Atlantis, FL Real Estate News

By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
The Daily Hot Sheet of Real Estate News Trending NowMarch 1, 2016NAR: Pending home sales cool in Jan. The number of U.S. homes under contract rose 1.5% year-to-year but fell 2.5% month-to-month. Two reasons for a drop: Higher prices and not enough listings. Read moreFlorida Realtors announces new chief economistDr. Brad O'Connor takes up the reins of the state association's Industry Data and Analysis department; he joined Florida Realtors in 2011. Read more.Citizens' 72-hour window to report loss problematicThe Fla.-owned insurer wants a rule that owners must report losses within 72 hours - but could an owner lose coverage for a legit claim if they fail to do that? Read more.To list or not to list? For mansions, it's not clearRealtors who market oceanfront estates say some sellers cons...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
 The Daily Hot Sheet of Real Estate News Trending Now February 29, 2016   NAHB study: Boomer generation housing preferencesNAHB compiled data to answer one question: What do today's baby boomers want in a home? Read more.Using public Wi-Fi? Don't email confidential dataA reporter flying on American Airlines discovered that someone had easily accessed his files - and every other passenger's files - simply by hacking into the plane's public Wi-Fi. Read more.Fla. consumer sentiment a bit lowerWhile current and short-term future outlooks held up well, Floridians' five-year outlook dropped, causing the overall index to decline almost one point. Read more.Homeownership a 'dream deferred' for millennialsDespite the Great Recession, more than 85% of millennials want to own a home, but a univers...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
Tweaking your way to more listings and an improved pipeline  If you want to improve your golf game there are many things you can do. For example, you can improve the length and accuracy of your swing. That will get you on the green sooner. You can improve your putting. That will get the ball into the hole more often.  Every little tweak you make improves your game overall. What does that have to do with getting more listings? Just as in golf, there are many little improvements you can make to turn more leads into listings. Say, for example, you get leads from your website. Typically you follow-up on those within two business days. What if you cut down your response time to just one day? That boost in responsiveness might motivate a few more prospects to meet with you. Even if it’s just ...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
THE SPUTTERING ECONOMIC DRIVER OF HOUSING  The start rate has been declining for three months now. Permits for single-family homes increased an anemic 1.6%. Multi-family permits rose 2.1%. (Of course, multi-family includes a lot of apartment rental construction.) As a result, the NAHB home builder sentiment index dropped three points to 58 this month. This is the lowest reading since May 2015. The good news is that optimism is still running at over 50 percent. Demand really isn't the issue; creating supply is. Builders cite a dearth of qualified labor and available lots for the slowdown. The good news is that the financial markets had an improved week. Stocks have rallied. Commodity prices, oil in particular, have moved higher, as Russia and Venezuela pressure Saudi Arabia into lowering...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
Interior Painting Tips of the TradeLooking for a quick way to rejuvenate your living space? Before you go changing layouts or knocking down walls, try giving your interior a fresh coat of paint. This fairly simple task can dramatically alter the look and feel of your home. Changing interior paint is an easy do-it-yourself project that most can tackle in a weekend or two. Before you get the rollers out and start painting, here are some basics about the interior paint finishes available: Flat or Matte -- Hide imperfections with flat paints, which absorb light and make the colors seem darker. The downside? This type of paint is the least stain resistant, so reserve it for low-traffic areas and ceilings. Eggshell -- Not as dull as flat paint but less shiny than semi-gloss, this low-sheen op...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
Market Minutes Ending For The Week Of February 26, 2016Volatility in oil prices and stock markets continues, but mortgage bonds have been a bit more stable. Mortgage rates continue to remain near record low levels. Global economic weakness is a worldwide concern, reported the IMF. However, this weakness is supportive of low mortgage rates here in the U.S.   Jobless claims were up this week, but still well below the 300,000 mark. Claims below this level are typically consistent with an improving labor market. While the overall housing market recovery remains intact, new home sales were down in January. Harsh weather has been blamed in part for the slowdown  Alternatively, existing home sales rose in January to reach a six-month high. Sales rose despite the challenges of tight inventory, ...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
Four Tips To Old-Fashioned Customer Care  Today, it’s often called customer service, but the big idea is customer care. In times gone by when local merchants greeted customers by name and doctors made house calls, caring for customers wasn’t just being nice—it was good business. Well, the same holds true in today’s fast-paced world. Caring for customers the way businesses used to will still get you more sales, more customer loyalty, and strengthen your business. Here are four keys to old-fashioned customer care.   Always Put Customers First. When this seems hard to do, remember, your customers put you in business. Businesses can’t exist without customers who choose to spend their money with them. Think of this and it should be easy to meet customers with a sincere smile, a friendly gree...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
The Daily Hot Sheet Of Top Real Estate News Trending Now February 22, 2016  Florida has 231 programs that help low-income buyersDown Payment Resource says 113 agencies administer those 231 programs, and 94.4% currently have funds available to help prospective homebuyers. Read moreIt took longer to close in JanuaryThe average time in Jan. climbed to 50 total days - four days more since the "Know Before You Owe" mortgage disclosure rules took effect in Oct. Read more.30-year mortgage rates unchanged this weekA six-week decline has ended, though rates remained steady at 3.65% rather than move higher. Few experts predict further declines, however. Read more.Real estate Q&A: HOAs must allow satellite dishesCan outdoor satellite dishes be prohibited by a small homeowner's association of mostl...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
The Increasing Challenge To Sell To Mobile Using Prospects According to studies, over 30% of adults report they mostly use their phone or tablets to access the internet. More than 60% say they use those same devices to check email and texts. We’re in the age of the mobile-using prospect. So, here are some guidelines that will help you communicate more effectively with this crowd.     Check that your website has a Responsive Design. That simply means it automatically displays properly on mobile devices. Make sure your website displays your phone number and email address in a format that is clickable. That makes it easier for prospects using mobile devices to reach you. Keep your emails short and to-the-point. Long emails look even longer on a small screen. Ask prospects if they prefer te...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
One Way To Increase Your Likeability There’s no getting around it. All things being equal, people will usually choose the sales associate they like best. As a result, your personal likeability is an important component of your brand and marketing. How do you communicate something as seemingly obscure as how pleasant you are or how easily you are liked?  It has nothing to do with pretending you’re something you’re not. In fact, quite the opposite. Demonstrating your likeability is simply about being your best self when interacting with prospects and clients, and letting that personality shine through on your website and in your marketing materials. Here’s a simple way to communicate that personal feature: Ask your best clients what it is about you they like most. Then, communicate more o...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
Market Minutes Ending For The Week Of February 19, 2016 Minutes from last month's Fed meeting showed concerns over global economic weakness. The Fed does not appear likely to raise policy rates anytime soon. Oil producing countries are unifying to freeze oil production levels and stabilize oil pricing. Stocks have rallied on the news this week for the best gains of 2016  The rally in oil pricing and stocks has eroded some of the recent improvements in bonds. The volatile markets have led to volatility in mortgage rates as well Housing starts were down slightly in January, likely due to cold weather. Still, the housing market fundamentals remain strong  Building permits were down slightly overall for January. However, a strengthening job market is projected to buoy housing demand this ye...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
 The Daily Hot Sheet Of Top Real Estate News Trending Now February 17, 2016   KB Home to settle on statewide construction defectsThe builder must repair 1,688 Fla. homes - some up to 10 years old - that qualify under the terms of a settlement with the Fla. Attorney General's office. Read more.Condo allows dogs but doesn't offer potty parkReal estate Q&A: A condo owner chose a dog-friendly development but later found he couldn't use its lawns for pet-necessary functions. Does that make any sense? Read more.Virtual reality: A new dimension in home buyingHeadsets allow potential buyers to see virtual 3-D listings, including balcony views from buildings not yet built. But the tech tool is still in its infancy. Read more.Twitter change could impact social media strategiesTweets currently app...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
The Daily Hot Sheet Of Top Real Estate News Trending Now February 16, 2016   Lending disclosures delay 1 in 10 transactions However, the disclosures, which went into effect last Oct., have derailed only 1% of transactions, according to a Realtor survey from NAR. Read more.Main Street holds up as Wall Street strugglesWhile the stock market has dipped and dived, most Americans don't care - a good sign for future home sales and other big-ticket purchases. Read more.New tech makes home buying more 'technical'High-tech tools now empower buyers to detect some home problems before they even put in an offer - such as an iPhone thermal imaging attachment for heat leaks. Read more.Reverse mortgages a good option for certain buyersLow-income retirees with cash from a previous home sale may be able...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
Market Minutes For The Week Of February 15, 2016WHAT IS GOING ON ABOUT RATESRates are somehow finding room to sink even lower. Last week, the 10-year U.S. Treasury note chipped off another 15 basis points, putting the yield on this long-term lending benchmark below 1.75%. The rate on a prime conventional 30-year mortgage will hover two percentage points higher (give or take a few basis points) than the yield on the 10-year note. Lower lending rates have been good for business. The Mortgage Bankers Association's latest survey shows refinances up 16% week over week. A meaningful gain was also reported on purchase applications, which were up 7%. When the MBA reports for this week, we expect to see a further increase in weekly activity. However, non-existent interest rates are having an imp...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
The Daily Hot Sheet Of Top Real Estate News Trending NowFebruary 15, 2016    Why are so many non-owners afraid to buy? Many renters want to become homeowners but overestimate downpayments and believe their credit score is too low. However, they're wrong. Read more.How safe is Fla. home insurance without Citizens?Fla.-owned Citizens Ins. moved policies into private hands, but is coverage equal? Studies suggest they're fine, but nothing is certain until a major storm hits. Read more.Industrial market booming thanks to e-commerceInvestors are diving into the U.S. industrial market, chasing after a type of commercial property that's having one of its best recovery cycles on record. Read more.Zillow reports 4Q lossThe company's stock has fallen 81% over the past 12 months and 26% percent si...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
Existing-Home Sales Surge Back in December  WASHINGTON (January 22, 2016) — Existing-home sales snapped back solidly in December as more buyers reached the market before the end of the year, and the delayed closings resulting from the rollout of the Know Before You Owe initiative pushed a portion of November's would-be transactions into last month's figure, according to the National Association of Realtors®. Led by the South and West, all four major regions saw large increases in December. Read more
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
Market Minutes Ending For The Week Of February 12, 2016 The labor market appears to be on solid footing.  Jobless claims were at the lowest level in 7 weeks despite slowing economic growth and a stock market rout. A strong labor market likely isn't enough to convince the Fed to raise policy rates in March. Recent Fed testimony made a rate increase sound unlikely. Oil pricing continues to suffer, and stocks continue to plummet. Weakness in equity markets drives money to bonds, supporting lower mortgage rates.  Purchase mortgage applications are 25% higher than a year ago, signaling strengthening in future home sales. Lower rates are likely contributing. Renters across the U.S. pay an average of $112 more in car insurance than home owners. Just another reason for renters to move to home o...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
Hell of a Day … How Could it get much worse?   There I was sitting at the bar staring at my drink when a large, trouble-making biker steps up next to me, grabs my drink and gulps it down in one swig.   "Well, whatcha' gonna do about it?" he says, menacingly, as I burst into tears.     "Come on, man," the biker says, "I didn't think you'd CRY. I can't stand to see a man crying."   "This is the worst day of my life," I say. "I'm a complete failure. I was late to a meeting and my boss fired me. When I went to the parking lot, I found my car had been stolen and I don't have any insurance. I left my wallet in the cab I took home. I found my wife with another man... and then my dog bit me."    "So I came to this bar to work up the courage to put an end to it all, I buy a drink, I drop a caps...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
The Daily Hot Sheet Of Top Real Estate News Trending NowFebruary 10, 2016College towns a hot real estate-investment spot "Many of the counties at the top of the list for strong rental yields are in college towns," says Daren Blomquist, vice president for data firm RealtyTrac. Read more.Drones outnumber piloted planesMore unmanned drones fly in U.S. airspace than manned planes. The FAA now has over 325,000 drone operators registered and "won't hesitate to take strong enforcement actions." Read more.Realtor.com unveils agent-client discussion forumPotential buyers/sellers visiting realtor.com can now ask home-related questions at "House Talk," with answers provided by participating Realtors. Read more.Renovation mortgages a good fit for some buyersMortgages such as FHA's 203K and Fannie ...
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By Winston Heverly, GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
(Winston Realty, Inc.)
The Daily Hot Sheet Of Top Real Estate News Trending Now February 09, 2016    Realtor.com milestone: 50M unique users in Jan.News Corp, which operates the NAR-owned website, called it a bright spot for increasing revenues and "the world's largest player in digital real estate." Read more.Fewer buyers bringing all-cash to closeHowever, Fla. ranks second for cash closings - 46.7% in Oct. In Miami and West Palm Beach, more than half of Oct. sales were all-cash. In Broward, it was 49%. Read more.Ad campaign urges consumers to 'Get Realtor'NAR's new ad campaign tells clients that they need to do more than click a few buttons to magically get the home of their dreams. It's time to "get Realtor." Read more.Gov. Scott names Fitzgerald to FRECPatricia "Patti" Fitzgerald, 2011 Florida Realtors pr...
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