Archive for October, 2011

St. Augustine Lonely Places Part II: The Osceola Capture Site

Monday, October 31st, 2011

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com), Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

Earlier this Halloween week we did a post on St. Augustine’s Lonliest Places.

This next place, the Osceola Capture Site, might be St. Augustine’s loneliest place of all.

Osceola Capture Site near St. Augustine, Florida. Photo by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com)

The obelisk at the Osceola Capture Site, near St. Augustine's Stonegate subdivision.

Osceola, if you recall, was a Seminole chief.  In October of 1837 he met the Army garrison from nearby Fort Peyton* for treaty negotiations under a flag of truce.  Instead of negotiating a treaty the soldiers arrested Osceola and imprisoned him in St. Augustine’s Castillo de San Marcos (called Fort Marion at the time).  He was transfered to Fort Moultrie on Sullivan’s Island in Charleston, South Carolina, where he died of malaria less than three months after his capture.  He is still buried there, just outside the front entry.

Capturing a respected opponent under a flag of truce was a black mark on the Army, but to be fair Osceola was no shrinking violet either.  Osceola was under arrest two years earlier but gained his freedom when he promised to adhere to a treaty and leave Florida.  But instead of leaving he, along with some other Seminoles, killed the local U.S. agent and some others.  Such was frontier war in Florida, circa the 1830s.

These days Osceola is the symbol and mascot of Florida State University.  Before every football game, an actor portraying the Seminole leader rides out on a white charger and fires a  flaming spear into the turf at Doak Campbell Stadium.

That brings us back to the Osceola Capture Site.

It was a hard place to find and not easy to get to back in 1837.  It’s pretty much the same today.

Located “two musket shots” from Fort Peyton, the modern-day site is located in a copse of pines and palmettos hidden behind St. Augustine’s Stonegate subdivision.

If you are brave and follow the sandy path back into the woods you will find a small obelisk.  And that’s it.  Nothing to tell you why this marker is here, or that it marked a pivotal point in Native American – U.S. relations and history, or that a famous Floridian — memorialized and venerated every football Saturday — lost his freedom here.

That is wrong.

The Actual Site

If you look on the plat maps you will discover that back in the day some foreward looking county commission created a right of way from Fort Peyton all the way to the Capture Site.  But sometime in the 1990s another county commission, this one a rubber stamp for development, allowed two lots to be platted in Stonegate that effectively wiped out access to the right of way, blocking the last 1000 feet of access of from the public.

At least until 2005 a continuation of the blocked right of way still existed behind the two houses that were built on the lots.  Then recently, who knows when, that small portion disappeared from the plats.  The county now owns just a small parcel surrounding the capture site.

Strangely, it’s the Stonegate subdivision that has protected the Capture Site from further development.

When a new subdivision was proposed behind Stonegate right around the time of the real estate bust, the homeowner associations in  Stonegate and the surrounding subdivisions along Deer Chase Drive objected strongly.  The reason?  The main access point for these new homes would be Deer Chase Drive.  Deer Chase is a quiet residential road that would have become a freeway for cars heading to the new subdivision.  So it was shot down.

Such are the developer turf wars in Florida post bust.

If you are a brave soul and would like to visit the Osceola Capture Site, here’s how you find it: 

Park in the cul-de-sac where Tahoe Lane and Woodridge Drive meet.  Take the path around the fence and walk about 1000 feet up the sandy road until you get to a taller section of pines.  Take the road-sized path to your right (west).  I believe this road-sized path is the second path on the right that you will pass (the other is a foot path).  Take this road path approximately 500 feet west until you come to a small clearing.  Go to the western side of the clearing and look to your left (south), you will see the obelisk rising a foot or two above the palmettos.  Keep in mind the access is through private property.  Even though it looks like there is plenty of foot traffic and moto use on the sandy road, be a good hiker and mind your manners so folks can continue to access the site.

*You can read about Fort Peyton on our earlier post, St. Augustine’s Loneliest Places.

What do you think about this article?  Share with a comment on Facebook or in the comment box below.

For a group of Realtors that will help you buy or sell a home in one of St. Augustine’s best places (even if it’s lonely and out of the way), contact St. Augustine Team or just call (904) 386-8327!

 

St. Augustine’s Paloma

Monday, October 31st, 2011

by Kate Stevens (Kate@StAugTeam.com), Broker Associate for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

Paloma, St. Augustine, FL 32084

A typical home in St. Augustine's Paloma.
A typical home in St. Augustine’s Paloma.

Paloma, located just east of the I95/SR16 intersection by the outlet malls, is ideally placed
for access to Jacksonville, St Augustine and all of the area’s one of a kind attractions.

Built between 2006 and 2008 by national builders, this well maintained community of around 150 townhomes is already established, with no ongoing construction.  Homes have either 2 or 3 bedrooms and range between approximately 1,100 and 1,500 sq ft.  Many benefit from sitting on a lake or preserve lot in this well thought out subdivision.  Approximately half of the townhomes have an attached 1 car garage and half are ‘terrace-style’ without a garage but with off street parking.

With street lights and sidewalks, it’s not uncommon to see residents out for a stroll and enjoying their surroundings.  There’s a community playground and pool which further enhance the community.

One of the attractions of Paloma is its low Homeowners Association Fee (all external maintenance and yard maintenance is taken care of by the association) and the fact that it does not have an annual CDD Fee.


A Recent Listing of St. Augustine Team’s on Paloma’s Cabernet Place

For a group of Realtors that can find you a great home in Paloma, contact St. Augustine Team or just call (904) 386-8327!

Can You Sell a Haunted House in St. Augustine, Florida?

Friday, October 28th, 2011

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com), Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

Can you sell a haunted house in St. Augustine?  Yes you can.

You can sell haunted houses in St. Augustine

The Castillo may be haunted, just in case you decide to purchase it someday.

There is a ton of misinformation out there on whether or not you have to disclose if a house is haunted, or whether anyone has died there or committed suicide, etc.  In the state of Florida this is called “stigmatized property.”

So to set the record straight, in the state of Florida you are NOT required to disclose if anyone died in the house, or if the house may be haunted, or if anyone in the home had AIDS, and so on.

What the state of Florida requires that you disclose is something called a “latent defect.”  Latent defects are things a normal person wouldn’t know about or can’t readily see that either deal directly with the physical structure of a home, or the land it sits on.

For example, if you know a septic tank is bad, you have to disclose it because it is a latent defect.  Why?  Because a normal person wouldn’t be able to tell if the tank is bad just by walking up to it.

Or, if you had a dock on the river that you knew couldn’t be repaired or lengthened, or it appears it’s on your property but it is not, then that would be a latent defect worth revealing.  Why?  Because the person buying the property will probably want to use or upgrade the dock at some point.  If they can’t and you knew about it, they could sue the pants off you for not telling them.

But if a house has ghosts?  Well, it doesn’t really affect the structure, use, or any easements.  Same if the place was the location of a suicide or murder.

But here’s the deal.  If the neighbors are going to walk up to the new owners after they move in and say, “Gosh, I didn’t think anyone would move in here after the murder!”…you may want to disclose that.

A great story I heard from another Realtor was that the evening after a closing the buyer called her up, frantic.  She said, “What’s wrong?”  The buyer said, “The ghost tour is in front of my house!”

So, you know, use your common sense.

For a group of Realtors that will give you more than a “ghost” of a chance when you buy or sell this Halloween, contact the St. Augustine Team or just call (904) 386-8327!

St. Augustine’s Heritage Landing

Thursday, October 27th, 2011

by Kate Stevens (Kate@StAugTeam.com), Broker Associate for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

Heritage Landing, St. Augustine, FL 32092

A typical home in Heritage Landing.
A typical home in Heritage Landing.

Heritage Landing is located in the north west of St Johns County off of the state-designated scenic road CR 13, close to the St Johns River, with good proximity to I-95.  It is ideally placed for access to Jacksonville, St Augustine and all of the area’s one of a kind attractions.

National builders started the community in 2005 and continue to build.  The final phase was heading towards completion in late 2011 bringing the total number of homes in the community to around 1,400.  Homes sizes vary from approximately 1,200 to over 3,500 sq ft with most of them in the 1,800 to 2,800 sq ft range.  Similarly sized homes tend to be grouped in sections.  Many benefit from sitting on a lake or preserve lot in this well thought out subdivision.  All homes have an attached 2 or 3 cargarage.  There’s a mix of single story and two story homes making it likely that there will be a floorplan to suit just about everyone’s needs.

With some of the best community facilities in the area, Heritage Landing is a popular destination for many people.  A large pool and clubhouse complex (with water slide, lap pool, fun pool and splash areas as well as a fitness center) sit adjacent to a range of sports fields and even an outdoor camp-style movie area. With street lights and sidewalks, it’s not uncommon to see residents out for a stroll and using the amenities. You can see a virtual tour of the Heritage Landing amenity center below.

Clearly these great amenities are not free.  The combined monthly fees for living in Heritage Landing run around $200.  For that residents have access to all the facilities and get to live in an extremely well managed and well maintained environment.


See the Heritage Landing Amenity Center

For a group of Realtors that will help you find your dream home in Heritage Landing, contact the St. Augustine Team or call (904) 386-8327.

Not Haunted, Just St. Augustine’s Lonliest Places this Halloween

Monday, October 24th, 2011

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com), Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

The last few years at Halloween we’ve done posts about St. Augustine’s most terrifiying (the parking lot at my church as the seniors rush headlong out of it to make the early bird at Finnegan’s Wake, for example), and even Florida’s most notoriously haunted building, Tihsllub Hall.

This year we’re going to focus on the not haunted.  These places aren’t terrifying, they’re just lonely.

St. Augustine’s Loneliest Places

St. Augustine National Cemetery

Most residents aren’t aware, or have forgotten, that we have a National Cemetery.  This beautiful and very small cemetery (just under 1.5 acres in size) is nestled between Marine Street and Charlotte Street just south of the National Guard headquarters.

St. Augustine National Cemetery
Lonely Place: St. Augustine National Cemetery

Burials started here in 1828 before there were such things as national cemeteries.  What makes this cemetery especially lonely are the three pyramids along the far wall marking the mass grave of 1468 unknown soldiers who died in battle fighting the Seminoles.

Over 100 of the soldiers died in an ambush on their way from Tampa to present-day Ocala.  Called the “Dade Massacre,” Seminoles under Cheif Micanopy ambushed the soldiers under the command of Major Francis Dade…only three soldiers survived the attack.  This started the Second Seminole War, the war that accounts for the other 1300-plus unknown soldiers buried in the mass grave at St. Augustine.

Next time you’re downtown stroll south of King Street instead of north and explore this wonderful, quiet place.

The Bike Path to Nowhere

Opened with great acclaim a few years back this bike path was highly touted as, well, a bike path.  All the county commissioners and maybe the state rep came out and had their photos taken and then vanished like the wind.

The reason this bike path hasn’t caught on with the local cycling community is well…it’s so darn short.  Basically it starts by the abandoned section of SR 207 east of Elkton and deadends at the railroad track west of I-95.

The plan was that the path go all the way to Putnam County.  The State Department of Transportation recently announced that they’re going to start the extension as far as the fairgrounds this year with an eye for completion in mid-2012.  If it goes as planned it might actually mean serious cyclists will start using it.

In the meantime it’s a great place for recreational cyclists and for kids learning to ride.  Access is best off Vermont Road, just take SR 207 west and follow the signs for the county landfill.  The bike path cuts Vermont Road before the landfill…you can’t miss it.

Pinehurst Cemetery

In the not so distant past, even the cemeteries were segregated.  Pinehurst was one of these.

Pinehurst Cemetery St. Augustine
Lonely Place: Pinehurst Cemetery, St. Augustine

Lonely and forelorn, Pinehurst conjurs up all the images of the spooky old cemetery.  Crooked headstones overgrown with weeds, big old oaks covered with Spanish moss, a place you wouldn’t want to find yourself at night.

Lately the West Augustine Improvement Association has been making an effort to clean up and manicure this cemetery as well as two others, Woodlawn and Sebastian.

Pinehurst sits behind a chain link fence in the 700 block of Pearl Street in St. Augustine, directly adjacent to Evergreen Cemetery but worlds away in care.

Site of the Theatre Troop Massacre

Back in the 1840s much of the goods and people that came through St. Augustine came via boats on the St. Johns River.  The river was easier to navigate than the shoal-ridden coast and transportation was more reliable.  Ever notice how King Street/CR 214 and CR 208 run in nearly a straight line towards the river?  That’s why.

The downside to using the river was that you had to finish the trip up overland.  A troop of actors who were coming into town with some other travelers in May of 1840 were attacked by Seminoles.  Five were killed in the ambush on what is now CR 208 near Whisper Ridge subdivision.  In true showbusiness tradition the “show must go on” and the remaining actors completed a 2-week stint in St. Augustine.

Though the ambush site sits next to a new subdivision, with a sidewalk even, looking down 208 there’s still not much beyond it until you hit the river, and it still has the feel of a lonely place.  Imagine how much more so it was back in the days of early American Florida.

Fort Peyton

During the Second Seminole War several forts were built near St. Augustine for it’s protection.  Fort Peyton was one of these, and a more unlikely place for a fort I can’t imagine: stuck in the woods near but not too near Moultrie Creek.  It’s as if the place was chosen at random.

Fort Peyton did play it’s role in history, however: it was garrisoned by the troops that captured the Seminole leader Osceola under a flag of truce near there.

Today Fort Peyton is accessed down a dirt road sheltered by oak trees that cover the path with their leaves.  It is overgrown in some places: my Jeep received a grape vine laurel heading down to the site.  The site itself has a marker, some benches, and a sign giving a brief history of the fort.

To find this lonely place you need to head west on Winterhawk Drive (not Winterhawk South, mind you): the path is on the right just past the house at the corner of Arrowhead and Winterhawk.  Though this a lonely place the homes on Winterhawk and Arrowhead back to the right of way, so mind your manners while you’re there.

Create your own video slideshow at animoto.com.

If you’re looking for a group of realtors who will put you into a bright, cheery home instead of a lonely one, contact St. Augustine Team or just call us at (904) 386-8327! 

Native Plants and Drought Resistant Plants for St. Augustine’s Valley of Death, Part III

Friday, October 21st, 2011

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com), Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

The future wildflower area tarped over.

The future wildflower area tarped over.

This month we’re preparing the ground in the Valley for some Florida native wildflower plantings.

We did it by spreading out a black tarp (actually black trash bags cut up) over the area where we want the wildflowers to grow.  We did this so the heat from the sun will kill what’s underneath.

What is ironic is that we actually have to kill something in the Valley of Death, where I’ve said nothing will grow anyway.  It’s not neccesarily that things won’t grow, but that they grow oddly, weeds and the occasional sprout of grass together, seperated by sand patches.

So we’re trying to take it down to the sand so we can seed Florida native wildflowers like Blanket Flower and Black Eyed Susan.

We tarped out only half the area designated on our plat for wildflowers.  Like the society garlic and tender fountain grass we’ve already planted, we want to see how it goes in small amounts first.

I should have actually done the tarping in August when the heat is much higher, and seeded this month.  But we hadn’t planted the society garlic yet, which forms the border with the wildflowers.  So here we are and we’ll see how it goes.

I’ll keep you updated as we move along!

For a group of Realtors that will keep you in green grass and wildflowers, contact St. Augustine Team or just give us a call at (904) 386-8327!

Free Halloween Buckets for Kids!

Monday, October 17th, 2011

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com), Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

St. Augustine Team's youngest members test drive the Halloween buckets!

St. Augustine Team's youngest members test drive the Halloween buckets!

For the second straight year the St. Augustine Team wants to make sure kids have a good time this Halloween by offering free pumpkin buckets
pre-loaded with candy.

This was a big success for us last year and if there’s any candy left over we get to eat it.  It’s a win-win for everybody!

The buckets are classic jack-o-lanterns in a variety of colors.

We’re going to have the buckets available at our office starting October 19 so kids can get a head start on the holiday.

Parents just need to give me (Sean) a call at (904) 386-8327 and I’ll have one ready to pick up, or you can stop by anytime the office is open.  As our business and inventory is in the field we may not be there at any given time, so it’s best to call ahead.  Buckets are available while supplies last.

St. Augustine Team Realty is located at 2746 U.S. 1 South in the Southgate Square plaza.

Parents can also e-mail me at Sean@StAugTeam.com.

For a group of Realtors who are all about the Treats with none of the Tricks, contact St. Augustine Team!

Zillow Zestimates Revisited, and How it Relates to the Jacksonville Jaguars

Friday, October 14th, 2011
by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com), Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.
Jack's Jags ain't doing so hot, but he still knows more about football than I do. (ap photo/Sharon Ellman, file)

Jack's Jags ain't doing so hot, but he still knows more about football than I do. (ap photo/Sharon Ellman, file)

Are Zillow estimates accurate?

I tried to answer that question in a post I did about Zillow “zestimates” back in February.  To quote myself:

“I’ll put it this way: somebody once asked a wedding guest if so and so’s coverage of a celebrity wedding was accurate.  The answer?  ‘Well, the dress was white.’

And the Atlantic Ocean is blue (most of the time), and the sky is wide…the point I’m trying to make is that Zillow estimates on home prices are accurate in only the most broad sense.”

Consumers love Zillow because it gives them a sense of empowerment in the often very confusing world of real estate. That’s a good thing.

Zillow also gives the consumer a very broad idea of pricing in a particular neighborhood.  Also a good thing.

When Zillow becomes a bad thing is when the consumer relies on it.  Especially when the Zillow data is being used to make decisions that a true real estate pro knows are bad.

All real estate is local.

In other words, even though though two homes were built in the same neighborhood at the same time by similar companies, they still might price out differently.

A real estate pro who has seen all the homes for sale in a neighborhood over a period of years, who has seen how they show to real people in real time, and knows how that compares what the home is “worth” on paper, is going to know more about pricing than a Zillow zestimate.  Sorry, that’s just the truth.

When a consumer tries to “prove” a point to a Realtor using Zillow data, when the Realtor is using up-to-the-minute accurate local sales data (which could include video, still images and backstory), not to mention actually having seen the home or homes in question…

Some Realtors just walk out.  Thier reputation is too important.  If they put a bad price on a house or put in a bad offer it will hurt their rep with other agents and make doing business harder.

Some Realtors will humor the consumer and write the offer or put the house up for a few weeks.  They will do this in hopes that when the offer is shot down in flames, or when nobody shows the house, that the consumer will “get it” and finally respond to reason.

The point is, if a consumer relies on Zillow data instead of their Realtor, they aren’t going to get the house or they aren’t going to sell the house.

Personally, if a consumer comes in and relies on Zillow more than they rely on me I won’t work with them. 

I’m not all-seeing.  I don’t know everything.  But I have been in this market for over a decade and most of the time I know what I’m talking about.  If a customer won’t at least listen to my advice and consider it, I can’t trust them to do the right things during a transaction, or to take the transaction seriously.  Which will hurt my rep on a transaction that won’t close anyway.

Now the bit about the Jacksonville Jaguars.

You may be aware that in the nearby city of Jacksonville there is a team called the Jaguars and that they play a sport called football.

You may also be aware that the Jaguars aren’t having a great season to date.  A guy named Jack Del Rio is the head coach.

What you may not know is that I have an alter ego as a sportswriter, something I’ve been doing part-time for about 20 years now.  I’ve covered a lot of football games.  And I watch a lot of football on television.

So does that make me an expert on how to fix the woes of the Jacksonville Jaguars?

Not even a little bit.

I could write a book on what I don’t know about running a successful football team.  I don’t know what the money issues are.  I don’t know how to draft and scout.  I don’t know how teach technique.  There’s no way I could orchestrate the constant movement of players from the playing field to the bench and back in the correct over and correctly get the calls out in the 15 seconds or so the team has to do it.

And while Jack Del Rio currently doesn’t seem to be getting it done right now, he’s forgotten more about football than I’ll ever know.  It might even be, ala the movie Major League, that the team has been set up to fail so it can move to L.A., where the franchise will easily double in value.

The point is this.  I may know something about football, but Jack Del Rio (love him or hate him) is a pro, and will be working in football for a long time.

And even though you may know something about real estate from charts and graphs and spreadsheets gleaned from Zillow data, the Realtors of St. Augustine are the real pros in this market, and they will be working in the field for a long time to come.

The pros of today may even be the best in history: they’ve survived the recession and the housing collapse.

Listen to them. 

More Halloween Events for Kids in St. Augustine

Monday, October 10th, 2011

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com), Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

UPDATED: The free Halloween parade is open to kids of all ages this Sunday, October 3o.  Registration starts at 1:30 pm at the Visitor Information Center at 1 Castillo Drive in St. Augustine, across from Ripley’s.  The parade starts at 2 pm and is sponsored by Ancient City Tours.  If you go make sure you have time to park and then get to the Visitor Center.

What a better way to start the Halloween madness than with a trip to the pumpkin patch!

Three area churches have pumpkin patches open this October.  The United Methodist Church on King Street just west of Historic Downtown in St. Augustine is already open from 10-7 daily.

On October 9th, two more pumpkin patches open.  The first is at the United Methodist Church in the Shores (724 Shores Drive, south entrance to the Shores) in St. Augustine, which is open from 2-7 Monday thru Friday and from 11 to 7 on weekends.  The second is at Our Lady of Good Counsel Catholic Church at 5950 SR 16 (west of the outlet malls), which will be open 2-8 Monday thru Friday, and 10 to 8 on weekends.

Carve those Pumpkins!

For $10 you can head up to toney TPC Sawgrass in foo-foo Ponte Vedra Beach and let your kids carve away while drinking fresh apple cider.  The event is from 6:30-7:30 pm on Sunday, October 16.  Contact Jamie Fowler for more info at (904) 543-5105.

If you have a teenager and would like to carve some pumpkins for free head to the St. Augustine Main Library on Monday, October 24 at 4:30, or the Southeast Branch Library on Tuesday, October 25, at 6 pm.  Teens 12-18 are invited.  Registration is not required for the Main Library event , but you will need to register for the Southeast Branch Library event (call 904-827-6900 to register).  Find out more on the Library’s Teen Event Page.

Trick or Treat with Real Alligators!

St. Augustine’s Alligator Farm will be hosting “Creatures of the Night” from 5:30 to 7 pm on October 28, 29 and 30th (a Friday, Saturday, and Sunday).  Kids will get to trick or treat and play games while the park is open after hours.  Cost is $7 for adults and $5 for kids (members), or $8 and $6 for non-members.

Tour the St. Augustine Lighthaunt, er, Lighthouse at Night!

The St. Augustine Lighthouse offers nighttime “Dark of the Moon” tours of the reputably haunted tower!  Tours start every Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 7:30 pm,  and kids have to be at least 7-years old to participate.  Reservations are strongly recommended, and as of this writing I am not sure if they’re doing an actual Halloween tour as the holiday falls on a Monday this year.  Cost is $25 for adults, $20 for kids…a bit pricey but a once in a lifetime kind of thing.  Find out more on the Lighthouse’s Dark of the Moon page.

Get Lost in a Corn Maze!

Ten short miles west of town on SR 207 you can take the kids, teens and yourself to the Sykes and Cooper Farms and get lost in a corn maze.  The farm also has a pumpkin patch and hayrides.  The cost is $8 per person for ages 3 and up (ages 2 and under are free).

For a group of Realtors that’s all about the Treats with none of the Tricks contact St. Augustine Team or call us at (904) 386-8327!

 

How Long Does a Listing Stay on the MLS Once It’s Sold?

Thursday, October 6th, 2011

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com), Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

Like the Acropolis, an MLS listing might be around for awhile. Photo by Titanas via Flickr (Creative Commons)

Like the Acropolis, an MLS listing might be around for awhile. Photo by Titanas via Flickr (Creative Commons)

How long does a listing stay on the MLS once it’s sold?

I saw this question posted on an online forum a few days back and here’s how I answered it:

A home will stay on the MLS theoretically forever. 

As a Realtor and broker I need it to be there so I can see how price changes in a neighborhood, and for a certain type of home, over time.  It also allows us to see what condition a home was in when it sold in a different year as opposed to now.  This information is accessible by members of the MLS only.

As for public real estate sites not controlled by us, where a real estate listing was syndicated out from an MLS feed or other feed, it could also be out there and viewable by the public…forever.

A lot of time our listings get “scraped” off legitimate sites and re-posted by someone trying to steal leads and then sell them back to Realtors.  Or, feeds we syndicate to don’t do a good job keeping things current.  Unfortunately, there’s nothing we can do about those.

If you’re worried about putting your home on the market at today’s prices, and are worried about old listings in your neighborhood popping up with bad data showing a lower or non-current price, here’s what you need to do:

Take a deep breath.

Because there is nothing you can do about it.

Like luggage, it’s going to follow you around forever.

And it doesn’t matter anyway. 

People that are looking at a home like yours are going to be looking at other homes like yours.  The prices are going to be similar.

If they are somewhat confused at first because the wildly outdated HomeShoppingSource4U! db says homes in your neighborhood are selling for pennies on the dollar, the Realtor is going to set them straight right away or not take them out looking.

Trust me, we’ve had a few of these looky loos come through our office toting charts and graphs from places like Zillow and others explaining to us why the homes in X neighborhood are all overpriced and they’d be willing to offer a (much lower) price of $Y and so on and so on…

And we say, pulling out listings from the local MLS that are up-to-the-minute accurate, “This is the way the market is today, this is the reality.”

They either get it, or they go home.

The ones that don’t get it don’t end up buying anyway.

For a team of Realtors that will sort out the Solid Gold Buyer from Looky Lou before they show your home, contact the St. Augustine Team or call (904) 386-8327!