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' Category

Neighborhood Spotlight: Ponce Davis

Although it is technically located in Unincorporated Miami-Dade County, the Ponce Davis neighborhood is really in the heart of it all. Surrounded by south Coral Gables, and High Pines, and just a stone’s throw from the pedestrian center of South Miami and many schools, it is truly a convenient location here in town.

Houses in Ponce Davis typically sit on large lots, many with parcels that are over an acre in size. Because the lot sizes are bigger, homes tend to be bigger as well. I just did a quick MLS search and out of the 16 Ponce Davis properties that are currently listed, the average adjusted square footage is 7,484 with the largest house measuring in at 12,713 adjusted square feet. Prices for houses in the neighborhood (not for lots) currently range from $2,695,000 to $11,900,000!

I love the Ponce Davis neighborhood, and guess who else does? A-Rod and J.Lo! Alex Rodriguez is a longtime resident of the exclusive neighborhood who, I have heard, just bought an additional plot of land for extra privacy. Not too shabby of a neighbor!

If you are interested in living in Ponce Davis, check out my two gorgeous listings in the area: 8705 SW 52 Avenue and 5002 SW 86 Street.

If you are looking to buy or sell a home anywhere in Miami, please 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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Guest Post: A Homeowner Contractor in Coral Gables

Hi Blog Readers, this is Ashley’s assistant Lillian taking over for today’s post and for a few more in the coming weeks. If you do not know me then you do not know that I am renovating my house right now (and if you do know me then you know that the renovation is pretty much all I talk about – sorry!). Because I live in Coral Gables this renovation requires permitting and inspections, so I thought I would write a little bit about the process as I live it.

First things first, I am remodeling reluctantly. You see, I had a hot water pipe burst in my master bathroom, and I am using this as an opportunity to update a functional but ugly space. My bathroom is also rather small, so I am expanding it, creating a new powder room, and redoing my closet during the whole process – why not go all in, you know?!

While working with an architect and designer to maximize what little space I actually do have, we started talking about the Gables permitting process and both of these professionals suggested that I go through it as my own “homeowner contractor,” which is not as scary as it sounds. No, I am not jackhammering my floors or doing finish work, as a homeowner contractor I am simply responsible for getting my permits, providing the actual contractors’ licenses, and scheduling necessary inspections. My architect and designer suggested that I go this route because it would save me some money (did you know that contractors charge 20% or more to do this for you?!) and some time.

So far, I’ve submitted my plans to the building department, received my permits, and just today went to file my notice of commencement. It has been very easy working with the City’s permit counter, and they have really held my hand through the process: they consistently explain each step and tell me what I need to look forward to and/or bring to City Hall on my next visit. Plus no one has made fun of me for showing up to the building department in a preppy sundress instead of paint-splattered overalls or whatever else you’d expect a real contractor to wear!

Right now I have a building permit in my front window, a dumpster in my driveway, and walls of plastic sheeting hanging through the house. Demolition begins tomorrow at 8:00am sharp, and I look forward to giving you an update at the time of my first inspection – I will have to call my friends at the permit desk to see when I need to schedule that!

If you are looking to buy or sell a home anywhere in Miami, please 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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Should You Rent or Buy?

Have you ever wondered if it makes more sense for you to rent? For generations, buying a home was considered to be the epitome of the American dream. However, in recent years, people have been debating whether buying a home is always better than renting. Many people are putting the American dream on hold, to rent for a few years. To help you make this big decision, we have included a calculator to see the difference that buying or renting might have on your long-term finances. There are many pros to renting your next home rather than buying. Let’s take a close look at this article and 15 convincing arguments for renting a home — and they’re not all financial.

View 3 of our fabulous rentals below that are move-in ready for you to call home:



5904 San Vicente Street • Coral Gables • FL • 33146
4 bed / 3 bath / $5,800 mo
5904sanvicente.com


4524 San Amaro Drive • Coral Gables • FL • 33146
4 bed / 2 bath / $5,250 mo
4524sanamaro.com


11701 SW 69 Court • Pinecrest • FL • 33156
3 bd / 2 bath / $3,100 mo
Pinecrest Rental

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}. 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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Happy 2017 from Ashley Cusack and Team!

Luxury Miami Homes for Sale

We wish you a very happy, healthy, and prosperous 2017!

The photo above was taken at our annual holiday luncheon, this year we had it at Fontana at the Biltmore. It was a fabulous day! The image shows you some of our amazing behind the scenes people, as well as the usual suspects. From left to right, meet the team:

Melissa Gonzalez helps with our administrative work. Jonathan Malone is our wonderful webmaster. That’s me next to Jonathan, and my mom Ginger Jackson is beside me. Amy Steinhour is our social media guru. Lillian Osborn and Cristina Diez-Arguelles next to her are my in-office team who handle contracts, scheduling, and more. Lastly is Shari Menachem, one of my two affiliated realtors who can help you buy or sell your home! Not pictured are Karen McCammon and Grey Bryan – they were missed sorely at our luncheon.

Clearly being a realtor takes a village!

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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Fishy Phishing Emails

A few weeks ago I wrote a blog regarding my email being hacked and how this led us to wire money to a fraudulent account. What I did not address in that piece is that hackers are getting in via so-called phishing emails.

Phishing emails are sneaky because they look like they are on the up and up. Some appear as order confirmations from stores, others seem like they are from Zillow, and then there are those from friends and associates containing strange links. While they seem legitimate, there is always some sort of “tell” that can show you that they are not. For example, if you hover your cursor over the email address, you might notice that one letter is off. Similarly, you can hover over a link within an email and see if it exposes the fact that the link does not direct you to the intended destination.

The problem with these emails is that they look so real that you and I would likely not think twice about opening them or clicking on the link, which could grant hackers access to your account. The only real solution to phishing scams is for all of us to be vigilant. It takes extra time, but do hover over links and email addresses to determine if they are correct. If not correct then report them as spam. EWM Realty has an email address where we can send anything that seems odd, and I’ll bet that many other large companies do too.

We are all on e-mail autopilot, but we have to be more aware. I know that I am standing on a soap box and preaching to you about creating more work for yourself; however, this has to stop. Be careful with your emails and I will do the same, and if you ever see something strange coming from my address please let me know so that I can do everything in my power to fix it.

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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Miami Real Estate: Where is Our Market Really?

I have been doing a lot of market updates recently, because it is such an interesting time in South Florida. Wherever I go, I hear “You must be loving this market”. Yes, it is a nice, steady market, but it is not exactly what most people out there think. These graphs give such a clear picture of the condo and housing market in Miami-Dade County over the past year. Before last year, we were in such a growth mode, but the past year has shown a rather consistent hold on the market. Yes, you will see a couple of upticks, but overall we are holding steady. This is what I have been seeing in my markets, but again, these graphs reinforce this.

The amount of condos for sale last year in August was 10,542 and this August we were at 11,423, an 8% increase. Single family homes over the same period were at 5,706 last year and dipped slightly to $5,432, a 5% decrease. As far as what has sold, the condo market saw 1,360 sales last August and this year 1,398, a 2.8% increase.

The median sale price for condos in Miami-Dade County increased by 7% when averaging the summer months last year compared to the summer months this year. Single family homes increased by 9%. The last measure we are looking at is months of supply and single family homes seem to be down 10% while condos are up 5%.

All of this shows a healthy market with slight growth. The past few years we would have declared a seller’s market, but now we are in a more balanced market. It is important for sellers to understand that we cannot just put an unsubstantiated price out there and hope to get it. Buyers are still willing to pay a fair price, even if that is the full price, but if a home is priced too high it will sit and lose momentum. It is more important than ever that we are thoughtful with our pricing!

Contact me for more information or a showing! Download and print the graph above, for the Miami Real Estate Market. If you are looking to list your home / condo, please call me directly 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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Great News on Miami’s Condo Market!

Look what a great opportunity the South Florida condo market is in comparison to the rest of the world! This is GREAT being that there are several new and luxurious condo buildings going up in the area. To mention a few, Park Grove & Grove at Grand Bay in Coconut Grove, The Collection Residences and Coral Gables Mediterranean Village in our City Beautiful (see my other blogs for more information on these) and not to be forgotten the SPECTACULAR Beach House 8 and 321 Ocean on Miami Beach (amongst SO MANY OTHERS).

Contact me anytime for more information or a showing! Go to Miami Condos for Sale if you are looking to list your home / condo, please call me directly 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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The Underline: Improvements to our Miami Metrorail

It’s exciting to hear of the plans designed to drastically improve the access road under our metro rail. It’s sounding like a GREAT new path for my long weekend runs! The idea is to create a 10 mile linear park with a variety of settings as you bike, walk, or run along the Metrorail beginning at the Miami River, Brickell station, all the way to Dadeland station. There will be two separate paths for walking and biking, lush landscaping, places to sit and socialize, work out stations, and really so much more. Some of the more creative ideas include art displays at the Coconut Grove station and around the University of Miami there will be a new business “pop-up” concept where entrepreneurs can temporarily open shop and market themselves. The access road under our metro is so underutilized and the link below will show, in more detail, the improvements coming in 2016. For more information on The Underline Project, check out their website.

For information on Coconut Grove Homes for Sale or if you are looking to list your home, please call me directly 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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