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.Florida: The New California?
National existing home sales have a median price of $225,700, and Florida’s median existing home price is $23,100 higher! What this means is that this state is no longer a “retirement” state, but is fast becoming another California! I saw a builder’s recent ad saying that the waterfront condos he was selling were priced at only $500 … per square foot!

Add to this the fact that real estate taxes have jumped along with prices and insurance is virtually out of reach, and all this is “normal.” On top of it all, impact fees have gone way up, and the state’s income from taxes has increased dramatically, but the government still wants more.

All real estate professionals need to be screaming their heads off to educate the public as well as our government at all levels to give us some real tax relief plus insurance reductions. We should be standing in line to tell our elected officials to get to work on a disaster that’s happening right under their noses.

Lee Carlson
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc.
Clearwater


Optimism Is Good
Real estate is like the stock market. When it’s at the top, the novice investor rushes in; when it’s at the bottom, the smart investor gets into the game.
 
If you’re waiting for the media to report the shift, you’ll have to wait until it’s obvious to everyone that a change has taken place. The media is only knowledgeable in hindsight. How can anyone consider the media an expert when they aren’t in the real estate business?

When I took the course to become a real estate professional, the instructor pictured the business like a 10-handed clock. It moves up and it moves down. When it goes up, the number of licensees will explode. When the hand starts swinging down, the weak leave the business and the experienced [sales associates] thrive as they gain a larger piece of a smaller pie.

I’m more than optimistic. I’m growing my business and my real estate investments, and finding it easier than ever to acquire listings. It doesn’t get much better than this.

Clifford Roe
Clifford Roe Realty
Seminole


Sick of the Spin
Having been bombarded by the “bubble is bursting” and “the sky is falling” media and “expert” types, we’re now faced with the “optimism is good” group.

Any reasonable person recognizes the fact that not all real estate markets are in a “correction mode.” I love that one. Or how about “softening of the market” and “stabilization”?

If you have a mind of your own and don’t drool over what the “experts” say or what the media hypes, but read and extend your horizons a little, you’ll discover the following: lumber prices are falling, [so are prices for] cement and other products used in the building/construction business. Could those price adjustments mean that homebuilders aren’t building, condominium builders aren’t “condo-ing” and developers aren’t developing?

Philip N. Cole
Docside Auction Group Inc.
Destin


Submit letters to “Editor” via e-mail to FLRealtor@far.org, mail to P.O. Box 725025, Orlando FL 32872-5025, or fax to (407) 438-1411.

Letters are edited for space and clarity. Publication of a letter does not constitute an endorsement of the writer’s views by the Florida Association of Realtors®.