Showing posts from 2017

Lister Accompanied Showings | Sarasota FL |

I've been working with out of town buyers looking for a luxury waterfront home in Sarasota.

Most of the agents in my service area falsely believe they are providing a value added service to their clients by promising to be present when a potential buyer tours their property.

Scheduling showings for these properties can be a nightmare, especially if the listing agent (usually an assistant, not the actual agent) can't be available to accommodate the schedule of the buyer.  Just imagine if this was occurring in another industry. It's really outrageous.

Is an assistant actually selling your luxury property instead of the Realtor you hired?  I toured 6 properties with buyers yesterday, and spoke to the actual listing agent a total of zero times.

Are you afraid of theft?  Every home owner selling their property should put valuables away and de-clutter, regardless of the price.  Are you worried about unqualified buyers touring your property?  A good buyer's agent won't w…

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas!

Thank you for following my blog.  I look forward to working with you in the new year!

Today's Real Estate Consumer | Marketing Your Home | Sarasota FL

As Realtors we are primarily marketers.  Home sellers rely on us to market their home to the right prospective buyers.  Studies have shown consistently that the internet is the place where over 90% of home buyers start their search.

Home buyer activity online is always evolving.  As a marketer, I subscribe to a weekly newsletter from Google about consumer behavior.

One major trend Google has identified is the "right here, right now" consumer mentality.  Consumers are using their mobile devices to make all kinds of decisions, from the nearest coffee shop to price comparisons while in a store.  The real estate industry is no different.

How many times have you been in your car, you see an ad, and want more information?  How many times on a recent vacation have you used your mobile device to find a bar or restaurant?

Locally, prospective buyers are searching condo buildings and neighborhood names while driving around Venice and Sarasota.  I decided a while ago to create pinpoin…

Flood Insurance | High Risk States |

CoreLogic, a real estate and financial analytics firm, released a report today based on FEMA data that shows  states with the most higher-risk homes for flooding.

Most may think with this past summer's hurricanes, Florida and Texas would be at the top of the list, but it's actually Arizona that has the highest percentage of homes with moderate to high flood risk.

You can read the article in the Wall Street Journal:

Read more about flood zones on my website

Venetian Shores | Town Homes for Sale | Venice FL

More for you from Venice Island in #Venice FL.  Venetian Shores is a luxury town home of just 12 units.  Featuring private elevators and garages, these two story units have upscale appointments and room for individual private pools.  Just a short walk to Venice Beach and the vibrant downtown, Venetian Shores town homes start in the $900,000's.  

Register for instant listing updates on my website

Golden Strand | Condos for Sale | Venice FL

Venice Island is one of Florida's best kept real estate secrets. Here you'll find a range of condo styles and prices. Today I'm bringing you my exclusive video for Golden Strand, a popular #VeniceFL condo directly across from Venice Beach. 1 and 2 bedroom units start in the low $300,000's and feature a heated pool and beautiful Gulf of Mexico views. 

For more on Golden Strand including the most accurate, current MLS listings, visit my website

Atlanta Braves | New Spring Training Facility | The West Villages Venice FL

Take a look at what may be the very first aerial video of the Atlanta Braves spring training site in The West Villages in #VeniceFL, scheduled to open in 2019. 

For more about living in The West Villages, one of the country's top selling master planned communities, visit my website

Venice Island | Condos for Sale | Venice FL

Are you looking for a Florida beach condo but feeling shellshocked by the prices?  Give Venice a look!

Beachfront condos on the Island (where downtown Venice is located) are a fraction of the cost of a similar Siesta Key condo in Sarasota.  One major difference here is that downtown Venice, just a short stroll from most of the Venice Island condos, has a long list of community events, restaurants, and attractions compared with Siesta Key Village.  Beaches are also far less crowded than Siesta Key, even in season.

Visit my website for a full list of currently available Venice Island condos for sale:

Property Taxes | Frequently Asked Questions | Sarasota FL

I get asked fairly frequently how property taxes in Sarasota compare to Manatee County. This article answers the question and brings up interesting points about Longboat Key.

Also available on my website I have more information, such as when taxes are billed, market versus real estate value, and homestead exemption.

Visit my website:

Home Partners of America | Homes for Sale | Sarasota and Venice FL

I'm happy to announce I'm now one of a handful of certified Home Partners of America agents in the Sarasota area.  #HomePartnersofAmerica is an innovative program that helps home buyers get a good quality home who may not be able to otherwise qualify for a conventional bank mortgage. 

For more information visit

Hottest Real Estate Markets | 2017 | Sarasota FL

Coastal Living put out a list of the hottest real estate markets, and Sarasota/Bradenton/North Port ranked #6.

Despite recent storms, people are still flocking to coastal cities such as Sarasota and Venice.  We have cultural attractions, gorgeous beaches, some of the best locally owned Zagat rated restaurants in the country, and a wide range of real estate options.

Read the article here.   For the most up to date real estate listings visit my website and search the MLS for free, with no sign up, ever:

Best Places to Retire | Real Estate | Sarasota FL

US News and World report named Sarasota the best place to retire for 2018.

Here's a link to the article.

If you can't make it down in the next few weeks to see why Sarasota is the #1 place to retire in 2018, take a look at my video, and contact me for expert real estate service.

Condo Insurance | Real Estate | Venice FL

With Irma gone and the Venice FL and Sarasota areas thankfully suffering little property damage, I'm getting questions about condo insurance.

Condo associations are responsible for everything outside the stud walls of the condo:  the roof, windows, building structure, and shared plumbing.  This is a large portion of your condo association fee.

Condo owners can obtain insurance for their personal property items, such as furniture, appliances, and HVAC systems.  The cost is similar to a renter's insurance policy.

Condo insurance would be recommended if you are on the ground floor.  The structure would be covered by your association in the event of a flood, and your flooded personal property items would be covered by your personal insurance policy.

For local insurance company contact information please visit either of my websites: or

Market Update and Hurricane Irma

First, about Hurricane Irma.....

I evacuated to Augusta GA, but according to my clients most of the damage was done to trees.  The expected storm surge thankfully did not materialize.

Now on to an update on Sarasota and Venice FL real estate news.

July year to year sales are flat, with prices increasing and available homes on a 3 month decline in supply.  Time to contract and close are also increased over last year.  Take a look at the data:

If you are ready to buy or sell in Sarasota or Venice, please contact me for the best customer service and the highest level of technology and marketing.

Flood Zones | Hurricane Irma | Sarasota County

Please call me 941-993-6853 with any of your Hurricane or Irma concerns about your Venice or Sarasota property. 

Find the flood zone for your address, and find out what the FEMA flood designations mean at and

Sarasota have ordered mandatory evacuations of the barrier islands:  Siesta Key, Lido Key, Bird Key, Longboat Key, and Casey Key.

Read more about mandatory evacuations here.

Flood Insurance | Homes and Condos | Sarasota County

Because of Hurricane Irma, I've been getting record setting visits to my website

If you want a new flood insurance policy, you're probably out of luck.  Most insurers' flood policies take effect 30 days after purchase.

Owners of condos should inquire about condo owner's insurance.  Your condo association fees cover the structure of the building outside the stud walls, such as roofs, walls, and window.  Condo owner's insurance resembles renter's insurance, which covers personal items but adds protection from loss for HVAC and appliances.

Sarasota County provides a very good mapping tool that will provide the flood zone designation for your address:  click here.
Visit my website for local insurance providers, who can answer your specific property questions:
Stay safe!

Legacy Trail | Downtown Extension | Sarasota FL

Great news for bikers (the pedal kind): Sarasota County is in the process of moving forward to contract land for an extension of The Legacy Trail to downtown Sarasota.

For homes and condos for sale near The Legacy Trail, visit my website

New Domain Name | Sarasota Real Estate |

My Sarasota real estate website has a new web address:

I've greatly expanded the number of individual neighborhood and condo profiles on the site.  Now you can find Siesta Key and Lido Key condos individually by name, or by using my custom map.

I've also added more search tools for you such as price range search, map search, and map draw search for your favorite geographic areas.
Take a tour of easy to navigate for all your Sarasota real estate needs.

CDD Fees | Real Estate | Venice FL

Home buyers don't like to pay them, but CDD fees are a necessary evil in funding new residential development, that you will have a hard time avoiding. 

CDD fees in Lakewood Ranch can be over $3,000 per year. You'll find CDD fees for new construction homes in Ft. Myers, Bonita Springs, and Naples. 

The good news is that some of the lower CDD fees are found in The West Villages in Venice FL, ranging from $300 to $1700 per year. For more about CDD fees visit

Hurricanes | Real Estate | Sarasota FL

As I write this, another hurricane is forming in the Gulf of Mexico headed towards a Texas landfall.

In fact, since 2004's Hurricane Charley and 2005's Katrina, Florida hasn't had a direct hurricane strike.  We have had tropical storms, which are basically prolonged versions of a typical afternoon thunderstorm in intensity.
Wind mitigation (roof construction) is a major component of homeowner's insurance, and newer homes have to be built at least 10 feet above base flood elevation (BFE).  If you are thinking of buying a waterfront home in Florida, there's always a risk, but the likelihood of you experiencing major damage as a result of a storm should be low if the 10-12 year trend continues for a few more years.

June 2017 | Real Estate Market Statistics | Sarasota County FL

Real estate in Sarasota County showed mixed results for 2017.  While dollar volume was up over June last year, the number of sales was flat, and time on market increased.
Median sales price in Sarasota County continues to climb.  This statistic is affected by both an increase in the sales price of resale homes, and increasing sales prices of new construction. Increasing prices are a function of demand and still relatively low inventory.
A common question among Sarasota County home buyers is how negotiable are list prices?  While every situation is unique, the average list price to eventual sales price ratio has remained consistent over the past year.  Important:  list price to sales price is based on the current list price of the property at the time of contract, not the original list price.
Time to contract is an indicator of the mindset of home sellers.  The time from initial listing of the property for sale to the date a contract is executed increased over June 2017.  
In my opinion,…

For Sale By Owner | New Real Estate Statistics | Sarasota FL

A new study shows that for sale by owner properties (FSBO's) tend to sell for lower prices than properties sold through Realtors through the MLS, and in many cases below the differential of what it would cost in Realtor compensation.  The study was conducted on data  from home sold from 2016 through the first half of 2017.

FSBO's attempt to avoid paying a Realtor fee by selling their home on their own, but it can backfire with a much lower than market sales price and the time the seller has to invest in the sale.  The study found that FSBO sales averaged 6 percent lower than those involving a Realtor.

Click here for the detailed results of the study from Collateral Analytics Research.

SOURCE:  "Saving Real Estate Commissions at Any Price", Collateral Analytics Rearch

Zillow in Legal Trouble Again | Real Estate | Venice FL

Zillow is in legal trouble (again), this time with the federal government for alleged violations of anti-kickback and deceptive practices rules. 

In short, it's a violation of RESPA, the Real Estate Settlement Protection Act, for an entity to pay for real estate referrals, such as a lender paying for advertising for a Realtor. Buyer beware: Whenever you see a Zillow Premier Agent promoting a lender, that lender is helping pay for that agent's marketing on Zillow. 

When you hire a Realtor to market your home for sale, you need someone can market themselves first.  Gary Keller of Keller Williams once said "Zillow is lazy marketing for agents".  

Zillow is an unethical company which always seems to be in litigation for misuse of data or misleading business practices.  Avoid Zillow when looking for a property because of bad data, and when choosing an agent who can't market themselves.

How's the Sarasota and Venice real estate market?

Real estate, like most supply and demand markets,is cyclical.  Right now we are seeing the overall market swing back to more of a buyer's market.

Sellers were encouraged for months and months that the time to sell is now, because there were more buyers than homes for sale.  This mentality was exacerbated by the fact that 50 to 100 new agents are joining our Sarasota and Manatee Realtor association every month.  What easier way to get a listing than for new agents to oversell home values?

My anecdotal experience in working with more buyers than sellers is that sellers are overpricing, and buyers are resisting this.  As always, homes priced correctly are selling fairly quickly.  A sure sign that sellers and their agents are starting to panic is an increase in open houses.

Stickney Point Bridge

The area around Sarasota's Stickney Point Bridge (aka the south bridge to Siesta Key) has a lot of attractions for tourists.  Here you can parasail, rent a boat or a jet ski, or eat at one of the South Village's restaurants.

I recently took a drone tour to share with you.

I have much more drone video tours of Siesta Key at

Siesta Key Beach and Siesta Key Condos

I have taken several videos of Siesta Key beaches from different locations with my own drone.  Here's one of my latest.

If you are looking for a Siesta Key condo, I have profiled 49 individual condos from Siesta Key village south to Turtle Bay.  You can find your Siesta Key condo by name, or by location using my custom map.

Visit  Never a sign up to view listings, straight from the MLS.

Siesta Key Condos for Sale

Take a look at my custom Siesta Key condo locator map, with direct links to condos for sale. 49 major Siesta Key condos profiled.

Start searching now with no sign up at

Re-Open Beach Road on Siesta Key

You may have heard about Beach Road on Siesta Key.  After years of shifting sands, the road has been partially covered and Sarasota County has banned access to this previously public street alongside the beach.

Take an aerial look at the affected area, and sign the petition to re-open Beach Road.

Venice: The Video

I possess one of the largest exclusive video libraries of Venice FL attractions, landmarks, and neighborhoods.  Take a look at the highlights of living in the Venice area.

For more real estate information about Venice, visit

The Technological Divide

The real estate industry is at the very beginning of a major shake up.  Older, and yes, successful Realtors, are starting to fall behind due the increasing amount of technology available to us in our business and our daily lives.

Technology for Realtors means two things: 1) Gadgets and 2) marketing platforms to reach customers on their gadgets.

Websites, blogs, and social media are all important ways for Realtors to market themselves.  I use all three as a means to help potential customers learn about our area and learn about my experience and knowledge.

A whole industry of millenials is springing up who are writing blogs, designing websites, and posting social media for Realtors who will hire them.  If a Realtor can't write an ad about your property, doesn't understand how a website works, and isn't posting current local information on social media based on their own knowledge, is that person qualified to sell your home?

A track record is good, and so are testimonials (a…

Historic Venezia Park

Venezia Park is a historic neighborhood on Venice Island. Take a tour of the tree lined streets and see the historic homes, mixed with modest bungalows and new infill construction. 

Venezia Park is easy walking distance to downtown and just a couple of minutes to Venice Beach.

For more Venezia Park information visit my website,

Sawgrass Venice FL

Today I toured Sawgrass in Venice FL with some potential home buyers. It was a great opportunity to create a video tour of the neighborhood. 

Sawgrass homes range from the mid $300's to mid $500's, with most having 3 bedrooms and 2 or 3 baths. HOA fees are $1196 annually, which includes a manned guard gate, use of a well-equipped fitness center, and sparkling community pool. 

For Sawgrass homes for sale visit

Resale Homes Inventory in Venice FL Increasing

If you've been frustrated by the lack of available real estate in the Venice area in the past, you'll be pleased to know that resales in many Venice neighborhoods have increased.

I could throw out a bunch of graphs or quote some MLS stats.  Instead, I have the benefit of updating my website,, every day and I see the increased inventory on a detailed level.

Here are some of the neighborhoods and condos with increased availability right now:
Calusa Lakes Gulf View Estates Venice Palms Verona Reserve Venetia Venetian Falls Sawgrass Waterford Venice Golf and Country Club Valencia Condo Apartments The Sansovino Point Whitecap
If you have been on the sidelines waiting to buy in Venice, our current market may be your best opportunity in years.  Contact me today for more information and to schedule a tour.

La Bellasara in Sarasota

La Bellasara is probably one of Sarasota's most iconic condo buildings.  Take an aerial trip from Sarasota's waterfront park to Golden Gate Point.

For more Golden Gate Point condos for sale visit

Albee Road Drawbridge at Nokomis Beach

Enjoy this video of the drawbridge and boating on the intracoastal waterway in Nokomis.

For Nokomis real estate listings and community information visit

Snake Island in Nokomis

If you're a boater or a kayaker, you'll enjoy this video of Snake Island in the ICW between Venice and Nokomis.

You can access Snake Island by launching at Higel Park or at the boat launch across from Nokomis Beach.  For Nokomis real estate information visit