Thursday, May 28, 2009

"Get Off The Fence... It's Time To Buy!"

(Back in 1986, I was still an Army Officer, working for the Defense Intelligence Agency. After 20 years of service, I was preparing for a career change to become a Real Estate Broker. The first course I ever took was a Finance class taught by Pat Zaby and I've been a fan of his ever since. The following is from his recent newsletter. Hint: It Is A Smart Time To Buy Real Estate... NOW... because in the chart above, we are now at "Low Risk - High Opportunity)

You can sit patiently in a boat and wait for the fish to jump into it... or you can use the right bait and pro-actively go after them. Similarly, you can wait for buyers to get off the fence on their own or you can coax them down by understanding and communicating - the compelling reasons to buy a home now.
Too many people are slow to react and have a tendency to do as the "herd" does. This means that some of the best opportunities are missed. Many people, including REALTORS®, bought at the height of the market when the risk was the highest and the opportunity for gain was the lowest. The corrections that have taken place in the market and the economy have caused a shift in the cycle and - acting now offers lower risk and much better opportunity.

Reasons to buy now:

The Selection is tremendous – with more homes on the market, buyers have a better choice as to what fits their needs.

The Values are above prices – due to the increased supply on the market, prices are below actual values in many instances.

The Interest rates are incredibly low – current mortgage rates are lower than they've been in 50 years and we may not see them this low for generations. The interest rates can have as profound an impact on the cost of housing as the price of the home itself!

Tax advantages: Deduction of interest and property taxes... Capital gains exclusion... Favorable LTCG treatment on balance... Home Tax Credit.

Social benefits: Provides shelter and security... Provides stability – (12 years vs. 3 years; U.S. Census American Housing Surveys)... Encourages community involvement... Fulfills part of the American dream.

Here in Palm Coast, FL, I just sold a house to a Flagler County Firefighter/EMT. In 2005, the house would have sold for about $230,000. He got it for $127,500 and it appraised for much more. The hazard policy insurer required coverage for $192,000... Talk about great price and great value! If you're ready, call me... You don't want to miss the bottom!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Flagler County Fire & Rescue

Back in November, 2008, I had the privilege of sponsoring a portion of a local Firefighter-Paramedic competition. The local Flagler County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) competition team won against teams from all over Florida. The teams are subjected to a series of difficult scenarios and judged on their ability to handle the emergency situation in an timely and technically correct manner.
Make no mistake - these professionals are good... really good. The local team of Dennis Kline, Cody King, Caryn Prather, and Mike Pius (Left to Right in photo above) are National Champions (twice) and have 15 Top Ten finishes in events all over the country. Their prowess has earned them and a team from New York City an invitation to a multi-national event in Prague, Czech Republic!
Don Petito, the Flagler County Fire Chief, is proud of his folks. "It would be great if we could get everyone to try a competition, because there's so much to be gained from doing it," he said. Petito has a hunch that the event in Prague will include some sort of Swine Flu scenario, based on the recent outbreak and heightened media coverage.
Like in sports, teams have a tendency to "perform like they practice." Back in the day, when I was going through Army Officer Candidate School (OCS), we had a series of training films titled, "What Now, Lieutenant?" A difficult situation would be created and we'd be graded on how we responded... and there was always more than one way to solve the problem. Our paramedics train in a variety of settings, to include tornadoes, fires, floods, earthquakes, terrorist attacks, chemical spills, plane crashes, and marine emergencies.
The team raises money for competition fees and travel expenses with sponsorships, yard sales, spaghetti suppers, etc. If you read this and would like to make a contribution to these local Heroes and this worthy program... contact me at 386-931-1987 or, and I'll put you in touch with them. Also, you could visit my website at:
(Information, in part, from Daytona Beach News-Journal article by Heather Scofield and photos from David Massey)

Why read "Palm Coast Unplugged?"

"Palm Coast Unplugged" gives a "backstage pass" to locally focused Palm Coast, Flagler Beach, and Ormond Beach, Florida... Real Estate and other useful information:
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