Market Snapshot: Country Place, Sarasota


Country Place is an attractive, well-maintained Sarasota neighborhood. Centrally located in the Southgate Ridge area, south of Proctor Road, it has lush shrubbery throughout and a plethora of mature palms, Norfolk pines, oaks and other deciduous trees.


A home at 3615 Country Place Blvd for sale in the Country Place neighborhood of Sarasota, Florida.       STAFF PHOTO / NICK ADAMS

A home at 3615 Country Place Blvd for sale in the Country Place neighborhood of Sarasota, Florida. STAFF PHOTO / NICK ADAMS

Entrances are on Beneva Road on the west and Sawyer Road on the east. The signs read “Countryplace” or “CountryPlace,” but the neighborhood’s name is two words in county records, as are the street names.

The main thoroughfare connecting the entrances, Country Place Boulevard, has paved sidewalks. Nearly 40 of the homes on its southern side back onto a large nature preserve, giving them a definite country feel.

But what sets Country Place apart is its strong sense of community.

“Country Place is a welcoming community,” says Faye Doyle, a Realtor with Coldwell Banker. “If you want to be part of the action, you can be. But if you want to have your privacy, people won’t bother you.”

She has conducted several open houses for her listing at 3615 Country Place Blvd. and has been surprised at the response of the locals. “Almost every neighbor has come by to visit,” she says. “They clearly love their neighborhood.”

On the prospective buyers’ side, she also has had a number of dog lovers. “Last week I had one with a St. Bernard and another with two Bernese mountain dogs,” she says. “I tell my clients, ‘This is the neighborhood for dogs.’ ”

Built from the late 1970s to the mid-1980s, Country Place has larger lots and homes than many newer neighborhoods. Properties cover from 12,000 to 19,000 square feet and the 3- and 4-bedroom houses range in size from 1,800 to 3,300 square feet.

“The larger lot and home sizes make for greater openness. Houses are not just on top of each other,” says Tom Cail, a Realtor with RE/MAX Alliance.

Growing up in Sarasota, Cail has a number of friends who have lived in Country Place and knows the subdivision well, having sold properties there.

“Since the recent recession, a lot of people came to realize that the value of the land mattered — you can change what you build on it, but you can’t change the dirt,” he explains. “Here, we have a lot of space.”

Although most of the 175 homes are ranch-style, the neighborhood’s architecture is anything but cookie-cutter. The four original builders built houses that vary in appearance, including two-story structures, California Contemporary and Florida modern, and even a few examples of Spanish-Mediterranean design with red tiles, interspersed among shingle and the occasional metal roof.

Many of the homes have been updated and remodeled. Cail’s listing at 3615 Country Place Blvd., for example, was built in 1982. Priced at $539,000, it has a new roof, all new pluming and interior walls, expanded closets, new windows and renovated bathrooms and kitchen.

“It’s almost a brand-new house,” says Cail.

Doyle’s listing at 3697 Country Place Blvd. has undergone upgrades as well, including a new roof and replacement of the popcorn ceiling inside. One previous owner put a domed cage over the lanai and resurfaced the pool area with new tiles. Another, who had a loom, wove a covering and put it on the kitchen ceiling. “It looks amazing,” says Doyle. Built in 1980, it is priced at $485,000.

Residents are mostly fulltime and represent a mix of retirees, working professionals and families.

“The shoppers that come to see my house range all the way from young married couples with small children to senior citizens who are looking for a house big enough to accommodate their visiting grandchildren,” says Doyle.

Homeowners like the central location, too. The Beneva Village Shoppes, which are close by at the southwestern corner of Clark and Beneva roads, has a Publix and a number of restaurants. The Westfield Square Mall, with Costco, movie theaters and a food court is not much farther down the road. The Gulf Gate Library and Siesta Key beaches are 10 minutes away. Even downtown Sarasota is only a 20-minute drive.

For active-minded nature lovers, Red Bug Slough, with nature trails and a fishing pier, is just across the street. Bee Ridge Park at Wilkinson Road offers a shaded playground, and volleyball courts and horseshoe pits, as well as coed adult softball, kung-fu and dance programs.

Country Place’s homeowners’ association is active; the $550 annual fee covers maintenance of the landscaped areas, the lake at the Beneva entrance to the community. Although there are deed restrictions, they are not draconian.

“You can park your car in the driveway and install a basketball hoop,” says Cail.

Over the past year, there have been 18 sales, ranging in price from $249,000 to $442,000. Currently there are three active listings, from $339,900 to $539,000, and one pending sale.

Last modified: March 28, 2016
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