Is Tampa Bay finally seeing signs of a buyer’s market? Soaring September sales hint at it

Bucking a national trend, sales of single-family homes soared by double digits in Hillsborough, Pinellas and Hernando counties in September. That dramatic increase, coupled with minor price increases, suggests that a real estate market that has favored sellers for several years is finally starting to swing a bit in favor of buyers. Another positive sign for those looking to purchase:…

Loews Don CeSar named Best Historic Hotel in America

The Loews Don CeSar Hotel on St. Pete Beach was recently named the “Best Historic Hotel” in its size category by the Historic Hotels of America organization. The 277-room “Pink Palace,” which has been an icon on St. Pete Beach for decades, was built in 1928. The hotel was recognized for its history and restoration. “It’s been 88 years in…

House flipping still paying off in Tampa Bay, though inventory shrinking

Last fall, Tampa-based Badger Investments paid $86,100 for a bank-owned house in St. Petersburg that was showing its age. Out went the wall-to-wall carpeting and the window air conditioner. In came granite countertops and stainless steel appliances. Badger put the house back on the market and sold it in May for $149,000 — a 73 percent gross profit. But those…

New York style brownstones planned for downtown St. Petersburg

Five high-end, New York-style brownstones are now planned for the downtown St. Petersburg site where a 16-story luxury condo tower once was proposed. Frank Menna, who owns the vacant lot on First Street N and Fourth Avenue, said Wednesday that the new project is a joint venture with hotel and restaurant owner Steve Gianfilippo. “I had the high-rise thing going…

Tampa Bay homes sales soared in June

Tampa Bay home sales skyrocketed in June, making it the strongest month in the past year. Year-over-year sales of single-family homes — which make up the bulk of the residential real estate market — soared 31.7 percent in Pasco County, 29.5 percent in Pinellas and 27.4 percent in Hillsborough.

Why some Tampa Bay homes sit on the market for years

As nearby properties changed hands, the Odessa house sat unsold through two presidential elections, a recession, a recovery and enough celebrity gossip to fill seven years of People magazine. Finally, after 2,552 days with no buyer in sight, the listing expired in January. “It’s a very pretty house,” real estate agent Robert Romano said, “but I’m letting it sleep for…