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Real Estate Chatter

What’s a CMA & Why Do I Need One?

home-valueIf you’ve been considering selling or refinancing your Miami home, you may have had a real estate agent offer you a CMA. So what’s a CMA and why do you need one anyway?

A CMA is a Comparative Market Analysis and, if done correctly, should provide you with a good idea of what your home is worth. It usually gives a range, not an exact amount.

A CMA is not an appraisal nor does it take the place of one. There are cases where an appraisal is needed and Realtors are not licensed to appraise a home (unless they are actually also licensed appraisers). My real estate license allows me to provide an approximation of value, but I cannot call it an appraisal, because it isn’t.

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Quit Claim Deed – DIY Can Bring Problems

deedWhen transferring title to a property, many folks just go online and find a Quit Claim Deed form and file it themselves. Even though they aren’t sure if it’s the best way to transfer title.

Owning a property, whether your primary residence or an investment, is likely to be one of the biggest purchases a person makes in their lifetime. Why risk that investment by trying to save money on legal fees? Unless you’re fully versed in real estate laws and know that what you’re doing won’t come back to bite you in the proverbial butt, you should seek legal counsel in such matters.

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Condo Owners At Risk of Forced Sales

brokenIf you’re a condo owner in the state of Florida, a law change that happened in 2007 could allow you to end up homeless.

The law is not very well known. I’m a real estate broker and I wasn’t even aware of this until I read about it this morning. And because of the negative impact it can have on condo owners, I felt compelled to write about it.

Apparently, prior to the change, in order to dissolve a condominium association you needed 100% vote. That meant that every single unit owner had to agree to the dissolution.

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Are You Entitled to Foreclosure Funds?

moneyWith the value of homes rising in Miami, some folks could be due surplus money of a home that’s foreclosed, but may not be aware of it. Home owners who are being foreclosed sometimes get so frustrated that they ignore the mail that comes their way. Is that you? Don’t!

There are cases of foreclosures selling for more than the bank’s judgment amount. And in that case, barring any other creditors, the homeowner may be entitled to funds.

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Is Your Miami Home Haunted?

Haunted-houseMiami readers, are you among the 35% of homeowners who say they’ve lived in a haunted house?  Or maybe among the majority that said they’d be ok purchasing a haunted house?

According to a survey of nearly 1,400 respondents, most people are fine purchasing a haunted house.  I can’t believe someone actually took the time to survey this. LOL  But in keeping with the upcoming holiday spirit, I thought I’d pass the info along to you.

According to the survey results, these are some of the things that have the potential to scare buyers away however:

  • Levitating objects
  • Ghost sightings
  • Supernatural sensations
  • Flickering lights/appliances
  • Strange noises, such as footsteps and doors slamming

If you see flickering lights / appliances, and still choose to purchase your haunted home, make sure you have a bonafide home inspector check out the electrical system.  It could be something much worse than Wailing Myrtle affecting it. =)


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Which Came First? Claim or Insurance Premium Hike?

The title was my attempt to be witty.  It’s a spin on the well known “which came first, the chicken or the egg?”  For years Florida residents have had to put up with rising insurance premiums from the insurer of last resort, Citizens.  Recent data regarding claims made against policies held by the insurer made me think about the old adage.

Are insurance rates up because of all the claims made?  Are some of the claims made, false?  I don’t know.  I can’t even venture a guess.  But I do know that the percentage of claims originating in our county of Miami-Dade far outweigh the rest of the state and yet policies held don’t mirror those numbers.

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These articles are not intended to give legal or tax advice, and you should consult your attorney or financial advisor for additional information.

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