Forbes Features Wine Cellar SPACiO Built at 321 Ocean

In case you missed it, Forbes recently published an article featuring a wine cellar we built out in a condo at 321 Ocean, an exclusive collection of 21 luxury residences in South of Fifth, one of Miami Beach’s most upscale neighborhoods. The Forbes article, titled “5 Luxury Homes with Exquisite Wine Cellars,” features five of some of the most impressive in-house wine rooms in homes that are currently on the market across the United States.

Building out the 50-square foot, climate-controlled wine cellar was a treat. It required us to work closely with the interior design firm Associated Design Co. to ensure that we could build out the design and execute the project without a hitch. We built the insulated glass enclosure, using customized acrylic and thermal metal framing, which was power-coated with a matte black finish to match the custom black finish on the rack.

The wine cellar was part of the build-out of the entire condo, which involved installing hardwood flooring throughout the condo, trim window coverings, staircase handrails, millwork and more.

It was a privilege to work with Associated Design Co. on the wine cellar. We’re looking forward to working with this very talented interior design firm again in the near future.

Click here to see the other wine cellars that made the list.

 

Tips for Getting Your Newly Built Condo Ready for Rent

Many of the buyers closing on units in recently completed luxury towers across South Florida are investors. Some are domestic and some are foreigners. They all share the same plan: renting the units out until the time arrives to execute an exit strategy. But renting a new condo can be a challenge for two reasons:

1. Hundreds of new condos are hitting the rental market simultaneously.

2. Hundreds of new luxury rental units are either nearing completion or under construction.

This is creating intense competition among future landlords. Here are some tips to help investors rent their units faster and generate income sooner rather than later:

1- If the newly-built unit comes ‘decorator ready’ – which means the floor, walls, closets, etc. are not finished – you will need to paint the walls, add flooring and build-out the closets. A solution: weeks before the closing date, recruit a general contractor to start planning the build-out of the unit. This way, the GC will start work as soon as the unit becomes yours, saving you weeks of ‘waiting time’ and placing a tenant in the unit much faster.

2 – For the walls, stick to neutral colors. Stay away from bold or ‘white,’ which will make your unit seem dull and potentially scare away tenants who may not have the creativity to envision the unit as their home.

3 – Basic Standard Materials: if your unit requires a build-out, do not use the same type of materials that you would install in your own home. Your tenants are not going to treat it with the same quality of care, so don’t overspend. For flooring, we recommend porcelain tiles because they are stylish, durable and low maintenance. They also work well in balconies and blend with the interior flooring.

4 – Invest in a practical built in closet system throughout the unit.

5 – Most new units come with the kitchen and bathrooms already finished. But if you plan to upgrade the kitchen, avoid white cabinets. Earth tones are ‘in’. Also consider upgrading fixtures such as door handles, faucets, etc.

6 – Open floor plans: if the unit seems small, consider knocking down walls to open up the floor plan, which usually involves combining the kitchen, dining and living areas into one large space. This will increase the natural light and create the perception of increased square footage.

For more ideas, give us a call. We have some great concepts to build out new condos and modernize older units.

Cost Effective Luxury Upgrades to Sell A Home/Condo Faster

If you’re thinking about putting your house or condo on the market, you should consider making a few luxury upgrades to help increase your property’s value. Realtor.com has compiled a list of big impact improvements you can make that are surprisingly cost-efficient.

Upgrade Your Patio

Average cost of a new patio: $3,007 
Increase in home value: 3% to 4%

It’s no secret that more homeowners regard their backyard as an extension of their living space. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that outdoor kitchens and furnished patio areas alongside a fire pit are increasingly popular.

Irene Medina, a real estate agent at Medina Group Real Estate in Coral Springs, FL, says an outdoor kitchen is “a big plus in homes [priced] from $350,000 and up.” This can be anything from an area in the patio with a built-in grill and sink to a full-blown kitchen.

Low-hassle option: Don’t have the money for an all-out kitchen? Try adding French doors that open to the outside. This simple change will make your home feel lighter and brighter, and will appeal to potential buyers—all for an average cost of $879.

Add a Hot Tub

Average cost to install an above-ground hot tub: $321
Increase in home value: 1% to 4%

“Having a hot tub on the property is a great selling point if the home doesn’t have a pool or a water view,” Medina says. If the property has a built-in pool, a hot spa attached to it or nearby could also go a long way, she says. Prices run the gamut, depending on how elaborate you want your spa to be. At the upper end, these babies can cost thousands, once plumbing, electrical, and the tub itself are factored in. But they don’t have to.

Low-hassle option: Don’t want to heat things up that much? Potential buyers are simply looking for a backyard oasis. Consider a simpler (and cheaper) upgrade by adding a hammock surrounded by lush landscaping—your costs will start around a whopping $30 for the hammock. (Cost of fresh caipirinhas not included.)

When it comes time to sell, any special extras that can paint a picture of leisure and relaxation out back can be an incentive for those in the market for a new home. Leisure is a good thing, right?

Get Smart with an Automation System

Average cost to install a home automation system: $1,282
Increase in home value: 3% to 5%

These days, smart intercom/doorbells that can show a homeowner video of a visitor at the door (and use remote communication) are becoming the Main Street version of the urban doorman. Smart garage door openers, security systems, and thermostats are also becoming more common.

Not only will these smart gadgets help you feel more secure in your home, they are also a big draw for the tech-savvy buyer looking for innovative and practical home features, says Mike McGrew, treasurer for the National Association of Realtors® and CEO of McGrew Real Estate in Lawrence, KS.

Low-hassle option: Consider a small splurge on just a Wi-Fi video doorbell. For as little as $100, you’ll have a fancy amenity that can provide convenience and some peace of mind.

Add an In-Law or Nanny Suite

Average cost of a basement remodel: $18,618
Increase in home value: 5% to 10%

Real estate agent Nancy Itteilag of Washington Fine Properties in Washington, DC, says she recently was “this close” to selling a home, but for one major obstacle: The property wasn’t fit to accommodate the prospective buyer’s au pair.

In her market, where double incomes are at an all-time high, there’s big demand for homes with an au pair suite, in-law unit, or a flexible living space (often on the lower level of a two-story house to maximize privacy for both au pair and family). So while the initial costs seem quite high, they could pay off in spades when it’s time for a sale.

Low-hassle option: If you already have a finished basement, you’re in luck. Want to give the feeling of privacy without doing a total remodel of the space? Throw up some temporary walls. For just over $200, you’ll have an extra bedroom instantly. And if your basement has a separate entrance, it’s all the better—it can double as a living space that can be rented out for extra income.

Create a Wine Room 

Cost of a wine cellar: Starts at $4,000
Increase in home value: Varies, but can be as much as 2%

We’re not talking about a dark closet where you hide your best reds (although those pay off, too). We mean a next-level wine space—possibly furnished with a small island or table—for entertaining guests and igniting conversation.

For some wine collectors, this room is becoming more of a showpiece than simply a repository to let wine age. Accordingly, in high-end homes, these cellars are also moving from the lower level to upper floors—often housed in glass walls and under LED lighting.

Wine Cellar SPACiO Built Out at 321 Ocean

While Realtors® agree that a wine room can increase your home’s value, this home improvement should be thought of first and foremost as a treat just for you. Because you deserve it!

“Wine cellars are a bit like swimming pools. They come in all shapes and sizes and costs. And the next folks that look at your house may want nothing to do with them,” McGrew says. “So do a wine cellar because you want a wine cellar, and don’t try to justify it by an increase in value when you sell.”

Low-hassle option: Carve out a space in your home to display a few decorative wine racks and a wine fridge to keep bottles chilled and ready for entertaining. You could create your own wine enclave for as little as $200!

Change Up Your Flooring

Average cost of installing new flooring: $2,853
Increase in home value: 5%

It might not sound sexy, but flooring is also high on the list when it comes to features that pay off in a big way. Whether it’s made of reclaimed hardwood or picturesque tile or features heating, it can set the tone for the whole house.

Want to step it up even more? Heated floors in common areas such as kitchens and bathrooms are a nice amenity for cold winter mornings—and, of course, add a sweet touch of luxury to your home.

Low-hassle option: If you’re looking for a home makeover on the cheap, consider new carpeting in neutral colors, which can go a long way in pleasing prospective buyers. The best part? The price tag, with an average cost of just $1,491.”

BRAVO’S MILLION DOLLAR LISTING BROKER CHAD CARROLL DISCUSSES 2017 TRENDS AND TIPS ON FIXER UPPERS

Chad Carroll Broker

Guest contributor broker Chad Carroll, who starred on Bravo’s Million Dollar Listing Miami and is one of Douglas Elliman’s Top Producing Agents in South Florida, sat down with SPACiO for a Q&A on trends we will see in the luxury residential market in 2017 and tips on fixer-upper homes in exclusive neighborhoods.

How do you expect buyers to react to the economic environment as it shapes up for 2017?

Buyers are going to be more cautious with their purchases. Interest rates are on the rise and a slowdown of foreign capital will definitely affect pricing. Sellers are going to have to adjust their prices to the new market conditions. Inventory levels are high and demand is relatively low compared to a year or 2 ago.

In terms of home decorating and renovation, what are some of the interior design trends your high-end clients are gravitating towards?

While they continue to prefer the modern interior design, they are increasingly introducing a touch of ‘home’ by incorporating different shades of warmer colors and finishes. Before, it was all about glass and white throughout the house but that style can feel a little stark. Now, I am seeing a lot more woods / artificial woods used alongside fabrics to soften everything up. Many of my high-end clients want their houses/condos to be a combination of ‘art’ and ‘home’.

Based on your years of experience selling homes in Coral Gables, the Brickell area and Miami Beach, what tips can you give us about buying a fixer upper?

Buyers need to be cautious that the house doesn’t have structural or roof issues. Often buyers don’t look into those things well enough and after closing problems appear and dip into their profit. Buyers also need to hire architects and general contractors who have experience working with similar types of properties. A house is not just a house. There are many types of construction and each requires a specific set of skills. Doing due diligence is key to the success of the project.