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Large land tracts coming

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  • | 11:00 a.m. March 25, 2016
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Many of the region's more active homebuilders have been assembling land for new communities for more than three years now.

But that isn't stopping land owners from bringing larger holdings to market now to try to take advantage of the area's continuing recovery.

In Lee County, the Stolle Ranch is being offered for sale for more than $27 million. The more than 2,755-acre North Fort Myers land is designated for a master-planned community and contains a pair of proposed I-75 interchange sites, according to marketing materials from Land Solutions.

To the east of Lee, Land Solutions also is selling a nearly 3,340-acre tract in LaBelle, for more than $66 million.

And in Sarasota County, Toronto-based homebuilder Lindvest is hoping to sell a 450-acre tract on Fruitville Road — one of the largest land offerings in the past decade — for more than $32 million. That land is entitled for more than 900 residences and up to 100,000 square feet of commercial space.

“The market is ripe and many sellers don't want to miss their chance to take advantage of the current market cycle,” says Ryan Sampson, principal at Eshenbaugh Land Co., a Tampa brokerage firm that specializes in land sales. “The question is how many buyers are out there for those large tracts.”

Sampson adds that many homebuilders are teaming up with private equity funds and other non-traditional lenders for capital. As a result, buyers may be more willing to shoulder greater risk in buying property and keeping it off their balance sheets for future development.

Sampson notes too that landholders of 800-plus acres in Sarasota and Pasco counties could list them by the end of the second quarter.


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