Our office is in Fountain Beach Resort, which is a condo-hotel. On the Marquee sign we have one line. Today it ways "Condos fr $35K".
People walk into the office and ask us about these condos. We give them the printout, brochure, and take them to this $34,900 (we shorten it on the sign) unit. A foreclosure unit, nothing wrong and nothing great about it, a decent size hotel room. Not rented because the lender / owner does not know that they can rent it.
When they come and ask about the condo, I often ask them what they are looking for. Often they say "Oh, a two bedroom unit with direct ocean view would be nice". Sure it would be nice. Especially for $34,900. I would buy one myself.
People look around, ask a bunch of questions, shake hands, take my card, tell me that they learned a lot and ... walk away. What they do not understand is that they are in 2003, not in 2009. Even we have only one unit at this price, next one, no better, is $54,900, then $59,900 and up.
2003 prices were in the mid to upper $30s. 2004 were in $70s, 2005 reached $120K, and then started sliding down to where they are now. I will see them in a few years and they would be telling me a wonderful story how they could buy for $34,900 and they didn't. How stupid. "But who would know".
That drives me nuts. Because I am telling them that in 2003 they were the same as this only one foreclosure unit now. That in a very short time they can make cool $90K on this unit. Can they easily make that kind of money in a year or two? They agree with me... and walk away.
They look normal people, they are not joking. It is something in the Florida air. Do you seriously expect a direct oceanfront 2 bdr/ 2bath unit about 1,500 sf for $34,900?
Do you have a 2/2 condo facing the Lake in Chicago on Michigan Ave for $34,900?
And here they usually laugh. Am I kidding them? It is darn so expensive on Michigan Ave.
Well, Atlantic Avenue in Daytona Beach is your Michigan Ave in Chicago, 5th Ave in Manhattan and whichever the best and the priciest avenue anywhere in the country. So, how come you expect to buy something really nice here, with the money that would not buy you a parking in your own neck of the woods?
Anywhere in the country if you walk into the Mercedes dealership, and they point to a car saying "sixty", you immediately know that it means $60,000. If they want a 2/2 oceanfront 1,500-sf condo for $34,900, in Florida they should be asking "sixty what? Sixty bucks?"
When something is too good people pinch themselves to make sure they are not dreaming. That's everywhere. Not in Florida, because with that level of disparity, no trauma center would help.
So, come on guys. Do not buy a studio for $34,900. This is Florida, here the air is money. You spent a winter in Chicago? You deserve it, a cool 1,500 sf 2/2 right on the ocean.
Yeah, it will happen when St. Paul or St. Peter will be your brokers.
Meanwhile, I still have a bunch of Mercedes for $60. Who is next?
Jon Zolsky, your Daytona Beach, Florida connection