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Sarasota Real Estate Blog

By Robert Schult | Agent in Sarasota, FL
  • Eagle Trace New Community in Lakewood Ranch Area

    Posted Under: General Area in 34202, Quality of Life in 34202, Home Buying in 34202  |  December 10, 2013 1:36 PM  |  473 views  |  No comments

    I had the opportunity today to tour the new Eagle Trace community located at the north end of Lakewood Ranch. Eagle Trace is being developed and built by local quality builder Neal Communities and celebrated a grand opening on December 7.  The neighborhood amenities are numerous and include gated entry, tennis court, pool, two dog parks and an outdoor entertainment area with a gas grill.  Typical of Neal Communities, the floor plans are well thought out and the model homes are decorated beautifully. Currently there are five single family home plans to choose from ranging from the 1772 square foot, three bedroom, two bathroom Freshwater 2 model that starts at $239,990 to the Sweetwater 2 model which has four bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 2443 square feet which is priced at $279,990.

    The Eagle Trace community also offers 2 bedroom and two bathroom paired villas ranging in size from 1434 square feet to 1524 square feet. The starting price for the villas is $191,990 which represents a tremendous value in the Lakewood Ranch real estate market.  With great amenities, wonderful floor plans and close proximity to all the wonderful things this area has to offer, Eagle Trace is sure to be hit with home buyers in the Lakewood Ranch area.

  • The Wonders of Lakewood Ranch

    Posted Under: Quality of Life in Lakewood Ranch, Parks & Recreation in Lakewood Ranch, In My Neighborhood in Lakewood Ranch  |  October 26, 2011 10:02 PM  |  954 views  |  No comments
    I was out taking pictures of homes and land for my customers in Lakewood Ranch and came upon this wonderful turtle..actually tortoise and thought I would share it with you:

  • Lakewood Ranch Real Estate News

    Posted Under: General Area in Lakewood Ranch, Quality of Life in Lakewood Ranch, Home Buying in Lakewood Ranch  |  June 17, 2011 10:02 AM  |  539 views  |  No comments
    A recent press release by SMR, the developer of Lakewood Ranch shows that the community is continuing to grow and thrive. Lakewood Ranch is an excellent location for your next home.

    Lakewood Ranch, FL (PRWEB) June 15, 2011

    Lakewood Ranch continues to buck state and national trends with several projects in the works over the remainder of 2011 that will infuse more than $100 million into the area.

    A number of private groups will join Lakewood Ranch developer Schroeder Manatee Ranch. (SMR) to bring a mix of homes, apartments, retail stores, schools and government offices to Lakewood Ranch, an area that has come back first in the real estate market and has already sold more than 170 new homes since the start of this year.

    The projects include the 380 acre neighborhood by Neal Communities that will eventually be home to 800 families with a 150,000-square foot shopping center. Neal has already sold 125 homes since the community opened in July of 2010. The LECOM School of Dental Medicine just broke ground on its 110,000 square foot building expected to cost $52 million and to be completed in 2012. The Lost Creek apartment complex is well underway and will offer 272 apartments at a cost of about $30 million and the first residents will move in this December. This is the first new apartment complex to be built in Manatee County in the past 10 years. Esplanade, the ranch’s first active adult community by Taylor Morrison is expected to break ground in August for sales to begin in early 2012 and will cost about $5 million to develop. These projects in addition to road improvements and several other smaller neighborhoods and office buildings in the works will make this area of Lakewood Ranch the fastest growing area in the state of Florida.

    "Lakewood Ranch is without a doubt the growth corridor in the region and the state right now," said Brian Kennelly, Lakewood Ranch Commercial Realty President. “We are a pocket of normalcy in the region and are coming out of the recession first due to the strength, stability and value that this area provides to buyers and business owners."

    The office space vacancy rate is consistently lower in Lakewood Ranch that in other areas in the region, with downtown Sarasota coming in at 13.67% vacancy, Bradenton coming in at 32.71% vacancy and Lakewood Ranch at 12.4%.

    On Main Street, Lakewood Ranch’s mixed use lifestyle center with restaurants, retail and family activities, sales are up 16 percent from this time last year and three new leases have been signed in the past 30 days. “The great thing about Main Street, that we envisioned from its inception, is that the residents here have really taken ownership of it,” says Kennelly, “it is the Lakewood Ranch gathering place and is the place for families and friends to come together for events, dining or shopping—we believe its success is a testament to having the right mix and our continued commitment to improve and grow the street.”

    The development boom furthers SMR’s goal of becoming a job center and economic hub with a mix of retail, residential and commercial properties intertwined with natural wetlands and preserves, making Lakewood Ranch the largest green certified master planned community in the country.

    The 8500 acre master planned community—ranked number 2 in the state of Florida and number 12 in the country by national real estate consulting firm John Burns consulting, began construction and development back in 1995 closer to University Parkway but ranch leaders see the area seeing the most growth this year, just north of state road 70 to be the eventual heart of the community. Others like ranch builder and developer Pat Neal have dubbed that section of Lakewood Ranch “the center of the universe.”

    There are 17 new home builders in Lakewood Ranch, with 40 new home models for prospective buyers to see and it is currently home to about 15,000 people and 12,000 jobs. There are more than 7000 homes in the community but only about 50 new homes and 150 resale homes are on the market. “After a market downturn, when recovery begins, there is a flight to safety—people want to buy where their value is safe,” said Milt Flinn, LWR Communities’ president. “Nothing is safer than building in a master planned community. Lakewood Ranch is a safe bet.” More than 160 homes are currently under construction in Lakewood Ranch, compared to about 80 this time last year. Lakewood Ranch is the 8,500-acre award winning master-planned community in Sarasota and Manatee counties on the West Coast of Florida. Just minutes from the Gulf Coast beaches, and cultural assets in Sarasota, Lakewood Ranch is already home to more 15,000 residents and features A-rated schools, a hospital, the Sarasota Polo Club, its own Main Street with theaters, shopping and dining, and four million square feet of commercial property

  • Lakewood Ranch Business

    Posted Under: General Area in Lakewood Ranch, Quality of Life in Lakewood Ranch, Home Buying in Lakewood Ranch  |  April 22, 2011 6:37 AM  |  419 views  |  No comments

    As in my past blogs, I like to share local news about the Lakewood Ranch area. Here is a wonderful program that is being considered in the Lakewood Ranch area. Another indication that Lakewood Ranch will continue to grow and prosper.  I am always ready to show you all that the "Ranch" has to offer.  This article is from today's Bradenton Herald. 

    Hafner: Lakewood Ranch best location for DEAL


    SARASOTA -- A day after one of his own trustees objected to the location of a proposed “economic acceleration” center, State College of Florida President Lars Hafner reiterated his commitment to locating the project in Lakewood Ranch.

    Speaking to the Sarasota County Economic Development Corp. on Thursday, Hafner said Lakewood Ranch is the best location to ensure equal access to Manatee and Sarasota counties. Hafner is seeking the support of both counties’ EDCs for the Design and Economic Acceleration Lab, a 10-acre complex devoted to attracting and retaining business to the southwest Florida region.

    “You can’t get any more specific in terms of neutrality,” Hafner told the EDC. When pressed by Sarasota Mayor Kelly Kirschner to consider a location along Sarasota’s north Tamiami Trail, Hafner said the project needs to be accessible to the Tampa area and have room for future expansion.

    Lakewood Ranch’s proximity to Interstate 75 and its developer’s willingness to commit 300 acres to the DEAL, make Lakewood Ranch the best location, Hafner said.

    “The most important thing is to get businesses here to the region and show them regional cooperation,” Hafner said. “I’m not so sure we have that any other place.”

    SCF Trustee Carlos Beruff had said Wednesday he opposed the DEAL because other locations would be less costly.

    While SCF is spearheading the push for support of the DEAL, the project is a joint effort among the college, the nonprofit Gulf Coast Community Foundation, and Schroeder-Manatee Ranch, Lakewood Ranch’s developer.

    Its main feature is a 72,000-square foot building that is envisioned to house several groups related to economic development, including the two EDCs.

    Hafner has now pitched the idea to members of the two EDCs and none have said when they will discuss it further.

    “We’re continuing to have a conversation and we’re happy to be included,” said Eric Basinger, president of the Manatee EDC.

    “But we’re focusing right now primarily on our job creation efforts. This is something we’ll consider for future planning.”

    Kathy Baylis, the outgoing head of the Sarasota EDC, said she plans to form a committee to explore the DEAL but did not offer a timeline.

    The DEAL’s mission would be to showcase all of the two counties’ potential assets to businesses looking to relocate to Manatee or Sarasota, or to expand their existing operations here.

    While Hafner is lobbying the two EDC groups to relocate their existing headquarters to the DEAL, he also said Thursday the project would be viable without their participation.

    The DEAL is proposed to be ready for tenants in late 2012, Hafner said Thursday.

  • Lakewood Ranch Real Estate

    Posted Under: General Area in Lakewood Ranch, Quality of Life in Lakewood Ranch, Home Buying in Lakewood Ranch  |  March 18, 2011 1:23 PM  |  486 views  |  No comments
    Lakewood Ranch has been ranked 2nd on the list of master planned communities in FL and 12th nationwide according to today's Bradenton Herald. If you haven't looked into this wonderful community, now is the time.

    LAKEWOOD RANCH -- A national real estate consulting firm has ranked Lakewood Ranch the No. 2 master-planned community in the state, after The Villages in Ocala.

    Lakewood Ranch also held the 12th spot nationally in the ranking by John Burns Real Estate Consulting, a firm with offices across the U.S. that specializes in housing research, advice and consulting.

    “We are so proud of this top nationwide ranking,” said Milt Flinn, president of LWR Communities.

    “We know that our strategic master plan -- incorporating our neighborhoods with amenities like parks and schools, shopping and recreation -- is one of the key reasons why Lakewood Ranch is so successful.”

    Lakewood Ranch is an 8,500-acre, master-planned community in Manatee and Sarasota counties.

    It is home to more than 15,000 residents.

    Among its many features are A-rated schools; a hospital; the Sarasota Polo Club; Main Street with theaters, shopping and dining; and 4 million square feet of commercial property, LWR officials said.

    A master-planned community is one that, from the beginning, is strategically mapped to insure walkability, a good fit with businesses and to provide a variety of amenities, according to Candice McElyea, director of marketing and public relations for Schroeder Manatee Ranch, Inc., developer of Lakewood Ranch.

    Such advance planning produces “a very desirable place to live,” she said.

    Although every developer has different goals in mind, at SMR, the focus has always been on walkability, she said.

    “Everything is convenient,” she said, adding that children can walk to school and families can walk to parks and to businesses. And there’s golf in the backyard.

    A respect for nature is also a key theme at LWR, she added.

    “Some developments are not necessarily master planned communities,” she said.

    “They wipe out all the trees, and put in the homes; in Lakewood Ranch, you’d be hard-pressed to find anything like that: Wetlands, nature preserves, big oaks, and nature is a really, really big part of our master plan here.”

    Read more: http://www.bradenton.com/2011/03/18/3043180/lwr-no-2-planned-community-in.html##ixzz1Gz5oGKyO
  • Lakewood Ranch Happenings

    Posted Under: Quality of Life in Lakewood Ranch, Parks & Recreation in Lakewood Ranch  |  March 16, 2011 12:03 PM  |  539 views  |  No comments

     Great things are always happening in Lakewood Ranch, FL. Check out this story from the March 16, 2011 Bradenton Herald

    LAKEWOOD RANCH -- A new 70-acre sports complex designed for soccer, rugby, flag football and more now has an anchor tenant, a first event, and will soon have a name.

    The Clearwater Chargers soccer program, established in 1975, is expanding to Lakewood Ranch, developer Schroeder-Manatee Ranch announced Tuesday.

    The Chargers will host tournaments, as well as a daily soccer program, recreational and competitive leagues and the U.S. Soccer Development Academy, SMR said in a press release.

    “This is just the beginning of an exciting initiative that will change the face of this region forever and create a sports mecca that will attract countless numbers of visitors and inject millions of dollars into our local economy for years to come,” said Rex Jensen, president and CEO of SMR.

    The addition of the Chargers gives local children access to top coaching and training, said Tim Mulqueen, Lakewood Ranch’s director of sports.

    Jensen once called the new sports complex a “sea of grass,” that will offer a massive number of fields.

    All those fields, 22 of them, were a major factor in the Chargers deciding to expand to Lakewood Ranch, said Robert O’Nan, president of the Clearwater Chargers.

    Tryouts for the soccer academy are set for May 4, with tryouts for the competitive team set for May 31.

    A Charger recreational league is envisioned this fall for children ages 4 to 19.

    The Chargers plan to bid on state cup championships to bring to the Lakewood Ranch and have plans for tournaments on Labor Day and Thanksgiving.

    The Chargers will host the Florida Youth Soccer Association tournament April 30, bringing 64 teams in for the inaugural event at the complex.

    Lakewood Ranch plans to announce the name and logo for the complex at a press conference at 10 a.m. Monday.

    Read more: http://www.bradenton.com/2011/03/16/3036653/clearwater-chargers-to-anchor.html#ixzz1GmuqaDa5
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