Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Business

Realtor makes a bundle specializing in clothing-optional resorts in Pasco

Last year, a bubbly Realtor named Jackie Youngblood earned one of Keller Williams Tampa Properties' highest grossing commissions: more than $150,000.

She earned the lion's share of those sales from an unorthodox clientele: nudists looking for homes around Pasco County's clothing-optional resorts.

Nudist enclaves and cruises are a $400 million-a-year industry, according to the American Association for Nude Recreation, and Pasco is one of the lifestyle's core communities. Home to sprawling nudist resorts like Caliente, Lake Como and Paradise Lakes, the county even voted in December to spend nearly $4,000 on tourism advertising in international nudist magazines.

Potential buyers often contact one of the half a dozen local real estate agents who specialize in nudist realty.

Resort homes range from $1 million mansions to one-bedroom casitas, Youngblood said, though some nudists, wanting more conventional digs for friends and family to visit, often buy outside the resort gates.

Youngblood, 61, a grandmother of eight who speaks with a Georgia drawl, has a secret weapon in this business: She and her husband, Bill, are nudists too. They live in a 2,300-square-foot villa in Caliente. She talked with the Times last month at her office in a north Tampa office park.

What are nudists looking for in a home?

They want privacy, whether on premise or off premise. Lots of windows and open floor plans because of entertaining — you know, the kitchen with the easy flow into the family room. Most of them want pools because it's for entertaining and because, up North, many people don't have the pools. In the back yards, some of them don't like any curtains and drapes or anything, they just want that nice window look with sliding glass doors everywhere. I was one like that. Even in our home outside, that was one big thing: I wanted it on a conservation area so I didn't have to put window treatments up. We built our own paradise in the back yard with shrubbery.

It seems counterintuitive that these people who are so open with themselves around other people want privacy at home.

On the outside (of the resorts), it's important because of their respect for the neighbors. They want to be able to run around naked, so if the next-door neighbor has children, or even if they don't, they don't want to insult someone. They're in a "regular" community, and they wouldn't want to do that. Even in the resorts, you have people who, they feel okay walking around the resort nude and being at the pool nude or in the clubhouse nude — and they have their towels to sit on, or whatever — but when it comes to being in their home, it's not what you necessarily want everyone to be seeing. Then you have those who couldn't care less. (laughs)

A lot of these deals seem to demand a certain amount of ... discretion.

Confidentiality and respect is of utmost importance to me. Sometimes it can be difficult in the nudist world doing that. Say for instance you're a nudist, you've purchased from me and you sent me a client. And then on Friday afternoon, everybody's up around the piano bar, and you say to me, "Hey, did Joe and Suzy buy that house?" I just say that's something you need to discuss with Joe and Suzy. I make it a habit not to discuss anybody's business with anybody. And that's one reason I get as many referrals as I do. I let people know that up front, too. I say, if you go to the hot tub, I can't keep you from saying anything. However, keep in mind that house that's for sale could have somebody else that's interested. And if you go tell all your business while you're sitting there in the hot tub, you're giving away your advantage to buy that house. That's actually happened before.

How does the nudist lifestyle change the selling process?

If I call my nudist people up and we meet on the premises, they might be nude. I always say, you come how you're comfortable, but I will be wearing clothes, because I never show property nude. When I'm working, I'm professional.

Any hazards of the job?

There have been issues before with mortgage companies and banks not loaning money for the resorts. They say it's a "unique property,'' blah blah blah. I think there should be some sort of discrimination there somewhere. ... At a nudist resort in Hudson, a nudist owned a house outside, a very nice home on about 2 acres of land. When people called me about it, I would say that's a nudist resort across the street. When a guy did buy it, at closing, I had him sign an addendum stating he knew when he bought it that that was a nudist resort, simply because, in two years, if he goes to sell and he can't, he could come back and say, "I wasn't told.'' You just don't take a chance like that. People don't understand it. They think, "Oh, that's just a bunch of weirdos over there having a big party. They all sit around and smoke pot and have a big orgy.''

What do these buyers find so intriguing about nudism?

We live very stressful lives. We're working, we're mothers, we're fathers. There's always something that we're going and going and doing. So when we don't have the kids, it's our time to get away and let our hair down and not worry about being judged on what you're wearing. You go to the club and wear anything you want, or not. It's just relaxing. You know you're going to be accepted no matter what size you are, no matter how you look. People accept you for who you are. A breathing, walking human being. Or not walking. We have some people who are in wheelchairs.

Contact Drew Harwell at (727) 893-8252 or [email protected]

Comments
Hillsborough commissioners ask CareerSource chief to step down or be fired

Hillsborough commissioners ask CareerSource chief to step down or be fired

TAMPA –– Hillsborough County commissioners voted Wednesday to ask embattled jobs center leader Ed Peachey to either resign or face termination over concerns the agency inflated job placement numbers with the state. Chairwoman Sandy Murman said commis...
Updated: 3 hours ago
CareerSource jobs chief Edward Peachey could soon be out of work

CareerSource jobs chief Edward Peachey could soon be out of work

CLEARWATER — The heads of the Pinellas and Hillsborough jobs boards will hold emergency meetings in the coming days to consider firing president and CEO Edward Peachey. Jack Geller, board chairman of CareerSource Pinellas, and Dick Peck, chairman of ...
Updated: 4 hours ago
St. Pete's World Liquors sign will live on at new home

St. Pete's World Liquors sign will live on at new home

A local landmark for a half century isn't coming down for good.
Updated: 7 hours ago
Investor calls for Bloomin’ Brands to let Outback Steakhouse stand alone

Investor calls for Bloomin’ Brands to let Outback Steakhouse stand alone

TAMPA — A second activist investor is calling for a big shake-up at Bloomin’ Brands Inc. In a letter to Bloomin’s CEO, Barington Capital Group, a New York-based investment firm, urged the Tampa-based restaurant conglomerate to let ...
Updated: 7 hours ago

Uber unrolls new pool service that could drastically cut fare

A new way to Uber is coming to Florida, but the "Express Pool" feature is only rolling out in Miami and seven of other cities to start.That means Tampa Bay will have to wait and see if it will get access to Uber’s latest offering, which links riders ...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Clearwater Beach named No. 1 in U.S. by TripAdvisor

Clearwater Beach named No. 1 in U.S. by TripAdvisor

A reigning champion for sand and sunshine, Tampa Bay is once again home to what’s been deemed the best beach in the country. Clearwater Beach was named the best beach in the U.S. for 2018 by the popular travel site TripAdvisor reclaiming the crown tw...
Updated: 10 hours ago
This week food fests celebrate collard greens and Jewish foods

This week food fests celebrate collard greens and Jewish foods

FIELD OF GREEN: COLLARD FESTOn Saturday you can devote your whole day to the beauty of collard greens. Well, that’s the jumping off point. Collards are the "central ingredient" at the Tampa Bay Collard Green Festival at St. Petersburg’s Historic Deuc...
Published: 02/21/18
Tampa Bay homes prices soar by double-digits in January

Tampa Bay homes prices soar by double-digits in January

Home prices soared in Pinellas and Hillsborough counties in January, the highest gains in several months. Prices for single family homes also rose in Hernando and Pasco as the shortage of available homes showed no immediate sign of easing. The bay a...
Published: 02/20/18
Updated: 02/21/18
Career Q&A: Nut allergy is a serious workplace concern

Career Q&A: Nut allergy is a serious workplace concern

Q: My manager has recently started eating nuts at her desk, which is located right next to mine. Unfortunately, I have a serious nut allergy, so any contact with them could produce a life-threatening reaction. Even foods which contain tiny pieces of ...
Published: 02/20/18
Yes, we have some bananas: Port Tampa Bay welcomes first shipment in 21 years

Yes, we have some bananas: Port Tampa Bay welcomes first shipment in 21 years

TAMPA — More than two decades after the last bunch arrived on shore, bananas are back at Tampa’s port. More than 3,900 pallets of Chiquita bananas from Ecuador arrived last week at the new Port Logistics Refrigerated Services warehouse.It was the fir...
Published: 02/20/18