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Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Don't Get Shut Out of Key West !

This has been one crazy winter so far. The weather has been uncharacteristically cool by Key West standards. We have had cold days, hot days, cool days, rainy days, and sunny days. But one thing for sure: we did not have one SNOW DAY!

People come back to Key West year after year after year. A lot of the buyers I work with have been coming to the Keys since the 1970's and 1980's. Most of my buyers are in their late 40's or older, and almost everyone is looking to purchase a place in Key West where they can retire at some future point in time. If you are among the many who want to buy a little piece of Paradise, my advice is simple: don't wait too long.

There were 23 single family home sales in Key West during January 2010. Four of those sales were bank owned properties and 11 were short sales. The average sales price was $305 per sq ft. But that sales data includes all of Key West whereas most second home buyers prefer properties located in Old Town, Casa Marina, and the Meadows. I refined my search to only those areas and excluded the one short sale at 1015 South Street (hell of a deal !). The result was four homes that sold for an average of $510 per sq ft.

The number of sales in January 2010 (23) more than doubles the number of single family sales in January 2009 (10). There are plenty of buyers for lower priced properties. We did not have any sales on larger, more expensive homes in the Old Town, Casa Marina or Meadows area.

Currently 145 single family homes are shown as contingent or pending in Key West. Thirteen of the 145 contingent or pending sales are priced above $1 million with an average list price of $787 per sq ft. Six of those properties went contingent or pending in January. A lot of short sales that have been hanging around and getting gray hair are starting to get approved and closed.

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about Key West has reached the bottom of the barrel. I stand by what I wrote. Within a couple of days a couple of nice houses priced under $500,000 were listed. One sold on the first day it was listed. CLICK HERE to see the 8 houses in the target area that are priced at $499,000 or below that I think most second home buyers might actually wan to buy. We have an abundant supply of homes priced over one million dollars, however. But that supply may be starting to shrink as well. The pickings, Dear Reader, are getting slim.

If you are looking to purchase a piece of Paradise and do not want to get shut out again, please call me, Gary Thomas, 305-766-2642 or contact me by email at I am a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties Coastal Realty, Inc. in Key West, Florida. We are the exclusive Lower Florida Keys for Christie's Great Estates. CLICK HERE to search the mls.

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Gary Thomas in a Nutshell

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Key West, Florida, United States
I first read about Key West in a magazine called "After Dark" sometime in the mid 1970's. But it wasn't until March 1984 that I made my first visit to the island that would become my home. I had two weeks for a vacation and reserved a room at Colours Guesthouse (now Marrero's Guest House) for one week. I thought that if I didn't like Key West, I could always go back to Miami or Ft. Lauderdale for the rest of my trip. But after a couple of days in Key West, that was no longer a consideration. But when I wanted to extend my stay for the extra week I found there was no room at the inn. The guesthouse owner did find me a room at LaTeDa, the infamous guesthouse/restaurant. That's a story I'll write another day. But those two weeks in Key West gave me the realization that I had found Paradise. Key West has been my home since 1993 and my only regret is that it took me so long to get here. I am a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties CRI. Let me help you find your new home or business in Paradise. Living in Paradise is not a slogan, it's a way of life.