On Top of the World is a huge 55 plus retirement community located in SW Ocala Florida. Sidney Colen, a visionary Florida builder, purchased the 12,872 acre Circle Square Ranch in 1975 and began to develop On Top of the World in 1982. His son is still building new homes here today.
On Top of the World is unique in Ocala real estate for a couple of reasons. This is a leasehold property which is unusual for our area. This means that you own the house but the lot is leased for 99 years from the time of the first sale. A buyer also can’t finance more than 80% of the purchase price of their home. Unlike most Ocala 55+ communities all outside maintenance is part of the HOA fees.
In addition to new homes there are quite a few resales here. Older homes are often attached in groups of 4 to 6 and of concrete block and stucco construction. The newer homes are single detached and also CBS. Sizes range from 1,000 to about 2400 sq ft of living area. Prices start as low as $40,000- and go up to $200,000- for resales.
HOA fees at On Top of the World are high, around $375- per month, because they include all outside maintenance including lawns, painting and roof repair but not replacement as well as property insurance on the building but not the contents or interior. In addition there is a 24 hour guard at the gate and too many amenities to list.
Amenities include the Arbor Club with indoor and outdoor pools and tennis, the Health and Rec Center with a fitness center, racketball, steam room ect. and a craft building with a complete woodworking shop, The Spa Ranch and Fitness Center, a library, a dog park, a bus service for shopping and the Circle Square Cultural Center. There are 2 golf courses, the Tortoise and Hare and The Links. Golf, the Ranch Spa and Fitness and the Cultural Center all have fees above and beyond your HOA fee.
On Top of the World is also a golf cart community which means you can drive your cart down the street. You can even access 2 grocery stores, small shops and a few restaurants with your golf cart.
Update 1/10/11 : There were 75 resales in On Top of the World between 6/1/10 and 12/21/10 from $23,000- (handyman special) and $164,000-. There were 3 foreclosures and 1 short sale. HOA fees are now $388- per month in most areas.
Update 2-12-2013 There were 190 sales in OTOTW in 2012. Prices are all over the place. A 2 story condo was the cheapest at $18,500-. The cheapest villa was $24,900-. The villas are homes attached in rows of 6-8. The most expensive home was a 2003 CBS home on the golf course for $135,000-. HOA fees vary. Villas are $391- month and free standing homes are from $307- to $328- month. Water is part of the HOA fees in the villas but not included in the single family. I think some of the newer single family homes are a great buy.
Update 6/2014 There are still cheap villas that sell in the mid $20K range. They are all small and need a total make over. Prices on the newer single family detached homes are going up with a recent sale of $180,000- for a 1713 sqft 2008 Hanover model. These newer resales are still a great deal and are a lot cheaper than buying new.
If you would like a list of homes for sale in On Top of the World fill out my Dream Home Finder, call me or send me an email.
Statistics used for this blog post are from the Ocala Marion County MLS and are deemed to be accurate at the time this blog was written but are not guaranteed. All information is time sensitive and subject to change without notice.