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Jackie Colson-Miller

Jackie Colson-Miller, CIPS
Direct - (813)629-5757
Homeward Real Estate
3401 Henderson Blvd
Tampa, FL 33609
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Archive for September, 2007

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More News About Short Sales…Get Professional Help

Filed under: Real Estate News, Short Sale, Tampa Real Estate Market


I wrote an article about Short Sales vs. Foreclosures earlier this week and I have gotten several calls from readers who had additional questions, or needed some help.

One of the most important issues to understand is that the Lender, who agrees to the short sale, will pay ALL OF THE EXPENSES, including the real estate commission. An agent experienced in the short sale process will handle all of the details of the transaction and all of the negotiations with the lender, AT NO EXPENSE TO THE SELLER. The short sale process is somewhat complicated, so a seller should use an experienced agent to handle all of the details.

I can assist you with a short sale, or refer you to an agent experienced in short sales, anywhere in the U.S. If you have any questions, you may call me at 813.629.5757 or email me [email protected].

If I can help with any other Real Estate questions, or you are interested in buying real estate in Tampa, or anywhere in the world, please contact me.

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Florida Property Tax Issues on The Real Estate Sizzle Get Statewide Attention

Filed under: Property Taxes in Florida, Real Estate News

I have been writing about the issues on Florida Property Taxes for months, and it is one of my most “googled” topics. I get much of my information about taxation and local economics from local officials “in the know”, have gathered information from the Hillsborough County Budget Office and attend conferences around the state. Most recently I attended a conference in Miami, where one of the featured speakers was an economist from the National Association of Realtors. I have researched Florida taxes as compared to other states, so my opinion is based on a combination of many factors. Let’s just say, I am “informed”.
My recent article on the Court decision to remove the proposed Property Tax amendment from the January ballot, and my decision to vote “against” the amendment, has caught the attention of Nancy Riley, President of the Florida Association of Realtors. My response to her is rather lengthy, so I have posted it on a separate page.

Comments are always welcome on The Real Estate Sizzle, but disrespect is not an option.

I believe you should always be an advocate for “doing the right thing” …whether it is property tax reform, or representing a client. If you are buying a home in Tampa, or selling your home in Tampa and want an advocate in YOUR next Real Estate transaction, contact me!

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Florida Judges Tosses the Tax Cut Amendment Off the January Ballot!

Filed under: Real Estate News

The latest news in the Florida Property Tax Cut saga

A Leon County Circuit Court Judge,Charles Francis, has declared the proposed amendment for property tax cuts will be removed from the January 29 ballot because the wording of the amendment is misleading and confusing .

That is the perfect description of the amendmentmisleading and confusing! Florida voters have NO IDEA what the amendment REALLY says, or what the long-term implications are for the vote. The amendment needed 60% of voter approval to pass. For now, without a successful appeal, it looks like it is OFF the ballot.

Once again, the fact that the media doesnt discuss, if the amendment doesnt pass, or remains off the ballot…. the issue goes to the Florida Budget and Taxation Commission for a new plan. NEW PLAN! Not a “quick fix”.
There are many alternatives to high property taxes in the State of Florida. Read some of my other articles on the subject of Tax Reform, including a poll of my readers.

I believe the Property Tax issue will be resolved, but it needs to be done the RIGHT way, not the FASTEST way. With patience and education about all of the possible sources of revenue, there can be a better plan. Should Florida be 45th on the list of cigarette taxes in the U.S.?

Should visitors, part-time residents, renters and others, who use roads, schools, state parks, beaches and other amenities in the State of Florida bear some of the tax burden? Or, should the majority of the tax burden be placed on the property owners in the state? What do you think? Leave me a commentthis the burning issue in Florida right now.

Do you need help buying a house in Tampa? Information about the right neighborhood for you in Tampa?

Overall taxes in the State of Florida are still some of the lowest in the U.S. because we have no income tax. It is a great place to live! If you need information about anything related to your relocation to Tampa, Contact me today!

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Short Sale vs. Foreclosure in Tampa…What Should You Do?

Filed under: Real Estate News, Real Estate Trends, Sellers, Short Sale, Tampa Real Estate Market

Facing Foreclosure in Tampa? A “short sale” might be the answer…
The drop in Real Estate Values this year, along with Adjustable Rate Mortgages, Sub-prime loans and zero down financing have created a situation where homeowners cannot meet their mortgage obligations.

When a homeowner is facing this issue, he should consider a short sale . What exactly IS a short sale ? A property is sold for LESS than what is owed on the loan and the lender accepts that payment in FULL. The Seller escapes foreclosure and the lender does not report a foreclosure to the credit bureaus, which would affect the sellers credit for 7 10 years. A short sale will have a smaller affect on the sellers credit rating and will show late payments on the mortgage, but it is a much better option than foreclosure.

Foreclosure is a very COSTLY process for a lender, so many lenders are willing to accept a short-sale, in order to cut their losses.

What is the first step in the short sale process? Call your lender and contact the loss mitigation department as soon as you have missed a mortgage payment. Explain your financial situation and ask for a short sale package, to see if you are a candidate for a short sale. You will need to provide them with your financial information and also write a “letter of hardship”., explaining the reason you cannot continue to meet your financial obligations. Next, contact your real estate agent and tell her you are facing a short sale . Your agent is a critical part of the short sale process, and will be negotiating with the lender, on your behalf, after you have submitted all of the short sale paperwork required.

If you have any questions about the short sale process, or think you may be a candidate for a short sale and need representation in the sale of your home.please contact me!

All costs involved in the short sale are paid by the lender, so do not attempt to maneuver through this process without professional help.

You can contact me at 813.629.5757, or via email: mailto:[email protected]

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The Latest News on Property Tax Cuts in Florida

Filed under: Property Taxes in Florida, Real Estate News, Tampa Real Estate

The Florida Taxation and Budget Reform Commission held the first of seven public hearings in Jacksonville. Here is the article posted by the Florida Association of Realtors, about that hearing. The issue of Tax Reform in Florida is heating up as the voters prepare for the referendum vote in January.

I have discussed the Property Tax issue on the Real Estate Sizzle for months now, and my feelings havent changed. You can read my previous articles on the tax reform issue and leave a comment!

Why I am Voting No on the Tax Referendum

Floridians Want Other Taxes To Reduce Their Property Taxes in Florida?

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Will the Lowered Prime Rate “Jump Start” the Real Estate Market in Tampa?

Filed under: Real Estate News

The Federal Reserve lowered the prime rate by .5%, which sent the stock market soaring today!
Jump_startConsumers will pay less for credit card debt, which is tied to the prime rate. And, it will affect ARM mortgage rates.

What will it mean if you are buying real estate in Tampa?

The lowered prime rate, along with lower home prices, should, ultimately give buyers the little push they need to buy a home. But will it lower mortgage rates? Only time will tell. Many analysts say “NO”.
Conventional mortgages ARE still available to buyers with good credit and there is plenty of inventory for buyers to choose from and interest rates are still very low. So, regardless of today’s rate cut, it is a GREAT time to buy a home.
You can read the latest from the Florida Association of Realtors website.

If you are ready to buy a house in Tampa, you can search here!

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Davis Islands Restaurant Goes “Provencal” as Caprice Bistro Becomes “Chez Bryce”

Filed under: Davis Islands Real Estate, Real Estate News, Restaurants in Tampa, South Tampa, Tampa Neighborhoods, Things to do in Tampa

South Tampa is known for its unique restaurants and local residents are in for a treat with the new ownership at Caprice Bistro, on Davis Islands. New owner and Tampa Native, Bryce Whittlesey, moved to France in 1995. He worked in Cap_riceseveral restaurants, most notably, LOusteau de Baumaniere, in Les Baux, in the region of Provence. Fortunately for South Tampa, Bryce has returned home to create provencal cuisine in his new venture! The new name? “Chez Bryce”.
I had a sneak preview of the lunch offerings yesterday. I sampled duck confit pizza and a lobster pannini. Ooh la la! Other menu items include fresh salads, all with a French flair ! Dinner offerings will, no doubt, be just as amazing. The menu changes daily, so there will always be something new and interesting.

Open now for patio dining, for lunch and dinner, the dining room is being transformed into a veritable Bistro de Provence , with textured walls in sunny colors. I expect this will be one of the “hot” places to go in South Tampa!
Moi? Its my new favorite place!

Bryce promises a barefoot guitar player ! I cant wait!

Decadent French food and a man strumming sweet melodies in your ear? What could be better than that?

Location and Hours:

Chez Bryce

238 E. Davis Blvd, Davis Islands (813)258 8100 Open Tues Sunday

Lunch, Dinner and Sunday Brunch

Check it out on Urban Spoon
Chez Bryce Island Bistro on Urbanspoon

Good Luck BryceWelcome Home!

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A Few New “things” on The Real Estate Sizzle

Filed under: Real Estate News

I am constantly adding new items to The Real Estate Sizzle to give my readers a wealth of information about everything pertaining to the real estate industry…locally and internationally.

Have a look at some of the new links and information. If you are buying a house in Tampa, this section is a “must read”….

On the Right Sidebar under “Real Estate Resources”

NEW LISTINGS BY E-MAIL …get new listings sent to you daily

HOME PRODUCTS …great ideas to keep your home smelling fresh

TAMPA NEIGHBORHOODS… a description of the most popular neighborhoods

GOLF COURSES …links to all of the area golf courses

TAMPA HOME SEARCH …search any area with your own parameters

WORLD PROPERTIES …I am a member of ICREA, so you can search on my site for a villa in Italy!

On the left sidebar, below the books in my library

“From the Blogosphere” has recent real estate-related articles from other real estate blogs…some great information

I hope you enjoy all of the enhancements to The Real Estate Sizzle….more on the “burning issues” in Real Estate!

Would you like to see a topic coverered here? Moving to Tampa, or Paris? Do you have a question? Ask it here!

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Mortgage Industry Fallout Results in Non-Payment of Property Taxes

Filed under: Real Estate News

The latest trouble in the demise of many lenders in the Mortgage Industry is American Home Funding’s failure to make property tax payments on behalf of it’s borrowers from their escrow accounts!

The Baltimore Sun reports on the troubled situation in a comprehensive look at how it affects property owners.  Anyone with a mortgage should check to insure that taxes and insurance have been paid by your lender, if you have an escrow account.

For a list of lenders who are no longer funding loans, and a list of those on the “troubled” list…those to watch…check out this site.


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Property Searches in Tampa Neighborhoods

Filed under: Buyers, MLS Listings in Tampa, MLS Search, Real Estate News, Relocation, Tampa Neighborhoods, Tampa Real Estate

Bp_islesSearching for the perfect house and neighborhood in Tampa?

Here are the current listings in all of the areas. Just click on the neighborhood.

If you have questions about an area, or need more information, please contact me!

South Tampa

Hyde Park

Palma Ceia


Beach Park/Sunset Park

Other South Tampa

Davis Islands


Harbour Island


Under 250K 250K-500K 500K-750K 750K+

Westchase Cheval Avila

New Tampa

Riverview, Valrico, FishHawk

Apollo Beach/Mirabay

Luxury Properties
1 Million – 2 Million

2 Million – 5 Million

To search for other homes in Tampa, click here!

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