The Great Grill Debate

The great grill debate happens throughout the country each summer. Are you a charcoal griller or do you prefer a gas grill? Here’s a breakdown of key differences between gas and charcoal.

Everyone Loves a Parade


Everyone loves a parade, especially the Parade of Homes hosted by the Home Builders Association of Lake-Sumter. This year’s parade promises to be one of the best since the Great Recession. With limited local housing inventory and increased demand, expect the crowds to be large. As in years past, there is no charge to view the homes on the parade route.

The Parade of Homes runs from Feb. 25 to March 5 and includes 30 entries comprised of custom homes, remodels, communities and builder models. The vast array of participants will give everyone something to see. The Parade of Homes viewing times are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Note that remodel entries are only available for viewing on Feb. 25 and 26.

The Dream Community for this year’s parade is Harbor Hills, 6538 Lake Griffin Road in Lady Lake. This beautiful community nestled on Lake Griffin has one of the best golf courses and scenic views in Central Florida. Harbor Hills is a gated community offering boating, tennis, a marina and junior olympic-size pool for its residents.

In my opinion, the Parade of Homes is like Pinterest live. For anyone considering a construction project, the parade offers the opportunity to see and meet outstanding builders. Plus, you can see tricked-out homes competing for honors and recognition. The Parade of Homes is an outstanding time to buy, because many builders want to sell the property they are showing. It just goes without saying, many are wheeling and dealing.

If you are planning to view homes in the parade, be sure to come prepared to take notes, pictures and have an open mind. Remember, viewing something in person is much different than viewing it on a computer screen. Also, it’s not a race. Take your time as you walk through the homes and don’t be shy, ask a lot of questions.

My top piece of advice for having a successful tour is: Don’t bring small children. Of course, children are welcome at the Parade of Homes, but you can’t fully concentrate and discuss home features with children who would rather be playing on a playground or watching a movie. Make your Parade of Homes tour a date with your significant other, with an easy drive, delicious lunch and no kids. That might be the best reason yet to attend the Parade of Homes.

The Home Builders Association of Lake-Sumter is placing Parade of Homes guides throughout the community. For information or to find the closest guide, call the Home Builders Association of Lake-Sumter at 352-343-7101 or email Lisa Templin-Rayborn at Each home will have directional signs from the main thoroughfares. The Parade of Homes is definitely worth a weekend pleasure drive.

Don Magruder is the CEO of Ro-Mac Lumber & Supply Inc. He is also the host of the Around the House radio show heard every Monday at noon on My790AM WLBE in Leesburg.

Carrier Air Conditioning

All new homes in Harbor Hills proudly come with Carrier Air Conditioning systems with their included 10 year warranty.

Want to learn more about this terrific company? Read below:

Carrier is the world’s leader in high-technology heating, air-conditioning and refrigeration solutions. Carrier is a part of UTC Climate, Controls & Security, a unit of United Technologies Corp., a leading provider to the aerospace and building systems industries worldwide.

At Carrier, our mission is to be the first choice for heating, air-conditioning and refrigeration solutions worldwide. We work every day to make the world a better place to live, work and play. Our employees, products and services create comfortable, productive and healthy environments, regardless of climate, and ensure the global food supply is transported and preserved for safe consumption.

Our culture is rooted in the core values of UTC Climate, Controls & Security. These values are the pillars of our business. They define who we are and guide every decision we make.


Quality is the common denominator of all we do. We are committed to Service Excellence and the Achieving Competitive Excellence (ACE) operating system.


Our customers have a choice, and how we perform determines whether they choose us. We strive for continuous growth to reinforce our leadership position. We achieve world-class financial performance. We continuously improve the productivity of our assets, resources and everything we do.


Successful businesses improve the human condition. We act with integrity and maintain the highest ethical standards. We are environmentally responsible and drive to sustainability. We care for the health and safety of our employees and customers. We actively support the communities in which we do business. INNOVATION

We are a company of ideas, committed to research and development. Our heritage inspires us to reach the next innovative, powerful and marketable idea. We continuously invest in new products, technologies and intelligent systems. CUSTOMER CARE

We listen to our customers and respond to their needs. We make it easy to do business with us. We are committed to excellence in customer satisfaction.

ABOUT CARRIER Built on Willis Carrier’s invention of modern air conditioning in 1902, Carrier is the world leader in heating, air-conditioning and refrigeration solutions. We constantly build upon our history of proven innovation with new products and services that improve global comfort and efficiency. The world’s first container refrigeration system to use the natural refrigerant CO2 from Carrier Transicold First container refrigeration system to use CO2 Learn more


In 1902, Willis Carrier solved one of mankind’s most elusive challenges by controlling the indoor environment through modern air conditioning. His invention enabled countless industries, promoting global productivity, health and personal comfort.

Today, Carrier innovations are found across the globe and in virtually every facet of daily life. We create comfortable and productive environments, regardless of the climate. We safeguard the global food supply by preserving the quality and freshness of food and beverages. We ensure health and well-being by enabling the proper transport and delivery of vital medical supplies under exacting conditions. We provide solutions, services and education to lead the green building movement.

These mark just a handful of the ways that Carrier works to make the world a better place to live, work and play.


From the very beginning, Carrier has been a natural leader. Not simply for the fact that we created an entirely new and innovative product, but because as we did so, we set the standard in environmental responsibility. Since 1994, we have led the industry in the phase-out of ozone-depleting refrigerants while introducing many of the world’s most energy-efficient heating, air-conditioning and refrigeration systems.

Preservation of the environment and protecting our world’s finite natural resources is a central tenet of our business. We recognize the vital importance of maintaining a responsible balance between the comfort we create today and the world we live in tomorrow.


Carrier delivers global solutions across a broad range of applications in heating, air-conditioning, refrigeration and beyond.

Home Comfort – Millions of people trust Carrier’s leadership and expertise in delivering efficient solutions for their home heating and cooling needs. Building Solutions – Setting the standard for performance, energy efficiency and sustainability, Carrier offers solutions in air conditioning, building controls and energy services for the building lifecycle. Transport Refrigeration – Carrier transport refrigeration equipment, cold chain monitoring solutions and replacement components ensure the safe, reliable transport of food and beverages, medical supplies and other perishable cargo to people and businesses around the world. Commercial Refrigeration – Serving the beverage, food service and food retail industries, our refrigeration solutions are built on next-generation technologies to preserve freshness, ensure safety and enhance appearances of global food and beverage retail.

30-year fixed mortgage rates hit three-year low

Article from:

WASHINGTON (AP) – May 12, 2016 – Long-term U.S. mortgage rates fell this week for a third straight week, posting new lows for the year. The benchmark 30-year rate reached a three-year low.

The low rates come amid the spring home buying season, luring prospective purchasers.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage dipped to 3.57 percent from 3.61 percent last week. It’s far below its level a year ago of 3.85 percent.

The average rate on 15-year fixed-rate mortgages eased to 2.81 percent from 2.86 percent last week.

Prices of U.S. government bonds have been at high levels since the Federal Reserve’s recent decision not to increase the benchmark interest rate – which it had raised from record lows in December. Some economists believe the Fed may not raise rates again until the second half of the year.

That means low levels for the bonds’ yields, which move in the opposite direction from their prices and tend to influence mortgage rates.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury bond stood at 1.73 percent Wednesday, down from 1.77 percent a week earlier. The yield rose to 1.75 percent Thursday morning.

To calculate average mortgage rates, Freddie Mac surveys lenders across the country at the beginning of each week. The average doesn’t include extra fees, known as points, which most borrowers must pay to get the lowest rates. One point equals 1 percent of the loan amount.

The average fee for a 30-year mortgage was 0.5 point, down from 0.6 point last week. The fee for a 15-year loan was unchanged at 0.5 point.

Rates on adjustable five-year mortgages averaged 2.78 percent this week, down from 2.80 percent last week. The fee was steady at 0.5 point.

AP Logo Copyright © 2016 The Associated Press. All right

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