July 10, 2017 – LAKEWOOD RANCH JUMPS IN MID-YEAR RANKING
Lakewood Ranch’s exceptional sales numbers have boosted the community’s ranking to third place in the nation for mid-year 2017, according to Maryland-based real estate consulting firm RCLCO.
Lakewood Ranch bettered its 2016 mid- and year-end position of No. 5, and outpaced many other recognizable and well-known communities in Arizona, California, Nevada, Texas, South Carolina, and even Florida.
Lakewood Ranch boasted 622 new home sales through the end of June of 2017, versus last year’s figure of 360; an increase of 73 percent. Only one other community in the top 20, located in Arizona, demonstrated a larger percentage of growth. Lakewood Ranch has been among the top-selling master planned communities in the country for six years.
Lakewood Ranch’s improvement over its mid-year sales in 2016 is partially attributable to its unique amenities and opportunities for community engagement, RCLCO officials said. “With a 140-acre sports campus—one of the largest in the country, a community polo club, and a multitude of community clubs, Lakewood Ranch offers members of all generations the opportunity to engage and interact.”
The continued growth in sales is not attributable to any one thing, said Laura Cole, vice president of marketing for LWR Communities, but a myriad of elements, all of which complement each other and in turn create a community.
There are vibrant shopping districts, unique sporting venues, a hospital, and A-rated public schools, Cole said. Anything that is not physically located in Lakewood Ranch is closely proximate, including access to I-75, the Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport, and the beaches and cultural offerings of Sarasota and Manatee counties.
Even with the pace of growth escalating, Schroeder-Manatee Ranch, Inc., the Ranch’s developer, maintains a commitment to open space – more than a third of the community’s 31,000 acres is set aside as green space, and there are more than 150 miles of interconnected trails and sidewalks. And infrastructure is put in place before the homes are built, including roads and landscaping, helping provide an integrated master plan that anticipates new residents’ wants and needs.
Sales in Lakewood Ranch are coming from throughout Florida, including an influx of buyers from Tampa, Orlando, and the east coast, as well as New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Illinois and the mid-Atlantic. People are also coming, in increasing numbers, from Georgia and California. Another area of growth is younger adults following their parents.
“Kids are following their parents to Lakewood Ranch because of quality of life,” Cole said. “Technology, and the proximity of four international airports for business use, helps make this move from highly congested metropolitan areas easier and more attractive. More people are doing it, and earlier in life than they used to. The 20-, 30-, and 40-year-olds want to be closer to their parents, and to the support structure of their kids’ grandparents. Our schools, medical facilities, sports and entertainment options, and location close to the beaches and cultural benefits allow them to experience a higher quality of life without sacrificing their big-city conveniences.”
Product diversification continues to be one of the critical success factors driving sales, Cole said. The community has benefitted from the addition of builders who offer a wider array of home products and sizes. There are more than 20 builders with upwards of 70 models, with prices ranging from the high $100,000s to more than $5 million. Young families are starting to positively impact sales in communities like Savanna and Mallory Park. There are also established, high-quality lifestyle neighborhoods with unique programs, which are attracting people at higher price points, like Esplanade and Country Club East.
Expansion of amenities at Lakewood Ranch, including renovations to the Lakewood Ranch Golf and Country Club’s existing athletic center and clubhouse, and a new clubhouse at Country Club East, were also instrumental in drawing attention to the community.
Lakewood Ranch Waterside, the newest village at the Ranch, opened its first models last month. Located in Sarasota County, LWR Waterside will feature single-family homes, townhomes and apartments—all nestled among seven lakes, with walkability to the new village center, Waterside Place.
RCLCO has been ranking master-planned communities since 1994; for more information, visit www.rclco.com.
Source: Lakewood Ranch