Hobe Sound, Florida is on what is known as Southeast Florida’s “Treasure Coast”. Although that nickname comes from the history of treasure vessels sunk along the shoreline there, it yields other treasure too. Many would say that living in that part of the Sunshine State is a treasure all its own.
If you are planning a move to the area, there are many things to think about before you start packing. If new real estate is in your plans, then here are a few things you might like to consider:
1. Getting Financing:
Looking for your new home is the fun part. Getting financing, however, may seem a little more challenging. If you take it in steps, you can make it simpler.
- At least six months before you start looking for your home, organize your credit information. You are allowed one free credit check every year from each of the three major credit reporting agencies. Get a copy and be sure to check your report for any errors. If you find any, make sure they are corrected.
- Your ability to buy the home you love may depend on more than your payment history and credit score. You will also need to determine your credit utilization score. This is the percentage of credit you use compared to your income. First time home buyers, in particular, will want to concentrate on a credit utilization score that is lower than one-third of their income.
- Get pre-qualified through a lending institution before you start shopping. For this, you will also need a statement of assets as well as income tax documents.
When you finally find a home you like and are seriously considering purchasing, don’t forget to investigate the neighborhood, too. The easiest way to start is to drive through several times during the day or evening. That will give you some ideas about the neighborhood and the neighbors. Are there kids playing? Are the neighbors friendly? Are the neighborhood amenities well-kept?
You should also consider some other neighborhood factors when shopping for new real estate. What are the schools like? What are their ratings from GreatSchools? If you plan for your children to attend a private school, is there one nearby? Remember, even if you don’t have children of your own now, schools are always of serious interest to homebuyers.
Is traffic manageable when you will be coming home? Is the grocery store convenient? How about other stores, restaurants or churches? All of these will affect the quality of your life in your new home.
3. What parts of your home should be move-in ready:
Everyone wants to make their new home “theirs”. Even if you emptied your entire piggy bank to buy it, there are lots of inexpensive, attractive and fun ways to make your home ready for your first day there:
- Make sure it is sparkling clean. Whether you use your own elbow grease or use a cleaning service, moving into a new, fantastically clean home makes a lot of difference! If you are new to the area, ask for referrals from your agent for a good cleaning company that does “move-in, move-outs”. Be specific about exactly what you want to be done, too. Your cleaners will appreciate that as much as you do!
- Painting is easy and inexpensive, whether you do it or a local contractor does. If you like to do-it-yourself, there is great advice online for painting at sites like HGTV.com.
- Many new homeowners find a bright new color on the front door makes a statement. If that isn’t enough, try adding a kick plate or a new lockset or front door knocker. If you like, some pretty new house numbers can spruce up your new front door area too.
- New kitchen cabinet hardware is a quick and inexpensive update. You can also add interesting under-cabinet lights, like Armacost RibbonFlex Pro. These flexible LED light strips are inexpensive and easy to install. You can even learn to install them easily yourself by watching YouTube videos!
Closing your home can be difficult but, if you prepare in advance and make sure you have every document you need, you should have smooth sailing at the settlement table. If there is any single piece of advice for closing, it is “be prepared”.
- Make sure you have every necessary document. Termite protection documents (if you need them), your driver’s licenses or other identification, the certified check, all of these things can hold up a closing if they aren’t available or in the closing package.
- Ask for a copy of your loan documents in advance. You have a legal right to review your settlement statement. Use it to compare it to the “Good Faith Estimate” from your lender.
- Don’t try to do a closing on your lunch hour or other limited length of time. Closing can take longer than expected. Try to take the day off to close.
- Perhaps one of the best tips for the closing day is do it early. If there is a problem at a real estate closing, it is possible that if it occurs early in the day, corrections can be made and the closing can be completed on that day. That also means that waiting until the last possible day for closing may not be the best idea.
5. Inexpensive things to do when you first move in:
Life in Hobe Sound can be delightful for a family with many wonderful things to do for just a little bit of investment.
- The great outdoors is a huge family attraction. Jonathan Dickinson State Park offers a host of family activities from canoeing to fishing to tours on the Loxahatchee River to bird watching.
- West Palm Beach is just a short drive away with great family fun that includes the city zoo, the Rapids Water Park and the South Florida Science Center and Aquarium.
Hobe Sound Schools
- Hobe Sound Elementary School, a public elementary school, located at 11555 S.E. Gomez Avenue in Hobe Sound, FL 33455;
- Hobe Sound Christian Academy, a private Christian school for grades kindergarten through 12th located at 11460 S. E. Gomez Avenue in Hobe Sound, FL 33455;
- Hobe Sound Bible College, a small private college located at 11298 S. E. Gomez Avenue in Hobe Sound, FL 33455.
The Pine School, The Pine School is an independent, college preparatory day school that serves students from Kindergarten through Grade 12. The campus is located in Hobe Sound, Florida.