Venice Gardens in Venice, FL. Older homes in a lush tropical surrounding. Oh, really?
The name “Venice Gardens” sounds nice for a subdivision, right? Most likely you have never heard about this part of Venice before unless you are a local. However, it may be worth knowing where and what it is. Everybody is familiar with the historic downtown area and the art district. Yes, the island is a beautiful place to be, and some people say that they can only live in this spot of Venice. That’s fine, everybody is entitled to his own opinion.
Therefore, let us have a closer look at the Venice Gardens neighborhood
So, where is Venice Gardens located? You may ask, dear reader. This is easy to explain: Cross the South Bridge, go a few hundred yards south on 41, make a left turn on Shamrock Drive and you are already in the Venice Gardens subdivision. On your right, you will already see the community center with pool and playground, gazebos and barbecues, all in a park-like setting. Nice. We will talk about that back later.
How big is the Venice Gardens community?
There are almost 1,900 homes – which is a pretty manageable size. About 7,000 people live in an area of 2.7 mi². The majority of the homes are with a beautiful lake or creek views. The only drawback is that there are basically no real “new construction homes” in the community. Therefore, if you are looking for a brand new home with all the bells and whistles, Venice Gardens is not the right spot to look.
The first homes in the subdivision were built in the late 1950’s when the prices for building sites on the Island of Venice were already going through the roof.
People were less demanding in the 50’s and many homeowners were happy to have just a roof over their head. Therefore, many homes from that time are pretty small compared with today’s standard. Two bedrooms and two bathrooms with 900 – 1,500 sq ft living area are common. Newer homes, built within the 70’s to the late 90’s, have already 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and 2,000 sq ft under air.
Not all of the homes “for sale” are updated and renovated. Yes, some of the properties hitting the market can simply be described as “handyman’s dream” (or “handyman’s nightmare”). But run-down properties can be found everywhere, even in newer communities. Most of the homes are in pretty good shape or can be remodeled without breaking the bank.
What is so nice about the community?
Well, first of all, the location. Venice Gardens is close to shopping, medical facilities and the white sandy beaches because it is right in the heart of Venice. It takes about 5-10 minutes (depending on how many speeding tickets you want to collect) to get to the beach. So Venice Gardens is a lot closer than the new and sleek lifestyle communities like Grand Palm, Gran Paradiso, Village Walk and Sarasota National.
Is the name “Gardens” justified?
Yes, it is. Many homes are surrounded by a nice tropical garden, and many of them are facing some type of water (lake, pond or canal). You can fish in your backyard when you have a home on the water, or if you own a little fishing or paddle boat you can tour the chain of lakes.
The community is non-gated because in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s nobody thought about living behind a wall. That hasn’t changed in 2015. Nobody feels unsafe while living in a community without gate, fence or wall. If you are still concerned, pull up the crime report. Yes, the community is safe. It could be called Garden of Eden…almost.
What about Septic and Well?
Like the homes in South Venice, older homes in Venice are all on septic and well. True? Or not true? Not true! The homes in Venice Gardens are on public water and sewer. Beautiful: no maintenance of a septic tank, no well, no pump to replace, no filtration system, no water softener, and no bags of salt-blocking the garage.
One word about the Home Owners Association
Exorbitant high fees for Home Owners Associations are sometimes another headache in Florida, right? So, what is the deal in Venice Gardens? The good news is that membership in the HOA is voluntary. Many homeowners love that part.
However, if you want to use the clubhouse and community pool you need to pay the annual fee of approximately $150 (a single person pays less, a family pays a little more) to get in. Can you live with that? You can actually rent the club house for family reunions, big anniversaries or for whatever party do you want to throw.
There is also a well-groomed county park next to the clubhouse. Not too big, but grills and gazebos are in place, waiting for your next outdoor event.
Who would be my neighbor?
Venice Gardens is not a retirement or 55+ community, and the community has also no deed restrictions. That can be good or bad. It means that you can have as many dogs as you want, you can rent your house for 3 days or for the rest of your time on this blue planet. Young families with or without kids live next door to retirees. Snowbirds live next door to Floridians. Seasonal renters live next door to homeowners. Some homeowners have trucks, some have motorbikes.
If that’s not what you want, Venice Gardens will most likely not become your favorite neighborhood to hang out.
However, if you don’t like it when somebody whispers in your ear that your Harley or your truck is not welcome in the community, which is the case in most gated and deed restricted communities, you may want to have a closer look at a “home for sale” in Venice Gardens. Find your happy place in Venice Gardens here!
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