1. Show Off Your Star Qualities with ‘Be A Neal Star’

    Neal Communities has been busy at work filming local residents at Grand Palm, Central Park and Villa Palmeras for their chance to “Be a Neal Star!”

    Participating Neal Communities residents are being filmed by a professional crew explaining why they adore their Neal Communities home and why they love living at Neal Communities!

    Neal’s contest offers those competing and submitting a video, a chance to win big with $6,000 in prizes!

    Think you’re an ideal homeowner? Are you ready to shine with STAR-quality attributes? Submit a 1-3 minute short video by April 25th.  Voting opens to both Neal residents and non-residents on Monday, May 5th and closes at NOON on Friday, May 23rd.

    To Enter to Win, Simply follow these 3 steps:

    1.Register here

    2. Submit a 1-3 minute YouTube Video submission, plus two photos on www.beanealstar.com

    3. Encourage your family and friends to sign-in to www.beanealstar.com and VOTE for you between May 5th – May 23rd.

    Following the close of voting, a panel of judges will be selecting FOUR contest entry winners based on number of votes received and shining star-quality attributes displayed.

    Want to see the entries so far? Click here: http://beanealstar.com/all-entries/


  2. Why Home Buyers Prefer New Homes All Under Warranty

    While a used home may appear more cost effective, it likely has products and appliances that need fixing, upgrading or replacing. Unfortunately, products and appliances today are not built with the same quality and do not last nearly as long as they did 20 years ago. While the avocado green fridge from the Brady Brunch is sure to be as functional today as it was in the 1970s, appliances today, don’t have the same gusto. How many appliances can you count in your home? When you count the basics: refrigerator, freezer, dishwasher, washing machine, and dryer, you can see how these products breaking down at once can easily take their toll on our sanity and our wallets.

    When you buy new, your products and appliances will all be top of the line and under warranty. With Neal Communities, your home will feature the newest in products and quality design and will come with the Neal warranty. It’s our friendly assurance to you that we stand behind our products and that you will be able to experience and enjoy your quality new home for years saving your sanity and your wallet.


  3. Inside the Valor II

    Liz Reuth, Neal Communities E-Marketing Manager takes us for a tour inside Neal Communities’ Valor 2 Kitchens in Lakewood Ranch Florida. A smart design with a beautiful open concept kitchen, dining and living space give this space an open and airy touch. The space is great for entertaining guests and with a double sink facing the living room, Mr. and Ms. Homeowner can stay engaged with the guests while cleaning up! Large cabinets surround the Valor 2 kitchen making it perfect for the cook in the family to store pots and pans along with counter space to house all cooking gadgets. If you don’t believe us, just see for yourself!

     
     

    Valor II is a contemporary 1,162 Sq. Ft home perfect for a single family. Featuring two bedrooms, two bathrooms and an open concept kitchen, living and great room; this is a home full of modern charm. A family friendly community with budget friendly prices. Come experience it for yourself!

     

     

     


  4. Boca New staff member and club expansion plans!

     The Boca Royale community is growing and so is our family as we welcome experienced General Manager, Ian Fetigan to the Boca Royale Golf & Country Club team!

    With more than 20 years of successful, hands-on management experience in the hospitality, non-profit, and private country club industries, Fetigan brings a wealth of knowledge to the Boca Royale team in all areas and will be an invaluable asset in our expansion and enhancing an already thriving club.

    The Boca Royale community will be expanding over the next few years. New staff, new dining menus and a perfectly manicured golf course are already setting Boca Royale apart as one of the finest golf and country clubs in the region with a reputation for delivering a quality, Florida lifestyle.

    Neal Communities is building homes within Boca Royale and offers homeowners a variety of new home options at Boca Royale. The builder offers single-family homes from its Cove and Signature Series, and paired villas from the Coral Series. Homes range in size from 1,434 square feet to 3,262 square feet. Homes are nestled amidst existing and established oaks and preserved land.

    Located right off of 776, Boca Royale has access to shopping, beaches, and entertainment. For more information about the community and country club, please go to www.bocaroyale.com or call 941-475-6464.

     


  5. A Night to Remember

     

    A few weeks ago John Neal Homes hosted a very special Realtor® event celebrating the opening of their newest model home in the Haddington neighborhood of Country Club East in Lakewood Ranch. Homes start in the $400’s and up in this community depending upon your lot and upgrades. Their new Palmavera model offers a spacious, refreshingly open floor plan that overlooked a small lake.

    Inside the spacious kitchen, John Neal Homes had brought in the celebrity Chef Tommy Klauber, and his staff from Polo Grill and Fête Catering and Ballroom, located on Main Street in Lakewood Ranch.

    The honored guests enjoyed a wine tasting with about eight various wines to try from Michael’s Wine Cellar. An array of hors d’oeuvres from Fête Catering, were served. From Moll’s Mac & Cheese Balls to hand picked Mini Blue Crab Cakes with a sweet chili dipping sauce; each appetizer was to die for.

    While guests toured this stunning home, John Neal was available to answer any questions about the property and the available upgrades. Meanwhile, Chef Tommy Klauber, demonstrated how to make his Sarasota Seafood Pan Roast.

    This surely was a night to remember! Good wine, good-looking food, gorgeous homes and great cooking skills.

     

     


  6. Looking for an Excuse to East Pecan Pie?

    “Good Moms Have Sticky Floors, Messy Kitchens, Laundry Piles, Dirty Ovens, and Happy Kids!

     

    Did you know that this month hosts National Pecan Pie Day? We couldn’t think of a better excuse to be in the kitchen, cooking, (and then of course, eating) pecan pie!

    Here is a recipe from FoodNetwork to make a Pecan pie.

     

     

    Ingredients

    • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
    • 2 teaspoons sugar
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt
    • ½ cold butter (1 stick) diced
    • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
    • Flour, for rolling the dough

    Filling

    • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
    • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
    • ¾ cu light corn syrup
    • ½ teaspoon fine salt
    • 2 cups chopped toasted pecans
    • 1 to 2 tablespoons bourbon
    • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    • 3 eggs, lightly beaten

    Directions

    Make the dough by hand: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Using your fingers, work the butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles yellow cornmeal mixed with bean-sized bits of butter. (If the flour/butter mixture gets warm, refrigerate it for 10 minutes before proceeding.) Add the egg and stir the dough together with a fork or by hand in the bowl. If the dough is dry, sprinkle up to a tablespoon more of cold water over the mixture.

    Alternatively, make the dough in a food processor. With the machine fitted with the metal blade, pulse the flour, sugar, and salt until combined. Add the butter and pulse until it resembles yellow cornmeal mixed with bean-sized bits of butter, about 10 times. Add the egg and pulse 1 to 2 times; don’t let the dough form into a ball in the machine. (If the dough is very dry add up to a tablespoon more of cold water.) Remove the bowl from the machine, remove the blade, and bring the dough together by hand.

    Form the dough into a disk, wrap with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 1 hour.

    On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough with a rolling pin into a 12-inch circle about 1/8-inch thick. Transfer the dough to a 9-inch pie pan and trim the edges, leaving about an extra inch hanging over the edge. Tuck the overhanging dough underneath itself to form a thick edge that is even with the rim. Flute the edge as desired. Freeze the pie shell for 30 minutes.

    Set separate racks in the center and lower third of oven and preheat to 400 degrees F. Put a piece of parchment paper or foil over the pie shell and fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake on a baking sheet on the center rack until the dough is set, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and lift sides of the parchment paper to remove the beans. Continue baking until the pie shell is lightly golden brown, about 10 more minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.

    While the crust is baking make the filling: In medium saucepan, combine the butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat, and stirring constantly, continue to boil for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and stir in the nuts, bourbon, and the vanilla. Set the mixture aside to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. (If the crust has cooled, return it to the oven for 5 minutes to warm through.) Whisk the beaten eggs into the filling until smooth. Put the pie shell on a sheet pan and pour the filling into the hot crust.

    Bake on the lower oven rack until the edges are set but the center is still slightly loose, about 40 to 45 minutes. (If the edges get very dark, cover them with aluminum foil half way during baking.) Cool on a rack. Serve slightly warm or room temperature

    Do you have a delicious recipe for Pecan Pie you want to share?


  7. New Home? No worries!

    Are you in the market to buy a new home? Congratulations, you are preparing for an exciting adventure! Finding a new home can be scary, especially if you are a first time buyer.

    We’ve put together a list of tips to keep in mind when looking for a new home.

     Price Shop

    Just as you would if buying a new car, you should compare prices in the area. Websites such as Trulia or Zillow can give you a general idea of what you can expect to pay. Once you determine what your budget is, you can narrow in on options.

    Set Your Budget

    In order to set your budget, you might consider speaking with a mortgage company. Or, using a mortgage calculator, you can determine what your payments would be if you put a certain amount down.  Fannie Mae recommends buyers not spend more than 28% of their income on housing costs.

    Consider Additional Costs

    Once you have an idea of your budget,  do your homework and determine what additional taxes, insurance, and other expenses are necessary. Be sure to include this in your costs so you don’t go over budget.

    Distinguish Your Wants From Your Needs

    We all want a big house with a large kitchen, walk-in closets, granite countertops, a huge pool in the backyard, and plenty of space. Determining what features and amenities you need from your next home and community is important. Otherwise, you might end up paying too much for features you didn’t necessarily need.

    Clean Up Your Credit Score

    Even if you are in the very early stages of looking for homes, start building your credit score now. Run a free report to find out what your score is and how you can begin to improve it.

    Home is where your story begins. Follow these tips to find your dream home.