Market snapshot: Venice Gardens



Venice Gardens has many attractive aspects — a central location, an affordable price point and numerous amenities — but what unites the community is a series of large, scenic lakes. Good for kayaking, canoeing, paddle boarding and fishing, they offer beautiful vistas throughout the area.


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“If someone tells me they want to move to Florida and live on the water, but they have a modest budget, I think of Venice Gardens and its many lakefront properties,” said Charryl Youman, a Realtor with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices. “You can get a house on the water there for less than $200,000.”

venice2Located south of Center Road, between U.S. 41 and Jacaranda Boulevard, the neighborhood has 2,652 homes in two distinct sections. The older part, with Briarwood Road as its southern border, was developed from the late 1950s and consists of mostly two-bath, two-bedroom, concrete-block Florida ranch homes with carports.

“Because the houses are smaller, it makes the yards seem bigger and feels like there is more elbow room than in many newer communities,” Youman said. “The homes may not have granite or stainless or high ceilings, but they certainly are easy on the pocket book. And people are taking care of them, painting, renovating, and installing new windows, flooring, kitchens and bathrooms.”

This area of Venice Gardens also has no homeowner’s association fees or deed restrictions.

“It’s one of the reasons it’s so popular,” Youman said. “You can have fences in your yards and get privacy.”

Many of the homes don’t have swimming pools, but there is a large park with a community pool at the intersection of Shamrock Boulevard and Pomelo Drive, as well as a clubhouse, The Venice Gardens Civic Center, where residents get together for crafting, dances and card games.

The other section of Venice Gardens is further east. Started in the 1980s, it includes the Jacaranda West Country Club golf course and has larger homes — two bathrooms, three bedrooms and two-car garages. Residents can join the club for golf, tennis and social events.

“Price points are a little higher, but still quite affordable,” Youman said.

There is also a section of villas and condos for 55 and older residents.

One of the pleasures of living in Venice Gardens is having one’s own village shopping area, a two-block commercial section along Shamrock Boulevard, the main thoroughfare. It includes The Jacaranda Animal Hospital, Marco’s Pizzeria, a flower shop, a small convenience store and Herman’s Market, an Amish bakery and butcher shop.

“They have a strawberry rhubarb pie to die for,” Youman said. “On Saturdays, they barbecue hotdogs, and people walk, drive and bike there to get some.”

The nearby Shamrock Café serves breakfast, lunch and dinner.

“Their hamburgers are my husband’s favorite because they’re fresh-ground beef,” Youman said.

Because of the affordability and convenience, Venice Garden attracts a variety of people, from seniors downsizing and retirees on fixed incomes to first-time home buyers and young families who like the fact that their children can walk or bike to Garden Elementary School and the YMCA across Center Road.

“It’s a great Halloween and Christmas community — people light it up!” Youman said.

There are also some snowbirds and annual renters.

More than 50 percent of the people living in Venice Gardens are age 25 to 55, so convenient access to Interstate 75 is a big plus for many of them who commute to work.

Downtown Venice, the hospital, beaches, shops and restaurants along Tamiami Trail are all within easy driving distance.

No wonder sales have been steady there.

In the past 12 months, 136 single-family homes were sold in the community, ranging in price from $49,900 for a major fixer upper to $322,500 for a completely renovated and updated residence in Jacaranda West. The average sales price during that period was $160,000.

Thirty-seven homes are on the market, starting at $91,500. One listing, at $349,000, is the only one above $300,000.

The median price is $140,000, and only 12 residences are listed at more than $200,000.

“There is something for everyone here,” Youman said. “It’s a charming, real all-American community.”


Last modified: May 16, 2014
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