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Foreclosure Reality: Tampa Bay Home Values Decline in October 2009

by Charlie Hounchell, Esquire

Tampa Bay foreclosures are responsible for our declining local real estate market values. Like it or not, every time a house in your neighborhood enters foreclosure, your home value will decrease as a result of a diminished average sold price per square foot. According to the S&P Case-Shiller home price index, Tampa Bay was the biggest price loser among twenty (20) housing markets in October. Due to the fact that more than one third of all homes sold in October 2009 were “distressed” properties, home prices in the area fell 1.6 percent from September to October. In six (6) years, Tampa Bay home prices have not been lower, duplicating those prices recorded in 2003. Since home prices peaked in June 2006, pricing has fallen 41 percent.

Unfortunately, foreclosures will continue to negatively impact our real estate values as unemployment continues to rise and homeowners remain significantly upside down on their home loans.

On a positive note, there are many amazing real estate purchase opportunities for the first time home buyer and the savvy investor. With any property purchase, it is imperative that you conduct a thorough title search and that you perform a professional property inspection before signing on the dotted line.

Please be advised that this article does not constitute legal advice nor does it provide any basis to form an attorney-client relationship. Nothing in this article should be copied without the express permission of the author.

Mr. Hounchell has a law degree from The University of Florida College of Law and he is a principal in The Law Offices Charles A. Hounchell, P.A., in Tampa, Florida. Mr. Hounchell earned his undergraduate degree from The George Washington University in Washington D.C. and he obtained his MBA in International Management from the American Graduate School of International Management (“Thunderbird”) in Glendale, Arizona.

Mr. Hounchell is a licensed title insurance agent and a real estate agent with Smith and Associates, Inc. http://www.smithandassociates.com/; http://www.livecasanova.com/. He has lived in many different countries, including Spain, Brazil, Argentina, Mexico and Germany and he speaks Spanish and Portuguese. A significant portion of Mr. Hounchell’s law practice is concentrated on Real Estate Law. He can be reached at 813-230-3376 or charlie@flpropertylaw.com.