Real Estate in Orlando FL

The real estate market in Orlando is vibrant and diverse. From luxurious lakefront living to master planned communities to high rise condominiums, real estate in Orlando varies widely.

Here are Orlando Buzz, we aim to provide you with news on major developments, market news and projections and even some featured listings.

Orlando Neighborhood Guide: Bay Hill

The Bay Hill area of Orlando is generally described as the area on either side of Apopka-Vineland Road in southwest Orlando, north of Lake Buena Vista and south of Windermere. It’s adjacent to the Dr Phillips community in Orlando. The Bay Hill neighborhood is on the western side of Apopka Vineland, north of Sand Lake Rd and south of Conroy Rd.

Bay Hill is mostly known for its gorgeous golf club and the annual Arnold Palmer Invitational that takes place here, but the neighborhood is also home to a wide range of real estate options with a variety of price points.

bayhill

History: The Bay Hill golf course broke ground in 1960. Thoughout the 1960’s, the neighborhood began to take shape with an added 9-hole course named The Charger and the emergence of homes on what is now Bay Hill Boulevard.

In 1970, Arnold Palmer took a lease with the option to buy Bay Hill, and the next era of growth for Bay Hill began. In 1979, Arnold Palmer won over the PGA Tour to host a tournament at Bay Hill – now known as the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

Today, the neighborhood is host to numerous homes, condos, the Bay Hill Club & Lodge, a world class golf course, and lush Central Florida scenery in nearby lakes and wildlife.

Restaurants & Shopping: Bay Hill has essentially an ideal proximity to some of the best shopping and dining in Southwest Orlando. The nearby restaurant row on Sand Lake Rd is host to enough restaurants that you could go out for dinner every night and never get tired of the nearby venues. Sand Lake has a number of boutique shops in the Dr. Phillips Market Place and other shopping strips in the area. Millenia Mall is a short drive away for world class shopping.

Family & Fitness: The Bay Hill neighborhood has a number of activities and fitness options nearby. The new LA Fitness of Windermere is a five minute drive down Apopka Vineland. For kids, My Gym on Sand Lake is fun, or if you prefer to get outdoors, the Dr P. Phillips Park is nearby as well.

The Dr. Phillips YMCA if less than 5 minutes away and includes fantastic work out and sports facilites for the entire family.

Schools: Dr. Phillips Elementary School, Southwest Middle School, Dr. Phillips High School

Extras: Bay Hill has its own marina for residents that want to have their boat available for easy access in the fantastic Butler Chain. Moreover, club memberships are available for full golf and social memberships which allow use of the club facilities such as the pool & tennis courts.

The Bay Hill neighborhood is a gem of southwest Orlando with the unique combination of world famous golf, a range of housing options and the adjacent Butler Chain of lakes.

Photo Credit: camflan via Flickr

House flippers booming again in Orlando

Defined as buying and selling a property within a six month timeframe, house flipping is once again hot in the Orlando real estate market.

According to RealtyTrac, house flippers made more money in Orlando last year than any other market in the country. While the average profit on a home flip was $37,375 in 2012, the average gross profit for a home flip in Orlando was nearly $75,000.

While increasing home flips may remind you of the housing bubble during the last decade, there are some differences at least for now. For instance, a majority of the home flips occurring are all-cash deals where an investor buys a property with all cash, potentially puts some work into the property, then sells it for a profit.

As we’ve discussed before, all cash buyers are driving up home prices in the Orlando market. The increase in general activity for the local real estate market is indeed a good thing as investors are helping soak up housing inventory which benefits all current homeowners. Also, with such a high percentage of the home purchases coming from investors, renters may see declining rates as a result from increasing rental inventory.

We will continue to monitor these trends in the coming months and years for the Orlando market.

All cash buyer home purchases hitting new highs in Orlando

Home prices are on the rise in Orlando, and one of the main driving factors is investor activity. Both foreign and domestic investors are active in the Orlando real estate market, and recent data from the Doctor Housing Bubble blog shows that all cash purchases in Orlando is in historic territory.

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With interest rates at historic lows, investors are finding it difficult to generate yield on their cash. This environment is encouraging these wealthy individuals to put their cash in real estate.

As we noted in our February 2013 real estate market update, the number of homes sold is up, the median price is up and inventory is low. These all cash purchases are having a very real impact on the Orlando market.

Oakland Park: A new master planned community on the West Orange Trail

Oakland Park by West Orange Trail
Oakland Park is a new master planned community located in Oakland, Florida minutes from the historic downtown Winter Garden. The new community aims to bring 21st century amenities with an eco-friendly touch. The community is nestled among hundred year oaks, is connected to the West Orange Trail and has views of nearby Lake Apopka.

The grounds of the community make up 258 acres of land off the Southern shore of Lake Apopka. Oakland Park is being labeled as a “green community” that strives to maintain the Old Florida beauty of the surrounding nature. The community planners are working to receive the Green Development Certification by the Florida Green Building Coalition which means the community protects the ecosystem and natural resources of the surrounding area, utilizes a green circulation system and promotes overall green practices throughout.

The community has model homes available for viewing and plenty of empty lots. As you can see in the picture below, there are a number of houses already built and several under construction.

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There are a number of lots that have views of nearby Lake Apopka as you can see below, however, it’s difficult to imagine how many of the homes that fill these lots in the future will have unobstructed views. By the looks of the development going on, the houses will be packed into this development.

Unfortunately, like most developments today, the houses are packed in leaving very little space for yards around and between homes. You’d think a “green community” might be more focused on providing homes with natural green spaces versus pushing a higher concentration of residents into the single area, but like much of the “green” movement, it’s often done only for marketing purposes.
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Definitely one of the biggest attractions of this community is the access to the West Orange Trail. The West Orange Trail brings visitors from all over town to enjoy the natural beauty and outdoors while getting great exercise, and the Trail goes right through this community. In fact, there are signs positioned for Trail users advertising the new development. You can’t argue with the easy access to this premiere trail. It’s a wonderful feature, and for some maybe even compensates for the lack of a yard out back. Downtown Winter Graden is a short bike ride east from the community.

The neighborhood will possibly remind you of Baldwin Park, but it’s probably a more accurate comparison with a community like Summerport located near Windermere.

If you like the master planned community feel, the “green community” concept or having access to the West Orange Trail from your driveway, then Oakland Park might be an interesting place to look for your future home.

February 2013 Orlando Real Estate Market

Orlando-Skyline-2012

Real estate has certainly been getting more attention in Orlando over the past few months.  Here’s a quick summary of what’s happening as of February 2013:

  • The number of homes sold jumped 12% year over year.
  • The median home price is up 20% at $133,000.
  • A home spend 94 days on market on average this February vs last February’s 84 days on market.
  • The median price of foreclosures is up 27% year over year.
  • The median price of short sales is up 12% year over year.
  • The median price of normal sales (not foreclosures or short sales) is up 6%
  • Home inventory is low. Last February inventory was at 9,253. As of February 2013 inventory stands at 7,183
  • Inventory peaked in July 2010 at 16,563 homes on the market and has steadily been trending down to the current level of 7,183.
  • In February 2013 there were 8,825 homes under contract.
  • Interest rates hit a new record low of 3.21%.

 

 

While activity for housing in Orlando has been heating up, it is also important to note that much of this activity is driven by investors and foreign buyers.  In an upcoming post, we’ll analyze the effect institutional and foreign buyers are expected to have this year on the Orlando real estate market.