Tuesday, November 14, 2006

UBS: 10% Nationwide Correction in 2007

From Marketwatch, some predictions about housing prices in 2007.

Home prices will fall 10% on average in 2007 and it will likely take three years to clear out the huge inventory of empty unsold homes currently in the market, according to a UBS report released Monday.

We are now overbuilt to the tune of 900,000 houses. Wonderful!

UBS analyst Margaret Whelan estimated that the industry overbuilt to the tune of 900,000 homes between 2003 and the first half of 2006. "Most of those homes are vacant," which means they'll rely more heavily on price discounting to get sold than if they were homes with people living in them, she said, during a conference call Monday.

"It will take about three years to shift all of that excess inventory," said Whelan. As a result, she expects housing starts to fall 15% in 2007 from 2006 levels.

Whelan said there is currently a five-month supply of existing homes up for sale and a six-month supply of new homes on the market, based on current sales trends.

In past cycles, when inventory levels have reached four or five-months' supply, "you've had a dropoff in real house prices," said UBS chief economist Maury Harris.

Harris is predicting median home prices will fall 10% over the next year, and housing starts will fall by 180,000 units to 1.55 million in 2007 from 2006. He trimmed projected GDP growth to 2% from 2.2%.

Now, my fellow Floridians, I ask you this:

With lower than median incomes in this state, much higher than median prices, and much, much higher inventories (ahem...Sarasota/Bradenton and West Palm Beach...), what do you think will happen to our median prices in 2007?

Full Article


Anonymous said...

complete devastation. i firmly believe, the public has bought into the BS spewed by the NAR and Cramer-like rants and believe the bottom is in and they whistle past the grave yard. The pending loss of wealth soon to be experienced by this boomer generation and their ilk will send this country into a 1929 like depression. prices will revert back to 2001 levels easily. Home equity will be gone, yet all the Fat slobs living in communities like WP'S OLYMPIA will still have the debt from the Escalades, harleys and pools. Prices in Olympia started at 210 and reached a peak of 550 in the summer of 05. Imagine if YOU bought in the summer of 05 at 550! It was all false demand.

WP is becoming a cesspool. over taxation over prices insurance and ileagal immigration run rampet. Just wait till the builders start to fire the day laborers.

zippo said...

Florida is at least TWICE as bad as the rest of the east coast:
- Price-wise
- Insurance-wise
- Inventory-wise
- Screw-the-new-owner tax-wise

So, I must conclude that prices in Florida will drop AT LEAST 20% in 2007.

Look out below.

Anonymous said...

Why is it that the downward-pointing arrow at the beginning of this post looks suprisingly similar to the STATE of FLORIDA?


I think not.

- Steel

Crazy G said...

When you quantify it by saying 2007, then I don't know...



Until the 'flippers' vacate, it'll never be normal!!!


|||||NOT BEFORE||||

Anonymous said...

Crazy hit it on the head.
When the flippers finally get the message it is all over.

As I stand to the sidelines with lots of money saved up to purchase my home to LIVE and mostl likely retire in for FAIR MARKET VALUE.

I hope the flippers learn a very valuable lesson over all of this.
Greed can not replace the value of affordable housing.


Crazy G said...

The better question is NOT the prices, but the houses themselves...


Sure, just about anything will sell at a 'price'..PERIOD..

"BUT", we already know, wages don't cover the amount required to buy a house...

People will live somewhere, based on what they can pay...


"FLIPPERS" HAVE GOT TO FEED THE GATOR [costs assoc. with a home].

super supper said...

'zactly. There are 2 types of "gators" in our state:

1. Florida Gators - Great Football, great basketball, obnoxious fans.

2. Housing Alligator - overpriced home purchased by amateur investor/realtor (herein referred to as an "air"-head), hoping to make a quick profit. When aforementioned profit does not appear imminent, air-head decides to rent the money-losing property, "until things get better". Unfortunately, the rent does not cover the total cost of PITI (especially the TAX part of the equation, when the "Screw Our New Homeowners" kicks in the year after purchase). So, the air-head now owns an alligator property, one that EATS up the equity as the property continues to de-value slowly down to actual market value.

Note, that in many cases, air-head will attempt to blame the media for causing housing prices to point in direction of true market value. This causes great mirth in the bubble-believer community.

sandi said...

From everything I've seen, it could get much worse than 10% in Florida - say 25-35%. However, it seems that too many people are still hanging on to their over-priced properties. Even worse, too many people are still BUYING these over-priced properties.

Nobody is learning.

Anonymous said...

I'm normally just a lurker on this and other RE blogs but I found myself in a real pickle today. My husband and I moved to Deland (between Orl. and Day. B.)because he got a job here. We started looking at but couldn't afford any houses in Jan. of this year. So we rented a 'failed flip' house in the community being built by my hubbie's company. In about May I noticed more and more houses coming into our price range-things we wouldn't have dreamed of in January. Around August we found a house we loved-nothing fancy 1981, 3/2, nice established neighborhood, on .68 acres. Didn't put in a bid--couldn't get out of lease and told they wouldn't budge on 199,900 price (already dropped from about 220). They got a contract the next week contingent on buyer selling house. You guessed it-house came back on the market today at 189,900!!! Still can't get out of lease so we'll have to wait till after new years to even put in offer. Can't really afford 180,000 much less 189,000 (I stay home with 2 younguns). They bought house for about 80-90,000 late 90's. Only one house on that street sold in 2003-2005 run up--bought for around 170 I think. I think we can swing 170-180,000 but I'm afraid we'll lose money even at that price. Hubbie works food and beverage so there's a possibility we'll have to move in one or two years---or we could stay here forever. Who knows! Any suggestions?

Anonymous said...

You can count your lucky pickles on this one.
That home will be a ton cheaper next year, and don't worry if it does sell there are plenty more. In fact you will get a "real fancy" home instead of something just acceptable for the sake of affording it.

Be careful do not buy anything yet.

Keep renting and save more money for a bigger down payment.


Crazy G. said...

"IF" you are a short timer, why would you even think of buying a house???

And "IF" you have anything to do with HOME BUILDING..."PERIOD"....you are in trouble....

I don't kow where you came from, but I certainly would be looking at want adds for jobs back there....

This is going to be a long, long grind down....3, 5, 7, years...I don't know....
When the last flipper is gone, Florida just may return to the Paradise It Once Was!!!!

Until then, It'll be a hell whole!!!

Anonymous said...

I'm from Florida-raised in St. Cloud. We're not leaving. Florida girl at heart so we're sticking it out until we end up under an interstate. I guess we could be 'shorttimers' because of hubbie's job but what-we never own a home ever again. I hate renting this house-nothing on the walls, afraid owner will go into foreclosure any moment. Oh, well. Guess we'll see what happens. I expect we'll continue to see pretty drastic price cuts here. Who the heck wants to live here and fight I4 rush hour when you have lower prices in Orlando? I enjoy the blog!

zippo said...

Yes, Crazy-G and SKB are right: wait it out. Being a renter is not pleasant, but imagine being a stuck seller who can't get out of his/her house. Now THAT is a nightmare.

Stick with us, keep an eye on your local real estate, and do not give in to the dark side of the force (greedy amateurs who have run up the prices the last 3 years). And, of course, have a great laugh at all the pain and agony being experienced by the last round of musical chair players who didn't find a seat.

Anonymous said...

Friends of ours are moving to WPB this month.
The Husband says he will purchase in two months regardless.
I was shocked, and told them to wait but they really do not wish to do that. They were almost insulted that I suggested that homes could be looking at a 50% haircut.

When we move there next summer things will hopefully look so much different by then.
I am glad we still have the winter and time on our hands.


zippo said...

WPB? That's one of Crazy-G's best subjects! I trust his analysis, so therefore you are right:

"haircuts o'plenty" in WPB.

Anonymous said...

Talked to my neighbors renting the house next door. They closed on a house Monday in Heathrow (high end comm. outside Orlando--Seminole county I think). Their realtor 'friend' owned the house and gave them a deal at 430,000. Told them she would have listed it at 460,000. He said she waived her realtor commission to give them the deal. I told him about our house situation and that I thought prices were going to continue downward. He agreed 'except for the Heathrow area--everyone wants to live there'. My area is different right?! To top it off they have to finish the lease on the house they rented next door to us that runs through to July--1400/month. I can't figure out how people do it. They're in their mid thirties, two kids, two brand new foreign cars, always dressed to the nines. He's a regional manager (?) for a large cookie company. Guess he makes a lot of dough HARHARHAR! Told hubbie he needs to start selling some cookies. Couple next door to them are moving back to Indiana. Can't sell their 4/2.5 bath, 2 story, 3000 sq. ft. house on .25 acres for $275,000. 'We've got too much equity in the house to give it away for less!' Translation--'Our home equity line of credit won't allow us to lower the price any more.' They haven't had a showing since August. It's been on the market since March. The cancelled a contract with KB Homes and actually got their $10,000 back.


CRAZY G. said...


He's going to be shocked when he finds he has to pay $5000/yr. for Hurricane insurance..."""IF HE CAN FIND SOMEONE TO WRITE A POLICY""

He's going to be shocked, when he finds the tax rate is 2.7%...

Median price house NOW is down to $369K...Your talking $8-$9000/yr taxes...


CRAZY G said...

Boy, oh boy!!!

Your neighbor friend really got a deal.....

The Realtor didn't charge a commission to sell her own house....

That's all you need is the realtors last name, or an address, and plug it into the tax appraisers website, and you'll know everything you need about getting a DEAL!!!!

CRAZY G said...

So, over on the other blog, I read that the CEO of Home Depot, said that this is the worst market he has seen in 35 years.....

At breakfast today, I noted, in the newspaper ad that Home Depot is selling TV sets, and furniture, besides appliances....

Pretty soon they start selling groceries to I'd guess, and then, maybe hamburgers, and used cars???

lizziebeth said...

Anonymous that wants a house of her own, Stay put. I rent, can afford to purchase a home and won't until the dust settles. We painted the kids bedrooms, hung pictures..... so it will cost us in money or labor when we move out. But we aren't locked into a depreciating asset. There are thousands of homes for sale in your price range. The taxes haven't come into play for some of the newer homes. It's going to get worse!

In the Sarasota Herald a realtor was qouted as saying that many of his clients are giving the keys back to the bank. Wait until 2007! Even the NAR is saying it won't be until 2008 before we start seeing some recovery. That's saying a lot. They can no longer spin it. The facts are out there.

If you had the cash, and could run the risk of your house depreciating, then do it. But just to hang a few pictures, paint... it's not worth the risk. Remember, even if you bought a house, you really are still renting. Consider it rent to Own from the bank. Yes, there is a little savings in tax write offs, you build a little equity.... You probably can save more money by renting than you will build equity!

If you want to feel settled, pick the neighborhood you want to live in and when your lease is up, rent a house in there. Do you really want to own a house in a neighborhood that may be full of foreclosures? At least by renting from a landlord, you can walk away with little or no risk. If you own and can't make your mortgage payments, you lose all your equity, and ruin your credit. I guess the question is ask yourself, am I willing to risk losing 30% of my homes value just to buy now?

Maybe someone knows the legal facts on renting a property that gets foreclosed. My take on it is that you can stay for at least 30 days. The bank won't kick you out. They may want your rent check. I've always heard it's difficult to kick a tenant out, even if a property sells, or forecloses.

lizziebeth said...

FYI, to potential buyers. We are looking at a property that is in our opinion close to true market value(back to 2001) prices. It's perfect for us. Before we make an offer, we are checking on insurance, taxes..... State Farm is issuing new policies. A dwelling value of $500k, 2% hurricane deductible is running around $3500 a year. SKB's friends will pay less in insurance since the dwelling is probably only $350k. It's still triple than homeowners insurance in most other states, but it's not $5,000k a year!

Anonymous said...

Hopefully I can talk hubbie into renting another year. He was so sure we needed to buy a house earlier this year he told me I needed to go back to work so we could afford something. Needless to say there was a lot of arguing during that time. He didn't think things were going to change-prices were just going to go up. He manages the restaurant for the golf club in the mega-development we're renting in. He said it's pretty bad for the home builders in here. NO ONE is selling houses. I think maybe two or three have sold ALL YEAR. They have 40 empty townhouses sitting in the development across the street. They keep building but houses are sitting empty. I haven't met any one here who owns-about 10 families, they all rent. What's scary is they've cleared EVEN MORE land across the other street! This is a 4 phase development. I think hubbie realizes things are not good in RE right now (I love it when I'm right!). His company just laid off almost all their RE staff. They're not building houses any more. They're just going to clear the land for development. Scary times.


CRAZY G said...

lissiebeth reply:

You're DEAD wrong , if your talking about W. Palm
A friend tried to sell a town house in Palm Beach Gardens, off PGA Blvd. After 6 mos. she got an offer, @ 300K....she'd been asking $359K....
She took the offer, "BUT" the buyer backed out, cuz of the Hurricane insurance....

>>>>> $5000.00 <<<<<


She had been paying $2200/ without windstorm, as she didn't have a mortgage......
The lender wouldn't go for it without windstorm....

CUZ..>>>> IT's |||| 5% ||| deductible with State Farm, and has been since 1992.....

Unless you've lived in W. Palm, you have NO idea how bad it really is!!!!

CRAZY G said...

anonymous reply:

Developers/builders are caught in a catch 22.....

The land isn't worth a squat, without a house on it....Most WAY over paid, for the land besides

"IF" they build a hOuse on it, they've got a chance to sell it....albeit, at a discounted price.



CRAZY G said...

Can you top this one!!!

A friend of our is a STATE FARM AGENT, in Jupiter....


WE ALREADY KNOW, THAT THEY CHARGE THE HIGHEST RATES...cuz that's what they are legally supposed to do....& starting in May '07...for snowbirds, & landlords..

They will have the priviledge of paying Citizens 25% more than the highest rates...


Hurry down to Florida....we desperately need more people stupid enough to pay all these high prices....

Lizziebeth said...

Crazy G.

That was for a home in Bradenton Florida. I just spoke with them yesterday. I'm not dead wrong! I have the qoute sitting here in front of me. I can supply you with the phone number of the agent if you like. The only catch was they are only insuring homes built after 2001 to the new hurricane standards. I only called State Farm as we've been with them for 20+ years. Maybe W.P/Jupiter are more volatile to hurricanes thus paying more. I made a mistake and said SJB's friend's insurance. I meant AMC who is located in the Orlando area. Being even farther inland than Bradenton, I would assume insurance would be the same or less. Regardless, it's still 3X more than what we've paid in other states!

Crazy G you'll appreciate this one. Yesterday was insurance, today was to check on the taxes. The lady at the Manatee County tax appraisers office was quite frank about the issue. Basically she wanted me to know that even if I pay ?XXX for the house the county appraiser comes out and reassesses it. They can come back at a higher number or a lower number than we paid. The shocking phrase she used was "it's his right" to do it. Okay, we won't be buying a house for a VERY, VERY long time.

Anonymous said...

"it's his right" to do it"

Geez,I wonder what he rea@@esses family and friends homes.

The more I learn about Florida the more sick to my stomach I get about moving there.
My husband is dead stuck on this and I can not seem to change his mind to Texas.

What do you guys think of this home? I actually was speaking to the builder on it (e mail) and told him I will to pay 2001 prices for it.
What do you think it would be worth. They have been building this model for a while now. (that is what their real state agent said)

I love this house (Oliva 2700) In fact I would love to purchase this show home.



SKB said...

I finally got a blogger name, just checking it out.

CRAZY G said...

Crazy's BLACK HOLE theory:

Having been a resident of Florida, and Palm Beach County for the last 25 years, I've witnessed a lot.....

I've seen people come to Palm Beach County, with GOBS of money, and going to make the BIG time and show everybody how it's done up NORTH.....

WHAT HAPPENED TO THEIR MONEY, AND WHAT HAPPENED TO THEM....they just disappeared into a black hole!!!

Palm Beach County just swallows them up....just like a black hole!!!

Many a fortune has been lost by the best of them...and a few reputations have gone down as well!!!!

To the best of the best I say, bring your money and bring your fame to Palm Beach County and see if you can escape the BLACK HOLE SYNDROM!!!

CRAZY G said...

Quick summary for those faint of memory;

Home Depot CEO said it's the WORST he's seen in 35 yrs....

D.R Horton CEO, said Real Estate is in a DEATH SPIRAL

Toll Bros. CEO, said REAL ESTATE has NO BOTTOM...

Well, 3 strikes and the nighs have it!!!

Put your money in the Black Hole, and see what comes out the other side!!!

CRAZY G said...

Jack McCabe [Resident Palm Beach cnty, real estate guru] estimates that there are |||| 47 mos ||| supply of listings available....

I mean |||"" 4 ""||| YEARS worth....

This is NOT NORMAL.....

Why would anyone in their right mind think they want to jump into the fracus!!!

CRAZY G said...

SKB reply:

OOOHH!!! &HIT... Port St. Lucie....You've got to be kidding me!!!!

If you like that hell hole, then you'll love Palm Coast even better!!!

I lived in Palm City [Stuart] for 10 years, so I've got a pretty good knowledge of PSL...

If you can stand the Mayor, "Minsky", GO FOR IT!!!!

Trust me....PSL has """NO"" culture

CRAZY G said...

SKB reply again

PSL is just ticky-tacky

Do yourself a favor, and go to the Jensen Beach Mall [PSL doesn't have a Mall], and you decide "IF" that's where you want to live and shop

Then go to the Gardens Mall, in Palm Beach Gardens [off PGA blvd], and see the difference

CRAZY G said...

Palm Beach Post, this morning reported that CITIZENS Insurance is going for another rate increase, in Palm Bch County, and St. Lucie county..

This is 'on top' of previously annnouced rate increases for home owners for next year....

It's noted that there has been a |||| 600% |||| increase in business/commerical insurance premiums

You may choose to live in those counties, but there may NOT be any businesses for you to transact with

lizziebeth said...


I'm not familiar with Port St. Lucie or Turnkey homes. It seems I've read a lot about Port St. Lucie being very susceptible to the fall out caused by specuvestors. The name Turnkey Homes, makes me raise my eyebrows! It sounds like they catered to investors/second homes. Your neighborhood could be full of snowbirds and rentals. Unless Port St. Lucie and the builder are both reputable, I wouldn't buy even at 2001 prices. There's so much to choose from in the rental market.

I agree with Crazy G. Go check out the malls and decide if you want to live there. We've moved across country many times. My favorite way to determine if I can live in an area is to check out the local Wal-Mart and grocery stores. I have one friend who checks out Chic Fil A, since her kids love to go there all the time. good Luck! Regardless of all that's going on, I still love Florida!

CRAZY G said...

Crazy the prognosticator says:




Yes, it's true...The last mini-recession we had, housing prices ""ACTUALLY WENT UP""...

Never happened before, and probably will never happen again...

Inteerest rates are NOT going back to 1% anytime soon....

The FEDERAL RESERVE has done enough damage....People can NOT take on anymore debt than they already have!!

super supper said...

Also, when considering an area, drive through during the evening hours - see how many people are living there, and how many homes are empty. Also, listen for barking dogs - you could be hating life for a long time if you've got one of them living next to you.


Andrew said...

My goodness a lot of negative comments.
For those of you that are not familiar with my situation.
We are moving to Florida next summer we have been living in Canada for the last four years.
My husbands contract is up here in Canada and we must return to the USA.
We have always loved Florida since we lived in the Bahamas for five years before we came here and we spent a lot of time going back and forth. We do have family and friends in the State as well.

Ok, so a lot of you seem to have a strong opinion of Florida, if you had a chance to live ANY PLACE in the USA where would it be?

If you had to stay in Florida give me your top 5 places you would pick giving the number one place your top choice and so on.

I have never seen WPB or PSL someone suggested PSL as a good place for more reasonable homes. I am familiar with FT Lauderdale and Miami neither of which I have any desire to live in.

Thanks for your help, this could help me and my husband make some important decisions.


Bigdaddy63 said...

It's very simple.

Currently houses are selling for anywhere between 7-10 x avg. income. The norm is 3 x avg. income.

Do the math.

lizziebeth said...


I have lived all over the US. While I have enjoyed most of the places I've lived, Florida is home for me. I am a West coast girl. Born and raised in Tampa. I can't say enough for the west coast of Florida. Unfortunately, during the housing boom, we have attracted some people I would rather have stayed up north. I hate hearing, "I can't find a good pizza, steak sandwich, bagel, deli......".

The negative comments are coming from us folks that are sick of what has happened to our beautiful state! Have you been here recently? Have you seen house after house for sale? Empty house after empty house. We moved back at the height and heard the lines that the realtors were using! They aren't making anymore land, you better buy now or you'll be priced out forever....... People from other states were buying properties sight unseen to turn around for a profit. Prices were artificially inflated. Now, taxes, insurance..... are out of control..... People who bought arms just to afford homes, are now having readjustments and can't afford them.

At least every other person I know, has some interest in real estate. Many people with stable jobs, quit to get in the real estate industry. I know so many folks who are screwed. They bought into the hype. Now they are hurting. I'm just saying be very cautious purchasing right now. If the house is already existing, you are looking at shoddy workmanship. They couldn't build houses fast enough. There was so much fraud in appraisals, mortgages, sales..... this thing is just beginning.

My suggestion is, read every newspaper in every major town. I think if you do you will find that we aren't just naysayers over here. Just venting our frustrations and hopefully helping the last of the greater fools from making a huge mistake!

Good Luck!

Anonymous said...


I have been following the bubble since 2002 when we moved here to Canada.
We have NO plans on making a commitment to anything until the last bottom has fallen.
We will rent for years if we must.
I really just wanted opinions on what State or what area in Florida would people move to if given the chance.
It is just we are in that very position right now as in January my DH will have to put his "dream" list together. From our list they will most likely give us our top 1 choice.
I just thought it would be nice to see what areas people would love to live in if they had that chance to move.

I guess people were not to interested in answering my questions. It's ok.
Thanks anyways.
It is just comments like this one made by Crazy G I found to be rather harsh and reminded me of the kind of talk one would read on Craigslist.

"OOOHH!!! &HIT... Port St. Lucie....You've got to be kidding me!!!!

If you like that hell hole, then you'll love Palm Coast even better!!!"

P.S. I have not even seen Port St Lucie, it was suggested to us a few months ago. So I had been watching it.
I think we may end up in Naples in the end of things. I have been there many times and I quite liked it.

lizziebeth said...

May I suggest Tampa, Bradenton, Brandon. Some people will bash Brandon, but it's an affordable family community with good people!

Have you considered North Carolina. So many Floridians cashed out in the boom and moved to NC. YOu get a lot of house for the money, beautiful trees and mild climate.

I still choose Florida though! I hate any cold weather.

karl marx brothers said...

well, I'll answer the question of which FL city/area is my favorite:

#1 on the list is the Cocoa Beach area. cool breezes keep down the harsh humidity year round, and beaches are uncrowded & well kept.

I had to live in Tampa (ex-wife)for years. I know the area well. and sorry to say that Tampa has really gone downhill fast.
The place has way too many pawn shops, strip clubs, check cashing stores,etc.
There is literally a strip club on almost every corner !
I moved back to N. CA years ago, but had to go back to Tampa on & off past couple of years.

Crazy G's comments are instense but true.

every word.

lizziebeth said...

No Crazy G. Only in your mind are they true. I've noticed declining comments, myself included, because of your rants. You make those of us that are concerned about the state of the real estate market look like a bunch of lunatics. Tampa has always had the same strip bars in the same locations. There isn't a strip club anywhere near family neighborhoods. Any big city in Florida has their seedy areas as well as their nice areas. just a fact of life!

SKB, I hope you are still following this blog. Don't let one person turn you away. I plan to skip Crazy G's comments from now on. You can do the same!

Sandi said...

Personally, I get a good chuckle from crazy's commentary. Sometimes I wish he would turn off the caps-lock, but he does have a good idea about what's going on along the east coast.

As far as St. Lucie, it is an extension of what's been happening in West Palm. Overcrowded, overpriced, dominated by New York and New Jersey types.

Similar to Lizziebeth, I like the Tampa area. Lots of culture, beautiful beaches, pro sports (3 out of 4), but she is right on: the prices are wayyyy out of line with incomes.

Hope this helps!

Andrew said...

Thanks Sandi, Lizziebeth, Karl, super supper, Big daddy for your comments.
It does help me to decide. If we do pick Tampa I would be able to stay on with the company that I am currently employed by.

Tampa is older though and I do prefer newer looking cities. I do not like older homes and I know that I could not be happy even renting an old place.

All in all it will be luck and fate that has it. My husband has to put in his top five places for our move in January They can be any where in the US we want but, He is determined on Florida so all of his choices will be in Florida. We should be out of here by July 2007.
I am starting to see some Craigslist prices coming down a bit but The homes I had been watching on MLS are all slowly coming off of the market. None of them lowered their prices and none sold. I have also noticed many that are still trying to sell their homes for a lot more for what they paid for from a purchase this year, it is ridiculous. When did people start to believe you could purchase for a matter of half a year and make a profit and NOT lose money. It is like so many people are in complete denial over all of what is going on. I wish people would wake up!! The party ended and life is going back to it was before the run up.

I love this site http://www.paslc.org/main.asp I do wonder why some properties show the sale of land for 100.00 does anyone understand how that worked? Did the buyer get some fantastic deal for 100.00 a year or something like this?

How close is the building permit taken out by the builder to the price that they actually sold the home for?

I noticed as well that the appraisals on some are so much lower than what the seller is trying to sell for. Who are they kidding?

Thanks all,


lizziebeth said...

There are many newer communities in Tampa. Stay away from Pasco County and New Tampa though. Do you have kids in school? That will make a huge difference! I lived in a community called Westchase for years. Wonderful community. The surrounding neighborhoods are great. Check out listings in the 33626 zip code. I just am not thrilled with the high school some of these neighborhoods feed into.

Two other areas to check out are Odessa and Lithia. Traffic has become a nightmare, so depending on where you work they may or may not work for you. As a teacher, I love the Lithia schools. A great community there is Fishhawk Ranch. Odessa has a bit more rural feel and have decent schools.

I currently reside in Bradenton. A community called Lakewood Ranch. Too far to commute to Tampa, but a wonderful newer area. Great schools! Easy commute to Sarasota.

lizziebeth said...


Keep in mind prices need to drop about 30% before you should consider buying.

If you go to a website called Westchaser, they have lots of neat links on that part of Tampa. They also have the tax value search for Hillsborough County. You type in the address and see what people bought their houses for. You can go to each county's tax appraisers office for the same info.

One more piece of advice. In our house hunting, we were told to purchase a home built after 2001. The new hurricane building codes went into effect. It will cost you more for hurricane insurance for a home built before 2001.

Anonymous said...

Stay in Canada and put a sun lamp in your bathroom.

Andrew said...

Thanks for all of the great information and links Lizziebeth!!

We have no small children any more.

I am hoping for a bigger haircut than 30 percent before we purchase a home.
There is no hurry on that decision at all. I will find a nice rental with everything I want and just enjoy that for the time being. Like I have said before I am prepared to rent and sit and wait it out.

Finding homes around the major airports would be a plus for my husbands job. We will know after January where we are going for sure. I will start to make my plans then. I think we will make a trip out to see some of the areas then.

No chance of staying in Canada my husbands tour of duty here will be over and we must return to the USA. We are more than happy to return as we have been away since 1999.

Thanks again.

Anonymous said...

The Westchase area would be perfect for you then. Depending on traffic, 15-20 minutes to the air port. Lots of ammenities and a cute little village area where you can walk, bike or blade to have coffee and bagels. Check it out! Check out their news letter, it's a monthly magazine. It's called the World of Westchase.

Anonymous said...

Rent "The Stepford Wives" before you move to Westchase get a boob job,a botox treatment, and a huge gas guzzling SUV. With the proper dosage of anti depressants it will seem like real life. Just give it a few years. I love the fake urbanism of the place. Gussied up strip malls. Great location though and tons of for sale signs. You get your pick but prices are way too high.

lizziebeth said...

As I recall, SKB said one of the things she doesn't like about Tampa are the older areas. Therefore ruling out many areas in Tampa. New Tampa is swamped with New Yorkers and flippers. Their property values have always been lower than Westchase, until the bubble that is. There are several lovely neighborhoods surrounding that area. Westchester, Mandolin, Waterchase, Westwood Lakes......

There are thousands of people who live in the area. Trust me, having lived there myself, they aren't all Alike. In fact it's my friends from South Tampa that have the Boob Jobs and Botox. Not my Westchase friends. But hey who am I to talk, one more face crinkle and I may consider the injection myself. If not looking "OLD and RUNDOWN" means it's home of the "Stepford Wives", then I'm sure SKB would be happy to live there!

As far as the tons of for sale signs in the Westchase area, DUH, isn't that what this sites about???? I have yet to see any area in Florida that doesn't have tons of for sale signs! SkB is smart enough to know that the area is over priced. Where I'd be willing to pay 30% below asking price(since I know and love the area, even though I don't drive a gas guzzling SUV, have a boob job and Botox(so far), she thinks it should go lower. I have to agree with you there).

The location can't be beat! Close to the airport, malls, golfing, and not too bad of a drive to the beach. Used to take 25 minutes to the beach, but I'm sure it's longer now.

It's funny how much people outside the area hate Westchase! I know not a soul that hated Westchase. I can think of only one person who moved out due to restrictions. The wife was a naysayer about everything. Most hate all the Deed Restrictions, but put up with it for it truly is a wonderful community! Mandolin, Westchester... aren't as strict as Westchase. I would live there if I wasn't in need of public education. I have one child who needs the special education services that are offered. I couldn't send her to the high school in the area. Which is why I asked SKB if she had children in school. If you go to a neighborhood on northwest of Westchase, the students go to a better high school. Most of my Westchase friends are opting for private high school.

Andrew said...

I have to laugh over here, being that I am turning 43 on Sunday.
I HAD a boob job at 40. I have not had any botox injections, I may consider some more plastic surgery down the road, who knows.

I would like to know what exactly was the poster trying to say?

What does this have to do with housing, the bubble or nice places to live? Is the poster saying that people that drive SUV's, people that take antidepressants and people that have any form of work done to enhance their appearance are some how less human than he is?

He mentioned "fake" I have to say I think the poster is the one who is shallow to judge so harshly.

Funny to mention "fake" on a housing bubble forum. At least that part fits as the prices of homes have gone up artificially.

Thanks again Lizziebeth, you are a wealth of good reading and a very kind supportive person. Enjoy your kids as they grow up so fast.


FL - Paradise Lost said...

It's so funny that the subject of Westchase "grew legs" on this board, because I live in Westchase - as a renter.

After a year of living there, I agree with everyone's opinion - it's about as nice of an area as you're going to get in Tampa, but it IS full of SUVs, gated neighborhoods, and 'For Sale' signs. And yes, it only takes a few minutes' drive before English is not the language of preference (Carrollwood, Town N Country, the cheaper parts of Countryway) and crime rates are much higher.

This past summer, about a sixth of the homes in Westchase were designated to Lowry Elementary - thus moving these kids from a top-rated (73% white) school to a (54% white) school with a lot of the aforementioned EASL (English As a Second Language) kids. You should've seen the fireworks - all these parents crying and yelling while trying not to sound overtly racist. Quite funny, really - especially when you consider that Lowry is also an "A" rated school and has larger classrooms.

Prices (as they are everywhere) are just plain stupid. I've seen houses on the market for the entire year I've lived there, and yet they've only lowered the listing prices nominally. This goes to show that "stickiness" of prices are more adhesive when the owners have the income to wait things out. Problem is (as we all know now), they're going to have to wait for a long, long time.

If you look at the tax records, it was only 3 years ago (2003) that listing prices were not a problem. My sympathy (and scorn) goes out to everyone who has bought since then.

lizziebeth said...

The school situation must have helped the listings explode! Most of my former neighbors still live there. Not as much turnover in that section. They all stayed at Westchase, but none plan to send their kids to Alonso! When you have a child with mild special needs, you want to send them to the best possible school. Touring Alonso scared the !@$@#$%% out of me, so we moved. Most of my Westchase friends have now accepted reality! Two years ago they thought I was nuts for not wanting to pay premium prices in Westchase! As much as I loved the place, reality is the homes are 40% over valued!

FL - Paradise Lost said...

I knew there was a serious disconnect with reality when I saw a 3 bedroom starter home listed for $450K earlier this year. I checked the tax records, and the place had sold for $300K in 2005, and $180K in 2002. I sent the listing agent an e-mail, asking about what drugs he was on. Obviously, the owner was just another late-to-the-party-overly-greedy-but-not-very-bright flipper.

I have since lost track of the listing - would love to see if it's still on the market and what it is going for now.

One thing for certain: foreclosures are way up in Westchase.

Andrew said...

Sounds like Westchase is worth looking into for us.

I read an article today that stated the Feds will have no choice but to raise the interest rates and soon.

Looks like we all will be able to go back to life as normal very soon and Paradise will return to lovely Florida.

Funny thing will be how many people will rush out to purchase homes? Reminds me of when they have 50% off sales on items that were overpriced by 50% in the first place.
For me I will be taking my time and being super selective. I might even decide to custom build my home as there are certain things I desire without having to have a McMansion to get them.

lizziebeth said...

Even with prices coming down, the tax issue is making me reluctant to buy even at a price that I feel is fair! Just a few months ago, I was willing to pay David Weekly full asking price with upgrades worth 40% of the sales price. I don't want to pay taxes on the over inflated price, and I only need so many upgrades. I wonder how many of us sitting on the sidelines will continue to lower our point of purchase. I know we've already passed my original goal. How low can it go????? I say back to 2001 prices.

Andrew said...

I am with you on that Lizziebeth. At this point I refuse to pay any more than 2001 prices.

It is such a good thing that you did not make that purchase.
I do feel very sorry for the ones that did, thinking they would be priced out of the market forever is they didn't. I can only imagine how they must be feeling at this point.


Anonymous said...


Interesting and stimulating reading your blog and posters' comments. I'm considering moving to the Tampa area to be near my Sister in Valrico; we own a house on the outskirts of Northern Virginia. I have 3 great children, (2 with special needs: Asperger's Syndrome/Celiac, and Type 1 Diabetes) and a baby. I need a progressive community with good schools. I wanted to buy, but after reading your posts, I think I'll rent. Any suggestions? Lithia, Brandon, Hyde Park are nice; Dunedin/Palm Harbor and Anna Maria Island are beautiful, but expensive. Any negotiating tips or insight will be appreciated!

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