Realtor stretches for variety in career

Lori Walden’s new DVD, Yoga in Paradise, is just the thing if you want to learn more about attaining spiritual insight and tranquility or you just want to see some beautiful island scenery. 

"I have had a regular home based yoga practice for many years and came to it while I was pregnant with my son," Walden said. "The breathing and meditation aspects of the practice have always been very helpful while dealing with a stressful job and living on a sometimes stressful little island."   

Walden, a Realtor, videotaped the project on a Sunday morning in October at Little Cinnamon Bay.  Jeff Clabaugh and Russ Rader of Blue Tang Productions handled the shoot, packaging, and marketing of the $24.99 DVDs.

Tax reassessment Q and A

While the island’s real estate values are reassessed by a group of stateside appraisers, the Office of the Tax Assessor is offering land owners a question-and-answer-formatted Web site for information about the process. 

An apparent example of the sort of expertise these consultants from Bearing Point Inc. bring to a party is:

Question, "Will my property taxes go up?" 
Answer:   "There will be three groups of taxpayers: those whose tax bills will increase, those whose tax bills will remain more or less the same, and those whose tax bills will decrease."

Thanks, we needed that. 

The Web site is http://www.vipropertyrevaluation.com/overview.htm

Child killed in traffic accident

Authorities said there was no indication that the driver of a Bellows International delivery truck was  under the influence of alcohol when his six-wheeled vehicle ran over and killed a 7-year-old boy Wednesday afternoon.  Javon Alfred was on his way home after a Christmas party at the Julius Sprauve School.  He was in the second grade

The food and drink distribution company based on St. Thomas issued a statement of condolence to the boy’s family, according to a report by the Virgin Islands Daily News. 

The newspaper report said the truck was turning into the right hand lane of Pond Bay road when the accident happened.  "The businesses on St. John are growing but the infrastructure for the roads is not growing," Angelo Hill, the deputy police chief, said.  "We would like distributors to realize that our roads are more narrow, so they need to slow down."

Annual bird count

Logoaudubon_1The annual Christmas Bird Count was scheduled for Sunday.  Sponsored by the Audubon Society of St. John, part of the Society’s nationwide annual survey of birds which includes 55,000 volunteers.  The purpose of the count is to monitor the number and population of bird species.  "It helps to see what birds are doing well, and which ones are in decline," Laurel Brannick-Trager, president of the V.I. Audubon Society told the Virgin Islands Daily News.  Results will be included in a "State of the Birds Report" to be issued next year.  The VI Audubon Society’s Web site has some tips on the best places for island bird watching.

Merry Christmas!

Ornament_1This is an ornament that adorns the Virgin Islands’ Christmas Tree on the ellipse between the White House and the Washington Monument.  The island’s tree, like those of the 50 states, DC and four other territories are each about four-feet high.  It is sponsored by the St. Thomas-St. John Chamber of Commerce.

The exhibit is called the Pageant of Peace.

A real estate glut?

Forsale The number of houses listed for sale on the islands’ Multiple Listing Service increased at a pace of more than one a day in the last week.  As of Wednesday evening, it stood at 61.  Real estate sales people concede that while inventory is now 70 percent greater than it was a year ago, this is not a sign of impending weakness in the market.

"Our customers come from markets where they looked at dozens of choices before deciding on their last house purchase," said Mike McLaughlin, broker associate at Town and Country Real Estate. "The math is simple; more inventory = confident buyers = happy sellers."

The market is certainly still active.  I’m aware of a $1 million-plus, frame property, which has just been sold, after less than three weeks on the market.