Clients and Procuring Cause

No one owns a buyer. ¬†Buyers, unless obligated by a Buyer’s Broker Agreement, often move from agent to agent. ¬†After showing a property, there is a documentation created, but showing a property or sending information to a client doesn’t necessarily create an entitlement to the fee at closing.

What happens when one buyer is contacted by more than one agent…sometimes a number of agents, with the same information. ¬† In small areas, with a scarcity of listings and a higher than average number of agents, this can be a common problem.

Are clients loyal and what happens when a client talks to several agents….all feeling entitled to a fee? ¬†This does happen and can be awkward. ¬†I tend to take it in stride and understand the average client might know a dozen other local agents. ¬†The average buyer might think about friendship, professionalism, loyalty to a first contact or might prefer one agent’s personality over another. ¬†A salesperson’s skin grows thicker with time. ¬†I once worked with someone over a period of weeks, showing the same property 4 or 5 times. ¬†On a final showing, the client called ahead to ask me to prepare a rough contract. ¬†As listing agent, I felt fairly pleased to bring an offer to the owner, an out-of-state bank. ¬† Anyway, a family friend came along for the last showing, never identifying herself as an agent until we were about to sign the offer. ¬† Both buyer and agent made it very clear I was expected to grin and bear the bad behavior. ¬†We made the sale, I worked both sides and life went on. ¬†Was it fair? ¬†Probably not, but I had a choice. ¬†Make it work for the client or fight a losing battle. ¬†“Half a win” is better than a loss.

There is a point. ¬†Agents usually don’t own buyers. ¬†I’d love to think every buyer will stay with me through contract, but many call one agent, then another, then another… before finally signing a contract with a second, third or fourth agent. ¬† What about registrations? ¬†Builders sometimes pre-register clients, but what happens if another agent brings in the same buyer? ¬†In most cases, the agent considered the procuring cause is the agent/broker entitled to a fee. ¬† Who writes the offer? ¬†Which agent came last and which agent did the buyer point out? ¬†Which agent was instrumental and present when a decision was made? ¬† Was there a break in the relationship or was the contact continuous? ¬†Were you the only agent working with this client? ¬†What about a truly active buyer with “MANY” agents vying for attention? ¬†Get used to being only one of many. ¬†Procuring cause isn’t always clear and anything short of a written agreement for representation or presenting a signed offer, may not make you the procuring cause. ¬†¬†Just because I sent information to a client, doesn’t mean they’ll choose to work with me, I’m necessarily the procuring cause or they haven’t been contacted by any number of other agents before or after.

Development Property on Amelia Island

This is one of the most beautiful remaining parcels on Amelia Island.  With frontage on two streets, there is a potential for additional density.  The elevations are quite high for Amelia Island and much of the canopy is in near virgin condition.

Please keep in mind, the offering is for existing home and land…not a completed subdivision.

Call for more complete information, see this LINK for more current Loopnet Listing information or for an emailed NDA agreement, prior to recieving a full packet of information.

Affordable Waterfront!

Located minutes from Amelia Island, the views from this property are spectacular.  You’ll see pictures of the waterfront and interior at various tides.  The second picture shows a lower tide and the first a higher or near high tide.   If you look, the dock shown is on the neighboring property and shows just how near the bank is to navigable water.

Amazing views from this deep-water lot on Christopher Creek. 
Reduced by more than $20,000 to $156,000.00! 
This shouldn’t last!¬†
Short boat trip to the Southern End of Amelia Island, Nassau River or Intracoastal Waterway. 
Fish from your chair in the back yard! Great for Kayak, boating, fishing or paddle sports from the back yard.

Full MLS information……  Tract 42 Chistopher Lane


Fernandina Boat House…Mixed Use, Commercial Corner…Back on the Market

Second chances are sometimes uncommon.  This property, under contract for most of the last year, is suddenly very available.  Consider the views, location, proximity to a highly successful hotel and a number of very high quality restaurants. 041817_1429_DowntownFer1.jpg

Added Loopnet Listing Information….click here…30 South 2nd Street Boat House

This side of Centre Street is a little higher in elevation on 2nd Street and the views, assuming a buyer might want to build to optimize a view, are excellent.

The Dining Diversity Effect and 20 Reasons to Choose Fernandina

Real estate is often about location, but why does anyone choose to live in a community? ¬†I play tour guide to new residents and am still shocked by how much the community offers. ¬†If you think about the reasons someone might choose an area, diversity is a very big consideration. ¬†By diversity, I’m not talking about demographics, although Amelia Island is filled with people from all over the world. ¬† ¬†cropped-30-S-2nd-St_K2-Edit-2-1.jpg

Within 4 blocks of my office, an easy walk, there are more than 20 dining choices. ¬†If you don’t believe me, just search dining on “” and move the map to the Historic District of Fernandina. ¬† ¬†I lose track sometimes, but I’m never at a loss for lunch choices. ¬† The unusual quality, with only a single rating below 4 stars on Google Reviews, is unheard of in a small town.

  1. Arte Pizza
  2. Sabbia
  3. Cafe Karibo
  4. Timoti’s Seafood Shak
  5. Nana Teresa’s Bakery
  6. Hola Cuban Cafe
  7. Marina Seafood Restaurant
  8. 4th Street Deli
  9. Ciao Italian Bistro
  10. Amelia Tavern
  11. Peppers Mexican
  12. Pablo’s Mexican Restaurant and Bar
  13. Luca’s on Centre
  14. Lulu’s at the Thompson House
  15. Pi Infinite Creations Pizza
  16. Leddy’s Porch
  17. 29 South
  18. Espa√Īa
  19. Burlingame
  20. Brett’s Waterfront Cafe (closed for repairs?)
  21. The Patio Place
  22. Amelia Island Coffee
  23. The Picnic Basket
  24. Tasty’s Fresh Burger’s and Fries

Walk one more block and you’ll find T-Rays Burger Station, David’s Restaurant and Lounge or The 801 Kitchen and Bar. ¬† I’m not even counting the ice cream shops, Fantastic Fudge, small pubs like Pajama Dave’s Beergarden, Green Turtle, the Palace Saloon or even the numerous B&B’s with available dining.

If there are any Florida towns with more dining choices in a small area, please tell me. Otherwise, Fernandina wins the award for concentration of high quality dining. ¬† If you love trying different menus, it is encouraging to think you could stay on the island with a different dining choice each night for a full month. ¬† ¬† By far, the concentration of unique and affordable restaurants is inside the Historic District of Fernandina, but several notables are worth mentioning in the vicinity. ¬† The Sandbar just opened in the old Sandy Bottom’s location and should be worth a try. ¬† ¬†La Mancha is unique for the island and worth a trip on Sadler Road and I always enjoy Kabuki Japanese Restaurant and Sushi Bar; the only teppan style meals on Amelia Island.

Key Downtown Economic Driver…Fernandina Harbor Marina

Fuel for the local economy isn’t always actual “FUEL”, but a marina without nearby fuel is much more difficult to manage at a profit. ¬† After Hurricane Matthew, the marina in Downtown Fernandina Harbor Marina has been working at a fraction of it’s capacity. ¬†The fuel normally sold was interrupted by the damage and repairing the marina with fuel was an unknown.

After talking with the Westrec Marina Manager earlier, I’m encouraged by recent developments. ¬†A request for an extension of grants and the ability to repurpose a portion of the grant money to cover the fuel facility should mean we have fuel by December of this year. ¬†Why so much time? ¬†Well, the damaged equipment must be removed, new lines hung and precision tested.

What happens, other than restoring the fuel? ¬†Well, my wish would be to see the marina restored quickly, but expand the marina northward toward the port, while reconfiguring boat slips to minimize silt. ¬†If possible, I hope efforts to shift the breakwater west succeed and the marina is expanded north along Front Street. ¬† Do you see the green/blue roof in the picture above? ¬† The city owns riparian rights to expand into a deeper and less silt prone area. ¬†Shifting the marina breakwater west, expanding north and restoring fuel restores the marina in a way insuring future profits and economic impact for Downtown Fernandina. ¬†It also, if done correctly, should nearly eliminate the need to dredge every few years. ¬† ¬†About have the area between Brett’s and the Cook property is a natural mud flat and will always silt. ¬†In my opinion, every effort should be made to rebuild/repair our marina outside that natural mud flat…or we’ll just be building another expensive silt trap.

Understanding the idea of a nearby ammenity like a marina is key to understanding Fernandina.  Events like fishing tournaments and the MTOA visits each year are the most visible piece, but a full marina contributes significantly to downtown merchants.  Jobs are created and the money spent is multiplied here on the island.   A functioning marina, contributing an economic benefit to surrounding business the goal.

Enterprise Funds All About Bigger Picture

The following is a reply to a post on another local blog. ¬†Fernandina is an odd community. ¬†By that, I don’t mean the people are odd. ¬†It has an unusual economic base, maintenance needs and level of complexity, for a relatively small town. ¬†Understanding how the parts function and create a benefit greater than the sum of parts is important, when thinking about support or ownership of the enterprise funds. ¬† Yes, there is a struggle to avoid excessive supplementation of an enterprise fund, but seeing the bigger picture and the way the CoFB uses those areas to improve the island is extremely important.


I would look at the debt associated with the marina and economic impact on the island. There is a noticeable difference in the waterfront activity and quality of activity with a closed marina. I think the marina has been challenged by silt and location issues for a very long time, so

setting a deadline there is a difficult thing. Over the coming year, we are likely to see a shifted location and expanded marina, with potential for profit for both the CoFB and the operator. We need to fix the marina and consider the long-term debt before announcing a date support ends.

The golf course is improving and we have, potentially, several events surrounding the location. Between the airport car shows, the Bonhams location and the potential for future profits as we use the location to promote the town and, as a byproduct, the airport. Seeing the way some of these areas connect and allow the CoFB to control events is important. The CoFB holds the parking and location cards for much of the island. Our police and fire departments are called on to manage events and, IMHO, it is important to remember this, when considering how to handle areas like the Marina, Golf Course or Airport.

The parts are not necessarily as neutral as the dollars they take or produce. Yes, we need to work to make each area profitable, but we also need to remember the importance of economic impact and control of events/tourism on the island.

Since 2015, the city has sent $650,000 to the golf course and $886,000 to the marina to help fund operations, according to budget documents posted on the city website. The money comes from the general fund, which largely relies on property taxes for revenue.

Source: City Manager Sets Timer on Funding for Golf Club, Marina | NCFL Independent 7/25/2017

Mermaids and Pirates….We sometimes forget how lucky we are to live here….

Today, I’m reading through a few blog posts, like the one below and am reminded of how fortunate we are to live here. ¬† I’m a native and there are times when I think of the old days with beach driving and shrimp boat races. ¬† That said, we still live in a paradise. ¬†Slow to be discovered, the momentum and change here on the island is increasing each year.

I’ve been to a number of beach communities in Florida and I still love Fernandina most of all. ¬† We have the history and pirates, but we have something a little more unique. ¬†The people are used to the diverse population. ¬† Every day I walk around the Historic District, I think about how many countries and nationalities are represented here. ¬† Eight flags is one way to think about our past, but we are more diverse by the day.

Once upon a time, I had a reason for wanting to go to Amelia Island. But that was long ago, and the reason has been lost, and now I only have ‚ÄúAmelia Island‚ÄĚ written on a list of someday destinations, like a forgotten address on a slip of paper tucked into an old book. But¬†[‚Ķ]

via Mermaids and Pirates | Amelia Island, FL ‚ÄĒ This Land, This Year

Selling a Crooked House on a Crooked Street

The title sounds nice, but the real point is in selling something different.  Sales always comes down to price, scarcity of the product andimage demand for the product.  Selling cookie cutter homes is difficult.   A crooked or unique location, is far easier to sell, if that quality is still desirable.

I found this structure a few years ago, when looking at a property for a potential client. ¬† It isn’t much, but I was drawn to the vertical boards and, in an odd way, thought it was an almost attractive deterioration. ¬† The more I thought about it, I realized I everyone is drawn to texture and differences. ¬†As long as the design falls inside a marketable range, unique is easier to sell.


SPAM Real Estate Mailings….Don’t do it!

Ticks and Spam…not good!

I’ve been writing about real estate, social media and my hometown, for more than 10 years. ¬†In that time, I’ve learned a little about networking and made my share of mistakes. ¬† Occasionally, I see someone absolutely determined to repeat mistakes. ¬† ¬†No names are being used, but I hope to point out how annoying it is to harass your entire address book with unsolicited email, no matter how much you might want the business. ¬†Anyway, an agent, living out of the area, is suddenly sending email solicitations to me every other day. ¬† ¬†Instead of blocking the SPAM, I thought I’d try to understand the logic or lack of logic in sending out completely unsolicited and pointless e-mail. ¬†We just came back from a trip to an area in tick season. ¬† Spam reminds me of the ticks on our vacation.

One early email was an inquiry. ¬†It makes some sense, if it isn’t going to a broker and, at first glance, it wasn’t terrible. ¬†Other than being a list of the steps in selling, it was bland, but closed by implying every other agent just “sticks a sign” in the yard. ¬†I’m left wondering how many other agents seeing this email, are feeling a bit annoyed after reading. ¬†A few minutes later, “SPAM Email #2” ¬†came through. ¬†This email, obviously not a fit for me, says so much has changed in this industry over the last few years, I really should consider their website for all real estate searches. ¬†In the last few days, four more emails arrived from the same agent. ¬†Each email is targeting a different kind of client and I obviously don’t want the “valuable information”.

I’m laughing a little at the emails, but, ¬†in my opinion as a broker, clients should “NEVER USE AN AGENT’S PERSONAL WEBSITE” for listing searches. ¬† National sites like ,, actually provide unique and valuable information. ¬†Can I provide more if you call? ¬†Always! ¬†I have access to paid subscriptions and can generate values or see listings in ways a non-subscriber couldn’t access. ¬† There just isn’t much point in directing a client to a separate site, unless the broker/agent wants to capture your name and contact information. ¬†Client time is better spent on one of the national portals or creating a true targeted alert. ¬† ¬†Are the individual agent or office portals valuable? ¬†Yes, if no other resources existed online. ¬† ¬†Saved searches and notifications from MLS are worth using. ¬† These are often faster than the national portals and usually provide more property detail as well as an early alert advantage over competing buyers.