Market Upswing Continues on Sanibel & Captiva Islands

PS C34 BalconyNot quite as much real estate action on Sanibel this week as last, but there still are a few things to report which makes it a better than usual September. SanibelSusan got a nice new listing at Pointe Santo (see photo of the view above & the beach below), we had a lot listing go under contract, yesterday we had a productive meeting at the Association of Realtors® plus had a new home listing on caravan, and today we got a good call about another new listing. Here are a couple of news items, followed by the activity posted over the last seven days in the Sanibel and Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service.


Realtor® Monthly Membership Meeting & Some Sanibel Scoop

Realtor logoThe Sanibel and Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® had one of their best-attended monthly membership meetings yesterday, with a standing-room-only crowd by 8 a.m. Our local District Vice President Gary Verwilt was a special guest. Our district covers the nearby Realtor® Associations which include, in addition to Sanibel and Captiva Islands, the Bonita Springs – Estero Association, the Cape Coral Association, the Realtor® Association of Greater Fort Myers and the Beach, the Marco Island Area Association, and the Naples Area Board. We like networking with our surrounding colleagues so they will sell our listings too.

Gary offered special kudos to the Sanibel and Captiva Islands Association for our strong efforts toward improving water quality and for our 2013 RPAC achievements. It looks like we will garner some state awards again this year for our Realtors® participation and many contributions. During the next two weeks, two of our board members will be traveling to the state capitol in Tallahassee and then on to Washington DC to continue the fight for clean water.

Our featured speaker was Sanibel Mayor Kevin Ruane who gave us some good news on recent budget meetings. City finances are strong with real estate taxes being cut for the sixth year in a row – though he noted that only 12-cents from every real estate tax dollar come back to the island. City debt has been reduced $45 million, while $17 million have been added to reserves.

Mayor Ruane also offered some insight into the City’s progress in creating a new “Cultural Core” area where residents and visitors will be able to walk to events and connectivity will be provided to local amenities. The City is working toward this development in cooperation with several local organizations, including The Community House, BIG ARTS/Playhouse, the Library, and the Sanibel Historical Village and Museum. Currently the 25 acres near City Hall are being considered for development and grants are being explored.

Realtors® thanked the Mayor for City support regarding the current flood insurance bill that could delay some of the upcoming changes in how those insurance premiums will increase for Floridians. In commenting, he referred back to his insurance background. Particularly noteworthy is that Florida has contributed $16 billion to the federal flood insurance program, but has only received $4 billion in benefit. We all know there is something wrong with that picture! That fight must continue too!

More on Water Quality

The Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation (SCCF) September newsletter has several excellent articles about water quality and how you can help. The rainy season is almost over and we cannot have the squeaky wheel stop squeaking. It will be back again next summer. Click here for the newsletter.

At the bottom of page 8, SanibelSusan got a little free press too. It is in the article about our recent Realtor® continuing education class at SCCF. Thank you, Kristie Anders!

Openings & Closings

Over Easy logoLighthouse CafeThe Over Easy Cafe and the Lighthouse Cafe both are back open. Hooray!

noah's arkNoah’s Ark reopens October 1.

shell museumrefugeweblogoWildlife Drive in the J.N. “Ding” Darling Wildlife Refuge reopens October 1.

The Shell Museum is closed until October 7 for renovations.

Event Reminders

SCCF logoTaste Dunes 2013Tomorrow, September 21 is international Coastal Cleanup. To participate, be at SCCF between 9 a.m. and noon.
Taste of the Island will be returned to The Dunes. This annual fundraiser for CROW is November 10.

Florida’s Housing Market Continued Upswing in August 2013

FLRealtors_newlogoFloridaRealtors® on-line posted the following article mid-week. All good news for Florida’s recovering real estate market.

“Florida’s housing market continued its positive trend in August with increased closed sales, higher median prices, more pending sales and a stable supply of homes for sale, according to the latest housing data released by Florida Realtors®. “Both sales and prices demonstrate that Florida’s housing market is growing and continuing to gain strength,” says 2013 Florida Realtors President Dean Asher, broker-owner with Don Asher & Associates Inc. in Orlando. “The growth in jobs and other positive signs are putting buyers at ease with how the economy is progressing. At the same time, prices are encouraging sellers to get off the fence and helping to ease inventory pressures. “August is the 20th month in a row that we’ve seen the statewide single-family home median sales price increase year-over-year.”

“Statewide closed sales of existing single-family homes totaled 20,933 in August, up 12.5% compared to the year-ago figure, according to data from Florida Realtors Industry Data and Analysis department in partnership with local Realtor boards/associations. Closed sales typically occur 30 to 90 days after sales contracts are written.

“Meanwhile, pending sales – contracts signed but not yet completed or closed – for existing single-family homes rose 17.2% over the previous August. The statewide median sales price for single-family existing homes last month was $175,000, up 18.6% from the previous year….”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity from September 13-20

3 new listings: Mariner Pointe #732 2/2 $389K, Pointe Santo #C34 1/1 $499K (our listing), Sanibel Inn #3535 2/2 $699K.
2 price changes: Sundial #H111 1/1 now $269K, HighTide A101 3/2 now $1.199M.
2 new sales: Sanibel Arms West #M4 2/2 listed for $450K, Atrium #307 2/2 listed for $1.2M.
3 closed sales: Spanish Cay #C3 2/2 $325K, Pointe Santo #D24 2/2 $620K, Sundial #R202 2/2 $603K.

No new listings.
2 price changes: 720 Periwinkle Way 3/3.5 now $1.379M, 2964 Wulfert Rd 5/5.5 now $1.997M.
2 new sales: 420 Lighthouse Way 3/2 listed for $589K, 6014 White Heron Ln 3/3.5 listed for $1.35M.
1 closed sale: 916 Palm St 5/4 multi-family $529K.

No new listings or price changes.
1 new sale: 1847 Farm Trl listed for $224K (our listing).
No closed sales.

No new listings or price changes.
3 new sales: Beach Villas #2611 2/2 listed for $610K, Gulf Beach Villas #2008 2/2 listed for $649K, Sunset Beach Villas #2238 listed for $825K.
1 closed sale: 2512 Wulfert Rd $231.5K.

No new listings.
1 price change: 4 Sunset Captiva Ln 2/2 now $2.395M.
1 new sale: 14971 Binder Dr 4/3 listed for $2.695M.
1 closed sale: 15160 Captiva Dr 6/6.5 $1.8M.

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.

Here’s to another sunny weekend, wherever you are.

Below is a photo shared by teammate Lisa Murty. (After all the recent rain in southwest Florida, the vegetation is a vivid green and the local critters are happy!)