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When the time comes to purchase a home, you’ll be faced with the choice of buying an existing structure or having a new one built. While circumstances may dictate which of these is better for you at any given point, there are a number of benefits to new construction homes that are worth looking into. If you do decide to go this route, it’s also important to keep in mind what contributes to the cost of new construction and how best to keep those costs under control.

Benefits of Choosing New Construction

New construction homes are attractive for several reasons, including the fact that they let you choose exactly how your space will be arranged. Choosing to build your own home will also give you confidence that there are no hidden or unexpected problems lurking below the surface as you may find with an existing home. When you build a new home, you can be sure it has all of the features you’re looking for and that you won’t need to immediately make any updates or renovations. Instead, you can just move in and enjoy it.

Contributors to the Cost of New Construction Homes

There are a number of factors that contribute to the cost of new construction homes, including the size of the living space, the types of materials used, and the location. The last item in particular is significant, and it can vary greatly depending on the area you want to live in and whether or not you already own the land itself. For instance, some factors that can increase the price of new construction include lack of available space and high demand for housing in the area, among others.

How to Keep Costs Low

Fortunately, there are a number of steps you can take to help keep the costs of your new construction home low. For starters, you need to decide exactly where you want your home to be. If you own land already, that choice may be an easy one, and the fact that you don’t have to purchase the land will immediately lower the cost of your new home. If you are purchasing the land, it’s a good idea to compare prices at various locations to determine which one gives you the best mix of convenience and value.

The size and layout of new construction homes plays a large role in determining their total cost as well. To help keep these to a minimum, take some time to determine how much space you actually need, and utilize an open floor plan whenever possible. You can also reduce costs by choosing your materials wisely, and by keeping the dimensions of your spaces in line with the standard sizes of common building materials.

Professional Designs for New Construction Homes

If you’re interested in new construction homes in Vero Beach or the surrounding areas, the professionals at Passage Island Construction have the experience and flexibility to get you the home you want at the best possible price. We’ll work with you from the ground up to design a custom home that’s exactly what you’re looking for in every way, while our experience in the industry and our knowledge of the local area can give you confidence that all the work we do will be done right the first time. To learn more about our new construction homes, contact us today.

The post The Cost of New Construction Homes appeared first on Passage Island Homes.

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If you’re thinking about building your own home, you have to find the right property. When you’re looking for property for sale for building a home, there are several attributes you should think about. Consider taking the following elements into account.

Location

Obviously, whether you’re buying or building a home, location is key when you’re looking for property for sale. Is the property close to your work or your kids’ school? If you want to be able to walk to shops and restaurants, is that available? What about the neighbors? Do you like how the community feels? These are all questions to consider as you look at properties.

The Views

While looking at different properties and thinking about the nearby amenities, you should also consider the views. Remember that you can’t see everything from the ground. While assessing the view, also take into account what you might see from a second story balcony or window. In a lot of cases, getting up high can really change the outlook and even turn a regular home into a property with an ocean view.

Zoning

Once you’ve narrowed in on the right location, you need to ensure that it’s zoned correctly. For most people, that means finding a property for sale that is zoned for residential use. If you run a business out of your home, such as a hair salon or a counsellor’s office for example, you may need a lot that’s zoned for both residential and commercial use. Similarly, if you ever plan to turn your home into a bed and breakfast or a vacation rental, you may also want to ensure that works with the zoning in your area.

Inspections

You love the location, and the zoning meets your needs. Now it is time to schedule an inspection. An inspector can help you fully assess that the property for sale meets your needs and that the land is hospitable for building a home.

Future Possibilities

No one can predict the future, but when you’re looking at property for sale, you should try to think about what the future holds in that area. Some areas simply feel like they’re up and coming, and if that works out, you may get to live in an area with lots of fun shops and things to do; however, that’s never a guarantee.

When thinking about the potential future of the area, you may want to look into new developments to see what’s in the pipeline for the area. You may also want to consider the demographics of the area and whether or not a lot of young people are moving in or out of the area.

Size of the Lot

Don’t forget to think about the size of the lot. If you’re working with a homebuilder, they can give you an estimate of the footprint of the house you’re thinking about building. Then, you can measure that out in your yard and make sure you have enough space for your yard and landscaping.

To learn more, contact us at Passage Island Construction today. We create high quality homes for people in Vero Beach and the surrounding area.

The post Tips for Finding the Perfect Property for Sale appeared first on Passage Island Homes.

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Home prices almost always seem to be rising. If you’re thinking about buying or building a new home, you may be wondering why this is happening. Well, there are actually a number of different factors at play. Here are the main elements that cause home prices to rise.

Inflation

Inflation refers to a general decrease in the value of money. In other words, inflation is why a dollar buys less now than it did five, 15, or 100 years ago. Inflation is always happening, and it is responsible for some of the increase in home prices.

In the United States, however, inflation is usually only worth about 1 or 2 percent per year, so it really only accounts for a very small portion of the increase in home prices. According to some analysts, home prices are rising at three times the rate of inflation.

Tight Supply

One of the basic principles of economics is that as demand increases, prices rise, and similarly, as supply decreases, prices also go up. Home prices are no exception, and as of early 2018, the supply of homes in the United States is declining. That means there are fewer homes for the same amount of buyers, and this situation drives prices up.

Of course, you can always increase the supply of homes by simply building more, but in many cases, there isn’t enough space for new homes. Space restrictions in certain communities can directly affect home prices.

Increasing Demand

While supply is decreasing, demand is increasing. That’s especially true for property markets in Florida. According to data from U-Haul, Florida is the second most popular state for people to move to, and in fact, the state has 8 percent more growth in 2018 than the previous year. Over the last few years, this state has experienced a huge influx of new residents. Miami, for example, grew by 13 percent in just six years from 2010 to 2016, and many cities in the state followed similar trends.

Low Interest Rate

Every quarter, the US Federal Reserve System (usually called “the Fed”) adjusts the interest rate, and these manipulations are designed to affect the economy in certain ways. When rates are low, mortgages are less expensive, and as a result, people are more likely to buy homes. That, in turn, increases demand, which increases home prices. That said, the interest rate was recently increased in the first quarter of 2018, and the Fed plans to increase it at least two more times this year. While those increases have not had an effect on house prices at the time of writing, the new rates may cause a downward trend in home prices eventually.

Increased Costs for Labor and Materials

Of course, home prices don’t exist in a bubble, and as other costs go up or down, home prices adjust accordingly. For instance, if you are having a new home built, the cost of materials and wages for workers are built into your costs. If those prices are higher than usual, your home may also cost more.

If you want to avoid rising home prices, you may want to buy now. To create a custom home, contact us at Passage Island Construction.

The post 5 Reasons Home Prices are Rising appeared first on Passage Island Homes.

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Building your own home is an exciting prospect. Rather than moving into a home designed for someone else, you get a home that’s been perfectly customized for you. However, there are some issues that can disrupt the whole process. To protect your investment and ensure the process goes smoothly, avoid these five mistakes people commonly make when building their own homes.

1. Don’t Forget the Details

When you’re building your own home, the design is just the first detail. You also have to make decisions about countless other details. Start that process early. Spend time looking at cabinets, flooring, paint, and other home essentials so that you can narrow in on what you want. Then, let the builders know. That way, your contractors won’t face delays as you decide on the details in the midst of the process.

2. Choose the Right Builders

That said, if you choose the right builders they will help guide you toward an effective timeline. They’ll remind you of the decisions you need to make about the home so that everything is squared away. Before settling on a builder, look through their portfolios, drive through neighborhoods they’ve developed, and tour their model homes. Also, make sure they’re experienced with the unique climate and conditions in your neighborhood.

3. Use Space Wisely

Often, people get so excited by the potential of a new home that they choose an overly large design. Then, down the road, they realize that they have an unsustainable amount of space and wish they would have gone for a smaller home. Before making the leap into a large home, spend some time thinking about how you use your space.

An effective floor plan that gives you room to live the way you like to live, is usually better than a sprawling space that doesn’t have the essentials you want. Again, the right builder can help you balance those elements.

4. Focus on Resale Value

When building your own home, you get the luxury of customizing the space for you and your family. However, you should also keep resale value in mind. Even if you don’t plan to live anywhere else in the future, you may change your mind, or your heirs may eventually need to sell your home.

To protect yourself financially, keep resale value in mind as you develop your plan. For instance, if you want a room for model trains, you want to ensure that it can easily be converted into a bedroom or a home office. Ideally, you need to balance your customizations with what future owners will want in a home.

5. Stay Involved in the Process

To ensure everything goes smoothly as you’re building your own home, stay active in the process. If the builders or designers have questions for you, make sure to respond to them promptly so that the project stays on track. Once construction starts, check on the building site and ask the contractors questions. That helps to keep everyone on the same page.

Interested in building your own home? Contact Passage Island Construction today. We build quality custom homes for people in Vero Beach and the surrounding area.

The post Top 5 Mistakes to Avoid When Building Your Own Home appeared first on Passage Island Homes.

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If you’re thinking about moving to Florida or even if you’ve been in the area a long time, you may be surprised to hear that there are some key differences between Florida homes and homes in the rest of the country. Wondering what’s so unique about homes in the Sunshine State? Take a look.

1. Florida Homes Don’t Have Basements

If you’re from the Midwest, the West, or other parts of the country, you may be used to homes with basements. When looking at real estate in Florida, however, you should be aware that basements are extremely uncommon. Florida has the lowest elevation of any state in the United States, and in most areas, the water table is less than a meter underground. That, combined with the often wet and marshy land, doesn’t bode well for basements.

2. Florida Has a Very Temperate Climate

Florida’s temperate climate means that you don’t have to worry about heating and cooling as much as you do in other parts of the country. In fact, in Vero Beach, the average low in January is 51 degrees, and the average high in August is only 89 degrees. Temperatures tend to be between these two levels year round, which makes the area extremely comfortable.

Rather than putting in a traditional furnace, many people opt for a heat pump instead. A heat pump cools your home while also providing heating capabilities when the temperature dips in the winter.

3. Humidity, Salty Air, and Sunshine Can Affect Your Home

Although 89 degrees is not that hot, high temperatures in Florida often feel hotter than they are, and that boils down to the humidity in the area. When living in Florida homes, many homeowners use air conditioning to beat the heat. They also choose their exterior paint carefully to ensure that it can withstand the intense UV rays and salty air that make this state such a popular tourist destination.

4. Florida Has No State Income Tax

Florida is one of only seven states that does not have a state income tax.  Although this factoid doesn’t directly affect Florida homes, it directly affects Florida homeowners, and the absence of a state income tax may make it easier to afford a home that you might not be able to afford otherwise. When you’re saving anywhere from 5 to 10 percent of your income, that money can go directly toward your home.

5. Florida Homes Are Rising in Price

Over the last three years, Florida real estate has increased in value by an average of 25 percent. However, the numbers vary based on the exact area and the type of home. For instance, in South Florida, the median sales price of single family homes increased 8.2 percent in 2017, and the biggest increases were in areas like Vero Beach. Despite this, the total number of Florida homes available for sale in this area fell over that same time span.

If you are interested in buying Florida homes, let us create your next dream home. At Passage Island Construction, we have a wide range of designs available, or we can design a completely custom home for you. Contact us today to learn more.

The post What to Know When Buying Florida Homes appeared first on Passage Island Homes.

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Vero Beach real estate is hot at the moment. This community has made nationwide lists for largest increases in home values, and at the time of writing, that trend shows no signs of slowing down. If you’re thinking about buying or selling in this state, you should check out the following trends. Here’s an overview of what’s happening.

Increasing Home Values

Over the last year, Vero Beach real estate has jumped approximately 15 percent in value on average. At the beginning of 2017, the median home price in this area was approximately $183,000, but at the beginning of 2018, it’s increased to roughly $232,000. At the same time, the price per square foot has increased from $122 to $136.

Interest in Medium-Size Homes

Prices have risen across the board, but the largest increases tend to be in medium-size homes. A year ago, the median price of a one-bedroom home was $53,500, but that number has increased to $59,000, which equates to a 10.3 percent jump.

In contrast, two and three-bedroom homes have jumped up 14.5 and 14.8 percent in value respectively, and based on the number of bedrooms, these are the largest increases in Vero Beach real estate. Two-bedroom homes have increased in value from $115,000 to $132,000, and three-bedroom homes have jumped from $214,000 to $245,000.

Finally, the smallest increases have occurred in the largest homes. Four-bedroom homes in Vero Beach had a median price of $326,250 a year ago, and as of March 2018, they have only increased by 2.7 percent to $335,000. These real estate trends indicate that it might be a great time to upgrade to a four-bedroom home or downsize to a one bedroom.

Growing Interest in the Seaside

The neighborhoods that have experienced the largest price increases for Vero Beach real estate tend to be located along the beach. In particular, Riomar, Ocean Drive, and South Beach have all experienced the largest gains in home appreciation since 2000. Not far away, neighborhoods near Kings Highway, Florida Ridge, the Royal Palm Boulevard, and Royal Poinciana Park have also appreciated more quickly than other areas.

Renewing Interest in New Homes

Ten years ago, construction on new homes stalled in the Vero Beach area, just as it did throughout the rest of the country. However, thanks to a robust economic recovery, Vero Beach real estate has a growing number of new homes. That said, the overall market is still dominated by older homes.

According to an analysis of homes on the market in this area, 57.9 percent were built between 1970 and 1999, another 29 percent are even older with building dates between 1940 and 1969. Only 5.6 percent of homes are older than 1939, and 7.5 percent of homes were built after 2000. Buyers who want a brand new home should talk with a custom builder to ensure they get the exact property they want.

If you are interested in a custom home, contact us at Passage Island Homes today. We have multiple floor plans to suit almost every need, or we can introduce you to our architect and help you design a home from scratch.

The post 2018 Vero Beach Real Estate Trends appeared first on Passage Island Homes.

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Thinking about buying a new home? Wondering what your current home might sell for? Just curious about real estate values? If so, we have put together the information you need. Here’s a look at house prices in the Vero Beach, Florida area.

Median House Prices in Vero Beach

The median house price in Vero Beach is $191,500 according to Zillow. The site was launched in 2006, and it collects information on property listings and sales throughout the country.  Its database currently has listings related to more than 110 million properties. Although the site does not have every real estate detail, it has a lot of information, and by sheer volume of information, it tends to be relatively accurate.

The median house price is related to sales that have already occurred, but when you look at houses that are currently listed for sale, the median house price in this area jumps up to $282,950. That is equivalent to $144 per square foot. In the Vero Beach Metro area, the average price per square foot is $150. In a lot of cases, knowing the average price per square foot can be valuable because it allows you to compare houses of different size and break down their value accordingly.

It’s also important to note that median house prices are different than averages. Median values throw out extremes at the top or the bottom of the calculation. This helps to create a more accurate assessment of the true home values in an area.

Increasing Home Values in Vero Beach

According to the National Association of Realtors quarterly report from the beginning of 2017, the house prices in Vero Beach are increasing more quickly than the house prices in any other areas of the country. The report takes into account house prices in 178 towns around the country.

On average, house prices increased by 6.9 percent, but in Vero Beach, prices increased by 18.2 percent. That put the area in second place after Cumberland, West Virginia and just behind Ocala, Florida. To put the numbers into perspective, this means that a home worth $300,000 at the end of 2016 was likely to be worth $354,600 by the first quarter of 2017.

Luxury House Prices in Vero Beach

Luxury house prices are increasing at a faster rate than the value of average homes. According to the Robb Report, the average price of luxury homes throughout the United States increased by 7.4 percent in 2017, and they sold more quickly than in 2016.

In Vero Beach, the increase was even more precipitous, and luxury homes rose 27.3 percent over 2017. That means that a house that was priced at $1 million, rose in value to $1.27 million.

At Passage Island Construction, we can build a custom home that’s perfectly suited to you. With a custom home, you pick all the details, so the price you pay is final. In contrast, when you buy a home, you usually have to pay for changes to customize the home for you. Give us a call today to see how we can make your dream home a reality.

The post Average House Prices in Vero Beach, FL appeared first on Passage Island Homes.

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If you’ve decided to build your new home in Vero Beach, FL, the next step is finding the right builder. As you search for someone to help you through this process, you should understand how building companies work. Here are five essential facts you need to know.

Building Companies Are Experienced in Different Niches

In most cases, building companies tend to have experience in different niches. For instance, some companies focus on modular homes, while others focus on traditional construction. Beyond that, some builders may be familiar with certain architectural styles, while others may focus on different styles.

Ideally, when choosing a builder, you should make sure they have experience with the type of construction you want for your home. On top of that, you should also look through their portfolios to ensure that the style of their homes appeals to you.

Building Companies Let You Customize the Details

Typically, when you start looking at the work of most building companies, you are going to see a range of different designs and details. Generally, you choose a basic design, but you get to customize the details. That means you get to pick out the flooring, the doors, and similar elements of your new home.

Builders Price Details and Customizations Differently

While this practice is fairly standard among most building companies, there are a lot of differences in terms of pricing. Some companies upcharge for luxury features, while others offer those features as standard. Make sure that you account for these differences when getting quotes from different builders. That helps to ensure you choose the best company for your budget.

Only Some Building Companies Let You Develop a Home From Scratch

Many building companies let you customize the whole home if you like. This is called building a home from scratch. Instead of choosing a preset design, you get to work with a designer or architect who helps you develop your dream floor plan.

It’s important to note that not every builder offers these services. If you want to build a truly unique home, you need to ensure that the company you hire offers this option. Keep in mind, this tends to be more expensive than starting with a design.

Building Companies Help With Building Codes and Regulations

If you’re dabbling with the idea of building your own home, you may want to note the critical role that building companies play in terms of navigating building codes and local regulations. The local building codes can be complex. To keep your project running smoothly and to ensure your home passes all inspections, you will want to work with a professional builder.

Additionally, local areas have a range of different regulations. These include rules about setbacks, how high your home can be, and other details. When you work with a local company, you ensure they know these rules inside and out. In contrast, if you hire a national builder, they may not know the ins and outs of the local scene.

To start designing your dream home, contact Passage Island Construction today. We are a custom builder who serves residents in Vero Beach, Florida as well as the neighboring cities of Sebastian, Palm Bay, Melbourne, and Viera to the north of us, and Fort Pierce and Port St. Lucie to the south. We look forward to helping you plan and build your next home, just the way you want it.

The post What You Need to Know About Building Companies appeared first on Passage Island Homes.

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If you have decided to build your own home, you will have to hire a team of contractors or builders to help you. Ideally, you should consider hiring local contractors. These professionals offer a number of advantages compared to working with national contractors.

More Money Stays in Your Community

When you hire a local contractor or buy something from a local store, more of your money stays in the community. According to some analysts, when you spend $100 with a local company, $68 of that money stays in your community. That money goes toward supporting other businesses and families in your community, and it helps to make your community a more interesting, thriving place for everyone.

In contrast, when you shop at a national chain or hire a national contractor, an average of only $43 stays in the community. The majority of your money goes somewhere else. As a result, your community loses out on what it needs to survive.

Easier to See Their Work

When you hire local contractors to build a custom home, you can often walk through some of their model homes, and you can go into their offices to take a look through their portfolio. With a national company, you may never get a chance to walk through any of their model homes.

A Personal Touch

Having a face-to-face experience with local contractors doesn’t just allow you to see their work. Generally, it also allows you to enjoy a more personalized experience through the building process. You can really get to know your builders in a way that might not be possible with a national company.

Accountability

When you hire local contractors, you can trust them and rest assured that they will be accountable to you. They also have a presence in the community so if you have a question or a concern once your home is complete, you can simply call them or go to their offices. In a lot of cases, you don’t have that same sense of accountability when you hire someone who is from outside the community. Unfortunately, on a worst case scenario, they may be a fly-by-night company who disappears at some point during the process.

Experience in Your Area

Local contractors have a lot of experience working in your unique climate. This is especially important in Florida which has ecosystems that are not found in any other parts of the world. In particular, a local contractor knows how to work with the clay rich soils find in many parts of Florida, and they know how to work in a salty environment that is very close to sea level.

When you hire a national company, they may look at building through the lens of what works in other climates. For example, their designs may not be appropriate for the weather patterns or soil structure in Florida. Additionally, their contractors may not know how to deal with the challenges of building in Florida.

If you want the benefits of working with local contractors, you should contact us today. At Passage Island Construction, we create custom homes for people in Vero Beach and the surrounding area. We can use an existing plan or help you design your home from scratch.

The post The Benefits of Hiring Local Contractors appeared first on Passage Island Homes.

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You’ve weighed the pros and cons of buying a house versus building your own, and you’ve decided that you want to embark on the journey of building your own home. Now, you just have to hire some new home builders. While you look for the right team, keep the following thoughts in mind.

Review Their Experience

With many professionals, you can only talk about their experiences or read their reviews. With custom home builders, however, you can actually look at the work they have done. If the builder has model homes, be sure to tour them. If they have developed certain neighborhoods, spend some time there walking around or maybe even talking with residents. The architecture and design of an area can have a direct effect on how those places feel.

Talk About Their Options and Upgrade Pricing

If you decide you’re interested in some new home builders based on their other homes, you should start the conversation about options. Look through their home designs, and talk about the features they offer. Different builders charge different rates for certain upgrades, and you need to take all of that into account when hiring a builder. For example, you don’t want to choose a builder because their base price is lower and then realize that you can’t afford the upgrades and details you want.

Pay Attention to Their Communication Styles

While talking to various new home builders, pay attention to intangible elements such as their communication style. Remember, you are going to be working with this professional for quite a while. You’ll want to feel comfortable with their communication styles. Do you feel like they are listening when you tell them things? Do they readily offer answers to your questions? Do you feel confident about their abilities to communicate with you through the building process? Ideally, you’ll want to answer “yes” to all of those types of questions.

Ask About Work Flow and Timing

Building a custom house involves various steps. You’ll have to choose a lot as well as a house design. Then, the builder has to survey and prepare the lot.  As the builder puts the home together, there are a range of different steps which include putting up the frame to putting in the flooring while also adding the finishing touches.  So that you know what to expect, ask prospective new home builders about their work flow and timing. Ideally, they should be able to give you an idea of how long the process is going to take and what to expect at each stage in the process.

Identify the Supervisor

Because there are so many elements involved in building a new home, you want to ensure it goes well. Ideally, you want a point person or a supervisor in charge of your project. Talk with different home builders about who is going to fill this role. Also, meet with that individual and make sure you are on the same page.

If you’re hiring new home builders, we’re confident that we can handle the job for you. Contact Passage Island Construction today to talk more about your new home. We are an award winning builder who creates custom homes in the Vero Beach, Florida area and beyond.

The post What to Know When Hiring New Home Builders appeared first on Passage Island Homes.

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