Mike, Home Buyer in Connecticut

I am thinking of buying a condo in the Reserve at Naples as a winter vacation home. Is this a good idea with?

Asked by Mike, Connecticut Fri May 1, 2009

all the rentals there

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Nathan Lacor…, Agent, Naples, FL
Sat May 2, 2009
It was supposed to be an apartment rental place then turned into an apartment conversion when it got started, lot's of rentals and unstability throughout the association. I would steer clear of it in the short run until they get some real residents in the place. As a NEW owner your the one having to suck up all the unpaid condo dues from other owners who quit paying. You need some low pressure good buying advice please send me your criteria and we can fire you off a list of hanpicked units in communties we know are safe.

Nathan LaCorte
Main: 828-215-5603
Toll#: 800-590-6856
Fax: 239-236-0282
Sand Castle Realty
1 vote
Nathan, It's been almost seven years since you wrote the above reply re "Reserve", would you please give me your current reply?
Rich H.
Flag Thu Mar 24, 2016
Ted Epstein, , Naples, FL
Fri May 1, 2009

The Reserve, along with many other communities, currently has numerous properties for sale at really great prices. Thinking of purchasing a home in Naples as a winter vacation home is a great idea with so many properties to choose from at prices we haven't seen since 2001 - 2004 in most communities.

Your best bet is to work with a Realtor. As a buyer, there is no cost to you. If you'd like me to do specific searches, among the thousands of properties available, that meet your specific criteria, please contact me. Or visit http://www.WOWnaples.com to do some property searches on your own.

- Ted

Ted Epstein, REALTOR®, e-PRO
Prudential Florida Realty
621 Fifth Avenue South
Naples, FL 34102
Direct: 239-249-0699
Web Reference:  http://www.WOWnaples.com
1 vote
Jerry Ippoli…, Home Buyer, Naples, FL
Thu Mar 20, 2014
I'm a full-time resident in a community about a mile away; have lived in Naples since 2004 when I was a renter during at The Reserve and through the period that the conversion took place. This complex was designed as a higher-end apartment complex; albeit, much more of a "pedestrian" clientele; converted in second and third quarters of 2005. As I'm presently investing in several properties in the area, I'm a "watcher" of coming and going for any place / community that I'd buy (or consider buying) in - much of what I see at Reserve is still a bit "shaky"; indeed, if you want to call me a "profiler" you may do so. Indeed, lots of left-over impact of the greed of 2003-2007 and lots of foreclosures -- for instance, one, one bedroom unit recently sold for $33,000 as reported in this past Sunday's Naples News Real Estate section - Collier County Records. As I'm very close to the market, is avoid this complex and

1. most of the apartment conversions are a bit "shaky" and have inordinately high fees, especially for a vacation home / apt -- face it, how much foosball or billiards can you play, or gym use in a few weeks or weekends a year

2. most of the conversions (as well as condos) have elaborate community / recreation centers - excellent if the conversion is to a long-term care facility, but anybody with mobility and a car can access better recreation at lesser expense than these facilities require upkeep and HOA fees for

3. proceed with great caution when selecting realtors in Naples - best to use the recommendation of a friend or acquaintance (true in any case and in any community as far as I'm concerned); I've been investing in property for thirty year and have never encountered as many ill-qualified; lazy; unethical realtors as I have here in Naples -- The key is: Dress pretty; talk a sweet line; "snooker the sucker"; collect the commission
0 votes
Much more secure investment, although more expensive and worth it, would be The Cove; Condos at Wilshire Lakes (Fieldstone); definitely higher end and worth it; possible the apt conversions at St. Croix - probably more stable than Reserve - converted just a bit earlier and nicer facility in higher-end area. There is soooo much on the market, my suggestion to anybody is to rent, although apartments are high in price but worth the opportunity to do personal research; then buy during the summer months when prices always take a big dip. Also, while foreclosures seem like a great buy, typically after your sweat equity in fix-up (most are trashed) and well as irritation to do the deal, they're really at market price -- so why not just buy at market ? !!! Also, if a foreclosure is of your interest, be absolutely certain that you have a savvy Real estate atty to take you through the process or you can be very, very burned in the transaction as you can inherit obligations of the former owner
Flag Thu Mar 20, 2014
Bschipper, Home Buyer, Naples, FL
Thu Jun 4, 2009
As the former President of The Board, and a current owner, I can state unequivocally that the Association is being well run and properly funded. When the Developer defaulted, they left the Association with a very poorly constructed budget, and some deficits. Those issues were corrected through:

1.) Budget cuts to eliminate non-essential services (e.g., $1,200 a month for a security company).
2.) Adopting a very strict collections policy and finding an attorney with a proven record.
3.) Adding a bad debt line-item in the 2009 budget to cover non-paying owners.
4.) Asking owners to pay for some services individually (as opposed to bulk contracts) such as cable television and water.
5.) Continually monitoring the budget to for additional cost-saving opportunities.

The result is that all vendors have been paid in full, we can cover all projected expenses, and the community is being properly managed. Our HOAs are collected monthly and represent the true cost of operating the Association. That is, unlike many developer-operated properties, no one is subsidizing our dues.

The current Board is very active and is comprised of all full-time owners and Bank of America. Most owners are active and care about the property. I would caution you that the Board and property management company have strict rules in place to ensure the community remains well-maintained and secure. Strict rules are in place regarding tenants, guests, and collections, and I would recommend you read the governing documents and related resolutions to ensure that you are knowledgeable about the restrictions.

Lastly, I would encourage anyone interested in buying to both browse the community website at: http://www.reserveatnaples.org as well as review our financials and budget. The community is seeing most of the delinquent owners being foreclosed on, and the foreclosed units being under-priced. As a result, the foreclosures are being resold quickly. If you live on property, you know the construction is superior to most other condominiums or townhomes, and that most owners and renters are either young professionals or retirees wanting to either downsize or have a second home.

I hope this is useful information.

0 votes
Rosemary Lan…, Agent, Naples, FL
Sun May 3, 2009

I have to agree with Skip Caron. I just sold a unit in the Reserve this morning, to a lovely family from Canada. This is a lovely well maintained community. There was a special assessment, but the monthly Assocaition fees are very low for the area. The community as a whole is very well run.

I would be happy to go over the units I showed this weekend and list the best ones we saw. Give me a call. My web page is below and my number is on it.
Web Reference:  http://www.rosellsnaples.com
0 votes
Brian and Di…, Agent, Naples, FL
Sat May 2, 2009
Hi Mike
I hate to disagree with my peers. Cash buyers are of course easier to purchase in the Reserve. I currently have several of them under contract with investors, the reason why is because it is at a price that is well below the comparable properties in Naples. The biggest problem that the Reserve had was a developer that was going bankrupt. Bank of America has taken those units over rented them and are paying the associattion fees for those units. Also, because a home owner currrently is not paying their association fees it is a senior lean here in Florida and on a short sale which those properties are those fees are paid at closing. the problem was when there were developer units and short sale units that were not paying. That is not the case now. It is an investor product but there are a lot of people who have bought them for personal use. I hope thois clears up what is happening at the Reserve If you have any further questions please feel free to call me at 239-659-3272 or email me at bcaron@kw.com

Good Luck Skip
Web Reference:  http://www.caronhometeam.com
0 votes
Ken Lowe, Agent, Naples, FL
Sat May 2, 2009
The association at the Reserve is unstable. The outcome of this is that a purchase would likley have to be for cash and dues could be very high until the usnits turn over to stable owners. There are several options in our market to purchase at a good value but I believe that since the volume of sales is on an upward trend, we may have seen the bottom.

I think it is a great time to buy and would be happy to share my reasons why.

Ken Lowe - Realtor Partner
The Tropical Team
Chairman’s Circle Diamond
Prudential Florida Realty
Let Me Help You Put Your Footprints In The Sand!!!
0 votes
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