The Sunshine State Shines Again: Northern Florida’s Best Real Estate Investment Opportunities


With the recession – and previous overbuilding – now digested, Florida is again a real estate growth area. Unlike South Florida, where home prices have mostly rebounded, homes are still under-priced in the North, especially in Gainesville, Ocala, and Deltona-Daytona Beach. Demand for construction loans and mortgages will be especially strong in Osceola, St. Johns, and Seminole Counties. Single-family homes converted to rentals can be successful investments throughout the area, but especially in Osceola and Flagler Counties.

Northern Florida was first developed as an agricultural area, much like the Central Valley in California, and is today a major source of fruit and potted plants. The mild climate encouraged population inflow, first along the coast but eventually inland where land was cheaper. Better transportation also encouraged an inflow of retirees, largely from the Midwest. The development by Disney of a destination near Orlando jump-started what is now a large tourism industry.

Real estate development in North Florida is quite different from that in South Florida, which is limited to the coasts by lack of land. As the northern urban centers grow, the best opportunities for investment are in the semi-rural surrounding country where agricultural land is available for development. The types of jobs being created in the region are mainly in services, healthcare and retail stores to support the expanding population, generally jobs with modest pay. Subprime loans – and the foreclosures that followed – affected all markets in Florida, but less so in the North.

For more information about the bustling investment real estate market in North Florida, contact a member of the 9 Core Realty team.



SWFL Housing Starts Up To Decade High Levels


The boomers are blowing up the new home market in Southwest Florida.

Housing starts surged to the fastest rate in a decade during the third quarter, and the demand from new and upcoming retirees will continue to grow, according to a new report by data supplier MetroStudy.

Builders broke ground on 1,488 single-family units in the region during the July-September period, a 14.5 percent gain over the year.

That was the top three months for home starts since third-quarter 2006, said Tony Polito, regional director of MetroStudy’s Sarasota-Bradenton market.

The still early days of baby boomers turning 65, coupled with good job growth and low interest rates, all fueled the best post-recession quarter for housing starts activity in Sarasota/Bradenton.

The pace of new construction has been strong all year. Housing starts in the first and second quarters also were the highest marks since 2006.

The third-quarter numbers translate to 5,576 annual starts, which beats last year’s rate by 27.3 percent.

Buyers closed on 1,313 new single-family homes in the quarter, some 23 percent ahead of 2015.

Because of retiree demand, there will continue to be growth in starts and closings in Sarasota over the next few years. This does not mean 2003-2006 levels, but demand should continue to grow.

For more information about housing starts and real estate investment in SWFL contact 9 Core Realty.

Fulfillment of Vision for Babcock Ranch Unfolding


Homes by Towne, Stock Development, Fox Premier Builders and Florida Lifestyle Homes continue to build furnished model residences in the community’s Lake Timber neighborhood, Master Developer Kitson & Partners announced that infrastructure installation and construction of Phase I of the Downtown District continue to progress as scheduled at Babcock Ranch, a new 18,000-acre eco-centric, solar powered town being developed by Kitson east of Fort Myers, off State Road 31 in Charlotte County.

Lake Timber is the first residential neighborhood at Babcock Ranch. Completed models are expected to be open for viewing in early 2017. Castle Harbour Homes is expected to begin construction of its first model by the end of December. Each home at Babcock Ranch is being built to Florida Green Building Coalition Certification standards.

Fulfillment of Kitson’s vision for Babcock Ranch continues to unfold at a remarkable pace. The roadways from State Road 31 leading to the Downtown District and through the Lake Timber neighborhood have been completed and the last parking area at Founder’s Square is scheduled to be completed by next week. Installation of brick pavers throughout Founder’s Square will begin mid-December.

The trusses and guardrails at Babcock Ranch’s signature bridge showcases views of Lake Babcock and Lake Timber have been installed and lighting, pedestrian column, and railing installation is underway and scheduled for completion within the next two weeks. Landscaping at the entrance off State Road 31 and along the main boulevard is 75 percent complete. Landscaping within the Lake Timber neighborhood is underway and will be completed by early 2017. More than 300 trees and 4,000 grasses and plants have been installed to date. Construction of a boardwalk along the banks of Lake Babcock at Founder’s Square is nearing completion.

To learn more about purchasing a build to rent home in Babcock Ranch, contact a member of the 9 Core Realty team.

Why Real Estate Investors Should be Looking at Build-To-Rent Homes


The glory days of buying a cheap home that has been foreclosed upon have all but dried up in most markets. The boom from 2008 to 2012 has subsided and home prices are now again on the rise. The rental market is still a strong asset for investors and a new breed of property ownership is helping to build capital for housing industry investors.

The Build to Rent Concept

When materials to build homes drop in price, it is cheaper to construct a property. Construction of house is only part of the investment needed for a person who plans to build a property in an emerging market. Building homes that hit the market first as a rental instead of waiting for a sale that might never come is a faster method to profit as a real estate investor.

There are downsides to owning pre-existing rental homes that some new investors are not aware of before investing. The age of the home is a big factor in whether or not a renter will sign a long-term lease agreement. Older homes can be prone to faster rates of deterioration and renters can grow tired of continuous issues. The homes built to rent concept helps investors to start off owning a brand new home at a more affordable price.

Cost Savings with New Homes

A house that is freshly built has a lot of money saving advantages for investors. The property insurance is often less expense each year due to condition of the home. More insurance companies are offering lower annual costs for homeowners insurance to owners of new properties versus older homes.

Because many older homes have aged appliances, replacements will likely be necessary for a new investor. These costs are now always figured into the future goals of investors and can decrease passive income. A home that was recently constructed can often demand a higher rent price because of the age and location. Being the first investor on the market to own a home before it is deteriorated could secure a buy and hold future.

The Build to Rent Model is a Cash Earner

Homes purchased through real estate agents will always include a commission on the property. The land value usually increases before the property is placed on the market and this also increases the selling price. Paying too much for an existing home can increase the length of time required for a property investor to earn back the initial investment. To learn more about diversifying your real estate investment portfolio with build-to-rent properties contact the 9 Core Realty team today.