Northerners increasingly search online for homes in Southwest Florida

Reporter: Morgan Rynor
Record breaking cold temperatures throughout the United States. (WINK News photo.)
Record breaking cold temperatures throughout the United States. (WINK News photo.)

As cold temperatures complicate life in most northern areas of the country, many there are searching for a tropical refuge to escape the brutal weather.

There are zero complaints about living in the Sunshine State while record-breaking low temperatures slam our northern friends and family.

“People go, ‘you’re going to live down here in Florida?'” said Don Surges, a North Fort Myers resident. “I go, ‘well yea, at least you can still go outside.'”

A new study by Trulia shows 70 percent of home searches coming from below freezing areas are for homes in Florida. The most popular area according to the real estate listing and rental property company is in Naples, followed by Cape Coral-Fort Myers area.

“Well, when you look at Southwest Florida and the attractiveness of it, obviously a big part of it is the location and the weather,” said Shelton Weeks, director of the Lucas Institute for Real Estate Development & Finance at Florida Gulf Coast University.

But experts said there are some downsides to our continued growth.

“As growth continues, then you should expect to see challenges with respect to all areas of our infrastructure, whether it’s the roadways, health care, education,” Weeks said. “All of these systems that we need in place will be challenged.”

But those who made the move do not regret it.

“I was never meant to be in the cold,” said Maddy Reyes, a Cape Coral resident. “Every morning you open up the blinds and you see the flowers and the green. Oh yes, it’s just beautiful every morning.”

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