Moving


Learn tips and tricks to make moving out of your college dorm easier.

16

Mar 2022

College Life Hacks: Moving Out for the Summer

Moving out of your dorm room is a lot less exciting than move-in day, but it’s still a part of the annual college experience. Whether you’re a freshman wrapping up an eventful first year on campus, or a senior finishing up your college career, these expert tips can make this end of semester process as smooth and easy as possible.

Plastic trash bags can be a versatile tool on moving day.

1. (Trash) Bags Are Your Friend

Inevitably, you will end up with more trash than you expect during the move-out process. That’s why it’s important to bring a full box of trash bags when packing and moving. Black trash bags are also an inexpensive way to quickly pack lightweight items like linens, bedding, towels, and clothes. They can be easily thrown in the truck of your car or moving van and can be discarded once you are done using them.

Pro Tip: You can also utilize white trash bags with drawstrings to protect more delicate clothing you want to keep on hangers. Just pull them up over your hanger and tighten the drawstring before moving your clothes out of the closet.

Many campuses offer recycling events at the end of the year for clothing and smaller items.

2. Reduce & Recycle

Before you start packing up everything in your room, take a few minutes to see if you actually need to keep all of your stuff. You can reduce the number of boxes you have to move by setting aside items you no longer need. Many colleges like the University of Florida host Recycling Drives at the end of the semester where you can drop off unwanted items like clothes, linens, and small electronics on campus

Renting a storage unit early can actually save you money in the long run thanks to lower rates.

3. Book Storage Space Now

It may sound counter intuitive, but you could actually SAVE money by reserving a storage unit a month or two early. Even if you don’t plan to use your storage space before the end of the semester, you could end up saving in the long run.

Here’s How: The closer you get to the end of the school year, the more students will be searching for summer storage. Thanks to the law of supply and demand, prices will inevitably go up as fewer units are available and if you wait until the last minute, you could get stuck paying a premium every month. By booking a storage unit early, you can lock in lower rates now, plus you can take advantage of rent specials available today, that won’t be offered later on.

You don’t have to wait until the last minute to start cleaning your dorm room.

4. Don’t Wait to Clean

There’s already enough to do on moving day without having to worry about dusting blinds. Spend time in the weeks leading up to your move-out date sweeping, dusting, and mopping your dorm room. Don’t forget to clean out the inside of appliances like your refrigerator, microwave, and coffee pot as they can develop plenty of build up over time.

Pro Tip: Some colleges will charge fines to students who leave dirty dorm rooms at the end of the semester so be sure to check on the specific rules on your campus.


With a little planning and effort, your summer move-out experience can be a quick and painless process. Plus you can always stop by one of our six Gainesville locations to reserve storage space, rent a moving truck, and pick up packing supplies any time.


Just Moved? Here’s How to Make Your New House Feel Like Home

02

Mar 2022

Just Moved? Here’s How to Make Your New House Feel Like Home

Moving can be a stressful time. Between unpacking all of your belongings and traveling to a new location, it’s often difficult to settle down and make your new house a comfortable place right off the bat. Fortunately, there are many ways to make your new house feel like home! Follow these tips and ideas to help make your new home a comfortable place to live after a big move.

A calculator and a pair of glasses lay on a table next to a budget being reviewed by someone holding a pencil.
It’s important to make a financial plan so you’re prepared for unexpected costs.

Do Some Cost Planning

The process of moving comes with unexpected expenses; therefore, cost planning is an important step to consider. Start a thorough process by writing down all of the expenses you expect to incur. These can be moving van or storage services, home upgrading costs, or even security and safety expenses. Once you’ve researched your options and documented your findings, tally a total spend, and see how it fits into your home budget.

It’s a good idea to look into your options in order to make sure you’re making the best decision for your money and your goals, especially if you plan to finance your expenses. As you do research into different financing options available, you’ll find that some will make more sense for your particular circumstances than others. For instance, a personal loan provides you with a lump sum upfront, whereas personal lines of credit and credit cards allow you to borrow against a certain limit. Each option will have its set of unique benefits; it’s about choosing the option that’s right for you.

A couple work together to move a blue armchair inside a living room.
Furniture can have a big impact on the look and feel of your home.

Focus on the Furniture

After moving, your new space is going to look like a blank, empty canvas for you to make your own. New furniture is a great way to fill the space and create more dimension. It can truly make your home go from plain to comfortable and stylish.

When thinking about furniture additions, create a layout of your living space. This process may be done in a few ways, either by drawing out your floor plan or mapping everything out virtually with services such as Amazon Showroom or Living Spaces. This might help you get an idea of what size, color, or style of furniture you’d like in your rooms before purchasing.

It’s important to keep in mind that furniture has a big impact on the aesthetic and comfort of your home. Although buying furniture online is a popular option, looking in person at stores is a way to test the waters and avoid buying furniture that is uncomfortable, something you can’t tell just by looking online. While you’re walking through the store, try out different sofas, chairs, or benches to make sure that what you’re going with is exactly what you want.

A young woman takes towels out of a moving box inside of her bedroom.
Unpacking and organizing your things will go a long way to feeling more at home.

Stay Organized

After a big move, you’ll likely have a lot of moving boxes, clothes, and other items from your old home that need to be unpacked and stored. You can stay organized by putting your moving totes into their designated rooms to prevent everything from being crammed into one room. This is important for creating a more relaxed and organized environment.

If your home has less storage space than you might need, or if you’d like a place to keep your belongings while you move, utilizing a storage unit can be a great option. Look for a storage unit in your area before you move and utilize it to save yourself space in your new home.

Decorations like shelving units or multi-purpose furniture like beds with storage space underneath can be a great way to conceal extra clutter. Whatever you decide to go with, having items in your home that can keep your space organized will reduce the time you need to spend cleaning and decluttering on a day-to-day basis.

A man and woman work together to paint a wall blue inside their home.
A fresh coat of paint can instantly make someone else’s old house feel like your new home.

Add a Splash of Color

New spaces may come with old colors, so you may need a fresh paint job if the last owner’s choice is not your personal preference. Sometimes updating the color scheme in your home can make a difference and help you get acquainted with your new home faster.

You can do this by choosing colors that remind you of your old home or another place you’re particularly fond of, like the beach or the forest. Doing this can create a nostalgic atmosphere in your home, helping ease your transition from your old home to your new, and making your new home feel comfortable and relaxing. This can be done with an entirely new paint job for your house or just some accents and decorations here and there that give you subtle reminders of places you love.

As you become acquainted with your new house, these extra details like proper financing, paint color, and storage will help with the transition and allow you to feel comfortable in the space you’ve created.



Learn more about retiring to the Central Florida area

16

Feb 2022

Retiring to Central Florida? Here Are Some Things You Need to Know

Florida has consistently been named one of the best places to retire in the United States year after year, and for good reason. The state of Florida offers many perks such as beautiful warm weather most of the year, close proximity to Disney World, and gorgeous beaches to name a few. When planning on retiring to sunny Florida, there are some things you’ll want to know before starting your journey. Below are some bits of information that you will want to know to help you along the way!

A woman signs paperwork in the background while a set of house keys hangs in the foreground.
Housing prices tend to be more affordable in Florida but other costs can add up.

Buying a Home Can Be Tricky

As with many places in America, the current housing market in Florida can be a bit of a roller coaster. When deciding to buy a home here, there are several things to consider to ensure that you don’t make a common home-buying mistake. First and foremost is your budget. The sunshine state boasts lower housing prices than average for the rest of the United States, which means more bang for your buck. Before buying you’ll want to know what your credit score is, as well as what credit score is needed to buy a house. This will ensure that you get the best deal on your purchase. The higher your credit score, the lower your interest rate will be. This equals a smaller overall loan for your new home. Something additional to keep in mind is that although housing is more affordable, homeowners insurance tends to be more expensive here. This is mostly due to the high number of hurricanes that Florida receives each year.

A stack of blank tax filing paperwork.
No state income taxes make Florida a popular choice for retirees.

There’s No State Income Tax to Strain Your Budget

Retirement can sometimes come with some financial anxiety. This is completely normal for new retirees, as you’ve always had a consistent flow of income each month. It’s crucial, especially when first starting your retirement, that you create a budget and stick to it. This will allow you to track how much money you have coming in and going out each month.

One reason many retirees prefer to move to Florida is that Florida does not have a state income tax. This also includes no tax on both retirement income as well as social security benefits. Even property taxes tend to be on the lower side. This allows retirees to get the most out of their monthly income without putting strain on their budget.

Clouds cover the sun in the background with palm trees in the foreground.
While Florida has a comfortable climate almost all year long, hurricanes do remain a threat.

The Weather is (Mostly) Gorgeous

Florida is nicknamed the Sunshine State for good reason, but there’s not perfect weather all of the time. Since 1851, 41% of the hurricanes that have made landfall in the United States have hit some part of Florida. This may not come as a surprise to you, but it’s definitely something to consider when planning your retirement here. As mentioned above, hurricanes drive up the cost of homeowners insurance, so you’ll want to make sure that’s factored into your budget.

However, when the sun is shining, that does come with its own concerns as well. Florida is one of the hottest states in the country, and with that comes the risk of heat-related illnesses. Things such as heat stroke and exhaustion are fairly common in Florida and pose a higher risk for the senior retirement community. Make sure that you’re aware of how to stay safe in the heat when retiring to Florida.

Elderly man jogs while listening to headphones.
Year round sunny weather allows for more time spent outdoors.

You Can Live a More Active Lifestyle

With mostly beautiful weather comes a more active and healthier lifestyle. There’s no cold winter to keep you cooped up inside for months at a time, and no snow to shovel. With retirees moving here in droves every year, you’ll also be surrounded by others who are of a similar age as well as with similar interests as you. Making new friends in your new home should come quite easily. Florida is also one of the most pet-friendly states, so if you have a dog, or would like to get one, you’ll have no problem finding places to play with them outside, giving you and your friend the exercise you need to stay fit and healthy throughout your retirement.


Retirement can be some of the best years of a person’s life. Without the added stress of a job taking up your time, you’ll be free to do the things that make you the happiest. Make sure to keep the above tips in mind when planning your move to the sunshine state in order to make the most of your retirement for years to come.


5 Things to Know About Clearwater-St. Pete

02

Feb 2022

5 Things to Know About Clearwater-St. Pete

Known for year round sunny weather and miles of beautiful beaches, the Clearwater-St. Petersburg area, located on the gulf coast just west of Tampa, is a vibrant and growing community that offers so many things to see and do. This is why it has become such a popular choice for those looking to relocate to Florida from out of state. But before you start packing up your bags, check out our list of 5 things you should know about the Clearwater-St. Pete area.

Clearwater Beach has been ranked the top Beach in the world by Trip Advisor.

Top Rated Beaches

With over 35 miles of white sand along the coast, it’s understandable why the Clearwater-St. Pete area is best known for their beaches. Clearwater Beach has been voted #1 beach on Trip Advisor for multiple years, and is a favorite among both locals and tourists. Residents get to enjoy the clear blue waters, aquatic wildlife, and local restaurants all year long. St. Pete Beach is another picture-worthy spot, with award winning hotels and restaurants lining the beachside. Indian Rocks Beach, Treasure Island and Caladesi Island State Park, while lesser known, offer some of the same stunning vistas while sporting fewer crowds.

Experience vibrant and unique art at the Dali Museum in St. Pete.

Enjoy The Arts

The art scene in Clearwater-St. Pete is fantastic and a must see for both visitors and locals. The most popular spot is the world class Dali Museum located in St. Pete, exhibiting a rotation of Salvador Dali’s vibrant and unique art pieces. Dale Chihuly also has a permanent glass exhibition in downtown St. Pete, providing a unique visual experience of his work. If you’re interested in catching a play or show be sure to check out the Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater, plus you’ll also find over 70 painted building murals in downtown St. Petersburg that should not be missed.

Taste the Spanish and Cuban influence at one of the area’s fantastic restaurants.

Fantastic Food (and Drinks)

If you’re a self proclaimed foodie, you’re going to love this area. With hundreds of restaurants offering every type of food you can imagine, there’s something for everyone. If local seafood interests you, grab a grouper sandwich and the ‘famous’ smoked fish dip at one of the Frenchy’s locations. Enjoy the spanish charm of tapas bar Ceviche in St. Petersburg, or try the popular Cuban sandwich at Bodega. Maritana Grille, located at the famous Don CeSar Hotel, Birch & Vine, Salt Rock Grille and Cafe Ponte are a couple local favorite spots to also check out to grab something delicious to eat.

Clearwater/St. Pete has also become a hot spot for local craft beers with a handful of breweries operating in the area. Popular choices include Big Storm Brewing and Grindhaus Brew Lab in Clearwater, as well as Green Bench Brewing and 3 Daughters Brewing located in the Downtown St. Pete area.

Play ball and catch a Tampa Bay Rays game at Tropicana Field in St. Pete.

Play Ball

Offering sporting events all year round, you can find football, soccer, baseball, racing, golf and more when you’re here. The MLB’s Tampa Bay Ray’s stadium is actually in St. Petersburg at Tropicana Field, and while there are ongoing discussions of building a new stadium in Tampa, you’ll have a few more years to check out some games here. In the spring, the Philadelphia Phillies, New York Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays do their Spring Training in the area. If you like racing, the annual Firestone Grand Prix takes over the streets of St. Pete in the fall, and you’ll be sure to have fun attending a Tampa Bay Rowdies professional soccer game in downtown St. Pete. Just across the bay, you can catch an NFL game at Raymond James Stadium, home of the 2020 Super Bowl Champions, Tampa Bay Buccaneers!

It’s a pirate’s life for me on Captain Memo’s Pirate Cruise in Clearwater.

A World of Attractions

Want to board a pirate ship, parasail over the ocean or pet ocean life? You can do all these, and more in the area. Captain Memo’s Pirate Cruise takes you out for an adventure at Clearwater Beach, and provides awesome views and a fun experience for people of all ages. There are dozens of rental companies offering parasailing, snorkeling, jet skiing, banana boating and other beach activities. There’s also various sunset cruises and dolphin boat tours that go out daily. Clearwater Marine Aquarium, best known for Winter, the rescued dolphin whose story inspired the movie Dolphin Tale, is a must visit. While sadly Winter passed away in 2021, you will have the opportunity to interact with other dolphins, sharks, sea turtles and rays, plus experience educational exhibits and activities.


It’s easy to fall in love with Clearwater-St. Petersburg, and these are just a few reasons why. If you’re planning a move to the area, let us help make your move easier with storage options, moving truck rentals, and packing supplies available in Clearwater and St. Pete.


The Florida Guide to Moving During the Holidays

22

Dec 2021

The Florida Guide to Moving During the Holidays

The end of the year can be a hectic time filled with last minute shopping and holiday parties. One thing that can make the season even busier though, is dealing with a move to Florida at the same time. Having to balance decorating your tree while also packing up kitchen appliances can stress anyone out. Luckily, our team has compiled our list of tips to make moving during the holidays a smoother process.

Christmas decorations with lights hanging together.
Keep your decorations minimal if you plan to move during the holiday season.

1. Minimize the Decorations & Gifts

You don’t need to go all out when decorating for the holidays in order to enjoy the spirit of the season. Keep your celebrations low-key by focusing on a few of your favorite traditions and skip the elaborate decorations that take up a lot of time and space (like a full size Christmas tree). If your move is scheduled right before the holidays, pack up your decorations last so you’ll have easy access to them as soon as you get to your new home.

Pro Tip: Keep the gifts small too by choosing to give gift cards, passes, and tickets to experiences like sports events or concerts. Check out our Shop Local Holiday Guide for ideas on tickets and gift cards available in the Central Florida area.

2. Remember Daylight Savings

As the holiday season ramps up, the sun sets earlier and earlier especially in Florida after daylight savings causes us to turn back the clocks an hour. Plan accordingly and try to begin your moving day as early as possible. This will allow you to maximize daylight hours and avoid hauling boxes and furniture in the dark.

A card saying "Merry Christmas" is surrounded by ornaments.
Take advantage of your usual holiday card list by including a new address announcement.

3. Announce Your Move With A Holiday Card

If you send out holiday cards every year, take advantage of the opportunity and include a note about your new home. Include a “We’ve Moved” insert that has your new address and add it inside your holiday cards. This way your friends and family will know where to send your housewarming and holiday gifts!

Pro Tip: You can save money by creating your change of address notes at home using a program like Microsoft Word or Pages and printing them with your own printer.

4. Dress Like a Floridian

If you’re moving from out of state, you may not be expecting sunshine and sandal weather in the middle of December. Check the forecast for the week of your move and be sure to pack and wear appropriate clothing. It’s not uncommon for Floridians to spend Thanksgiving or Christmas in shorts and flip flops.

Large indoor storage unit with door opened.
You can still enjoy the holiday season by renting a storage unit and delaying your move date.

5. Buy Some Time With a Storage Unit

If you still want to go all out for the holidays this year, another option is to rent a storage unit and delay your move by keeping large items like furniture packed away for a few months. This will allow you to take out your full lineup of decorations and enjoy the full holiday experience without dealing with the majority of your move until the new year.


With a little planning, and some help from a facility like Personal Mini Storage, you can make a successful move even during the busy holiday season. Most importantly thought, remember to take some time to celebrate with your family and friends even if you’re surrounded by moving boxes.


Pro Tips For Packing & Moving Your Plants

10

Nov 2021

Pro Tips For Packing & Moving Your Plants

Guest post by Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp.

That 4-foot tall monstera belonged to your grandmother, and you’ve kept it alive for the last decade. Or there’s an iris in the garden you paid top dollar for because of its exquisite peach color. Just like your fine china, house and garden plants need special handling during a move.

Be sure to check with your destination city about restrictions on moving plants there. Most states have regulations banning certain plants because of threats of insects, diseases, or invasiveness. For example, moving to Florida with house plants requires a certificate of inspection. Some plants, such as citrus, are banned altogether.

Small potted plants sitting on a stand.
Inspect house plants before you start moving to make sure they aren’t diseased.

A Few Weeks Before The Move

Before digging garden plants, make sure they will survive in their new home. Check the USDA plant hardiness zones of your destination to see if your beloved plants can make the trip. Lilac bushes that thrive in Colorado won’t bloom in Florida. The same goes for a bearded iris or pear tree.

As for your gerbera daisies or coreopsis? Dig those garden plants and move them into pots. You can also put them in plastic grocery bags and store them in a shady place, making sure they get plenty of water before the move.

Inspect houseplants to make sure they aren’t diseased. Give them a quick shower to wash off any insects that might be there. The last thing you want is to pack pests.

Woman holds moving boxes and a potted plant inside a home.
Wrap plants with sheets or blankets during a move to help prevent accidental damage.

Packing Plants

The riskiest plants to move are large ones. That’s because it’s so easy to smash a branch or two – or even break the plant in half. Whether from the garden or house, wrap a large plant with sheets or blankets, starting at the base of the plant or the pot. Staple or tape the wrap so that it is snug against the plant. Bubble wrap can also be used as plant protectors inside the blanket or sheet.

Place smaller pots in boxes or reusable shopping bags. Try to make the pots snug in their box or bag. Wedge crumpled newspaper, craft paper, towels, or bubble wrap around the pots or plants to keep them from moving about.

Woman holds small potted plant in hands.
Be sure to water your plants well before you hit the road to help them survive.

Moving Plants

Keep in mind the timing of your move. Whether in a car, van, or moving truck, plants need a reasonable temperature to survive. If it’s a long trip, you’ll need to consider your stops to eat or overnight stays. Intense heat and cold temperatures may cook or freeze your plants left in the car. Consider moving all of them into your motel room for the night and reloading them the next morning.

If moving in winter, allow the soil in the pots to go dry. This protects roots from freezing. You can insulate them from the cold with tenting blankets or newspaper over the plants.

In summer, water the plants well. Consider packing a cooler with ice packs, which may come in handy if the temperature inside your car climbs during unexpected stops and slow-downs.

Five medium sized potted plants rest on a small table next to a watering can.
Try to unload your plants first to give them time to acclimate to their new situations.

Unloading Plants

Your plants should be the first items you unload. Remove the wrapping and inspect for any damage. Give them a light shower and place them in a bright window. Allow houseplants to acclimate to new and different light and temperatures before moving to their permanent spot. Water as needed.

When moving garden plants outdoors, get to know the lay of the land. Put the pots in a partly sunny or shady area until they get used to their new light and temperatures. In summer, plant as soon as possible. In winter, stow the plants in an area protected from wind and cold. An unheated garage is ideal. Garden plants can be held in pots for several weeks if need be. Water as needed.

Various sized potted plants are placed indoors near a large window.
Don’t be shocked if plants look a little rough immediately following a move.

Give Them Time To Adjust

Like people, plants need time to adjust to their new home. Don’t be surprised if the plants look a little rough or seem slow to respond to their new surroundings. Prune the dead branches or leaves, and give them a little extra TLC. Plants are incredibly resilient, so they’ll likely bounce back before you know it.

If you’re planning a move to Florida, Personal Mini Storage can help with 46 locations in the state offering convenient self storage, U-Haul rentals and moving supplies to help keep all of your belongings (including plants) safe.


Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp award-winning garden writer, editor, and guest speaker at horticulture industry events. Known as a hortiholic, she frequently says her eyes are too big for her yard. She blogs at hoosiergardener.com.


The Process From Start to Finish

04

Oct 2021

Moving to Florida: The Process From Start to Finish

Florida is the third most populous state in America, and for good reason. The sunshine state offers its residents many benefits such as beautiful weather year-round, Disney World, no state income tax, and world-renowned beaches. It’s no wonder that nearly 1,000 people are moving here every day. The list below offers some advice on how to plan your relocation to the sunshine state from beginning to end.

Before starting a move, do your research and choose a city that best fits your lifestyle.

Research Florida Cities

Like most states in the U.S., Florida is divided into many sections based on region. It’s crucial that you do your research beforehand so that you choose the city that’s the best fit for your lifestyle. If you’re looking for the hustle and bustle of city life, Florida is home to many larger metropolitan areas such as Jacksonville, Miami, and Tampa. If you’re looking for something smaller and more intimate there are cities like Winter Garden, Venice, and Davenport. The best part of living in Florida is that no matter what city you choose to reside in, you’re never too far from the ocean.

There are many factors to keep in mind when deciding to rent or buy in Florida.

Buying vs. Renting

Whether you plan on buying a home or decide renting is a better option for you, there are a few things to keep in mind to help you during the process.

Buying

It’s crucial that you stick to your budget as much as possible when buying your new home. There are a lot of mistakes that home buyers make and it’s important to avoid them, especially with the housing market as unpredictable as it is currently. When buying a house in Florida, it’s best to plan on living there for several years as the housing market can be volatile. If you decide to move after you purchase your home, you may end up owing more money than your house is worth. If you’re unsure of your level of commitment when moving, renting may make more sense for you.

Renting

Renting is a great option for those who are unsure of where or how long they would like to live in Florida. Thousands of people move in and out of the sunshine state every year. Living here year round is not for everyone. If you’re looking to test out the waters before you jump all the way in, renting is your best bet. It’s also important that you know your rights as a tenant in Florida, especially if you’re moving from another state that may have different laws in place.

Take an honest look at your finances and create a budget for what you can spend on housing.

Create Your Budget

Now that you’ve researched and chosen the next city you would like to call home, you will need to create a budget. More specifically, a budget for how much you can spend on a house, or how much you can spend each month on rent. It’s important to note that buying property in Florida tends to be lower in price than most other parts of the country. If you are planning on buying property, you will want to get a mortgage pre-approval during the budgeting process. This will help you determine how much house you’re able to afford before you move.

Plan ahead and make sure you have all of the packing & moving supplies you’ll need.

Pack & Move

Now that you’ve done your research, established your budget, and chosen your new home, it is time for the fun part. Packing and moving is a lot of work, especially if you’re moving to a new state. If you plan ahead and make sure that you have all the packing and moving supplies you need, you will have a much smoother time. A pro tip is to start packing as early as possible, and only do a little bit at a time. This will help you avoid any burnout. You will also want to utilize a moving truck to make this process quicker and easier.

Moving to a new state can be an exciting but also nerve-racking journey. If you take the time to plan each step, you will have no trouble at all. Good luck, and enjoy your new life in Florida!


Moving to Florida: 4 Things to Know About Davenport

15

Sep 2021

Moving to Florida: 4 Things to Know About Davenport

Florida continues to be one of the top destinations for families looking to relocate from another state. While larger metropolitan areas like Orlando and Tampa are usually top of mind when considering a move to the sunshine state, many are looking to neighboring communities that offer some of the same benefits with a more affordable cost of living. Here are a few things that make the Davenport area a popular choice for those moving to Central Florida.

1. A World of Entertainment

A photo of the castle at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom.
The mouse house and other popular theme parks are a short drive away from Davenport.

While the city of Davenport may not be a household name like many neighborhoods of Orlando, this growing community offers some of the same benefits that make Florida one of the most popular states to move to. Thanks to the close proximity to Central Florida’s tourist hubs, residents of Davenport have no shortage of entertainment options at their fingertips. Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Orlando Resort, and Sea World Orlando are all a short drive away allowing many to take advantage of annual passes to their favorite theme parks. Additionally, world class restaurants featuring cuisine from around the world are close by.

If outdoor activities are more your speed, Davenport has a number of parks and recreation areas including Lake Eva Community Park, Northeast Regional Park, and Lake Louisa State Park.

2. A Golfer’s Paradise

A golfer sets their golf ball on top of a tee, preparing to line up a shot.
Florida has become a mecca for golfers from around the world and Davenport is no exception.

According to the Florida Sports Foundation, there are more than 1,100 golf courses throughout the state making Florida a top destination for golfers. Davenport is no exception with a handful of prestige courses in the area. Sitting atop one of the highest areas in Florida, Highlands Reserve Golf Club, offers challenging fairways while still being accessible for novices. Another popular option is just down the street at Champions Gate Golf Club. This expansive resort features two full courses, a training and golf academy, and a family friendly champions 9 course.

3. Experience a Piece of History

Various sized shark teeth are layed out on a table.
Experience a unique adventure by joining a fossil and shark tooth hunting tour.

While some Central Florida communities like Winter Garden are relatively new in terms of a growing population, Davenport offers residents the opportunity to experience a bit of history in their own backyard. Step back in time and go on a prehistoric adventure by joining a fossil and shark tooth hunting tour with Fossil Funatics in Davenport.

Step back in time and go on a prehistoric adventure…

Or if flying is more your style, you can take to the skies and enjoy a breathtaking view from above with a hot air balloon ride courtesy of Bob’s Balloons. You’ll have the chance to see what “old” Florida looks like and experience a unique vantage point of the area.

4. A Taste of Davenport

A person's hand holding freshly picked blueberries near a plant.
There’s nothing quite like the taste of a fresh picked blueberry.

Even though the Davenport community continues to grow, there are still opportunities to experience the area’s roots in agriculture. The True Blue Winery located in the heart of historic Davenport, offers guests a variety of wines using blueberries grown on site. During the spring, families can stop by and pick their own berries during the U-Pick-Em events. Other seasonal events take place throughout the year making it a great place to spend an afternoon.

A stop at Webb’s Candy Shop should be at the top of your list…

If you’re looking to satisfy your sweet tooth, a stop at Webb’s Candy Shop should be at the top of your list. Specializing in citrus candies as well as gourmet chocolate since 1932, it has become a popular family destination with both locals and tourists alike.


Are you considering relocating to Davenport? Personal Mini Storage has everything you need to make moving easier with four convenient locations serving the Davenport area, moving truck rentals available on site and a full line of packing supplies.


4 important things to know about the city of Winter Garden

18

Aug 2021

Moving to Florida: 4 Things to Know About Winter Garden

Packing up a moving truck and heading to the sunshine state is a no brainer for many families looking to relocate and enjoy the warm weather. In fact, according to move.org, Florida was the #1 destination for people who relocated to a new state in 2020. One area that is consistently at the top of the list for many prospective buyers is the community of Winter Garden. Here are four things to know about this growing Orange County community.

1. Location, Location, Location

Photo credit: downtownwg.com

Located on the western border of Orange County, Winter Garden feels far away from the hustle and bustle of Orlando’s trendy neighborhoods while being a short drive away from everything that makes Central Florida special. Many professionals choose to live in Winter Garden and commute to Downtown Orlando thanks to the close proximity of toll roads that can make for an easy drive. Along with the proximity to Disney World, a quick trip to Cocoa Beach is just over an hour away making Winter Garden a versatile and convenient place to live.

2. Family First

Children running through water spouts at the Downtown Winter Garden Splash Pad.
Kids can enjoy the Splash Pad in Downtown Winter Garden all year long.

Known as a safe, family friendly place to call home, Winter Garden is considered one of the best places to raise a family in Central Florida. Many public schools are A-rated and you’ll find numerous parks and playgrounds throughout the area. There are plenty of opportunities to enjoy the arts too thanks to the historic Garden Theatre (originally built in 1935) in downtown Winter Garden. Plus with the Walt Disney World Resort a quick 20 minute drive away, many residents choose to become annual passholders, taking advantage of the theme parks all year long.

Outside view of Plant Street Market in Downtown Winter Garden.
Plant Street Market is a community hub of craft beer, food, and fun.

3. Small Town Charm, Big City Amenities

While the area has one of the fastest growing populations in the state, this community continues to keep it’s small town charm. Downtown Winter Garden is famous for it’s tree lined streets, independent, locally run businesses and a weekly farmer’s market. Plus the popular Plant Street Market includes fan favorites like The Crooked Can Brewing Company, and plenty of food options including sushi, brick fired pizza, and more.

Crowds strolling Downtown Winter Garden streets.
Downtown Winter Garden is filled with locally owned shops and restaurants.

4. Room to Grow

While today’s red hot real estate market is making it tough for buyers to find and secure their dream home, Winter Garden offers more options when it comes to new construction homes. Because it’s a relatively new community, there is more land available to expand in the area and home builders are choosing to set up shop in Winter Garden. The Winter Garden area offers a mix of single family homes, townhomes and apartments and has attracted a diverse mix of residents including young professionals, families and retirees.


Considering a move to Winter Garden? The team at Personal Mini Storage is ready to help. We’re conveniently located one mile from Downtown Winter Garden with various self storage options, packing supplies and rental trucks available to make moving day easy.


Make sure to avoid these mistakes during the home buying process.

24

Jun 2021

Expert Advice: 4 Home Buying Mistakes To Avoid

Whether you are starting your search for the perfect Orlando neighborhood to call home, or have had your belongings in a storage unit for months, buying a house can be a confusing and overwhelming process. With the real estate market heating up, we sat down with an Orlando home expert and Mortgage Advisor, Greg Roberts of Primary Residential Mortgage, to discuss some of the most common mistakes he sees customers make and his best advice on how to avoid them.

1. Looking for A Home Before Talking To A Mortgage Lender

Speak with a mortgage advisor before you start looking for open houses.

One of the most common mistakes you can make is starting the search for your dream home BEFORE getting pre-qualified for a mortgage. “There’s nothing worse than falling in love with a house and realizing it’s just out of your price range,” says Roberts. Taking the time to speak with a mortgage lender first, can help set realistic expectations as you being your search. Plus getting pre-approved can make your offer look more attractive to sellers, allowing you to schedule a moving truck in no time.

2. Buying More House Than You Can Afford

Don’t get caught up in the excitement of buying a home and spend more than you can afford.

This may sound like common sense, but it can be easy to get caught up in the emotion of buying a home. Before you realize it, you can find yourself in a bidding war, leaving you in over your head financially. “If you find yourself needing to dip into your retirement fund in order to make a down payment, it could be a red flag,” says Roberts. An honest review of your finances with a mortgage expert can give you a clear view of your limits and knowing exactly how much you can comfortably afford will set you up for success for years to come.

3. Ignoring Special Loan Programs

Ignoring special loan programs you may qualify for could cost you in the long run.

Saving up enough money for a 20% down payment may sound like a daunting task, but there are several options that can help you qualify for a mortgage with drastically reduced financial requirements. According to Roberts “Many people don’t realize they qualify for some of these loan programs that can drastically affect their homebuying experience”. Check your eligibility for special programs like FHA loans and VA loans which can reduce interest rates and down payment requirements.

4. Applying for Credit Before the Sale is Final

Hold off on any big purchases until you’ve officially closed on your home.

So, you’ve found the right home, agreed on a price and even set a closing date. Time to start shopping for new appliances and home upgrades, right? Not so fast says Roberts. “One mistake we see is home buyers applying for a new credit card after their offer has been accepted, but before the official closing is completed.” It may be tempting to get a head start on any home improvement projects you have planned, but this can negatively affect your credit profile and even put your loan at risk. “It’s best to wait at least one full business day after your closing to apply for any new lines of credit,” suggests Roberts.

With a little prep work, you’ll have everything you need to make the home buying process smooth. Then, when moving day arrives, Personal Mini Storage can make things easier with convenient storage options, U-Haul rentals, and moving supplies.


The Roberts Team at Primary Residential Mortgage is a local hometown, family operated, direct mortgage lender.  Primary Residential Mortgage is a top 20 nationally recognized mortgage lender, offering a wide array of mortgage products.



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