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florida: signs of the times
Old 03-29-2008, 12:07 PM   #1
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florida: signs of the times

neighbor across street finished his house, renov & addition to streamline 1950s structure, pool, fountains, designer everything, etc, asking $900k. for years it was an eyesore so i couldn't be happier with the work they've done. he thought he'd get well over $1mm when he began this flip just before the crash. most of the structural work was just about completed right when real estate & therefore also construction material prices dropped.

as i've previously mentioned, this area has changed dramatically in character over the last 15 years, from cracktown to gay chic. just blocks away, nightlife abounds every evening, both in & out of season. the once 95% section 8 hud housing district two blocks away is now 95% condominium apartments & lofts. side streets like mine have new builds, additions and loving renovations next door to dilapidations.

on my particular block, i was the very first to fix-up and to drive by my house today you'd think you just passed a not-for-profit botanical garden. two other houses have been extremely well restored, one log cabin not yet restored but kept neat, one cute cabin, a very nice & large corner house and what we all affectionately refer to as the waco house, just waiting to be burned down.

on the opposite side of the street is our new town library where once stood a gorgeous house complete with a cold-war concrete bunker. i tried to get the local historic societies to block the project but failed in my efforts so my town succeeded in destroying history so they could expand the library. the rest of that side has mostly neatly kept houses, one renovation, one corner house which flipped from $350k to $560k in 60 days & currently in--surprise--foreclosure, an empty lot until recently owned by a church and three other houses: the one directly across from me as described above and to the west of that my neighbor has added about 2,000 sq ft, gated entry, etc, very nice.

but to the east remained a problem for the flip. a dilapidation replete with beat-up travel home sitting on the weedy front "lawn". the owner was offered about $450k more than once during the bubble but the potential buyers could never figure out just how many liens were one the house so the deals failed to coalesce.

now that the flipper is ready to sell, he has a bit of an pink elephant hanging onto the side of his house. so i hear a bunch of construction this morning. yup, selling neighbor is fixing up dilapidated neighbor's house just so he can sell his own.

new landscape is going in. what looks like a deck or some planters. he must have paid to have the travel home removed. investing in your neighbor's house so you might have a chance to sell your own. sign of the times.

in the meanwhile. here's the latest university news for florida's near future. overall not looking too terrible.

florida's economic outlook 2008-2010, broken down by region:

www.bus.ucf.edu/hitec/Pages/Forecasts/Florida%20&%20Metro%20Forecasts/Proof-Only%20Florida%20Q108.pdf

florida's population projections:

http://news.ufl.edu/2008/03/27/florida-population-2/
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Old 03-29-2008, 02:47 PM   #2
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Thanks for the update. We just lowered the price of the house we are selling by another 16% hoping we can sell before the season ends. The current price is 45% lower than what the owner was offered a few years ago.

Can you tell me which 'region' Boynton Beach is in?

Thanks.
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Old 03-29-2008, 03:33 PM   #3
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hi jb. most welcome. i assume the university of central florida puts boynton in the miami district since it includes palm beach as well, though those of us living here would rarely combine the two. i don't know the researcher's criteria for those boundries.

looks like year over year depending on zip code, boynton ranges from plus 5.5% to minus 40.2% by fourth quarter 2007 sales as recently posted here: DQNews - Miami/Palm Beach Area Home Prices and Sales

boynton's a bit of an odd town. out west where my brother lives is mostly new developments where you get more house for the money. they never did quite develop a downtown, either out west which is nothing but sprawl nor in the original downtown which has been in bad repair at least for the 30 plus years i've lived here.

some new development & some rehab starting getting off the ground and their downtown might have had a chance to recover weren't it for the bust. i imagine that their downtown will do much better during the next boom cycle whenever that might be.

good luck in selling your house. i've got a house in palm beach county for sale and learned at it's price range there is a 32-month supply. the only thing, in theory, that might help is most of that supply is not deep-waterfront though, in reality, that has shown me no advantage to date.
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