Fort Myers - You're not going to believe what some brand new townhomes went for on the auction block Thursday night in Fort Myers, considering where prices have been. A three bedroom townhome previously priced at $310,000 sold for about $180,000! First time home buyer Brandon Quarterman, a student at Florida Gulf Coast University, was the lucky bidder. He said, 'I'm feeling great. more money in my pocket!"
The two and three bedroom townhouses in the San Simeon development, which is off of Winkler Avenue, were selling for prices we haven't seen in Southwest Florida in quite some time. And that was the whole point. Marketing reps with the developer, Levitt and Sons, say they're trying to quickly unload the fifty homes. Most of them were left over after people and investors backed out of deals when the housing market changed. Levitt and Son's Jama Shaw said, "This is our aggressive approach in moving onto our next phases and new floor plans."
Greg Toher was outraged when he heard the prices some of the homes were going for. Walking out of the auction room, he told us, "$145,000! Unbelievable! We paid $300,000! They just got rid of at least four for $145,000!" He says he closed on his three bedroom San Simeon townhome in December, "You've got to be kidding me, that's not fair."
New buyers may be getting a steal, but current San Simeon homeowners, like Greg, tell WINK News they feel like they've been ripped off. Tara Gionpalo said, "I feel really mad, really sad, hurt."
Victoria Toher said the developer went back on their word, "They promised us they were not going to go below market value." A Levitt and Sons representative told WINK News on Thursday night that the homes did go for fair market value...as determined by the hundreds of bidders at the auction. He went on to say they feel terrible for the homeowners, but the prices were reflective of a challenging real estate market and they're confident it will once again shift in the homeowner's favor.
Bruce Sexton, another San Simeon homeowner who closed on his house in October is not convinced, "I don't think they have loyalty to the people who purchased early. They're just trying to dump the houses and get what they can."
"They promised us they were not going to go below market value." Uhhhh...everything sells at market value by definition.