Sanibel & Captiva Island Cool Fronts Still Beat Up-North Weather

This week’s cold front is just about over. Temps were down into the low 40’s every night this week, but a warm weekend is in store before the next chill arrives on Tues. Elise & I are still wearing our flip-flops. Dave continues to shake his head & Lisa’s smart enough to stay out of the discussion. Even cooler, we are all very thankful to be living & working in SW Florida.

 We had a few more showings this week, but only one sale was announced at our Association’s Realtor meeting yesterday. Price reductions & new listings continue to be the norm. Below are a couple of items that I found of interest this week. Some not the greatest news but all good things for us to know in trying to get real estate sold in our ever-changing marketplace.

Consumer Profile Shift

Interesting article by Jeremy Conaway published this week in the SW Realtor® magazine. Written to help real estate brokers drafting their annual marketing plans, it offers info on the dramatic shifts taking place in the real estate consumer demographic. Some of these stats were eye-opening to me. Here are some of the new sectors:

  • One third of all homebuyers are single.
  • Six million children in the U.S. are being raised by committed same-sex couples.
  • Single childless women, in many major cities, now out earn their male counterparts.
  • Nearly half of the baby boomers (age 50-60) are actively using social media.
  • Only one of five new households in the U.S. in 2009 were non-Hispanic whites.
  • There has been a 14% increase in the number of non-married households.
  • Women within the 25-39 age range now make up 46% of those earning bachelor’s degrees in science & engineering.
  • During the next six years the 82 million members of the millennial generation will hit their economic stride.
  • Teen births are down to just 10% lower than births for women aged 35 & older.
  • Four out of ten children are born to single mothers.
  • In 2009, 16% of marriages were between non-Caucasian individuals of different ethic backgrounds.
  • “As it relates to household buying power and influence, men are on their way out & women on their way in.”

Top 10 Cities With Most Underwater Homes in America

(compiled by Business Insider with data by Zillow). NOTE: this is an improved position for Fort Myers.

  1. Las Vegas, Nevada              80.2%
  2. Phoenix, Arizona                 68.4%
  3. Reno, Nevada                      64.4%
  4. Orlando, Florida                   64.2%
  5. Stockton, California              57.5%
  6. El Centro, California             55.0%
  7. Modesto, California              53.9%
  8. Lakeland, Florida                 53.7%
  9. Port St. Lucie, Florida          52.0%
  10. Fort Myers, Florida               51.6%

The Next Real Estate Boom

A recent article by Patrick C. Doherty & Christopher B. Leinberger gives this Realtor pause when considering how attractive Sanibel & Captiva Island will be in the years to come. The article reiterated that the Great Recession has highlighted a fundamental change in what consumers want: homes in central cities & closer-in suburbs where one can walk to stores & mass transit. These trends have been evident in many cities for a number of years. But the biggest factor is demographic. Baby boomers (those born between 1946 & 1964) & their children, the millennial generation, are looking for places to live & work that reflect their current desires & life needs. Boomers are downsizing as their children leave home while the millennials or generation Y, are setting out on their careers with far different housing needs & preferences. Both of these huge groups want something that the U.S. housing market is not currently providing: small one- to three-bedroom homes in walkable, transit-oriented, economically dynamic, & job-rich neighborhoods.

Florida Sues EPA to Block New Water Regulations

The Associated Press reported yesterday that Florida on Tues sued the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency seeking to block new clean water regulations opposed by business & agriculture interests as well as some municipal utilities. The federal lawsuit alleges the rules, which apply only to FL, are unfair, arbitrary & lack scientific support. FL is the first state where EPA has imposed such regulations although 13 others have adopted similar rules of their own. The regulations are required by EPA’s settlement of an earlier federal lawsuit that five environmental groups filed in Tallahassee. The agency was accused of failing to control pollution from such sources as fertilizer runoff from farms & lawns & effluent from sewage treatment plants. The environmentalists say those nutrients cause algae blooms that are choking Florida waters to the detriment of tourism-related businesses, property values, the environment & public health. (We know all about that here on the islands.) The new lawsuit by the FL Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services rehashes issues raised in court arguments against the EPA settlement. The new rules set numeric criteria to replace the state’s vague descriptive regulations for determining when lakes, rivers, streams & other inland waters are polluted with nutrients. EPA announced the regulations in November but delayed implementation for 15 months. Under the settlement, EPA will adopt another set of numeric standards for coastal waters by August 2012. The environmentalists’ suit was filed by the Sierra Club, FL Wildlife Federation, Conservancy of Southwest FL, St. Johns Riverkeeper & Environmental Confederation of SW FL. Stay tuned on this important issue & be sure to renew your PURRE membership (


Sanibel & Captiva MLS Activity Dec 3-10, 2010: 

10 new listings:  Sundial #C206 1/1 $349K, Sundial #B402 1/1 $425K, Sanibel Arms West #I7 2/2 $459K, Sandpiper Beach #204 2/2 $719K, Loggerhead Cay #513 2/2 $899K, Sundial #E208 2/2 $899K, Sanibel Surfside #125 2/2 $929K, Sanddollar #C102 3/2 $1.1M, Villas of Sanibel #A102 3/3 $1.195M (our listing), Dosinia #2B 3/2 $1.299M.
6 price changes:  Sanibel Arms #H2 1/1 now $289K, Seashells #35 2/2 now $299.9K, Sanibel Arms West #M4 2/2 now $419K, Pointe Santo #B45 2/2 now $799K, Island Beach Club #P1E 2/2 now $799K, Sundial #L305 2/2 now $895K.
2 new sales:  Mariner Pointe #721 2/2 listed for $329K, Pointe Santo #E36 2/2 listed for $995K. 
1 closed sale:  Heron at The Sanctuary II #3A 3/2.5 $600K.
4 new listings:  9292 Kincaid Ct 3/2.5 $399K, 190 Violet Dr 3/2.5 $998K, 1214 Buttonwood Ln 3/2 $999K, 4741 Tradewinds Dr 3/3 $1.995M.
11 price changes:  495 East Lake Rd 3/2 now $399K, 1120 Junonia St 3/2 now $699K, 450 Sea Walk Ct 4/3 now $825K, 5422 Shearwater Dr 3/2.5 half-duplex now $835K, 246 Christofer Ct 4/2.5 now $865K, 521 Lighthouse Way 3/2 now $995K, 618 N Yachtsman Dr 3/2 now $1.095M, 1995 My Tern Ct 3/2 now $1.095M, 830 Limpet Dr 4/4.5 now $1.995M, 1212 Isabel Dr 3/3 now $2.195M, 4717 Rue Belle Mer 3/3 now $2.275M.
7 new sales:  1302 Par view Dr 3/3 listed for $649K, 668 Anchor Dr 3/2 listed for $692K, 3733 Coquina Dr 3/2 listed for $695.5K, 1581 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed for $725K, 538 Lake Murex Cir 3/3 listed for $999K, 572 Kinzie Island Ct 5/5 listed for $1.4M, 800 Sand Dollar Dr 3/3.5 listed for $1.595M.
2 closed sales:  3965 Coquina Dr 2/2 $363K, 793 Birdie View Pt 3/3 $1.1M.
1 new listing:  1466 Sand Castle Rd $349.9K.
4 price changes:  5148 Sea Bell Rd now $199K, 5439 Osprey Ct now $379K (foreclosure), 1242 Anhinga Ln now $599.9K, West Gulf Dr (lot 7) now $1.45M.
No new or closed sales.
1 new listing:  Marina Villas #709 2/2 $595K.
No price changes, new or closed sales.
No new listings.
3 price changes:  11537 Andy Rosse Ln 4/4 now $1.895M, 16171 Captiva Dr 4/4.5 now $1.985M, 16585 Captiva Dr 5/4/2 now $2.495M.
No new or closed sales.
No new listings.
1 price change:  11516 Wightman Ln now $799K.
No new or closed sales.
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.