Frequently Ask Questions
Buying a Home at Babcock Ranch
The best starting part for those interested in living in Babcock Ranch is the Discovery Center located at Woodlea Hall. Our Town Ambassadors provide valuable oversight into the history, structure, and function of the town. All homes are purchased through one of the many outstanding builders who provide a full range of living options at Babcock Ranch – and incorporate best practices of green building. Our Ambassadors can help you connect with builders who have homes that suit your style and budget.
How big are the homesites?
Currently homesite width sizes range from 50 ft. to 80 ft.
Can I purchase a lot and then bring in my own builder?
There are no individual lot sales. All homesites are purchased by our approved builders.
What builders can construct homes at Babcock Ranch?
We are constantly adding builders and products – you’ll find contact information for all currently active builders on our site map.
How much do homes costs?
Current pricing starts just under $200,000 to over $1,000,000.
Will there be smaller homes and lower price points?
Yes! A variety of home designs and sizes at various price points, including condominium and rental apartments, are included in the plans for Babcock Ranch. The first condos to be introduced will be in the Babcock National neighborhood currently underway on the north shore of Lake Babcock.
Governance & Fees
Who maintains the community?
Babcock Ranch Community Independent Special District (ISD) and the Babcock Ranch Residential Association.
How does the ISD work?
The ISD is set up under a provision with the State of Florida. This provides the ability for bonds to pay for the infrastructure for roads and other common area developments.
How are the fees charged for the ISD?
The ISD fee appears on the individual ad valorum tax bill. The annual operations and maintenance of the ISD is currently $375 per year and appears on the tax bill. The debt service depends on the size of the home site and currently ranges from $870 to $3,100 annually.
What are the recurring fees?
The recurring HOA fees currently set at $140 per month. This amount is billed quarterly by the association. Residents will have a choice of membership to other facilities.
What services are covered by the HOA fees?
Services provided by the HOA include:
- Professional On-Site Community Management
- Lifestyle Event Programming
- 1 Gig Internet Service
- Lakehouse and Pool
- Community Garden
- Community Holiday Decorations
- Community Landscaping
Who provides police and fire protection and how close?
Charlotte County EMS, fire, and police. There is a fire station within a mile of the entrance to Lake Babcock Drive. We are putting in a sheriff substation.
What are the taxes?
All properties are subject to county property taxes. All current development is in Charlotte County.
Who oversees the town-running ISD?
There is a board in place that executes the plans established by the ISD, including future additions and inclusions into the programs. All meetings are publicly noticed.
What are the green-building requirements for homes here?
All residential builders are required to attain a minimum of Bronze Certification from the Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC.) Those ratings are achieved through a combination of best practices for reducing energy consumption and minimizing environmental impacts.
What kind of landscaping can I have?
Residential landscaping requirements are included in the architectural guidelines. They can choose from a list of native plants and approved plant materials that use minimal water. No invasive or exotic plant materials are allowed.
What type of sod is used throughout the town?
Zoysia and Floratam per HOA documents under Landscape and Maintenance Specifications.
Are rentals permitted?
Rentals are permitted in residential neighborhoods with some restrictions at a 2-month minimum.
Are there membership fees?
Certain facilities will be collecting membership fees, i.e. The Hatchery and Wellness Center.
Can you have a satellite dish?
Yes, but the location must be approved by the ARC prior to installation.
Can you have a fence or invisible fence?
Both invisible fences and regular fences are permitted. The regular fence must be submitted to ARC and conform to certain guidelines. Fences cannot go down to the lake edge since there is a 20-foot lake maintenance easement.
Can you park on the street?
Parking is only permitted in designated areas.
Are there access restrictions/visitors?
Are there pool fencing requirements?
Yes, per Florida code.
Infrastructure & Utilities
Babcock Ranch is powered by the sun, with electricity generated from the on-site, solar photovoltaic power generating facility.
Where does the electricity come from?
The 75-megawatt FPL solar energy plant that went online in January 2017 is located at the northern edge of town on 440 acres of land donated for that purpose by K&P. Whenever the sun is shining the solar field provides clean, renewable solar power to every home and business at Babcock and to the electrical grid to serve all FPL customers. Solar panels on commercial buildings expand our energy production. A second 75-megawatt solar energy plant now under construction adjacent to the first plant will double the generating capacity of Babcock Ranch and ensure the town is always a net contributor of clean, renewable energy to the grid.
What if there is no sun?
The solar panels produce electricity whenever the sun is shining and at night, or when it is extremely cloudy, we pull power from the grid. FPL recently added 10 MW of battery storage capacity to the solar field, further decreasing the amount of energy needed from the grid and helping ensure the town contributes more total energy to the grid than it pulls back.
Florida Power and Light (FPL) provides electricity for the town. Residents pay a typical electric bill. The electricity is not free just because it is solar, but residents do not have to pay a premium for using solar power.
What is the average electric bill using solar?
This will depend on usage, but all homes are built energy efficient which helps cut down on energy consumption.
What is the process of installing solar on individual homes? Can residents put their solar purchase into the mortgage or is it something they need to do after construction is complete?
Purchasers of homes can obtain third party solar companies to provide for their solar needs. This can be planned pre-construction and included with their mortgage. All builders offer buyers the option of adding their own rooftop solar.
Drinking (potable) water, sanitary sewer, and reclaimed water for irrigation are all provided by the Babcock Ranch Community Independent Special District. Town & Country Utilities operate the town’s water facility.
Where does the drinking water come from?
Potable water comes from 150-foot-deep wells located on the town property that draw from the sandstone aquifer. We are fortunate to have a source of high-quality drinking water that requires minimal treatment to meet and exceed safety standards.
Where does the irrigation water come from?
The Town & Country’s treatment plant at Babcock Ranch reclaims 100% of all wastewater to reuse for irrigation. The treated wastewater is blended with lake water and distributed through the reused water distribution lines that run throughout the community.
Will the banks of the lakes (common areas vs. residential) remain as they are, or will there be vegetation planted?
Yes, there will be vegetation planted. This will help with erosion, filtration and provides a habitat for the fish.
What is the purpose of the “rain gardens” and “filter marshes” that are part of the community landscape?
The purpose is to mirror the filtering qualities of marshlands. In doing so we are both reducing the quantity and improving the quality of water flowing on to our neighbors
Who handles the trash?
Trash service is provided by Ecologic Waste Management.
An advanced public and private transportation system based on shared, driverless, electric vehicles is anticipated as the eventual backbone for moving people and goods about in Babcock Ranch. Our goal is to create a mobility system where Babcock Ranch residents will not need to own a second vehicle, and ultimately not need to own any vehicles. Because the mobility system at Babcock Ranch is envisioned to be made up of shared driverless vehicles, the number of cars (and the amount of parking space) that the community needs will be far lower than a typical community of the same size. Using their personal devices, residents will be able to “hail” driverless cars to take them where they want to go.
In the near term, the mobility system at Babcock Ranch will include driverless vehicle and non-driverless vehicle services such as hourly and daily car rentals, airport shuttles, on-demand driverless vehicle rides, bike sharing, etc. Together, this will serve as an integrated mobility system to move people around within and outside of Babcock Ranch.
Our transportation partner is Transdev, a global leader in mobility and autonomous operations serving more than 200 other cities across the country. Transdev has projects established in at least 19 other countries and has been responsible for about 200 million passenger trips in traditional cars and buses.
Will there be another entrance to Babcock Ranch?
There will be several access points to Babcock Ranch as well as a divided parkway in separate locations. There is an access point to the north and an access point to the south along SR 31 in the master plans.
What type of roads will there be?
The roads at Babcock Ranch will be public roads designed to minimize the impact on wildlife, especially at night. The parkways will be divided in certain areas with native landscaping.
Who maintains the roads?
Roads will be maintained by the Babcock Ranch Community Independent Special District (ISD) and, in certain parts, homeowner’s associations.
Can I own my own golf cart?
Yes, golf carts are encouraged. and both electric and gas-powered carts that meet Florida’s street legal requirements are allowed. Per Florida law, golf carts used on roads must be equipped as follows:
- Head/tail/ brake lights
- Turn signals
- Vehicle identification number
- Max. speed of 25 MPH
When will 31 widen?
2021 or 2022
One of the many benefits of living in Babcock Ranch is that residents enjoy access to the latest, most robust technology and telecommunications services available in the area.
In addition to the cutting-edge Fiber-To-The-Home (FTTH) deployed throughout Babcock Ranch, Centurylink is building a community WIFI network that will be available to Babcock Ranch residents and guests.
Who provides TV, internet and cable service?
Centurylink is the internet provider through fiber optic to the home. Each residence has 1-gigabit fiber optic to the curb.
I have never heard of Centurylink, who are they?
Centurylink is the third-largest telecommunications provider in the United States and is recognized as a leader in the network services market by technology industry analyst firms.
Are telecommunications services included in my POA dues?
Yes. To ensure all homes in Babcock Ranch enjoy the fastest Internet services available from Centurylink, Internet service is included in your POA dues. Currently, 1 GIG service is included in your dues. Higher speeds may be available the future.
What about Cable TV and Telephone services?
Residents can order a variety of Cable TV packages directly from Centurylink. In addition, the super-fast high-speed Internet service in each home allows for entertainment services such as Hulu, Apple TV, Netflix and other streaming services, sometimes preferred by consumers over traditional Cable TV. Wired telephone services are also available from Centurylink.
Can I subscribe to DISH or DirecTV for video entertainment?
For those residents who insist on a personal satellite dish, approval for the installation location must be granted by Babcock Ranch prior to installation.
I want WIFI in my house, do I need to buy a Wi-Fi_33 router?
No. Centurylink will provide a wireless router in each home that provides 1 GIG wireless service. This is included as part of your 1 GIG Internet service.
Will my cell phone work at Babcock Ranch?
Will Babcock Ranch have a community video channel?
Yes. Plans call for Babcock Ranch to establish a dedicated community channel for messages and local programming of interest.
Recreation & Amenities
Babcock Ranch is all about building a community. Our Founder’s Square serves as a hub for social activities with a splash pad, great lawn, shade structures, and a bandshell. There are trails for walking & biking, and access to the lakes open to everyone. Neighborhood amenities, like the Lake Timber Lake House, are reserved as space for residents to gather with their friends, family, and neighbors. In addition, the membership-based Lee Health Healthy Life Center at Founder’s Square features an outdoor pool. The Hatchery, a collaborative workspace located above Slater’s overlooking Founder’s Square, is another example of a membership-based amenity.
What type of trail system does Babcock Neighborhood provide?
Some of the trails at Babcock Ranch are wide and easily accessible. Other trails will be more natural and follow creek riverbeds. Access to the trails will be on foot and motor vehicles are prohibited on all trails.
How many trails will there be?
When complete, we will have more than 50 miles of trails to explore. Each neighborhood can access the network of trials via a nearby trailhead to walk, run, bike – however you choose to get engage with a healthier environment. The Babcock Ranch Preserve and other preserves in the immediate area offer a wide variety of outdoor activities.
Are there bike paths?
Yes – but they are not only restricted to bicycles. Biking is encouraged, and visitors and residents may ride on the trails and designated bike lanes.
What type of activities can happen on the lakes?
There are no gas motors permitted on the lake. Canoe, kayaks, stand up paddle boards, small sailboats, and all non-combustion engines are permitted.
What is the depth of the lakes and conditions?
Most of the lakes are or will range from 10-30 feet deep.
Where do I store my lake toys?
Are there lake toys for rent?
Yes – at Curry Creek Outfitters.
Can I have a dock behind my house?
We are working on the design guidelines for docks for certain sections of the lake. There is a 20-foot lake management easement utilized by Southwest Florida Water Management District. We are working on lake access for residents who live on the lakes.
Can I fish in the lake?
Fishing is allowed in the lakes with the proper permits required. Visit Curry Creek Outfitters for fishing information.
What type of fish are in the lake?
There are a variety of fish in the lake including bass, gar, and tilapia.
Will we ever allow harvesting the fish vs. catch and release?
Currently, all of our lakes are catch and release. There is the potential at some future date for harvestable fishing.
Can you swim in the lake?
Swimming in the lakes is not permitted.
What is our protocol regarding alligators?
Once a gator is 6′, fish and wildlife service will relocate them.
Are there pools in the neighborhoods?
There will be pools and amenity centers reserved strictly for the use of residents and their guests in different parts of the town. Like the Lake House and pool at Lake Timber, they will be open to all residents, not just to those living in immediately adjacent neighborhoods. The next pool and clubhouse facility to be constructed will be located on Lake Babcock near Babcock Neighborhood School and Jack Peeples Park.
Can we rent out community spaces to hold private events at Babcock?
There are certain facilities that are open for rent at Babcock Ranch for events and family gatherings, but to residents only. Refer to CCMC, Babcock Ranch’s property management partner for details.
Will there be golf courses?
The first golf course community will include 18 holes located in the Babcock National neighborhood.
Will there be any recreational facilities, ball fields, etc.?
Jack Peeples Park is the first community park, providing tennis and pickle ball courts, a basketball court, and a multipurpose field. In the master plan, we have committed to building regional parks that will include ball fields, tennis courts and other facilities.
Will there be other community gardens?
We have set aside pocket parks throughout the community that will afford areas where residents may rent a plot of land to garden.
Commercial & Shopping
Founder’s Square is the northern anchor of a downtown area that will expand steadily to the south with a broad variety of mixed-use space. Babcock Ranch is a town – and as we grow, we will have all of the things you would expect to find in any great hometown. Offices, churches, social organizations, auto repair – you name it, we have room for it within the 6 million square feet of commercial and community space included in our entitlement. All will be added as the market demands.
How far do we have to go to get groceries?
Slater’s Goods & Provisions at Founder’s Square stocks local produce and convenience items. A major grocery will be located at the “Crescent B” shopping center now under construction – in addition to the Publix located just 6 mile south of Babcock Ranch at the Verandah Shopping Center.
Who will own the downtown buildings?
The buildings may be retained by K&P and leased for businesses.
Will there be office buildings?
We are entitled to build 3 million square feet of general office, medical office, civic, community, and miscellaneous public facilities out of the 6 million total square feet.
Where can visitors stay – will there be a hotel?
We are permitted to build a total of 600 hotel rooms (360,000 square feet of building space).
Where can I run a business?
There will be several areas for business development. The downtown area will continue to offer commercial space. The Hatchery will serve as an entrepreneurial collaborative center and offers desk and office space through its membership programs.
Details on commercial entities coming in? Timelines n commercial?
We will have 6 million sq. ft of commercial property. Once the businesses have signed the lease agreement they will be announced. Below is the list of potential businesses:
- Dry Cleaners
- Hair Salon
- Cellular/Electronics Store
- Pack and Ship Services
- Optical Shop
- Tech Services
- Pool Supply
- Nail Salon
- Financial Services
- Pizza Restaurant
- Sub Restaurant
- Other Restaurants
When will we have more commercial spaces?
There is no specific timeline for commercial development. It is market driven. However there has been a strong response of various commercial entities expressing serious interest in bringing their business to Babcock Ranch .
The prerequisite for attracting top entrepreneurial and technology firms to locate at Babcock Ranch, and for establishing a tightly knit community, is to create a world-class educational system.
Babcock Ranch’s K-12 school system is based on innovative education concepts aimed at tailoring curricula to the learning capabilities of individual students. Students learn in a customized, personal, interactive environment that balances digital and hands on project-based learning. Babcock Neighborhood School, a public charter school, opened for grades K-6 in the fall of 2017. The school now goes through grade 8 and will continue to add a grade each year to take students all the way through high school.
How are the schools paid for and funded?
The schools are public schools funded the same as other public charter schools by the State of Florida.
Who can go to the school?
Enrollment is open to all students eligible to attend Charlotte County Schools, with admissions preference for those students living in Charlotte County. Any open seats not taken by Charlotte County residents are filled via a waiting list.
What is the enrollment process for the school?
Each resident upon signing their purchase contract must go to the school website www.babcockneighborhoodschool.org and register for the admissions lottery system ASAP
Are there any special educational opportunities at the Charter School?
The Charter School is a public school and offers the IEP (Independent Educational Program) for a wide spectrum of students.
In addition, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (commonly referred to as Section 504) is a federal law designed to protect the rights of individuals with disabilities in programs and activities that receive federal financial assistance Students with Disabilities.
Health & Wellness
The development of an innovative, state-of-the-art wellness, fitness and longevity center is an important element of the Babcock Ranch vision. The center promotes healthy lifestyle choices by providing complete fitness facilities along with other services such as nutritional guidance, weight management and stress reduction.
Will there be a hospital?
Included in our entitlements is the ability to have a 177-bed hospital.