Luxury Miami Real Estate

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550 South Dixie Highway

Coral Gables, FL 33146

Cell: 305-798-8685

Office: 305-960-5330

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Archive for the 'Miami Real Estate News' Category

Daylight Savings Has Ended But Miami’s Window of Opportunity for Planting is Now Here

Miami gardening enthusiasts already know this—but for those whose thumbs are anything but green, right now is a special time of year where landscaping is concerned. Cooler temperatures are key, the soil is still holding much of the summertime warmth while cooler air temperatures make for less stress on plants’ roots (and on the gardener doing the planting, too). You don’t have to intend on listing your Miami home anytime soon to find the motivation to replant your garden and annuals. A beautiful yard makes you feel good and offers something pleasing to all those who pass by your home. A home that has maintained a beautiful yard also sticks out in people’s minds. If you do list it down the road people will remember it in a positive way. It’s a win-win! So get your gloves out and start gardening!
If you are in the market to either buy or sell a home, I would love to help you! Call me at 305.798.8685, or visit my website at: Luxury Miami Real Estate

Luxury Miami Real Estate

My focused dedication as a realtor in my home town of Miami for over 25 years, consistently puts me at the top of my field. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell your home, let me help you from start to finish with my results-proven: professional marketing, excellent property exposure and comprehensive experience.

Consistently in the top 10 company-wide at EWM for the past 15 years, my focus is on Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Pinecrest and South Miami — specializing in luxury real estate and waterfront properties. Call me today and let’s get started!

Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ashley Cusack at {305.798.8685, email and website}. Senior Vice President, EWM Realty International.

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Millennials Are Buying Homes Because of Their Dogs – Not Their Children or Marriages

This is fur real, believe it or not, roughly one-third of recent homebuyers ages 18 to 36 said a desire to have more room for their pets influenced their decision to buy their first home! As a true dog lover, I get it although I can’t say I have bought a house for my dog, (obviously just outside the millennial window)! A recent survey conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of SunTrust Mortgage found that 33 percent of millennial home buyers’ decisions to buy a home was driven chiefly by their dog. Furry friends outranked wedding bells (25 percent cited marriage as their top motivator for buying a home) and kids, too (only 19 percent said the birth of a child was their prime incentive). The survey also found that 42% of Millennials who had never bought a home said that their dog, or the desire to have one, would be a key factor in their decision to becoming a homeowner.
If you are in the market to either buy or sell a home, I would love to help you! Call me at 305.798.8685, or visit my website at: Luxury Miami Real Estate

Luxury Miami Real Estate

My focused dedication as a realtor in my home town of Miami for over 25 years, consistently puts me at the top of my field. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell your home, let me help you from start to finish with my results-proven: professional marketing, excellent property exposure and comprehensive experience.

Consistently in the top 10 company-wide at EWM for the past 15 years, my focus is on Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Pinecrest and South Miami — specializing in luxury real estate and waterfront properties. Call me today and let’s get started!

Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ashley Cusack at {305.798.8685, email and website}. Senior Vice President, EWM Realty International.

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Spice It Up!

If you don’t already participate in Miami Spice, it’s time to spice up your life and try it out! Miami Spice is designed to encourage visitors and locals to explore new restaurants and visit old favorites by providing discounted three-course meals. There is no membership or sign-up required to enjoy Miami Spice. Now through September 30, close to 240 of the city’s best restaurants are offering prix-fixe lunches for $23 and dinners for $39, and Miami Spice 2017 has sweetened the deal by offering a $23 weekend brunch to the mix, click here to view the full list of participating restaurants here. To narrow it down, here are this year’s ten must-visit brunches: 1. Fooq’s Miami, 2. Dragonfly Izakaya & Fish Market, 3. Essensia, 4. Bakehouse Brasserie, 5. Redlander Restaurant, 6. Bird & Bone, 7. Peacock Garden Bistro, 8. Forte Dei Marmi, 9. Mariposa and 10. Anacapri Italian Kitchen.
Happy brunching, Bon Appétit!
If you need help buying or selling a home give Ashley Cusack a call at 305.798.8685, or visit her website at: Luxury Miami Real Estate

Luxury Miami Real Estate

My focused dedication as a realtor in my home town of Miami for over 25 years, consistently puts me at the top of my field. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell your home, let me help you from start to finish with my results-proven: professional marketing, excellent property exposure and comprehensive experience.

Consistently in the top 10 company-wide at EWM for the past 15 years, my focus is on Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Pinecrest and South Miami — specializing in luxury real estate and waterfront properties. Call me today and let’s get started!

Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ashley Cusack at {305.798.8685, email and website}. EWM Realtors.

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Foreign Investment, or Lack Thereof

A little while ago I attended the Luxury Portfolio International Summit on Miami Beach. It is a great opportunity to network with my fellow realtors, not to mention it is incredibly educational! One subject that was discussed extensively at this year’s conference was the lack of foreign real estate investment in the United States. Miami is a very international market, so we have certainly felt this change over the past year, and I was interested to learn more about what is happening internationally to cause this shift.

Take a look at this chart, which illustrates why foreign investors have stopped buying property in the US. You will note that, with the exception of China, it has become more expensive across the board to buy property in the US. For example, if you look at Argentina, back in 2007 a $1,000,000 property in the US could be purchased for 3,186,990 Argentinean Pesos. However, in 2016, a $1,000,000 home would cost 16,042,200. That makes a $1,000,000 house a whopping 403.4% more expensive to an Argentinian buyer in 2016 than it was in 2007! Colombia, Peru, Brazil, and Venezuela have all seen their currency rates change, meaning that the Latin American market here in Miami has weakened considerably.

It is not just South Florida that is experiencing this shift in the real estate market: other parts of the US have historically had heavy foreign real estate investment as well. Because property is relatively more expensive right now, the “steals” that foreign investors were purchasing around 10 years ago simply do not exist at this point.

The real estate market is constantly changing, and this is just the latest shift. I am sure that one day in the future I will be writing a blog about how much foreign investment we are experiencing!

If you need help buying or selling a home give Ashley Cusack a call at 305.798.8685, or visit her website at: Luxury Miami Real Estate

Luxury Miami Real Estate

My focused dedication as a realtor in my home town of Miami for over 25 years, consistently puts me at the top of my field. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell your home, let me help you from start to finish with my results-proven: professional marketing, excellent property exposure and comprehensive experience.

Consistently in the top 10 company-wide at EWM for the past 15 years, my focus is on Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Pinecrest and South Miami — specializing in luxury real estate and waterfront properties. Call me today and let’s get started!

Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ashley Cusack at {305.798.8685, email and website}. EWM Realtors.

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Miami Home Buying Tips: Cast Iron Plumbing

Lately I have had two deals hit rough patches because their inspections have revealed cast iron pipes under the house. Cast iron piping, which was utilized until around the mid-1970’s, ultimately corrodes and gives way, which can cause major water damage to a home.

Now, if a home is built with a crawl space, replacing this type of plumbing is not such a huge undertaking because a plumber can go right under the house and work from there. However, many homes that were built between 1950 and the mid-1970’s have a concrete slab foundation and these problematic pipes are encased within it. That means that their replacement requires floors to be torn up and the foundation opened to expose, remove, and re-plumb the house. Simply replacing the pipes is quite expensive, but when you add re-pouring the slab and redoing the floors to the mix, you are talking about totally remodeling a house! No wonder finding cast iron pipes spooks a buyer!

The tricky thing about cast iron pipes is that, if they are in decent shape, you can actually live with them and many providers will actually insure a house knowing that it has this type of plumbing. Therefore, many sellers are pushing back when buyers ask to have new plumbing lines installed or request a credit for those repairs. As a realtor, this presents a dilemma. Do I advise my buyer to take the risk and make an insurance claim when the time comes? When I have the listing, do I keep the price high and then negotiate the repair? This is the talk around the real estate water cooler these days! These pipes are really making our job tricky, and I get the sense that I am going to be seeing this issue come up more and more as older homes in Miami change hands.

If you need help buying or selling a home give Ashley Cusack a call at 305.798.8685, or visit her website at: Luxury Miami Real Estate

Luxury Miami Real Estate

My focused dedication as a realtor in my home town of Miami for over 25 years, consistently puts me at the top of my field. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell your home, let me help you from start to finish with my results-proven: professional marketing, excellent property exposure and comprehensive experience.

Consistently in the top 10 company-wide at EWM for the past 15 years, my focus is on Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Pinecrest and South Miami — specializing in luxury real estate and waterfront properties. Call me today and let’s get started!

Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ashley Cusack at {305.798.8685, email and website}. EWM Realtors.

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The Foreign Buyers

Here is a link to a great article from the EWM 2017 Real Estate Market Outlook publication. It gives clear insight into the foreign market. It has such great implications on our daily market and this article paints a pretty clear picture of where we are today with hopes that this market will pick back up in 2018.
If you need help buying or selling a home give Ashley Cusack a call at 305.798.8685, or visit her website at: Luxury Miami Real Estate

Luxury Miami Real Estate

My focused dedication as a realtor in my home town of Miami for over 25 years, consistently puts me at the top of my field. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell your home, let me help you from start to finish with my results-proven: professional marketing, excellent property exposure and comprehensive experience.

Consistently in the top 10 company-wide at EWM for the past 15 years, my focus is on Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Pinecrest and South Miami — specializing in luxury real estate and waterfront properties. Call me today and let’s get started!

Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ashley Cusack at {305.798.8685, email and website}. EWM Realtors.

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6 Massive Pricing Mistakes

Luxury Miami Real Estate
Inman New York recently ran an article called “6 massive pricing mistakes homesellers need to evade,” and it was a highly informative piece that I will share with you at the end of my quick introduction. Pricing is imperative if you are trying to sell your home, yet the pricing process is not a purely scientific one: you can look at active and sold listings to get an idea about where a home should be listed, but various factors can add to or take away from the number tabulated in a comparative market analysis. Joseph Rand, who wrote the article, hit the nail on the head when he selected these six pricing mistakes that so many sellers make:

  1. “Pricing to the unsolds, rather than the solds.” As he explains, the unsold houses in your neighborhood are likely priced too high, whereas the ones that have closed were clearly priced correctly, so their numbers are more important than other active listings.
  2. “Overvaluing the amenities.” While upgraded finishes are lovely, chances are that they will not double the value of your home. While a whole-house generator might allow you to command a higher asking price than a house without it, it is not likely to make your house $100,000 more valuable than your neighbor’s.
  3. “Trying to get full value for improvements.” Like the aforementioned upgraded finishes, improvements to your home will not necessarily add the full value that a seller anticipates. If John paid $40,000 for a new roof last year, then he cannot simply add that amount to a realtor’s suggested list price. Like driving a new car off of the lot, the new roof’s value went down the moment the last nail was hammered in place (read the article below – Mr. Rand does a good job of explaining this).
  4. “Pricing based on what the sellers ‘need.’” Many sellers decide that they want or need to net a certain profit by selling their home and become so focused on that number that they ignore comparable closed sales. This is a big mistake because it truly is not based on reality. Sure, some people probably get lucky and sell for a number that meets their need, but that is all that is – luck.
  5. “Falling in love with the AVM.” Automated valuation models such as Zestimates are despised by the vast majority of the real estate community because, as Zillow admitted, they are simply a starting point.
  6. Nod adjusting to the market’s reaction. Many sellers set their price and simply ignore what the market is telling them – are they getting showings, are people making offers? If not, then they are priced too high and it is time to adjust. If there is a bidding war, then the home was either priced exactly right or possibly a little low, and by driving the price up, the potential buyers are correcting price on their own accord.

Click the link below to read the article from Inman, and the next time you are selling a home avoid these 6 Massive Pricing Mistakes Homesellers

If you need help buying or selling a home give Ashley Cusack a call at 305.798.8685, or visit her website at: Luxury Miami Real Estate.

Luxury Miami Real Estate

My focused dedication as a realtor in my home town of Miami for over 25 years, consistently puts me at the top of my field. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell your home, let me help you from start to finish with my results-proven: professional marketing, excellent property exposure and comprehensive experience.

As the #7 Realtor company-wide at EWM in 2014, my focus is on Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Pinecrest and South Miami — specializing in luxury real estate and waterfront properties. Call me today and let’s get started!

Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ashley Cusack at {305.798.8685, email and website}. EWM Realtors.

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Real Estate Update: Renting Miami

Luxury Miami Real Estate
Did you know that as of last month Miami ranks ninth nationally in median one-bedroom rental prices? At $1,840 per month for a one-bedroom, we are still way behind first place San Francisco’s astonishing $3,590, but our rental rates have steadily grown. In fact, rent rates rose 1% between January and February of 2016 and are up 5% year over year. If you think that is a drastic increase, then look at two-bedroom rentals – their median price has jumped 13% since last year!

With median rental prices rapidly increasing, isn’t it time to consider purchasing a Miami home?

If you need help buying or selling a home give Ashley Cusack a call at 305.798.8685, or visit her website at: Luxury Miami Real Estate.

Luxury Miami Real Estate

My focused dedication as a realtor in my home town of Miami for over 25 years, consistently puts me at the top of my field. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell your home, let me help you from start to finish with my results-proven: professional marketing, excellent property exposure and comprehensive experience.

As the #7 Realtor company-wide at EWM in 2014, my focus is on Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Pinecrest and South Miami — specializing in luxury real estate and waterfront properties. Call me today and let’s get started!

Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ashley Cusack at {305.798.8685, email and website}. EWM Realtors.

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I’ll Take It, Maybe . . .

Everyone always wants to know what’s going on with the market, but they really think they know. People constantly say “so you must be busy,” as though the market is on fire. And while there is plenty of activity and I have lots of buyers and sellers right now, we are feeling a shift in the wind. It is usually a subtle adjustment that we feel before a change takes hold, and we have started feeling that slight shift.

We have had three deals fall apart in the past few weeks when the buyer brought a reasonable offer and the seller countered back with a reasonable, slightly higher offer. All three times the buyer (in one instance our buyer and twice our seller) said they were done. When the seller brought back the last offer they had received, the buyer decided their last offer was actually too high. In the last few years sellers have had a little more room to play around. Now it seems if you get an offer that you would accept, then you should do so. I am still seeing a lot of buyers in the market, but I can see a shift in the market and the buyers are definitely flexing their muscles.

If you need help buying or selling a home give Ashley Cusack a call at 305.798.8685, or visit her website at: Luxury Miami Real Estate.

Luxury Miami Real Estate

My focused dedication as a realtor in my home town of Miami for over 25 years, consistently puts me at the top of my field. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell your home, let me help you from start to finish with my results-proven: professional marketing, excellent property exposure and comprehensive experience.

As the #7 Realtor company-wide at EWM in 2014, my focus is on Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Pinecrest and South Miami — specializing in luxury real estate and waterfront properties. Call me today and let’s get started!

Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ashley Cusack at {305.798.8685, email and website}. EWM Realtors.

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She Took Off Like a Jack Rabbit: Running with Ashley Cusack

Article reprinted from The Scout Guide:
“How was your race? Did you try and follow Ashley?” I asked a friend who was excited to try for a personal record at the St. Thomas Episcopal Parish School Alumni 5K last year. “I thought I might, but changed my mind 10 seconds after the start whistle . . . she took off like a jack rabbit, and I never saw her again!”

ASHLEY CUSACK is a Miami native – a true rarity in our community! With a career in real estate spanning over 25 years, Ashley has consistently been in the top ½ of 1 percent of Realtors nationwide, and in the top 10 of EWM INTERNATIONAL REALTORS.

When this mother of two is not helping her clients, Ashley is a very active volunteer at The Ransom Everglades School and St. Thomas Episcopal Parish Church and School; the Junior League of Miami Foundation Board; the Beaux Arts of the Lowe Art Museum; and helping coach girls’ lacrosse and cross country running teams at her children’s school. And when she is done doing all of that, or sometimes when the rest of us are still in bed, you can probably find her RUNNING! We caught up with Ashley to ask her a few questions:

What’s your favorite way to start the day? I get up at 4:45 am every day, and run with my long-term running partner. We have been running together for over 15 years, and I cannot be ready for all that I need to do in the day without it!

Those who know you, know how important running is to you. What is your favorite annual not to be missed run? My favorite running event is The St. Thomas Episcopal Parish School Alumni 5K/Fun Run. Oh, and the Camp Greystone Alumni Run. And the Miami Corporate Run. Oooops, one more: the Hemingway Day 5K in Key West. I guess I have more than one favorite. (Editor’s note: Ashley was too shy to say this on the record, but we know that she has actually won first place in all of these events, maybe more than once.)

Are you training for a specific race now? No, not a particular race, but I have recently incorporated speed work into my weekly workout schedule and am excited to see how that translates at my next 5k. I meet a group of friends once a week on the Coral Gables High School track and run a one mile warm up and cool-down with 2.5 miles of speed intervals in between. I have definitely seen improvements on my time!

Favorite running shoe? Everyone has their own favorite running shoe that they swear by. I’m a AdiZero girl myself. They are made by Adidas, and are lightweight and give me a lot of support. The guys at FootWorks in South Miami are the best at fitting you for running shoes.

Favorite afternoon snack or lunch spot? I love SUNJUICE SMOOTHIES in South Miami, and, if I ever get to sit down to have lunch, I love CHOCOLATE FASHION in the Gables. But, I never seem to actually sit down for lunch . . .

She might move fast, but when it comes to being a friend, or selling houses, Ashely always takes the time to make you feel like you are the most important person in the world!

Take it from this Scout Guide Editor for whom Ashley Cusack Real Estate is helping to find a new house to buy in this sizzling hot South Florida real estate market. My family feels like we are getting honest answers to our myriad of questions AND are excited to see homes that become available as soon as they hit the market! We are confident with Ashley and her team we will find the perfect home for our family! If you need help buying or selling a home give Ashley Cusack a call at 305.798.8685, or visit her website at: Luxury Miami Real Estate.

Luxury Miami Real Estate

My focused dedication as a realtor in my home town of Miami for over 25 years, consistently puts me at the top of my field. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell your home, let me help you from start to finish with my results-proven: professional marketing, excellent property exposure and comprehensive experience.

As the #7 Realtor company-wide at EWM in 2014, my focus is on Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Pinecrest and South Miami — specializing in luxury real estate and waterfront properties. Call me today and let’s get started!

Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ashley Cusack at {305.798.8685, email and website}. EWM Realtors.

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Buying a Home? Keep these Factors in Mind


Year after year there have been widely held expectations for interest rates to go up. We know they have to eventually but the real question is WHEN? Economists predicted higher rates last year when rates actually ended up falling. There is still speculation that rates will go up again soon but only slightly. These low rates have created a push for potential home buyers to take advantage and move forward in buying. Although interest rates are a big factor when needing to take out a loan for a home purchase there are other things to keep in mind that are AS important if not more so in some cases. How long do you plan to be in the home? On average it takes four to seven years to break even and cover the cost of the transaction plus the cost of ownership. What do you have for down payment? Putting at least 20% down is going to save you from having to pay private mortgage insurance each month. How’s your job security? Being both financially and emotionally ready to make the right decision is important.

If you have any questions, need some advise, I am more than happy to help. Feel free to call me with any questions or real estate advice at 305.798.8685 or visit my website: Luxury Miami Real Estate.

Luxury Miami Real Estate

My focused dedication as a realtor in my home town of Miami for over 25 years, consistently puts me at the top of my field. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell your home, let me help you from start to finish with my results-proven: professional marketing, excellent property exposure and comprehensive experience.

As the #7 Realtor company-wide at EWM in 2014, my focus is on Coral Gables, Coconut Grove, Pinecrest and South Miami — specializing in luxury real estate and waterfront properties. Call me today and let’s get started!

Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, Ashley Cusack at {305.798.8685, email and website}. EWM Realtors.

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