Miami – I’m Baaaack
I arrived back into Miami last night. NYC was awesome and I was actually contemplating extending my stay until Sunday but I’m happy to be home. Being in Chicago and NYC for the past couple of weeks reminded me just how many people are in this world. Walking (or driving) the streets of Miami you kind of lose site of that after a while. Walking one city block of Chicago or NYC though and you regain that perspective.
The Real Estate Connect Conference was a good experience. I met a lot of great and insightful people and listened to some very intelligent keynote speakers. I’m not sure if the conference was completely worth the price to me but it was still a great experience and I have no regrets. I’m a very tech-savvy person though, so for a Realtor who isn’t tech-savvy this conference would pay for itself in spades.
I decided to install the “Recent Comments” plug-in onto my sidebar. (You’ll find it down the right-hand side of the screen). I’ve known about this plug-in since I began this blog but I never really liked the look of it. I’ve decided to install it regardless because I know that you all enjoy participating in the latest conversations. I’ll often receive comments on a blog post that I wrote 4-6 months ago. Unless you periodically check that post or happen to stumble upon it via a search engine, then you’ll likely never know about the latest comment on that post. The “Recent Comments” plug-in will reveal the latest conversations occurring on this blog.
Here are a few tid-bits of information:
- Plaza on Brickell will begin closings in the 901 tower within the next week. I think Plaza on Brickell is the most affordable new condo development on Brickell Avenue. About three weeks ago, one bedrooms started at $210,000. I’ve mentioned before that I feel that Plaza on Brickell will act as the buoy for the Brickell condo market. If any of you are strongly considering purchasing in Plaza on Brickell then let me know because I can now get you inside so you can preview the development and walk inside condos that you may have an interest in buying.
- Avenue on Brickell (1060 Brickell condos) will begin closings within the next 7-10 days. This means big competition between Avenue on Brickell and Plaza on Brickell since closings will begin around the same time. They are basically right across the street from one another. It will be interesting to see which offers a better product.
- As most of you already know, Bank of America purchased Countrywide Financial Corp. yesterday morning for $4B in stock (a total investment of $6B when considering its $2B investment in Countrywide in 2007). With this acquisition, Bank of America will overnight become the largest mortgage originator and servicer. BOA is acquiring a HUGE customer base from Countrywide. Countrywide, however, will have huge losses as a result of bad loans and their credit risk will now be passed along to Bank of America. On the bright side, as a few financial articles have pointed out, Bank of America will enjoy huge tax savings because of this acquisition. Bank of America, which has large annual profits will be able to offset these profits with big write-offs from Countrywide. Wall Street, however, didn’t particularly like the details of the acquisition as Countrywide lost a little over 18 percent of its value on Friday.
- The Brickell and Brickell Key Condo Indexes will likely return later this month. I have a million things to get done before that but I should be able to make the time to get that done. It’ll be interesting to see if anything has changed now that we’re a few months into our peak season in Miami.
- I plan to hire a professional videographer/editor within the next couple of weeks. Up to this point, I’ve done all the video work on my own. I’m just an amateur videographer though. Every listing that I get from here on out (and the ones that I currently have) will have a professionally made video tour. The quality will be much better than I could ever do. About 80% of the buyer leads that I get from this blog are from non-locals. I think video will help these out-of-state or out-of-country buyers tremendously when previewing properties. Many brokers may not agree, but virtual tours are a thing of the past. Video may be cost prohibitive to most Realtors when compared to virtual tours but I think the investment for me will separate me from the rest. I’m trying to find a reputable videographer/editor in the Miami area. If any of you know of one then please let me know. I don’t need a production studio but rather an individual who knows what they’re doing and can deliver great Internet-quality video. Also, if any of you developers that read this blog are interested in having your development showcased then let me know because I would love to get inside with a camera crew to tour the common areas and various units. It’s all about eyeballs these days. Get more eyeballs to view your development and you’ll get more closed sales. Miami real estate has become an international market. You’ll also gain insightful comments from visitors of this blog. You may hear someone comment “The lobby looks amazing!” or “The closets are way too small”. This is the feedback that you need to hear, even if you may not want to.