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Business Observer Sunday, Jan. 6, 2019 3 years ago

Florida scores big sales in master-planned communities

From Polk County to south Sarasota, the region is well represented in the fast-growing housing segment.

Master-planned communities are one of the biggest trends in homebuilding going into 2019, and Florida is a national leader in the category, according to a new report.

The Sunshine State scored 11 master-planned communities in the John Burns Real Estate Consulting annual Top 50 largest nationwide master-planned communities list, released in early January. Ranked by total sales, four of the top seven on the list are in Florida, and two of those are on the west coast: Schroeder-Manatee Ranch’s Lakewood Ranch, in Manatee and Sarasota counties, and the West Villages, in south Sarasota County. Lakewood Ranch, with 1,482 sales in 2018, ranked No. 2, while the West Villages, with 1,108 sales, ranked No. 4. Both communities moved up one spot from the 2017 rankings.

Two more from the region that made the 2018 list are Starkey Ranch, a Wheelock Communities project in Tampa, at No. 29 with 435 sales and Lakeland’s Highland Meadows, from Landmark Investment Services, at No. 50 with 327 sales.

Total sales nationally in master-planned communities hit 28,526 in 2018, the John Burns report shows, up slightly over 2017 and a part of a decade-long trend in increased sales. A master-planned community, the firm states, includes a range of home sizes, types and prices; consistent signs, landscaping and themes; shared or reciprocal amenities for a verity of lifestyles; and branding and marketing that give the community a unique feel.

“Master-planned communities continue to dominate the new home sales scene,” the report states, “achieving sales and pricing premiums for offering a well thought out, highly desirable lifestyle to homeowners in all life stages.”





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