It has been another week of glorious spring weather on the islands. The Gulf of Mexico is turning into that bright aqua color that we love to see in the summer!
Here are a few news items, followed by the activity posted in the Sanibel and Captiva Multiple Listing Service over the last seven days.
Last Sanibel Farmers Market Until Fall
Expect to see Sanibel Farmers Market aficionados at the last one of the season on Sunday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. With 46 vendors this year, in addition to being a terrific source for fresh fruits, veggies, seafood, baked goods, other dining delights, and more, the Market is the go-to spot to mingle with neighbors and friends, and a favorite with vacationing visitors. After this weekend, many will be counting down until November when it starts up again. Thanks for another great season, Sanibel Farmers Market organizers!
Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors
As another week comes to an end and high season winds down, our weekly Realtor® Caravan Meetings are changing from weekly to the summer schedule of every other Thursday morning. May also brings our annual end-of-season Realtor® fundraising event which still is often referred to as “The Over-the-Hump Party”. It includes a golf tournament plus social with RPAC auctions.
RPAC (or Realtors® Political Action Committee) is the voice of Realtors® on Capital Hill. Since 1969, RPAC has promoted the election of pro-personal-property-rights candidates across the U.S. During the last federal election cycle alone, RPAC contributed more than $12 million, making it the number one trade association political action committee in the nation. On the local level our RPAC Committee is active both in Tallahassee and Lee County, involved in such issues as water quality, the home mortgage and appraisal processes, affordable housing, sales tax initiatives, and more.
For several years, The Sanibel and Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® has won the state award for raising the most funds by a small board. Our intention is to make it happen again in 2013! More to follow on how much SanibelSusan’s donation garners this year!
How About Some Mulch?
Another upcoming Realtor® event in May is one of our give-back-to-the-community efforts. On May 4, Sanibel and Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® members will spend the morning laying mulch at this new Community Housing playground on Mahogany Way. Thanks to our Communications and Public Relations Committee for making this happen!
Why Zillow Often Is Wrong
One of my favorite real estate educators, Melanie Jackson McLane from Williamsport, PA, posted the following on her ActiveRain blog this week. I couldn’t agree more. (Thanks for allowing me to share this with my readers too, Melanie!) Her article says:
“This blog was inspired by a cartoon which shows a couple sitting with a real estate agent. The agent says: “Based on comps, I suggest listing at $350K.” Wife: “But we paid $650,000 for it!” Husband: “And Zillow says it’s worth $675,000!” I found the cartoon on Facebook and reposted. The sad truth is that most consumers do not understand Zillow—or House Values, or even their county assessment office—all of which use Automated Valuation Models (AVMs) to price property. The boring stuff first: AVMs use mathematical formulae, including multiple linear regression, to assign values to certain features of houses to come up with a value. As with any program, GIGO applies (Garbage In, Garbage Out). The AVMs out there for use today by consumers, of which Zillow is probably the best known, rely on reported and recorded sales data. This is why, if you live in one of the fourteen states in the US which does not record sales prices, the information you find may be sketchy, and derived from Multiple Listing Services (MLS). You may be thinking: “Well, what’s better than that? A recorded sales price tells me what that house down the street sold for.”
“Well, yes and no. A recorded price will tell you the amount they put in the deed as the transfer amount. It will not tell you:
- If there were any “side deals” or cash under the table
- If the seller paid closing costs or other fees on behalf of the buyer, known as “seller concessions”
- If it was an “arms-length sale”, or one under duress, or between related parties, or any other sale which an appraiser would not usually consider.
“This is where the AVMs fall apart. As I always say when teaching pricing and valuation: “All comparables are sales; all sales are not comparables.” Here’s what I mean: in order for any real estate professional to use a comparable (“comp”) to compare to your home to establish a price or value, it needs to have sold. Houses that are listed and don’t sell indicate what the market won’t pay. Houses that are listed and sold indicate what the market will pay. However, not all sales are comparables. Here are some examples of houses I would not use for comps, as an appraiser:
- The sale between two parties with the same last name, and it is verified that they are related by blood or marriage
- The sale between two parties with different last names, but verification of the data revealed that the party selling the property was acting as executor of her mother’s estate, selling the 2/3 interest she and her sister had to their brother, who already owned a 1/3 interest
- The property that did not sell at auction, and the next week the owner sold it for 20% below my appraised value to a neighbor, who was a friend
- The property that sold for at least 20% higher than market, and upon verification, the buyer was not represented by an agent, was from out of town, and was unfamiliar with the market
“You will notice the same word in all four scenarios: “verification”. As an appraiser, I verify data. I’m required to. But any real estate professional who is good at his or her profession will verify data, and will only use data which is germane and pertains to the property. Zillow, and other AVMs, don’t verify data. They throw it all into the mix. Some is high, some is low, and some is just irrational. So, before you decide to sell your house based on a “zestimate”, do yourself a favor and get an opinion from a qualified real estate professional.”
20th Annual Sam Bailey’s Island Night
Wednesday, May 15 is the date for the 20th Annual Sam Bailey’s Island Night at the Lee County Sports Complex where the Ft. Myers Miracle will play the Dunedin Blue Jays. The gates are open at 5:30 p.m. The parades will start at 6:15 p.m. The Game begins at 7:05 p.m.
Free tickets are available at Bailey’s General Store, The Sanibel Rec Center, and sponsoring businesses.
‘Ding’ Darling To Celebrate “National Trails Day”
Take a hike, play Animal Olympics, and learn more about Refuge creatures and the “fingerprints” they leave on Refuge trails at J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge during National Trails Day on Saturday, June 1. Indigo Trail and the Bailey Tract will be open all day free to hikers and bikers, who will be able to also experience the new Children’s Education Boardwalk trail. Wildlife Drive will remain closed for maintenance. Activities will include:
9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Animal Olympics: Test your abilities against the elite Olympians of the animal world. This fun, interactive program runs all day along the Indigo Trail.
10 a.m. Indigo Trail Hike: Join naturalists as they lead a one-hour tour identifying the ecosystem’s plants, animals, birds, reptiles, and more. Explore the Children’s Birding Trail and its two-story observation deck. Bring water and bus spray, and meet at the flagpole in front of the Education Center.
11 a.m. Reading in the Refuge: Oh Scat & Animal Tracks: Whose scat is that? Whose tracks are those? Learn about the wondrous world of animal tracking from a refuge naturalist in this fun, 30-minute interactive program in the Education Center Classroom.
1 p.m. Wildlife Wonders: What makes a bird a bird? Why is a manatee called a sea cow? Is that a crocodile or alligator? Find the answers to these questions and more as you join a naturalist in exploring the refuge’s unique ecosystem. The 30-minute program takes place in the Education Center Classroom.
The “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge co-hosts the 2013 National Trails Day activities to educate about wildlife and opportunities on getting outdoors at the refuge.
Hard Working Water: Did You Know?
“For every gallon of water used in an average household, five times more water (40,000 gallons each month) is used to provide that home with electricity via hydropower turbines and fossil fuel power plants.
You can get a conservation three-fer – healthier rivers, fewer greenhouse emissions and cleaner air – by redoubling your energy conservation efforts! April is Water Conservation Month, let’s conserve!”
Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity April 19-26
2 new listings: Loggerhead Cay #331 2/2 $489K, Loggerhead Cay #133 2/2 $649K.
2 price changes: Coquina Beach #2E 2/2 now $599K, Tarpon Beach #203 2/2 now $675K.
6 new sales: Captains Walk #D5 2/1 listed for $213.9K, Island Beach Club #P1A 2/2 listed for $449.5K, Sanctuary Golf Villages I #6-2 2/2.5 listed for $455K, Lighthouse Point #230 2/2 listed for $495K, Surfside 12 #B4 3/2 listed for $869K.
3 closed sales: Tennisplace #E33 2/1.5 $245.5K, Captains Walk #B5 2/1 $307K, Loggerhead Cay #521 2/2 $510K.
2 new listings: 720 Periwinkle Way 3/3.5 $1.429M, 1838 Buckthorn Ln 3/2 $1.45M.
7 price changes: 5650 SanCap Rd 2/2 now $524K, 3131 Twin Lakes Ln 3/2 now $694K, 1225 Junonia St 3/2 now $699K, 1300 Par View Dr 3/2 now $769K, 1130 Seagrape Ln 4/3 now $945K, 5418 Osprey Ct 4/3.5 now $995K, 912 Almas Ct 3/2.5 now $1.1M.
9 new sales: 1350 Middle Gulf Dr #1E 3/3 half-duplex listed for $669K, 1206 Par View Dr 3/2 listed for $699K, 701 Heather Ln 4/3.5 listed for $750K, 1255 Isabel Dr 3/3 listed for $889K, 479 Lagoon Dr 3/3 listed for $1.0945M, 1694 Dixie Beach Bldv 3/2 listed for $1.095M, 2429 Wulfert Rd 4/4.5 listed for $1.395M, 444 Lighthouse Way 5/4.5 listed for $2.395M, 3441 West Gulf Dr 5/4/2 listed for $4.9995M.
9 closed sales: 1639 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 half-duplex $360K, 1609 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 half-duplex $370K, 1414 Causey Ct 3/2 $499K, 9224 Dimmick Dr 4/2 $645K, 9470 Balsa Ct 3/2 $669K, 1507 Angel Dr 3/2 $675K, 1230 Par View Dr 3/2.5 $657.5K, 872 Limpet Dr 3/3 $1.475M, 2963 Wulfert Rd 4/6.5 $2.65M.
No new listings.
1 price change: 9426 Sage Ct now $229,555.
No new or closed sales.
No new listings.
1 price change: Tennis Villas #3138 2/2 now $395K.
1 new sale: Marina Villas #903 2/2 listed for $620K.
No closed sales.
No new listings or price changes.
1 new sale: 16623 Captiva Dr 9/9 listed for $4.895M.
1 closed sale: 11490 Old Lodge Ln 3/3 $979K.
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.
Another weekend of terrific weather is expected here on sunny Sanibel & Captiva Islands. Here’s hoping that it is sunny in your neck of the woods too!