NBI Properties Sponsors New Year’s Celebration at The Landing

After the hustle and bustle of the holidays dies down, NBI Properties would like to invite all of our beloved family, friends, and clients to ring in the New Year with us at The Landing in downtown Fort Walton Beach! NBI is a proud sponsor of this family-fun event, which begins on December 31 at 6 p.m.at The Landing. Presented by the City of Fort Walton Beach, Apex Broadcasting and other local sponsors, the event promises plenty of fun for all ages.
The party kicks off with a 5K run at 6 p.m. and deejays from B-Boy Productions will be spinning your favorite tunes from 7 p.m. until 1 a.m.! In addition, you can hear the band Continuum performing live from 8 to midnight and then stay for the grand finale – a spectacular fireworks display when the clock strikes twelve to ring in 2015!
Free shuttle service is available if you indulge in a little too much champagne, so we encourage you to put this on your calendar and be a part of this special New Year’s Celebration. See you there!
Happy Holidays!
Jayme Nabors and Craig Barrett
NBI Properties

Property Management Recommended for New Investors

In times like these when the stock market is topsy turvy, NBI Properties hears from many people who are interested in diversifying their portfolios by investing in real estate. Viewed by some as a safer, less risky investment because it is not subject to the volatility of stocks, the right real estate investment can produce a steady income stream and reap attractive returns. However, because there are so many options available, investors often need help figuring out how much risk they should assume and if they have time to adequately manage their properties.

According to Craig Barrett, co-founder of NBI Properties in Fort Walton Beach, his firm works with investors from all parts of the country. He said that most are content to invest in rental properties and hire NBI for property management services

“We have clients in lots of different states, and they don’t have the time or inclination to be hands-on property owners ” Barrett said. “We do everything for them, including screening tenants, collecting rents, and ordering repairs. New investors who make the mistake of thinking they can manage properties from afar are usually unaware of the time consuming responsibilities they will face as property owners.”

As one of the largest commercial real estate and property management firms on the Emerald Coast, NBI Properties provides valuable services to investors by handling work order requests, ordering inspections, hiring cleaning services, and responding to emergencies. Overall, Barrett said he steers investors toward properties that require few renovations or maintenance while offering a dependable source of cash flow.

“We recommend that investors choose properties in need of few repairs instead of trying to improve a rundown house or business,” he said. “Not everyone has the skills required to flip properties and turn a profit, so we advise clients to invest in properties for the long term.”

Hurricane Tax Nixed for Floridians

Florida-owned Citizens Property Insurance Corporation recently announced that policyholders will not be socked with an additional “hurricane tax” even if the state is hit by a “once-in-a-century” storm. As Florida’s “insurer of last resort,” Citizens must levy assessments on all Florida property and casualty policyholders if it depletes its surplus and cannot pay claims after a catastrophic hurricane. However, company executives said they expect they will have enough surplus and reinsurance coverage to protect it’s current customer base and avoid the tax.

The news marked a dramatic turnaround for Citizens, as the insurer faced the prospect of an $11.6 billion assessment only three years ago. However, since then, the company’s customer base plummeted from a high of nearly 1.5 million in 2012 to 727,000 with additional policy decreases expected in 2015. Craig Barrett, co-founder of NBI Properties in Fort Walton Beach, said the announcement was welcome news for all Emerald Coast property owners.

“The possibility of having to pay extra hurricane taxes has been a question mark for area residents for far too long,” Barrett noted. “It’s the last thing business owners and homeowners should be concerned with in additional to their regular insurance coverage.”

Citizens will begin 2015 with the lowest policy count since 2005 after depopulation efforts, including a takeout program that transferred more than 300,000 of its policies to private companies this year. However, during the past three years, Citizens and other insurers have benefited from calmer hurricane seasons and a global reinsurance market more willing to offer cost-effective coverage to the Florida market.

Holiday Key Lime Chicken Salad

Going to holiday pot lucks, church gatherings or other social functions and need a good recipe? Try our Florida-inspired healthy Key Lime Chicken Salad and you’ll be the hit of the party! This recipe is good for 4-6 people as an appetizer, so double or triple the ingredients if you need it for a crowd. Here are the ingredients you will need:
3 key limes (squeezed for 1/3 cup of juice)
2 tablespoons raw honey (use local honey from the farmer’s market!)
1 cup organic coconut milk
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon hot sauce (we like Frank’s Wing Sauce!)
2 free range boneless chicken breasts
1 cup shredded red cabbage
½ cup chopped celery
1 cup shredded carrots
3 cups organic Hearts of Romaine lettuce, shredded
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
To Prepare:
Whisk lime juice and honey in a small bowl until smooth. Add coconut milk, salt and pepper. Mix until well blended and set aside.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place chicken breasts in a 8½ x 11 glass baking dish and pour half of the mixture on top. Marinate chicken for 5-10 minutes, turning to coat all sides.

Cover with foil and bake 30 minutes.

To make the salad:
In a large bowl, combine carrots, celery and cabbage. Pour in the remaining half of the marinade mixture. Toss to coat and set aside for 10-15 minutes. Add lettuce and cilantro and toss well. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Remove chicken from oven and cool. When cool, slice chunks about ½” in thickness. Put salad on plates and top with chicken. Enjoy!

Florida Ponders New Boat Anchoring Laws

Complaints and issues related to anchoring boats are on the rise, so executives of the Boat Owners Association of the United States (BoatUS) are expecting a renewed effort for local anchoring control in Florida’s 2015 legislative session. A state online survey is seeking comments until December 8 to assess what Florida residents and boaters think about potential restrictions on near-shore anchoring.

The survey, posted on the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) website, asks for opinions on possible rules that could force anchored boats to move 150 feet offshore, ban boats “in a condition of disrepair or poor maintenance” or require that stored boats at anchor be moved several miles every few weeks. Craig Barrett, co-founder of NBI Properties in Fort Walton Beach, said new anchoring laws would be advantageous to many of the firm’s clients on the Emerald Coast.

“Numerous waterfront businesses in this area risk damage whenever a storm blows through because there’s always a chance that boats anchored close by can be set adrift,” he said.
“New anchoring laws would help alleviate these fears.”

Waterfront businesses aren’t the only ones hoping for stricter anchoring laws. The FWC has received complaints about popular water-skiing areas made unusable because of boats anchored there; “public nuisance” boats left to sink and become derelict; and boats anchored “for extended periods of time, a bit closer to waterfront residences than many people would agree is appropriate.”

The online survey seeks to assess public opinions on a range of anchoring “concepts,” including:

A setback distance for anchoring near boat ramps, marinas and other areas that need water access.
A ban on anchoring overnight near a waterfront home, with 150 feet listed as one suggested distance.
Stronger rules against anchoring a boat considered at risk of sinking.
Require “stored” boats be moved within a certain period, and moved at least a fair distance away.
The online survey became active Nov. 21 and will close at 11:59 p.m. Dec. 7. Take it at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/AnchoringSurvey.

Florida’s Net Lease Activity Heats Up

Net lease sales are on the rise in Florida, according to a to 2014 Net Lease Florida Report just released by Calkain and Beshears & Associates. According to managing partner and executive Vice President David Sobeleman, the data is important because it marks the first comprehensive net lease market report focused on the state.

“This report is the first of its kind for Florida net lease assets,” Sobelman said. “We feel that our footprint and success in the State of Florida allowed us the privilege to comment firsthand on the net lease market dynamics for the entire state.”

The report details the reason Florida is one of the most active net lease markets in the nation. For starters, population growth, tourism, and strong consumer spending have propelled demand for retail space and new development projects. Craig Barrett, co-founder of NBI Properties in Fort Walton Beach, said the report’s findings are an accurate reflection of leasing activities on the Emerald Coast.

“Net leases are increasingly popular due to several factors and trends,” he noted. “There’s more demand for retail space, an uptick in consumer spending, no state income tax, more jobs coming to Florida, and construction is noticeably picking up as well. All of these things have resulted in considerably more clients interested in making investments in Florida net leased properties.”

Florida hosts a diverse pool of investors comprised of high net worth individuals from the northeast United States, foreign investors and perennially active local owners. The Calkain report concluded these investors all consider the Florida market as a familiar safe haven for their investment dollars. Additional statistics and facts gleaned from the report include:

Net lease retail cap rates averaged 6.52% for Florida tin 2014, roughly 50 basis points lower than the national average; McDonald’s state wide average is a 4.24% cap rate; Wawa’s state wide average is a 5.49% cap rate; pharmacies lead all sectors with the highest ask and sales price; banks lead all sectors with the lowest ask and sales cap rates.

Analysts Predict Rosy 2015 Real Estate Market

Top real estate analysts and economists are predicting the home-purchase market will strengthen along with the economy in 2015, according to Freddie Mac’s U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook for November. Freddie Mac economists have made the following projections in housing for the new year:

Mortgage rates: Interest rates will likely be on the rise next year. In recent weeks, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage has dipped below 4 percent. But by next year, Freddie projects mortgage rates to average 4.6 percent and inch up to 5 percent by the end of the year.

Home prices: By the time 2014 wraps up, home appreciation will likely have slowed to 4.5 percent this year from 9.3 percent last year. Appreciation is expected to drop further to an average 3 percent in 2015. “Continued house-price appreciation and rising mortgage rates will dampen affordability for home buyers,” according to Freddie economists. “Historically speaking, that’s moving from ‘very high’ levels of affordability to ‘high’ levels of affordability.”

Housing starts: Homebuilding is expected to ramp up in 2015, projected to rise by 20 percent from this year. That will likely help total home sales to climb by about 5 percent, reaching the best sales pace in eight years.

Single-family originations: Mortgage originations of single-family homes will likely slip by an additional 8 percent, which can be attributed to a steep drop in refinancing volume. Refinancings are expected to make up only 23 percent of originations in 2015; they had been making up more than half in recent years.

Multi-family mortgage originations: Mortgage originations for the multi-family sector have surged about 60 percent between 2011 and 2014. Increases are expected to continue in 2015, projected to rise about 14 percent.

Jayme Nabors, co-founder of NBI Properties in Fort Walton Beach, Florida, said that residents and businesses on the Emerald Coast have been expressing optimism about the economy for the last several months.

“Investors and businesses are more confident overall and very excited about growth and opportunities,” he said. “With the economy on the upswing and better-paying jobs coming to the area, the overall feeling is that 2015 may be the best year for real estate that we’ve seen in a long while.”

Florida CRE Boosted By Foreign Investors

Commercial real estate is heating up in Florida, largely thanks to with foreign investors snapping up multifamily and hospitality properties. Brokers and lenders have their hands full dealing with foreigners from around the globe who are much more comfortable investing here than in their homelands where political unrest is much higher. Although South Florida has long been a favorite repository for cash moved from Latin America and South America, prices have risen so high that foreign investors are venturing north into central Florida and Tampa Bay in search of better values and cap rates. Craig Barrett, co-founder and CRE broker at NBI Properties in Fort Walton Beach, said his office has been working with several clients from other countries to find suitable investments in the area.

“We are frequently contacted by foreign clients, and in many cases it is because of referrals from our existing clients,” Barrett said. “They have heard that not only will we help them find properties, but we will guide them through the process of working with local lenders to obtain financing.”

Barrett noted that while a few investors pay with cash, others are using existing investments and properties as collateral for other deals. He added that foreign investors continue to prefer multifamily and hospitality properties because they are more familiar with the business models, but banks definitely deserve some credit for finally loosening their purse strings.

“Lenders are now much more willing to grant loans than they were in recent years,” Barrett said. “Banks that made it through the recession are finally relaxing stringent loan requirements.”

Lenders are stepping up on loans for industrial and hospitality properties, as they expect demand for warehouse space and hotel rooms to increase with favorable economic activity. They are not as eager to finance retail and office properties due to the perceived threat of Internet shopping overtaking retail and an oversupply of properties to lease. In contrast, the newest lenders working with investors are less concerned about risk and are more inclined to lend money for acquisition, development and refinancing. These lenders are supporting urban infill, smaller retail developments, and re-development.



This time of year we always want to remind our families, friends and clients how special they are to us. We are thankful for each and every one of you! On behalf of NBI and our entire staff, Jayme and I would like to wish you and your loved ones the best Thanksgiving ever! Enjoy this joyous time with your family and friends, and try out our Pumpkin Cornbread recipe if you have a crowd of hungry ones!

Best wishes,

Craig Barrett, Jayme Nabors and the NBI staff

Pumpkin Cornbread


1 1/4 cups corn meal (any brand)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup of canned pumpkin or pumpkin purée
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup buttermilk
1 T unsalted butter
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Whisk together corn meal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a bowl.

In another bowl whisk together eggs, sugar, buttermilk, and pumpkin until thoroughly combined. Slowly add in the dry ingredients and mix well.

Melt butter in a skillet. Pour the batter in the skillet and bake 25-30 minutes or until golden brown on top. Cool 10-15 minutes before cutting into slices. Enjoy with butter, honey, or prepare this easy Cinnamon Maple Butter:

2 sticks of butter, softened
2 T good quality maple syrup
1/4 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp brown sugar

To prepare: Beat all ingredients until smooth. Pour butter into a small container and chill 2-3 hours.

Wounded Air Force Vet Gets New Home

Here at NBI Properties, we have a tremendous respect for all of the local military families who make sacrifices to serve our nation. Recently our hearts were warmed by a story in the Northwest Florida Daily News about Ret. Air Force Master Sgt. Joe Deslauriers getting a brand new home. Building Homes for Heroes built the home in Destin for Joe, a triple amputee,and his family. Last week they saw it for the first time and it was a dream come true. Joe and his wife, Lisa, moved into the fully-customized home with their son, Cameron, while many volunteers and community members welcomed them.

The house warming ceremony marked three years since Joe and his wife, Lisa, were homeowners. Previously the couple lived in Fort Walton Beach where Joe was an explosive ordinance disposal technician before he was deployed to Afghanistan in 2011. At the time, Lisa was pregnant with their first child and was due in December. But their dreams were shattered on September 23 when Joe lost both legs and part of an arm in an accident while clearing an area of improvised bombs to get to an injured Marine.

Since the accident, it’s been a long road of recovery for Joe, as he’s been shuffled in and out of hospitals and rehab facilities. and temporary housing. Since he returned home from the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Washington, D.C., the family has been living in a cramped, two-bedroom apartment in Destin. That was before Building Homes for Heroes stepped in to build a new home for the Deslauriers. Board member Kelly Hallman said that the home was built from the ground up by volunteers and the family would not owe dime when they moved in.

Florida Senate President Don Gaetz spoke briefly at the ceremony, noting that no matter what he and state Rep. Matt Gaetz were able to do in the Legislature, they weren’t doing the “heavy lifting.”

“The real heavy lifting was done by Joe Deslauriers and his family and everyone who has worn the uniform and stood in harm’s way,” Don Gaetz said.

The family is grateful and wants to show their appreciation by giving back to the community. Next month, Joe will be speaking with area students on Veterans Day. Through Building Homes for Heroes, he and Lisa have become part of a support network for other wounded service members.

Source: Northwest Florida Daily News