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In Miami and nationwhide, the housing crisis that has dominated the country since 2008 has forced many people of all age groups to delay buying a house. However, almost everyone still strives to own a home, which continues to be a major component of the American Dream.

The National Association of Realtors predicts changing demographics of the American population will highly influence the coming shifts in housing trends for the next two decades. And instrumental in this change will be echo boomers.

“Echo boomer” is the moniker given to the group of people born between 1978 and 1994, making them between the ages of 18 and 34. Also known as “millennials”, they constitute 31 percent of all recent home purchases, according to statistics released by the NAR. These numbers, compiled by the NAR Profile of Home Buyers 2011, suggest that the future of the housing market will largely rest upon this group.

Eager to get started searching for homes? Start here to find your Miami Condo or Home for sale.

But there are other influences, as well. As those 65 and over begin to give up their homes and move in with extended family or into assisted living facilities, more and houses will leak into the inventory of home available to buyers. Even for those over 65 who are able to live on their own, they will be seeking more affordable and, too, more accessible housing. This will also add homes to the pool.

The housing recovery may not happen quickly, as the continued floundering economy will prohibit otherwise-ready buyers from pulling the trigger like they might have in years past. Because of these struggles, the demand for rental housing may rise more than the demand for buying, especially in the short-term. But it is thought that the echo boomers symbolize the long-term opportunities that will produce the eventual recovery.

Eager to get started searching for homes? Start here to find your Miami Condo or Home for sale.

Echo boomers represent a new dawn for the future of America in many ways. First is their numbers: with nearly 65 million people, they are more than 20 percent of the entire population. Second, they are mostly a college-educated group, seeking jobs and concerned with their professional careers. This means they could stay single longer than previous generations as a group did. Third, this group is the most racially and ethnically diverse in American history. Whereas the baby boomers, those between the ages of 45 and 65, are more than 65 percent white, the echo boomers are only 55 percent white.

Because many echo boomers are still in high school and college, it would seem that the group as a whole is not buying homes at the rate previous generations have. This would seem to be the case especially given the current economy and market conditions. However, the reality may not be true, according to recently released data.

According the American Community Survey, there are signs that homeownership has increased among echo boomers compared to when baby boomers were the same age. In fact, according to the NAR, there are 900,000 echo boomer homeowners; at the same age, there were only 500,000 baby boomer homeowners.

In the end, though, industry experts expect that even though echo boomers will probably rent first, thereby causing a delay of several years in the rise of homeownership levels for this group, they certainly exemplify the future of homeownership.

Eager to get started searching for homes? Start here to find your Miami Condo or Home for sale.

The Kleer Team is committed to helping clients acheive their dreams of homeownership. Allan Kleer and his team are most known for their high profile work representing celebrities. But the team also vigoriously represents many first time homebuyers. Schedule an appointment today here.

The Kleer team Does It Again On Miami Beach! North Alton Road Home SOLD!

Miami Beach, Fl., June 12, 2012 -- Allan Kleer, principal Master Broker at The Kleer Team, one of Fortune International Realty and Miami Beach's Top Real Estate Specialists, closed on the sale of the 4312 N. Alton Road residence in Miami Beach. The home was exlusively listed with The Kleer team, who sold to their own Fortune buyer, on May 23rd, 2012.

The owner of the North Alton Road property had the home on the market for over six years and worked with five Brokers before the property was finally sold by The Kleer Team, the sixth Miami Beach Real Estate luxury home specialist to represent the home. Utilizing the Miami Beach Real Estate Marketing Resources of Kleer Team and Fortune International, the North Alton Road home was sold after two seperate contract negoitations, from The Kleer Team's network of buyers, resulted in a final offer and sale.

The historic residence was built in 1930 and previously updated, the home featured a Morroccan-themed layout and over 3,000 SF of space that included five bedrooms and four bathrooms, an in-laws quarter and a separate entrance. The North Alton Road property sits in a residential district, where Alton Road is a major north-south artery and main thoroughfare with access routes all throughout Miami Beach. The home is situated in a prime location, adjacent to Mount Sinai Medical Center and Miami Heart Institute, a short distance to the LaGorce Country Club and Miami Beach Golf Course, and just off the 195- Julia Tuttle Causeway. On the section of Alton Road that traverses South Beach, there are many local businesses, including small businesses, retail stores, commercial offices, grocery markets, and restaurants & boutiques catering to the residences on Alton Road.

About Miami Beach
Miami Beach is a coastal resort urban city situated between the Atlantic Ocean and Biscayne Bay, in Miami-Dade County, Florida. The city of Miami Beach, located in Southeast Florida, is globally recognized for its resort-like luxury lifestyle, Art & Culture, Festivals, Fashion and major Music events. Miami Beach and popular South Beach is also a national and international tourist destination known worldwide for its Art Deco and contemporary architectural landscape consisting of luxury waterfront and oceanfront South of Fifth condos, Island mansions, upscale homes and extravagant residences. Due to its tropical setting, premier retail and shopping, prominent restaurants and entertainment venues, Miami Beach has attracted many celebrities, politicians, athletes, and affluent residents from around the globe who invest in Miami Beach Real Estate.

About Allan Kleer PA and The Kleer Team
Allan Kleer, M.B.A., P.A. Allan Kleer, M.B.A., P.A. leads one of Greater Miami's Top Real Estate Teams for over 14 years. Kleer is a graduate of the University of Michigan, with a Master's in Business Administration in International Target Marketing and has successfully sold and closed over $100 Million in both luxury residential and commercial properties in Greater Miami, Miami Beach, Bal Harbour, Sunny Isles Beach, and South Beach. Allan attributes his success to an extensive international network, a thoroughly trained and professional team of Agents. The Kleer Team is committed to bringing added value and thorough execution to every real estate transaction. Allan and his team of agents are fluent in English and Spanish, with a working knowledge of French and Portuguese.

The KleerTeam's formula for success is the implementation of a truly international and aggressive marketing campaign, combined with state-of-the-art property promotion tools and over 25 years of combined real estate sales experience. The Team's combined expertise, dedication to follow up, and attention to detail, and partnership with Fortune International Realty, are at the core of a strategic approach to real estate sales success, with a strong emphasis on teamwork. For more details please click


At last! To the joy of every child (and most adults) you know, your Miami home has a swimming pool! Whether you just bought the property or have recently installed a pool yourself, this is a feature that’s not only a pleasure to look at, but also a true centerpiece — a magnet for socializing and relaxing throughout the hot summer months.

Also true: that pool carries a few drawbacks, as well. You should consider both when it comes to writing an offer or selling a home with a pool

Pro 1: Boost Your Property’s Value

In today’s super-competitive housing market, it’s good to stand out from the crowd. Whether you add your property to the local home listings next week or plan to do so in the future, a pool will boost its overall value.

Pro 2: You (and Future Buyers) Will Enjoy Your Pool

Imagine a blissful summer afternoon experience – floating around, colorful beverage of choice in hand. The truth is, you will enjoy your pool: friends will come over, you’ll host great BBQs, you’ll look forward to unwinding after difficult workdays. It’s hard to put a price on any of that. Buyers influenced by the summer heat will have the same vision of entertaining and relaxing with friends and family. And the extra attention drawn by Miami home listings that mention a pool is unquestionable.

Con: Not all buyers want a pool.

While some may avoid them because of small children, dogs, and generalized safety concerns, others may shy away from extra maintenance issues, both real and imagined. Monthly pool service, higher water bills, higher electricity and gas bills, potential for repair of pool mechanical equipment, pool re-surfacing (which can hit the $10k neighborhood!), pool leaks, replacing diving boards, pool covers…if they have had a pool before, or are merely responding to second-hand tales, the unknowns can seem daunting. The brave do-it-yourselfers who choose to monitor a pool on their own will be taking on the task of checking chlorine levels, watching algae, measuring chemicals and above all else keeping that pool blue!

Nevertheless, the truth is that pros and cons accompany all local home listings. Every household is unique –the balance between challenges and rewards is what makes it so. If you’re having that “colorful-beverage-in-hand” vision and relish the idea of making it a reality, we are always happy to show you the home listings that best fit your specifications.

Led by Allan Kleer, The Kleer Team is dedicated to representing buyers and sellers of condos and homes in the Miami area.Contact us today. Let us work on your behalf to achieve your goals!


A shadow inventory means clearing the market of distressed homes. According to Standard & Poor’s Rating Services such an operation would take approximately 46 months. The agency’s results were based on progresses done in the first quarter data in 2012 and in the fourth quarter data of 2011.

Meanwhile, mortgages made on residential estates appeared to be relatively stable in the first months of the year, only with small variations dependent on flux of the local markets. Any significant reductions are tried to be prevented in order to maintain a balanced situation. In general, the regional variations are dependent on how fast can the services dispose of the backlogs of nonperforming loans, which are a result of the existing differences in the foreclosure procedures. These procedures may present delays due to the judicial versus non-judicial processes involved. The agency estimated that in the first quarter of this year the judicial states were about 2.5 longer than the non-judicial states.

In addition, S&P develops a shadow inventory on all existing proprieties that feature delays in mortgage payments of over 90 days, and on proprieties that cope with the danger of foreclosure, or that are REO. Also, it includes up to 70 percent of the loans that became “cured” or current from the 90 day delinquency in the last twelve months. This happens because, according to S&P, they are more probable to re-default.

The agency makes all the calculations relying in the ratio of the total volume of distressed loans related to the six-month moving average of liquidations. Regardless its analyses, the shadow inventory make use only of data that is not acquired by the agency itself, and S&P analysts consider a month-to-clear to be similarly high for the market seen as a whole.

Furthermore, the amount of distressed non-agency residential mortgages is still unexpectedly high, rating $354 billion in the first quarter of the year. Despite this, the agency is aware that the general distress volume has declined greatly since 2010. For the agency to be able to put the shadow in perspective, S&P bases its results on the original balances of loans and states that the numbers are less than one-third of the existing non-agency residential mortgage securities market in U.S. Also, it considers the New York City’s metropolitan statistical area that has had the highest months-to-clear in the nation in 202 months.

Moreover, the agency’s monthly first default dropped to 0.67% in March 2012, which represents the lowest level since May 2007. The first default rate represents the percentage of loans that becomes 90-plus-day delinquent in a certain month for the first time. It is a percentage of all loans that have never been presented delays over 90 days before. In this case, the propriety enters automatically in the shadow inventory at a much slower rate. The only improvement done is made in the speed of the services that liquidate the nonperforming loans, and which will determine if the shadow inventory continues.

Since the first quarter of 2009, the default rates have lowered and an average national rate has been settled. Anyhow, it is inevitable for the shadow inventory not to have a great impact on the market.


Welcome to the lifestyles of the rich and famous!

The luxury housing market has been heating up over the last several months, mostly driven by a dwindling supply of desirable properties and bargains, relatively speaking, that is, for high-end real estate.

Take a look at these 4 majestic mega-mansions:

Divine Fifth Avenue Penthouse

Featuring views of the Manhattan Skyline and Central Park, this palatial penthouse is the largest property ever offered on 5th Avenue. This exquisitely designed residence has a professional recording studio, a dining room capacity for 22 people, a private rooftop terrace and is equipped with three kitchens.

List price: $65,000,000

7 bedrooms

11 bathrooms

European Elegance, Beverly Hills Style

Just built in 2008, French moldings and hand-painted ceilings adorn this beautiful mega-mansion. Characterized as an “entertainer’s paradise,” this spectacular property boasts an expansive pool pavilion, beautifully manicured gardens and a tournament-size tennis court.

List price: $49,500,000

36,000 square feet

9 bedrooms

14 bathrooms

Historic New York City Townhouse

Back in 1995, this historic townhouse sold for $6,000,000. It was originally built in 1916 for the retail magnate Frank Woolworth and still retains its charm. This opulent neo-French Renaissance mansion features a decadent dining room with room to seat more than 50 people, a drawing room spanning 35 feet and a massive fireplace.

List price: $90,000,000

47,182 square feet

7 bedrooms

10 bathrooms

Palm Beach Paradise

Designed in 1921, this four-acre property is right in the heart of Palm Beach and comes with 150 feet of priceless oceanfront. This estate is 75 percent green space with luscious park-like gardens that surround the Mediterranean Revival-style main house.

List price: $59,000,000

23,000 square feet

10 bedrooms

11 bathrooms


A $1 billion program to assist struggling homeowners pay their mortgages is getting a huge overhaul, possibly opening the door for thousands of previously ineligible South Floridians to receive aid.

Since 2011, only around 5,500 homeowners have received assistance from the Florida Hardest Hit Fund, and tens of thousands have been discouraged from applying or rejected due to the program’s extremely strict eligibility rules. The board of Florida Housing Finance Corporation, which manages the program, voted to loosen those rules at the end of April.

The changes are really great and are going to help a lot of Hardest Hit Fund applicants and participants, said David Westcott, the agency’s director of homeownership programs.

The federally-funded program offers two kinds of help: Lump sum aid to help borrowers catch up on past-due mortgage bills as well as monthly mortgage payment assistance to borrowers suffering from financial hardship, such as unemployment.

The program was slated to help tens upon thousands of homeowners, but so far only around 5,500 have qualified. At this point, only $101.8 million of the $1 billion has been set aside for homeowners, and even less than that has been paid out.

After examining the program’s first-year performance, the agency pushed for aggressive changes, including scrapping the 6-month cap on mortgage delinquency. Under the new rules, that means that homeowners who are more than six months behind on their mortgages would now qualify.

The FHFC also moved to increase limits on how much aid homeowners could receive, tripling mortgage “catch-up” assistance to $25,000 and doubling aid to unemployed borrowers to $24,000.

This is going to open a lot more doors for homeowners, said Mordy Lafortune, of Neighborhood Housing Services of South Florida. In the long run, it’s better to stabilize homeowner and the economy, itself, he said.

Lafortune has worked with many homeowners who were so excited when they first heard about the program, only to find out that they didn’t qualify.

When the program launched back in April 2011, the Miami Herald reported on how the strict requirements were going disqualify many homeowners right off the bat. According to research by FHFC, 23,407 either withdrew their applications or did not complete them and 12,516 homeowners were rejected, only 5,540 applicants were approved.

The FHFC said it will reach out to homeowners who were initially rejected to see if they qualify under the new guidelines.

Ray Payano, a Cutler Bay homeowner, who didn’t even bother applying for the program last year, said he would take another look now that the requirements have eased.

Back in 2010, he struggled to keep up with the mortgage after both he and his wife were laid off, had a baby and depleted their savings, all in the span of a year.

Payano has since started his own energy conservation consulting firm and can now afford his $1,450 mortgage, but says he could use some help catching up on the overdue amounts. With the new rules, the Hardest Hit Fund could provide him up to $25,000 to get caught up on his mortgage, as long as his bank agrees.

However, not all banks are on board with the program. A number of mortgage service providers have declined to accept mortgage assistance money, choosing instead to foreclose on homeowners.


Bidding wars are erupting from Weston to Homestead, as home prices and sales take off, further reinforcing the end of a prolonged market slump.

A bank-owned, two-bedroom, two-bathroom condominium in Coral Springs sparked 64 offers within 10 days, selling for $71,000, or 34 percent over its initial $53,000 listing price.

I’ve never seen the housing market like this before. It’s a feeding frenzy, said one broker. It was a rentable building, so all the investors were out, she added.

The median sales price of single-family homes in Broward County rose 17 percent in April to $205,000, and condominiums jumped 17.4 percent to $84,300, compared to prices in April 2011.

And in Miami-Dade, home prices continued a five-month ascent, up 30 percent for condos, to $150,000, and 8.2 percent for single-family homes, to $183,000, compared to a year ago, according to figures by the Miami Association of Realtors.

Throughout South Florida, higher demand is leading to multiple bids and, in turn, increasing prices, as the real estate market keeps turning around.

There’s a very limited amount of inventory at this point and a lot less foreclosures on the market, another realtor said. Now homebuyers are finding themselves in the middle of bidding wars. We’re in a situation where for 80 percent of contracts, there are three or four offers, if not more, for the same property, he added.

Brokers say the inventory of home listings is way down. It’s decreased 34 percent in the last year in Miami-Dade, from 17,897 to 11,878, and down 4 percent since March, the Realtors’ Association said.

Also, in Broward, the inventory of residential listings has decreased 30 percent in the past year, from 15,781 to 11,086, also down 4 percent from March.

With a housing stock of 16,000 condos and homes in Weston, only 91 condos and 254 single family homes are currently for sale.

Neighboring areas of Cooper City, Davie, Pembroke Pines and Southwest Ranches are all experiencing a similar dearth of inventory.

We’re putting properties on the market and getting multiple offers in one day, a broker said.

Investors with cash, mostly foreign buyers, continue to fuel the market.

In both Broward and Miami-Dade, 64 percent of closed sales in March were all-cash sales and most of them were international buyers, the Miami Association of Realtors said.

We’re at a point in the market where builder inventories are low, and in fact, for some builders, sales are proceeding quicker than they can build, said Brad Hunter, director for Metrostudy, a housing market advisory firm based in Houston.

For those who’ve been waiting four or five or more years for home prices to stabilize and start edging back upwards, we’re essentially there, he said.

Meanwhile, distressed properties still make up a majority of sales.

Forty-seven percent of all closed residential sales in Miami-Dade in April were distressed, including REOs, bank-owned properties, and short sales, compared to 59 percent a year ago and 49 percent in March.

Thirty-eight percent of all closed residential sales in Broward were distressed in April, compared to 50 percent in April 2011 and 41 percent the month before.

Even more distressed properties are going to hit the market, which could still dampen prices, analysts say.


The real estate market has gone through a severe recession, perhaps even a full on crisis, and if you haven’t been living under a rock, you could clearly see a lot of people losing their homes thanks to foreclosures, or get hit hard on their monthly bills. For years, the crisis, which originally started with an excess of default loans with the large banks, has spread across the country, and to many homeowners. This in turn has lead the authorities to try and help people out, especially those who were the worse off, in serious danger of losing their homes.

The state of Florida, for example, implemented a system that gives some much needed funds to those people in dire need, and the $1 billion program is now getting restructured and reorganized. The main problem is that last year, 5,500 homeowners received state sponsored aid as part of this program. That’s nowhere near the total amount of people who could have used the help, and who suffered from the economic downturn. Several issues occurred that made this system not work quite the way the state thought it would, and now the government workers have the task of fixing what’s broken.

The board of Florida Housing Finance Corporation, which runs the program, recently voted to change the rules for admission, and as a result, more people will now be able to use the program to get financial aid. That means people who applied and were refused in the past will be able to apply again, and perhaps this time they will qualify under the new rules. Also, the limit of money that each homeowner can ask for was raised as well, so each person helped will be able to receive more. For example, someone who’s been out of a job for a year is likely to owe above the current limit for the aid program. Now, the lump sum limit has been raised to $25,000, which should be enough to solve the majority of cases.

The program is funded by the federal government and covers two specific help cases. First, monthly payment assistance is available for those who have problems paying their monthly bills, if they got fired or have other situation arise. Also, those who are already behind on their mortgage payments can receive a lump sum to help them out and catch up on their bills. So far, only around $100 million of the $1 billion sum has been given out, and thanks to the new rules, it’s thought that the whole budget will go to help individuals who need it.

A federal watchdog recently criticized a lot of similar aid programs for not doing enough to actually provide financial assistance to people, and the reform on the Florida program comes right after that report came out. But the problem often lies deeper. In several cases, banks unwilling to participate in the program have blocked aid efforts, according to the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program, the federal watchdog tasked with checking these things out. Hopefully now that this has all come out, the process will be smoother for those in need.


A famous Palm Beach resident recently put her Billionaire’s Row property up for sale.

Ruby Rinker, the owner of the property, held the house in trust for $23.5 million, which is considered the town’s most expensive residential sale for almost a year. It measures around 12,230-square-feet, with seven bedrooms, a two-bedroom guest house, a swimming pool, and a tennis court.

The 2.66 acres, multimillion-dollar estate was named after the South Ocean Boulevard it is located at in Palm Beach County. It stands north of Sloan’s Curve on the stretch of South Ocean Boulevard, which is also knows as Billionaire’s Row.

Ruby Rinker was the widow of Marshal “Doc” Rinker, the executive of the concrete firm, Rinker Materials. He bought the house in 1999 for $7.45 million. He died in 1996 — eight years after selling his company to CSR Ltd of Australia.

Expensive property sales are becoming less common in the town of Palm Beach. According to the Evans Report, the first quarter of 2012 only saw one residential sale above $10 million, while the first quarter of 2011 only saw three sales above $10 million, with an average price of $18.17 million.

However, that is not to say that investors have given up hope. In fact, small-time real estate investors are slowly heading back to South Florida to check up on properties once again.

The release of the Standard & Poors / Case – Shiller price index shows that there is a 2.5 percent increase in home prices in Palm Beach, particularly Miami-Dade counties and Broward compared to 2011.

The Standard & Poors / Case – Shiller price index is actually used to measure sales in the country’s twenty biggest markets and are then compard with January 2000 (when the index was set at 100). The index gives a three-month moving average prices for each region assessed, although condominium sales are excluded in the study.

The 2.5 percent increase Palm Beach home prices is good news for South Florida — especially its investors. Price increases are becoming more consistent, and the index increases have been going on for four straight months already. There are also reports that show how Palm Beach County’s existing-home sales in the month of April have gone up in volume. The median price also breached the $200,000 mark for the first time this year, which is another strong indicator of South Florida’s “slow-but-sure” recovery.

Economists also notes that South Florida’s beaches and its foreign buyers will be the ones responsible in increasing actual sales. However, this does not take into account the foreclosures that are still entering the market and the European economic breakdown that’s happening right now.


Prices Shattering Records

The selling prices for Miami’s most exclusive homes seem to be setting new records every day. Recently a condo went for a cool $25 million, the highest price ever paid for a condo in the Miami–Dade County region. A mansion sited on Indian Dr. is reportedly closing escrow at $52 million topping anything sold in the prerecessionary days. At the top of the range, the mansion formerly known as Versace and currently called Casa Causarina has just been listed for $125 million.

The market frenzy surrounding such top end offers calls to mind to some the sort of expectations commonly seen in 2006, just before the boom went bust. The belief then was that prices could only move one direction, up. That sadly turned out not to be the case as real estate prices began falling in 2007 and continued to do so for years.

While prices have stabilized recently and even showed gains, some are warning that market conditions at the high end point to another bubble forming that could burst at any time. Prices are currently being driven upward by a relative handful of wealthy investors who could choose to pull out without warning. With such a small pool of speculators controlling prices, it is anyone’s guess how long prices will continue to rise for luxury estates.

Foreign Money Moves In

Helping to drive prices upward is an infusion of foreign buyers into the high end market. Florida attracted more than a quarter of the $82 billion that foreigners put into U.S. real estate in 2010. The average price that foreigners paid was $400,000. This compares to an average price of only $212,000 for homes sold that year. The percentage of all cash sales by foreigners has been rising since 2007 and reached 62 per cent in 2010.

Floridais seen as an attractive place for investment by foreigners due to the relative safety in general and the state’s tropical climate. The Miami area is considered especially enticing because of the vibrant culture the city has to offer.

The high end foreign buyers are not seeking a primary home to live in. They can not even be classified as looking for a second home. It is suggested that these types of buyers are actually doing the equivalent of making stock purchases, but of the sort that comes with a view of the ocean.

Right now, there is a flight to safety that is propelling the outlook of foreign investors. With financial markets in turmoil, property is seen as a tangible asset with intrinsic worth. The price may lower, but the asset will not disappear the way investments in stocks possibly can.

These sorts of investors have proven fickle in the past. Another region of the globe or the country may catch their interest causing an abrupt turn in market conditions for high end Miami real estate. For now, forecasters are expecting prices will continue to rise, but the end to that could come very quickly.


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