10 Expert Tips for Keeping Your Yard Fresh and Lush This Summer

Ah, the summer season—the perfect time to bask in the sun, enjoy outdoor activities, and showcase your beautiful yard. However, maintaining a fresh and vibrant yard during the summer months can be a daunting task. If you are thinking about listing your home during the summer months, there are several challenges to overcome. Fear not! In this blog, we’ll provide you with 10 expert tips to help you keep your yard looking fresh and inviting all summer long.

  1. Water Smartly – Efficient watering is key to maintaining a healthy yard. Water your lawn early in the morning or late in the evening to minimize water loss due to evaporation. Use a sprinkler system or soaker hoses to ensure even coverage. Avoid overwatering, as it can lead to shallow root growth and other issues. Consider using a smart irrigation system that adjusts watering based on weather conditions and soil moisture levels.
  2. Mow with Care – Regular mowing is essential for a well-maintained yard. However, mowing too short can stress your grass and make it more susceptible to drought and weeds. Set your mower blades to a higher setting to allow the grass to shade its own roots and retain moisture. Remember to sharpen the mower blades regularly for clean cuts and to prevent the tearing of the grass blades.
  3. Weed Control – Weeds can quickly invade your yard and steal nutrients from your plants. Stay on top of weed control by manually removing them or using herbicides specifically designed for your lawn type. Applying a pre-emergent herbicide in early spring can help prevent weed growth. Mulching your garden beds can also reduce weed growth by blocking sunlight and preventing weed seeds from germinating.
  4. Fertilize Wisely – Proper fertilization is crucial for maintaining a lush green lawn. Choose a slow-release, balanced fertilizer and apply it according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Over-fertilization can cause excessive growth, leading to more frequent mowing and increased water requirements. Alternatively, consider using organic fertilizers to promote long-term soil health and reduce environmental impact.
  5. Prune and Trim – Regular pruning and trimming not only improve the aesthetics of your yard but also promote healthy growth. Trim overhanging branches to allow sunlight to reach your lawn and plants. Remove dead or diseased branches to prevent the spread of pests and diseases. Proper pruning encourages air circulation, reducing the risk of fungal infections.
  6. Aerate the Soil – Compacted soil can impede water absorption and nutrient uptake by the roots. Aerating your lawn in the early summer months can alleviate compaction and improve overall soil health. Use a core aerator to remove small plugs of soil and allow air, water, and nutrients to penetrate the root zone. Aeration also promotes stronger root growth, leading to a healthier and more resilient lawn.
  7. Protect Against Pests Insects and pests can wreak havoc on your yard during the summer. Regularly inspect your plants for signs of infestation, such as holes in leaves or wilting. Use natural pest control methods whenever possible, such as introducing beneficial insects or using organic insecticides. If necessary, consult a professional for targeted pest control measures to protect your yard without harming beneficial wildlife.
  8. Provide Adequate ShadeSummer heat can be intense, causing stress to your plants and lawn. Strategically plant trees and shrubs to provide shade and reduce temperature fluctuations. Focus on shading windows and outdoor living areas to keep your home cool and comfortable. Additionally, using shade cloth or umbrellas in areas with potted plants can help prevent sunburn and dehydration.
  9. Maintain a Clean Yard – Regular maintenance goes a long way in keeping your yard fresh and inviting. Remove fallen leaves, twigs, and debris to prevent them from smothering your lawn and blocking sunlight. Trim back overgrown plants and remove spent blooms to promote continuous flowering. Keep walkways and patios clean by regularly sweeping away dirt and debris.
  10. Enjoy Your Outdoor Space – Lastly, remember to enjoy your yard and make the most of your outdoor space. Add comfortable seating areas, outdoor lighting, and decorative elements to create a welcoming ambiance. Host barbecues, garden parties, or simply relax and unwind in the tranquility of your well-maintained yard.

With these 10 expert tips, you’ll be well-equipped to maintain a fresh and inviting yard throughout the summer. By watering wisely, mowing properly, controlling weeds, fertilizing appropriately, and taking care of pests, you can ensure a lush and vibrant outdoor space. Remember, regular maintenance, such as pruning, aerating, and providing shade, will keep your yard healthy and thriving. So, embrace the summer season and create a beautiful oasis right in your own backyard.

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The Importance of Homeowner’s Insurance!

Homeowner’s insurance is the most important protection for your most valuable asset – your home.

However, the cost of homeowner’s insurance can be a significant expense for many homeowners. The cost varies depending on several factors, such as the value of your home, your location, and your insurance history.


One of the most significant factors that can impact the cost of homeowner’s insurance is the location of your home. If you live in an area that is prone to natural disasters, such as hurricanes or floods, your insurance rates may be higher. This is because the risk of damage to your home is higher in these areas, which means the insurance company is taking on a greater risk by insuring your property.

Flood insurance is an important protection for homeowners in areas that are at risk of flooding. Homeowner’s insurance typically does not cover flood damage, which means you need to purchase a separate flood insurance policy if you want this coverage.

Flood insurance can be purchased through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) or through private insurance companies. The cost of flood insurance can vary depending on the risk of flooding in your area, the value of your home, and other factors.

If you live in a flood-prone area, it is important to consider purchasing flood insurance to protect your home and belongings. You can access this information on the FEMA flood map.


Another factor that can impact the cost of homeowners insurance is the age and condition of your home. If your home is older or has not been well-maintained, the insurance company may consider it a higher risk and charge you a higher premium. Similarly, if your home has certain features that make it more susceptible to damage, such as a swimming pool or a wood-burning stove, your rates may be higher.


Your insurance history can also impact the cost of your homeowner’s insurance. If you have a history of filing claims, insurance companies may view you as a higher risk and charge you higher premiums. Similarly, if you have a poor credit score, insurance companies may consider you a higher risk and charge you more for coverage.

While the cost of homeowners insurance can be a significant expense, it is important to have this protection for your home. Without insurance, you could be at risk of losing everything in the event of a disaster or accident.

To keep your rates as low as possible, consider taking steps to reduce your risk, such as installing a security system or doing home repairs. You can also shop around for insurance quotes to find the best rate for your needs.

Fraudulent Claims

Many of my clients express frustration with the high rates and wonder why they are so much higher than in other states. The truth is, that one of the major reasons for the high rates in FL is excessive fraudulent claims.

Fraudulent claims have been a significant issue in Florida for years, particularly when it comes to property insurance claims. According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, Florida consistently ranks as one of the top states for insurance fraud. This type of fraud can take many forms, from staged accidents to falsified damage claims.

Fraudulent claims not only drive up the cost of insurance but also have other negative effects on the real estate market. For example, insurance companies may be hesitant to provide coverage in areas known for fraud, making it more difficult to sell homes in those areas.

Natural Disasters

One of the primary reasons that Florida is particularly susceptible to insurance fraud is the prevalence of natural disasters like hurricanes. When a hurricane hits, it can cause widespread damage to homes and businesses, making it easy for dishonest individuals to submit false claims. This type of fraud can drive up the cost of insurance for everyone in the state, even those who have never filed a claim.

In addition to natural disasters, there are other factors that make Florida a target for insurance fraud. For example, the state has a large population of seniors, who are often targeted by unscrupulous individuals looking to take advantage of their vulnerability. There are also many people in Florida who are struggling financially, and some may be tempted to file fraudulent claims to collect insurance money.

Additionally, some insurers may require higher deductibles or refuse to cover certain types of damage altogether, which can make it harder for homeowners to recover from disasters.


So, what can be done to address the issue of fraudulent claims in Florida? One approach is increasing penalties for those caught committing insurance fraud. The state already has strong laws in place to address insurance fraud, but enforcement can be challenging. By increasing the penalties for those who are caught, it may be possible to deter some would-be fraudsters.

Another approach is to educate homeowners about the dangers of insurance fraud and how to avoid it. Many people may not realize that filing a false insurance claim is a serious crime that can have significant consequences. By raising awareness about the issue, we may be able to prevent some instances of fraud from occurring in the first place.

Insurance companies can also take steps to address the issue of fraud. For example, they can invest in technology that can help detect fraudulent claims more quickly and accurately. They can also work with law enforcement agencies to identify and prosecute those who are committing fraud.

As a Real Estate Broker, I believe it is important to educate my clients about the issue of insurance fraud and how it can impact the cost of homeowner’s insurance in Florida. I also believe it is important to work with reputable insurers who have a strong track record of combating fraud.

In conclusion, by working together, we can help protect homeowners and keep insurance rates as affordable as possible.

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What is the Latest on Home Mortgage Interest Rates?

If you’ve been considering buying a home, you’ve likely wondered: What is the latest on home mortgage interest rates? Mortgage rates have been steadily increasing this year and are predicted to continue to rise through 2022. Mortgage rates are highly dynamic, responding to a number of economic factors. Inflation, the federal funds rate, and even the Federal Reserve itself are driving mortgage rates higher. The Federal Reserve has already raised interest rates three times this year, signaling its intention to raise rates again in order to combat inflation. However, the higher the rate, the more expensive the mortgage payment will be.

Freddie Mac’s weekly report covers mortgage rates for the previous week

Each week, Freddie Mac surveys lenders for the latest rates. The results are based on first-lien, conventional, conforming home purchase mortgages. They use rates for high-quality borrowers with down payments of at least 20%, so the actual rates can differ slightly from those reported by Freddie Mac. The rates are usually higher than those of the real market. In addition, Freddie Mac’s survey includes the effect of discount points, which borrowers can pay to lower their rates.

The rise in mortgage rates has caused some alarm in the housing market, and the rising rate may have a negative impact on demand for homes in the near future. However, the rates don’t include fees and other costs associated with home loans. Although no one deliberately tries to manipulate mortgage rates, a rise in rates could be a sign of trouble in the housing market. Typically, the home buying season is the busiest time of year, but the recent uptick in mortgage rates has affected demand.

The weekly report from Freddie Mac looks at mortgage rates for the week ending Thursday. The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with 20% down represents a good rate for borrowers with good credit. Lower-credit borrowers will see rates higher than this. Money’s daily mortgage rate survey is based on lending activity over the previous day. While there is little consistency in these figures, the average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is at a record low.

Freddie Mac’s average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage jumped up to 5.23% for the week ending June 9

Mortgage rates have climbed significantly over the past year, with the recent increase in the federal funds rate contributing to the jump. Last week, the Federal Reserve increased its interest rate target by 75 basis points, the largest increase in almost three decades. The Fed’s statement last week emphasized its commitment to inflation at or below 2%, which is the target the central bank has set for itself.

Freddie Mac’s weekly report covers rates for the previous week, and today’s rate may be higher than the one reported this week. Those rates are based on averages and don’t reflect individual circumstances. Lenders often use FICO scores to determine the interest rate on a mortgage, and the higher your score is, the better.

Freddie Mac’s average rate for borrowers looking to buy a home rose a quarter-point last week. The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage climbed to 5.23% last week, up from 4.96% a year ago. Meanwhile, the average rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage rose 4%, up from 2.23% a year ago.

Freddie Mac’s average

You might be interested in knowing what Freddie Mac’s average home mortgage interest rates are. The agency has been collecting this information since April 1971. The survey is based on rates on first-lien, conventional, conforming home purchase mortgages. These rates vary for refinances since they are based on rates for high-quality borrowers. This survey does not apply to every borrower, so you may want to compare the rates of different loan products to find the best rate for your circumstances.

The average interest rate on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages climbed 0.4 percent to 5.27% last week, up from 5.1% a week ago. That rate is still lower than the year-ago rate of 2.27 percent. Meanwhile, the average rate on a five-year adjustable-rate mortgage rose 0.3 percentage points to 4.2 percent. Freddie Mac’s average home mortgage interest rate chart will show you what’s happening in the market.

Freddie Mac’s survey differs from Bankrate’s, which shows that mortgage rates have been falling each decade since the financial crisis. While mortgage rates are higher now than they were two decades ago, they are still quite attractive when compared to pre-financial crisis levels. And if you don’t have much down payment, you can consider applying for discount points to lower your interest rate.

How Do I Qualify for the Lowest Interest Rates?

How do I qualify for the lowest interest rates? The best way to qualify for the lowest interest rate is to have good credit. While those with bad credit will likely pay higher interest rates, those with good credit are often approved at a lower rate. Low debt-to-income ratios and a high annual income are key factors in qualifying for low-interest rates. Other factors to consider include the length of time you have been with your current employer, area of study, and job history. Regardless of the amount you need to borrow, it’s worth shopping around with several lenders to find the lowest interest rate on a credit card or personal loan.

Having good credit makes it possible to qualify for a lower interest rate on a personal loan. By lowering your credit utilization and reviewing your credit report, you can improve your credit score and get approved for a lower interest rate. If you don’t have excellent credit, you can also look for a co-applicant who has a higher credit score than you. A higher credit score means a lower rate on a personal loan.

The best way to find the lowest interest rate on a personal loan is to shop around for a loan and check your credit score. Good to excellent credit is needed for a personal loan, but shopping around can help you get the lowest rate. To get a good interest rate, shop around using an online marketplace like Credible. It takes just two minutes to compare personal loan offers from multiple lenders. You can also get a copy of your credit score from one of the three major credit bureaus. However, these bureaus may charge you a fee. Many banks offer credit score monitoring services for free.

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Right Of First Refusal Explained

In my 16 years of being an Orlando Realtor, I’ve been asked by dozens of clients to explain what a right of first refusal is and how does it work.

When you are selling a house, you may encounter a situation where the sale is contingent upon the buyer selling the home they live in before buying yours.

So, is it a good idea to accept an offer like this? Accepting an offer such as this is OK as long as you include a “right of first refusal” aka “kick-out clause” contingency in the contract.

It’s pretty rare to get an offer with a home sale contingency, but it does happen occasionally and depending on the situation, sometimes it’s a good alternative.

What’s a right of 1st refusal?

Right Of 1st Refusal Explained

If your Orlando home has been listed for a while with little or no offers, you may be willing to make your terms more attractive to buyers. For instance, if a buyer came along and wanted your house but they can only afford it after they’ve sold their current home. Accepting an offer that includes a home sale contingency involves a bit of risk if you don’t structure the deal correctly.

When one of these offers is presented to one of my clients, I insist on including a right of 1st refusal clause in the contract or we don’t accept it. The purpose of this clause is to allow you to accept an offer like this while continuing to market your home to other interested buyers. You’re telling the buyer that you will continue to actively Market the home until the buyer completes the purchase.

Here’s how it works…

If a different buyer makes an offer on your home while under contract, you have to give the original buyer the option of eliminating the home sale contingency for the sale of their current home and purchasing your home within a pre-determined amount of time, usually between 24 and 72 hrs.

If the original buyer fails to buy your home within that time frame, then you have the right to sell your home to the second buyer.

Working as a top real estate agent in Orlando FL, I’ve closed several of these transactions successfully. Sometimes they worked out and everyone was happy and other times it didn’t work out for the buyer. In every instance, the seller was protected because we used the 1st right of refusal contingency.

What to Look For In A Right of 1st Refusal Clause

If you have your home listed with a realtor and you receive a purchase agreement with a kick-out clause, there are a few things to look for like the following:

  • How much is the buyer offering on your home?
  • How much time are they asking for to complete inspections?
  • How long are they asking for to obtain financing?
  • What is the closing date?
  • How long do they have to respond if you end up getting another offer?
  • Is their current home already being marketed for sale?… It better be!

Why Would A Buyer Accept A Kick-out Clause?

Many of you might be wondering why a buyer would even accept a clause like this when it puts them at a disadvantage. Think about it…anyone who makes an offer that’s contingent on selling their own home first is already in a bad position.

It’s human nature for people to view things from their perspective without thinking about it from the opposite side of the table. Think about it…If you were in a situation where you’re struggling to sell your home, you may get super happy to receive an offer like this one!

Understand, however, that a buyer like this is more than likely facing his or her share of struggles and the road to the closing table will probably be a bumpy one.

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Orlando Realty’s “Easy Exit” listing agreement.

When somebody lists their house with a real estate agent, they always worry that the agent won’t perform as promised and they will be stuck with them until the listing agreement has expired costing your home valuable time and exposure on the market.

Most real estate agents require you to sign listing agreements that have a cancellation fee of several hundred dollars when the homeowner wants to terminate the contract with the agent they hired to represent them.

It’s for this reason that I use an “Easy Exit” listing agreement. This takes the risk out of listing your house and having to worry about us not performing.

When you list your home through our INSTANT AMNESTY Listing Agreement, there’s no risk to the homeowner. We are so confident that you’ll be happy with the results that we get you that you can cancel your listing with us at any time and NO CHARGE! There is NO cancellation fee in our listing agreement.

• You can cancel your listing anytime.

• You can relax, knowing you won’t be locked into a lengthy contract.   

• Enjoy the caliber of service confident enough to make this offer.
   In my 8+ years as an Orlando realtor, the few times that someone has wanted to cancel a listing agreement with me was because they decided to keep the house instead of selling, it has never been for non-performance. When it comes to real estate, my skills and work ethic are among the best in Orlando and I have the track record to prove it. My confidence comes from thousands of successful real estate transactions and thousands of happy clients. The fact that most of our business comes from referrals from past clients says it all.

Whether it’s a traditional listing or an Orlando short sale, I get the job done no matter what.

Tired of your realtor not performing and wasting valuable time on the market? Give us a try, you have absolutely nothing to lose. Visit us at https://orlandorealtyconsultants.com/ or call us at 407-902-7750 so that we can discuss your best options. Jenny Zamora Lic. RE Broker

Orlando Vacation Homes


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