Investing in Real Estate in Southwest Florida: What You Need to Know

As one of the fastest growing areas in Florida, Cape Coral offers an incredible opportunity for buyers looking for vacant land and new homes. North Port and Port Charlotte have experienced significant population growth over the past half century, with residents from across the country and abroad. This sunny region of Florida's Gulf Coast, home to a wealth of beaches and natural beauty, is a meeting point for expats, retirees and investors alike. Existing businesses are expanding thanks to an influx of new residents.

Wells Fargo, Amazon, Starbucks, IBM, Bank of America, UPS, Target and Lee Health are some of the top employers in Fort Myers-Cape Coral, North Port and the surrounding areas. North Port belongs to Sarasota County and Port Charlotte to Charlotte County, but these cities have a strong historical link that dates back to the mid-20th century. Both cities were developed by the General Development Corporation (GDC), a company that developed land in southwest Florida during the 1950s. Port Charlotte was the first area to develop, followed by North Port. The area now known as North Port was originally dubbed North Port Charlotte by the GDC before it established its own city identity.

Located approximately midway between Sarasota and Fort Myers, Port Charlotte has more than 165 miles of waterways with access to the Port of Charlotte, the Gulf of Mexico and miles of stunning natural beaches. It also offers several hiking trails, wildlife watching in the Tippecanoe Environmental Park and outdoor activities, making it ideal for nature lovers. Encompassing the 8,000-acre Myakka State Forest, North Port is the only city in the state with an entire state forest within the city limits. It's an area rich in archaeological history and beautiful natural springs. Warm Mineral Springs is Florida's only natural hot spring, with a year-round temperature of 85 degrees and one of the highest mineral contents in the world.

With approximately 80 miles of freshwater canals, North Port also offers a wealth of opportunities for canoeing and kayaking. Just west of North Port and Port Charlotte is the pristine, masterfully planned community of Rotonda West. Rotonda is smaller by comparison, with a population of around 10,000 residents, but it certainly has no shortage of amenities. Today, the southwest region of Florida is experiencing a boom in its population. With a steady growth of people residing in the area, Southwest Florida is projected to have 1.5 million inhabitants by 2025 - out of its 1.3 million current residents. Following these trends, it can be expected that when an area's population increases so does its housing market.

As mentioned earlier, when an area's population decreases so does its property values. Today, Southwest Florida's housing market is doing just that; it has been estimated that homes in the area have experienced an increase of 17.7% in average sales prices this year. In addition, landlords have experienced lower turnover when it comes to finding potential tenants; rental contracts have been signed just 12 days after they were released. Not only does this mean that investors will start generating income faster but they can also pass on maintenance costs such as mortgages and HOA taxes to their tenants much sooner. Another factor contributing to Southwest Florida's current market state is its tax policies; while these taxes aren't just limited to this region they benefit from Florida's low real estate taxes. The Florida housing market has a property tax rate of 0.83%, which is much lower than the national average of 1.07%.

On average, Florida receives around 118 million tourists from across the country and abroad; this boosts the short-term housing market in this area in particular. Although these tourists are scattered throughout the state a good number visit Southwest Florida because of its attractions; with Tampa Bay Bonita Spring and Coral Cape located here this region can be considered a trending tourist spot. Because of this vacation rentals and short-term rentals on Airbnb work very well here; with an increase in population Southwest Florida is likely to experience an increase in demand and property values. While 200,000 people may not seem like an outrageous number this is still a 13% increase in this region's population; in terms of real estate with every 1% increase in population property values typically increase by 1.4%. This means that investors will get a huge return on investment thanks to this influx. There are also additional benefits to buying investment properties in Miami; this city has relaxed rental laws with prices set by the market not by government agencies; evictions are easier to process here with a 7-day unconditional eviction process for those who don't pay regularly. Due to its constant influx of tourists and strong job market Miami can be an attractive place to buy investment properties; over the past three years employment growth here was 11% with nearly 129,000 jobs added to its economy. Clearwater part of Tampa Bay metropolitan area is one of the best places to invest in Airbnb properties in Florida; home prices rose more than 31.9% last year forcing many locals to consider renting rather than buying a home. To further establish itself as a city worth investing Clearwater offers a privileged location for tourists due to its miles of fine sugary sand and crystal clear waters; around five million visitors come here every year. With all these factors taken into consideration Southwest Florida can be considered one of the best places for real estate investments; whether you're looking for long-term investments or short-term rentals there are plenty of opportunities here for those looking for lucrative returns on their investments.

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