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Home Buying Tips

Tips that I've learned through the years, or that others have shared that might be of help to home buyers out there. Some of these are relevant to buyers in the Destin area, others are just general information worthy of a share.

Found 74 blog entries about Home Buying Tips.

Townhomes in the Brownstones at Kelly PlantationHave you ever considered buying a townhome? In the Destin and Scenic 30A area there were 1,773 listings sold in the last three months. Townhomes made up 10% of these sales, behind single-family homes and condos.

Destin Townhomes differ from condos in a very specific way. With a condo, you share ownership of the roof, the underlying ground, and other common areas. With a townhome, you own the ground up to and including the roof. The only thing you share in a Destin townhome with your neighbor is the wall that separates you and any common amenities such as pool or tennis courts.

Destin townhomes offer a low maintenance lifestyle without sacrificing the space one is used to in a single-family home. Sizes range from cozy patio homes under 1000 sq. ft.

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Sales in Destin and along Scenic 30A remain brisk as we enter fall. While units sold declined slightly, total dollar volume of sales increased. Inventories are near an all time low and we are seeing upward pressure on prices.

The next 8 weeks represent the seasonally best buying opportunity of the year. Most are focused on the holidays allowing savvy buyers an opportunity to negotiate with more anxious sellers.

For those taking advantage of this prime time of year for buying, we've included some tools to assist with your search. Secrets to Buying a Profitable Condo Rental, is worth a read, especially for anyone considering a possible rental investment. Spotlight on Seagrove Beach highlights a less commercial area of the Emerald Coast, perfect for a

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Here is the latest summary of the Destin real estate scene for September 2016. This gives you a snapshot of home, condo and land sales in Destin FL and the surrounding Emerald Coast.

Total residential sales for Destin and the surrounding towns were $267,488,702 with an average sale price of $432,830. Properties averaged only 123 days on the market with a closing price of 96% of the asking price. This was a robust September market, that sold more single-family homes and townhomes then the same time in 2015. Condo sales were down slightly, but prices increased 11%.

Strong September performing areas included:

  • Fort Walton Beach: 141 sales
  • Navarre: 122 sales
  • Destin: 85 sales
  • Niceville: 79 sales

Destin Home Sales

Destin real estate update72 single-family

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Perhaps you're considering purchasing a condo on the Emerald Coast, maybe for an investment, but you're not sure where. With so many places to choose from, sometimes it's hard to know where to begin. This graph below shows the average condo sale price for August 2016 in these popular areas along the Emerald Coast. It also shows the comparable price from August of 2015, so you can see just how your investment would have fared.

Notice, real estate along 30A West and the Miramar Beach, Sandestin Resort areas showed the most gains. 30A East and Navarre, showed some depreciation. This is only for one month, we'd be happy to send you updates for sold listings, or a monthly report of the stats in desired areas.


Average sale prices for condos in August 2015

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Home buying deal breakerWe researched online and polled past clients to find out what features they would consider deal breakers while viewing a house. Keep in mind that everyone has different opinions and a deal breaker for one person might be an inconvenience for another. Still, if you're selling a home, you might find some of these points helpful.

Popular Deal Breakers

1.  Design flaws that are too costly or time consuming to change

2. Open concept houses

3. Closed floor plans

4. Two-story or split-level homes

5. Carpeting

6. Insufficient closet space

7. Old Roman-style tubs with step down

8. Not enough bathrooms

9. Kitchen peninsula (vs an island)

10. Washer/Dryer in kitchen

11. Close proximity to power lines

12. Indoor swimming pool

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This Destin real estate update for July 2016 gives you a snapshot of home, condo and land sales in Destin FL and the surrounding Emerald Coast.

When summer rolls around, rental season kicks into full gear and sellers are less willing and less negotiable to sell.  Buyers don't seem to notice too much though, as their attention turns to outdoor activities and our beautiful beaches. That being said, residential sales in the Destin area totaled $351,547,336. The average sale price was $372,008 and real estate averaged only 111 days on the market. The average seller received 95% of their asking price.

Strong July performing areas included:

  • Navarre: 159 sales
  • Fort Walton Beach: 149 sales
  • Crestview: 112 sales
  • Miramar/Sandestin: 95 sales
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Destin golf community checklistMoving to a Destin Golf community? Heres a tool to help you keep track.

Buying a home can be overwhelming, to say the least. You've just spent the day touring some of Destin's finest golf communities, but they're all blending together. The Burnt Pine house overlooking the golf course had a pool, or did it? Was it the Regatta Bay listing that had no short term rentals, or the Baytowne property?

Here's a handy little tool you can use to keep track of all the Destin golf homes or condos you look at. Just fill in the name of the community, address and MLS#, the price, note some of the pros and cons and give the golf course your own star rating. Take a quick photo, and later that night when you're discussing the various homes, it will all come back to

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This real estate nightmare involves two sales of the SAME HOME on the SAME DAY, combined with some sloppy paperwork by the Title Company. Subsequently, the whole thing fell apart, just like a house of cards.  I'm not trying to scare anyone, but really felt that this story needed to be told. It's something that home buyers, sellers or other agents need to be aware of.

The First Deal

After looking at several Destin homes, enduring inspections, appraisals, and lender related delays, our buyers were excited about closing on their new home last Friday. Everything went smoothly as buyers and sellers both signed their respective paperwork, the lender authorized funding, and the title company began disbursement.

We picked up our check on the following

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This Destin real estate update gives you a snapshot of home, condo and land sales in Destin FL and the surrounding Emerald Coast areas for May, 2016.

Destin Home Sales

Destin real estate updateDestin home sales in May 2016 reflected an active market with almost $30,000,000 in sales volume. The average price was $596,972 and houses closed at an impressive 94% of selling price. Sales of luxury homes on 30A have been red hot with median prices approaching $2,000,000 in both Rosemary Beach and Seaside. WaterColor was extremely popular with 55 homes sold at a median price of $1,275,000. WaterSound came in at a close fourth with 37 sales averaging only 97 days on the market and closing at 98% of the asking price. 

North of 30A, Niceville sold 80 homes at 98% of the list price

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For those dreaming of living in a golf course community, the Destin area has an awesome selection to choose from. Median prices for homes on a golf course in Destin range from $463,750 to $1,135,000 with both private and public courses available. Burnt Pine, Kelly Plantation, Regatta Bay, and Emerald Bay are gated while Indian Bayou is not. Some courses require more skill than others but I'll leave that determination up to you.

Year to Date Comparison of Destin Golf Communities as of May 31, 2016

Destin golf home sales stats

Burnt Pine

Kelly PlantationLocated within the gates of Sandestin, Burnt Pine is the most exclusive golf course community in the Destin area. The average home is over 4,000 square feet with a median sales price of $1,135,000. The most expensive home in Burnt Pine

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