Author Archives: Michael Flahaven

Stroke symptoms recognize them and use the fast method

Recognize Stroke Symptoms Using the FAST Method

Signs and Symptoms of a Stroke

Signs and symptoms of a stroke in both men and women include:

  • Sudden weakness or numbness on one side of your face or in one arm or leg
  • Loss of vision, strength, coordination, sensation, or speech, or trouble understanding speech. These symptoms may get worse over time.
  • Sudden dim vision, especially in one eye
  • Sudden loss of balance, sometimes along with vomiting, nausea, fever, hiccups, or trouble swallowing
  • Sudden and severe headache with no other cause, followed quickly by passing out
  • Fainting briefly
  • Dizziness or sudden falls with no clear cause

FAST Stroke Recognition

Experts use the acronym FAST to remind people how to recognize the signs of a stroke and what to do. FAST stands for:

  • Face. Tell the person to smile. Watch to see if their face droops.
  • Arms. Have the person raise both their arms. Watch to see if one is weak or sags.
  • Speech. Ask the person to say a simple phrase. Listen for slurred or strange-sounding words.
  • Time. Every minute counts. Call 911 right away.

When to Get Emergency Care for a Stroke

If you or someone with you shows any signs of stroke, don’t wait. Quick treatment is crucial to survival and recovery.

Call for emergency services. If the symptoms pass quickly, you might have had a transient ischemic attack (TIA), a brief blockage of blood flow to your brain that often comes before a stroke. Don’t ignore this warning sign.

Get to the hospital right away. Some treatments must begin within a few hours of symptoms. Early treatment can often help prevent death or disability.


6 Florida Design Styles That Never Go Out of Style

When we think Florida design, the first thought that usually comes to mind are those four incredible Golden Girls. These women set the scene thirty years ago for what the world would think of when they think ‘Florida’.

The wonderful weird thing has been, it’s stuck. The easy, breezy look of open air and tiled floors. Light colored walls meet easy-to-care for fabric all sewn together with a backdrop of the tropics.

6 Florida Design Styles That Last

Tropical Influences

Whether bold and bright or soft and subtle, tropical inspired patterns and furniture will always be a win in Florida decor. The elegantly curled fern wood accents and traditional turned legs give your living room the air of an island oasis. The tropical accents create a casual appeal characteristic of Florida style.

Neutral Palettes

Neutral palettes are always in style in one form or another, because they are so versatile. Whether in a bedroom or living room, a neutral palette brings a vibe of cool sophistication. Want a little more color? Add some accent pillows, a throw, and an area rug, and you have a new color scheme with very little effort. The neutral palette gives you endless interior design possibilities.

Whimsical Floral Patterns

This timeless favorite was championed by Laura Ashley in the ’50s and has remained a staple ever since. However, less is definitely more when it comes to florals, so use them on cushions and lamp shades to bring a touch of whimsy into your home decor without going over the top.Dining Buffet with Silver Sand Finished Doors

A Touch of Glam with Metallic Accents

Who doesn’t love a little bit of glitter, glow, and shine? A little goes a long way, but it can also elevate your style and make your décor memorable. One or two statement pieces is all you need. The silver sand finish combined with cherry veneers finished in dark sable offers a unique and contrasting appeal.

Fun-loving Geometric Patterns

Geometric patterns have a youthful, carefree air about them. Although they can be traced back to the Aztecs, their popularity in home decor really took off in the ’60s, and they’ve been in style ever since. Use them on area rugs, upholstery for occasion chairs, or wallpaper to make a statement.Ivory Key Queen Pritchards Bay Panel Bed with Leather Wrapped Rattan and Silver Leaf Finials

Awesome Accent Walls

The demise of accent walls has been grossly exaggerated. An accent inspired by the pastel homes and whitewashed roofs of Bermuda makes the perfect backdrop a beautiful wicker four-poster bed. Traditional elements blend naturally with natural materials such as woven raffia and leather wrapped bamboo to create quintessential Florida style.

Mirrors on the Wall

Using mirrors to open up the space, make it seem bigger, and bring it light is a design trend that will never go out of style. A fresh take on the mirrored wall of the ’60s is to lean a large, floor-length mirror against a wall. You get the same illusion of more space without the dated look. They are also great for Florida homes with lovely garden views.

What To Do If You Think You Have COVID-19/Coronavirus

COVID-19 is a respiratory condition caused by a coronavirus. Some people are infected but don’t notice any symptoms. Most people will have mild symptoms and get better on their own. But about 1 in 6 will have severe problems, such as trouble breathing. The odds of more serious symptoms are higher if you’re older or have another health condition like diabetes or heart disease.

Here’s what to look for if you think you might have COVID-19.

Common Symptoms

Researchers in China found that the most common symptoms among people who were hospitalized with COVID-19 include:

  • Fever: 99%
  • Fatigue:70%
  • A dry cough: 59%
  • Loss of appetite: 40%
  • Body aches: 35%
  • Shortness of breath: 31%
  • Mucus or phlegm: 27%

Symptoms usually begin 2 to 14 days after you come into contact with the virus. They may include:

  • Sore throat
  • Headache
  • Chills, sometimes with shaking
  • Loss of smell or taste
  • Stuffy nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Emergency Symptoms

Call a doctor or hospital right away if you have one or more of these COVID-19 symptoms:

  • Trouble breathing
  • You have constant pain or pressure in your chest
  • Bluish lips or face
  • Sudden confusion

This is when you need to get medical attention. Contact your doctor’s office or hospital immediately. This should be done before you go in as there may be important instructions you need before you go.

Medical staff need to be prepared to treat you and to protect themselves before you arrive. Taking time here to do this right can make a big difference.

Here’s an inforgraphic to help demonstrate some of the info provided here. We wish you and your family a safe journey through this pandemic. We will continue to bring you as much and the best info we can find.

Please contact us with any questions you may have.

June 2020 Newsletter

Express Offers Could Be a Perfect Pandemic Solution for Senior Homeowners in Florida Smarter Seminars Downsizing Made Easy

Express Offers Could Be a Perfect Pandemic Solution for Senior Homeowners in Florida

What is an Express Offer?

Express Offers is the iBuyer Program offered through EXP Realty.

An iBuyer is a real estate investor that uses an automated valuation model (known as an AVM) and other technology to make cash offers on homes quickly. Since they rely on a mountain of data points on comparable home sales, an iBuyer will often purchase homes sight unseen.

The ‘i’ in i-Buyer often refers to ‘internet’ but can also imply ‘instant’ or ‘institutional.’ iBuyers are commonly companies that buy houses online, rather than individual real estate investors. A typical investor is aimed at compiling a portfolio or flipping homes for a profit. The trend of buying and selling homes online, iBuying, provides home sellers an alternative to the traditional selling process.

Sellers now have the option of listing traditionally, listing for sale by owner or selling to an iBuyer. When you sell to an iBuyer, you take control of the home selling process. Rather than focusing on curb appeal and professional photos to attract the right buyer, you can focus on your own moving and buying duties.

Simply put it’s a new way of selling your home, fast. Now, fast doesn’t mean ‘cheaper’. It just means fast.

Read on to learn more.

The Average Flaw of the iBuyer Process

Once a homeowner decides to explore the iBuyer route, they fill out a form with a company and that company usually has a few Realtors with whom they work. They guide the process along for the seller.

The issue is usually that the seller is not able to ‘select’ the Realtor with whom they’ll work.

Difference between our iBuyer program and most others on today’s market is simple. Express Offers doesn’t follow the typical iBuyer model. Rather than purchasing homes, Express Offers operates as the middleman using agents to connect sellers with other cash buyers.

This becomes infinitely important for Seniors and anyone aiding a Senior in the sale of their home. You need to know, trust and communicate well with the agent in charge of your transaction.

Add to that our current pandemic and going this route could be an unbelievable ‘win’ for a Senior homeowner! The home could be sold quickly, for today’s market value and with little disruption to the daily life of the Senior homeowner.

The Express Offers program advantages offered over other iBuying platforms in uncertain times include considerations such as:

    1. Our Express Offers program has some advantages over other iBuying platforms in uncertain times:
      We have multiple iBuyers with different company sizes, territories and investment strategies (Buy & Hold, Fix & Flip and Land purchases). So, even if some are being more cautious, others will be ready to buy.
    2. Buy & Hold investment strategies work well in a down market. Investors like rental markets because people tend to rent a property, rather than buy in economic uncertainty. Investors like getting properties at a lower price, holding them and letting them appreciate over time. However, Buy and Hold iBuyers are negatively affected right now due to the moratorium on evictions, which may cause them to buy less until the moratorium is lifted.
    3. Fix & Flip iBuyers are still purchasing properties, but they will be very prudent in their purchasing decisions and are looking for wide margins! So, it’s best to only submit properties that are a very good deal.
    4. Smaller iBuyers are actually more likely to buy in uncertain times than larger iBuyers because they have less overhead.
    5. Our iBuyers are waiting for more information from the government, Federal National Mortgage Association (FNMA) and their investors before deciding how much the Coronavirus pandemic affects their business.
    6. The Big 3 – Opendoor, Offerpad and Zillow Offers are pausing indefinitely, so we are the only option for iBuying platforms.
    7. Benefits that help us stand out to consumers:
      1. Cash offers in as little as two days
      2. Skip the hassle of staging and showing.
      3. Pick your closing date.
      4. No obligation offers.
      5. No convenience fees.
      6. Multiple offers possible on your home.
      7. Skip out of pocket repairs.
      8. Agent expertise every step of the way!
orlando library update may 25th openings and services amid coronavirus

Orlando Library Services and Opening Update As of May 25th, 2020

Information Regarding COVID-19
CDC Stop the Spread of Germs

Posted 5/20/2020 3:30 p.m.

The Alafaya Branch will reopen on May 26.

Posted 5/18/2020 11 a.m.

Beginning this week, Questline, the library’s call center, is available for customers Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Posted 5/15/2020 9 a.m.

The Alafaya Branch book drop has reopened. Library materials may be returned to any library location.

Posted 5/12/2020 2 p.m.

Please only return library materials to our locations. We are not accepting book donations at this time.

Posted 5/8/2020 5 p.m.

Orange County Library System Begins Phased Reopening

In the weeks we have been closed to the public, Orange County Library System has been evaluating best practices for cleanliness and sanitation, so we are prepared to open to the public with health and safety in mind. Like many businesses and government agencies, our plan to resume regular services will happen in phases. Below is the plan for restoring services to the public, which began on May 6 with the opening of the library’s call center. Our home delivery service resumes on May 11, and on May 18 the following branches will be open 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday through Saturday, for essential services only:

Winter Garden
South Trail
North Orange
South Creek
The Alafaya Branch is undergoing a refresh and will reopen when the project is complete.

Essential services will be limited to returns, grab-and-go service and computer usage for up to one hour. Seating areas, charging stations and meeting rooms will not be accessible.

All customers will be required to wear face coverings while in the building.

Capacity will be limited to 25 percent.

On Tuesday, May 26, the following branches will also reopen, from 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday through Saturday, for essential services only:

Chickasaw  reading at orlando florida library updates and services may 25th 2020
Fairview Shores
Washington Park
West Oaks
On June 1, the Orlando Public Library will reopen, from 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday through Saturday, for essential services only. Customers will be able to visit service points at the Information Desk, Children’s Library, Library Central, 3rd Floor and 4th Floor for staff retrieval of material and use public computers on the 4th floor for up to one hour per session. Restrooms will be open on the 1st floor only. The Melrose Center will remain closed.

Library administration will monitor these openings closely, and may make adjustments to the plan as necessary.

View the library’s complete phased reopening plan.

Posted 5/5/2020 10 a.m.

In the weeks we have been closed to the public, Orange County Library System has been evaluating best practices for cleanliness and sanitation, so we are prepared to open to the public with your health and safety in mind.

Like many businesses and government agencies, our plan to resume regular services will happen in phases.

During Phase 1, we will reopen Questline, the library’s call center, for calls and chat on Wednesday, May 6. Questline operators will be available for customers Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. When our libraries open to the public, the call center will be open during library open hours.

Our home delivery service will resume on Monday, May 11. On that date, staff will begin processing holds and our courier service will start delivery on May 12. Customers who have designated one of our locations for picking up their holds will have their requested items delivered via USPS.

Orlando Housing Market 2020 Smarter Senior Seminars YourFloridaHaven Pulse Report May 2020

Orlando Market Housing Report for May 2020

May 2020 Newsletter Smarter Senior Seminar Series Downsizing Made Easy Top 10 Aging in Place Tips Orlando Florida

May Newsletter

A Beautiful Tribute and A Story of Love

Here is a beautiful tribute to a man who loved his wife dearly and misses her immensely.

As I began my second seminar, What You Should Know About HEALTH, one of the attendees was a familiar face. That familiar face was a neighbor of mine. As I pass by his home during my daily walks, if the garage door is open I will meander in to visit with him for 15-30 minutes. He looks forward to that because he has become very lonely. Keep in mind, this familiar face from three to four years ago use to spend time at the community pool swimming laps until his doctor recommended he not because he was experiencing ear problems. Today, he gets around using a walker or is pushed around in a wheelchair for precautionary reasons.

The reason why this man is lonely is that he has recently lost his wife of 45+ years. They lived together up to the end in their home with around the clock staff to take care of the both of them. They made a pact to live in their home under their conditions up to the end or until the money ran out. The money never ran out, to this day he still lives in their home of course with less staff and without her.

He would share with me during those occasional visits about the times he and his wife made their annual trek for 1-3 months at a time visiting their favorite place Barcelona, Spain. He spoke about the friends they made over the years, the times they spent at the beach, and the excellent cuisine they would experience but never did he share a particular talent his wife had. I found out about that particular talent the day I began my second seminar.

I thought that he heard about my seminar and was there to participate and learn ways to stay healthy. He has always amazed me with the spunk and fire he has at his age. He was not there for the seminar as we learned later he was there to sit and view what was on the wall in that section of the library. On the wall were oil paintings and those oil paintings were done by his wife with scenes from their many trips to Barcelona. This was her special talent.

He left early and apologized that he crashed my party. I was thrilled that he was there.  As he and his caregiver were leaving, I found out he was there to view the oil paintings in peace on his birthday. Yes, his birthday, 96th to be exact. He was there to sit in solace on his birthday to view these magnificent paintings his wife had done while they vacationed in Spain and to reminisce on his 96th birthday the love and times that he spent with his wife who by the way passed recently at 101 years of age.

This remarkable man is very lonely as he misses his wife and partner immensely.

5 Questions Florida Seniors Should Ask Before Picking an Assisted-Living Home

Buying a house is challenging. If you’re just beginning your search, you might not even know exactly where you and your family want your new home to be. Your St. Cloud realtor will be able to help you narrow down your choices between neighborhoods and also find the perfect school for your family. If you’re looking for more information on schools in St. Cloud, that can be found by clicking here. Below you’ll find some important steps that you should take with your St. Cloud realtor to get ready for the journey of buying a home.

  1. Determine how much you can afford to spend on a new home. The first step in any significant investment is determining your budget and being comfortable with the money involved in buying a house. Your St. Cloud realtor can help you figure this budget out, as well as find homes that work within that budget. Buying a home should be a pleasant experience so we won’t push you. Along with the budget, you’ll want to get prequalified for a mortgage, this will make the process a lot easier when it comes to putting in an offer.
  2. Shop around with your St. Cloud realtor and find a home you love. You’ll want to make lists of pros and cons, and weigh all of the options. Do you want to do renovations inside before you move in or shortly after? Or do you want something move-in-ready? Is the home close to schools and parks? What about entertainment? These are things you’re going to want to keep in mind and tell your St. Cloud realtor about.
  3. Once you and your realtor in St Cloud find the right home for you and your family, it is time to put an offer in on the home. This is the intimidating part because, in many cases, you’re left waiting for a bit while the paperwork is shuffled around. Being preapproved will help you here.
  4. If the offer goes through, you and your St. Cloud realtor will sign all of the documents and all you have to do now is pack and move into your new home on closing day!

Buying a home doesn’t have to be a scary process. With the right St. Cloud realtor, the process will be challenging, but will end in a new home for you and your family! For further reading, you can visit your realtor website and read some news about the current market and find more advice on the process here. Or call your St. Cloud realtor for more personalized information and guidance.

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