For Strong Business Investment, Sarasota is putting Florida on the Map

HuB, the largest private co-work/incubator spaces in Florida

The HuB is the largest private provider of co-work/incubator spaces in Florida.

Recently, the “who’s who” of Florida business leaders visited Sarasota and learned that our beautiful community is more than just a pretty little beach town or just a place to go for fine dining and a night at the theatre. Sarasota County has officially blossomed as a vibrant business environment with local economy that is reaching well beyond tourism and construction dollars and setting the pace for strong long-term growth. 

During a 2-day meeting, 65 board members of Enterprise Florida, Florida’s leading marketer for inbound business investment opportunities, convened and learned about a number of Southwest Florida’s business developments.  What they learned about Sarasota County pleasantly surprised them and it just may surprise you too.  Here are a few of the highlights:

  • Sarasota County is home to a large number of manufacturers including PGT, Tervis, L-3 Aviation Recorders, CAE Healthcare, Hoveround and Sun Hydraulics.  Having such strong presence in the manufacturing industry allowed for $300,000 in funding to go to the Sarasota County Technical Institute so that proper equipment could be purchased for their precision machining program.   

  • Another eye-opener for the board members was Sarasota County’s emerging life-science industry.  Three local companies Voalte, RPS and Lakewood Amadex received a combined total of $48 million in funding from private-equity firms for the continuation of life-saving work in research and technology.

  • Lastly, Sarasota County is home to the HuB, the largest provider of private co-work/incubator spaces in Florida.  While it is not a new concept, it is a growing trend that works well for freelancers, programmers, and budding business owners by offering them a “workplace” and a chance to network with other business professionals, while keeping their overhead costs manageable.  The HuB, located on Fruitville Road, recently expanded their facility to approximately 15,000 square feet.

All of this progress has put Florida on the radar screen for many significant business-investment projects and is encouraging  more globally competitive companies to consider moving to our state and possibly, to our region.  This in turn, will create more jobs, strengthen our local tax base and bring more support to local services – a true picture of a recovering economy and brighter days ahead for Sarasota County.

Just Sold: Casa Al Mare located at 2016 Casey Key Road

Casa al Mare:  Built in 2010, this Gulf to Bay property sold on August 29, 2014 for $6.2 million

Casa al Mare: Built in 2010, this Gulf to Bay property sold on August 29, 2014 for $6.2 million

I’m pleased to report the sale of my listing, Casa Al Mare, on Casey Key which closed on August 29, 2014. This gulf to bay property with its stunning classical Italian interiors in the 2010-built home, sold for $6.2 million.

After spending more than a year searching up and down Florida’s East Coast, and West Coast, the buyers arrived in Sarasota, and fell in love. Casey Key afforded them the privacy and natural beauty they sought, plus close proximity to Sarasota’s restaurants, cultural events, and easy fly in, fly out convenience. Walton and I look forward to having them as neighbors and sharing what we love about our paradise. The sellers are not leaving the area, so we will continue enjoying their company as well.

If you are interested in buying or selling property, please contact me for further details.

10 SW Florida Homes Ready to Make Your Beachfront Dreams a Reality

Ohana on Longboat Key:  Gulf-side pool and chiki hut overlooking the Gulf of Mexico.

Ohana on Longboat Key: Gulf-side pool and chiki hut overlooking the Gulf of Mexico.

Almost everyone, at one point or another, dreams of spending a relaxing day on the beach with a cool drink in hand and their toes in the sand.  For some, this may just be a dream of a vacation getaway, but for many, it is a dream of a blissful lifestyle.  Imagine walking out your front or back door and only a few steps away, having a beautiful stretch of beach that is all your own to enjoy every single day.

If having a beachfront home is your dream, Michael Saunders & Company just posted 10 homes that are ready to help you bring that dream to life and three of the homes on the list are my listings:  Ohana on Longboat Key and Villa de Napoli and Satori on Casey Key.

Set upon 2.57 pristine acres on the Gulf of Mexico, Ohana is truly a rare private retreat composed of an enclave of organic structures.  The home includes three pavilions that will make you feel like you are living in a Balinese luxury resort and provides enough space for you, your extended family and your guests.

Villa de Napoli:  Outdoor seating area, poolside

Villa de Napoli: Outdoor seating area, poolside


With 100 feet of water frontage on the Gulf of Mexico, Villa de Napoli is a resplendent gulf-to-bay residence on Casey Key that will “wow” you with its detailed finishes and its views. Built in 2003, this home has just about every amenity you can think of such as 5 generous en-suite bedrooms, a spa-like master suite, ample room for outdoor dining and entertaining, and 4 balconies facing the Gulf where you can watch and enjoy the sunset every evening.

Satori on Casey Key:  Gulf-side pool with the Gulf of Mexico just a few steps away.

Satori on Casey Key: Gulf-side pool with the Gulf of Mexico just a few steps away.

And last but not least, Satori on Casey Key, which also offers 100 feet of water frontage on the Gulf of Mexico is a beautifully appointed, contemporary home that was newly constructed in 2012-2013.  This smart house combined with a design that was meant to fill the home with natural light allows you to create the perfect ambiance.  The amazing gulf-side pool, which is wrapped by terraces and Zen-like gardens creates an atmosphere that is perfect for gracious entertaining or just relaxing in a tropical paradise.

Click here to see the other seven homes that made Michael Saunders’ list of “10 Dreamy Beachfront Homes.”

If you are interested in buying or selling property, please contact me for further details.

 

“All the numbers point to a very healthy 2014 for Sarasota County real estate.”

 

July has always been known as a quiet “Florida month” and is when the real estate market typically sees a little bit of a lull.  Even though the number of residential sales, according to the Sarasota Association of Realtors® was down 11.4% from the previous month, I would have to say a total of 928 closed residential real estate transactions along with another 834 sales pending for the month of July is still a pretty busy ”lull.”  I can personally attest to July not being much of a “slow” month, as I counted 19 showings in eleven days.

Sarasota Association of Realtors president, Peter Crowley states that “all the numbers point to a very healthy 2014 for Sarasota County real estate,” and he was not only speaking about the total number of sales for the first 7 months of 2014; which is still ahead of last year’s near record sales pace.  He is also referring to the fact that for the first time in 6 years, the median sales price for single family homes and condominiums has surpassed the $200,000 price point; with single family homes at $201,000 and condominiums at $205,000.

Additionally, inventory levels dropped below 4,000 in July 2014 to 3,912 compared to last July when inventory stood at only 3,747, which was the low point in the recent market.  What low inventory and rising median sales prices translates to is that we still remain in a seller’s market.

With the number of increased showings I have and continue to experience even into mid-August, I have no doubt that 2014 will be another prosperous year for the record books!

If you are interested in buying or selling property, please contact me for further details.

“People want to come to Sarasota, now more than ever!”

June2014SARStatLast year was an historic year for property sales in Sarasota County, but 2014 is shaping up to be record-book worthy as well.  The first six months of 2014 posted the second highest number of residential sales in the Association’s 91-year history, averaging nearly 1,000 sales per month at a total of 5,956.  June is the fourth month in a row with over 1,000 residential sales topping out at 1,048 sales.

Adding to June’s high number of sales is the increase of the median sales figures for both condos and single family homes.  Since 2013, condos and single family homes are equaled and the median sales prices sits at $195,000, which is substantially ahead of last year’s figures and is indicative of a strong rebound for our region’s real estate market.

June is typically when we see a significant slow-down of traffic and in business, but so far this summer that has not been the trend, especially for real estate.  Peter Crowley, Sarasota Association of Realtors President states, “We are continuing to see heavy foot traffic at open houses and at brokerages across the county.”  Even the decrease in road traffic seems to be minimal and some are even reporting that there seems to be an unusually high number of visitors this summer.  According to Peter Crowley, “People want to come to Sarasota, now more than ever.”

Inventory levels dropped again in June 2014 to 4,196 from May’s figure of 4,513, a fairly significant one month decline of 7 percent . Last June , inventory stood at only 3,758 homes and condos for sale in the county.  The low point in the recent market was in July 2013 at 3,747, far lower than the current level. The month’s supply of inventory stood at 4.6 for single family and 4.2 for condos. Last month, those figures were 5.0 and 4.6 respectively, and last year at this time they were 4.2 and 4.3, respectively.

With the number of increased showings I am experiencing, and buyers settling into a real “buy” mode, I am confident the remainder of the year will continue to see good results and properties changing hands.

If you are interested in buying or selling property, please contact me for further details.

An Active Summer on Casey Key

 

Direct beach front, just outside your door.

Backyard view of 321 Casey Key Road.

Hard to believe we are in mid-July already. Most of the Casey Key homeowners are probably enjoying their summer homes elsewhere. Meanwhile, we are having an active summer of closings and pending sales on the Key. Here’s what’s happening:

So far in 2014, we have had 9 sales of single family residences, and one vacant land sale. The homes that have sold are:

2014 CASEY KEY SINGLE FAMILY HOME SALES

ADDRESS

SOLD
DATE

LIST
PRICE

SOLD
PRICE

LAND
SF

HEATED
SF

WATER
FRONTAGE

88 N CASEY KEY RD

2/18/2014

$1,695,000

$1,475,000

36,651

3,424

BAY

3920 CASEY KEY RD

3/13/2014

$1,450,000  

$1,400,000

13,725

2,932

BAY

740 N CASEY KEY RD

4/15/2014

$2,749,000  

$2,275,000

21,889

3,812

GULF TO BAY

508 S CASEY KEY RD

4/25/2014

$2,300,000  

$2,043,000

33,443

2,342

GULF

621 CASEY KEY RD

5/16/2014

$2,295,000  

$2,050,000

32,807

1,140

GULF

1166 CASEY KEY RD

6/2/2014

$1,790,000  

$1,520,000

19,589

3,759

Non-Water 

510 N CASEY KEY RD

6/30/2014

$2,250,000  

$2,100,000

46,838

1,987

BAY

1700 CASEY KEY RD

6/30/2014

$3,300,000  

$3,000,000

18,113

4,172

GULF TO BAY 

1900 CASEY KEY RD

2/18/2014

$3,495,000  

$2,940,000

135,036

3,502

GULF TO BAY

 

2014 CASEY KEY VACANT LAND SALES

ADDRESS

SOLD
DATE

LIST
PRICE

SOLD
PRICE

LAND
SF

WATER
FRONTAGE

4019 CASEY KEY RD

1/29/2014

$2,950,000

$2,500,000

44,429

GULF

 

2014 CASEY SINGLE FAMILY HOMES PENDING

ADDRESS

LIST
PRICE

LAND
SF

HEATED
SF

WATER
FRONTAGE

507 S CASEY KEY RD

$997,000

16,759

1,456

BAY

412 S CASEY KEY RD

$1,199,990

16,271

3,983

GULF

325 CASEY KEY RD

$1,199,999

13,636

892

GULF

321 CASEY KEY RD

$1,299,000

11,301

1,070

GULF

805 CASEY KEY RD

$2,895,000

22,680

2,255

GULF

920 CASEY COVE

$899,000

8,664

2,705

BAY

2014 CASEY SINGLE FAMILY HOMES “ACTIVE WITH CONTRACT”

1156 CASEY KEY RD

$1,100,000

21,034

1,717

BAY

540 N CASEY KEY RD

$4,050,000

36,160

4,494

BAY


What you will notice is that all of these sales are $3 million and below with only one “active with contract” property above $ 4 million at this time. That being said, I am very optimistic that before year end we will see some of the higher end properties selling. Showing activity has been picking up recently that I am aware of, and I remain super optimistic. Stay tuned.

As you drive the key, you’ll notice the various stages of construction going on. One of these is a spec home at 3801 Casey Key, getting almost close to being complete. The vacant gulf side lot at 3807 Casey Key, on the market for years, is now under contract, so we should be seeing signs of construction there in the near future. The gulf side lot in the 3900 block adjacent to Gulf Surf Resort, is now under construction. The unique modern home at 3258 Casey Key is getting close to completion.  I think we were all pleased to see the cyclone fence installed at the vacant gulf front lot near Blackburn Point and Casey Key Road, now preventing the parking lot that it had turned into. A Carl Abbott designed home is planned for that parcel spanning 290 feet on the Gulf of Mexico.

Now, let’s review what’s going on elsewhere. At a recent Michael Saunders & Company sales meeting, we heard a representative from Benderson Development discuss a handful of commercial shopping center projects underway they have been holding onto for several years. The time is ripe for developing these and the good news for Casey Key residents is that the one located at Blackburn Point and US 41 is slated for full speed ahead on the remodeling front. Although he would not say specifically, it was mentioned that a grocery store is planned for the center. You probably know that Richard’s Food Emporium reopened there a few months ago and expanded its offerings.

And what about the new condominium developments in downtown Sarasota, Lido Key and Longboat Key? Those areas have been lacking “new development” for some time now. There will soon be some great looking modern buildings to choose from:  Vue Sarasota Bay (Gulfstream and US 41 intersection); Sansara (near Burns Court) The Jewel (Main Street–sold out), One 88 (Golden Gate Point), Aqua (Golden Gate Point) is said to be back on track after a zoning hurdle; Aria and Infinity (on Longboat Key), and finally Park Residences of Lido Key. If you would like additional information on any of these condominiums, please contact me for details as reservations are limited for some of them.

And finally, as of this date, there are 53 homes available for sale listed at $5 million plus throughout Sarasota and Manatee counties; three are “active with contract” and there have been 3 sales this year above $5 million:  one on Bird Key, and two on Siesta Key, with the highest at $10.25 million for the property at 4300 Higel Avenue.

Have a great rest of the summer and I’ll report again soon!

Just Listed – 3210 Casey Key Road, Nokomis FL

Roofed cabana with walkover to the beach.

Relax under the roofed cabana or use the walkover to head to beautiful Casey Key Beach.

It is my pleasure to introduce to you the Coastal Cottages on Casey Key, a gulf-to-bay property that offers amenities that embody a serene lifestyle – a quality that seems long-lost from most beach communities.

Here, you can have a selection of boats docked at the 7,000 lb renovated lift or  use the separate kayak launch and spend your days out on the gulf waters with the pelicans and the dolphins, soaking up the Florida sun and the salt air.

If you prefer something even more relaxing, sprawl out underneath the roofed cabana and enjoy the gulf breeze and melodic sounds of the waves, or stroll the walkover to the wide, sandy beach and go shelling.

This property has two structures; a 2/2 cottage that is ready for immediate occupancy and another that is ready for your finishing touches.  The property is listed at $2,995,000.

Sarasota Poised For New Development

If you have looked to the skyline in our region lately, you may have noticed the presence of construction cranes in the backdrop.  As Michael Saunders put it, these cranes are “highly visible displays of confidence in the region’s commercial real estate market,” but they are more than just a sign of commercial growth; these cranes represent a major transformation for the Sarasota/Manatee area.

By the time construction is completed, well over a quarter of a billion dollars in new construction will have been spent throughout the region, adding almost 1,000 hotel rooms, close to 1,500 residential condominiums and prominent retail centers committed to bringing in well-known luxury brands from all across the country and our commercial landscape will have evolved into something spectacular.

Rendering of the Mall at University Town Center

Rendering of the Mall at University Town Center

The most anticipated retail center is the Mall at University Town Center, one of only two enclosed malls of major size and scope under construction in the entire U.S.  The developer’s financial commitment to our region has encouraged many of the nation’s premier luxury retailers to eagerly follow suit.

A rendering of VUE Sarasota Bay

A rendering of VUE Sarasota Bay

For downtown Sarasota’s bay front, be prepared for what is being hailed as an iconic representation of Sarasota’s history and an important laboratory for mid-century modern architecture – a genre that is indigenous to our region and studied by architectural students worldwide. VUE Sarasota Bay is set to break ground soon and will feature an 18-story condominium as well as partner with a new Westin Hotel.

Our region already enjoys influx of visitors who enjoy our status as Florida’s cultural mecca with some of the top-ranked beaches in the world.  However, with our emerging status as an international sporting destination, our region is set to increase its tourism appeal and subsequently, its tourism dollars and our commercial landscape is ready to meet those demands.

Aerial view of Nathan Benderson Park, where the 2017 World Rowing Championships will be held

Aerial view of Nathan Benderson Park, where the 2017 World Rowing Championships will be held

Still, the evolving commercial landscape doesn’t just stop with tourism.  Tourism growth brings on a demand for residential and commercial properties, it brings new businesses to the area and thus, increases productivity, employment, property values, investment, and tax revenue – sending the Sarasota/Manatee region into a cycle of prosperity.

Sales Activity Heating up on Casey Key

My listing at 3920 Casey Key Road sold on April 15, 2014

My listing at 3920 Casey Key Road sold on April 15, 2014

Sales activity on Casey Key seems to be heating up this month!  April has seen one sale; which was my listing at 3920 Casey Key Road; this property was under contract in just 30 days, and closed in 62 days; 6 other properties went under contract this month.

Based on the increase in showing activity, especially with the higher end properties, it appears we should be in for a steady summer and into the fall with sales.  Calls to the Michael Saunders & Company call center for showing appointments saw a 20% increase in the month of March when compared to March 2013.

Sales Activity on Casey Key

Casey Key has the following sales thus far in 2014. I represented the seller at 3920 Casey Key; I listed and sold 1900 Casey Key.

Property
Address
Sold
Date
List
Price
Sold
Price
Land
SF
Heated
SF
Water
Frontage
3920 Casey Key 4/15/2014 $1,450,000 $1,400,000 13,725 2,932 Bay
88 N Casey Key 3/13/2014 $1,695,000 $1,475,000 36,651 3,424 Bay
1900 Casey Key 2/18/2014 $3,495,000 $2,940,000 135,036 3,502 Gulf to Bay

 

 

 

 


The following Casey Key properties are currently pending. I represent the seller and the buyer at 740 N Casey Key.

Property
Address
List
Price
Land
SF
Heated
SF
Water
Frontage
412 S Casey Key $1,199,990 16,271 3,983 Gulf to Bay
510 N Casey Key $2,250,000 46,838 1,987 Bay
621 Casey Key $2,295,000 32,807 1,140 Gulf
508 S Casey Key $2,300,000 33,443 2,342 Gulf
740 N Casey Key $2,749,000 21,889 3,812 Gulf to Bay
1700 Casey Key $3,300,000 18,113 4,172 Gulf to Bay

 

 

 

 

 

 


As you can see, properties listed up to around $3 million seem to be the sweet spot for sales presently; however, I anticipate that changing before year end based on showings and increased interest in the laid-back lifestyle of Casey Key  when compared to other areas. Additionally, land value on Casey Key seems a bargain when compared to what is being paid elsewhere in the county.

‘Ohana – What Makes this Retreat-Like Home so Unique?

PLEASE CLICK ON IMAGE FOR BROCHURE

‘Ohana on Longboat Key is this magnificent enclave of structures that lives a like a private retreat, taking full advantage of sun, surf and sand.  Living on Florida’s gulf coast, finding homes that “live like a retreat” and offer some of the most spectacular water and sunset views is not uncommon yet, there is not another gulf front property quite like ‘Ohana.  So what makes ‘Ohana so unique?

Everything about this home was done with meticulous consideration, from the carefully designed landscaping with over 60 varieties of palms and tropical plants to the hand-selected cypress pillars, Douglas fir beams and white oak flooring.  Unlike most homes in southwest Florida, ‘Ohana’s architectural influences did not come from the Florida Keys, the Caribbean, or even from the Mediterranean region, nor did it come from inside the pages of Modern Architecture, but instead found its inspiration in Balinese and coastal South African resort architecture, combining aesthetic principles, use of natural materials, and extraordinary craftsmanship.

Michael Saunders describes ‘Ohana as pure magic and there couldn’t be a better description as this home magically blends the expanse of more than 2.5 acres and over 9,000 square feet of total living space with the warm, cozy feeling of a true family home. Consisting of three pavilions, and a separate beach house, family members and guests alike can bask in privacy, but at the same time seclusion does not become the only option, as the pavilions are connected and lead to indoor and outdoor living spaces designed to host large gatherings and celebrate family togetherness.

Click below to see the full brochure on ‘Ohana.