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Realty Check: What Your Money Will Buy

...for $2.3 million, $1.175 million and $575,000.

$2.3 million

  “The enormous great room, with its high ceiling, is one of the distinctive features of this Port Royal home,” says Sally Pratt of John R. Wood Realtors. “Another is the fascinating show Mother Nature puts on outside. The many species of birds settling in the lake’s island rookery at sunset is an amazing sight.”

Pratt, the selling agent, notes that the three-bedroom, den, three-and-a-half bath house built in 1958 has had many extensive renovations, including updated kitchen and baths.

 Set on slightly more than half an acre, the home has 3,049 air-conditioned square feet and 3,341 total square feet.

“There are Spanish marble and tile floors,” she adds, “and a super location, close to the beach and sited in what many call the most prestigious community in Naples.”

The home sold unfurnished in October for $2.3 million.

$1.175 million

The exceptional personality of this penthouse is immediately apparent from the first step off the elevator,” says Carol Johnson of Premier Sotheby’s International Realty. “The impressive entry introduces a spacious floor plan framed with exquisite views of the Gulf of Mexico and Estero Bay.”

Johnson, the listing agent for this three-bedroom, den, three-and-a-half bath home in Vistas at Bonita Bay, Bonita Springs, reports that the full-size built-in bar with granite top and glass shelving is a perfect gathering place for friends and family.

Johnson notes the generous kitchen, with breakfast room and breakfast bar, is another of the many impressive features, as are all the amenities of the Vistas building, which include resident management, a pool and fitness center.

Built in 1998, this home on the 24th floor has 4,282 total square feet, 3,828 of which are air-conditioned. The house sold in October unfurnished for $1,175,000.


The sellers of this lovely home in Belle Lago were reluctant to leave it, but they decided to move closer to their children and grandchildren in Arizona,” Brenda Booth-Brown explains. “They had put in many improvements over the years, including hurricane shutters, and they knew their serene water views were going to be missed.”

The three-bedroom, den, three-and-ahalf bath home, built in 2004, has tile floors throughout, and 12-foot ceilings with crown molding throughout.

Located on a third-of-an-acre lakefront in South Fort Myers, the residence has customized closets, an island kitchen and guest suites. The Toll Brothers’ Aragon floor plan has 3,103 air-conditioned square feet, and the home, with a three-car garage, pool and spa, totals 6,128 square feet.

Booth-Brown, and her husband, Rick Brown, of Keller Williams Elite Realty, Bonita Springs, were the listing and selling agents for the property, which closed in November for $575,000, unfurnished.



Quail Woods Estates

Tucked away in a woodsy setting off Immokalee Road in North Naples, Quail Woods Estates was one of the earliest communities to make gas available to its residents. While dozens of nearby conveniences and an interstate access now neighbor the secluded enclave, the rustic character of the estate homes in the 61-acre development retains its charm.

Total number of properties: 62

Total MLS sales, Oct. 2011 to Oct 2012: 3

Price range: $920,000 to $1.43 million

Total MLS sales, Oct. 2010 to Oct. 2011: 6

Price range: $680,000 to $1,225,000


On the Market: A swim-up bar in the pool is one of many enticing enhancements in this four-bedroom, den home built in 2006, pictured here. Sited on a .88-acre lot, the 4,528-squarefoot floor plan includes three full baths, two half baths and a media/playroom. The deluxe kitchen is equipped with double ovens, a six-burner range, a coffee/espresso unit and a wine cooler. Michael Price of Germain Properties points out that among a host of attractions and upgrades are faux-painted walls, wood ceilings and hardwood floors. There’s a four-car garage, a propane generator, and 6,534 total square feet. The house is for sale at $1,599,000, furnishings negotiable.

Recent Sale: A dramatic staircase is a focal point in this four-bedroom, den home with four full baths and one half bath. According to selling agent Trey Wilson of Naples Estates Properties, the original owners of this home, built in 2005, added a poolside gazebo to enrich outdoor entertaining opportunities. With 6,273 air-conditioned square feet and 8,725 total square feet, this residence has custom murals, deluxe flooring and a four-car garage. The home sold for $1.43 million unfurnished in June.

Market Talk

Tourism and rising economy boost local market.

Area real estate agents report the proverbial worm has turned. The multitude of foreclosures and short sales that were cluttering the local market are now becoming hot properties for two key reasons.

Jeanette Igoe, owner of Igoe Realty, Estero, acknowledges the impact of European bargain hunters, the increase in tourists and an improving economy, and says that shrinking inventory and faster bank negotiations are  leading to the types of sales in these two categories that haven’t been seen for a long time.

“There’s less paperwork required for short sales,” she says, “and the banks seem more anxious to rid themselves of properties they’ve been losing money on for two years.”

Igoe’s evidence is a short-sale waterfront condo that sold in Ports of Iona, Estero, in just three weeks in August for $140,000. She mentions a short-sale five-bedroom home in Rookery Pointe, Estero, that was purchased for $315,000 without the buyer ever inspecting the inside.

And she reports that a condo in that same community sold in 11 days for the full price of $225,000.

In Bonita Springs, Heather Wightman of Royal Shell Real Estate says the seller’s agent of a unit in the townhome community of Timberwalk, Fort Myers, put a notice on the MLS that bids would be entertained for a two-day period. “My buyer made a cash offer at the full asking price and was unsuccessful,” she explains, “so obviously the winning bid was higher.”

Trey Wilson says of a recent sale noted in the Quail Woods profile above, “It was a short sale and represents incredible value for a home of this caliber in this neighborhood. Definitely an example of a buyer being rewarded for their patience in dealing with the banks and the short sales process. It was originally listed for $1,999,000 in August 2011.”

“On average, we can make a decision on a short sale within 15 days after we receive all of the required documents,” says Veronica Clemons, Wells Fargo Home Mortgage Communications, Charlotte, N.C.

“Wells Fargo continues to streamline the document requirements and the process in order to provide quicker responses to requests for short sale.


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