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  • 0 The Best Neighborhoods & Suburbs in Orlando

    • Orlando
    • by Administrator
    • 01-02-2018

    With 233 sunny days a year, world-class spas, exciting sports, and thrilling theme parks, it’s no wonder Orlando, Florida was recently named by Travel Pulse as the number one most visited city in the US. Thinking of living in Orlando? Here are the eight best neighborhoods in Orlando to check out.   1.   Celebration This neighborhood likes to think of itself as an independent city catering to well-to-do families. Modeled to be an all-American neighborhood, Celebration has a feel reminiscent of a Hollywood movie set. The Mediterranean, Victorian and Colonial homes sprawl among postcard-worthy landmarks, and parks. To get around, locals often bike, walk or ride in electric vehicles. Celebration also allows for pedestrian traffic – a rarity in today’s suburban America. A sampling of great restaurants includes the Celebration Town Tavern and Columbia Restaurant.   2.   Dr. Philips Directly adjacent to and east of Bay Hill, Dr. Phillips is one of the largest citrus producers in the world. Nearby attractions are the Butler Chain of Lakes, Sand Lakes, and theme parks. This suburban area overflows with waterfront estates, upscale gated communities, and the esteemed Bay Hill community. Dr. Philips is home to a plethora of eateries and nightlife. Between the fabulous dining choices at popular hotspots Seasons 52, Rocco’s’ Tacos, Ocean Prime, and upscale shopping at Mall of Millenia, this neighborhood is one of Orlando’s most desirable neighborhoods. The neighborhood also offers endless opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts. Most of its residents are well-to-do families. In fact, it’s in the top fifteen percent of the highest-income neighborhoods in the country. According to some reports, Dr. Phillips is safer than 62% of cities in the United States, and definitely one of the safest neighborhoods in Orlando.   3.   Winter Park From its festivals and farmers’ markets to its shops and bistros, the town of Winter Park has long been a hotbed for moneyed visitors and snowbirds. Winter Park was originally created as a winter destination for wealthy northerners. There’s a smorgasbord of shops, cafes, and boutiques housed alongside its pristine lined street – the Park Avenue. If you veer slightly off the Avenue, you can enjoy a lovely dinner at The Ravenous Pig – a nominee for James Beard Award. There are a few noteworthy museums in Winter Park. They include Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art and Albin Polasek Museum and Sculpture Gardens. Opt for a leisurely and picturesque stroll near Rollins College.   4.   Milk District Milk District derives its name from the nearby T.G. Lee Dairy. This edgy little Orlando neighborhood is located east of Thornton Park. It’s known for its eclectic shops, funky bars, and its quaint World War II era homes. Common scenes include street parties and food truck gatherings. If you miss the outdoor entertainment, there are always other well-known eateries like Pom Pom’s Teahouse and Sandwicheria, the long-standing Beefy King, and the Se7en Bites.   5.   Thornton Park Thornton Park is relaxed, hip and urban. It is located one city block from Lake Eola Park. Here, you’ll find craftsman-style bungalows and sidewalk shops, all just a few blocks from the heart of downtown. Walk the cobblestone streets and pass by eateries that showcase live music. Speaking of walking, the neighborhood offers its residents walking distance to hip hangouts like Benjamin French Bakery and Café, and Dexters of Thornton Park. This Orlando area is close to all the food and culture spots. If you’re staying at the quaint EO Inn & Urban Spa, be sure to check out the Sunday farmers market brimming with treats, music, local produce, and crafts For shopping expeditions, be sure to explore the trendy indie boutique Zou Zou.   6.   College Park College Park packs a punch because of its low-key beauty and close proximity to downtown Orlando. Its streets are named after famous colleges such as Yale, Harvard, and Princeton. At the intersection of Edgewater and Princeton is ground zero for nightlife, dining, and shopping. Scenic lakes inundate College Park. Many of these lakes have parks with playgrounds for kids and have paved paths for walking. Excellent parks include Lake Adair and Lake Ivanhoe. The area manages to maintain a small-town feel. In fact, Edgewater Drive, the neighborhood’s main street, is graced by the ‘50s-era façade of the Publix grocery chain. For some culture, head over to adjacent Lock Haven Park, home to the Orlando Repertory Theatre and Shakespeare Theatre. College Park has a great bike and walks scores.   7.   Baldwin Park  Baldwin Park is a trendy neighborhood rich in history. From 1940 to 1968, it served as a base for Air Force and Army Air Corps. Later, it was converted to a naval training center. Today, Baldwin Park is a quintessential American neighborhood home to thousands of residents. It boasts of fifty miles of walking paths, where residents can jog or walk their dog. True to its name, Baldwin Park also has many parks. The 55-acre Blue Jacket Park is a must visit. The park is a track and field complex with two children’s playgrounds, picnic areas, basketball courts, tennis courts, lighted baseball fields, and a huge lawn perfect for soccer and field games. Not only that, but Baldwin Park is also a foodie haven. At the Village Center on New Broad Street, you can revel in a mix of restaurants that offer a variety of dishes. Unique treats include Marshmallow Puff Daddy and Al Cappuccino.   8.   Park Lake Highland This neighborhood is home to famous local spots. They include Nora’s Sugar Shack, Santiago’s Bodega, Will’s Pub, and the Orlando Urban Trail. According to Niche, the Park Lake Highland neighborhood is the absolute best place to live in the Orlando area. Beautiful views of the city’s skyline serve as a backdrop to a mix of impressive modern designs and historic clapboard lakefront homes. It’s bike and walk scores are great, as are its safety scores. The pristine campus of the affluent private schools such as the Lake Highland Preparatory School only adds to its appeal. If you’re a foodie, you’ll certainly appreciate the many restaurants that are lined up along the nearby Mills 50 District.   North, south, east, west – all directions point to intriguing neighborhoods in Orlando. If you’re moving there, make sure to sample this list of neighborhoods. Whether you are a landlord or a tenant looking to rent from an experienced Orlando rental manager we've got you covered. Contact us today for help!  

  • 0 Everything You Need to Know About Relocating to Orlando

    • Orlando
    • by Administrator
    • 24-12-2017

      You may have heard that Orlando is one of the top tourist destinations in the U.S. But did you know it's also a great city for families, snowbirds, urbanites, and retirees? If you're planning on relocating to Orlando, Florida, who better than an Orlando property management company to tell you everything you'll want to know before moving there.   Demographic Information Orlando has an estimated population of 254,000 people, making it the 77th most populous city in the country. It's also the 5th largest city, and the largest inland city, in Florida. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Orlando is the fastest-growing of the country's 30 largest regions. Over the past six years, Orlando's population has been increasing at a rate of 138 people per day, according to the Orlando Economic Development Commission (EDC). This growth is fueled by domestic relocations, which account for 40% of the migrations. 24% are from natural population increases, while another 34% is due to international migration. The EDC also noted that the "The City Beautiful" and the "Theme Park Capital of the World" is now the 24th most populous region in the United States. Additionally, Orlando is the most visited city in the country, thanks to its fine collection of attractions. Some of these are SeaWorld, the Universal Orlando Resort, Walt Disney World Resort, Gatorland and Wet 'n Wild Water Park. According to the most recent census, the racial composition of Orlando is as follows: non-Hispanic White – 57.6%, Black – 28.1%, Asian – 3.8%, Alaska Native – 0.4%, Pacific Islander – 0.1%, Latino or Hispanic – 25.4% and others – 10%.   Moving to Orlando? Pick a Neighborhood Based on Your Lifestyle You won't find a boring neighborhood if you’re living in Orlando. If you want a taste of urban living, here are three Orlando neighborhoods worth considering.   1. Thornton Park Walking through Thornton Park is like taking a step back in time. You'll find old bungalows that date as far back as the 1920s. The neighborhood is adorned with beautiful, mature oak trees and brick-lined streets. Alongside that, Thornton Park has a great variety of high-end shopping boutiques and prime restaurants. 2. College Park Despite its name, College Park is more of a family neighborhood than a hotbed of frat parties. Much like Thornton Park, the neighborhood is dotted with brick-lined streets and historic homes. 3. Lake Nona Lake Nona is a fast-rising neighborhood that's home to families from various socioeconomic backgrounds. Originally conceived as a 7,000-acre golfing mecca, recent developments are trading the "golf" image for a more futuristic one. Several developments, including a Medical City, are slated for construction on the site. Other places to live in Orlando that might interest you include: Heathrow Oviedo Hunter's Creek Lake Eola Heights       There is No State Income Tax Depending on where you came from, relocating to Orlando might save you money. Orlando is one of the seven states that don't levy state income tax. One reason for this is the many hotels in the area. Orlando has a large number of hotel rooms, second only to Las Vegas. Also, Florida sales taxes hover at around 6.5%, and the state has one of the highest property taxes in the country.   Overall, the cost of living in the Orlando, Fl is slightly above that of the national average, with transportation and housing costs making the biggest difference.   It's Easy to Find a Job Living in Orlando Assuming you don’t mind working a low-wage job in the service industry, Orlando has tons of employment opportunities in places like the Kennedy Center and Disney. But can you live off those wages? According to statistics, Orlando workers earn 22% less than the national average. As such, you'll need to supplement that income with a side hustle or two to make ends meet. In particular, the local beef and citrus industries are full of employment opportunities. Companies that engage in those industries include: Darden Restaurants Tupperware Brands Duke Energy Siemens Orange County Public Schools       A Foodie's Paradise Orlando’s food scene is, to put it simply, eclectic. Local restaurants feature everything from Brazilian and Mexican to Asian and Indian. No matter your taste, you're sure to find something that excites your taste buds. For instance, if you're a barbeque fan, try out The Ravenous Pig, Yellow Dog Eats, or 4 Rivers Smokehouse – all of which were ranked in USA Today's 10 best restaurants in Orlando. Orlando Magazine and Orlando Weekly also named Graffiti Junktion as the best burger joint in the city. Other restaurants to try out in Orlando include: Seito Sushi - takes pride in offering the "finest" sushi and new Japanese cuisines SOCO - for Southern contemporary cuisine K Restaurant and Wine Bar - With its farm-to-table classic American fare, it's one of the best chef-owned restaurants in College Park. Urbain40 - Run by Chef Tim Keating, a four-time James Beard award nominee Prato - Run by Chef Brandon McGlamery. Serves the best Italian cuisine in Winter Park. Chef Eddie's Artisan's Table Woodlands Tin & Taco   Fun Weekend Getaways in Orlando Orlando is filled to the brim with fun and exciting things to do. Besides the dozens of theme parks surrounding the area, tons of local events and festivals are sure to meet your entertainment needs. Some of the city's most awesome destinations include: Jungle Adventures. Have you ever petted a tarantula? Because that's just one of the many exotic animals available in this zoo. Florida Film Festival. Going into its 30th year, the Florida Film Festival is sure to offer you something enjoyable. Carmine Oddities Boutique. As you can guess from the name, it's filled with knick-knacks that you've probably never seen before. Cirque du Soleil Nouba. Watch this spectacular array of dazzling choreography and daring acrobatics.   If you're the sporty type, you can cheer on teams like the: Orlando Solar Bears (Ice Hockey) Orlando Magic (Basketball) UCF Knights Orlando City SC (Soccer)   Prepare for the Warm Weather and Hurricane Season Since Florida has a humid subtropical climate, expect warm weather when you move into Orlando. You can enjoy the local weather while gliding along on a zip line over preserved land, or trekking via an eco-safari. You can also ride a canoe at Wekiwa Springs State Park, go biking along the 22-mile West Orange Trail, take a pontoon tour at the Winter Park Chain of Lakes, or ride a horse through the woods. Generally, the temperatures stay well above 60 degrees Fahrenheit. If you're not used to year-round heat, it might take a while to adjust. To do that, you should:   Stay hydrated by drinking water or similar liquids. Use a central AC system and/or an electric fan. Have your home sprayed once or twice a year. Bugs and mosquitoes tend to proliferate in warm climates.   Clearly, Orlando is a top tourist destination for a reason. It has practically everything you need to live your life to the fullest. If you're thinking of relocating to the "City Beautiful," check out the aforementioned destinations and then some.  

  • 0 Guide to The Eviction Process in Florida

    Sometimes it becomes necessary for a landlord to exercise his right of eviction. In Florida, tenant eviction can occur for various reasons. The landlord can follow Chapter 83 of the Florida Statutes for help with the Florida eviction process. Trying to evict a tenant through threats, disconnecting utilities or changing locks is illegal. The Florida law gives specific guidelines to end a tenancy. There are different types of notices used depending on the situation at hand. The following are steps required to file an eviction in Florida. It provides an overview of the rules landlords must follow when evicting a renter or ending a tenancy.   1. Determine whether to proceed with the Florida process of eviction You must have a reason/cause to evict a renter. As such, you need to determine whether a cause exists. In Florida, you can evict a tenant as a result of the following violations; Violations of the lease agreement Non-payment of rent Violations of local, state or federal laws Nuisance, etc.   2. Make sure you haven’t violated any Florida lease term If the eviction process reaches a hearing, the tenant will also be given the opportunity to be heard. Therefore, it is prudent to make sure that you haven’t violated any of the lease terms yourself.  Make sure that you: Comply with all relevant Florida safety, building, housing, and health codes Follow all the rules and regulations pertaining the Florida eviction process Maintain common areas in a habitable manner Conduct all feasible and necessary repairs   3. Notify the tenant of the eviction If there is a reason for eviction, write the renter a letter reminding them of the terms of the lease agreement. Let them know that you have a right to evict them should they fail to comply with the lease terms. Make sure to use a certified mail service to send the letter. This way, you can present it later as evidence to support your eviction complaint.   4. Notice of Termination with Cause As already told, you can terminate a tenancy early and evict a tenant for a variety of reasons. To proceed with the eviction process, you must give the tenant a written notice. There’re a variety of Florida eviction notices depending on the reason for termination.  Choosing the right type of notice is key. Otherwise, the judge may end up dismissing the case. Here’re the types of notices: 3-day Notice to pay or Quit This 3-day notice should be served if the tenant hasn’t paid the rent. These notices must contain specific information in order to be effective. Do not include the first day of service, weekends or holidays when counting the 3-day notice period. Once the 3 days have passed, the landlord can proceed to file an eviction lawsuit. 7-Day Notice Use this notice if the tenant is not complying with the terms of the lease agreement. The notice informs the renter that he or she has seven days to come into compliance or you’ll terminate the tenancy. The Florida State statutes stipulate that you have a right to file an eviction lawsuit if the violation isn’t fixed within the 7 days.  7-Day Unconditional Quit Notice This notice permits you to terminate the tenancy at the end of seven days. Unlike the 7-Day Florida Notice aforementioned, the 7-Day Unconditional Quit Notice doesn’t give the tenant time to cure a violation. In Florida, this type of notice can be served if the tenant; - Creates unreasonable disturbances - Destroys the rental property - Repeats the same violation within one year 15-Day Notice This notice is given in Florida is for month-to-month tenancies. It must be served fifteen days before the rent is due. - For oral month to month agreement, Miami Beach has a special law requiring a 30-day notice. You can also use this notice if the landlord-tenant lease doesn’t contain a lease duration.    5. Serve the Florida Eviction Notice In Florida, service of an eviction notice can be accomplished using various means. Some lease terms contain instructions while others don’t. The most common one involves personally handing one to the tenant. Other ways include securely posting it on the door or serving it by mail. When sending via mail, make sure it is a certified service in order to have documentation of receipt. You can present the receipt as evidence later in court. The person serving the notice must indicate the manner of service.   6. Create an eviction complaint If the tenant hasn’t remedied the violations or hasn’t paid the rent due, Florida eviction laws allow you to file an eviction complaint. The eviction complaint notice begins to toll on the first full day following delivery of notice. Holidays and weekdays are exempt.    7. File your eviction packet with your Florida county clerk’s office In most counties, the filing fee is $185. A completed eviction packet contains; A pre-stamped envelope addressed to all tenants/occupants Five copies of the lease agreement and notice provided to the tenant A completed eviction complaint     8.  Florida Eviction Summons and Complaint  The landlord needs to file and serve an Eviction Summons and Complaint notice. This is if the tenant fails to comply or to leave the property. A copy of the notice and certificate of service must be notarized by the court clerk.  Service can be conducted by a county sheriff or by a process server. Tenants have a 5-day window to answer the eviction summons. If an answer is filed, the landlord must contact the court to schedule a hearing. Should no answer be filed, the landlord needs to file a Motion for a Default Judgement.   9. Tenant Eviction Defenses In some cases, the renter may choose to fight the eviction. In effect, this would lengthen the amount of time the lawsuit takes. During the pendency of the case, the tenant is required to deposit the amount of rent due with the court. Failure to do so results in the automatic issue of the default judgment. The portion of the Florida landlord-tenant law relating to residential dwelling units was written, in part, to protect tenants. These defenses are available to the renter regardless of the lease term. Be it covering week to week or year to year.  When the process begins a renter can assert a variety of defenses to the Florida eviction lawsuit.  The following are some common tenant eviction defenses: Under Florida Statute 83.56(5), a tenant may argue the defense of “waiver” in an eviction lawsuit. Here, you waive your right to evict a renter if you accept rent. However, repeated actions by the renter may make this defense null and void.  The landlord hasn’t kept up the property. To avoid making the eviction void, the landlord must comply with applicable housing regulations. These are rules and regulations that govern the condition and upkeep of the property. Under Florida Statute 83.60(1)(b), it is called the “defense of a material noncompliance” and is a complete defense to an eviction attempt.  “I don’t have the money to pay right now.” Sometimes, renters may give excuses that may be valid. Here, you can serve the tenant a 3-day notice to pay the rent. If the tenant doesn’t pay up after the expiration of the 3 days, you can proceed with the eviction.  Improper notice by the landlord. If you fail to provide a proper eviction notice, it’ll be illegal to evict the renter. You must include all of the statutorily required information and provide a written notice.  Retaliatory conduct, discriminatory and self-help. Under Florida Statues, tenants can use several other defenses to fight off an eviction. See illegal residential evictions in Florida.  Material noncompliance or a case of constructive eviction. Under this defense, you cannot evict a renter if they served you a 7-day written notice specifying their intent not to pay rent.  See Tenant Defenses to Eviction Notices in Florida for more information on tenant defenses.   10.  Removal of the Renter File a motion for default with the court if the renter answered the summons, but failed to show up at the court hearing. Alternatively, attend court on the hearing date and make sure to take all notice receipts with you.  Supposing the judge sides with you, the court will order the sheriff to evict the renter within 24 hours. You must obtain a Writ of Possession from the Florida court, which you must pay for. Once the Writ is served or conspicuously posted on the property, the renter has 24 hours to vacate.  If the renter leaves any personal property at the rental unit, the Florida eviction laws mandate you to notify them in writing. In Florida, the law requires that you give the tenant at least 10 days to claim the property.  The 10-day period is if the notice was personally delivered to the renter. If mailed, the tenant has 15 days to claim the property. You can charge the tenant for storage of the property. The costs should be reasonable. If the tenant fails to claim the property within that time, you are at liberty to dispose of it whichever way you please.   Conclusion Eviction is not an easy matter for both the landlord and the tenant. There’re very specific rules and regulations that have to be followed.  If not well-versed with the Florida eviction laws, it’s recommended to seek the services of an experienced attorney or your Florida property management company.

  • 0 Breaking a Lease in Florida: What You Need to Know

    A lease often lasts for a fixed term, which is typically a year from signing the lease agreement. After the lease term ends, you must either; Move out of the premises Renew the lease with the same or different terms Continue living on a month-to-month lease agreement, in your Florida rental. Once you sign a lease, you are committing to a full term stay. Nonetheless, if circumstances change and you want to move out before the end of the fixed term, you may break your lease. For example, you may move out early if you become sick and need to be moved to a health facility, or if you have gotten married or divorced. However, specific Florida rental laws have been put in place regarding breaking a lease. IF YOU'RE LOOKING FOR A PROFESSIONAL PROPERTY MANAGER CONTACT US Breaking a Lease in Florida     Prior to the changes of Florida Statutes 83.595, the Florida Law was clear. It stated that if a tenant chose to break a lease by moving out before the end of the lease, the landlord had to accept the tenants choice. It also stated that although the tenant had left the premises they were still obliged to continue to pay the monthly rent unit the end of the lease's term. The law also explained that the landlord was allowed to charge rent until the rental had been rented out again. This method created challenges for landlords, like having to chase tenants down in order to get the monthly rent payments. The renters would be long gone and subsequently, their landlords would begin re-leasing efforts and charge the tenants for the vacant months. Under the new law however, during the signing of the lease, the landlord may choose to offer the renter the opportunity to lock-in a lease-breaking/early termination fee. Under the conditions that the fee is no more than twice the required monthly rent, and that the tenant submits no less than a 60 days’ notice. And of course, all of this must be provided in the Florida lease agreement. This fee is known as “Liquidated” or “preset” damages. It is collected in case the landlord doesn’t find a new renter within the two months of the original lease breaking. This fee is given to the landlord to help cover his or her losses. The landlord must present this option to the tenant at the time of signing the lease. The tenant can then decide whether they want to accept it or not. If the tenant refuses to accept, the law states that he/she should not be denied rental on this basis.     A Tenant's Right to Breaking a Lease in Florida    There are various reasons why you may choose to break your lease. However, as serious as some of these reasons might be, you may still be required to pay the remaining rent or the termination fee. The Florida Landlord-Tenant Law only allows four main reasons for breaking a lease before the end of the fixed term. They include;   • A Call to Military Service   One reason might be if you enter the active military service as part of the uniformed services. The uniformed services consist of the armed forces, commissioned corps of Public Health Service, commissioned corps of the national Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration, and the activated National Guard. In this case, the federal law allows you to break a lease. However, you must submit a handwritten Florida lease termination notice stating your reason for breaking the lease. Your tenancy will reach an end, 30 days after your rent is next due.   • If the Rental Premises is Unsafe or Violates Florida Health/Safety Codes You can break a lease under Florida Statutes Landlord-Tenant Law 83. 60. Law 83.60 focuses on the landlord’s ability to provide a habitable rental premise, under the local and state housing codes. These codes govern housing quality and dictate if sufficient hot water, heat, and locks were provided. Under this law, you have been “constructively evicted” from you Florida residence. In other words, the landlord has “evicted” you by providing inhabitable housing. Under no circumstance should you be required to pay any termination fees. You also have the right to move out before the lease term ends, if your landlord fails to take action after you have submitted a repair concern.   • If the Landlord Invades Your Privacy or Harasses You According to Florida Statutes 83.53, your landlord must give you a 12 hours’ notice prior to entering your rental property. The law further states that if the landlord violates your privacy rights then you have the right to break your lease before it ends, without any further rent obligation. Shutting off your utilities, changing the locks without your knowledge or permission, or removing windows or doors are examples of unethical behaviors that fall under this law.     How Can You Break Your Lease and Minimize Your Financial Responsibility?   • Transfer the Lease to Another Tenant You can avoid paying the early termination fee by transferring the lease to another party. It could be a friend, family, or anyone looking to rent out a house or apartment. Simply approach your landlord and explain your intention to transfer the lease to another party.   • Have a Talk with your Landlord If you wish to leave early but don’t want to pay the standard fee, you can try talking it out with your landlord. In this case, you need to be honest about your reason for leaving early (if the reason doesn’t fall in the Florida Landlord-Tenant Law). He/she might understand. However, you must inform him/her as early as possible so they have time to look for a replacement.   • Consider the Termination Offers   If you are in a hurry to move out but haven’t found someone to transfer the lease to, you can consider the termination offers detailed in your lease agreement. In most instances, breaking lease agreements usually requires the tenants to pay about 2 to 3 months’ rent or forfeit their security deposit. You can negotiate the termination fees with the landlord with the intention to have him/her reduce the fees and return your deposit. Again, provide a detailed and accurate explanation of why you choose to break the lease to increase the chances of the landlord reducing your termination fees.     When to Seek Legal Advice After Breaking a Lease in Florida   It is important to take legal action if you feel that your landlord is not acting within the law. Some ways that a landlord can take advantage of you include; charging you for breaking a lease, providing uninhabitable housing, or forfeiting your security deposit. In any of these cases, you should seek the advice of a qualified and reputable Florida real estate attorney who will help you file a lawsuit against your landlord. As long as you have the proof, your chances of winning the case are high.

  • 0 Best Areas to Invest in Real Estate in Orlando

    • Orlando
    • by Administrator
    • 11-10-2017

    One question many investors looking to buy properties here in Orlando often ask is which neighborhood should they invest. Having managed hundreds of properties in Orlando, I figured it would be a good opportunity to talk to you about five areas - Lake Nona, Kissimmee, Oviedo, Orlando and Winter Park. These are arguably the best areas for property investors to invest their hard-earned dollars. They have large employers nearby, have plenty of amenities, are in solid residential areas, and have newer homes.   But why Invest in Orlando? Besides being a dream destination for tourists (thanks to Florida weather, beautiful beaches, and Disney World), Orlando also stacks up high in terms investment opportunities. In fact, it has been ranked as the third best investment location by Forbes.   A recent report by Yardi Matrix showed that Orlando apartment dwellers faced rent increases about twice those of the national average during most of 2016.  Furthermore, Orlando boasts the second highest rental yield in the United States. Its rental yield is almost twice as high as in San Francisco, according to a study done by Finder.com.  All these reasons make it clear that Orlando is one of the best cities in the country for investing in residential real estate.   Neighborhoods to Invest in Real estate in Orlando, Florida   Winter Park Winter Park is an attractive area for investors looking to buy investment properties. It is Orlando's quintessential "old money" neighborhood. Museums and posh boutiques dot this charming enclave. From its bistros and shops to its farmer's markets and festivals, Winter Park has long been a hotbed for visitors and snowbirds. It's near great shopping centers, restaurants, exploration areas and more. The rate of unemployment in Winter Park is 4.30%, with job growth of 2.46%. Over the next decade, the future job growth is expected to be about 40.62%. Presently, the median household income is $56,995.  In terms of Winter Park demographics, recent data shows the population stands at 28,771, with 87% and 7% speaking English and Spanish respectively. Another interesting fact is, the population density in Winter Park is 845% higher than the rest of Florida. The median price of homes currently listed in Winter Park is $779,950, with the median list price per square foot being $301. The median home value is expected to rise by around 3.2% within the coming year.    Oviedo This community is on the east side of town, near the University of Central Florida. Because of the relatively stable economy attributed to several large employers, it is a desirable area for investors looking to put up rental units. Besides the University of Central Florida, other big employers include NES Global and Siemens. Oviedo is approximately 16 square miles in size and is located in eastern Seminole County. It’s a growing city that steadfastly maintains its small-town feel offering a farmer’s market and air-boat rides. Part of Oviedo's southern charm is the population of chickens that roam the downtown area. In fact, images of roosters are painted on all road signs leading into Oviedo. Some attractive places near Oviedo include Friendship Park, Sweetwater Park, Oviedo Bowling Center, Pappy's Patch, University Performing Arts Center, and Cup O' Pottery. The median household income in Oviedo is $82,259. According to recent data, the unemployment rate in Oviedo, Florida stands at 3.90%. Oviedo is home to 36,617 residents. There are 8,556 households out of which 70% are married couples living together, and 50.4% have children under the age of eighteen.  The home value in Oviedo has gone up by 8.2% over the past year to reach $287,700. The square foot average price is $145.   Lake Nona Lake Nona is also called Medical City, due to many medical centers and hospitals that have been built in recent years. Lake Nona is an attractive area for people who are commuting to their Lake Nona is an attractive area for people who are commuting to their workplaces in Orlando. Therefore, there exists a huge rental potential for property investors. Lake Nona has two neighborhoods. One with higher priced homes and one with more affordable properties. Both areas have a lot of investment potential. Originally conceived as a 7,000-acre golfing mecca, Lake Nona is an up-and-coming neighborhood attracting families from different socioeconomic backgrounds. Housing units range from townhouses to luxury homes. Some of the areas nearby that make it attractive to property investors include Moss Park, Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, International Drive Area, and Sea World. The median income for residents between the ages of 25 and 44 in Lake Nona stands at $63,956. It is $36,091 for those under the age of 25, and $54,566 for those over 65 years. In terms of demographics, Lake Nona is home to 58,599 residents, with the male and female population being 28,541 and 30,058 respectively. Based on 45 home sales, the median sale price for homes in Lake Nona for the period between May 24 to Aug 23 was $400,000. The square foot average price was $170, representing a 4% rise compared to a similar period the previous year. Currently, the median rent per month is $1,995.    Kissimmee Kissimmee is the county seat of Osceola County. It is a great area for investors looking to purchase an investment property, at an affordable price, because of the excellent neighborhoods surrounding it. Homes in these neighborhoods, unlike similar homes in Lake Nona area, generally offer lower home prices and lower property taxes.  Kissimmee is next door to theme parks and exciting attractions of Orlando, FL. Thrill-seekers can enjoy flying warplanes, do zip lines, jet ski, and helicopter rides. Conservation lovers will enjoy kayaking on Lake Toho or Shingle Creek. Other weekend getaway attractions include Lake Tohopekaliga, extreme Jet Ski, Boggy Creek Airboat Rides and more. The median household income is $35,452. Currently, the rate of unemployment in Kissimmee is 5.2%, with job growth of 2.5%. In the next decade, the job growth is predicted to stand at 39.80%. When it comes to demographics there are 17,121 households out of which 37.4% have children under the age of eighteen, 47% are married couples, and 20.9% are individuals.  Over the past year, home values have gone up by 11.9% to reach $239,500. Currently, the median list price per square foot in Kissimmee is $118.   Conclusion As an Orlando property management company, we have the staff and resources in place to take care of your property. We take care of your property the way you would if that were your only job. We know what it takes to get and keep a home here rented, whether they are just single-family homes or large apartment buildings. If you're looking into real estate investing in Central Florida don't hesitate to contact us through email or give us a call at (407) 288-8283. 

  • 0 9 Reasons to Live in Orlando

    • Orlando
    • by Administrator
    • 12-09-2017

    Orlando is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the US. Being home to Disney World, Sea World, and Universal Studios, there is no doubt that people from around the globe are fascinated with this city, making it the tourist capital of the U.S. However, most people don't realize that Orlando is also one of the best places to live. With one of the country's largest university's, a diverse population, cultural vibrancy, focus on arts and a thriving sports sector, Orlando is where you might think of moving permanently.    Why You Should Consider Living in Orlando:   Weather Orlando has amazing weather throughout the year. There are no long rainy seasons and no snow storms. Weather is actually one of the key reasons why people love living in Orlando. You can have access to warm weather all year round. People can enjoy the great outdoors, don’t need to worry about heating and can live a healthy and active life without any worries.    Outdoor Activities Orlando has an abundance of outdoor activities, again mainly due to its great weather. The Atlantic Coast offers white sandy beaches with pristine blue water and plenty of water-related activities. There are also beautiful gardens, several recreational facilities, and sports complexes. The city is also home to some of the finest golf parks in the State.   Work Opportunities Because Orlando has a thriving tourist industry there are many full time and part time jobs offered. It is very easy to find jobs in hotels, fast food restaurants, and the Disney Resorts. Since the city is always busy, most hotels and motels are always looking for staff to cover shifts.    Investing If you are thinking of investing, then Orlando is just the city. There are numerous opportunities to set up your own business and penetrate untapped market segments. You can even enter the Airbnb rental business, buy a property to rent out to tourists or run a bed and breakfast. The opportunities are endless.   Fun in the Sun Orlando is home to the world famous Disney World Resort, Universal Studios Theme park, the Busch gardens and the Epcot center. There are hundreds of restaurants and shopping plazas all over the city, which will ensure that you're never bored. If you’re looking for some fun in the sun for you, your partner and your family, Orlando offers the complete package.    Food Orlando is one of most diverse cities in the country. A benefit of its diversity is that you have access to a large variety of different types of cuisine.You can find cafes, restaurants, bistros, diners, and top of the line 5 star restaurants which serve cuisine from all over the globe. Whether you’re in the mood for Italian or Indian or you simply want those homemade pancakes, you can find them in Orlando.    Natural Beauty Orlando is simply one of the most beautiful places to live. It has great scenery, ample natural reserves, plenty of parks and green spaces and of course the entire Atlantic coast.   Diversity Orlando has quite a racially diverse population. You can catch a glimpse of different cultures and traditions from all over the world because so many people from various parts of the globe are settled here. The diversity of this place has also resulted in people making extra effort to blend together and build a community that is cohesive and unified.   Retirement Community There is a large retirement community in Orlando, which is well established. Adult-organized communities have their own support groups and many live within their own compounds with a leisure lifestyle. The city of Orlando has introduced many social programs and has worked hard to improve public services. Commuting is easy and the traffic is much less compared to other cities in the US.   The best way to know Orlando is to take a short vacation and see the place for yourself. Away from the city, there's lots of affordable housing which can be rented or bought. Overall, this is a definite place to consider if you are considering moving to a new city.   

  • 0 How to Successfully Screen Tenants for Your Rental Property

    We’ve all heard stories about tenant-landlord disputes, especially of tenants that make it very difficult for landlords to deal with them and evict them, if the need arises. That is why it is extremely important for all landlords to screen tenants, even if they have been recommended by family and friends. The biggest advantage of effective screening is that any warning signs of tenants who could be problematic in the future become apparent at an early stage.   Here are some tips on tenant screening to ensure that you get the right tenant:   Rental Application: Make all prospective tenants fill out a rental application. The information provided by the applicant will help you decide if they have the right profile and if they would be a good fit for you. Make sure that the application is based on recommendations by the Housing Agency and always follow your state’s  rental and housing laws to ensure you are not sued for discrimination against any religion, race, income or gender.   Identity Check: During the application process, it is generally recommended that you ask the applicant for photo identification. This is mainly for verification purposes. In addition, make sure that the application form asks for a driver’s license number as this information can be used to conduct a background search. Make a copy of the photo ID and also ask if the potential tenant owns a car and if yes, the license plate number of the car.   Background Check: If you want limit the likelihood of ending up with a difficult tenant, always perform a background check. Do not fall for appearances or sweet talk as looks can be deceiving. A background check can reveal important things about your potential tenant including a history of skipping rent, damaging property, or any prior convictions.   Credit Check: In addition to the background check, always perform a credit check as this will provide you with the individual's credit history. To do this, you will need to get the applicant’s permission as well as his or her Social Security number.   Past Landlords: Ask the applicant to provide details about previous landlords including names, addresses and duration of stay. This will help you verify if the applicant has had any issues with landlords in the past. You need to call the landlord(s)to obtain this information.   References: You should always ask for character references. However, since some tenants can provide bogus letters, it is always a good idea to ask for phone numbers and follow-up.   Meeting in Person: Never ever rent out your property to a person you have never seen. You must physically meet him or her. We live in a digital world and even though most communication is done via email or phone, a physical meeting is vital. This meeting will tell you a lot more about the person’s personality, amicability and other oddities that an email or a phone conversation wouldn't uncover.   Protecting Yourself: Always follow state laws when it comes to checking the background of potential tenants. Clearly state on the application form that the information provided will be used to perform a background and credit check. In addition, you should have a section where the applicant is required to give a signed consent for a credit check. Be honest and up-front.  Background checks are quite common in the rental screening process.   Code of Conduct:  In the application form or lease agreement, always include the code of conduct and the expectations from tenants. Have the prospective tenant read the application and lease and go over each point with them. Many landlords just give the applicant the documents to review and get back to them. This does not mean that the applicant has read the information so make sure they understand the specifics of the agreement. The rental application must be signed and dated to make it valid.   Judgment: Finally, before you accept any tenant, use your instinct to follow-up on the candidate. If you suspect anything odd or abnormal about their personal information or behavior, the onus is on to you to screen them properly. There is nothing worse than getting a bad tenant. The leg work you do prior to accepting the tenant can save you a lot of hassle and money in the long-run.   Tenant screening is one of the most critical components of the rental process and should not be rushed or ignored. It is in the interest of both the landlord and the tenant to ensure that they are a good fit from the very beginning. If not, both parties suffer. If you would like help with your rental property don't hesitate to give us a call. We would be happy to speak with you and see if we can be of service. 

  • 0 How To Set The Rent Price For Your Rental Properties

    How you price your rental property influences the type of renters you will attract, as well as the amount of rental income you receive. It is no surprise that many landlords struggle to determine just what that rental fee is. While a low rental price will appeal to many tenants, it will limit rental income. Similarly, charging a higher amount to maximize profit may repel quality renters, keeping your units vacant longer. A long-drawn-out vacancy translates to a significant loss of benefits and rental income. So how does an Orlando, Florida landlord determine the right price for his or her property? Know the Pricing Red Flags The first step to setting the right rental price is to determine whether your price is too high or too low. If a week after listing the vacant property no one makes inquiries or prospects inquire but do not show up, chances are your price is too high. The same may be true if people come to view the property but decline to fill out an application . However, if within the first day of listing the property you receive multiple inquiries, and the prospects are in a rush for you to take a holding deposit, your rental price is likely too low.   Understand the Rental Pricing Determinants The price of rental properties in Orlando, Florida depend on several factors.  Major factors include the square footage, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, lease duration,  inflation rates,  location of the property, as well as the type of housing unit i.e. a single family or multifamily unit. Minor rent price determinants include the amenities and fixtures in the property, the lease clause, laundry, utilities, appliances, HVAC systems, cleanliness of the unit, and whether the property is furnished, has a lawn, fence or parking space.   Research Listings Prices As a landlord, the easiest and quickest way to determine the right rental price is to check the property listing platforms. They provide valuable information such as how much owners want for their properties. Some of the popular platforms available for use include: Craigslist, Zillow Rent Zestimate, Cozy Rent Estimate, Trulia Market Overviews, Rentometer, and the multiple listing services, Realtor.com.   Consult a Professional Another effective way of arriving at a rental price is to consult with a rental property expert. It could be a fellow landlord, a real estate agent, a property manager, or members of a Rental housing association. If you decide to talk to a property owner or association member, look for one with assets that are comparable to yours. The units should be similar in type, number of bedrooms, and square footage.  If you prefer to work with a real estate agent or property manager, make sure that he or she has sufficient expertise and experience in handling rentals.   Compare Real Rent Data Although the listings platforms provide a guide on how much you could charge, the prices they indicate are not necessarily what the landlords ultimately receive. They are merely an expression of what the owners hope to get. Hence, you need to investigate the rent listings' prices further to ascertain the actual rent fees. An excellent way of comparing rent data is by using Rent Estimate platforms which will help you to calculate rental prices with absolute confidence. They are basically a rent calculator, which gives you a recommended rent estimate based on similar properties in your area. It is a good idea to run a rent survey on several platforms like Cozy, Zillow and Rentometer. The guesstimate report will provide valuable information including; The rent estimate for your property The Confidence Score The estimated local vacancy rates and the precise rental amounts of comparable units, and The historical Orlando Florida rent trends. Once the calculations have been completed, the resulting reports from each of these platforms can be compared to the actual rent price of your property. It is likely that your rent will either be higher or lower than the results of these platforms. The Rent Estimation report  makes it relatively easy for a landlord to determine whether his or her rent prices are under or above market rate. As a result, he or she can adjust the rent to a competitive rate to attract quality renters.

  • 0 Guide To Buying Investment Property in Orlando Fl

    What You Need To Know When Buying An Orlando Investment Property So you're looking to buy investment property in Orlando?   Real Estate investing is a viable investment strategy which boasts of superior advantages over any other type of investment out there.   When the housing market turns around, an Orlando real estate investor can enjoy not only a positive cash flow but also the opportunity to benefit from increased equity in the property. Moreover, you safeguard those gains from both the state and federal income tax.   It's worth noting that for you to enjoy these benefits, you should diligently think through a few things about the Orlando property in question to eliminate any chances of making common property investment mistakes. Here are some of the things you should do. IF YOU'RE LOOKING FOR A PROFESSIONAL PROPERTY MANAGER CONTACT US Study the Metrics When getting into any property investment, you should assess its ability to generate wealth. Take the time to explore the factors that can either promote or inhibit wealth production. Such variables include historical growth trends, demographics, vacancy rates, where the residents work, the population growth rate, as well the kind of renters likely to look for property in the area. Similarly, be on the lookout for red flags such as a dominant employer downsizing, as that can affect your tenants’ ability to pay rent.   Armed with this information, it becomes much easier for you to purchase the kind of property that people living in that community would want to lease. You'll be able to predict the demographic that is likely to be looking for a home in Orlando - young professionals, retirees, or families - and invest in the type of home they'll be interested in renting. Analyze the Rent Your primary goal for  purchasing investment property is to earn rental income. Be diligent before making a decision. Conduct a rent assessment on the property to determine its realistic profit potential. To do that, calculate how much money you need to be earning from the investment, and verify whether the property in question has a realistic potential of generating that figure. In depth research on what comparable nearby units demand as rent, and surveying the prevailing occupancy rates of those houses might prove useful at this stage.  Inspect the Property Many first time investors hardly take the time to examine the actual status of the property they want to buy. Consequently, they end up with a home that demands unending costly repairs. Save yourself the agony and hire a competent home inspector to evaluate the property to learn its true condition. Some of the features you should review include the roof, electrical systems, plumbing, smoke and fire sensors, insulation, as well as the drainage.   Even though you can conduct the inspection by yourself, getting a pro will ensure that you only invest in a property that is safe, habitable, and complies with the local building codes. Saving you from pricey and countless property maintenance headaches. Assemble a Team Prosperous property investors in Orlando rarely work alone. They have a network of professionals to help with the day to day running of the investment. These professionals include a competent real estate agent well versed in the local market, a qualified appraiser for evaluating the assets, a reliable financier, and an attorney who specializes in real estate. Also, they have certified electricians, painters, plumbers, roofing experts, and service and maintenance contractors. Having a team of reliable experts is invaluable. If you feel like the challenge of managing all these professionals is daunting, hiring a property management company might be a prudent option as the manager will handle this for you. Critically Evaluate Cash Flow When purchasing the rental property, it is critical that you consider all the costs likely to affect your cash flow. These include property maintenance, renovation, repairs, and management expenses. Find out what these costs are and whether the rental income will be more than enough to meet those obligations and still leave you with a desirable amount.   If you decide to hire a property manager make sure to factor in their fees when calculating your cash flow. Interviewing your property manager ahead of time and asking detailed questions about their services and fees will help avoid surprises. Craft an Exit Strategy Rental property investing involves more than just buying the right asset in the right neighborhood and at the right price. You also need to have the ideal exit strategy that will help you to sell or flip the property at the acceptable time and price.   Whether you choose to purchase the property for renting or flipping, you need to factor in financing and renovation costs into your exit strategy. For instance, if your mortgage has an adjustable rate or a balloon payment, the best exit strategy is to dispose of the property beforehand.  Know Your Options At times, for one reason or another, your exit strategy might fail. It could be due to the flooding of the local rental market, or the bottom falling out of the property market just as you are about to sell. Whatever the reason, it is prudent to have in mind a few options that you can pursue.   For instance, you could offer an existing tenant a lease-purchase deal, or sell it to an interested property investor at a slightly below market rate. In both scenarios, you will have the opportunity to cut your losses and get rid of the asset promptly.   These are just a few tips to help you avoid unnecessary costs and get you going when buying Investment property in Orlando. Seeking the advice of a competent property management company can make the exercise much more rewarding. If you're looking for guidance buying an investment property in Orlando or Central Florida give us a call today!

  • 0 Must Know Tips for First Time Landlords

    A rental property can give you passive recurring income and a stable future, or it can be the source of untold misery especially to a new landlord. Many first time owners, end up having nightmarish ordeals with their investments for many reasons. For instance, they may not know how to attract or screen quality renters, how to craft self-serving rental agreements, or even how to keep the occupants satisfied and happy. As a result, such landlords end up with problematic tenants who do not pay rent promptly, are always causing trouble, or damaging the property. If you are a first-time landlord wishing to succeed, here are a few tips to help you do that. Provide a Quality Home The condition of your property influences the type of tenants you attract. If your property looks outdated, dilapidated and broken, then high-quality renters will shun away from it. Take your time to keep your units clean, durable, and appealing at all times. You can do that by performing repairs each time a tenant moves out, upgrading it using high quality materials and carrying out routine property inspections and maintenance. You also want to make sure your property is a safe place to live in. It should comply with all the relevant housing codes, while the utilities should be in perfect working conditions. Remember this is going to be someone's home. If you're looking to attract high quality tenants, you need a high quality property.   Your Rental Property Is Your Business A defining distinction between those who run a successful real estate investment and those who fail is in how they manage their rental units. Experienced landlords view their property as an investment, from which they hope to earn impressive returns. These owners handle the property like they would any other business. Only that in this instance, the renters are the customers. Your rental property is your business. Be professional, organized and objective in all matters relating to your investment.   Familiarize Yourself With The Fair Housing Laws A common challenge for most first-time landlords is learning the state and federal laws they need to abide by. Unless you derive pleasure out of standing in front of a judge or paying hefty fines, you need to be conversant with the Fair Housing legislations in your state. Knowledge on matters such as the “Protected Class, will keep you from discriminating against any renter by their color, race, religion, age, sex, handicap, national origin, or familial status. As a first-time landlord it's essential that you educate yourself about Landlord-Tenant laws.   Don't Jump At The First Opportunity To Fill Your Rental When a tenant moves out of the property, the first instinct for most landlords is to find another tenant as soon as possible. In their haste, many landlords end up renting their property to unqualified tenants. Avoid falling into such a trap by being patient enough to wait until the “right” candidate comes along.  Understandably, you will be concerned about the loss of rental income. However, what is the use in hurrying to fill the units only to end up spending massive amounts of time and money on endless conflicts and repairs? Be patient, apply effective advertising strategies, and be diligent in your tenant screening.     Define Your Perfect Tenants It is not just sufficient for you to look for renters. You should have a clear image of the type of occupants you want in your property. For instance, one with a stable income, a particular family size, as well as desirable credit ratings and tenancy history. Most first-time landlords undermine the importance of such a step only to end up with tenants that cause them issues. When defining your ideal tenant be careful not to discriminate against any candidate. Being knowledgeable of the Fair Housing rules will prove useful here.   Price your units correctly A primary reason why many first-time landlords struggle is their inability to charge the correct rental amount. Even though the right price of rent is relative and dependent on many factors, it is critical that you do not overprice or under price. Overpricing will seem like a rip off to potential renters, while charging too little will be unprofitable. Fortunately, it is not impossible to determine the right range. You need to research the market to ascertain what amount similar properties are renting for. When setting the price, also take into consideration how it will affect your financials such as fixed and variable expenses. A quick search on websites like Zillow.com, Trulia.com, and Rent.com can help you determine the going rental rate in your area.   Thoroughly Screen Prospects One of the most common struggles for first-time landlords is their inability to vet or research the tenant before handing over the property. If you want to have a rewarding experience, never allow anyone to occupy your investment before they pass through a thorough tenant screening process. The vetting should involve the prospects filling out a formal rental application as well as being put through credit and background checks. You should also talk with the applicant’s employer,  previous landlord, and neighbors. Proper due diligence can save you from many painful tenant headaches. If during the process you identify inconsistencies or concerns, be firm and disqualify the candidate.   Have a Legally Binding Rental Agreement You have every right to dictate what goes in your property, provided you adhere to the state’s laws. You do this by developing a legally binding rental agreement. This legal document defines the roles, responsibilities, and liabilities of both you and your tenants. The tenant must then sign the document as a confirmation that he or she agrees to abide by those terms.  Make sure the contract sufficiently addresses elements like the rental amount, rental payment date, security deposit, pets, property usage, maintenance, inspections, tenant evictions, termination and much more. The rental agreement will you to communicate to the residents what your expectations are. But most importantly, the rental contract becomes a reliable point of reference in case of disagreements.   Set Practical Rent Collection Procedures There is no doubt that your success as a landlord largely depends on your ability to get the tenants to pay the rent on time. You need to come up with safe and convenient methods for them to remit the rent each time it is due.  For instance, instead of encouraging cash payments you should adopt automated payment solutions. Furthermore, come up with novel ways to motivate the tenants to pay their rent on time.   Conclusion Evidently running a successful rental property business involves a lot of work. Not only do you have to learn the legalities of dealing with tenants, you also have to learn how to effectively attract high quality rents. However, if you follow the  tips you've just learnt and continue to educate yourself, you can have a very profitable investment even if you are a first-time landlord.