Short Sale Sellers – May I Help You?

Do you think short sales are over on the Emerald Coast of Florida? They are not. In 2017, I’ve helped sellers from Sandestin, Destin, Miramar Beach, Florida to Navarre, Niceville, Crestview and more short sale their homes or investment properties, with prices ranging from $100,000 to almost $1,000,000!  The market has recovered, but not completely. Many homeowners are still experiencing mortgage rate re-sets where their  mortgage payments increase, relocation for employment, business failure, military PCS from Eglin AFB or Hurlburt Field, loss of rental income, divorce, job loss, etc. These hardships make paying their mortgages difficult or impossible, and their home’s value has not increased sufficiently to cover their first or second mortgage balances should they pursue a traditional sale. In these cases, short sale is still an option. Lenders are somewhat easier to work with than in years past, but not always. It depends on your particular situation.

Don’t stick your head in the sand if you’ve been receiving calls and notices from your mortgage lender because you are behind on your payments.  You may be able to recover, save your credit and avoid foreclosure through short sale. I recently helped a couple who had about a $100,000 in credit card debt that they had built up to pay a mortgage they could no longer afford.  They hired an attorney to help them with their debt consolidation and he suggested they also short sale their house. They were surprised and delighted that I got their house sold quickly and their Nationstar – Mr. Cooper short sale approved in 14 days!  If you have missed mortgage payments already, be wary of parties who contact you with “built-in” investors to buy your home after discovering Lis Pendens notices in public records. Always check with a legal professional before proceeding, as some of these are scams.

Here is a “Thank you” I recently received from one of my Niceville Florida short sale sellers:

“Wendy, I want to say how thankful I am for how hard you fought for me. You’re AMAZING and I’m so grateful for you.”

To discuss your particular situation to see if short sale or VA Compromise Sale could help you, give me a call or send me an email, and consult with your attorney. I’ll be happy to give you my honest opinion.

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

www.shortsales-emeraldcoast.com

www.rulnickrealty.com

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.

Santa Rosa Mall, Mary Esther Florida – Not So Bright and Happy for the Holidays

Out for my annual Christmas and Hanukkah shopping excursion for my husband, I trekked over to Santa Rosa Mall in Mary Esther, Florida. On Black Friday! Was I nuts? Yes and yes! Yes, I was nuts because it WAS Black Friday, a traditional zooey day to shop, but the second “nuts” part was… it was Santa Rosa Mall!  My first clue was the parking lot… half-empty.  My second clue was… Sears. My go-to store for tools, stocking stuffers and all things my Hubby likes was also half-empty! What happened to the tool department?  They used to have rows and rows of every tool imaginable, from the center aisle to the left and of course, to the right.  Before the big turn into the clothing department, a major power tool section was missing! There were only lonely shelves and wide-open spaces.  The myriad displays of screwdriver, ratchet and toolkit gift packs in all sizes were… not there! I used to roam wide-eyed, even last year, wondering what to get my Hubby from the vast Craftsman goodie selection. Alas, there was nary a tool bauble to be found.  I could not even find a Craftsman Christmas ornament, one of the traditional gifts I give him on a Hanukkah night to decorate our tchotchke tree! As you may know, Sears isn’t doing so well. They recently closed 63 stores and their revenues are down 25% over last year’s third quarter. But not to stock the surviving stores? How sad.

I left Sears empty-handed to head toward the Hallmark store, another Christmas staple for us, to buy classic action hero or goofy film character ornaments for Hubby. (After I hit the scary, buggy Sears bathroom). I walked and walked. Wasn’t the Hallmark store there, next to Gamestop? Was I losing my mind? I found a directory and stared at it for a while, being map-challenged (one of my best Realtor qualities) and located the Amy’s Hallmark Store. I sauntered back, noticing the steel bars shuttering parts of the mall, and the few patrons strolling about. I still didn’t see the Hallmark store. I tried asking iPhone’s Siri for walking directions. It sent me in a circle. Finally, I asked one of the mall employees, “Where’s the Hallmark store?” “Oh, they closed last year right after Christmas. They had no business.” Oh my. Gulp. Why it was still listed on the Santa Rosa Mall directory, I don’t know, but I was depressed at that point and left. I drove over to Destin Commons – what a difference! I could barely find a place to park! People were crossing roads like families of ducklings! It was a happy place.  I found all the tools Hubby could want at Lowe’s and headed home. That Sunday, an article about Santa Rosa Mall appeared in the Northwest Florida Daily News.  There is a proposal to convert the former Belk store at the mall to a 228-unit apartment complex, called the The Renaissance at Santa Rosa Town Center.  Repurposing of indoor malls is going on all over the country.  For Mary Esther, it may be better than the gloomy shopping center that exists there now.

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.

Book Review: “Mini Habits: Smaller Habits, Bigger Results”

The book just jumped out at me from “surfing” on Amazon… “Mini Habits: Smaller Habits, Bigger Results” by Stephen Guise.  One of his key premises is “Doing a little bit is infinitely bigger and better than doing nothing (mathematically and practically speaking)”.  The author proposes that you do something so infinitesimally small on a daily basis that moves you toward your goal, or the habit you wish to acquire, that you CANNOT fail.  Here is Mr. Guise’s main example. He wanted to exercise regularly, but dreaded the idea. So he decided he could try just ONE PUSH UP. That’s it- one push up every day.  He thought it was ridiculous, but he found he could do it. And his habit grew. He did more than one push-up a day. Now he is close to a gym rat. His theory is that you make the path toward your goal un-failable! Mr. Guise is a writer. One of his other main goals was to write every day. His mini-habit was to write just 50 words a day. (I’ve already written 180 words!) He says that is so easy, it often spills over to hundreds or thousands of words.  The point is – the mini-habit is not terrifying. It’s not hard. It creates success and builds a platform to do more.  Does it work?  I’ll admit, I’ve read about half of the book so far, and have successfully implemented a few mini-habits that are very rewarding!  If I miss a day or two, I don’t beat myself up. I’ve made it a fun little game, you see.

One of my new daily habits is to do something outside of my comfort zone, regular pattern of behavior or even defying a small or large fear.  Let me give you some simple, and some harder, examples. It’s quick and easy to go through the drive-through at the bank or the pharmacy.  Sometimes, instead, I go inside! I talk to people! Wow! It’s not that hard, it’s interaction, it takes longer and it may even be good for business. Here is another example. I may call a For Sale By Owner! That’s really outside my normal pattern of behavior, but guess what – I already got one listing with another on the way.  The mini-habit isn’t to list 100 For Sale By Owners within six months.  It’s just to do one thing outside my normal modus operandi each day.  It may or may not be business related. That part doesn’t matter.  When my husband and I were in the store, I wasn’t feeling well, but made a point to say “Hello” to someone I knew, that wouldn’t have noticed if we had just walked by. Typically, that may be something I would do, just get in and out. But I made a point to say “Hello”.  Fun, huh? What about doing something “hard” with this mini-habit? Hard may be to pick up the phone to relay unpleasant news instead of sending an email. But just one thing a day – you can handle that, right?  Here is another mini-goal I have started, meditating for five minutes a day with breathing exercises. One of my friends taught me to breathe in, filling the belly, hold for a count of seven, then breathe out more slowly, for a count of eight. OK, I admit five minutes is hard for me. I sometimes do three or four minutes. Maybe I should re-make that mini-habit into a one-minute meditation instead?

Here are some mini-habits you could consider, depending on your goals:

1. Drink one glass of water a day

2. Walk to the end of your driveway once a day

3. Read one new word in a foreign language a day

4. Read one page of a book a day

5. Call one friend a day

6. Clean one counter a day

7. Send one hand-written note per day

8. More Mini-habit ideas from the website

Anyway, I can see the usefulness of  Stephen Guise’s book and techniques in “Mini Habits: Smaller Habits, Bigger Results”. Perhaps you can apply it to something in your life, too! (And I just wrote over 700 words!)

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy:
itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.

Indian Lake Condo Unit 368 – Under Contract in 10 Days! Destin Florida

Indian Lake Unit 368 went under contract in just ten days! This two bedroom Destin Florida condo had several showings and was sold fast!  The unit had a long-term renter with monthly gross income of $1200. The return on investment was quite attractive to the new owner. The quarterly homeowners association dues (HOA dues, also referenced as “condo association dues”) at Indian Lake for this two bedroom 1090 square foot condo are $804. The condo lease is currently is under professional management.  Amenities at Indian Lake include an in-ground pool, clubhouse, fitness center and playground. Indian Lake was originally built as an apartment complex in 1999, then converted into condominiums a few years later. The complex has one, two and three bedroom units and there are just under 300 condos in the project.

One item of note for purchasers of an Indian Lake condo in Destin Florida is that the association is discussing an upcoming special assessment. Nothing has been finalized as of this writing, but a formal study into water intrusion behind building walls has been made by an engineering firm. If you are buying an Indian Lake unit, be sure to ask for the details and a copy of the report.

So far this year, 14 Indian Lake condos have sold at an average sale price of $124,493. There are two units under contract, and ten for sale, ranging in price from $89,900 to $154,900. The list price for this unit was $109,900 and was reduced to $99,900 for a quick sale.  The sale price will be revealed once the condo closes, in about two weeks.

4020 Dancing Cloud Court, Unit 368, Indian Lake Destin Florida

Watch the virtual tour.

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.

So You Found a “For Sale By Owner” and You Want an Agent to Write Your Offer?

 I’ve recently been asked to write an offer for a buyer purchasing a For Sale by Owner property. The buyer found the property and wonders why a fee for such a service shouldn’t be rock bottom.  If you think just writing an offer for someone is easy, take a look at the following list of required items involved in this task by the real estate agent:

  1. Verify ownership of the property
  2. Verify legal description and parcel id.
  3. Make introduction to seller.
  4. Obtain property disclosure from seller
  5. Ensure buyer’s desired offer terms are specified, such as offer price, earnest money, personal property included in purchase,  choice of title agent, closing cost assignment (who pays for what), closing date, inspection dates, etc.
  6. Ensure appropriate addenda are included, such as lead paint disclosure, condo rider, insurance cost limits, VA addendum, FHA addendum, etc.
  7. Ensure buyer is pre-approved to provide proof to seller along with offer
  8. Send offer to seller
  9. Describe offer to seller
  10. Discuss offer with seller
  11. Construct seller counter-offer and provide to buyer
  12. Negotiate offer
  13. Ensure finalized contract is sent to title agent
  14. Follow up on inspections, such as home inspection, termite/wood destroying infestation inspection, feasibility study, septic inspection, survey, appraisal for lender, provision for condo document review, coastal construction zone line disclosure, buyer pre-closing walk-through, etc.
  15. Ensure repairs are made if required as specified in contract and re-inspections take place if necessary
  16. Negotiate issues such as changed seller move-out date, buyer appraisal low, etc.
  17. Ensure title agent arranges closing
  18. Assume liability for errors in contract
  19. Assume liability in transaction follow up
  20. Assumar liability for whatever else can go wrong

Sometimes, the above tasks may be brief or easy, but often they are lengthy and can be complex.  Because a real estate agent has not found the property, driven the buyer around nor actually listed the home for sale, it does not mean that the tasks involved in just “writing” an offer can be diminished in their importance nor regarded as insignificant.

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.

Emerald Coast Water Damage Prevention Checklist – Courtesy Niceville Insurance Agency

I recently sold a fixer-upper house on 30A in South Walton, Santa Rosa Beach, Florida, in the Beach Highland subdivision. One of the reasons it needed work was due to water damage from a washing machine hose break.  The sellers of this 30A vacation home had turned the water on prior to their visit by calling South Walton Utilities two days before their arrival. When they got into Santa Rosa Beach, they found their 30A home flooded on much of the first floor because the washing machine hose had broken.  The floor was permanently warped, and they were horrified! Well, just recently, my favorite local Emerald Coast of Florida homeowners insurance agent, Travis Wieland of Niceville Insurance Agency, mailed me a fabulous informational pamphlet on Water Damage Prevention.  He said I could share it with my readers. Maybe this will help you in the future!

  1. Roof Leaks – Have a professional inspection annually. Request a detailed inspection report that includes the condition of the flashing, roof covering, parapets and drainage system. Ensure downspouts are free of debris.
  2. Washing Machines – Turn supply valves off when not in use, when leaving for extended periods of time (This is a great idea!!). Only operate washing machine while someone is home. Inspect water supply line hoses once a year for cracks, kinks or blisters. Consider replacing standard hoses with reinforced braided stainless steel ones.
  3. Plumbing Supply & Drains – Pay attention to your water bill. A significant increase could indicate a leak. Disconnect garden hoses when freeze warnings are issued and turn off outside faucets (freezes don’t happen often on the Emerald Coast, but it did snow here a few years ago!) Visually inspect plumbing pipes (drain and supply lines) annually, look for condensation around the pipes or an obvious leak and corrosion.
  4. Toilets– After flushing until the fill valve has finished refilling the bowl.  Inspect the flushing mechanism inside the toilet every six months. Replace the flapper or fill valve assembly if you notice intermittent or constant tank refilling when the toilet is not in use (it sounds like a ghost – who hasn’t heard that?) Operate the valve to make sure the water supply will shut off. Replace supply lines with reinforced braided stainless steel hoses.
  5. Water Heaters – Have professional plumbing inspection at least once every two years, and annually once the warranty has expired. The rod will eventually corrode and leave the tank vulnerable to damage.
  6. Sinks – Inspect plumbing beneath sinks every six months. Locate the water shut-off valve. Inspect the valve every six months to make sure water supply will still shut off. Have valve replaced if needed.

To keep your home protected from water damage, follow this advice. I’ve heard stories from others returning home from vacations to find floors and walls damaged from leaks! For your local homeowner insurance needs on the Emerald Coast of Florida, I always recommend Travis Wieland of Niceville Insurance at 850-729-2131 or email travis@niafl.net!

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.

12 Unit Multi-Family Apartment Complex for Sale, DeFuniak Springs, Florida – North Walton

Introducing The Highlander, 12 unit apartment complex for sale.

North Walton County – DeFuniak Springs Florida.

Why this is an attractive multi-family investment on the Emerald Coast:

  • 12 units
  • Built in 2000-2001
  • Original owner
  • Continual upkeep and maintenance – new parking lot, windows, paint, carpet, washers, dryers, ceiling fans replaced
  • 100% occupancy
  • All units have 2 bedrooms, 2 baths and screened porches
  • Convenient to I-10, Highway 90 and Highway 331 to South Walton, Santa Rosa Beach, Destin, Niceville, Crestview and Freeport
  • Growing town with Walmart, Lowe’s, Lake DeFuniak historic Circle DriveLeCom Dental School, Emerald Coast Technical College, Chautauqua Winery
  • Toll-free number and leasing website included in sale
  • Built on four acres – site has two acres available to build more units, zoned C1
  • Profitable

If you are looking for a multi-family investment on the Emerald Coast – you’ve found it.  Contact listing Broker, Wendy Rulnick, for detailed financials.

Watch the drone video.

537 North 20th Street, DeFuniak Springs, FL 32433 offered for sale for $797,500.

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

 

           

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.

Indian Lake 2 Bedroom Investment Condo – Destin Florida 32541

Newly for sale – Indian Lake Unit 368 is a striking condominium value in Destin Florida!  These Indian Lake Destin condos sell fast and are an attractive investment property. Earn rental income of $1200 per month with the long-term tenant in place in this two bedroom, two bath second floor unit!  Indian Lake is located off Commons Drive and Two Trees Road at 4020 Dancing Cloud Court.  The Destin condo complex is near Morgan Sports Center in Destin, which offers a variety of youth and adult sports opportunities, like baseball, volleyball, basketball and more. Henderson Beach State Park on the Gulf of Mexico is a five minute drive away, across from Walmart.  This lovely beach offers a boardwalk and pavilions. Indian Lake has a community swimming pool, work out facility and playground.  The unit needs paint and a little “TLC” and is sold “as is”.

What are you waiting for?

4020 Dancing Cloud Court, Unit 368, Indian Lake, Destin Florida is offered for $99,900.
Watch the virtual tour.

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.

I would love to hear your story…

As a means to get new business, I sometimes mail out what is called an “expired letter”. I mail these letters to owners who had their properties on the market in the Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, Niceville, Fort Walton Beach Florida areas, but whose house, condo or lot failed to sell and their listing contract “expired”.  A portion of my letter reads:

“I would love to hear your story and see if your information combined with my creativity may get your property sold.   I’ve found that sellers have unique insights that are often the key to a successful sale! What are yours? Please call me to share your story…”

Interestingly, I got a call from a gentleman who owns waterfront property in Santa Rosa Beach, and his listing expired, but he didn’t want to sell again. He was intrigued by my letter and said that was HIS line – “Tell me your story”!  He found it fascinating that I took the same approach, then he proceeded to ask me for “my” story. Of course, I was caught unawares and stumbled and stuttered. Was this a telemarketer with a new line, or what? It turns out he was for real and I found out I didn’t like talking about myself much, but I glanced around my office and saw a Derek Jeter poster on the wall. I told him I was a real New York Yankees baseball fan!  We hit it off, as he, too, was a fan of the Yankees and baseball! We talked and exchanged a few emails relaying our past baseball experiences, my going to the World Series, and him growing up listening to the game of the week. He knew all the players way back in history and recounted how his father had played for the minor leagues and how he was named after a famous baseball player! He inspired me and my husband to watch the Ken Burns’ “Baseball” documentary, especially about the Yankees of the 1960’s. I recounted this to my new friend and it was quite touching – to get to know someone a little with a brief exchange of our shared mutual interest.

Is there a moral to this story? Not really, but I do take a sincere interest in my clients. Everyone has a story. It may help me sell your real estate better.  Tell me yours!

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.

Just Sold – Island Green, Sandestin, Miramar Beach Florida Golf Course Home

This Sandestin home at 1513 Island Green Drive in Miramar Beach, Florida just sold in 34 days.  The 3589 square foot Raven Golf Course home built in 2002 had dreamy views of the Number 2 Fairway and dappling lakes beyond from both the first and second floors. Upgraded features included marble floors, high ceilings, crown molding, open spaces, arched doors, granite counters and more. The second floor had a palatial office or family room suite with four glass sliding doors to the covered porch for limitless views. There were walls of Scandinavian style built-in cabinetry and sleek Murphy bed in this special room.  The grounds adjoining the Raven Golf Course included a sparkling pool and hot tub. The master bedroom on the first floor had glass block accent windows and opened to the patio. The master bathroom had a whirlpool tub and separate shower. The kitchen featured a happy window above the sink to view. A dream audio center valued at over $100,000 was included. Other features of this Island Green, Sandestin Florida home included a $200,000 Onan whole house generator, three air conditioning units and brand new carpet. People like Island Green because it is a “community” within a “community”.

This Sandestin home at 1513 Island Green Drive in Miramar Beach, Florida just sold for $840,775.00

Watch the virtual tour.

If you need to sell your Sandestin home, call me at 850-259-0422.

It’s Wendy… It’s Sold!

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, Rulnick Realty, Inc.
Call 850-650-7883 ext 204
Email Wendy: itswendy@rulnickrealty.com

Wendy Rulnick, Broker, sells real estate in Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, 30A, Miramar Beach, Seagrove Beach, Watercolor, Sandestin, Seaside, Rosemary Beach, Fort Walton Beach, Niceville, Bluewater Bay, Navarre, Florida.