St. Petersburg Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

Sept. 24, 2018

Beach Hacks To Make Your Life Easier

 

Going to the beach is a great time, no matter what time of year it is! But we know that it can be a hassle! Here are some of our tips to make your trip to the beach a little easier and a lot more relaxing.  

-If you are just beaching for the day, Uber or beach shuttles may be your best option.  Everyone loves our beaches and the parking can fill up very quickly!

-Bring sunscreen and set a timer! It is easy to get caught up in all of that fun in the sun.  Don’t get burnt because you forgot to reapply! That Florida sun is strong! 

-Don’t forget to hydrate (Sure, drinking alcohol may be fun but doesn’t count!) 

 

 

-If you plan to stay out after the famous Florida sunset, pack some bug spray! (Or ask the bar or restaurant you are at.  A lot of restaurants thoughtfully supply bug spray to keep guests comfortable)

-Sunset is a very popular time! If you hope to be sipping a cocktail while the sun is setting over your favorite bar, get there early.

-Mesh bags are your best friend.  Sand is fun while you’re at the beach but not at all once you get home.  Place belongings in a mesh bag and shape it out. (Away from other people please….) Mesh laundry hampers work well too.

-To get sand off of your body, sprinkle your body with baby powder.  The sand will wipe right off!

-Be aware of any rip current statements. If you do get caught in a current swim parallel to the beach until you are out of the current! You can then safely head to shore. If you try to fight the current, you will probably lose.  This is why the advice is to go with the current. 

-Despite our advice of setting a timer, did you still get a sunburn? Freeze aloe vera in a silicone ice cube tray for the best sunburn relief! Note: This is only for minor sunburns, not sun poisoning which may require medical attention. 

 

 

-Set your sandals face down so they aren’t scolding hot when you’re ready to put them on and head back home. 

-Protect your phone from sand and water by placing it in a ziplock bag! You can see through the plastic and your phone stays dry and safe.

-Hide your valuables in a creative way.  Use empty deodorant tubes, chapstick tubes, sunscreen bottles, or even baby diapers.  There are miniature safes that you can take to the beach to lock away your belongings as well, but this is much more cost effective! 

-Have a little one with you? Bring a kiddie pool to the beach! It keeps your little one in one place and keeps the sand off of them! Who knows, you may be able to relax on the beach for a few minutes with this trick! 

-Don’t forget to have some fun, take some photos, and relax.  It’s important to remember why you went to the beach in the first place! 

 

 

We are so lucky to have some of the world’s best beaches just minutes from us! Our beaches are beautiful, clean, and have a variety of activities to fit everyone’s needs!  Please remember that we love our beaches and we want them to remain beautiful and clean so clean up after yourself when you leave!! 

 

Posted in Just for fun
Aug. 30, 2018

Pros and Cons of Fixer Uppers

Over the past two weeks, we have told you all about the pros and cons of new construction and a remodeled home.  Now let’s talk about fixer uppers! 

Living in Florida, there is an abundant amount of homes that need a little TLC before they can be considered a dream home! Do you have the eye to make that ugly duckling a stunning swan? Are you an HGTV and Pinterest addict with a can-do attitude?  Then perhaps a fixer upper is for you! But it is important to consider all sides before you put your hard earned money into a home that needs some TLC!

 

 

PROS:

  1. Since the home is not move in ready or in today’s trends, the price point on fixer uppers tends to be significantly lower.  Simply stated; you get more bang for you buck buying ugly ducklings! 
  2. You can transform the home into whatever you, HGTV, and Pinterest have dreamed up together! Get the home of your dreams and make it a personal haven.  No one else will have quite the same home as you since you had a hand in the transformation. 
  3. In today’s market, homes are going under contract with multiple offers in a matter of hours.  Fixer uppers tend to sit on the market longer and have significantly less competition.  That means a less stressful home buying experience for you! 
  4. Do you love a specific neighborhood but the home prices make you cringe? A fixer upper is a great way to get into your dream neighborhood without breaking the bank! An added bonus: the homes surrounding your home have an impact on the resale value of your home, which could mean extra money in your pocket!
  5. Great investment! Many times, buying a fixer upper and doing the work results in a huge increase in home value! If you work with a great realtor (hint, hint!) then your project could result in a pretty nice pay day when you choose to move! 
  6. When it’s all done, you will have total bragging rights.  You did this, you designed that, you thought of this idea, you chose the cabinets, you redid the layout of the entire house.  You can enjoy the satisfaction of a job well done!

 

 

CONS:

  1. No matter if you are hiring a contractor or being a DIY master, the estimated time frame is often underestimated.  If you are planning on living elsewhere during the remodel, this could mean quite a few months of double mortgage! Not to mention the frustration of missed deadlines.
  2. You know the saying “When you make plans God laughs”? Well there is a similar one in fixer uppers that goes something like, “When you make a budget a contractor laughs”.  Plan to go over budget with your remodels.  It will save you frustration when unexpected bumps in the road pop up!
  3. A full home renovation will take a lot of time.  Overseeing contractors, making decorating decisions, frequent runs to Home Depot, and running interference on unforeseen problems can be a full time job! If you have a real full time job, a home renovation can be overwhelming and stressful.
  4. The image you have in your head may not come out exactly as you had pictured it.  Things such as budget restraints, load bearing walls, and poor craftsmanship can ruin your DIY dream.  Redoing mistakes can lead to going over budget!

 

 

 

So, is a fixer upper the right fit for you and your family? Do you have the time, patience, and money to take on a project like this? If you do, the outcome can be a one of a kind dream home that may even make you money in the long run!

If you are ready to begin exploring fixer uppers, give us a call or head over to the search page and start browsing today! 

Posted in Market Updates
Aug. 25, 2018

Pros and Cons of Remodeled Homes

Last week we told you all about the pros and cons of buying a new construction home.  Since then, we have had a few clients inquire upon new construction versus a remodeled preexisting home.  

Preexisting homes generally have a lower price tag than a similar home that is new construction. In addition to a lower price tag, a lot of those extras that buyers tend to overlook are already taken care of.  (Examples: window treatments, light fixtures, ceiling fans, etc). 

The downside of a preexisting, remodeled home is the risk of buying a beautiful home with poor craftsmanship.  Luckily, this is easily avoided.  Don’t fly blind! Only buy a remodeled home using an expert.  This is where we come in! Our agents are trained to recognize good work and pay attention to details.  We provide extra education to all of our agents with remodeled homes in mind.  This means our agents can show you possible areas of concern.  If you choose to put an offer in, a full home inspection will ensure that you are making a wise investment and will shed some light on possible defects.

Here are some of the things our agents are trained to look for:

 

  1. Are the floors even? Living with uneven floors is unsightly, unsafe, hard to keep clean and frankly, annoying.  The humidity in Florida can cause certain flooring to warp and lift after it is installed if it is not done correctly.  Those wood-like tiles are very difficult to install and a DIY job can lead to corner lifts and uneven tiling.  
  2. Perfect finishings.  Attention to detail is very important in remodeled homes. The little touches are the best indicator how much the contractor cared about the job and how much time and effort were put into the remodel.  Check how tight the bannisters are, look for gaps around doors, check to see if the windowsills are even, see if the moldings line up in the corners.  
  3. Pay close attention to the kitchen.  The kitchen will be the biggest chunk of change in any remodel.  Do the cabinets match? Are the cabinets good quality? Feel the cabinets.  Did the contractor dust off the cabinets prior to painting or can you feel the dust painted over? Do all of the appliances work? Do all of the appliances match? Was the backsplash installed correctly? 
  4. The home may be beautiful but are all of the major systems in working order? This may not come to light until the home inspection, but try to check the HVAC system, peek at the roof, check all of the windows, and check to make sure the electrical work looks updated.  Again, do not fret if you know nothing about the major systems! That is why we have home inspections! 
  5. Look for signs of water intrusion.  Walls that are bubbly, stains, discoloration, and sagging ceilings are all signs of water intrusion.  Water intrusion is no fun and it can be a serious, costly issue! Again, home inspectors are trained to spot signs of water intrusion, so even if you do not see it, they will find it! 
  6. After you are under contact, pay for a pest inspection.  We live in Florida and we are blessed with awesome weather.  However, it is not just humans who love the warm weather Florida offers.  You don’t want to buy a home to find out you have unwelcome visitors like termites, bedbugs, or roaches.  

 

 

 

We are happy to help you with all of your real estate needs.  We hope that by reading this article you see we are not just here to make a sale, we are here to make the RIGHT sale.  We want you to be thrilled with your new home and we never want anyone to have buyers remorse! That is why we train our agents to help you with every single step of the home purchasing process! 

Posted in Market Updates
Aug. 2, 2018

Pros and Cons About Buying New Construction

It seems that Pinellas county is changing every single day.  New industry is flocking to the county and our real estate market is soaring! It is a very exciting time to be in the real estate business and we are thrilled to help you! 

During this time of change and development, we see a lot of new construction homes popping up all over the county.  We have clients who only want new construction, clients who want anything except new construction, and clients who do not yet understand the complexities of purchasing a new construction home.  

So what exactly are the pros and cons of a new construction home? Is a new build the right fit for you and your real estate needs? 

 

 

PROS:

 

  1. New homes are built in today’s style and to fit the needs of today.   Most of the new construction you will find on the market today offer things that buyers want such as walk in closets, an open concept, ample natural light, and high ceilings. 
  2. A lot of builders offer a warranty on their product! This means if anything goes wrong with your new home for the length of the warranty, the builder will fix it for you.  Note: Warranty lengths vary and some builders do not offer them at all.  
  3. If you purchase a home prior to completion, a lot of builders will allow you to customize the home with your personal touch! Pick the color of cabinets, paint, tiles, and more.  
  4. No one has lived there before.  While this should goes without saying, it is often overlooked.  This home is 100% your home.  You will never deal with another person’s dirt or poor color choices. 
  5. Maintenance free living! Everything from the roof to the appliances to the plumbing are brand new and unlikely to break or malfunction, leaving you to live maintenance free for a few years. 
  6. Lower energy bills.  New homes are much more energy efficient than their older counterparts.

 

 

Well. That all sounds great! But before we go searching for your perfect new construction home, let’s think about some of the downsides… 

 

 

CONS:

 

  1. Cost.  Often times, new construction homes can cost a lot more; sometimes up to 20% more than a similar existing home. 
  2. A sore thumb? Sometimes, builders do not think about the neighborhood they are building in and your new home can stand out in comparison to the other homes in the area.  A unique home can be fun but is often difficult for resale.  
  3. Smaller lots.  Builders are in the business of making money! It is not uncommon for builders to buy one large lot and build two homes on it, making the lots very small and the homes close together.  If a large yard is important to you, an existing home may be the better fit.
  4. The ideal image of your new home can add up very quickly.  All of those special touches you want may be counted as upgrades by your builder and those stack up! 
  5. New homes take a long time to complete.  Depending on the size of the home, how far along the home is when you purchase it, and any potential delays, a home can take up to a year to be completed! (Average build time is around 7 months but this varies)
  6. After you move in, there are still a lot of costs you will need to deal with.  Most of the time, blinds are not included and landscaping is scarce. 
  7. Move in day can change due to delays in construction.  Having said that, delays in closing can happen with any home purchase! 

 

 

 

As you can see, buying new construction is not for everyone.  Don’t worry if this list seems daunting, we are here to help you with every step! Whether you want a new construction home or an already existing home, our agents are trained to find that one special house that you will make your home! 

 

Posted in Market Updates
July 24, 2018

Beaches

 

One of the main reasons people move to Florida is to be on the beach! The salt water, the sand, the food, the drinks, the people, the sunsets! What’s not to love? The only problem is deciding which beach is the best beach for you! 

All of our beaches tend to have their own personality and attract people looking for different styles of fun.  Let’s start at the North and work our way down.  

 

 

1. Clearwater Beach

The most well known beach in our area is easily Clearwater Beach.  Clearwater Beach has been named the number one beach in all of the U.S. for multiple years, including 2018.  Tourists flock from all over the nation to see why this beach is so great! There are hundreds of activities and restaurants to choose from but the main draw is the pristine beach and crystal clear water.  

During your time in Clearwater, Frenchy’s Rockaway Grill is a must! Frenchy’s offers guests a wide selection of fresh seafood.  While everything on their extensive menu is delicious, a crowd favorite is their famous grouper sandwich, prepared six different ways! Each is more delicious than the last!   Enjoy open air, beach front vibes and take in the stunning sunset views while you’re there.  

The vibe of Clearwater Beach is busy, fun, and upbeat.  There are always a lot of happy tourists exploring, drinking, and playing. Don’t worry! No matter how many people happen to be there, Clearwater Beach is large enough that the beach itself never feels crowded! 

 

 

 

 

2. Indian Rocks Beach

Perhaps one of the lesser known beaches in our area is a local favorite.  Legend has it that Indian Rocks Beach got it’s name when native medicine man healed his chief with waters from a spring that was reportedly across from the beach.  Early settlers in the area would see the natives on their way to the “rock encircled spring” and would say “The Indians are on their way to the rocks” (Thank you to the City of Indian Rocks Beach for that story!!) 

A favorite local and tourist haunt is the Original Crabby Bill’s.  While not located on the beach, the Original Crabby Bill’s is just across from the beach and always worth a visit! Be prepared to feel like a member of the family! Everyone is warm, welcoming, and just looking to have a great time! You will find some of the best live music during your time there! Enjoy a variety of seafood while you’re there but make sure you don't miss out on their specialty….. crab! Especially stone crab if it is in season! 

Indian Rocks Beach is one of the most laid back, down-to-earth, and chill beaches our area has to offer.  Enjoy the welcoming atmosphere that locals love! 

 

 

 

3. Madeira Beach 

Known by many as Mad Beach, Madeira Beach is a very popular tourist attraction.  Legend has is that the first European to settle this area was a pirate by the name of John LeVique.  While many tourists flock to the white sand beaches of Maderia Beach, many also head over to John’s Pass, named for the aforementioned pirate who discovered the area.  

John’s Pass is located across the street from the beach on the intracoastal water.  This village and boardwalk gives people a choice of water sports, boat tours, restaurants, shops, and fishing trips.  Dine at big names such as Hooters or Bubba Gump Shrimp or enjoy some local flavor at the Boardwalk Grill. Boardwalk Grill is famous in the area for having the freshest seafood available! The grouper is brought in daily and you can taste the freshness. The restaurant itself is very small and casual but worth the wait if it is busy.

Madeira Beach offers fun for the entire family with easy access to John’s Pass. A happy mixture of locals and tourists, a small fishing village vibe, and a lot of fun, Mad Beach has a little bit for everyone.  

 

 

 

 

 

4. Treasure Island

Perhaps one of our favorite stories to tell is how Treasure Island was named! The story is that an early hotel owner buried treasure chests on his property and later “discovered” them, claiming they were filled with treasure.  Predictably, the news spread very quickly and people began calling the Island, Treasure Island.  The name stuck and here we are!  Today’s tourists don’t hope to find buried treasure when visiting, rather they hope to make treasure memories on the three mile beach.  

While visiting Treasure Island, there are plenty of restaurants to visit.  A staple of the island is Caddy’s on the Beach.  Caddy’s offers guests the opportunity to drink and dine with their toes in the sand, staring at the water and listening to great music.  Savor burgers, seafood, and adult beverages of all kinds.  Relax in the open air, beach vibe atmosphere.  A fair warning: parking is always an issue at Caddy’s so we recommend catching an Uber to visit this very popular location.

Treasure Island gives guests a perfect mixture of relaxation and action! Whether you want to sunbathe in silence or drink and dance in the sand at Caddy’s, there is something for everyone at this gorgeous beach.  

 

 

 

 

 

5. St Pete Beach

The home of Don Cesar, also known as the Pink Palace, and named one of the top ten beaches in the U.S., St Pete Beach serves guests a magical experience.  There are two main beaches on the island; Get in touch with nature at the county’s largest stretch of undeveloped public beach down at Pass-A-Grille Beach.  Relax, unwind, enjoy the calm of the beach and the soft breeze.  Or you can head to the better known St Pete Beach.  Lined with restaurants, bars, hotels, and condos, St Pete Beach is a lively, fun filled outing.  Walk from bar to bar, go parasailing, rent jet skis, or try your hand at windsurfing.  

During your day at the beach, enjoy the casual atmosphere at Bongo’s Beach Bar and Grille! The food is always excellent and the nightly music is always worth staying around for! While a lot of people love the seafood at Bongo’s, the cuban nachos are the winning dish for us! And there is plenty to share… if you can!  The entire restaurant is open air and there are plenty of tables that allow guests to sit with their toes in the sand while dining and relaxing listening to music! 

After Bongo’s, catch the sunset up on Level 11.  This open air, rooftop lounge is right above Bongo’s and gives guests the best view of the sunset available.  Perched high above St Pete Beach (on the 11th floor if you gathered…), the panoramic views of the sunset from above are truly unparalleled.  The sunset is a very popular time at Level 11 because it truly is the best seat in town so be sure you get there early! 

 

 

 

So, there you have it.  Moral of the story? All of our beaches are awesome and they all have their own unique feel.  No matter what kind of beach day you are looking for, one of our white sand beaches will fit your need! 

 

Enjoy your day at the beach.  Don’t worry! We will be here waiting when you get back!

Posted in Neighborhoods
June 25, 2018

Fun With Fido In The Burg

It’s no secret that here at Wolf Real Estate FL we lover dogs! Just head over to our Instagram to see our favorite Mastiff and Chihuahua.  One of the many reasons we were drawn to St Petersburg initially was how dog friendly it is! We love to hang out with our furry friends and include them in our outings.  If you are new to the city or simply looking for new ideas to bring your fur child to, then read on! 

 

 

The Dog Bar on Central is a beer lover and dog lovers heaven! Think of the Dog Bar as a large, outdoor dog park with a bar in the middle.  There is never a shortage of dogs, drinks, friendly humans, and fun.  Fido’s entertainment includes climbing obstacles, a pool, humans for petting, dogs for playing, a large area to run, and AC units during hot summer evenings.  Humans can enjoy the fairly priced drinks, the ample amounts of adorable pups running around, other humans, indoor and outdoor TVs, and the occasional food truck.  Go prepared! You are required to bring proof of vaccinations and there is a membership fee of  $5 for one week or only $40 for the year.  

If you are dying to go to the beach and see how Rover fairs in the salt water, Fort De Soto dog beach is the best in the area! This expansive beach sits on the white sand beaches and is an off leash dog beach for dogs to run, play, swim, and fetch!  The beach never seems too crowded since it stretches far and wide.  We have never seen our Mastiff so tired after swimming all morning! There is also a large fenced in dog park with showering station so you can be sure to get rid of all that salt and sand.  While you’re there, explore some of the walking trails, just be sure to put your dog on a leash anywhere outside of the dog beach or dog park.  There is a $5 entrance/ parking fee.  

While it’s true that dog parks can be found in most cities, St Pete has some of the best! We frequently go to the dog park at Crescent Lake and North Shore. Both of these locations are large, popular destinations for fellow dog lovers to bring their best friend.  There is never a shortage of dogs to play with at either of these parks! We love to take our dog to North Shore Dog Park and then walk up to Beach Drive and sit on one of the many dog friendly patios for dinner or drinks! While most of the places on Beach are dog friendly, Clifford loves to go down to Cassis because they have a dog menu! Treat your furry friend to a Mutt Loaf or a Hot Diggity Dog while you enjoy your meal!

After all of those fun activities, perhaps it is time to pamper your pooch! In addition to full service grooming, One Lucky Dog offers a dog bakery, a great selection of fun toys, and a wide variety of bandanas, harnesses, and dog clothing.  Trust us! There are plenty of options to empty your wallet and spoil your pup rotten! 

If you are looking for a dog friendly hotel during your stay, our pick for downtown pet friendly is Hotel Indigo.  Hotel Indigo is near all of the action of downtown and welcomes pets up to 50 pounds.  This brightly colored, funky hotel is located in a historic hotel and is only a few blocks from Beach Drive! Walk to everything and bring your furry friend with you. 

 

Our favorite pick for a truly luxurious experience for you and your dog is the Don Cesar.  The Don Cesar is located on Saint Pete Beach, but it is worth the short drive to show your dog the luxurious life! Not only is your dog welcome to stay in your room with you but the Don Cesar includes a gourmet room service menu for your dog as well as a special bed! Of course you have to make sure your pup is getting proper exercise during your stay, so make sure you utilize one of the suggested dog-walking routes provided to you at check in! If this isn’t enough to feel like doggy heaven, they also offer in room dog massages by canine massage therapists.  (Yes. Really.) 

As you can see, there is no shortage of ways to bond with your dog while in St Pete! Now the hard question is…. Which do you do first?? 

 

 

 

Have fun bonding with your furry bestie! Don’t worry! We’ll be here waiting for your call when you get back! 

Posted in Just for fun
June 13, 2018

District on 9th

If you have been near downtown St Pete lately, you have probably noticed the large amount of new construction that has been popping up all over the city.  The city is entering a new era and it is certainly an exciting time! If you have been looking for a centrally located, convenient, and beautiful place to live, District on 9th is a winner on all levels! 

 

District on 9th is currently under construction and now selling! It will feature 34 townhouses with four different floor plans.  The best part? Prices start in the low $400s! 

District is being built by the well known Icon builders.  Icon is known for quality construction, exquisite finishes, well thought out floor plans, innovative architecture, and great locations.  In fact, the District is so conveniently located, there are dozens of restaurants within walking distance including Engine No. 9, Buya Ramen, Pizza Box, Kings Street, Bavaro’s Pizza, Hawkers, Intermezzo Coffee, Fergs, and so many more! These residences are steps from downtown and only about 15 minutes from our perfect beaches.  Enjoy the art galleries, the Pinellas Trail, the wonderful boutiques, the art museums, visit the Tampa Bay Rays, attend festivals, take in all of the surrounding murals.  You will never be bored living in such a vibrant area! 

 

 

Why do we think that the District on 9th is something special? Other than the exceptional location; District offers a high quality product that is at an aggressive price point.  The area that District is located is changing rapidly and welcoming new businesses and residences in everyday.   Basically, this is an opportunity to live in one of St Pete’s most vibrant and unique areas before prices skyrocket.  

 

We are inviting you to live in luxury in one of our favorite areas of St Pete.  If you are looking for a different area, we are happy to announce that Icon is building all over our area! We love working with Icon Builders and we are happy to share that they have projects in areas such as Kenwood, downtown Sarasota, Dunedin, and Tampa! Call us today for more information! Our agents are ready to assist you in all of your home buying needs.

 

-All photos are property of Icon 

Posted in Neighborhoods
June 11, 2018

The Best Patios Downtown St Pete

Whether you live in Florida or you’re just visiting us, being outside is all part of the lifestyle of the Sunshine State! There is no better place to be outside than St Pete! After all, we do hold the Guinness World Record for the most consecutive sunny days; 768 days to be exact.  After a long day of enjoying our perfect weather, what is better than enjoying an adult beverage outside? 

Here is our list of the best places in St Pete to enjoy a cocktail while soaking in that Vitamin D from all that sunshine! 

 

  1. The Canopy Rooftop Lounge at the Birchwood 

 

There are no shortage of stunning views downtown St Pete, but the Canopy has them all in one spot.  Perched on top of the Birchwood hotel, the Canopy is an elevated outdoor escape.  Enjoy expansive views of the Tampa Bay, the world famous Renaissance Vinoy, and our bustling, beloved Beach Drive.  

In addition to the views from the Canopy has fire pits for cool evenings, a wonderful cocktail menu, delicious small bites, lounge style seating, fantastic live music, and canopies to escape the Florida sun when you’ve had enough.  

 

 

2.  The Vinoy Hotel

 

You will hear us mention the Renaissance Vinoy Hotel a lot on our website.  It is a staple of the community and a gorgeous place to visit or stay.  The Vinoy features a few bars and restaurants but our favorites are Paul’s Landing and the Veranda Patio.  

Paul’s Landing offers the best view of the Vinoy Marina! Grab a drink, admire the yachts, and take in downtown St Pete’s skyline.  The large patio ensures that you will get a seat outside and the numerous fire pits will keep you warm if it gets chilly during the evening! If you are hungry, the food is fresh, flavorful, and filling. 

The Veranda Patio is a quaint, cozy bar in front of the hotel with views of downtown and the Vinoy Marina.  Enjoy the salty breeze with a cocktail while watching hotel guests come and go! 

 

3. Red Mesa Cantina and DeSanto

 

We have definitely raved about Red Mesa Cantina before and this won’t be our last time urging you to go! Red Mesa Cantina is in the heart of downtown with a patio that transports you to a lush oasis.  Don’t worry too much about that Florida heat! Red Mesa Cantina has large, outdoor air conditioning units, fountains, and umbrellas to keep their guests cool even on the hottest of days! Their fresh, handcrafted margaritas are the best in the city and the food is always fresh and delicious.  

DeSanto is in the same building as Red Mesa Cantina, it is actually on the rooftop! Enjoy the views from the third story of this heavenly location.  DeSanto serves fresh cocktails, chill vibes, and a relaxing aesthetic.  The majority of this rooftop bar faces West so you can enjoy the ever changing cityscape of St Pete! 

 

4. The Getaway 

 

North of downtown St Petersburg, there is an escape to the Florida Keys called The Getaway.  The Getaway is a large, outdoor, waterfront bar that welcomes everyone to join in the fun by land or boat! Live the Florida lifestyle with white sand, palm trees, tropical cocktails, and great music.  

This is an excellent option for a casual drink while enjoying the beautiful Bay views.  One of the main draws of The Getaway is the beach bar vibe, without having to travel to the beach side! You will forget that you are close to the city and far from the beach while relaxing with your toes in the sand and a tropical cocktail in your hand.  

 

 

5. Three Birds Tavern

 

Three Birds is very close to downtown and the majority of the restaurant is either on the patio or on their expansive, wraparound deck.  Three Birds has a casual, laid back vibe that invites guests to stay and hangout for awhile.  The deck bar has plenty of entertainment such as a pool table, giant Jenga, and TV’s.  

It’s difficult to pick a favorite at Three Birds but people flock (pun intended) to their brunch where you can build your own Bloody Mary! Choose from options like bacon salt rim, a variety of flavored vodkas,  pickled garnishes, and a few interesting spicy options.

 

Don’t miss out on the food while you’re there either! Everything on the menu is delicious and made to order! Insider tip: try the sweet potato fries! 

 

 

 

Posted in Just for fun
May 16, 2018

Benefits of Owning a Home

It should come as no surprise that the cost of living in Saint Petersburg is on the rise.  The housing market is hot and people are moving to the city in droves! In a matter of two years, three large, luxury apartment buildings will be up and running, ushering even more people to downtown St Pete! With the continued growth and beautification of St Pete, rent is on the rise! 

Most would assume with the rules of supply and demand that the cost of rent should decrease downtown due to the increase of available apartment units.  This, however, is not the case.  The apartment complexes that are newly complete or soon to be complete are allowing downtown St Pete to charge top dollar for luxury accommodations.  The price of a one bedroom apartment in one of these apartments range from $1200-$2500 a month and the price of a two bedroom apartment ranges from $2100-$4200 a month.  

A lot of people prefer renting single family homes or townhouses for privacy, space, or pet concerns.  The rent is climbing higher and higher for single family homes and townhouses as well.  A three bedroom, barely updated home near downtown St Pete will set you back around $2200 a month or more.  

With prices like these, the cost of rent is often higher than the cost of owning a home! What are the advantages to owning a home rather than renting?

 

1.You Are Building Equity  

 

 

When you are renting a property, you can essentially kiss that money goodbye.  You will never see a dime of that money ever again.  When you own a home and pay a monthly mortgage, you are building equity.  Think of it like putting a small amount of each “rent” (mortgage payment) into savings.  When you sell your home, as long as you sell it for more than you owe on your mortgage, you will get some money back.  If you made a smart investment, you may even make money! 

 

2. Tax Benefits 

 

 

Homeowners are able to deduct the mortgage interest and property taxes when they file tax returns every year.  In the state of Florida, homesteading is a huge tax advantage! You will have to pay all of the interest and taxes up front, but in the end think of it as a deduction from your mortgage payment; lowering the cost of owning a home even more! 

 

3.  You Can Do Whatever You Want With Your Home

 

 

This is one of the most exciting things about owning a home! You can paint the walls, change light fixtures, knock out walls, change flooring, add a fence, put in a pool, whatever you want! You no longer need a landlords permission for anything!  If you are smart with the changes you make to your home while you are there, you may be able to make some money off of your home when it is time to sell! 

 

4.  Your Dog Will Be Happier 

 

It’s true!  You can fence in your yard, give Fido his own room, get more dogs, buy a large piece of land to play fetch on, let the dogs swim in the pool, whatever you want! You will not face breed restrictions or size restrictions and you can give Rover that pal he has always wanted.  Basically, owning a home makes you a great pet parent!

 

 

5. Homeowners Are Happier

 

Homeowners are able to personalize their space to their individual taste which gives them a sense of belonging.  In addition to a sense of belonging, owning a home makes a person feel more connected to the community.  Studies have also found that people equate owning a home to the first sign of financial stability.   Stability, security, and community lead to happier people.  Plus, when your dog is happy, you’re happy! 

 

6. Buying A Home Doesn’t Have To Be Stressful

 

 

 

When you have a full team of real estate experts behind you, your home buying experience will be smooth, seamless, and exciting! We work hard to ensure that every step of the process is easy.  You will never be left in the dark and all of your questions will be answered in a timely manner.  Our home buying experts are looking forward to meeting you and helping you find your dream home today! 

 

Posted in Market Updates
May 9, 2018

Crescent Lake Neighborhood

Crescent Lake is one of the hottest neighborhoods in St Petersburg! Houses in Crescent Lake are flying off the market and aggressively increasing in value.  There are hundreds of great neighborhoods in St Petersburg! What makes Crescent Lake such a hot commodity these days? 

Perhaps one of the most notable selling points of Crescent Lake is the proximity to downtown St Pete.  A simple four minute drive, ten minute bike ride, or a twenty minute walk is all it takes for you to be in the heart of our beloved downtown.  Most of the residents love the comfort of a neighborhood feel with the convenience of being able to be downtown in a matter of minutes! 

 

For those that love being outdoors, the 56 acre park in the heart of the neighborhood is serene and stunning.  You can often find fitness gatherings such as group yoga, mommy and me fitness, rugby, soccer, and running groups.  Enjoy the sparkling lake by walking or running the 1.1 mile loop around the lake or take a time out and hang in a hammock for awhile.  Sit and relax while trying to spot some of Florida’s wildlife or unique collection of birds that gather at the large lake.  

Crescent Lake is very family friendly as well! The Crescent Lake Park features a large playground that is always teeming with children running and playing!  To the side of the playground is a large field that is perfect for throwing around a ball or playing tag.  Most of the children love the large Banyan trees that are scattered around the park.  Man can make jungle gyms, but not as well as nature can! Even novice tree climbers will find joy in these easily scalable trees! After all of that activity, brave children can be spotted feeding the numerous geese that live around the lake.  

 

Crescent Lake is great for dog lovers as well! The aforementioned walking path is always a popular walk for people with dogs to do.  There is also a large, off leash dog park that is split into large dog and small dog parks.  The large dog park is usually busy with fun-loving, rambunctious, friendly dogs but if no one is there, the park provides balls to play with! The park is almost always clean since there are waste pages provided.  

For the sports lovers out there fear not! There are very well maintained tennis courts that are always busy with people playing tennis and pickle ball.  There is also a baseball field in Crescent Lake Park as well.  There are a few high school teams and intramural that play at this field so it is not always available.  

While we’re on the subject of the baseball park, there is a lot of history behind it! It was originally the spring training field for the New York Yankees.  It was the field that Babe Ruth himself trained on! There is a much beloved rumor that Babe Ruth was playing in a spring training game and was running to catch a ball when he spotted an alligator.  Despite his love of the game, he refused to get a ball that close to an alligator.  (Whether this story is true or not we do not know but it is a beloved story that circulates around St Pete).

Even without all of the selling points of Crescent Lake Park, the real estate itself is a reason to move to the Crescent Lake neighborhood!  The neighborhood itself is approximately 550 residences and 35 square blocks.  The Crescent Lake neighborhood has a stunning balance of old and new.  New construction and complete rehabs of homes are very common and are changing the landscape of the area.  However, a lot of the streets in the neighborhood still have brick roads and extremely old trees, maintaining the charming history of the area.  There are still plenty of craftsman style homes and old ranches that help to maintain the historical aspect of Crescent Lake.  

 

Is Crescent Lake a good investment? It would seem that the area still has a lot of growth potential.  Homes in the area are appreciating, new construction will continue to assist in market values, and the demand is currently sky-high! The neighborhood is continuing to improve as restorations of old structures continue and the new residents assist with and insist on a higher level of maintenance.  

 

Are you ready to make Crescent Lake your new home? Give us a call today! We would love to assist you in your home buying journey! 

 

Are you ready to sell your Crescent Lake home? Call us today and see why we are the best in the business and learn more about our proven sales technique.  Often imitated but never replicated!