Home Sales Decline in Lee

Fort Myers News-Press.
Prices and sales of homes in Lee County fell in February even while the national housing market showed a sharp increase in sales.
February's median price for single-family homes in the county was $256,100 down 4 percent from January's $266,900 with sales down 14 percent to 423 from Januarys 492.
For Condominiums the median price was down 13.1 percent to $247,600 from January's $285,000. The number of sales was up 8% from January.

KB Home earnings better than expected

For the quarter ended Feb 28 the company reported net income of $27.5 million or 34 cents a share. The results topped Wall Street's expectations. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial were looking for profit of 25 cents a share.

Results were significantly lower than year ago results. The company attributes these results to intense price competion that could last throughout 2007.

Lee County Fastest Growing County

Lee County added more people to its population than any other Florida county in the year 2005-2006.
According to figures released by the U.S. Census Bureau today, the county grew by 27,148 or 5 percent.
Miami-Dade, the most populous Florida county with 2.4 million people, grew by about 24,000.
Since the 2000 census, Lee County has grown by 30 percent - more than 130,000 people.
It appears the secret is out. We look at every day as just "Another Day in Paradise"

Allstate to cut Insurance Rates

14 percent reduction will impact 23,433 SW Florida Policyholders.
Allstate plans to drop hurricane insurance rates by an average of more than 14 percent accross Florida later this summer if state regulators approve, officials said Monday.

Rates on 30-Year mortages fall to lowest level of the year

Rates on 30-year mortgages fell to the lowest level since mid-December as investors scrambled to the safety of bonds following last week's stock market turmoil.
Mortgage giant Freddie Mac reported Thursday that 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages averaged 6.14 percent this week down from 6.18 percent last week.

House Hunting

There is a great selection of resale housing, down from their irrational peaks and prices apparently bottoming out.
The Greater Fort Myers Board Multiple Listing Service shows 13,838 houses and 9,246 Condominiums were available in Lee County.

Lehigh Acres Leads in New Home Permits

Lehigh Acres ( Suburban Fort Myers) accounted for the most new home permited in Lee County in February according to a report issued Monday.
Historically, Lehigh Acres has averaged 60 percent to 70 percent of permits issued but in recent months the percentage has crept up as the new home industry has sagged.
About 81 percent of the single family home permits were for construction in Lehigh Acres, valued at about $50.7 million.
Michael Reitmann, executve vice president of the Lee Building Industry Association, said that although permits are down there's some indication that buyers are returning.
More than 2,000 people paid $5 a piece to tour the Paseo community in the past nine days as part of the associations annual Parade of Homes, he said, and "there was a significant number of sales."

Insurance Rates to Drop

Starting in June, insurance rates in Florida could drop from 10 to even 50 percent.

The reductions come from calculations released Thursday by Florida regulators. Gov. Charlie Crist called them very encouraging.

Example savings calculated by regulators range from 27-39 percent in Lee and Collier counties.
Mobile home residents will see slightly higher reductions and condominium residents slightly less.

The final inpact to individual home bills will vary widely from area to area and from company to company.