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Frances Khalwy's Blog

By Frances Khawly &The KhawlyTeam | Agent in 33330
  • The Mansions at Acqualina

    Posted Under: Home Buying in Miami, In My Neighborhood in Miami, Investment Properties in Miami  |  July 10, 2012 9:02 AM  |  1,489 views  |  No comments

    A new standard for luxury real estate in North Miami is being built along Sunny Isles Beach.  The Mansions at Acqualina are being developed by LPLA Partners and designed by Luxury Living-FENDI CASA, adjacent to the Aqualina Resort and Spa.

    Acqualina is a member of The Leading Hotels of the World, and is AAA's only Five Diamond hotel/resort on the beaches of Miami.  Acqualina is also cited as one of Andrew Harper's top beach and family resorts in Florida and is a Fodor's Gold Award recipient.

    The magnificent entrance will feature a marbled lobby with a 26-foot arched and coffered ceiling.  Amenities will include the world-famous Il Mulino New York restaurant, the award-winning Acqualina Spa by ESPA, Costa Grill and Acqualina Beach Club.

    Construction on this luxury high-rise with 79 “sky mansions” has begun, including the 15,000 sq. ft. “Palazzo di Oro” penthouse.  Pre-construction pricing is starting at $5 million.

    Purchasing a luxury home requires the talent and expertise of a real estate professional who is experienced in handling such sensitive transactions.  The combination of extensive real estate knowledge and unparalleled negotiation skills is exemplified by The Khawly Team – South Florida’s Real Estate Specialists.  Frances Khawly and her team have earned over 25 real estate certifications pertinent to the current real estate market.  If you are interested in consulting a Realtor to sell a luxury home in Miami, FL or buy a luxury home in Miami, FL, contact The Khawly Team online or call Frances Khawly directly at 754.422.2098.

  • Miami-Dade Property Values Experience the First Increase in Four Years

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in Miami, Home Buying in Miami, Home Selling in Miami  |  July 3, 2012 10:27 AM  |  1,497 views  |  No comments

    As expected, property values for real estate in Miami-Dade have seen their first increase in the past four years.  The increase of two percent may seem small, but the indication is large.  Real estate experts have been predicting this modest recovery since figures began rebounding early in the first quarter.  Now, Miami-Dade homeowners have proof that the worst is behind them.

    “What we are seeing is a recovery period for Miami-Dade County,” Property Appraiser, Pedro J. Garcia said.

    Having said this, homeowners in Miami-Dade might be in for a bit of a surprise when they receive their tax bill, unless the county decides to lower the tax rate.  18 out of the county’s 35 municipalities have higher tax-rolls than they did last year.  The final tax bill is dependent on several other taxing districts, like the Miami-Dade school board and individual cities.

    As long as inventory continues to remain low and demand continues to be strong, home values will continue to increase.  Demand is showing no signs of slowing down either.  Investor interest remains a primary catalyst due to a steady increase in rental rates, and the generous influx of tenants across the board is supporting this increase.  Traditional buyers are attracted to the record low mortgage interest rates and record high affordability.

    This improvement in home values is also making it more attractive for home owners to sell their Miami-Dade homes.  If you have been waiting for the right time to sell your property, contact Frances Khawly of the Khawly Team – South Florida’s Real Estate Specialists.  With over 25 real estate certifications, a full-time team of knowledgeable professionals and hundreds of happy clients, you can trust that the sale or purchase of your Miami home is in qualified hands.

    If you are interested in taking advantage of great home values and interest rates, the Khawly Team can also help you search Miami-Dade homes and expertly represent you as an experienced buyer-agent during the home buying process.

    Image(s): FreeDigitalPhotos.net

  • Miami Real Estate has Global Appeal

    Posted Under: Home Buying in Miami, Home Selling in Miami, Investment Properties in Miami  |  June 26, 2012 8:52 AM  |  1,523 views  |  2 comments

    Miami has always been an eclectic city known for its international flare and cultural diversity within the community.  And now that real estate in Miami is more affordable than it has been in many years, international buyers are flocking to this vibrant metropolis and buying as much property as possible.

    According to DataQuick, foreign mailing addresses were attached to 5.3 percent of homes purchased in the last six months of 2011.  Out of a total population of 5,564,635, this figure accounts for a total of 294,925 Miami homeowners.  If that wasn’t impressive enough, the Miami metro area accounted for 30 percent of Florida’s international buyers’ pool.

    These foreign buyers are coming from various parts of the world, such as Latin America, Europe, and Canada.  Canada represented 70.5 percent of foreign buyers’ addresses, followed by 2.9 percent from Argentina and 2.3 percent from Venezuela – this according to public records data.

    83 percent of Realtors in Miami say that they have worked with an international buyer within the past year.  Half of these Realtors also said they have seen a dramatic increase in the number of foreign buyers just in the past six months alone.

    These buyers are attracted to the stability of the United States, relative to the rest of the world, and see a rare opportunity to purchase at low prices.  It is also much easier for a foreigner to buy real estate in the United States than it is in other parts of the world.  In fact, certain countries will not even allow non-residents to purchase property.

    If you would like to search for homes in Miami, contact Frances Khawly and the Khawly Team – Miami’s Real Estate Specialists.  With over 25 real estate certifications, a full-time team of knowledgeable professionals and hundreds of happy clients, you can trust that the sale or purchase of your Miami home is in qualified hands.

    Image(s): FreeDigitalPhotos.net

  • Chateau Beach Residences – Sunny Isles Beach

    Posted Under: Home Buying in Sunny Isles Beach, Celebrity Homes in Sunny Isles Beach, Property Q&A in Sunny Isles Beach  |  June 19, 2012 12:31 PM  |  1,476 views  |  No comments

    An established developer, Chateau Group, from South America has made landfall in Miami, FL.  The company has planned a luxury condominium complex that will offer world class amenities and quality for its residents.  The complex is scheduled to break ground in September, 2012 for anticipated completion in the Fall of 2014.

    Château Beach Residences will cover one acre on the sought-after coastline known as Sunny Isles Beach, along Collins Avenue.  The 84-unit and 33-story project will feature signature his and her spas with therapies suites, a relaxation terrace with an aromatherapy Jacuzzi, an ocean view fitness center, a wine lounge with private lockers, a cigar bar with humidor boxes, a theatre room, a kids’ club, and a ballroom.

    The units will feature 11-foot ceiling penthouses, standard 10-foot ceilings, floor to ceiling impact glass, private elevators and semi-private elevators in select units, Italian cabinetry, and top of the line appliances.  Standard units will offer 2 – 4 bedrooms, ranging from 2,890 square feet to 4,305 square feet.  Penthouses will offer 8,500 to 9,300 square feet.

    The payment schedule and reservation agreement is as follows:

    • Reservation Agreement:  $150,000
    • Purchase Agreement:  Balance of 30% deposit
    • Pour floor:  20% deposit
    • Top off:  20% deposit
    • Closing:  30% deposit

    If you are interested in learning more about this luxurious condominium, contact Frances Khawly and the Khawly Team – Miami’s Real Estate Specialists.  With over 25 real estate certifications, a full-time team of knowledgeable professionals and hundreds of happy clients, you can trust that the sale or purchase of your Miami home is in good hands.

    Image(s): FreeDigitalPhotos.net

  • Homeowner’s Insurance for South Florida Real Estate

    Posted Under: Home Buying in South Florida, Home Insurance in South Florida, Investment Properties in South Florida  |  June 12, 2012 9:22 AM  |  1,550 views  |  No comments

    Allowing your homeowner’s insurance policy to lapse can be a costly mistake.  This is a lesson one South Florida real estate owner learned the hard way when he received notice that his annual plan would cost $18,000.

    Mark Kunzelmann, a North Palm Beach homeowner, let his homeowner’s insurance policy lapse – a policy that is required by the lender.  In the event that such a thing occurs, the lender is legally allowed to secure a new policy, passing the cost onto the borrower.  In this case, Kunzelmann’s policy went from $2,500/year to $18,000/year!

    While the ethics of such an exorbitant increase are certainly questionable – especially considering the fact that this amount included an 11 percent commission payment from the insurance company to the lender – the focus of this blog will be on prevention.

    Home insurance premiums are increasing an average of 10 percent each year, so when it comes time for you to renew yours, make sure you shop around.  Don’t base your coverage amount of the appraised value of your property, since this value includes land.  Rather, base it primarily on the value of your home and make personal possessions secondary.  If you’re not sure what the value of your home is, review your tax record – your home assessment should be listed separately from land.

    After you decide on the coverage amount, make sure you have a full understanding of what the policy covers.  Too often, homeowners don’t find out the limitations of their plan until they file a claim.  Needless to say, this is not the time you want to learn that something you thought was covered will not be covered after all.

    Stay on top of your deductible.  Insurance companies are notorious for changing these amounts without giving you prior notification, so do your due diligence to ensure that you are not caught off-guard.

    Last, but certainly not least, keep your homeowner’s insurance policy documentation organized and secured in a fire-proof box.  Conduct a home inventory – www.uphelp.org is a great site to help you with this – and pair the inventory worksheet with receipts, photos, etc. in your storage unit.

    If you would like to sell a home in Miami or search for homes in Miami, contact Frances Khawly and the Khawly Team – Miami’s Real Estate Specialists.  With over 25 real estate certifications, a full-time team of knowledgeable professionals and hundreds of happy clients, you can trust that the sale or purchase of your Miami home is in good hands.

    Image(s): FreeDigitalPhotos.net

  • Assessments in Miami-Dade Improve

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in Miami-dade County, Home Buying in Miami-dade County, Home Selling in Miami-dade County  |  June 5, 2012 8:38 AM  |  1,380 views  |  No comments

    Tax Assessments in Miami-Dade have increased for the first time since 2007.  The countywide taxable value of all real estate rose 1.48 percent from $186.96 to $189.73 billion since last year, according to an estimate released Thursday by Miami-Dade Property Appraiser Pedro J. Garcia.

    “Coastal municipalities with a concentration of high-end properties experienced the most growth in property values, while others had only negligible changes,’’ Garcia said in a statement. He added: “While it is premature to celebrate a complete recovery of the county’s real estate industry, there was a clear positive trend, especially in the last three months of 2011.’’

    Taxing authorities will not set their 2012-13 tax rates — the figures multiplied by the taxable value of real estate to determine taxes — until later this year, making it difficult to determine how this will affect property taxes at the present time.

    Here’s a look at how various cities in South Florida have improved:

    These increases in assessed value point towards stabilization in the South Florida real estate market, especially Miami-Dade.  These values also follow a steady stream of monthly increases in home prices in Miami-Dade.  However, these figures are based on home sales data from 2011.  Based on the improvements we’ve already seen in home values in 2012, assessments for next year should be up as well.

     “The numbers basically confirm what we already knew. Property values are coming back.’’ says a local real estate broker.

    If you would like to sell a home in Miami or search for homes in Miami, contact Frances Khawly and the Khawly Team – Miami’s Real Estate Specialists.  With over 25 real estate certifications, a full-time team of knowledgeable professionals and hundreds of happy clients, you can trust that the sale or purchase of your Miami home is in good hands.

    Image(s): FreeDigitalPhotos.net

  • Miami Real Estate is Back!

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in Miami, Home Buying in Miami, Home Selling in Miami  |  May 29, 2012 7:25 AM  |  1,182 views  |  No comments

    The Miami Real Estate Market is making a comeback.  Strong demand from buyers, coupled with low inventory, has created the perfect conditions for bidding wars and a transition into a seller’s market.

    In Miami-Dade, home prices continued to move up 30 percent for condos to $150,000, and 8.2 percent for single-family homes to $183,000 - this according to figures released last Tuesday by the Miami Association of Realtors (MAR) comparing current trends to data from one year ago.

    Miami Realtors say the inventory of residential listings has decreased 34 percent in the past year in Miami-Dade, from 17,897 to 11,878.  It continues to decrease in 2012, representing a 4 percent decline since March – this also according to MAR.

    Due to these conditions, it’s not uncommon for real estate agents in Miami to list a home one day and receive multiple offers the next.  And the offers being received are the not the low-ball offers we’ve been hearing about in prior years.  Buyers are losing their leverage due to the inventory shortage, making offers more competitive and above list price at times.

    Meanwhile, distressed properties still make up a large number of sales.

    In April, 47 percent of all closed residential sales in Miami-Dade were distressed, including REOs (bank-owned properties) and short sales – this compared to 59 percent in April 2011, and 49 percent in March 2012.

    There are still many distressed properties in the backlog that will be gradually released onto the market, however, these homes will probably be sold online.

    From a statewide perspective - median sales prices in April increased 10.2 percent to $144,350 for single-family homes and 16.1 percent to $108,000 for condos, according to the Florida Realtors Industry Data and Analysis department and vendor partner 10K Research and Marketing. The national median price for existing sales of all housing types was $177,400 in April 2012, a 10.1 percent increase from one year ago.

    If you would like to sell a home in Miami or search for homes in Miami, contact Frances Khawly and the Khawly Team – Miami’s Real Estate Specialists.  With over 25 real estate certifications, a full-time team of knowledgeable professionals and hundreds of happy clients, you can trust that the sale or purchase of your Miami home is in good hands.

    Image(s): FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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