Brent's Blog / / Theme Park News, Orlando News, Real Estate News

The headline reads "Disney Raises Theme Park Ticket Prices". It's an annual tradition you probably don't care to celebrate.

Indeed, Disney yesterday made several price and policy changes for their theme park admission tickets. But what exactly did they do?

Here's a summary:

Prices are up for most, but not all, tickets. Changes range from ($3) - $46.

That's right! A few tickets actually received a downward adjustment. 2-day tickets decreased from $202 to $199 while a 2-day ticket with Park Hopper option increased by $2 and a 2-day ticket with both Park Hopper and Water Park Fun and More options (more on this in a moment) is now $23 less.

Similarly, a 3-day ticket decreased from $290 to $289 while a 3-day ticket with Park Hopper option increased by $4 and a 3-day ticket with both Park Hopper and Water Park Fun and More options is now $21 less.

Single day tickets now range from $99, a $2 increase, to $124, the same as before, depending on park and season. As above, those opting for both Park Hopper and Water Park Fun and More options on a 1-day ticket will pay less.

But that's where the love ends. All other tickets increased in price - as much as $46 per ticket. And, as a new policy which is being spun as "save $20 when you purchase online", 3-day and longer tickets will now cost $20 more in person at the gate. (...No biggie there. You want those tickets in advance anyway so you can make your FastPass+ selections prior to arrival.)

Some other notable changes were initiated:

Tickets now carry an expiration date. Previously, an unused Disney ticket lasted forever. Now, you'll need to use any ticket you buy in 2017 for the first time on or before December 31, 2018. But don't worry. If for some reason you don't use it in time, the paid value can be used toward a new ticket at then current least for now.

Another change regards the Water Park Fun and More option. I told you I'd have more to say on this in a moment! Well, it has been eliminated. Hold on, hold on, that's sort of true and sort of false. You can still add water park and more visits to your theme park ticket, but it is now called Park Hopper Plus. What's that? Park Hopper Plus is being positioned as a +$15 upgrade to a Park Hopper ticket. In other words, Park Hopper Plus is the same as having both the Park Hopper and Water Park Fun and More options. The difference is not only the name, but also having both options together is now the only way to add water park and more visits. The Water Park Fun and More option is no longer available as a stand alone option to add directly to a Base ticket. Some things are unchanged. You still get the same number of visits you got before, and you can still use them independently from your theme park days. Also, 1-day Water Park tickets and a Water Parks Annual Pass are available.

Now some of you may be like "say what?". I apologize. Some of the info. above is for those familiar with the old ticketing. For everyone, here's a printable one-page chart with all ticket possibilities and pricing before and after tax. I hope it helps!

Looking to purchase multi-day tickets? Remember, 3+ days now costs more at the gate. Also, you can save on multi-day tickets by using an authorized reseller.

Call Kissimmee Guest Services located in Disney's Town of Celebration at 321-939-2057 and mention Promo Code FER or order online and enter the code during checkout. Learn more on my page at

Posted in:General
Posted by Brent Ferry on February 13th, 2017 1:50 PM
Construction in the retail area of the planned Orlando Margaritaville Resort began in late 2016. Site work is ongoing.

Here is an aerial view of the progress.

February 2017 Flyover Video

Check for updates or sign up for my email list at

Posted in:General
Posted by Brent Ferry on February 9th, 2017 10:33 AM
Disney announces OPENING DATE for Avatar and Star Wars-Themed Lands.

You can purchase discounted Walt Disney World tickets by calling 321-939-2057 and mentioning Promo Code FER or order online here and enter code during check out.

Posted in:General
Posted by Brent Ferry on February 8th, 2017 11:06 AM
You've probably heard the news. Universal's Volcano Bay Water Theme Park is opening May 25th.

Today I had a chance to attend #UniversalAndU at Universal Orlando Resort to learn more about this exciting new park.

Get ready for an all new, all day experience!

You'll be able to enjoy Volcano Bay from morning to night. With 28 acres of fun divided into 4 areas with 18 attractions/experiences - more than any other water park in Orlando - you'll experience thrills AND relaxation, immersive theming from the same creative team that brought you The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and the newest technology and designs.

Become an honorary Waturi islander for the day. Explore Krakatau Volcano, Wave Village, River Village, and Rainforest Village. The best part about this magical island? No carrying tubes, and, with your TapuTapu wristband, which all guests will receive upon entering the park, you can enjoy a virtual line and special tap to play interactions. 

Interested? If you want to experience the park, you'll need a multi-day 3-Park Ticket. You can get yours now through my preferred ticket provider. Call 321-939-2057 and mention Promo Code FER or click here to order online and enter the code during checkout. You'll receive FREE domestic shipping with the code and save both time and money. Multi-day Universal tickets cost $20 more in person at the gate.

How do you get there? Complimentary transportation will be provided for onsite hotel guests and also for day visitors from the south parking garage (daily parking fee applies).

Got a question or need help planning your Universal Orlando Resort vacation? Feel free to give me a call at 407.506.7857 or drop me a line at and I'd be happy to help.
Posted in:General
Posted by Brent Ferry on February 7th, 2017 3:43 PM

Check out my event page for 2017 NFL Pro Bowl Week and Game Day Information.

I will also be conducting FREE, no obligation tours of the newest vacation home resorts over the next week. See page for more information or call me at (407) 506-7857 to schedule your own appointment.

Posted in:General
Posted by Brent Ferry on January 25th, 2017 1:17 PM
Real estate firm Ten-X's winter market report based on current and forecasted housing fundamentals lists Orlando as the hottest market for single-family homes. Palm Beach county, Fort Lauderdale, and Tampa together with Dallas join Orlando in the Top 5 Metros.

"The Orlando housing market continues to make substantial strides in its recovery. Metro employment is up 4.1 percent year-over-year, supported in large part by its booming leisure/hospitality sector that comprises over 21 percent of local employment. Payrolls are at an all-time high, some 27 percent above their prior peak. Home prices jumped 4.4 percent this past quarter, eclipsing $200,000 for the first time since 2008. Up 11.2 percent year-over-year, home prices have outpaced US annual growth for 20 straight quarters, with room for additional growth as prices remain 17.3 percent below their prior peak. Population growth has exceeded two percent for four consecutive years, and Orlando's economic outlook is among the best in the nation."
Posted in:General
Posted by Brent Ferry on January 11th, 2017 9:42 AM
Article as appears in the Orlando Sentinel January 6, 2017

Orlando real estate can post some of 2017's hottest gains, reports say

Less than two years after metro Orlando led the nation in foreclosures, it's now expected to post some of the hottest real estate gains in the United States during 2017, two new reports show.

Home values throughout Orange, Seminole, Osceola and Lake counties are expected to increase 5.7 percent during the next year — the highest rate among the country's top 100 metro areas, according to real estate analytics firm Zillow.

"It's actually a thriving market in the sense where people can find employment and buy a house," said Svenja Gudell, chief economist for the company. Wages are still among the nation's lowest, but analysts see that unemployment remains low and wages have begun to improve in recent months.

If predictions hold true, Orlando home-price growth this year would exceed the 4.6 increase in home prices expected nationally. The forecasts factor in projected increases in mortgage interest rates.

Analysts say the price increases are unlikely to lead to a bubble in the near term because mortgages are not easy to get and Orlando home values remain below their peak from a decade ago.

On Thursday, Krystal Little and her husband Jason saw a townhouse hit the market in the Winter Park school district. Within hours, they signed a contract to buy it for cash with intentions to flip it.

"Everything is moving in hours now," said Little, who also is chairwoman of the Orange County chapter of the Central Florida Realty Investors nonprofit.

The Littles plan to paint and make modest improvements to their new townhome before selling it within a few weeks of closing. They plan to reap at least a 15 percent return on their investment.

Even though investor activity won't lead to a long-term housing recovery, that group has helped rehab the region's inventory of foreclosures. Little said they are finding buyers more easily now.

"Two or three years ago, investors had to go all out improving properties," she said. "It had to be pristine. We don't see that now. It's mostly cosmetic improvements."

Limited supply, rising home values, ample jobs and income growth elevated Orlando to the nation's top market position among the 50 largest metro areas for the current quarter, according to real estate analyst Ten-X. Three other Florida metropolitan areas trailed directly behind Orlando in the ranking: Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Tampa — all also among the hardest hit nationally during the recession.

"The top 20 cities in our report include many that were devastated during the foreclosure crisis — especially in states like Florida — and as home prices continue to recover, they still represent buying opportunities for homeowners and investors alike," Ten-X Executive Vice President Rick Sharga said.

Orlando's outlook for the coming year follows two years of booming price increases for a region that suffered during the housing bust. In the core Orlando market of Orange and Seminole counties, median prices have more than doubled from a bottom of $94,900 in January 2011, according to Orlando Regional Realtor Association.

But there is room for more price growth in the Orlando area, in part because home prices are 17 percent below their 2007 peak, said Sharga.

Ten-X reported Thursday that Orlando jumped from fourth to first during the last two quarters to overtake Fort Lauderdale as the country's top market, when all factors are considered.

Orlando had the highest expected home appreciation for 2017, Zillow ranked it as the fourth-hottest market overall — as other factors such as unemployment or income growth kept it behind Nashville, Tenn.; Seattle; and Provo, Utah.

Zillow's Gudell said that Orlando still has not recovered fully from the bust. About 11 percent of houses are upside down with values below the mortgage owed on them — four times more than normal for a market but far less than five years ago when about half of mortgages in the region were underwater.

Little said she sees few foreclosure deals and momentum continuing into the new year.

"We've been watching prices steadily increase. Even in the holidays, we were watching it increase," she said. "Normally you see a dip at that time of year, but it's holding steady. That was surprising to me, and it's a sign of a good, strong market."
Posted in:General
Posted by Brent Ferry on January 11th, 2017 9:35 AM
Encore Resort Homes at Reunion brings the "wow factor" to vacation homes. Check out the following special priced inventory and contact me at 407.506.7857 or for more information. FREE Buyer Representation.

Posted in:General
Posted by Brent Ferry on January 10th, 2017 4:22 PM
Osceola County Sales Tax Increases From 7% to 7.5%

Effective January 1, 2017, the combined state and local sales and use tax rate for Osceola County is 7.5%.

The combined rate is composed of the 6% state sales tax plus the 1% local government infrastructure surtax and newly added 0.5% school capital outlay surtax.

The school surtax is effective January 1, 2017, and will remain in effect until December 31, 2036.

The Osceola County School Board approved a special resolution to add a referendum to the November ballot. The half-cent sales tax increase passed during the November 8th General Election. Osceola County residents voted 57.82% in favor of the surtax which is estimated to bring in $25 million dollars annually for the next 20 years. The surtax revenue can only be used to support capital projects for schools in Osceola County. Prioritized projects have been identified for 30 schools to include facilities maintenance such as HVAC, flooring, and paint as well as technology and security upgrades. The School District of Osceola County Facilities and Maintenance Departments have already initiated numerous improvements.

More information about the tax, updates, and school-by-school information can be found at
Posted in:General
Posted by Brent Ferry on January 4th, 2017 12:36 PM
Christmas at Gaylord Palms: November 18, 2016 – January 1, 2017

The majestic Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center in Kissimmee just outside the gates of Disney is an attraction unto itself. The hotel’s one-of-a-kind atrium is a treat to explore complete with alligators and turtles cared for by Gatorland and a variety of signature dining experiences including the top rated Villa de Flora (Orlando Sentinel’s Foodie Awards Critic’s Choice for Best Buffet), Old Hickory Steakhouse, seafood focused MOOR, and
Wreckers Sports Bar featuring a 37 ft. sports screen and over 50 HDTVs.

Now through New Year’s Day there are even more reasons to visit.

Christmas at Gaylord Palms returns November 18, 2016 through January 1, 2017.

This year's theme for ICE! is A Charlie Brown Christmas. Members of the late Charles Schulz' family were on hand to kick off the event during a special preview earlier tonight.

You’re going to love this year’s display! Click HERE to view my event and exhibit photos.

The classic Peanut’s story unfolds in ICE! featuring A Charlie Brown Christmas - a stunning walk-through holiday attraction hand-carved from 2 million pounds of ice.

Alpine Rush Snow Tubing returns. Children and adults of all ages can zoom down a super fun eight-lane snow tubing hill.

This year’s event adds Santa's Snow Throw. Test your aim by throwing real snow balls!

Also debuting in 2016 is a brand new 60 foot Christmas tree and A Christmas Wish Light Show. Catch it and a revised Cirque Dreams UnWrapped Stage Show in the Emerald Plaza within the St. Augustine Atrium. Neil Goldberg brings back his famed Cirque Dreams brand for a second year in a row with this uniquely inspiring theatrical performance. Both shows are FREE with times as follows.

A Christmas Wish Light Show (~ 6 minutes)
Sun.-Thurs. at 6:15pm, 8:15pm, 8:45pm and 9:15pm
Fri. & Sat. at 6:15pm, 8:45pm and 9:15pm

Cirque Dreams UnWrapped Stage Show (~ 25 minutes)
Sun.-Thurs. at 1:00pm and 6:30pm
Fri. at 6:30pm and 8:00pm
Sat. at 1:00pm, 6:30pm and 8:00pm
No shows Thanksgiving Day

Whether it’s your first time or a yearly tradition, a visit to Christmas at Gaylord Palms is sure to help get you into the spirit of the holidays. Check it out! View pictures of this year's event.

ICE!, Alpine Rush Snow Tubing, Santa's Snow Throw, The Elf on the Shelf Scavenger Hunt, the all new Mrs. Claus Christmas Traditions and Story Time Sing-a-long, Gingerbread Decorating Corner, Breakfast with Charlie Brown & Friends, and Build-A-Bear Workshop are fee based opportunities. Various entry prices, combo tickets, and passes are available. Event self-parking is $20.00 plus tax. Valet parking is $27.00 plus tax. Parking validated with minimum dining spend.

Learn more and get tickets at #CAGP16

Posted in:General
Posted by Brent Ferry on November 17th, 2016 10:55 PM


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