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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Home prices falling at record pace in August-Best Time To Buy

Home prices falling at record pace in August
Down 4.4% over the past year in 20 major cities, Case-Shiller says
Rex Nutting, MarketWatch
Last Update: 11:29 AM ET Oct 30, 2007

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - The 13-month-long decline in home prices in 20 major U.S. cities accelerated in August, with prices dropping a record 0.7% in the month, according to the Case-Shiller price index released Tuesday by Standard & Poor's Corp.
Prices were down 4.4% in the past year, the fastest decline in the seven-year history of the 20-city index. In the original 10-city index, prices have fallen 5% in the past year, the biggest decline since 1991.

"The fall in home prices is showing no real signs of a slowdown or turnaround," said Robert Shiller, co-creator of the index and chief economist for MacroMarkets, in a release.
Read more.
"With supply overhang growing and mortgage financing tougher to obtain, home prices are going to soften considerably further in the quarters ahead," wrote Joshua Shapiro, chief U.S. economist for MFR Inc.
The last time prices fell so much, it took more than eight years for home prices to return to their peak level.

In a separate report, the Conference Board said consumer confidence fell to its lowest level in two years in October, with consumers more pessimistic about job growth and less inclined to buy homes or major appliances.
See full story.

The Case-Shiller index, which tracks multiple sales of the same homes, is considered by many observers to be the best gauge of national and metropolitan-area real-estate values.
Falling prices make it more difficult for homeowners to tap the equity in their homes or refinance their mortgages. Millions of homeowners who took out adjustable-rate loans in 2005 and 2006 face sharply higher mortgage payments this year and next, with foreclosures having already soared as the result of payment resets.

The biggest declines are the Rust Belt and in the former boom towns along the coasts. Prices are up in the Pacific Northwest and in areas of the South, but they're rising at a slower pace.
Prices could fall much further. In a separate report, analysts at Goldman Sachs figured that prices in California are about 35% to 40% overvalued, compared with past relationships between home prices and income growth. The median sales price of a home in California was $589,000 in August, Goldman said, but should be around $375,000, they said.

In the Case-Shiller index, fifteen of the 20 cities tracked in the index have seen prices fall in the past year, led by Tampa, Fla., with a 10.1% decline, followed by Detroit with a 9.3% loss. Indeed, eight of the 20 cities recorded their largest-ever year-over-year price declines in August.

Detroit had held the top spot for price declines among the 20 cities in previous months. A year ago, prices in Tampa had been rising at an annual rate of 14.3%.

Prices were up in five cities, led by Seattle with a 5.7% increase and Charlotte, N.C., with 5.6%. After adjusting for inflation of 2.4% in the past year, real prices were up in just three of 20 cities.
Here are the year-over-year nominal price changes for the 20 cities covered by the index:
Tampa, down 10.1%; Detroit, down 9.3%: San Diego, down 8.3%; Phoenix, down 8%; Miami, down 7.8%; Las Vegas, down 7.6%; Washington, D.C., down 7.2%; Los Angeles, down 5.7%; San Francisco, down 4.2%; Cleveland, down 4.1%; Minneapolis, down 4%; New York, down 3.8%; Boston, down 3.6%; Chicago, down 1.3%; Denver, down 0.4%; Dallas, up 0.5%; Atlanta, up 0.8%; Portland, Ore., up 2.8%; Charlotte, up 5.6%; and Seattle, up 5.7%.

Rex Nutting is Washington bureau chief of MarketWatch.

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Friday, October 26, 2007


Thursday, October 25, 2007 - 2:41 PM EDT
New Port Tampa Bay land put on market
Tampa Bay Business Journal - by
Michael Hinman

Colliers Arnold Commercial Real Estate Services has confirmed it will handle the potential sale or alternative capital structure for the 52-acre site pegged for New Port Tampa Bay.

Ed Oelschlaeger, president of New Port developer EcoGroup Inc., told the Tampa Bay Business Journal last week that as part of the company's regrouping to move the 1,250-unit project forward sometime in 2008, he was exploring the options of bringing in a partner or selling the property outright.

"We're trying to recapitalize New Port, and part of that effort is to sell the project," Oelschlaeger said. "It's possible that EcoGroup would not be involved going forward under some circumstances, but we should be here under most circumstances."

While New Port was planning just less than 1,300 residences, Colliers Arnold said the property already is zoned for 1,750 residences and 240,000 square feet of commercial use near the intersection of Gandy and Westshore boulevards in Tampa.

"The vision for the site is extremely exciting, and we're confident it will be developed to its fullest potential as a waterfront community," said John F. Gerlach, a broker with Colliers Arnold, in a release. "We are committed to helping EcoGroup find exactly the right party who will take this property to its highest and best use in the years ahead."

Deposits for units have already been refunded, and Oelschlaeger said new ideas are being put together that could possibly keep most of the project intact, except with lower price points and smaller construction phases.

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Monday, October 22, 2007

Foreclosures Skyrocket-Article reveals where most foreclosures are in Tampa, Fl

Tampa Palms Townhome
I have been hesistant on posting articles related to foreclosures in the Tampa Bay area, however I found this article and thought it had enough info worth while. If you are looking to purchase foreclosures in the area check out these statistics. It may help you decide where the best places are to purchase your next property.

Foreclosures Skyrocket-
from the Tampa Tribune

Carriage Pointe is just one example of what's playing out in hundreds of neighborhoods throughout Florida and the Bay area.

The Sunshine State's foreclosure rate of one filing for every 248 households is second only to Nevada. In Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas counties, the number of foreclosure filings through September was 19,226, up nearly 131 percent compared with the same period last year, according to RealtyTrac, a California company that tracks foreclosures. That's up from 9,476 in 2005, the first year the company began its reporting.

Just last month, there were 4,365 filings in the three counties, and lenders took the keys back from 502 homeowners, RealtyTrac said.

The Tampa Tribune set out to find pockets of the Bay area that are feeling the foreclosure pinch more than others. The Tribune interviewed experts and homeowners, and analyzed public records and data provided by RealtyTrac and ForeclosuresDaily.com, a local company that sends researchers to courthouses daily.

The data show no neighborhood or price range is immune. Those in default are a mix of investors and people who bought primary residences. Neighborhoods with clusters of foreclosures were typically popular with speculators who purchased multiple homes. Many bought beyond their means with adjustable-rate and interest-only mortgages that fueled the 2005 real estate boom in Florida.

The idea was to sell or refinance before the low teaser rate went up. Now that the real estate market has slowed, that's no longer an option for many. Homes are sitting on the market for months, and prices are dropping.

The Bay area real estate market is expected to stabilize over the next two years, but experts say the neighborhoods where foreclosure rates are highest could suffer much longer.

"Those neighborhoods will have sharper drops in prices because you'll see more aggressive pricing to move homes," said Mike Larson, a real estate analyst with Weiss Research in Jupiter. "And when there are a lot of renters, prices could drop because renters don't typically take as good of care of the home as homeowners do."

RealtyTrac's data show the ZIP codes with the most foreclosure activity were in Port Richey, New Port Richey, Wesley Chapel and Riverview. The areas tended to be more densely populated and, in most cases, had intense residential growth.

But out of 145 ZIP codes in Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas counties, the one for Port Richey in Pasco topped the list with 716 filings, RealtyTrac data show. As retirees have moved out in recent years, first-time homeowners have moved in, often using nontraditional financing. The area also was a hot spot among investors looking for rental property.

In Pasco, foreclosures in New Port Richey and Wesley Chapel, where hundreds of new homes were built during the boom, have risen dramatically in the past year, too.

In Hillsborough, ZIP codes with new subdivisions were hardest hit. The Riverview ZIP code had 573 filings, more than any other in the county. But it was followed closely by an area north of Ybor City and the Sulphur Springs area in Tampa, which had 528 and 538 filings, respectively.
Hillsborough and Pasco had ZIP codes with the highest total foreclosures, but Pinellas also has been susceptible. Some areas, such as neighborhoods in south St. Petersburg, have had a lot of foreclosures because of high investor activity.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Encouraging outlook for Bay Area real estate-Tampa, Fl

Encouraging outlook for Bay Area real estate

Last Edited: Thursday, 04 Oct 2007, 6:44 PM EDT
Created: Thursday, 04 Oct 2007, 6:44 PM EDT

Is Florida's depressed real estate market on the verge of a turnaround?

ST. PETERSBURG - The National Association of Realtors senior economist has encouraging outlooks for the Tampa Bay market.
"Certainly I feel very comfortable saying 2008 will be better than 2007 in terms of sales and prices," said Dr. Lawrence Yun.

Yun calls Florida "ground zero" in the current national real estate correction.
"I don't even use the word 'price correction' because there is minimal price decline," he adds.
The economist thinks there is a lot of pent-up demand in the local market from buyers waiting for more significant price drops. But rising rents are prompting some of them to start shopping. Sellers are also lowering their expectations. Florida also continues to capture 26% of foreigners buying homes in U.S. and will continue to attract northern retirees.

"Long term, baby boomers, huge population on the verge of retirement and we know where they want to go," Yun said.

New home construction starts in Florida are down 70% from the peak in 2005.
"[It's] actually a positive for the local market stabilization, because you don't want to add inventory to the current situation."

But property taxes and insurance continue to be a drag on the local real estate market. 79% of home buyers say they have postponed or cancelled deals because of insurance costs and availability. 62% of home sellers say the same issues motivated their decision to sell.
Yun thinks the local real estate market is poised for recovery despite taxes and insurance problems, and says resolving those issues will strengthen the rebound.

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Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Urban Tour Of Homes-Downtown Tampa

Luxury living meets urban life-style in this "One of a kind" two story corner penthouse loft featuring: 750 sq ft wrap around roof-top terrace

Discover what Urban Living is all about!
For one day only, 12 of the hottest developments in downtown Tampa will be open to the public!

Take a personal tour through some of the Bay Area's most exclusive new residences and find out why so many people are deciding to call downtown "Home."

the Urban Tour of Homes
Saturday, October 13th, 2007 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Victory Lofts Penthouse
101 12th Street

To receive a current list of lofts and condos in Channelside or Downtown Tampa, send us an email. or call 813-784-7744

Rae Catanese, Realtor-Prudential Tropical Realty

Now is the time to buy.

Prices have come down on many lofts and condos for less than what sellers paid 3 years ago!

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Monday, October 08, 2007

Housing Trends-Best Places For Real Estate Deals

This was on Forbes.com today and thought it was a very encouraging article for the Tampa area.

Towers of Channelside

Home sales have sunk to their lowest levels since 2001. Investors are jumping ship, foreclosures are mounting and lenders are exercising caution.

Still, there are areas of the county where it makes sense for some to buy. That's because, in a market slump, sellers eager to unload their homes often accept less money from buyers. New construction also slows. Both bode well for those hoping to score a deal--if the market in which they are buying is expected to experience increased sales.

To find such places, we paired with Moody's Economy.com to research current home sales patterns and sales projections in the country's 40 biggest real estate markets. Based on models that estimated 2008 housing inventory, sales rates and turnover, we arrived at a list of markets that are experiencing price stalls or declines, but where over the coming year are expected to provide deals for buyers.

Tampa and Miami--are expecting to see significant pickups in sales activity, according to Moody's, and therefore become better buyers' markets because of a relatively lower risk.

But economists caution that while over the next year the dust may settle in these 10 spots, buyers should be prepared for future swings. This is especially true in the case of riskier markets like Orlando and Las Vegas, where the expected increase in sales volume and housing turnover doesn't necessarily mean that the price trough is imminent.

"Housing market activity revives when house prices decline sufficiently to restore housing affordability and entice buyers to step up and make a purchase," says Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Economy.com. "Some markets are already approaching those price points, in many others prices will have to decline much more to get to that point."

If you are in the market to purchase a home please feel free to contact us or visit http://www.tampabaydwellings.com/ to search listings in all of Tampa Bay.

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