It’s Susan manning the fort at SanibelSusan Realty for the July 4th holiday. The island is busy with vacationers, mostly families, and many for just the long weekend. The parade this morning was a big success. Elise and her family were here to enjoy it with me from our great vantage point. I posted lots of photos on Facebook for those interested, just a few here.
The road rally at The Timbers is just finishing up now, and the evening celebration is gearing up at The Dunes, followed by the fireworks over the bay. I hope your Independence Day has been a fun-filled one too!
Below are a couple of news items before the action was posted in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service over the last seven days. It was pretty quiet, but, be sure and check out the new Captiva sale by SanibelSusan. I started working on this one several months ago so it is really not indicative of the action we typically see this time of the year. Just the same, I am very happy that it finally made it to contract. If you follow the named homes on Captiva, this is the one known as Banyan Beach and it’s a beauty!
Lee County Final Property Rates Up From Early Estimates
“Lee County’s final property values are in — and they’re up. Across the county, values of the 600,000-plus properties went up 7.1% over last year’s numbers. That’s about 1.6% points higher than property appraiser Ken Wilkinson’s initial estimates sent to the state June 1.
“All of the county’s cities and all but one fire district saw had small boosts from June estimates as well.
“It’s been an appreciating market … it makes sense values would continue to go up when we finished our last month of work,” Wilkinson said. In addition, the “actual real estate market that’s happening between buyers and sellers appreciated over 10% overall,” he said — the first time since 2007 that’s been the case.”
“Collier County is slated to release its final numbers to its taxing authorities today.
“The increase is good news for Lee County’s budget, and possibly for its taxpayers, Board of Lee County Commissioners Chairman Larry Kiker said. “It puts us in a better financial position as we go into this budget cycle. It will mean, obviously, we’ll have more money to work with,” he said. The county could use that money for capital improvement projects it has put off for years — or, “best case,” a reduction in taxes, Kiker said. “My prediction is it’s going to be a lower rate this year than last year,” he said.
“County staffers created two budget scenarios for commissioners at their last budget workshop: One with an increase of 5.48% based off Wilkinson’s earlier numbers, and one at 6.48 reflecting what final number they hoped to see. Since it’s even higher, the county will “adjust accordingly” before bringing its third draft of the budget to commissioners, Pete Winton, assistant county manager, said in an emailed statement provided by county spokeswoman Betsy Clayton.
“Cities up, too. Cities and taxing districts in the county also saw boosts.
“Fort Myers and Bonita Springs each had a nearly 2% increase over earlier estimates, increasing from 7.3 to 9.2% and 6.4 to 8.3%, respectively.
“Cape Coral had a boost of 1.5% between estimates and Thursday’s final numbers. Last year, it had the largest increase in the county.
“Sanibel’s property values went up 1.5% points from estimates, to 4.8%, and Fort Myers Beach had an increase to 6.6%, from 5.5% estimated in June.
“Sixteen of 17 fire districts saw had boosts too. The exception is Fort Myers Shores, which had a decrease of its estimate from 6.95 to 5.22%.
“Wilkinson must send these numbers to the state by Tuesday July 1. The next step is for the board to set the tax rate for fiscal year 2014-2015, which will allow TRIM (Truth In Millage) notices to be sent to property owners by mid-August. The commissioners are scheduled to meet Aug. 4 to set the rate.”
More Details on Sanibel & Captiva Sales
With half the year over, it is a good time to see again how the real estate market is progressing. The condo segment still is playing catch-up, particularly with the seasonal-rental type units. Good income should make those properties more attractive to prospective buyers in the months to come as the economy rebounds. In the meantime, the baby boomers and retirees continue to drive the market. They are looking for space and more inventory is needed to meet that demand. Here is a snapshot of the islands sales/inventory today (July 4, 2014):
CONDOS HOMES LOTS
SANIBEL No. Average Price No. Average Price No. Average Price
For sale 132 $714,951 165 $1,305,212 83 $517,812
Closing pending 12 654,567 32 856,820 3 465,852
Sold & closed
2014 thru 7/4 103 685.677 127 840,984 17 441,356
2013 161 573,557 197 910,321 26 416,502
CONDOS HOMES LOTS
CAPTIVA No. Average Price No. Average Price No. Average Price
For sale 44 $858,589 32 $3,831,078 3 $2,579,667
Closing pending 1 525,000 6 3,524,833 0 N/A
Sold & closed
2014 thru 7/4 12 617,042 17 2,834,794 0 N/A
2013 36 659,185 18 2,522,056 2 675,000
Florida, A Worthy Investment: Vote “Yes” on Amendment 1
“Did you know Florida is the only state in the union to have been recognized and awarded the prestigious National Gold Medal Award for Excellence in the management of our state parks three times? In fact no other state has ever won twice, let alone thrice.
“I’m just back from a jaunt around Florida visiting Florida parks from White Springs near the north Florida border to our own backyard. It’s a trip that I highly recommend and one that never fails to inspire me with the unique diversity and beauty of this state’s natural wonders!
“The protection and public use of these wonders is made possible by a nationally recognized public land conservation effort many decades long that has invested in the protection, conservation and interpretation of some of the best and most unique features of wild Florida. Today the program goes by the name Florida Forever but has been known over the years as Preservation 2000 (P2000) and CARL – Conservation and Recreational Lands.
“Despite its amazing success, the program has been in jeopardy since 2009 when state legislators began redirecting funds historically used to fund purchases, restoration and preservation efforts. This November we have a chance to recover the program by supporting Amendment 1 on the November ballot. The amendment does not create a new tax but would dedicate and protect funding of our public lands using 33% of existing document stamp taxes, the taxes paid in real estate transactions. This is the funding that has been used for 20 years.
“The program to educate the electorate for this Fall’s vote needs your support and sponsorship. Visit our website (www.sccf.org) for more information or the Florida Water and Land Legacy website (www.voteyeson1fl.org) to donate toward the effort to pass this important amendment this November.”
Planning Ahead to “Ding” Darling Days
From the “News from Friends of J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge”: “There must be 25 ways to celebrate “Ding” Darling Days, happening at the Refuge October 19-25 this year. 2014 celebrates 25 years for the annual eco-festival, which started in 1989 as a one-day Family Fun Day and has grown week-long with free and discounted tours, free nature presentations, and yes, still that so-popular Family Fun Day kick-off. We don’t have room to tell you all of the 25 ways to celebrate, so we will start with just 10. Look for more in the next newsletter, “Ding” on the Wing bulletins, and at www.dingdarlingdays.com/ddd-events:
- 25 “Ding” Things Passport: A week-long scavenger hunt with 25 fun prizes.
- The debut of the Discover “Ding” GPS-based game app – the first of its kind in the Refuge System with 25-minute clinics during “Ding” Days.
- Free Silver Anniversary reusable bags filled with books and other goodies for the first 250 arrivals to Sunday Family Fun Day, October 19.
- Free 25-minute archery demonstrations and clinics for Family Fun Day.
- Special 25th anniversary presentations by Heather Hensen’s Ibex Puppetry troupe.
- 25% off all Tarpon Bay Explorers tours – including tram, paddling, and nature cruise excursions.
- 25 stunning images of mating great blue herons at a special photographic presentation by Sallie Rich on Tuesday.
- Free 25-minute stand-up paddleboard clinics on Tuesday and Thursday.
- Fee wilderness paddles into the Refuge’s Lady Finger Lakes to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act.
- 25-cent Sill Photo Booth pictures on Saturday’s Conservation Art Day.”
Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity June 27-July 4
1 new listing: Clam Shell #C 2/2 $1.265M.
1 price change: Sundial #I104 1/1 now $369K.
1 new sale: Loggerhead Cay #373 2/2 listed for $539K.
2 closed sales: Breakers West #B4 2/2 $430K, Sanibel Inn #3535 2/2 $656.5K.
4 new listings: 1825 Ardsley Way 3/2 $548K, 1674 Bunting Ln 3/2 $569K, 218 Daniel Dr 3/2.5 $849K, 547 N. Yachtsman Dr 4/2.5 $965K.
2 price changes: 475 Sea Oats Dr 3/3 now $750K, 1048 Kings Crown Dr 4/4 now $1,224,995.
7 new sales: 1644 Atlanta Plaza Dr 2/2 listed for $459.5K, 621 Lake Murex Cir 2/2 listed for $509K, 497 Lake Murex Cir 4/3 listed for $715K, 4444 Waters Edge Ln 3/2 listed for $949K, 1066 Bailey Rd 3/3 listed for $970K, 1817 Buckthorn Ln 4/3.5 listed for $1.095M, 283 Ferry Landing Dr 3/2 listed for $1.695M.
5 closed sales: 2011 Mitzi Ln 2/1 $415K, 1841 Ibis Ln 2/2 $435K, 2551 Sanibel Blvd 3/2 $465K, 2729 Wulfert Rd 4/4.5 $1.092M, 5612 Baltusrol Ct 4/3/5 $1.675M.
2 new listings: 1299 Par View Dr $235K, 2462 Wulfert Rd $259K.
1 price change: 1540 San Carlos Bay Dr now $1.195M.
No new sales.
1 closed sale: 4309 Gulf Pines Dr $270K.
No new listing, price changes, news sales, or closed sales:
1 new listing: 11535 Wightman Ln 3/3 $1.325M.
2 price changes: 16785 Captiva Dr 4/3.5 now $1.695M, 15009 Binder Dr 4/5.5 now $4.25M
1 new sale: 16682 Captiva Dr 10/12.5 listed for $11.9M (my buyer).
No 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.
Here’s wishing everyone a safe & fun Independence Day!