Blog & News

When a home inspector examines...

4 Items Home Inspectors Can’t Evaluate

When a home inspector examines the property your buyer is under contract to purchase, you should know that there are some items the inspector legally can’t determine about its condition. Inspectors are bound by a set of rules that limit what they can share with a buyer. HouseLogic.com, the National Association of REALTORS®’ consumer-facing website, recently highlighted several points that home inspectors can’t tell a buyer about.


1. Termites, rats, or mold. Most inspectors aren’t licensed to determine whether these types of infestations exist. Instead, they may note evidence such as sagging floors (which could imply a termite problem), shredded insulation (an indication of rats), or black discoloration on the walls (which could mean fungal growth). If an inspector notices these items, your client should follow up with a specialist who can better evaluate the issues.

2. Hidden flaws. Inspectors check for what they can physically see without having to move anything. Therefore, they may not be able to say whether the foundation is cracked behind the wood paneling or an electrical plug behind a sofa isn’t working. Inspectors should note if they are unable to evaluate a critical component of the home. In some situations, the seller could be asked to move an item in order to give the inspector a better view.

3. Evaluations of pools or septic systems. Specialists may be required to come in to take a closer look at certain aspects of the home. Inspectors are not certified to inspect everything. “We’re general practitioners,” says Larry Fowler, a home inspector in Knoxville, Tenn. A pool inspector and an expert on septic systems or wells may need to conduct a more thorough inspection of some units in the home.

4. Unnecessary repairs. Inspectors may take note of every little flaw in a home, from chipped paint to window scratches. That could leave your buyer with an overwhelming list of defects. “Some inspectors like to show they know more than somebody else,” Fowler says. Buyers shouldn’t necessarily freak out if their inspection report contains pages of items. A real estate professional can talk them through what could affect their offer and what is just normal wear and tear.
So you’ve listed your home...

7 Likely Reasons Your Home Isn’t Selling

So you’ve listed your home for sale and it’s been showing, and showing, and showing, and…not selling. That means it’s time to make some changes, especially if your home has been on the market more than 30 days.
The average number of days it takes for a home to sell, called average days on market, is different in every area, from Portland’s 78 to New York’s 164.
But generally, says Alisha Simpkins, a top 1% selling agent in Chico, CA, a home is “going to sell for the most amount of money in the first 30 days.”
“Buyers right now are really savvy,” she explains. “They have a lot of ways to do market research. If it’s sitting on the market for more than 30 days, we typically have buyers asking, ‘What’s wrong with it?’”
In fact, in this study about days on market transparency, the study’s authors write, “Ifa home has spent too many days on the market, this is usually interpreted as a negative quality signal, as buyers speculate that there are maybe flaws which made the property hard to sell to previous buyers.”
Having your home sit on the market is more than just frustrating—it’s probably costing you money. In this analysis, of the U.S. housing market, homes that sold in the first seven days sold for the list price, while homes that sat for 30 days sold for 4% below list.
The longer a listing sat, the more the sale price fell below list price. So every day that your home isn’t selling, it is, statistically, going to sell for less. But don’t panic! With some changes, you can bring in the buyers again.
Here are 7 likely reasons your home isn’t selling.

1. The price is too high

When it comes to reasons a home isn’t selling, “If it’s not condition, it’s always price,” says Simpkins. “And in fact, it’s usually always price.”
Pricing a house too high is a common mistake: according to our Top Agents Insights Report, 51% of agents found that pricing a home incorrectly is the biggest error sellers make.
Pricing a home for sale is tricky. There are a lot of ways to slice the data to determine your home’s fair market value. And while data, usually from sales of comparable homes in the area, is important, a top agent’s experience can be invaluable when building a pricing strategy.
“My job is to position my listings to where they sell in the first 30 days,” says Simpkins.
How do you know if your home is priced too high? If you priced the home yourself, consult a real estate agent for advice. A top agent should be able to tell you at once if your asking price is too ambitious.
Another way is to listen to the feedback you’re getting from people at open houses and showings. You can even just browse local listings. If your home is priced higher than comparable properties in your area, your problem is probably price.
What’s the fix?
Time for a price drop. “I don’t think you should go more than three weeks without doing a price reduction,” says Simpkins.
And while it’s no fun to realize your home isn’t worth what you thought it was, you’re not alone. In 2017, 22% of sellers reported reducing the asking price of their home at least once, according to the National Association of Realtors.
So how much should you drop the price? “You don’t want to be the house that drops the price a thousand dollars every week,” says Simpkins. “I’d say a significant price reduction will get the job done.”

2. Your home doesn’t fit the mold

The 30-day rule doesn’t apply to everybody, however. Some properties have features that make it more difficult to find the right buyer.
“I either think you have a unique property, or a property that is relatively easy to sell,” explains Simpkins. Unique properties—like very large homes, very high-end or expensive houses, homes in unusual areas, or just homes with odd or unusual features—take a little longer to match with a buyer, and that’s okay.
For example, Simpkins explains, a recent client was trying to sell a home that had two complete living spaces in the same house. Two kitchens, living rooms, and masters, on two different floors, but not separated into two apartments or zoned to be a two family.
To sell such an unusual home, Simpkins had to change her marketing strategy, finding ways to help buyers picture themselves in the space and suggesting possible upsides: an Air Bnb rental or room for live-in family.
What’s the fix?
First of all, patience. If your home is unusual, you’re probably going to have to wait a little longer for the perfect buyer to show up.
Second, make sure your marketing and advertising strategy is designed to appeal to the buyer you’re looking for. Cast the unusual features of the home in the most positive light, and try to get your listing in front of the right people.
Selling an unusual home might require listing the property in places other than the usual online real estate sites. If there’s a specialty website, mailing list, local app like Nextdoor, or even print publication that could reach specific potential buyers, make sure to use it.
Think about what appealed to you when you bought the home—there’s gotta be another buyer out there who feels the same way. And if your main motivating factor for buying an unusual house was a rock bottom price? Well, there’s another solution.

3. Your staging is bad

It might seem silly—the buyer isn’t shopping for furniture, after all—but staging matters. “There is a difference between staged homes and vacant homes,” says Simpkins. “Typically, a staged home sells for more money and it does sell in a shorter amount of time.”
In fact, staged homes sell 87% faster than non-staged homes, and for 17% more. 96% of surveyed realtors says staging has some effect on buyers, and 38% of sellers’ agents always stage a home.
Why? “The more you can let them picture their own stuff there, the better,” says Simpkins. Unstaged, or worse, badly staged homes can seem cluttered, dark, and small.
While vacant homes have the problem of potential buyers not being able to really envision the space’s potential, homes crammed with too much of the current owner’s stuff feel cramped and overwhelming.
Incorrect staging can fail to show off your home’s assets or even worse, highlight flaws you’re hoping to draw buyers’ attention away from.
And staging isn’t just about decluttering and bowls of fruit. It’s also about fixing up the little things that distract people from your awesome home. Most buyers have trouble seeing past cosmetic issues like scuffed paint, floors in need of refinishing, or outdated fixtures.
What’s the fix?
Make little upgrades, paint, fix anything that’s broken, clean up your yard, and do a brutal decluttering pass.
Consider hiring a stager to help you show your home at its best. If you’re working with a top agent, they almost certainly have someone whose eye they trust: use that resource.
It’s understandable that you don’t want to spend a lot of money fixing up a house you’re selling, but little upgrades will often bring a huge return on investment.
And packing up a bunch of your things and sending them to storage or living in a home with furniture that isn’t yours might sound unappealing, but can sell your house faster and for more. Hey, nobody said selling a home for top dollar is easy!

4. Your curb appeal is no good

Curb appeal is like the staging of the outside part of your home. It’s an old real estate chestnut, but the first impression a buyer gets from your house is important.
An ugly yard or run-down facade will turn people off. The last thing you want someone thinking as they walk up to your door is “fixer-upper.”
While it doesn’t necessarily make rational sense that a few flowers would translate to thousands of dollars in purchase price, a lot of homebuying decisions are done at least partially subconsciously, or by “gut.” Staging and curb appeal are part of that.
Don’t believe me? The numbers don’t lie: lawn care gets an average 303% ROI, general landscaping 100%. What’s the fix?
Upgrade your landscaping, get your grass a brilliant green, plant a few flowers, and fix anything obviously broken on the front of your home.
A professional landscaper or stager can help advise you on the easiest ways to make your yard look great. And hey, why not paint your door a cute color? The right shade could help make the sale.

5. Your listing photos aren’t professional quality

44% of buyers look online before doing anything else, and 89% of buyers found listing photos useful, according to the National Association of Realtors. If your listing photos don’t show off how great your house is, nobody is going to come in person to see it.
These days, a few poorly-lit iPhone shots just aren’t going to cut it: listing photos taken with a professional camera get 61% more pageviews. And even more importantly, good photos increase price by between $934 and $116,076.
What’s the fix?
Hire a professional to re-do your listing photos. This is something your agent should have arranged for you at the outset, and one of the things your commission is going to pay for.
If your realtor doesn’t provide a photographer, it’s worth it to find someone yourself. It’s another instance where a little investment on the front end will deliver huge returns.

6. You’ve got a specific problem to address

Even if a showing doesn’t provide you with a buyer, it gives you something important: data. “Showing feedback is extremely important,” says Simpkins.
According to Simpkins, the questions your agent should be asking at a showing are, “What’s wrong with this home? What would need to change to make you want to buy this home?” If you’re getting the same answer from multiple people, you know you have a problem.
What’s the fix?
Once you’ve identified that there’s an issue, you can work to mitigate it. If multiple people seeing your house say it’s too dark, add lighting, declutter, or have windows cleaned.
If buyers are having trouble envisioning something specific—where to hang a TV in a living room full of windows, or how to fit a king-sized bed in a smaller master bedroom—you can update your staging to illustrate a solution.
Unfortunately, some things can’t be changed. If the issue is that you’re located on a busy street or the neighborhood isn’t as picturesque as buyers were hoping? “Price cures all,” says Simpkins.

7. You’re getting bad advice

Almost everything on this list could have been prevented by working with an experienced agent at the top of their game. Your realtor should help with pricing, staging, and curb appeal, and should be taking charge of marketing and responding to feedback from showings.
Simpkins shares a story of a potential client whose backyard she felt wasn’t private enough. Her suggestion was to put up a bamboo fence and make some changes to increase the privacy factor. The seller ended up going with another agent.
“The agent who received the listing put it on the market, six months went by, and she didn’t sell it. He decided to rent it, and the renter actually damaged the home. So it cost my seller quite a bit of money to get the house back into the proper condition even to get it back on the market,” she says.
“He called me and said, ‘You know, I really appreciated what you told me last year, and I’m really sorry that I didn’t listen to you. I think one of the big mistakes we made was not doing something to the back yard.’”
Simpkins brought in her landscaper to help the seller make the recommended changes to the backyard.
“We actually received an offer within a week of putting it on the market,” Simpkins says. A costly mistake for that seller, but a happy ending.
What’s the fix?
Make sure you’re working with an agent who is an expert in your area or the kind of home you’re trying to sell.
“Unfortunately, when you list with the wrong agent,” says Simpkins, “You either end up taking a lot less for the home, or staying in it for another six months or a year.”
Top 5% agents sell single-family homes for an average of $10,000 more and 12 days faster.

It’s not too late to get that home sold.
With the right adjustments to your home’s price, listing, staging, or condition, it will sell. There’s a buyer for every home.
Worst-case scenario, you have to take your home off the market while you make some changes and then relist. The good news is that if you have to relist the home, you can start fresh with a new agent, if necessary.
1. Getting into the MLS...

14 No-Brainer Reasons Why You Should Use a Real Estate Agent to Sell Your House

1. Getting into the MLS Is a Goldmine for Sellers

The multiple listing service is the holy grail of home listings. Once in the MLS, a home is sent out to dozens upon dozens of online sites and into buyer agents’ hands, so your home always has a steady influx of foot traffic in showings and open houses.
You must be a licensed realtor in the state to list a home in the MLS. So, when you list as for sale by owner, or FSBO, you’ll have to shell out a flat fee or commission to a broker to have access. The fee already cuts into your cash flow from not using a realtor. This probably explains why, according to the 2015 National Association of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, only 10% of the MLS website is made up of FSBO homes.

2. High Roller Buyers Don’t Look at FSBO Listings

Top real estate agents Jones, Janice Overbeck, and Bonnie Fleishman all agree:  The No. 1 reason people choose to sell their home themselves is to save money on commission. There’s a problem though: Statistics say you won’t.
The typical FSBO home sold for $210,000, compared to $249,000 for agent-assisted home sales, according to the Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers.
Overbeck explains one huge reason why:
“Those ‘A’ buyers are in town for the weekend for a few days to buy a house, or they’re under contract to sell their home and they’ve got to find one,” Overbeck adds. “They’re never going to buy for sale by owner, and those are the highest paying buyers.”
Jones agrees.
“One of my past clients is trying to do a for sale by owner,” Jones says. “And the main reason they said is they’re trying to save a few bucks, which is ironic because the people who want to buy for sale by owners are usually pretty cheap.”

3. Agents, Quite Literally, Are Forced to Put You First

“A realtor has a fiduciary duty to the client, and so it’s crazy not to use an agent because you end up making back that money you think you’d save all the time,” Overbeck says.
Put in simple terms: A realtor is bound by law to act in a seller’s best interest. If for some reason they do not, a seller has recourse in court.

4. Your Saved Commission Money Won’t All Go to the Bank, Either

Agents are generally paid in a split commission deal: The sellers pay typically 5 to 7% of the selling price as commission to the listing agent, and the listing agent splits the money with the buyer’s’ agent. For a $250,000 home, the commission can, at the high end, be $17,500.
Don’t put all that money in the bank just yet, though.
Stats already show that the typical agent-assisted listing sold for $39,000 more than a FSBO, but FSBO who look to skip commission forget about paying the buying agent.
A buyer’s agent is never going to make your listing a No. 1 priority if you don’t offer that agent a commission. Typically, the listing agent will split the commission earnings with the buyer’s agent. To put your FSBO home on buyers’ radar, offer their half of the commission.
Overall, on a $210,000 house, which is the FSBO selling average, a seller who thinks they can pocket a $12,000 commission, really only ends up saving $6,300, or 3%.

5. You Never Want to Be an Amateur at the Negotiating Table

Who would have the upper hand in a tough offer negotiation: a licensed, professional, experienced buyer’s agent who has done this dozens upon dozens of times in their career, or a home-selling newbie who has an emotional attachment to the home? Never bring a fist to a gunfight.
Without a listing agent, sellers go into negotiations handicapped. Even in a genial, smooth negotiation process, that agent’s only priority is to get the home for the price the buyers want—he or she has no responsibility toward the seller.
Plus, that’s doesn’t even take into account some out-of-the-box offers that can be difficult: all-cash offers, bidding wars for the home, low-balling offers, and more.

6. You Could Be In Weird Zoning Violation, Without Even Knowing

Homeowners may not be up to speed in things like housing code or zoning violations, but they are massive when trying to sell a house. Did you know in Georgia that your home could be in violation for having too many tomato plants in your garden?
A house will almost certainly not get sold if it’s in violation of code, no matter how silly they seem.

7. Pricing a Home Is Like Hitting an Exact Bullseye

When they narrow in on an effective price, real estate agents have access to comparable home sales and neighborhood information dating back years. Sellers without access to this pricing information are throwing a dart in the dark, which could make or break a listing.
“The worst thing you could do is overprice a home,” Jones says. Overpriced homes are more likely to sit on the market because they don’t show up in potential buyers’ search criteria.
Think a site like Zillow can get all that information for you? Think again. Home value is called a “Zestimate” for a reason—it’s based off of user-inputted data mixed with public information in a proprietary formula.
While no online tool can be as accurate as a realtor who physically evaluates the home, HomeLight offers a Home Value Estimator tool based on five different estimates.

8. Marketing Is a Whole Different Ballgame Than Listing

You won’t sell a home by merely listing it on websites and waiting for offers to come flooding in. They won’t. That’s where marketing comes in.
“There’s a difference between marketing a home and selling a home,” Jones says. “The way you get top dollar is to market a home, and that’s what I do.”
Marketing is about getting exposure in the best places with the best angles. A real estate agent knows what listings buyers will be attracted to, gets the listing on the best websites, recognizes and highlights a home’s stand-out qualities, positions home showings in the best light, and networks regularly about the house. It’s a consuming process that will evolve according to reception at open houses and reactions from potential buyers.

9. You Want Access to a Realtor’s Buyers List

Many real estate agents work with both buyers and sellers, and so they have access to high-quality home-seekers on the other side of the equation who may be the perfect fit for your home.
A study by the National Association of Realtors shows that 82% of homes are sold via realtor contacts—i.e. prior clients, referrals, friends, and family.

10. Realtors’ Rolodexes Are Filled With Star Professionals

It’s not just buyers in agents’ contact lists; they also have a laundry list of skilled professionals at your disposal.
Top Maryland agent Fleishman can’t even count the number of times her contacts have come through to help her sellers in a bind.
“I had a seller who had a termite issue, and we didn’t find out until two days before closing. [The seller] called some people, but they couldn’t come out or they wanted to charge an arm and a leg,” Fleishman recounts. “I called my guy and he came over on a Saturday afternoon … and he got the whole job done so we could close on time.”
“So we got the deal to close just because I had the contact of somebody who I give a lot of work to who, when I need a favor, is going to drop everything and help me out,” she adds.
She remembers another time when her lawyer contact handled a last-minute title issue at 11:30 p.m. on a Saturday night, when the seller’s lawyer couldn’t get to the bottom of the problem. She has stories exactly like this for countless types of professionals in her rolodex.
“Networking is key. If I didn’t have a good licensed handyman who was reasonable who could come at the drop of a dime, a lot of transactions wouldn’t happen.” Fleishman says.

11. There’s Nothing More Frustrating than Endless Paperwork

One glance at the 15-plus-page state contracts, plus their addendums and disclosures, should send more people scrambling to a real estate agent to close on a home. That’s just one technical form sellers have to complete in the process, which are time-consuming and can be confusing.
All this paperwork can add up to mistakes. Mistakes can be costly, not just in terms of dollar value but in the law. With a realtor, any of these types of mistakes pass the repercussions off to the agent, and they won’t sit on sellers’ shoulders.

12. Cancel All Your Plans, You Have to Sell

Selling a home is a full-time job. You have to host open houses, prep for last-minute showings, vet a slew of interested people to find actual potential buyers, complete the seemingly endless paperwork, market a home, and do all the smaller day-to-day tasks that keep your home presentable. It’s exhausting.
For most people, they already have a full-time job. For agents, this is it.
“You don’t realize how hard it is to sell a house until you try to do it,” Jones says. Just remember Jones’ story of an exhausted woman trying to tell her home before caving and hiring a professional.

13. There’s a Built-in Negative for FSBO Showings

Jones believes sellers should never attend open houses or showings at their property—which isn’t exactly possible in a FSBO.
“When I show a property, I never want the seller to be there because I want the buyer to say whatever they want about the house without the fear of offending the seller. Also, a buyer doesn’t feel like they can poke around or open and close doors while the seller is there,” Jones explains.
“So, if you’re trying to sell it yourself, you’re going to be there, and you’ve already got that built-in challenge that’s going to automatically put the buyer in an uncomfortable situation.” He adds.
If potential buyers are uncomfortable, that’s a huge detractor from getting an offer.

14. Emotions Don’t Mix with a Business Transaction

“Buying and selling a home are next to getting married and having a baby—all the reasoning goes out the window, sometimes, people get very emotional.
She has a recent story about why these emotions can come into conflict with the stressful business transaction of selling a home.
“I have clients where, he built the home, he proposed to her on the lot before they built it, and they got married across the street in the clubhouse … [After negotiation] they felt like, ‘we just don’t want to sell this home to these people because it’s so special to us’ and it’s not a business transaction anymore,” Overbeck says, adding that she had to step in as a therapist, as well as a realtor.
Home buyers and sellers may...

6 Buying & Selling Myths

Home buyers and sellers may have false assumptions about the real estate transaction process, believing in myths that could rob them of a purchase opportunity or keep them from selling for more money. Leaders of the Orlando Regional REALTOR® Association culled the top myths consumers fall for.

1. The longer a home has been on the market, the more negotiable the deal is. There are many reasons a property may be on the market for a long time that have nothing to do with price or condition. Buyers shouldn’t automatically assume time on market indicates the sellers are more willing to haggle over the price.

2. An open house must be part of the marketing plan for a home. Open houses actually aren’t terribly effective when looking for potential buyers. In reality, only 7 percent of buyers find the home they buy through an open house, according to a 2017 survey by the National Association of REALTORS®.

3. A 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is the best form of financing. Every buyer’s situation is different, and not everyone will benefit from a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage. “If you don’t plan on staying in your home for 30 years, you need to evaluate other options, like a 7-year fixed-rate.

4. Overpricing your house leaves room for negotiation. While negotiations are a part of most real estate transactions, if you price your home too high, you run the risk of not getting buyers to the table at all.

5. Online evaluations can give you an idea of home value. Automated valuation models don’t take every factor into consideration when determining the value of a property. Environmental hazards, recent nearby sales, and renovations, for example, aren’t calculated into AVMs, but they can certainly affect the home’s price. “The best way to check your house’s value is to ask a real estate professional.

6. You have to put 20 percent down on a home purchase. While buyers can save money on financing costs by bringing a higher amount to the table, it’s not necessary to buy a home. Conforming loans will enable your clients to buy a home with as little as 3 percent down.
I have lived in Destin...

My Favorite Destin Restaurants

I have lived in Destin for 18 years and have seen many restaurants come and go. As a realtor I am always asked, Hey Keith, can you recommend a place to eat. That's always a tough one as the Destin and surrounding area has hundreds of good restaurants. Here are some of my favorites. Happy dinning!

Dewey Destin's - The Destin family and Destin, Florida have been intertwined since Dewey’s great, great grandfather, Leonard Destin, founded the town in 1835. The adventure began a few years earlier when Leonard, his father George, and his brother William set out from New London, Connecticut with three ships and ran into a hurricane near Cape Canaveral, Florida.
Today the Destin family and friends, using original Destin and Gulf Coast recipes, are proud to serve seafood and other favorite area side dishes to local friends and out-of-town guests alike. While we maintain a casual atmosphere, we are serious about great tasting food. Therefore, Dewey makes it a practice not to use food warming lamps which he feels turns quality fish into chewy and rubbery leftovers. Only when the food is just right do we bring it to your table… which sometimes means that certain items may arrive before others are ready (especially when busy). Please relax, enjoy the view, the weather, the company of fellow diners, and remember our promise as various portions of your order arrive:

Harbor Docks - Harbor Docks has been a Destin seafood restaurant tradition since 1979.
When you’re looking for fresh seafood and exceptional service, look no further than Harbor Docks.
We’ve been offering fresh food, and more importantly, fresh, local seafood, since the restaurant’s inception. Our food is made from scratch, and our seafood comes from our own wholesale market. It doesn’t get any fresher. If you’re thinking of seafood in Destin, Harbor Docks is the place you want to be.
At Harbor Docks, we’re all about families. We’ve served generations of families from around the country our own style of simply prepared Gulf seafood and sushi, and many of our employees come from two generations of the same families.
We want you to be a part of our family, too. We’ll welcome you, make you feel comfortable, provide you with the highest quality Destin seafood restaurant and offer you the best service in town.
Once you enter the door at Harbor Docks, you’ll become a part of Destin and a part of our family.

Chans Wine World - Wine World’s unparalleled selection of premium quality wines, beers and liquors is a direct result of founder Chan Cox's passion to bring to Northwest Florida the very best selection of quality products that the world has to offer.

Wine World is Northwest Florida’s most successful and influential full service retailer of fine wine, spirits and beer. Wine World also provides a selection of gourmet foods, cheeses and accessories from Pensacola to Panama City Beach. Three locations also provide unique dining experiences with award winning wine lists.

Wine World was founded in 2000 by Chan Cox with its first location in Destin. His founding principle was to provide unparalleled selection and customer service delivered at highly competitive pricing. That founding principle remains strong and this spirit along with innovation has enabled Wine World to capitalize on evolving market conditions and strategies through initiatives such as the Wine World Direct program, among others.

The Red Bar - The Red Bar is South Walton’s most popular indoor destination. It’s the place for fun with friends and family while taking in all of the eclectic decor, listening to great live music and enjoying great food and cocktails.
The simple but varied menu includes pasta with crawfish and shrimp, panné chicken and mashed potatoes, stuffed eggplant, crab cakes and fish of the day. Oh, and don’t forget about the salad – it is the best anywhere on the Emerald Coast!
The Red Bar Jazz Band plays almost nightly during dinner. The party gets cranked up a notch after the dinner crowd thins, creating a more funky atmosphere. Don’t be surprised to spot celebrities here late at night. But please be cool, everybody just wants to chill at The Red Bar.
Located in Grayton Beach, Florida — The Red Bar is just a short drive from Destin & Panama City Beach. Housed in the old General Store at 70 Hotz Avenue – Downtown Grayton Beach.

Seagar's - Seagar's Prime Steaks and Seafood, located in the iconic Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa, is Destin's only AAA Four-Diamond restaurant. Seagar's specializes in the finest prime beef and freshest seafood available on Florida's Emerald Coast, and offers a wine list that has repeatedly garnered Wine Spectator's "Best of Award of Excellence."
Seagar's brings traditional elegance back to the fine-dining experience, complete with private dining options, captain service, sommelier service and tableside preparation of items that include steak Diane, Dover sole and its signature bananas foster. Other menu highlights include tuna tartare, Osetra caviar and USDA Prime filet mignon, rib eye, porterhouse and New York strip steaks.
Seagar's also features a private-reserve wine list of more than 600 wine labels. The rich woods and fireplace create an intimate lounge experience where guests enjoy full dining service and live piano entertainment. Conceived in the likeness of some of the country's most renowned steak houses, Seagar's continues to be lauded by critics as one of the best restaurants in Destin and the region.
Seagar’s is conveniently located on the grounds of the Sandestin Resort in the lower level lobby of the Hilton Sandestin Beach’s Emerald Tower. The guard at Sandestin's south gate will provide a pass for Seagar’s.

Half Shell Oyster House - The Half Shell Oyster House has ten locations. The first one opened in the summer of 2009 in Downtown Gulfport, MS and the second in Downtown Biloxi, MS. The charbroiled oysters are legendary and the atmosphere will make you feel like you’ve stepped back in time. Located in the historic Kremer building in downtown Gulfport, the “Half Shell” or “Oyster House,” as locals have abbreviated it, serves the Southern delicacy freshly shucked on the half shell, charbroiled over an open flame, BBQ, Rockefeller and Bienville. We expanded to Florida in 2012 with the opening of our Sarasota, FL restaurant. Our fourth location opened in Hattiesburg, MS, in February 2013 and our fifth location opened in Mobile, AL in June of 2014. Since we have opened a location in the Hard Rock Casino in Biloxi, MS in January 2015 and Flowood, MS in September 2015. In January 2016 we opened our second Alabama location in Spanish Fort and October 2016 we opened in Lafayette, LA, our first in Louisiana! Our most recent location opened in late May 2017 in Destin, FL.
Our oysters are outstanding, but if you’re not in the mood for oysters, Half Shell has a vast menu with something for everyone, lunch or dinner. Start your meal with New Orleans style BBQ Shrimp or a Seafood Stuffed Portabella. The Half Shell Salad with avocado, goat cheese and toasted almonds is great paired with a cup of gumbo. We feature daily and monthly specials utilizing locally caught fresh fish and seafood. The burgers, poboys and sandwiches are all good too. Or, try one of our steak or chicken creations like the Chicken Half Shell with Alfredo sauce, sundried tomatoes, capers and artichoke hearts. Seafood specialties include classic Shrimp and Grits and hearty Seafood Pot Pie.
Whatever you choose, it’ll be served with warm Southern hospitality in a unique atmosphere that complements the food. Exposed brick walls, wrought iron railings, unique French Quarter lighting and architecture frame the room. Each location offers a beautiful and unique setting for your dining experience. Each of our locations has semi private areas for your party or banquet needs. Or, just pull up a stool at the long copper bar, order a cold one and watch your oysters be grilled to perfection.
For lunch, dinner or happy hour, Half Shell Oyster House is sure to soon be your old favorite.

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