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  1. Florida

How hot is the real estate market? This St. Pete listing is on fire.

A St. Petersburg real estate agent listed a house with a photo of it engulfed in flames.
Screenshot from Zillow listing of 742 SW Boulevard N house in St. Petersburg.
Screenshot from Zillow listing of 742 SW Boulevard N house in St. Petersburg.
Published Jul. 31, 2019
Updated Jul. 31, 2019

Click here to read this story in Spanish.

For less than $100,000, you can own this home in St. Petersburg.

There’s just one twist. The photo of the home in the real estate listing shows the house on fire. Yes, the house on the property was “heavily damaged in a fire,” the description says.

The city has ordered that the house be demolished.

But, the listing continues in capital letters, the lot is located in a “very popular area."

Screenshot from a Zillow listing of a home at 742 SW Boulevard N, placed on Zillow 20 hours ago.

The real estate agent who put up the listing, Dylan Jaeck, was told that the fire occurred about nine months ago when the previous owners left to visit family. They then sold the property to the owner Jaeck is now representing.

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The house’s address, 742 Southwest Blvd. N, is located between Fourth Street N and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Street N and 54th Avenue N and 62nd Avenue N.

“A lot of expensive home (sic) in this neighborhood,” the listing continues, also in all capital letters. “You can’t find a better lot. There’s not too many lot (sic) available in this area.”

The house is listed as a 1,280 square-foot, three-bedroom, three-bath home with a 6,037 square-foot lot. The original house was built in 1959, the listing indicates. The neighborhood is zoned largely for single family residences.

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Jaeck said he purposely used the photo of the house on fire in the listing.

For one, he knew it would get attention. In fact, he said, he’s now getting calls from many Realtors in Pinellas County.

“When it comes to real estate, marketing is the priority,” he said. “You want to grab as much attention as possible.”

Using the photo was also a way to be up front with prospective buyers about the house’s defects, he said.

“If I was just to post a picture of the front of a burnt down house or an aerial shot, the listing would be more stagnant,” he said. “People would call and ask: ‘How much would it cost to fix this house?'"

A Google Earth photo of 742 Southwest Boulevard N dated from June 2011.

Jaeck, a St. Petersburg resident and third-generation Floridian, according to his website, has been in the business for almost five years. He works for Luxury and Beach Realty Inc., a St. Petersburg-based real estate agency.

Strangely, the first house he ever sold also had been damaged by fire. He sold that house in September 2015 for almost $46,000. By December 2016, the house had sold for $150,000, according to Pinellas County Property Appraiser records.

So the question remains: Would you buy a house that requires more than a little touching up?

Read the whole listing here.

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