Bubil: Good luck with that rental, my colleague


Every once in a while, a colleague will stop by my desk with a real estate question.

Usually it something like, "Do you know someone who can fix my roof?"

Yes, that's me, your full-service property concierge. At least it is better than when readers call with legal questions. I always tell them I am not an attorney and "you get what you pay for."

But on Thursday afternoon, recreation reporter Tom Becnel, who makes his living going on bike rides and kayak trips and writing about them (why didn't I think of that?), stopped by with "a real estate question."

Being on deadline and stuck for a good column idea, I didn't even look up from my computer. I was about to blurt out, "Yes, the market is hot," when he asked me about rentals.

"We are finally putting our house in Port Charlotte up for sale," said Tom, tired of the commute on the I-75 superspeedway or parking lot, depending on the time of day he makes the trip.

"We are looking for a rental close to downtown. We saw a real cute one over by Morton's Market, but they want $2,100."

My first thought: "My column idea just landed in my lap!"

My second, and this I told him, "Tom, welcome to Sarasota. The rental market is tighter than the for-sale market under $300,000. There's a rental between Tuttle and Shade for $1,600, but it is only a 2/1 and I think it is overpriced. Maybe that's why it's still on the market."

"Well, we were looking in Bungalow Hill," Tom said. "It's real pretty over there."

Ah, the sweet voice of the innocent. They come to Sarasota and have such high hopes. Aren't they cute?

"Tom, have you thought about looking for affordable rentals in Port Charlotte?"

With that, his shoulders fell and he walked away. "Thanks."

I don't think he meant it.


I am looking forward to the national symposium of Docomomo at Ringling College April 18-21. "Documentation and Conservation of the Modern Movement" is what Docomomo stands for; the theme is "Modern Matters."

The group was formed to promote awareness and preservation of modernist architecture.

About 150 Docomomo US members will tour examples of "Sarasota School" architecture, including several houses in Lido Shores and Paul Rudolph's addition to Sarasota High School, which is about to undergo renovation.

The symposium will feature presentations by Docomomo US chapters, as well as selected individuals, regarding their efforts around the country. A keynote address will be held at the Herald-Tribune building on Main Street in Sarasota. Information: docomomo-us.org.

Harold Bubil

Recipient of the 2015 Bob Graham Architectural Awareness Award from the American Institute of Architects/Florida-Caribbean, Harold Bubil is real estate editor of the Herald-Tribune Media Group. Born in Newport, R.I., his family moved to Sarasota in 1958. Harold graduated from Sarasota High School in 1970 and the University of Florida in 1974 with a degree in journalism. For the Herald-Tribune, he writes and edits stories about residential real estate, architecture, green building and local development history. He also is a photographer and public speaker. Contact him via email, or at (941) 361-4805.
Last modified: March 30, 2013
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