2018 Naples International Film Festival

Toronto. Cannes. Tribeca. Sundance. Naples, Florida? Yes. For the last 10 years, Naples has welcomed filmmakers from all over the world. The 2018 Naples International Film Festival looks to be the biggest selection in the festival’s history. Any film-lover worth their salt won’t want to miss an opportunity to view these movies before anyone else does.

The 2018 Naples International Film Festival hosts 60 screenings of movies made by filmmakers from all over the world.

What: 2018 Naples International Film Festival
Where: Artis-Naples (5833 Pelican Bay Blvd) & Silverspot Cinema
When: October 25th to 28th
Contact: Artis-Naples (239) 597-1900/(800) 597-1900

2018 Naples International Film Festival

Search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area

Click the photo above to search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area.

Over a four-day period, guests of the 2018 Naples International Film Festival have a chance to view 60 different screenings and hear from the filmmakers of each themselves. The films range from quirky narratives to insightful documentaries as well as bundles of interesting short films and promising student films. This year’s feature film for opening night is The Drummer and the Keeper, an Irish drama about living life with a mental illness. The cost to attend the opening night film, including walking the red carpet, is $69 per person. Reserve your opening night tickets online here.

From 10 am to 10 pm over the rest of the 2018 Naples International Film Festival, dozens of other films will be shown at the Silverspot Cinema in Naples. Purchase tickets for each individual screening. Or bundle them up and pay just $55 for four movies. To set up your own viewing schedule, take a look at the 2018 Naples International Film Festival’s quick guide here.

Closing Ceremonies for the 2018 Naples International Film Festival

Beginning at 5:30 pm on Sunday, October 28th, guests at the 2018 Naples International Film Festival closing ceremonies will be served some delicious food while filmmakers receive their awards on-stage. Steve Martin and Martin Short perform their act live after the awards presentation. Unfortunately, tickets to see their show have already been sold out. But, it’s not too late to pick up tickets for the awards ceremony. Tickets cost $50 per person and can be purchased online here.

By supporting the arts in Naples, you also support art around the world. And if you love movies, you’ll love the 2018 Naples International Film Festival. Get your tickets today!

Michelle Thomas, Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, Luxury Naples/Marco Island Homes & Condos 

Moving Tip: Should You DIY or Hire a Pro?

What part of the Naples home buying experience do people dislike the most? Moving! Sure, you’re excited because you get to move into a new home. However, the logistics of a move create more stress to your already busy lifestyle. This week’s moving tip asks the question should you DIY or hire a pro?

When moving from one house to another, do you prefer doing it yourself or hiring a professional moving company? What moving tip would you give someone moving for the first time?

Moving Tip: Should You DIY or Hire a Pro?

Pros and Cons of Hiring a Pro

Search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area

Click the photo above to search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area.

Pros: When you hire a professional to help you move into your new Naples/Marco Island home, they handle all the heavy lifting…literally. Many companies provide packing services as well. All you have to do is tell them where to place your furniture and boxes. If something gets damaged in the move, a reputable moving company is insured to cover it. With professionals, you won’t have to take off work to complete your move. They trudge on while you go about your daily routine.

Cons: Primarily, the cost. Homeowners pay much more for this service than they would to do it themselves. If you hire a less-than-reputable moving company, you run the risk of possible theft. Moving Tip: Always research a company’s reputation and ask for references as well as proof of insurance before you hire them on.

Pros and Cons of Doing it for Yourself

Pros: On the flip side, DIY moving jobs cost less. But they’re not free. You might need to rent a truck or van. You’ll need packaging materials (boxes, tape, bubble wrap, etc.). Plus, there’s the cost of gas. However, this all tends to add up to much less than hiring professional movers. Another “pro” with moving your property yourself is that you don’t have to worry about anybody stealing anything from you.

Cons: Unless you move things for a living, you run the risk of breaking or damaging your property. You also run the risk of hurting yourself due to moving heavy objects incorrectly. This might even cause you to take time off work in order to heal. Moving Tip: Pack lighter things (like bedding, towels, linens, etc.) in with heavier items (books, dinnerware, cookware). Use medium-sized boxes. This reduces the chances of you overpacking and hurting yourself in the move.

Should You DIY or Should You Pro?

When it comes right down to it, the choice is yours. If you can afford it, let the professionals handle the move to your new Naples home. Professionals work well for cross-country or state-to-state moves as well. On the other hand, you might have a big family or lots of good friends who are willing to help you with your move. In that case, save yourself a few bucks and do it yourself, especially if it’s within a short distance.

Which method did you use in the past to move from house to house? Which one do you prefer? What moving tip would you tell someone weighing the pros and cons of hiring a professional moving company or doing it themselves? Please leave your thoughts in the comments below.

Michelle Thomas, Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, Luxury Naples/Marco Island Homes & Condos 

Marco Island Boat Show 2018

Summer may be over, but boat deals are not. In fact, one of the biggest boat shows around hits the area in just a couple of weeks: the Marco Island Boat Show 2018. Thousands of people come to see what dozens of vendors offer at show-only discounted prices. If you’re in the market for a new boat, then you won’t want to pass up this opportunity.

Whether you want a sailboat, pontoon, party barge or yacht, you'll find exactly what you're looking for at the Marco Island Boat Show 2018.

What: Marco Island Boat Show 2018
Where: Rose Marina (951 Bald Eagle Dr, Marco Island)
When: October 12th to 14th, 10 am to 5 pm
Admission: $5 per person per day, kids ages 12 & under free w/paying adult
Contact: Rose Marina (239) 394-2502 or via email

Marco Island Boat Show 2018

Search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area

Click the photo above to search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area.

From 10 am to 5 pm every day between October 12th and the 14th, the Marco Island Boat Show 2018 features the most popular boat manufacturers around. They include Chris-Craft, Correct Craft, Bombardier, Master Craft, Sea Rays, Ski Nautique, Sunseeker, and more. Many manufacturers also allow you to try before you buy. What does that mean? Schedule an in-water test drive with the vendor. Of course, appointments are subject to availability. And not all vendors allow personal test drives.

In addition to watercraft, several vendors offer the latest and greatest in safety gear, accessories, dock set-ups, and even insurance information. Whatever you could possibly want that relates to spending time on the water, you’ll surely find at the Marco Island Boat Show 2018. Then, when you get hungry, visit one of the food vendors. For the 21 and older crowd, beer and wine will be available for purchase as well.

Let the kids roam free at the show’s free Kids Club sponsored by Home Depot. They blow off steam. You peruse the show’s merchandise. Everybody’s happy.

Tickets for the Marco Island Boat Show 2018

Admission runs just $5 per person for each day of the event. Kids ages 12 and under gain entrance for free with a paid adult. Park for free on-site as well.

We live on an island. The Gulf of Mexico and the Florida Keys are our playgrounds. You need the right equipment to enjoy it. You’ll find that equipment when you attend the Marco Island Boat Show 2018.

Michelle Thomas, Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, Luxury Naples/Marco Island Homes & Condos 

Marco Island Photo Contest for New City Website

When people come to visit you on Marco Island, where do you take them first? What are your favorite local haunts? Where do you hang out the most? Share your love for the city by entering the Marco Island photo contest. The City needs photographs to add to its soon-to-be-released new website. And they’re asking for the public’s assistance.

Enter your own photos of your favorite locations/events/places around the city in the Marco Island Photo Contest for use on their new site.

What: Marco Island Photo Contest
Deadline: 5 pm on October 15th, 2018
Entrance Fee: FREE
Contact: City of Marco Island Submission Form

Marco Island Photo Contest

Search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area

Click the photo above to search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area.

Do the winning photographs take home a cash prize of some sort in the Marco Island Photo Contest? No. But photographers achieve local celebrity status of a sort when their name accompanies their photo on the new website (where possible). The City wants photographs of local landmarks, celebrations, people, and vistas. If you do take photos of people, please make sure you get their written permission to allow the release of their likeness in case the photo is used on the website. Otherwise, it might not even be considered for inclusion on the website. Also, please leave out any alcohol, tobacco, profanity or nudity. Make sure your photographs remain family-friendly and showcase Marco Island’s unique lifestyle.

Marco Island Photo Contest Rules

Contestants in the Marco Island Photo Contest may enter up to five photographs total. Digital photos only, please. Hard copies will not be accepted. Both color and black and white photos are allowed. Only submit your own work. Any photograph taken by you during the last three years (2016, 2017 or 2018) can be submitted. Made it to a Marco Island 2nd Tuesday or two over the past few years? Did you take foodie photos during the Marco Island-Naples SWFL Restaurant Week earlier this year? Been out on your boat or at the beach lately? Have you taken photos of shops around town decorated in their holiday finest in the past couple of years? Submit them into the Marco Island Photo Contest. Organizers want to see photos from any season throughout the year, not just right now.

How to Enter the Marco Island Photo Contest

All you need to do to enter the Marco Island Photo Contest is to visit the City’s website and fill out the online submission form. If you want to submit your photos in person, bring the digital photos via USB stick or CD to the City Hall’s front desk. They’ll also need you to fill out a paper form to accompany the photos. All photos submitted automatically become the City’s property. They will not return any photographs to the original owner. So, if these are photographs you want to keep at home, make copies or print them out before you submit the original. All entries need to be received by 5 pm on October 15th, 2018.

Get out there. Go find your favorite locales, landscapes, and events. Take lots of photos. Then, select the best four or five and enter them into the Marco Island Photo Contest. Good luck!

Michelle Thomas, Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, Luxury Naples/Marco Island Homes & Condos 

Fall Home Maintenance Tasks to Complete Right Now

So, fall technically doesn’t begin for 12 more days. However, responsible Naples/Marco Island homeowners start getting their properties in shape for the change of seasons as soon as possible. Complete the following fall home maintenance tasks right now. Then, you’ll be ahead of the curve if you need a service call.

Save yourself the headache and expense of a larger problem by tackling these fall home maintenance tasks right now.

Fall Home Maintenance Tasks to Complete Right Now

Gutters

Search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area

Click the photo above to search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area.

We might not experience the bone-chilling cold here in the Naples/Marco Island area that other parts of the country feel. However, that doesn’t mean we should neglect cleaning out the gutters as part of our fall home maintenance tasks. Rain falls quite a bit here, as you know. In fact, our summers experience the most precipitation out of the entire year. Wind brings all sorts of foliage to our rooftops that can then settle into the gutters. If the gutters become clogged, water won’t drain properly from the roof. Pooling water creates a myriad of problems, from roof rips and tears to rot and leaks. The majority of these problems can be solved by simply clearing out your rain gutters routinely.

Fireplace

Another one of the fall home maintenance tasks to pay attention to right now is cleaning out your fireplace. We may still have a couple of months before you actually light a fire in your fireplace, however, you should make sure it is in proper working condition right now. Creosote builds up in the chimney, creating a fire hazard. Leave the cleaning to the pros. Experts recommend a good chimney sweep after every 50-70 fires. One professional cleaning per year (either early fall or in the spring) should be enough for more Naples/Marco Island homes.

Roof

Next item up on your fall home maintenance tasks list should be to inspect your roof. As I said before, wind brings all manner of things to the rooftop. It can also cause severe damage to tiles or other roofing materials. Repair or replace damaged areas as soon as possible. I highly recommend paying a roofing company to come out and look at your roof. Inspections typically cost about $100. But it could save you thousands of dollars down the road if a potential problem is spotted and resolved in its early stages.

Doors/Windows/Walls

When the weather starts to change, animals like to find warmer places to nest. Don’t allow them to lay claim to your Naples/Marco Island home. The final one of your fall home maintenance tasks to tackle right now is to walk around the perimeter of your home looking for small holes in the walls. Check the eaves as well as the foundation. Mice and other critters look for ways inside and they don’t need much of hole to do it either. Most mice fit through a whole the size of a dime. Even vents provide access points. Also, keep cold, wet weather out and warm temperatures in during the winter by sealing up doors and windows. Replace worn or cracked caulking or weather stripping. This helps reduce your energy usage and costs as well.

Complete these fall home maintenance tasks as soon as possible. Some might require the services of a professional. As the weather gets cooler, these professionals’ schedules fill up. Then, the consumer (you) gets charged more. Save yourself the headache and expense of a larger problem by tackling these chores right now.

Michelle Thomas, Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, Luxury Naples/Marco Island Homes & Condos 

Is White-Boxing the Way to Go When Selling Your Naples Home?

For most sellers, home staging plays a huge part in how quickly their home sells as well as for how much. But a trend we’re beginning to see with higher-end homes like those in Naples and Marco Island is something called “white-boxing”. That’s the complete opposite of home staging. So, is white-boxing the way to go when selling your Naples or Marco Island home? It just might be.

White-boxing is a new trend we're seeing in higher end Naples and Marco Island homes. Is this the right strategy to use when selling your home?

What is “White-Boxing”?

Search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area

Click the photo above to search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area.

White-boxing is the absence of furniture or furnishings of any kind. This provides buyers with a truly blank slate. Only white walls and blank floor space. No artwork, books, area rugs, dishes…nothing. Your Naples/Marco Island home is simply a “white box” filled with infinite possibilities.

What Makes White-Boxing Popular?

Today’s luxury buyers want to go in and put their personal stamp on a place. No matter how lovely of a home it may be, they want to tear down walls, rip up flooring and customize the space to fit their lifestyle. When a seller uses white-boxing, it allows the buyer and their designer to better see what they’d like to change instead of focusing on the furniture and fixtures. For designers, this blank canvas makes it easier to render their design concepts for the buyer to visualize once customization has been completed. Plus, buyers feel less guilty about gutting a home to redesign it if it’s already empty. In fact, these buyers may pay more for a white-boxed home than a staged one.

Does White-Boxing Work for Every Home?

No. It may seem odd, but many rooms actually look smaller without furniture in them. White-boxing works best when you have large rooms and a fabulous view. Otherwise, this might not be the best strategy. Determine who your buyers are before you list. Talk this over with your Naples REALTOR® to decide whether or not white-boxing is a good selling plan for your home.

Michelle Thomas, Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, Luxury Naples/Marco Island Homes & Condos 

Naples Food Angels Need Volunteers

Did you know that one in six people in the United States goes hungry every single day. This includes men, women, and children. It affects families living right here in the Naples area. That’s heartbreaking and should never happen in a country as rich as our own. Places like the Naples Food Angels help feed these families in need every week. But they need your help.

What: Naples Food Angels
Where: The Current Community Center (13510 Tamiami Trl N #5, Naples, FL)
When: Every Saturday 10:30 am to 12 pm & Every Wednesday 6 pm to 7:30 pm
Contact: First Christian Church of Naples (239) 529-3977

Naples Food Angels Need Volunteers

Search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area

Click the photo above to search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area.

Naples Food Angels are looking for volunteers to help them with their food distribution efforts. Twice a week (Wednesday evening and Saturday morning), they open up their facility and allow local families in need to shop the shelves for free. Items they choose from include fresh produce, meat, baked goods, personal care products, and other available items. What began with service to just eight people four years ago has grown to serve over 1,000 people a month. As you can imagine, that means the Naples Food Angels need more hands helping pick up, pick through, and organize the bi-weekly distribution efforts.

How to Volunteer for the Naples Food Angels

With the Naples Food Angels, everyone is welcome. Age doesn’t matter. In fact, bring a service hours volunteer form from your school and receive credit for all duties performed as part of the Naples Food Angels family. Public service looks excellent on college applications, by the way. Currently, the “angels” need help with bakery pickups, retail rescue pickups, delivery of leftover perishables to St Matthew’s House, and distribution of food at the center every Saturday. They also need assistance with pickups at various donor locations as well as sorting and stocking the shelves of the facility at the community center throughout the week. In addition, the Naples Food Angels prepare bags for homeless teens going to two Naples area schools. If you’re interested in volunteering, please contact Dara Albert, volunteer coordinator with the Naples Food Angels, at (719) 304-9961.

Of course, donations are always welcome as well. The Naples Food Angels rely on donors as well as volunteers to fulfill their promise to bring good, healthy food to those less fortunate members of our community. If you’d like to donate food or personal care items in person, feel free to drop them off at the Current Community Center between 10:30 am and 12 pm any Saturday of the year. Or, you can donate money online as a one-time-only or regular recurring donation. All money raised is used to purchase food and personal care items for the families serviced by the Food Angels. Thank you and God bless.

Michelle Thomas, Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, Luxury Naples/Marco Island Homes & Condos 

Reseal Your Driveway and Boost Your Curb Appeal

Want to boost your curb appeal? In the past, I’ve told you how to make your outdoor spaces more mobile-friendly. I even talked about specific colors trending for spring. This time, let’s turn to the front of your house…more specifically, your driveway. Do cracks and potholes make your driveway look shabby? With a little elbow grease, you can reseal your driveway without professional help and boost your curb appeal.

It's easier to reseal your driveway than you think. And it easily boosts the curb appeal of your Marco Island/Naples home.

How to Reseal Your Driveway

Check the Weather

Search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area

Click the photo above to search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area.

When you reseal your driveway, you’re going to need one full week of no rain and temperatures of 60F or above. While the latter isn’t a problem at the moment, we tend to experience the most rainfall between May and October in Marco Island and June through September in Naples. Check the weather forecast before you start your resealing project or you may end up having to do it again.

Clear the Way

You need a clean surface to reseal your driveway. Therefore, you’ll need to take the weed wacker to any growth around the sides and in between the cracks on your driveway. Sweep or blow away any grass clippings or dirt on the surface as well. Then, power wash the entire driveway using a back and forth motion. You’ll then need to allow it to dry completely or the sealant will not adhere to it. It typically takes about 48 hours to dry all the way through.

Take Care of the Cracks/Potholes

Put on a pair of rubber gloves and boots or old shoes you don’t mind messing up. Then, seal up the smaller cracks and potholes in your driveway’s surface with asphalt crack filler (available at most home improvement stores). This helps provide a smooth surface for the asphalt sealant to go over.

Create an Asphalt Perimeter

With a long-handled brush, use wet asphalt to mark the perimeter of where you’ll be laying down the asphalt when you reseal your driveway. This provides a guideline of where to quit spreading it. If the asphalt goes outside of that line, it could create an unsightly stain that is difficult to remove. Keep it off the grass and garage door.

Start Filling it In

After you created a perimeter, fill in the space with asphalt. Using a push-pull method, make sure your asphalt is evenly coated. Don’t work with any more than two to three gallons at a time. You’ll want it to be evenly distributed throughout.

Finishing Touches

At the end of the driveway, use a bristle brush to mark an asphalt border line when you reseal your driveway. This helps create a borderline between the driveway and the street. Finally, stay off the driveway for several days to allow it to set properly and thoroughly dry.

While it may sound like a lot of work to reseal your driveway, it really isn’t. Almost anybody can do it themselves and save a few dollars in the process. Talk to your local home improvement store associates if you have any questions. Good luck!

Michelle Thomas, Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, Luxury Naples/Marco Island Homes & Condos

Weekend Warrior Paint Project for Your Naples Home

Earlier this year, I discussed the beautiful paint color trends for spring. The included warm persimmons, pastel yellows, earthy turquoises, and lovely lilacs. These colors give your Naples home a pick-me-up over simple white walls. Even a brighter hue on your front door gives the entire facade a lift. Looking for another weekend warrior paint project for your Naples home? Why not paint interior doors and trim in something other than white?

Home in need of a little "oomph"? I have a weekend warrior paint project for your Naples home. Change the color of your interior doors & trim to add character to each room.

Weekend Warrior Paint Project – Interior Doors and Trim

Search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area

Click the photo above to search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area.

For many homeowners, it feels natural to paint the walls once you claim ownership of your house. It adds a bit of your own style to the place. However, we often overlook the trim and interior doors. This is unfortunate. You wouldn’t paint the exterior of your Naples home without also painting the trim, would you? And by concentrating on a small area like doors, window casings or trim, you can be more daring with color than you might want to be with a whole wall. Also, this is a simple weekend warrior paint project that won’t take up days or weeks of your time to complete. If you don’t like it, paint over it later. Here are a few current trends to consider using on your trim and doors.

Neutral Colors

With this weekend warrior paint project, neutral colors always remain timeless. When I say “neutral”, I don’t mean just sticking with creams or beiges (even though they are very pretty). Olive green and even gray colors provide the perfect neutral complement to most other colors in the room. They also look gorgeous against simple white walls.

Black

Black is the new white when it comes to trim. It works well with just about any color you use on the walls of your Naples home. It also creates a beautiful accent when used on closet and en-suite doors in the bedroom. And if you want to draw the eye to the spectacular view outside, trim your windows in a gorgeous black color inside.

Bold, Bright Colors

Want to spice things up? Paint your interior doors a bright hue. A bold turquoise door with trim in a matching color or black makes a statement without feeling overwhelming. Visit Postcards from the Ridge’s website for some incredible inspiration to use in your own home.

Monotone

So, it may sound odd to go with a monotone look when the whole point of this post was to change up your trim and doorway looks. However, using the same color for your interior doors and trim that you use on the walls and ceilings help make them virtually disappear. In turn, this makes small rooms feel much larger. Also, if your home includes several doors on either side of a hallway, using a monochromatic color scheme allows the doors to blend better into the walls.

Only have a couple of days to tackle some home improvement ideas? Create a whole new space with this weekend warrior paint project. Concentrate on changing up the color of your doors, trim and/or window casings. Time to complete and the cost of materials is minimal. But the difference can be extraordinary.

Michelle Thomas, Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, Luxury Naples/Marco Island Homes & Condos

Marco Island 2nd Tuesdays Showcase New Exhibits Each Month

Support our local artists. Come to the Marco Island 2nd Tuesdays event every month through October 2018. The public is welcome to attend.

Between now and October 9th, come to the Center for the Arts' Marco Island 2nd Tuesdays 2018 event to meet the artists themselves.

What: Marco Island 2nd Tuesdays
Where: Marco Island Center for the Arts (1010 Winterberry Dr)
When: 2nd Tuesday of the Month through October 9th, 2018, 5:30 pm to 7 pm
Admission: Suggested donation of $10 per person
Contact: Marco Island Center for the Arts (239) 394-4221

Marco Island 2nd Tuesdays Art Receptions

Search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area

Click the photo above to search homes for sale in the Naples/Marco Island area.

The Marco Island 2nd Tuesdays events allow the center to introduce a different exhibit each month. Talk to the artists themselves in the galleries on-site. Find out their inspiration for each piece. Learn about the techniques used to create these masterpieces. And discover what they’re working on next. In addition to mingling with artists and art-lovers alike, guests enjoy delicious food prepared by talented chefs of various local restaurants. Each month highlights a different restaurant. For the 21+ crowd, a visit to the wine bar may be in order.

Admission & Parking for Marco Island 2nd Tuesdays

Admission to every Marco Island 2nd Tuesdays event is free to the public. However, a donation of $10 per person is suggested. This helps maintain the costs of operating the center for the arts. Entrance to all events such as this is included with each Center for the Arts membership. In fact, all members are also allowed to bring one guest with them to the event. Learn how to become a member by visiting the Marco Island Center for the Arts’ website here. Guests may park in either the front parking lot or on the grass adjoining the parking lot. If both areas are full, feel free to park at the Jewish Congregation of Marco Island parking lot across the street. Show your support for our local artists as they practice their craft. Come to one or more of the Marco Island 2nd Tuesdays events this year.

Michelle Thomas, Premier Sotheby’s International Realty, Luxury Naples/Marco Island Homes & Condos