Monthly Archives: March 2013

The upper 9th ward Florida public housing development has just been reopened, following a hard-working campaign by Diane Conerly to the Housing Authority of New Orleans (HANO). HANO administrative receiver David Gilmore found that Florida was being ignored, with some of the worst buildings ever, but thanks to Conerly, it is being saved.  Being the resident leader for the Florida housing development, she pushed Gilmore into never forgetting the people who had been waiting seven years to come home following Hurricane Katrina.

Gilmore was torn since there are such budget restrictions on all departments, but through Conerly’s sheer determination, he relented and thus happily announced at HANO’s February 19th board meeting that Parkcrest Builders had been awarded authority for 51 new units where Florida once stood.

The reason it was so important to Conerly was because she would regularly be inundated with calls from residents desperate to come home and leave their Section 8 housing.  At times some of them would tell her “it’s never going to happen.”  She felt so bad for them, she too “shed a lot of tears.”

Now, there are plans from HANO to erect the public housing units as well as a management office on a tract of land linked by North Dorgenois, Congress, Law and Alvar streets.  This will include: six one- 25 two- and 20 three-bedroom units.  Of the $1.3m needed to complete the project, $8.3m is coming from FEMA and $4.8m from capital funding.  The plan is that infrastructure work will begin early this summer.


When one is involved in home purchases in more than one state, it is crucial that they are given the correct tax knowledge.  Contacting an accounting firm that specializes in this area, is one way to get this done.  Since tax laws are quite varied depending on what state one lives in, it is often the case that where one buys a second home will not have the same laws as where their primary home is.

The question one has to ask, as noted by accounting firm Anchin, Block & Anchin – the firm based in New York which, according to ‘Inside Public Accounting’ has been named one of the "Best of the Best" Top 25 Firms in the United States – is whether or not one is a real bona fide resident of the state where they are purchasing their second home.

When it comes to tax law, if one is a state resident of where their new home purchase is, as Anchin notes, they will be expected to pay income tax there rather than from their prior home state.  Indeed, as executive partner of Anchin, Block & Anchin, Clarence Kehoe points out, really, one needs “to seek professional advice when figuring this out because each state varies and it’s really complicated.”

Basically it is important to get a grasp of two main tenets: how to enact residency in the new state and thereafter what is needed to annul residency in the prior home state?  Enacting new residency requires one live in that place for more than six months of the year, although as Kehoe notes, this rule is not so straightforward.  As he notes, “breaking residency in your home state can be much more complicated.” Taking the example of New York he explains, “first they look at your days spent in New York and whether you maintain a permanent place of abode there; then they will also look at what your ‘intent’ is—is your new home really your permanent residence?” For this to be figured out, the executive from Anchin Block says that other details will be investigated like where most of one’s family business and social connections are; where one visits doctors; etc.  He adds, “New York has recognized that people who say they move to Florida really are still New Yorkers. They raise tens of millions of dollars auditing people on this.” Given that New York is not alone in this, it is important to seek advice from professionals.

At the end of March the Palm Beach International Real Estate Expo will take place at the Palm Beach County Convention Center, West Palm Beach.  To date, close to two hundred exhibitors (architects, brokers, lenders, developers, etc.) have signed up to participate.  Sponsored by 2030 World LLC, this is a good time for the event given the booming condominium market and the increase in single-family homes in the southern parts of the State.

Many of the excess condominium units that were erected during the 2000 to 2005 housing boom have since been sold to foreign investors.  Now, there is such an increasing demand, that housing developers are planning on building close to 15,000 new units.  Around 3,000 of these will be in the Broward and Palm Beach counties.

Clearly the Florida real estate market is on the up.  Indeed, so much so that the Boca Real Estate Investment Club is booming with increasingly more people feeling that getting into this career is more stable than others right now.  Founded by David Dweck, the group of young twenty- and thirty-something professionals are seeking to make real estate flipping in Florida, a full-time job.  And it seems that they are succeeding!  One guy purchased a bank-owned home in Boynton Beach for $68,000, renovated it at a cost of $30,000 and then six months later sold it for $135,000.  And they enjoy the actual job – finding something that is very unlivable and turning it into a beautiful home.  

The club is working for a few reasons.  First, it is because of the boom in Florida real estate and second, because as Dweck argues, the age-old staying in the same job for tens of years working 40 hours a week just isn’t the American way anymore.  “People are starting to realize that real estate investment is viable,” he added.

So if the Florida housing market continues on its upward spiral, this really could be a potential new job possibility for many young, up-start professionals looking to get their foot on the career ladder.