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December 21, 2014 – The conflict over whether or not Salamander should be allowed to build a 198 room lodge-hotel on the same spot occupied by the existing lodge is heating up. The stakes are high, with $72 million in capital investment , plenty of local economic impact and several jobs on the line.
December 19, 2014 – A quarterly report released by the University of Central Florida (UCF) suggests that the recession was far worse on Florida than it realizes, but the rebound in 2015 will "surely put a twinkle in Kris Kringle's eye."
December 19, 2014 – GoToby.com’s Property of the Week is a three bedroom, two bath second floor condominium in Tidelands. Tidelands is a private gated community featuring a blend of single-family estate homes and condominiums located along nearly one mile of the Intracoastal Waterway, less than one mile north of the Hammock Dunes bridge.
December 18, 2014 – “The package of tax extensions approved by the U.S. House and Senate, and headed to the President’s desk for signature, includes important provisions that will help distressed homeowners and commercial property investors with transactions made during 2014,” says National Association of Realtors® President, Chris Polychron.
December 17, 2014 – At Monday’s regular BOCC meeting, Flagler County Commissioners unanimously approved the proposed airport lease with Delta-Engineering. “This is another wonderful opportunity for our residents and an indicator that the investment in the airport is generating a return,” said Commissioner Revels.

December 17, 2014 – Following an upwardly revised rate last month, housing starts in November slipped 1.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.028 million units, according to newly released figures from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Census Bureau. Three-month moving averages for total and single-family production were at their highest levels since the Great Recession.
December 15, 2014 – For the first time since 2007, the percentage of Flagler County home sales comprised of distressed properties (lender-owned via foreclosure or short sale) dropped below 25%. During the depth of the Great Recession (2009 to 202), distressed properties contributed more than half of all home sales. 2007 was the first year that the Flagler MLS began to report short sales and REOs separately.
December 15, 2014 – According to the 2013 American Housing Survey (AHS), one out of three households who moved and bought a home in the previous two years were millennials. Being the youngest home buyers with little or no accumulated wealth affects how millennials shop and buy their homes, often for the first time. This article examines the 2013 AHS data and looks at what homes millennials bought over the previous two years, how they financed their purchases, what motivated them to move and how they chose homes and neighborhoods.
December 12, 2014 – This week’s GoToby.com House of the Week is an ICI model home on an estate-sized lot in the Wild Oaks section of Grand Haven. Built in 2014, it has four bedrooms, three baths, a private study, pool and 2,969 square feet of living area.
December 10, 2014 – The Flagler County Planning & Development Board last night, ignoring county staff’s strong support of the project, voted 3 to 2 against recommending approval of Salamander’s plan to replace the ageing Hammock Beach Resort lodge with a198-room lodge/hotel. The vote is a setback for the project, but the P&D board’s decision is not final. The issue will go before the Board of County Commissioners on January 12, 2015 for a final decision.
December 10, 2014 – The president of the Cinnamon Beach Condominium Association yesterday released details of the Association’s settlement of a $14M construction defects lawsuit against the condominium developer, Centex/Pulte. The lawsuit has cast a shadow over the resale market for the 275 unit condominium complex, built by Centex in 2003 through 2005.
December 9, 2014 – Mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced Monday that first-time home buyers can now qualify for loans with down payments as low as 3 percent. That will expand credit for qualified home shoppers who may have been sidelined the last few years because of higher down-payment requirements, housing analysts say.
December 8, 2014 – The Cinnamon Beach Condominium Association today notified its members that the Association has reached an agreement with Centex/Pulte in their construction defect lawsuit. The Board reports that it is pleased with the settlement and there is no longer a need to proceed to the scheduled May 2015 trial. Details of the settlement remain confidential.
December 8, 2014 – At 6:00 P.M. Tuesday, the Flagler County Planning and Development Board will have a second chance to make the right decision. They will decide whether or not to recommend approval by the Board of County Commissioners of Salamander’s $72 million proposal to expansion and upgrade the Hammock Beach Resort. At the heart of the debate is a 198 room lodge designed to fit on the footprint of the ageing 20-room beachfront lodge.
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Don "Toby" Tobin is a licensed real estate professional affiliated with Watson Realty Corp. Toby is a member of the Flagler County Association of Realtors®, the Florida Association of Realtors, Enterprise Flagler, Flagler Home Builders Association, and the National Association of Realtors.

GoToby.com proivdes real estate news, commentary, and analysis for Palm Coast and Flagler Country Florida, as well as Realtor® referrals and consultation to buyers, sellers, and developers.