

If you have found properties that meet your requirements for the purpose, location, and price, do not be too eager to sign that check and part with your money right away. Always bear in mind that there are always flaws in what appears to be a good deal. In most cases, lower prices are associated with the condition of the property.

Make a thorough check if the property is still in good shape when it comes to the quality of its materials and construction. You might think that you have made a good deal in buying a large property at a very low price, but it might turn out to be a large breeding ground for termites instead. You don’t want that. Unless you already planned a general renovation, which would cost extra money of course.

  1. Legal status of the property

Once you are settled and starting to use the property, you won’t like it if there will be other people knocking on your door and claiming the property as theirs too, won’t you? Before signing any documents for the purchase, make sure you have checked the legal status of the property to make sure it is clean and available for purchase.

  1. Future market value

Nobody knows what will happen in the future, that’s for sure. Although you must already have specific plans on how to use the property, it is always possible that you would consider selling it in the future.

Considering its future market value is always a good move so that you will be able to properly plan out in case you are going to place it on the market. It will also help you decide if the property is going to be an asset or will just turn into a liability.

 

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Picture-Perfect Projects in South Florida

Imagine that you’re done with the decluttering, cleaning, renovating, beautifying, and everything is set and at the right place. Time for listing, right? Technically, yes. Some homeowners would spend thousands of dollars and hire a professional photographer to take amazing photos of their homes. There’s actually no need for that. Cut your cost and do it yourself! Here are some tips on how to take picture-perfect shots for that winning listing in South Florida.

Camera tricks

A good camera basically does the trick. You don’t need to invest in a professional-grade kit, all you need is a digital camera with at least 10 megapixels. Add in a tripod for steadier and more professional-looking shots. Camera phones are a definite no-no. Although the latest phone models have great cameras, opt for the better output. Save the iPhone shots for selfies for this one.

The secret’s in the styling

Your home may be beautiful, but is it appealing to your target buyers? Charm them with a house that tells a story. Style it in a way that it’s warm and relatable (by adding a few personal knick-knacks and photos of your family in the mix), yet up-to-date and chic (add colors and textures). Time to take out your prized decors and linens from the closet!  

Delight with lighting

Proper lighting is one of the keys to great photos. Believe it or not, it’s not ideal to take photos when the sun is out. An overcast weather is better, with the lights inside turned on. It will give your property that warm, cozy, and homey feel. To avoid overexposing your shots, turn off your camera’s flash.

Find your focus

Does your house have a great view of the sunset or have a roomy kitchen? Make sure that you highlight these features in your photos. Take note that you’re still selling your property, and it’s best to show its strengths through magnificent photos. This will also narrow down your potential buyers, as it will lay out what your house has and doesn’t that fit their requirements.

Edit a bit

Yes, you have the perfect photos, but you can still improve them with a bit of editing. Adjust the color, brightness, or even remove items you think are better to be not included in the shot. There are easy-to-use editing tools available online, or you can ask a friend or family member do it for you.

Show the bigger picture

Do your clients a favor and show them a better view of your home, not just the interiors but also the location. This is one of the biggest considerations when buying a property, and adding this may help you find a new owner. If you have an impressive neighborhood, don’t hesitate to incorporate some shots.

A proper stack of photos can make or break your sale. Just remember that these photos are meant to improve your offer, and your home should back the claims. Let these tips help you get the perfect snaps and score that winning pitch.

 

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How to Invest in Real Estate in South Florida When You Have Debt

In America today, the average college graduate often begins his career already burdened with a five-digit student loan debt. Instead of just aiming their focus at establishing their careers, these graduates begin their journey with a financial handicap. Usual student loan amortizations require large monthly payments which linger for many years to come, hindering them from making financial investments such as real estate.

Good Debt vs. Bad Debt

If you are contemplating about real estate investment in South Florida, you should know the difference between “good debt” and “bad debt.” Bad debts are those that incur high-interest rate charges as well as very short payment terms. Examples of bad debts include car loans and credit card debts.

On the other hand, good debts commonly have low-interest rates, long payment terms, and are tax deductible. Investing in real estate may involve debt, but it is “good debt.” This is because you get to deduct your mortgage investment interest from your total tax bill. In addition, you can also gain from the capital growth of the real estate property you purchase, which typically appreciates in value over time.

Robert Kiyosaki once said, “Real estate investing, even on a very small scale, remains a tried and true means of building an individual’s cash flow and wealth.” This said, even if you currently have a debt, you can still invest in real estate. Below are three ways you can do so.

Look out for income-driven repayment schemes.

Existing loans are like red flags that mark your financial resume. The common practice of lenders is they compute your debt-to-income ratio before they lend you any money. Once they see your existing loan, this may automatically disqualify you from a loan, even if it is for the purpose of investing in real estate.

There is such a thing as an income-driven repayment plan where, for a period of time, your monthly payments can be set to $0 per month. During this period of time, you can qualify for a mortgage, despite your existing loan. However, you must ensure that you qualify for this program.

Consider alternative forms of lending.

There are a number of alternative forms of lending you can explore which don’t take your existing loans into account. Some examples are home equity loans, crowdfunding, and private money lenders.

Strategize better ways to deal with your existing debt.

The best way may well be to devise a strategy to proactively pay off your existing loan. Note that if you are only making the minimum monthly payments, it will take you ages before you can make a dent on that loan. Take control of your income and expenses.

Consider being more aggressive in attacking your debt. Work harder, engage in side gigs where you can make an extra buck, and seriously set aside an extra amount of money regularly for the purpose of paying out your loan. The time to save money is NOW.

Remember, “It’s not how much money you make, but how much money you keep, how hard it works for you, and how many generations you keep it for.” Robert Kiyosaki couldn’t have said it any better. Real estate investment can be one of the best ways to preserve and grow your hard-earned income for generations to come.    

 

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South Florida Real Estate is Investment That’s Worth It

People know South Florida as a great party county, but it has other advantageous factors which makes it a go-to location for savvy investors. South Florida is located in the US’ southeastern area. It is referred to as the Tri-County or the Miami Metro area. South Florida is composed of three counties mainly Broward, Miami-Dade, and Palm Beach. These three counties are densely inhabited, with Palm Beach as the smallest. Miami is the biggest city in the area. To date, South Florida’s population totals roughly over 5 million.

South Florida Key Facts

The climate in this area is of the tropical kind—wet and dry. There are also spots which are influenced by damp subtropical climates. Hurricane and set seasons turn up simultaneously due to the area’s location.

In terms of education, South Florida offers one of the best in the state. The area has the Miami-Dade County Public Schools district which comes with its own designated school board. The Superintendent of Schools is primarily responsible for managing the everyday tasks of the school system. There are other school systems in operation as well—the Broward County Public Schools and the School District of Palm Beach County. Meanwhile, higher education is offered by a number of excellent universities and colleges in the area like Florida National University, the University of Miami and the Broward Community College.

South Florida has three airports—the Miami International Airport, the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and the Palm Beach International Airport. For local transportation, the area offers the Metro rail system which spans throughout 22 stations. In addition, the area has five interstate highways which assist the location to sustain excellent assembly with other locations.

The area presents a thriving economy. It now has a good number of public companies with constantly successful operations. The companies offer the most job openings in the area. Roughly a hundred public companies are operating in the area together with 200 private ones. South Florida has lots of companies included in the US’ Fortune 500 list.

An Excellent Real Estate Investment

The area’s real estate is included in the most flourishing in the entire state. Its excellent numbers are not only attributed to the great rise of job opportunities, but the boom is also influenced by the higher rate of external businesses now operating in the location. There is a nice range of real estate that people can check out in the area from residential units, condominiums down to land.

There are currently more than 110,000 properties available in the area. The amount of foreclosures happening in South Florida is high, and it offers owners and investors chances to acquire one. Recent studies show that Broward country was listed second in the country’s foreclosure percentage while Miami-Dade was listed in the fourth position. Palm Beach, in turn, was listed 13th.

If you want to make excellent real estate decisions, now is the time to check out what South Florida has to offer. The area has what it takes for residents to thrive in today’s difficult times—great job opportunities, excellent schooling systems, great weather and prime real estate.

  

 

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Five Top Eco-Friendly Features of Today’s Luxury Green Homes

The world needs our help to sustain the environment more than ever. We can’t sit idly by anymore. In just the past few years, the impact of climate change has been so significant that everybody needs to pitch in to prevent more damage. That doesn’t mean you should become an environmental activist. You can do your part at your own home in South Florida.

One of the most effective ways to do so is adding Eco-friendly features if there aren’t any. These have long-term benefits that are sure to support efforts to save the planet. For ideas on how to make your home environment-friendly, here are five of the most popular Eco-friendly features more and more modern luxury green homes have.

  1. Locally sourced, sustainable building materials

Sourcing locally to support sustainability is no longer just a trend among chefs. The real estate industry has been doing it for quite some time now. A lot of construction companies have been using resources that abound in their area. Apart from saving natural resources, it reduces pollution by making supply chains smaller. The shorter the distance builders travel to get raw materials, the smaller their carbon footprint.

  1. Green Hooves

A green roof is basically a roof that has vegetation. It was developed as a way to give high-rises natural beauty while improving their ability to take in carbon dioxide, lessen water runoff, curb heat absorption and serve as habitats for wildlife like birds and insects. It’s now a sustainable living architectural feature of not only many buildings but also a growing number of luxury green homes.    

  1. Geothermal pumps

Installing a geothermal pump at home is a surprisingly effective way to save electricity with virtually no adverse environmental effect. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, geothermal pumps use 25 to as much as 50 percent less electricity than typical water systems. The less the demand for electricity, the less coal or fossil fuel power plants burn to generate it. Geothermal pumps don’t have any outside condensing units, which create emissions, so using one won’t make you produce more air pollution.

  1. Solar panels

Installing some solar panels at home is another great, environment-friendly way to save electricity. A 15-solar panel system can generate three to four kW, which is enough electricity for a single-family home each day. Since it generates virtually no emissions, it will also greatly reduce your carbon footprint in the long run.

  1. Smart home control

Making your home smart isn’t just a cool way to make it more comfortable. It can also make it much more Eco-friendly. For example, you can program its features that can be remotely controlled, like the lighting, the heating or the water, to switch off at certain times of the day. Not using these or leaving them on all day lets you use much less electricity, reducing your impact on the environment.

Windows & Doors

Windows and doors can make a huge difference in heating and cooling costs over the year. This also results in less energy used and a greener home. Our friends over at Impact Windows Fort Lauderdale do an awesome job at installing all types of windows and we give them the highest recommendation. Many of our clients have used them for impact windows and regular windows installation in the area.

With some many ways to make your home green in today’s world, it is a no brainer! It may take an investment upfront, but you will sure get that investment back.

Fighting climate change to save the environment isn’t only measured in press-worthy acts. The efforts to help by average people being done away from the media’s watchful eye give just as much support. It all needs to be a concerted effort for the fight to be truly effective. Play your part by making your home green.

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Different Types of Real Estate in South Florida

There are five types of real estate investments, and each type has its own advantages and drawbacks. The fact is, not everyone is interested in investing in residential lots. So, what other options are there in South Florida? Check out this quick video by real estate investing wizard Grant Cardone.

 

  1. Land

This type of real estate property includes ranches, farms, and vacant land. Generally, the size and price of this property are quite big. In some areas where lot prices are cheap, vacant land can generate a higher commission rate.

As an agent, specializing in building lots can be profitable in rapidly growing areas. However, you may need to search farther out from the city as the spread continues. Make sure you know any particular buying requirements before you make any purchase.

2. Commercial
 commercial real estate is any property that generates income and is usually called a commercial property. This includes shopping malls, medical buildings, schools, hotels, and offices. Although used for residences, apartments are still deemed as commercial because they’re possessed to generate income.

An empty land can also be considered a commercial property if it’s marked for commercial use. The valuation of this property is more complex because you need to consider a lot of factors including income potential, cash flow, and historical revenue.

  1. Industrial

The industrial type of property is mainly used for industrial purposes. It includes warehouses and manufacturing buildings. These properties can be utilized for research, manufacturing, storage, and distribution of products. Some buildings that sell goods are deemed commercial real estate.

Investing in an industrial real estate is good for the intelligent investor because it can offer large benefits, such as higher yields, longer leases, and low maintenance. As rents go higher, income and yields go up as well. Industrial tenants also agree on long lease agreements, which can go up to 10 years.

  1. Residential

The residential type of property is perhaps the most popular property niche with real estate agents. This includes both new construction and resale houses. As a real estate agent, you can specialize in different types of homes including duplexes, condominiums, and vacation houses.

You can even work with only high-valued properties. The strategy is to do what you please. You’re going to serve your customers better if you’re interested in your niche.

  1. Mixed Use

There are some real estate properties that combine any of the above categories into one project. Let’s say; you want to build a three-story office building surrounded by retail stores. You can let other businesses lease in other spaces of your building. This type of real estate property is ideal if you have significant assets because it can help control risk through diversification.

A Piece of Advice

When considering a real estate prospect, never buy it directly in your name. There are a lot of reasons, one something to do with personal asset protection. The trick is to use a legal entity, like a Limited Liability Company or a Limited Partnership. In case you face a lawsuit settlement, you can put the legal entity into bankruptcy and walk away.

 

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4 Tips to Design Small Living Spaces in South Florida

Small living spaces are a pain to decorate. There’s always the possibility of overestimating the things you need and the tendency of underestimating the actual space you have. But, don’t fret, there’s a way to work out the little room you’ve got. Check out these handy tips on how you can fit everything in your South Florida home and still make it seem like you have room for more:

  1. Good lighting is your best friend.

Fill the room with light! Don’t rely on a single light source in the center of the room. Rooms look better when there’s ample lighting all around. Make sure the room has multiple light sources, including natural light. When the light spreads around the area, it makes the rooms look more spacious. You can even utilize the vertical space in your area by varying the length and sizes of the light fixtures attached to your ceiling. This technique is going to make your room look so much more spacious than it really is. You’ll even get to do away with those heavy drapes.

  1. Clean up your clutter and organize it.

A small space doesn’t need unnecessary objects piling up on its floors and table tops. The best way to get rid of clutter? Stowing all your clutter away in strategic shelves and storage units you can hide away. You can also opt for donating some of the items you no longer use.

Pick up all the mess on the floor and everywhere else. Next, declutter. Arrange your items in boxes with labels like ‘throw away,’ keep,’ or ‘give away.’ If you’re having trouble letting go of an item, ask yourself ‘Will I use this anytime within the week or the next month?” If the answer is ‘No,’ you’ll most likely have to place it in the give or away pile.

  1. Mirrors, artwork, and plants can accentuate the overall look of your room.

Mirrors manipulate depth perception. This means mirrors can be used to trick the eyes making the room seem bigger than it really is. You can make use of this trick to visually expand a single room or the whole space. Ceiling-height plants create the same kind of effect too. These plants, together with floor-length mirrors, will draw attention to the ceiling and the room as a whole. If you have some artwork you want to showcase, place them above the average line of focus. This manipulates the vertical space of the room.

  1. Make use of furniture that have little compartments or multi-functional ones

Multi-functional furniture has to be one of the greatest inventions of all time. Imagine having a sofa with drawers underneath that you can turn into a bed anytime. Or maybe a coffee table that can house an armchair and a side table. There’s even an ironing board that doubles as a mirror when you fold it up. How cool is that? Multi-functional furniture are a small space’s best friend. They are not only aesthetically pleasing, but they’re also functional.

 

 

 

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Real Estate is my Passion

Real estate has been my passion since recieving my licnese when I was 18. There is just something about how I see people feel when they get to buy a new home of their dreams and and have a new place to live. There are always some ups and downs here, but at the end of the day I love it.

Why Real Estate?

Well first off, my father is a real estate mogul and I would love to follow in his footsteps. He owns a lot of property and I would love to do the same thing. Second off, I was not really a person who wanted to get a degree from a university, so a great decision for me was to study for my real estate license. IT is NOT because I am not smart or good at school, I just did not see the reason to waste 4 years of my life to get a piece of paper to allow me to work for someone else the rest of my life. Kind of seems like a bad joke right? Anyways, I passed the Real Estate exam with like a 95% on the exam! Pretty good huh?

Florida Real Estate Broker License

I am now considering going to back and obtaining my Florida real estate broker’s license. I would love to be able to open my own office and move the chains forward on owning my own brokerage. This has been a dream of mine for quite some time, a dream I am hoping to obtain in 2018. I am currently doing my continuing education, as required by the state each year!
Wish me luck!