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

Oct. 31, 2019

Calculating Return on Equity

Return on Equity

Real estate rental property investors enjoy many benefits from income tax advantages to resistance to damage from inflation and interest rate gyrations. If you're talking to an accountant, they tend to be deep in the numbers, and they want to know how you're doing for return on the money you have invested in your rental property. Return on Equity (ROE) is one way they like to measure investment performance.

A simple example of ROE is an interest rate of 5% on a Certificate of Deposit of $100,000, resulting in $5,000 that year in interest. Your equity is clear, the $100,000 you deposited. So, dividing $5,000 by $100.000, you get your 5% ROE. You received 5% on your equity in the investment. For rental property, it's more complicated, but the basic structure is the same.

Suppose you purchase a rental home for $150,000 with 20% for a down payment. You have a mortgage for $120,000 because your down payment was $30,000. This is the year you buy the home, so it's the ROE for the first year. Suppose your rents minus your expenses, pretty much your positive cash flow, come to $3,200 for the year. Dividing that $3,200 by your $30,000 in equity, you see that your ROE is 10.67%. That's a nice number, and you're satisfied.

Now you're a few years down the road. You've paid down your mortgage, and you've been able to increase your rents a bit, and this increases your positive cash flow or return. You've paid down your mortgage to $106,000, and your home has appreciated in value to $158,000. This gives you a new equity number of $158,000 - $106,000 = $52,000. With your rent increases, your cash flow or profit after expenses is now $4,100 for the year. Our new ROE is now $4,100/$52,000 = $7.89%. This is how ROE in subsequent years is calculated. It is simple, and there may be some extra pieces for some investors that their accountants will include.

At the beginning of this article, tax advantages were mentioned. That interest on your CD would have been taxed in the year earned. When it comes to the cash flow from the rental home, you can deduct depreciation, which is a major factor in how much money hits your bank account that you get to keep.

You can depreciate the structure value (not the land value) over 27.5 years. Using the example above, if the structure was worth $110,000 when purchased, you could depreciate approximately $110,000 / 27.5 = $4,000 per year as a depreciation deduction. You've just wiped out that positive cash flow profit for taxes. Later, when you sell the home, there will be some recapture of that depreciation depending on how long you owned it, but you get the tax advantage idea.

There are several other calculations for evaluating a rental home's investment performance, but ROE allows you to compare it to non-real estate-related investments. It's easy to see why so many millionaires hit that income level through real estate investing.

Posted in Real Estate News
Sept. 12, 2019

Top 4 Reasons to Stage a Home for Sale

Beast reasons to stage a home

Staging a home for sale takes time. As a home seller, you might be wondering whether staging a house for sale is really worth the time and money you put into it. Will it capture buyers' interest and increase your selling price? See it from the buyers' side of things with the top four reasons staging your home attracts buyers.

1. Buyers Will See Your Home in Use

There's a fine line with real estate buyers, where they like to see the home in use they're turned off by a house that's cluttered with personal knick-knacks.

Staging a home is like setting a scene: You can remove the personal effects and replace them with tasteful items that give the buyer an idea for how the house might be used. That's why you'll stage each room for a single purpose, for example replacing a home office in the kitchen with a breakfast table nook.

2. Staging Brings out Your Home's Personality

With older homes, staging helps define the home's personality. Buyers are more likely to remember homes with character and visual appeal, so if your home is staged right, a buyer might be unable to stop thinking about it after the showing.

3. Staging Creates a Flow

A house with no furniture can lose its shape, especially with the trend of open-plan living. Furniture helps define a room's purpose and contour, separating the open plan dining area from the living area. This can give the home a flow, so buyers move naturally through the space.

4. Staging Helps Real Estate Marketing

The real estate process begins on the internet, where buyers browse new real estate listings. When you stage your home and take professional photos, your listing will pop off the web page. More buyers will want to come to open homes and showings.

When people see crowds at an open house, they automatically develop a higher opinion of the property. After all, if so many people are here, the house must be a good bargain. As you can see, this leads to increased interest and maybe even an offer you can't refuse.

When you think about it from a buyer's point of view, then it becomes obvious. Real estate staging offers too many benefits to ignore. If you don't want to stage the home yourself, your real estate agent can recommend a home staging professional who will do the work for you. And you can sit back and reap the benefits, knowing you did everything you could to command a high sales price.

Posted in Real Estate News
Aug. 31, 2019

Beautiful Bay Front Home - Perdido Key



This amazing, custom built, 4/4.5 bay front home is located in the gated community - The Preserve at Crown Pointe. This beautiful home is directly on Perdido Bay and offers screened, inground and solar heated pool with spa and 81 feet of waterfront with a pier.


July 30, 2019

Ready To Build - Corner Lot in Herons Walk

Nice lot ready for your new home! This one includes the survey and house plans! Mouse permit has been paid. If you are ready to build your beach home, this is the lot!

Click Here For More Info


July 23, 2019

Gulf Front 1/1 Perdido Skye Condo Now Available

Excellent investment condo on Perdido Key! This condo has one bedroom, one bath, with hall bunks and sleeps 6. It is a direct Gulf front unit that comes fully furnished, is turn key and has a well established rental history. Complex offers outdoor pool and quick access to the beach via the private boardwalk and conveniently located at the East end of Perdido Key near shops and restaurants.


July 3, 2019

Beautiful Pool Home - Perdido Key

Absolut perfection! Very well kept, updated 3/2 home for sale in Chandelle - one of Pensacola's premier SW subdivisions. Loads of updates and the best back yard!

1139 Naple Info

May 30, 2019

Finding The Perfect Home Online

House in SW Pensacola

When it comes to doing your next home search online, what websites come to mind?  Often they're sites like Zillow.com, Realtor.com, and maybe Trulia.com.  That's logical, as these sites spend considerable amounts of money on advertising.  There is something to be said for some of the bells & whistles on those sites.  However, there is a better approach to locating every possible home that meets your search criteria.  Here is the best way to make sure that you don't miss that perfect home for you.

1.  Receive pre-approval for a mortgage, as this will qualify you for a price range.  Once you know what you can buy, don't let listed prices limit your possible choices.  When you're doing your searches, if you have a limit of $285,000, make $295,000 or $300,000 the top end of your search.  The main reason is that the majority of homes sell at some price below the list price.  Don't miss seeing some of them just because the list price is above what you want to spend.

2.  Find a local real estate website in your market area with an IDX search page.  IDX stands for Internet Data Exchange, and it's an agreement among all brokerage members of the local MLS to allow their listings to appear on other member websites.  Check out a few local sites, and look for the disclaimer at the bottom of the search page about IDX.  Feel free to choose the site that is the most friendly to use or the one that offers other bells & whistles.  

Condominium in Perdido Key FL

3.  Look for one more thing on the site you like best.  Hopefully, there will be a form to complete and the ability to save a search.  This will allow you to tell the site what you want for home features, area, and price range.  Once set, the MLS system will send you automated email alerts for new listings that match your search criteria.  Many will also alert you to price reductions and depending on the site, you may see a place to request your search, and the agent will build it.  Keep in mind that busy agents don’t always have the time to check for new listings daily, so by using the IDX system you will know about new listings before many of the area agents.

4.  Remember, in most cases, Zillow does not have feeds that come from the MLS systems and on Zillow, many owners do not remove their listing after the home has sold, so you will see houses advertised that are not for sale. Therefore, you will get more up-to-date information from a local real estate website.

Following these steps and using a local agent’s website will deliver just about every home available to your computer or smartphone screen.  The IDX site will be up to date because the MLS rules require their members to keep it current and most boards require the members to remove delisted or sold listings within 24 to 48 hours in order to avoid a fine. You will also want to start with a local site to get your alert search set up, so you are aware of new listings as soon as they hit the MLS and watching the price reductions can also alert you to your perfect home when it drops into your price range.

Posted in Real Estate News
April 27, 2019

Drink, Dance, and Toss Fish!

The Flora-Bama Mullet Toss in Perdido Key

The world-famous Flora-Bama is home to the Interstate Mullet Toss on Perdido Key. This weekend long party draws people from all over. Fun in the sun, great music, and good food. The beach will be lined with vendors surrounding the perimeter of the carefully marked off throwing field. For a fee, both adults and kids can partake in the fun and see just how far they can throw a mullet! A portion of each fish tossed goes to local youth charities including programs from the CDAC (Community Drug and Alcohol Council, Inc.), which offers programs addressing tobacco, drug and alcohol abuse, mental health issues and situations involving violence.

The Mullet Toss Contest

The Flora-Bama Mullet Toss has raised and contributed over $40,000 every year to local charities on both sides of the state line. Come on out enjoy the beautiful weather and toss a fish across the state line!

Posted in Perdido Key News
March 29, 2019

Marketing Your Vacation Rental

marketing a vacation condo rental

The success or failure of your vacation rental can hinge upon your marketing efforts. The nicest vacation rental can't be rented if no one knows about it. While employing a company can take a lot of the weight off your shoulders, it's cheaper and more rewarding to do it yourself. Also,it is easier than you think, and once you have the processes in place, keeping them going can be simple.

Digital marketing is the most effective for vacation rentals. With so many comparison websites and travel websites, it is essential to create a presence for yourself and your property. These sites will make your rental visible, where potential renters can look at pictures and read reviews.

Pictures and reviews are two tools that will help you bring in renters. If you can't take professional-grade photos, consider using a freelance photographer. It is important to show your property in its best light, while still being true to its condition, especially when you are trying to get your rental off the ground. The renters that these photos attract will become your ambassadors, who will build the word-of-mouth that results in the success you desire. Reviews are vital for the marketing of your vacation rental. Be sure to ask each renter to review their experience and the property so that others will know what to expect when they look at booking.

Beach Colony condo rental sales

You should put your vacation rental on the TripAdvisor, FlipKey, VRBO, and Airbnb websites. These are where most people go to find a vacation rental, and a lot of the reviews are linked throughout these sites, which makes the process easier for you as well. Flipkey and Tripadvisor synchronize; when you set up your vacation rental at Flipkey, it will automatically list on Tripadvisor. FlipKey charges three percent per booking, so you don't spend money until you start making it. VRBO and Airbnb offer a similar scheme. They make it simple to be a start-up. 

The right marketing will mean the success of your vacation rental. Most marketing is done digitally now, and advertising your property online means getting it in front of more eyes than you could ever hope to otherwise. This is also where you will build your customer base with repeat business; reviews that recommend you to others will create new business. Directly managing your marketing will give you the control and freedom to make the changes necessary to reach the demographic you're looking for, without requiring too much of your own time. The right marketing will pay off in your first season of renting and carry your momentum forward into the years to come.

Article by Dawn Marino

Posted in Real Estate News
March 21, 2019

Canal Front, Boaters Paradise in Gulf Breeze

Beautiful, canal front home with pool located in the highly desired Gulf Breeze area. This spacious 3 bedroom, 2 bath home has loads of upgrades and has been well maintained. The property offers, spacious master bedroom with beautful master bath, 2 large additional bedrooms, large kitchen, formal living room, dining room, family room and bonus Florida Room. Outside has ample parking including secondary drive/pad for boat or RV, inground pool, deck and boat dock with 16k lift.