Warm Weather, Beautiful Beaches, and Southern hospitality: You’ll find them in Florida!

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If you are a looking to settle in a place with a low cost of living but offers a lot of comfort and leisure, Florida is the place to go.

Real estate brokers, like Melissa Yardy and Raymond Bolduc, know that the house prices in Florida are comparatively lower than in other parts of the US. It is also home to some of the best medical centers in the country, due in part to retirees having flocked the place.

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Aside from promising cheaper home prices and excellent healthcare, Florida offers warm weather, beautiful beaches, and Southern hospitality that you can hardly find in other states.

Florida has earned the nickname “Sunshine State” because of its warm and fairly humid climate. While the north and central parts of the state is humid tropical, South Florida is tropical. The warm weather is perfect for people who seek an active lifestyle and love swimming in beaches, visiting theme parks, and fishing.

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Florida has a 1,197-mile coastline with 2,276 miles of tidal shoreline and 663 miles of beaches. The beaches have warmer water compared to that of the rest of the US. Because of abundance of beaches here, one is never more than 45 minutes away from dipping, wading, or diving into the water. There are also five cruise ports in this place, which means that those who love cruising can save a lot of money on airfare.

The local residents in Florida are known for their hospitality. Being part of the Southern United States, the local residents are stereotyped for being hospitable to visitors. This hospitality can be rooted in the religiosity of the region, which teaches that one should be good to strangers.

Florida is pretty much a paradise, both for the young people and the elderly who want to enjoy retirement.

If you are looking for homes to buy or rent in Florida, check out these featured listings.


Real estate as portfolio diversifier and inflation hedge

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Although real estate is one of the world’s riskiest and most lucrative industries, it remains to be the best way for investors to expand, diversify, and protect their portfolio. This sector of the economy is specially used as part of a long-term core strategy to stabilize income flow. It is noted for its high market efficiency and the role it plays in the variability of stock and bond returns.

The traditional notion on real estate is anchored on its capacity to encourage assets diversification and increase the purchasing power of capital. The National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries (NCREIF) reports that the market indexes for the real estate industry have consistently displayed low correlation with the returns of both stock and bond investments. This means that portfolio diversification can potentially be put to its maximum. New opportunities offered by real estate allow venture capitalists to customize their assets allocation and heighten their investment’s risk mitigation potential.

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Hedging Inflation
During periods of inflation, property owners can increase their rental rates. This gives way to an increased inflation hedging capacity, allowing investors to manage demand elasticity more conveniently. However, real estate professionals, including Melissa Yardy of Florida and Jack Friedman of Texas, point out that although this strategy is very plausible, property owners may still have to face steep competition in the marketplace.

Real estate has the potential to produce investments that can be readily diversified and increase the purchasing power of capital. However, the ability of the industry to act as an inflationary hedge is only possible when leasing opportunities are made available.

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This website provides more insights, information, and analyses about the real estate industry.

Melissa Yardy: Deciding What Type of Home to Buy

The full article can be accessed on the RE/MAX website.

So you’ve decided it’s time to become a homeowner.

Great decision! You’ll be making an investment in your future – and building equity in a place all your own – instead of enriching your landlord.

One of the most important decisions you’ll make as you proceed in the home buying process is the type of home you want to live in. A single-family home? A town home or condo? A duplex or triplex?

And what type of floor plan do you prefer? A single-family ranch? A multistory home or a tri-level?

There are many factors you should consider in making these decisions, including your lifestyle, family situation and financial circumstances, says George Groves of RE/MAX Prime Properties in Scarsdale, N.Y.

Seek an Affordable Home

One of the most important considerations is financial. You want to purchase a home for which you can make the monthly payments without stretching your budget.

“If you want to get started in real estate, a condo or town home is sometimes what you can afford,” Groves says. “They’re usually priced less than single-family homes.”

Another option for the cost-conscious is to buy a duplex or triplex, live in one of the units and rent out the rest.

“This is often the right way to go,” Groves says. “Now you can buy a property you otherwise couldn’t afford because you have rent payments helping cover the mortgage.”

Availability is another issue, Groves says. Especially in urban areas, there may be fewer affordable single-family homes than other types of properties.

Consider Your Lifestyle

Your lifestyle embraces many factors, including your age and state of health (and that of your family); how much time you spend at home; whether or not you plan to entertain a lot; how much work you want to do around the home.

If you and your family spend most of your time away from home, there’s no need to buy a big home or one with a big lawn. Your better choice might be a condo or town home, Groves says.

“Let your maintenance payments take care of things you would otherwise do yourself,” he says, including lawn care, exterior painting and snow removal.

You also might want to consider a newer property that won’t require too much maintenance.

On the other hand, if you’re homebodies, you may want a larger, more comfortable home – and if you like to throw parties or have people over for dinner regularly, you should take this into account as well.

If anybody in your household has mobility issues, it would be best to stick with a one-story home.

“Other than these factors, it’s a case of personal preference,” Groves says. “On a cost basis, if you have a three-story house, the third floor doesn’t have the same value per square foot as the first two stories – and the same goes for the basement. So you may get more space for less money that way.”

Often, Groves says, picking the right home is a matter of “feel.”

“If it looks like home and feels like home, buy it,” he says.. “It is quite often difficult to find a home you love, so even if it is a little more than you wanted to spend, if you can afford it, buy it. Do not buy a home just because it is a bargain. Quality of life should be a major part of your decision.”

Be in it for the Long Haul
Groves offers one final piece of advice in searching for a home.

“It should be for the long haul,” he says. “Not for speculation. In today’s economy, if you have a decent down payment, your mortgage payment should be roughly the same as your rent. And over the long haul, you’ll see appreciation as you go.”

Contact Meet Melissa Yardy

Melissa Yardy: Real Estate Prices in Pinellas Bump Up

Melissa Yardy St. Pete Beach

Tampa Bay Times quoted today that “Hundreds more homes sold across Tampa Bay last month than the year before, as tight supplies sent prices rising and helped the market build in strength.”  CoreLogic said this week that there is a nationwide surge as values climb and supplies dwindle after the market’s six-year slump.  American home prices rose 5 percent in September, the biggest yearly increase since 2006.

In St. Pete Beach and Treasure Island statistics show a rise in condo sales:

Number Sold
Average Sale Price

Time Period
September – Novemeber 2011 23 $253,000
September – Novemeber 2012 51 $258,000

As well as single family home prices:

Number Sold
Average Sale Price

Time Period
September – Novemeber 2011 31 $541,000
September – Novemeber 2012 28 $623,000

Inventory is at a 6 year low, making it a good time to list and sell your property in the upcoming seasonal market, January through May.  For more local real estate information visit www.MelissaYardy.com


Melissa Yardy St. Pete Beach


Now that the election is over and I want to make everyone aware that the The Foreclosure

Relief Act expires naturally at the stroke of midnight on December 31st, 2012 which means any short sale closings, deed in lieu of foreclosure, mortgage modifications with principle forgiveness and foreclosures with waivers of defiency, that occur, (which means it closes or is signed off by the

lender) on or after January 1st, 2013 will likely incur ordinary income tax on the borrower.

This IRS ruling on December 20th, 2007 created an opportunity for homeowners to sell their

primary residence less than what was owed, and although they would still receive a 1099 for

the difference but this phantom income was not taxable as if it was income for that year to

the homeowner. This ruling applied to most homeowners since the limit was 2 million. At the time, as a Realtor, is was a huge benefit to give these already distressed homeowners some relief and a little less to worry about. Over the last 5 years, it has been somewhat customary and I’m sure most

Realtors and homeowners do not realize this exemption is almost at it’s end.

As an example, if a homeowner has a $300,000 mortgage and the lender only receives $200,000

and cancels the debt, in a short sale then the seller would receive a 1099 for $100,000 for that

year as if they had received that much income for the year. If that taxpayer pays 15% taxes on their income then they would owe $15,000 in additional taxes. This additional burden would likely prohibit them from getting on their feet and moving past an already horrible situation.

I would encourage all Realtors to contact their congressman and make it known how important

that this Act be extended past this quickly nearing deadline.

Short Sales and Arm’s Length

Melissa Yardy St. Pete Beach

In the homes sales market of these days, most buyers have an ample opportunity of purchasing exiting home through the purchase of what is referred to as ‘short sale’ property. Short sale describes the situation in which the existing owner is no longer capable of affording the keeping up of the repayments of mortgage or repaying of the loan. At this point, the seller can ask the bank to settle that mortgage at value that is that what the borrower owes.

In 2011, a program to assist the owners of homes that were distressed was launched by the Bank of America. According, to Melissa Yardy, this is one of those great innovations that are very vital in helping the economy in general and the owners of homes in particular. The new program is offering incentives of relocation up to $20,000 to the owners of homes that are in distress.

As a professional in real estate, Melissa Yardy believes that this will go a long way in helping very many families and owners of homes who are capable of demonstrating hardship that can be verified as well as providing the necessary paperwork for ‘unqualifying’ for the mortgage. This is without doubt a very great stride towards mending the American market of real estate.

The subsequent step is for the defaulting customers of Bank of American and it is suggested that they should contact Realtor so that they can get started. It is almost a requirement that a real estate agent that is licensed should do the marketing of this property so that he or she can find a willing buyer within arm’s length transaction. The term arm’s length describes transaction in real estate whereby the purchasers and sellers of parcel of land or property act independently in a way such that they are not in any way related to the other.

The arm’s length transaction idea offers an assurance to the real estate transactions buyers and sellers that they are acting in their best interests and they are not subjected to any form of influence from the outside. In the transactions that are not within arm’s length, there is high likelihood of some other factors which may have influence on the transaction and in some instances to the exchange value as well. This concept is very important because it is very common way that is used in determining the fair value for the market.


Melissa Yardy St. Pete Beach REAL ESTATE CHEESECAKE

Just like my favorite dessert with the perfect ingredients, so is today’s real estate market.   The National Association of Realtors showed that a strong rise in home price from a year ago, in fact 9.4% higher for the median prices existing home sold.  Interestingly enough, while prices are up compared to only one year ago, mortgage rates are lower and incomes are up so homes are slightly more affordable to the median income family.
The sugar in this fabulous recipe is that the prices are still almost half of what they were in 2005 so that’s a 50% off sale.  Now, if you are an investor buying property to rent out, here’s the real icing on the cake, or cheesecake, rent’s for properties have not decreased, in fact in our area, rents have increased, making a great time to invest.  It’s the perfect ingredients to make it a great time to
For more information on the Pinellas County real estate market, visit www.melissayardy.com

Melissa Yardy: Top Return on Investment

It’s amazing how well an investor of real estate can do in real estate in our market today.  A client of ours just purchased a townhouse in Lake Forest Condominium in Pinellas Park.  It a fairly large complex of wooden construction and is located in mid Pinellas county.  The purchasers bought the property at $50,000 and put about $15,000 to update the kitchen, bath, carpet and paint and it’s beautiful condition.  Based on the rental market they are advertising it for rent for $1500 per month.  Their taxes and insurance is about $100.00 per month and the maintenance fee is $385.00 leaving them a net of $1015.00 per month so their earning a whopping 18.7% on their investment, if the
property is rented the whole year and they have no repairs.  That’s an incredible return compared to leaving that money in the bank.  Now is a good time to buy real estate !! Visit my website www.melissayardy.com

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Here’s Your Money…Now Get Out!

Melissa Yardy St. Pete Beach  A Distressed homeowner assistance program rolled out by Bank of America this week is one of the new innovations to help the homeowner and our economy.  The new program offers relocation incentives–up to $20,000 to distressed homeowners who start the short sale process prior to November 30, 2011.  As a real estate professional I believe that this can help thousands of families and  homeowners who can demonstrate a verifiable hardship and provide proper paperwork to “unqualify” for the mortgage.  This is a great stride in mending our real estate market.  The next step is

for Bank of America customers who are in default and suggest they contact a Realtor to get started.  It is almost required that a licensed real estate agent market the property to find a buyer in an “arm’s length


The term “arm’s length” is used to describe a real estate transaction in which the buyers and sellers of property or a parcel of land act independently and are not related to each other. The idea of an arm’s length transaction ensures the buyers and sellers in the real estate transaction are acting in their own self interest and are not subject to any outside influence. In a ‘non-arm’s length transaction their could be other factors that influence the transaction and subsequently the value of the exchange. This concept is important as it is a common way to determine fair market value.

For those that qualify for the program and will give hundreds of homeowners a faur start when starting over.

For more information on short sales, visit http://www.provenshortsales.com/

Read more: http://www.realestatewords.com/arms-length-purchase/#ixzz1aUuIpxxb that the owners use a licensed Realtor to find a buyer in a “arm’s length transaction.”

Melissa Yardy: A Commitment to Clients

Melissa Yardy has been in the real estate business for over 30 years. Clients know they can depend on her to provide outstanding service, whether they are buying or selling.

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For those who are looking to sell, Ms. Yardy creates a customized and comprehensive marketing plan, which includes Ms. Yardy’s personal and financial investment in the sale. This will ensure that the property is exposed to the greatest number of possible buyers.

For those looking to buy, Ms. Melissa Yardy knows what makes the St. Petersburg area special. She understands why people are anxious to move here, with spectacular Gulf beaches and beautiful water that is just right for boating and other water activities, shopping, restaurants, and an amazing cultural, arts, and sporting scene.


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She also knows that the area is home to an outstanding array of luxury homes, condominiums, and condo hotels. With her expertise in real estate and her knowledge of the area she has helped countless clients through the years to find the home of their dreams. Whether the client wants to live on the beach, in the heart of St. Petersburg, or in a secluded cottage where they can relax and watch the amazing Florida sunrises and sunsets everyday, Ms. Yardy can help!


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Melissa Yardy is a Florida-licensed broker with the experience and know-how to help clients buy their dream home or sell their property. She carries out her commitment to her clients by using innovative marketing strategies, superior contract negotiation skills, and her excellent professional understanding of the ever-changing marketplace. Once someone becomes a client of hers, she is determined to make them a client for life by exceeding their every expectation. She operates under the principles of integrity, dedication, honesty, and accountability, with the goal of doing what is right for the customer and helping each client to fulfill their needs.