Want to give your outdoor living space a makeover but on a budget and don’t know where to start? Don’t fret, some string lights and an outdoor rug can transform your space in no time. Read on for more backyard furniture ideas that will transform your lackluster backyard into the ultimate summer hangout spot--without breaking the budget!
1. Build a DIY Deck
If you have a lot of green space but need somewhere to display your Traeger grill and wicker egg chair, start your backyard remodel with a DIY Deck. A deck can instantly give your yard more functionality and ambience, while adding value into your home. Add a simple DIY deck on a budget with this step-by-step guide and continue reading for our simple but effective decoration ideas.
2. Roll Out an Outdoor Rug
To adorn your beautifully crafted deck, consider displaying an outdoor area rug to add in some colors and patterns and give your deck a new look, without committing to repainting/restaining your existing space. Machine washable rugs are probably your best bet for an outdoor space, especially if you have kids, dogs, or frequent parties/gatherings.
3. Add Decorative Planters
Liven up your backyard or deck with a few decorative planters! Planters are super versatile products that allow you to house a variety of different plants in a shared space and bring individual character and charm to a bleak environment. Of course, accompanying your planters with vibrant and colorful plants makes your space feel bright and inviting.
Learn how to irrigate your Florida lawn, save money and conserve water, all without resorting to a wasteful sprinkler system. Read more >>
4. Hang Solar String Lights
If you're looking to have a beautiful backyard, we recommend investing in some outdoor string lights. Lights can easily elevate your space and give your deck a warm, welcome glow at an inexpensive price point. If you have a little more money in the budget, we recommend looking into solar powered lights, as they won’t impact your electricity bill since they store up energy from the sun.
5. Suspend a Hammock
To take advantage of your renovated yard, suspend a cozy hammock between two trees for ultimate relaxation. If you don’t have two trees sturdy enough to hold a hammock, you can also purchase an affordable hammock with a stand to replicate the same cozy vibes.
6. Install/Build a Fire Pit
Roast some marshmallows on your beautiful deck, complete with a new fire pit. You can impress your friends by building your own stone fire pit or buying a budget-friendly metal fire pit. Either of these options will complete your picture perfect summer yard, but make sure you provide enough comfortable seating to make s'mores and sing songs around the campfire.
If you are feeling motivated to keep renovating after your backyard summer makeover, don’t forget to check out our blog post on how to make your home look expensive on a budget! We hope you enjoyed our backyard furniture ideas, summer edition. Check out the Rabell Podcast for more tips on backyard makeovers on a budget.
Get ready to revitalize your mind, body, and spirit at Rabell Realty Group's exciting "Fit for Fun" event! Hosted by the dynamic duo of Kristen and Rebecca, Rabell Realty is inviting you to join them on September 23, 2023, from 9 am to 12 pm at their office for a morning of health-focused activities and a chance to explore the world of wellness.
This event isn't just about real estate; it's about nurturing your well-being. We've lined up five amazing health-oriented vendors to guide you on your journey to a healthier and happier you. Let's dive into the exciting lineup!
Rose Quartz Wellness Spa:
Start your day of wellness with a splash of relaxation! Rose Quartz Wellness Spa is offering 15-minute free massages to ease your tension and soothe your muscles. Plus, if you decide to book a massage on the same day, they'll sweeten the deal with a fantastic discount. Don't miss this opportunity to pamper yourself!
Explore the world of CBD oils with Halo Health. Their knowledgeable team will be on hand to educate you about the benefits of CBD and showcase their high-quality products. Discover how CBD can fit into your wellness routine and experience the potential benefits firsthand.
GWP Physical Therapy:
Think physical therapy is just for athletes? Think again! GWP Physical Therapy is here to break down misconceptions and show you that their services are for everyone. Learn about the importance of maintaining your physical health and how GWP can help you lead a more active and pain-free life.
Soda Fit Foot:
Elevate your fitness game with Soda Fit Foot's stunning fitness apparel and footwear. Whether you're hitting the gym, going for a run, or practicing yoga, they have the perfect gear to keep you looking and feeling great. Explore their latest collections and find your perfect fit!
Mental health is a crucial component of overall well-being, and Sage Wellness is here to support you. They offer counseling services to help you navigate life's challenges and achieve mental clarity and balance. Discover the power of holistic wellness with their expert guidance.
Don't forget to bring your friends and family along for this exciting event! There will be something for everyone to enjoy, from relaxation and rejuvenation to learning about new ways to improve your well-being.
Mark your calendars for September 23, 2023, and join us at Rabell Realty Group's office. Kristen and Rebecca can't wait to welcome you to this fantastic morning of health and wellness. Let's make wellness a priority and have a blast while doing it!
Stay tuned for more updates and information about our "Fit for Fun" event. See you there!
Hey there, all you fabulous first-time homebuyers! If you're looking for the perfect place to plant your roots, look no further than vibrant Gainesville – one of the fastest-growing cities in the country. Despite those high interest rates, there are affordable options if you know where to look. We’re here to show you some Alachua County neighborhoods that make sense for first-time homebuyers in the current market.
Pleasant Street and Duckpond
Let's start with the charming and historic neighborhoods Pleasant Street and Duckpond. If you want historic charm in your first home, these two neighborhoods should be on your radar.
The Pleasant Street area and Duckpond were built up before major developments came to town, and are the richer in architecture and walkability for it. Tree-lined streets and wraparound porches complete with rocking chairs lend these neighborhoods a sociable, laid back vibe.
The Duckpond is popular with professors and other professionals, while Pleasant Street tends a little more toward graduate students and first-time homebuyers with young families. Pleasant Street has deep roots in the African American community and was an important center of activity during the civil rights era.
Both neighborhoods are walking distance to Downtown Gainesville, where you have ample access to restaurants, shopping, and entertainment. Closer at hand, locals support a weekly farmer’s market at Cypress & Grove brewpub, and a growing hub for all things vintage -- from arcade games to clothes -- along the NW 8th Ave corridor.
Well-maintained Victorian homes abound in the Duckpond. In Pleasant Street you’ll find smaller Victorians and Florida vernacular style cottages.. If finding a first home with character and charm is a priority, the homes here will fit the bill. Many were built in the early part of the previous century.
Gainesville’s beloved Bed and Breakfast District is located in the historic Southeast neighborhood of the city. Read more >>
High Springs is a growing suburb of Gainesville that’s worth a look for first-time buyers. It's located ten minutes past Alachua on 441, about thirty-five minutes from downtown Gainesville and the University of Florida, and still within the excellent Alachua County School District. Not only are High Springs homes affordable, they’re typically set on larger lots with lower taxes and utility bills.
The nearby springs draw tourists from all over for the canoeing, river tubing, cave diving, and camping. But High Springs is more than just outdoor fun. Locals don’t have to travel far to enjoy nice restaurants, the High Springs Brewing Company which hosts events throughout the week, and the High Springs Farmer’s Market, which takes place every Friday afternoon.
All in all, High Springs is a great place to stretch out and put down roots.
At the higher end of the affordable range we have Grand Oaks, Southwest Gainesville’s next great residential community. It's got everything you need and more – a convenient location near I-75, great restaurants, shops, and entertainment at nearby Celebration Pointe and Town of Tioga. Plus, you have access to lots of green space, a pavilion with a pool and a playground.
Grand Oaks is going to be a great neighborhood to raise kids. Along with the amenities we touched on above, the neighborhood is zoned for A-rated Chiles Elementary.
New construction homes are available now with an additional 80-85 homes slated for 2024. If you’re interested in seeing these beautiful homes in person, we invite you to call or text Kristen Rabell at 352-213-6760 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Exciting news from Gainesville, Florida’s Grand Oaks development! As the community enters the second phase of construction, we are thrilled to announce that there are 44 beautiful homes or lots available for sale between the builders represented by Rabell, and more on the way. Read more >>
Blues Creek is another quiet and friendly place to raise a family in Northwest Gainesville. Blues Creek is zoned for Talbot Elementary.
Residents enjoy access to a pool and tennis courts. If that weren’t enough, the community is surrounded by lush greenery, with Blues Creek Ravine to the southwest, and San Felasco Hammock Preserve State Park, Devil’s Millhopper Geological State Park, and Possum Creek all nearby, so there are plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation.
Blues Creek’s compact footprint and modest HOA fees are the secret to the community’s affordability. That smaller land area also means you need to act quickly if a home becomes available.
Looking for some charming Southern small-town vibes? Look no further than Micanopy! Only 10 miles south of Gainesville, this place is as quaint and charming as can be.
Micanopy’s lovingly preserved historic homes are situated on some of the most beautiful Spanish-moss covered roads in Florida. Majestic Payne’s Prairie borders Micanopy to the northwest.And with its convenient access to I-75 and SR 441, you'll never feel far from the action.
The tree-lined historic district supports a handful of antique shops and restaurants. It’s no wonder the Huffington Post included Micanopy in its list of the 12 Cutest Small Towns in America.
Given its storied history and proximity to the University of Florida, University Park is a surprisingly affordable option. And for a neighborhood so close to campus, University Park is a peaceful, quiet place to put down roots.
One of the oldest neighborhoods in Gainesville, University Park boasts a lush tree canopy that helps keep the neighborhood cool during the hot months. Locals enjoy easy access to the Paynes Prairie Preserve, the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens, the Harn Museum, the Florida Museum of Natural History, and much more.
Downtown Gainesville is walking distance and offers a wealth of dining, shopping, and entertainment options. If you're a Gators fan, you'll appreciate the proximity to Ben Griffin Stadium and its many events.
Now, I know being a first-time homebuyer can be a bit overwhelming, but don't fret! We're here to help you navigate this exciting journey! Before you start the house hunt, you will want to get your financial ducks in a row, evaluate your credit score, and create a budget. When you’re ready to get serious about your search, getting pre-approved by a mortgage lender is key. Lenders will look closely at your credit, employment history, and debt-to-income ratio. It's important to learn the expectations for a down payment and what your closing costs will include. In addition to monthly mortgage payments, homeowners pay property taxes and mortgage insurance.
Gainesville is a perfect place to buy a first home. It's bustling with a robust housing market and many unique neighborhoods to give you all the options you might want as first-time homebuyers. But you don't have to do it all alone! Reach out to Rabell Realty Group to connect with an experienced real estate agent. We can help you with first-time homeowner down payment assistance programs and any other resources you may need. Contact us today, and together, we'll find your perfect first home! 🎉
As the summer draws to a close and the back-to-school season approaches, there's no better way to celebrate than with a fun-filled community event! We are thrilled to invite you to the Back-to-School Snow Cone Social, hosted by Rabell Realty Group, Darr Schackow Insurance and Advisors Mortgage Group. Set to take place on August 11th from 3:30pm until 5:00pm at the Rabell Realty office, this event promises to be an afternoon of delightful entertainment, refreshing treats, and memorable family moments.
Live Music by The Medicine Show
Get ready to tap your feet and groove to the rhythm of live music performed by The Medicine Show. This talented local band will set the stage ablaze with their energetic and captivating melodies, ensuring that everyone has a fantastic time. Their eclectic mix of genres guarantees that there will be something for everyone to enjoy, making it a perfect opportunity for families and friends to come together and have a blast.
Delicious Snow Cones from Charlie's Snow Shack
No summer celebration is complete without icy treats to beat the heat! We are excited to have Charlie's Snow Shack on board, bringing their delectable snow cones to the event. Whether you prefer classic flavors or adventurous combinations, Charlie's Snow Shack has a wide range of options to satisfy your taste buds. Indulge in these vibrant, flavorful treats while catching up with friends and neighbors, creating lasting memories with every refreshing bite.
Engaging Family Games
In addition to the live music and mouth watering snow cones, we have planned an array of exciting family games to add an extra dose of fun to the event. From extra large connect four to cornhole, there will be something for all ages to enjoy. Gather your loved ones and challenge each other to friendly competitions, fostering a sense of camaraderie and community spirit. With laughter and cheer filling the air, the Back-to-School Snow Cone Social promises to be a joyous occasion for everyone involved.
Join Us for an Unforgettable Afternoon
The Back-to-School Snow Cone Social is an excellent opportunity to bid farewell to the summer and welcome the upcoming school year with open arms. Hosted by Rabell Realty Group and sponsored by Darr Schackow Insurance and Advisors Mortgage Group, this event promises to bring our community together for an afternoon of laughter, music, and camaraderie. Mark your calendars for August 11th from 3:30pm until 5:00pm, and head on over to the Rabell Realty office for an unforgettable time.
We look forward to seeing you and your family at the event! Spread the word, invite your friends and neighbors, and let's make this Back-to-School Snow Cone Social an incredible success. Together, we can create lasting memories and celebrate the start of a new academic year in style!
Alachua County is embracing a new era of sustainable planning with its recent changes to the Landscape Irrigation Design and Maintenance Standards. The revised code, which went into effect on June 12, 2023, marks an important milestone in water conservation efforts and sets an example for North Florida.
Here's what new construction homeowners need to know about the new rules, along with some ideas for creatively adapting your landscape in the Gainesville area.
What You Need to Know
The Alachua County Commission has limited the area that can be permanently irrigated to 50% of the permeable area, with a maximum irrigated footprint of 0.25 acres per residential lot. These changes ensure that new irrigation systems and additions to existing systems adhere to the new efficiency standards, which must receive a permit before installation. Alachua County also requires irrigation companies to register their businesses with the County and make sure their practices align with the latest guidelines.
Why Is This Happening?
Water conservation lies at the heart of these code revisions, aiming to combat the growing trend of what Alachua County officials consider over-irrigation in new construction communities.
Stacie Greco, the Water Resources Program Manager at Alachua County Environmental Protection Department, highlights the significance of this step in reducing water consumption. “Since almost 60% of residential water use occurs in our landscapes, this is an important step for reducing water use,” Greco said. “The water savings will not only help save our springs and groundwater supply but will also save homeowners money on their utility bills.”
Fertilizer from over-irrigated lawns running off into the groundwater and tourist-friendly springs is another problem the new rules aim to address.
Water Conservation Ideas for New Construction Homeowners in Alachua County
Now, you might be wondering, what are the options for homeowners to embrace these changes without losing their beautiful landscaping? Below we discuss a few alternatives to sprinklers that not only conserve water but also enhance the beauty and functionality of your landscape:
Native and Drought-Tolerant Plants
Embrace the natural beauty of Alachua County by incorporating native and drought-tolerant plants into your landscape design. These plants are adapted to the local climate and require minimal irrigation once established. Drought-tolerant species such as palms and Florida-native grasses like fakahatchee and cordgrass are excellent choices that can thrive with limited water. Low maintenance annuals and perennials include aloe, blue daze, black eyed susan, rosemary, lavender and many more.
For more tips on choosing drough-resistant plants, check out the University of Florida Extension’s blog article on Florida-friendly landscaping.
Capture the abundant rainfall in Alachua County by installing a rainwater harvesting system. Collecting rainwater in barrels or cisterns allows you to reuse it for irrigation purposes during hotter or drier periods. It's a sustainable and cost-effective solution that reduces reliance on municipal water sources.
Efficient Irrigation Techniques
If you prefer some form of irrigation, consider more water-efficient methods like drip irrigation or micro-sprinklers. These systems deliver water directly to the root zones of plants, minimizing evaporation and runoff. Additionally, smart irrigation controllers equipped with weather sensors can adjust watering schedules based on real-time weather conditions, further optimizing water usage.
Check for broken or clogged sprinkler heads and nozzles
Determine if any sprinkler heads need raising or straightened to ensure correct coverage
Test and clean rain/freeze sensor
Examine Backflow Preventer
Clean filters for drip irrigation (if applicable)
By staying on top of maintenance, you can rest assured that your irrigation system will continue to perform optimally and save you money on water.
Mulch is a superhero in water conservation. By applying a layer of organic mulch around your plants and shrubs, you can significantly reduce water evaporation from the soil, maintain soil moisture levels, and suppress weed growth. Organic materials like wood chips or shredded leaves make excellent mulching options.
Grand Oaks: Embracing Water Conservation in Alachua County
Grand Oaks is a brand new residential community in Southwest Gainesville, with convenient access to tons of retail, restaurants, and I-75. Grand Oaks amenities include access to ample green space, a covered pavilion with a pool and playground, and proximity to new retail offerings.
Phase 1 and Phase 2 are on the market now. Phase 3 of the development, set to be completed in 2024, will comply with the new irrigation standards in creative ways. Grand Oaks builders are embracing the new rules by designing landscaping with drought and heat tolerant zoysia grass and Florida-friendly landscaping.
As real estate professionals, we encourage homeowners to make the most of these changes by adopting water-wise landscaping practices. Not only will you contribute to water conservation efforts, but you'll also create stunning, resilient landscapes that add value to your property.
Let's embrace this new chapter in Alachua County's journey toward a greener future. Together, we can protect our water resources and create sustainable communities for generations to come!
Scalloping is a tradition every Floridian has to experience, and there's nothing quite like snagging those succulent bay scallops right from their cozy seagrass beds. It's a treasure hunt like no other!
The season in Florida is a relatively short window and you don't want to miss the opportunity to score the freshest of bay scallops from the seashore.
If you live in North Florida and are looking for opportunities for family fun, it's time to learn more about scallop season. Read on to learn more.
What Are Scallops?
The Florida Bay Scallop is a Bivalve Mollusk that grows in the seagrass beds of the Gulf of Mexico. These scallops filter the salt water for nutrients that suspend in the water column and fall into the seagrass once they are fully developed.
Bivalvia means that the scallop has two halves to its shell, which the scallop will open and close when it sees shadows in the water. Interestingly, the bay scallop has blue eyes which are used to monitor the light around it.
Our Florida bay scallops live fast and die young, rarely making it past a year of age. But in that short time, they grow their shells to an average size of three inches. And they've got style too—their top shells sport a dark mottled color while the bottoms shine bright white.
They also open their shells to eat and breathe. The bay scallop opens its shell and filters algae out of the water when they eat. They also pull oxygen from the water so they can breathe using gills inside their shell.
Scallop Season in Florida
Most people are familiar with scallops because of their delicious sweet flavor. It's the reason that Florida's scalloping is an annual tradition dating back to at least 900 AD.
Each summer thousands of locals and visitors alike travel to various locations around the state to partake in this activity. The scallop season runs from Pasco County through the Florida Panhandle in Gulf County along the west coast of Florida.
Florida Regional Bay Scallop Season 2023
The scallop harvesting season takes place in the greater bay region of central Florida's west coast waters. It runs from July 1 to nearly the end of September in different sections of the west coastline.
Franklin and Northwest Taylor Country have their scallop season from July 1 to August 24. Likewise, Levy, Citrus, and Hernando Counties' scallop season run during the same period.
The Fenholloway and Suwannee River Zone scallop season runs from June 15 through Labor Day. Pasco County scallop season starts the third Friday in July and runs for ten days.
If you're looking for a late-season chance at scallops, the Gulf County season runs from August 16 to September 24.
Gulf County Zone
Franklin - NW Taylor County
Fenholloway - Suwanne River Zone
Levy, Citrus and Hernando Counties
Pasco County Zone
What You Need to Do to Be Ready for Scallop Season
If you're ready to give this activity a try, it's important to know a few things. You need a license, in some circumstances, and the right equipment for a successful experience.
Here's what you need to know to be ready for scalloping season.
Florida Fishes Licenses
Now, before you dive headfirst into this scalloping extravaganza, let's cover the essentials.
First, if you're wading along the shore, no fishing license is needed. But if you're venturing out on a private boat, grab yourself a Florida saltwater fishing license.
Or, for a hassle-free option, join a scallop tour boat—they'll take care of the license and even provide the necessary equipment.
Daily Bag Limits
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission carefully monitors the bay scallop population from year to year. It seems the scallop population has a natural ebb and flow in density that varies over a five to seven-year period.
Because of this they do have bag limits restricting how much you can harvest at any one time. These limits include:
Gulf-NW Taylor County and Levy-Pasco County
Per Person: 2 gallons of whole bay scallops in shell or 1 pint of bay scallop meat
Per Vessel: Max of 10 gallons of whole bay scallops in shell or 1⁄2 gallon bay scallop meat (1⁄2 gallon = 4 pints)
Fenholloway through Suwannee River Zone
From June 15 30:
Per Person: 1-gallon whole bay scallops in shell or one cup shucked
Per Vessel: Max of 5 gallons whole or 2 pints shucked
From July 1 Labor Day:
Per Person: 2 gallons of whole bay scallops in shell or 1 pint of bay scallop meat
Per Vessel: Max of 10 gallons of whole bay scallops in shell, or 1⁄2 gallon bay scallop meat (1⁄2 gallon = 4 pints)
Individuals can't exceed their limits even when aboard a scalloping vessel.
Summer in Florida wouldn’t be complete without epic downpours, magnolia blossoms, and the intoxicating smell of food cooking on the grill. But hang on a second there, partner. Barbecue grills present many safety risks that even the most seasoned grill masters may not be aware of. Read more >>
To catch scallops from the water, you'll need some specific supplies and you need to be ready to get into the water to look for them.
The most prepared scallop fisherman has:
Small dip net
Mesh scallop bag
Once you harvest a scallop, it's important to keep it wet until you get to shore and are ready to clean them up. They are highly sensitive to going without water.
You can place them on ice, but not in ice water as it will almost immediately kill the scallop. Keeping them on ice will make preparing them easier once you get to shore since they're more likely to keep their shells open.
How to Harvest Scallops
To make your scalloping adventure a success, equip yourself with a small dip net, mask, snorkel, fins, mesh scallop bag, dive bag, and gloves. And don't forget to keep those scallops wet until you're ready to clean them—these little beauties don't like going without water.
When you're out in the water, keep an eye out for scallops in four to eight feet of water near the seagrass edges. Snorkel over, scoop 'em up with your trusty dip net, and stash them in your mesh bag. But beware of their pinch—they can close their shells faster than a bidding war on a beachfront property!
Scallop Harvesting Along Western Florida's Coasts
Every Floridian should have the experience at least once of diving and catching bay scallops straight from Florida's coast. The season is now so give it a try.
Hello, Gainesville homeowners! Welcome to the 'Stay Indoors' edition of Gainesville living. Are you feeling the heat? With summer in full swing, it's time to explore your energy-saving options and transform your home into a cool oasis while getting those utility bills in check.
As a Florida-based real estate team, we're here to share some valuable tips and ideas that will help you transform your Gainesville abode into an energy-efficient haven. From insulation upgrades and HVAC system improvements to harnessing the power of the Florida sun, we've got all the information you need!
Insulate and Chill
When you think of insulation, you might envision a cozy pink blanket that keeps your home warm during the winter months. However, insulation plays a crucial role in keeping the cool air inside during summer and preventing unwanted heat from seeping in. That’s why ensuring proper insulation in your attic, walls, and floors is essential.
Insulation tends to settle and thin over time, becoming less effective. Refreshing your insulation means it takes less energy to keep your home cool. It’s a cost-effective home improvement that pays off in greater comfort and lower summer electric bills.
HVAC Heroes: Upgrade Your System and Regularly Change the Filters
Your trusty HVAC system works hard to keep you cool when the summer heat tries to sneak its way in. But is it up to the task?
Consider upgrading to a more energy-efficient model that will save you both money and stress. Look for units with high SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) ratings, smart thermostats, and zoning capabilities to cool specific areas of your home. Switching to a high-efficiency air conditioner can reduce your energy use by 20% to 50%, according to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, and could net you a federal tax break of 30% of the cost (up to $600).
Regularly changing your HVAC system's air filter is also crucial. Replace the filter once every two months during the hot months and once every three months for the rest of the year. Dust and dander build-up strains the system, causing it to draw more power to compensate. Neglecting to change those filters regularly reduces energy efficiency, leading to higher energy bills.
Creating natural shade around your property is an elegant way to maximize your home's energy efficiency. While trees and shrubs take time to grow, they offer long-term benefits.
Strategically planted trees and shrubs provide relief from the intense Florida sun by reflecting the heat that would otherwise reach your home. The shade and water vapor produced by trees and other landscaping elements can lower the surrounding temperature by as much as 6° F, according to the Department of Energy.
Shade trees not only keep your interiors cooler but also allow you to enjoy your outdoor space more. Cool air settles near the ground, making the area directly under trees as much as 25°F cooler than nearby blacktop.
While we’re on the subject of outdoor spaces, we invite you to take a brief detour to consider the benefits of transforming your lawn into a beautiful sprinkler-free – and cost-efficient – landscape.
Learn how to irrigate your Florida lawn, save money and conserve water, all without resorting to a wasteful sprinkler system. Read more >>
Window Wonders: Treatments and Upgrades
Windows are your home's eyes to the world, but they can also be major energy wasters. Upgrade to energy-efficient windows that are designed to block heat and UV rays while keeping the cool air inside.
Duke Energy’s window replacement program offers homeowners who make upgrades a rebate of $2 per square foot of window area (up to $400) on east, west and south-facing windows.
You can also reduce the need for air-conditioning by installing window treatments such as blinds, shades, or curtains to further enhance your home's insulation and reduce heat gain during the sunny days.
Let the Sun Shine: Solar Panels
Installing solar panels is a great long-term investment in energy efficiency. By generating your own electricity, you can keep your home comfortably cool while lowering your electric bills over time. It’s also a fantastic way to reduce your carbon footprint.
With the region boasting an average of 64% sunlight per day and a 9.7-year solar payback period, Gainesville is an ideal location for going solar. Numerous solar incentives are available to homeowners in the Gainesville area, offered by state agencies and power companies, making solar energy an attractive option.
GRU offers a net metering program, where customers who install photovoltaic (PV) systems for their home can connect with the GRU grid and receive credit for the surplus solar energy they produce.
Here are a few more available incentives:
Florida Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) programs
30% federal tax credit for systems placed in service after 12/31/2021 and before 01/01/2033. Good for: solar water heat, solar photovoltaics, biomass, geothermal heat pumps, wind (small), fuel cells using renewable fuels.
As a savvy homeowner in Gainesville, you have the power to make your home more energy-efficient and beat the summer heat. By implementing these tips and ideas, from harnessing solar power to upgrading insulation and HVAC systems, you'll create a comfortable and sustainable sanctuary while saving money on your utility bills. So, embrace the sunshine, unleash your inner energy-saving superhero, and enjoy a refreshingly cool home all summer long!
Remember, Rabell is here to assist you with all your real estate needs. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions or require professional guidance on buying an energy-efficient home. Stay cool and keep your energy bills in check!
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as professional advice. Always consult with qualified professionals for personalized recommendations based on your specific circumstances.
Looking for the perfect Gainesville neighborhood? Look no further than Oakmont, a luxurious subdivision in Gainesville, Florida. This neighborhood has it all: a built-in community, tons of family-friendly amenities, and of course, an awesome pool! In this article, we'll explore the highlights of living in Oakmont, which easily made our list of Gainesville's Best Neighborhoods.
1. Picture-Perfect Location
Oakmont is nestled in a quiet corner of SW Gainesville, surrounded by lightly developed countryside. It's a peaceful oasis spread over 550 acres – 45 of which are set aside as a permanent nature preserve – that’s still within easy reach of major highways, Butler Plaza, restaurants, and more.
Oakmont is all about community. You'll find friendly neighbors, charming streets with sidewalks and benches, and endless opportunities to make friends. From group fitness classes to casual chats by the pool, Oakmont knows how to bring people together and create lasting memories.
Oakmont’s community development district, or CDD, is the first of its kind in Gainesville, and covers the cost of amenities as well as community programming, including seasonal festivals like the annual Easter egg hunt, guided exercise classes, family movie nights and much more.
3. Resort-Style Amenities
Oakmont is an active community. The complete fitness center plays host a variety of group classes. You also have exclusive access to basketball and tennis courts, volleyball nets, and a multipurpose activity field.
Now, let's talk about the star attraction: the resort-style pool! The Olympic size swimming pool features lap lanes for the aspiring olympians and a splash pad for the kiddos. Surrounded by swaying palm trees and beautiful landscaping, it's the perfect spot to beat the heat.
4. Fun for the Whole Family
Oakmont is an attractive option for young families. With amenities like a playground, sports facilities, walking trails and bike lanes, everyone can stay active and entertained. It's a fantastic way to spend quality time together and stay healthy -- without having to get in the car and deal with traffic hassles.
For a change of scenery, head on over to neighboring Celebration Pointe, which features a walkable town plaza ringed by shops, restaurants, a movie theater, and a dog park.
Families with little ones can opt to enroll them at top-rated Chiles Elementary or Terwilliger, Gainesville’s newest elementary school, which opened in 2021 to ease crowding.
5. Nature at Your Doorstep
Gainesville is known for its natural beauty, and Oakmont residents have easy access to lush state parks, nature reserves, and hiking trails. If we had to narrow it down to just three day trip ideas, they would have to be:
Devil’s Millhopper - shaded trails wind down a collapsed sinkhole / miniature rainforest ecosystem.
Sweeter Wetlands Preserve - 3.5 miles of boardwalks, observation decks and raised trails allow visitors to observe wildlife from close up without interfering with the natural habitat.
Gainesville-Hawthorne trail through Payne’s Prairie - 16 miles of level trails, much of it shaded
Oakmont's amenities signal luxury and exclusivity, complete with a fantastic pool and amenities galore. So you might be surprised by how affordable some of the homes are. Oakmont actually supports a variety of budgets and home sizes. If homes are availabe, they'll be listed below, so be sure to bookmark this page and check back often. Happy house hunting!
[listings title="Newest Oakmont Homes for Sale" qs="hood=365376&sort=importdate&status=A" propcount="6"]
Exciting news from Gainesville, Florida's Grand Oaks development! As the community enters the second phase of construction, we are thrilled to announce that there are 44 beautiful homes or lots available for sale between the builders represented by Rabell, and more on the way. With phase 3 in the works and slated for completion in 2024, this development will ultimately offer a total of 304 stunning homes.
Grand Oaks, Gainesville's Next Great Neighborhood
Grand Oaks is perfectly situated between Newberry Road and Archer Road, close to national retailers, restaurants, nature preserves, and a brand new mixed-use development.
The homes range from 1,700 to 2,200 square feet and start in the high $300k range, making them affordable for many. Each home boasts luxurious features such as LVP flooring, 9-foot ceilings, quartz counters in the kitchen and bathrooms, tiled floors in the bathrooms, and decorative niches.
Plus, Grand Oaks residents have access to green spaces, a covered pavilion with a pool and playground, and proximity to new retail offerings. These amenities are currently open and being enjoyed by residents.
A-Rated Public Schools
For families with children, Grand Oaks is located in the highly regarded Alachua County School District, with schools such as Chiles Elementary, Fort Clarke Middle, and Buchholz High School and Fort Clarke High School all receiving an A rating.
The Weseman Family: Trusted Names in Gainesville Building
The Weseman family, with over 150 years of experience in the Alachua County/North Central Florida area, is behind the development of Grand Oaks. Their team of builders, including Michael Weseman and Gary Weseman, offer a range of spacious floor plans ranging from 3 to 4 bedrooms, with added upgrades, luxury finishes, and smart home additions that surpass other builders in the SW Gainesville market in craftsmanship and attention to detail.
Mixed-Use Development Next Door: Markets West at Tower Road
Markets West is a 16.5-acre mixed-use development that will bring retail and office space to this desirable pocket of Southwest Gainesville. The development is part of the Grand Oaks master plan spanning 135 acres, which includes over 300 homes and 248 multi-family units.
You'll love the convenience of Markets West with entrances at both Tower Road and SW 24th Ave. They're even adding a new east-west road to connect the two, making access smoother and reducing congestion.
The first businesses to sign on include O2B Kids preschool, and North Florida Regional Medical Center.
More Information and Scheduling a Tour
For those who want more information on Grand Oaks Gainesville, we highly recommend visiting our comprehensive Guide to Grand Oaks Gainesville page. There you will find everything you need to know about this amazing community, including a virtual tour of the site, floor plans, pricing, and more.
If you're interested in seeing these beautiful homes in person, we invite you tocontact Kristen Rabell or Jackie Mercier to schedule a tour. These experienced real estate agents are passionate about helping you find your dream home in Grand Oaks. Contact us today to schedule a tour and see why Grand Oaks is being touted as Gainesville's next great neighborhood!
[listings title="Newest Grand Oaks Homes for Sale" qs="polygon=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&sort=importdate&status=A" propcount="3"]
Blueberry Festival at Amber Brooke Farms (formerly Red White and Blues Farm)
Join us for our 2nd Annual Blueberry Festival! This is a two-weekend event full of blueberry-themed activities, photo ops, treats, live music, blueberry and sunflower picking, a blueberry mascot, face painting, food trucks, beer and wine, blueberry cobbler made-in-house, and blueberry stomping for wine production.
Location: Amber Brooke Farms (formerly Red White and Blues Farm) 3250 NE 140th Ave, Williston, FL 32696
Time: Saturday, April 29, 2023, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Cost: $13 in advance and $15 at the door (2 yrs & under – Free!)
La Selva Art Studios Moon Magic Workshop
Moon Magic Workshops combine art and astrology so participants learn about astrology with a dose of creativity.
Astrologer Mercurial Megan will dissect and explain the basic astrological structure and concepts of the birth chart. This workshop supports individuals interested in learning about their birth chart and understanding astrological placements, planets, houses, and degrees. Participants will engage in a creative activity mapping out their personal birth/natal charts as they learn.
Location: 3146 NW 13th St, Gainesville, FL 32609
Time: Saturday, April 29, 2023, 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Florida Theatre presents Dino Ranch Live
For the first time ever, Disney Junior’s Dino Ranch comes to the stage with a fun-filled, action-packed live show. Dino Ranch follows the adventures of the Cassidy family as they tackle life in a fantastical, “pre-westoric” setting where dinosaurs still roam. As the young ranchers learn the ropes, they discover the thrill of ranch life while they navigate the great outdoors through unpredictable challenges.
Location: Florida Theatre 233 W University Ave, Gainesville, FL 32601
Time: Sunday, April 30, 2023, 4:00 pm
Buchholz Players presents Into the Woods
Buchholz High School Drama Produces Tony Award-Winning Spring Musical
Into the Woods hits the stage with an epic fairytale about wishes, family and the choices we make.
James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim take everyone's favorite storybook characters and bring them together for a timeless, yet relevant, piece and a rare modern classic. Into the Woods reminds us that there will be times when each of us must journey into the woods, but that we must mind the future and the past.
This musical production is sure to delight audiences with an impressive set and talented cast. Buchholz Players brought home Top Honors at the State Thespians Festival Competition under the leadership of Ted Lewis.
Location: Buchholz High School Auditorium 5510 NW 27th Ave, Gainesville, FL 32606
Time: Tuesday, May 2, 2023, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Cost: $15 general admission, $12 Students & Seniors
O2B Kids Parents Night Out
Parent Night Out is an Evening of Fabulous Activities for Kids 6 to 13 Years Old
Led by our O2B Play Leaders, kids will enjoy a fun evening where they get to make choices about where to play! There's awesome activities, group games, free play fun, a themed movie and more! A hot cooked dinner is ALWAYS included!