Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Neighborhoods and Real Estate Listings

Choosing the right neighborhood is an important part of perusing Edmonton real estate listings. The neighborhood you choose will determine the lifestyle you enjoy at your new home as much as will the house itself! To make sure you make the right choice, you can ask a realtor about the neighborhoods where you find appealing Edmonton MLS listings. They can let you know about the neighborhood and about any special circumstances that may apply. Some areas do have characteristics that may make them very desirable, or very undesirable, to some buyers.

A good example of this are the Edmonton house listings found in the more exclusive suburbs. Sometimes, a first time buyer will have their heart set on a house because they want to alter it to suit their dreams. This isn't always possible, depending upon the neighborhood where it's located. Some neighborhoods have covenants and restrictions that are designed to foster a certain look for the neighborhood. If your tastes run a bit eccentric, you may find that some neighborhoods will be too restrictive for you to really enjoy your home, which is a significant part of owning a home in the first place!

In some cases, a first time home buyer can get themselves into real trouble by choosing the wrong neighborhood. A realtor can help you avoid this. When you're working with a realtor, they'll tell you about the property taxes and economic performance of homes in that same neighborhood. This may reveal that what seems to be a good buy is actually a money pit waiting to happen. If you're buying for the first time in your life, be sure to engage the services of a realtor so that you don't end up suffering from this common pitfall.

A good realtor can help you find Edmonton real estate that is in an area that fits your lifestyle perfectly. For example, if you're young, single and enjoy nightlife, you might love a place in a trendy, somewhat noisy part of town. If you're older and have children, you'll probably want more peace, quiet and a nice yard where the kids can play. There are so many factors that go into choosing the right neighborhood that it's always a good idea to get some guidance in this regard. Choose a realtor who knows the area well and which parts of the city will suit you.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Pelican Pointe Country Club - Homes and Real Estate for Sale

Highly attractive values are available at the Venice real estate market with the high inventory of properties created by the pervasive economic difficulties. A lot of acquisition opportunities can be availed of even at prime properties like those at the Pelican Pointe Country Club real estate development. Here's a quick look.

A master plan was implemented in converting this 100-acre property into a complex composed 1,355 home sites and villas nestled with an environment-friendly golf course. Over half of the enclave has been devoted to natural preserves and recreational facilities.

A magnificent clubhouse, sprawling with its 22,000 square feet of floor space, is host to excellent dining facilities hailed as No. 1 in the Readers Choice Awards survey of local newspapers.

The hum of social functions and events that abound in the clubhouse is matched in the activities that can be pursued at Pelican Pointe's various sports facilities. Available to members are a junior Olympic-sized swimming pool, two Har-Tru tennis courts, and a modern gym complete with large-screen TV monitors.

Golf is even made more exciting in Pelican Pointe's championship golf course, a 27-hole layout designed by the respected course architect Ted McAnlis. The links has three nine-hole layouts from which the 18-hole combination that suits a golfer's particular ability can be chosen. Quite favorable to most golfers, there are no parallel fairways along the entire course that can be a distraction to play.

Hence, smooth play can proceed in the course that runs for 5,326 yards from the nearest tees to 7,182 yards from the farthest tee markers. Measured in USGA standards, the layout has a course rating from 66.9 to 74.5. There are ample supplementary golf facilities at Pelican Pointe, including putting, pitching, and chipping greens, in addition to a driving range and a practice area for bunker play. Underscoring the links' popularity, Pelican Pointe has been consistently rated as No. 1 in publication surveys on Readers Choices for golf during the past 10 years.

Homes in Pelican Pointe carry the quality trademark of the best builders in Florida such as Sam Rodgers and Arthur Rutenberg. The exquisite landscaping, the ponds and lakes of the community are well-maintained thanks to a master homeowners association which manages these common areas.

A comprehensive listing of Pelican Pointe homes for sale can have single family residences with approximately 1,200 square feet of floor space and asking prices at the ballpark figure of $170,000. Bigger residences having around 3,300 square feet of floor area can be offered at a starting price of $750,000 which banners the luxurious lifestyle at Pelican Pointe.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Realtors and Real Estate in Lake Mary, FL - How to Buy a Foreclosure

Are you in search of realtors and real estate in Lake Mary? Looking to learn how to buy a foreclosure? Foreclosure is a long complicated legal process, which starts when a property owner defaults on their properties mortgage. The reasons a home may be in foreclosure are varied but usually come down to the current homeowner inability to pay their mortgage payments.

Usually homes that are foreclosed on have not been maintained to the same level when compared to someone who is outright selling their home. This could mean anything from the roof needs repair, the foundation is damaged, or the outside landscaping has been neglected for months or years to simple matters like the need for a new carpet or hot water heater. Keep in mind that the amount of repairs and the severity of those repairs will be reflected in the asking price of any foreclosed home available for purchase. If the home you are interested in is priced well below market value and appears to be an irresistible bargain, look closely; the savings may be a sign of major work that needs to be completed.

Purchasing a home that is currently being foreclosed upon can net a buyer a great savings. When the mortgage lender finds it necessary to foreclose on a property, a notice of default is filed as a public record. These public records are then compiled by companies and real estate agents that assist homebuyers in finding foreclosure properties to purchase for a fee. You can also save some money by searching the records yourself, however that can be very time consuming.

Once you have found a property you are interested in purchasing it is a good idea to have a title search and lien search completed on the property. This will help you avoid any surprises about the ownership of the property. Usually homes that are being foreclosed on for lack of payments on a mortgage also have unpaid taxes or utility bill liens against them. You will also want to have a complete home inspection performed by a neutral third party as well as home valuation completed. Make sure you enter into your purchase contract with open eyes and all the knowledge you can gain.

If you are a first time home buyer looking for a great deal, ask your real estate agent about bank owned foreclosures. Banks understand the legal process of foreclosures better than independent mortgage brokers and under normal situations will not sell the home until the current owner or tenants have been evicted. Save yourself the trouble of having to deal with an unhappy homeowner who has just lost their house to you by focusing on properties where the owners are no longer living there.

Many banks and other financial institutions have a surplus of foreclosed homes available for purchase. These organizations need to sell the homes in order to recoup their expenses so the price on a new home may be right for you. Be careful though, do not purchase more home than you really can afford, you would not want to have to go through the process of foreclosure yourself.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Mexican Stocks, Silver, and Real Estate - A Ten Year Review

The Consumer Price Indexes (CPI) program of the US Department of Labor produces monthly data on changes in the prices paid by urban consumers for a representative basket of goods and services in the United States. Tracking the CPI data began in 1913 and by 1983, inflation had reached 100%. Therefore, today most all data is calculated using a 1983 base of 100. For example, a CPI of 215.3 in 2009 indicates 115.3% inflation since 1983. Below is the inflation calculator based on data provided by the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics showing inflation during the past decade:

CPI Inflation Calculator
If in 2008 (enter year)
I purchased an item for $100
then in 1998 (enter year)
that same item would cost:$132.09
Rate of inflation change:32.1%

The above calculator shows that if you put $100 under your mattress ten years ago it, through the inflation of goods and services during the past decade, it would be worth $76 ($100/1.32) today, i.e., worth 76% of its original value or a loss of 24% in terms of 1998 purchasing power.

In order to hedge against inflation, many advisors suggest that you buy various commodities, oil and gas, foreign dollars, Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITS), Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities (TIPS), gold, and silver, etc. All of these investment vehicles are now available through Exchange Traded Funds (ETF's) where you don't have to take physical possession of the commodities; for relatively small investments, gold and silver in the form of bullion or coins is readily available and simple to purchase and hold. All of these forms of hedges against inflation can be excellent, however for the purpose of this article, we'll concentrate on silver.

Silver has always been one of Mexico's major export materials; in fact, until just a few years ago, Mexico was the largest producer and exporter of silver in the world. Let's assume ten years ago, instead of putting your $100 under the mattress, you bought $100 worth of silver selling at approximately $5.50/ounce. Today, at $16.65/ounce, you can sell your silver and enjoy a gain of more than 200%, i.e., your $100 investment is now worth $303 resulting in a 1999 purchasing power of $230 (76% of $303); not bad! If you're concerned that the recent increase in silver prices is only a temporary spike, it should be known that silver was selling at $20/ounce in 1981 and when the Hunt brothers were speculating in 1980, it was driven up to over $50/ounce; now that was a spike! The last time silver was selling for $16.65/ounce was in 1981. Taking the CPI inflation index of 2.37 (1981 to 2009) into consideration, $16.65/ounce in 1981 was equivalent to almost $40/ounce (2.37 X $16.65) in today's money and therefore it's not too difficult to imagine a much further increase in silver prices! This logic is further reinforced when you take into consideration the weakening dollar forecast for the near future. (see ten year silver price graph below)

The world's leading miner and producer of silver is the Pan American Silver Corp. (PAAS), headquartered in Vancouver, B.C. This publicly traded company has silver mines throughout Latin America with a couple of its largest mines in Mexico. In fact, one of these two mines is their only open pit mine and the other huge Mexican mine, located north east of Puerto Vallarta, has been producing the purest silver of all their mines since 1929. The graph below reveals the PAAS stock performance during the past ten years.

Next, let's analyze the performance of the US stock market during the same ten year time frame. If your $100 had been invested in SPY, the S&P 500 ETF, it would be worth 80 dollars today per the graph below. Let's take it a step further and adjust for inflation; that $80 would have only $61 (76% of $80) of 1999 purchasing power. Yes, that's correct; if you were invested in the US stock market and your return was better than average, you've lost almost 40% of the purchasing power that you had ten years ago!

Now, let's compare the ten year performance of the Mexican stock market (Bolsa) to the US stock market. If you had purchased EWW, the ETF basket of Mexican stocks, in 1999, you would have realized a 150% gain and your initial investment would now be valued at $250, with a 1999 purchasing power of $190 (76% of $250); pretty decent, especially when you compare it to the $61 left from investing in the SPY's!

You'll immediately see how much the ETF basket of Mexican stocks (EWW) and the Pan American Silver Corp. (PAAS) stock had appreciated in value through 2007 and then fell precipitously in the second half of 2008. More importantly, you can see how both are recovering beautifully as the world recovers from the global recession. Comparing both of these Mexico related stocks to the SPY's; you may never again want to invest your $100 in a US related stock! Assuming that the global economy continues its gradual recovery, it seems quite apparent from extrapolating the curves below that Mexican stocks and silver are very attractive areas for investing a portion of your portfolio at this time. It's amazing to see how closely the EWW and the PAAS stock prices have correlated over the past decade!

Finally, let's look at Mexican real estate. Along the prime region of the Mexican Riviera, property values have tripled from 1999 to 2008 (we don't have any empirical data but after being invested in the real estate market in Puerto Vallarta for more than a quarter of a century, we can state it as a fact; some properties have quadrupled in value!), after which they have remained flat to perhaps dropping by as much as 20%. Therefore, a real estate investment of $100 in 1999 was worth about $300 in 2008. Assuming a depreciation of $60 (20% of $300) over the past 18 months, it's now worth $240. In terms of 1999 purchasing power, it's worth $182 (76% of $240); about the same as EWW and PAAS, not as much as silver, but a whole lot more fun than owning either! When comparing these facts and figures to the $61 of 1999 purchasing power remaining from the $100 invested in the SPY's, it's truly disheartening to think of those of you that were fully invested through IRA's or 401k's during the past decade. Fortunately, it's not too late to recoup your losses; in fact, the time could never be better!

The recent drop in Mexican real estate values was caused mainly by the global recession; however, the recent border town drug cartel war news (1,200 miles between PV and Juarez!) and the swine flu scare (three confirmed cases in PV!) contributed significantly to the local real estate recession. The border town drug cartel war and the swine flu scare effects will vanish over time and in all probability, the property values will soon recover to their 2008 highs. Unlike the 20% property value drop in the US, there are virtually no foreclosures dragging down the housing values in Mexico. The housing crisis in the US will probably continue for a couple more years resulting in further erosion of home values by an additional 10-20%. Currently, millions of Real Estate Owned (REO-lender owned) properties exist in the US but you won't find any in Mexico!

In summarizing, $100 placed under the mattress ten years ago has a 1999 value of $76 today, $61 if in the S&P 500 SPY's, $230 if in silver, $190 if in the Mexican EWW fund, $185 if in the silver company PAAS, and $182 if in Mexican real estate. Regardless of where in Mexico you had invested your $100 ten years ago, whether it was in Mexican silver, stocks, or real estate, you've now got at least three times as much as you would have had if you had invested in the S&P 500 SPY's! So, here we are in 2009; the question is where best to invest your remaining money after the fiasco of the past decade? With real estate prices 20% off recent highs, long term mortgages of 50% (or more) available in Mexico, and many developers willing to short term finance up to 50%, there has never been a better time to invest in Mexican real estate.

Why hesitate; isn't it about time that you at least consider making an investment decision totally contrary to those recommendations that you've been receiving from your personal financial "guru" that have cost you 40% of your life's savings? Come on down and retire in Mexico; maybe you'll even want to buy a bag full of Mexican Libertads or dabble in the Mexican Bolsa through a vehicle such as the EWW fund while enjoying retirement to its fullest! Who knows; as you're relaxing in your beach front condo on the Mexican Riviera, perhaps your investments in Mexico will gain enough over the next couple of years to recover what you've lost during the past decade!

(Please refer to GRAPHS associated with this article)

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Land, Lot & Home-site Real Estate Investment Strategy: 5 Keys to your Success

Real estate offers enormous potential for those who are willing to take risks. Sure, CD ladders, Stocks and Bond Mutual Funds may be safer, but they also don't offer the potential for a gigantic return on investment. It is well known that real estate is how the majority of America's truly rich have made their fortunes. A little known, wealth building real estate strategy that can truly make you wealthy is investing in pre-development phases. This type of plan will not only produce higher profits, but also enjoys minimal risk when compared to traditional investing. The pre-development strategy can be super-charged by taking advantage of the current "Baby Boomer" phenomenon and pre-construction discount pricing.

Regardless if you are looking for a real estate property for investment purposes, or as a site for a future home; preconstruction investing is proven to offer a safer and higher return on your investment than any other financial instrument available today. Traditional investments (stocks, bonds, etc.) over the past couple of years have seen average returns of 4-8%. In contrast, real estate and land investments have realized cash on cash returns of greater than 200%; with less risk.

If all that were not enough, it gets even better. For those who qualify, only 5% down payment is required instead of the traditional 10%. The bank will put up the remaining 95%. This means double your leverage for even greater return on investment. Here's the best part. Many of the developers of these pre-development land projects will cover the payments on your mortgage for up to two years. You put up virtually nothing, buy at pre-development prices, make no payments while waiting for further price appreciation and then rake in some serious profits when you decide to sell.

5 Keys to your Success

"PreConstruction Land Investing"

1. LOCATION: Think like a baby boomer, target the type of locations and development projects that will appeal to the baby boomer generation seeking vacation property, second homes and retirement locations.

2. EARLY PHASE: Pre-development stage, buy at a pre-construction discount which are commonly offered early on to build projects momentum. This will limit your risk and put you in a position to maximize your profits.

3. LEVERAGE: Put down only 10% and even 5% as a down payment. The bank puts up virtually all the money for you as a mortgage. With 20 to 1 leverage even a modest increase in property prices can mean huge gains.

4. ELIMANATE NEGATIVE CASH FLOW: Focus on pre-development incentives, many developers will offer to make your payments for a period of time along with a price discount. You can enjoy no payments for 18 months while waiting for appreciation.

5. EXIT STRATEGY: Find a developer with an aggressive marketing plan and track record of success. When a developer builds a strong community brand and image, you both will benefit. It will also aid price appreciation as well as you ease and ability to sell. Once the community's infrastructure and amenities are in place the prices will naturally rise. Then once, the last phase release for the development is priced, adjust your property accordingly and sell it.

It's really that simple. Now let's add the POWER of COMPOUNDING!

You don't need the know-how or the time necessary to thoroughly learn the ins and outs of investing in real estate. If you have good credit, money to invest, or retirement accounts sitting idle, chances are a good Realtor who specializes in preconstruction land investment opportunities can assist you with your search.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Construction and Real Estate Litigation Firms - A Helping Hand in Property Disputes

Property related matters are always a typical subject for a layman. It is mainly because there are many laws and complex formalities attached with it that confuses an ordinary person. So, here comes the role of a construction and real estate litigation law firm. These law firms comprised of qualified lawyers holding good amount of experience into construction projects and other relative real estate matters. The lawyers in these firms very well understand and are familiar with the important party dynamics, documents and laws that govern such matters. In addition to it, if you face any sort of property dispute then these firms will help you in dispute resolution, especially mediation and arbitration.

In addition to it, there are many other reasons for which you must hire a construction and real estate litigation firm that will stop you committing deadly mistakes, errors in the documents, errors in the figures and other problems that could lead to time-consuming and expensive legal actions in the coming future. And with proper legal support, you can simply avoid big financials too such as bankruptcy, foreclosures and many more. The wide range of services that you will get to enjoy with construction and real estate litigation firm may include:

Loan modification

In case if you have take up a loan for purchasing and are unable to cope with its terms. Then the litigation firm will help you modifying the term of your existing loan resulting in a more affordable repayment. As at the time of negotiation with the lender, the legal representative definitely puts you in a more favorable position.

Foreclosure protection

The litigation experts completely understand that purchasing a home is a major investment. In case of lack of funds you are losing the home to the bank then definitely the litigation firm will help in either stopping or delaying the foreclosure. They will make earnest efforts to let you stay in your house and meanwhile will assist in finding alternatives like external financial support or short sale.


The real estate lawyers assist the lenders as well as the borrowers in a range of financial transactions such as acquiring a property, development and construction loans, bridge and permanent loans, securitized lending and many more.

You can gather more information about the construction and real estate litigation firms through the Internet. Besides, you can simply avail the services of these firms online only with ease.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Five Buying Tips For Luxury Homes and Real Estate

Hawaii. Often known as the Island of Dreams, or more specifically, a place where dreams can come true. But this virtual Paradise has factors to consider before you think about picking up stakes and moving here. Hawaii Luxury Homes and real estate do not come cheap and the location itself is not for everyone. Before you decide to make your Hawaii getaway, visit for yourself and see if the lifestyle is something you could get used to. In addition to this, if looking to buy Hawaii Luxury Homes and real estate, have some buying tips on stand-by to make sure you are getting the best deal possible.

1) Know where to look. Hawaii is without a doubt one of the most beautiful locations on earth. Featuring year-round warmth, mountainous regions for hiking, and beautiful beaches for surfing and swimming, you might simply say, "Take your pick," when it comes to locating the perfect home. However, you should research the market like you would anywhere else. What are the best areas for property value? What are the styles of homes that appeal most to you? Are the prices and fair and manageable? Will the location be conducive to your lifestyle? All these questions should be considered heavily before proceeding.

2) Don't get in over your head. Calculate what you can afford. Take a good, hard look at your finances as well as how you intend to support yourself once you are moved in to the Islands. Hawaii can be quite expensive, so it's important that you keep a tight watch on price and means of paying for it before moving forward.

3) Have realistic expectations. Even though Hawaii is Paradise to many, that does not mean it will be Paradise to you. That's why visiting the Islands for 1-2 weeks is essential. You need to have realistic expectations of what the Islands can offer you, and you need to weigh that against the things you will be leaving behind.

4) Pick a home suited to your lifestyle. There is a temptation to buy the most beautiful home. A place that will make others envious at first sight. If money is no object to you, you should still proceed with caution. Don't buy a showplace if it is not suited to your personality, expectations, and lifestyle. Choose location and home model based on how you will live in it six years down the road, not based on what you would do if given a week to party with zero obligations. Life is not one big party. Even in Hawaii!

5) Scout locations. Are you partial to city life, or would you rather be far removed from the public? Decide before you buy. Hawaii can be hard to navigate if you buy far out from civilization. Sacrifices are necessary. Are you ready to make them?

Monday, December 23, 2013

The Process in Mortgage and Real Estate

When you consider mortgage and real estate, you must realize that lenders may request questions which underwriters will send responses.

Most mortgagers will submit questions in relation to the applications that applicants fill out. After reviewing the questions underwriters respond according to the lender's requirements. These writers assure that each application will meet minimum requirements. In addition, they evaluate creditworthiness of the borrower.

Some of the questions that mortgage lenders may ask circle your employment history, net income, and credit score and so on. These questions often help underwriters to evaluate your case to see if you qualify for a loan. You will need to supply your employment proof, annual gross income proof, time you worked at your current job, proof of steady income, et cetera. Steady income is viewed as a steady source of income that you take control of weekly.

Underwriters have a few functions that include key points that focus on questions that a lender may consider. If you do not show an adequate proof of income, the lender may ask for additional proofs.

If you have any outstanding debts, the mortgage lender may request additional security, such as a co-signer.

If you are searching for a mortgage lender, it is in your best interest to have a real estate agent assist you. If you already found the home you want to buy, then you may find it difficult to find a real estate agent. For this reason, you should always ask a qualified real estate agent to help you find a home to finance. The agent will help you find a home that fits your budget. In addition, the real estate agent will help you find a lender, go through the processes of getting the loan, and assist you right until the end of the closing processes.

You have support when you request a qualified real estate agent to assist you through the process of buying a home.

Underwriters will prompt lenders to ask for additional information if your application presents insufficient details. When you feel out a mortgage application, you want to make sure that you have all ready information available to get your loan as quickly as possible.

If you have poor credit, you may want to surf the Internet to find mortgage lenders that focus on poor credit lending. Otherwise, prepare your application with vigilant to make sure that the lenders get everything they need to accept your application.

Once your application is approved, you can move to the next step. The next step involves getting the loan, which goes to the homeowner. This money you repay back to the mortgage lender.

When you searching for mortgage loans and do not have a real estate agent, it is wise to surf the Internet to find the best rates on interest, mortgage repayments, originator costs, closing cost, finders fee, and so on. Reduce these fees by exploring your options in mortgage.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Expired Listing Letter and Real Estate Marketing Tips

The expired listing letter is a valuable asset for real estate marketing plans. Expired realty listings refer to contracts that have expired between homeowners and their agent. Realtor contracts generally last between six and twelve months. If the listed property is not sold during the contract period, sellers can enter into a new listing agreement with their current realtor, hire a new agent, list the property as for sale by owner, or take the home off the market.

Investors use the expired listing letter to solicit business from the seller by offering to buy their home or help them sell it. In order to find expired property listings, investors must subscribe to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) database; a service that provides lists of nationwide properties for sale to realtors.

Investors who have never used expired listing letters can easily locate sample templates online. Investors will need to adapt marketing letters to suit sellers' circumstances. A good place to learn and share expired listing marketing ideas is by participating in real estate forums or networking groups.

In addition to using expired listing letters, investors will need to develop a marketing plan and follow-up strategies. Most investors incorporate multiple marketing tools such as postcard marketing, direct mail, referral marketing, realtor flyers or brochures, and cold calling.

The expired listing letter is generally used to solicit sellers, but some investors use these letters to solicit realtors. Working directly with real estate agents can be a profitable niche for investors willing to develop close working relationships. Realtors do the majority of legwork while investors earn profit by closing the deal.

Investors who are unfamiliar with marketing strategies should consider hiring a marketing specialist and copywriter to create expired listing letters and brochures. Real estate investors often use a variety of prospecting tools.

They might start with an introduction letter, followed by a postcard and a phone call. Or they might start with a phone call and send a folder filled with a marketing letter, client testimonials, and a list of successful real estate closings. Regardless of the marketing strategy, the primary goal is to locate motivated sellers, purchase properties below market value, and earn profit on each expired listing transaction.

In today's competitive market investors must stay on top of changing trends and create marketing campaigns that make them stand out from the crowd. Sellers often receive dozens of expired listing letters once their real estate contract expires. This is where creating unique marketing strategies can really pay off.

Private investors who dedicate their time to locating expired real estate listings often work with sellers that are frustrated their home did not sell during the listing period. The last thing these people want to hear is empty promises. They want to sell their property. Investors who focus on solving this problem can earn the seller's business by focusing on their needs and explaining how they can help sellers accomplish their goals.

Real estate investing is a competitive industry. In order to become successful in this arena, investors must be committed to finding solutions for sellers. This can be accomplished by building a strong network of realty experts, developing a strong marketing plan, and utilizing strategies that will attract motivated buyers and quickly close real estate deals.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

The Renaissance Of Downtown Miami - New Opportunities For Retail Business And Real Estate

From deserted nighttime streets, to the place to live, shop, and play, Downtown Miami is experiencing an unprecedented transformation for South Florida. Miami is reinventing itself into a major metropolis, and the changes are more evident along the Biscayne Boulevard corridor.

Large condo projects are changing the skyline, and despite the uneasiness created by the recent slump in the real estate market, and the worries about the impact of a massive influx of new condos, construction remains strong. Major retail and mixed-use projects are underway, studies done by the City estimate the number of residences in the Downtown area, currently at 20,000, will reach 70,000 residents by 2030.

Planners remain optimistic in the long term about Miami real estate, and the Downtown area. The number of people working in Downtown today (105,300) is expected to grow by 34%, and as the area develops, many employed in the business district will consider the convenience of buying or renting real estate in the area, and avoiding the daily commute.

Developers are jumping to the opportunity: one mixed-use project, (Met Miami) is breaking ground this year, will add 120,000 square feet of retail space including dinning, entertainment, and national retailers. The first phase is under construction, including 447 residences, offering luxury condos and lofts.

Europeans and Latin Americans are also buying second homes in Miami, spending time and money in town. Many are buying properties in the new condo towers; even in the current condition of the market, Miami real estate is very attractive compared to other major markets. Part of the appeal is the diversity and international flavor of the city, the privileged location as a gateway to Latin America, and a major transportation, business and financial hub.

The city is offering incentives to retail business: assistance up to $100,000 to property owners for exterior improvements, and reimbursements up to $65,000 to tenant businesses for fixed interior improvements. The goal is to spur rehabilitation and job creation in Downtown Miami, especially in the Business District around historic Flagler Street. Real estate development will gain from commercial growth in the area, homeowners and tenants will enjoy the vitality of a vibrant 24-hour city with amenities for everyone.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Personal Credit and Real Estate Investing Don't Mix

Are you using your personal credit to finance your real estate deals? I hope the answer is NO. This is a topic that I think everyone trying to start or has already started investing should know. Why, because I was a victim of it at the beginning of my investing career as well. Knowing what I know now could have saved me thousands of dollars.

Too often I here of investors using their personal credit to fund their real estate deals. At the beginning of my career I used my personal credit cards to pay for my business expenses, borrowed from my personal savings and checking account, and received personal loans to finance my deals.

I would be willing to bet even you have used one or more of the above financing methods for your investments. Why do we all make the same mistake in the beginning? Well because there are many experts, books and home study course that recommend people to use their personal finances to get there real estate business going.

If you use your personal credit to fund your real estate deals, you are exposed several risks. The first thing that could happen is your personal credit score can be lowered. When you personally guarantee any type of business related financing, the lender will require a personal credit check to be done. The key thing here is that every time an inquiry is made to your credit history, your personal credit score takes a plunge. Every investor knows that as your score gets lower the harder it is to go to banks to get traditional financing. Second, using your personal credit reduces the amount of credit available that you can use for your own use. As you tie up your personal credit your debt-to-income ratio will start to sky rockets. Which then will lower the amount of credit you have available for your personal expenses. The last thing that could happen is you could possibly lose everything you have. Since you have used your personal credit, if your real estate investing career fails everything else will crumble as well.

So my suggestion for investor is that receive a business line of credit. There are many companies out there that will walk you step by step to ensure that the process is done correctly. With business credit you can receive up to 1,000,000 dollars in credit!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Marco Island Florida History and Real Estate

Marco Island is a beautiful place to live, work, or vacation. Located on the gorgeous Gulf of Mexico on the southwestern coast of Florida, it is the largest of the Sunshine State's famous Ten Thousand Islands (which does not actually include 10,000 islands, but sounds impressive).

Part of a nearly 100-mile-long chain of hundreds of islands and tiny islets, Marco (as locals call it) is only 24 square miles, making it a fairly exclusive place to live. There many factors making it a desirable place to live or own a second home, however, not the least of which is its white sandy beaches and beautiful ocean views.

There are roughly six miles of these beaches to be shared by its population of about 15,000 residents, although seasonal population swings are not uncommon. This can bring the number of locals up to 35,000 in the winter as "snow birds" flee their colder home states and provinces.

The islet has a rich history, beginning with the pre-columbian Calusa Indians. The Calusas left behind a number of artifacts many of which have been preserved in the Marco Island Historical Museum. The famed Marco Cat wood carving found by archaeologist Frank Hamilton Cushing in 1896 was not so lucky; it was quickly sent to the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C.

There are numerous water front condominiums and detached homes for residents to live in. These include beach front properties or properties facing one of the many canals that give boaters easy access to their home. Marco Island real estate can be found in all price ranges, from mid to high five figures for a small older condo to well over $20 million one of its more exclusive luxury estates.

As one might expect, one can find a wide variety of amenities on Marco Island, including a large selection of world class restaurants, outdoor cafes, and family restaurants. Many of these restaurants are situated in view of Marco's ocean vistas and wildlife, allowing diners to take in dolphins playing in their coastal habitat while enjoying fine cuisine.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Canadian Dollars and Real Estate

What is the average rate of exchange between the Canadian and American dollars? While the figure does shift slightly from day to day, the current exchange is around $1 American to $1.05 Canadian. This is an amazing difference from the rates only a few years earlier. This means that the many affordable homes in the Phoenix, AZ real estate markets are even better bargains then before.

For many years, buyers looking for a second home, retirement property, or real estate investment in the Phoenix or Scottsdale real estate markets were simply "out of luck" due to the horrible rates. Today, that difference is so slim as to be nominal, and the status of the economy has dropped prices so low that the rates hardly seem to matter.

Consider that prices on Scottsdale homes for sale are still far below the actual values. Homes worth half a million dollars are entering the markets at two-thirds their real value. This is not because they were over-priced to begin with; it is simply a matter of it being a "buyer's market" all over the world, but particularly in areas like Scottsdale and Phoenix.

It might take a bit of history to understand this shift, but the underlying reasons are extremely simple. The population of this entire metropolitan area has expanded significantly in only around twenty to thirty years. Vast tracks of agricultural lands have been converted into golf courses, beautiful subdivisions, and the facilities necessary to support the booming electronics and computer industries. After all, Intel and Motorola each have several different corporate and production facilities in the region. Now areas that had populations of less than 30k in the 1950s currently stand at 200k or more!

Let's not forget the surge of interest in this area from those entering their retirement years. Many of these properties are also ideally suited for Canadian investors too.

Now we know the reasons for the wide availability of excellent Phoenix, Arizona homes at somewhat low pricing, but we haven't yet considered how to make bargain pricing even more appealing. What about the Phoenix and Scottsdale foreclosure markets? Just like any part of the country, this area has its home and business owners who did not weather the financial meltdown. Because of this, a savvy Canadian investor could easily get their hands on a fine property at a substantially reduced price. Of course, the best approach to this sort of project is to work with a knowledgeable Realtor who knows the area and the great properties becoming available.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Residual Income and Real Estate: Is There A Better Way?

Whether you realize it or not, your home and any property you own can be providing you with residual income. It may not be cold, hard cash every month but real estate can be a great way to have income coming in for years to come. It can even be passed on to your family so they can enjoy the benefits as well.

When you make a real estate purchase, you can either decide to live in it yourself or you can choose to rent it out. By having the property and making the payments on it monthly, you will be creating equity. This equity can then be used as income if the time ever comes when you need it. The investment in real estate should continue to grow. There are times when the investment may remain the same or decrease in value but if you have chosen to use it as an investment, it runs the risk of any investment.

The residual income in real estate comes when you are able to pay off the investment, in most cases, a house or rental property, and you can still collect rent from a person living in the property. This situation is ideal because you are not paying on a mortgage but the payments coming in are a profit. As long as you own the property and it is rented, there is income coming in.

This residual income will benefit you and your family. Property can be conveyed to heirs so your family can benefit from having a rental property bringing in income for their lifetime. The family can choose to have a realtor or management company handle the rental or they can do it for themselves. Either way, the money coming in from the rental will be profit after taxes and insurance are paid each year and the residual income will go directly to the family or trustee of the property.

Because real estate can fluctuate in value, the best time to purchase an investment property, meant to create income is when the price of the property is low. You should also do your best to pay off the property so that any income that comes from the tenant of the property becomes profit.

Once the property begins to make money on its own and there is a reserve available for repairs, insurance, and taxes, the property will be considered a successful investment. If you are looking for income, real estate is a great way to do it, but you have to make sure you don't end up in debt for a possible high return.

The main problem with this type of residual income is that it can be a huge headache. First of all it takes a lot of money to buy a home or even more for an apartment complex. Then you have to do maintenance to keep the place nice so people will want to live there. Right now the banks are not just lending money out to just anyone. This can make it hard for anyone wanting to get into the real estate game. The good thing is there are other ways to make a solid residual income and without all the overhead and risk.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Squatters Rights and Real Estate: Fact or Fable?

There is a new breed of squatters appearing across the country, especially in areas where there are a lot of foreclosures. Some of these are scams where foreclosed houses are rented out by a scam artist to several people, where they collect the first and last months' rent and give them a bogus lease. These unsuspecting people move into what they think is their new rental home only to find out they have been duped. With a lease in hand, police can be powerless to evict these unknowing victims, except by taking them through the court system with the lender who owns the foreclosed property.

The other scams that are taking place is where squatters are moving into vacant properties, changing the utilities into their names and then go through eviction proceedings, but in the meanwhile they live rent free for a few months and then move on to the next property.

In some parts of the country with high foreclosure rates, lenders are settling with these squatters by paying them a couple thousand dollars to move. The problem with this tactic is that these squatters move to other properties that are owned by the same lenders, expecting another payback.

When it comes to squatter's rights and real estate, you would think these are stories that are more fable than fact, but the sad part is that many people are taking advantage of these vacant homes and living in them, and making them in worse condition than they were when the lender took them over. The other problem is that they are causing legitimate sales to fall through because buyers don't want to wait through the entire eviction process.

The unfortunate part is that some of these squatters are innocent victims that don't realize they have been scammed. The party that leased them the home didn't own it to begin with and they are out the hard-earned money for the first and last month's rent and have no place to go and no money to go there.

The other type of squatters are those that are repeat offenders that can be hard to evict any way but the legal way, through normal eviction proceedings, since they already have transferred utilities and can claim they had a verbal month to month agreement, which can stand up in court, in some cases, especially if it is true.

The best thing for neighbors in the area of foreclosures to do is to keep a list of foreclosed homes and who to contact, form a neighborhood watch to keep an eye on foreclosures, notify police immediately before you see squatters moving things in and do everything they can to keep squatters away from the foreclosed and vacant homes in their neighborhoods. Some of these squatters are making the neighborhood worse than the foreclosed properties are, by inviting all kinds of transients and derelicts into these vacant homes. That is not something most homeowners want to live next to for several months.

It seems that there really are squatter's rights and some con artists are profiting by living in vacant homes for free and then taking payoffs from lenders that want to speed up their evictions. Neighbors need to be aware to protect their own home's value, when it comes to squatters in the neighborhood.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Current Trends in Texas Foreclosures and Real Estate

There were 57,000 foreclosures that were completed in Texas between February 2012 and February 2013, which ranks Texas fourth nationally in completed foreclosures for the period. Out of 5,411 Texas foreclosure filings in the month of February 2013, 3,252 filings were foreclosure starts. This suggests that despite a 43.36% decrease in foreclosure notices filed in February 2013 over February 2012, the market for distressed property in Texas will continue to remain active.

Sensing localized recoveries in the Texas housing market, mortgage lenders are moving in and expanding operations in the state, particularly in North Texas. This could prove to be a boon to first time homebuyers as well as foreclosure investors looking to realize value on the purchase of distressed property, especially as interest rates remain low and inventory stays strong.

Positive Economic Indicators Support Strengthening North Texas Real Estate Market

North Texas by many measures remains the strongest local market. In North Texas, the average sale price in February 2013 was 94.0% of the original list price, a 1.9% increase as a percentage of list price over February 2012. Overall, pre-owned home sales were up 14% year over year, with prices 8% higher in February 2013 than in February 2012. The higher average sale prices are partly due to a more restricted supply, with the housing inventory falling to 3.6 months in February 2013 as compared to an inventory of 5.6 months in February 2012.

Austin is another area where the real estate market is gaining strength. Sales were up 26% year over year in February, while the median price for listed homes was up 7% during the same period, to $208,500. The competitive market resulted in a drastic reduction in inventory, which stood at just 2.6 months at the end of February. Townhouses and condominium units shared in the gains, with 31% more units sold in February 2013 than February 2012. Strong gains in employment rates as greater numbers of people relocate to Austin are likely supporting the increases in real estate activity, as Austin boasted just 5.4% unemployment in February 2013. Still, there are contracts waiting for distressed real estate buyers who know where to look.

Advantageous Markets to Pursue Texas Foreclosures and Distressed Real Estate Transactions

An assessment of the outlook for distressed real estate performed by Cole Schotz predicts Dallas will be within the top markets for distressed real estate throughout 2013. Median list prices in Dallas are at $205,000, a 5.39% increase year over year. However, in light of a 20.34% drop year over year in active listings, this increase is quite modest. The delinquency rate for Dallas mortgages also remains high, reported at 4.28% in January 2013, suggesting that more distressed properties are entering foreclosures in Texas pipeline in this market.

El Paso may be one of the most promising places to look for distressed property in Texas, with 8.79% of all sales in 2012 taking place on foreclosed homes. The average discount realized on these sold properties was 17.80% despite a 93.42% increase in foreclosure activity in the area. Foreclosure discounts in McAllen, Texas were also high in 2012, at 21.49%; however, the foreclosure activity in McAllen decreased substantially in 2012 from 2011, falling 65.90%.

The overall economic outlook in Texas is strongly positive. In February 2013, the state saw its largest monthly job gains ever recorded, with 80,600 new jobs added, adjusted for seasonal variations. The regenerating job market and the strengthening real estate market, on the whole, point to opportunities for investment gains on distressed real estate for those who buy during this recovery.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Life and Real Estate in Brevard, North Carolina

Located in Transylvania County, Brevard North Carolina is is literally the crossroads between Pisgah National Forest, Dupont State Forest, Gorges State Park, Bracken Mountain Nature Reserve. It is a place to easily reach premiere hiking, wildlife, kayaking, biking, and some of the most beautiful waterfalls east of the Mississippi.

Brevard, North Carolina has a bustling local economy, nicknamed the "Heart of Brevard". This pride in downtown business and preserving the local economy makes Brevard a smart place to start a business, raise a family, or visit for vacation. Four festivals are held annually in Brevard. These are: The White Squirrel Festival, Fourth of July Celebration, Halloweenfest, and The Twilight Tour.

The largest city, Asheville, is less than an hour away and puts you close to the Biltmore Estate and Gardens in Asheville, The Folk Art Center on the Blue Ridge Parkway, Chimney Rock Park on U.S. 74, and Grandfather Mountain in Linville, just to name a few. Additionally, you are approximately 3 hours from major metropolitan areas: Charlotte, NC; Knoxville, TN; Atlanta, GA. And you're just minutes from natural wilderness!

Brevard and Transylvania County are steadily growing, with excellent opportunities to invest in real estate and Brevard, NC homes. It is becoming a desirable retirement location as well.

The beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina are home to a wide array of real estate investments. Brevard, NC real estate, so close to Pisgah National Forest has various types of property to suit your needs. Whether it's a cabin in the woods, a retirement home on a golf course or lake, or a condo or villa in town Brevard has it all, while still maintaining quaint downtown charm.

If you are a music fan, the Brevard Music Festival might be something you would enjoy. Located in downtown Brevard in the Blue Ridge Mountains of western North Carolina, the Brevard Music Center (BMC) has been providing young musicians with the opportunity to develop their talents for sixty-eight years.

Each summer more than 400 students, ages 14 through post-college, join professional musicians to eat, breathe and sleep music for seven weeks. In addition to a rigorous schedule of instruction, students collaborate with faculty and guest artists in more than eighty public performances.

Brevard's excellence also extends to their county schools. Brevard schools (part of the Transylvania County School District) provide comprehensive educational needs to about 3800 students K-12. They consistently rank in the top ten in the state in performance and endeavor to ensure each student receives a world-class education. Brevard High School has received excellence awards four years in a row.

From their quaint downtown full of delicious restaurants and charming shopping, to the Brevard College's Paul Porter Center of Performing Arts and the world renowned Brevard Music Center, Brevard offers small town charm with big town culture. Over one-third of their county is National Forest land. Enjoy great hiking trails, many waterfalls and acres of untouched forest to enjoy all outdoor recreation.

You owe it to yourself to explore the wonder of Brevard, NC.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Getting Your Dream Home From Real Estate Auctions-Things You Should Remember

Bank foreclosed properties are now widely available for sale and these real estate properties cost less than purchasing a brand new home or purchasing a home from a real estate agent or broker. These properties are available through auctions sponsored by the bank.

The auction will be announced on newspapers and on the internet so you have to expect a bit of competition for acquiring the property. You have to consider the fact that public auction will be comprised of different people who wants to own a real estate property. Because of this, you should be prepared when you go to an auction.

Normally, the auction will start off at a starting bid. It is important that you should participate in the bid in the earliest possible time. If the bid gets any higher, you should stop making bids and wait for the right moment to bid again.

You have to consider that bank auctions have no refund after the sale has been done. This is why it is important that you should choose the particular property you want. It is also important that you should know all about the property before you participate in the auction by taking a closer look at the property inside and out. By doing this, you will know about certain maintenance issues that need attention and you will also have an idea on what the home will be like if you want to remodel it.

You should consider that although real estate properties are quite cheap, the homes are usually used and there are certain renovations needed for it. You have to know how to estimate the cost. If you don't, you can consider bringing a professional along to analyze the home and give you an accurate estimate on how much it can cost you to renovate or remodel the home.

There are different payment methods that you can choose from after the sale has been made. Be sure that you take a closer look at the options before you choose which payment method you want. It will mean the difference between saving money and spending a lot more than you should in a real estate property.

Bank foreclosed real estate auctions are great if you want to have a home for you and your family at a very affordable price. You should only consider that you know which home you want to have and also know about the current market price of each home in order to save money on it.

These are the things you should remember when you are considering getting a home from bank foreclosed real estate auctions.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Sonoma Community Homes For Sale and Real Estate in Round Rock, Texas

Location of Sonoma Homes

These homes are within a few minuets of state highway 130, state highway 45, interstate 35, and 79 or Palm Valley Drive providing access to Austin and the wider Central Texas region. While providing access to its surrounding area, Sonoma homes have several, more local, amenities which make living in these Round Rock homes a fulfilling experience. Located next door to Sonoma real estate are local shopping, golf course, and multiple parks and trails. The Rock'N River Family Aquatic Center is just a couple of minutes from Sonoma Homes real estate and offers fun swimming activities for all members of the family. Just a few miles to the west of Sonoma homes is old downtown Round Rock with City Hall, the Main Public Library, and many small quaint shops and restaurants. The Dell Diamond, home of the Round Rock Express, is located just across from Palm Valley Drive.

Schools of Sonoma Real Estate

Sonoma real estate are a part of the Round Rock Independent School District, a highly ranked academic district with many great schools. Located within walking distance from Sonoma real estate is Blackland Prairie Elementary School, hosting grades kindergarten to fifth grades. Blackland Prairie Elementary is known for its online computer programs for school work and assignments which directly link the home with the classroom and allow parents to be involved in students academic progress. Located across from Blackland Prairie Elementary School on Via Sonoma Trail, is Ridgeview Middle School hosting grades sixth through eighth, also having access to technology in the classroom and offering many pre-advanced placement courses for students in a variety of subjects to get students a head start on college readiness. Stony Point High School is also located a short distance away and offers international baccalaureate course which are advanced level courses that are accredited for a international educational standard. In addition Stony Point High School also offers several advanced placement and pre advanced placement course as well has having multiple extracurricular activities such as active sports teams, several clubs, and other enriching opportunities.

Types of Sonoma Homes for Sale

Sonoma homes for sale range from 1500 square feet to over 4900 square feet and were usually built between 2001 - 2010. These Round Rock homes are priced from the mid $200s to the high $300s. There are several open lots available for custom built homes within Sonoma. Features of Sonoma homes include open floor plans, large great rooms, fireplaces, brick and stone exteriors, and multi car garages.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

How To Buy Vacation Homes As Real Estate Investment Property

Vacation homes are popular with people for lots of reasons, one of which is to be able to enjoy a favorite vacation getaway spot in style. But increasingly, vacation homes are also being seen as possible real estate investment opportunities. But before rushing out to invest in a vacation home, here are some important considerations to keep in mind.

First of all, not all vacation homes are equal. Some will be located in more popular areas of the country than others, and this will have a direct impact on their property value as well. So just as with most other kinds of real estate, location will be one of the most important ingredients for success in choosing a vacation home as an investment vehicle.

Some areas of the country are extremely popular as vacation getaways, and a vacation home bought in one of these areas can often be expected to increase in value steadily as time goes on. But oftentimes, a very useful strategy is to buy a vacation home in a smaller city or town in that same general area, but not in the major city itself. Usually, vacation homes will be less expensive in these outlying areas, and there will also be less competition to have to deal with as well.

One of the most important characteristics of the popularity of a vacation home is the weather and general surroundings. If you take into consideration these factors, some of the most popular vacation spots in the US these days can be found in the southwestern and southeastern parts of the country. For instance, Las Vegas has proved to be a popular vacation destination almost year-round now, while Arizona is extremely popular because of its pleasant climate in the wintertime. Florida is another area where the growth of vacation homes has been steadily on the increase in recent decades as well.

For those who enjoy winter activities, there are several popular destinations in Colorado, the western states and the northeastern part of the US.

In addition to weather, another point for consideration in buying a vacation home is what kind of recreational activities are available in that general area. This could be anything from major theme parks to sunny beaches, or even ski resorts. The more there is to do, the better.

Cultural activities are also popular with vacationers, so look around the surrounding towns and areas to see what museums and attractions of local interest are available that could be useful to vacationers.

If the area seems to be in a constant state of growth, there is a very good likelihood that property values will continue to rise for the foreseeable future. So look around to see how much new construction is going on, including both commercial and residential in nature. This will often give you a good clue to the kind of overall growth that the area is experiencing.

If you use the suggestions given above to help identify the most popular vacation home locations, you can usually buy a vacation home that will turn out to be an excellent real estate investment.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Vista Oaks Community Homes and Real Estate in Round Rock, Texas

Homes in Vista Oaks Real Estate

Vista Oaks is a 316-acre real estate community located in Round Rock, Texas. The subdivisions of Brushy Creek North, Sendero Springs, Preserve at Stone Oak, and Mayfield Ranch are all nearby Vista Oaks real estate. These homes can be reached by taking I-35 N and then going East on 1431, or by going West on 1431 from Cedar Park. This real estate is in the zip code of 78681. Homes in this neighborhood have features such as wood floors, vaulted ceilings, backyard patios, brushed nickel fixtures, granite countertops, and walk-in closets. Homes here range in prices from the 150s to 400s. There are over 900 houses in this chunk of a subdivision. This community is in a great location.

Vista Oaks Real Estate Location

This neighborhood has houses that are conveniently located nearby important city locations, yet tucked away in nature. Scott & White Hospital, Seton Hospital, and IKEA are all close to the community mentioned and surrounding areas. In addition, restaurants such as Chuy's, La Madeleine, Rudy's and Salt Lick BBQ, Mesa Rosa, and Cracker Barrel are all only a 10-min drive away from the area. Businesses such as Prestige Business Solutions, Paul's Music and Math Lessons, and Royal Vista Dental and almost within walking distance. Academy Sports and Outdoors, Dollar Tree, Bealls, AT&T, BBVA Compass Bank, and FedEx Office are just some of the nearby shopping stores close by this area and surrounding areas.

Vista Oaks Homes for Sale

This community of places and residents is in the Leander School District. The schools of Rouse HS, Vista Ridge HS, Wiley MS, and Parkside ES are in the borders. Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine in Round Rock, Austin Community College, Concordia, and Le Cordon Bleu are all higher education schools located only a short drive from the area.

Vista Oaks Homes in Round Rock Real Estate

Several different amenities are available to residents. Williamson County Regional Park is a short drive away. The park offers a track, basketball and tennis courts, picnic areas, a kiddie train, a football field, and a playground. Nearby is also a Junior Olympic Pool, a fire-pit pavilion, a sand volleyball court, multiple playscapes, tennis courts, basketball courts, and a board conference room. Houses in this community have access to the Honey Bear Creek Trail: a lighted walking, jogging and bike trail that is near places here.

Friday, December 6, 2013

First Time Buyers and Real Estate Investors Can Make a Great Team

If you are a First Time Home Buyer, a newbie/property virgin, purchasing that initial property can become an overwhelming project. Many first time buyers have been diagnosed with "Information Overload". It seems that everyone and anyone has an opinion and or story about what you should do and how to do it. Yes, there are questions such as where should you start, who can you trust, and can you afford it that will need to be answered early on in the buying process but these questions must be answered properly and correctly. You might even inquire if there are any shortcuts, is there a mentor who can help? What about the qualifying process, am I credit worthy? Can a licensed Real Estate Agent show houses that meet my criteria, payment, and location requirements? All of the above are great questions but how do you obtain the right information? Indeed this is "Information Overload".

Let me tell you that I have been an investor for many years. I find it an honor and a privilege to work with First Time Home Buyers. I understand where their confusion lay. I can provide the new buyer with the necessary confidence needed to become a proud home owner. I suppose you are wondering why I say work with an investor? The answer is simple as Steven Covey states, "It is a Win -Win Proposition". A reputable Real Estate Investor has only one goal in mind which is to sell his properties as quickly as possible. The investor that has agreed to work with the buyer brings to the table benefits that may not be available with a Real Estate Agent or Mortgage Broker. Now don't get me wrong you can work with both and they can assist you well. But let me explain further.

When a home is acquired through an agent it is normally sold on an "As Is" basis. This means that you the buyer will have to go in making repairs before the property becomes "Home Sweet Home". But if you and the investor work together in tandem you will be able to make repairs or put your own personal touches on before you buy. This saves you time and in my experience time can be more important than money.

Typically, most first time buyers are not Bob Villa quality so improvements are outsourced to other vendors. This can be a daunting task. A seasoned investor can deal with vendor headaches and buy finished property with all the fixings included. Here is another benefit. If the investor does not have a salesman involved he can usually give the buyer a discount on the price or better yet add some features to the home that can enhance the property. I am not saying that this is the only way for First Time Home Buyers to go but it can make life very simple and very gratifying for both parties.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Rosedale Golf and Country Club - Homes and Real Estate for Sale

Professional realtors in Florida often suggest a visit to the Rosedale Golf and Country Club for home buyers or investors interested in Bradenton real estate properties. This is so because convincing clients on the merits of acquiring a Rosedale real estate property is much easier. This golf community enjoys the reputation of having been created under the Hunt Group backed by the 30-year building experience of its head, Robert Hunt.

Furthermore, location is very much in the community's favor. Rosedale was masterfully planned in a 440-acre site along State Road 70, only one-quarter of a mile away from Interstate 75. Movement to and from the surrounding urban centers is thus easy and convenient. Nearby attractions not only include those in Bradenton but also other points of interest in Sarasota City, St. Petersburg, and Tampa, plus some more within the Florida Gulf Coast.

Paying a short visit to the Rosedale complex can turn into an extended tour with the many facilities that it offers. Its clubhouse entices visitors to tarry longer in its elegant foyer, lounge rooms, and outdoor patio. The dining room of the community center lures guests to have a prolonged sampling of many affordably priced culinary specialties suited for large or small social occasions.

Also deserving some closer look are the country club's well maintained swimming pool, bocce courts, and fitness center. More delights are presented by Rosedale's five Har-Tru tennis courts and the comprehensive training programs made available to club members.

Hours can go unnoticed in the country club's golf course voted as No. 1 in the 2010 People's Choice Awards of the Bradenton Herald. Designed by noted course architect Ted McAnlis, this 18-hole par 72 layout is mesmerizing with its fabulous nature reserves and impressive lakes. The golf links, from its farthest tees, measure 6,779 yards and dish out a 72.9 course rating and a 134 slope rating.

Pondering a choice from among Rosedale homes for sale will be much like peering through the house models featured in some glossy publications. The Rosedale community, also No. 1 in the Bradenton Herald awards, consists of superb patio homes and stylish single family residences. Asking prices around the low $200s can be for houses having floor spaces of over 1,500 square feet. More spacious homes with some 2,400 square feet of floor areas will be those in the $500s range listings that can indeed set Rosedale's best foot forward in the real estate market.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Real Estate Script - Web 2.0 and Real Estate Web Sites

Where parked my guests if I buy a house in San Francisco? Is it worth the daily commute to San Francisco to live in Palo Alto? What is the normal price of a parking space in Pacific Heights? " These questions, along with their answers, are a small sample of common content in the latest batch of real estate scripts that have signed up to new trends of what has been called Web 2.0: a whole fresh and revolutionary way of understanding what is Internet and how to harness the full potential of Network communication user is asking or answering other users in a common meeting point: the real estate script, which is converted by the constant feed of content from their visitors and the integration of information and functionality from other portals in a potent tool in the service of a more informed decision purchase or sale in the largest business transaction that most people usually carry along his life that related to your home.

But... what is Web 2.0?
Web 2.0 is the term coined in 2004 by Tim O'Reilly to describe a second generation of web sites characterized by greater interaction with and among users, which aims to facilitate creativity, collaboration and information sharing among users. It refers both to a new language or to a new protocol, but a new way of understanding the web and benefiting from all its features.

If the first generation websites were characterized by a centralized creation and dissemination of content, the company decided it wanted to include on their websites, creating content and functionality, and published their pages through a web host disseminate them, at most, through newsletters and bulletins, web 2.0 sites are characterized mainly by the integration of content and functionality of other portals (eg Google Maps, Google Earth, YouTube, etc.). and because users take on a role protagonist have multiple ways to generate feedback or feedback that is integrated as additional content in the actual development of the website, enriching it.

The creator of the World Wide Web, Tim Berners-Lee, disagrees with the concept of Web 2.0 because, he argues, all these potentials were present in the concept of network communication that gave birth to the Web as we know it today. Were the companies said, they moved to the Web a traditional one-way communication model that largely untapped possibilities of the new medium. Indeed, firms in the economy and cement larillos (brick & mortar) Accessed the Internet reduces the role of their websites to a mere showcase on line the same offer communicated via other means off line: TV, newspaper, radio, outdoor advertising, direct marketing... but that did not use all the potential of the Web: multidirectional communication, and information integration capabilities, data sharing between users...

It has taken several years of experimentation, a boom and subsequent crash of dotcom and perhaps a whole new generation of professionals whose careers have developed since the beginning with the Internet as part of integrated scenario management positions in companies, so that finally we got to really understand what they mean by concepts like "network communication "and we began to see the development of business models that capitalize on that potential.

The value of the environment
We are back to the misconception discussed two paragraphs ago. The focus on real estate portals giving information about the property itself, neglecting the fundamental aspects like the environment. Own perspective is a manufacturer of a vision: who makes a product usually is felt as proud of their product that believes that only highlight its many virtues should be enough to convince potential customers of its benefits. However, this view forgets that people acquire goods or services according to benefits, tangible or intangible, we expect that these products or services we provide. That is, do not buy by the technical characteristics of products, but for the benefits or value that these products are going to bring.

In the case of buying a home, it is important whether it is a townhouse or an apartment, buy a villa or whether we will settle for a flat. But no less important to know how to be our neighbors, how I may move to my place of work or, if I have children of school age, between which schools may choose to carry them. Therefore, since important information is collected on the potential buyer the home itself, and on the developer to know the level of confidence that you deserve, or even financial guarantee their payments, it is equally all data that can discover about the environment, about what it's going to bring, as his social life, their children, their quality of life and, ultimately, the enjoyment of housing will depend on both the environment and the house itself.

This is what they have discovered real estate portals like pioneers in what we term as Web 2.0 Trulia.com, Zillow.com Biggerpockets.com or. A visit to any of them opens a world of information that seems light years away from everything we've seen so far. The paradigm shift is threefold:

o Firstly, these sites comprise a vast amount of information presented in an orderly, logical and connected, allowing users to form an idea of how a neighborhood can be determined in a multitude of variables.

o Second, the portals provide a multitude of information to know whether the price asked by a building bears a proper relationship with the actual characteristics of the price compared to sales of similar homes in the environment in recent months. Many have even what has been the evolution of the average sales price per square meter in the area.

o On the other hand, the users of the portal players and become content contributors with questions and answers. They are the people who live in certain places know best what are the advantages and disadvantages, problems or opportunities to buy there and now. So the first hand information from a source more credible and impartial apparently it does not conceal business interests and responds to real questions from potential buyers is used to make more informed purchasing decisions and informed choices.

Let's look first at what level can access information with the new breed of real estate portals.

The new real estate script portals:

We entered Trulia.com. We seek a home in Plano, Texas. This is a typical residential town in the north of Dallas. We chose one of the houses at random. In the very form of housing, we see what has been the evolution of prices for that neighborhood (bounded by houses that share the same postal district) in recent months. We can even compare average sales prices for homes of 1, 2, 3 or 4 bedrooms in closed sales in recent months. And we can also see a graph of developments in the price of housing for the city of Plano since 2000 until today. Obviously, if buying a home is done in part or in total investment reasons, this is a fact that we definitely want to meet.

We can also see the evolution in the average price per square meter, changes in the number of sales and what have been the most popular neighborhoods in recent months.

If we have children, information on available schools will be key to making a purchase decision. Trulia.com can see the level of schools in this district postal comparing the level of district schools on the level of the state average according to the TAKS standards in both English and math.

The panorama of the neighborhood is complete with a statistical table whose data are so extensive that make us feel a certain shamelessness. For example, we know the average income per household, per capita income, the average value of each property and applied the average price in homes offered for sale. All these data also compared the average of the state. So, we know that only a 2.44% state income below $ 10,000 annually while 8.39% confess win over $ 200,000 a year, for example.

Trulia.com also allows us to access crime statistics for Plano and we discover that we would have a 3.35% chance to be a crime against property (4.08% statewide) or 0.29% of suffering a violent crime (a 0.32% for the whole state of Texas). Of course, we know these figures broken down, if you allow us the courage to know the possibilities that we would have to suffer a burglary, a violent assault, murder, rape or theft of vehicle decided to settle in the neighborhood.

Turning to more mundane topics, Trulia.com informs us that a 10.41% of the residents of Plano take 45 minutes to an hour to get to work. About 50% take less than 25 minutes and 7%, more than an hour. Almost all of them travel to their workplaces driving his own vehicle.

Trulia.com rounds this flood of data featuring a complete directory with links to local area maps, attractions, parks and recreation areas, census data, statistics and studies about the area, community organizations, issues related to the environment and local government, schools and other educational institutions, and references to the media, press and radio.

The integration of information from the users themselves as well as real estate agents with interests in the region comes through Trulia Voices: this is where the potential buyer has the possibility to leave your question to another user with the necessary information can answer. Thus, the users themselves become major generators of information and high value-added content, and high credibility, to the portal.

If you Trulia.com seems overwhelming, do not miss the chance to come by Zillow.com. It has an amazing integration of maps, to the point that it can provide not only the aerial view of almost any home, much like Google Maps, but also a perspective view from any angle. One of the most striking features is the concept of Zillow.com Zestimates: this is an estimate of the appraised value of a home. Thus, one can enter your own neighborhood and find out what is the approximate market price of your home not only... But that of all its neighbors! Indeed, the aerial view all homes listed with the corresponding estimate of price-Zestimate-overlay.

Zillow.com also does a great job in submitting alternative proposals for any home that interests us, allowing comparison with other similar benefit of their environment.

Unlike Trulia.com, Zillow.com qualitative data gives us some very interesting environment: for example, percentage of single, married, divorced and widowed in the neighborhood. Percentage of homes in which children live and where not, and the distribution of population by age ranges (pyramid of local residents) and also, Trulia.com, the average time of commuting to the workplace.

Other data that may be of interest are the ethnic composition of the population, the degree of training achieved (primary, secondary, graduate, graduate, postgraduate) and the type of work you do: executives, engineering, administrative, sales... Thus, a query about the type of people who live in Plano, Tex. says that often lead to work alone, that a large number of them have a master's degree and tend to have high income.

Zillow.com including direct contact with neighbors in the area of consultation to which we can question what I want to know: from the quality of schools, to shopping centers or parking problems.

Zillow.com Another striking aspect is its concept "Make me move" These are people who are not yet intending to sell your home, be willing to do so whenever they make an attractive enough offer.

Just some of the most striking aspects of next-generation real estate script: basic information of the home, of course. Complete with drawings, building specifications, descriptions and photographs. But all integrated with a comprehensive information environment, with reliable data on changes in the housing market each district level and the ability to interact in real time with people living in these places and can be a source of unbiased, credible and helpful.

Therefore, we believe this new type of portal will set a trend in the short or medium term, is also copied here. Maybe not so much by national portals, but for Europe-wide real estate portals aimed at increasing the floating population will bring in the future social mobility data of the Old Continent to which are common in the United States. In this new scenario, it is clear that the type of information that potential buyers will demand will be much more related to Web 2.0 that brings the traditional portals we've seen so far.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

The Non Recession in Panama - Panama Trade, Business and Real Estate

Panama Trade, Business, and Real Estate: Panama is not just pristine beauty and an exciting capital city.

There is more to Panama than two sea coasts, a mountainous interior, a historic past and an exciting Latin American capital city. Panama is a busy place with lots of investment opportunity. For the person interested in moving to Panama, investing in Panama, or setting up a business in Panama a little background is useful.

The Non-Recession in Panama

The world wide recession caused a business slowdown in Panama but the gross domestic product never dropped below 3 percent a year from as high as eleven percent in recent years. Traffic through the Panama Canal has dipped a little but revenues continue at sufficient levels to continue the ambitious expansion program. The Panama Canal Authority expects to see a return to recent shipping levels in a year and substantial increases when the expansion program is finished.

Business in this Central American banking center, insurance center, tourist center and trade center has simply settled down to a level that is normal in Europe and the United States, waiting to resume a growth rate comparable to China's as the recession mends. The success of Panama's middle class is good testimony to the growth of all facets of business here.

What Happened to Property Values and Why

A lot of North Americans (Norte Americanos here) felt the sting because of the precipitous fall in property values "back home." Many took out a second mortgage on their first home in the states or Canada to purchase second homes in Panama. When real estate values fell up North many had to sell in Panama to cover their mortgage back home. In addition the recession put a damper on new home and apartment purchases in this country for several months. Despite a reasonable economic climate and business conditions new high end real estate in Panama dipped substantially in price. That is to say, the problem with folks needing to bale out in Panama had little to do with Panama and a lot to do with conditions elsewhere. The result is that there are lots of underpriced properties in great locations in this country waiting for smart investors to find them.

As world trade picks up and the historic Panama Canal Expansion progresses towards completion Panama expects to see more growth going forward. Panama also expects to see property values rise substantially in the next few years. New buyers will come in to take advantage of prices that are extremely low by recent historic standards.

Panama Canal Expansion Will Change Global Shipping Patterns Forever

Panama is the narrowest part of the Americas. At fifty miles wide it is the logical spot for the Panama Canal connecting Atlantic and Pacific. Positioned on the land bridge between North and Central America Panama is ideally positioned for transport of goods and as an air hub for the Americas.

The Panama Canal has been open for business since 1914. Its construction was considered one of the world's engineering triumphs. Run by the USA until 1999 the Panama Canal is now administered by an autonomous unit of the Panama government, the Panama Canal Authority (Autoridad del Canal de Panamá).

The Panama Canal Locks were built to allow passage for American war ships and pretty much all other shipping at the beginning of the 20th century. Now there are super tankers and container ships too large to pass through Panama Canal. The largest ship that can pass is defined as a "Panamamax." The enlarged set of locks for the Panama Canal Expansion will allow nearly all current ships to pass as well as doubling overall capacity from roughly 5 percent of global sea trade to as high as 10 percent.

So-called panamax ships, designed specifically to fit the ninety-four year old Panama Canal locks, can carry 4,000 twenty-foot containers. Expansion will let "cape-size vessels" with as many as 12,600 containers pass through the new "third lane" Panama Canal locks.

Ports up and down the East coast of the Americas are installing giant cranes capable of servicing the huge boats expected to use the Panama Canal from 2014 onward. The canal authority expects to see as much as a doubling of transit volume when the giant, cape size, vessels begin to pass through Panama. After the USA handed over the canal the new operators have been developing the land along the canal for commercial use. The use of land along the Panama Canal to develop logistics operations, material assembly facilities, and the like is already creating more jobs that take advantage of global trade passing through the country.

Trade Agreements and Investments

Panama has free trade agreements with several nations. An example is that with next door Costa Rice in which 90% of goods pass duty free country to country and over the following years all goods will gradually become duty free. These free trade agreements serve to lower costs and typically help create jobs. Canada and Panama are actively negotiating a free trade treaty and the already-signed agreement with the USA periodically shows signs of being passed to the Senate.

Throughout Latin America and especially in Panama the middle class is growing larger and growing more prosperous. Besides the large influx of North American and European retirees it is the successful Panamanian middle class that supports and drives up prices in the housing market. This is a nation that has not had a big increase in unemployment. The growing middle class and increasing prosperity is expected to drive up real estate prices again in Panama.

An objective measure of how well are expected to do in Panama was seen a year of so ago when one of the large US investment houses included a range of Panama investments in one of its growth funds. For the last several years Panama has received the highest foreign investment, per capita, of any nation in Latin America.

Opportunity in Panama

Although the recession caused a business downturn here it caused a substantial "correction" in property values on new, high end property throughout the country. Whether one likes the mountains or the shore Panama has both. Panama City is an exciting Latin American capital city and islands such as in the Bocas del Toro Archipelago in the Caribbean or Taboga and the Pearl Archipelago in the Pacific offer exotic tropical retreats. Those looking for a home in the tropics will be well served to look in Panama. Those investing in the recovery of Panama's housing market may well be very happy that they did.