Northeast Florida has it all.
Jacksonville, FL (August 15, 2014) - Sunshine and a nearly perfect climate? Pretty much year-round. Access to waterways? The St. Johns River and smaller rivers flow through it, and its coast is the ocean. Beautiful golf course communities? In every direction. Hustle, bustle and traffic? Maybe a little too much.
Fortunately, the world is getting smaller, and nearby is everything that is so desirable about Jacksonville with much less hustle and bustle.
Osprey Cove is minutes away from all Northeast Florida has to offer. One mile north of the Florida-Georgia border off Interstate 95, is the gated private community, featuring a signature Mark McCumber 18-hole course and a multitude of attributes that earned St. Marys the title of No. 1 Small Town in America from Money magazine.
“The community’s best features are the natural ones,” said Paul Larner, a principal in Bald Eagle Partners, the owner of Osprey Cove. “There’s nothing we could do to improve the water, marsh and natural views surrounding and throughout the community. We are focusing our attention, then, on the other amenities, such as the golf course, the River Club and all the extras the community’s residents enjoy.”
When Bald Eagle Partners purchased the property two years ago, it was suffering from a stall in the housing market and deferred maintenance.
“Osprey Cove is the type of property we look for,” Larner said, “ones with good infrastructure in place, great bones but — for one reason or another — have not reached their full potential. We infuse capital into the existing structures, breathing new life into them and bringing them back to life.”
Larner is in the business of assessing value, and he knows it when he sees it.
“For homeowners in this community, the value is unparalleled,” he said. “To begin with, the homesites are priced very competitively. Building costs here are also lower compared to regional averages. Homeowner association fees are inexpensive, and insurance rates are low. Some retirement income is exempt from state tax in Georgia. From a cost perspective alone, homes in Osprey Cove are a great value.”
For homeowners who want recreational, sporting and natural amenities, the value increases exponentially.
Consider the Mark McCumber 18-hole golf course with breathtaking views of the marsh. Add four HarTru tennis courts. There are private docks and a community boat ramp for water sports and exploring access to the Intracoastal Waterway. The elegant River Club was renovated last summer. A fully equipped fitness center gives residents a healthy workout, and the Junior Olympic pool offers exercise and cool refreshment on long, hot days. Boat and RV storage is available.
“Convenience is another factor that adds value to Osprey Cove,” Larner said. “St. Marys is 25 minutes away by boat, and the Atlantic Ocean is 40 minutes away. Jacksonville International Airport is a 25-minute drive, less time than from Amelia Island. The commute to Jacksonville is less than the commute from some areas in southern Duval and northern St. Johns counties.”
The current makeup of the community is about 65 percent retirees, 35 percent younger working family residents.
The appeal to retirees is obvious — value plus the lifestyle befitting retirees who enjoy maintaining an active life, pursuing recreational interests, relaxing and socializing.
The appeal to younger families is obvious — value again, plus the amenities conducive to an active, engaged lifestyle in a secure, quiet neighborhood close to all the conveniences larger urban areas afford. For families with school-aged children, the high-ranking Camden County school district is a big plus. The system ranks 4th out of 186 in Georgia for grades 9-12. Overall, the Camden County schools with 86.3 points scored 10 points higher than the rest of the state at 76.8.
St. Marys Realty broker Stewart Saltonstall said the location is ideal for people with a wide range of interests and needs.
“Major cultural events, professional sports and world-class medical facilities are all minutes away by car,” Saltonstall said. “Historic, quaint St. Marys is even closer. Osprey Cove residents have access to the best that large metropolitan areas have to offer with far fewer of the headaches, such as traffic, overcrowded communities and the stress that goes along with it.”
There are 1,090 homesites in Osprey Cove, and 670 homes have been built. Existing homes sell from $250,000 to $1 million or more. Of the remaining sites, Bald Eagle owns and controls 190. The majority of Bald Eagle’s homesites are in the newer east side of the property and range from $37,500 to $95,000, depending on size and location.
“We are seeing more interest in this area in the last few months,” Larner said. “We built a model home and a spec home and both were under contract before either was completed. We’ve built a couple of spec homes, and they, too, have sold before they are finished. People are regaining confidence in this community as they see the improvements and appreciate that values will continue.”
Saltonstall believes Osprey Cove offers exceptional value.
“Osprey Cove is an all-around tremendous value,” Saltonstall said. “Compare a marsh or golf course homesite ready to build with one at a competing Florida community, and our land prices are incredibly valued with 80-foot sites starting at $62,000, which includes initiation fees valued at $15,000. Couple the great coastal lifestyle and access to Cumberland Island with the cost to build ranging from $135 per square foot compared to $175 per square foot in Jacksonville, Georgia’s No. 3 ranking by Kiplinger as the most cost-effective state for retirees compared to 10th-ranked Florida, and it’s hard to ignore Osprey Cove. And, if that isn’t enough, we’re proud that Georgia was ranked the No. 1 state for businesses in June.”
Preferred builders, broker
– Since 1983, W.H. Gross Construction has a reputation for quality design and craftsmanship and an unremitting dedication to customer satisfaction built on the philosophy of carefully observing a customer’s wants, needs and budgets and translating them into homes that are as livable as they are unique. A recipient of the “Best Builder in Camden County” award for more than five years, the company builds homes throughout St. Marys, Kingsland and the surrounding areas. Web: www.whgross.info.
– Parr Builders, one of the South’s premier homebuilders, has designed and built new homes of the highest quality and design excellence for the past 35 years. Web: www.parrbuilders.com.
– Towerview Homes brings many years of experience building in the Carolinas to Osprey Cove. Towerview’s resources, experience and knowledge make the building process painless, and homes are delivered within budget and on time. Towerview builds cottage-style homes and custom, luxury homes on deep water. Web: www.TowerviewHomes.com.
– St. Marys Realty is broker for Osprey Cove Real Estate. Contact broker Stewart Saltonstall for information at (912) 882-5555 (office) or (912) 674-6425 (cell). Web: www.ospreycove.com.