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2018 Florida Realtors® Mid-Winter Business Meetings

by Kijner & Sons International Realty

Daniel Kijner, KSI Realty's Senior Broker-Owner and Broker Associate with Fortune International Realty in Miami, is currently attending with fellow real estate professionals the 2018 Florida Realtors® Mid-Winter Business Meetings.

During the event, which is held in Orlando Florida from the 24th to the 27th of January 2018, several highly respected economists and business data experts will share their insights on the US economy as well as on the Florida residential real estate and housing market. The 2018 Florida Realtors® Mid-Winter Business Meetings are a great opportunity for agents to not only network but also learn about the latest real estate trends and data to better serve their clients and the community at large. 

KSI Realty is a proud member of the Florida Realtors®, the voice for real estate in Florida which provides programs, services, continuing education, research and legislative representation to its 180,000 members in 54 boards/associations. 

Check some of our photos from the event below. Wanna learn more about the committees' meetings and events, click here

Are you looking to buy or sell a property in Miami-Dade or Sarasota Counties, Florida? Visit or contact us today at

2018 Florida Realtors® Mid-Winter Business Meetings

Daniel Kijner
Leigh Brown
(Immediate Past President of the Residential Real Estate Council,
formerly known as CRS and,
Broker Owner at Re/Max Executive Realty in North Carolina

2018 Florida Realtors® Mid-Winter Business Meetings

Daniel Kijner
Teresa King Kinney
(CEO of the 
Miami Association of Realtors®)

Daniel Kijner
Deborah Boza-Valledor
(COO & Chief Marketing Officer of the Miami Association of Realtors®)

Daniel Kijner 

Christina Pappas 
(District Sales Manager at The Keyes Company, 
daughter of Keyes President and CEO Mike Pappas and, 
2017 Residential President of the Miami Association of Realtors®)

Ask the Expert: US Realtor

by Kijner & Sons International Realty

Kijner & Sons International Realty
is pleased to share a recent report from
World First, UK first foreign exchange broker offering currency exchange and international payments to private and corporate clients in the UK and abroad. Laura Kijner, international real estate specialist with KSI Realty in France and Thailand and, Florida Realtor® with Fortune International Realty in Miami, Florida is featured in their July 29th issue on investment and relocation to the U.S.  

To read the full article by David Trumper, see below:

If you’re thinking about moving to the US, you’ll be aware just how many considerations there are – the actual buying of the property is one of the last things you’ll have to sort out!

Florida Realtor Laura Kijner has helped lots of people in their move to the US, and in this edition of ‘Ask the expert’, she explains some of the things you need to consider. 

In the U.S., every state has different rules and regulations, so wherever you are looking to purchase a property, you should get the relevant information.

Investing or buying a vacation home abroad is quite different from actually moving and living overseas!  Usually, people that have successfully moved to the U.S. have conducted their due diligences – they’ve gone to visit, they know the area, maybe they’ve been there for ten years for a month every year. Moving to the U.S. can be a long process. A lot of people don’t realise that getting the proper visa or even a green card is not an easy task.

Ask yourself the right questions

Do you already have the proper structures in place to facilitate your move and the acquisition of a property? Do you have a U.S. bank account? Do you have all the necessary funds available for an investment? How about currency conversion? Are you a cash buyer? If you need a loan, it’s probably best to check with your financial institution at home since, as a foreigner, you are unlikely to have collateral or a credit history in the U.S. You need to be ready, willing and able! And to be so, takes preparation.

Get to know the place and its people

Make sure it’s right for you and your family. Adapting to a new culture and environment takes time. You need to see yourself working and living there for the foreseeable future. If you are moving with your kids, you will need to think about schools and later colleges. Even to run the simplest errand, you are most likely to drive your car around. Do you have a driving license? Are you fine with driving at least an hour a day? Make sure you find a property in a neighbourhood you like, that is safe and convenient, a place where you can easily commute to and from work.

Drive, walk around, check various neighbourhoods, talk to some agents, talk to fellow expats who have moved to the U.S. and who will give you honest feedbacks, talk to an attorney, a wealth manager and a CPA about what’s involved – it’s about just getting that information.

Many foreigners do not know that dual agency is illegal in Florida. A real estate licensee may enter into a brokerage relationship either as a transaction broker – offering limited representation – or as a single agent with prospective buyers and sellers.

See a house you like? Go for it, whoever you’re signed up with

In the U.S., all real estate agents, with no exception, have the same access to the available properties in their market with the exact same conditions. As members of the Miami Association of Realtors, we offer access to the MLS (Multiple Listing System). The MLS is a tool where, in the words of the National Association of Realtors, brokers share information on properties they have listed and invite other brokers to cooperate in their sale in exchange for compensation if they produce the buyer. Sellers benefit by increased exposure to their property. Buyers benefit because they can obtain information about all MLS-listed properties while working with only one broker. Thus, it doesn’t matter where you find your dream property. Even if it’s not listed with the company you signed up with, your real estate agent will call the other agent and they will cooperate with each other to ensure a successful transaction.

The purchase of the property is the last thing we would take care of. You’re not going to put your trousers on when you’ve already put on your socks and your shoes!

Do things in the right order. If you are not ready to take the plunge yet, you can always sign up for listing alert emails on a realtors’ website – like this one. By signing up to alerts like this, you’ll get a good picture of a place’s real estate market – in this case, Miami – from prices to inventory and you will be able to monitor the changes over time. What you see today might not be available 6 months for now when you are actually ready to buy. Be informed!

Finally, there are many costs associated with the acquisition of a property. These costs depend on your own project, the selected property and its location, laws of the State of Florida, of the County and the City as well as on professionals and/or other providers you are likely to select from Attorney to CPA (Certified Public Accountant). Some fees are negotiable, other not. Some are recurring, other not. Most people are first time investors with very little knowledge of the acquisition and relocation process in the U.S. As a consulting firm, we are here to help and we offer tailored packages for a fee for those in need of full assistance.

Laura Kijner works with Kijner & Sons International Realty, which specialises in investment opportunities and income producing properties in South Florida.


Looking to buy a condo or a home in Miami? Looking to relocate to or invest in Florida? Contact us today at

The high retreat: owning properties under blue sky and palm trees

by Kijner & Sons International Realty


Summer is officially over, children are back to school and as we welcome Fall, many of us are already planning for the upcoming holiday season and ways to diversify our assets in this tied economy.

Whether you are a savvy investor, a young professional or an active retiree, this time of the year is also perfect to look for business opportunities in real estate and make your dream of owning a property under the Floridian sun, a reality! Finding an enjoyable place to retire, sending your children study in a renowned American university or coming back for vacations to your beloved second home year-round has never been easier! Comparing to Europe, the “Sunshine State” still offers lower cost of living, cheaper housing solutions no matter the investment (residential, commercial or land) as well as some of the world’s most beautiful beaches and boating spots.

According to the Miami Association of Realtors® and the local Multiple Listing Service (MLS) systems “the total number of listings, including single-family homes and condominiums, that pended in Miami-Dade County during the month of July 2012 increased 31 percent, from 2,593 to 3,393, year-over-year and two percent compared to the previous month*”.

We, at KSI Realty, forecast that this trend will intensify gradually especially with lower level of housing inventory available on the market as Canadians and Brazilians - closely followed by Europeans, Argentineans, Venezuelans and Russians - have quickly absorbed the stock of highly discounted homes in the Southeast Florida market for the past 2 years. This “micro” boom is not only seen in the Greater Miami area (Dade and Broward counties) but also in the Orlando, Tampa Bay and Sarasota-Bradenton-Venice areas. In addition, according to a recent survey by the University of Florida, consumer confidence in the Sunshine State hit five year high in September**.

In light of the upcoming U.S. Presidential Elections, many domestic buyers have withheld their home purchase based on expected tax benefits, cuts or increases depending on who will be in office in 2013. Regardless of the victorious party, we will most certainly see more budget cuts and tax increases under a form or another. Rental demand has been stronger than ever and gives the necessary flexibility and financial freedom to low income Americans. It is a good old game of wait and see – it has always been easier to rent during difficult times than to buy. Nowadays, it has become harder to obtain a loan despite historically low US interest rates. Thus, this is great news if you own a property and want to rent it out for monthly revenues!

The main difference between domestic buyers with foreign buyers (who are responsible for a fifth of Florida home sales***) is that locals still heavily rely on leveraged financing whereas stronger foreign currencies relative to the US dollar and a liquid cash mind-set have greatly benefited international investors in Florida.

Daniel Kijner, KSI Realty’s senior broker-owner and French wealth manager reminds our clients that the key to a successful acquisition resides in strong yields from rental income and future capital gains in the mid to long-term horizon. Well-prepared and organized investors make such plans. Emotional vs. rational is an ancestral battle between the mind and the heart that is usually reconciled by financial rationales. 

The golden rules remain as follow: 

1) Plan ahead with a US tax or real estate attorney and a CPA (we will introduce you to our ancillary network of local partners who are legally competent to assist you in Florida)

2) Retain the right specialists to conduct all due diligences prior to putting all your eggs in one basket – go for the one-stop shop solution

3) Make sure you get a Realtor® who represents your interests and not those of the seller (either an individual or a financial institution for distressed properties) or those of the transaction - basically someone who’s neither working for your nor the seller

By following this clear and simple strategy, many satisfied clients of KSI Realty have saved thousand of dollars in the long run. Making the false economy of $3,000 on a $250,000 transaction may very well turn out to be a $10,000 unplanned expense to salvage for unforeseen bumps in the road.

The litigious and liability driven system in the USA is certainly very different from the one of your home country and this should never be discarded when one takes such an important decision as purchasing a home.

A successful property acquisition is one that is stress free, well planned out and, most importantly, well executed by a reliable and dedicated real estate professional such as a Realtor®.

When the need for excellence arises in sourcing your next income-producing property, primary or secondary residence with relocation and wealth management concerns, KSI Realty is your lifeline partner.

Questions or comments? Contact us at


* Miami Association of Realtors®, " Miami Pending Home Sales Continue to Rise " by Lynda Fernandez on August 30th, 2012:
** Sunshine State News, " Rick Scott: Florida Consumer Confidence 'Moving in the Right Direction' " by Jim Turner on September 26th, 2012:
*** The Miami Herald, " Foreigners responsible for a fifth of Florida home sales " on August 28th, 2012:

Read more here:

The Spring 2012 Paris Property & Investment Show

by Kijner & Sons International Realty

The Spring 2012 Paris Property & Investment Show (Salon National de l'Immobilier) is around the corner and will be held at the exhibition center Paris-Porte de Versailles from March 29th to April 1st, 2012. With over 35,000 visitors, 250 exhibitors and 50 conferences by real estate experts, the Spring Paris Property & Investment Show is an event you cannot miss!   

Kijner & Sons International Realty is glad to be once again participating at this show under the FNAIM pavillion, the French National Real Estate Federation, which by its number, is the first European organization for real estate professionals.

Come and meet with KSI Realty and its certified Realtors® to learn more about investment opportunities and relocation in Florida, Thailand, France and Costa Rica (Booth D38a). This year, we will specifically focus on real estate owned properties (REOs) such as short sales and foreclosures in South Florida and will present you with unique properties whether you are interested in residential or commercial real estate and whether you want to relocate to the Miami or Sarasota Florida area. 

To download your free invitation to the show, just click here. For any other inquiry, do not hesitate to contact us at

Specialty Mortgages: Risks and Rewards

by Kijner & Sons International Realty

In high-priced housing markets, it can be difficult to afford a home in Miami or Sarasota Florida. That’s why a growing number of homebuyers are forgoing traditional fixed-rate mortgages and standard adjustable-rate mortgages and instead opting for a specialty mortgage that lets them “stretch” their income so they can qualify for a larger loan.

But before you choose one of these mortgages, make sure you understand the risks and how they work.

Specialty mortgages often begin with a low introductory interest rate or payment plan - a “teaser” - but the monthly mortgage payments are likely to increase a lot in the future. Some are “low documentation” mortgages that come with easier standards for qualifying, but also higher interest rates or higher fees. Some lenders will loan you 100 percent or more of the home’s value, but these mortgages can present a big financial risk if the value of the house drops.

Specialty Mortgages Can:

  • Pose a greater risk that you won’t be able to afford the mortgage payment in the future, compared to fixed rate mortgages and traditional adjustable rate mortgages.
  • Have monthly payments that increase by as much as 50 percent or more when the introductory period ends.
  • Cause your loan balance (the amount you still owe) to get larger each month instead of smaller.

Common Types of Specialty Mortgages:

  • Interest-Only Mortgages: Your monthly mortgage payment only covers the interest you owe on the loan for the first 5 to 10 years of the loan, and you pay nothing to reduce the total amount you borrowed (this is called the “principal”). After the interest-only period, you start paying higher monthly payments that cover both the interest and principal that must be repaid over the remaining term of the loan. 
  • Negative Amortization Mortgages: Your monthly payment is less than the amount of interest you owe on the loan. The unpaid interest gets added to the loan’s principal amount, causing the total amount you owe to increase each month instead of getting smaller.
  • Option Payment ARM Mortgages: You have the option to make different types of monthly payments with this mortgage. For example, you may make a minimum payment that is less than the amount needed to cover the interest and increases the total amount of your loan; an interest-only payment, or payments calculated to pay off the loan over either 30 years or 15 years. 
  • 40-Year Mortgages: You pay off your loan over 40 years, instead of the usual 30 years. While this reduces your monthly payment and helps you qualify to buy a home, you pay off the balance of your loan much more slowly and end up paying much more interest. 

Questions to Consider Before Choosing a Specialty Mortgage:

  • How much can my monthly payments increase and how soon can these increases happen?
  • Do I expect my income to increase or do I expect to move before my payments go up?
  • Will I be able to afford the mortgage when the payments increase?
  • Am I paying down my loan balance each month, or is it staying the same or even increasing?
  • Will I have to pay a penalty if I refinance my mortgage or sell my house?
  • What is my goal in buying this property? Am I considering a riskier mortgage to buy a more expensive house than I can realistically afford?

Be sure you work with a REALTOR® and lender who can discuss different options and address your questions and concerns!



Learn about the National Association of Realtors® Housing Opportunity Program at

For more information on predatory mortgage lending practices, visit the Center for Responsible Lending at


Questions to Ask When Choosing a REALTOR®

by Kijner & Sons International Realty

Make sure you choose a REALTOR® who will provide top-notch service and meet your unique needs whether you are considering purchasing a property in Sarasota or Miami Florida.  

1. How long have you been in residential real estate sales? Is it your full-time job? While experience is no guarantee of skill, real estate — like many other professions — is mostly learned on the job. 

2. What designations do you hold? Designations such as GRI and CRS®* — which require that agents take additional, specialized real estate training — are held by only about one-quarter of real estate practitioners.

3. How many homes did you and your real estate brokerage sell last year? By asking this question, you’ll get a good idea of how much experience the practitioner has.

4. How many days did it take you to sell the average home? How did that compare to the overall market?

The REALTOR® you interview should have these facts on hand, and be able to present market statistics from the local MLS to provide a comparison. 

5. How close to the initial asking prices of the homes you sold were the final sale prices? This is one indication of how skilled the REALTOR® is at pricing homes and marketing to suitable buyers. Of course, other factors also may be at play, including an exceptionally hot or cool real estate market.

6. What types of specific marketing systems and approaches will you use to sell my home? You don’t want someone who’s going to put a For Sale sign in the yard and hope for the best. Look for someone who has aggressive and innovative approaches, and knows how to market your property competitively on the Internet. Buyers today want information fast, so it’s important that your REALTOR® is responsive.

7. Will you represent me exclusively, or will you represent both the buyer and the seller in the transaction? While it’s usually legal to represent both parties in a transaction, it’s important to understand where the practitioner’s obligations lie. Your REALTOR® should explain his or her agency relationship to you and describe the rights of each party.   

8. Can you recommend service providers who can help me obtain a mortgage, make home repairs, and help with other things I need done? Because REALTORS® are immersed in the industry, they’re wonderful resources as you seek lenders, home improvement companies, and other home service providers. Practitioners should generally recommend more than one provider and let you know if they have any special relationship with or receive compensation from any of the providers. 

9. What type of support and supervision does your brokerage office provide to you? Having resources such as in-house support staff, access to a real estate attorney, and assistance with technology can help an agent sell your home. 

10. What’s your business philosophy? While there’s no right answer to this question, the response will help you assess what’s important to the agent and determine how closely the agent’s goals and business emphasis mesh with your own.

11. How will you keep me informed about the progress of my transaction? How frequently? Again, this is not a question with a correct answer, but it reflects your desires. Do you want updates twice a week or do you not want to be bothered unless there’s a hot prospect? Do you prefer phone, e-mail, or a personal visit?  

12. Could you please give me the names and phone numbers of your three most recent clients?

Ask recent clients if they would work with this REALTOR® again. Find out whether they were pleased with the communication style, follow-up, and work ethic of the REALTOR®. 


* For more information about KSI Realty's licenses and how we can assist you as Realtors® with your next investment project(s) in Florida, visit: & You can also contact us at

To look for all properties available in:

> The greater Sarasota area, click here

> The greater Miami and the beaches area, click here

Tips for Finding the Perfect Neighborhood

by Kijner & Sons International Realty

Your neighborhood has a big impact on your lifestyle. Follow these steps from Kijner & Sons International Realty to find the perfect community to call home in Miami or Sarasota Florida

  • Is it close to your favorite spots? Make a list of the activities — movies, health club, church, etc. — you engage in regularly and stores you visit frequently. See how far you would have to travel from each neighborhood you’re considering to engage in your most common activities.
  • Check out the school district. This is especially important if you have children, but it also can affect resale value. The Department of Education in your town can probably provide information on test scores, class size, percentage of students who attend college, and special enrichment programs. If you have school-age children, visit schools in the neighborhoods you’re considering. Also, check out
  • Find out if the neighborhood is safe. Ask the police department for neighborhood crime statistics. Consider not only the number of crimes but also the type — such as burglaries or armed robberies — and the trend of increasing or decreasing crime. Also, is crime centered in only one part of the neighborhood, such as near a retail area?
  • Determine if the neighborhood is economically stable. Check with your local city economic development office to see if income and property values in the neighborhood are stable or rising. What is the percentage of homes to apartments? Apartments don’t necessarily diminish value, but do mean a more transient population. Do you see vacant businesses or homes that have been for sale for months? 
  • See if you’ll make money. Ask a local REALTOR® or call the local REALTOR® association to get information about price appreciation in the neighborhood. Although past performance is no guarantee of future results, this information may give you a sense of how good of an investment your home will be. A REALTOR® or the government planning agency also may be able to tell you about planned developments or other changes in the neighborhood — like a new school or highway — that might affect value.
  • Make personal observations. Once you’ve narrowed your focus to two or three neighborhoods, go there and walk around. Are homes tidy and well maintained? Are streets quiet? How does it feel? Pick a warm day if you can and chat with people working or playing outside.

Source: The National Association of Realtors® (NAR

Mark your calendar!

by Kijner & Sons International Realty


Mark your calendar! On March 26-27, is the second annual Florida Open House Weekend. More than 50,000 blue balloons featuring the Realtor® logo will be flying above mailboxes at open houses from the Panhandle to Key West. 

Kijner & Sons International Realty is pleased to announce the second annual Florida Open House Weekend to be held statewide March 26th and 27th! More than 50,000 blue balloons featuring the Realtor® logo will be flying above mailboxes at open houses across the wonderful Sunshine State.  

To learn more about this event and how, as a buyer, you can benefit from this amazing opportunity, contact us at To see all the properties available in the Sarasota and Miami Florida areas, just go to

Dealing with International Buyers, What You Should Consider?

by Kijner & Sons International Realty

Last month, Kijner & Sons International Realty shared with you the percentage of international buyers in Florida for 2010 (post that you can access here). As a Realtor®, there are several important elements that you should always consider when dealing with international clients to ensure a successful closing; those elements as you might imagine go far beyond language and cultural differences.

1)   As you might be aware, Real Estate is different from one country to the next and the American way of buy and selling homes through an MLS is quite unique. In most countries, there is no comprehensive, shared and detailed list of all properties available in a market at a given time. Thus, it is your role to make international prospects understand what is the MLS and how to use it to their benefits. Furthermore, in many foreign countries, there is no “Exclusive Right to Sell” agreement between a prospect and a broker as people can easily list their property with as many agencies as desired.

2)   Some foreigners in their home country will never go to an agency to sell or buy a property as there is no concept of “fiduciary relationship” or “due diligences” as we hear it. Instead, they will turn to friends and family or a recommended person for the search and closing parts of a transaction.

3)   Most international prospects do not always understand the existing cooperation between different brokerages; that is, when an agent turns to another brokerage house for a property that might interest the clients and that is not on his/her own listings. In the same way, foreigners might have a hard time with referrals (especially if the referral comes from another state).

4)   Last but not least, you should always keep in mind that international prospects need to go through more legal and administrative steps than regular Americans when purchasing a property in the US. In deed, they might need to open a bank account to wire their money from abroad. In addition, they might have to convert currency and will be waiting for the right time to do so in order to have greater purchasing power. To go even further, you need to ask yourself the right questions: do your clients possess the appropriate visa and residential status to acquire a property and/or reside in the US? Do they have certified professionals to help them throughout the process of acquiring a property (lawyers, CPAs…)? And the list goes on and one depending on each client and his/her investment project of course. 

Displaying blog entries 1-9 of 9




Kijner & Sons International Realty
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