It has been more than 12 years since the housing bubble bursting gave way to economic collapse in the United States and the global financial crisis. Since that time, the Southwest Florida regional housing market has experienced various recovery levels, with Manatee and Sarasota Counties leading the upturn.

For the local real estate markets in Lee County, the recovery took a little longer to arrive. This was mostly due to the hurricanes of the mid-2000s and the painful downturn of former speculative markets such as Cape Coral. However, the recovery is now in full swing for Cape Coral and its surrounding communities of Bonita Springs, Estero, Fort Myers, and Naples. One major reason for this improvement is the healthy demand for real estate in Southwest Florida, a region that is regarded as one of the best in terms of quality of life.

With low housing supply seen in Manatee and Sarasota Counties, first-time home buyers and property investors are now turning their attention to Lee County and Cape Coral in particular.

Real Estate Innovation in Cape Coral

Over the years of recovery, many changes in the home-building industry in Cape Coral has occurred. One such example was the multi-generational home designed by M&S Cape Homes, a local developer that features an interesting solution for homebuyers who wish to live with extended families or who would like to have a flexible home that they can rent to summer guests or temporary visitors.

More Out-of-area Buyers Expected

As we head into early 2021 and vaccine distribution hopefully reduces travel restrictions, more foreign house hunters are expected to look at housing opportunities in the area. In the past, these international home buyers mostly arrived from Canada and Germany; these days, however, local real estate agents are seeing an influx of Brazilian home shoppers who skipped on the speculative market conditions of Miami and South Florida.

In recent uncertain times, many near-retirees and other individuals considering Florida in the future had sudden reason to relocate sooner. Forced to work from home anyway, why not do it in Sunny Southwest Florida, where an extra room can serve as a home office, and the cost of living is much cheaper than in other parts of the country.

Home Builders Report Strong Sales

Summer is largely considered the offseason of real estate sales in Southwest Florida, but savvy house hunters broke the trend in 2020, and the local housing market boomed. These offseason home buyers’ profile tends to be more affluent and in search of newly constructed homes that offer a bit of luxury. To this end, golf communities and gated neighborhoods with many amenities are among the most popular option in Collier and Lee counties.

Commercial Developments Promote Residential Growth

Business development hasn’t missed a beat in Southwest Florida and attracts more homebuyers looking for quality of life. While some businesses, especially those in hospitality, retail, and entertainment, are fighting to bounce back, commercial real estate and future development, continue to boom. One such example in Bonita Springs is a planned mixed-use development off I-75, including a 165-room hotel, 482 multifamily units, and 300,000 square feet of retail space.

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