Dr Phillips Daily Dose 3/13/13

Mar - 15 | | no comments. | Blog, Dr Phillips, Dr Phillips real estate, News, Orlando

What features influence whether you purchase a home or not? Everyone is different, but there are some factors that remain the same. How many bedrooms do you want? You and I may not want the same number of bedrooms, but on thing is true, we both better know how many we want. The same thing can be said for the number of bathrooms your new home should have. Well, how much space do you need to fit those bedrooms and bathrooms? I like big open spaces so I may want more space than you, but we both know how much square footage we want. The last thing everyone should know what they want in their home is the price! I certainly hope you aren’t searching for homes between $1,000 and $10,000,000. You might end up with, oh say every home on the market!

The next few determining home search factors are those most people know, but not all. Does the home have a pool? I would venture to say that more than 50% of home buyers searching homes for sale in Dr Phillips would like to see homes with pools. I would also venture to say a fair portion of those buyers will find the perfect home for them and it doesn’t have a pool. It does not deter them from purchasing a home, they just didn’t know their favorite home wouldn’t have a pool. Is the community gated? There are many reasons someone may want to live in a gated community, extra sense of security, exclusivity, or prestige. There are so many ‘secure’ awesome neighborhoods in Dr Phillips, having a gate at the entrance only adds to the monthly HOA. What year was your house built in? While most people know if they want an older house with character or a newer contemporary home, most are not going to be particular whether the home was built in 1997 or 1998. Would this be a deal breaker for you?

Finally, the things most people don’t even think about. Does your home have a bidet? Is this something important to you? I would never use one but there are people that have to have them. What about a ramp at the front door? While this is not something you would think of commonly, if you are confined to a wheelchair it is imperative to have ramp access into your home. What about a fenced in yard? I have 3 dogs. I do not want to walk them 4-5 times a day. Therefore, I need a fenced-in backyard to let my dogs out back to use the bathroom. What little things do you find you have to have in your home? Everyone has them, so what’s yours?

Dr Phillips Daily Dose 3/12/13

Mar - 14 | | no comments. | Blog, Dr Phillips, Dr Phillips real estate, News, Orlando, Parkside

Today, I would like to discuss the pros and cons of a HOA. For those of you who are not familiar with this term, it stands for Home Owners Association. Current homeowners within the community are elected to a board, and charged with maintaining the community and enforcing the “Laws of the community.” When you purchase a home in a HOA you should be presented the regulations set forth by the association, and are obligated to abide by those regulations.

This is a very important topic when searching for Dr Phillips homes for sale because most Dr Phillips communities have an HOA. Some are more strict than others, and some charge more annual fees. There are pros and cons, but all in all, I think they are for the better.

To not leave you on a sour note I will start with some of the cons. The big one: You will at some point get an irritating little piece of paper in the mail called a violation. It happens to everyone, don’t freak out. Members on the board of the HOA generally take turns driving through the neighborhood on a monthly basis observing each home and recording any violations they may see, or improvements that need to be made. Obviously if your front lawn is torn up and you have a boat parked in your driveway, your HOA is going to send you a violation. The ones that are irritating are the little ones: replace mulch (just because it doesn’t look that good anymore), trim trees (that have just been trimmed), or my personal favorite, the violation to submit an architectural review for an addition you already had approval to make. Those are the worst! Side note: and architectural review is to be submitted before altering the property, i.e. tree removal, planting, home painting, or altering the structure of your home in any fashion. I speak from personal experience, when I say, I try to do things by the book when it comes to my HOA, but when I receive a violation for something I’m not in violation for, I get upset! Now, I will chalk this one up to everyone being human and susceptible to making errors, but don’t do it again! In defense of my personal HOA, they do an excellent job. We are one of the few communities that has a large savings for repairs, and our common areas/entrances looking amazing. The second caveat, the annual dues. Now, my personal HOA dues are not too expensive, but there are some Dr Phillips’ communities that charge thousands of dollars per year. This leads me to the pros.

While some communities charge more for their annual dues, you generally tend to get more for your money. Communities like Turtle Creek, Vizcaya, and Phillips Landings all offer gate guarded entrances. Others like Parkside offer a community pool and clubhouse. Hopefully, they have been prudent with their money and do not have to increase annual dues to raise capital because they do not have a reserve fund. The biggest pro to an HOA, they keep your community looking good. No one wants to drive past ‘that house’ that looks like no one has done any yard work in the past year, the lights are busted, and the home is just a total eye sore. Your HOA is there to put pressure on that homeowner to clean up their property. They also maintain the common areas and entrances of your community. My personal community does not have many common areas, but we do have an awesome entrance and brick retaining wall that surrounds the neighborhood. The HOA will maximize your home’s value. By keeping your community clean, your home’s value goes up. simple as that.

The best piece of advice I can give, check to see if the house you want to purchase is in an HOA before you buy. If it is, get a copy of the bylaws and be familiar with them. If you think it’s not for you, don’t buy that house because if you do, your bound to those bylaws. In the end, if you are considering buying in an HOA, I think you will find it will all be worth it, if you can live with those pesky violation letters every once in awhile. Stay tuned Dr Phillips!

Dr Phillips Daily Dose 3/11/13

Mar - 12 | | no comments. | Blog, Dr Phillips, Dr Phillips real estate, Florida, For Sale, News, Orlando

In the USA Today, there was an article about tax breaks I would like to review. It had some great information for homeowners and potential home buyers to keep in mind. There are numerous tax breaks given to homeowners every year. These are the main ones:

1. Mortgage Interest – It’s tax deductible! This is the most lucrative way to save some mullah come tax season. It is even more important for new homeowners and those who refinance recently as their payments are mostly interest. (For those not familiar with how a mortgage payment works, at the beginning of the payment period the payments mostly consist of interest payment. As time goes on, the payments will include more and more principal. So, even though the total monthly payment remains the same, you do not have much equity in your home for several years. This is why it is important to pay a considerable amount of cash when purchasing a new home.

2. Property Taxes – While the exact laws on this differ from county to county, for the most part, property taxes are tax deductible.

3. Renovations Count – Now, not all renovations count. There are certain qualified improvements that are acceptable. Minor repairs, and replacing personal appliances are not included. Improving a home is however included, things like additions to the property, putting in a new pool, or a new privacy fence can be included. These may not be deductible until you sell the home though, so always consult an accountant for further assistance.

4. Unqualified Renovations – As I hinted at before, there are renovations that cannot be deducted immediately, but it may be deductible when you sell the property. By federal law, a single person is granted $250,000 tax-free profit from the sale of their house while a married couple is granted $500,000. Those renovations that you could not deduct earlier can be counted against the profit from the sale of your home to help you get those capital gains down. Now, you must have lived in the home for at least 2 years, but this is a great tax break to take advantage of.

5. Selling Costs – All your costs associated with selling the property are tax deductible. Marketing fees, advertising fees, and broker fees are all tax deductible.

6. Mortgage Insurance – It was a little nerve recking there for a little bit as politicians tried to remove mortgage insurance tax deductions under Obama’s theory on government. Luckily, Congress kept this deduction intact allowing millions of potential homeowners to purchase their first homes by purchasing private mortgage insurance in leu of placing a 20% down payment.

7. Moving Expenses – Don’t forget about those pesky moving costs. Again, there are limitations. To qualify for this deduction you have to have been relocated due to a work related incidence, and it must be more than 50 miles away.

Hopefully you can take advantage of these tax deductions and save some of your hard earned money. And remember, hold onto those receipts as the government may want to see them come tax season. That is all that is happening in the Dr Phillips Real Estate market today. Stay tuned!

Dr Phillips Daily Dose 3/8/13

Mar - 09 | | no comments. | Blog, Dr Phillips, Dr Phillips real estate, For Lease, For Rent, For Sale, News, Orlando

While mortgage interest rates are still hovering near all-time lows, this week did show a very slight increase up to 3.52% for a 30 year fixed rate mortgage. While mortgage rates are not going to jump 5% overnight, this could be a sign that mortgage interest rates may start to increase. Now is the time to buy, don’t find yourself renting another year missing out on these historically low interest rates.

Speaking of rentals, rental rates are steadily increasing. All across the state rental prices are going up. Because of the shrinking inventory of homes to buy and rent, we are finding ourselves with more people looking for a place to live than we have people trying to sell or rent there current residence out. Investors have taken note, and it won’t be long before builders are jam packed building new construction homes and apartment complexes. This can be a dangerous game as overbuilding is a serious possibility. For now, expect a steady increase in rental rate across the state, especially places like the Dr Phillips Real Estate market where homes are in high demand.

Oh yea, and one more thing, not only do you have to compete with local buyers, foreign buyers are back too! Raising the competition in the home buying scene. That’s all for today folks. TGIF!

Dr Phillips Daily Dose 3/7/13

Mar - 09 | | no comments. | Blog, Dr Phillips, Dr Phillips real estate, Florida, News, Orlando, Uncategorized

For those of you who didn’t know it, and those of you who refuse to believe it, we have entered a seller’s market. With home sales up 9.1% in January, and home inventory remaining the same, we are seeing home values increase. To add to it, buyer traffic is up over 40% from this time last year. The days of finding a move-in ready home for a steal are quickly coming to an end. The Orlando Real Estate market has always been ahead of the curve; Specifically the Dr Phillips Real Estate Market. We are seeing homes sell in a matter of days, and home buyers are paying full price. Especially with how fast Meritage Homes Parkside Dr Phillips Orlando is selling new construction homes, Dr Phillips is deep in a seller’s market.

Our next topic is the return of interest only mortgages. To the unsuspicious buyer, these types of mortgages sound great. In my opinion, they are a bad idea. The whole idea of an interest only mortgage make no sense to me. For a lender to service a loan that a buyer can afford only if they maintain their current level of income, and then several years down the road demand a large payment of the principal of the loan, and expect the mortgagor to be able to pay is ridiculous. This just opens lenders up to a world of trouble. It’s not hard to find a case where someone sues their lender for providing them with a loan the lender ‘knew’ they couldn’t afford. And with the rise in mortgage only mortgages, that is not going to change anytime soon. I can’t put all the blame on the lending companies though. Home buyers need to be diligent with their finances and not over spend. If you don’t know if you can afford a loan, figure it out. Add up your monthly income, add up your monthly expenses, all of them, and your debt to income ratio should not be more than 33%. Most lenders will allow a higher debt-to-income ratio, but if you don’t want to live paycheck to paycheck, keep your debt-to-income ratio low.

That ends today’s segment. Be sure to check back tomorrow for more Dr Phillips Real Estate news.

Dr Phillips Daily Dose 3/6/13

Mar - 07 | | no comments. | Dr Phillips, Dr Phillips real estate, News, Orlando, Uncategorized

Todays Dr Phillips Daily Dose will include two very popular topics. Real Estate investments and Facebook. It seems that more and more people are realizing the profit potential in flipping homes. Working a standard 9am-5pm job 5 days a week is no longer the American dream. Whether we would rather spend more time with our families, traveling, or yes, even just sitting on the couch watching television, more and more people no longer want to be stuck at work for hours on end week in and week out.

Real estate investing allows investors to work flexible hours yet remain profitable. As a Dr Phillips Real Estate investor myself, I can relate to not wanting to work the typical 9-5 shift. I feed my 6-month old daughter breakfast everyday, eat lunch with my family, take breaks when I want, and best of all, I’m my own boss. It also helps that I am doing what I love most. I love all facets of the real estate industry. Not only do I enjoy buying, fixing up, and selling homes myself, I love the satisfaction of making someone the proud new owner of a home or helping someone sell their home. It is an experience everyone should want, and have, in their lifetime and I would love to be there to help.

The next segment of today’s Dr Phillips’ Daily Dose is about a new tool on Facebook. Facebook plans to upgrade their new graph search to enable people to search for specific qualities. For example, a Facebook user will now be able to search for ‘a male real estate agent’ in ‘Dr Phillips Orlando, Florida‘ who is a ‘friend of one of my friends.’ I believe this is a response to LinkedIn’s search options which allow you to connect to professional contacts but, you can see what your relationship is to them. Whether they are a 1st connection (one of your friends), 2nd connection (a friend of a friends that you may know), a 3rd connection (a friend of a friend you might know because they are friends with one of your friends), etc. This tool is useful because LinkedIn can actually suggest friends you may not have otherwise found based on your professional connections. Facebook is simply making their own version of this tool. If you need a particular service in a particular area, now you can search for a specific person to complete a specific task in a specific area and, to top it all off, you can see how you are connected to them.

Phew, that was a tongue twister. It amazes me the progress we make with technology everyday. The internet is such a helpful tool in making professional connections. Well, that’s all for today’s Dr Phillips’ Daily Dose. I hope you all check back in later to see what other topics come up. Remember, Blake Roby can meet all your Real Estate needs, so call Blake today.

Meritage Homes Dr Phillips Parkside Orlando: Pricing

Mar - 03 | | no comments. | Dr Phillips, Dr Phillips New Construction, Dr Phillips Parkside, Dr Phillips real estate, Orlando, Orlando New Construction

Dr Phillips Parkside Pricing

Dr Phillips Parkside Pricing

This is it! The moment you have all been waiting for! The prices for Parkside of Dr Phillips have been released! Well, they have for the first 5 buyers anyway. Last week, Meritage Homes held a private release party where 86 qualified buyers were invited to come hear the answer to the long awaited question, How much?! Most were surprised at the answer that followed.

Base Madrid model: $386,990

Base Tara Model: $414,990

Base Palm Model: $440,990

Base Barcelona Model: $465,990

It is important to note that not only were these guaranteed for the first 5 buyers but, prices did go up. Meritage Homes promised to release at least 20 homesites in a lottery system for those who showed up to the release party. Well, they did them one better. They guaranteed each person would have the chance to purchase a homesite before the grand opening.


By Sunday afternoon, 20 homesites had been sold and the prices had gone up $30,000! At this rate, by the Grand Opening for Parkside in Dr Phillips by Meritage Homes prices will be increased by more than 20%! I can’t wait to see where the prices finally end up. For all the latest updates on Dr Phillips Parkside be sure to check back here or follow Parkside on Twitter.

Dr Phillips Parkside Update

Feb - 18 | | no comments. | Dr Phillips, Dr Phillips New Construction, Dr Phillips Parkside, Dr Phillips real estate, Featured, For Sale, Orlando, Orlando New Construction, Parkside

With the much anticipated release party for Dr Phillips Parkside fast approaching, tension is growing. Hopefully TOMORROW I will have official pricing information for you all! There has been all sorts of speculation over the price for home’s in Dr Phillips Parkside,and with the amount of interest Meritage Homes has received about Parkside, and the upward trending Dr Phillips’ Real Estate market, I think we are all going to have a curve ball thrown our way tomorrow and prices will start higher than initially expected. I encourage all of my prospective buyers to please be patient, as we as Realtors do not know anymore about the pricing than you do at this time. For those of you who have been with me for some months now following the status of Dr Phillips Parkside, you know all too well how information can change at the last minute. Please be patient with us. This is a new experience for us all. I can’t wait to see you all Thursday Night!

The Palm at Parkside

Feb - 03 | | one comment. | $200K - $500K, Dr Phillips, Dr Phillips New Construction, Dr Phillips Parkside, Dr Phillips real estate, Featured, For Sale, Orlando, Orlando New Construction, Parkside

With the grand opening of Parkside in Dr Phillips getting so near, everyone is starting to get a little anxious (including me). Everyone wants to see the model homes before they select a lot in Parkside. As most of you know, model homes will not be ready for view at the Parkside location in Dr Phillips for 2-3 months. This is very problematic because pre construction lots go on sale (hopefully) end of this month. For most of us, it is hard to look at the blueprint version of a floor plan and be able to visualize it. Well, for those of you that fall into this category, I’ve got good news!

Meritage Homes does have another community being built just a little ahead of schedule of Parkside with very similar floor plans! The Palm is ready for view, with the Madrid and Barcelona floor plans close behind. I had the opportunity to walk through this model home and wanted to share some photos that might help you visualize what your home could look like.

Parkside Dr Phillips

Parkside Dr Phillips


This is a lovely shot of the front of the home showcasing the brick paver driveway and walkway, three car garage, stone wall, and lovely landscaping. Can you imagine walking into this home everyday?

Living Room

Living Room

Once you enter and pass the flex room and dinning room, you enter into the spacious living/family room. With large glass windows, you get a great view of the backyard and patio.

Gourmet Kitchen

Gourmet Kitchen

Just next to the living room is your brand new chef’s kitchen. This open concept allows for easy access to the pantry and all your cooking appliances. The large center island is great for preparing items to be cooked and also works well to feed the kids breakfast in the morning.

Living Room

Living Room

This is the view of the living room/family room from the kitchen. Everyone can hang out together while meals are being prepared.

Onwer's Suite

Onwer’s Suite

Next we have the Owner’s Suite located just off of the breakfast nook. This peaceful retreat has great views of the back patio as well, and is large enough for anyone’s furniture.

Owner's Master Bathroom

Owner’s Master Bathroom

The final stop we are going to make is the Owner’s Master Bathroom. This is the angle from the oversized closet showcasing the beautiful countertops, garden shower, and soaking tub.

Hopefully these photos can help you visualize the Palm floor plan at Parkside of Dr Phillips a little more and, don’t forget, you are welcome to come see this floor plan yourself!

Don’t forget to check out Dr Phillips Parkside which is dedicated to this new community and has all of the latest updates.




Parkside Dr Phillips

Jan - 14 | | no comments. | Dr Phillips, Dr Phillips New Construction, Dr Phillips Parkside, Dr Phillips real estate, Featured, For Sale, Orlando, Orlando New Construction, Parkside

We are just over a month from Parkside opening in Dr Phillips!! I can’t wait for everyone to select their lot! Remember, get your financing ready now so there are no delays! Please email me Blake@MyTeamConnect.com or visit ParksideDrPhillips for more info!


Parkside Dr Phillips