Best areas to live in Ocala

Are you thinking about buying real estate in Ocala? Lots of families are choosing to make this highly livable city their home, and all of them want to know which areas in Ocala are the best ones.

It turns out that when it comes to neighborhoods that offer outstanding quality of life, Ocala is spoiled for choices.

Let’s take a closer look at seven of the best areas to live in Ocala.

Historic District

Ocala’s Historic District is aptly named. First developed in 1880 as a residential neighborhood, the district expanded eastward from the center of town. The earliest homes in the area are clustered along Fort King Street. This is where you’ll find numerous Queen Anne Revival and Victorian-style houses. As you progress eastward, you’ll notice that the homes become more modern, featuring bungalows and other architectural styles. One of the most attractive enticements to living in the Historic District is the many old oak trees, all of which drip with Spanish moss.

The most desirable portion of the Historic District is found southeast of Highway 40. It is a small area, encompassing only a few city blocks, but it is a remarkable neighborhood. Prices can vary widely here, ranging from approximately $350,000 up to well over one million dollars.

Fort King District

The Fort King National Historic Landmark is the main attraction in this neighborhood. In addition to the reconstructed fort, there is a Visitor Center, a library, an interpretive trail and the Heritage Teaching Garden.

This is a neighborhood that boasts an abundance of beautiful houses, many of which were built in the mid 1970s as well as some newer construction. It’s close to the Historic District without being in it, which means that you can move in for a great deal less money. In recent data, $235,000 was the median home price for single-family dwellings in the Fort King District. That means that you can find home prices starting at about $200,000 and going up to $575,000.

Heathbrook

This is a thoughtfully designed, extremely attractive community that is quite large. It feels incredibly secluded in its perch off of Highway 200. You turn at an understated sign at the main entrance, then are pleasantly surprised by the many upscale houses and apartments in the area. If you buy a home in Heathbrook, then you will truly have it all. The community boasts an excellent gym that’s well equipped, multiple swimming pools and plentiful green spaces. Expect to spend about $275,000 for a good house. In Heathbrook, lawns and streets well kept, all is peaceful and quiet and you’ll find that you’re surrounded by lots of trees. You can buy a piece of paradise at an affordable price in this neighborhood.

Fore Ranch

Are you excited at the prospect of becoming a homeowner but don’t have a ton of money to spend? Fore Ranch may be the perfect location for you. Plentiful homes priced at between $180,000 and $250,000 are available here. In addition to a multitude of single-family homes, you’ll also find a broad selection of townhouses. Lots in this community tend to be a bit smaller, which may be perfect for your family if you don’t want to spend a lot of time maintaining a yard. Residential lots are kept smaller to provide larger areas for community amenities, of which there are many. A gym, swimming pools, splash pads, playgrounds, tennis courts, basketball courts, walking trails and man-made ponds are just the beginning. If you have a growing family, Fore Ranch is the ideal place to settle.

Equestrian Homes

Ocala is the “Horse Capital of the World,” and it has worked hard to earn that title. If you want to become a part of the city’s equestrian society, opt for one of the many farms. All you really have to decide is how many acres you want. Some farms have as few as two or three acres, but other properties may have 2,000 or more acres. Accordingly, you will find a wide range of prices, with smaller farms sometimes going for as little as $150,000. On the high side, you could easily pay $17,000,000. This means that whether you want to raise a few chickens or breed million dollar horses, you can easily make your dream a reality in Ocala.

Silver Springs Shores

It’s time to learn about this developing and hugely popular neighborhood in Ocala. Located to the south of the city, Silver Springs Shores is the place to find affordable homes and an overall attractive cost of living.

Officially, Silver Springs Shores is outside of Ocala’s city limits. This means that first-time home buyers can easily qualify for USDA no down payment home loans on properties in this area. For $200,000, you could get a spectacular first home that is the perfect starter property.

Making Silver Springs Shores even more attractive is how quickly it is developing to provide shopping and services to residents. With a Publix, a Walmart, gas stations, multiple shopping centers and all sorts of service providers, you don’t have to go far to get everything you need when you live in this neighborhood.

Marian Oaks

Like Silver Springs Shores, Marion Oaks is a residential area that is just outside of the city limits. This makes it the ideal place to buy a home with USDA loans for first-time home buyers. Marion Oaks is becoming extremely well developed. In fact, it’s like a city all its own. This is not a small, contained housing development, but a true community that encompasses just over 14 square miles. You’ll find a shopping center, gas stations, churches, schools and grocery stores right where you need them. With low-cost houses that provide an interesting mixture of old and new construction, you’ll have plenty of reasons to love the lifestyle at Marion Oaks.

Call Florida’s Choice Realty First

Do you want to learn more about these and other outstanding neighborhoods in Ocala? If so, call Florida’s Choice Realty today. Our knowledgeable Realtors can help you find your new home.

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5 Reasons People Choose to Move to Ocala

Is Ocala a Good Place to Live?

The central Florida city of Ocala is packed with extraordinary experiences. From natural wonders in the Ocala National Forest and Silver Springs State Park to man-made attractions like the Appleton Museum of Art and the Fort King National Historic Landmark, Ocala is a wonderful place to visit.

We often get asked “Is Ocala is a good place to live?”. Here are five reasons why people move to Ocala and why it’s more than a place to visit.

1. Everything You Need with a Small Town Atmosphere

Ocala’s city planners have carefully managed development over the years. The result is the ideal balance between having access to everything you need and not sacrificing a warm and hospitable small-town feeling.

This makes Ocala a fantastic place to start out in life, raise a family or retire. Whatever stage of life you’re in, you’ll find an abundance of jobs, restaurants, shops and houses of worship. The schools are recognized for the quality education that they offer, and residents are free to discover a wide range of recreational possibilities.

Ocala features excellent community connection. You’ll probably get to be good friends with your neighbors, which is a rarity in other cities. Plus, Ocala’s quaint downtown district is a favorite place to hang out, dine and shop. You’ll even find several fun festivals on the calendar.

2. It’s the Horse Capital of the World

How did a mid-sized Florida city earn a reputation as the Horse Capital of the World? By boasting a surprising number of prestigious breeding facilities.

When you visit Ocala, you’ll discover that you don’t have to travel far to discover mile upon mile of pastureland. All of it is beautifully fenced in with white or brown lumber. Immaculate barns are seen on the horizon. As you watch, sleek, muscular animals graze in the pastures or are put through their paces by experienced trainers. There’s no mistaking that this is serious horse country.

In fact, Marion County boasts in excess of 600 farms that raise and train Thoroughbreds, making it one of just four Thoroughbred centers on the planet. Altogether, the local horse farms have produced six Kentucky Derby winners, 20 Breeders’ Cup champions and 45 national champions.

If horse lovers need even more incentive to make Ocala home, consider that the World Equestrian Center soon will be open. This elegant facility will feature almost 20 multi-purpose outdoor arenas, riding trails, schooling areas, climate-controlled barns and much more.

3. Ocala Is a Haven for Outdoor Recreation Enthusiasts

If you enjoy other outdoor recreation as an alternative to horseback riding, then you’re in luck. Ocala is filled with recreational options.

Water sports are particularly popular in the region, with many locals indulging in kayaking, canoeing, boating and tubing. You might explore along the Ocklawaha River one day and then Lake Weir the next. Or, you could spend a lifetime discovering the more than 600 springs, rivers and lakes of the Ocala National Forest.

Fishing for crappie, bass, catfish and more is popular with local anglers. You’ll be spoiled for choice with diverse locations like Fore Lake Recreation Area, Rainbow Springs State Park and the Lake Eaton Pier to name a few.

Hikers love to explore the miles of trails in the many parks, and cyclists find plenty to occupy them here too. Diverse activities like hunting, birding and off-road riding vie for the attention of outdoor adventurers.

It’s all yours for the asking, and with an average of 233 sunny days every year, you’ll have lots of time for exploration.

4. An Ideal Central Location

It’s hard to imagine a more ideal location than the one that Ocala occupies. That’s because the city is situated in the geographic center of Florida. No matter where you want to visit in the state, you’re just a short drive away.

You can be in Daytona within an hour and a half where you can enjoy the beach or catch a NASCAR race. With just slightly more time in the car, you’ll find yourself in St. Augustine. This ancient city boasts not only the beach but also some of the oldest and most fascinating historic sites in the U.S.

Larger cities like Gainesville and Jacksonville are found to the north. Gainesville features attractions such as the Florida Museum of Natural History, the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens and the Harn Museum of Art. In Gainesville, you’ll also find the University of Florida, which offers a wide range of prestigious degree programs. Jacksonville boasts popular sites like the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens, MOSH and the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens.

If thrill rides are more your style, then venture an hour or so south to Orlando. Known as the theme park capital of the world, this is where you’ll find Disney World, Universal Studios, Sea World and more.

With equally convenient access to the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, beach getaways are always on the itinerary. Plus, you’ll have your pick of big-city thrills with a drive of an hour or two. No wonder people say that Ocala is perfectly located.

5. Ocala Is Affordable

In recent years, Florida’s cities have acquired a reputation for pricey real estate. However, that’s not the case in Ocala. Compare real estate here with other communities in Florida, and you will be pleasantly surprised. With lower home prices, you’ll be able to get more home for your money.

Plus, Ocala occupies a large region with acres of land. This means that you’ll probably find a larger lot than you will in other Florida cities, ensuring you a bigger yard and more privacy.

Even with all of those advantages, you’ll find that your property tax bill remains attractively low. It’s just one more reason that families are coming home to Ocala.

Are You Ready to Make a Move?

If you were asking yourself if Ocala is a good place to live and after reading this article are interested in what Ocala can offer your family, then call Florida’s Choice Realty. Our expert Realtors are always prepared to share their love of the local area with families who are thinking about moving to Ocala. Call us today to or fill out the form below to learn more.

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