I penned a piece for last Saturday's Wall Street Journal on St. Joe (NYSE:JOE), the largest private land owner in Florida. I know smart people on both sides of this, including one who buys the stock and puts it away for his kids. He believes over the long term it will do more than put them through college. The story's key point was that real estate stocks are like real estate -- you need to buy right.
A story in the St Petersburg Times over the weekend on St. Joe gives further reason to believe you might get a chance to buy it cheaper, assuming you think that swampy part of Florida will ever be a home-flipper's paradise. (Reality Check: If it happened in Las Vegas, with its convection oven-like summertime weather, it can happen anywhere.)
Speaking of St. Joe: On August 1 the company touted a land development deal it struck with Beazer Homes (NYSE:BZH). The fine print: Beazer has 120 days to back out. Is that like a call option that pretty much gives Beazer a chance to get a better feel for the market before deciding whether to go ahead with the transaction? A St. Joe spokesman declined comment; Beazer officials couldn't be reached.