As the snowbird flies, so will real estate broker Shawn Elliott.

Florida, which has one of the nation's highest foreclosure rates, is ripe for the picking, the Woodbury businessman believes.

Home Search

Search Newsday for over 100,000 homes

So he’s trying to hatch a Shawn Elliott Luxury Homes and Estates office around Thanksgiving in Palm Beach, where he bought a second home two years ago, in Boca Raton. He's working to get his real estate broker's license there and negotiating to buy one real estate firm in the area, if not two, he said. He said he's also negotiating to buy an office building but mum's the location.

"Prices are like so beat up down there that you could steal things down there," Elliott said of homes. "It's unbelievable. Now I'm seeing a place that was 4.4 [million dollars] for 1.9 [million dollars]. I could probably buy it for 1.5 [million dollars]."

But he said the Florida market is not for flippers or short-term occupants. He estimated that it'll take 10 years for prices to appreciate back to normal or stable levels there, which means the market is more attractive for longer-term owner occupants.

The bi-state business would fit in with his firm, which focuses on high-end North Shore homes.

Elliott said his clients ask now and then about buying Florida homes but he can't do much beyond referring them to an agency licensed in Florida.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

"So many of our customers from here sell their big homes here and buy big homes down there," he said. "Why not capture both ends of the market?"