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Charlotte-Lee-Collier
Business Observer Friday, Feb. 15, 2013 7 years ago

Naples Community Church buys its Seventh Avenue home

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Naples Community Church Inc. purchased the 16,000-square-foot Fontana Building on Seventh Avenue for $2.25 million.

BUYER: Naples Community Church Inc. (principals: Darleen Cors, Douglas Van Oort, William Buchanan, Karna Bodman, Bill Allyn and Kirt Anderson), Naples

SELLER: Fontana LLC

PROPERTY: 849 Seventh Ave. S., Naples

PRICE: $2.25 million

PREVIOUS PRICE: $1.13 million, March 1998

LAW FIRM ON DEED: Ross Lanier & Deifik PA, Naples

PLANS, DESCRIPTION: Naples Community Church Inc. purchased the 16,000-square-foot Fontana Building on Seventh Avenue for $2.25 million.

The price equated to $141 per square foot. The two-year average price per square foot for office space ($120) in the Southwest Florida area, according to the CoStar Group.

The two-story office and retail building has served as the church's sanctuary for the past several years. It shares space with the FLAVA restaurant, interior design firm Certain Something and Faire Bella Beauty Bottega.

“Three and a half years ago we were meeting in a high school,” says senior pastor Kirt Anderson. “What initially drew us to [the building] was the aesthetics of the facility; plus it was right in the middle of our congregation. It was originally built to be a church with two stories inside. It works perfectly for our space.”

Anderson says the church's initial lease arrangement had a purchase agreement with the current seller. The church plans to continue to lease out much of the space, including 2,000 square feet of vacant space.

“This is expensive property, so we had to look for a creative way for the church to buy the property,” he says. “Most churches stand empty all week long. This way the building is full most of the week, and we can grow and expand our programs slowly.”

Through sharing the building and a capital campaign, the pastor expects the church to pay off the building in three years.

The church mortgaged the property to the former owner Fontana LLC for $1.65 million.

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