Sarasota Realtors Robert and Valerie Orr
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Best Seller Open House Hosting Tips

As the Sarasota market continues to favor sellers, more homeowners are jumping in, opting to sell their properties as home value steadily rise. So, now is the time to know the best seller open house hosting tips to get top dollar and increase your return on investment. Buyers are eager to take advantage of the near historically low interest rates and to purchase before prices rise too high. It's all a matter of making the right impression, well before buyers see your home in-person.

Best Seller Open House Hosting Tips
Data collected by the National Association of Realtors reveals 92 percent of home searches begin on the internet. This figure certainly isn't surprising because it's the simple and easiest way to see scores of homes. Of course, clicking and tapping through hundreds of photos isn't a substitute for real-time experience. Buyers need to be on-site in order to get a complete understanding of what the home offers, the neighborhood dynamics, and more. But, to get buyers to actually see your home, said photos must pique interest and cause people to act.

When a home hits the market, one... read article

Sarasota Florida History

Known for its beautiful, sprawling, white sand beaches, its wonderfully mild winters and balmy summers, Sarasota, is home to much history. With its many challenging and gorgeous golf courses, great marinas, museums, shopping districts, and more, Sarasota is a terrific place to live.
Strolling along the beaches and touring downtown, as well as inland, it’s difficult to believe Sarasota was so different in the early to mid-nineteenth century. Once known as Zara Zote, eventually, it became Sara Sota, until the name morphed into its modern carnation.
Sarasota Florida History
Sarasota saw its first real visitors with the arrival of the Spanish in the early 1500’s. In 1539, Spanish Conquistador Hernando de Soto arrived in “ZaraSota,” a name meaning "Radiance of Soto." The peninsula became a territory of the United States in 1819 and later earned its statehood in 1845. Fort Armistead became the first Army military installation. For many years, Spanish, European, Cuban, Mexican, South American, and eventually, Americans traded in the area. The arrival of William H. Whitaker of Savannah, became one the very first settlers, establishing a residence on Whitaker Bayou in the 1840's.
Sarasota,... read article

Inexpensive Weekend DIY Home Improvements

As the Sarasota real estate market inventory and pending sales continue to increase, you might be thinking about selling your house soon. To fetch the biggest return on your investment, your property must entice potential buyers. This is done by decluttering, depersonalizing, disinfecting, and staging. To really pique interest and get buyers through the door, you can do a few inexpensive weekend DIY home improvements.

Bad ROI Home Improvements
The trick is to choose the right improvements. While some might improve aesthetics and function, they don't necessarily pay off at resale. In fact, according to the Remodeling magazine’s 2016 Cost vs. Value Report, there are projects which you should avoid altogether, if you are going to sell your home. Making the list of bad ROI home improvements are a deck addition, upscale bathroom remodel, upscale master suite addition, upscale bathroom addition, and a modest bathroom addition.

It’s understandable if you, like many Americans, associate home improvement projects with money flying out your door. After all, the average bathroom remodel tops $16,000, according to Remodeling Magazine’s Cost Vs. Value Report. Replacing your windows runs $8,000 on average. Kitchens and master... read article

Smart Home Money-Saving Energy Tips

We all like to save money when and where possible. It's why we plan and budget spending to maximize savings, investments, and to enjoy various activities. But there are more steps homeowners can take to save every month. It's not often we think about energy efficiency, that is, until we are able to open the windows and give the air conditioner a much-needed break. The fact of the matter is, energy hogs live in your house. But, you don't have to pay for their rent free lifestyle if you know some smart home money-saving energy tips.

Biggest Home Energy Wasters
A few years ago, the Digital Power Group grabbed headlines when it asserted a smartphone uses more energy than a medium-sized, Energy Star refrigerator. Combining battery charging, with data use, and WiFi connectivity, the company claimed this rivals a refrigerator in energy use. Of course, that's a big contention but these pocket-sized technological wonders do consume a lot of energy.

An energy-efficient home will keep your family comfortable while saving you money. Whether you take simple steps or make larger investments to make your home more efficient, you’ll see... read article

Why An Empty Home Is Difficult To Sell

With median prices rising in Sarasota, a small amount of inventory competition, homeowners considering selling are in a ripe environment. Buyers have just as much incentive because of rising median prices and still near-historic interest rates. The process of selling a home is a challenging one but definitely not insurmountable. One of the obstacles some sellers face is trying to market an empty home. You might wonder if there's really a difference between an empty house and an occupied property. Experienced real estate professionals know there indeed is a difference but the reasons easily alude.

Why an Empty Home is Difficult to Sell
It could be time for you to buy a bigger home, shorten your commute, or even downsize. Whatever the reason, you should understand there's a real combination of art and science which goes into selling a home. After all, you want a good return-on-investment and to sell as soon as possible but there are factors which must be taken into consideration. For instance, as the seller, you are required by Florida law to make certain disclosures. So, if you did or know... read article

Sarasota Real Estate Market Healthier With Fewer Distressed Sales

August distressed property sales, composed of foreclosures and short sales, continued to fall across both Sarasota County and Manatee County. By comparison, distressed property sales fell an astounding 53.9 percent from August of last year. As a result, the total number of distressed property sales decreased to just 5.8 percent of all completed residential real estate transactions. In August 2015, sales of distressed properties accounted for 12.8 of all residential property sales.

Closed sales of single family homes and condos combined went up in August by 1.8 percent over August of last year. Traditional sales, however, which include only non-distressed properties, shows an improvement of 9.9 percent over August 2015. Clearly, as sales of distressed properties decrease and account for a smaller market share, prices of non-distressed properties will experience positive gain. Although there were fewer distressed property sales, which drives down the total number of all closed transactions, this is good news for the health of the market across both counties.
Sarasota and Manatee County Median Home Prices
In addition to falling distressed property sales, both Sarasota and Manatee counties experienced a rise in median home prices. Residential real estate median prices continue to increase from 2015 to 2016. During August, the... read article

Biggest Real Estate Seller Listing Picture Mistakes

You're ready to sell your home, done some kitchen remodeling updates, along with a few other key improvements; and now, it's time to move forward. The good news is, the current local Sarasota real estate market favors sellers, but this doesn't mean it will be a short process. Buyers will continue picking and choosing which homes to see in-person after hours of going through online listings. If there's one aspect of home selling you should be very concerned with, it's how your home presents on the internet. The vast majority of home searches begin on the web, so, it's paramount your property pique interest and you should know which of the biggest real estate seller listing picture mistakes to avoid.

Biggest Real Estate Seller Listing Picture Mistakes
When people start their searches for residences in their locality, there are a few key reasons buyers choose a home. These primarily include: location, price, condition, energy efficiency, and various surfaces, components, and systems. However, even if a home is in an ideal location, is priced right, in good condition, and is energy-efficient, if it does not strike... read article

Difference Between Grandfathered And Unpermitted Work

The difference between “grandfathered” and “unpermitted” work is the former is considered legal but the latter is out of code compliance. In some instances, even work deemed to be grandfathered runs afoul of new building codes. Unpermitted work, however, is just that and the situation needs to be rectified or the home cannot be insured, causing a home loan to be denied. In either case, there’s at least some cause for concern, because of possible safety issues.
<h2>Difference between Grandfathered and Unpermitted Work</h2>
Whether you're relocating to the area or are <a href="">convinced it's time to buy a bigger home</a>, such circumstances could spell trouble. The term "grandfathered" simply means the work is acceptable, done to previous code standards and no further action is needed. But "unpermitted" work has nothing to do with the quality. Rather, being done without proper inspection and permitting. Even if the work is high quality, if done without a permit, it's not code compliant.
<blockquote>a home inspector will not tear into walls and ceilings to inspect wiring and other work, even if the house was never properly inspected after apparent illegal additions were built. That's not what inspectors... read article

Signs It's Time To Buy A Bigger Home

There are evident and reasonable signs it's time to buy a bigger home if you're beginning to feel cramped or your needs have changed. You might be considering moving into a larger property for one or more out of several reasons but are still unsure if it's a wise decision. For instance, you want to avoid all the common home remodeling headaches to improve your current property, a bigger residence already equipped with your needs is certainly a more attractive choice. Still, you need to know the legitimate reasons for upsizing.

Considerations before Moving into a Bigger Home
Of course, there are some considerations to think about before moving into a bigger home. A new mortgage definitely warrants deep thought because if you can get the best home loan rate and you can afford to pay a little more each month, you're one step closer to moving into a larger home. In addition to your mortgage principal and interest, slightly higher property taxes and insurance rates will also be a reality, as well as higher utility bills.

...if you feel like you're ready to move up, there... read article

5 Biggest Home Remodeling Mistakes

The five biggest home remodeling mistakes are completely unavoidable yet, manage to plague so many homeowners. With the local Sarasota real estate market favoring sellers, now is a great time to update your home to sell or to stay put and enjoy increased value, as well as equity. It's well-known certain home improvement projects help to sell a home and/or increase its market value. But the mechanics behind getting from drab to fab are entirely different, eluding the majority of homeowners. Over-personalization, is just one of many makeover pitfalls, causing an otherwise sellable home to linger longer on the market than comparable properties. Going overboard on landscaping is yet another error, as buyers see it as a maintenance headache rather than a plus.

5 Biggest Home Remodeling Mistakes
In a recent survey of 300 licensed general contractors, Consumer Reports magazine found the five biggest home remodeling mistakes. What's most remarkable about these blunders is a clear demonstration of stressed, myopic homeowners. Not seeing the forest for the trees might be a cliché expression, but it most definitely fits when it comes to remodeling a home. For... read article