Orlando/Apopka Still A Cool Place To Be

Well followers, sorry for the long Christmas break!! I am back on the bandwagon now, ready to write about new and (hopefully) interesting topics. My pledge for 2009 is to write a more casual and conversational BLOG. This means you may not find everything rosy here! I’m going to “get real!” Deal with it! It won’t all be about real estate either.

Today’s post is about the exceptional state of affairs at the Orlando Apopka Airport. This is a property with amazing potential that, like many other projects right now, is going through a hard stretch. Fortunately the airport is complete enough to be a great base of operation for aircraft from C-172s to King Airs and even an L39 jet. The runway extension has just had several hundred feet added to it but is still short of the 5000’ paved length promised. Between this delay and the decline in our economy, some owners are beyond motivated to sell their properties here. This is much the same scenario taking place all over the country right now.

The opportunity lies in these great deals available. In fact my husband and I have already bought one, along with a partner. We believe that this development will be a great investment down the road. It requires a commitment to hold the property for likely 2-3 years, to allow our country’s finances to regain traction and for this project to work through its issues.

Is this the perfect development today? No. That’s why there are deals. Does it have great potential as a long term investment? I think so, or we wouldn’t have risked our hard earned savings to buy more property there during these shaky financial times. The key is to make sure you are buying because you can use the property right now and/or you can hold on to it for a few years. For example: store your plane or other toys or open an aviation-related business. Make sure that the current infrastructure meets your needs, as it is today. Don’t buy here if you need more runway than is available, it may be awhile! There is also the real possibility that all of the owners may need to pitch-in to complete the entry road. Again, this is why you go into this getting a great price. When the entry is complete, everyone will benefit from the increased value.

Why this property and not one of the many others?? The answer is scarcity. Scarcity increases value. Even with all of the delays and political fussing among the condo members, there is still no other development like it anywhere near Central Florida. We own the land under our hangars! No land lease. No government entity telling us to move on. This is the general aviation pilot having control for a change. It’s the “pilots’ airport. You can enjoy it today! It’s a beautiful airport outside of class B airspace and it’s uncontrolled. There are businesses here and busy weekends with pilots hangar flying and scoring each others landings. There are hangar parties and students getting ready for check-rides (congratulations CJ!) In one word it’s “cool.”

As a real estate broker I prefer to point out all of the pros and cons of an investment and allow my customers to make an informed decision. No putting on the “rose colored glasses” when it comes to selling. No one wins in the long run. That is what happened during the boom times all over the country. I think we can all tell a story about not getting what we expected. I sure can! Yet, I still see value in the properties at the Orlando Apopka Airport and opportunities.

Remember: A pessimist is an optimist with experience!

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