Placida Florida Real Estate
Charlotte County in Southwest Florida is one of the best oceanside communities in the US and almost no one has ever heard of it. Most of the area sits undeveloped, and the areas that are developing rapidly still manage to maintain the small-town, relaxing feel of a beachside city. There is no rush hour, no traffic jams and yet you can have all of the amenities of a larger city within a 30-45 minute drive anytime you want it. For these reasons alone, considering a move to Charlotte County cities like Placida, Cape Haze or Windward is worth a look.
Even if you don’t care to relocate to this area, it is worth it to take a look at the real estate possibilities in the area for investment purposes. As you read further into this website you will see that there are many extremely attractive activities and points of interest in the Charlotte County, Florida area. This makes Placida a prime investment area that can still be had for relatively cheap compared to other seaside areas on the west coast of Florida that tend to be overpriced.
In scenic Charlotte County, Fl there is a peninsula called Cape Haze Peninsula. Not only is this home to Cape Haze, Florida (naturally) but it is also home to a city called Placida, which is just north of Cape Haze and sits at the tip of the peninsula and has access to not one or two but three waterways in the area (intra coastal waterway, Charlotte Harbor and the Gulf of Mexico). This of course sets the stage for a large number of maritime activities.
On the Eastern edge of the Cape Haze Peninsula is Windward, which is one of the quietest and most serene communities you will ever find near a body of water. The normal hustle and bustle of visitors looking to soak up the sun are not as prevalent here as other areas of Florida which are much more well-known and populated.
None of these three Southwest Florida communities is huge in population- in fact they are quite tiny and only increase in population during the winter when snow birds flock to condos to escape the harsh winters of the Northern half of the United States.
For this reason, the area is afloat in new developments which are keeping in tune with the general attitude and style of the area. Single-family waterfront homes with large lanais and/or patios are the norm for the area. Condos are usually for the seasonal renters that inhabit the area mostly from November to April, though it is fairly easy to rent them out in the summer too, making them a sound investment. Many locals like the idea of condo living and buy them to settle into year-round as well.
Life in Cape Haze, Placida and Windward
As we mentioned before, Charlotte County (and therefore these cities, by extension) are all very laid-back areas that do not fall into the rat-race trap of larger, busier cities in South Florida. As you would expect from an area with access to so much water, boating and fishing are huge in the area and drive the economy. Rentals as well as sales of boats and other water recreational devices bring in big money almost year-round. These types of services can be available year-round because the temperature rarely dips below 60, even in the dead of winter, when half the country is covered in snow.
But don’t fret about the small-town vibe of the area- you can get all of the trappings of the big city without having to go too far. A quick hop in your car and you can be in nearby Sarasota County, home of-you guessed it- Sarasota. This is a much larger city than any in Charlotte County and has huge malls, chain stores, bars, clubs and other things that Placida, Cape Haze and Windward simply don’t have (and prefer to keep it that way, as well).
Off the coast of Placida are some barrier islands that are only accessible by boat including Little Gasparilla Island, Palm Island, and Don Pedro Island, another reason why boating is such a big industry in the area.
Jobs and Business Development
As you could guess, there are a lot of jobs in the tourism industry in areas like Placida and Cape Haze. But a growing industry in the area is construction- namely new homes and rental construction. Along Highway 775 are many developments, mostly due to the fact that this particular highway overlooks the intra coastal waterway which is a big draw for boating enthusiasts. There are many docking stations in this area, and Placida is home to some of the best boat repair shops in the entire area.
Condos and townhouses in particular are being developed at a rapid rate. Many seasonal renters prefer this type of housing because they are often owned by associations that maintain them during the off-season and do repairs and things like lawn care. Not having to make trips back during the off-season to maintain a mortgaged house or having to pay a staff extra to maintain it for you makes this type of housing very desirable indeed.
With the recent real estate market correction, housing such as condos and townhouses in Placida have became a bargain. Now may be one of the best opportunities in years to become an owner in Placida Florida.
For those wishing to relocate, there are many jobs in the immediate areas of Englewood, Venice and Port Charlotte. If you have as specialized degree, there are several larger corporations moving into nearby Sarasota County. You can get to most areas of Sarasota County within 30-45 minutes from Placida. In Charlotte County, the majority of the area is undeveloped, especially in slightly larger communities like Punta Gorda, and Port Charlotte which is merely a stone’s throw away from Placida. Sarasota County is also home of the nearest airport (SRQ), in the City of Sarasota. There is a very small airport in Placida, though this is mostly for private planes and occasional Coast Guard use.
With Placida being the biggest of all of these three towns, they also have the most schools in the area. Education in Charlotte County is quite good, with children at the High School level or lower getting a nice 19:1 student to teacher ratio, which is tiny compared to many other areas in the US. Both English and math scores are 3-10% higher than the Florida average on standardized tests given statewide.
Higher Education, on the other hand is not as easy to come by. You would have to drive at least 20 minutes to get to the nearest Community College and a big further than that to get to an accredited University. Sarasota and Ft Myers (south of Charlotte County) both offer good college choices as well as job opportunities once you graduate. All of the colleges, community colleges and Universities in the area are well worth the commute, which is easy by highway.
Sights and Sounds
The biggest draws in Placida, Cape Haze and Windward are boating, fishing and golf. Boating especially is huge in the area- the rental, repair and storage facilities in the area are top-notch and quite lucrative for the business owners. Fishing seems to go hand-in-hand with boating, as few anglers in the area choose to fish from piers or docks (though there are many to use if they choose to go this route instead). There are a handful of world-class golf courses in Charlotte County, some of which overlook the deep blue waters of the nearby Gulf of Mexico.
But those are only the really obvious things to do and see in the area. There is actually quite a bit more. For instance, in keeping with the water theme, kayaking and canoeing are growing in popularity for those who either can’t afford a boat or simply don’t wish to own one.
Bicycle tours and rentals are also increasing in popularity. Rent a bike by the hour or for an entire day and take one of the most scenic rides you will ever have on the well manicured streets of Boca Grande. In fact, sightseeing tours in general are starting to crop up as the realty developments in the area start to fill with new tenants.
Eco Tours are also on the rise, as Charlotte County is home to some of the best beach and animal preservation efforts in the entire country. Within a short distance of Windward, you can find a seat turtle rehabilitation program, a Florida manatee watch program and many conservation efforts to keep the waterways clean and beach erosion to a minimum.
And don’t forget nearby Ft Myers, Sarasota and even Tampa/St. Petersburg in the general area, most within 30-90 minutes. If you ever get tired of boating, idling or relaxing or simply want a change of pace, these larger cities can provide those things for you. Placida Road (Highway 775) is your gateway from the Placida, Cape Haze and Windward areas to the rest of sunny Southwest Florida- and beyond.
For more opportunity on investment real estate and homes for sale in Placida, Windward, Cape Haze or anywhere else in the general Englewood area, just contact us below.
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