Rustic and Unspoiled Properties in Southwest Florida

Rustic and Unspoiled Properties in Southwest Florida

If you’ve searched for properties in Southwest Florida, you’ve probably noticed that coastal homes are a big feature. At the same time, these are where many of our larger metros are, leading to access to many different types of amenities. For example, throughout the area, we have a budding food and craft beer scene, excellent fishing and boating, arts and entertainment, and more.

Still, you may have decided that something more rustic is right for your real estate needs. Whether it’s because you’d like to get away from the bustle of a metro area or the idea of a little extra land appeals to you, there’s more than one reason for wanting to go a bit more rural.

And because properties in Southwest Florida provide numerous options, you can most likely find the home of your dreams! Here are a handful of areas to look at when you’re thinking that rural properties in Southwest Florida might be right for you.

Orangetree, Florida

Located in Collier County, Orangetree isn’t one you’ll hear much about when it comes to properties in Southwest Florida. That’s because it’s considerably off-the-beaten-path. The nice factor about Orangetree is that you can find new construction in an area that’s out of the way, but you can also find affordable lots at the edge of town with more space.

LaBelle, Florida

First, I have to mention how LaBelle has its own festival celebrating the state tree. This celebration features a 5k run, rodeo and more. But let’s talk properties for LaBelle. In addition to a few choices in new construction, there are also occasional rural choices that are worth looking at. In fact, you can even find larger estate properties that are much more affordable than other parts of the country.

Bowling Green, Florida

Located to the side of Tampa Bay and Sarasota, Bowling Green is a place known for its historic buildings like the Bowling Green Train Station and other vernacular construction. In the area, you’ll find that the inventory can be a bit tight, but that rustic properties become available on occasion; in addition to new construction choices.

Arcadia, Florida

Located in DeSoto County, Arcadia is another area that isn’t often mentioned, but that you’ll want to consider if you’re thinking about rural properties in Southwest Florida. Not only is the historic district on the National Register of Historic Places, the small city also has several annual events that draw in local crowds. However, in the area there are numerous properties with generous space to enjoy at prices you’re sure to love even more.

Are you searching for something different in Southwest Florida come 2018, but haven’t found what you’re looking for yet? I’d love to provide you with all my expert knowledge. Send me an email!

Terry Records

Records Results Real Estate
Residential Sales and Property Management Service




Your 2017 Southwest Florida Real Estate Wrap-up

Your 2017 Southwest Florida Real Estate Wrap-up

Now that December is here, my Southwest Florida real estate team is starting to review how our market shaped up for the year. That means digging into the trends that defined SWFL properties, from Sarasota to Marco Island. Having this understanding is critical for providing our clients with the best guidance when it comes to buying or selling a home in Southwest Florida. In addition to regularly reviewing the data, we also like to anticipate what we might see in the coming year.

A Phenomenal Year for Southwest Florida Real Estate

Throughout this year, my team saw strong signs that our regional real estate market is healthy and growing. Home values have continued to strengthen in key areas of the region, and we’ve experienced a surge in business for my team. And it’s not hard to imagine why this is the case: while the rest of the country’s prices have gone through the roof, SWFL has remained affordable. This is while amenities in the area grew as well.

Hurricane Irma’s Effects on the Area

Of course, we can’t do a 2017 Southwest Florida real estate wrap-up without talking about Irma. With the storm came plenty of questions from just about everyone I know. And that’s perfectly understandable. From flood insurance to buying trends, Irma had the power to shake up lives and the market. But in reality, once it had passed, we learned a few vital lessons. First, Florida has become amazingly efficient at dealing with post-hurricane situations. It’s hard to explain or capture this in words, but just the sheer number of utility workers, from as far away as Wisconsin and Montana that came to our support was outstanding. And best of all, even though we experienced a slight dip in the real estate cycle, life returned to normal fairly quickly, all things considered.

Tax Concerns have been on Everyone’s Mind

Of course, just as everyone has been talking about tax bills on the national stage, this topic has been at the forefront of anybody’s mind that is buying or selling local real estate. And with the news of the Senate’s bill hitting airwaves this week, many people are wondering how their unique situation will be impacted. This is one we’ve kept a close eye on as the conversation developed during the year, and a topic we expect to monitor into 2018 for our clients.

The Larger Economic Perspective

And speaking about the larger, national perspective, 2017 brought with it new all-time highs for the stock market, in addition to real estate markets strengthening in many areas of the US. While Southwest Florida isn’t totally reliant on tourism dollars, it is good to see healthier signs from an economy that some feared was still showing symptoms of slowing down. For us, it’s meant that business has continued to set up shop in our area, contributing to a burgeoning economic sector that’s more diverse, with more opportunities. And that’s something I think we can all get behind.

Have a question or two about where Southwest Florida real estate in 2018? Send me an email, and I’d be happy to chat!

Terry Records

Records Results Real Estate
Residential Sales and Property Management Service





This Week’s Top #SouthwestFlorida Photos

This Weeks Top Southwest Florida Photos


For all my regular readers, you’ve probably realized that my team is all about everything Southwest Florida. In addition, as a digitally connected real estate team, we love featuring the very best in home trends across the internet, from decorating to hosting your next backyard BBQ.

On that note, this week, we also wanted to share something that would give you an idea of how wonderful Southwest Florida is. When the weather’s always warm and there’s countless amenities at your fingertips, capturing how amazing the lifestyle can be isn’t always easy.

But when you take a look on Instagram at the #southwestflorida photos, you start to get an idea of just how beautiful our little slice of paradise can be. Just look for yourself!

Sailing in Siesta Key

Let’s start with a photo that’s truly Southwest Florida. In our piece of paradise, boating is an amenity that many residents and visitors love to take advantage of. Moreover, this photo highlights just how remarkable an amenity it can be. Stunning!

Chasing the Sunset in Naples

Witnessing the sunset on the water every day is a real privilege.  In fact, you can find plenty of people doing exactly this on any given day. And this photo of the Naples Grande shows off that fact. If you’re from out of town and ready for house hunting in our area, this is a nice hotel near the water to choose.

Starry, Starry Night at FGCU

Speaking of sunset and Southwest Florida properties… this photo at Florida Gulf Coast University shows how our area is the perfect mix of amenities. First, we have outdoors that are second to none. At the same time, we also have a bustling economy with much more growth potential.

Jumping Tarpon

To see just what I mean about the outdoor amenities, just click to see this photo! Our area is known for some of the best sport fishing in the world. Of course, you don’t have to be a pro at it. Many people who own local property engage in this activity for leisure as well.

A Southwest Florida Budding Food Scene

On the topic of seafood, this photo gives you an idea of how much the food scene has taken off in Southwest Florida. And it’s not just seafood. Throughout Southwest Florida, we’re seeing more and more outstanding dining options popping up.

A Day at the Beach in Longboat Key

Finally, this photo from Longboat Key is certainly doing justice to our beautiful area. Every day can be like this when you live in paradise, and you’re never far from an oceanfront view. From Cape Coral to Marco Island, we have so many options when it comes to SWFL properties. I’d love to show you some of them!

Terry Records

Records Results Real Estate
Residential Sales and Property Management Service


Hosting a home holiday party, SWFL-style


Hosting a home holiday party SWFLstyle

As the premier real estate agent in Southwest Florida, I love giving people ideas for how to host get-togethers in their homes. Whether it’s a summer-fun hangout in the backyard or a holiday party for the family, being the host gives you the chance to show off your SWFL home. But how do you throw a distinctly Southwest Florida-style holiday party? That’s a great question!

Living it up with the island lifestyle

While Southwest Florida has several bustling metros, it’s still not difficult to find hints of the island lifestyle throughout the area. After all, when you live this close to the water, you’ll find that relaxing and taking it slow comes naturally. So, for your holiday party, remember to keep any stress at bay.

Send out ocean-inspired invitations

From lovely paper invitations with nautical images to email invites that feature an Oceanside photo you took, it’s essential that you let everyone know the time and place. There’s many ways you can express an ocean-inspired theme, and it can be as quirky or as refined as you’d like.

Plan your food and drinks around refreshing

In colder climates, there’s often a focus on warmer, comfort foods. And although we do get our own fair share of cooler days, on the whole, our weather is a good deal warmer. For holiday parties, that means lighter food like seafood is excellent for an opener or even a main dish. And for the drinks, light and refreshing will often rule the day. For example, Pinot Grigio is still appropriate, as is a variety of festive cocktails and even local craft beer!

Mistletoe, music, and… mermaids?

Around my home, we love to get in the holiday mood. From hanging mistletoe to putting on the cheerful music, it’s a special time of year for everyone. Of course, dressing up your home’s entryway is an extra special way to greet your guests. Seaside colors, wreaths with shells in them, and trees with starfish ornaments are all great ideas to make this happen.

Give the gift of Southwest Florida

Lastly, I always recommend giving a little of Southwest Florida to each of your guests. How can you do that? Maybe it’s a yearly state park pass for the outdoor lover you know. Or perhaps it’s a gorgeous home decoration that was local made. Whatever you choose, there’s many ways to share how rich our area is with your friends and family this year.

Do you know someone who’s ready for the joy of Southwest Florida property? I’d be happy to talk with your friends and family about their real estate goals. Just send me an email!

Terry Records

Records Results Real Estate
Residential Sales and Property Management Service



5 Questions to Determine What’s Most Important to You in the Home Buying Process

5 Questions to Determine Whats Most Important to You in the Home Buying Process

For first-time homebuyers, from Southwest Florida to Seattle, the real estate process can sometimes feel like a tug-of-war. For example, you probably want the most bang for your buck, but at the same time, you also want a home that you can enjoy and love. And even in affordable Southwest Florida, buying a home means balancing your priorities against your property choices. But, as your resource for all things real estate, I knew I had to put together an easy, straightforward list of questions that can help smooth out this process for you if you’re buying a home.

What sort of area would you like to live in?

Location, location, location. You’ve probably heard this often on your journey to buy a new home. In Southwest Florida, we’re lucky enough to have a large variety of choices, from quaint coastal island living to the bustling downtown lifestyle. There’s even rural choices all throughout our area! For many people, this is one of the biggest questions to answer to help them begin balancing their wants and needs.

What features would you most like to have in your home?

Locally, features like a pool or a large patio in the backyard can be key. While features often fall into the “want” category as opposed to the “need” category, knowing which are most important to you can help narrow in on those properties that will make the most sense for you and your situation.

What are your growth plans for the future?

It may sound like an odd question, and of course, your life can always change, but this one is important. Knowing ahead of time that you may want children can mean the difference between a smaller condo vs a 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom home, for example. Although the answer to this question may not be set in stone, you’ll likely have an idea of your direction for the next 5 or 10 years, and this can give us a huge insight.

What style home do you see yourself in?

This may not be as vital as the others, but it’s still important to ask. Locally properties can range from contemporary new construction to cute, 1950s Mid-Century Modern. And although it may be a lesser priority, a home’s style does factor into your decision when you’re buying a home.

What range are you most comfortable with for your budget?

After decades of helping people purchase homes, in Southwest Florida and beyond, I’ve learned that setting a budget range is most helpful. This is because the price of properties can differ greatly from area to area and with feature to feature. If you set a single number, you may feel like you’re either selling yourself short or breaking the bank. While your bank will approve your final loan amount, a budget range gives you the flexibility to balance the answers to our other questions against each other in a positive way. In addition, the result is a smoother, more enjoyable home buying decision for you.

Are you thinking about buying a home in Southwest Florida? I’d love to be your expert and show you all the possibilities in our area. Just send me an email!

Terry Records

Records Results Real Estate
Residential Sales and Property Management Service


6 Diverse Places to Grab Great Food and a Drink in SWFL

6 Diverse Places to Grab a Drink in SWFL

Now that the holiday season is here, I know many of you are looking for those local spots to take a friend or two for a light meal or a drink. At the same time, you probably also want to take them somewhere a little different. After all, whether it’s a place with an outstanding view or just a quirky local stop, appreciating everything our area has to offer is well worth it. So, today, we’re bringing you six places in SWFL to grab a drink, all with their own ambience.

Ford’s Garage in Cape Coral

This local staple is beyond awesome. First off, the atmosphere celebrates our local connection to that captain of industry Henry Ford. And focusing on prime burgers and craft beer… well, you can’t go wrong. The décor is quirky but upscale, and the drinks are out of this world good.

The Sea Breeze Café on Sanibel Island

This upscale local spot is completely tucked away and hidden on Sanibel. You’ll probably never hear anyone talk about, and that’s because it’s a well-kept SWFL secret. The view is something out of a movie, and the drinks are well made. Did I mention it also has a poolside bar?

The Beached Whale on Fort Myers Beach

Let’s switch it up a little bit, and look at a local stop that’s more down-to-earth. The Beached Whale, located right across the street from the sands of Fort Myers Beach has a fun rooftop bar. It is not nearly as upscale as our first two, but it offers a different feel, especially for a relaxing weekend.

Maduro Cigar Bar in Sarasota

For those of you with friends who enjoy a fine cigar along with a tasty beverage, Maduro might be a good choice. This stop is also frequented by locals in the area and stocks a selection of craft beers and wines, in addition to cigars. This one is good if you’re looking to lounge and talk in a laid-back atmosphere.

Clasico in Downtown Sarasota

Frequented by a younger, more hip crowd, Clasico has wonderful outside seating. It also doesn’t hurt that you can order a bite from their delicious menu. But if you’re looking for a quick drink with friends, this is a good stop in upper Southwest Florida. The drinks are prepared with care, and they have a decent selection.

Blue Dog Bar and Grill on Matlacha

And finally, another Southwest Florida hidden treasure, the Blue Dog Bar and Grill. Quirky, quaint, and with plenty of local flair, this stop is all about seafood. Best of all, they usually stock a small mix of nice beers to go with the tasty meals.

Are you coming to the Southwest Florida area to discover your dream home, but need an inside connection to all the local amenities? I’m your premier agent in the area!

So, we want to wish each and every one of you a happy, safe holiday season, Southwest-Florida style!

Terry Records

Records Results Real Estate
Residential Sales and Property Management Service



Festive Lights, the Holiday Season, and Southwest Florida Homes

Festive Lights the Holiday Season

With the holidays beginning, I know many of you are searching for activities that will go with the seasonal spirit. And in SWFL, we have so many options, it’s incredible. Some of my favorites are the tree lightings, but also the beautiful Southwest Florida homes that are decorated in the most striking lights and ornaments.

It’s not just because I’m a Southwest Florida real estate agent; our slice of paradise has many wonderful historic homes that light up during the holidays, and we also have community events that bring everyone together. So forget shoveling snow, and get ready for festive lights, the holiday season, and Southwest Florida homes dressed in their cheerful best.

Santa at Coconut Point in Estero

In addition to their yearly tree lighting, the shops at Coconut Point in Estero also feature Santa and other festivities. This one remains a family-friendly stop for all ages.

Holiday in the Park in Bonita Springs

During December, Bonita Springs is bringing residents and visitors a blizzard! With a snow slide and train rides, this event promises to be a huge hit. There’s also free cookies and cider!

Downtown Festival of Trees in Fort Myers

From the end of November and into the beginning of December, Goodwill celebrates the season with it’s yearly tree showcase. And when you see the decorations at this one, you’ll get truly inspired for your own home!

Burroughs Home and Gardens in Fort Myers

When it comes to Southwest Florida homes, the Burroughs Home and Gardens is especially worth visiting during the holiday season. This historic home adds classic decorations that bring the property to life even more.

Edison Ford Holiday Nights in Fort Myers

Another amazing historic Southwest Florida home, the Edison and Ford estates has one of the best holiday events in the area. Starting with tree lighting on November 24, the season is filled with tea celebrations, visits from Santa, and much, much more.

Historic Palm Cottage in Naples

Next on our holiday list is another Southwest Florida home that’s quaint and full of history. The Historic Palm Cottage is Naples oldest house, and during the holidays, it comes alive with sing-a-longs, lights, ornaments, and everything you’d ever want for a holiday.

Venetian Village Holiday on the Bay in Naples

Also in Naples, Florida, the Holiday on the Bay is an annual event that everyone in the area looks forward to. The event is free and features holiday carolers, performers, and a snow show you simply cannot miss.

Sarasota Jungle Gardens Holiday Lights Spectacular in Sarasota

Finally, the holiday lights at the Sarasota Jungle Gardens are the best. This lush, stunning garden is turned into a bright, festive event that has roasting marshmallows on an open fire, a visit from Santa, and more family-friendly activities.

Are you new to the Southwest Florida area and looking for holiday fun? Send me an email, and I’d be happy to send you information, whether on SWFL real estate or anything related to our community!

Terry Records

Records Results Real Estate
Residential Sales and Property Management Service