Tampa man gets prison term for condo sales scheme that defrauded Wells Fargo, other lenders

A Tampa man who pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud in connection with a Temple Terrace condo sales scheme was sentenced to 18 months in prison. Daniel Cardenas was one of several people involved in the scheme to sell units at The Preserve at Temple Terrace, a 392-unit condominium complex in Tampa, prosecutors said. The scheme took place from October 2007 through May 2008. Two other men — Carlos Escarria and Alejandro Tobon — were sentenced for their part in the scheme in May. All…Original Article

South Tampa real estate agent sells $9.5 million teardown in Boca Grande

A South Tampa real estate agent has closed the third highest sale on the Gulf of Mexico this year — a $9.5 million home in Boca Grande that will be torn down. Stephen Gay of Smith & Associates Real Estate represented the buyer of 4561 Shore Lane, which is 2 acres with 205 feet of beach frontage. The home on the site, built in 1981, is 9,580 square feet. “This may be the third highest sale on the Gulf this year, but it’s the only one that was sold for lot value,” Bob Glaser, president…Original Article

Median home values in the wealthiest Zip Codes

Over the past six years, the median home value remained relatively steady or even increased in the five wealthiest ZIP codes in the Tampa Bay area (see the List on Page 6). This is in contrast to the region as a whole, which saw home values decrease by an amount ranging from around 10 percent in Manatee and Pinellas counties to just under 30 percent in Hernando. However, this is still reflective of the home value lost during the housing collapse that accompanied the recession. Home values increased…Original Article

As Google Maps renames neighborhoods, residents fume

Google cartographers can reshape the identity of a city, town or neighborhood with a name choice. How the company arrives at its names is often mysterious, but it's clear the decisions have far-reaching consequences, including Google Maps driving increased traffic to quiet neighborhoods.Original Article

This is where Tom Cruise is likely moving in Clearwater

Tom Cruise is officially moving to a Clearwater condominium, nearly a year after public records linked him to the property. People magazine reports that Cruise is leaving Los Angeles for Clearwater, moving to a "penthouse apartment in Clearwater, Florida, just a block from the Church of Scientology’s international headquarters." Cruise is a prominent member of the church and a close friend of leader David Miscavige, according to People. His move to Clearwater has been rumored for years. Multiple…Original Article

Tampa ranks as top Florida city and among top 10 in the U.S. for flipping houses

The popularity of flipping houses has grown, thanks in part to TV shows like "Flip or Flop" and "Flip this House," and it turns out Tampa is one of the top cities for house-flippers, according to a recent report from WalletHub. Compared to 169 other cities across the country, Tampa came in as the No. 10 best city to flip a house, largely due to relatively low remodeling and renovation costs. The Big Guava also beat other Florida cities that were ranked, such as Orlando, Cape Coral and Jacksonville.…Original Article

What millennial homes will look like in the future

From New York and London to New Delhi and Shanghai, millennials are increasingly blurring the lines between home, work and play — sharing spaces to save money and time as well as make new friends.Original Article

Overstock returns to the real estate game

Online discounter Overstock.com still wants to sell you home furnishings, but is adding another layer to its services — helping you find a new home to put those furnishings in. Overstock (NASDAQ:OSTK) announced plans to launch O Real Estate in September, an initiative that will use the company’s search technology to help customers buy, sell and manage real estate. “For nearly 20 years, Overstock has connected customers with premium home goods, helping them build their dream homes; now,…Original Article

How homeowners are using equity loans

Home equity lines of credit have hit a nine-year high. Real estate analytics firm Attom Data Solutions found that 347,875 new home equity lines of credit were taken out in the first quarter of 2018. That's an 18 percent increase from the final quarter of 2017, and 14 percent increase from the same time last year, The Chicago Tribune reports. Since the recession, home equity loans have taken on a new purpose. “Putting home equity to work is the name of the game in the 2018 housing market –…Original Article

‘Severe’ housing shortage hits US home sales, lifts prices

Sales of previously owned homes falls for third month while prices hit new peak.Original Article