Jacksonville Real Estate

Written by Helen Glenn Court
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First called Fort Caroline and then Cowford, what is now Jacksonville, Florida has a rich history and heritage. The first inhabitants were the Timucuan Indians, who greeted first the Spanish in 1513 and then the French in 1564. Only in 1812 did Florida become a territory of the United States. A year afterward the town of Jacksonville--named for General Andrew Jackson, soon to be president--rose on a narrow ford of the St. John's River. By the time Florida became a state in 1845, Jacksonville was already an important commercial hub.

By the end of the 19th century, the town had--with its delightfully warm climate and beautiful Atlantic beaches--become a haven for visitors from colder weather as well as a vital shipping port. In the first year of the 20th century, however, a fire destroyed much of Jacksonville. Rebound growth was slow but steady. By 1968 it was geographically the largest city in the continental United States, but the pace was still quiet and slow. By the turn of the 21st century, however, that too was history. Jacksonville today is a vibrant city in the national spotlight.

Broadly speaking, a map of Jacksonville today reveals 10 areas of the greater metro area: Airport/Northside, Amelia Island/Fernandina Beach, Arlington, Beaches/Mayport, Downtown/Riverfront/Southbank, Orange Park, Palm Coast, Ponte Vedra/St. Augustine, Southside, and Westside. No matter what neighborhood you choose, however, this is a wonderful city to call home! With a strong local economy, a vibrant business sector, an international airport, an NFL team, and a truly metropolitan flavor, Jacksonville boasts a well-educated population of nearly 750,000 (median age 33) and a host of cultural, sporting, and recreational venues.

Shopping for Jacksonville Properties

Finding a house to call home, though, especially if you're relocating from another state and don't know the city well, calls for a local realtor. That expertise--intimate knowledge of neighborhoods and finger on the pulse of the market--is critical. While the last census noted a median house value of only $87,000, the health of the real estate market over the last several years has changed that statistical number. A more realistic range for a single-family home might start at about $100,000 and run up to $500,000. Of course, you will find properties at less than that, and, always, at considerably more.

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