Area Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog, Treasure Coast Insider, to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community events, restaurants and much more. That’s because we care about our communities and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!




Oct. 16, 2019

Downsizing Considerations For Seniors


Downsizing Considerations for Seniors

Downsizing Considerations For Seniors

Downsizing considerations for seniors can seem daunting. The lifestyle adjustments may seem uncertain and difficult. It’s also a chance to establish a healthy living environment to cope with changes life sends your way. Whether that comes from financial, emotional, or physical concerns, downsizing considerations for seniors means change. Enjoy full quality of life in your golden years.  

Ensure A Safe Landing

Chances are you’re aware of the gradual changes that go hand-in-hand with growing older. Sometimes that can mean needing assistance with some daily basics, and if you should reach a point you could use a bit of help each day, assisted living can be a dream come true. Seniors who require help with things like bathing, dressing, and getting in and out of bed can benefit from having help close at hand. At the same time, it’s a lifestyle oriented toward freedom and self-sufficiency - you don’t have restrictions, just help when you need it.

There is a wide range of amenities assisted living communities offer. You can enjoy everything from laundry and transportation services to group activities and exercise rooms to gourmet meals to on-site beauticians. Along with this array of options comes a broad price range, with facilities in Stuart typically costing $1500 to $8495 per month. Those prices don’t necessarily reflect quality, and since there is so much variety, your best bet is to visit communities in person. 

Smaller Home = Living Large

There are many important financial benefits seniors can gain from downsizing. For one thing, it’s a chance to release the equity in your home and apply it to your life. If you have unused space, you’re no longer tied to it - you don’t need to heat, cool, or maintain it, so it lowers your utility bills, upkeep, and taxes.  

You can move to a home that is closer to places and people that improve your overall quality of life, such as transportation services, health care facilities, and grandchildren. On top of all that, if you pay for services like lawn care or handyman help, with less property, you can cut those costs as well. If you’re tending to those things yourself, it allows you to free time and energy for other things, such as hobbies, friends and family members.  

Choosing a house

If you elect to find a smaller house, there are a handful of things to look for that help make aging in place go more smoothly. When it comes to basic structure, stairscan be challenging as you age, so a one-story home is desirable. There are also several features to consider which could either be found in existing homes or easily added. For instance, flooring that is easy to tend is a perk, as well as wider-than-average doors and hallwaysWhen it comes to renovations, if you need to make one room your top priority, it should be the bathroomAdding grab bars, a taller toilet, and bath seating can go a long way toward helping you stay safe.  

Allow Ample Time

Moving is a funny thing. It seems like it always takes far longer to pack, make all your arrangements, and then actually manage the move, then anyone ever expects. Bearing that in mind, start planning your move well in advance. If you have a lot of belongings, and have lived in your home for a long while, start decluttering early on.  

Cutting down on belongings can be especially difficult, as it involves sorting through emotions attached to things and deciding what is necessary for your next phase in life. Try enlisting a friend or two to provide impartial input, and pack as you go. To help you with boxing things up, use this handy packing checklist from My Move.  

Downsizing considerations for seniors can bring many wonderful perks, but there are some challenges involved. Sort your options carefully and give yourself ample time for the process. In the end, you’ll be rewarded with better quality of life in your golden years.

For more downsizing considerations for seniors, contact Mona Leonard, your Treasure Coast Insider blogger.


Article written by Andrea Needham

Posted in Seller Needs
Oct. 10, 2019

Stuart Area Restaurant Discounts

Stuart area restaurant discounts

Stuart Area Restaurant Discounts

Everyone loves saving money! The Stuart area restaurant discounts listed below will be sure to make your mouth water. Locals (and other smart people) have the inside scoop on great food and restaurant discounts. Check out these dollar-saving Stuart area restaurant discounts in person.

With the Treasure Coast's beautiful waterways, there's an abundance of waterfront restaurants with delicious food and atmosphere...not to mention the view. To make it even more appealing, here's a short list of waterfront eateries... and savings!

The Sailor's Return Happy Hour

Sailor's Return located where the north and south forks of the St. Lucie River converge. Waterfront dining at it's best with a formal dining room overlooking Sunset Bay Marina for intimate dinners. Beautiful indoor lounge with great ambiance and dockside tables wrapping around to an outdoor bar, dance floor and bandstand, lend a positively upbeat way to spend the evening or enjoy lunch in the open-air on one of Stuart's perfect days. Great live music Happy Hour at both bars from 3:30pm-7pm $5 drink specials and appetizers to die for under $8. My personal favorite is the gourmet flatbread of the day. Served with locally famous Mrs. Peter's Smokehouse fish dip! 

Conchy Joe's

Enjoy live music, waterfront bar and restaurant at Conchy Joe's Seafood in Jensen Beach. Located directly on the Indian River Lagoon, there's lots to enjoy. Listen to the sounds of local musicians Thursday through Monday while enjoying homemade, delicious conch chowder, calamari, raw bar, or delicious fresh-caught (never frozen) fish. The full service menu also includes salads and burgers. The wood burning grill gives filet mignon, NY strip and chicken dishes that special flavor.

With "old Florida" charm, and atmosphere, enjoy the most exotic of island drinks too! Happy hour menu and drinks are available everyday from 3-6 pm for significant savings. With an extensive kid's menu, bring the entire family for a great time.


A Little Background - The Story Behind the Story - Dolphin Bar and Shrimp House

The Dolphin Bar and Shrimp House has that old Florida charm and an interesting history. With terrific happy hour discounts on drinks and hors d'oeuvres, and a view that's spectacular. Many years ago, I had the fine fortune of taking care of Ralph Evinrude (yes, that Evinrude). He was charming and delightful and he taught me how to view life's shortcomings with acceptance and love. 

Stuart area restaurant discounts

He married Frances Langford in 1955 and they settled on the St. Lucie River off of Palmer St at the north end of Sewall's Point. It was close to his Evinrude motor testing facilities. On the Indian River Lagoon, he built a restaurant called Frances Langford's Outrigger Resort. For many years, it's been a local treasure with great food, a beautiful view, and a shrine. The great works Frances Langford so dedicatedly gave to her country during WWII, singing in Bob Hope's USO shows and starring in over 35 movies, are apparent when you enter this expansive restaurant and bar. Delicious catering with a pleasant and professional wait staff.

Stuart area restaurant discounts Frances Langford

Although the name Frances Langford's Outrigger is now gone from the marquis, you'll see all the history of Ralph and Frances at the Dolphin. Come see their sweet love affair, or visit the exhibit of her works at the Elliott Museum on Hutchinson Island. Frances continued her philanthropy locally by giving huge financial gifts to Martin Memorial Hospital (now Cleveland Clinic) where I worked for over 25 years. Her legacy continues today through the Frances Langford Heart Center in Stuart.

The Twisted Tuna

Nestled in the Manatee Pocket, a protected cove in the fishing village of Port Salerno, The Twisted Tuna bustles with nightlife, live entertainment daily, and discounts. Happy hour is 2:30 pm to 6:30 pm that includes money off on mixed drinks, special house wine and beer discounts, and $5 "bar bites."

Mona Leonard Reviews The Twisted Tuna

If you're not in the mood for waterfront, try these great Stuart area restaurant discounts, for an amazing food experience. 


Stuart area restaurant discounts are all over the menu at Florentino's Italian Restaurant. With savory Italian aromas seeping into the dining area from the kitchen, my mouth starts watering when I walk through the door. The best chop steak and fries in the county or perhaps the best clams linguine (I get the angel hair) in white sauce you've ever had. Daily 2 for 1 specials abound. Tino (owner and chef) makes some of the best Italian comfort food on the Treasure Coast.

The Black Marlin

Stuart area restaurant discounts also includes The Black Marlin. With $5, $6, and $7 appetizers and two-for-one drinks from 4pm to 6pm Mon-Sat, it's a delicious decision to stop in. The menu includes Bam Bam shrimp, grilled portabella caprese and fried calamari. Enjoy a warm, inviting atmosphere with great food. Shop downtown or take in a performance at the Lyric Theatre, or perhaps a stroll down the boardwalk over the St. Lucie River. All are just steps away. 

For more information on these wonderful restaurants and others, contact Mona Leonard at, your Treasure Coast Insider blogger.







Posted in Restaurants
Aug. 13, 2019

Senior Fun and Activities

Senior Fun and Activities

Senior Fun and Activities

Senior fun and activities abound on the Treasure Coast. Golf, boating, tennis, dancing and swimming are just a few examples. Charitable organizations, churches, clubs (from the Women's Club of Martin County to several VFW's, Elks, Moose) and more, add to the possibilities. For senior fun and activities all over the Treasure Coast, we've got a lot to offer!

Happiest Seaside Town

In a recent survey by US News, 9 of the top 25 best places to retire are in Florida. It's no wonder Florida's at the top of the list... with low taxes, housing affordability, and overall happiness and desirability. Stuart, voted the "Happiest Seaside Town" by Coastal Living Magazine for the entire US, has lots of activities and support for seniors.  I've lived in the Stuart area for many years and love the small town charm. So many great restaurants, playhouses, golf, beaches, and boating to consider. 

State of the art healthcare is available at Cleveland Clinic Martin Health which has 3 hospitals... Stuart, Stuart South and Tradition in Pt. St. Lucie. We have award winning long term care facilities as well. Palm Beach International Airport is only about 45 minutes to the south and Orlando Regional Airport (and Disney World), less than two hours to the north. 

Mona Leonard Reviews Stuart FL Happiest Seaside Town

Stuart Area Golf Courses

Details for public courses can be found here. There's plenty to choose from that are reasonably priced, conveniently located and tons of fun! These beautiful, affordable, year-round courses. give you miles of greens and lots of golf time. For details about specific course, check out my blog on golf courses.


Bingo anyone? The highly rated Elks Lodge near Kanner Hwy and US1 in Stuart boasts many Friday nights filled with Bingo and lots of senior fun and activities. Great Italian food on Thursdays with entertainment. Made-to-order meals 5-7 pm with bar service 4:30-8:30 pm. Join in the fun!

Bingo Madness and Arcade on US1 in Port St Lucie has great reviews too! With its recent transformation, it's sure to make your time worthwhile. If you're a serious player, check them out.

Bingo at Night's of Columbus  is a great spot for Stuart area senior fun and activities. One review says "this place exudes the warmth of brotherhood." The facility is also available for your events. Located in southwest Stuart. 


Many Stuart area Do you love to dance? Sing? Senior fun and activities include Friday nights at the Hobe Sound VFW with dancing and if you're so inclined, singing. Cowboy Bob's karaoke tunes bring out the performer in all of us. Terrific dance floor and a good sound system make the place light up with fun and friendship. Friday nights are open to all, membership not required. With a great menu at reasonable prices, enjoy their delicious menu from 4:30-7:00 pm. 

Several dance studios are close by for lessons. Many Stuart area restaurants have live entertainment and dancing. There's plenty to choose from. 

Festivals and Art Shows

As a personal favorite, the Annual Downtown Stuart Art Festival offers a large variety of art and attracts artists from all over the country. This February event on East Ocean Blvd typically benefits from beautiful temperatures with lots of sunshine. With Memorial Park and it's lovely grounds as a backdrop, enjoy free admission and the opportunity to see (and perhaps buy) some amazing art.

Another personal favorite is Under The Oaks in Vero Beach. World-class artists with amazing, high quality pieces displayed among huge live oak trees in Riverside Park on Vero's barrier island. It's a stage set for success. For a complete list of Treasure Coast area art shows and festivals, check out Treasure Coast Insider's blog on these events.

Mona Leonard Realtor Reviews the Downtown Stuart Art Festival

Theatres and Playhouses

Stuart offers plenty of plays and entertainment at the Lyric Theatre located downtown. Drawing top performers and musicians, this historic theatre is loved by many Martin County residents. The theatre also offers free movies in the summer. 

Nestled in an unsuspecting location on Weatherbee Rd in Ft. Pierce, the Pineapple Playhouse has ample parking, great plays and a more intimate experience than larger playhouses. Similarly, the Barn Theatre on East Ocean in Stuart is smaller than the Lyric Theatre and the Sunrise Theatre in Ft. Pierce. 

For more information about senior fun and activities on the Treasure Coast, contact Mona Leonard, your trusted Treasure Coast Insider blogger.

Posted in Things to do
Aug. 13, 2019

Stuart Area Rodeos


Mona Leonard Reviews Stuart Area Rodeos

Stuart Area Rodeos

Many people moving to the here might not even think Stuart area rodeos exist. They exist and thrive! With over 18,000 cattle ranches in the state of Florida, we're ranked 12th in the nation for beef production. So much of the Treasure Coast is rural and agricultural. The most popular Stuart area rodeos are in Indiantown and Okeechobee. 

Indiantown Rodeo

Held in October, the Indiantown Rodeo is a favorite for folks of all ages. In addition to the adult events (roping, riding and busting to name a few), the Mutton Bustin' contest is loved by kids and adults alike. During this event, young cowboys and cowgirls try to hang on... and walk away with great pride after the competition. You've never seen anything cuter. It's serious stuff for these kids and they love it.

Cowboys from all over the country come to compete in Indiantown's rodeo. It's set in lush Timer Powers Park on Citrus Blvd and the area has a long tradition for everything Western... appropriate for western Martin County. My mom grew up in this little town in the '60's. It's a great place to raise a family.

With all that nature can offer, Indiantown has it all. If you're considering this area of the Treasure Coast, you'll love the fresh water fishing in Lake Okeechobee near Port Mayaca to the west. My absolute favorite fish to eat is fresh water catfish. There's plenty to do living the country life. Ranches and wildlife areas are abundant. It's "Old Florida" beauty with all its flora and fauna. Cabbage palms, live oak hammocks, Cyprus stands, grasslands, White-tailed deer, wild turkey, bobcats, an occasional gator... and nice people.  

Mona Leonard Reviews Stuart Area Rodeos

The Okeechobee Cowtown Rodeo

The Okeechobee Cowtown Rodeo held in March each year, brings cowboys from all over the country, in search of prize money and glory. It includes bareback bronc riding, bull riding, calf roping and lots more. It's a well-attended rodeo, usually filling the arena with spectators. Several times during the year for various rodeo events, the arena fills with excitement and awe. For the full arena schedule, contact the Okeechobee Cattlemen's Association 


Mona Leonard Reviews the Okeechobee Rodeo

Want to look the part? 

Eli's Western Wear is the place to shop if you're in the mood for some western wear. A new cowboy hat, some great boots, shirts, jeans and belts, Eli's Western Wear is the place to shop in Okeechobee. The inventory is huge and if they don't have what you're looking for, they can likely order it for you. 

The Adams Ranch

The Adams Ranch includes 65,000 acres just west of Ft. Pierce. I met Bud Adams on several occasions and road shotgun in his old pick-up to view some of the gorgeous landscape and cattle on his ranch. Four generations have raised cattle here (Bud is standing in the photo). Their cattle auctions are second to none and they create a top-notch hoedown for young and old alike.

From raising money for victims of human trafficking, to putting on a great shindig for the Cattleman's Ball to raise money for the Sunrise Theatre, this family owned and operated ranch (ranked in the top 50 seed stock ranches in the country) is part of the heritage of the Treasure Coast. 


Mona Leonard Reviews The Adams Ranch

For more information on other terrific Stuart area rodeos, contact Mona Leonard at or call 772.530.6131. As blogger for the Treasure Coast Insider, feedback is always appreciated.



Posted in Local Events
Aug. 13, 2019

Stuart Area Theatres and Playhouses

Mona Leonard Realtor Reviews Stuart Area Theatres and Playhouses

Stuart Area Theatres and Playhouses

Many Stuart area theatres and playhouses have a long and interesting history. Each one is unique in its feel, intimacy, acoustics, and services. Below are several Stuart area theatres and playhouses.

The Lyric Theatre

Stuart offers plenty of plays and entertainment at the Lyric Theatre located downtown. Drawing top performers and musicians, this historic theatre is loved by many Martin County residents. The theatre also offers free movies in the summer. 

Mona Leonard Realtor Reviews The Lyric Theatre 

Sunrise Theatre

The oldest of the Stuart area theatres and playhouses is the historic Sunrise Theatre at 117 S Second St in Ft. Pierce, this Mediterranean Revival Style theatre was built in 1923 and as the largest theater on Florida's East Coast between Miami and Jacksonville. The first movie shown was Charlie Chaplin's silent 1923 hit "Vagabond." After renovations made by the St. Lucie Preservation Association in 1997, the theater hosts outstanding performers and musicians. 

Mona Leonard Reviews The Sunrise Theatre

Barn Theatre

Similarly, the Barn Theatre on East Ocean in Stuart is smaller than the Lyric Theatre and the Sunrise Theatre in Ft. Pierce. It's intimate theater of just 169 seats make it cozy and more interactive. You'll see lots of local talent and some cleverly chosen plays. 

Pineapple Playhouse

The Pineapple Playhouse is nestled in an unsuspecting location on Weatherbee Rd in Ft. Pierce. The Pineapple Playhouse has ample parking, great plays and a more intimate experience (100 seats) than larger playhouses. A playhouse tradition, meeting the cast after the show is a true delight. You may get hooked on a more interactive experience at the Pineapple Playhouse than other playhouses.

Maltz Jupiter Theatre

The Maltz Jupiter Theatre, once owned by Burt Reynolds, draws talent from around the world. Famous for their mysteries, this dinner theatre is well-loved by many local patrons. Located in the hustling entertainment district of Jupiter, it's sure to wow you.

Kravis Center

Located in West Palm Beach, the Kravis Center is a more regional theatre experience. This beautiful venue draws performers from across the globe. This theatre attracts the best in music, comedy, plays, and other performances. It can also be reserved for graduations and other activities. You won't want to miss The Nutcracker during the holidays. It's a delight for all fortunate enough to attend this annual tradition. 

Mona Leonard Realtor Reviews The Kravis Center

Area Movie Theaters

The Regency 8 Theater in Stuart has a great selection of recently released movies. With lots of restaurants close by, it gives a whole new meaning to date night. Located in the Treasure Coast Mall, the Regal Treasure Coast Mall boasts 16 theaters and amazing recliners so you can kick back and watch the show. 

For more information about Stuart area theatres and playhouses, contact Mona Leonard, your trusted Treasure Coast Insider blogger.

Posted in Things to do
Aug. 8, 2019

5 Stuart Area Public Golf Courses

Mona Leonard Reviews Trump National Doral Golf Club


5 Stuart Area Public Golf Courses

These 5 Stuart area public golf courses, open year round, each have unique qualities, challenges and benefits. No matter what your skill level, you'll enjoy playing golf in the beautiful surroundings of any and all of these 5 Stuart area public golf courses.

Eagle Marsh Golf Course

The first of the 5 Stuart area public golf courses is Eagle Marsh. Considered one of the most challenging courses in the area. Located in beautiful Jensen Beach, and with a signature 18th hole that has two separate greens to choose from, Eagle Marsh is nestled directly next to the breathtaking Savannahs. Enjoy the full-service bar and restaurant after your game. Priced competitively. The rest of the five Stuart area public golf courses I'm reviewing are below. 

Mona Leonard Reviews Eagle Marsh Golf Club

Palm Cove Golf Course

Beginners and seasoned players alike can improve their game at Palm Cove, in the heart of Palm City. The greens are typically reachable in regulation and the narrow fairways discipline even scratch golfers. Palm Cove is affordable with a pleasant staff that’s attentive to your needs.

Heritage Ridge Golf Course

Heritage Ridge in Hobe Sound is our third pick of five Stuart area public golf courses. With a more forgiving course,  wider fairways and fewer obstacles, Heritage Ridge is reasonably priced and favored by many seniors. If you love playing golf year round, enjoy the great summer rates.

Martin Downs Golf Course

Martin Downs Country Club is in beautiful Palm City. Near Florida’s Turnpike entrance on SR 714, this gated community has a forgiving course. The open fairways are relatively obstacle-free for your next time out. Opening at 11 am, the full service restaurant and bar will hit the spot! Good summer rates too.

Champion Turf at St. James Golf Course

Champion Turf Club (at St. James) sports a full-service bar, snacks and limited pro shop. With lightning fast greens and open fairways, this north Port St Lucie course has long par 4’s and is considered challenging. Competitively priced. 

Mona Leonard Realtor Reviews Champion at St James


As a Treasure Coast Insider (that includes you) feel free to contact Mona Leonard for additional information on these and other Treasure Coast courses. Mona is always happy to share Treasure Coast Insider information.