Helping Buyers, Sellers and investors reach their goals for over 20 years.

Dear Friends,

Welcome to our Miami Beach Real Estate Blog. We are always looking for input so if you have any questions or comments we would welcome them.  We strive to get only to give the best to our community.  Look forward to hearing from you soon.   


Take Care,

Sept. 22, 2014

Surfside Florida Homes, Condos and Life on the Beach

Surfside Florida

Surfside Florida is located just south of Bal Harbour and the Bal Harbour Shops along Miami Beach. It's a smaller community east of the Indian Creek country club along the Atlantic coastline. With a population of about 5000, with beautiful coastal community offers a tropical paradise and an ideal paste of South Florida.Surfside Florida - Live Play Relax

The small town of Surfside was incorporated in 1935 and continues to be a sleepy, attractive residential neighborhood with multifamily condominiums and apartments as well as single-family homes in a small business district. Surfside remains an ideal community for permanent residency, vacation properties for seasonal retreats. Because of the smaller community nearly every home is within just a couple blocks of fabulous shopping, the beach, public parks and playgrounds as well as dining.

According to the town of Surfside Florida.gov, Surfside has earned a superb reputation as a family community and destination. There's numerous accommodations, resort facilities and leisure activities throughout the town plus, you're just a short drive to the Bal Harbour Shops or the city of Miami Beach. Surfside offers a commercial district with fine dining and casual restaurants, reasonably priced accommodations and a variety of stores and services. Residents are close to downtown Miami, South Beach and the North Shore open as well as numerous golf courses and marinas with boating rentals and fishing expeditions.

Real Estate Options

Single-family homes in Surfside start at about $450,000 and can reach as high as $5 million depending on size, location and view. Around the $500,000 mark R2 and three-bedroom homes of around 1500 ft.² it may or may not need a little bit of work. The median home price is around $600,000 with some high end homes skewing the average. There are very few homes over the $1 million mark but luxury estates and beautiful waterfront properties are available between $1.5 million and $4.5 million.

Surfside has numerous condominiums as well typically priced from about $290,000-$4 million depending on size, location and amenities. Some of the higher end condominiums will have numerous amenities such as swimming pools, fitness centers and concierge services. Oceanfront luxury residences start at about $1 million and offer two, three or four bedroom floor plans from 2000 to 4000 ft.².

 

For more information on this versatile town just north of Miami Beach please give us a call today or visit the website for all homes and properties for sale in Surfside FloridaImage by Ines Hegedus-Garcia Flickr Commons

Posted in Surfside
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Sept. 15, 2014

Cash Sales Higher in Florida Than Any Other State

Cash sales continue ebbing closer and closer to pre-crisis levels, according to CoreLogic’s recent June sales report.

Nationally, sales have dropped dramatically year-over-year. Since June 2013, the portion of total sales completed in all-cash have dropped 36.2 percent to 33 percent overall – the lowest share since September 2008.

Since January, year-over-year cash sales have fallen each month. However, while drops have been drastic,

- Read full article: http://miamiagentmagazine.com/corelogic-reveals-june-cash-sales/#sthash.LpOIgFA4.mRTWVb1D.dpuf

 

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Sept. 15, 2014

Aventura Florida - Relax - You’re in Florida

Aventura Florida - Relax - You’re in Florida

If you've never heard of Aventura you might not be for Miami, however, knowing this little gem along the ocean means your perfect gateway to world-class shopping and relaxation. Aventura is located in North Miami Beach between Hallandale Beach and Maule Lake just west of Highway A1A. This master plan suburban city is located in northeastern Miami-Dade County Florida and is named after the Spanish word for "adventure". It was named after one of the developers of the original group of condominiums in the area exclaimed "what an adventure this is going to be." Aventura has a population of about 35,000 residents and began its development in the early 1970s. The famous Aventura Mall is located here and is one of the fifth largest shopping malls in the US. Most of this community is covered by water including Dumfoundling Bay and Maule Lake in addition to numerous inlets and peninsulas making nearly every home in Aventura a waterfront property or the very least offer waterfront views.Aventura Florida

Aventura is known for its world-class shopping with over 280 shops in the mall alone. The residential neighborhood offers an enclave of tropical landscaping and because water surrounds most of their high rises and luxurious family homes, this is an ideal place to call home if you desire to be close to the water and the beach all in one. Aventura also provides an easy access to Fort Lauderdale and Miami since it's exactly 12 miles in either direction to these famous cities.

If golf is your thing Aventura is calling your name. Golf Digest have called the beautiful Aventura and Turnberry Isle Resort and Golf Club and “oasis” in the middle of a busy Miami and Miami Beach. The Turnberry Isle Resort offers to distinct courses; the Soffer and the Miller Course originally designed by Robert Trent Jones Senior. These 18-hole courses showcase the best of Florida golf with a variety of challenges, contoured fairways, rolling greens and strategic water features. This quiet course is beloved by locals and golf loving visitors alike and the Senior PGA championship held residency at this course from 1979 to 1986. In addition to this fabulous course there's also the Cascata Grill perfect for a beverage or a full meal after a fabulous game. With innovative Florida cuisine, this restaurant offers unique bites from award-winning chefs.

Aventura offers its locals and visitors alike high-rise luxury condominiums, hotels with waterfront views, fabulous shopping, nightly entertainment, and world-class dining all in a restful and relaxing setting. Think this might be where you'd like to hang your hat? There are a variety of high-rise condominiums, luxury homes and waterfront estates to choose from. the average listing price is about $580,000-$650,000 with the median sales price of about $350,000. There are numerous single-family homes that easily top in the $1-$3 million range or humble single-family homes within just a few blocks of the mall starting at less than $300,000. From stunning high-rise condominiums of over $6 million to available lots of parcels of land perfect for building your custom home, Aventura may just have the perfect residency for you, your family and your budget. To learn more about this fantastic part of Miami often times referred to as our hidden gem, please give me a call or visit the website for all current listings, condos and homes for sale in Aventura. Image by Arjun Sharma Wiki Commons

View all Aventura Homes for Sale

View all Aventura Condos for Sale

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Sept. 8, 2014

Bal Harbour Florida - Where to Live, Why Buy

Bal Harbour is located at the northern end of Miami Beach and is technically a village in the Miami-Dade County area. It's home to about 3500 residents and over the last 50 years has built up several beach clubs, hotels, restaurants and shops. In 1965, the Bal Harbour shops were constructed by the Whitman family, one of the incorporators who lived in the local apartments. In the early 1970s, the beach began a major re-nourishment project and in 2008 the new Regent Bal Harbour opened becoming the northern gateway to the village. Bal Harbour

Originally known as Bay Harbour, the local planning community changed the name to Bal Harbour as it was technically was a city on a beach. The word “Bal” was a combination of a city that ran from the bay to the Atlantic Ocean, so B for Bay and AL for Atlantic. 

THINGS TO DO

Bal Harbour offers over 120 shops, for hotels, almost 20 restaurants and hundreds of events and oceanfront activities each year. It's known as Miami's most fashionable beach destination. The local art project and program continues its dedication to supporting arts in the area and expanding their museum access program that launched in 2013 providing free admission to four of the top area museums. Bal Harbour also provides free access to private collections and the "unscripted" Public Art program provides South Florida artists a platform to pursue their creativity.

Dining is also a fabulous option in Bal Harbour. With oceanfront resorts, cafés, coffee shops and lounges, there's always a close destination for fine dining, casual fare, or a burger on the beach. The ONE Bal Harbour Resort and Spa is a timeless getaway with fine dining options, pool bar and grill, fabulous spa services all set in a spectacular setting.

Condos at Bal HarbourREAL ESTATE

Speaking of settings, for nearly 80 years, the bowel harbor village has been a pristine community with top residential living an upscale tourism. A variety of elegant homes, estates and condominiums to feel the idea of a "dream village, the founder Robert C Graham and vision so many years ago.

CLICK HERE for all Homes for Sale

 

The homes and real estate in Bal Harbour range from about $280,000-$5 million depending on size, condition and location. Oceanside resorts and estates start at about $800,000 and harbor side homes can range from about $280,000 for condominiums and townhomes to $3 million depending on size and location. At the publishing of this post the average listing prices roughly $2.4 million with a median sales price of $595,000. However, due to the limited properties on the market at any given time, a higher-priced home could skew the median and average results. Please check with the current list of Bal Harbour homes for sale and condominiums here. Images by Jimmy Baikovicius and Ines Hegedus-Garcia FLickr Commons

Posted in Bal Harbour
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Sept. 4, 2014

Beachfront Homes Snubbed for Marina Properties

Home buyers determined to get a beachfront property are instead opting for marina homes. Dockside living is often cheaper, and boats and water toys are just steps away.

Kasidy Alves and his 13-year-old son, Ryder, both surf in amateur competitions, which played a large role in the family's recent house purchase. "We've always wanted water—to be on it, near it, or have access to it," Mr. Alves said.Waterfront in Miami

Their new home delivered on the water, but not the beach. And that's just fine for the Alveses. Their five-bedroom, four-bath, 3,500-square-foot home in Oxnard, Calif., faces the Channel Islands Marina and includes an extra lot and two 45-foot boat slips. "You can stand-up paddleboard, jet ski, swim, and it's right out of your backyard," said Mr. Alves, the 44-year-old co-owner of the consumer-electronics company Scosche.

Even as a surfer—one who doesn't yet own a boat—Mr. Alves opted for the channel. "Beach homes have sand everywhere, and it's always windy," said Mr. Alves, "This is the best of both worlds." Read on...

...In Miami, year-over-year price increases in the second quarter of 2014 were 47.7% higher on beachfront properties than of those on a bay, said real-estate appraiser Jonathan Miller. This is partly because of supply and demand: The bay-front residential market is five times larger....

Read the full article here: Wall Street Journal and chime in below on your thoughts for our area. image by Phillip Flickr Commons

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Sept. 4, 2014

Coconut Grove Real Estate

Coconut Grove is located just south of downtown Miami and Miami Beach between Highway 1 in the ocean. A beautiful stretch of land, Coconut Grove is home to residential properties, luxury estates in a few commercial shops and restaurants. It is also the oldest modern continuously inhabited neighborhood of Miami Florida in Miami-Dade County. It's bordered by Brickell, The Roads and Coral Gables. Sometimes spelled Cocoanut Grove, the definitive spelling as it is now was established when the city was incorporated in 1919. Annexed in 1925 when the city of Miami divided two areas including Coconut Grove and Silver Bluff, it is commonly known to locals as "The Grove".Coconut Grove FLorida homes and real estate

Coconut Grove is served by the Miami-Dade County Public school District and has three elementary schools, one middle school and one high school. In addition, Coconut Grove also has the Academy of Arts and Minds Charter High School which was founded in 2003. There are several private schools including a Montessori school and several Catholic schools.

Click here for all Coconut Grove Homes for Sale

Residents choose to live in this beautiful area because it's close to the ocean, has a variety of activities and events throughout the year in a wide range of home prices. There are also numerous parks located in Coconut Grove including the 8 acre Kampong, which is a tropical garden that forms part of the National Tropical Botanical Garden. The Barnacle Historic State Park is also located in Coconut Grove and was built in the 19th century currently home to one of the oldest homes in the county. In addition to these parks there are several smaller neighborhood parks, sports fields, picnic areas and walking trails throughout Coconut Grove.

EVENTS:

Each year, Coconut Grove offers a variety of events and activities including Septembers bike Coconut Grove and "great streets for Coconut Grove", a presentation and community discussion about making coconut Grove a more livable environment for all of us. Enjoy a free bike tour Saturday, September 13, from 9 AM until 11:30 AM or you can travel the shady lanes of Coconut Grove viewing historical homes and colorful wildlife. Enjoy local flavor such as Mojica madness on Fridays at TK' s, a local hangout and restaurant. Locals never miss the Grove Green Market every Thursday from 2 PM until 8 PM where you can sample delicious local flavors, pick up dinner, or simply Peru's all of the local flavors, produce and fair. The Sierra Club meeting happens every second Monday of the month at the Coconut Grove sailing club and you can always find karaoke at the Sandbar Sports Grill each Monday at 10 PM. Nearly every restaurant and nightclub will offer some sort of happy hour event or specials on a daily or weekly basis. Annually you can't miss the Coconut Grove Pumpkin Patch, the Great Grove Bed Race, the Miami Short Film Festival and the Coconut Grove Arts Festival happening each year.

Coconut Grove FLorida homes and real estateREAL ESTATE

 

Thinking of making Coconut Grove your permanent or secondary residency? Homes and condominiums are priced from about $150,000 for foreclosures in smaller condos to $16 million for large single-family estates, large acreage and waterfront property. Of course, there's everything in between as well as there are usually 150 to 200 properties for sale at any given time throughout Coconut Grove. As of the publishing of this post the average list price is roughly $1.4 million with a median price of about $895,000.

 

Click here for all Coconut Grove Homes for Sale

Roughly 10 to 15 new homes hit the market each week so if you're interested in learning more about this part of Miami or would like updates on current listings and properties that meet your search criteria fill out our form online or call us for a more personal homebuying experience. Images by Janie Coffey and Richie Deisterheft FLickr Commons 

Posted in Coconut Grove
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Sept. 4, 2014

Little Havana

Little Havana is located just west of downtown Miami South of the Dolphin express freeway or 836 and north of SW. 16th St. This small neighborhood in Miami Florida is home to many Cuban immigrants as well as residents from Central and South America. It is aptly named after the capital city of Cuba, which is also the largest city.

Little Havana PubLittle Havana is known for its diverse culture, social events, and colorful festivals each year including the Three Kings Parade and unique landmarks including the Walk of Fame known for famous artists and Latin personalities. With a robust streetlife, fabulous restaurants, and eclectic music, this is a great location to live, play and hang out.

The Cuban culture in Little Havana is alive and well with colorful murals, monuments to heroes past and some of the best Cuban coffee you'll ever taste. Make sure you visit on the last Friday of each month when Little Havana hosts Viernes Culturales, also known as cultural Fridays. This monthly gallery night showcases cultural arts and local artists of the neighborhood. If you're looking for multicultural experience and exposure, little Havana has it all.

Probably one of my favorite things about Little Havana is the food. With Cuban specialty foods, authentic flavors, and specialty dishes, it doesn't get any better than the fabulous croquettes, roles of Cuban bread with ham paste mixture, empanadas and the good old bull of white rice and marinated black beans. Of course, one of my favorites is the Cuban sandwich. Known worldwide, the Cuban sandwich has made its debut right here in Miami. This crunchy, buttered baguette is stuffed with juicy ham, succulent roast pork, melted Swiss cheese, mustard and pickles. It's almost the perfect sandwich. This combination of flavors has been a favorite not only for Cubans but everyone that lives in the Miami area for years. To finish the meal you can't miss the famous caramel flan or tress leches cake and wash it all down with a delicious Café con Leche or robust cup of coffee.

Home in Little HavanaREAL ESTATE

Many folks would love to be within walking distance or within just a block or two of these famous hotspots and it's possible with homes and many of metal in amongst the residential neighborhoods. Condominiums start at about $200,000 in smaller single-family homes start at about $100,000. However there are some higher end homes on the west side of Little Havana, which started about $250,000-$700,000 depending on size, condition and location. There are many homes along Highway 90, which makes an easy commute route to Interstate 95 or the toll freeway 836. Those that live in the Little Havana neighborhood utilize the Miami-Dade County public school district and have access to eight elementary schools, three middle schools and one high school including the Miami-Dade College, the Young Women's Preparatory Academy and the Mater East Academy charter high school.

READ MORE: Condo or House in Miami and Miami Beach?

There are several parks located in Little Havana, the largest being Marlin’s Park located just south of NW. 7th St. between NW. 17th Ave. and North W. 14th Ave. This is a baseball park in the current home of the Miami Marlins. In addition there are also several other parks including Henderson Park, Riverside Park, and Sewall Park which offer playground equipment and sports fields.

 

If you're interested in learning more about this fabulous neighborhood just west of downtown Miami or would like information on the homes and properties for sale please browse my website or call for more personal touch. Because I work in all areas of Miami I can help find the right home at the right price for you. Image by Infrogmation and Phillip Flickr Commons

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Aug. 25, 2014

Condo or House in Miami and Miami Beach?

Question:  I'm moving to Miami and wonder should I buy a house or a condominium and should I live in Miami Beach instead? Condo or House in Miami

I actually get this question a lot and being a Miami real estate agent for several years  find that it's not a matter of which type of house you should buy but what suits your lifestyle, tastes, needs and budget. Miami Beach is a lot more expensive than Miami Metro itself. There are more condominiums in high-rise luxury apartments in Miami Beach which can easily top $5 million or more. So, it's all going to come down to your budget. Also, when you purchase a condominium, regardless of where that is, you will usually have additional fees for homeowners dues and association costs. These can range anywhere from $100 a month to several thousand dollars a year. You have to add this onto the cost of your mortgage when considering your monthly budget. The condominium mortgage payment alone might be $1500 that the new add-on $500 a month for amenities and your over the $2000 mark before you know it. Lenders will help you decide which direction to go with and which makes the most sense for your budget but you might have to settle for a less expensive condominium in order to make the Association monthly payments.

....Or a House?

A single-family house on the other hand will have the add additional responsibility of exterior maintenance and possibly landscape but you usually will not have additional association fees. That's not always the case however, many homes in the Miami area are in gated subdivisions and controlled by homeowners Associations. Even if you have a single-family home you will have additional homeowners dues that will cover either common area maintenance, road maintenance, and even sign maintenance. Everything has to be taken into consideration when choosing a condominium or a house. Do you want the responsibility of taking care of the entire property or just the interior? Are you looking to save money and buy a bigger house so that you don't have association fees or do you prefer to spend a little extra and have everything taken care of? Do you prefer more of the resort style living or a single-family house on a small lot?

... Back to Condos?

Condo or House in Miami BeachYou are also a little more restricted when it comes to condominium living. You will have to follow by the Association's rules and bylaws which may require you to pay certain special assessment fees from time to time, restrict you on the number of pets or even if they allow pets at all, and noise ordinances. Because this is similar to an apartment you will share walls with other tenants and residences so the noise level will need to be kept down.

Many high-rise condominiums in Miami and Miami Beach have beautiful views. This is something you might not get with the house. Several estates and beachfront homes might have beautiful views but can also  be several million dollars. Luxury high-rise condominiums and even lowrise condominiums, against the bay or in Miami Beach, may still have beautiful views with home prices less than $400,000.

It's best to make a list of things that you're really looking  for in a home purchase regardless of whether it's a condo or a house. Then decide on your budget; speak with the lender to find out exactly how much money your budget can afford each month towards a mortgage payment and/or condo association fees. What will make or break the deal? Do you prefer the responsibility of a single-family house that's not in an association or would you like the added security of being in a fully funded association with all amenities under the sun? Maybe somewhere in between?

There are plenty of choices, options and price ranges to choose from. Feel free to browse my website and give me a call when you're ready to look at any of these homes and condominiums up close and personal. I would be happy to answer more questions for you and give you pros and cons to buying a condo or house in Miami.

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Aug. 21, 2014

U.S. Home Sales at Highest Pace of 2014, Says NAR From WPN

U.S. Home Sales at Highest Pace of 2014, Says NAR

U.S. Home Sales at Highest Pace of 2014, Says NAR


According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), existing-home sales in the U.S. increased in July 2014 to their highest annual pace of the year, as the ongoing decline in distressed sales continued.

Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, rose 2.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.15 million in July from a slight downwardly-revised 5.03 million in June. Sales are at the highest pace of 2014 and have risen four consecutive months, but remain 4.3 percent below the 5.38 million-unit level from last July, which was the peak of 2013.

Read the full article here

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Aug. 18, 2014

Miami Landlords Profit Big Time

South Florida Landlords Gain Large Profits on Investment Properties

According to a recent article in Bizjournals.com, the average landlord is making a large profit in the South Florida real estate market. The report also comes from zillow.com, one of the nation's leading real estate websites. Zillow ranked South Florida as one of the countries best market for residential landlords who are not professional investors. This means that average investors such as those that may own less than five properties are earning an average of $515 only behind the highest, which is Oklahoma City at $536 (on 1 property).South Florida Landlords Gain Large Profits on Investment Properties

Rents have jumped nearly 6% since June 2013, which is well ahead of the national rate of just 2.5%. The national website Zillow calculates profits based on the difference between rental income and mortgage payments on a median priced home. Zillow also accounts for property and income taxes, maintenance and vacancies.

As rental payments go up, short-term income flow will naturally continue to improve. Because of this, thousands of South Florida homeowners have become landlords during the housing bust just after 2008 when prices drop dramatically. Those that bought during peak prices are still finding themselves struggling to make a profit but those that purchased while prices were dramatically undervalue continue to see monthly profits increase.

 

The rental market is continuing to rise as prices increase. The South Florida market including those around Miami and Miami Beach are finding a balance between the rental market and purchasing. Prices may be the same for similar properties depending on rent versus a mortgage payments. Those that have plan on a short-term living environment or those that have not corrected their credit to the point of a mortgage loan may find that renting is a better option. Because of this, landlords are making a killing at profit investments each month. [Source]

Think you can compete? It's not hard considering these are mom and pop landlords and not big-wig investors. Because I work with a variety of buyers and sellers including investors, I can offer you the tools and resources to make an informed decision on the best rental property for your needs. Whether it's a flip property or monthly cash flow, call me to find out the first steps needed in becoming a Miami investor.

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