miami beach real estate

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Kai at Bay Harbor

By: Ines Hegedus-Garcia on April 13, 2014

I am loving these new buildings in Bay Harbor Islands.  Modest, modern and the perfect scale.  Here’s a project in pre-construction with an estimated completion date of October/November of 2015.

Kai at Bay Harbor

Kai at Bay HarborKai at Bay HarborKai at Bay HarborKai at Bay Harbor  hero_5

Kai at Bay Harbor is designed by Arquitectonica with a total of 7 floors and 57 residences.  There are 1 to 3 bedroom residences available and it’s located on the North side of the east island in Bay Harbor with west exposure on the canal, overlooking single-family homes of Bay Harbor east island.

Kai at Bay Harbor Location Map

We told you about Riva Bay Harbor a few weeks ago, which is already built – but here you have another gorgeous project in an amazing location and pre-construction pricing ranging from $515,000 to $1,225,000 for designer-ready units.
Built by 3D Developers made up of 3 development groups that decided to join forces:  Brick O., Equipo 18, and Blue Sky Developers.  (From Venezuela, Ecuador, Colombia and Argentina)

Kai at Bay Harbor Residence Features

  • Glass enclosed balconies
  • European style cabinetry
  • Marble floors in baths
  • Jacuzzis in Master Baths
  • Polished granite countertops
  • Top-of-the-line appliances

Kai at Bay Harbor Building Features and Amenities

  • Pool deck and swimming pool
  • Exterior lounge areas
  • Fully-equipped fitness center
  • 24 hour front desk and concierge
  • Marina

I don’t often get excited about pre-construction projects in Miami and can still count the ones I love in one hand (The Porsche Tower , One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid , Beach House 8, and One Ocean South Beach.) What I love about Kai is not only the scale, but the modest pricing which will make these fly off the market.

We can send you floor plans, brochure and deposit structure upon request, just email us at

Condo Name:  Kai at Bay Harbor
Architecture: Arquitectonica<
Developer:  3D Developers
Location:  9940 W. Bay Harbor Drive, Bay Harbor Islands, FL 33154



Holy Crap!

By: Ines Hegedus-Garcia on April 11, 2014

Reviving an old septic article after inquiry from client – it’s a dirty job, but somebody has to do it!

Here’s the scenario, you are buying a Miami Beach home with a septic system and logic tells you to have it inspected – pretty straight forward up to now.  So you ask your Realtor to recommend home inspectors and you do a bit of research on your own.  You finally hire a home inspector and find out that they have to subcontract the septic inspection and you figure everything is fine….this is when it starts getting hairy.

How do you know that the subcontracted company is legit?  Better yet, how can you guarantee that they will perform an objective inspection and will not damage anything in the process?  How do you make sure that the septic company you hire will do the necessary research to locate the system and will not break a lid or destroy landscaping or God forbid be respectful of someone else’s property?

It happens to us too often and no matter how we try to foresee problems, something really wrong always happens.

  • From the company telling you that the system is damaged just so that they can get the gig <<<conflict of interest!
  • To inspector showing up unannounced, digging up half the yard, damaging lids and then claiming system is not working properly
  • To them knowing ahead of time system is older than “customary-life of septic systems” and making you pay for an unnecessary inspection that they know they will fail regardless of condition.

The list goes on an on, sadly, everyone looses, whether you are the buyer or seller of the property.  I still have not come up with a solution to this problem, and I’m sure there are reputable septic inspectors out there (just have not met them yet).  The closest suggestion I have is to first make sure that you sign an agreement with the inspector assuring them that no matter the findings, they will not be performing the job (that should cut out the conflict of interest).  Second, make them sign a release in case they damage the tank in the process (this may not be an easy task).

The easiest solution is to educate yourself about septics.  How much will it cost to replace tank and drain field?  What are the signs of a non-functioning or failing septic without even having to open lids to visually inspect?  When do you have to become concerned about a septic system?  If a septic system has a “said” life expectancy of 15 years, how come we see 50 year old septics in perfect condition?  If a septic system is supposed to be pumped out every few years, how come we see septics in perfect working condition that have NEVER been pumped out?

In my opinion, the whole septic industry is very wishy washy, and there are no objective and/or proven expert opinions out there.  The basic truth is that septics are fairly inexpensive, are low maintenance, and usually easy to fix.  There are tale tale signs that a septic is failing when a home is occupied:  sewer smell, constant backed up toilets, collapsed lids or holes in yard.  An empty house is reason for concern, but not the end of the world either.  So think about who you hire to inspect and think twice about inspecting – you may be doing more damage than good in the end.

related reading:

Aroma: Miami Real Estate’s 5th sense

Miami Beach Home Inspections Continued

*original article from June/2010


Miami Shores Real Estate Market Report for March 2014

By: Ines Hegedus-Garcia on April 7, 2014

Miami Shores Homes – Real Estate Market Report

miami shores housing market
There are currently 86 Miami Shores homes for sale: (14 more than last month)

  • Lowest priced listing is $2169,900 (435 NW 111 St)
  • Pending Sales (Properties under contract): 37 (4 more than last month)
  • Closed sales in March:  12 (6 more than last month)

The 12 Miami Shores homes sold in March were the following:

  • 1081 NE 95 St – listed for $1,150,000 and selling for $1,000,000 ($327/sf)
  • 485 NE 94 St – listed for $1,148,000 and selling for $1,002,500 ($295/sf)
  • 1095 NE 95 St – listed for $843,000 and selling for $705,000 ($231/sf)
  • 1260 NE 94 St – listed for $799,000 and selling for $785,000 ($290/sf)
  • 87 NE 92 St – listed for $699,000 and selling for $665,000 ($317/sf)
  • 1298 NE 104 St – short sale listed for $629,000 and selling for $545,000 ($192/sf)
  • 1036 NE 95 St – listed for $600,000 and selling for $587,000 ($305/sf)
  • 30 NE 93 St – listed for $599,000 and selling for $580,000 ($242/sf)
  • 17 NE 109 St – listed for $439,000 and selling for $410,000 ($192/sf)
  • 92 NW 93 St – short sale listed for $379,500 and selling for $350,000 ($203/sf)
  • 78 NW 99 St – listed for $307,500 and selling for $397,500 ($247/sf)
  • 215 Grand Concourse – short sale needing a lot of renovation work, listed for $299,000 and selling for $323,925 ($135/sf)

The average sales price per square foot for Miami Shores homes in March was $248.  That’s considerably higher than the $215/sf from 2013 (2013 Miami Shores Real Estate Market Report), and higher than February’s $190/sf.

If you decide to list your home for sale, we recommend that you take a trip to Miami Shores City Hall to check if you have any open permits.  We do this for our clients as a courtesy, to avoid last-minute problems prior to closing.

If you are interested in getting a list of all properties currently for sale in Miami Shores, we will be happy to send you a digital copy at your request.  Feel free to email us at


Curb Appeal or Web Appeal

By: Ines Hegedus-Garcia on April 3, 2014

Dale Chumbley - The Road to SoldWhat is the secret for selling your Miami Beach Home? The COO of Zillow, Spencer Rascoff says, in an article on ABCNews that,

Sellers used to have to worry about curb appeal: How does the grass look, etc. Now a seller needs to worry about Web Appeal: When a buyer is browsing on the Web, what is their first impression.

I could not agree more and the article could not have come at a better time.  We say it over and over again to our clients, sound like a broken record and it’s nice to get get a reinforcement.  If 85% (some sources say almost 90%) of buyers start their search online, doesn’t it make sense for you, as a Miami Beach Real Estate seller, to take full advantage of online marketing?   And when I say take full advantage I don’t just mean pretty photos and a couple of search platforms.  You should be doing great photos, video, virtual shows, e-flyers, directories, blog posts and using as many available tools as possible to expose your property to potential buyers.

Rick laughs at me when I talk to him about online marketing because he says I speak a foreign language  between embedding, syncing, html, css, syndicating, plugins, widgets……you get the picture. It does feel like I have a some sort of degree in Social Media after being immersed in the medium for almost 3 8 years….and to think that he’s supposed to be the “techie” ;) .

Is there a magic formula for which search sites to use or what way to market on-line for your house to be noticed?  I wish I could say yes, but the way I look at it, the more you do and the better you expose, the better the chances that a buyer may find your property.  We go out of our way to learn about new platforms and new methods of marketing so our listings are found.  It takes a lot of work to stay on top of technology, but it’s one of the services we feel is crucial for successful marketing of any real estate property.

A good web listing can help you sell your house during a down market

**photo credit: Dale Chumbley at ClarkCountyRealEstateGuide**

**written June 18th, 2009**


The Terrifying Truth about Mold

By: Ines Hegedus-Garcia on March 31, 2014

So the Miami Beach home you just bought has mold – is it the end of the world?

mold and miami beach real estate

The mold issue here in South Florida has almost become a “trendy” topic – to such extremes that building inspectors have all kinds of special gadgets now to reinforce the fact that all homes have mold.  We always warn our clients that Miami’s climate is extremely humid and not unusual to hear the weather man on TV announce that we are at 100% humidity!

Always expect a house to have some mold. Did you read that correctly?  ALWAYS expect a house to have mold.  It’s good to know what the standards are and to keep in mind that empty homes without air conditioning will have a higher percentage of mold just because of common sense.   Getting rid of mold will include setting on the air conditioning to cold temperatures, sometimes even buying or renting dehumidifiers and if you are very concerned, hiring a mold remediation company.

I am concerned however when mold is identified as “toxic” – sometimes remediation companies cannot address tough toxic mold issues.

It’s always good to get an expert’s opinion, but make sure you check credentials, a lot of so called “mold experts” are just taking advantage of the trend and are not very proficient in the subject.  A lot of inspection companies will even charge you an extra fee to do a more extensive mold study, but that doesn’t necessarily identify the problem, just gives you a lot of data to interpret – if you are really concerned, go on-line and do some research – that way you won’t have to take anyone’s word for it.

An educated consumer is our best client :)

originally published 8/26/2009