Friday, December 20, 2013

Grandview Heights - Flamingo Park Neighborhood December Market Update 2013

Latest market update for the Grandview Heights/Flamingo Park Neighborhod in West Palm Beach, Florida.

Breakdown - 4 homes sold  - 5 homes are pending and 17 homes are on the market.

Average sales price is $322,000

Palm Beach County November 2013 Market Update

Here's the latest market update for Palm Beach County.  The biggest change from November 2012 in the Palm Beach County Market is the median sale price has went up 15.6% and the average days on the market has went down to 46 days from 89 days.  Quite the change!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Home Maintenance Tips that can save you Thousands of Dollars

You could be losing thousands of dollars by letting your home age faster that it should.  Here's a simple maintenance strategy to keep your home young.

Many homeowners don't realize that their out-of-shape house is older than its years and could lose 10% of its appraised value, says Mack Strickland, an appraiser and real estate agent in Chester, VA.  That's a $15,000-$20,000 adjustment for the average home.

I love in a Historic neighborhood called Grandview Heights which is a few streets from Flamingo Park and both are in the Historic District in West Palm Beach, Florida.  Grandview Heights was established in 1910 and most homes in the neighborhood were completed by 1925.  I do come across a lot of these historic homes that have not been maintained well, so the amount of renovation or repair is a huge amount.

But good maintenance can add value.  A study out of the University of Connecticut and Syracuse University find that regular maintenance increases the value of a home by about 1% each year.

So if you've been deferring maintenance, or just need a good strategy to stay on top of it, here's the simplest way to keep your home in good health.

Focus on Your Home's #1 Enemy - MOISTURE

If you focus on nothing else, focus on moisture - your home's No.1 enemy, especially in South Florida.  Water can destroy the integrity of your foundation, roof, walls, floors - your home's entire structure.  So a leaky gutter isn't just annoying, it's compromising your foundation.

Keeping moisture at bay will improve your home's effective age - "real age" and it protects its value.  Here's your easy 4 step routine.

Follow This Easy 4-Step Routine

1. When it rains, actively pay attention.  Are your gutters overflowing?

2. After heavy rains do an inspection for spot damage or leaks.

3.  Set a time of year to check watering systems for leaks along with water related appliances, such as refrigerator, filters, water heater and the HVAC (condensation in your HVAC can cause leaks).

4. Repair any damage and address any issues and leaks ASAP.   I see so many homes that could have saved thousands of dollars with a little caulk in the bathtub.  Trust me, it will be the cheaper, easier fix if you repair those items right away.

For more tips on maintaining your home or my list of what you need to do to prepare your home to sell, call or email me!

Tracie Whillock

(561) 376.0985

Realty Associates

Friday, December 13, 2013

Historic Home Renovations Dos and Don'ts

Nothing is more self-gratyfying than taking on a historic preservation project.
 Living in a historic district in Grandview Heights/Flamingo Park myself, I adore the architectural splendor of my hisotric district in West Palm Beach.   Attempting to tackle a renovation project for a home in the historic district offer benefits to the homeowner and the city as well.  You are creating value and forced savings for the home upon completion.  

If you are considering purchasing a historic home, you will need help through the process of renovation.  Make sure you find a local Realtor that is knowledgeable in the historic area and can help after closing with advice after you close as well to help you stay on track.  


Determine Work Scope and Budget

Look carefully at the structure of the house to see what needs to be done.  Get a clear idea of how much it will cost to get the level of finish you desire.  It's easy to get carried away with their renovations.  You may want to remove the wall to open up the kitchen but realize that you need to move the air duct to do so which could cost you $10,000, which could be better spent elsewhere.

Find the Right Architect

Ask your local Realtor that works in that area if they know of any architects that specialize in historic homes in West Palm Beach.  Also check with the local neighborhood association, such as in Flamingo Park Historic District that has Flamingo Park - HOA website.  The website has information regarding new regulations for building such as size, scale and mass Flamingo Park - Building Regulations .  Also check with neighbords, they are always a good source of information.  Your City's Historic Preservation Division if they have one.  West Palm Beach has a great one at West Palm Beach Historic Preservation Division.

Buy Local

It's always good to purchase as many locally stocked materials as possible.  In the historic districts in West Palm Beach, such as Grandview Heights, Flamingo Park & El Cid,  the historic homes are known for their Dade County Pine wood floors and buyers love it.  You can't purchase it anymore so don't destory it if you have some.  It's extremely durable and impervious to termites.  it's a gem in these historic homes.  


Stop Mid-Process
Don't stop the project mid-process if it can be avoided.  Delays can become costly over time and opossibly increasing the costs.

Bother the Contractor
I know it's temting to call or go to the job site while the contractor is there working with questions but everytime you do, it's delaying the project.  Keeping questions to a minimum until he or she is off the clock.

Ignore the Historic Landmarks Commission

Not working with your hisotric landmarks commission in your city can be a huge problem.  They can help to ensure you have the appropriate permits and are working within the required guidelines.  Think about how disappointed you will be if you find out later that they can't have what you want because it's not historically incorrect - for example, wanting alumium siding in lieu of weatherboards, only to find out that it isn't allowed, when they could have gone with a good slate look-alike which is doable, easier and less expensive to install the slate.

Disregard the Budget

The biggest “don’t” of all is to not make a clear budget or plan for cost overruns. Even with the most detailed of budgets, projects do often run 25 to 50 percent over budget, so it’s important to have these funds available if needed.

By taking on a historic renovation, you can help a neighborhood turn itself around. These projects will bring life back to a community and reveal the promise that is buried within those old treasures.

Happy Building! 

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

What Questions Should I Ask My Home Inspector Before Buying My Home?

When you buy a home in Palm Beach County, you need to know exactly what you’re buying. Imagine how frustrated you’d be to find out that the hot water heater wasn’t working—in the middle of a shower! This is why you should have a home inspection before you buy your home. A home inspection is an important part of buying your home. Before you hire a home inspector, ask candidates a few questions to make sure you hire a trustworthy inspector.
  1. What does your inspection cover? Not all inspections are the same. Ask for copies of previous home inspections so you can see exactly what they will check inside the home. If you are concerned about something specific, like a leaky faucet in the bathroom, mention that to the inspector so they can check it out.
  2. Are you licensed or certified? If you live in a state that licenses home inspectors, ask to see their license. At the very least, choose a home inspector who belongs to American Society of Home Inspectors. This shows a level of professionalism and education that you can trust.
  3. What kind of report will you give me? You should expect a written report detailing what the inspector found. Most inspectors will give you a typed report within a week of the inspection. Make sure the inspector will be available to explain anything on the report that doesn’t make sense to you.
  4. Will I be able to attend the inspection? If the inspector refuses to let you be present during the home inspection, find someone else. This is your chance to know exactly what you are buying and what potential repairsyou or the seller will have to make.
As your real estate agent, I will guide you through the home buying process. Let me help you find your new home in Palm Beach. Call me today at (561) 376-0985 or email me at Here's some useful links for your home buying inspection:
  1. Home inspection - 
  2. American Society of Home Inspectors. - 
  3. Easy household repairs. -

Friday, October 11, 2013

New Construction Steps from the Beach in Coastal Ocean Ridge, Florida

Just steps from the beach and the Atlantic Ocean is the New Construction Community called Ocean Breeze.  This community features Luxury Luxury.  Interior Design is by the Award Winning Firm of Marc- Just steps from the beach and the Atlantic Ocean is the New Construction Community called Ocean Breeze.  This community features Luxury Luxury.  Interior Design is by the Award Winning Firm of Marc-Michaels.  

Each unit has ocean views , Dedicated Deeded Beach Access.  The Units are 2 Stories, 3,000 square feet under air, 12 Foot High Ceilings, A Private Courtyard, covered Verandas so you can enjoy the beautiful South Florida weather year round!  

Each Town Home has a 2 car garage, with an option 4 car, include a master suite, 2 additional bedrooms, 3.5 Baths, family room, dining room, gourmet kitchen, breakfast room, club room and fireplace.  Not a details spared in this new Luxury Community in Ocean Ridge.  

Prices start at $1,395,000 - only 7 Luxury Town Homes and they are going quick so act fast.  

It's hard to find New Construction on the Beach so this is rare.  

Contact me for more info or to schedule a private showing.  '

Click the link for more details:

Tracie Whillock

Phone: (561) 376-0985

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

SunFest Music Festival 2013 - West Palm Beach, Florida

Hi guys...SunFest is kicking off today in West Palm Beach, Florida.

 It's one of the biggest music festivals in South Florida with some of the top bands and musicians! Train, The Smashing Pumpkins, The Offspring, The Black Crowes, Gavin DeGraw, Phillip Phillips, Barenaked Ladies just to name a few!

 1 day pass is $37.   Where can you get live music, floating bars and sunshine? Great time and a must if you live in West Palm Beach!

 Follow my new Blog for all the great events and everything you need to know about real estate in Palm Beach County! See ya around town! Tracie W.