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International Buyers: Tips For Buying Florida Real Estate

May 31, 2008
Below are 7 tips for International home buyers considering an investment in Florida real estate.

1. Consider the Cost of Hurricane Shutters When Buying a Home in Florida

Hurricane Shutters are not a small investment. Most small homes are looking at a spending a minimum of $3,500 to protect their homes. If you are interested in buying a larger home and they have installed quality hurricane protection you should keep in mind how much money the sellers invested when negotiating a price.

2. Remember Sprinkler Systems

I am sure you are aware that it can get very hot in Florida. Homes need built in sprinkler systems to maintain the beauty of the landscaping. However, there are many homes that do not have sprinkler systems and there are those that do not have functioning sprinkler systems. The cost of adding or repairing a sprinkler system is considerable.

3. Barrier Island vs. the Mainland

There are many buyers that believe they want to live in a barrier island because they have heard about the beauty and the instant water access, but there are those that are unhappy with their choice. There are many benefits of living on the mainland of Sarasota. For example, there are luxury condos in Downtown Sarasota that are minutes away from Marina Jacks. You can have waterfront views and a boat and avoid paying the high prices of living on a barrier island.

4. Maintenance Fees

Maintenance fees can be quite high depending on where you buy. You will also have taxes and homeowners insurance costs to consider and sometimes the maintenance fees will put home buyers over their yearly budget.

5. Family Neighborhoods

Sarasota has neighborhoods that tend to be quieter than others and we have those that are full of children and all the noise that comes with them. If you are hoping to buying a home where you will have peace and quiet let your Realtor know. A knowledgeable Sarasota Realtor will know which neighborhoods are best suited to your needs.

6. Homeowners Insurance Deductions

Talk to your Realtor about which aspects of a home will give you a deduction on your homeowners insurance because they could save you a lot of money in the long run.

7. Owning a Home with a Pool and/or Jacuzzi

The Florida Department of Health reports, "Deaths from drowning for children less than age five in Florida are more than double the national average and are higher than any other state in the nation. More than two-thirds of these deaths occurred in swimming pools."

Most people dream of having a home in Florida with a pool and it is a great dream, but everyone needs to consider pool safety. Again, ask your Realtor what you should be looking for and/or avoiding.

There are many more tips and laws that are important to International buyers. It is important for International home buyers to choose a Realtor that knows the Florida real estate market well and can help you choose the perfect home that meets the needs of your lifestyle.
About the Author
John Allen is a Realtor in Sarasota Florida. He specializes in waterfront condos, luxury home and golf communities. His award-winning website covers all aspects of the Sarasota real estate market.
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