Susan Taylor Martin, Real Estate Reporter

Susan Taylor Martin

Real Estate Reporter

Call me a nosy neighbor. I’ve always liked checking out Sunday open houses, especially houses for sale around my area of St. Petersburg. And I’m a huge fan of HGTV shows like “Flip or Flop’’ and “House Hunters.’’ Maybe that’s why why I ended up four years ago as the Tampa Bay Times real estate reporter. It’s a great job, especially now that the market is hot. But there’s a lot more to real estate than pretty (or not so pretty) houses. I’ve reported on a good number of scams and the colorful characters behind them, including one fellow that my stories have sent to federal prison - twice! In my off-hours, I like to travel (was a foreign correspondent for 12 years), figure skate, hit garage and estate sales, read and check out new restaurants. I’m probably one of the few people who remember when downtown St. Pete had only four restaurants — the lunch counters at Maas Bros. and Woolworth’s plus Aunt Hattie’s and Uncle Ed’s. Alas, Aunt Hattie’s closed in the early ‘80s after a rat ran over a restaurant critic’s foot.

Sales of Tampa Bay homes plunge in December

This home in Tampa’s gated Avila community sold in December for $2.7 million, making it Hillsborough County’s priciest sale of the month. [Courtesy of Susan Carnes/ Fast-Pix]
In one good sign for buyers, the supply of available Tampa Bay homes continued to inch up.

Is St. Pete ready for a 50-story skyscraper on Central Avenue?
The 400 block of Central Avenue has never seen a building as tall as the Red Apple Group's proposed tower. Some aren’t ready for that kind of development.

The 25 most expensive homes sold around Tampa Bay in 2018

The historic Stovall-Lee House on Bayshore Boulevard in Tampa. [Courtesy of Coldwell Banker]
Many of them are on the water and the cheapest sold for $3.45 million.

Soaring tower with luxury condos and hotel 'coming soon' to downtown St. Petersburg

New York’s Red Apple Group plans this approximately 50-story mixed used tower on the 400 block of Central Avenue. [Courtesy of Arquitectonica]
The building would be one of the tallest on Florida’s west coast.

Prices for new homes dropping in the Tampa Bay area

Builders are offering bigger price cuts than in the past on new homes. [SUSAN TAYLOR MARTIN | Times ]
Builders are offering bigger price cuts for new homes in the Tampa Bay area even though the demand for homes is said to outpace the supply.