Real Estate: The Future is bright and I Already Have Shades

The Future is bright and I already have some nice shades!!! (purchased from our wonderful Pier Park)

With all the negative talk in the news and in the local rags you would not know that there are many bright spots in our horizon. Northwest Florida is poised and ready to blossom and flourish.  Many renowned and respected groups such as, American Express, Fortune Magazine and others are encouraged about our Real Estate market here.

American Express says that Northwest Florida is one of its Top Ten vacation destinations in the country. Northwest Florida is second behind the Orlando area in Florida tourism. Northwest Florida beaches are world-class, drawing over seven million tourists each year — more than any other East Coast beach area.

Real Estate professionals will tell you that their phones are ringing and people are taking advantage of the dropping prices and loving the new home buyers tax credit. . As inventory is depleted prices will stabilize and even climb up a little.  Many residences are priced below the cost to build. “If you are looking for an investment to hold on to for the next five years, the time to purchase is now. We are still very undervalued compared to other regions of Florida.”

The St. Joe Company (NYSE:JOE), whose corporate headquarters are in Jacksonville, FL, (will not be for long) is the largest landowner in Northwest Florida, owning over 718,000 acres of prime development land — half of it less than ten miles of the coast. St. Joe has been a large player in the Florida panhandle for a long time.  And according to St. Joe’s Investor Relations Department the long-range prospect for Florida panhandle real estate is particularly upbeat which is evidenced by St. Joe moving their headquarters to our area. What a genuine vote of confidence that is!!!!

There is also great reason to believe that our diverse economy is going to bring us more prosperity in the future:

Long-term financial and demographic trends continue to favor Florida, whose economy is fundamentally strong and diversified. The state’s population is expected to increase by three-fourths (to 28.6 million) by 2030. Its demographic growth rate regularly outperforms that of the rest of the country: over the past forty years, its annual rate of growth has outpaced the national average by 100%. By 2010 Florida will pass New York to become the country’s third most populous state.

Florida’s strong, diverse economy routinely outperforms the U.S. average, with a vibrant tourism industry, lots of high-tech jobs and a strong high-tech manufacturing sector. A big military presence with a number of busy and growing bases provides stability to the area’s economy. Within Northwest Florida, Walton County has one of the lowest unemployment rates in Florida and the United States.

Florida is the strategic and economic center of the Americas. Geographic location, as well as financial and political stability, puts the State at the heart of trade and business throughout the region. Vacation property sales to retiring Baby Boomers are robust, and the State is a favorite spot for retirement relocation.

And if all that is not enough, we still have the most beautiful beaches in the world.

The Florida panhandle’s beaches are Florida’s second favorite tourist destination, trailing Orlando. The Florida Panhandle’s beaches attract more than seven million tourists yearly, more than any other stretch of beach on the East Coast.

Beaches in Northwest Florida rate as some of the most spectacular in the U.S. and the world. Beaches in Walton, Bay and Gulf Counties have been chosen for the number one ranking by Dr. Stephen P. Leatherman, an expert on beach quality and author of America’s Best Beaches.

The news just keeps getting better and better and with the arrival of our new Airport people can actually get to us so they can enjoy us even more!!!!  I can hardly wait to use our new Airport and am so thankful for all the community leaders that made it possible and thanks to St. Joe for knowing that this is the most fabulous place to live. I know I really do not need to remind you but I will anyway…. please remember, “The only people we need to get even with are those that have helped up.”  Now go get even!!!!

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