How to Fix a Slow-Filling Toilet — Home 101

Lowe’s Home 101 experts, Joel and Courtney, show what to look for if you have a slow filling toilet tank.

As part of Lowe’s REALTORS® benefit program we bring you some creative ideas for maintaining your home.  Be sure to visit often to view e-newsletters loaded with helpful home improvement tips, and more….


Home For Sale In Winter Springs Florida


New on market, desirable 4 bedroom pool home in Chelsea Woods Tuscawilla a residential community in the north east sector of Orlando. Tuscawilla a well established family neighborhood is considered one of Orlando’s top communities. Neighborhood features include highly rated schools, golf course, tennis courts, and walking trails, it is close to shopping professional centers and major highways.

Property is a single story ranch style home with 4 large bedrooms and 2 1/2 baths, located in a quiet cul-de-sac. The main living area features a large family room with wood floors, wood burning fireplace and large French doors leading to the screened pool area. The large kitchen has custom counter tops and stainless steel appliances including a microwave.


For more information on this wonderful property please click links on our listing widget to the left. You may also use contact the seller link on this widget to make direct contact with the seller’s agent, or contact our office directly for additional information on any special rebates presently offered with the purchase of this showcase home. You are also welcome to call our office at 800 699-4841 any time during or after your tour to speak directly with one of our agents.

Check out iRealtyServices Rebate Programs.icon_search_croped
We help you with your home buying, and selling, needs, while saving you thousands of dollars in transaction costs.

Home buyers Save an average of 1.5% of the purchase price, when iRealtyServices represent you in the purchase of a home of $100,000 or more. Rebates credited to buyers at closing and may be use towards payment of any lender approved closing cost.

Find your Florida dream home.
Use our Property Search to access over 70 thousand available MLS properties in the mid-Florida region (updated daily), plus additional Florida properties listed For Sale By Owner (FSBO).

Calculate your rebate.
Once you have found a property of interest, you can request information on our rebate packages or calculate rebate using our rebate calculator.

Easy to use website tools.
Request Buyer Rebate Information or use our Rebate Calculator to see how much you can save! Find a home using Florida property search or check out iRealtyServices home buyers special offers.


Oviedo Florida Important Roadway Bulletin

Oviedo Home Search

Public Works is installing sidewalk on the south side of Mitchell Hammock Road between SR 434 and Clara Lee Evans Way. Concrete will be poured today between 9:30am and noon. Therefore intermittent single lane closure on eastbound Mitchell Hammock Road will occur. Maintenance of traffic (MOT) will be in place.  

As always, If you are driving in the area please be aware of your surroundings and traffic. Thank you!

Seminole County FL – Home Buyer’s Resource

OD_BloggerResidential Solid Waste Management ……..

Seminole County provides collection, recycling and disposal services for residential solid waste throughout the unincorporated area of the county. These services are funded by assessments collected annually via property tax bills. The annual assessment for collection and disposal services is billed in advance of the service calendar year.

Collection and recycling services are provided through contracted service providers [referred to as "Haulers"]; disposal services are provided at facilities owned and operated by Seminole County.

The Solid Waste Management Division of the Department of Environmental Services provides management of collection service contracts and the day-to-day operation of the disposal facilities. For collection & disposal related information and customer service, contact:

The Department of Resource Management facilitates the financial management of these services, including the levy of assessments and service option record management. For service rates, service options, and other assessment related information and customer service, contact:

Collection services for New Residential Dwellings begin when the construction is completed and a certificate of occupancy issued. Specific collection days and routes are established for each area of the county.

Depending on the route assignment, household garbage is collected either Monday & Thursday or Tuesday & Friday for service options that include two collection days per week. For options with one collection day per week, collection is either Thursday or Friday. Yard Waste collection is Wednesday for customers with service Options 1 or 3. Recycling collection day varies throughout the County.

For more information visit
call 407-665-2260.

Advertise Your FSBO Property Free

 Free Widgets

laptop_imageAdd A Free For Sale By Owner Property Listing Using Our Widget

Use this widget to add a free For Sale By Owner property to Owner Direct Realty real estate marketing network.

After adding your Free FSBO property listing to our service, visit our Website at to access many other free and marketing tools to promote your property.  FSBO sellers can upload multiple photos, add or edit listing information, print flyers and to grab our free For sale by owner Listing widget for to promote property for sale.

It is easy to use our FREE widget to distribute your property photo and information to your social networks and blogs or to send to others by e-mail.

The For Sale by Owner listing widgets displays the main photos and basic information of For Sale by owner properties posted on Websites. They also provide links to a pop-up slideshow to view additional photos on each property. Need more information! Click Contact The Seller buttons to contact home Sellers directly using a secured e-form, or Listing Details to access all the detailed listing information added by Sellers.


Home sales dipped in June

National Association of Realtors’ data shows existing home sales fell 1.2% in June. In spite of the slip, NAR chief  economist Lawrence Yun said there is still market momentum, even as interest rates climb.

The nations tight housing stock rose by 1.9 percent in June to 2.19 million equivalent to 5.2 months supply, still well below the 6 months supply considered a normal healthy market.  Due in part to the limited inventory of existing properties for sale many single family homes are selling above asking price and there is strong expectation of continued increase in home prices. In spite of the rosy picture pointing to higher prices and continued recovery, there are signs of concern.

First time homebuyers accounted for only 29 percent of  home buyers in June 2013 compared with 32 percent in June 2012. Low inventories of available homes, combined with rising home prices and interest rates plus tight mortgage qualification conditions are definitely limiting the number of first time homebuyers entering the housing market.

To sustain what is still a fragile housing  recovery, interest rates and rising home prices must be normalized to enable the entry of more first time home buyers into the market place.  First time homebuyers are the engine that drive the housing market, without them there is only stagnation.

Distressed homes,  foreclosures and short sales accounted for 15 percent of June sales down from May’s 18 percent recording the lowest market share since monthly tracking began in October 2008. The average sale price of foreclosures and short sales in June was 14.5 percent below market price. The declining  number of foreclosures and short sales within the market place will be another factor contributing  to the upwards pressure on home prices.

The national median existing single-family home price was $214,700 in June, which is 13.2 percent above a year ago. The national average mortgage rate of a 30 year fixed rate conventional loan is presently 4.375% up from 3.375 in May.  So how will this 1 percent rise in interest rate affect homebuyers?

One percent rise in interest rate cost homebuyers an additional  $57 for every $100,000 borrowed. Homebuyers buying an existing single family home at the national median price of $214,700, using a conventional loan with 5% down payment at a rate of 4.375%,  would have monthly payments of $1,018.37 P&I approximately $117 more than in May before the rate increase.  

The past months rapid increase in mortgage rates could delay many first time buyers entry into the housing market in this slow recovering economy.  


Mortgage Rates Soars After Bernanke’s Speech

We woke up this morning to the highest mortgage rates of the year after Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke signaled that the years of low interest rates may be ending soon. Ben Bernanke in a speech on Wednesday said the federal reserve may start slowing its economic stimulus programs later this year.

The Fed’s in a massive effort to restart the housing market has implemented various economic programs which resulted in historically low mortgage rates over the past few years. However, there has been clear signals that the Fed were throttling back on the stimulus programs. Then came the clearest signal of all the Fed’s Chair speech on Wednesday.

Thursday May 20th 2013 one day after Bernanke’s speech, American families woke up to mortgage rates above 4% which rose by .375% by the end of the day. In real terms the monthly cost of paying a $200,000 mortgage loan increased by $45 today.

To end on an optimistic note, by historical standard mortgage rates are still very low and unlike most consumer loans are tied to long term interest rates. While rates are unlikely to fall back to the historic lows of the past few years, the rapid increase will probably slow over the next few days.

Rapidly rising interest rates spurred Orlando homebuyers into action!

 May’s rapidly rising interest rates spurred Orlando home buyers into action resulting in another double-digit increase in Orlando home sales.  Coupled with the tight inventory of available homes for sale sent Orlando home prices climbing.

The relative good news, inventory of Orlando homes for sale increased by 10 percent as a number of new listings came on the market in May, the majority – 65 percent – of which were normal sales (not short sales or foreclosures).

The median price of existing homes sold in Orlando during the month of May rose 2.99 percent, to $148,000, when compared to April 2013.  Orlando’s median price has risen more than 37.04 percent in the 17 months since January of 2012, reports ORRA.

In addition to the overall median increase, each individual sales type experienced a year-to-year median price increase in May, with foreclosures leading the way with an 18.07 percent jump. The median price of short sales increased 14.00 percent; the median price of normal sales increased 12.50 percent.

Completed Sales

Single-family home sales increased 16.64 percent in May 2013 compared to May 2012, while condo sales increased 7.85 percent.

Compared to May of 2012, the number of short sales decreased 8.96 percent and the number of foreclosures decreased 12.78 percent. The number of completed traditional sales, however, was up 44.96 percent compared May 2012.

Homes of all types spent an average of 68 days on the market before coming under contract in May 2013, and the average home sold for 96.70 percent of its listing price. In May 2012 those numbers were 85 days and 95.76 percent, respectively.

The average interest rate paid by Orlando homebuyers in May was 3.64 percent. Last month, homebuyers paid an average interest rate of 3.49 percent.


Buyers who earn the reported median income of $55,100 can qualify to purchase one of 3,702 homes in Orange and Seminole counties currently listed in the local multiple listing service for $314,131 or less.

First-time buyers who earn the reported median income of $37,468 can qualify to purchase one of the 2,541 homes in Orange and Seminole counties currently listed in the local multiple listing service for $189,874 or less.

This representation is based in whole or in part on data supplied by the Orlando Regional REALTOR® Association and the My Florida Regional Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor MFRMLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy. Data maintained by the association or MFRMLS

Use IRA and 401K Plans for Real Estate Investments

Did you know the funds in your IRA could be used to purchase real estate?

That’s right, since 1975 IRAs and 401K plans have been afforded the ability to purchase real estate, which has helped many real estate investors create large nest eggs by investing in what they know and understand. By establishing a self-directed IRA in Florida, real estate investors can combine their knowledge and expertise of the real estate market with the tax advantaged growth of their retirement plan, creating the ultimate wealth building machine.

By simply transferring your IRA from the bank or brokerage firm you are currently using to a self-directed IRA administrator you gain the ability to make your own investment decisions, without being limited to the stock market. With the current rapid recovery of the real estate market, now more than ever is the time to take control of your retirement plan and invest in what you know and understand…real estate!

Self-directed IRAs offer substantial tax advantages that have made many millionaire investors. The greatest advantage is that IRA investors pay no capital gains tax when the property is sold by the IRA. In addition, because the profit from the sale is deposited back into the IRA with no tax on gain or growth, the investor enjoys the power of compound interest to invest the next real estate deal. Although IRS 1031 exchanges can be used to fund partial IRA investments in real estate, Self-directed IRAs do not have the same limitations and holding periods, thus are much more flexible. Finally, if you’re like many investors who are tired of poor performing investments in stocks, bonds and mutual funds, Self-directed IRAs offer true portfolio diversification; i.e., in real estate, to help build wealth via tax-deferred or tax-free income-generating assets!

The first step in purchasing real estate for your Self-Directed IRA is to contact a Realtor who is knowledgeable in finding properties suitable for this type of investment. Purchasing real estate with your IRA is very similar to conventional means, but IRS regulations must be observed. As with any investing, it’s always appropriate to have competent advice from tax and legal advisors. Beyond that, the best remedy is to become an educated investor.  We recommend attending a workshop or seminar about buying real estate in a 401K or IRA offered by your local Self-directed IRA administrator.

The local Self-directed IRA Administrator I work with is Entrust Administrations Services, Inc. based in Lake Mary, FL. To learn more contact me at

*Neither myself nor my brokerage is in any way affiliated with Entrust Administration Services, Inc. nor are we compensated by them. Please do your own due diligence.

Great Golf Deal

Stoneybrook West
There must be a dull hole lurking somewhere in Arthur Hills’ design portfolio of 185 golf courses, but I haven’t played it. You certainly won’t find one at Stoneybrook West, a typically inspired Hills creation near the shores of Black Lake. If the prospect of touring this gem doesn’t stoke your fires, today’s deal should do the trick. GolfNow Deal Caddy has three hugely discounted options for unlimited golf—as in “all-you-can-play”—at Stoneybrook West, valid any time or day through August 31: check it out @