How much does a house cost in Punta Gorda Isles (PGI) or Burnt Store Isles (BSI)? How about a vacant lot in Port Charlotte? As a Charlotte County Realtor, I am asked these questions on a daily basis. Most of the people asking these questions do not currently live in Florida and probably have never been to Port Charlotte. They are calling and emailing in from Illinois, Ohio, New Jersey, and many other states. These are the people that are driving the market in the upward direction in which we have been moving for years.
The interesting thing about these questions is that they are almost unanswerable without more information. Our market is not driven solely by the size of the lot or the number of bedrooms in a home. There are many other factors that determine the price of a piece of property, some being unique to Southwest Florida or even Charlotte County. Everyone reading is now saying “Well, of course, Location, Location, Location” and that is very true but there are some other very important things to know before buying any piece of property in this area.
For example, I lived (and bought a home) in Kansas City, Missouri prior to moving back to Punta Gorda. My home buying experience there was much different than many of the homebuyer’s that I represent in this area. In K.C., my wife and I analyzed a number of subdivisions based upon the proximity to where we worked and their overall feel. After picking the subdivision, we walked through every home for sale and picked the house that we liked best for the price. In that subdivision, every single home was priced from $250-$300,000.
The price range for subdivisions in our area tends to be a bit broader. In PGI, the current price range is from $399,000 to $4,200,000. Another difference here is that it is very common to see a buyer like two houses a little better than a third at the same price and ultimately choose the third. The house itself plays an important role in every buyer’s decision but how much greenbelt, location on golf course, proximity to water, the size of seawall, boating distance to open water, view, depths of inlets and boating access (bridge/no bridge) are equally or more important to some buyers.
These criteria can drastically alter the price of any piece of property. On the water, two buyers with the exact same size and price criteria may choose two very different homes. If one has a 37’ sailboat that draws 5’ and the second does not have a boat but has lived in downtown Dayton for the past 30 years wants a big water view, these two buyers probably won’t even look at the same homes within PGI or BSI when visiting the area.
Off of the water, the existence or size of a greenbelt for privacy can sway some more than a 4th bedroom. As a person currently living alongside a fairway of a golf course (the 10th hole on St. Andrews South), I can personally vouch for how important the location of a house in proximity to the tee-box can be.
Vacant lots have the same factors to consider and more. There are many environmental issues to think about when purchasing a lot. Most can be worked out, however some require a lot more work and money than others. Scrub Jays, mangrove plants, gopher tortoises and the burrowing owls should all be looked into. A vacant lot with one or more of these environmentally sensitive animals/plants may seem priced very well compared to others in the same subdivision but the buyer needs to know the rules.
So, how much is a 3 bedroom/2 bath house in PGI? A vacant lot in Port Charlotte? Let’s talk a bit longer