Naples Vocabulary – The terms you need to know!

Green Flash

The “green flash” is a phenomenon that happens just as the sun drops into the horizon. The sun’s light is at just the right angle to cash a green bubble so to speak just above the sun. This flash only happens for a few seconds so don’t blink next time you’re watching a sunset on the beach! Ideal conditions for the “green flash” are a clear, cloudless sky and an elevated vantage point like a balcony of a beachfront condo.


These horrible Satan flies are a type of biting insect that are only 1mm-3mm in size. How much damage can something like that do? A LOT. The problem is that these tiny bugs bite you well before you feel them on your skin and they often come in swarms. If you’re outside in an area that has no-see-ums, it is not uncommon to wake up the next day covered in itchy, painful bites. Don’t get me wrong–you’ll feel them when they bite too but you don’t ordinarily see the damage right away. Also, they’re so small that they can even pass through some lanai screens so special no-see-um screen has become awfully popular. You’ve been warned.


This is a real estate term that we see a lot here in Southwest Florida, especially in the condo market. Most are familiar with the term “furnished” which indicates that furniture is going to stay with the property being sold. However, “turnkey” takes furnished to a whole new level. With a “turnkey” property, just about everything is going to stay including silverware, towels, coffee machines, you name it! That’s why a lot of agents will advertise a “turnkey” unit by saying, “Just bring your toothbrush!”

Bufo toad or cane toad

Beware of the bufo toads if you have pets. These are an invasive species of toads with glands that secrete a white milky substance that is toxic to your pets. If your dog ingests this toxin, get them to the vet immediately as a lack of treatment may prove fatal.


When you start driving through the neighborhoods west of US41, you’ll see a number of homes for sale where the home is clearly from the 1960’s or 1970’s. Then, you see the price tag and it’s pricey despite the age of the home. That’s because the home is a “teardown.” Buyers will purchase the home, tear it down and build new.

Lot Value

Remember those teardowns you just read about? They are sold for lot value which is just the value of the land the home is on.


Lely is a humongous neighborhood most easily described as being near US41 and Collier Blvd.. It made the list of vocab not because people don’t know where it is but because it is very often mispronounced. It is pronounced “Lay-lee.” Thank you!

Love bug

You may not know what a love bug is but your car’s front grille sure does! These flying insects mate around April or May each year and they are everywhere. Unfortunately, they’re flying around on the roads of Naples and you’ll plow through them as you drive. They get firmly adhered to your car but there are a number of ways to get rid of their bodies. One of the easiest is actually to use dryer sheets. Give it a shot in a couple of months!

Marco Midnight

Dance the night away, well… at least until 9pm. Marco Island, FL has a great term as it seems everything on the island abruptly stops at 9pm, or “Marco Midnight.” I’m not sure where people got the notion that the party stops at 9pm but it does! My parents used to own a home on Marco and would throw big Christmas parties every year. Right at 9pm, people would say their goodbyes and by 9:15pm everyone was out. It’s quite a phenomenon to see in person!


Porch? Balcony? Nope, it is a lanai (pronounced luh-nai). A lanai is an outdoor space attached to the home or condo that usually includes a concrete or paver floor and a covered area of some sort. They are often screened in as well. They’re enough of a part of the home that you’ll see them drawn on the home’s floor plan (although not included in the interior square feet measurement).

Pub Sub

Full disclosure—I hate this term but I love the product. A “Pub Sub” is one of the subs made at Publix. They are outstanding and there are a lot of different varieties. If you’ve been to Naples for more than a few days, I’m sure you’ve had one!


You probably know the road in question as “Collier Boulevard” but the folks that have been here a while likely call it “951.” It’s the same thing… use either one!


A snowbird is simply a person that lives up north and travels down to Naples in the winter to enjoy all we have to offer here. Then, they take off at the end of season to return home, just like migratory birds.

Home Watch

You just read about snow birds and they’re a big reason why home watch companies exist. Many property owners here in Naples actually live up north so who is going to keep an eye on their place while they’re away? The answer, the home watch company. They will go in periodically and check for leaks, secure your property, find things that need attention, etc..

The Alley

Alligator Alley” is the portion of I-75 that connects Naples to the east coast of Florida. It is a pretty straight shot across the state and has canals on both sides that are full of alligators. That’s where it gets its name.

Stingray Shuffle

If you go to the beach, you’ve certainly done (or seen someone do) the “stingray shuffle.” As you walk out into the Gulf of Mexico, sliding your feet against the sand will scare away any stingrays that may be resting on the sea floor. It’s an easy way to lower the chances of getting stung by the stingray’s barb.

Swamp Buggy

Oh boy. So a swamp buggy is a vehicle built to go into the deep muck and swampy areas. They’re famous in Naples for the Swamp Buggy Races that are held annually. This year you can see them on April 7th, 2024. The races are amazing to watch as these vehicles fly through the deep water and mud. Also, don’t forget the “Swamp Buggy Queen” as she gets thrown into the “sippy hole.”

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