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14-year FL girl is a Landlord

14-yr old Florida Girl is a Landlord (…and maybe Fl’s youngest RE Investor) Willow Tufano was only 14 years old when she became a real estate investor. The Port Charlotte teen earned money to purchase her first investment home by taking out the neighbors trash and by selling on the website craigslist items she collected from the side of the road and thrift shops. Willow is not your typical teen that would have taken that money and bought the hottest new gadgets or the latest fashions instead she did something that many adults would have been too scared to do, buy investment property. She earned about $6,000 when she the – says she overheard her parents talking. “The idea came from out of the blue. I heard my mom and dad talking at the dinner table one night that there was a house on the market for $16,000. I said offer $12,000 and we can [split it],” Willow told a reporter at Knowledge @Wharton website. Willows mom and father in the real estate business. Willow brought her first home for $12,000 in January 2012 and then purchased another home in October of 2012 for 17,500. She was able to offset the repairs by using a $10,000 gift card she received from the Ellen Degeneres talk show host. Yes… her success has come with fame and landed her on the Ellen Degeneres talk show to tell the world about the adventures of this mini real estate mogul in training. Willow bought one of the through a short sale process. Willow is not only a investor but she is also busy being a landlord. She is now 15 years old and still collecting her items to sell and she wants to buy 10 more properties by the time she turns 18 years old. Willow’s mom, Shannon Moore is a Realtor and says, “I was skeptical in the beginning, partnering with a (then) 14-year-old, but she collects the rent, interviews contractors, tries to solve the problems,” says Moore. “She’s a great partner. She’s learning some great skills and it’s a good, practical education.” Originally posted to Blog on 12/5/2012

Fannie & Freddie Sued in FL over Transfer Taxes reports that the Clerk of the Courts for Miami-Dade County, is suing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The home mortgage-finance companies ,now under government control, is on the hot seat in the Sunshine State and few other counties across the US over the same issue. Clerk Harvey Ruvin filed the lawsuit in federal court on October 29th alleging Fannie and Freddie improperly claimed tax exemptions, which amounts to 60 cents per $100 of the value of single-family residences. Adam M. Schachter, a lawyer for the county, said in an e-mailed statement to, “Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are parties to thousands of real estate transactions, particularly here in South Florida, and they are shirking their responsibility to pay their fair share of transfer taxes.” Brad German, a spokesman for Freddie Mac, and Andrew Wilson, a spokesman for Fannie Mae, didn’t respond to’s e-mail messages seeking comment on the lawsuit. The website also says the Miami-Dade clerk claims that tax exemptions for federal agencies don’t apply to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac because, while federally chartered, “they are private corporations and not government entities,” according to the lawsuit.

Originally posted to Blog on 11/5/2012

Beginning in April, Lake County, Florida will begin selling properties through the tax deed auctions on the internet. The first online tax deed sale in Lake County will be on Tuesday, April 3rd. If you are interested in bidding there or getting more information about these sales, you can go to the Lake County auction site at Real Auction hosts sales for many of the counties in Florida and will be doing the Lake County sale as well. If this will be your first time bidding at one of their online auctions, it’s probably a good idea to go to one of the two training classes (March 26 or 27th). The classes last about 90 minutes and cover the software only. Beware that you generally have to register for each county seperately even if you already are registered with Real Auction in another county. Click here for information on the training classes.

Originally posted to Blog on 3/12/2012

4 Arrested in Tax Deed & Short Sale Fraud

Tax Deed Fraud Arrests

The Miami-Dade County Inspector General says the Con-artists lured victims into believing that a county employee inside the Tax Collector’s office could sell tax deeds before the public auction. The State Attorney says they collected a total of 2.5 million from investors who thought they were buying tax deeds from the county before they were scheduled to be sale. Instead Investigators say the suspects didn’t have anyone on the inside and were forging tax deeds and selling them. The 4 suspects also allegedly ran a short sale fraud scheme too.

Investigators say the suspects were forging tax deeds and selling them. Ayda Young, Yohany Garcia, Zoraida Abreu, and Johnny Bou-Nassar were arrested on Feb 22nd and charged with Racketeering, Grand Theft, Uttering Forged Instruments, and Identity Theft. In total, the criminal charges involved 15 victims that were defrauded of over $2.4 million. Officials say most of the money was spent gambling and there isn’t any money left to repay the victims. Miami-Dade Inspector General Chris Mazzella said, “Where you have the promise of great returns on low investment with no risk, than you really need to be careful.” You can read the Inspector General’s report here.

Originally posted to Blog on 3/12/2012