Treasure Coast Real Estate Blog

July 24, 2020

Closing Costs in Real Estate

Common Closing Costs for Home Buyers in Florida

The bundle of fees associated with the buying or selling of a home is called closing costs. Certain fees are automatically assigned to either the buyer or the seller; other costs are either negotiable or dictated by local custom.

Closing CostsYour lender must disclose a good faith estimate of all settlement costs. The title company or other entity conducting the closing will tell you the required amount to bring to the closing.

TYPICAL BUYER CLOSING COSTS

  • Down payment
  • Loan origination fees
  • Points, or loan discount fees you pay to receive a lower interest rate
  • Appraisal fee
  • Credit report
  • Private mortgage insurance premium
  • Insurance escrow for homeowners insurance, if being paid as part of the mortgage
  • Property tax escrow, if being paid as part of the mortgage.
  • Deed recording fees
  • Title insurance policy premiums
  • Survey
  • Inspection fees—building inspection, termites, etc.
  • Notary fees
  • Prorations for your share of costs such as utility bills and property taxes

Notes:

About escrows- lenders keep funds for taxes and insurance in escrow accounts as they are paid with the mortgage, then pay the insurance or taxes for you. Note: when financing more than 80% (LTV), escrowed property taxes and insurance are required, which will increase your monthly mortgage payment. 

About prorations – At the closing, certain costs are often prorated (or distributed) between buyer and seller. Because such costs are usually paid on either a monthly or yearly basis, you might have to pay a bill for services used by the sellers before they moved. Proration is a way for the sellers to pay you back or for you to pay them for bills they may have paid in advance. The most common prorations are for property taxes. This is because property taxes are typically paid at the end of the year for which they were assessed. Thus, if a house is sold in June, the sellers will have lived in the house for half the year, but the bill for the taxes won’t come due until the following year. To make this situation more equitable, the taxes are prorated. In this example, the sellers will credit the buyers for half the taxes at closing.

 

Contact us with your real estate questions. Whether buying or selling a home, we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, no obligation.

 

Eric Slifkin, a Broker Associate, is the founder of the Slifkin Team at Keller Williams Realty. Eric and his team of experienced agents serve South Florida and the Treasure Coast, including  Stuart, Port Saint Lucie, and the Palm Beaches.



July 7, 2020

Discover the Basque Vineyard, BC

Develop Your Own Canadian Winery or Hemp Cultivation Enterprise

Overview

The Basque Vineyard, BC is a stunning 12.23-acre property overlooking the majestic Thompson River Valley located on the beautiful sloping hillsides of the Basque region section of the South Caribou. Its southern exposure, sunny arid climate, and gently sloping hills make it a more fertile environment for grape cultivation than the wine country of Spain or France. The potential of this area is limitless.

The Opportunity

Located just south of Ashcroft, BC, this prime 12.23-acre parcel includes a two-bedroom home ready for your own winery, or hemp cultivation (Industrial Hemp Licence issued). Offering the perfect altitude, slope, climate, soil, and sun exposure, the vineyard overlooks the Thompson River and all the natural beauty to go with it.

The climate provides ideal conditions for wine varieties including Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Semillon, Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Shiraz/Syrah, Cabernet Franc, Gamey Noir, Marechal Foch, and Chancellor. Architect renderings for the wineries as well as soil and water assessments are available. The well provides 20 gallons per minute when last tested. A neighboring 31.01-acre tract is also available.

 

Contact Us to learn more about this investment opportunity. Whether buying or selling, we are always happy to discuss your wants and needs, no obligation.

This once-thriving vineyard produced grapes facilitated by well-draining sandy loam soil, south-facing windswept slopes, and a newly installed water system for irrigation as well as a distribution center that has a purification system.

Improvements

The water pump connects to the water distribution center then up to the highest point of the slope which is prepared to supply gravity-fed irrigation to the whole property (all this without disturbing the topsoil).

In addition to the magnificent landscape and Thompson river views, there is a 1200 square foot 2 bedroom one bath rancher, that boasts Italian ceramic tile flooring, open floor plan, laundry room, sunroom, and Jacuzzi bathtub. As well as a cozy fireplace to warm up to on those crisp autumn evenings where you can sit and enjoy the views.

Basque Vineyard BC

Possibilities

The potential to develop your winery can be effortless; the current owner has had numerous studies completed, from soil suitability, establishing a drip irrigation system as well as consulting with experts to determine which strains of Grapes would do the best with the properties conditions.

The ability to expand your vineyard is also a possibility as the adjacent 31.01-acre property is negotiable. Basque Vineyard BC, Inc. (the managing company of both properties) is also for sale should the buyer needs to acquire it for immigration purposes. Let your imagination run and create the winery of your dreams! Download the Basque Vineyards Site Plan

 

Contact Us to learn more about investment opportunity. Whether buying or selling, we are always happy to discuss your wants and needs, no obligation.

 

Eric Slifkin, a Broker Associate, is the founder of the Slifkin Team at Keller Williams Realty. Eric and his team of experienced agents serve South Florida and the Treasure Coast, including  Stuart, Port Saint Lucie, and the Palm Beaches.

 

June 27, 2020

Relocating to Stuart, Florida

Greater Stuart, Florida Relocation Guide

For those who enjoy outdoor recreation and appreciate an area with natural beauty, the greater Stuart area is a perfect choice for your Florida relocation offering a casual lifestyle with access to a major metropolitan market.

Stuart, Florida Relocation Guide

Real Estate in Stuart, Florida

The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that over 43 million Americans will relocate this year alone. A significant number will be moving to and from Florida – particularly the Stuart area of the Treasure Coast, which offers an unspoiled natural environment that creates the quality of life that many of its residents seek. For those who enjoy outdoor recreation and appreciate an area with natural beauty, the greater Stuart area is a perfect choice offering a casual lifestyle with access to a major metropolitan market. Learn more

Stuart Waterfront

Whether you are moving to Stuart from your home up North or points south, we can get you through the complicated real estate process without breaking a sweat. We will not only find you that desirable beach property, boating community, golf community, or equestrian community, we also represent your best interests and negotiate the most favorable terms possible for your purchase. 

Let us be Your Search Engine

Even if you know the difference between Stuart, Palm City Hobe Sound, and Jensen Beach, finding a property that suits your Real Estate needs and tailored to your lifestyle can be a daunting task. There are multitudes of real estate agents competing for your business. An Internet search for “Stuart Florida Real Estate” yields hundreds of real estate web sites with properties and selling and buying tips galore. You could spend days and weeks scrolling through real estate listings and driving through neighborhoods to find the perfect home – or you could ask us to do the looking for you! We offer a full range of relocation services, beginning with an extensive client consultation and ending with a successful transaction.

Downtown Stuart  Waterfront

Don’t Buy a Home Without our Assistance!

Relocation can be a very stressful process for you and your family. The time and effort required to get things done can be overwhelming. We understand what you are going through and can handle much of the work involved to help you through this experience – at no cost to you. We are knowledgeable in all aspects of real estate for buyers, sellers, and relocation. Why not put our experience to work for you?

Predecision Services

If you are relocating to the Treasure Coast for career purposes, our predecision services will help you evaluate your living situation before accepting a relocation assignment. Predecision counseling includes an analysis of our local real estate market, a review of destination area costs, and a tour of potential homes.

Short Term Housing

Looking to rent? Contact us for furnished or unfurnished Stuart, Florida rental homes, villas, and condos available for annual lease or short term rental. We offer a great selection of home rentals located in the heart of the Treasure Coast, convenient to Stuart area restaurants, theaters, golf, beaches, and shopping as well as West Palm Beach and Orlando area attractions. Learn More

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? Together with his team Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, no obligation.

This post has been authored by Eric Slifkin, a Broker Associate at Keller Williams Real Estate and the founder of the Slifkin Real Estate Team. Eric and his team of experienced agents serve South Florida and the Treasure Coast, including  Stuart, Hobe Sound, Palm City, Port Saint Lucie, Jupiter, Tequesta, and the Palm Beaches.

 

June 16, 2020

Waterfront Condo in Wellington, FL

Discover Mayfair at Lake Wellington

3-Bed / 2-Bath + Garage for $309,900 • RX-10601407

Enjoy wide water views from every room! This 3-bed/2-bath first-floor carriage home commanded a significant builder premium when new and is uniquely situated on the nicest corner lot in coveted Mayfair at Wellington.

Mayfair at Wellington

This home features an open plan, screened lakefront porch, private covered entry, Corian counters, maple cabinets, tumbled stone backsplash, 10-foot ceilings, accordion hurricane shutters, attached garage, large ensuite master with separate shower with walk-in spa. Learn MoreMayfair at Wellington

Property Highlights:

  • Lakefront property with garage
  • Private covered entry and storage closet
  • Screened-in porch with panoramic water views
  • 55+ community with gated access, pool & clubhouse

Mayfair at Wellington

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? Together with his team, Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, no obligation.

This post has been authored by Eric Slifkin, a Broker Associate at Keller Williams Real Estate and the founder of the Slifkin Real Estate Team. Eric and his team of experienced agents serve South Florida and the Treasure Coast, including  Stuart, Hobe Sound, Palm City, Port Saint Lucie, Jupiter, Tequesta, and the Palm Beaches.

 

Posted in Lisitings
June 7, 2020

Investment Properties With a Twist

Fresh Ideas for Buying Stuart, Florida Investment Property

Rental Properties

If you've ever considered owning a rental property in Stuart, Florida or the Treasure Coast but haven't much liked the thought of a traditional tenant/landlord relationship, perhaps some of these alternative ideas will spark your imagination.

Vacation rental properties: It's no secret that seasonal rentals in Stuart, Florida are in demand. With worsening Northern Winters quality rental units are in short supply and command top dollar.

As an investor, there's no need to take on long-term renters when you use your property for short term accommodation for Snowbirds heading south for the Winter. Services like airbnb.com, VRBO.com, and HomeAway.com are great places to list your property, or you can arrange for marketing and management by a local Realtor.

If you're considering this type of rental investment, be sure to look for properties with amenities that tourists would consider a plus (especially beachfront condos and pool homes near restaurants, recreation, shopping, etc.)  

Corporate housing: There is increasing demand in the Stuart area for short term corporate housing for relocating personnel as well as renters building new homes. Executives or small teams visiting from other cities can get tired of the hotel life, and having a residential option close to the office is a great option. Forming a relationship with local firms, builders, and real estate agencies offering relocation services is a great way to generate cash flow for short-to-intermediate term occupants. 

If you're curious about properties in the market which could be a good fit for any of these scenarios, get in touch today. I'd be happy to help you optimize your investment property strategy by helping you with your search.

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? Together with his team Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, no obligation.

This post has been authored by Eric Slifkin, a Broker Associate at Keller Williams Real Estate and the founder of the Slifkin Real Estate Team. Eric and his team of experienced agents serve South Florida and the Treasure Coast, including  Stuart, Hobe Sound, Palm City, Port Saint Lucie, Jupiter, Tequesta, and the Palm Beaches.

 

June 7, 2020

Homes Near the Beach

Buy a Home Near the Beach in Greater Stuart, Florida

Beachfront Condos

About Stuart, Florida

Stuart, Florida sits on the banks of the Saint Lucie River boasting a remarkable amount of shoreline for its size. The ocean is about 5 miles east of town, offering visitors and residents a host of recreational options including deep-sea fishing, swimming, and kayaking.

The greater Stuart area offers some of the finest beaches on the east coast. Beach access ranges from individual strips that allow for more private spots to enjoy the surf and sand or larger, guard protected areas like Stuart Beach, Bathtub Beach, and Jensen Beach.

There is a wide variety of communities and neighborhoods in Stuart, Florida within minutes of Stuart area beaches and recreation. Housing options include everything from modest condos and townhomes to villas and estate homes in gated subdivisions.

Click here to search for homes near the beach in greater Stuart, Florida.

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? Together with his team Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, no obligation.

This post has been authored by Eric Slifkin, a Broker Associate at Keller Williams Real Estate and the founder of the Slifkin Real Estate Team. Eric and his team of experienced agents serve South Florida and the Treasure Coast, including  Stuart, Hobe Sound, Palm City, Port Saint Lucie, Jupiter, Tequesta, and the Palm Beaches.

 

June 6, 2020

How to Choose a Good Condo

Stuart FL CONDOS

How to Buy a Condo in Stuart, Florida

If you're looking to take advantage of the current real estate market in Stuart, Florida, a condo can be a great choice for a first-time or downsizing buyer.

So how do you choose a good condo? Seek ownership in a well-maintained building, and pay special attention to the financial health of the condo association. Lax maintenance may be a sign of financial trouble, which could result in higher maintenance fees and problems trying to resale the property later.

Things to consider:

  • Choosing the right location is topmost. Make sure it is near private and public facilities like churches, markets, schools, etc. and if you will need public transportation to get there. Do you need to be close to your job?
  • What are the parking rules? Do you own your space? Is there sufficient guest parking?
  • How much is the monthly homeowner association fee and what specifically does it cover?
  • Review a copy of the latest financial statement from the condo association.
  • Ask the board of directors, which is elected by the unit owners from among themselves, if major repairs or improvements are imminent. If so, find out how much they will cost and whether there is enough money in the reserve to cover them.
  • Check the rules and regulations and by-laws as well as the covenants, codes, and restrictions (CC&Rs). You may find, among other things, that they prohibit or restrict cars, pets, and the renting of units. Some may require that the board have the right of first refusal on the sale of any unit.
  • Learn everything you can about the homeowners association, including legal disputes and conflicts. Start by reading the minutes of the association meetings.
  • Find out the owner-to-tenant ratio. Since many condominiums are often purchased as investments, there could be a high percentage of tenants in the building.
  • Consult a Realtor. There are at least 100 activities involved in a real estate transaction. An experienced Realtor can guide you through every step of the way toward owning the right condo for you.

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2015. All rights reserved.

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? Together with his team Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, no obligation.

This post has been authored by Eric Slifkin, a Broker Associate at Keller Williams Real Estate and the founder of the Slifkin Real Estate Team. Eric and his team of experienced agents serve South Florida and the Treasure Coast, including  Stuart, Hobe Sound, Palm City, Port Saint Lucie, Jupiter, Tequesta, and the Palm Beaches.

 

June 2, 2020

5 Tips for a Better Relocation Visit

Relocating to Stuart, Florida: How You Visit Matters

Are you considering a move to Stuart or the Treasure Coast area? Maybe you're trying to make the choice between two or three potential options. If so, how you visit your future home can have a dramatic impact on which one makes the final cut.

By making a few subtle shifts in how you prepare for your visit to Stuart (and how you spend your time while you're in town), you can gain more useful insight into our community.

Tip 1: Stay a week if possible
While a long weekend might be your only shot, you can get a much better perspective on a place if you have enough time to unwind. A mix of weekdays and a weekend is a great way to get a view of the rhythm of Treasure Coast lifestyles. If you have a long time to plan, visit us in Summer as well as Winter.

Tip 2: Find a short term rental
Renting for several weeks or months will not only provide you a little more room and the facilities of real living space, but you'll get a better sense of what it might be like to really be here."

Tip 3: Explore some on foot
Driving aimlessly can be a good "survey" technique (and indeed, getting lost is a good idea, too), but walking neighborhoods and downtown districts will give you a vivid sense of the community.

Tip 4: Get the local low-down
Before you go, find friends-of-friends on Facebook and other social media sites who can give you an idea of the must-see places that locals love. Use this list as your guide, not the tourism brochures.

Tip 5: Pay attention to what matters to YOU
Remember: You're the one thinking of living here. Don't let what others see as the main benefit to the town be what guides your decision to live here. Go with your gut, your values, and your comfort level!

By the way, I'm glad to help you sell your home prior to the move, or refer you to a trusted agent in your present city. Just get in touch!

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? Together with his team Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, no obligation.

This post has been authored by Eric Slifkin, a Broker Associate at Keller Williams Real Estate and the founder of the Slifkin Real Estate Team. Eric and his team of experienced agents serve South Florida and the Treasure Coast, including  Stuart, Hobe Sound, Palm City, Port Saint Lucie, Jupiter, Tequesta, and the Palm Beaches.

 

Posted in Home Buying, Relocation
May 27, 2020

Homes With Pools Near Stuart, Florida

Pool Home

Dive into these homes with pools in Hobe Sound, Jensen Beach, Palm City, Stuart

Feel free to contact us with your real estate questions. Whether buying or selling a home, we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, no obligation.

 

Eric Slifkin, a Broker Associate, is the founder of the Slifkin Team at Keller Williams Realty. Eric and his team of experienced agents serve South Florida and the Treasure Coast, including  Stuart, Port Saint Lucie, and the Palm Beaches.

 

 

 

Posted in Home Buying
May 18, 2020

Top 10 Tips for Florida Real Estate Investors

Successfully Investing in Florida Real Estate

In the long run, real estate has proven to be a reliable choice for investors. While no investment is without risk, these top ten tips will help you avoid some of the pitfalls of real estate investing.

Top 10 Tips for Florida Real Estate Investors

 

  1. Get Educated


    Knowledge is the new currency. Without it, you are doomed to follow other people’s advice without knowing if it’s good or bad. Educating yourself will help take you from being a “good” investor to becoming a great investor.

  2. Set Goals


    Setting clear and specific investment goals becomes your road map and action plan to become financially independent. You are far more likely to achieve financial independence by identifying specific and individualized goals than not doing anything at all. Your goals can include the number of properties you need to acquire each year, the annual cash-flow they generate, the type of property/location, and even the rates of return required.

  3.  Never Speculate


    Always invest with a long-term perspective in mind. Never speculate on quick short-term gains in appreciation, even in a hot market with double-digit increases. You never know when a market will peak, and it’s usually six to nine months after the fact when you find out. Don’t chase appreciation. Rather, only invest in prudent value plays where the numbers make sense from the beginning.

  4. Invest for Cash-Flow


    With few rare exceptions, always buy an investment property with a positive cash-flow. The higher, the better. Your cash-on-cash return is directly related to the before-tax cash-flow from your property. Cash-flow is the “glue” that keeps your investment together. Your equity will grow over time (through appreciation and loan amortization), while the cash-flow covers the operating expenses and debt service on your property.

  5. Be Market Agnostic


    The United States is a vast country made up of hundreds of local real estate markets. Each market moves up and down independently of one another due to many local factors. As such, you should recognize that there are times when it makes sense to invest in a particular market, and times when it does not. Only invest in markets when it makes sense to do so, not because you live there or you bought property there before. There’s an element of timing, and you don’t want to buck the trend.

  6. Take a Top-Down Approach


    Always start by selecting the best real estate markets that align with your investment goals. Most investors start by analyzing properties with little to no regard for their location, which can be a big mistake if you don’t consider the investment in light of the market and its neighborhood.

    The best approach is first to choose your city or town based on the health of its housing market and local economy (unemployment, job growth, population growth, etc.). From there you would narrow things down to the best neighborhoods (amenities, schools, crime, renter demand, etc.). Finally, you would look for the best deals within those neighborhoods.

  7. Diversify Across Markets


    Focus on one market at a time, accumulating from 3 to 5 income properties per market. Once you’ve added those 3 to 5 properties to your portfolio, you would diversify into another prudent market that is geographically different than the previous one. Typically that means focusing on another state.

    One of the underlying reasons for diversification within the same asset class (real estate), is to have your assets spread across different economic centers. Every real estate market is “local,” and each housing market moves independently from one another. Diversifying across multiple states helps reduce your “risk” if one market decline for any reason (increased unemployment, increased taxes, etc.).

    Even if you don’t live in Texas, you can invest in the Houston Real Estate Market, which is becoming a hotbed of buyer activity that could be beneficial for real estate investors. Just ask the multitude of overseas investors who are choosing Houston as the city of choice to invest in for the foreseeable future.

  8. Use Professional Property Management


    Never manage your properties yourself unless you run your own property management company. Property management is a thankless job that requires a solid understanding of tenant-landlord laws, excellent marketing skills, coupled with strong people skills to deal with tenant complaints and excuses. Your time is valuable and is better spent on your family, your career, and looking for more property.

  9. Maintain Control


    Be a direct investor in real estate. Never own real estate through funds, partnerships, or other paper-based investments where you own shares or other securities of an entity you don’t control. You always want to be in control of your real estate investments. Don’t leave it up to corporations or fund managers.

  10. Leverage Your Investment Capital


    Real estate is the only investment where you can borrow other people’s money (OPM) to purchase and control the income-producing property, which allows you to leverage your investment capital into more property than buying using “all cash.” Leverage magnifies your overall rate-of-return and accelerates your wealth creation. As long as you have the positive cash-flow and your tenants are paying off your mortgage for you, it would be foolish not to borrow as much as possible to buy more income property.

Contact Us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a single property or an entire portfolio, we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, no obligation.

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