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What it takes to buy a home

What are renters willing to sacrifice to become homeowners?

Here are the results of a survey of 795 renters between the ages of 18 and 45, conducted in February by the National Association of Realtors. Results were compared to a similar survey in December 1991.

Expect to sacrifice 1995 1991

Vacations 50.0% 74.6%

Home furnishings 32.5 44.5

Jewelry or clothing 30.9 46.2

Daily non-essentials

(general belt-tightening) 44.0 67.4

Appliances or electronics 23.1 34.6

Entertainment/sports/recreation 36.1 55.8

New car or other vehicle 39.6 68.2

Other sacrifice 1.5 2.9

Source: National Association of Realtors

Is your neighborhood a "10'?

Thirty-six percent of homeowners in the Tampa-St. Petersburg metropolitan area rate their neighborhoods a perfect 10, and 41 percent say their home is the best place to live. That word comes from a Census report released Friday that covered Hernando, Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas counties. The report, based on information gathered in 1993, also tells us that 84 percent of our homes have air conditioning, and 86 percent of the owner-occupied homes had a porch, deck, or patio. Fifty-four percent of the 37,900 owner-occupied homes built between 1989 and 1993 cost $100,000 or more, and 31 percent of homeowners with a mortgage were paying an interest rate of less than 8 percent.

Phones active at poison center

More than 200 times a day the phone rings at the Florida Poison Information Center at Tampa General Hospital, which serves Central and South Florida. For the 1993-94 fiscal year, which ended last June 30, here is the breakdown of calls from Tampa Bay counties to the poison center: Hernando County, 480; Hillsborough, 11,032; Pasco, 3,115; and Pinellas, 8,128. (Citrus County is in the Jacksonville jurisdiction.) Sixty percent of those calls involved poisonings of children 5 and under. You can learn more about how to poison-proof your home and keep dangerous substances away from children from a free brochure, "Stop Poisonings." Send a long, self-addressed envelope with 32 cents postage to the National Safety Council, Department PR-3P2, Box 588, Itasca, IL 60143-0558. The brochure is printed in both Spanish and English.

Pasco will parade its homes

Mark your calendars: It's almost time for the Pasco Parade of Homes, the annual showcase of new construction sponsored by the Building Industry Association of Pasco County. Executive director Bob Shelton says he expects about 20 entries at sites around the county _ two in Land O'Lakes, the rest in West Pasco _ and the parade will run July 15-30.

_ Compiled by Homes Editor JUDY STARK