An extensive report by Global Property Guide on the Virgin Islands, concludes “The housing market in the US Virgin Islands has still not quite recovered from its crash in 2008, but reports of new property developments suggest optimism.”
While all 3 of the Virgin Islands are discussed, here are some highlights on ST Croix. Read the complete discussion at GlobalPropertyGuide.com.
“The property market in the U.S. Virgin Islands is experiencing a slow but gradual recovery from the worldwide market slump as several new development projects are scheduled to be underway next year.
“In St Croix, average home sales price fell 7.4% to US$356,954 in 2009, according to the USVI Bureau of Economic Research. Condo prices, however, rose by the same percentage to an average of US$234,619 in 2009, even though the number of actual units sold dropped from 108 to 60 over the same year.
“In 2009, the number of homes sold [on St Croix] fell from 187 to 172, even with an average price drop of 7.5% to US$356,954. Though condominium prices in St. Croix rose, condominium sales throughout the Territory were in even worse shape as only 152 units were sold that year—114 less than in 2008, even with an average price drop of around US$22,000 to US$251,832.
“Residential property sales peaked in 2004, when 587 homes and 551 condominium units were sold in the islands. Since then, property sales have been falling sharply—in 2009, only 298 homes and 152 condominium units were sold.
“The re-issuance of property tax bills in USVI after several years in abeyance has begun, with property owners receiving multiple bills and having to pay arrears from as far back as 2006. The USVI government, having to operate at an $800,000 a day deficit thanks to a federal injunction over property reassessment on the islands earlier in the decade, is expected to recoup at least some of the millions of dollars it had been losing in property taxes.
“Upcoming developments include construction of three new resort-casinos in St. Croix:
1. The USVI Legislature approved the issuance of a Coastal Zone Management (CZM) permit for the construction of the Robin Bay Seven Hills Beach Resort and Casino on the south shore of St. Croix. The first phase of the four-phase project is scheduled to break ground in early 2011 with the construction of a two-building luxury hotel, a casino, golf course, and 52 time-share units. However, financing is still a problem.
2. The Mills of St Croix – The proposed William and Punch resort development (in partnership with the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation) has dealt with its CZM permit renegotiations in July 2009 and had met with various US agencies such as the EPA, the Army Corps of Engineers, and the Fish and Wildlife Commission in June 2010. Pending approval of federal permits, signs are pointing to a possible groundbreaking by early 2011.
3. The proposed development by Golden Resorts at Great Pond Bay has stalled while Paul Golden is fighting the Virgin Islands Conservation Society over the validity of the CZM permit issued in 2004.”
Call any of our Coldwell Banker agents about these reports and to discuss in depth our St Croix real estate market.