Rule Britannia

As informed trend watchers will tell you, buyers from the United Kingdom are not only among today’s most active homebuyers in Southwest Florida; but have traditionally favored our region over all other possibilities on Florida’s two coasts.  So much, in fact, do they prefer our particular blend of climate, culture and coastal ambiance that they purchase residential properties in the Sarasota-Bradenton-Venice market at a rate nearly three times higher than either of their next two closest preferences—Naples and Tampa-St Petersburg.  (Source:  Florida Association of Realtor’s 2009 Survey of International Homebuyers)

Therefore, the decision to sell your home in Sarasota, Manatee or Charlotte Counties should by all measures include choosing a company that can provide you with the strongest and most comprehensive network of incoming international referrals—both from around the world and across the U.K.

At Michael Saunders & Company, we’re exceptionally proud of our exclusive network of worldwide brokerage affiliations—pieced together carefully over more than three decades—that enable us to put your property on the radar screens of qualified buyers everywhere. These affiliations include Leading Real Estate Companies of the World, Luxury Portfolio, Christie’s Great Estates, the European Real Estate Network and Mayfair International Realty.

While each of these exclusive affiliations is international in scope and strategically important in its own right, Mayfair International Realty is especially key toward helping our agents effectively connect with buyers from the U.K.—who last year alone accounted for 16% of all Florida home sales to foreign buyers.

Nick Churton, Managing Director of Mayfair International Realty, calls his Central London headquarters akin to having a Michael Saunders & Company branch office in the city’s most fashionable quarter.

“Mayfair’s office in London is the base for Michael Saunders & Company’s marketing activities in the U.K.,” Churton says.  “And we never miss an opportunity to introduce one of your properties to a prospective customer; or to a journalist writing for the U.K. media. That is why you will see so many Michael Saunders & Company listings featured in the U.K. press; and why we get so many enquiries for properties in your particular market area.”

Mayfair International Realty is a network of luxury real estate professionals working from both sides of the Atlantic; with membership strictly by invitation only.   Each member organization—including 100 brokerages in 350 offices spread throughout the buyer-rich U.K.—is the leading expert in its own local market area and gladly refers buyers to our particular spot on the globe. At the core of Mayfair’s worldwide influence is its headquarters in Central London, which is also the real estate “bridge” to buyers in Europe, Russia and the Middle East; and stands head and shoulder with New York as the world’s twin capitals of culture, commerce and finance.

As a principal benefit of membership in the Mayfair network all Michael Saunders & Company listings priced from $250,000 and above are showcased on  In addition Mayfair International Realty uploads all properties priced over $ 1 million to the Web site for Country Life Magazine (  Country Life has been a revered institution in the U.K. for over 100 years and a copy is hand-delivered to Queen Elizabeth each week.  Its Web site boasts over 1.2 million hits per month and over 600,000 users, 72% from the U.K. and 28% from the rest of the international community. This is yet another competitive advantage offered to sellers who list their properties with an agent from Michael Saunders & Company.

Nick Churton expresses a particular fondness for his time spent on Longboat Key.  “This was the first place I really came to know in the States,” he says.  “Now I compare all the other great coastal areas I visit in the U.S. with this extraordinary location—and for me nothing else comes close. This is why I am so passionate about telling others about Southwest Florida.”

The London office of Mayfair International Realty is ideally situated at the crossroads of London’s luxury real estate and retail districts, Churton explains.

“Our window displays are always grabbing passers-by with eye-catching photos of sun-dappled waterfront properties in Sarasota, Manatee, Longboat Key, Venice and elsewhere—especially during this unusually cold and snowy winter,” he adds.   “I love talking to buyers about Sarasota and use every opportunity I get to pass on my own personal knowledge and enthusiasm for Longboat, Lido, Siesta, Casey and Manasota Keys; whether it’s describing taking a cruise along the Intracoastal, toasting the sunset from a spectacular beach; or ambling around St Armands Circle after dinner.  Living by the water in such a warm and idyllic location is just a magnificent lifestyle for U.K. buyers. And what wonderful properties for them to inhabit!”

A sentiment to which we can only add:  “Rule Britannia!”

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