It’s A Tropical Kinda Friday!


SanibelSusan here reporting another happy Friday! (Those are especially nice on weeks with closings.) There have been bright blue skies here so-far today, after a soggy Thursday afternoon. Now that the rainy season has settled in and the first of the tropical storms have developed in the gulf, showers have become more frequent and sometimes heavy.

Sanibel Square lost electricity for a short time yesterday. (A notice from the City said that 2000 island customers were affected.) Lee County Electric Coop (LCEC) continues to respond quickly. Go to http://www.lcec.net to download their “Smart Hub” app to report outages and to access your account. LCEC’s outage management map is a good resource too.

A plus with these showers is the islands are back to their lush tropical summer look, vegetation is a brilliant green and growing like crazy. Here are a few photos of the things blooming in my yard today. The gardenia bush is flowering for the third time this year – that’s a first.

These recent rains also have resulted in a lot of skeeters! There are almost enough to help carry in the mail. Though Lee County Mosquito Control (LCMC) has been working hard to keep them in check, population now is expanding faster than the island marsh bunnies – and that is booming. (Seriously, LCMC does a great job keeping those pesky biters in check during “mosquito season”, May through October. Mosquito activity increases, particularly after heavy rains that produce large areas of standing water. With the islands, mangroves, wetlands, and salt marshes, Sanibel is a prime breeding ground, so contact LCMC if you have a large number in your island neighborhood.)

At SanibelSusan Realty

Once again, our listings got some action this week. No offers, but some inquiries and showings. The activity posted since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service follows a couple of news items below. Plenty of real estate sales are occurring here. If you are interested in an updated Sanibel/Captiva inventory list, contact The SanibelSusan Team. We are happy to mail or email you one anytime.

Much of the local news, probably like where you are, is about COVID-19 and when schools will begin. Lee County’s School Board met yesterday and have decided to delay the opening here from August 10 to August 31.

The “Real Estate” State of the State

Below is the June 2020 – Florida Housing Report from Dr. Brad O’Connor, Florida Realtors Chief Economist:

“The June 2020 statistics from Florida Realtors have just been released, and they erase any remaining doubts that Florida’s housing market is in the midst of a large-scale recovery. This isn’t to say that every segment of the market is performing well, but on the whole, things are looking better than they have in several months.

“Let’s start by looking at the statewide statistics for existing single-family home sales. For the first time since March, closed sales were up year-over-year, rising by 1.3%. Remember in April and May, closings were down about 21 and 36%, respectively. But thanks to this nice recovery in June, plus the unusually strong sales growth we had ahead of the pandemic in January and February, here at the mid-point of 2020, closings are only down a little over 7% for the year compared to the first half of 2019. At our current trajectory, in fact, it’s possible that we may end the year with more closed single-family home sales statewide than we had last year.

“Of course, if you’ve been following the numbers with us over the past couple of months, you likely saw all of this coming. After all, new pending sales of single-family homes were up 2.3% in May. And if we assume new pending sales trends will continue to provide reliable forecasts of closings in the months to come, then based on the latest numbers from June, we can expect a very good summer. Why? Because in June, statewide new pending sales of single-family homes were up over 23%, year-over-year.

“Several factors are playing into this renewed demand for housing, but by far, the most important factors are record-low mortgage interest rates and the release of all the pent-up demand from our derailed spring buying season. Of course, we can’t expect this supercharged level of sales growth to last forever, since at some point, we will burn through all of this pent-up demand. But interest rates are not expected to rise any time soon, and they still have some room to go lower, so we have every reason to be optimistic about sales over the coming months, barring additional negative shocks to the economy.

“Over in the condo and townhouse category, existing home sales continue to lag those from the single-family category, but they still show significant improvement. Closed sales in this category were down nearly 11% year-over-year in June, but keep in mind, they were down over 50% in May. Still, the best signal that condos and townhouses are making a comeback comes from probably the most surprising number we saw this month, which is the nearly 20% increase in new contracts compared to the same month last year.

“Over on the supply side of the market, inventory remains scarce and one of our most immediate areas of concern, particularly in the single-family home category. As of the end of June, there were over 27 percent fewer single-family homes listed for sale in Florida’s MLSs than at this time a year ago. Looking at it another way, in three months’ time, we have gone from nearly 84,000 statewide single-family listings at the end of March to under 66,000 listings here at the mid-point of 2020. Fortunately, the condo and townhouse category has fared better, with inventory being down only about 6% compared to a year ago.

“The one positive aspect of this reduction in the supply of available housing is that it counteracted the temporary drop in home sales activity we saw in the first couple months in the pandemic, thereby keeping home values relatively stable. But now that demand has come roaring back, we are starting to see rising prices again. The median sale price for closed single-family home sales in June was $282,000, a 4.4% increase from a year ago. Over in the condo and townhouse category, the median sale price was up 7.7%, to $210,000. As we continue on through 2020, our biggest concern remains the inventory shortage, which could eventually put a cap on the number of possible transactions. But home values should remain stable.

“Now, I’ve covered the state as a whole, but every local market has its own trends….”

The Market on Sanibel & Captiva Islands

Looking more specifically at the island market, the below graphic provides the statistics through 2020’s 2nd quarter, provided by the islands Association of Realtors®.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors®

The local Association of Realtors® office remains closed for meetings including caravans, but members are looking forward to our first “virtual” membership meeting on August 13 where the guest speaker is Dr. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist and Senior Vice president of Research at the National Association of Realtors®.

He will discuss today’s economic climate, current housing trends, the outlook on resort and 2nd home markets like ours, and his projections for the end of 2020 and beyond. (You may remember from my past blogs that I am a huge fan of his conservative outlooks. If anyone has a question that you would like me to pose to him, just let me know.)

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity July 17-24, 2020

Sanibel

CONDOS

2 new listings: Sunset South #2D 2/2 $675K, Villas of Sanibel #B202 3/2 $1.895M.

4 price changes: Casa Blanca #4 1/1 now $357K, Signal Inn #14 2/2 now $699K, Atrium #103 2/2 now $1.225M, Sunward #201 3/2 now $1.259M.

5 new sales: Colonnades #C3 1/1 listed at $245K, Pointe Santo #D21 2/2 listed at $549K, Kings Crown #306 2/2 listed at $838K, Somerset #C302 3/2 listed at $1.65M, High Tide #A301 3/2 listed at $1.989M.

3 closed sales: Captains Walk #C3 1/1 $250K, Island Beach Club #320B 2/2 $649K, Heron at The Sanctuary #3B 3/2.5 $775K.

HOMES

5 new listings: 315 East Gulf Dr 3/2 half-duplex $599K, 756 Windlass Way 4/3 $869K, 1351 Middle Gulf Dr #1A (Moonshadows) 3/3 half-duplex $889K, 1259 Par View Dr 3/4 $1.175M, 1306 Seaspray Ln 4/4 $4.65M.

3 price changes: 799 Casa Ybel Rd 5/3 duplex now $580K, 690 Durion Ct 3/2 now $695K, 1081 Captains Walk St 4/2.5 now $995K.

10 new sales: 560 Piedmont Rd 3/2 listed at $460K, 1890 Farm Trl 3/2 listed at $549.4K, 9247 Dimmick Dr 3/2 listed at $590K, 1567 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 listed at $595K, 1559 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $677K, 5304 Umbrella Pool Rd 3/3 listed at $770K, 9024 Mockingbird Dr 3/2 listed at $819K, 2439 Harbour Ln 3/3 listed at $1.089M, 1329 Eagle Run Dr 3/2.5 listed at $1.375M, 4577 Waters Edge Ln 4/3 listed at $2.995M.

9 closed sales: 1593 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 half-duplex $583.5K, 1021 Sand Castle Rd 2/2 $658K, 1807 Serenity Ln 3/2 $700K, 1755 Jewel Box Dr 3/2 $725K, 5659 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 2/2 $750K, 901 S.Yachtsman Dr 2/2 $760K (our listing), 1430 Causey Ct 3/2 $865K, 5855 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 3/2 $900K, 6071 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 5/4.5 $1.4M.

LOTS

No new listings or price changes.

No new sales.

2 closed sales: 6411 Pine Ave $290K, 6053 Sanibel-Captiva Rd $922K.

Captiva

CONDOS

1 new listing: Beach Villas #2522 1/1 $529K.

No price changes.

1 new sale: Tennis Villas #3213 1/1 listed at $354.9K.

No closed sales.

HOMES

No new listings.

2 price changes: 11515 Gore Ln 5/4.5 now $2.395M, 1124 Longifolia Ct 4/5 now $2.938M.

No new or closed sales.

LOTS

No new listings, price changes, new or closed sales.

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.

Below is our ad from today’s “Island Sun”.

Until next Friday, Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

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