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The Breakers of Fort Walton Beach

by Jim Gilliland

 

Anybody who knows me knows I LOOOOVVE The Breakers of Fort Walton Beach. Any given Saturday, if Alabama football isn’t on, you can find me on the beach at The Breakers. The units are spacious. The property has some of the best pools on the island. There’s a fantastic gulf-side grilling area. These are grills you actually want to use, not those dirty grills tucked away in a parking garage or next to the dumpster like at a lot of other rentals. The Breakers has an in-house 24 hour front desk, so if there is ever a problem, help is right there! Among the amenities are a very nice fitness facility (I’m in there every morning!), shuffleboard, and a really nice party room. The Breakers of Fort Walton Beach is my favorite property on Okaloosa Island.  I’m not alone in feeling that way either; according to TripAdvisor, The Breakers of Fort Walton Beach is the # 1 property in the Fort Walton Beach Specialty Lodging Category – beating out Waterscape, Destin West, and every other condo on the Island!

 

I have sold more units in there than any other agent. I know that property better than anybody else in town. The developer even calls me with questions about the property! If you are interested in buying or selling a unit at The Breakers, give me a call! I can answer any question you may have about The Breakers! Check out their website here: https://www.breakersfwb.com/ 

 

 

blu on Okaloosa Island

by Jim Gilliland

Have you heard about the newest waterfront development coming to Okaloosa Island? It’s called blu, and it is going to be GORGEOUS. The Gilliland Team has partnered with the developers to bring you the opportunity to be one of the first to call blu home. I’ve seen the plans and the renderings, and let me tell you, it’s going to be amazing. The balconies are going to be nice and big - at least 10 feet deep and 29 feet wide. blu is going to be a gated property. There will be two huge gulf front pools and a state of the art fitness center. I think my favorite feature will be the Gulf-side fire pit. There’s nothing like sitting around a hot fire with a cold drink listening to the waves and the banter of friends.  If you’re interested in finding out more about blu on Okaloosa Island, give us a call! http://www.pcsfla.com/blu

 

790 Santa Rosa Blvd, # 207 at The Islander Beach Resort

by Jim Gilliland

Continuing our blog posts on waterfront properties, today we’re going to share a little about The Islander Beach Resort. Longtime residents of Fort Walton might walk into the lobby of the Islander with a weird sense of déjà vu. That’s because it used to be home to Jamaica Joe’s, a popular restaurant and bar on Okaloosa Island. Our marketing director used to work at the Islander, and she mentioned that every couple of weeks or so, someone would walk in to the lobby to check in, stop and take a look around with a puzzled look on their face. She could tell that they were trying to figure out exactly why/when they had been in there before. Inevitably, it was because they had spent some time at the bar at Jamaica Joe’s.

From a 1985 article in the Sun Sentinel:  “in Fort Walton Beach there`s the very popular Jamaica Joe`s at the Islander Beach Resort on Santa Rosa Boulevard, reminiscent of something romantically tropical in the islands. Jamaica Joe`s at this time of the year is packed elbow to elbow with those lining up for the best happy hour munchies on the Emerald Coast. Those who stay for dinner dig into a good assortment of steaks or the Steambucket for Two, a collection of just about everything from the deep.”

These days, the Islander is popular with vacationers. The property has a large gulf front pool, heated seasonally, beach service, and fitness facility. Unit 207 is a 1 bedroom, 2 bathroom coastline view unit. The Islander has some of the larger one bedroom units on Okaloosa Island. In addition to the living room, there is a separate sitting room, which means the unit can comfortably sleep 6, whereas most one bedroom units can only sleep 4. This extra space and the lower rental price of a coastline unit means these one bedroom units at the Islander are a great value for renters. Because they stay rented, they are also a great value for investors. Take a look!



Thinking about buying a vacation rental?

by Jim Gilliland

Hello Internet! We’re going to get the blog rolling again here at RE/MAX Gulf Coast Realty. With a combined 154 years of Real Estate experience, we have lots to say, so let’s jump in!

Today we’re going to talk about vacation rentals. Specifically, things to consider when purchasing a second home that you plan to rent out.  If you are in the market for a vacation home that you expect will pay for itself on the rental market, there are several things that you need to think about. Below are just a few:

Location – The old adage “location, location, location” has stuck around for a reason. You’ll be visiting your vacation property yourself from time to time, so make sure you love the location.

Some communities and properties have restrictions on short term rentals, so make sure to thoroughly check that out. For example, Bella Riva – a beautiful complex on Okaloosa Island – will only allow rentals that are 7 nights with a Saturday to Saturday stay. And did you know that if you own a house on the north side of Santa Rosa Boulevard on the Island, that you can’t rent your property for stays of less than a month? Make sure to do your research on rental restrictions!

Price vs Cash Flow – The sale price is only part of what you’ll need to spend. There will most likely be a monthly HOA fee, utilities, advertising costs, fees to have the property cleaned between renters, added insurance costs…and the list goes on! Make sure you have accounted for everything when you consider the price.

It’s also important to be realistic in your expectations for rental income. Take into account slow seasons and periods of time where your property could sit unoccupied.

Personal Use – How do you intend to use the property? This goes back to what I mentioned about location. Make sure you love the location! Also, a one-bedroom unit might have a great ROI, but if you’re a family of 6, it might not be the best move. Return on your investment is good, but only one aspect of the whole thing. Consider how you intend to use the property yourself.

Just a few thoughts! We’re going to be updating the blog more regularly, so check back with us in a few days!

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Jim Gilliland
RE/MAX Gulf Coast Realty
28 Walter Martin Road NE, Suite A
Fort Walton Beach FL 32548
Office: (850)243-2220
After Hours: (850)864-7459
Fax: (850)664-6068