I said yesterday in my year end review that I believe 2009 is going to be a better year than ’08, and if the first week is any indication we’re in for a great year. We definitely started off with fireworks, with four sales, one new contract, five new listings and five price changes. Our inventory of MLS listings in the Cape San Blas, Indian Pass, C-30 Corridor took a healthy 4% dip, too, starting off the year at 353, down 14 from 367, with 147 homes (vs. 150) and 206 lots (vs. 217). Lots to cover so let’s get rolling by taking a look at what sold.
The year started off with a bargain hunters bonanza with two homes and two lots all sporting SOLD signs at bargain basement prices. The first home is this 520 square foot 2-bedroom, 1-bath cottage tucked away behind The Tradin’ Post which went under contract back on December 11.
The sellers picked it up in mid 2005 for $185,000 and put it back on the market just 2 years later in mid-2007 for $199,000 and have been lowering the list price ever since in hopes of attracting a buyer. Finally offering it at $149,000 did the trick; they got an offer and closed this week with a cash deal for $130,000, which is not only a heck of a lot less than they paid for it, but also substantially less than the county’s assessed value of $140,927 which is something we never used to see.
Our second home sale was a foreclosure on a 2-bedroom, 1 1/2 bath 1224 square foot first tier home in Money Bayou with gorgeous views throughout of both the gulf and Money Bayou that we looked at back on the 13th of December. Listed for $375,250, it closed on Tuesday for $311,000, 35% below the county’s assessed value of $480,336. This was the only sale this week with conventional financing; the other three were all cash deals.
Some savvy buyer started the new year off by stealing ths first tier lot on the Cape for only $80,000! This bank-owned property was my October 18 pick-of-the-week when it was listed for a mind-numbing $99,000, almost half of the county’s assessed value of $192,000. Looks like Kes, our property appraiser, has his work cut out for him this spring. The previous owners paid $380,000 for it just three years ago in January 2005.
Our fourth and final sale of the week came on the market and went under contract the first week of December. It’s a lagoon front property in Mystic Palms subdivision near the point of Indian Pass which was listed for $225,000 and closed on Tuesday for an even $200,000 cash. Just like our other three sales, this, too, is well beneath the county’s assessed value of $250,000.
Our one new contract this week is on a lot that is a rare breed any more, a 200′ wide gulf front parcel on Cape San Blas listed in July for $1.59M, still below the county’s assessed value of $1.7M. The seller has owned it for nearly 25 years so this will be pure profit at almost any price. The annual taxes of $27,737 are probably more than the fellow paid for it back in the early ’80s. There are contingencies to be met on this contract so no closing date disclosed yet.
So what bargains are lurking among our five new listings this week? My pick of the week among them goes to this 1,396 square foot, 3-bedroom, 2-bath gulf front home in Treasures Shores which enters the competition with an attractive price tag of $799,000. Until recently that would have been tantamount to offering the 75′ wide gulf front lot at a mouth watering price and then throwing the house in for free. Wouldn’t you love to call this your back yard?
Here’s what the listing agent has to say:
Just walk into this open, comfortable and very functionally designed home and experience the true feeling of beachfront living on the C-30 and Indian Pass unspoiled shoreline. Exceptional views with an open floor plan and high, 10 foot ceilings designed for the full panoramic experience. Three bedrooms, 2 full baths (both with jacuzzi tubs), wood-burning fireplace, beautiful oak hardwood floors accented with an ocean blue creamic tile in the kitchen and around the fireplace. Partially screened porch highlights the great location, views, natural setting and surroundings. Outdoor shower and boardwalk to the never crowded, wide beach. Large 75′ wide lot with federal flood insurance available. Owner occupied, never rented, house is in great condition.
We’ve seen a lot of great bargains already this week and we’re just now getting to the five new price changes, where my pick of the week for this category goes to a lot at Ovation on Cape San Blas which comes down 25% (how’s that for an after Christmas sale?) from $199,900 to $149,900. This is in keeping with the spirit of things as that’s well below the tax assessed value of $192,000, and the $235,000 the sellers gave for it in September 2005. At this rate old Kes is going to have to hire a few folks just to keep up with all these changes. According to the MLS, this price includes architectural houseplans by Donofro Architects, the architectural firm who designed Ovation itself.
I think the lesson we’ve learned this week is that if you price it right the buyers will come. As we saw in the year end review yesterday, lots may still be looking for a bottom, but housing just may be on the rebound locally. If you’re thinking of selling or buying, let’s talk. My direct line is 850-227-5197 or shoot me an email to [email protected]. As the owner selling his gulf front parcel purchased in the early ’80s proves, real estate is still your best long term investment. Thanks for stopping by today. Looking forward to hearing from you.