Yikes – It Was Only 68 Degrees Today on Sanibel Island

 It’s time again for my weekly island weather report and more Sanibel and Captiva scoop. A cool front arrived last night with temps expected to go down into the 40’s both nights over the weekend. It hasn’t broken 68 degrees yet today. Certainly that is not typical for this time of the year, but gives us a chance to get out our long sleeves. It’s expected to be back to our more usual 80-temperature days & 60-temperature nights by Tuesday.

I was out showing property most of the day today (love those client referrals) and we are happy to have had a pretty productive week at SanibelSusan. Fun to see white caps on the bay too as I was showing condos at Lighthouse Point. Not too often we see those. Lots of beautiful great blue herons and ibis flying in and out of the bayside lagoon too.

We again had good showing activity at many of our listings this week and trust that election results will produce enough consumer confidence to boost sales in the months to come. 

Below are some news items, followed by the activity posted on our Sanibel & Captiva Island Multiple Listing Service this week. 

Sanibel Farmers’ Market

Hooray, the Farmers Market starts up again on Sunday. From then through April purchase fresh local food, plants, flowers, & special treats from 40+ vendors on the grounds of City Hall, every Sunday from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m. Here is their Facebook page which lists the vendors.

SCCF Campaign to Buy Bailey Homestead

If you are just returning to the island, you will notice that the 28.3-acre property opposite the intersection of Periwinkle Way and Donax Street is marked off with colorful blue and green stakes. Last week the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation (SCCF) held a kick-off event to announce their fundraising campaign to purchase the parcel, known as the Bailey Homestead. If the campaign can meet a June 24th deadline, it will preserve a piece of Sanibel history. The land includes the original home of the Bailey family, built in 1896, where Sam Bailey was born and Francis Bailey raised his children. It is one of only ten homes on Sanibel’s Register of Historic Landmarks. With habitat for bobcats, gopher tortoises, migrating songbirds, and other wildlife, its acquisition will save the parcel from being developed (currently zoned for 36 homes). 

Huge Gap in Mortgage Availability

Nearly 1/3 of Americans are unlikely to qualify for a mortgage because their credit scores are too low. This is according to a recent analysis of more than 25,000 loan quotes and purchase requests on Zillow Mortgage Marketplace.  Borrowers with credit scores under 620 who requested quotes for 30-year fixed conventional loans were unlikely to receive a single quote, even if they offered a relatively high down payment of 15 to 25 percent. Nearly 1/3 of Americans has a credit score this low, according to data provided by myFICO.com. Meanwhile, the lowest interest rates went to mortgage borrowers who were among the 47 percent of Americans with excellent credit scores of 720 or above. For each 20-point credit score increase, the average low APR declined 0.12 percent. 

Reporting Requirements for IRS Form 1099 in 2011

During 2010, new reporting requirements have been added to the duties of property owners and owners of small businesses. The recently-enacted small business legislation (HR 5297) included an expansion of the Form 1099 reporting related to a trade or business. To date, only those real estate professionals engaged in property management-type businesses have been required to file Forms 1099. Congress has extended the Form 1099 requirements to any person who receives rental income. This requirement would apply to any landlord (including a small investor), rather than only those who are in the business of managing property. Starting in 2011, any person who receives rental income must provide a Form 1099 for all payments of $600 or more made to service providers such as plumbers, carpenters, yard services, and repair people. The purchase of goods is not included within the reporting requirements. The Form 1099 is provided to the IRS and to the service provider. The new requirement applies to both residential and commercial property. (Note: The National Association of REALTORS® had a Call for Action opposing this proposal in May 2010, calling it burdensome and a trap for the “little guy”. The Call for Action had a high response but Congress adopted the provisions to help “pay for” other provisions in the small business bill.)

Useful Websites

In our ongoing REALTOR® search to improve our internet presence, I recently heard about some freebie online technology solutions that are worth sharing. Give them a try.

Flixtime.com –  turns photos into videos.

PDFtoWord.com  – converts a PDF to Word, which then gives you the ability to edit the document.

Piknik.com – easier than Photoshop, this allows you to easily edit photos online.

Zamzar.com – good one for when you receive a file that you can’t open. It supports file conversions.

Shift in Mobile Devices

Like me, are you astounded at the amount of time today’s youth spends texting? Not really a real estate tidbit, but this shift in technology will affect REALTOR sales techniques and marketing plans. A recent article in the “Wall Street Journal” reported that the average 13- to 17-year-old sends and receives 3,339 texts a month – more than 100 a day. According to the Neilsen Co., the media research firm, people aged 45 to 54 sent and received 323 texts a month (in the 2nd quarter of 2010), up 75 percent from a year ago. Though text messages take up less bandwidth than phone calls and cost less, a text message content often is so condensed that it fails, even more than e-mail, to convey the writer’s tone and effect, with a greater opportunity for misunderstanding. Social scientists and researchers say that the rise in texting over conversation is changing the way we interact, food for thought for those of us trying to do business in this climate of new technology.

MLS Activity – Sanibel

8 new listings: Captains Walk #A1 2/1.5 $257K, Mariner Pointe #1083 2/2 $369K, Sunset South #1C 2/2 $495K, Oceans Reach #4B1 1/1 $519K, Sunset South #9D 2/2 $525K, Sandalfoot #4C2 2/2 $548K, Compass Point #181 w/cabana 2/2 $960K, Gulfside Place #128 3/3 $1.997.5M.
14 price changes: Tennisplace #A31 2/1 now $235K, Sanibel Siesta #203 2/2 now $349.9K, Ibis at the Sanctuary #A201 2/2 now $420K, Villa Sanibel #3C 2/2 now $520K, Blind Pass #B103 3/2 now $559K, Sundial #R203 2/2 now $587K, Sundial #Q402 2/2 now $629K, Sundial #S301 3/2 now $629.9K, Loggerhead Cay #181 2/2 now $639K, Pointe Santo #A21 2/2 now $795K, Pointe Santo #E36 2/2 now $995K, Sundial #L205 2/2 now $1.195M, Junonia #301 3/2 now $1.65M, Sandals #C 3/3 now $1,999,995.
3 new sales: Loggerhead Cay #544 2/2 listed for $599K (our listing), Pointe Santo #B33 2/2 listed for $699K, Sundial #F308 1/1 listed for $385K.
2 closed sales: Cottage Colony West #139 1/1 $485K, Somerset #D301 3/2.5 $975K (our sale).
11 new listings: 1433 Jamaica Dr 5/4 duplex $499K; 4052 Coquina Dr 3/2 $545K; 731 Nerita St 3/2 $585K; 566 Boulder Dr 3/2 $599K; 9444 Cotten Ct 3/2.5 $629K; 1208 Harbour Cottage Ct 3/3 half-duplex $829.9K; 1339 Par View Dr 3/2 $849,948; 885 Limpet Dr 3/3 $1.739.9M; 1052 Whisperwood Way 3/3 $1.75M; 5045 Joewood Dr 3/3.5 $2.995M; 2029 Periwinkel Way 4/2 $2.999M.
13 price changes:  721 Cardium St 2/1 now $259K, 1212 Middle Gulf Dr 2/2 now $444K, 555 Rabbit Rd 3/2 now $469K, 1417 Causey Ct 3/2 now $549.9K, 678 East Gulf Dr 3/2 now $599K, 1278 Sand Castle Rd 4/3 now $689K (short sale), 3898 West Gulf Dr 3/2 now $695K, 6101 Castaways Ln 4/2 now $825L (short sale), 2550 Wulfert Rd 4/3.5 half-duplex now $849K, 5750 Pine Tree Dr 2/2 now $949K, 3952 West Gulf Dr 4/3 now $950K, 1163 Seagrape Ln 4/4 now $989K, 600 N Yachtsman Dr 3/2.5 now $1.239M (short sale).
1 new sale: 1430 Causey Ct 3/2 listed for $549K (short sale). No closed sales.
2 new listings: 1657 Sabal Sands Rd $395K, Bay Dr (acreage parcel) $2.495M.
1 price change: 978 Main St now $125K.
No new sales.
1 closed sale: 535 & 541 Whitehall Rd $115K.

MLS Activity – Captiva

1 new listing: Captiva Hide-A-Way #2A 2/2 $699K.
2 price changes: Sunset Beach Villas #2312 1/1 now $479K, Gulf Beach Villas 2/2 now $639K.
No new or closed sales.
1 new listing: 16697 Captiva Dr 5/4 $8.25M.
2 price changes: 33 Urchin St 2/2 now $718.8K, 16459 Captiva Dr 8/7.5 now $3.94M.
No new or closed sales.
Nothing to report.

(This representation is based in whole or in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors or its Multiple Listing Service.  Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.)