I am currently living in Ireland and holidaying in Clearwater Beach. I am interested in buy a house for

Asked by Bob, Ireland, WV Thu Jul 24, 2008

holiday use with a planned move on retirement in about five years time. It certainly looks like a good time to buy. What are the likely pitfalls? e.g. taxes,renting,medicare etc

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Brooke O'Mal…, Agent, Sarasota, FL
Thu Jul 24, 2008
There are great values available, make sure you
investigate the subdivision or condo assosiciations.
Many are in trouble because of the decline, and you
could have problems from amentities that haven't
been completed,or a high percentage of Developer
owned units. This can create a problem with a high
percentage of renters which will affect your purchase.
Look for gated communities that offer complete outside
maintenance caretaking along with security.This offers
some protection and gives you less to think about.
For medical you should check with your providers as to the
coverage available in or near the area.
Taxes are a concern, and honestly there isn't much that
appears is being acomplished by our representatives.
You may want to search on Realtor.com for adjacent
states that may offer more competitive tax advantages
and or better medical options. Be patient and learn as
much as you can before making your decision.
If you would like to consider the Sarasota area
please look at our web site, we feature Foreclosures
and short sales that are the best value for your
Hope this helps,
1 vote
Cyndee & Jack…, Agent, Seminole, FL
Thu Jul 24, 2008
Dear Bob,
It is a great time to buy, especially if you're interested in Pinellas beach area properties. We specialize in Clearwater area homes and condos and work with many investors and buyers from out of the country. Having an agent working ONLY for your interests is a good idea when working to negotiate the best deal even in a buyers market.

We have written several articles about our taxes on our blog as well.
As of February this year we currently have a 10% cap for anyone whose home is not their 1 primary residence (qualifying homestead) - the good news is we have a new ammendment on the ballot to be voted on in November which proposed to increase oujr sales tax by 1% and cap all property taxes at 5% that are not homesteaded - this would be great news for individuals like you :)

Check out article:http://www.clearwaterrealestatetampahomes.com/clearwater-flo…

Renting is another issue I have written about and an important one - for instance most buyers don't realize that nothing on Island Estates can be rented for less than 3 months and move require 6 month rentals and up. there are only 7 condo complexes in Clearwater Beach that can be rented weekly and most are over $500k - Sand Key has NO weekly rentals and few short term rentals. These are all the things we can help you with.

Check out this article: http://www.sandbarstosunsets.com/2008/06/10/clearwater-beach…

We work with many buyers and you may want to see the videos they've shared about their experiences at http://www.SandbarsToSunsets.com/clients

If you'd like to discuss your requirments feel free to call me at 727-710-8035 or email me at cyndeehaydon@gmail.com

Cyndee and Jack Haydon
Belloise Realty
Our blogs:
1 vote
Anna Dementov, Agent, Clearwater Beach, FL
Sat Feb 15, 2014
You are definitely right about now being the best time to buy! The pitfall would be - things that could be wrong with the house physically to be found out after buying - that is why I always recommend and ensure that my buyers get a standard home inspection done in the purchase process.
Please let me know if you are still looking!

Anna Dementov - Great Homes Realty - cell:727.222.6997 - email: annadementov@gmail.com - web: http://ClearwaterEstate.com (Waterfront and Beach Luxury Specialist - Immediate Personal Service - Russian speaking realtor In Florida)
0 votes
Harry Dobbs, Agent, Clearwater, FL
Sat Apr 6, 2013
No pitfalls, now is a good time. However, you may want to consider a condo so you have no worries about maintenance and security when you are not here. The condos on Sand Key rent out very well also if you would like.
Harry Dobbs
Sand Key Realty
0 votes
Jeannine Sch…, Agent, Clearwater Beach, FL
Mon Jun 18, 2012
Great Time to Buy!! Contact me for your personalized plan....Demand is high here on the Beach...
We will be glad to give you all the information needed for you to make a informed decision. We have a great condo 5 minutes from Clearwater Beach for $150K. 2 Bed/ 2 Bath.

Have a great time here on the Beach and/ or feel free to stop in the office or call me for an appt.
0 votes
Teresa Poole, Agent, Loris, SC
Tue May 19, 2009
Don't rule out the greater Myrtle Beach, SC area for your retirement destination. We have much to offer in our area and I can assist you in Horry County, SC. Call me if you change your mind about location.
0 votes
Caroline York, Agent, St Petersburg, FL
Sun Aug 3, 2008
Management of a rental unit is generally the biggest pitfall. You could avoid that by hiring a reputable property management company. Selecting the home you want to retire in and then renting it out and expecting it to be in the same condition five years from now would be a disaster if you don't have the right people managing it. Many realtors may suggest that you buy "at the beach" I find that purchasing a condo in downtown St Petersburg or Clearwater where you would attract a professional tenant on an annual lease rather than a seasonal tenant may provide a more solid base for your investment. If I can be of service please contact me. Much success in your investment!
0 votes
Bill Eckler, Agent, Venice, FL
Fri Jul 25, 2008
hi Bob,

As you are aware, this is an ideal time to make a real estate investment in the US. If you are planning on renting this property, our recommendation is to bake your purchase based on "rental appeal." We find that renters are attracted to beach and water front, golf course availability, proximity to cultural activities, safety,etc. etc. Your rental return will be greatly enhanced.

We also tell our customers to never consider making a real estate purchase without considering its resale value, 5, 10, 15 years in the future. All thought it is impossible to envision a clear picture for the future, your decisioin should be based on ideal characteristics like those above.

Good luck,
The "Eckler Team"
Michael saunders & Company
0 votes
Chris Griffi…, Agent, Bonita Springs, FL
Thu Jul 24, 2008
I hope you're enjoying your stay in Florida.

I was about to refer you to Cyndee Haydon but I see she has already submitted a response. I can only add my glowing endorsement. She's one of the most knowledgable, trusted real estate agents I've met in Florida. Good luck!
0 votes
., , Clearwater Beach, FL
Thu Jul 24, 2008
Are you a US or irish citizen? That will make a difference for Medicare. Property taxes are considered high but when you add all the other taxes paid in other areas they are not so bad. We do not have an income tax or an estate tax like other states or countries. Compare "apples to apples" and look at the total tax picture before deciding taxes are high or low in any area.

Prices have come down significantly. You can get good buys without the hassle of dealing with foreclosures or short sales. Bank owned properties may be the best buys but sellers who have a lot of equity and need to sell are also good buys. This is definately the time to buy! Mortgage rates are still low although you will have to provide more information than before.

My clients have access to all lisitngs on MLS and can search them on their own with guidance from me. I will be happy to give you an account and you can start your search today. My office is located on Clearwater Beach. I'm a Tampa Bay native and am very familiar with this market.

Martha Vasquez
Century 21 Sunshine Realty
(727) 244-9404
0 votes
Loretta Buck…, Agent, Palm Harbor, FL
Thu Jul 24, 2008
You are correct in assessing that now IS a great time to buy, Bob! Couldn't pick a better time, in fact--and if you're going to be on holiday here anytime soon, definitely take a ride on the Foreclosure Bus! (Read about it on the link below.)
As far as pitfalls go, that would really depend on you and your individual situation--how much do you have set aside for retirement, will you have citizenship (or non-) concerns, and are you going to plan on trying to rent seasonally or year-round?
These are the kinds of questions to ask a good real estate consultant. Call me! 727-656-6206
0 votes
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