Fort Lauderdale-based Stellar Communities is planning a different kind of build in Four Corners – smaller single-family homes for rent that have yards, pet salons and parks - all the amenities of a larger single-family community or an apartment complex.
Stellar plans to build 180 detached one-, two- and three-bedroom single-family homes on part of the 32.4 acres the company is buying and then 300 apartment units on another part of the land, Managing Partner Larry Baum told GrowthSpotter.
“Everything was pre-Corona (Covid-19),” Baum said. “We are so far along I feel like we are going forward with it. … We’re very bullish in the area.”
Baum had expected final approvals from Polk County in June, followed by a third-quarter closing on the land, which is located in Davenport on U.S. 27 half mile north of County Road 54 (Ronald Reagan Parkway) on the west side of 27. Mark Wilson of Kimley-Horn is the civil engineering project manager.
Who knows with the corona thing,” he said, but the company will push forward. Stellar is working to get on the Development Review Committee (DRC) agenda as soon as possible. The committee will discuss the company’s request for the highest density allowed – 15 units per acre.
Single family Build-for-Rent (BFR) communities are among the fastest growing housing asset classes in the nation. In these communities, the builders offer fewer floorplans and exterior elevations than traditional primary residential communities. The home’s interior finishes are comparable to a Class-A apartment.
Stellar is purchasing the property from a trust based in Saudi Arabia under the name Fahad M. Al Turki. Baum declined to disclose the pending sale details.
Established in 2009, Stellar builds every home using environmentally friendly, sustainable practices and products, Baum said. “All our projects are built with green certifications.”
Steller ChampionsGate will be Baum’s first project in the Orlando area in about 15 years, Baum said. Stellar has about 2,000 units in different stages of development cycle throughout Florida, mostly on the west coast.
“We like the location,” Baum said of the Four Corners submarket. “We like that we can do two different products; closeness to jobs, retail, schools. … It has a lot of good factors.”
The single-family homes will be built in blocks, with 54 1-bedroom, 108 2-bedroom and 18 3-bedroom units, according to site plans prepared by Orlando-based architect Canin Associates. The apartments, which will be built at the same time as the single-family homes, will be 3-story garden style units, Baum said.
“We have gyms and nature trails and pet spas and runs,” Baum said. “We build communities.”
Community-style rentals attract people who want to stay longer in a place but don’t want to own or deal with maintenance and yard work. Millennials and seniors are Stellar’s largest demographic, Baum said. They want amenities, yards and pet-friendly communities without having to worry about a mortgage.
“We’ll offer 2-and 3-year leases and they will take them,” he said.
Baum said the biggest concern now with the Covid-19 pandemic is the job force – one of the big attractions for development in the Four Corners area, which borders four counties – Lake, Orange, Osceola and Polk.
“We’re very worried about what’s happening in Orlando with the jobs,” he said. “The short-term concern is how fast the jobs are going to come back there, because a lot of the renters will be people who work in the parks.”
Then again, Baum said, with a nationwide stay-at-home order, Florida may see more people moving to the state. “Now that we’re in the quarantine, you’d rather have a yard” and be able to go outside to warm weather. “We still believe in Orlando and Four Corners.”