Between the irrational runup in home prices, the 2004-2005 hurricanes, and the "Save Our Geezers" regressive property tax system, it's getting plenty messy down here in the sunshine state. Here now some of the latest on our situation from around the state:
Reexamine the Property Tax Structure?
"Here and across Florida residents find themselves whipsawed by soaring property values and skyrocketing insurance premiums. Worse, surging construction costs caused by hurricane rebuilding from the tip of Florida to Louisiana mean homeowners can pay a lot more for less house than they could get just few years ago. Add on tougher building codes, and sticker shock is rampant.
People used to move to this area because of the low property taxes; today, people are talking about leaving because they are getting so high."
Insurance Woes Abound
"Mike and Terry Thompson were ready to call it quits and sell their mortgage-free Navy Point home.They've never made a hurricane claim in the 31 years they've owned their home, located about eight blocks north of Bayou Grande.
Yet their hurricane insurance premium jumped this year, from $945 to $5,143.
"I thought it was a joke or something," Mike Thompson, 55, a retired Pensacola police officer, said of his reaction when he opened his insurance statement."
Escrow Bomb is Ticking
"Unless you've been under a rock, you know Florida is in a property insurance cost crisis. That cost now has to be paid.
If you are not putting 20 or 40 or 50 percent more money away to cover insurance costs, you will sometime in the next few months receive a letter from your mortgage company."
Angry Tax Payers Confront County Commssion
"The board cut a little more than $10 million from the 2007 budget to save taxpayers about $60 per $100,000 of taxable property value.
"That's nothing. That's not enough," shouted some of the more than 100 people attending the public hearing at the Fred B. Karl County Center. ""
Many thanks to Lizziebeth from Orlando for the links.