Say "No!" to Real-Estate Speculators!
Some say they come from Outer Space looking not for a planet to take over but a killing in the interplanetary real-estate market. They gravitate to waterfront property with explosive development. Many can be found camping outside developers' sales offices hoping to score a condo or two on the first day of pre-construction sales where deposits are minimal and the rules lax. But don't expect to see Roswell-style aliens looking back up at you. These fiendish creatures have cloaked themselves to look like you and I. Like locusts descending on a wheat field, their very nature is to take what they can before moving on to the next real-estate hot spot. A quick profit is all that matters. This scorched earth policy leaves behind inflated housing prices and hollow cities of empty apartments no one can afford. The most recent example happened in Miami. 33 of the 102 units set aside as "affordable" (between $99,000 and $216,000) for the Loft 3 development in downtown Miami were resold within a year of closing with at least one fellow, Al Lorenzo, who was the campaign manager for Mayor Manny Diaz, flipping it within a month for a markup of $92,100. Of those 102 "affordable" units, only 6 remained in the same hands for more than a year but none of those six list them as their home address within the city. Since then, the City of Miami has installed safe-guards to protect affordable housing from these predator aliens. Whether or not it works remains to be seen. County and state-wide laws protecting affordable housing from real-estate speculators might be more effective because in the end, if the land has been made uninhabitable because the habitats are unaffordable, it becomes a crisis of biblical proportions, a plague not induced by God's wrath or alien real-estate speculators but by man's greed.
Labels: Affordable Housing