Lakeland Florida Homes New on Market – Weekly Update for 12/07/08

Hi fellow readers, as we getting closer to the Holiday Season, fewer homes are being listed as it shows in this week’s report that 56 homes were newly listed with area Realtors® compared to the 63 homes listed the previous week. There are currently a total of 2,399 homes for sale in Lakeland, Florida. The average sales price is $217,515 and the average size of a home is 1,854 square foot, which calculates to $117.32 per square foot.

Types of homes newly listed:

1 condo newly listed at $170,000

5 mobile homes listed with an average sales price of $83,080

50 single family homes with an average price of $229,732.

With every weekly update of newly listed homes in the Lakeland area, I always provide you with some details on the priciest home that came on newly on the market as well as the cheapest home. The top of this week’s list is a former 2000 Parade Home winner built by Mark Hulbert; it is a 5 bedroom 4 and ½ bath pool home, featuring over 4,600 square feet of living space and being offered for $1,490,000. It is located on Banana Lake in the Highlands-By-The-Lake community. On the bottom of the list and also this week’s cheapest home newly on the market is a 3 bedroom 1 bath home listed for $36,000; it is located in the Palma Ceia Court subdivision. The data for this report was obtained from the Mid-Florida Regional MLS, it is deemed reliable but not guaranteed. This report does not include “For Sale By Owner”. All my reports are illustrated by zip codes and the map provide you a better guidance when searching for homes in Lakeland, Florida.

The breakdown by zip code is as follows:

33801 – 05 at an average price of $128,920

33803 – 10 at an average price of $169,370

33805 – 02 at an average price of $60,500

33809 – 08 at an average price of $187,025

33810 – 09 at an average price of $175,871

33811 – 05 at an average price of $129,780

33812 – 03 at an average price of $686,600

33813 – 11 at an average price of $322,463

33815 – 03 at an average price of $92,633

Weekly update on distressed properties in Lakeland

The distressed home market has seen a decrease in properties being offered for sale from last week’s 23 properties to 17 properties newly listed. The average price for a home is $131,832 ($88.10 per square foot). Distressed homes are categorized as “Bank-Owned”, “Require 3rd party approval (Short Sale)”, “Pre-foreclosure”, and “In-Foreclosure”.

For more information on the location of the properties, pricing and size of the home click on map picture which leads you to the interactive Community Walk map created by Chuck Welch of Lakeland Local.

Like what you see – want additional details on a specific property? Look no further, click on the “Search for Homes” icon or contact me directly at (863) 619-6918

Copyright © 2008| All Rights Reserved

Lakeland Florida Homes New on Market – Weekly Update for 12/07/08

Petra Norris – Realtor®

Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

CDV TransAtlantic, Inc.

P.O. Box 92050 – Lakeland, FL 33804-2050

Telephone (863) 618-6919

Thanksgiving Day – What are you thankful for?

Posted On November 25, 2008

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My daughter Jeanne called me today to share with me a journal entry of her friend, which inspired me to write a blog about Thanksgiving and what it means to me. Before I continue, please read this short message between a mother and her little girl – it is so cute and what a great idea to write short notes of thankfulness for everyone to see.

“Mommy, what are we writing today?
I thought it might be fun if we wrote everything we’re thankful for on the mirror so all our friends and family would see when they come to visit us.
Oh.  But, mommy, what does thankful mean?
Well, thankful means lots of things.  Name something you love.
Mommy and Daddy!
So, I bet since you love us so much, you’re thankful we’re here.  Name something else.
Bubby.  I’m thankful that Bubby is here.  What about you, mommy?
Well, mommy and daddy are thankful for you and Nickolas.
What else mommy?
Well, we are thankful for our jobs.  Some mommies and daddies can’t work right now.  (I started to add more and I was interrupted…)
MOMMY…you know what I’m most thankful for?
What Alissa?
Why turkeys?
Because, silly, without turkeys, there’d be no turkey!”

When I first experienced Thanksgiving Day – I didn’t even know it. Long time ago, when my husband and I first met I was living in my own apartment in my hometown in Germany. My husband Jim told me he had a few days off and wanted to spend time with me. I said okay and he showed up at my doorsteps after I arrived from work that evening. Since I did not take any time off from work, I was thinking what could I make for him to eat while I was gone all day at work for the next two or three days. Well, I prepared this very tasty home-made vegetable soup in a big pot for him to heat up over the next few days while I was gone to work. That specific Thursday evening after we ate, he explained to me that in America, Thanksgiving Day was celebrated and people would cook turkey, pies, etc. – turkey! What the heck is a turkey? Really, I did not know what a turkey was; you see, Germans cook for the holidays such as Christmas a goose or a duck and are not accustomed to turkey, at least not in Bavaria. That was the last time we had soup on Thanksgiving Day and since then I’m always reminded being a little embarrassed on Thanksgiving Day on how Jim and I spent our first Thanksgiving Day.

Over 20 years have passed since then and now I’m telling the whole world what I’m thankful for – what about you?

Of course, I’m thankful for my family, children, grand-children, my dogs and friends spending Thanksgiving at my house with all the trimmings – Turkey of course! I’m very grateful that my 85 year old mother made this long trip to Lakeland Florida to spend time with me and my children during the Holiday Season. I’m mostly thankful that my husband is back at his old job after his horrific accident at work that kept him at home for over a year. I’m thankful that my sister-in-law Sally does not have to suffer from bladder cancer anymore because she is looking down on us from heaven above. I’m thankful for all my clients – past, present, and future – that have instilled their trust in me to sell their homes and buyers who depended on me to find their future home and keep me in business. I’m also thankful to all the friends on Active Rain that read, comment, subscribe to my blog and continue to give me the confidence boast I need once and awhile.

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

My Reflection of the Presidential Election 2008

Posted On November 5, 2008

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As I watch history being made today while writing is blog, it is exciting for me to watch the whole process of the election. Although I did not vote because I’m German citizen, it is just a phenomenal time for me and for us residents of the United States to be part of this history.

The voter turnout was unprecedented in all parts of this great country. I was so happy to see that my husband finally voted for the first time. My daughter, a first time voter, sent in her absentee ballot via federal express so her vote will be counted.

This defining moment will also be very challenging for our president-elect Barack Obama. As I watch John McCain’s concession speech; he so eloquently said with cheers that we as a country should come together in unison and get this country back on track – “Americans never Quit”.

The times ahead will be challenging indeed with two wars and the financial crisis. As I watch Barack Obama igniting the watchful audience with his victory speech he states that we must work hard – “step by step, block by block with calices on our hands. “Yes We Can”. I’m sure that neither Senator Barack Obama nor Senator John McCain thought of when they first announced their running for presidency.

Copyright © 2008| All Rights Reserved

My Reflection of the Presidential Election 2008

Petra Norris

Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

CDV TransAtlantic, Inc.

P.O. Box 92050

Lakeland, FL 33804-2050

Telephone (863) 618-6919

Blog Action Day – Poverty Affects People in Your Own Back Yard

Poverty is not only in countries like Thailand, Indonesia, Africa, Iraq, Afghanistan…

It’s happening right here in our own back yard

America – The Land of the Free, the land with endless opportunities, living the American Dream…..

Growing up in Germany in the 70’s with six brothers and one sister, mom was working in a brewery and dad was a heavy equipment operator putting asphalt on the road. We had a roof over our head, food on the table and hand-me-down clothes to wear. Money was always tight with dad working only in spring, summer and fall. I never knew our financial dilemma when I was growing up, my parents never talked about money in front of me and my siblings. Poverty was in our family, I just did not notice.

Today, I took a walk around Lakeland’s Munn Park. I noticed a guy sitting on the bench reading a book with a backpack next to him. I asked him if I could sit next to him and off we were talking about life. I asked him where he came from and where he lived. He started talking about living on the streets, being homeless, staying at The Lighthouse Ministry in Lakeland when he can; being an alcoholic and that he lost his only son in a motorcycle accident a few years back only made things worse. Losing his son, he told me, was a real heartbreaker that he has not been able to get over. I commented that losing a child is worse than losing a spouse, but he would have to take that first step to turn his life around. He seemed to me that he has trouble when getting a step ahead something happens, like loss of work, he would fall down again, making it even harder to get up again.

“It is not easy for men to rise whose qualities are thwarted by poverty.”
By Juvenal (55 AD – 127 AD)

Poverty is happening in your own backyard; even here in this beautiful town Lakeland Florida, all you have to do is look around you. Poverty could be in your own neighborhood, with foreclosures on the rise, folks losing their jobs. More and more people are living one paycheck away from disaster.

Today is Blog Action Day and the theme is “Poverty”. Please join me and thousands of others to make a difference in somebody’s life by lending a helping hand. By lending a helping hand you may put food on their table, clothes on their back or even have a warm place to sleep.

Written by Petra Norris – CDV TransAtlantic, Inc. – Lakeland Florida

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month – My Special Tribute to a Special Lady

Posted On October 7, 2008

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There comes a time in our lives when we meet that “Special someone”. By that “Special Someone” I’m not talking about your significant other, a famous person, or even one of your family members. I’m talking about someone, who you came in contact either during your professional career or personal life, a person that touched you the most. Well, to me that very “Special Lady” that influenced and inspired me is Dorothy Lasater.

When I was hired as a bookkeeper in 1995 to manage the accounts of a German investor who owned 197 units in Fort Worth, Texas I was introduced to Dorothy Lasater, a leasing manager who leased and handled the daily operating business for all properties. We talked on the phone every day, sometimes twice or three times during the day. Dorothy informed me about the leasing aspect and maintenance issues on a daily basis including how to keep our properties at a high level of an occupancy rate and what is needed to keep our properties in tip top shape. Of course all this could not have been accomplished without the financial support of my client and his consultants.

I started too really like her…. no I really loved her! Not only did we talk about business, but we talked about everything – my family – her family. I always could count on her when I seek her advice; she was just like a mother, a friend, a sister.

Over the years, I had flown to Fort Worth and visited Dorothy, inspected the properties. She always wanted to see where I lived, so one day she decided to come to Lakeland, Florida. I picked her up at the airport, took a drive down to Venice and Sarasota. After a wonderful lunch, I took her out to the pier in Venice where she saw Dolphins playing near the pier – she was so tickled that she could see these fantastic creatures wildly jumping in and out of the water. On the way back to Lakeland, we took a detour over the Sunshine Skyway Bridge driving on and showing her this enormous structure connecting the bay. I even tried to hook her up with a widower here in Lakeland but that did not work out. It was one of my most memorable times spent with Dorothy; she even considered retiring to Florida. A Texas woman retiring to Florida…. nah, not in a million years!

In 2003 she called and told me that she was diagnosed with breast cancer. I was very concerned and asked that if she would want to stop working, she could and I would understand it completely. She

Get Your Yearly Mammogram

replied with an explicit “No”; during the course of her treatment with chemo and radiation, she never once was out for more than two days in a row. She was always there, always dependable, always could count on her even when she did not feel well. She fought through it and with the support of her family she was in remission soon thereafter.

In the spring of 2005, I received a phone call from our part time employee saying that Dorothy was hospitalized with pneumonia. After a week or two being hospitalized, I found out that the cancer returned and spread into her lungs. She was always very optimistic saying she won the fight before, she will win again. She moved to her daughter’s ranch started her treatment and decided to retire in June at age 67. I remember flying out there and celebrating her retirement with a nice lunch. Never in a million years, did I think this was the last time I would see her alive. We talked on a weekly basis, always upbeat and happy; one time she was telling me she is looking for a part-time job, asking me if I would give her a good reference – a very relentless Lady. I laughed and told her that she really needs to enjoy her retirement and enjoy life.

The week before her birthday, my leasing manager told me that Dorothy fell gravely ill and Hospice was helping her to be comfortable. I talked with her and all she wanted to know if we had sold all the properties. I told her that I loved her and to take care. On October 16, 2008 on her 68th birthday, Dorothy Fay Lasater lost her battle with cancer and passed on to be with the good Lord.

My sister-in law Sally is currently fighting bladder cancer. To honor Dorothy, my sister-in law and thousands of others fight cancer, please join me and go to The Breast Cancer site to help meet their quota of donating at least one “Free Mammogram” a day to an underprivileged woman. It will only take less than a minute of your time and best of all, it’s free!

Copyright © 2008| All Rights Reserved|

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month – My Special Tribute to a Special Lady

Petra Norris – Realtor®

CDV TransAtlantic, Inc.

Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

PO Box 92050 – Lakeland, FL 33804-2050

Telephone (863) 619-6918

Would you want to live in Lakeland?

Recently, my husband and I drove to Lake Mirror after dinner to listen to good music, stroll around the lake, enjoy a beautiful sunset and close out this great evening with Fireworks. While relaxing sitting on the bench, we’ve met this nice couple from up north, who come to Lakeland to escape the cold weather climate and the snow from October through April to enjoy this beautiful weather and the great atmosphere Lakeland has to offer when they put on shows like this. So we sat there and talked about everything, such as news, Lakeland, arts, children, and even politics. My very first blog I wrote that I Love Lakeland and this blog emphasize that Lakeland has so much to offer despite being a small town with it’s arts, crafts, botanic garden, the many lakes, museum, parks, theaters and entertainment – even ice skating in Winter – no it doesn’t snow here and the lakes don’t freeze.

So why would you not want to live in Lakeland?

I took some pictures I’d like to share with you for you to see that Lakeland, FL is a great city to live in, centrally located between Orlando and Tampa and is only hopscotch away from all major attraction.

Lake Mirror at Sunset                                     


Lake Mirror

Swan Derby


There are always activities going on here in Lakeland and most of them are free of charge:

Mayfaire-on-the-Lake @ Lake Morton on May 10th and May 11th.

Farmers Curb Market open every Saturday from 8:00AM-2:00PM

First Friday of the month Lakeland welcomes you to go shopping and dining Downtown where stores have extended business hours.

Fisherman Statue                                         Constructionworker Statue


Did I mention that with all the activities Lakeland has to offer, such as the Swan Derby or the Mayfaire-by-the-Lake you also get the see Fireworks.

Oh I forgot! If you are looking to buy a home here in Lakeland, give me a call or search my web site for homes.

Copyright © 2008| All Rights Reserved

Would you want to live in Lakeland?

Petra Norris – CDV TransAtlantic, Inc. – Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

P.O. Box 92050

Lakeland, FL 33804-2050

Telephone (863) 619-6918

This blog is solely my point of view

My First Concert – Do you remember your first time?

My First Concert

The Les Humphries Singers AlbumI remember when I was young, about 10 years old. Now growing up in the early 70s in a small German town my siblings and I were excited to hear that “The Les Humphries Singers” were in the same town my older sister lived in about 15 miles away from my hometown, we visited that sunny Sunday afternoon.

My parents did not have any money for us to attend, so we just walked down to see if we could get a glimpse of the very popular group. The concert was in an oversized tent, if you have ever been to the Oktoberfest in Munich, you know what I’m talking about. The tent was only half the size of a tent at the Oktoberfest. As the group got off their tour bus walking past me, people were cheering and kids were screaming.

Well, the officials closed the tent and all you hear is them singing their songs. My brothers and I were trying to look through the holes in the tent, when suddenly a man came up and asked us if we would like to see it? Yes, we would like to but we don’t have any money. To our surprise, this gentleman, just let us in. We inched our way to the front of the stage and there they were, singing songs like “We’ll Fly You to the Promised Land”,  “Kansas City” and “Mexico”, dancing right in front of me – up close and personal! Unforgettable to this day!

Now, as you think back it seems funny when you shop for clothing you find the style of clothing that you wore in the 70s – perhaps at your First Concert?

New Year’s Resolution

Posted On January 11, 2008

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Happy New Year 2008!

Have you made your new year’s resolution yet?

– loose weight – spent more time with family – exercise more – eat healthier – stop smoking and/or drinking. I already sound like a broken record because all these resolution are made every year and after a few weeks passed by, folks have stopped sticking to it – myself included. Let’s try to focus only on one thing and make baby steps to achieve, whether it is trying to loose weight – don’t go for that extra helping, try not to eat after 7:00 p.m. If paying off debt is your goal, try to pay an extra $50.00 on your credit card bill. Just don’t over do it, you set yourself up for failing.

Christmas Spirit

Posted On December 6, 2007

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I have to be truthful about this, I am not in the Christmas Spirit yet – are you?

My husband and I bought a Christmas Tree last week and it is not even decorated yet – wow, am I going to be in trouble. I’m asking myself, what would get me in the Christmas Spirit? Perhaps, attending various local Christmas concerts, maybe driving through different neighborhoods looking at all the beautiful decorated homes or drive to the Lakeland Mall and Lakeside Village. Catching some fresh air while strolling at Munn Park in Downtown Lakeland absorbing all the Christmas decor that Lakeland has to offer will do the trick, perhaps.  Honestly, my Christmas Spirit will come on Christmas Eve when I have a chance to reflect on what Christmas is all about – it is the birth of Jesus born in a manger.

Merry Christmas!