As we head into the weekend let’s take a moment to think about all of the awesome things that happened this week. There are so many wonderful things happening out in the world; below are my top four favorite things that happened this week!
1. The Key West Lighted Bike Parade
In Key West, when it comes to Christmas, we don’t just decorate a tree. We decorate everyyyythang. Tons of Key Westers brought unwrapped toys or a cash donation to benefit The Wesley House and provide holiday gifts to families in need. They rode their decked out bikes on down to “Sparkle Street” a.k.a Applerouth Lane where the merriment continued into the wee morning.
2. The Dude Who Punched a Kangaroo:
This video has taken the internet by storm. But seriously, what dog owner wouldn’t square up to a Kanga to save their pooch!
3. The Couple That Murdered the Dance Floor
Every year this cute as can be couple shows up to a local mall and brings down the house; this year to the tune of Uptown Funk! Just look at the smiles on their faces! Can you say #relationshipgoals?!
4. The Fujifilm Instax Mini Camera
I actually received this gem as a Christmas gift last year from a friend of mine and had it tucked away from moving until we broke it out last night for our company holiday party. Such a fun addition to the night, the pictures are small, instant, and look super cute hanging from clothespins.
What are your favorite things that happened this week?! Comment below and share with us…
If one of your favorite things happens to be Key West real estate…I am a full time buyers agent in Key West, Florida and am happy to help you in your real estate search. Please contact me at 305-394-4073 or email@example.com.
One of the most important and intimidating steps in your home buying process is getting a pre-qualification from a lender. In this blog post I’m going to break down the pre-qualification process and help set you up for success when approaching this step in your home buying journey in Key West.
Let’s start by defining “pre-qualification”.
Pre-qualification is a letter from a bank that states the loan type (conventional, FHA, VA, etc.) and amount you have been approved to borrow based on the financial picture you provide to the lender. It does NOT include an analysis of your credit report/ score.
This is how you see what your buying power is and is a crucial step in being successful in your real estate search. Many people over and under estimate their buying power, which is a total time waster for everyone involved. You don’t want to spend time looking at $500K houses when your purchasing power is $350K and vice versa.
Below are four simple steps to help you take the leap into getting pre-qualified. Side note: just do it already!
- Make an appointment. Reach out to your bank and ask to meet with a loan officer. You can also ask your real estate agent for recommendations as well, they always have preferred contacts and suggestions if you don’t know where to start.
- Know your number(ish). One misconception of the pre-qualification process is that you need to pull your credit report to be pre-qualified which is completely FALSE. That’s right, many people think that you do but you don’t. You should have an idea of what your credit score is though to be sure your pre-qualification is as accurate as possible and I recommend using Credit Karma to find out. Credit Karma is my go to app and website for credit checking and monitoring and it’s FREE!
- Get your sh*t together. No for real, get it together… get a copy of your most recent tax return, a recent pay stub, and a couple of months of bank statements together. The more information you can provide the more accurate your pre-qualification will be.
- Take your pre-qualification letter and give (or email) it to your real estate agent.
Once you’ve given your agent your pre-qualification letter they will adjust your real estate search accordingly and you will be on your way to finding your dream home!
I am a full time buyers agent in Key West, Florida and am happy to help you in your real estate search. Please contact me at 305-394-4073 or firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s talk real estate!
I think I’ll start by introducing myself… My name is Krystal Thomas, I am a REALTOR® and work for Last Key Realty, Inc. as an agent helping to make peoples’ dreams come true one closing at a time (corny but true! Who doesn’t dream of buying a home in Key West?!). In my spare time I’m a writer, avid reader, lover of the sunshine, good vibration seeker, newly inducted Rotarian and an avid fan of my husky and sidekick Skyy.
I became a real estate agent in 2013 and let me tell you, the struggle has been reeeeeeal. The amount of offers I put in for clients vs. the number of homes sold is astounding. The first year I sold one house. The second year I sold one house. This year, year 3, as of today I’ve sold 5 and have 3 under contract.
It’s been a long rough road to get to where I am today both professionally and personally. I’ve learned so much along the way and there is still so much more to go! With each transaction and experience there are lessons upon lessons to be learned and I’m more excited than ever to share these experiences with you.
There are A LOT of really cool things cooking right now! Aside from it being Fantasy Fest week in Key West, just today this happened:
- Got an accepted offer for my buyers for a mid town home in Key West, FL.
- Spoke with a prospect who will be in town next weekend and wants to look at properties while he is here. BINGO, set up showings for next Friday… check!
- Approved the HUD to close on my first investment property on Friday. My first house flip. The FIRST FLIPAROOSKI!
I’ve realized that through all of my journeys, both personally and professionally in Key West, I am neither the first nor last to do or learn any of this. But what I want to share with you is what I am learning along the way as an experienced/constantly learning agent, a first time home buyer, project manager, etc. etc.
I’m looking forward to sharing my adventures in living, buying, selling, managing and investing in Key West with you so stay tuned.
If you like what you read here, and would like my help as you enter your own Key West home purchase journey, please shoot me a message at email@example.com or 305-394-4073 and we can set up time to talk.
As the vacation rental market grows worldwide, the expectations of vacationers shopping online has morphed drastically in the past two years. Four years ago we launched a gallery-style website that focused on showcasing our luxurious vacation homes through photography. When we embarked on the development of our brand new website in 2015, we challenged ourselves to maintain that simple, gallery-style format while rising to (and hopefully exceeding) the market demands for technology. We are so incredibly thrilled about the introduction of our new website, that has achieved all that we hoped to deliver for our future guests.
With all new booking customization capabilities and search functionality, this new site allows a vacationer to shop our rental homes in a whole new dimension. Most excitingly, we are now completely enabled for direct online booking, making the booking process easier for our guests and cutting out the additional fees being charged by third party listing sites.
Other new features include:
- Larger, higher resolution photos
- Real-time availability updates
- Map view of all of our properties
- Customizable reservation add-ons at booking
- Full MLS Integration for Real Estate interests
- Much, much more!
This is only the beginning for Last Key’s technology integration to better service our guests. We are already busy exploring “Phase 2” of this new site. As we do, we encourage you as website users to submit any feedback on our website that may be helpful to us in making it as user-friendly and functional as it can be. Website feedback can be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org or through our Contact Us page.
Cheers to the Future!
There’s no question that, like the rest of the country, Key West has gone through a sharp decline in real estate. In fact, the real estate recession probably had its impact on Key West sooner than in many other areas. However, it now also seems like Key West is seeing an earlier recovery as well. Some of the earlier signs were with a marked uptick in vacation rentals, at all times of the year, especially in summer. And now, we see an estimated 7% increase in average home purchase prices from a year ago. Inventory is down substantially from this time last year, and we are actually seeing homes being purchased at “above asking” prices.
Meanwhile, vacation rental homes have become a tremendous opportunity for investors. A well-located and nicely furnished home of any size with a transient license has the potential to generate 10-12% of its purchase price in gross rental income every year. An exceptional home with three or more bedrooms can generate even more, as much as 13-15% in gross income. Returns like this have changed the nature of real estate investment, which has always depended primarily on real estate appreciation. With rates and occupancy of vacation rentals presently growing every year, and the attractive tax benefits that come with owning an “active” rental, such a home could in effect pay for itself in less than twelve years. For more information, feel free to call 305.304.1933 or e-mail Chris Santry.