Clearwater, FL Real Estate News

By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Florida Gators - Even as decoration are popular here in the Clearwater Florida area! If there is one thing we love, it is our gators! So when I saw this one in a neighbor's yard being used as decoration, I thought it should be shared! When I first saw it, I did an immediate double take, since I wanted to be sure it was not the real thing! Gators wander from pond to pond, so while a pond might not have one today, that does NOT mean it won't have one tomorrow! Don't EVER feed a gator, they then associate people with food....NOT a good thing! And once that fear of humans is gone, they become dangerous and have to be put down. I once hear somebody say you have to be careful when you go to the beach because of gators.........NOT true! They are in swamps and ponds folks, not the public beache...
Comments 16
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Hammock Pine Village in Clearwater's Countryside area is a wonderful place to live. This gated community is convenient to the mall, restaurants, hospitals and the Gulf Beaches. So when my investors asked that I suggest a great place for them to purchase in, it was easy! Almost ALL condos that are closing are cash and that means that the closing can take place quickly, especially when the seller does not have a mortgage. Buying a condo that is in pristine condition also means that the investor can have it back on the market for a tenant right after closing, or as in this case simply extend the lease with the current tenant! If you are still considering purchasing, let me warn you! Inventory is declining and prices are beginning to climb! NOW is the time to purchase! Condo prices are goin...
Comments 10
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Clearwater Florida Market Report - February 2012 Unlike over on the beaches, where prices are on their way back up, the city of Clearwater Florida has not started to climb as rapidly again. In February 2012 the median list price for a single family home was $138,760, which is up 2.77% over January 2012. The median price per square foot was $116. Looking back at November 2011 the median sale price for single family homes was down 2.29% from October 2011. So while the Clearwater Florida housing market has not started taking off as rapidly as the Clearwater Beach market, the handwriting is indeed on the wall! Serious buyers are out scooping up reasonably priced properties and the inventory is getting smaller and smaller. It is only a matter of time before prices start rising more dramatica...
Comments 7
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Existing Home Sales - By Region, Nationally We discuss what is going on in our nation and it is always interesting to break it down by region so I have done just that here:   In the above chart the regions are as follows: Northeast - red Mid-West  - green South        - blue West         - yellow This information comes from the Economics Department of the National Association of Home Builders and puts a different perspective on things when we look by region, as shown here. Again, I have to stress that each state, each town, each neighborhood is different. Ask your Realtor for more detailed LOCAL information for your own market.
Comments 4
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Florida's Shrinking New Listing Inventory really gets the point across when you compare the last three years: And while the number of new listings for single family homes has declined 7.9% in just the last year, the change is even larger when we look at condos and townhomes, which shows a 10.8% reduction in the last twelve months!   It all comes back to: When is the time to buy? NOW! And along with that thought, it is a great time to get your home or condo listed since the market is picking up and getting HOT!    
Comments 7
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Florida Home Inventory is indeed declining. When we compare January 2011 to January 2012 in the category of single family homes we see this: Graph maker When we compare condo and townhouse sales from January 2011 to January 2012 it is even more impressive:   Graph maker As we all know, reduced inventory generally means prices start going up. What does that mean? Simple, if you are considering purchasing, NOW is indeed the time!  
Comments 8
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Florida Home Sales Soar - January 2012 Indeed, according to the latest information out from the Florida Association of Realtors, single family home sales rose 5.3% in January 2012 over January 2011 and condo sales were up 18.8% over one year ago! While that is wonderful news, the fact that the inventory is declining also means that prices are going to start going UP. January 2011's inventory for single family homes was 171,961 and when we compare that to January 2012's reduced numbers of 113,822 it becomes obvious that as the inventory declines there is only ONE direction for prices to go and that is indeed UP. Let me know how I can assist you in your home search here in the Clearwater/Palm Harbor area of our beautiful Gulf Coast!
Comments 2
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Beautiful day for a closing would be an understatement today! Blue skies, sunshine and a high in the upper 70's is what greeted my clients from Michigan as we met to go to the title company. We are dealing with more and more condos closing extremely quickly. Why? They are neither bank owned nor short sales - they are simply priced right to sell and people are taking advantage of these great opportunities! Most of the condos that I have sold in the last year have been cash deals. That means that they can close within just a couple of weeks, something that seller's welcome! If you are looking for a vacation or retirement condo, townhome or villa here in the Clearwater/Palm Harbor area, give me a call so we can begin your search!
Comments 3
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Belleview Biltmore Hotel - The White Queen of the Gulf was built in 1896 by Henry B. Plant and his son, Morton Plant. The hotel is the world's largest occupied wooden structure. Built of pine, the structure was originally dark since it was not painted white for many years. This beautiful old landmark was a Winter resort to European royalty as well as the Vanderbilts, du Ponts, Thomas Edison and many other famous people. For years I would go to this landmark hotel every Thanksgiving with my children for the most magnificent feast imaginable! There are many stories surrounding this beautiful old hotel. One is that Morton Plant's wife, Maisie lost her necklace of double strand natural pearls that she purchased from Henri Cartier. Guests through the decades have commented that they have see...
Comments 9
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Clearwater Florida - January 2012 Market Report A new year is here and this one is going to be GREAT for the local real estate market! Clearwater's single family home market started off the new year with 56 closings in January! These ranged from a 4 bedroom 3 bath 2555 sq ft home in Wynwoods Landing that listed for $324,900 and sold for $305,000 to a little home built in 1921. This little 1456 sq ft 3 bedroom 2 bath home was bank owned. Listed at $26,999 it sold for $26,900. The average time on the market for these 56 homes was 90 days! That is not a bad average at all! The market has really picked up and that is wonderful! Turning our attention to townhomes, condos and villas, there were 50 closings during January in Clearwater. These ranged on the high end from a waterfront condo at W...
Comments 2
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
We came, we viewed, we wrote the offer.....three hours later we have a bilateral contract. When you look at this adorable community, is it any wonder that my client did not want to look any further? Not only does she have a garage with her downstairs condo, but from the lanai there is a magnificent lake front view. To top it off, the pool is about a two minute walk away from her front door! As always, cash is king. This one will close in three weeks. There are wonderful homes and condos out there just waiting for new owners! Give me a call today to begin your search!      
Comments 15
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Two contracts in one day is certainly a great indicator of the market! We all remember the days when we could not write contracts fast enough and I am so happy to report that the market is certainly changing in that direction once again! This morning I wrote up a contract on a single family house and it was followed only three hours later with a contract on a condo in Clearwater's beautiful Countryside neighborhood. Both clients got fantastic homes at great prices! Both are going to close in February and both are cash deals! It really doesn't get much better than that! Oh, and yes, this photo was taken today and that bush IS blooming in January! If you are in the market to purchase a home or condo, the time is now to spring into action! Give me a call today to begin your search!  
Comments 6
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Clearwater Florida - 2011 Housing Market Review Reviewing the Clearwater Florida housing market for the year 2011 in the category of single family homes we find that there were a total of 984 closings. These break down as follows: List $ 1,100,000     Sold: $ 830,000 (most expensive) List $        5,000     Sold: $   32,500 (least expensive) Sale price/sq ft High: $308.03 Low: $   11.09 Average Days On Market: 94   Now turning to the category of townhomes, condos and villas we find that there were 944 closings. These break down as follows: List: $ 1,143,450     Sold: $ 1,143,450 List: $      12,000     Sold: $        8,500 Sale price/sq ft High: $334.20 Low:  $ 12.59 Average Days On Market: 95   Things are indeed happening in Clearwater Florida! Home sales for 2011 rose 8% and condo sal...
Comments 3
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Clearwater Florida Market Report - December 2011 Looking back at December 2011 in Clearwater Florida the market breaks down as follows: In the category of single family homes, there were 83 closings in the month of December. They are Most expensive list price: $687,900     Sold Price: $610,000 Least expensive list price: $ 26,500     Sold Price: $  24,000 Sale price/sq ft High: $ 143.42 Low:  $  17.67 Average Days On Market: 97     Condos, townhomes and villas break down like this: Most expensive list price: $ 427,900     Sold Price: $ 427,900 Least expensive list price: $  24,900     Sold Price: $    24,900 Sale price/sq ft High: $ 255.31 Low:  $  27.76 Average Days On Market: 110    
Comments 2
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
No, you can't bring your pet gator to go shopping....read the sign, please! Ron and I went to the flea market in Oldsmar Florida yesterday. I wanted to purchase a couple of carpet runners and figured the Turkish stalls at the local flea market was probably a pretty good place to look. As we were entering the flea market, I noticed this sign for the first time in my life! I am sure it has been there forever, but I never noticed it before. Being the blogger that I am, I had to take out my iPhone and photograph it! I wonder if somebody from another part of the country or even from overseas would read this sign and think that here in Florida, we bring our pet gator or iguanas with us when we go shopping! No, generally, we leave them at home so they can play with our pet dogs and cats! Just ...
Comments 16
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Why work with a Realtor? There are many reasons and one of them is that when you are dealing with bank owned property, you need somebody on your side.....that would be your Realtor. We are currently closing on a bank owned property here in the Greater Clearwater Area of Florida. The closing company is down near Miami.....not unusual when dealing with bank owned properties. Today my client received the package via email for signatures but with NO instructions as to what to do with it, where to sign or anything else. Naturally, I had asked for a copy of the package as well since I figured this scenario just might transpire. I went through the package, all 25 pages of it, and wrote a step by step email as to where it needed signatures and other information. While we deal with packages like...
Comments 7
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Advertising is indeed the key to success! As we begin 2012 I have decided to make a few changes to my advertising beginning with my new and improved business card:   I took a photo of Clearwater Beach Florida and uploaded it to VistaPrint. I then uploaded my own photo, company logo, MLS/Realtor logo and added other information I wanted to present. Last year my business cards had palm trees with sand and surf. I think this cleaner photo looks more professional. My next move is to have perforated vinyl window graphics installed on the back window of my SUV. Originally I was going to have my company logo with my name and phone number. Ron thought that a female riding around in traffic with her phone number on the rear window is asking for problems so now I am considering just putting my we...
Comments 16
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
The days of multiple offers are back and I am loving it! There is nothing sweeter than receiving multiple offers on your listing! When I hear people say that the market is NOT recovering, I have to ask what part of the country they live in because HERE in the Clearwater/Palm Harbor area of Florida we are indeed experiencing a real estate market recovery! Needless to say, my sellers are also thrilled! Three offers on their listing in two days is fantastic! Now let the bidding war begin! My personal crystal ball says if you are seriously considering purchasing, this is indeed the time to jump in!  
Comments 8
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Charles Rutenberg Realty welcomed in 2012 with a wonderful office luncheon. I consider myself lucky to work with such a professional group of people. John and Joann Nestor are our owners and they go out of their way to make us feel like one big family!   John Rurkowski, our on-site broker here in Clearwater, is always available and the ladies in the office (Pauline DeKeyser, JoAnn Roberts and Kristen Conover) comprise the most efficient office staff I have ever worked with! Last Friday there was a wonderful turnout for our end-of-the-year party! It was also an opportunity to meet Charles Rutenberg Realty Realtors that I did not know. With such a large group, covering so many counties, it is impossible to know everyone. If you are a Realtor looking for a change, give me a call. I would l...
Comments 3
By Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor
(Charles Rutenberg Realty)
Seville Condo Under Contract - Clearwater Florida - yes, just two days after listing the 2 bedroom 2 bath condo at Seville, it is already under contract and set to close next week. Since this is a cash deal and NOT an REO or short sale, there is nothing to delay this closing. These are the changes that we are seeing more and more here in the Clearwater/Palm Harbor Florida real estate market. If the property is in good condition and priced right, it doesn't stay on the market long! Looks like 2012 is going to be a VERY good year for the Florida real estate market indeed!      
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