Record Breaking New Home Sales Force First Price Increase Since 2006 in Lakewood Ranch, FL

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An astounding second quarter has forced a price increase to take effect on July 25, 2011. This is the first price increase since the market crash in 2006 and is further evidence that builders in Lakewood Ranch, FL are leading the real estate recovery statewide.

Main Street at Lakewood Ranch

The demand has been so high since the beginning of the year that we are just going where the market takes us.

For the first time since the real estate market crash in 2006, the Lakewood Ranch management team says it will increase lot prices. “The demand has just been so high since the beginning of this year that we are going where the market takes us,” said Milt Flinn, LWR Communities’ president. “The pace of our sales is creating a sense of urgency and a domino effect—people want to get the best lots and the best value.”

The increase will be from $8,000-$18,000 per lot and will take place on July 25, 2011. With 40 new home models to see in Lakewood Ranch and 160 homes currently under construction, there are a lot of choices for buyers. Walk-in traffic is up 70 percent this quarter compared to the same time last year and for year-to-date, more than 18,000 people have visited Lakewood Ranch information centers and models.

Of these visitors, 47 percent say they plan to purchase a home in nine months or less and for the first time ever, the number of people visiting for a second time has exceeded first time visitors.

“People have been looking for a while, and now that the time is right, they are zeroing in on what to buy,” said Jimmy Stewart, LWR Communities’ director of sales.

At The Lake Club and Country Club East, sales are up 142 percent from last year with $11 million in sales so far this year in these two neighborhoods alone. Four palatial homes are set to start going up in The Lake Club before the start of the fourth quarter, ranging in size from 12,000 to 20,000 square feet, with many “smaller” homes already under construction. “We have seen a sharp increase even in our luxury home market – with $3 million in lot sales in The Lake Club since the beginning of this year,” said Stewart.

There are 19 new home builders in Lakewood Ranch and among those builders there were 206 new homes sales since January 1, 2011. “Buyers here realize that master-planned communities hold tremendous value, and the fact that we have been ranked the No. 12 community in the nation only helps to drive these positive results,” said Flinn.

“This the most desirable place to live in the state of Florida,” said Rex Jensen, president and CEO of Schroeder-Manatee Ranch, Inc., the developer of Lakewood Ranch. “Since 1995, when we built our first home here, we have strategically worked to create two jobs for every household, to be two schools ahead of demand, and to make this a beautiful community integrated with nature that is a place people want to call home. For these reasons, I am not surprised that we are so successful at a time when others are just beginning their recovery.”

Lakewood Ranch is the 8,500-acre award winning master-planned community in Sarasota and Manatee counties on the West Coast of Florida. Just minutes from the Gulf Coast beaches, and cultural assets in Sarasota, Lakewood Ranch is already home to more 15,000 residents and features A-rated schools, a hospital, the Sarasota Polo Club, its own Main Street with theaters, a 75 acre sports complex, shopping and dining, and four million square feet of commercial property. For more information Visit http://www.lakewoodranch.com.

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Candice McElyea
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