FEMA recently released the draft flood maps that have moved many property owners to a higher risk flood zone than what they were previously mapped in.  In Key West alone, over 2,000 properties may be moved from the X zone where flood insurance is not required by lenders into a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) where insurance will be required.

Fortunately for these property owners there is the "Grandfathering Rule" option. According to FEMA's website, when flood map changes occur, the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) provides a lower-cost flood insurance rating option known as “grandfathering.” It is available for property owners who:

  • Already have flood insurance policies in effect when the new flood maps become effective and then maintain continuous coverage; or
  • Have built in compliance with the FIRM in effect at the time of construction.

Their website also says that timing is important because owners of most pre-FIRM buildings (built before the first flood map became effective) have only one chance to grandfather and lock in existing zone fore future rating. To read more about the Grandfathering Rule click here. 

To view the flood maps for your location, click here. 

Posted by Roberta Watson on October 9th, 2019 2:20 PM

The Ocean Reef real estate market is both unique and competitive; and with so many fabulous properties in one little piece of heaven, how in the world do you make your home stand out?

Well, you highlight its strengths, you downplay its weaknesses, and you appeal to the greatest possible pool of prospective buyers. Which is exactly why Watson Luxury Properties has been focusing more efforts on home staging than ever before.

Once staged, homes spend an average of 73% less time on the market and buyers are willing to spend 1% to 5% more of the dollar value on a staged home than a non-staged home.

Home staging makes it easier for potential buyers to visualize the property as their future home and one study shows that 68% of staged homes sold for 9% more than their un-staged neighbor’s home. (That’s a $90,000 difference on a $1,000,000 property!)

Take our listings 104 Creek House; watch the before and after video below and just see the difference a little home staging can make:

104 Creek House: Before & After Home Staging Video

Note that the changes are subtle but impactful. For more tips and tricks on home staging, check out this article from moving.com:

Moving.com Article Here

(We like to add extra emphasis to de-cluttering, making the space neutral, and lighting.)

While we’re talking about subtle home improvements, have you heard of the TAKL App? One of our most favorite clients introduced the app to us and we can’t get enough of it!

TAKL Video Here

Posted in:Tips and tagged: HomeStaging104CreekHouse
Posted by Roberta Watson on April 26th, 2019 3:17 PM

It's that time again! The Ocean Reef Open House Tour where we open the doors to our best listings and invite you to look around at all that the Ocean Reef real estate market has to offer.

This Saturday, April 20th, 2-5:00 p.m. doors will be open at all the locations found on the map linked below:
Our featured listings for the tour include the three spectacular condos:
29B Angelfish Cay, 104 Creek House, and 37 Harbour House
(find their details on the "Our Listings" page). 

29B Angelfish Cay
2-bedroom, 2-bathroom
Offered at $1,125,000
104 Creek House
2-bedroom, 2-bathroom
Offered at $975,000
37 Harbour House
3-bedroom, 4-bathroom
Offered at $2,299,000

Posted in:Open House Tour
Posted by Roberta Watson on April 17th, 2019 2:06 PM
We love trying new marketing techniques at our office; especially for certain listings that need a little help  to show the public their potential.

Let’s face it. We all aren’t the type who can see a plot of land and envision our own castle there; to truly see potential for its best use. That takes a very special and creative person and we salute you.

Take the vacant lot at 29 Baker Road, for example. There are 14 vacant lots for sale in Ocean Reef, 4 of which are located in the Hammock Course neighborhood.  So how do we get the word out that this sweet piece of the pie has the greatest potential? 

Well, after a brainstorming session at our office, we invited our favorite videographer down to Ocean Reef for a relaxing day out on the water making this very point:
Click here to see the video.

Now you see it, right?!
All building permits for 29 Baker Road have been pulled and are ready to transfer to the new owner, including the dock permit. All the hard work has been done! 
Oh, and did we mention that Architectural plans are available with purchase? This property just keeps getting sweeter.

29 Baker Road, offered at $695,000. Contact Watson Luxury Properties at 305-367-0999 with inquiries.
Posted in:Marketing
Posted by Roberta Watson on April 6th, 2019 8:40 AM

It's that time again, every Broker's favorite weekend at the Reef! The Open House Tour where we open the doors to our best listings and invite you to look around at all that the Ocean Reef real estate market has to offer.

This Saturday, March 16, 2019, from 1-4:00 p.m. doors will be open at all the locations found on the below map:

Ocean Reef Open House Tour Map 

Our featured listings for the tour include the two spectacular condos, 37 Harbour House and 36B Pumpkin Cay (find their details here on the "Our Listings" page).
One is the best view at Harbour House, and the other is the best deal in Pumpkin Cay. You will want to include those two on your tour without a doubt.


Also noteworthy, 8A Landings JUST LISTED (photos coming soon). Unfortunately, it did not make the printer for the tour, but the door will be open with an Open House Sign outside. Be the first to see it here at the Reef and let us know your thoughts!

Posted in:Open House Tour
Posted by Roberta Watson on March 14th, 2019 2:55 PM

It is terrifying (to say the least) to witness an injury, much less that of your own mother. After a fall on the bridge near Buccaneer Island, the Watson Team’s own Joanie Watson was attended to by Public Safety paramedics in record response time. Cared for, transported to the airport, and air-lifted by helicopter to a trauma center, Joan’s family could not be more grateful to the Public Safety Department for their skill and professionalism.

Bobbie Watson, broker at Watson Luxury Properties, was in awe of Public Safety’s quick response time. What felt like an eternity waiting for paramedics, was only less than 3 minutes.

“You just can’t expect that response time anywhere else but inside of the Ocean Reef Club,” said Bobbie.

Christina Watson, Business Coach and Agent at Watson Luxury Properties, recalls the event, “with deftness they gently put a collar on to protect her neck and head, lifted and turned her to lay her flat on the board and then used the hydraulic lift to seamlessly insert her into the rescue vehicle for transportation to the airport. You don’t realize the importance of the equipment we are blessed to have with Public Safety until you watch a frail woman in no condition to withstand any jarring be placed carefully into the rescue truck with such finesse.”


During the entire event, Public Safety Officers offered encouragement and comfort to the Watson family. They were informative, skilled, gentle and held a talent for reassurance that quelled all fears.

Two officers in particular truly deserve extra credit, Officer Marin and Officer Alvarez, both experts in their field. The Public Safety Director himself, Tim James, even personally called Bobbie’s cell shortly after the event to give reassurance and support.

A horrific event was made bearable by the Ocean Reef Public Safety Department. Our Joanie is doing well and we can't wait to welcome her home. Thank you Public Safety.

Posted by Roberta Watson on March 5th, 2019 3:27 PM

Known for its great food, great service, and great location (who doesn’t love Buccaneer Island) the members of the Ocean Reef Club lost their favorite restaurant for a whopping 505 days after Hurricane Irma! (But who’s counting?) With a storm surge that engulfed the restaurant resulting in a total loss, post-hurricane recovery and rebuild included a complete gut and remodel of the beloved eating place.


Now, 505 days after Irma (again, who’s counting?), agents from our office were excited to attend the long awaited Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at the NEW Islander Restaurant of the Ocean Reef Club.

It was a beautiful happening where many gave words of gratitude including our Club Chair, Teresa Holmes, our new Club President, Serge Rivera, Member and PAC Chairman, Alan Goldstein, Monroe County Mayor, Sylvia Murphy, and Senior Vice President of Food, Beverage & Lodging Operations, Giovanni Melis.

Our favorite moment of the ribbon cutting, besides the actual cutting of the “ribbon” (a fishing net was used in theme), was when Giovanni ended his words with “Congratulations to you! This is YOUR restaurant!” The gathered crowed roared in applause and raised their champagne in a moment most won’t forget.

Now why do we think you should head over their now? Well:

1. You can’t beat the smell of a brand new restaurant.
And the décor? Breathtaking. The interior design of the restaurant seamlessly incorporates the relaxed feel of the islands with modern luxury. You'll want to get in there and sit in the cozy entrance lounge, just next to the new bar, and enjoy your favorite adult libation

2. The Sushi Bar.
Seriously. There is a sushi bar with the kindest sushi chefs in the biz behind the glass. When you sit at the bar, you may also enjoy the overhead mirror that allows you to view the entire sushi making process in real time.

3. This is YOUR restaurant.
To the members of the Ocean Reef Club: This is your club. Your support and love of this club is everything. Without you, none of this would exist. So get out there and enjoy YOUR restaurant.


Posted by Roberta Watson on February 22nd, 2019 1:33 PM

We’re here to tell you that NEW is the new market trend! Nationwide, eager buyers are looking for newly built homes, says Dave Ramsey; recent real estate news suggests that the slow rate of new construction is contributing to the rising prices over the last few years. In fact, new home construction is projected to increase by 8% in 2019!

While the Ocean Reef real estate market typically sets its own trends, we seem to be following suit with the new construction bandwagon. New construction and recent renovations seem to be sold before the listing hits our MLS.

Take these recent pending beauties as examples: (Two of them didn’t even last a month!)

(Above: 17 Country Club and 23 Dilly Tree)

(Above: 7 South Harbor Drive and 50B Fairway Lakes)

As you know, hind sight is often 20-20 in real estate; especially at Ocean Reef. Buyers who are “new construction” homeowners are scoring the most desirable homes by acting quickly. 

Our recommendation is to act fast with an agent you trust; don’t suffer from “I'm Not the Buyer Remorse.” 

Article Links:



Posted in:Tips and tagged: Marketoceanreeftrend
Posted by Roberta Watson on February 8th, 2019 2:38 PM

Florida is known for sunshine, blue skies, and hot wives (referencing those funny air conditioning billboards- you know what I’m talking about). Us Floridians are used to 365 days of 80-degree weather with temps only fluctuating about 10 degrees depending on the time of day. However, this “winter” has been a wacky one with “cool fronts” coming through just about weekly! These cooler temps have us thinking about fireplaces, cozy sweaters, space heaters (Thank you 19th Hole!).

If you have a fireplace in Florida, I’m sure you’ve actually felt compelled to use it this year so we are here to give you answers to your top 5 fireplace questions; from how do they work, to whether or not they are safe and how often you should clean them. Here Zillow does a beautiful job of breaking it all down. We also found this article for you with tips to help achieve maximum coziness in your home; who would have thought perfecting your hot toddy game was one of them!

Ocean Reef in the News:
Star anise adds enticing, enhancing spicy-sweet flavor

Posted in:Tips
Posted by Roberta Watson on January 25th, 2019 1:08 PM

TopTenRealEstateDeals.com recently released a list of the top 10 celebrity homes of 2018, which means that living like a star has never been easier.
Moreover, Kathie Lee's gorgeous Ocean Reef estate at 19 Card Sound Road made the top 10!

The article reads: "Kathie Lee Gifford is parting with her Florida mansion, which is located in the Ocean Reef Club in Key Largo. Spread across 11,400 square feet, the three-level house is equipped with eight bedrooms and eight baths. Notable entertaining spaces include a gourmet kitchen with a pantry, a formal dining area, and a spacious great room opens to a screened-in terrace with a swimming pool and outdoor kitchen beyond."
See more at: 19cardsoundroad.com

Follow the article link below to continue reading the Robb Report article:
The Top 10 Celebrity Homes to Hit the Market in 2018

More of Ocean Reef Club in the news:
Spas of America Unveils North America's Favorite Spas of 2018
Renewed Hope for Coral Reefs Around the World
Posted by Roberta Watson on January 11th, 2019 12:41 PM