SanibelSusan here. Today the islands are feeling the effects of what forecasters are calling swirling weather patterns associated with a tropical wave which poses a threat for localized flooding across Southwest Florida today. Heavy downpours began Wednesday afternoon and have been sporadic so far, but the chance of rain is predicted at 100% right through the weekend. It finally drops to a 20% chance on Wednesday. On the upside, the temperatures are down into the high 70’s/low 80’s and the vegetation is lush.
With the ground already saturated, flash flooding warnings have been issued for Lee and Charlotte counties until 8 p.m. tonight. This wave is not related to Hurricane Harvey which is poised to slam the Gulf coast of Texas, but it nonetheless probably helped bring the greater-than-normal rain throughout the day.
Before a few news items, here is a photo shared with me earlier this month. Look who walked by and caught him by surprise when he was at his island home. (You’ve gotta be fast with an iPhone. Thanks for sharing, Scott.)
Florida Realtors 101st Annual Convention/Trade Show & Governance Meetings
Sorry I missed posting a blog last Friday. While in Orlando at the Florida Realtors® Annual Convention and Governance Meetings, it was great to play a part in the productive educational sessions Tues/Wed/Thurs, followed by committee meetings Fri/Sat, and ending with the Board of Directors meeting Sunday morning.
There are a lot of events, networking, and real work crammed into a few days so I always enjoy the drive back home when it is nice to get out in the fresh air again and rethink the week’s accomplishments.
I’ve seen lots of changes in the industry during the 20+ years that I have been involved in the state leadership team. Hot topics now are cybercrime, wire fraud, copyright infringement, automated valuation models, paperless transactions, social media advertising, artificial intelligence, and drones.
Though the real estate markets vary from one area of Florida to another, much of our work and problems are common. Staying involved in problem-solving and solution-sharing is key in staying ahead of the many changes that technology continually brings to this business.
Here are a few fun facts about Florida Realtors®:
- Florida Realtors® is the 2nd largest state Realtor® organization in the country.
- It is 170,000 members strong (in 2017)
- It began in 1916 and now covers 13 districts, 54 local boards, and has 130+ employees.
- In 2016, 61% of membership was female and averaged 52 years old. Members had an average of 10 years of experience and completed 9 transactions. They closed nearly 400,000 sales with over $105 billion in dollar volume.
- In 2016 in Florida, there were $19.4 billion in international sales. The largest fraction of foreign buyers (39%) were from Latin America & the Caribbean. The top 5 countries of foreign buyers in Florida were: Canada, Brazil, Venezuela, United Kingdom, & Argentina.
- In 2017, Florida Realtors® PAC successfully supported legislation that passed the first-ever cap on community association fees for estoppel certificates.
Because of the size of our local organization, the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® only has two voting Directors at the state. There were 561 Florida Directors voting on Sunday. I was honored to be one of them, along with our 2017 Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® President, Joel Goodman.You can find more info about Florida Realtors® at FloridaRealtors.org.
Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors®
Yesterday was the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® August General Membership Meeting followed by biweekly Caravan. Once again, like two weeks ago, the meeting was well attended, but not much real estate action was announced. Our new listing at Spanish Cay was one of only two properties on the following Open House Caravan.
The speakers for the General Membership Meeting included a panel of four rental managers from ReMax of the Island Vacation Rentals, Royal Shell Vacations, SBL Vacations, and VIP Vacation Rentals. They fielded such questions as:
- Who handles the prorations of rental income when a property sells? The rental managers do, this is not something that normally is handled by a title company since it’s not a physical part of the real estate.
- How do you handle requests for showings when a property is listed for sale? Most of the managers prefer to make the showing appointments and only when requested by the Listing Agent. Particularly “in season”, when requests may be frequent, Listing Agents may want to ensure that the request is to a “serious prospect” before bothering a long-term tenant. VIP prefers that the Listing Agent calls the tenant so they can control who goes in/out.
- Has the rental business increased or decreased? Some mentioned that particularly with homes, inventory is less than it was some years ago. Many in the large baby boomer population who purchased and rented before retirement are now using the property themselves.
- Have rental rates increased? In most cases yes, but it’s often dependent on a property and its upgrades. The “best” properties are booked a year in advance with repeat longer-term bookings preferred. Particularly for reservations in Feb and Mar, they should be booked a year ahead.
SanibelSusan Realty Associates
While away, I fielded some phone and email inquiries about a few of our listings. Then, this week, we got another new listing. It is a Sunset South top-floor riverside expanded 2 bedroom with elevator, garage & large private storeroom – a great opportunity for a buyer looking for easy residential living with gulf access, natural views, and handy to the causeway. Well priced too at $499,900 (view shown in first photo below).
Several of our listings were shown this week and a couple of showings are scheduled as next week many rental properties are vacant. The action posted in the Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service since August 11 (two week’s worth of info) is posted after a few news items below.
The islands are coming up on what some of the retail establishments say is traditionally the slowest week of the year. Many communities only allow construction projects in September so it could be a few quiet weeks with schools back in session and the rainy season in full swing. It is a good time to view property though. Some say, the best time to secure real estate before “season”.
If you are looking to try some place new, “Sanibel Fresh” opened yesterday in the former location of Bennett’s Fresh Roast at 1020 Periwinkle Way. Open Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. until 9 p.m., their motto on their Facebook logo says “Healthy food for a happy you”.
We haven’t tried it yet, but our pals say it’s “great”.
Call for Action
Without Congressional action by September 30, 2017, authority for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) will expire. If NFIP lapses, more than 40,000 real estate transactions per month will be in jeopardy. The National Association of Realtors® has issued a call for action and made it easy for you to urge your member of Congress to pass “The 21st Century Flood Reform Act” H.R. 2874 as soon as possible.
H.R. 2874 contains several provisions of critical importance:
- Reauthorizes NFIP for a full 5 years, avoiding the uncertainty of short-term extensions and potential shutdowns.
- Caps NFIP rates at $10,000 per year for property owners.
- Directs FEMA to develop more granular rate tables, to ensure fewer properties are overcharged
- Sets aside $1 billion for flood mitigation assistance grants.
And increases access to private market flood insurance. Please follow this link to Take Action
Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity August 11-25, 2017
3 new listings: Sunset South #6D 2/2 $499.9K (our listing), Sundial East #O405 2/2 $1.0995M, Sanddollar #A101 2/2 $1.195M.
3 price changes: Seashells #40 2/2 now $359.9K, Ibis at The Sanctuary #B102 2/2 now $449.9K (our listing) (photos below), Ibis at The Sanctuary #B302 2/2 now $468.5K.
4 new sales: Ibis at The Sanctuary #B201 2/2 listed at $475K, Sanibel Moorings #931 2/2 listed at $550K, Sanctuary Golf Villages I #6-2 2/2.5 listed at $649K, Lighthouse Point #327 3/2 listed at $849K.
4 closed sales: Spanish Cay #B6 2/2 $380K, Blind Pass #F210 2/2 $444K, Blind Pass #B105 2/2 $450K, Sanibel Arms West #I3 2/2 $519K.
5 new listings: 982 Main St 3/2.5 $489K, 4542 Bowen Bayou Rd 3/2 $578K, 1724 Bunting Ln 3/4 $985K, 1304 Eagle Run Dr 3/3 now $1,099,995; 411 Bella Vista Way 3/4 half-duplex $2.495M, 3945 West Gulf Dr 3/3 $3.195M.
7 price changes: 3021 Singing Wind Dr 3/2 now $499K; 5306 Ladyfinger Lake Rd 3/2 now $589K; 673 East Rocks 3/2 now $715,888; 3354 Barra Cir 3/2 now $875K; 673 East Rocks 3/2 now $725,988; 5075 Joewood Dr 4/4.5 now $3.25M.
6 new sales: 982 Main St 3/2.5 listed at $489K, 2150 Egret Cir 3/2 listed at $524.9K, 981 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 listed at $549K, 1311 Sand Castle Rd 4/4.5 listed at $799K, 655 Anchor Dr 3/3 listed at $749K, 1272 Isabel Dr 4/4.5 listed at $3.45M.
1 closed sale: 981 Main St 4/2.5 $625K.
No new listings.
2 price changes: 3354 Barra Cir now $399K, 4115 Sanibel-Captiva Rd now $799K.
No new or closed sales.
1 new listing: Beach Villas #5228 1/2 $433.5K.
No price changes.
2 new sales: Beach Villas #2517 1/1 listed at $497.5K, Beach Villas #2623 1/1 listed at $530K.
No new listings or price changes.
1 new sale: 11500 Chapin Ln 4/4.5 listed at $1.795M.
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. 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.)