Southwest Florida has been drawing people looking for a second home in a warm subtropical atmosphere. People are drawn to the watersports, boating and all around fun in the sun on the Gulf of Mexico. There are also the top notch golf courses, fine dining restaurants, exclusive boutiques and quaint shops.
There is wide variety of cities and towns lining the coastline, from the cultural coast city of Sarasota to the quaint laid back town of Bradenton, situated around the mouth of the Tampa Bay. The culture and also the weather changes quite a bit up and down the west coast. Many times during the winter there is a 10 to 15 degree temperature difference from one end to the other. Plants that thrive in tropical Marco Island won’t make it through the occasional freeze in Brandenton.
Even with the cost of home owner’s insurance, the yearly threat of hurricanes and other problems, approximately one thousand people relocate to Florida every day and lots of them come to Sarasota County.
Buyers looking for a second home have discovered the Naples area is too pricey and are looking north to Sarasota, where home prices are better and there are more and better cultural amenities. Sarasota County is the more affordable choice, between those two property options. Bargain hunting investors and buyers looking for a second home have discovered that the price for a waterfront property is about half that of other areas.
Countless newcomers are drawn to Sarasota for the cultural amenities like the Asolo Theater, the Sarasota Ballet and the well-respected Sarasota Opera, as well as world class golf courses, pristine sandy beaches and watersports in the Gulf of Mexico or Sarasota Bay.
Sarasota has all the advantages of a large city but is a small community where everyone knows each other. Buyers looking for a second home are adventuresome and find this the perfect place. There is a large variety of buyers from all over the world that are discovering Sarasota. They have been coming here since 1910, when Chicago socialite, Bertha Palmer, built her winter home here.
Circus magnate, John Ringling, established Sarasota as a winter home for his circus in 1927. When he died, the state of Florida inherited his museum and his Venetian home on Sarasota Bay.
Dramatically changing the skyline, downtown Sarasota is booming with newly constructed condo towers. The place to been seen is the Saturday Farmers Market on Main Street and Lemon Avenue. Crescent Beach, on Sarasota’s shoreline, has fine powdery white sand, like powdered sugar. Sarasota was described as the best small city in America by Money magazine and the most romantic location for well off mature singles by Fortune magazine. In today’s market it can be hard to locate a newly built downtown condo priced under $600,000, but some units on Gulf Stream Avenue, in older buildings, in need of some work, can be had for considerably less.
There is an area south of downtown that is in great demand for bay front communities. Among the most prestigious are Cherokee Park and Harbor Acres. Bird Key is an island that was filled and dredged in 1960 by Arvida. It possesses some of the most opulent newly constructed mansions in the city.
Fabulous shorelines, world class golfing, nature at its finest beauty and the warm Florida sunshine make the Gulf Coast of Florida an ideal place to purchase your second home away from home.