Sarasota is an Attractive Haven For Millionaires

Local resident Steven King
Local resident Steven King

Sarasota is an Attractive Haven For Millionaires

Sarasota is enjoying an influx of well heeled buyers from Hollywood and beyond. Steven King makes his home here along with tennis stars Monica Seles and Martina Navratilova, Rosie O'Donnell and political gurus James Carville and Mary Matalin. Add to that the recent addition of Fashion Designer Michael Kors on Longboat Key. The average wealthy person in Sarasota is a little harder to spot. Typically they have retired from a successful career in corporate America or moved here for retirement due to high state taxes elsewhere. Few covet the limelight. For those who relish an active social life, Sarasota is the perfect place to live in season and out.

How many wealthy people live in Sarasota? Phoenix Marketing International found during an analysis in 2013 that the North Port, Sarasota and Bradenton area has over 17,005 millionaire households. Millionaire households are defined as those with at least $1 million in investible assets not counting real estate or 401K assets, 2,450 of these households have over $5 million or more. The powerful trend that has been fueling this influx is the Sunshine State's tax policies. With no state income tax or taxes on estates, capital gains or dividends and interest, Florida has proven to be a wonderful haven for those with money to protect.

Florida and more specifically the Sarasota area has always drawn snowbirds from the Midwest but now more and more transplants are arriving from the Northeast. Canadians and Germans have long been fans of the West Coast of Florida along with Italians in increasing numbers. Many are anxious to flee the economic unrest in Europe, just recently many Californians have expressed interest in the State, weary of state income tax rates as high as 13.3%. Another huge draw is IMG Academy, a private and pricey sports academy, offering a sports and academic curriculum. Founded originally by Nick Bolletieri as a tennis school, IMG offers golf, soccer and much more to its students. The parents of those students often want second homes in the area to be close to the kids.

The one area in which Sarasota is lacking is in the area of wages. The county's jobless rate of 6.1 percent is below the national average but many of those jobs are in low wage services industries. Many of the better paying careers are in health care and with the aging population in Florida, one third of all Floridians are over 65, that is not likely to change any time soon. The factors that hold Sarasota back from the kind of growth that many other Florida cities have experienced is also the lack of large industry. We have a beautiful bay but no harbor for shipping, there are no large research universities or schools and with such a small airport travel from the major metropolises can be challenging.

 With so many positives like the beautiful coastlines, crystal clear waters and an very active social climate, Sarasota is likely to continue to attract those wanting a certain lifestyle for many years to come.

Holly Pascarella

The Pascarella Group



Luxury Living in Lakewood Ranch


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