Real Estate North Palm Beach: Best Pre-Sale Fix-Ups

BSR1202We’ve talked on this blog before about how important it can be to differentiate your home from everything else in the market; when potential buyers are looking at homes for sale North Palm Beach properties all have a lot to offer. And while there are a lot of methods to making yours stand out from the crowd, perhaps the best tack to take is focusing on simple improvements that make the biggest impact.

If you’re looking for the best bang for your buck in terms of indoor fixes, nothing beats paint. Time takes its toll on even the best interior paint job, and especially in areas around the kitchen there’s a tendency for paint to appear lackluster after even a few years. A professional painter who knows their stuff is worth the price — they can advise not only on the best values in neutral colors that are universally appealing to buyers, but also help with minor cracks that may have developed over time.

We also advise our clients that while kitchen remodels are fun and return most of the money invested, bathroom remodels almost always return 100% and can have a big impact on potential buyers. Kitchen trends may come and go, but an out-of-date bathroom never seems to come back around; replacing aging fixtures, installing new and brighter lights and refinishing (or completely re-doing) the floor will pay off.

Finally, while we’re on the topic of floors, don’t be afraid to consider replacing the flooring throughout your home; wide-open spaces truly pop when they’re covered with new material, whether it’s carpet, hardwood or tile. When you’re ready to sell (or buy), you’re ready for the realtor North Palm Beach homeowners recommend most to their friends and family; contact us today!

Juno Beach Real Estate Tip: Tax Advantages To Vacation Homes

BSR1201When potential buyers start looking at vacation homes for sale Juno Beach naturally pops up as a popular destination for them. As far as varied offerings in real estate Juno Beach is hard to match — there’s literally something for everyone in this small-town-feeling community, from the smallest townhomes to luxury estates. But when it comes to vacation property, the usual methodology doesn’t take into account the possible tax advantages to owning a second home.

The key to taking advantage of them is to be sure your second home isn’t just a vacation home for you along — you need to rent the property out. Surprisingly, there are a number of tax deductions that are just for landlords, and if your vacation home is primarily set up as a rental property, you can take advantage of them too.

Tax deductions for rental property include interest on mortgages taken out both to purchase and to improve the property for rental — and that deduction also includes interest that accumulates on credit cards as a result of paying for goods or services needed for the rental process.

Depreciation of a rental property is also tax-deductable; essentially this means a portion of the purchase price of the property is deducted every year for several years until the full cost is met.

Landlords can also deduct the cost of any standard repairs needed to keep the property up to par for potential renters; they can also deduct the cost of travel to and from the property when specifically done for the sake of the rental activity.

Other deductions include the cost of various kinds of insurance, and even the cost of legal and professional services needed — on which note we’ll advise you to consult a tax professional before you file for any of these deductions.

A Home for Retirement: Re-Sizing Your Lifestyle

BSR0902The Jupiter Florida real estate market is no stranger to beautiful homes suitable for a well-deserved retirement; from Admiral’s Cove and Frenchman’s Creek to Egret Landing and Abacoa, options abound for those who are searching for just the right spot to enjoy their golden years.

But it’s important for buyers in this market to recognize that even if they’ve bought homes before, buying for retirement is a different animal; things you looked for in a home when you were working a steady job, or still had children under the roof, aren’t going to be the same characteristics you want when your time is wholly your own — and your income fixed.

So while nearly every Jupiter home for sale could be a good enough one for retirement, the ones that will stand out for you are those that match your needs at this stage in life — not the needs you think you might have. A good example is size; many buyers will look at a near perfect potential home for retirement as being too small, because they feel it important to be able to house all the family that might visit at one time. But for the extra cost of a few bedrooms and bathrooms in that home’s purchase price, a buyer could opt for a smaller home and invite their families to stay in the finest hotel in Florida every time they stay (and probably still come out ahead).

Larger homes also cost more to heat, cool, and maintain; for a fixed income retired person, it might be best to find an exceptional smaller home — even if there’s a larger one in a similar price range — and be ready to pocket the savings on upkeep.

Tips for Buying In Planned Communities

BSR0901We’re seeing a lot of increased interest among our clients in planned communities like Egret Landing, Admiral’s Cove, and Abacoa. Jupiter Florida real estate has no shortage of great planned communities and each one has its own unique character and specific appeal. It’s important when picking a Jupiter home for sale in a planned community that you take the time to find just the right one for your family’s needs; remember, your home is an investment, so there’s nothing more important than doing due diligence to ensure you’re investing wisely.

A great place to start is your local real estate experts — that’s us. We can help you find information about individual communities with respect to their planning and development history, and what each community has in store for the future. Many planned communities are not fully “built out,” so there are changes coming down the pike in terms of undeveloped space that may or may not be planned in a way you find inviting or appropriate.

Visiting the individual homes within the communities you’re interested in is of course a must; but it’s just as important to take the time to look around beyond those four walls as well. Visit the amenities that attracted you to the particular planned community, and see how well they’re being maintained and whether the activities you expect are taking place.

Finally, there’s no substitute for experience. See if you can talk to local homeowners about the challenges and opportunities they faced when they moved into each planned community, and find out whether the available schools, healthcare facilities, recreational opportunities, social activities and retail establishments have turned out to be everything they’d hoped, and what they expect to see in the years to come. The fewer surprises before you buy, the better!

Real Estate North Palm Beach: Inspections Are Key

NorthPalmBeachLooking for a homes for sale in North Palm Beach is exciting; it’s a fantastic area with a great market, and plenty of opportunity to find the perfect home. Indeed, even looking at North Palm Beach homes for rent is fun, and for many of the same reasons.

But unless you buy and sell real estate for a living — and often, even if you do — there are a lot of things you can miss when you’re checking out real estate. North Palm Beach is a fantastic place to wind up buying property, but a professional home inspection can make the difference between a home you’ll love forever and an investment you’ll regret.

Any real estate investment represents a lot of money changing hands; indeed for most people, the purchase of their home will be the largest single investment they ever make. This is why it’s so critical to make sure you’re covering all the bases, and why the cost of a professional home inspection is so worth it. Most professional inspections, even those that cover every aspect of the home from the foundation to the roof and everything in between, cost just a few hundred dollars. The peace of mind that brings, plus the potential to avoid costly problems later, is well worth the money.

A home inspection contingency in your real estate contract is a great way to ensure your North Palm Beach home investment won’t get off the ground without knowing the home is everything it’s represented to be. Your real estate professional can help you design a purchase agreement that hinges upon a successful inspection that uncovers no significant issues that might bite you down the road; and they can likely help you find a professional inspector that has experience with the North Palm Beach area.

“Secrets” To Selling Real Estate, West Palm Beach

West-Palm-beach-aerial-photYou’ve taken the plunge, and decided to add your home to our ever-changing list of West Palm Beach homes for sale — congratulations! Finding a good real estate team is the first and most important step on your journey to sell real estate. West Palm Beach has its own unique market; we’ve seen a lot of houses move quickly and a lot sit for a long time. Here are a couple of our “secret” tricks to help you put your best foot forward and make your property stand out among homes for sale in West Palm Beach.

Follow your nose.

We joke that the way to a buyer’s heart it through their stomach, and we’re not above putting out a dish of small chocolates next to our business cards for potential buyers to salve their sweet tooth. But you can be even more subtle: before a showing is a great time to bake cookies! The smell of freshly baked cookies puts a smile on anyone’s face, and will help your home be remembered. Secret #2,433: a few drops of vanilla extract in a cup of water gently boiled on the stove has the same effect, with fewer calories.

Let there be light!

Your home has never been tidier, your walls never cleaner, your windows never more sparkling: time to show it all off by turning on lights, opening all the doors and throwing open the blinds and curtains to let all the light in!

Put Away The Trophies.

Homebuyers want to imagine themselves living in their new home, not your old one. This means any memorabilia you’ve been keeping around needs to go into a box or closet before the showing — let your potential buyer imagine building their own memories!

Palm Beach Gardens Florida Real Estate: Should You Stop Renting and Buy?

PalmBeachGardensRealEstateWe’ve helped a lot of people find homes for sale in Palm Beach Gardens over the years, and we’re seeing an increasing number of buyers come to us who have, for whatever reason, most recently been home renters, not home owners. Whether it was because of a hectic job that kept them on the move, changes in their financial picture that made renting more affordable, or simply a lifestyle choice that has gradually become less attractive, a lot of our buyers have been out of the home ownership game for a long time.

What this means is that they might have forgotten what it means to live in a home that you own, rather than in one of the many Palm Beach Gardens homes for rent; with prices at reasonable levels and the picture of a sensibly-sized mortgage payment in their minds, many buyers are looking at the potential to actually save money by owning Palm Beach Gardens Florida real estate.

But it’s important to take the time to chart out your future expenses accurately; remember, even if the mortgage payment seems like a better deal than rent, you may find yourself covering more of the “fixed” expenses involved with the property than you ever did as a tenant. You might think utility use wouldn’t change between renting a home and owning one, but if you’ve been used to a landlord who covered such expenses within the price of rent, you might be in for a rude awakening. Homeowner’s insurance is a must, and typically is more expensive than renter’s insurance. And of course taxes on the property should be considered as part of your monthly expenses.

However, unlike rent, your mortgage is going toward building equity in your home, and can be considered a great investment in your future. For more information about Palm Beach Gardens Florida real estate and our collection of homes for sale in Palm Beach Gardens, contact us today!

Digital Detective: Learning More about Jupiter Florida Real Estate

jupiter-real-estateWhether you’re looking at a home for sale in Jupiter, or are checking out Jupiter Florida homes for rent, there’s no such thing as too much information. And while there’s a lot to be said for hitting the pavement and walking around a neighborhood, there are a lot of ways to find out a lot about a neighborhood without even setting foot there.

If you have school-age children — or anticipate having them while living in your current home — you’re going to want to know more about the school district that serves the neighborhood. The Florida Department of Education (fldoe.org) ranks its elementary, middle and high schools through a point system based upon grades and standardized test scores. Those rankings are updated every year, and can be a good window into the schools’ performances.

Crime statistics for areas throughout the state are routinely collected and analyzed by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (www.fdle.state.fl.us); that data is mapped by the state as well as by independent nonprofit and for-profit agencies. Everything from car break-ins to homicides show up, and can give you an idea whether the neighborhood you’re looking at is improving or declining with respect to crime — a great tool especially when looking at Jupiter Florida homes for rent.

Finally, if picking your Jupiter Florida real estate investment has to do with how easily you can get to and from work, find the home for sale in Jupiter you’re considering on Google Maps (maps.google.com) by typing the address into the search box. Then, come back to that website during the morning and evening commute rush hour, and select the “traffic” overlay option. The map will show you real-time traffic information so you can see whether the route you’d use for your commute is going to be problematic.

Own the Perfect Home with Mortgage Rates Decreasing in Florida

Florida_Keys_Canal_PropertyMortgage rates in the state of Florida have been decreasing significantly, following the trend that has been consistent in last year or so with some variation. With the current interest rate below 4% for real estate West Palm Beach and other areas in Florida, this is the perfect time to buy a house if you’ve been waiting.

 

Most people don’t know what to do with the interest rate of a property. They don’t know how they can secure the lowest possible interest rate and even if they do, they often make mistakes that raise the interest rate unintentionally. To be sure that you’re on the safer side when buying your home, pay close attention to the following tips:

 

  • When you’re about to close the interest rate, don’t make any large purchases. You’d also want to avoid career changes at this time since a lender will check your status just before closing, for one last time. Unless the deal is through, don’t do something that makes the lender suspicious about your ability to repay the money.
  • Most people will only pre-qualify for the mortgage, forgetting the importance of getting pre-approved. Getting pre-approved means you will have a greater chance of bending the negotiations in your favor while improving your credibility at the same time. It will also help you expedite the buying process.
  • The last but the most important tip is to watch your budget closely. Don’t agree to a loan that was originally above your budget. You may be able to get a mortgage deal for such a home but you will have troubling paying the money. Your monthly payment will be higher than what you can afford. You may be able to pay for the first few months but you will run out of patience with such a high payment. Therefore, only go for what you can afford. You can always look for North Palm Beach houses for sale. Be a little humble with your choice and you will do just fine.

How Updating Baths Can Increase Your Home’s Value

bathroom20_bigSomething every potential homebuyer considers is the way a house is staged for sale. Buyers will show more interest in a property if it is staged properly. If a home is staged correctly it can make the difference in its pricing on the market as well. One of the secrets in preparing a home for new ownership is updating its bathrooms.  By doing a few simple tasks, potential buyers will be more interested in paying the asking price for a property without asking for a cut down on the original asking price.

 

Getting your property’s bathrooms in perfect condition does not mean you have to shell out a wad of cash. You can make your baths attractive for potential buyers by making  just a few small changes. For example, you can look at homes for sale Jupiter Florida or homes in Palm Beach Gardens – they almost always have perfectly staged baths. You can get loads of low-cost improvement ideas from viewing these houses. You can also look at houses that sold quickly after being placed on the market and compare bathrooms. Here are some interesting tips, gathered from such houses and real estate advisors, to help you stage your baths perfectly:

 

  • Clean the baths. No one likes dirty looking baths. You’re probably not going  to sell at the price you asked for if you baths are in a less desirable state of appearance.
  • Update knobs, towel racks, and other bathroom vanities to make them trendy. You can always find inexpensive hardware that reflects the latest trend. Houses in West Palm Beach and Jupiter Homes are perfect for following latest trends since they are usually renovated once a year.
  • Add flowers and scented soaps to enhance the ambiance of the baths. Houses with more lively baths tend to sell quicker compared to houses with regular baths.