Yikes, Jacket Weather on Sanibel Island

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Yesterday was the islands’ low (so far) winter temperature for the year, a chilly 37 degrees F when SanibelSusan left home at 8 a.m. for our Realtor Caravan Meeting. Our new listing at 569 Lighthouse Way (shown above) was open for viewing during the following Caravan Open House. In addition to boat dock with two lifts (14K# & 5K#), it has new windows/doors, paint, landscaping, & cool fish pavers on the walkways & drive.

It was another cold morning today, but it looks like, starting Monday, day-time temperatures should be back in the 70’s again.

The action posted in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service since last Friday follows a few news items below.

Sanibel Community House Fine Arts Festival

Community House logoToday and tomorrow (Jan 19 and 20), the Community House is trying something new with a Fine Arts Festival to benefit the Community House itself and the Sanibel Community Association. It is a little smaller than some on the usual annual events held there. It is featuring over 50 artists showcasing a range of work including paintings, sculptures, jewelry, hand-blown glass, photography, and more. Open both days from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., I bet they have a good turn-out with the weather chilly. Maybe some shoppers will cross the street to find out about real estate too.

If you haven’t checked out the new Community House yet, it’s worth a visit. The Community House has posted lots of new events that include the talents of their resident chef and take advantage of the new facility. See more info and their schedule at www.SanibelCommunityHouse.net.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of REALTORS®

Sanibel realtors logoLast week, SanibelSusan was the Installing Official at the islands’ Association of REALTORS® Annual Installation and breakfast at The Sanctuary. It was an honor! Congratulations to outgoing President Joel Goodman for a great year and to incoming President Dustyn Corace for the good year to come.

Community Service Awardthe awards presentations that followed, I was one of the Sanibel/Captiva Realtors® that made their 2017 Honor Society (my 25th consecutive year). I also received with the islands’ 2017 Community Service Award and a President’s “Above and Beyond” Award. It’s always nice to be recognized.

In 2018, I again will Chair our Sanibel/Captiva Ombudsman Program. Each Realtor® Association is required to have this self-governing program. An ombudsman’s role is primarily one of communication and conciliation, not adjudication. Ombudsmen do not determine whether ethics violations have occurred or who is entitled to what amount of money, rather they anticipate, identify, and resolve misunderstandings and disagreements before matters ripen into disputes and possible charges of unethical conduct. The islands’ Association is lucky, we rarely have disputes. Having this system of communication works and I am happy to help with it.

Island Inn Road Reopened to Pedestrian & Bike Traffic

The City announced this week that the stretch of Island Inn Road immediately west of Tarpon Bay Road that had been closed to public traffic since September while the area was operating as the Disaster Debris Management Site for Sanibel’s recovery efforts following Hurricane Irma has been reopened for pedestrian and bicycle use.

Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2017

NoacklogoThe following info from Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Affiliate Member, Noack & Company CPA’s:

Out of Pocket Damages – The first $500 you spend on hurricane related damages is not a tax write-off, but what you spend over that could be! This includes (but is not limited to) your roof damages, screening enclosure repairs and landscaping/tree removal costs. Anything that you spend that is a qualified hurricane damage cost that is over $500 (and NOT reimbursed by insurance) may qualify for a write off regardless of if you itemize or take the standard deduction. Best advice – use qualified contractors and keep your receipts.

Retirement Plan Distributions – If you are struggling to catch up, or can’t afford to pay for the damages, you may be able to take money out of your retirement account (up to $100,000) without the early distribution 10% penalty to help. You may also be able to spread the taxable income out over three years instead of including the money you take out all in your taxable income in the year you took it. Oh, and you can take advantage of this anytime from 9/4/17 to 1/1/19.

Employers Retention Credit – EMPLOYERS: listen up! If your business was unable to operate ay any point from 9/4/17 to 1/1/18 due to hurricane damages or power outages and you paid your employees, you may be eligible for a credit for some of the wages you paid! Limitations apply, but if you think you may qualify for this consult with your tax professional for more details.

“The three relief options above … a guide…. consult your tax professional on determining if you qualify….’

Provided by Carol McCarley with Noack & Company CPA’s at 239-936-6144, Carol@cpaofFlorida.com

Tidbits About Hammon Stadium

Minnesota Twins Workout SessionsMost island owners and vacationers have enjoyed an event or two at the Minnesota Twins Hammond Stadium at the CenturyLink Sports Complex. Lee County reports that it garners $50 million in direct visitor spending each year, thanks to its hosting of spring training for the Minnesota Twins and the Boston Red Sox (about $25 million from each team).

Hammond Stadium, home to the Minnesota Twins for spring training, completed a $48.5 million renovation in 2015 that was supported with dollars from a bed tax, which is a local charge levied on hotel rooms (& other short-term rentals) in the area. In return, the team signed a 30-year lease and agreed to stay in the area through at least 2044.

Here are a few fun facts about the stadium that I found in the Jan/Feb 2018 issue of “Gulfshore Business” magazine.

Employees there during a game:           300

Cars in the lots:                                           2,500 – 2,800

Parking attendants:                                   more than 50

Parking shuttles:                                        4

Total seats:                                                  8,730

Infield seats:                                               6,550

Porch seating:                                            2,180

Hot dogs sold:                                            ~2,000

Beers sold:                                                  7,000

Sodas sold:                                                  4,000

Waters sold:                                               2,000”

No Special Election for Sanibel City Council Seat

Sanibelcityseal logoCongratulations to friend, former appraiser, and former Vice Chair of the Sanibel Planning Commission, Holly Smith who will serve on Sanibel’s City Council until March 2019. Holly is one of the hardest-working gals I know – fair, thoughtful, smart, and resourceful.

She was one of ten applications who applied to fill the unexpired term of Jim Jennings who resigned his City Council seat in October after moving off island. She recently received that appointment which meant she would fill the position until a March 20 Special Election. This week, we learned that Holly was the only applicant for that Special Election. As a result, there will be no election and she will serve the rest of Jim’s term.

Holly already has well served Sanibel’s citizenry for several terms as a Planning Commissioner. Since she received the Council appointment she has already “dug in” and last week attended the Everglades Coalition conference in Stuart water quality. If you run into Holly, please thank her for her service and her willingness to continue.

Tax Reform – A Comparison of Prior Law With New Law

Probably best to consult your own tax professional, but here’s a quick comparison of a few items that affect real estate:

  Prior Law New Law
Mortgage interest deduction including 2nd homes) Capped at $1M Capped at $750K
Home-equity loan deduction Capped at $100K Not deductible
1031 Like-Kind Exchange Applied to all classes of property (personal & real) Limits non-recognition of gain to real property
Depreciation Recovery Period for Real Property (residential rental) 27.5 years No change
Depreciation Recovery Period for Real Property (non-residential) 39 years No change
Depreciation Recovery Period for Real Property (leasehold improvements) 15 years No change
Capital Gains Exemption on Sale of Primary Residence Up to $250K ($500K if married) & if lived in for 2 of last 5 yrs No change

Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity January 12-19, 2018

Sanibelsancap GO MLS logo


7 new listings: Sundial West #G407 1/1 $460K, Mariner Pointe #1073 2/2 $499K, Loggerhead Cay #433 2/2 $594.9K, Compass Point #232 2/2 $689K, Sandpiper Beach #506 2/2 $749K, Pointe Santo #E21 2/2 $927K, Pointe Santo #C35 3/2 $949K.

5 price changes: Lighthouse Point #217 3/2 now $465K, Sundial West #G206 1/1 now $499.9K, Sundial West #F201 2/2 now $849.9K, High Tide #C201 2/2 now $989K, Gulfside Place #123 2/2 now $1.223M.

4 new sales: Spanish Cay #F3 1/1 listed at $277K, Spanish Cay #A4 2/2 listed at $374K, Sundial West #J307 2/2 listed at $759K, Sanibel Arms West #D5 2/2 listed at $849K.

2 closed sales: Nutmeg Village #211 2/2 $630K, Shorewood #2B 3/3 $1.553M.


14 new listings: 9248 Kincaid Ct 2/1 $475K, 744 Martha’s Ln 2/2 $620K, 836 Donax St 3/2 $629K, 721 Durion Ct 3/3 $725K, 1325 Par View Dr 3/3 $749K, 9224 Dimmick Dr 3/2 $898K, 925 Lindgren Blvd 3/2 $995K, 3941 Coquina Dr 3/2 $999K, 1545 Sand Castle Rd 4/3.5 $1.199M, 2479 Blind Pass Ct 3/2 $1.3M, 430 Glory Cir 4/5.5 $1.495M, 1033 S Yachtsman Dr 3/3 $1.495M, 1475 Angel Dr 3/4.5 1.549M, 4265 West Gulf Dr 4/4.5 $4.895M.

10 price changes: 1040 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 now $569.9K, 1846 Ardsley Way 2/2 now $598K, 1425 Causey Ct 4/3 now $729K, 1245 Anhinga Ln 3/2 now $849.9K, 9224 Dimmick Dr 3/2 now $898K, 789 Pyrula Ave 4/3.5 listed at $1.095M, 6123 Starling Way 3/2.5 now $1.175M, 1672 Hibiscus Dr 3/2 now $1.229M, 900 Snowberry Ln 4/3 now $2.995M, 6111 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 5/4/3 now $19.975M.

7 new sales: 340 East Gulf Dr 2/2 listed at $569K, 1710 Sand Pebble Way 3/2 listed at $629K, 1169 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $679K, 601 Sea Oats Dr 3/2 listed at $685K, 5280 Ladyfinger Lake Rd 3/2 listed at $895K, 765 Conch Ct 5/4 listed at $899K, 701 Anchor Dr 3/3.5 listed at $1.295M.

2 closed sales: 4606 Brainard Bayou Rd 2/2 $455K, 673 East Rocks 3/2 $651.5K.


Nothing to report.



No new listings or price changes.

1 new sale: Beach Villas #2621 2/2 listed at $650K.

2 closed sales: Tennis Villas #3220 1/1 $283,113; Tennis Villas #3223 1/1 $305K.


No new listing.

1 price change: 11531 Paige Ct 4/3.5 now $3.49M.

No new or closed sales.


Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® 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.

DingDarlingSunset 01-12-18

Until next Friday, stay warm! Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan