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In a survey, 23% of Americans said they’ve lived in a haunted house and an additional 20% may have.

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Nearly 60% of people who have lived in a haunted house didn’t know it was haunted before they moved in, according to’s, fourth annual Haunted Real Estate Report.

The survey of 1,000 people across the United States was conducted by Toluna Research through online interviews.

Some of the spooky findings

  • 43% of respondents may have had a ghost roommate.
  • 58% of respondents said they have never lived in a haunted home
  • 23% of respondents said they have lived in one (58% had no idea it was haunted before moving in, but 37% did and decided to go for it anyway.)
  • 20% think they may have lived in one.

What made you think your house was haunted?

  • 65% said strange house noises made them think so
  • 52% saw strange shadows in the house
  • 48% said items moved on their own
  • 47% said certain rooms felt haunted
  • 46% said they felt a touch
  • 44% said the home had hot and cold spots

“Moving into a new home is a really exciting time, but finding out that your new abode has an unwanted guest can definitely put a damper on the celebration,” says Nate Johnson,’s chief marketing officer. “We conduct this survey annually and it’s always interesting to see the results. This year, we were surprised by how many people had unknowingly moved into a haunted house at some point in their lives, and even more so by how many people knew and decided to move in regardless.”

Would you move into a haunted house?

When asked if they would ever consider moving into a haunted house, 54% of respondents said there was no way, while 21% were prepared to brave any spooky happenings plaguing the house, and 21% were on the fence and responded with “maybe.”

Interestingly, survey responses weren’t that different if the homebuyer didn’t actually buy the home. When asked what they would do if they inherited a haunted house, 51% said they would sell it immediately, but 23% would try to flush the ghosts out by renovating the home; 20% are willing to take the risk and simply move in, while 6% said they’d tear the place down.

A ghost next door?

While only one in five respondents (21%) were okay living in a haunted house, almost half of them (43%) were willing to live next door to one. Still, 31% aren’t willing to risk it even if the house next door is haunted.

© 2019 Florida Realtors®


Airbnb: Florida Has 7 of Top 10 Short-Term-Rental Cities

Miami Beach leads the U.S. short-term rental list followed by Kissimmee. Four of the top 10 cities are in South Florida and three are in Central Florida.

MIAMI BEACH – Airbnb has seen explosive growth in the last few years, even as some cities fight to manage short-term rentals, fearful that they’re taking over their communities. But some homeowners and investors are cashing in.

Florida is Airbnb’s hot spot, finds a new study released from IPX 1031, a 1031 exchange resource. The Sunshine State is home to seven cities of the list’s top 10 cities based on the most rentals through Airbnb per every 50,000 residents.

Miami Beach tops the list with more than 3,400 Airbnb listings per 50,000 people. Kissimmee, Fla. – near Walt Disney World Resort and Universal Studios – came in at number two. Only one Florida city in the top 30 fell outside the highest 10 spots: Fort Myers at No. 29 with 507 Airbnbs per every 50,000 residents. While Jacksonville fell outside the top rankings, it came in at No. 3 for the greatest growth (up 54%) in Airbnb rentals since 2017.

Top 10 U.S. Airbnb listings per 50,000 residents

  1. Miami Beach: 3,416
  2. Kissimmee: 2,880
  3. Bend, Oregon: 1,659
  4. Daytona Beach: 1,108
  5. Asheville, North Carolina: 1,042
  6. Miami: 1,034
  7. Atlanta: 1,017
  8. Fort Lauderdale: 1,016
  9. Orlando: 988
  10. Hollywood, Fla.: 984

Airbnb has bloomed into a multibillion-dollar company since launching in 2008. The company allows investment property owners to rent out their homes, apartments and condos. To find those with the most Airbnb properties per capita, IPX 1031 analyzed 350 cities data via a short-term rental analytics database called AirDNA.

Charlotte, N.C., has seen the most growth in the number of rental listings through Airbnb since 2017 – a 54.7% jump in Airbnb listings since 2017. Following close behind is Fresno, Calif., with a 54.4% increase, and Jacksonville, Fla., with a 54% uptick.

On the other hand, cities like Chicago, Austin, Boston and Los Angeles have seen the most limited growth in short-term rentals. Washington, D.C., has seen a decrease.

“Some of these cities have been dealing with tighter regulations and restrictions on Airbnbs, which may be the reason for these stagnant numbers,” the IPX 1031 Insight Blog notes.

Source: “2019 State of Down Payment Assistance Report,” Chenoa Fund (October 2019)

© Copyright 2019 INFORMATION INC., Bethesda, MD (301) 215-4688


Bathroom tile grout can become quite the headache. Being a high traffic area, it can feel impossible to keep sparkling clean in these areas, especially in mold-prone spots near toilets and tubs. If your grout is looking less-than-fabulous, you can try this quick trick and save yourself a renovation.

The Items You Need:
Vinegar + water solution (or your preferred floor cleaner)
Scrub brush
Paper towels
Small craft paintbrush
Grout renewer product (sold in hardware or home improvement stores)


1. Using the vinegar and water solution, clean your floors with your scrub brush. Be as thorough as possible. Once the floors are as clean as you can get them, give them time to dry. The grout renewer works best on clean, dry floors.

2. Using your paintbrush, brush the renewer onto the grout. Avoid getting any of the renewer on the tile, and be sure to wipe it off if you have any accidents. Work from the back of the room to the doorway so you don’t have to worry about smudging any of the renewer when you head back out of the room.

3. Once all the grout lines have been painted, avoid walking on the tile for 24 hours and let it fully dry for 72 hours. Now your bathroom tile should look fresh and clean! A quick fix all for under $20.


The 60th annual Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show

Starts T O D A Y , and goes on for a total of 5 days from

October 30th - November 3rd.

Who’s getting ready to dream BIG and attend the “The Greatest Boat Show on the 7 Seas”?!

There is estimated to be 1,200 exhibitors and 1,500+ boats on display at this highly anticipated event. In addition to the countless, luxurious water vessels on display, @flibsofficial is introducing the Superyacht village in honor of their 60 years. Who thought it could get any better?



2 Bed | 1 Bath | 756 SF | Intracoastal view


Another transaction completed here at Leisure Beach Condo.

This building has kept us busy in 2019 as we have assisted in buying, selling and renting multiple units in this desirably located condominium right off of Las Olas, 1 block from A1A.


Contact Lisa Yanowitz today for availability and details.



There are a number of life events and factors that may lead you to consider a renovation or a relocation. Growing families tend to need more space and durable home amenities as they add to their numbers, while even empty-nesters in retirement may weigh whether a downsize is the right move for them. Sometimes external impacts bring the decision about, like a change in the housing market making it more favorable to sellers or performance of the local school district.

Whenever addressing the fundamental choice between moving or upgrading the home, it's helpful to start by asking yourself a series of questions. Your answers will help you decide whether remodeling your home or selling is the best option for your finances, your family and your future. Here are some questions to begin with:

Which is more financially feasible?

First and foremost, you must compare the costs of a relocation versus a remodeling. A lot depends on what more you need from the home. If it's a new master bedroom or kitchen renovation, those projects could cost in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. There are also permitting costs and budget overruns you may need to deal with, too. Moving means paying back the mortgage you initially took out, which is usually done through the sale of a home. However, if the market conditions aren't favorable, a home sale might not be enough, especially after a real estate agent is paid their share. Plus, there are closing costs associated with the new mortgage you'll take out in the next town, as well as fees for movers. Weighing the costs against the benefits is a fundamental place to start.

Will your family be better off?

Sometimes while the costs are high (especially for relocations), the benefits are even greater. This may be the case if you can find a home in a new location that boasts better schools. The quality of the local public and private school options are one of the most important criteria parents consider in whether to remodel or move. If a new home that fits your needs can be found, and for a reasonable mortgage, the chance to improve your children's lives may be too good to pass up. However, the local job markets also need to be researched. While economic opportunities and good schools commonly go hand in hand, that's not always the case, and you securing a job before moving is a proactive step many take.

Proximity to loved ones is another family factor to consider. Moving may mean either living further away from family, or closer to.

What is the timeline?

If you approach the decision of whether to remodel or relocate early enough, you may be able to find a middleground option. For instance, if the conditions for a move aren't right at the moment, but you have time to spare, a medium-sized remodel could satisfy your family's mid-term needs for more space or home comforts. Choosing the right project may not only improve livability or home structure but also help you recoup some costs when you do decide to sell. For instance, in 2019, a mid-size kitchen remodel cost around $22,500 on average nationally. That remodel returned 80% of the costs at sale. A midrange wood deck addition returned 75% of the costs, on average.

Of course, every family has a unique situation, and sometimes timelines are accelerated. In such cases, having to wait through the remodeling process might not be the ideal option, as opposed to a move.

What's the involvement level of each option?

When it comes time to actually remodel or relocate, you'll want to be sure your family is prepared for whatever option is best. Remodeling, while attractive because of the generally lower costs, can be a nuisance for some. Renovations mean having to live in the home while construction is going on, or finding temporary housing. In a perfect world, no construction project would go delayed — but that's far from the reality we live in, which is one of budget and schedule overruns. A drawn-out remodel process could accrue costs and take longer than expected.

Still, it might be preferred than packing up everything and moving halfway across the country. Arranging movers and overseeing the process can be a task that takes up even working hours. But not all moves are as involved. If you're moving to a different part of the city or a new suburb with better schools, the process might not be as nerve-wracking. It all depends on what your family prefers, in the end.

If you're in the middle of making such a decision and looking for the help of a lender, reach out to us today. Contact The Federal Savings Bank whether you want to get the process started with a new mortgage or are interested in exploring options for home equity line of credit to support a remodel.

Article from

-The Federal Savings Bank


Just R E N T E D
Victoria Park Place #26
3 Bed | 2.5 Bath | 1,957 SF
Steering our clients in the most beneficial direction after testing the market for sale and not getting the ideal pricing due to high inventory in the community. This ended up being a win/win for owner and their new tenants!


Refinancing is an option many homeowners consider once they're well into paying off a mortgage. By refinancing, homeowners can benefit from more favorable rates or terms, or choose to tap their home equity for cash.

The question of whether to pursue a rate-and-term refinance or a cash-out refinance is one many homeowners must address. Each has different advantages, but the allure of transforming home equity into a cash sum is hard to pass up for many.

Here's what you need to know about cash-out refinances, the pros and cons, and if this style of refinance is right for you.

What is a cash-out refinance?

First, a broader definition: Refinancing is the process of taking out a new mortgage that pays for and closes out your previous home loan. This new mortgage replaces the old one entirely. A homeowner might want to refinance because their credit score may have improved from when they first took out the loan, or the lender sees the borrower as less of a risk after years of steady monthly payments.

A cash-out refinance differs in one crucial area from the rate-and-term refinance:

  • A rate-and-term refinance replaces the old mortgage with a new one of the same value but offers a better interest rate or different term length to accommodate homeowner financial goals.
  • A cash-out refinance is a new home loan taken out at a higher value than the existing mortgage. The borrower is paid from the difference between the new loan amount and the home value.

However, it's important to remember that lenders typically don't make 100% of that value available. If you have a home worth $250,000 and still have $100,000 on the original mortgage, you may be able to access up to 80% of the $150,000 in home equity you've built through a cash-out refinance.

Pros of the cash-out refinance

The clear attraction of a cash-out refinance is, of course, the cash amount you receive as part of the transaction. While there's no such thing as truly free money — a refinanced mortgage is a loan that has to be paid back, while closing costs and interest rates will still apply — a cash-out refinance is a great way for homeowners to better manage their personal finances and liquidity thanks to an influx of cash. Used responsibly, this cash amount can help homeowners accomplish various things, like:

Making home improvements: Home upgrades or renovations are a wise use of cash. Such projects can improve the livability of your home and add amenities, which in turn can increase your home's value. If you plan to sell, you may be able to recoup costs when that time comes. Or, you can just enjoy the convenience of additional bathrooms, an expanded garage or new master suite. Plus, when you use cash-out refinance money to improve your home, it's possible you can save on taxes through the mortgage interest deduction. Consult your tax advisor for more details.

Paying down high-interest debts: It's important to get a sturdy handle over high-interest debts. The longer they exist, the more interest you pay. If you have the means to committing a sizable payment, you can reduce your debts or wipe them out. Before making any personal splurges with the cash from a refinance, consider how it could be applied to paying down debts.

Savings for college or retirement: Circulating that cash back into savings is another beneficial strategy. Putting some of your amount toward education or retirement not only increases your savings but also puts that money to work. In the right interest-bearing account, your cash can grow and help fund college for a child or a move to warmer climates in retirement.

You may be able to benefit from other favorable conditions or alterations to the new mortgage loan, but those opportunities will vary from lender to lender.

What else is there to know?

While the cash-out refinance is a popular option, it is not always the right refinance choice. It requires a careful consideration of your current personal finances and future goals, alongside the specifics of your mortgage and desired refinance. A couple things to know about the cash-out refinance is that:

  • You might have a higher interest rate: While a rate-and-term refinance typically lowers the interest rate on a loan, a cash-out refinance may instead raise the rate you see. Each consumer will have a different experience, but each may need to weigh the costs and benefits if their rate is increased.
  • Closing costs are still in the mix: Refinancing means taking out a new mortgage to close the old one. That repetition of the process means new closing costs and other fees to account for. A common pitfall is thinking those costs no longer apply.
  • Risk of foreclosure might increase: You will need to repay the whole refinanced amount when the loan's term ends. If you took out more cash than you needed, it could present repayment problems. Always be sure to calculate exactly what you need, like the cost of targeted home improvements.

Want to learn more about cash-out refinances and your options? Contact The Federal Savings Bank today. Terms and conditions may vary. Subject to underwriting approval.


Buyers found a condo they loved only to find that it doesn’t qualify for a federally backed mortgage? Try again tomorrow. New rules that open more condos and complexes to FHA loans go into effect on Oct. 15 – a break in condo-heavy Fla. for first-time buyers.

WASHINGTON – First-time homebuyers often opt for a condo, but rules for Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans banned many units and complexes in Florida from participating.

However, that changes on Tuesday, Oct. 15, when updated FHA rules go into effect. The new FHA condominium approval regulation – and a new Condominium Project Approval section of the Single Family Housing Policy Handbook – are a comprehensive revision to FHA condominium project approval policy.

Of special interest in Florida, which has a lot of condo units, is a new policy that makes some individual condominium units eligible for FHA mortgage insurance even if the condominium project isn’t FHA approved.

While the U.S. has more than 150,000 condominium projects, only 6.5% are currently approved to participate in FHA’s mortgage insurance programs, and FHA estimates that 20,000 to 60,000 more condo units could be eligible for FHA-insured financing every year.

The change is notably good for first-time buyers – 84% of FHA-backed condo buyers are first-timers.

“Florida is ground zero when it comes to condominium sales but these markets have been impacted by certain federal rules,” said 2019 Florida Realtors President Eric Sain, a Realtor and district sales manager with Illustrated Properties in Palm Beach, when the updated rule was published in the Federal Register. “The changes being proposed by HUD will go a long way in allowing flexibility in these markets and help more hard-working Americans achieve the dream of homeownership.”

National Association of Realtors® (NAR) President John Smaby said the FHA update “culminates years of collaboration between HUD and the National Association of Realtors (NAR).”

The new rule:

  • Introduces a new single-unit approval process to make it easier for individual condominium units to be eligible for FHA-insured financing
  • Extends the recertification requirement for approved condominium projects from two to three years
  • Allows more mixed-use projects to be eligible for FHA insurance

“Florida Realtors has been working with NAR on this matter for some time now, and we are excited to see the results of this work,” said Sain. “Many congratulations to NAR for staying diligent on the issue and communicating with members at HUD to explain the problem and find sensible solutions.”

The complete HUD regulation on FHA loans is posted online, and NAR produced a video that provides an overview of the changes.

© 2019 Florida Realtors®


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57 Articles Found

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Sunday, November 17, 2019

5 Designer Tips on How to Mix ...
Dont stress by following only a few tips, you will be able to easily shape and >Allow y...

Can Landlords Manage Rental Pr...
Why buy out-of-state property?Each landlord has a different reason for managing pro...

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How Did The Market Do in September?
Check out the charts below for market updates in Miami and Broward!

1 in 5 Americans Say They’ve Lived in a Haunted House
In a survey, 23% of Americans said they’ve lived in a haunted house and an additional...

The 60th annual Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show
The 60th annual Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show Starts T O D A Y , and goes...

Bathroom tile grout can become quite the headache. Being a high traffic area, it can feel...

Airbnb: Florida Has 7 of Top 10 Short-Term-Rental Cities
Airbnb: Florida Has 7 of Top 10 Short-Term-Rental Cities Miami Beach leads the U.S....

Rented - Leisure Beach Condominium
R E N T E D 2 Bed | 1 Bath | 756 SF | Intracoastal view . Another transaction...

How to Decide to Remodel Your Home or Sell It
There are a number of life events and factors that may lead you to consider a renovation...

What You Should Know About Cash-Out Refinances
Refinancing is an option many homeowners consider once they're well into paying off a mortgage....

Just Rented - Victoria Park Place
Just R E N T E D Victoria Park Place #26 3 Bed | 2.5 Bath | 1,957 SF . Steering our...

It’s Here: Mortgage Rule Opens Door to Thousands of Condos
Buyers found a condo they loved only to find that it doesn’t qualify for a federally...

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