Go Local Wednesdays – Historic Gardens


Please come join us Sunday, April 19th  for ‘The Private Gardens of Historic Orlando featuring Lake Eola Heights’ tour. The event is held by Lake Eola Heights Garden Committee and features a number of local sponsors, including us, the ThinkLiveBe Property Team!   We are so pleased to be a sponsor and cannot wait to spend the day strolling through the gardens of one of Downtown Orlando’s most historic neighborhoods.  This is a self guided tour where you are invited into the gardens of a number of residences and you’ll have an opportunity to speak with the garden care takers and in some gardens you will even be serenaded by local musicians as you take in these lovely surroundings.  We cannot think of a more special way to spend the day!

Tickets are available at Handy Pantry Grocery, aka ‘Garden Central’.  They are $15 in advance or $20 on the day of.   You can also purchase them online, here.

The tour starts at ‘Garden Central’ at noon and goes until 5pm, but remember it is self guided.  There will be complimentary Gem Cars available to take you to and from the homes.

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Monday Market Report – 3 Steps to Writing a Great Offer

We are still experiencing multiple offers in the Orlando real estate market.   There is still a lack of inventory in the Downtown Orlando real estate market specifically (good condition and well priced inventory that is!).  In times like these, I often hear buyers say “I don’t want to get into a bidding war”.  This sort of baffles me.   Wouldn’t you want to at least try to secure a contract on a house that you like and fits your needs?  It’s not really a bidding war if you’re not in an auction where you can “one up” the other person.3 steps

In a real estate transaction, when there is a multiple offer situation you aren’t really bidding on the home.  You simply make a solid offer and you either have the best offer for that particular seller or you don’t.   In these situations, you just need to make your highest and best offer so you know you gave it your best shot.   But if the seller decides to go with another buyer, well you just move on to the next option.  Keep your emotions in check; it is not your “home” until you have the keys.

So let’s walk through the steps of making an offer on a property that has multiple offers.

  1. Evaluate the market in the area to determine a fair value for the home
    1. It is important that you have a skilled agent that can help you understand if the home is over value or in some situations under value. If a home is priced right and there are multiple offers, there is a very high likelihood that the property will sell for over asking price.
    2. Ask yourself if you’re willing to pay fair market value for this home. As long as there are comparable homes to support that price, you’re not “overpaying”.  Many people have a fear of overpaying, but if 10 other buyers are willing to offer at or above asking price than the “fair market value” is actually greater than the asking price!
  2. Make a clean offer
    1. Again you need a skilled agent to assist you with this, but basically you want an offer with few contingencies and little to no concessions.
    2. A great offer contains no concessions or has factored those into the price.
      1. If you need closing cost assistance than consider this as you decide on a sales price.  You may have to offer a higher price and wrap the closing costs into the offer price.
      2. Keep in mind the home still has to appraise if you are using a loan; so you can offer more but if it doesn’t appraise you will have re-negotiate with the seller and they may not be willing or able to contribute to your closing costs at that time.
    3. Have a quick inspection period and closing date. “Quick” is typically 7-10 days for inspections and a 30 day closing.  For a cash transaction you can close in about two weeks.
    4. Put down a reasonable escrow deposit.
      1. The escrow deposit is a good faith deposit on the house. It is negotiable as all of the offer terms are, but make sure it represents how serious you are.  As a cash buyer you can expect to put down a much greater escrow deposit.
  3. Get pre-approved if you are only pre-qualified for a loan and present that letter with your offer.  Or if you are paying cash have a Proof of Funds presented with the offer.
    1. Pre-qualification means the lender has checked your credit and asked you some questions. A pre-approval means they have verified your income and assets.
    2. As a seller wouldn’t you want to know that everything has been confirmed?
    3. To go one step further, you could get a loan approval.  There are lenders that can provide a commitment contingent upon the property appraisal.  This says to the seller that you are serious about purchasing a home and that the lender has fully approved you as a buyer.  *this means less contingencies that the seller has to worry about*

No matter what price range or market you are in, there are sometimes multiple offer situations.  The best thing to do is take the emotions out of the equation.  Determine the best possible offer that you feel comfortable with and make that offer.   Someone else may offer more, but there’s no way to know what someone else is going to offer.  With a great agent on your side, you’ll have a strong offer and be in contention on these difficult deals.

Thinking of Buying a home in Downtown Orlando?  We think you should love where you live.  Get started today by calling us at 407-494-2820 or visit http://www.heartorlandohome.com/ 

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Who Says There’s Nothing To Do In Orlando – 10,000 Eggs


This year is the 61st Annual Easter Egg Hunt in Winter Park.  The city hides 10,000 eggs throughout Central Park, children up to age 10 are welcome to join, everyone else can join in on the laughs!  The hunt begins at 10:00am but get there a little early to get a good spot as there will be lots of competition…but don’t worry, its very friendly competition! And its okay to come up empty handed because there are plenty of treats to be had at the treat table.


Where:  Central Park in Winter Park

When:  Saturday April 4th at 10:00 am

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Tuesday Tour – Colonialtown North

Welcome to Colonialtown North!  This is a charming neighborhood just North East of Downtown Orlando.  Colonialtown North is filled with 1920s and 1940s bungalows, some 1950s ranch homes, and also home to some new construction.  It is not a historic district although it is filled with historic charm.

The neighborhood is located within walking distance to Mills50 Main Street district, a thriving business district with shops and restaurants and biking distance to Downtown, Thornton Park, and Audubon Park. The proximity to the Orlando Urban Trail makes it a very bike friendly neighborhood.  You’ll find charming bungalows priced in the low $200,000s all the way up to large two – story homes near $400,000.  There is a voluntary neighborhood association, a community garden, and community pool and rec center.  If walk-ability is in your must have list, this neighborhood should top your list.

Thinking about moving to Colonialtown North?  Search Colonialtown North Homes for Sale

Need to sell your Colonialtown North home, call us today 407-494-2820.  We can help you find a buyer that enjoys this neighborhood as much as we do!

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Monday Market Report – The Top 3 Reasons to List your Home For Sale Now


Many people ask what time of year is the best time to sell a home.  That answers depends on what part of the country you are located and the general market in your neighborhood.  Here is Orlando, our busiest seasons for home sales are spring and summer.  But if that’s when the buyers are closing on a home in Orlando, that means they started searching for a home a few months earlier.  It typically takes about 30-45 days to close on a home that is being financed.  A buyer usually takes a little time to view homes before making a decision, so you want to be “on the market” when the most buyers are searching for homes…not when they’re closing on them!

Last year the most Orlando homes went under contract in April and May.   Listing during the months where the most pending activity takes place ensures you’ll have the maximum buyers searching and therefore obtain your highest offer for this market.

So why list now?

1.  Home Values are Up
The median sales price took a dip in January, but it’s back on the rise and so are the number of sales. Last month there were 12% more sales than January and 19% more than that time in 2014.

2.  Competition is still relatively low
The more listings that are for sale the more competition you have when trying to sell. The number of listings was increasing pretty quickly last year but it seems to have slowed just a bit in the new year.  Take advantage of this sooner rather than later!

3.  Get on the market before everyone else does!
As the market improves, inevitability more people will attempt to sell their home.  Don’t wait for everyone else to jump on board (see #2).  List now to attract the buyers in these busy months.  Other sellers will wait to sell during the summer because its more convenient for moving or they have heard it’s the busiest time of year.  Don’t wait and risk your chances of selling while the buyers are searching!

Thinking of selling your Downtown Orlando, College Park, or Winter Park home?
Contact us today to get your home sold quickly and for top dollar

407-494-2820 Office line – ask for Kathryn or fill out this form and we’ll be in touch shortly!

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Who Says There’s Nothing To Do In Orlando? – What’s Up Downtown

What’s Up Downtown.  An opportunity for local residents, businesses, employees, educators and pretty much anyone else who wants to network and learn more about developments and initiatives taking place in Downtown Orlando.  It happens the first Thursday of every month and in the past there have been some really cool settings and awesome information shared.

Next Thursday, April 2nd,  What’s Up Downtown will be a 45 minute Historic Walking Tour around Downtown Orlando.  You’ll hear from multiple speakers, see character appearances and even be welcomed into the History Center for a complimentary visit!

The tour starts at 8:30am at the Downtown Orlando Information Center and will end at the 1927 Historic Orange County Courtroom which is located within the Orange County Regional History Center.

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Go Local Wednesdays – Hidden Gem

I love little neighborhood cafés and restaurants that are nestled between residential homes. We are lucky have a few of them to choose from in Downtown Orlando neighborhoods,  and one of my favorites is 903 Mills Market.  It may not really be a hidden gem because it is so well known and so popular and for good reason! The menu is awesome, the staff is great but the ambience is what really makes it special.  It is super chill, relaxed and easy going, most of the seating is outside but they have a few tables inside as well.  During the day you can relax under the shade of the umbrellas and at night under the string lights and night sky.  It is located on the corner of Gore and South Mills, just a few steps from Lake Davis.  A great place to have a bite and a drink and then meander around the lake and catch a beautiful view of Downtown Orlando skyline!

interested in buying in Downtown Orlando, Search Homes!

Needing to sell your Downtown Orlando Home, call us, 407-494-2820!

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