Consumer Real Estate News


    • Kitchen Staples Helpful for Heart Health

      5 March 2021

      (Family Features) Taking care of your heart health requires a commitment to the right routines and smart decisions, such as adopting a heart healthy diet. Foods you might already have in your kitchen can offer powerful vitamins, minerals and beneficial plant compounds that may help contribute to heart health. 

      Decades of research shows that each 8-ounce serving of 100% orange juice, such as Florida Orange Juice, is packed with key nutrients and valuable plant compounds, which may play a beneficial role in helping lower blood pressure and other risk factors for heart disease. Consider these additional heart health benefits of 100% orange juice: 

      While many people associate vitamin C with its ability to help promote a healthy immune system, it’s also been shown to support cardiovascular health. Orange juice is an excellent source of vitamin C providing more than 100% of the recommended daily value in an 8-ounce glass. 

      In several research studies, higher intakes of the flavonoids typically found in citrus were associated with reduced risk for cardiovascular disease and stroke. 

      In one 8-ounce serving, 100% orange juice provides 10% of the daily value of potassium, which is an electrolyte that helps maintain fluid balance affecting blood pressure. Diets containing foods that are good sources of potassium and low in sodium may reduce the risk of high blood pressure and stroke. 

      Some studies found folate and vitamin B6, both water-soluble vitamins, may help protect against heart disease by lowering homocysteine levels in the blood, an amino acid believed to cause damage to the arteries and increase the risk of blood clots when elevated. One 8-ounce glass of orange juice contains 15% of the daily value of folate and 8% of the daily value of vitamin B6. 

      “Drinking Florida Orange Juice is not only delicious, it delivers a powerful combination of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and beneficial plant compounds,” said Dr. Rosa Walsh, director of scientific research at the Florida Department of Citrus. “From helping to reduce hypertension to fighting inflammation, it is an excellent choice to include in a heart-healthy diet.” 

      You can add the heart health benefits of 100% orange juice to your diet with the powerfully nutritious punch of Orange Juice Shrimp Quinoa Bowls, the perfect mixture of textures with tangy, spicy and sweet flavors. Or start the day strong with a Florida Sunshine Grapefruit Smoothie for a breakfast beverage that requires just a few minutes of prep and blending. 

      Find more heart healthy inspiration at floridacitrus.org. 

      Orange Juice Shrimp Quinoa Bowls
      Servings: 2

      2 cups water
      1 cup quinoa
      1 cup Florida Orange Juice
      1 tablespoon hot sauce
      1 tablespoon honey
      1 tablespoon soy sauce
      6 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
      2 tablespoons lime juice
      1 tablespoon white miso
      1 1/2 pounds shrimp, peeled and deveined
      1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
      1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
      1 bell pepper, diced
      1 English cucumber, sliced into half moons
      3 scallions, sliced
      1 avocado, sliced
      1 teaspoon sesame seeds
      2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped

      In the pot, bring water to boil. Add quinoa, reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Fluff with fork.

      In a bowl, whisk orange juice, hot sauce, honey, soy sauce, 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, lime juice and miso. Remove half and set aside.

      Add shrimp to the remaining half and marinate 15 minutes.

      Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add remaining oil.

      Season shrimp with salt and pepper then add shrimp to wok and saute, cooking approximately 2 minutes per side until pink and cooked through.

      Place 1/2 cup quinoa in a bowl and top with bell pepper, cucumber, scallions, avocado and shrimp.

      Drizzle with dressing that was set aside and garnish with sesame seeds and cilantro.

      Florida Sunshine Grapefruit Smoothie
      Servings: 1

      1 cup Florida Orange Juice
      1/2 cup Florida Grapefruit Juice
      1 ripe banana
      1/2 cup low-fat vanilla yogurt
      1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

      In a blender, blend orange juice, grapefruit juice, banana, yogurt and vanilla extract until smooth. Serve immediately.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • What is an Expired Listing?

      5 March 2021

      If you sign a contract with a real estate agent to get help selling your home, the contract will stipulate that the agent will represent you for a period of time, typically six months to a year. If your house isn’t sold within that time frame, your listing on the multiple listing service (MLS) will expire. At that point, you can work with your agent to figure out why your home didn’t sell and what to do about it, or you can switch to a different agent.

      Did You Set Your Price Too High? 
      Real estate prices go up and down. Numerous local factors, such as property taxes, crime rates, school quality and whether a house is close to businesses, parks and other amenities, can influence home prices. The price for one house will also depend on how much comparable homes in the same area have sold for recently. 

      A real estate agent should take all that information into consideration and set a reasonable asking price. In some cases, however, an agent tells a homeowner that a house can sell for a high amount to get the owner as a client, but the house lingers on the market because the asking price is too high. It’s also common for a homeowner who is influenced by emotion to insist on setting a price that is unreasonable, given the current real estate market in the area.

      If your listing has expired, it’s time for you and your real estate agent to have a frank discussion about whether the asking price was too high. If your agent tells you that other houses selling for the amount you asked are larger than yours, in better condition, or have amenities that yours doesn’t, take that to heart. You may not want to reduce the price, but it may be necessary to attract a buyer. 

      Does Your House Need Repairs or Updates?
      Your agent may recommend that you make repairs or remodel outdated rooms before you relist your home. You may be able to make some fairly simple changes, such as cleaning up the yard, replacing the front door and installing new hardware in the kitchen, or you may have to spend more money to update the kitchen or bathrooms. 

      What Did Prospective Buyers Say?
      If a handful of people expressed interest in your home but decided not to buy it, their feedback may be helpful, especially if there was a consistent theme. If several people said they thought the house was outdated, poorly maintained, or overpriced, that means you will have to address those concerns if you want to find a buyer.

      Should You Change Agents? 
      If your agent overpriced your home, didn’t do a good job of marketing, or didn’t provide a high level of service, you may want to relist your home with a different agent after your contract with the first individual expires. Don’t be too quick to blame your agent, however. Consider other possible reasons why your house didn’t sell.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Are You Eating Healthy Portion Sizes?

      5 March 2021

      Most people know that they should eat a mix of healthy foods to get enough vitamins and nutrients, but there is a lot of confusion surrounding portion sizes. Not knowing how much to eat can lead to weight gain. Here are some tips to help you eat healthy amounts.

      What is the Difference Between a Portion and a Serving?
      A portion is the amount that you are served or the amount you eat. It may vary from meal to meal. A serving is a standard amount that can be useful when comparing different foods. For instance, if you look at two packages of crackers, each will tell you how many are in a serving, as well as the number of calories and the amount of fat, sugar and nutrients in a serving. 

      What are Healthy Portion Sizes?
      The amount of food you should consume in a day will depend on your gender, age and activity level. If you have questions about your dietary needs and ways to adjust your eating habits, consult your doctor or a nutritionist.

      Focus on filling your plate with lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and non-fat or low-fat dairy products. Limit your consumption of oil, fat and sugar. 

      Measuring portion sizes may be helpful, at least until you get used to eating healthy amounts. Then you may be able to tell how much is appropriate by comparing it to your hand or common household objects.

      Don’t Focus on Cleaning Your Plate
      Many people were taught as children to clean their plate. As plates and portions have gotten larger, obesity has become a serious problem. 

      Restaurants tend to serve portions that are much larger than the average person should eat in one meal, and the food often contains a lot of fat, sugar and salt. If you eat out, consider ordering two appetizers instead of an entrée or splitting an entrée with another person. 

      Another option is to eat half of your entrée and take the rest home to eat the following day. If you decide to get part of your meal to go, ask the server to wrap a portion before serving you the rest so you don’t overeat.

      How to Eat Healthy Portions
      You’re likely to eat more if you consume food from a large plate or straight from a container. Using smaller plates can help you get used to eating healthy portion sizes. Put portions of food on plates in the kitchen, rather than placing bowls on the table and having people serve themselves. 

      Water can help fill you up so you don’t consume more food than you need. Drink a glass of water about 30 minutes before a meal to avoid overeating.

      It takes time for your brain to realize that you’re full. If you eat too fast, you may continue eating after you’re full because your brain hasn’t gotten the signal to stop. Take smaller bites, chew several times and pause to sip water and engage in conversation.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • 6 Small Ways to Help Stimulate the Economy

      4 March 2021

      In a time when the U.S. is still navigating historically high unemployment, more families whose lives have not been terribly impacted are feeling the pain of people out of work and small businesses struggling to stay afloat.

      If you have the means and you’re looking for ways to help, financial experts and entrepreneurs suggest these tips to help you stimulate a sagging economy. 

      • Buy Local - The book you buy for $20 online may cost $30 at the local bookstore, but your support in paying the higher price helps more than just the bookseller and her employees. Since small businesses tend to buy supplies from other local businesses, the extra dollars you paid for that book may have a more far-reaching effect.
      • Update Your Home - If you’ve been wanting to get your home painted, remodel your bathroom or change out the living room lighting, now is the time to do what you can afford. You can help appreciate the value of your home while doing your part to improve the economic landscape.
      • Order More Takeout - Even if you love cooking, declare a “Takeout Tuesday” night and support local restaurants by ordering in. It can bring a little spice into your life (literally!) while helping local restaurants survive.
      • Celebrate Now - Got a promotion? A birthday? A Zoom graduation coming up? Instead of putting off celebrations “until things are back to normal,” treat your family or friends to a celebratory gift they can enjoy now. Whether it’s a new outfit or a new car, every dollar you spend contributes to the economy.
      • Give What You Can Afford - Direct donations to food banks, emergency service organizations or your favorite charity will never be more useful or appreciated. Consider giving to a scholarship fund to help needy students get the educational grounding they need to start a lucrative career. 
      • Be an Influencer - Whether on Instagram or over the phone with friends and family, talk up the books, car or cookware you bought, or the great dinner you had delivered from a local eatery. Your recommendations may spur others to open their wallets, too.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • 6 Activities That Non-Skiers Can Enjoy in the Mountains

      4 March 2021

      Ski resorts are always a great place for the whole family to come together and make memories during the winter. The reality, however, is that hitting the slopes is not for everyone. If the non-skiers in your crowd are looking for ways to spend their day while everyone else is on the mountain, here are a few activities to ensure they have just as much fun.

      Spa Day
      There’s a luxurious spa and wellness center to be found at just about every ski resort, and for those who like to be pampered, a day of personal treatments will certainly keep them happy. From relaxing massages to rejuvenating facials, chances are they won’t feel like the ones who are missing out when the skiers get home at the end of the day. 

      Snowshoeing
      Snowshoeing is a great way for just about anyone to get outside and exercise while taking in the beautiful surroundings. Most ski resorts have guided snowshoeing tours and designated trails for snowshoers that are groomed, or you can always explore on your own and venture up the mountain.

      Shopping
      Of course, a little retail therapy might be just the thing to stay busy during the day. If this sounds like you, then you’ll be pleased to learn that most ski resorts have charming villages with boutique shops that you can stroll through to your heart’s content.

      Cross-Country Skiing
      Alpine skiing may not be your thing, but you can still strap into a pair of skis and embrace the outdoors. Cross-country skiing is another fun option that provides kids and adults of all ages the opportunity to exercise while immersing themselves in the scenery.

      Sleigh Ride
      A horse-drawn sleigh ride through the mountains offers a majestic experience that’s suitable for the entire family. Just make sure to bundle up and maybe even bring a blanket, as it can get chilly sitting still in the elements.

      Après Ski
      Who said you had to ski to enjoy a little après? When the lifts stop running, everyone can get together for drinks and snacks around a roaring fire to share the highlights of their day in the mountains. 

      Published with permission from RISMedia.