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Realty Check: What Your Money Will Buy

... for $5.3 million, $3.25 million and $1.29 million.

$5.3 million

No beach, no problem.

With more than 18,000 square feet situated over four lots on the south end of the Cape Harbour community in Cape Coral, the six-bedroom colossus at 5832 Armada Court didn’t need much else to justify the $5.3 million for which it sold in July.

“You can count on one hand the number of homes that have sold for more than $5 million that don’t have beach access in Lee County,” says Realmark Realty’s Ted Stout, who listed and sold the home. “The luxury market is coming back. Over the last year, we have sold three of the top five residential homes in Cape Coral—$1.9 million, $1.8 million and now $5.3 million.”

It’s the second-most expensive home sale ever recorded in Cape Coral, trailing only its original sale price of $6 million in 2009. It nearly doubles the $2.9 million price tag of the next sale on the list, for a home sold on Riverside Drive in 2011.

The home itself includes a main house, guesthouse, caretaker’s quarters, six full baths, three half-baths and three fireplaces. Glass walls and rare wood flooring provide the look and feel of a Tuscan manor mansion, while a seven-car garage and more than 560 feet of seawall with seven docks cater to both the car collector and the boating enthusiast.

It was purchased by a retired entrepreneur from Naples.

“They bought the property because of the incredible value Cape Coral offers compared to Naples,” Stout says. “This home would sell for $15 million to $20 million in Naples, making it a steal when you shop the Southwest Florida coast.”

$3.25 million

In the words of Larry Lappin of John R. Wood Realtors, this home at 1925 E. Gordon Drive in Naples was worthy of notice for a lot of reasons.

“It’s a couple blocks from the beach, a couple blocks from Third Street and on the largest body of water in Aqualane Shores,” he says. “That’s a triple-crown of reasons to take a look at it.”

The contemporary design comprising 3,230 square feet sold in June for $3.25 million to a local buyer.

The house was built in 1987 but got a complete renovation and update from Hemmer Construction, complete with beautiful finishes, a minimalist design and clean lines. Hardwood and marble floors are featured throughout, alongside a gourmet kitchen and a two-sided linear fireplace.

A deep water yacht basin has a boat slip with a lift, and the house also boasts a three-bay collectors’ garage.

“It’s an exceptional lot and a modern contemporary home,” Lappin says. “It was good timing for both the seller and buyer.”

$1.29 million

If 300 feet of lakefront and up-close-and-personal access to the 10th and 11th holes of the Long Mean Golf Course sound like attractive amenities in a vacation home, you’re on the same wavelength as the New Jersey couple who purchased the 5,704-square-footer at 15200 Kilbirnie Drive in Fort Myers.

The property, within the Fiddlesticks Country Club community, includes an impressive front entry with paved circular driveway and glass and wrought iron Cantera double doors that look through to the pool, lake and greens. The home underwent extensive remodeling and an addition in 1998, and has a recently completed covered arbor patio area.

The master suite is downstairs and has its own private patio overlooking the lake.

“There are a lot of high-end features and appointments that added to the charm,” says listing agent Denise Chambre of Premier Sotheby’s International Realty. “They got a home they could walk into and not have to do anything at all to it. It’s wrapped around the lake, and the entire home was designed to take those views in mind.”

The home sold for $1.29 million on Aug. 2.


The Strada Residences at Mercato

Modeled after the European approach to living, with residential over retail, the upscale enclave of The Strada comprises 92 residences overlooking Strada Place—the tree-lined main street of Mercato—creating a community that appeals to all age ranges. Eleven floor plans are available and each residence comes with secured parking and five-star amenities located in their own private rooftop club. Residences with one-, two- and three-bedroom floor plans are appointed with first-class finishes and flooring.

Total number of properties: 92

Total MLS sales, July 2012 to July 2013: 15

Price range: $395,000 to $1,100,000

Total MLS sales, July 2011 to July 2012: 15

Price range: $379,000 to $695,000

On the market: This three-bedroom, three-bath, furnished uptown model is designed for the true urbanite. From the tailored, light upholstery to the strong use of dark woods and woven textures, this 2,314-square-foot residence revels in its simplicity. The selection of colors, including taupe, chocolate brown and spa blue, enhance the use of minimal art and accessories to provide a simple and soothing space perfectly suited for the Mercato lifestyle. It is available for $1,139,000.

Recent Sale: A loft-like design creates an open and airy feel in a three-bedroom/three-bath model that sold in July for $985,000. Decorated by Clive Daniel Home, the 2,450-squarefoot residence features a mix of soft neutral fabrics with splashes of tangerine in the main living area. The master suite displays peacock-blue accents. It’s cosmopolitan chic with reclaimed wood furniture and repurposed windows used as mirrors.



New Look: Realtor Offers a Video Blog

Just when you thought video blogs were the exclusive domain of angst-ridden teens and publicity-starved celebrities, Lori Fowler suggests you take another look.

In fact, the Naples-based Realtor recently turned to the up-close-and-personal social media format as a means of boosting her profile in the area, and has already encountered success with it since joining Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate.

“Ninety percent of people begin their search to buy or sell real estate online,” she says. “Competing in a marketplace with thousands of Realtors, I realized that I needed to find something to set me apart and help drive traffic to my website (lorimovesflorida.com) and hopefully generate business, at the least brand recognition.”

Fowler’s inspiration came courtesy of a career counseling session that suggested ways to get her website to rise to the top of relevant online searches. Among the ideas presented was fresh daily content in the form of blogs—and, voila, a video seed was planted.

The visual idea particularly appealed to the veteran of 20 years in philanthropy and nonprofit management, thanks to a long history of on-camera presentations and virtual sales pitches.

“It is a lot of fun and I really enjoy public speaking,” she says, “so it is something I look forward to and I am trying to do on a daily basis as time permits.”

Her typical video blog (or “vlog”) runs about three minutes and is shot in one take, usually from the front seat of her car as she drives through Naples on the way to an appointment or back to her Tamiami Trail office after showing a property. In terms of content, she shares pointers and tips from customer conversations that potential customers searching online might identify with or find helpful.

“I’m looking to show who I am as a Realtor and how I work best with my customers,” she says. “I thought that they would not really know unless they were here in town driving in my car to look at property, or meeting me at their home to potentially list their property. (Realtors) are all very unique and have different personalities, skills and specialties. I hope that the vlogs help people identify with me.”


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