Welcome to the Perdido Key Lifestyle Blog!

Perdido Key Lifestyles

I hope you'll find my news items interesting and helpful to your real estate needs. Let me share my knowledge of the Perdido Key area with you! Check in for updates and news.

Looking forward to talking with you!

Dawn Marino

May 10, 2022

How to Spot an Awesome Real Estate Agent

The Marino Team, Awesome agents

Are you needing the services of a real estate agent, but don't know which professional to hire? Are you confused by the multitude of agents in your area and narrowing down your choices to just one agent? Picking the proper professional for your real estate needs doesn't have to be an overwhelming task. Bear the following tips in mind and spotting an awesome real estate agent will be made easier.

Response Time

Try reaching out to a number of real estate agents via their advertised phone numbers to see how quickly they respond. The sooner a real estate professional gets back to a potential lead, the likelier it is they will be responsive to your queries should you hire them.

Socially Savvy

Another way to check a real estate agent's responsiveness is to reach out to them on social media. Tweet at them or leave a query on their Facebook page and monitor how long it takes for them to respond on social media. If a real estate professional has automated their social media networking, they may be slow to respond. Look for a real estate agent who invests time in social networking and offers a personal touch instead of automated posts.

Website Quality

Review the websites of potential real estate professionals you are thinking of hiring. If their website looks like it was designed back in the eighties and has never been updated, chances are good their grasp of new, modern real estate technologies isn't going to be stellar. You want to work with a real estate agent who is up-to-date on the latest tools and technologies, not someone who is still using a Palm Pilot to communicate with clients. The quality of a website says a great deal about the pride an agent takes in their real estate services.

Blog Banter

When you are thinking of hiring a real estate agent, you want to be sure they know their industry. Posting quality content on their blog on a frequent basis helps real estate agents showcase their expertise. If an agent you're thinking of hiring doesn't have a blog or hasn't posted in months, you might want to think twice about hiring them to help you buy or sell a home.

If you want help learning how to spot an awesome real estate agent, these four factors should be top-of-mind. Understanding which characteristics are essential for a top-performing real estate professional can help make your hiring decision easier. Pay attention to the above-listed signs and there's a good chance you'll find the perfect professional to assist with your real estate needs.

Posted in Real Estate News
March 28, 2022

5 Things Real Estate Agents Wish Buyers Wouldn't Do

When you're on the hunt for a new home, a buyer's agent is indispensable. They represent your interests in the transaction, not those of the seller. They have an expert's understanding of market trends and can communicate with the seller's agent to gain valuable insider information on any property you're interested in. As far as real estate goes, they're an angel on your shoulder.

So, the last thing you want to do is put a strain on your relationship with them. Unfortunately, many prospective buyers unknowingly make their agent's work harder and potentially even get in the way of securing a successful home purchase. Here are five things your real estate agent wishes you wouldn't do.

1. Asking to View Properties Without Mortgage Preapproval

When you're perusing the latest listings online and see something you like, it's tempting to call your agent and view it before talking to a lender. Your agent might acquiesce once or twice, but soon they're going to ask you to secure mortgage preapproval. Mortgage preapproval shows that your credit and financial standing have been evaluated by a lender and you've gotten the green light to get a mortgage. Not only does this tell the agent, who works strictly on commission, that they aren't wasting their time, it makes your offer much more attractive to the seller.

2. Getting Hung Up on Minor Details

First impressions make big impressions. That's why realtors encourage homeowners to stage their homes for tours rather than leave them as-is. However, not every homeowner can or wants to take this advice, which means you're going to see homes with cluttered kitchens, purple walls and children's toys covering the floor. Your agent really needs you to look past these to the big picture. Rejecting a home because it needs to be repainted or has unattractive light fixtures is very frustrating for them, since these are easy and inexpensive fixes. Remember, they know what you're looking for and they showed you this house because they believe it will work for you.

3. Working with Multiple Agents

Sometimes your agent isn't available at exactly the moment you want to see a house. Calling another agent instead is unfair to both agents. As mentioned, real estate agents only earn money when you buy. If your agent has put in time and effort to work with you and yet you use another agent out of impatience or disregard, you're essentially stabbing your agent in the back. If you do this and your agent finds out, expect to be politely dropped. You should only move on to a new agent if your current agent is genuinely a bad fit and you need to end the relationship.

4. Dragging Your Feet

You've found a home you like at a price you can afford. It checks all the boxes and you've expressed interest. But you're afraid to commit so you don't make an offer. This is likely going to frustrate your agent, who knows that great houses can get snapped up quickly by qualified buyers who aren't afraid to pull the trigger. In a seller's market houses can literally sell within hours, sometimes sight unseen! While it's understandable that you don't want to make the wrong decision, consistently waffling when presented with good opportunities wastes both of your time.

5. Making Unjustifiably Low-Ball Offers

You want to score a deal. Everyone understands that. But putting in an offer far below asking price without good reason slows everything down at best and costs you the house at worst. The homeowner may be good-natured and make a counteroffer but unless the house has major problems that were only uncovered during the home inspection, it won't be anywhere close to your low-ball bid. If you then counter with another lowball number, you'll risk alienating the seller and driving your agent nuts. Listen to their advice and put in an appropriate bid.

You probably know what it feels like to work with someone who doesn't value your time or respect your knowledge. It makes you not want to work with them at all. Don't do this to your agent, who is there to make sure you find the house of your dreams at a fair price. Trust their guidance.;

Posted in Real Estate News
March 28, 2022

The Blue Angels Are Back

Blue Angels are back

The Boys (and Girls) are Back in Town! (Cue the music!)

The 76th season of amazing U.S. Navy aviation is underway this month! Our favorite local celebrities, The Blue Angels, have begun practicing their incredible formations and maneuvers over our beautiful Emerald Coast area. The Naval Aviation Museum has opened the flight line behind the museum to view the practices. The gates open at 9:30am and take off is 10:30am. Only Department of Defense ID Card holders (active duty, retirees, and their families) and their guests, as well as Veterans that possess a Veterans Health Identification Card from the Department of Veteran’s Affairs can enter the Navy Air Station Pensacola at this time, but the aircraft can be seen for miles around!

Consider watching them from Gulf Islands National Seashore, Big Lagoon State Park, or Fort Pickens (just West of Pensacola Beach). The beaches along Perdido Key also have great views of the ariel action. Practices are scheduled mid-week and occur through early November. See you on the beach!

2022 Practice Schedule:

March: 22, 23*, 29, 30*

April 5, 6*, 12, 13*, 20*, 26, 27*

May 3, 4*, 10, 11, 17, 18

June 1, 8*, 14, 15*, 21, 22*, 28, 29

July 6, 12, 13, 19, 20, 26, 27*

August 2, 23, 24*, 30, 31

September 7*, 13, 14, 20

October 12*, 18, 19*, 25, 26*

November 1, 2*, 8, 9

*Indicates Blue Angels Autograph Sessions

Posted in Pensacola News
Feb. 11, 2022

Winter Vacations in Florida - Be Prepared

Winter Vacations in Florida

A trip to Florida in the depths of winter is often just the thing to warm up your bones and get you through to spring. You may have visions of lying on the beach or playing in the surf, but remember that Florida has its seasons, too. Be prepared for whatever your Florida vacation brings your way by following a few tips.

Flight Problems

While it may be sunny and warm in Florida, your home state could be in the middle of a blizzard that cancels flights or causes significant delays. It's a good idea to use your carry-on bag to bring along items you may need if forced to spend the night somewhere due to a weather-related delay. Items may include toothbrush, hair accessories, make-up, change of clothing and medications. Make sure you have phone numbers with you to notify hotel reservations, house sitters or airport pick-ups.

Cool Periods in Florida

Though Florida is known for its year-round sunshine and warm temperatures, cold fronts do dip down from the northern states in large weather patterns that cause overcast skies and temperatures sometimes into the 40s. Pack sweatshirts, fleece jackets and long pants to ensure that you are ready for whatever fluctuations occur. Even if the air is cool, you can still enjoy beach time, walking, shell-collecting and taking photographs. The brisker weather can be perfect for enjoying other activities, such as visiting museums and historical sites in the area or enjoying a nature hike in a wooded area filled with native Florida plants. Many people find that golfing is the perfect activity for days of cooler temperatures.

Wear Your Sunscreen

Although the winter months are the "dry season" in Florida, you may encounter some cloudy days. Don't think the sun's harmful rays disappear when there is heavy cloud cover or cool temperatures in Florida. Sun-sensitive individuals can still get a nasty burn. Infants and small children can be particularly vulnerable. Bring your sunscreen and wear it faithfully even on cloudy days.

Boating During the Winter Months

Florida winters are generally free from rainstorms, but boaters may find that weather patterns produce strong winds on the water. Always check the weather forecast before you set out for a day of boating. Most Florida resort areas offer boat rentals with navigation maps of the area. Stick to designated areas to avoid low water levels during the dry season and the danger of running aground.


Winter fishing in Florida offers some of the best catches of the year. Snook, spotted seatrout, redfish and flounder can be found in abundance. Sheepshead may be biting when no other species will. Black drum and Spanish mackerel are also available during the winter months. Surf fishing is a popular option, but the water may be brisk, as low as 55 degrees in the northern part of the state and in the 70s in the southern section, so have dry clothing available when you get out of the surf.

Posted in Florida News
Feb. 7, 2022

13555 Perdido Key Dr A19D

Beautiful poolside unit now up for grabs at Purple Parrot. These poolside units don't come up for sale very often. Newly renovated and rent-ready! Call me for info: 850-232-3722

Posted in Perdido Key Condos
Dec. 19, 2021

11123 Seaglades Dr

High and Dry with a spectacular view! This beautiful, terraced, waterfront lot is in Flood Zone X and is just under 3/4 of an acre with close to 100ft of waterfront. Most of the value is in the land on this one, but you can rehab the existing home or tear it down and build your dream home. this is a great property!

Dec. 18, 2021

1052 Bonita Dr

New on the market and ready for you! This well-maintained home offers 4 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, and over 2300 square feet of living space. The home has a new roof, HVAC replaced in 2018, Water Heater 2014, new paint, and a large backyard. Located in Chandelle, this home will surely be at the top of your list!



Nov. 17, 2021

Downsizing in Retirement? Have a Plan in Place to Make it Happen

As you moved through your working years and climbed your way up the corporate ladder, monetary success and material possessions went hand in hand. As the promotions piled up and the raises continued to grow, you accumulated more and more stuff, moving into bigger and bigger houses just to hold it all. But now you are getting ready to retire, and you are anxious to tap the home equity you have worked so hard to build.

Downsizing into retirement is one of the most popular ways to save for the rest of your life. Selling the dream home that once housed a growing family and buying another, more modest, residence could add hundreds of thousands of dollars to your nest egg and make your retirement savings stretch much further.

Even so, downsizing into retirement will not just happen; you need to plan carefully to make the next phase of your life a successful one. Here are some steps you can take to make downsizing easier as your retirement date moves closer.

Compare Square Footage for Your Current and Proposed New Home

Your new home will be smaller than your current one; that is what downsizing is all about. Even so, it is important to quantify that size difference, as that will make the rest of the planning process much easier.

If you already have a condo or similar accommodations picked out, check the square footage and compare it to your current residence. If you are still shopping for a new home, you can estimate based on the sizes of the houses you have been touring.

Take Inventory of Your Possessions

Once you have the new and old square footage figures in place, you can start planning for which possessions you will be keeping and which ones will soon be finding new homes. It may take some time, but this exercise is well worth the effort.

Armed with a list of your possessions and information about the square footage of your new residence, you can start to compile a list of the items currently in your home. Once that inventory has been compiled, you can make a list of the items you want to sell, donate or give away to friends and family members.

Talk to the Proposed Recipients

Now that you are ready to downsize into retirement and shed your extraneous, it is time to talk to proposed recipients of your largesse. This is an important step, since your loved ones may have different ideas when it comes to the furnishings and home décor you currently own.

You may think that your kids have been eyeing that amazing antique desk for years, or that your grandkids cannot wait to get their hands on that massive sofa. But what if they have other home décor plans, ones that do not include those gifts? If you want your downsizing to be successful, you first need to make sure the intended recipients want the items you will be giving away.

If they do not, having another plan in place will be critical. This is especially important if you want the furniture and home décor to stay in the family.

Invest Your Real Estate Profits

Now that you have rehomed, sold or otherwise disposed of your extraneous possessions, it is time to enjoy the fruits of all that hard work. Downsizing your possessions is a vital first step toward beefing up your retirement nest egg, so you can truly enjoy this new phase of your life.

Once your dream home has been sold and the new home has been acquired, it is time to invest the proceeds in a way that will preserve its value while providing the income you need in retirement. If you are not already working with a financial advisor, you might want to hire one to help you deal with this sudden windfall.

As you move into retirement, you might want to move in a more literal sense. Moving into a smaller and more affordable home in retirement is a popular way to make those limited retirement savings stretch further, and the steps outlined above can help you make it happen.


Posted in Real Estate News
Nov. 17, 2021

908 Bartow Ave For Sale

New on the market and sure to catch your eye! This home has 3 bedrooms, 2 full baths and a great outdoor space that can be used year around. Fully renovated kitchen and a new roof coming soon! Dont miss it! Call today for your showing appointment - 850-232-3722

July 14, 2021

Happy Birthday Pensacola!

I't Pensacola's Birthday.

Everyone who lives or vacations in Pensacola, Florida, knows it is special. Yet, for the curious, there are many unknown facts about Pensacola and its history to be discovered. On July 17, Pensacola will celebrate its 200-year anniversary as part of the United States. To celebrate, below are some lesser-known facts about this historic city.

1. The history of Pensacola can be traced to when it was first sighted by Juan Ponce de Leon in 1513.  

2. Pensacola was originally pronounced Panzacola. This name was told to Spanish military officer Juan Jordan de Reina by local Native Americans in 1698. Panzacola is thought to be the name of that local tribe.

3. The white sand beaches in Pensacola and surrounding coastal areas get their color from fine ground quartz crystal. The crystal comes all the way from the Appalachian Mountains by way of a river. It spreads out in the Gulf of Mexico and ends up on the beaches from Panama City to Eastern Alabama.

4. The world’s largest artificial coral reef is off the coast of Pensacola. The USS Oriskany aircraft carrier sits in its final resting place 28 miles off the coast. It is nicknamed “The Great Carrier Reef” and is a renowned deep-water dive site. 

5. For those considering calling Pensacola home, the city boasts the shortest average commute time in the country at only 19 minutes, has a 5.80% lower cost of living than the U.S. national average, and has approximately 220 sunny days per year!

Posted in Pensacola News