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Consumer Confidence

by Lisa Castanet

I keep reading reports and stories that consumer confidence is on the rise.  Real estate articles are also suggesting that there is an uptick in activity throughout the nation and prices are rising quickly in several markets.  Agents are reporting to their associations and industry news outlets that volume and transaction dollar amounts are on the rise. Interest rates are still at historical lows although some of our lenders have said interest rates increased slightly this week.

I am curious as to whether or not the buyers in our local area feel confident and positive about the real estate market today.  I wonder if home buyers are reading the same reports or hearing this type of news and whether or not it is influencing their feelings about making a decision.  If you are looking to purchase a home today or in the near future do you feel a sense of urgency or frustration due to the lack of available inventory?  Do you think you have missed out on good opportunities to purchase a home due to the amount of competition?

As a home seller, are you feeling better about the market value of your home?  I wonder how many home owners have waited to put their house on the market for sale in past few years due to declining values.  Perhaps now is the time to reconsider if the inventory is extremely low and the values have stabilized.  Our local market values will most likely not regain the incredible losses experienced from 2007 to 2011.  If your home value is greater than the mortgage on your home then you are in great shape.  However, if you owe more then your home is worth now may be the right time to list your home for sale as a short sale and move on with your life.  We can help you determine if you may qualify for a short sale on your home.  A short sale is less destructive to your credit score than a foreclosure.  Home sellers can get top dollar in this market since the inventory of available homes for sale is so low.

Whether you are a home buyer or a home seller this is quite a volatile time in the real estate market and you need a professional working on your behalf.  Today’s market conditions and fast paced changes in direction require a full-time dedicated professional.  We are here to help you buy or sell your home.  Give us a call today!

Help wanted.

by Lisa Castanet

Property maintenance person experienced in rental property maintenance, light carpentry, plumbing and electrical wanted in Lakeland and Mulberry, FL area markets. Offering a paid rate of $25 to $35 per hour as needed depending on experience and willing to grow business. Independent contractor applicants must be willing to have and pass credit and background checks. Call for interview 863-647-1679

Sell or Rent

by Lisa Castanet

Many homeowners in today’s current market are trying to decide if they should sell or rent their home.  I would suggest a homeowner who is trying to decide between whether or not they should sell or rent their home should evaluate their long term financial plan.  If you have a mortgage on the property, what is the balance due to pay it off in full or how many years are left on your loan?  What are all the monthly expenses that you owe on the property?  Take a look at the property taxes, homeowner’s insurance, homeowner’s association membership dues and maintenance expenses or monthly utility bills that you pay.  Typically,  if a property is rented on an annual basis then the tenant would pay for the utility bills.  However, you should evaluate the total expenses versus what a current market rental rate would be for your property.

With this information in hand and an understanding of the costs associated with rental properties, a homeowner can evaluate which option is best for their individual circumstances.  Carrying costs between tenants can include turning on utilities in order to show the home during the marketing period, any maintenance repairs which may be required or annual service inspections for air conditioning units or replacement filters, batteries for smoke detectors and new fire extinguishers.

If you are not in a situation that demands you sell the property then I would suggest it may be the ideal time to hold on to it and rent it out for the next three to five years and then prepare to sell it.  A variety of large hedge fund buyers are gobbling up three bedroom, two bath single family homes in the Central Florida area and I would imagine they did some research to determine the value of such investments.

We are property managers for single family, unfurnished rental homes throughout Polk County and in particular the Lakeland and Mulberry market areas.  We have full time, dedicated personnel that work with property owners on the entire management of their investment property.  Why not relax and let us handle the day to day grind while you get paid each month?  If you would like assistance in evaluating whether now is the time to sell or rent then please call us today for an appointment.

A Realtor's Job

by Lisa Castanet

We receive several calls into our office daily from buyers asking for more information on homes we have listed for sale.  We answer their questions and try to be helpful.  We ask them if they are currently working with an agent or Realtor to help them in their search to purchase a home.  Sometimes they tell us yes and we wish them the best in their search.  If they are not working with another agent then we ask them to share more specific information on what exactly they need or want and the barriers of reluctance gradually come down. 

We have discovered that most folks do not really understand exactly how Realtors work or how they get paid.  They don’t know why some agents ask them to sign papers or agreements before they see properties and buyers can be reluctant to commit to “hiring” an agent for their services.  These days so many buyers feel they can do most of the “leg work” themselves and just want contact with an agent when they decide they want to see a property or make an offer.

We try to be as flexible as possible in meeting our buyer’s needs and realize everyone has different ways they prefer to work or different needs and schedules that must be met.  We are here to help and really think buyers deserve individualized assistance.  Buyers do not pay for Realtor’s commissions and Realtors do not get paid salaries.  The real estate market is unique and ever changing today.  We are here to guide you through the obstacles of home ownership, qualifying for financing and evaluating a home for purchase.  Our education, training and expertise are put to the test with each transaction we are involved in as Realtors.  We are licensed and also must adhere to certain legal practices.  We are members of our local association of Realtors and commit to uphold principled moral ethics.  Our efforts are invested in each of our customers from the first meeting to the final day of closing on a home purchase.  Every day in between is part of that journey in helping a buyer become a home owner or for successfully marketing and selling a home for an owner.  We get paid only if and when we are successful in completing the process or “transaction”.

We love what we do and really enjoy meeting the people we help with our services.  That is the real joy and the fact that we can make a living from our efforts is just “icing on the cake”! J

Now Interviewing

by Lisa Castanet

Our company is growing and we are now interviewing for a couple of different positions.  We would welcome new agents to our office and would love to talk with you about our commission structure and the benefits of working in a smaller independent organization.

We also need a talented administrative employee.  Ideally someone who may have several talents including answering phones, routing calls, office work, or a combination of those types of duties. If someone was tech savvy or interested in working on our website updates that would be a wonderful additional talent as well.

We have a diverse residential real estate business and offer lots of flexibility and different interests.  We list, market and sell residential real estate.  We handle long term rental properties and short term furnished rentals.  We also work with individuals looking to purchase properties.  The types of folks we work with vary from those looking to rent, corporate clients who travel to the area for short term work, vacationers who stay seasonally in town, and buyers and sellers.  People may call our office regarding a listing we have for sale or for rent.  Our tenants may have maintenance issues or our guests may need help with the internet or cable service in their vacation rental.  We are seeking an employee that could handle these responsibilities.

We are growing year after year and need another enthusiastic person or two to join our team.  If you are a licensed agent, please give us a call.  If you are a talented individual looking for variety and are interested in being counted on and perhaps interested in becoming a licensed assistant or agent in the future, please call us to schedule a meeting.  We are now interviewing exceptional people.

Displaying blog entries 1-5 of 5

Contact Information

Photo of Native Palm Team Real Estate
Native Palm Team
Native Palm Properties
5925 Imperial Pkwy, Suite #111
Mulberry FL 33860
(863)647-1679
863-838-1318
Fax: (863)701-8309