Sanibel Island Luminary 2015

SanibelSusan here, reporting that after a long Thanksgiving weekend with wonderful almost summer-like weather and a few real estate sales, the island thinned out a little this week as locals busily decorated for island luminary events. It is amazing how quickly the transition goes from family turkey dinners/parades/football to Christmas.

Merry Christmas Lighthouse

The bright sunny Southwest Florida weather changed yesterday as a few brief showers were followed by significant rain last night. It brought in a cool front, just in time for the festivities tonight. The high today is only expected to be 75 degrees, but the forecast says it will be back to the low 80’s/high 70’s starting again tomorrow.

Real Estate Happenings

Sanibelsusan LogoBelow, after a few news items, is the action posted over the past seven days in the Sanibel and Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service.

I was busy over the long weekend showing property and opening listings, while teammates manned the office. Though just a few sales were reported this week, one was one of our Mariner Pointe listings and my sale. We love it when that happens!

There were many more new listings than sales, including our new listing at Lighthouse Point #129. It may be a few more weeks before the number of new sales exceeds the number of new listings in a given week. In the meantime, here is a summary of inventory today (Dec 4).

Inventory is down and real estate is moving with the busy quarter coming up!


# of Units                     Condos             Homes              Lots

Available For Sale        95                       114                     60

Under Contract             24                       30                       5

Sold/Closed in 2015     148                     222                    41


# of Units                     Condos             Homes              Lots

Available For Sale        36                       39                     4

Under Contract              3                         4                       0

Sold/Closed in 2015     31                       22                      4

(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 general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.)

Upcoming Island Events

This afternoon, Fri – Dec 4 – Pre-Luminary Celebration at Sanibel Historical Village Honoring World War II veterans, the buildings in the village are decorated inside and out era-appropriate. The small Community Chorus Ensemble will sing from 4 to 4:45 p.m. to kick off the Luminary celebration.

Village 2014

Sanibel Historical Village BIG ARTS Chorus singers pre-Luminary 2014

Tonight, Fri – Dec 4 – 31st Sanibel Luminary Trail from 5:30 to 9 p.m. when 1700 luminaries will light the island bike paths to kick off the holiday season. Trolley stops are at Lighthouse Café, Bennett’s Fresh Roast, Jerry’s Shopping Center, Tahitian Gardens, Periwinkle Place, School House Theater Lot, Palm Ridge Plaza, Olde Sanibel Shoppes, & Bailey’s Center. (Community Chorus singers will be at Bailey’s starting at 5:30.)


Tomorrow night, Sat – Dec 5 – Captiva Luminary Trail from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Trolley stops at South Seas Resort Chadwick’s Square, Captiva Village/Bubble Room, Andy Rosse Lane/McCarthy’s Marina.


BIG-ARTS-Community-chorus-holiday-concert-2009Tues – Dec 8 – BIG ARTS Community Chorus Holiday Concert at 7 p.m. It is gonna be great. Tickets are selling fast. So to ensure getting in, visit the box office before concert night.

Sat – Dec 12 – 6th Annual Captiva Lighted Boat Parade beginning at 6 p.m. Watch the event from shore at McCarthy’s Marina or cruise in the parade with passenger tickets with Captiva Cruises. Boats cruise down Roosevelt Channel.


Sanibel Lighthouse & Cottages Deck Out for the Holidays


“For the 9th consecutive year, the Sanibel Lighthouse has been decorated with holiday decor compatible with the era in which the Lighthouse was constructed. Built in 1884, the Sanibel Lighthouse is an enduring symbol of our island community and world recognized icon.

“As a holiday gift to the community, the City of Sanibel Public Works staff placed the green garland and red bows on the Lighthouse. Additionally, both of the adjacent Lighthouse Caretaker’s Cottages have been decorated with garland, bows, and wreaths for the holiday season. Decorations will remain on the Lighthouse and cottages until January 9th, 2016.”

Guided Native Vegetation & Landscaping Tours

Sanibelcityseal logoOffered by the City of Sanibel Vegetation Committee on City Hall grounds which are planted solely with native plants. Next tour is Wed, Dec 9 at 10 a.m. January tours are Wed, Jan 13, and Sat, Jan 23. See how you can plant a garden that reseeds itself with little maintenance, is good for the environment, and will attract birds and butterflies. Call the City’s Natural Resource Dept for more info at 239-472-3700. 2016 Housing Forecast: Best Since ‘06

Florida Realtors logoHere is some good news that was posted on line at FloridaRealtors® yesterday:

“New home construction and moderate gains in the existing home market will deliver a one-two punch that pushes total home sales to the highest levels since 2006, according to the 2016 housing forecast issued by, an online real estate service operated by News Corp subsidiary Move, Inc.

“The 2016 housing market will be a picture of moderate, but solid growth as existing home sales and prices slow to a 3% growth rate year-over-year, a result of higher mortgage rates, continuing tight credit standards and lower affordability.

“The new construction market will see more significant gains in 2016 as new home starts increase 12% year-over-year and new home sales grow 16%.

Total sales for existing and new homes will reach 6 million for the first time since 2006, predicts – a result of a strong gross domestic product increase of 2.5% and continued job creation. However, the healthy economic indicators will be tempered by a lack of access to credit and rising home prices, which will ultimately limit housing demand and growth.

“”Next year’s moderate gains in existing prices and sales, versus the accelerated growth we’ve seen in previous years, indicate that we are entering a normal, but healthy housing market,” says Jonathan Smoke, chief economist for “The improvements we’ve seen over the last few years have enabled a recovery in the existing home market, but we still need to make up ground in new construction, which we could begin to see in 2016.”

“Three distinct segments of homebuyers will drive next year’s sales: Older millennials (25-34 years old), younger gen X’ers (35-44 years old) and retirees (65-74 years old), according to Smoke.

Millennials: They’re expected to make up the largest demographic of homebuyers in 2016, having represented 30 percent of the existing home market. Driven by increasing income, millennials will seek out homes that meet the needs of their growing families – putting the most weight on the safety of the neighborhood and the quality of the home. Commute time and a preference for older homes have these buyers looking in city-centers and closer-in suburbs. According to’s proprietary research, the following markets are expected to be some of the most sought out markets for millennial homebuyers in 2016 due to their large numbers of millennials, strong employment growth, and relative affordability.

  • Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, Ga.
  • Pittsburgh
  • Memphis, Tenn.-Miss.-Ark.
  • Boston-Cambridge-Newton, Mass.-N.H.
  • Austin-Round Rock, Texas

Young gen X’ers: Accounting for 20% of home purchases in 2015, buyers between the ages of 35-44 will be back in the market again likely making up the second largest population of buyers in 2016. These buyers have rebounded from the financial crisis and are entering their prime family-raising and earning years. More than two-thirds of the buyers in this age group already own a home and will be moving out of a starter home into a larger home or more desirable neighborhood. All the markets on this list are seeing an uptick in growing families, declining unemployment and growing household incomes.

  • Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, Ga.
  • Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, Colo.
  • St. Louis, Mo-Ill.
  • Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia, N.C.-S.C.
  • Columbus, Ohio

Retirees: This group is expected to make up the third largest home buying segment in 2016. Ages 65-74, they will be selling their current home in an effort to downsize and lower their cost of living. Last year, they represented 14% of homebuyers. They will likely put their home up for sale at the start of the home-buying season in March or April, and aim to make a home purchase following the sale of their home. This age cohort has a very strong preference for newly constructed homes and put the most weight on an ability to customize the home. Homes in the following markets are expected to see the most retiree buying activity in 2016 due to a large share of population as well as rapidly rising home values.

    • Boston-Cambridge-Newton, Mass.-N.H.
    • Sacramento–Roseville–Arden-Arcade, Calif.
    • San Diego-Carlsbad, Calif.
    • North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton, Fla.
    • Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Fla.

“According to Smoke, several markets are poised for substantial growth in prices and sales. Each market demonstrates strong demand dynamics, evidenced by 60% more listing page views on than the U.S. overall, and inventory that moves 16 days faster than the U.S. average. Surging demand in each market can be attributed to growing household formation, a prosperous job market and low unemployment rates, as well as large populations of millennials, young gen-X’ers and retirees.

“’s 10 hottest markets for 2016 are:

  • Providence-Warwick, RI-Mass.
  • St. Louis, Mo.-Ill.
  • San Diego-Carlsbad, Calif.
  • Sacramento–Roseville–Arden-Arcade, Calif.
  • Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, Ga.
  • New Orleans-Metairie, La.
  • Memphis, Tenn.-Miss.-Ark.
  • Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia, N.C.-S.C.
  • Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, Va.-N.C.
  • Boston-Cambridge-Newton, Mass.-N.H.

“To see’s forecast for 19 Florida cities and more trend information, visit their website.”

Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity November 27- December 4



11 new listings: Sundial West #H408 1/1 $439K, Sundial West #H407 1/1 $465K, Lighthouse Point #113 3/2 $649K, Sundial East #O402 2/2 $655K, Lighthouse Point #129 3/2 $699K (our listing), Pointe Santo #C41 2/2 $850K, Surfside 12 #B1 3/2 $1.099M, Sanibel Surfside #127 2/2 $1.15M, Surfside 12 #B3 3/2 $1.249M, Kings Crown #105 3/2 $1.289M, Tanglewood #3 3/2 $1.595M


View from Lighthouse Point #129

No price changes.

2 new sales: Ibis at The Sanctuary #201 2/2 listed at $468.5K, Mariner Pointe #332 2/2 listed at $480K (our listing & sale).


From Mariner Pointe looking to the Sanibel Marina

1 closed sale: Sundial East #N301 2/2 $695K.


10 new listings: 1490 Sand Castle Rd 2/2 $539K, 3870 Coquina Dr 3/2 $599K, 5303 Umbrella Pool Rd 3/2.5 $679K, 3941 Coquina Dr 3/2 $749K, 485 Peachtree 3/3 $749K, 1121 Sabal St 3/2.5 $749K, 1321 Par View Dr 3/2.5 $949K, 941 Pecten Ct 3/2 $1.039M, 5115 Joewood Dr 4/3 $2.349M, 911 Strangler Fig Ln 4/3 $3.195M.

3 price changes: 450 Lake Murex Cir 3/2 now $529K, 760 Windlass Way 3/3 now $999.9K, 1052 Whisperwood Way 3/3 now $1.549M.

3 new sales: 785 Rabbit Rd 3/2 half-duplex listed at $339K, 1004 Fish Crow Rd 4/3 listed at $871.9K, 812 Angel Wing Dr 3/3.5 listed at $2.447M.

3 closed sales: 2006 Harbour Ln 2/2 $989K, 749 Pyrula Ave 3/3 $1.225M, 1137 Golden Olive Ct 5/3.5 $2.175M.


Nothing to report.



Nothing to report.


1 new listing: 16790 Captiva Dr 5/5 multi-family $5.25M.

No price changes, new or closed sales.


No new listings, price changes, or new sales.

1 closed sale: 11545 Wightman Ln $1.05M.

(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 general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.)

Until next Friday…hope to see you on the Luminary trails…

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

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