Came in late on this thread, but congrats. to you FlyGuy for taking the plunge.
I have been watching the condo. market for a couple of years, and see that in general, prices are getting more realistic but still have some way to go IMO - particularly with our tanking economy, tighter credit, and other financial "shoes" still to be dropped. Lower selling prices are only a small part of the equation.
I think I have come to the conclusion that owning a home in SoWal would make more sense than a condo. Just looking at condos. from $300m to $700m I see condo. fees or assessments of anywhere from $500 to $1,000 a month. Yikes!
$6,000 to $12,000 a year and we haven't even touched insurance or R.E. taxes!
From my relatively uneducated point of view as it relates to real estate, it would seem to me that one of the biggest deterrents to sales of condo's. are these monthly fees. I think a lot of would be buyers (including me) could probably enjoy 2-3 months of beachside vacations in May and September on $6-$12,000 a year and not have to worry about the other problems that go with ownership. Don't mean to rain on anyone's parade - just wanted to offer my 2c from this side of the fence.