Emerald Coast Real Estate Blog

8 Ways to Make Your Backyard a Summer Paradise

*Original Post on June 29, 2017 - 3:50 pm by Housecall
By Sage Singleton

Summer is the season to be outdoors. It’s the perfect time for backyard barbecues, neighborhood socials, and late-night evenings on the patio. You don’t need to travel to a luxurious and exotic location to enjoy spending time outdoors. Make your own backyard a summer paradise with these eight simple suggestions.

Inspect and update wooden decks

To make your backyard a summer haven, take some time to inspect and update your deck. Wooden patios and decks can be warped by cold weather, so you’ll want to replace loose or missing slats as needed. Sand, stain, and seal your deck once you’ve made sure it’s structurally sound. If you have a stone patio, check for missing pieces and update as needed. Once this is complete, you’ll have a shiny and appealing deck you can decorate with patio furniture—creating a relaxing sitting area for summertime.

Purchase patio furniture and essentials

Once you have a designated patio or deck space, you’ll want to add some patio furniture so you can sit down, mingle with friends and family, and relax. Consider purchasing weatherproof patio furniture that is both ...

New Construction or Existing Home: Which is Better for your Family?

*Posted on July 16 2020 by Housecall

New Construction or Existing Home:
Which is Better for Your Family?

By Anita Ginsburg

Are you in the market to buy a home? If so, then you may be trying to decide between new construction or purchasing an existing home. With your home being such a huge purchase, you need to be sure you make the best choice for your family.

Here are some things you should consider when trying to determine whether new construction or an existing home is better for your family:

Your Budget

The biggest deciding factor for many individuals is their budget. Existing homes often come with a cheaper initial price tag; however, there may also be some incentives for purchasing a new construction home that can make them more affordable in the long run.

Whether or Not You Want to Make Repairs

Existing homes usually have repairs that need to be made. Things may break more often than you think, and fixing them requires time, energy and money. Some individuals are handy and don't mind making a few repairs here and there, while others...

New Home Sales Jump in June!


New single-family home sales jumped in June, as housing demand was supported by low interest rates, a renewed consumer focus on the importance of housing, and rising demand in lower-density markets like suburbs and exurbs.

Census and HUD estimated new home sales in June at a 776,000 seasonally adjusted annual pace, a 14% gain over May and the strongest seasonally adjusted annual rate since the Great Recession. The April data (571,000 annualized pace) marks the low point of sales for the current recession. The April rate was 26% lower than the prior peak, pre-recession rate set in January.

Click here to read the entire article.

*Article by Robert Dietz on July 24, 2020 on eyeonhousing.org


The Red Bar Returns in Grayton Beach!

The Red Bar has returned to Grayton Beach after the original structure had been destroyed by fire over 17 months ago.  Original owners and brothers, Oli and Phillipe Petit, have closely followed the original building plans of the previous 100-year-old structure.  They even commissioned 2 of the local artists who had painted the original sign that hung on the side of the building and the famous Front Door of the establishment.

As you walk in the Bar you'll notice the same eclectic and vintage feel that you came to know and love.  The Petit brothers spent months curating antiques, posters and art to give the same "funky" feel from the past.

Whether you're a Local or long-time establishment-lover make a point to stop in and say "Hi"!


Top U.S. Area to Buy a Vacation-Rental Home? The Panhandle

Top U.S. Area to Buy a Vacation-Rental Home? The Panhandle

Weiss Analytics: Fla.’s Panhandle offers the best returns on vacation-home investments in the U.S., while Siesta Key and the Miami Beach metro also made the top 20 list

NEW YORK – Real estate investors are scrutinizing second-home markets as they hunt for growth opportunities, even during the pandemic. After all, “travel doesn’t stop when the economy weakens – it changes where people travel,” a new report from rental management site Rented Inc. and Weiss Analytics notes.

“In 2020, travelers want to stay closer to home, and they are seeking genuine experiences. High on the list are Instagram-worthy, outdoor locations, and the highest returns come from homes that enhance the guest experience,” the report states.

Rented and Weiss note a “dramatic shift” in drive-to destinations and markets within two to five hours of major metro areas, which are seeing some of the highest returns in vacation home rentals.

Rented Inc. and Weiss Analytics’ fifth annual analysis of top vacation rental markets looks at properties based on the highest return on investment. The rankings use a three-bedroom, two-bath stand-alone home rental as a base and then compare this vacation housing across hot spots based on homeownership, short-term revenue potential, cost to acquire, annual appreciation and projected changes in asset value.

Overall, the report found that Florida’s Panhandle is the top vacation-home...

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Beach Properties of Florida Ranks among Top Brokerages!

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Beach Properties of Florida is pleased to announce that it has been included in the newly released Swanepoel Mega 1000 for the 2nd straight year.

The Swanepoel Mega 1000 ranks the top 1000 brokerages, top 20 Franchisors and top 20 holding companies.  Criteria for these distinctions, including annual sales volume, transaction sides and agent counts are used to determine the results of these rankings.

If you would like to read the 2nd Annual Mega 1000 click here.


Home Refinancing Surges

Home Refinancing Surges
The Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) latest Weekly Application shows an uptick in applications for the week ending July 10, 2020. The Market Composite Index increased by 5.1% from the previous week on a seasonally adjusted basis, owing mainly to the surge in refinancing activity of 11.9% compared to a week before. The increase was partially offset by the slowdown of purchasing activity by 6.1%. The MBA’s 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rate fell to a new record low of 3.19%, sliding by 7 basis points from the previous week. Refinance applications increased slightly, of which the main contributor was the increase in conventional refinances.
Throughout the pandemic, the weekly fluctuations have underrepresented the outsized gains seen in mortgage activity as measured on a year-over-year basis. On an unadjusted basis, the current Purchase Index was 16% higher than what it was the same week one year ago while the Refinance Index was 107% higher than what it was the same week one year ago. Also, on a year-over-year basis, the Refinance and Purchase Indexes have moved in tandem with each other since the beginning of 2019 (as shown below)...