WHY I CALL NAPLES HOME

BY Mike Taylor, Regional Vice President – Naples

A few months ago, my wife and I decided to move to Naples. It may not have been the most opportune time to move; we were settled in a great home in the Orlando area and had one child working in New York and another ready to finish up her last two years of high school. But Naples – with its friendly atmosphere, great schools and white sandy beaches along the Gulf – was calling our names.

Naples has long been known for its proximity to beaches, top-notch golf courses and upscale dining and shopping. The area has attracted all types of homebuyers: young families, retirees and second homeowners. We enjoy being somewhat removed from the hustle and bustle of some of the year-round tourist cities in Florida.

The median home value in the area rose 14.9 percent over the past year, according to Zillow. And that number is expected to continue to rise in 2015. That’s because the Southwest Florida market is rapidly rebounding post-recession and our warm climate and unique lifestyle is drawing people to move here and invest in the area.

According to research from Metrostudy, Southwest Florida closings were up 31 percent mid-year versus last year and sales prices are on the rise as well. As the area becomes increasingly popular, the supply of quality inventory of new homes and lots is low, so developers are moving north along the west coast of Florida. Naples, especially North Naples, plays a part in this growth pattern.

But for all its predicted growth, Naples is lacking in new home supply. There is a big gap between old and new construction, and homebuyers in search of brand new homes are having trouble finding them. The market, however, is reacting to demand and homebuilders are starting to develop more communities in this market.

FrontDoor Communities saw the need for a neighborhood in Naples that delivers quality-designed new homes right in the heart of the city. Its first community in the area is Andalucia, a thoughtfully-designed neighborhood nestled around Lake Azzuri and surrounded by natural preserves and wetlands. Its central location provides easy access to the area’s best shopping, beaches and schools.

What appeals to me most about Naples is the causal, community-oriented lifestyle, and I believe Andalucia reflects that. I moved to Andalucia because it is an intimate neighborhood that fosters relationships with neighbors while being surrounded by Southwest Florida’s natural beauty.

I expect Naples to be our home for many more years. It will be where we become empty nesters, where we welcome home our grandkids one day and where we will enjoy all the great things that Florida has to offer.

FrontDoor’s development at Andalucia will be a catalyst for further development in Naples. Andalucia provides customizable quality-designed homes to an area lacking in new construction, but in a way that makes it seem like I’ve lived here forever.

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