Sarasota Real Estate Market Draws Steam from Commercial Projects


SARASOTA, FLORIDA, June, 10, 2013 – The dynamics of the residential market in the North Port–Bradenton–Sarasota is being enriched further with the entry of retail chain Wawa and the redevelopment of a local Publix Supermarket, Sarasota Bay Real Estate reported.  Based in Pennsylvania, the gas station and convenience store chain Wawa already got a special use permit from the planning commission in Bradenton to set up shop at State Road 64 in the eastern side of the city.

Separately, the Sembler Company is redeveloping its shopping center anchored on a Publix Supermarket, at the North Tamiami Trail in Nokomis, Sarasota County. The makeover of the 143,697-square-foot Nokomis Village Shopping Center involves upgrades on the Publix building’s façade and other improvements to the whole property including landscaping. The project is set for completion before end-2013.

Convenient retail shops around Venice

Several nearby Publix Supermarkets are serving the area in the meantime that the Nokomis store is under construction. These include the three Publix stores in Venice, one of which is at the Venice Shopping Center at the South Tamiami Trail, another at the Jacaranda Blvd., and the third at E. Venice Avenue. In Sarasota, Sembler also has presence at the Beneva Marketplace through the Dollar Tree retail shop.

Notably, another Publix-anchored shopping center, Plaza Venezia, is rising at the southwest corner of Laurel Road and Pinebrook Road, also in Venice. The 68,400-square-foot shopping center is being developed by Michael Collard Properties based in Winter Park, Florida.

Sustained home market uptrend

Real Estate Market

These commercial developments proceed amid the vigorous activity of the residential market in metro areas of North Port, Bradenton, and Sarasota during the first four months of the year.  A total of 4,201 closed sales of single family homes were registered in the region as of April, rising year over year by 16.3% for the month and by 15.7% in the first three months of 2013. The April median price, meanwhile, rose to $202,946, 23% higher than the year-earlier month. The median price for the first quarter, in comparison, was estimated at $180,000, up 13.9% from a year earlier.

The same uptrend prevailed in the market for condos and townhouses wherein closed sales for the first four months totaled 2,143, with April deals rising by 14.5% and by 8.4% in the January–March period.  The April median sale price for these residential types rose year over year by 5.4% to $144,900. An estimated $136,000 median price was registered in the 2013 first quarter, up 3% from the similar period last year.

Where sales are brisk

The heightened market activity is quite evident around the area where the planned Wawa retail center will be built. Homes for sale in the nearby Braden River Lakes Community appear not staying long in the market. Out of the eight properties in this neighborhood currently listed in the MLS, seven are already on the pending sales list. The only one left in the listing is a three-bedroom residence with a floor-area of 1,400-plus square feet attractively priced at the high $100s.