Hooray, It’s Almost October

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One of my favorite months on Sanibel & Captiva Islands is October. That is when the weather is usually as good as it gets, with humidity down and temperatures dropping into the 60’s at night. Traffic is light. Shops and restaurants that were closed for vacations and refurbishment reopen. Snowbirds begin arriving with big smiles on their faces. Schedules are posted with upcoming fall and winter activities, holiday sensations begin. In the real estate business, it is also when we get our new listings for the upcoming “high season” and when we like to adjust any existing listings so that they are well positioned for “season” too. October is just that month when things start hoppin’ on the islands again.

This year is no exception. According to local weather reports, two cool fronts are on their way to SW Florida with our forecast for the weekend and beyond, “perfect”.

When Dave went out this afternoon to do his periodic listing checks, I asked him to snap a few photos which are posted in the slide-show above. They include the playground at Bowman’s Beach, an osprey nest on Tarpon Bay, and the new bike path which was just paved in front of our office. That path now connects most of the town center area including Sanibel’s Community House, Sanibel Square (home of Nanny’s Children’s Shoppe, SanibelSusan Realty, Island Therapy Center, Norm Ziegler’s Fly Shop, BIG ARTS on Periwinkle, Molnar Electric, Nave Plumbing, Sanibel Rental Service, Sanibel Design Center, and Sanibel Bean), Sanibel Library, City Hall, BIG ARTS & the playhouse, the Sanibel Museum & more. How cool is that?

One more tidbit, a new tab has been added above for those wanting to search for Sanibel & Captiva property. Hopefully, by next week, I’ll have figured out how to post more details on each my listings too. In the meantime, the above tab will bring you to the information that is shared cooperatively through our island Multiple Listing Service and the Internet Data Exchange. A full-page of info on each of my listings, including streaming videos and aerials, can be found today at www.SanibelSusan.com 

Ready to Invest in Homes Again

Those who read these blogs probably have figured out that I am a big fan of Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors®. Here is what he had to say in the October issue of “Realtor®” magazine. It is a good summary of the status of the economy.

“Americans socked away $250 billion in each of the ten years prior to 2008 – before the onset of the financial crisis. The savings rate was a low 2% to 3% of disposable income. Starting in 2008, consumers became more careful about spending and are now saving some $600 billion a year.

“The adjustments were certainly warranted. But the rise in savings has not affected all sectors of the economy equally. Spending on food, clothing, utilities, and health care has hit new highs. The growing population is fueling these areas, so where are the increased savings coming from?

“Vehicle sales have fallen to about 12 million units a year over the past three years, well below the 16 million to 17 million unit sales pace typical before the slowdown. Then there are home sales. New- and existing-home sales hit $1.2 million and $7.1 million, respectively, in 2005. The comparable figures are now $300,000 and $5 million.

“This process of saving more and reducing debt is known as deleveraging, and it’s not just households doing it. Businesses, banks, and state and local governments are doing it, too.

“Only the federal government has been moving in the opposite direction: spending more using borrowed money. But this trend is likely to reverse soon. The debt ceiling bill enacted in early August all but ensures federal borrowing will slow because it creates a mechanism for $1.5 trillion in spending cuts if Congress fails to act on the recommendations of a new super committee of lawmakers charged with identifying cuts.

“Meanwhile, we can expect deleveraging to slow among businesses and consumers. There isn’t a perfect straight-line path in economics. Deleveraging is big now, but tomorrow will be different. Despite major hurdles in the housing market, there are also signs sales and prices have reached the bottom.”

What’s New at “Ding” Darling Refuge

An e-mail received this week from the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society, said that the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service thought of “Ding” Darling Refuge when deciding where to debut one of three new traveling Climate Change interpretive exhibits. Newly arrived at the Refuge’s free Education Center, the exhibit will be at the Refuge through “Ding” Darling Days in Oct and at least until the end of Jan when it will help to kick off the Refuge’s winter lecture series. The background of the climate change exhibit displays a map of coastal refuges, including “Ding” Darling, that are at risk due to climate change, rising sea levels, loss of wetlands and other habitat, flooding and drought. For the complete 2012 Lecture Series Schedule.

Sanibel MLS Activity – September 23-30


4 new listings: Sanibel Arms West #M7 2/2 $399.9K (our listing), Blind Pass #B209 2/2 $479K, Kings Crown #216 2/2 $749K, Lantana #202 4/3.5 $1.899M.

3 price changes: Sundial #B402 1/1 now $395K, Lighthouse Point #318 3/2 now $449K, Clam Shell #C 2/2 now $749K.

1 new sale: Mariner Pointe #1062 2/2 listed for $299K.

2 closed sales: Sanibel Arms #D6 1/1 $180K, Loggerhead Cay #544 2/2 $525K (our listing).

1 new listing: 955 S Yachtsman 3/2 $649.9K.
5 price changes: 1214 Par View 2/2 now $499K (our listing), 5657 SanCap 3/2 now $545K, 1284 Par View 2/2 now $549K, 935 Lindgren 3/2 now $624.9K, 5035 Joewood 4/4.5 now $3.75M.
3 new sales: 1672 Atlanta Plaza 2/1 listed for $350K, 617 East Rocks 3/2 listed for $545K, 618 N Yachtsman 3/2 listed for $772.5K(short sale).
2 closed sales:  965 Main 4/2 $216K, 4248 Old Banyan 3/2 $430K.

No new listings.
3 price changes: 1299 Par View now $215K, 9056 Mockingbird now $299K, 3411 West Gulf now $3.74M.
No new sales.
No closed sales.

2 new listings: Bayside Villas #4319 3/3 $559K, 4306 Bayside Villas 3/3 now $625K, Lands End #1628 3/3 $1.799M.
1 price change: Bayside Villas #4306 3/3 now $625K.

1 new sale: Lands End #1640 listed for $1.899M.

1 closed sale: Lands End #1639 2/2 $1.075M.

No new listings.

1 price change: 16585 Captiva 5/4.5 now $2.2M.
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. If your property currently is listed with another broker, this is not intended as a solicitation of that listing.


Until next week, best weekend wishes & Happy October.

Here’s to the beginning of a wonderful fall & winter “season” on the islands!