Real Estate

5 min read

Unlock Florida's Shoreline Secret: Top Spot for Vacation Homes

Imagine owning a slice of paradise where the sun kisses your skin 590 miles along. Welcome to Florida's best-kept secret for vacation home bliss, as touted by the real estate gurus.

Tobi Miles
June 7, 2023

Vacation homes afford travelers the chance to return to their favorite destinations over and over. The tendency for frequent travelers to buy vacation homes in peak travel sites makes sense, that is until you consider the cost and prospect of navigating tourists. Florida is home to no shortage of vacation home spots, but none are as appealing as Lee County.

Lee County is often overlooked when it comes to the many vacation destinations in Florida. You may know Lee County as the spot where the Boston Red Sox train during spring or for major cities like Cape Coral, but it’s much more than that. The canals, shorelines, and beaches have attracted countless tourists and people looking to buy second homes.

Lee County is home to some of the most affordable vacation homes in Florida. The proximity of Lee County to the shoreline makes it desirable for people looking for a vacation home close to the water without paying the associated exorbitant prices. Vacation homes in Lee County cost as little as $525,000, whereas vacation homes in tourist cities like Naples often cost at least $900,000.

The proximity to Bunche Beach, Four Freedoms Beach, and Yacht Club Public Beach make Lee County one of the most desirable vacation home destinations. You have access to 590 miles of shoreline, but that isn’t reflected in housing costs as much as what you’d expect in Fort Lauderdale or Miami. Lee County is home to 50 miles of beaches that see less foot traffic than the major tourist destinations in Florida.

Fort Meyers and Cape Coral are the most notable cities in Lee County, but there is no shortage of great places to buy real estate. Combined, the county boasts over 780,000, and they are spread evenly across several key cities and neighborhoods. You have several options in Lee County ranging from historic southern homes to modern beach houses along the water.

While premium prices apply to vacation homes along the waterfront on the Gulf of Mexico, you can find many affordable houses in Lee County. The median home value in Lee County is $400,000, and while the average waterfront home costs at least $125,000 more, there are many affordable options. A recent Pacaso survey indicates that 61% of people looking to buy a vacation home in Florida want houses on the water.

Many areas in Lee County scratch that itch for prospective buyers as much of the real estate in the area is on or near the beach. The canals in Lee County are also lined with gorgeous homes, and many homeowners in the area dock boats on the water off their backyards. Check out the real estate in Cape Coral if you want to buy a vacation home on the water as there are over 400 miles of canals in the city.

It’s also the biggest city in Lee County and Cape Coral and boasts the most luxurious attractions in the area besides Estero Bay. Don’t let the effects of Hurricane Ian dissuade you from purchasing a vacation home in Lee County. Lee County has since bounced back, and most of the key destinations in the area reopened in October of 2022.

Many people choose Lee County for their vacation home because of the minimal tourism compared to areas like Miami-Dade County. While Lee County attracts 4.4 million tourists per year, that pales in comparison to the 15.9 people that visit Miami-Dade County per year. Sure, you will have to navigate some tourists in Lee County, but the 400 miles of canals and 590 miles of shoreline give you plenty of space to unwind in your vacation home.

However, it's highly advisable to seek consultation with a skilled attorney before acquiring such a property. This measure is essential to guarantee the safeguarding of homeowner interests. This is particularly critical if you're planning to utilize your dwelling for vacation rentals, whether occasionally or on a long-term basis. In such instances, it's wise to have a customized agreement for short-term or vacation leases established.

This contract should encompass various aspects of guest responsibilities, which include following evacuation directives, appropriately securing the rental residence before departing, and promptly reporting any damages incurred. Moreover, the agreement outlines policies for cancellations and reimbursements. These policies detail the conditions under which reimbursements are feasible, the process for revoking reservations, the timeframe for communicating reservation alterations, and other pertinent refund particulars.

Lastly, homeowners can incorporate crucial details about emergency protocols, evacuation procedures, communication avenues, and contact information that guests can use to stay well-informed. These steps provide a comprehensive legal foundation, ensuring both homeowners and guests are well-informed and protected.

Article updated:
January 5, 2024

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