It’s Luminary Weekend 2014 on Sanibel & Captiva Islands

SanCapAssnLogoSanibelSusan is happy to report good attendance at the local Association of Realtors® Caravan meeting yesterday. Not many sales or price reductions were announced, but the strong turnout shows that sales associates are ready for “season”. My team also had plenty of visitors at Somerset at the Reef where Realtors® and neighbors got to view our new listing there. Here are a couple of photos of the fabulous view from that condo!

The week’s report of the action posted in the Sanibel and Captiva Multiple Listing Service follows a couple of news items below.

Christmas Festivities Beginning 

luminary bagsIt is “luminary weekend” on Sanibel and Captiva so the islands are expecting a spurt of activity with folks here to enjoy the festivities today on Sanibel and tomorrow on Captiva. All week decorations have been going up and businesses have been preparing for the many events that begin this afternoon. Here is a quick summary of what is ahead over upcoming two weekends:

Today (12/5)

historical village logo3-5 p.m.            Homesteaders’ Christmas Open House at Sanibel Historical Village

5:30 to 9 p.m.    Sanibel Luminary, includes a flash mob inside Baileys at 5:30 p.m. Trolley stops at east-end (Lighthouse Cafe area), Jerry’s Center, Tahitian Gardens, Periwinkle Place, School House Theater lot, The Village Shops, Palm Ridge Rd, Olde Sanibel Shoppes, & Bailey’s Center

Sunset-Aria-on-Captiva-beach5-6:30 p.m.        Free opera concert on the beach at ‘Tween Waters

Sat (12/6)

CHV_Golf-Cart-Parade-4223:30 p.m.          Decorated golf cart parade at 3:30 p.m., starts at South Seas

5:30 to 9 p.m.    Captiva Luminary. Trolley stops at Chadwick’s Square, Bubble Room, Andy Rosse Ln/McCarthy’s Marina, Green Flash, & ‘Tween Waters

Fri (12/12)

Jensen-logo5:15 p.m.          Jensens’ Mullet March parade, salute to veterans, starts at Jensens’

Sat (12/13)

4:30 p.m.          Junkanoo Parade on Captiva in the village

CHV-Boat-Parade-2012-45:30-7:30 p.m.   Lighted boat parade, view from McCarthy’s, Jensens’, Green Flash, ‘Tween Waters

8 p.m.               Boat parade after-party at Keylime Bistro

Christmas Bird Count

National_Audubon_Society_logoSanibel-Captiva Audubon will hold its annual Christmas Bird Count on Saturday, Dec 12. The results will go to the National Audubon Society to be included in the 115th National Christmas Bird Count which began on Christmas Day in 1900. More than 50,000 observers participate each year in this census of early-winter bird populations. Volunteers are needed (birding skills are desirable, but not necessary). Call 239-246-1054 to volunteer.

The Luxury Market’s Achilles Heel

million dollar billA “Daily Real Estate News” article posted yesterday sources “Sales of Million-Dollar-Plus Homes Growing, But Who’s Buying Is Shifting,” Redfin (Dec. 3, 2014)”

“Million-dollar homes are selling faster than other types of homes, but the typical luxury buyer is changing. “Markets that are most dependent on international demand are seeing a steady and dramatic decline in sales of million-dollar-plus homes,” according to a new report by Redfin. “Meanwhile, sales of expensive homes continue to rise at a steady pace in cities where those sales rely less on investors, both foreign and domestic.”

“As international investments wane, other home buyers are courting high-end real estate markets. Metros such as Houston with strong, diverse job markets, most notably in the energy and technology fields, are seeing a big spike in demand for luxury properties. Houston saw a 42% increase since last year in sales of homes costing $1 million or more, Redfin reports.

“Luxury markets that have traditionally been driven by high international interest remain strong, but year-over-year growth in home sales for $1 million and more has decreased, according to Redfin’s report. Redfin points to California markets such as Los Angeles, Orange County, and Riverside-San Bernardino; Florida markets such as Miami, Orlando, and Fort Lauderdale; and Las Vegas as having seen high-end sales go from 46% to 5% in the past year due to the decrease in foreign buyers. “This sector of the market, particularly in the places that have typically had strong foreign interest, will need traditional [and well-heeled] buyers to offset disappearing demand from international investors,” according to Redfin’s report.”

5 Ways to Keep Negotiations on Track

contract-hand-shake-clipartHere’s some good advice from RISMedia on Dec 1, 2014:

“There are a lot of things that could sink a deal, but during negotiations, there are several factors that are important to keep it from running off course. Jose Perez of real estate services firm PCMS Consulting lists five things that come into play during a successful negotiation.

  1. Home buyers and sellers should never negotiate directly.
  2. Try to minimize any surprises. Spelling out all of the factors involved in the transaction as early as possible can help get the ball rolling smoothly.
  3. Each party should be able to back up their position with logic and facts. Perez says there should be no late-game requests “just because.”
  4. Transparency is critical because it will avoid distrust and stalled deals.
  5. Don’t let egos get in the way of a deal closing. “When you bring your ego to the table, you’re negotiating against yourself,” Perez says.”

1 in 5 Markets Developing Housing Bubble?

Open HouseAny mention of the term “housing bubble” catches my eye, so it was somewhat with surprise that I read the following article sourced to RealtyTrac:

One in five housing markets has exceeded their historical affordability norms and may be showing early signs of a housing bubble. RealtyTrac analyzed 475 counties and looked for three early warning signs of a possible housing bubble:

  • If a market was less affordable in October 2014 than it was during the 2005-to-2008 housing bubble.
  • If a market was less affordable in October 2014 than its historical affordability average since January 2000.
  • If a market had a rising foreclosure rate on loans originated in 2014 compared to loans originated in 2013.

“”Affordability and foreclosure rates by loan vintage are two key metrics that will help consumers, investors, institutions, and policy makers identify if a housing market is at risk for another price bubble,” says Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac. “While 99% of markets have not returned to the irrational affordability levels during the previous housing bubble, one in five markets has now exceeded their historical affordability norms, which is a strong sign that either a new home-price bubble is forming in those markets or that home-price appreciation will soon plateau until incomes can catch up.”

“RealtyTrac found that 21% of the counties analyzed were less affordable than their historical affordability averages. Some of those counties included: Los Angeles County, Calif.; Harris County, Texas (Houston metro area); Kings County, N.Y. (Brooklyn); Dallas County, Texas; Bexar County, Texas (San Antonio metro area); Alameda County, Calif. (San Francisco metro area); Middlesex County, Mass. (Boston area); Oakland County, Mich. (Detroit area); and Travis County, Texas (Austin area).

“RealtyTrac’s analysis also found that 12% of the 475 counties had higher median prices than the peak reached during the 2005-to-2008 housing bubble. Topping the list were Kings County, N.Y. (Brooklyn); New York County, N.Y. (Manhattan); Travis County, Texas (Austin); Honolulu County, Hawaii; Fulton County, Ga. (Atlanta); Mecklenburg County, N.C. (Charlotte); and Erie County, N.Y. (Buffalo).”

REALTORS® Expect Modest Price Growth in Next 12 Months

If you missed the map and article about expected real estate price growth by state that was posted in “Economist Commentaries” on Dec 1 (it was on the news a lot), I will post the map on my blog later today. Here is the verbiage:

“With rising inventory  and modest expectations of demand growth,  REALTORS®  responding to the  October 2014 survey expected home prices to increase modestly in the next 12 months, according to data gathered from the October 2014 REALTORS® Confidence Index Survey: [1]. Local conditions vary with expectations anchored on factors such as the level of inventory, the state of the local job market, and credit conditions.

“The median expected price increase is about 3%.  The map shows the median expected price change in the next 12 months based on the August – October 2014 surveys [2]. No state had a median expected price growth above 5%.  States  with the most upbeat price expectations (orange) include California, Washington, North Dakota, Texas, Florida, Georgia, the District of Columbia, and Massachusetts–states with strong housing markets, job growth, and economies.


[1] The median expected price change is the value such that 50% of respondents expect prices to change above this value and 50% of respondents expect prices to change below this value.  A median expected price change is computed for each state based on the respondents for that state. The graph shows the range of these state median expected price change. To increase sample size, the data is averaged from the last three survey months.

[2] In generating the median price expectation at the state level, we use data for the last three surveys to have close to 30 observations. Small states such as AK, ND, SD, MT, VT, WY, WV, DE, and the D.C. may have less than 30 observations.”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity Nov 28-Dec 5



2 new listings: Tennisplace #B23 2/1.5 $310K, Sundial #A305 2/2 $825K.

3 price changes: Colonnades #44 1/1 now $193K, Captains Walk #A2 1/1 now $245.9K, Seascape #104 3/3 now $2.195M.

2 new sales: Seashells #33 2/2 listed for $299K (short sale), Loggerhead Cay #322 2/2 listed for $519K.

3 closed sales: Seashells #38 2/2 $279K, Kimball Lodge #304 2/2 $430K, Sandalfoot #4D2 2/2 $580K (our buyer).


12 new listings: 938 Palm St 3/2 $425K; 1717 Sand Pebble Way 3/2 $499K; 220 Palm Lake Dr 3/3 $599,999; 1075 Blue Heron Dr 3/2 $629K; 728 Windlass Way 3/2 $649K; 1347 Jamaica Dr 2/2 $679.5K; 3968 Coquina Dr 3/2 $699K; 8999 Mockingbird Dr 3/2 $775K; 1258 Par View Dr 3/2 $789K; 2388 Wulfert Rd 3/4 $1.148M; 390Old Trail Rd 4/4.5 $1.978M; 960 Whelk Dr 3/3 $2.299M.

6 price changes: 828 Rabbit Rd 2/1 now $409K, 1063 Blue Heron Dr 3/2 now $510K, 2596 Roosevelt Pl 3/2 now $739K, 251 Daniel Dr 3/2 now $809K, 857 Birdie View Pt  3/2.5 now $995K, 1800 Woodring Rd 1.349M.

3 new sales: 548 Chert Ct 3/2 listed for $585K, 1854 Farm Trl 3/2 listed for $599K, 1710 Middle Gulf Dr 3/2 listed for $699K.

4 closed sales: 4606 Brainard Bayou Rd 2/1 $350K, 1238 Par View Dr 3/3 $782.5K, 1329 Eagle Run Dr 3/2.5 $765K, 3537 West GUlf Dr 3/3 $3.2M.


No new listings, price changes, or new sales.

1 closed sale: 3338 West Gulf Dr $360K.



1 new listing: Bayside Villas #4202 1/2 $320K.

1 price change: Seabreeze #1253 3/3 now $1.569M.

No new sales.

2 closed sales: Bayside Villas #4212 1/2 $257.5K, Beach Villas #2511 2/2 $545K.


2 new listings: 11537 Andy Rosse Ln 4/4 $2.345M, 15172 Wiles Dr 5/2 $7M.

No price changes, 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.

I hope to see you on the Luminary Trail…Susansanibel Luminary trail