Friday, September 07, 2018

Orlando FL Million Dollar Homes for Sale

There are more than 500 Orlando FL Million Dollar Homes for Sale currently just in  Orange and Seminole County. These homes start at $1 Million Dollars and go all the way up to $28 Million. Add the surrounding counties in which to explore the Million Dollar market and it quickly becomes too confusing for any buyer to handle alone...
Orlando FL Luxury Buyers Agent

If you are thinking about buying a Florida Million Dollar Home, you need an Orlando FL Luxury Buyers Agent to guide you to the best buys. Call us for a no pressure chat about your needs and the best options available:  407-539-1053.
There are various home styles and lifestyles to choose from. Single family, condominiums, townhomes, waterfront, golf front, estate homes, vacation homes, and luxury homes with land.  Not to mention, that about one half of these luxury home are on lakes...which may or may not be a desirable or quality lake. There are 200 homes on lakes and about 110 homes on a chain of lakes.  For more information on lakes go here.
The highest priced Million dollar homes are in the community of Isleworth in Windermere Florida, a suburb of Orlando. That pricing is followed by Golden Oaks in Disney and Lake Nona in east Orlando.  The town with the most homes Million dollars+ is Windermere and the city with the highest pricing per square foot is Winter Park.
Choosing an area to buy an Orlando Million Dollar Property
Where to buy is always the home buyers personal preference, but for investment and appreciation purposes, a million dollar home should be in a million dollar neighborhood.  You never want to be the fanciest house in the community…
The choice of cities comes down to many factors:  What do you need to live close to? Your work? Kids school? Disney? Want more land? A custom built home?  What are your buying goals?
What about your budget?  All this needs to be figured out before we talk about areas and what pricing you can get where. Occasionally, a buyer will say that the price does not matter, but I find that it always let’s figure out your comfort level first.
Why hire an Luxury Home Buyers Broker?
Orlando Luxury Home Buyers Broker

If you want to save time, money and effort, you need the services of a good and experienced  buyer broker. Listing brokers represent the seller and their job is to sell for the highest price and protect the seller.  You need someone to advise you and negotiate in your best interest and tell you all the good, bad and ugly about the property....100% full disclosure.
Florida does not have mandatory agency disclosures, so brokers are not required to tell you that they don’t or can’t work in your best interest.  A shocking discovery to most Florida homebuyers who are not familiar with agent duties.
There are very few brokers that specialize in representing only the home buyer.  Most brokers will attempt to either represent only the home seller or limitedly try to represent both the buyer and seller at the same time as a transaction broker/facilitator.  That means no loyalty, no full confidentiality and no full disclosure to the buyer.
Buyers Broker of Florida is an Exclusive Buyer Brokerage office that  ONLY represents the best interest of the home buyer and never the seller, so we never have a conflict of interest. 100% loyalty, 100% confidentiality, 100% full disclosure to the home buyer.
Home buyers who understand conflict of interest choose to avoid it.  This is the same reason that every courtroom has two for each side.  Buyers and sellers each have opposing interests; sellers want the highest price and buyers want to pay as little as possible.  Florida law says that a broker cannot have two masters...Consumer Reports says:  if the agent is not working for you 100%, they are working for someone else.
Making an offer on Florida Million Dollar Home
Before our buyer makes an offer, we will research the property to see how long it has been on the market, if there were any price changes up or down, what the seller paid for the property, and what the comparable sales are showing. We do dig for additional information.
Based on what we find we will suggest an offer, but the buyer makes the final decision.  Everything depends upon the attributes of the million dollar property and how badly the buyer wants it.  Is this a one-of-a-kind property that checks all the boxes? Or is this one just one of many homes that could fit your requirements?
All offers are put in writing with either a pre-qualification letter for financing or “proof of funds”  showing that you do have the cash to complete the transaction. The counteroffers are typically done verbally until there is a meeting of the minds and the contract is then revised to reflect what the buyer and seller have agreed to.
Negotiating an Orlando Million dollar home contract may take longer...
The more luxurious the property is, the more there is to negotiate.  The home may come with furnishings, a car, boat, airplane or advanced technology which may be included in the sale or negotiated into the sale.
Typically a Million Dollar Home will not have multiple offers, so usually there is no urgency to decide quickly as if there were multiple offers on the table.  Sometimes the owners are out of the country and they may want time to review your offer. Sometimes the offer stalls and is revived a week later, so it takes longer to conclude negotiating the terms. Every home is unique for best negotiations.
Once a contract is agreed to and signed by both the buyer and seller, the escrow deposit is due and the clock starts ticking for the due diligence period and inspections. Depending upon the complexity of the property, we may ask for 30 days or more to complete due diligence.
Home inspections on Million Dollar Homes in Florida
Million dollar and multi million dollar properties are not inspected like a typical house sale.  A general comprehensive inspection is just the beginning. In a Million Dollar home there are elevators, extra fireplaces, gas lamps, wine rooms, electronic gadgets, waterworks and complicated convenience items.
The house may have 6 or more a/c units; different makes and models with complicated electronic air filters which may be outside the expertise of a general home inspector, who usually does a cursory examination.
The pool person that cleans the pool does not look for problems other than dirt or the pool finish. Not only can there be problems with water levels, colors of the pool lights, but also the KOI pond may be losing hundreds of gallons of water a month. Inspections on large homes will always reveal some deficiencies.
Licensed Florida home inspectors are only required to eyeball the roof from the ground, which may not be adequate.  Even if you get an inspector that is willing to do more, almost no one will get up on a steep or 2-story roof. You will need to hire a good roofer to walk the roof.
Depending upon the particulars of the home, you may need specialists for the elevator, Lutron system, masonry, electrical and more.  It is not unusual for a property inspection to take more than one day and run into a few thousand dollars. A small price to pay to learn about the multi-million dollar home that you are buying. If there are deficiencies that you are not willing to accept, we will either renegotiate the contract or you may simply not buy the property.
Yes, Million dollar home buyers do need to hire their own title attorney
Luxury Homes in Orlando FL

The buyers title insurance is a negotiable item in the purchase contract.  Who pays for it gets to control which title company will issue the title insurance and prepare all the paperwork for closing.
Most real estate listing offices have “controlled business arrangements” with a title company where they funnel them all their business in exchange for “perks”. Sometimes, the title company even shares space with the listing office.  While this affiliate relationship is a “legal” arrangement, it is for sure not in the best interest of the buyer.
It is a well known fact that most title companies do not diligently scrutinize the buyers closing documents. They are biased toward the hand that feeds them, which is the listing agent who has the seller. They have no interest in finding or resolving any issues for the buyer.
Studies have shown that 70% of title work is flawed and many title companies are having the buyer sign a “compliance agreement” or “hold harmless” which releases them of any screw-ups whether accidental or intentional.
I find that routinely they overcharge the buyer hundreds of dollars, or simply put some sellers charges on the buyers side.  Most of the time, they cannot explain what the additional charges are for... their answer is usually that no one else complains, and that’s just the way they do it.  For sure, they do not read or follow the contract. They also don’t look at the survey. Some title companies are loosely run and have clerks (not attorney’s) that do everything...most are not trained to do careful title work or resolve any problems.
Worse then that, if there is a title issue, they do not bother to correct the problem….they simply make an exception to the title policy and exclude coverage for that problem. That dilutes the protection that you have under your title insurance. If you complain, they will simply charge you for adding an endorsement to cover what they just removed.
I have had a title company:
  • Not pay off $12,000 in liens against the property  
  • Not request an estoppel for what was owed to the HOA
  • Skip doing a municipal lien search, even when it is in the contract
  • Blatantly lie about sending a check to the bank
  • Bounce a check
  • Not mention the survey encroachments to the buyer.
When the title company does sloppy work, takes shortcuts and omits paying off something, the buyer could end up liable to pay even if it is not their debt.
Then there are the more serious problems:  One time I bought a property that was on two lots, consisting of two parcels.  I was careful to make sure that both lots were listed in the contract with the correct folio number.  The title company ordered the survey which to me looked confusing, so I hired an attorney to review all my documents...  
I quickly learned that the seller’s title agent was transferring only one parcel of property, not both. I also learned that the seller was trying to sell my 2nd parcel to the next door neighbor!
What do you think would have happened if this transaction closed with only one parcel? Or if the other parcel was already sold to the neighbor? Or the seller was already back in another country?
When you are paying a million dollars for the house of your dreams, this is not the time to cheap out and use a title company that is obligated to the listing agent and the seller.
Besides, title company underwriters are rated just like car insurance, so you do want to only have “A” rated title insurance company.  
Every buyer needs to have a Buyers Broker that works solely for them, and also a title agent that is not biased for the sellers side. Pay your own title insurance and hire your own title attorney to do your closing.  Peace of mind. Then can you enjoy your Orlando FL Million dollar home in paradise.

Luxury New Construction in Orlando Area

If you are thinking about Luxury New Construction in the Orlando area, please put your seat belt on now. I am going to take you on a ride behind the scenes of buying a new construction home and it is not what you think.
Luxury New Construction in Orlando FL

Here is a true new construction luxury buyer story: this one I call “bait and switch”.
Buyer went to contract with a closing date of about 8 months out.  The buyer was promised several “bonus” upgrades, but when I read the contract, only one “bonus upgrade” is mentioned...the builders representative forgot to include everything she promised. I remembered and made sure that it was added to the contract.
During the signing of the contract, the buyer was given a “feature” sheet which shows the selected elevation (how the exterior will look)  and lists all the features that are included inside the home. The feature sheet had to be signed by the buyer to acknowledge the specifics of what the home is to have. No problem.  So far, so good. Except as the construction is progressing, some of these “features” are not being included.
Six months into the build, the new construction home buyer is given a revised “feature sheet” that deletes many of the promised upgrades as the buyer is told that the builder is no longer offering the other “features” in the community.  I compared the original signed feature sheet with the new revised one...there were 12 items that have been either replaced with something of lesser value or totally deleted.
I objected, and was told that the original feature sheet had “typo’s” and the new feature sheet was the correct one.  I think not...there were no “typo’s”...a typo is a spelling mistake. This builder simply decided not to provide the gutters, or the extra window or pavers on the 8 more changes.
Tidbit  #1:  If it is not written in the contract, you will not get it.  Chances are the sales agent will not remember or maybe will not even be working at the same location.  You must be vigilant and scrutinize need to include me as your trusted buyer agent.  I do read the 100 page contract.
Tidbit  #2: Builder cannot change what is signed. Once the contract is signed by the buyer and the builder, it is a legal and binding contract.  The builder cannot change what was originally agreed to. Even if the builder needs to substitute something, it must be of equal value or quality. Stated in the contract.
Even more interesting: the builders agent insisted that we are the ONLY buyers in the community who complained about the “revised” feature sheet.  Yes, I believe it, but that is not my concern. Other new construction Orlando buyers probably didn’t notice what they were entitled to unless someone like me pointed it out.
Many new construction home buyers think they don’t need to include a seasoned buyers agent, but when a problem comes up that needs to be addressed, buyers don’t know what to say or do, so they say “nothing”. Or maybe the buyer already has a broker that just signed them in with the builder and then disappeared until the commission checks are handed out. That does happen.
By the time buyers realize they are on their own, with no one on their is too late to hire a Buyer’s Agent. So, they comply with whatever the builder wants...regardless of how unreasonable it is.
Some new construction buyers even mistakenly believe that if they don’t bring any agent that somehow they will get a better price, and everybody will be fair.  That is absolutely not fact, more than likely an unrepresented buyer will pay more and get less.
Most interesting: This particular builder in my story is not some small fly-by-night flake. This is a national builder that is well known and builds in most major cities.  
Surprised, right?

3  Facts that all new construction buyers in Florida need to know

1. The builder’s sales person is not your best friend.  They will be friendly, professional and likable. They will make you comfortable enough so that you spill the beans about how much money you have, how much you are willing to spend and how much you love these homes!  However, they work only for the best interest of the builder, not you. This disclosure is buried in the small print of their 100 page contracts.
Their many titles may be builder salesperson, builder representative, builder agent, sales counselor and customer relations person.  Their only job is to make you fall in love with the community, so that you will buy the highest price and most favorable terms for the builder.
2. ALL builders pay the broker commissions.  Builders market to real estate agents to encourage them to bring in their buyers.  It is a fact that 80% of home buyers will use a realtor for their homesearch. Builders know that those are the more serious buyers, so want to capitalize on that.
New construction home builders are happy to cooperate with your broker, but you need to make them aware of who is representing you.  You must either accompany the broker or advise the builders rep upfront and sign/register in your broker’s name at the new construction office. There is no commission rebate to you for coming alone.
3. What you see in the new construction model homes is not what you get.
All model homes are upgraded and staged to the max. Builders know that “the eyes buy” so they pull out all the stops to make it appealing. Yet, some rooms may not even be the same size or configuration of what will be built. I had a new construction client that figured out that the master bedroom shown in the model was actually 6 feet longer than the size indicated on the blueprint for that model being built. In addition, the windows were oversized and not standard...something that no builder sales rep mentioned.
Last month I was in a new construction community where the base price of the new homes started at $400K.  This particular model that we were looking at had almost $300K in additional upgrades. So while the model looks fabulous, if you don’t buy the additional upgrades, your new home may be pale by comparison.
Lately, because the luxury new construction in Orlando is selling so well, there are less and less included perks and more outrageous pricing on some basic upgrades.
A good buyers agent will get clarification on what comes with the home and what is an extra add-on cost for the buyer. They will advise you of adding features that will make you money on a re-sale and not wasting your money on features that  only add cost. The choice is always yours.
Selecting a New Construction Lot
Luxury Homes in Orlando FL
This is one of the first decisions that you will make.  It is the builder agents job to have you quickly pick your favorite spot in the community.  Builders release only a few lots at a time to create a sense of urgency. Selecting the lot may not be as simple as it sounds and can be confusing to the buyer.  
There are perimeter lots, oversized lots, lakefront lots, waterview lots, conservation lots, interior lots, cul de sac lot, lots with extended easements.  All have different pricing and lot “premiums” added cost to the lot. Typically lot premiums can add anywhere from $5K-20K to the cost of the lot and sometimes can go as as high as $200K for a nice waterfront lot.  
Recently, I have found some builders who are asking top dollar for lot premiums that are not premium lots.  One builder is calling a perimeter lot a “conservation” lot which it is does not back-up to any conservation….it backs up to another house. Very misleading.  Of course, they are not explaining that to the buyer...they are simply charging a premium price for a non-premium lot...and unsuspecting buyers are paying the price.
In addition, the price of the premium does not tell the whole story...a higher premium does not necessarily mean that the lot is more valuable, just like a lower priced lot may be your best choice.  We will help you sort out the best lots for the money.
Going to contract on your luxury new construction home
Builder contracts are written for benefit of the builder and never for you, so don’t expect any help from the builders rep on that.  Most builder sales people have never read the small print in their own contracts and for sure they are forbidden to explain it to the buyer.
Some builder contracts are subject to a financing contingency, some are only if you use their lender, and some builders offer no financing contingency on certain properties.
Same with appraisals...mostly no contingencies.  I recently had a VA buyer whose new construction home appraised $10K short.  This was a government loan so the builder was not allowed to force the buyer to pay the difference.  Buyer was ready to “walk” away, so I was able to negotiate the price down to the appraised price. Otherwise per contract, the typical buyer would have been on the hook to come up with the extra $10,000 needed.
The reality is that the builder will give the buyer a short fuse to sign the contract electronically by docusign...they do not want the buyer to read or understand their convoluted 100 page contract.  Most home buyers do not understand even a fraction of what they will be required to sign. Yes, that is one of the big reasons that you need to bring a good buyers agent with you.
Here is a news video on how one buyer lost $40,000 because he did not understand the contract.
Before my buyer goes to contract on Luxury New Construction in Central Florida, I like to get a copy of the contract prior so that I can highlight any “buyer beware” issues and make sure the buyer understands the terms.
Not long ago, I requested such a contract from the builders salesperson  He sent me 92 pages of contracts and addendums the night before, most of which were not relevant to that community.  Yes, I read and understood all.
The next morning, I disputed what the builders salesperson stated which was different from what the contract really said. I received an additional $16,000 in builder concessions for my buyer client.  I also requested a reimbursement for the buyers hotel stay that was advertised on their website. That was several hundred dollars back to the buyers pocket. Builder concessions are not unusual if you know what to ask for.

What is negotiable on new construction?

It depends upon the builder, how popular the community is and even what time of the year it is.  The best buys are usually "spec homes”. These are “speculative” homes that the builder may have built in the hopes of an easy sale because they are “ready to go”. Or it is a finished home that the current buyer is unable to close on.  The buyers financing may have fallen through, they may have had a job transfer or maybe even a they no longer qualify to purchase.
Builders typically do not like to negotiate the base price but will negotiate “other” things. That all depends upon inventory, sales that month or time of year. Buyers that go alone, will never get the concessions that we can get for them because they don’t even know what to ask for.

Hiring an inspector for your new construction property in Orlando

Don’t kid yourself that a new home cannot have problems.  I have seen missing hurricane straps inside the roof, missing insulation, exhaust vents that are not connected and even hot water flushing the toilet.  I have also seen sloppy finish work, keys that don’t fit, the wrong appliances and missing landscape that was not installed...
Just last week on a new build, they were putting in 4x4 posts for the structure when the building plans called for 8x8 posts.  They did not fill the concrete blocks as required and it was too late for a re-do. The framed wall in the master was so crooked that they were going to put another fake wall over that so that it looked straight.  Seriously.
You can hire an inspector to just inspect the finished home, or you can hire a “phase” inspector that goes out periodically to inspect what they are doing during construction.
Lately, I am seeing builder contracts that limit the builders responsibility after closing. So it is important that you do have an inspection.
How to find a good buyers agent for new construction
Just like any profession, not all buyer agent services are the same. Statistics put out by the Orlando Realtor Association show that 38% of local realtors have been in business less than one year and only 64% sold one or more homes last year.
How does someone with no experience negotiate all the twists and turns that do come up? Or even know what to ask for?  The fact is that they don’ don’t sell yourself short.  You deserve to have someone on your side experienced in Luxury New Construction in Orlando. Choose carefully...
You, the home buyer, need to ask the agent the hard questions:
  • How much new construction do they actually sell?
  • How often do they represent only the buyer?
  • What will they do to save you money?
  • What will they try to negotiate for you?
  • Ask about some of the ways they protected the buyer?
  • Do they really read the new construction contract?
  • Do they provide advice during the contract signing?
  • Do they attend the home inspections?
  • Will they do a walk-thru for you, if you are not there?
  • Do they review the closing statement for mistakes?
  • What happens if the builder puts in a smaller water heater?
  • What will they personally do to actively help you?
Picking the right Buyer Broker will save you heartache in the future. Read our 5-star reviews here. Call us for a no pressure chat to discover your best home buying options in Luxury new construction in Orlando area: 407-539-1053

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Orlando FL Luxury Buyers Agent

Orlando FL Luxury Buyers Agent is a necessity for any homebuyer seeking to purchase a luxury home.  Buying a Luxury home in Orlando is not a simple cookie cutter transaction. Not only is there is a lot more money at stake, there are also more components that can go wrong.  Keep reading and you will understand.

Orlando FL Luxury Buyers Agent

3 facts about Florida representation that buyers don’t know

1.    Florida is a “Buyer Beware” state the does not have mandatory agency disclosures.  This is the only state that I know of where the broker does not have to tell you, the buyer, that they work for the best interest of the seller…  A scary thought for sure….and yes, that means you are on your own, unless you hire a Luxury Buyers Agent to guide you around potential problems. Not that everything is a problem, but there are a lot more problems than any buyer realizes.  We will discuss some shocking stories later…

2.    Almost all brokers in Florida work as “Transaction Brokers”  with absolutely no fiduciary duties to you the home buyer. No loyalty, no full confidentiality, no full disclosure.  A Transaction Broker strives to facilitate the transaction with both the buyer and the seller at the same time, so they keep both sides of the commission.  Sure, the state allows them to call it “limited representation” but if you read the Florida definition of what that really means, it is NO TRUE REPRESENTATION  AT ALL. None….zippo. And it’s your hard earned money you are spending…An experienced FL Luxury Buyers Agent will help you invest wisely.

3.    Florida Agency Laws protect the Broker $ commission $, not you the consumer. Broker responsibilities have been diluted so much that in most cases, it is either non-existent or such a watered down version that it does nothing to protect the buyers interest.  When you work with a Transaction Broker “facilitator”, that broker is simply in the middle trying to keep both sides happy. Color it however you want, but lets face it, buyers and sellers have opposing interests. Seller wants more money and you want to pay less.

Buyers Broker of Florida is an Orlando FL Luxury Buyers Agency

On a positive note, our unique Buyer Brokerage office does fully represent only the home buyer and never the seller.  We have been in business for almost 30 years, exclusively representing home buyers with expertise and enthusiasm. Call us for a no pressure complimentary chat about your home buying needs. 407-539-1053.  Check our 5-star reviews here.   To understand your choice of a Luxury Buyers Agent in Orlando, it is important to understand what the duties of brokers are in Florida. Read the whole story here.

Buyer Representatives Orlando FL Homes

How to get started with an Orlando Luxury Buyer Representative

While we are the premier Buyer Agency office in Central Florida, you might run across some traditional brokers that may claim to be an exclusive buyer representative.  Don’t be fooled. If the office lists properties, they owe allegiance to the seller. The law in Florida does not allow any broker to serve two masters…which is exactly why we are only on the buyers side.  That way, we have no conflict of interest,  and are under no obligation to promote any particular seller properties.

We welcome your interview and look forward to building a mutually satisfying relationship of trust. Ask us anything…407-539-1053.

How an Orlando FL Luxury Buyers Agents sizes up the home

As a Dedicated Luxury Buyers Agents, I want to know everything about the property being considered.  I gather all the information available and if I find a negative, I tell the buyer. No secrets. If the buyer chooses not to buy, that is OK, because there is always another property to buy.

Here are a few things that an experienced Luxury Buyers Agent investigates:
  •        Check ways to learn how long the property has really been on the market.
  •        Compare the property to what has sold recently.
  •        Review all the price changes…drops or increases.
  •        Examine google maps to see what is located around there
  •        Find out why the property was under contract and now back on the market
  •        Check the tax records for anything unusual
  •        Maybe even check with the city or county for violations
  •        Ask for any inspection reports
  •        Evaluate why has the property has not sold
  •        Ask about previous offers
  •        If remodeled, check for permits
  •        Ask the listing agent questions…if they balk, I ask a different question.  While some sellers agents may not say much, others divulge more than they should.

Benefits of having your own Luxury Buyers Agent

The Shocking True stories…

Story # 1 Complicated property. 

Private compound with two homes, two pools, airplane hanger, and commercial building.

When viewing the property, the listing agent comments that the downstairs of main house has new carpet and new paint due to water damage.  I ask from what and was told that the pool overflowed. I notice that the house sits about a foot higher than the pool and the pool sits on a lake.  Common sense tells me that if the pool overflowed, the water would go in the lake, as water does not flow uphill.

I check with the city for permits and learn that a water pipe burst in the bathroom walls and flooded the first floor…now that is a totally different story.

I was also told that another buyer is interested in purchasing and they are communicating with the city about future plans. I am curious about my buyers competition, so start asking questions from the city clerks.  I learn that years ago, when the property was built there was a water line that was not connected to the meter and the water for one house has been on the city meter…using city water…for free.

The city had notified the owner several times in the past 6 months. The city cited violations and requested that it be reconfigured or they were going to cut off the water to the property.  The city was requiring a water line search and an independent engineer to submit drawing on how they were going to rectify the problem. We provide the listing agents with all this information including the contacts; their response was that we were wrong and we did not know what we were talking about.

Meanwhile, we negotiate a contract for the buyer with the condition that the owner rectify the water problem.  A couple of months go by and nothing is done.

Finally, the sellers representatives set up a meeting with the city and the city attorney decides that since this property is being sold that they are going to change the deed restrictions that are on the property.  Instead of having several water meters for this compound, they are now only going to allow only one meter for all the buildings. Is that crazy or what? The reason given was the convenience of reading the meter…

Not only is the city overstepping their boundaries, the listing agents think that this is a good idea and are talking the seller into accepting this proposal. That would change what the buyer is actually buying.  It would mean that if the buyer ever wanted to rent out any portion of this large property, they would not be able to separate out the water usage. The existing meters would be worthless. Why DEVALUE the property?

We discussed this with the buyer and their attorney and they did not want this material change either.  The buyer withdrew from purchasing the property. Today the property sits vacant. How much do you think the next buyer will know?

What do you think would have happened if the buyer had not hired us?

Story #2 Lakefront acerage.

One-of-a-kind gorgeous Vacant Land acreage between 2 lakes. Access is through two neighbors property.  We advise the buyer about doing proper inspections:  a survey, (to verify the boundaries of the property), wetlands study (to verify how much land is actually buildable), and adding the access easement to the survey (confirm legal access to property).  The Title company wants to exclude that from the title insurance policy as the survey shows that the legal easement is not adequately described and therefore cannot be insured. Making the easement an exclusion on title insurance is not acceptable as the buyer then has no guarantee that they have access to their own property.

Buyer withdraws from the contract. Seller goes back to their original title company to correct.  That title company revises and then pays the neighbors for their cooperation in granting legal access. After recording proper access, buyer goes back under contract at $10K less…

There is vacant land sold every day where the buyer does not bother getting a new survey because no one has advised them how badly they need one.

Story #3 Repairs after inspections.

After inspections, on an “as is” contract, seller has agreed to our written request to fix the roof leak and replace the rotten wood.  They fix the leak and cover the rotten wood, instead of replacing it.. We make them re-do and replace the rotten wood also. Shoddy work is never acceptable.

Story #4 Winter Park Luxury Home Septic.

Seller claims they are not on septic, but on city water.  During home inspections, the Luxury Buyers Agent notices that there are no manhole covers in the street which indicates city utilities. The buyers agent texts the listing agent to again confirm that the property is on city water.  The listing agent confirms that the seller said they are not on septic.

Long story short the property is on septic.  Buyers do a septic inspection only to find that the septic lid is cracked with a tree growing inside…a real tree. Septic company does not bother to pump it out and closes it up.  Not to mention, that the seller has added a bathroom to the property and the septic/drainfield is too small to handle that size of home. The seller has owned the property for two years…do you really think that the seller did not know he was on septic?  Not a chance…

Buyer withdraws from the purchase wondering what other problems were not disclosed…

Story #5 Flawed tile on new construction.

New construction walk-thru. (yes, we always do them…with or without the buyer)  Buyers Agent notices that the floor tile is flawed. Buyer does not notice and builders agent is not saying anything.

Buyers Agent makes builder replace the entire 2nd floor with new tile.  Not only does a seasoned buyer agent notice things like that, they are also not afraid to speak up and make sure it is corrected for the buyer.

Story #6 Seller removing things of value.

Right before closing, I do a walk thru and find the side by side refrigerator missing, washer and dryer gone, the nice hunter fans replaced with cheap stuff.  The chandelier removed, and even the fancy moen kitchen spigot replaced with junk. I might not have noticed the “spigot” part, but they left the box on the counter. I notify the listing agent of the problem. Listing agent says it is not a problem because the sellers were not “planning” on leaving them.

Yes, it is a problem.  It is addressed in the contract. Sellers cannot replace or remove anything that is supposed to stay with the property.

I negotiate adequate monies for the missing/stolen items.  Listing agent compensates the sellers.

Sellers routinely remove or replace items that belong to the buyer. We find missing mirrors off the bathroom walls, appliances replaced, and all kinds of stuff.  We even had a transaction where the seller removed some shrubbery and the pavers from the driveway!

One time, the seller removed the elaborate security system from the house leaving large holes in the walls and ceilings. Not only did he take it, he actually paid a company to remove it!  Yes, we made him hire a company to put it all back and fix the holes…

Many times, the listing agents think it is OK to replace things as long as it is similar.  Not so. We often hear stories from buyers without proper representation how they got the short end of the stick. You have a choice to not go through this. Call us 407-539-1053.

Buyer Representatives Orlando FL Homes

What I have learned about Luxury Listing (Sellers) Agents

Listing high end property is very competitive and these “sellers agents” all want to sell the property for as much as they can.  They can then promote their statistics and use that to get more listings.

One would think that the sellers agent knows everything about the house, but not so.  Many times, I have learned things about the house that the listing agent was not aware of…sometimes they don’t want to know.  If they are aware of negative issues, they are required to disclose, but that might not sit well with the seller, (who they represent), so that part you cannot rely on.

While full disclosure of material facts is the law, the reality is that “full disclosure” is a well protected secret.  These sellers brokers are fierce protectors of the seller and keeping the property value high.

So, if you ask a direct question, a luxury listing (sellers) agents standard answers are:

   “ I don’t know”

   “they bought it that way”

   “It’s grandfathered in”

   …and more bogus claims. 

Which is exactly why you need us…407-539-1053

What will your Orlando Fl luxury buyers agent suggest you inspect?

Luxury property always needs more than just a simple comprehensive inspection. You should inspect everything that may be a costly fix to you. Each property is unique, so inspections may vary from $ Hundreds $ of dollars to several thousand dollars. The property may have an elevator, resort size pool, and multiple sophisticated A/C units that most techs have never worked on.

Sometimes you need to bring in additional specialists to do a proper evaluation.  For example, you may need an expert on technology or need a real roofer to actually walk the 10,000 square foot tile roof.

When you are spending big bucks of your hard earned money, it is important that you understand exactly what you are buying.  This is not the time to cheap out on marginal inspections. Finding problems affords you the opportunity to re-evaluate the purchase or renegotiate the contract.

Buying your luxury home “as is”

Almost all home purchases in Central Florida are written on an “as is” contract. That does not mean that you must buy the property with the deficiencies. “As is” only means that the seller is not interested in fixing anything…it does not mean they won’t.

If the inspections are a contingency in the contract, and there are actual deficiencies you are not willing to accept, we do renegotiate the contract. We have received $ tens of thousands in repair credits and $ hundreds of thousands in price reductions after inspections. Sometimes the seller is already stretched to their limit, but regardless, we will always do our best to advocate your position.

How a Florida Luxury Buyer Broker gets paid commission

Commission is paid the same as any licensed broker in the State of Florida.
  •     From the split with the listing office
  •     From the seller
  •     From the terms of the contract

There is no additional cost to have a Luxury Buyer Broker represent you.  On new construction, all builders pay the buyer brokerage fee.

Luxury Buyers Agents gives tips to Luxury home buyers in Orlando

   Use your poker face when viewing property when the seller or agent is there.

   Be careful what you say…there may be cameras and recording devices.

   Say nothing about yourself. The less the seller and their agent knows about you the easier it is to negotiate a contract.

   The seller and listing agent are never on your side.  What you say in front of them can and will be used against you to drive a harder bargain.

Our Confidentially:  You can tell us everything.  My lips are always sealed and your information is always confidential. True Luxury Buyer Reps do not blab, which is exactly why every luxury home buyer needs an Orlando FL Luxury Buyers Agent.

​In case you can not view this video here, please click the link below to view Orlando FL Luxury Buyers Agent on my YouTube channel:

Thursday, August 09, 2018

Luxury Lifestyle Vacation Homes in Orlando FL

Dreaming about luxury lifestyle vacation homes in Orlando FL? Wish you could go somewhere just to have fun? Maybe it’s time to discover your vacation home options and let us help you find the home of your dreams. We make buying a vacation home simple, so you can start enjoying a vacation home luxury lifestyle that will rejuvenate you. If you can dream it, we can find it. Call us: 407-539-1053.

Luxury Homes for Sale in Orlando FL

Buying a luxury vacation home in Orlando is a smart investment for you to explore. There are many reasons to choose Orlando for your vacation home or investment property and hundreds of vacation homes to choose from.

There are more choices than you can imagine. Condo-Hotels with full concierge services, townhomes with garages, single family homes with pools, estate homes with acreage, equestrian ranches, multi-family investments, and brand new custom homes built to your specifications...all available for you to just pick.

Why choose Orlando for your luxury vacation home?

Orlando is Florida’s largest inland city, making this an ideal hub city for living, visiting, entertaining, touring, shopping, working, playing and also finding beautiful real estate.

Orlando is known as “City Beautiful” in the sunshine state and is located in the very heart of Florida. This is a perfect location for an easy 45 minute drive to the beaches for swimming, fishing, scuba diving, gambling on a Cruise ship, or watching the NASA space launch. You can visit major cities like Tampa, Jacksonville, or Daytona in a leisure two hour drive or you can drive to Miami/South Beach in less than 4 hours.

There are many places to visit to enhance your vacation experiences while relaxing at the end of the day in your luxury vacation home. You can own a private soft place to end your day and call it your home.

Buying a Vacation Home for investment

Orlando Vacation Home investments work very well here because this location is well established and well regulated, with a growing flow of tourists looking for a place to stay.

Orlando is the world’s #1 destination for tourism, thanks to Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando Resort, and SeaWorld Orlando. In addition, there is Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Island of Adventure, Disney’s Hollywood studios, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Typhoon Lagoon, Blizzard Beach. These venues bring all types of shows with music, humor and added pleasure to living a fun vacation lifestyle.

Disney is the draw that attracts 72 million visitors per year and welcomes 1,500 new adult residents each week. Orlando is the fastest growing region of the 30 largest metropolitan centers in the United States. and houses United States largest university; the University of Central Florida. As the visitors figures grow, so does the industries and businesses.

Orlando was voted the best city for many reasons. Here are just a few:

  • #1 In the nation for job growth
  • #1 Best city for new business
  • #1 In the state for real estate appreciation
  • #1 Fastest growing metro city in Florida
  • #2 Top International Airport
  • #1 Best place to retire
  • #1 Best city to own investment property
  • Top 10 for “American city of the future”
  • No state taxes

Most importantly, this region offers an unbeatable quality of life. It provides a rich lifestyle for residents through cultural opportunities, arts, fashion, music, amateur and professional sports, favorable weather and abundant recreational activities. All this will for sure provide you with additional opportunities to maintain a lifestyle of luxury vacation living.

Variety of luxury vacation real estate options for luxury living

Condo-Hotels: Orlando has the third largest condo-hotel market in the world. This is a newer concept in which a condominium building has individual ownership, but is run like a hotel. There is a front desk for guest check in and an assortment of luxury amenities. These features enhance the appeal to potential home buyers as well as future renters. Services typically include valet, concierge, housekeeping, restaurant, resort pools, business center, health and fitness, gift shops, onsite travel services and transportation to the attractions. 

The condo-hotel on-site management company operates a rental program where management takes care of the cleaning, upkeep,and interaction with renters. They do all the marketing, and property maintenance. The condo-hotels combine vacation ownership with investment potential. The rental revenue generated is shared between the owner and rental program operator. This helps to defray the owners expenses and removes the headaches.

The benefit is that the owners have a luxurious “hassle free” vacation home in a premier location. The downside is that you might not be able to live there year round. Some condo-hotels limit the amount of time the unit owner can utilize the property, since the main goal is to rent it out.

Regular condo communities for Vacation Ownership

These will not have an on site property manager and have less restrictions. You are able to hire your own property management and use the property for personal use all year round, if you wish. You may also rent it out periodically. The monthly fees will vary depending upon the location, size of your unit and the maintenance of the common areas. The maintenance fees will be less than a condo-hotel and the condo ownership will be a mix of owner occupants, vacation renters, and second home owners.

Town homes are a popular choice as vacation homes around Orlando

Townhomes are typically 2-3 story attached home. They typically share a common wall, but not the ceiling or floors with the neighboring dwelling. A townhome will also have recreational amenities like a pool and clubhouse and more. These townhomes usually range from 1,200 to 2,200 square feet and may come with a garage and a private courtyard or a plunge pool.

Orlando townhome ownership may be like a condo where you own only what is inside your unit or it can have a “fee simple” ownership where you actually own the piece of land that your unit sits on. The townhome grassy area and the recreation facilities are always considered common area that you can use, but you do not own.

Single Family homes offer luxury vacation lifestyles

Single family homes offer the most living space and the largest number of bedrooms. The choice of what style you buy depends upon your needs and your budget.

Who will be utilizing the home? Will this also be a rental? Or will this only be for your personal use? Will you be inviting extended family for a holiday get together?

A single family home can offer more amenities within the home, such as a private pool, theatre room, BBQ, Pool table, Ping-Pong table, Foosball, Card table and more.

Since the property includes both the house and lot, you will be responsible for the upkeep of the property. If the property is in a community, there could be a monthly maintenance fee for the private road, common area,clubhouse, pool or guard at the gate.

There are luxury vacation homes available in gated communities, lakefront communities, golf communities, and estate homes big enough for extended families.

New Construction vacation homes

There are many new construction communities in several counties that are being built specifically as vacation homes and/or vacation rentals. Please ask us 407-539-1053.

Where are these vacation homes located?

Luxury Homes in Orlando FL

It depends. If you are not planning on renting your property short term, then you can buy any home style in all areas. Your lifestyle may not be a good fit with renting out your home, and that is OK. If however, you are planning on renting it out when you are not using, then it is considered a “short term rental”. A short term rental means that you can rent it out by the day, by the week or by the month.

Vacation homes for short term rentals must be in a community zoned for that and this type of rental is not allowed in all communities. The homeowners or condo association must have specific language in their by-laws that allow vacation rentals. Otherwise, the property will fall under an annual rental property...which means that you can only rent it out only one time a year on a 12 month lease or at minimum a 7-month lease.

You can find short term rentals mostly in areas with close proximity to Disney. Certain communities only in Orlando, Davenport, Kissimmee, and South Clermont.

Criteria for renting out your luxury vacation home

  • The #1 Feature that vacation guests want is close proximity to Disney. Ideally 10-15 minutes away, but not more than 20-25 minutes from where all the Disney fun is.
  • The #2 Feature that vacation guests want is activities at the home during the times that they are not out shopping or visiting the attractions.

This means that your vacation home must have a private pool or at least a community pool. Ideally the pool should be heated to maximize bookings for guests all year round.

Other preferred features is accessibility to tennis courts, a water park, or golf course. Playgrounds and boat docks are also a plus. The more recreation facilities there are within easy reach, the easier it will be to rent. Remember, these guests are here on vacation looking to pack in their time living a luxury lifestyle and having fun.

Luxury vacation homes come in all sizes from 1,000 square feet to more than 5,000 square feet...from 1 bedroom to 8 bedroom homes. Popular are the ensuites where the bedrooms have their own bathroom. The homes must be completely furnished to quality standards, including bedding, towels, and kitchenware. If you own a condo-hotel, the management company will require furnishings to be their choice of high standards.

Selecting a Property Management company

There is no shortage of property management companies, with a mix of some that are very good and some that are only second rate. 

Duties of most vacation management companies:
  • Market the property for you
  • Handle reservations
  • Guest inquiries and check-in
  • Deal with emergency requests
  • Arrange for maintenance and repairs
  • Pay bills on your behalf
  • Collect rental income
  • Provide a monthly expense statement
  • They will even furnish the home for you

Typically there is a monthly fee, in addition, to the management company taking a cut off your rental income. The financial compensation will vary from one company to another, so you will need to decide which management company is most appealing.

Interview your vacation property manager: Initially you want to judge them on how quickly they respond to your inquiries and how knowledgeable they are about the business. Ask questions during your interview with them and make sure that they send you a copy of their management agreements. The management agreement will explain their services and fees. If you wish to add or modify the agreement, most property managers will accommodate you.

Start up costs for your vacation rental home: You will have initial start up costs that will cover expenses such as obtaining proper licenses, changing locks, adding lock box for keys, making sure it is fire code ready with working fire extinguishers, smoke alarms and fire exit signs.

Best Real Estate Agent in Orlando FL

The management company will then do a walk-thru of your property to confirm that the property is appealing to a guest visitor. They want to make sure that you have the minimum required furnishings, including towels, dishes, TV and so forth. They may make additional suggestions to make your property more marketable; for example adding a wide screen TV in certain rooms or having wireless access.

Escrow money is required by management in order to pay bills and/or repair items on your behalf. Management will also need to have your Power of Attorney on file, so they can handle your account with the utility companies or other vendors on your behalf.

Most management companies have a website that market directly to the consumer. They also have partner websites in other countries such as Canada and the United Kingdom. In addition, they have relationships with travel agents and tour operators to book rooms. The overnight rate and commission rate to the management company will vary depending on who rents your unit, and what time of year it is. You will receive either a percentage of what the management company receives or a flat rate based on the nightly rate. Nightly rates fluctuate based on high season vs. low season.

Some owners maintain their own website for additional bookings, in order to maximize profitability. This can be done as a stand alone or in conjunction with the property management company bookings.

There are many wonderful options for a vacation home either for personal use or to utilize as a rental to offset expenses. For additional information, to discuss areas, prices and options, please call us at Buyers Broker of Florida407-539-1053. We would be pleased to answer all your questions about Luxury Lifestyle Vacation Home in Orlando FL.

In case you can not view this video here, please click the link below to view Luxury Lifestyle Vacation Homes in Orlando FL on my YouTube channel: