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Friday, November 30, 2012

1709 George Street - Key West

Just listed, but not by me, 1709 George Street in Key West. This smartly updated four bedroom home with two baths and a beautiful pool is priced at only $565,000. The listing Realtor describes this home as:
"Wonderful and walled for privacy, this tastefully renovated and immaculately maintained home is a true hidden pleasure. Enjoy 4 bedrooms, 2 stylish baths, an open kitchen with granite counters, stainless steel appliances and mexican tile floors throughout. New impact glass doors & windows are everywhere in this sunny home! Relax by your pool or under your outdoor covered patio. Absolutely nothing is needed in this perfect charmer. This home has plenty of off street parking and is close to the beaches and nature walk. Not often do you find a home in this price range that needs no work and has style galore. Hurry, it won't last!"

This 1355 sq ft home is surrounded by a privacy wall on a 4840 sq ft lot. The home, which was built in in 1964, looks almost brand new. The CBS home has been thoughtfully remodeled and now includes crown molding and baseboards, new interior doors, impact resistant windows and doors, and an updated kitchen and baths. 

The home has four good sized bedrooms each of which has lots of windows for ambient light but ultimate privacy as well. The two bathrooms are worthy of being called works for art. One has a step through door that provides quick access to the pool.

A covered lanai is located off the fourth bedroom which is used as an office. The lanai provides shade from the sunny pool.

CLICK HERE for all the details on 1709 George Street listed by Terri Spottswood at Truman & Company. And CLICK HERE to view more photos I took of  this property. Better yet, please call me, Gary Thomas, 305-766-2642 or send me an email at to schedule a showing.  I am a buyers agent and a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties Coastal Realty, Inc. in Key West. This place really is a Key West home buy this Christmas.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Bank Owned Investment Property - Summerland Key, Florida

Every now and then I get a phone call or an email from a potential buyer who has had a persistent dream of buying a place in Key West that he or she or they could operate as an investment. The goal is give that potential buyer the reason to move here and have a place to go to that could turn a profit. With the rate of return banks are offering in today's diluted economy, making a profit on just about any non-risk investment ought to provide a greater rate of return. Preferred Properties is the listing brokerage for a Bank Owned Trailer Park located on Summerland Key, just 29 miles east of Key West. The listing Realtor describes the property as:
"The Summerland Palms Trailer Park fronts US1 with easy highway access. The parcel consists of 21 condominium sites for monthly rental plus an on site laundry and sewer treatment plant. The well maintained property is approx. 39,328 sq. feet and has an annual income of appx. $170,000. There is potential for on site building, redevelopment and/or future use of building rights off site. A full package is available."
Summerland Palms is a trailer condominium where all of the lot spaces (except one) are owned by a single owner, the Seller. The Seller leases the 21 spaces to the individual trailer owners who pay monthly rent. There is a common laundry facility that also generates income. The combined projected gross income is $170,000. According to the listing agent, this investment would generate about a 6% return on investment.

Coin operated laundry for extra cash income

Click GOOGLE MAP for an aerial view of the location. You will note the trailer park sits off highway US1 behind what is called Flagship Drive, or on the Gulf Side of the highway at Mile Marker 29.

CLICK HERE to view the Key West mls datasheet and to view lots of listing photos. The asking price on this Bank Owned Property has been reduced to  $1,100,000. Please contact me, Gary Thomas, 305-766-2642 or send me an email at so that I can send you the listing information package on this property. I am a buyers agent and a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties Coastal Realty, Inc. in Key West, Florida.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Key West Waterfront Condo - 833 Eisenhower Drive #203

If you have not noticed it yet, prices are on the rise and the number of available properties available for sale are on the wane.  Old Town is still the area most in demand. Cute little cigar maker cottages, would-be fixers, and even Grand Conch houses are the properties potential buyers seek the most often. Shipyard Condominiums is most popular property for first time home buyers in Key West because of the price, location, and ability to rent on a limited transient basis.

Today I am writing once again about a property that is priced similarly to what you might pay for a much smaller unit at Shipyard Condominiums.  833 Eisenhower Drive #203 which is a lovely two bedroom two bath 1351 sq ft condominium that overlooks the Garrison Bight.  This unit also comes with a boat slip. The asking price has been reduced to $599,000 or $443 per sq ft.

The listing agent at Preferred Properties (that's where I work but this is not my listing) describes this unit like this:
"Take advantage of this major Price Reduction! This pristine 2/2 Harbor Lodge condominium comes with a boat slip! You'll love this bright end unit with extra windows, designer kitchen, high ceilings and covered deck overlooking the pool and the sparkling water. This beautifully maintained unit also has assigned covered parking and an extra large workshop/storage area. Harbor Lodge is a well maintained and managed property overlooking the boats and activity at Garrison Bight and is within walking/biking distance to Key West's main attractions. This is a great opportunity to own a beautiful unit in an A+ building on the water. Easy to see!"
Harbor Lodge Condominiums was built in 1990. There are just three units per floor and there are only three floors. All units have assigned covered parking and an extra large storage room. The storage room is large enough to store motor scooters, bikes, kayaks, and other outdoor sports equipment. Transient rentals are not permitted at this property. Owners may rent on a month to month basis or annual basis, however.

Daytime or nighttime, there is always something interesting to watch when you own a waterfront home.

Unit 203 has an updated kitchen, plantation shutters, and is in pristine condition. The owners have maintained this home and a new owner will need only bring a toothbrush. CLICK HERE to view a slide show of photos of this wonderful waterfront condo. And CLICK HERE to see the Key West Association of Realtors mls datasheet.

Please contact me, Gary Thomas, 304-766-2642 or send me an email at if you would like to see this unit or any other property available for purchase in Key West. I am a buyers agent and a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties Key West.

Monday, November 26, 2012

1117 Stump Lane - Old Town - Key West

1117 Stump Lane - Key West
 Just listed by Preferred Properties, that's where I work but this is not my listing, 1117 Stump Lane in Old Town Key West.  Budget buyers who are looking for a place they can move right into and do a little bit of fix-up over time or a buyer who wants to do a major renovation ought to take a look at this home.  The listing Realtor described this 1541 sq ft three bedroom two bath house this way:
"Located in the heart of Old Town Key West, on one of the best lanes between Frances and United sits this 3/2. On the ground level there is a living room, dining area, kitchen, bedroom, bath and laundry room. On the second level there are two bedrooms, bath and a large walk in closet. There is enough room in back for a small pool and patio. Just waiting for someones touches."
This is a property that will probably go under contract as soon as you can say "Jumping Jack Flash" because it is priced to sell and there are a lot of buyers who are getting desperate for a deal.   Click on GOOGLE MAP for an aerial perspective of the location and then us the toggle switch to do a GOOGLE WALK down the block. Check out the other homes on this quiet little lane that runs one direction from White Street to the east and ends at Frances Street on the west. Stump Lane is situated between Southard Street to the south and Fleming Street to the north. You'll pass the residence of a famous writer and individuals who are famous to their families and friends.

The lot is 28.5' x 100'. There is room for a pool in the rear.  Right now the back area is pretty much paved concrete plus some ornamental trees. There is no room for off street parking, but that is not a problem for this area as most of the houses on this little lane are single family homes that are owner occupied. There is no commercial activity competing for parking spaces.

I dug into the old shoe box and found a photo taken of the house in 1965. Compare that pic to the one just below which is quite recent. Not much has changed.

  When you walk inside it's almost like taking a step back in time. The interiors have not changed in decades. They worked well for the prior owner. Please take a look.

Yes, the concrete is 'tinted' green!
CLICK HERE to view more photos of this property and CLICK HERE to view the Key West mls datasheet. Do not delay on this property. Asking price is just $619,000.  If you would like to see this property or want more information please contact me, Gary Thomas, 305-766-2642 or send me an email at I am a buyers agent and a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties Key West.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

All You Need is Love - 712 Love Lane - Key West

If you are a hopeless romantic you'll probably fall in love with today's home when you read the address: 712 Love Lane.  But if you're a pragmatist it will probably require that you pass through the gate at the end of the walking lane and enter into the front yard before you fall in love. And after that all hope is lost for you will surely be truly, madly, deeply in love with this wonderful Key West home.

Today's home rests at the very end of Love Lane in Old Town Key West.  You'll fall in love with this place as soon as you pass through the gate and enter into the front yard which Leslie Linsley described in her book Key West Houses as "an enchanting environment with a brick-and-stone patio and overhead trellis laden with cascading bougainvillea."

The listing broker describes this wonderful home this way:
"One of the island's best kept secrets. This 4 bedroom, 3 bath all-on-one-level triple saw tooth shotgun proved inspirational to many. Harry Roberts was the model for Harry Morgan in Hemingway's Key West novel To Have and Have Not''. Bill Wright, Russell Baker, and David Halberstram have all been inspired by this gem, secluded behind the library palm garden. Judith Kazantzis immortalized the home in her poem, Love Lane, Key West''. The main home and separate guest cottage with bath open to the private deck and 9 foot deep heated lap pool with outdoor shower. Cypress shutters and cypress cabinets with travertine tops in the kitchen and dining area. Located off Fleming Street at the end of Love Lane with off-street parking."
Let me first tell you why it is so "secret" - it's because it is so difficult to find. I have mentioned before somewhere in this blog that there are three "legs" to Love Lane. If you walk of drive on Southard Street you will find a Love Lane sign midway between William and Elizabeth Streets on the north side of the street. If you walk down the lane which is wide enough to accommodate a car you will see that the lane abruptly ends where a house sits. And if you are walking or driving on Fleming Street between Elizabeth and William Streets you will find an unmarked walking lane that begins at the edge of the Monroe County Public Library (which has been referred to as the Pink Library). This, too, is Love Lane. And if you went back to Southard Street and looked to the south side of the street you would find a tiny little strip of ground not much wider than the sidewalk on which it occupies, a lane also called Love. In his book The Streets of Key West author J. Willis Burke explains the confusion about Love Lane:
"Love can generate some confusion - and Love Lane is no exception. Some maps show to Loves, one coming off Fleming and another off Southard, but not meeting mid-block. Other maps indicate Gwynn Street, named for a former mayor and cigar tycoon E. O. Gwynn, is the lane that runs off Southard. And yet another source cites Johnny Cake Lane as making up the northern half of Love Lane. At one time perhaps it did... As confirmed by the loving couple who lives on the Fleming Street side of the lane, both are now called Love Lane. It seems they don't meet because the bungalow that bisects the lane was built on the sly, and over the decades, has been grandfathered and let stand."

Like so many places in Old Town, this home has been added onto over the years. Rooms, multiple decks, a pool, a guest cottage are pieces that slowly became the whole. What was once a small cottage is now a 1309 sq ft home with three bedrooms in the main house plus the guest cottage or pool house. I started to write which of the rooms is my most favorite and then realized I couldn't decide which one that might be. So instead I'll throw up some photos I took and you can decide which you like most.

When you enter the home you see the dining room on the right. It's a magnificent space with soaring ceiling, a library wall crammed with books and windows that look out to the library garden and front porch, and the quiet little reading nook.

On the opposite side of the room is the living area with walls that seem to reach to heaven. Cedar shutters line the French doors on the south side which filter the view of the pool. Art has found a home on these walls which themselves become a piece of art. Look through the open door and view the first of three bedrooms in the main house. Notice the pickled wood flooring that is light and practical and in harmony with the house.

Pine walls were whitewashed which allowed the pink tones of the wood to show through. Louvered cedar doors open out to the pool.

See what I mean? You can't pick a favorite spot because each room or space is so precious in its own right. I love the spartan room with the single bed. It has a window that looks out to library garden. The shutter lined master bedroom made me want to jump on the bed and take a nap and the gauzy front bedroom made me want to peer through the shutters out to the pool. And then there is that insane kitchen with the soaring ceiling and handmade cedar cabinets. Nothing store bought from Home Depot or IKEA here. This kitchen was created with LOVE in mind.
The pool is located on the south side of the property. It should stay sunny most of the day throughout most of the year. Sometimes buyers miss things like that. It's always nice to have a pool with some sun and some shade. Not all people are bronzed gods and not all gods need to bake all day.

The pool house (guest cottage) is located at the far end of the pool.  I walked inside and looked at the room and my jaw dropped. Who wouldn't love to sleep, or take a nap, or do other stuff in this place? It is just too awesome.

I was nearing the end of taking photos when I snapped the above picture. I told the listing agent that Ralph Lauren must have created this space - it is just perfect!  He didn't, but I think you get what I mean. CLICK HERE to see all of the photos I took of 712 Love Lane.

Kevin N. McCarthy's book The Book Lover's Guide to Florida: Authors, Books and Literary Sites notes that author William Wright lived at 712 Love Lane (for about ten years). The present owners purchased this home from Wright in 1987. They created a masterpiece.  CLICK HERE to view the Key West Association of Realtors mls datasheet and to view listing photos. If you would like to see 712 Love Lane with me, Gary Thomas, please call me a 305-766-2642. I am a buyers agent and a full time Realtor at Preferred Property Key West. You'll fall in love with this one!


The information on this site is for discussion purposes only. Under no circumstances does this information constitute a recommendation to buy or sell securities, assets, real estate, or otherwise. Information has not been verified, is not guaranteed, and is subject to change.


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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.