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Village of Pinecrest to Impose Building Restrictions

Posted by on Apr 15, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Possible Rule Changes to Limit Pinecrest Florida Real Estate Development

Pinecrest May Limit ‘McMansions’

Article by Madison Fantozzi of The Miami Herald

pinecrest florida real estatePinecrest council members want to study possible new rules aimed at limiting property owners ability to build large homes on relatively small lots.

The council decided Tuesday not to immediately approve a set of such rules, instead opting to get more input from contractors and village residents. Several contractors spoke against the proposed changes, but Mayor Cindy Lerner said the council needs to act to preserve the village’s character.

“My family moved here in 1960, when our homes were small ranches on big lots,” Lerner said. “That’s the character of Pinecrest. We value green space. With these larger homes, we’ve lost a lot of green space and now we’re realizing the adverse impact of these buildings on the environment.”

Although the average size of homes constructed in the village in the past several months is 8,500 square feet, there are homes that have been constructed in recent years that are as large as 16,000 and 20,000 square feet, according to village Planning Director Stephen Olmsted.

Among the rule changes on Tuesday’s agenda was an increase in the “setback,” or minimum distance between a home and a side lot line from 25 to 30 feet for a single-story house. Olmstead said this would reduce the scale of buildings and address associated impacts like runoff of storm water onto neighboring properties.

The council also considered reducing the overall height of structures in single-family residential districts from 35 feet to 32 feet, and increasing front-yard setbacks from 50 feet to 55 feet for a one-story structure, or 60 feet for the second story of a structure.

Olmsted said the proposed amendments would align the code with the village’s Master Plan, which promotes environmental sustainability and conservation.

“We’ve heard from a lot of people in suits with greedy ideas,” said Karen Ross, council member Bob Ross’ wife. “McMansions are ruining the village’s character. There’s no need for more large homes — we’re not crying for the tax dollars.”

Also on Tuesday, the council postponed discussion of a possible restaurant at Pinecrest Gardens. When a Gardens neighbor wanted to discuss the proposal, Lerner gaveled down the resident and adjourned the meeting.

The mayor said the topic “needs a breather.”

As one of Miami’s best realtors, you will find that I am honest & knowledgeable with over 10 years of experience selling homes in numerous areas within Miami-Dade. As a Miami native, I not only know but specialize in many neighborhoods including Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Pinecrest, Palmetto Bay, Key Biscayne, Miami Beach, High Pines, and South Miami.

If you are considering buying or selling your home and would like to work with an excellent realtor who specializes in any of these areas, feel free to contact me directly at 786-488-9765 or email me at John@JohnSeidel.com today for your consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Check back with us frequently as we are constantly posting the latest sales, statistics, and local news on Miami’s Real Estate market.

Miami Real Estate Property Increasingly Attracting International Buyers

Posted by on Apr 14, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Miami International Real Estate Buyers

Brazilians and Colombians Top List of Consumers Searching Miami.

Article by MiamiRE

miami international real estateMiami, FL – South Florida, the top area in the nation for international real estate buyers, continues to increasingly attract attention from consumers worldwide, according to the 30,000-member MIAMI Association of Realtors. In February, Brazil again ranked first for foreign consumers searching for Miami properties on Miamire.com, MIAMI’s property search portal. Colombians were in second place, mirroring results from a year ago. Consumers from India ranked second, moving up significantly compared to February 2013, when India ranked tenth.

Top countries for consumers searching South Florida properties on Miamire.com in February 2014 compared to February 2013 were from: Brazil, Colombia, Canada, India, Argentina, Venezuela, Bolivia, France, United Kingdom, and Russia.

Nationally, the Miami-Fort Lauderdale area is consistently one of the top markets for most of the highest-ranking countries searching for property in the U.S. According to Realtor.com®, the top countries (outside the U.S.) where global consumers were most engaged on Realtor.com® &Realtor.com® International in December 2013 were:

Based on the 2013 Miami International Market Report, Miami attracts a significant number of buyers from countries not reflected in property search rankings above, including Venezuela, Colombia, Argentina, Peru, and Ecuador.

Miami 2nd Most Searched U.S. City by International Consumers

Miami again ranked second only behind Los Angeles among the top ten overall most searched U.S. cities by non-U.S. consumers throughout the month of December 2013 (latest figures available). Fort Lauderdale ranked seventh. If the Miami-Fort Lauderdale market were combined, the ranking would be even higher.

As one of Miami’s best realtors, you will find that I am honest & knowledgeable with over 10 years of experience selling homes in numerous areas within Miami-Dade. As a Miami native, I not only know but specialize in many neighborhoods including Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Pinecrest, Palmetto Bay, Key Biscayne, Miami Beach, High Pines, and South Miami.

If you are considering buying or selling your home and would like to work with an excellent realtor who specializes in any of these areas, feel free to contact me directly at 786-488-9765 or email me at John@JohnSeidel.com today for your consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Check back with us frequently as we are constantly posting the latest sales, statistics, and local news on Miami’s Real Estate market.

Open House Miami FL – April 13th from 1-3 pm

Posted by on Apr 13, 2014 in Blog, Listings, Miami Real Estate | 0 comments

open house miamiOpen House Miami Real Estate Listing

A Rare Gem in This Area!

Come and preview this gorgeous 2 story townhome located centrally to Downtown, Brickell, Airport, Coconut Grove, Coral Gables and Key Biscayne. Built in 2002, this 3 bedroom, 2-1/2 bath home features a grand entrance into the living room with soaring ceilings. The floors are marble throughout the living areas and wood in the bedrooms. The bathrooms have marble flooring, marble for the bath surround, and wood cabinets with granite counter tops. In the master bathroom there is a Jacuzzi tub. There are custom built closets, a walk-in closet in the master bedroom, and an indoor laundry closet. The kitchen has wood cabinets, granite counter tops and stainless steel appliances. The backyard has a pool and the property is completely fenced and gated for security and privacy. The home has a 1 car garage as well as a bricked driveway. It also comes with hurricane shutters. A Must See!

Property details: 3 bedrooms, 2-1/2 bathrooms, 2,312 sq ft

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1359 SW 23 ST, Miami, FL 33145

$509,000 (Reduced)

(Click here to view a video presentation of this Miami Real Estate listing)

As one of Miami’s best realtors, you will find that I am honest & knowledgeable with over 10 years of experience selling homes in numerous areas within Miami-Dade. As a Miami native, I not only know but specialize in many neighborhoods including Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Pinecrest, Palmetto Bay, Key Biscayne, Miami Beach, High Pines, and South Miami.

If you are considering buying or selling your home and would like to work with an excellent realtor who specializes in any of these areas, feel free to contact me directly at 786-488-9765 or email me at John@JohnSeidel.com today for your consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Check back with us frequently as we are constantly posting the latest sales, statistics, and local news on Miami’s Real Estate market.

Tigertail Ave Coconut Grove

Posted by on Apr 11, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Behind the Naming of Tigertail Ave Coconut Grove

Who is Tiger Tail?

tigertail ave coconut groveTigertail Ave in Coconut Grove is named after a local resident and one of the famous Seminole Indians of the Second Seminole War. Tiger Tail was born in Spanish Florida around 1790 and was the son of the chief of the Tallahassee Seminoles. His real name was Thlocklo Tustenuggee, or Fish Warrior. His physique was that of an athlete being over six feet tall, strongly-built, with dark skin, deep creases on his face, and a nose and mouth that were considerably larger than the average.

Despite the First Seminole War (1817 –1818), Fish Warriors tribe remained friendly with the white man. He lived with Robert Gambles, a prominent plantation owner, where he learned the ways of the white man. He spoke English fluently, became a Christian and was baptized, and had many friends among the white men.

After the United States purchased Florida from Spain in 1821, two years later Governor Duval was negotiating a peaceful solution with the Indians in The Treaty of Moultrie Creek. During which time, Fish Warrior arranged athletic activities to keep the Indians busy. It was not long that he would rise to become the star athlete. During the competitions, he would wear a strip of panther skin dangling from his belt earning him the nickname “Tiger Tail”.

The Treaty of Moultrie Creek would not go through due to the language calling for the removal of Indians across 4,000,000 acres of land expanding from Ocala south to Charlotte Harbour. This displeased many and for the next twelve years there would be trouble within the tribes. Soon the moderate Indian leaders would lose their influence over the tribes and would be replaced by firebrands such as Micanopy, Billy Bowlegs, Osceola and Tiger Tail. These new chiefs would led their tribes into one of the most savage and costly wars in American history, The Second Seminole War (1835 -1842). Chief Tiger Tail earned his reputation among the whites as the most talented and devious of all the chiefs.

Toward the end of the war, the Indians either had retreated into the Everglades, or were killed or captured and sent to the Oklahoma Reservation. Chief Tiger Tail managed to escape yet was captured by American troops later on in a village where he was staying. He was then sent to the Oklahoma Reservation but escaped during transportation.

In the 1860’s Chief Tiger Tail, about 70 years old, would arrive in Dade County and settle in the area that was soon to be known as “Coconut Grove”. He camped on the bluff in the area north of where Aviation Avenue is today. He became friendly with the local residents, wandering up and down the trails looking to trade or just to visit. The ill-defined trail began at about where 27th Avenue is today and continued off into the woods to about the location of today’s 17th Avenue. This trail was nicknamed “Tiger Tail’s Trail” after the white settlers’ new Indian friend.

Chief Tiger Tail died in 1882 but the trail remained and officially in 1912 the trial would be called “Tigertail Avenue”.

As one of Miami’s best realtors, you will find that I am honest & knowledgeable with over 10 years of experience selling homes in numerous areas within Miami-Dade. As a Miami native, I not only know but specialize in many neighborhoods including Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Pinecrest, Palmetto Bay, Key Biscayne, Miami Beach, High Pines, and South Miami.

If you are considering buying or selling your home and would like to work with an excellent realtor who specializes in any of these areas, feel free to contact me directly at 786-488-9765 or email me at John@JohnSeidel.com today for your consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Check back with us frequently as we are constantly posting the latest sales, statistics, and local news on Miami’s Real Estate market.

Fleur de Lys Mansion Sold For $102 Million

Posted by on Apr 9, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Lavish California Mansion Sold For $102 Million

Article by Alyssa Newcomb of Good Morning America

fleur de lys mansion soldFleur de Lys, a sprawling estate in Los Angeles, has been scooped up by a deep-pockets buyer for $102 million, making it the highest price home sale ever recorded in the county.

Three anonymous billionaires duked it in a bidding war before one emerged victorious, settling on an all-cash deal for the home that included antique furnishings, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The lavish 50,000-square foot estate looks like a version of Versailles. The main house is reached by driving down a half mile long tree-lined private driveway, according to the Westside Estate Agency, which listed Fleur de Lys.

The estate sits on five acres in Los Angeles’ Westside and boasts a dozen bedrooms.

It was previously owned by socialite Suzanne Saperstein, who first listed the property in 2007.

As one of Miami’s best realtors, you will find that I am honest & knowledgeable with over 10 years of experience selling homes in numerous areas within Miami-Dade. As a Miami native, I not only know but specialize in many neighborhoods including Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Pinecrest, Palmetto Bay, Key Biscayne, Miami Beach, High Pines, and South Miami.

If you are considering buying or selling your home and would like to work with an excellent realtor who specializes in any of these areas, feel free to contact me directly at 786-488-9765 or email me at John@JohnSeidel.com today for your consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Check back with us frequently as we are constantly posting the latest sales, statistics, and local news on Miami’s Real Estate market.

South Florida Property Industry Targets Tech Outfits

Posted by on Apr 8, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Upcoming conference aimed at attracting IT companies to Miami area

Article by Christopher Cameron of the Real Deal

miami it companiesMiami’s commercial real estate sector is looking to the tech industry for future expansion.

Many in the real estate business are hoping that the upcoming eMerge Americas Techweek conference, which brings together civic leaders, industry bigwigs and entrepreneurs with the purpose of establishing a technology corridor for the Americas, will spark growth in the office market.

“Like the South by Southwest conference, which draws 250,000 people to Austin every year, eMerge Americas Techweek has the potential to be transformative for our region,” Alan Kleber, a managing principal at Cresa South Florida, told GlobeSt. “We believe eMerge Americas is poised to dramatically impact Miami’s economy, from finance and healthcare, from government to real estate, and from education to entertainment and entrepreneurship.”

So far, corporations like IBM, JP Morgan, Univision, Cisco, as well as founding partners Greenberg Traurig, P.A., the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Medina Capital and Miami-Dade County, have all signed on to help establish a technology hub for the Americas in Miami.

As one of Miami’s best realtors, you will find that I am honest & knowledgeable with over 10 years of experience selling homes in numerous areas within Miami-Dade. As a Miami native, I not only know but specialize in many neighborhoods including Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Pinecrest, Palmetto Bay, Key Biscayne, Miami Beach, High Pines, and South Miami.

If you are considering buying or selling your home and would like to work with an excellent realtor who specializes in any of these areas, feel free to contact me directly at 786-488-9765 or email me at John@JohnSeidel.com today for your consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Check back with us frequently as we are constantly posting the latest sales, statistics, and local news on Miami’s Real Estate market.

New Listing – Charming Coral Gables Property in Great Location!

Posted by on Apr 7, 2014 in Blog, Coral Gables Real Estate, Housing, Listings | 0 comments

Coral Gables Real Estate for Sale

Coral Gables Homes for SaleLocation! Charming Art Deco Beauty. When you enter this Beautiful home, you walk into a room with Volume Beamed Ceilings. It also features Hardwood floors, Fireplace, 2 bedrooms upstairs, 1 car garage, Nice covered patio and Yard. Walking distance to the Youth Center, Miracle Mile, Restaurants and Shopping and close to the Trolly. A must see.

Property details: 2 bedrooms, 1 bathrooms, 1,361 sq ft, 5,750 lot size

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334 Sarto Ave, Coral Gables, FL 33134

$449,000

(Click here to view a video presentation of this Coral Gables Real Estate listing)

As one of Miami’s best realtors, you will find that I am honest & knowledgeable with over 10 years of experience selling homes in numerous areas within Miami-Dade. As a Miami native, I not only know but specialize in many neighborhoods including Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Pinecrest, Palmetto Bay, Key Biscayne, Miami Beach, High Pines, and South Miami.

If you are considering buying or selling your home and would like to work with an excellent realtor who specializes in any of these areas, feel free to contact me directly at 786-488-9765 or email me at John@JohnSeidel.com today for your consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Check back with us frequently as we are constantly posting the latest sales, statistics, and local news on Miami’s Real Estate market.

Used Appliances vs New Models

Posted by on Apr 4, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Are used appliances ‘greener’?

BY ANGIE HICKS OF THE MIAMI HERALD

used appliances vs newWhat’s the better deal for your pocketbook and the environment: a new major appliance or a refurbished one?

Several consumers who recently replaced washers and dryers told our research team that they bought used because those models might last just as long as new ones and that reusing is a good “green” practice.

One couple said that when their 20-year-old washing machine finally died, they were disappointed when the brand-new replacement lasted only five years. Instead of taking a chance on another new model, they spent $250 on a used model they figure will last at least as long as a new one.

Another consumer bought a refurbished dryer for $200 rather than spend $1,000 on a unit she believed would last no more than the 10 years she expects her used unit to remain reliable.

To these people, and others like them, buying used saves the green in wallets while eliminating the need to use resources to make a new washer or dryer.

Highly rated appliance repair pros tell our team that new appliances tend to have about half the life span of past models. Reasons they cite include the use of cheaper raw materials and a greater reliance on computerized systems.

So if it’s time for you to replace a major appliance, particularly a washer or drier, consider whether a refurbished model might be a good value, and find a local shop that’s gotten good consumer reviews on a trusted online site.

Before you buy new:

  • Consider a unit’s EPA Energy Star rating, but also how long it’s expected to last.
  • Research possible features and decide before shopping which ones you actually need.

As one of Miami’s best realtors, you will find that I am honest & knowledgeable with over 10 years of experience selling homes in numerous areas within Miami-Dade. As a Miami native, I not only know but specialize in many neighborhoods including Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Pinecrest, Palmetto Bay, Key Biscayne, Miami Beach, High Pines, and South Miami.

If you are considering buying or selling your home and would like to work with an excellent realtor who specializes in any of these areas, feel free to contact me directly at 786-488-9765 or email me at John@JohnSeidel.com today for your consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Check back with us frequently as we are constantly posting the latest sales, statistics, and local news on Miami’s Real Estate market.

Buying vs Renting a Home

Posted by on Apr 2, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Buying a home in South Florida trumps renting, new study finds

BY MARTHA BRANNIGAN OF THE MIAMI HERALD

buying vs renting a homeTo rent or to buy is a perennial debate for those mulling their housing options.

It’s still cheaper to buy a home than to rent in Miami-Dade and Broward counties, despite the double whammy of sharply rising home prices and mortgage rates, according to a new housing affordability study by RealtyTrac.

But the math advantage of buying is shrinking.

In Miami-Dade, the monthly house payment jumped 29 percent to $790 a month in the fourth quarter of 2013 from $614 a year earlier, according to the Irvine, Calif.-based data firm.

Those figures are based on a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage, insurance, taxes and maintenance on a median-priced, three-bedroom house, after subtracting the income-tax benefit.

Renting a comparable three-bedroom house in Miami-Dade last year cost $1,539 a month, RealtyTrac said, using the average fair market rent for the area set by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

For Broward, the monthly payment on a median-priced house rose 31 percent to $912 in the fourth quarter of 2013 from $695 a year earlier. The big spike was due to an increase in the median home price coupled with higher mortgage rates.

Even so, that was well below the $1,763 a month cost of renting a similar house in Broward, RealtyTrac said.

The median home price rose 17 percent to $166,000 in Miami-Dade and 19 percent to $191,500 in Broward in the fourth quarter of 2013 from a year earlier, according to RealtyTrac.

The study underscores the divergence emerging in the housing recovery: Home-ownership costs, based on sales prices and interest rates, have risen far more than median household incomes.

“The monthly cost of owning a home is still less than renting in the majority of markets,” Daren Blomquist, vice president of RealtyTrac, said in a statement. “But the cost of financed homeownership is becoming dangerously disconnected with still-stagnant median incomes, driven not by shoddy underwriting practices this time around but by investors and other cash buyers who are not tethered to the typical affordability constraints.”

For Miami-Dade, the minimum qualifying income needed to buy a median-priced home in the fourth quarter of 2013 was $37,942, up from $29,478 a year earlier. For Broward, the minimum income needed jumped to $43,771 from $33,359. The study assumes no more than 25 percent of household income is used for a monthly house payment.

Buying came out cheaper than renting in 296 out of 325 U.S. counties analyzed in the study. Counties where renting was less expensive than buying included San Francisco, Orange, Santa Clara, Alameda and Ventura in California, and Suffolk and Westchester in the greater New York area.

As one of Miami’s best realtors, you will find that I am honest & knowledgeable with over 10 years of experience selling homes in numerous areas within Miami-Dade. As a Miami native, I not only know but specialize in many neighborhoods including Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Pinecrest, Palmetto Bay, Key Biscayne, Miami Beach, High Pines, and South Miami.

If you are considering buying or selling your home and would like to work with an excellent realtor who specializes in any of these areas, feel free to contact me directly at 786-488-9765 or email me at John@JohnSeidel.com today for your consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Check back with us frequently as we are constantly posting the latest sales, statistics, and local news on Miami’s Real Estate market.

The Move-Up Buyer

Posted by on Apr 1, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

The Short List: John Seidel’s Tips for Working with the Move-Up Buyer

by Doug Pitorak of Miami Agent

move up buyersEvery week, we ask a real estate professional for their Short List, a collection of tips and recommendations on an essential topic in real estate. This week, we spoke with John Seidel, a Realtor with Coldwell Banker in Coral Gables.

11. Sit down and carefully go through the value of their home before you go out and start showing them more expensive properties to buy.

10. Set the stage by going to their home and learn about their lifestyle and why they bought their current property and what they want that’s different then what they currently own.

9. Give them a range of low to high. A worst case scenario on their own home always helps so they are comfortable with the price range of homes they are looking to upgrade to. It will make you feel more comfortable and confident when you are showing them homes, knowing that they are fully aware of the expectations of their current residence.

8. As with any purchase, ensure your buyer knows to calculate their new property taxes on the higher end purchase. Don’t assume they have already figured out what their new tax base will be, not to mention insurance costs – wind, homeowners and flood, if it’s required.

7. Determine if they need to sell their home first before they can buy or if they are depending on the equity in their home to purchase a more expensive one. This is why I like to go over a worst case scenario when selling their home; you may negotiate a good price on the sale of their home, but there is a chance that price can go down some after an inspection or an appraisal, if there is a financing contingency.

6. Be patient. It can take a while. Buyers today are very particular with what they want in a home, especially if they are upgrading. Make sure they are on the MLS alerts. I have found this to be an incredibly useful tool, as they are alerted to new listings or price reductions instantly.

5. Make sure you know who all the decision makers are. Sometimes a family member/parent is involved.
Understand if that family member – who may be assisting in the purchase – needs to also be included in the search and previews of the homes.

4. Listen closely to the amenities your client is looking for, as with any buyer. If there is a couple involved, I
always make a list for each one and try to come up with a compromise if they are not exactly looking for the same things. Then, I review it with them to ensure we are all on the same page.

3. Find out the real reason for moving. Do a lot of listening and watch body language.

2. Show a variety of houses.

1. And again, as with any buyer you work with, always Get a pre-approval right away before you start showing any properties. They need to be realistic in expectations, or you will waste your time.

As one of Miami’s best realtors, you will find that I am honest & knowledgeable with over 10 years of experience selling homes in numerous areas within Miami-Dade. As a Miami native, I not only know but specialize in many neighborhoods including Coconut Grove, Coral Gables, Pinecrest, Palmetto Bay, Key Biscayne, Miami Beach, High Pines, and South Miami.

If you are considering buying or selling your home and would like to work with an excellent realtor who specializes in any of these areas, feel free to contact me directly at 786-488-9765 or email me at John@JohnSeidel.com today for your consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Check back with us frequently as we are constantly posting the latest sales, statistics, and local news on Miami’s Real Estate market.