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Why & When you Need a Building Permit

building-permit2If you are having major work done in your home, a building permit protects you and the future occupants of the home. Florida State law requires that when you sell a property your are legally obligated to disclose any renovations that were done without a building permit. If you have remodeled without a permit you may be required to apply for a permit, have the building department inspect the renovations to be sure that the work is up to code and in some cases you may be required to dismantle the work that was done without the permit.

A building permit is required if you:

• Change the footprint of the house
• Move a load-bearing wall
• Alter the roofline
• Create a new door or window opening
• Replace an electric stove wit a natural-gas model
• Move a sink
• Install new electrical wiring

A Building permit is Not required if you:

• Install new floor coverings
• Replace doors or windows without altering the structure
• Change a countertop
• Replace a faucet
• Repaint the interior or exterior of the house

September Pending Home Sales Down, Still Higher Than a Year Ago

Washington, DC, October 27, 2011

Pending home sales declined in September, although activity remains above a year ago, according to the National Association of Realtors®.

The Pending Home Sales Index,* a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, fell 4.6 percent to 84.5 in September from 88.6 in August but is 6.4 percent higher than September 2010 when it stood at 79.4. The data reflects contracts but not closings.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said the housing market is being excessively constrained. “A combination of weak consumer confidence and continuing tight lending criteria held back home buyers, even though the private sector added nearly 2 million net new jobs in the past 12 months,” he said.

The PHSI in the Northeast declined 4.7 percent to 60.6 in September but is 4.0 percent above a year ago. In the Midwest the index dropped 6.2 percent to 71.5 in September but remains 12.3 percent higher than September 2010. Pending home sales in the South fell 5.5 percent in September to an index of 91.6 but are 5.0 percent above a year ago. In the West the index declined 2.1 percent to 105.8 in September but is 5.6 percent higher than September 2010.
“America’s monetary policy is contradictory and confusing, where some consumers with the best financial capacity and top-notch credit scores pay higher mortgage interest rates,” Yun said. “The Federal Reserve evidently has been attempting to lower mortgage rates, yet more consumers are faced with taking out jumbo loans that carry higher interest rates.”

Yun emphasized the need to reinstate higher loan limits in 42 states. “Just leaving excessive cash to sit in banks and not work into the economy is a drag on the overall recovery,” he said. “We need a comprehensive approach to address housing issues – not additional impediments.”

The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

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*The Pending Home Sales Index is a leading indicator for the housing sector, based on pending sales of existing homes. A sale is listed as pending when the contract has been signed but the transaction has not closed, though the sale usually is finalized within one or two months of signing.

The index is based on a large national sample, typically representing about 20 percent of transactions for existing-home sales. In developing the model for the index, it was demonstrated that the level of monthly sales-contract activity parallels the level of closed existing-home sales in the following two months.

An index of 100 is equal to the average level of contract activity during 2001, which was the first year to be examined as well as the first of five consecutive record years for existing-home sales; it coincides with a level that is historically healthy.

8 Alternatives to Pricey Retirement Locales

Even with their retirement nest eggs diminished by the tough economy, some retirees aren’t giving up on their dreams of living in beautiful spots. Instead, they are searching for similar but cheaper alternatives.

SmartMoney calls these locales “doppelgangers” — more affordable twins with similar climate, culture, and amenities than their better-known other half.

Here are their suggested substitutes:

● Prescott, Ariz., as an alternative to Sedona, Ariz.
● St. Augustine, Fla., instead of Sarasota, Fla.
● Chattanooga, Tenn., instead of Ashville, N.C.
● Bloomington, Ind., instead of Madison, Wis
● Caron City, Nev., instead of Boulder, Colo.
● Auburn, Ala., instead of Pinehurst, N.C.
● Bellingham, Wash., instead of Eugene, Ore.
● San Luis Obispo, Calif., instead of Santa Barbara, Calif.

Source: SmartMoney, Catey Hill (10/20/2010)

Price Trends for Single Family Homes in Naples Zip Code 34103

This Week
Monday August 23, 2010

The median list price in NAPLES, FL 34103 this week is $648,950.

Inventory is tightening and days-on-market is falling. But demand
as measured by the Market Action Index is also trending down. The
market is not giving strong up or down signals from these data.

Supply and Demand

The market has been consistently cool for several weeks. Demand
level are low relative to the available inventory. It’s a Buyer’s
market and prices continue to fall. Look for a persistent shift in
Market Action before prices plateau or begin to rise again.

Price

Again this week in this zip code we see a downward notch for
prices. Pricing has been weak in recent weeks and versus their
absolute-high level. At this point, we will be looking for a
persistent upward shift in the Market Action Index as a leading
indicator for a trough in prices.

Is a Naples Lifestyle for you?

Tucked into Florida’s south west corner lies the “The Jewel of the Gulf”
Naples, FL is a tropical paradise rich in economic vitality and luxury living. This coastal community with its almost constant breeze off the Gulf of Mexico is the best place to enjoy an active, healthy outdoor lifestyle year round. The pristine beaches, charming outdoor cafes and local markets are perfect for romantic escapes.
Naples is home to not one, but two Ritz Carlton’s which set the standard for the amenities and services that are found in Naples. From upscale shopping, galleries and performing arts venues to seemingly endless dining choices “The Jewel of the Gulf” provides a standard of living not found anywhere else in Florida. It’s the perfect place to live, work or visit!