It's not every day you get to buy a place with its own pond, or an acre of land in Pinellas County, Fla., for under $400,000, for that matter. But this huge place -- just a 24-mile drive from Tampa -- offers both.
According to listing agent John Rurkowski, it's a rarity. "We just don't make land like that in Pinellas County," he said.
Located within walking distance from Lake Seminole State Park, it's now being offered at a 60 percent discount to its sale price of $990,000 five years ago.
Among the amenities: a two-story entryway, a great room with a sweeping staircase, a swimming pool, plenty of outdoor entertaining spaces and a master suite with a fireplace and den.
According to Rurkowski, deals like this may not last long. The local market for large homes is gaining steam, he said. During the two months through April, home prices on all types of homes in the Tampa-metro area were on the rise, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller home price index.
Until recently, smaller homes were pretty much the only real estate selling in the greater St. Louis area, according to real estate agent Lucinda Seymour.
Now, she said, "There are buyers at all price points. Buyers are finally feeling more optimistic."
Demand for homes like this one has picked up, she said.
Located in a residential community just 20 miles south of St. Louis, the four-bedroom home has a huge great room with a fireplace and floor-to-ceiling windows looking out onto a community lake. The big kitchen boasts a center island, double-oven and breakfast room.
The home is being sold in a short sale, however. And it's being sold "as-is," meaning the current owner won't be making any repairs for the buyers.
For the past several years, Las Vegas has been the poster child for the foreclosure mess, but recently the market has started to stabilize and demand for homes has been on the upswing.
That has opened up the market for existing homeowners to sell their homes and trade up to bigger ones, said Bill Jenkins, an agent with Keller Williams Realty. And many of them are taking advantage of the deep discounts in the area to get the home of their dreams.
This house, which was built in 2007, is in "immaculate condition," he said and selling at 57 percent discount to its last sale price three years ago. It features a columned portico, a balcony and an attached three-car garage. Inside, there's a large kitchen with hardwood cabinets, granite countertops, tile floors and lots of built-ins.
In early 2005, this huge, modern house had an estimated value of more than $1 million, according to real estate web site Zillow. The value had dropped to $550,000 when it sold three years ago. Now it's being sold for almost half that price.
Part of that price cut reflects the collapse in home prices in the Cape Coral/Fort Myers metro area, but part of it is due to the fact that this home is in need of some serious TLC.
The 6,000-square-foot home, which is being sold in a short sale, was damaged and stripped by a previous occupant.
Those willing to put in some elbow grease will get plenty of space and amenities in return, including five bedrooms and 4 bathrooms, in which there are two Jacuzzi tubs and three saunas. Outside is a huge pool.
Aaron Eyerman of Blue Water Realty said he has seen a pick-up in demand for larger homes in the area. "On our website, we've definitely noticed a surge in interest in four-bedroom homes and up," he said. "[P]eople figure 'Why not get more for your money.'"
Located in a suburb 80 miles southeast of Los Angeles, this 4,000-square-foot home has lost more than half of its value since it was last purchased in February 2007.
But big houses like this may not stay this cheap for long. Demand for big homes is picking up in the area and there isn't a lot of supply, said agent Richard Knapp.
"There are 30 buyers for every house," he said.
This home is nicely appointed with plantation shutters, a fireplace and an open floor plan. It has a three-car garage and even has parking for an RV. Knapp said there's shopping, medical facilities and parks close by.