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SWFL homes for champagne wishes and caviar dreams

July 6, 2018
By BOB and GERI QUINN - Homing In , Cape Coral Daily Breeze

This week we thought we would have some fun while tipping our hats to former television producer Robin Leach of "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous," as we dissect several recent Southwest Florida single-family home sales worthy of champagne wishes and caviar dreams.

Our first example brings new meaning to the phrase "go big or go home," as we feature a beach front estate on the Gulf of Mexico along Gordon Drive in the Port Royal section of Naples, which was sold on June 20. According to the property description in the Multiple Listing Service, the main home was built in 1994, featuring a low country-style of architecture, which originated in the coastal areas of South Carolina and Georgia back in the late 1700s. The original owners were said to have assembled "the finest team of craftsmen to create this breathtaking vision whose true success lies in welcoming Presidents, huge charity events, casual family gatherings, and private contemplation." The estate features the main home, multiple guest facilities, a pool with a pool house, plus various garages and service buildings. The approximate living area was shown as 10,825 square feet, with a total area of 24,510 square feet.

This estate was initially listed for sale on Aug. 30, 2016, for $69 million, and they reduced the price to $59.9 million on Oct. 4, 2016, only to bump it up to $60.9 million the next day. This was a price reduction of 11.74 percent after just over one month on the market. And there it sat for another 18 months, before it went under contract with a buyer on April 10 of this year, with the final sale closing on June 20 at $48.8 million. The buyer bought the home as a cash sale, and the ultimate sales price was $12.1 million, or 19.87 percent, below the reduced price, and $20.2 million, or 29.28 percent, below the initial list price.

According to the records, the seller bought this estate back on March 20, 2015, for $45.6 million, so the property appreciated by 7 percent, or $3.3 million, in just over 3 years. The previous sale of this estate was at $40 million back on May 25 of 2007.

Next up, we will take a swing through the Bonita Springs-Estero area, where the top priced single-family home sale so far in 2018 was a gulf-front home along Hickory Boulevard on Bonita Beach. This was a situation where the original home at this location was built in 1974 and it was bought in July 2016 for $2.25 million, and permits were issued to demolish the home in September 2016. Then new construction permits were issued in October 2016, with the home being completed and listed for sale earlier this year.

This beachfront home features 5,000 square feet of living area and 9,000 square feet of total area, with five bedrooms, a den, five full bathrooms and two half bathrooms, along with a six-car garage. The main level of the home includes two private guest suites, each with private bathrooms, a gourmet-style kitchen with a gas range, a custom bar with seating, and pocketing sliding glass doors featuring panoramic Gulf views out over the elevated pool and spa. The third level of this home contains the master bedroom and bathroom, a den, plus a bonus entertainment room with a bar, and a private lanai with a fireplace overlooking the gulf.

It was listed for sale as a furnished home at $6.575 million in January of this year, and went under contract with a buyer right away, closing as a cash deal in 28 days, at a final price of $6.45 million, or within 1.9 percent of the list price.

For our final stop this week, we'll head onto Fort Myers Beach for a closer look at another gulf-front home, built in 2015, with 3,774 square feet of living area and 9,970 square feet of total area. This home advertised six-plus bedrooms, with 3.5 bathrooms, and it features a large open concept in the main living area with stunning sunsets and endless open water views. It also has a true chef's kitchen with a Wolf brand gas range and a pot filler, a Sub Zero refrigerator, a built-in Miele espresso maker, an oven and a steam warmer, two dishwashers, and a wine station. There is also a pool and a spa overlooking the beach.

The initial list price on this furnished beachfront home was $4.095 million back on Nov. 4, 2016, and it went through a series of price reductions before being offered for $3.78 million on March 8 of this year. The listing expired on April 3, and the home went back on the market on April 7, at a reduced price of $3.588 million before being further reduced to a list price of $3.398 million on May 5. This home then went under contract with a buyer on May 16, with the sale finalized as a cash deal at $3.3 million on June 22.

There are a couple of things to note about the pricing of this Fort Myers Beach home in relation to its final sales price. First, the ultimate sales price was 19.41 percent, or $795,000, below the initial list price, which is a pretty common theme with overpriced homes in our real estate market, both in Cape Coral and throughout Southwest Florida. Second, the new list price of $3.588 million, set on April 7, was most likely what we would call the optimal listing price for attracting a buyer because this ended up being within about 8 percent of the sales price. Unfortunately, making the determination that a home is priced at its optimal list price in "real time" can be difficult, and this is where knowing and analyzing the market, and reading the showing activity can play a big role in helping a seller determine when to hold firm on their price, versus making another price reduction.

In fairness to the listing agent on this home, we were able to use 20/20 hindsight in our price analysis, whereas they chose to make another price reduction of 5.3 percent on May 5. Since we do not know what kind of potential buyer activity was taking place with this home at that time, we'll just use it as an example of how difficult it can be for a seller to get to the right price to attract an offer on their home, so they can celebrate with a bottle of champagne.

(The sales data for this article was obtained from the Florida Realtors Multiple Listing Service Matrix for Lee County as of June 30, 2018. It was compiled by Bob and Geri Quinn and it includes information specifically for Cape Coral single-family homes, not including condominiums, foreclosures or short sales. The data and statistics are believed to be reliable, however, they could be updated and revised periodically, and are subject to change without notice. The Quinn's are a husband and wife real estate team with the RE/MAX Realty Team office in Cape Coral. They have lived in Cape Coral for over 38 years. Geri has been a full-time Realtor since 2005, and Bob, who also holds a Certified Financial Planner designation, joined with Geri as a full-time Realtor in 2014. Their real estate practice is mainly focused on Cape Coral residential property and vacant lots.)



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