Just a few months ago there were over 800 (of approx. 5500 totoal ) properties on the market in Lakewood Ranch and now there are less than 200. Some enclaves (subdivisions) like Riverwalk Grove where I lived had primarily short sales and a few bank-owned (REO) properties. There were over 30 homes to choose from and they sold from $180k-$207k.. Two months ago there was only one on the market, I listed and sold a home within 3 weeks for $202,000. Another sold at $259,000. In my opinion this neighborhood bottomed out and was down from the approx. $300,000+ range at the peak.
Because of its amenities and location, Lakewood Ranch was and still has so much to offer. It is a planned community; newer homes; lots of parks;miles of bike paths; deed-restricted; family oriented; excellent school districts; multiple golf courses; convenient shopping centers with large new planned regional centers; their own town hall, etc.. In spite of what we read, the majority of LR does not have a high percentage of abandoned or neglected propertiess and I would suggest finding a competent local realtor to address your concerns. I have lived in SRQ for 10 years and have found LR to be one of the few neighborhoods with a high percentage of families with school-aged children.
I would be happy to create a report on MLS which provides a multitude of property choices to meet your needs along with statistics verifying my statistics. Recently the greater Sarasota area was picked #1 in Undervalued cities in the US on the Today Show, #5 undervalued by US News; and #10 for college towns by Forbes magazine. Our area is known as the Cultural Coast because of SRQ art, culture, and sophistication. And we do not have serious traffic problems.
Should you have further questions, please feel to drop me an email.
(Personal website under construction)