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Lots of houses for sale, still

CliffhouseThe number of residences offered through the Multiple Listing Service now stands at 66, at least 20-25 percent more than a year ago.  And while the MLS listings did get as high as 69 a few weeks ago, there has been movement of properties on and off the list, and agents say pricing is holding steady.  Of the houses listed currently, 14 are priced at $1 million or less, and about 90 percent of them are on the Coral Bay end of the island.  The $1-$2 million range is where the action is, 26 properties are offered, again most Coral Bay-ish until you get to $1.5 million when Fish Bay and Chocolate Hole residences appear.  The least expensive listed property is a 1-bedroom, 1-bath Carolina house priced at $500,000.  The other end is Cliffhouse (pictured), a 4-bedroom, 4.5-bath Peter Bay property, with hot tub and pool, priced at $13.9 million.

Cocolaba business for sale

Cocoloba_1

Already?  Islandia Real Estate is offering a gift shop located in the three-month-old Cocolaba Shopping Center in Coral Bay.  Big Fish, owned by Genoveva Rodriquez, is a gift shop featuring t-shirts, handmade bracelets and jewelry, coffee beans, spices and informal island apparel.  There’s also a selection of "Jimmy Buffet items," according to the St. John Source. Rodriquez is the wife of Jim Phillips, the developer of the shopping center.Asking price for Big Fish is $55,000. 

Marina Market building for sale

Marinawinesandspirits American Paradise Real Estate is offering the Marina Market commercial space with an asking price of $1.45 million. The listing includes the 5,000 square foot building whose tenants are the newly-opened Marina Wines and Spirits and a gift shop. The liquor business is to be sold separately.

Marina Market was an island landmark, with competitive prices on grocery items and often the island’s lowest prices for wine.  After health code issues prompted the owner to close, the liquor store was opened in the spring.  It is located on the south shore road about half a mile from Cruz Bay, halfway between the Marketplace and O’Connor’s Texaco.

Real estate offerings keep growing

RealestateTwo properties located in Chocolate Hole, one of the island’s most expensive and stable residential areas, were added to the Multiple Listing Service in the last week.  They include a 2-bedroom/no pool house priced at $1.495 million and a 3-bedroom/no pool listed at $1.95 million.  As the last week of the year began, total residential inventory stood at 65 properties, two more than last week.

Giving some credence to expectations that the unusually high number of properties for sale could lead to some price erosion was a reduction in the asking price of a 4-bedroom/pool residence at Peter Bay.  Originally offered at $5.5 million, the price has now been cut by $750,000, to $4.75 million.

Even so, four weeks ago, the median asking price for a listed home was $1.399 million.  It is now $1.5 million, a gain of 7 percent.  In a month.

Properties are apparently selling, or at least coming off the MLS.  A 3-bedroom/pool/waterfront property in Fish Bay listed at $1.2 million has gone under contract, and a 3-bedroom/pool at Sans Soucci & Guinea Gut has also come off the list.

The listing of commercial properties also has welcomed back a familiar offering:  Morgan’s Mango.  Offered at $1.2 million for more than a year, and then taken off the MLS, it’s back now at $1.4 million.  There are 9 businesses for sale on the island.

Inventory continues to rise in the land listings, too, up 8 this week to 154. Condos, up 2 to 8.

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

Read moreTax reassessment Q and A

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.

Real Estate update, 12/13/04

The inventory of homes for sale on the island’s Multiple Listing Service increased six percent in the past week, ending with 54 available properties. Three homes were added.  The new residences include a $999,000 3-bedroom/2-bath at St. Quaco & Zimmerman, a 5-bedroom/4-bath with pool house overlooking Contant was re-priced lower by $200,000 at $1.199 million, a Concordia home featuring 3-bedrooms/2-baths and a pool and a $4.2 million 5-bedroom/5.5 bath property with pool at Sans Souci
In the other market segments land offerings decreased by 1 to 147, one condo came off the list bringing the number available now to 6, one timeshare was added to make the total available 94, and there was no change in the number of commercial or business listings.

Real estate update: 12/7/04

A $4.2 million, 5-bedroom/5.5 bath with pool and hot tub at San Souci moved off the Multiple Listing Service this week, but has not been sold.  The property was listed, didn’t move, and so it’s been taken off the market, according to Diana Beam at RE/MAX Island Paradise Realty. "They usually get renewed and placed back on the market," she said in a comment to NewsofStJohn.com.

On another side of the properties balance sheet, two came onto the market, boosting the public listings to 51, up two since last week. This is another high water mark for inventory. Newly-offered are a 3-bedroom/2-bath with pool property at Fish Bay for $1.2 million, and .6 of an acre at Chocolate Hole, offered for $1.75 million – the MLS had no details on the building.

Otherwise, as the inventory of homes swells in advance of the winter season,  land listings dropped by one to 148, while all was unchanged among condominiums (7), timeshares (93) and businesses (9).

Real estate update: 11/29/04

Stuffed fuller than a Thanksgiving turkey is one way to describe the inventory of residential properties on St. John right now.  There are more listings on the Multiple Listing Service than I’ve seen in a year.  An economist could be expected to say the result could be some softening in pricing, especially in the $1 to $2 million range.  But that’s between you and your real estate sales person.  (The island’s full of good ones.)

In the past 10 days, two properties came off the MLS and four were added, leaving a total of 50 homes.  Both houses removed were below the island’s median home asking price of $1.399 million.  They included a 3-bedroom/2-bath residence in Mandahl and an unfinished $895,000 Chocolate Hole, 3-bedroom/3-bath house.  Added to listings were an $829,000 Carolina 4-bedroom/4-bath, a 2-bedroom/2-bath with no pool at Enighed for $1.2 million, a 4-bedroom/4-bath Fish Bay property with no pool, at $1.85 million, and a 4-bedroom/3.5 bath with heated pool in Carolina, listed at $3.15 million.

The MLS inventory of land offerings increased by three, for the second week in a row, to 149.  Condo listings were steady at 7, timeshares also even at 93, and business/commercial properties unchanged at 9.

Real estate update

MlsLots of listing, not much selling.  In the past week, five properties have been added to the Multiple Listing Service.  Three are in Coral Bay, one’s mid-island at Annaberg, and the most expensive is out near Maho Bay – a  4 bedroom/4-bath with pool property on 9 acres, priced at $11.5 million.  That’s the second offering above $10 million.  The other is the $13.9 million 4-bedroom/4-bath Peter Bay Cliffhouse.  Nothing’s come off the MLS, so as of Monday morning, there were 48 residences available, 14 of which are priced under $1 million, and 16 between $1 and $2 million.

Listings are also up for land parcels, a gain of three to 146.  There was one less condominium offering as the list now shows 7 properties.  There was no change for timeshares, 93, or business/commercial properties, 9.

By the way, note that we’ve added real estate ads in the right column.  It’s a natural to be advertised on the News of St. John, as are villa rentals and island services.  If you’d like information about how to market your business here, e-mail [email protected].