Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

Sept. 5, 2018

Florida Day Trips You HAVE to Go On

A typical summer in Florida goes a little something like this: amusement park getaways, weekends at the beach house, beautiful sunsets, bonfires with friends, plenty of bar-b-ques to make an appearance at, sporting events rooting on your favorite hometown team, and deciding where to go on a day trip…

This guide highlights a few hidden gems RIGHT HERE in Florida. We hope this gives you some inspiration on where to take your next Day Trip or Weekend Getaway in the Sunshine State!

MUST-DO Day Trips*

*I’ll be using the Jacksonville, FL area as the starting point for mileage, and approximate travel times.

1. Big Talbot Island State Park

SR A1A North, Jacksonville, FL 32226 (Northeast Florida)


Travelling on Scenic Route A1A North, one might pass this area thinking, “Eh, just another wooded area in Florida.” But beyond the trees, tucked away behind the brush, is Boneyard Beach. Big Talbot Island has experienced incredible amounts of erosion over the course of time, creating 30-foot cliffs and sending trees pummeling to the ground eventually becoming bleached by the sun and washed by the waves on the shore. Big Talbot Island is also one of the few undeveloped barrier islands left in Florida.

To learn more about Big Talbot Island, visit

2. Florida Caverns State Park

3345 Caverns Rd, Marianna, FL 32446 (Panhandle of Florida)


About 3 hours due west of Jacksonville is where this next hidden gem resides! The Florida Caverns State Park offers tours to the public of the underground cavern formations and lasts approximately 45 minutes. I highly recommend doing so, as it was easily one of the best experiences I have ever had at a Florida State Park! This state park is also popular for camping, picnicking, fishing, hiking, swimming, and even horseback riding.

To learn more about the Florida Caverns State Park, visit

3. Anastasia State Park

300 Anastasia Park Rd, Saint Augustine, FL 32080 (Northeast Florida)

ANASTASIA STATE PARK | FL Day Trips | Property by Ford Team

What makes this 1,600-acre area so special is its location; nestled between the dunes of Anastasia Island and an ocean hammock. Anastasia State Park has 139 all within a 5-minute walk or bike ride to the beach and offers bicycle, paddleboard, kayak, canoe, and sail boat rentals.

To learn more about Anastasia State Park, visit

4. Silver Glen Springs

5301 North Highway 19, Ft McCoy, FL 32134 (Central Florida)

SILVER GLEN SPRINGS | FL Day Trips | Property by Ford Team

Enjoy the cool waters of Silver Glen Springs by canoe, kayak, swimming, fishing, or snorkeling! Tucked away in the Ocala National Forest, Silver Glen Springs is the perfect getaway for the day. What makes this park stand out is the ability for boaters to travel up the spring run. There are plenty of fish, birds, manatees, and other wildlife to see in the area. The park also offers canoe rentals!

To learn more about Silver Glen Springs, visit

Though there’s only a few more weeks until school starts back up, these trips are perfect to fill your sense of adventure. Have you ever been to any of the aforementioned places? Comment below and tell us about your experience!

Posted in About the Area
Sept. 5, 2018

Thinking About Selling? The Time is NOW and Here’s Why

Jacksonville, Florida was recently named the #1 Real Estate Market in the nation.


The market is moving fast, homes are being sold quicker than ever, and the area is experiencing immense growth in population, and job opportunities. With more people in the area, the demand for homes is increasing, and we need more homes on the market.

Low Inventory

There are more  buyers in today’s market than there are homes for sale. Rising prices and mortgage rates are sparking demand and the supply is far less than is demanded in the market. All across the country and across all real estate markets, there are low inventory conditions creating a crunch in the market. The number of listings on the market are near a 20-year low!

The Solution

We need more homes put up for sale! This is a seller’s market, which means you are in an ideal real estate market- if you’re a homeowner. Home prices have been increasing- in fact home prices grew 6 percent nationally and rose in all 50 states. Whilst buyers compete for your newly listed home, you’ll see a higher price paid for your home.

Average Time on the Market, is now 8 days less than last year

So far this year, homes are selling on average 8 days faster than just last year affecting not only major metropolitan areas, but quieter areas like Tampa, Fla. Still-low mortgage rates and steady hiring will continue to instill confidence in buyers and further drive the housing demand in a positive trend.


The market is hot right now, and what that means is that homes are flying off the market. Many homes in the Jacksonville area are selling within a fews days on the market and with multiple offers. We are about to hit the peak season for real estate and can only expect more traction to pick up in the market.

Buyer’s Frustration

As a buyer, you really have to have an advantage over everyone else who is looking for the same qualities in a home as you. Many buyers are losing hopes in finding the home of their dreams because of losing out on offers. The market is competitive for buyers and needs more homes to keep up with the amount of demand from buyers.

As the supply of houses on the market tightens, bidding wars are more commonplace than ever before in some cities. The most challenging markets generally have a few things in common: strong job growth, young first-time buyers searching for homes amongst declining inventories. But overall, it’s been reported in a number of studies that the economic outlook is positive, and the positive sentiment will support the economy and market even further.

Sept. 5, 2018

Tips for Owning a Home in Your 20s


Many of us millennials are ready to buy a home, but are fearful and unsure of the process. We’ve been told time and time again that it is a LONG process, that it is unaffordable and out of reach for our generation but I’m here to tell you that is simply not true.

Here is what the process really looks like:

FREE Money

There is FREE money out there waiting for people like you and me to ask for assistance. There are two programs available in Duval County, Florida that assist with up to $15,000 in down payment and closing costs at ZERO percent interest.

Program 1: Headstart to HOME Ownership Program

Also known as Duval County’s H2H Program, for first time homebuyers. The program has been set in place to assistant first time homebuyers will down payment and closing costs. There are a few requirements, which can be found here. Once you are working with a lender, they will know if you are eligible to apply for assistance.

duval county h2h program

What makes this program awesome for first time homebuyers is that the $15,000 in assistance is at a ZERO percent interest rate and is completely forgiven after 10 years.

For more information, visit the City of Jacksonville’s website here.

Program 2: Movement Mortgage

Movement Mortgage has just launched an in-house financial assistance program that gives qualifying buyers a 3% Down Payment Grant that does not ever have to be repaid.

movement mortgage

The Movement Assistance Program, also known as MAP, helps qualifying borrowers make ends meet when it comes to home buying. Want to know if you qualify for the MAP program? Ask for more details from your Movement Mortgage loan officer or visit

We’ve all heard the generalizations of millennials: we spend too much money on artisan goods (particularly at brunch), we’re poor, we idolize objects and the latest fads, we’re lazy, we drink too much, and we like to treat ourselves too much (what’s wrong with a little self care?)… The list goes on forever. What many older generations don’t seem to understand is that we are in fact a successful, and thriving generation making an impact on the world.

Millennials make up one of the largest generations in history (even bigger than the baby boom). More than 40% of millennial workers were found to have a bachelor’s degree or more, after a research study by PEW Research in 2016. That’s 8% higher than their Generation X counterparts back in the year 2000. Our generation is entering its peak homebuying years and more than 93% of renters ages 18- to 34-years-old plan to buy a home someday, according to a study by Goldman Sachs. As many millennials are reaching this age, that someday just might be now.

So how do you acquire homebuying financial assistance?

Step 1: Find a realtor.

find the right realtor

There are plenty of hard-working realtors out there ready to help you with the homebuying process. It’s best to interview a few realtors and find the one that works for you. Realtors have experience and expertise and can help you streamline the entire homebuying process from connecting you with a lender to finding the right handyman to get repairs done.

Step 2: Go to a lender and get pre-approved!

One of the most important steps in the home buying process is getting pre-approved for a home loan. It helps you stay on track for what you an afford, avoids any heartbreak later in the process, and helps your realtor show you homes that fit your criteria and budget.

Let your lender know that you would like to apply for financial assistance and they will apply for you on your behalf! It’s that easy.

What are you waiting for?!

It’s never too early to get to know the process. It’s time to work on your homebuying dreams! Feel free to reach out to the Property by Ford team for any questions. ????

Sept. 5, 2018

Jacksonville Relocation Guide

Planning on a move to Jacksonville, FL? Check out our complete guide on making the most important decisions in a relocation to Jacksonville!

This guide is intended for families, professionals, and students that are making a move to the Bold City. This relocation guide for Jacksonville, Florida covers Home and Living, Workplace, and Schools in the North Florida area.

The Property by Ford Team wants to make your transition to Jacksonville a breeze. Read on to learn more about this booming city, recently named the #2 City Americans Are Moving To by It’s not surprising to those that already live here; Jacksonville is one of the fastest growing cities in the nation in terms of population, and job opportunities!

Home and Living

Jacksonville is 875 square miles making it the largest city (by area) in the United States! That being said, there are plenty of communities in the area, and we’re sure you’ll find your perfect fit. Check out the communities of Jacksonville on our website >>>

Here are some of our favorite Jacksonville communities (in no particular order):

The Beaches

  • Jacksonville Beach
  • Neptune Beach
  • Atlantic Beach
  • Ponte Vedra Beach

Other Areas

  • Intracoastal Waterway
  • Ponte Vedra
  • Ocean Front
  • River Front
  • Saint Johns

And many more…

To search Jacksonville areas and neighborhoods, click here.


In just the last year, many national and leading companies have announced new openings and headquarters here in the great River City. Of all of these, Amazon and IKEA may be the most recognized of all.


Amazon is expecting to hire over 4,000 people for their Jacksonville centers which include two fulfillment centers and a warehouse all located in Jacksonville.

IKEA, JACKSONVILLE FLIKEA is also looking to bring on board 250 people for the opening of its Jacksonville location off of the I-295 East Beltway and Gate Parkway. This location is expected to open in the Fall of 2017 and includes openings not only in home furnishings and design, but its restaurants and kitchens located inside the building as well.


With 197 schools in just Duval County alone, we’ve looked to other sources to pick which Duval County schools are the highest ranking. Check out the best schools in Duval County at the links below:

Best High Schools in Duval County according to >>>

Best Schools in Duval County >>> Click Here

Sept. 5, 2018

What the heck is a Referral, anyways?

It’s a beautiful day and you get a phone call/text/email from your past realtor asking for referrals. And then your mind starts racing:

“What the heck does that even mean?”

“Is their business not doing well?”

“Why should I refer them to my friends and family?”


There’s subtle and not-so-subtle ways that realtors may ask for a referral or review of their service and your experience. And even more likely than not, this is EXACTLY how your realtor asked you:

 “A referral from a friend, past client, or colleague is the highest compliment I can ever receive.”

“The greatest form of flattery is a referral.”

“Feel free to send my information to your friends and family.”

These are just a few of the common taglines or phrases realtors use. They are frequently found at the bottom of email signatures, the backs of business cards… you’ve likely encountered something similar to this before. But I’m sure you’re still asking yourself, “what does this all mean?”

So, Here’s What It Means:

Your transaction was a breeze, and your realtor knows that you have like-minded individuals in your circle that could use their services. Your realtor wants to work with more wonderful customers just like you! It’s most certainly a compliment to you, the customer!

Giving your realtor a referral is acknowledging their level of expertise and great service. A referral is simply relaying to your realtor that you are thankful for their time and effort in your recent transaction. Buying or selling a home is quite usually one of the largest transactions a person will have in their lifetime, and you want to know that they are well cared for. Besides, who doesn’t love helping friends out?!

Referring your realtor’s name out shows that you trust them to take care of your family and friends, which is a great responsibility for any professional. Being able to trust the realtor that is working for you or friends and family eases the stress and anxiety of the home-buying or home-selling process.

Now What?

Hit ‘Reply’ to your realtor!


Written by: Lauren Avalos, Property by Ford Team

Posted in Real Estate News
July 31, 2017

Curious About Local Real Estate?

Receive the Latest Local Market Stats

Curious about local real estate? So are we! Every month we review trends in our real estate market and consider the number of homes on the market in each price tier, the amount of time particular homes have been listed for sale, specific neighborhood trends, the median price and square footage of each home sold and so much more. We’d love to invite you to do the same!

Get Local Market Reports Sent Directly to You

You can sign up here to receive your own market report, delivered as often as you like! It contains current information on pending, active and just sold properties so you can see actual homes in your neighborhood. You can review your area on a larger scale, as well, by refining your search to include properties across the city or county. As you notice price and size trends, please contact us for clarification or to have any questions answered.

We can definitely fill you in on details that are not listed on the report and help you determine the best home for you. If you are wondering if now is the time to sell, please try out our INSTANT home value tool. You’ll get an estimate on the value of your property in today’s market. Either way, we hope to hear from you soon as you get to know our neighborhoods and local real estate market better.

Posted in Market Updates