Just released is the the much awaited report on growth here in our Lee County. Everyone has been holding their breath on this one, and the news was just posted today.
For the second straight year, Cape Coral has led Lee County for increases in its property values, after 6 years of negative growth during the years of 2006-2011.
According to Ken Wilkinson our long time tax collector, reported that Cape Coral showed an increase in its property values by 5.7% for year to date 2013. Followed closely behind the Cape, was Lehigh Acres [far eastern side of our Lee County] with a 4.4% increase in property values. This is very impressive news when you consider these 2 areas were ground zero for the housing bust and foreclosed properties from 2008- 2010. Fort Myers never tanked in the recession like the other 2 areas.
For our local government, its a positive trend, since it means more tax revenues. While over the last few years local city governments have been working with deficit budgets and negative cash flow, causing things like road maintenance, parks and recreation services, ages of fleet vehicles to worsen and fall into a weak state of condition. With the additional revenues, this infrastructure needs and maintenance vehicles will improved.
Some city service operations had slowed due to cut backs in staffing, so perhaps with caution staffing can be brought back to departments like zoning, future land use, permitting, police and fire services.
There has also been some talk about giving part of the new surplus money back to the taxpayer. I would not hold my breath waiting on that idea.
For the Individual……
With property values on the rise, it means your home is worth more in the market. So if your considering selling, your net proceeds will be greater than anytime in the last 6 years. If your not planning on selling the news is still good, it means you will build equity once again.
For those staying in their homes, a jump in property values and the re-creation of equity in your home could mean a return of the “Equity Line of Credit” for needed repairs and updating of your current residence.
Simply put it means “jobs”! There have been more new single family home building permits pulled in the first 5 1/2 month’s of this year than in all of 2012. Right now there are not enough skilled workers to meet the demand for new construction. As a long time Realtor here in this market, I am seeing a very low inventory of available homes in certain price ranges, thus creating the need for new construction.
Recently Hertz International announced relocation of their corporate headquarters to Fort Myers. That will bring over 100 new jobs to the area, over the next few years. New jobs means more money in the goods and services segment. That brings more business for hotels and restaurants, which puts other people to work.
Its all good news for those who have had their eye on SW Florida as a destination for many years. Now may be the very time to get your relocation plans on the table once again, and come find your piece of paradise, here in the “Sunshine State”.