January 28, 2020
How Scientology doubled its downtown Clearwater footprint in 3 years


Florida Trend Real Estate

How Scientology doubled its downtown Clearwater footprint in 3 years

| 10/21/2019

How Scientology doubled its downtown Clearwater footprint in 3 years

The Church of Scientology and companies run by its members spent $103 million over the past three years buying up vast sections of downtown Clearwater. They now own most commercial property on every block within walking distance of the waterfront, putting the secretive church firmly in control of the area’s future. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]

See also:
» See every building owned by the Church of Scientology

Where do millennial millionaires want to buy? In Florida, of course

Miami’s urban cores will keep growing thanks to millennial millionaires. Florida ranks among the top seven states where millennial millionaires are buying property, according to the most recent “A Look at Wealth” study by Coldwell Banker Global Luxury and data surveyor WealthEngine. [Source: Miami Herald]

Could rent control come to Florida?

Last week, Florida state Rep. Anna Eskamani filed a bill that could lift the state’s law against rent control — albeit only in housing emergencies “so grave as to constitute a serious menace to the general public.” While mild, her proposal was small step in a worldwide trend toward rent reform. In the past six months, New York, London, Berlin and Barcelona have all passed rent control measures. [Source: Bisnow]

Minority real estate professionals still fight racial and gender barriers

Minorities and women only represent 1.3 percent of the $69 trillion in global financial assets under management across mutual funds, hedge funds, real estate, and private equity, developer Don Peebles said at The Real Deal’s Miami Real Estate Showcase & Forum. [Source: The Real Deal]

Opportunities ahead: Three developers pick the hot spots

Despite years of continuous activity, Florida’s industrial and multifamily sectors still have room for growth, said Crocker Partners Managing Partner Angelo Bianco, Mitchell Property Realty President Ed Mitchell and Merrimac Ventures President and CEO Dev Motwani. The panelists spoke last week at RealInsight’s Florida Commercial Real Estate Summit at the Hyatt Regency Miami, highlighting potential for distribution centers, hotels, shopping malls, technology hub and sports stadiums in Florida’s major cities. [Source: Miami Herald]

Andrew Levy, a West Palm Beach resident and real estate agent with Echo Fine Properties, paid off nearly $950 in student lunch debt across nine Florida schools in Jupiter last week. [Source: Daily Commercial]


› Once ‘unfit for human habitation,’ Orlando condo complex finishes repairing building defects
Seven years since repairs began, Orlando’s largest condominium complex appears to have righted the shoddy workmanship that for years plagued the condos, racking up millions of dollars in damage, hundreds of code violations and millions of dollars in fines from the city.

› Retail, condos, apartments advance at Miami Worldcenter
Miami Worldcenter, the mega-project in the Park West area, is shaping up nicely, said Nitin Motwani, one of the principals. There have been 250 closings at Paramount, Miami Worldcenter’s landmark 60-story glass-fronted condominium. “It’s going great,” with 90% of the building’s 569 units sold, Mr. Motwani said.

› Florida Army veteran receives mortgage-free home after struggling with homelessness
It was all tears and cheers as Nikita Wilson, 33, was handed the keys to her brand new, fully-furnished home in the small neighborhood of Pine Hills in Orlando. On Tuesday, the staff sergeant became the latest beneficiary of a housing partnership between Bank of America and the Central Florida chapter of the Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals.

› TradeWinds resort purchased by South Florida investment firm
A South Florida real estate firm has purchased the TradeWinds Island Resorts for an undisclosed price. Joseph Smith, CEO of investment firm 1754 Properties, said the sale closed Thursday. He declined to give further details but said his firm would release more information on Monday.

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Real Estate Video Pick

New FHA mortgage policy benefits first-time home buyers — and developers
New FHA mortgage policy benefits first-time home buyers — and developers

New Federal Housing Administration rules make it easier for first-time home buyers to purchase condos — and for developers to sell them. Since 2010, the FHA has limited condo mortgages to approved developments, with re-certification required every two years. Beginning Oct. 15, certification will be extended to three years.

Watch the video and read more at the Miami Herald.

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