When I meet someone looking to purchase a home in St. Petersburg, I consistently get three questions from those buyers. I'm going to dissect them for you today.
1) Is all of St. Petersburg (or southern Pinellas) in a flood zone?
No. I would recommend calling your insurance agent, but there are many areas in St. Pete that are not in a flood zone. You would be surprised how close you can get to waterfront areas and not have to pay the premium of flood insurance. Call me if you'd like some recommendations on insurance agents.
2) Is there anywhere in St. Pete where there is good value?
Well, define "value". Are you wanting to be close to downtown? How close? Would a 10 minute drive to the best bars and restaurants be good enough for you? If so, Historic Kenwood or Allendale Terrace may be excellent areas. Both neighborhoods are not in flood zones, within 10 minutes of downtown, and have home values consistent with the rest of Pinellas County.
3) Isn't it impossible to get a mortgage nowadays?
Lending requirements have certainly increased since the real estate boom of last decade. However, as we go into the latter end of 2014, lenders are becoming more lenient on mortgage criteria. Working with a mortgage broker instead of a bank is helpful as well. A mortgage broker can shop your mortgage to many different lending institutions, hopefully creating a perfect match for you and your loan. Call me today for mortgage broker recommendations.