As we wrap up another week of nice winter island weather, I must mention the unusual fog seen here midday Wednesday. Coming onto the island late morning, the fog was so thick that one could barely see the water beyond the causeway island bridge railings, much less the shores of Sanibel. Calls from those beachside in the afternoon reported lingering fog just off the shoreline east end. Rarely do we see fog here.
The SanibelSusan Team had a couple of nice closings this week plus a super sale. Also had other listings shown and worked with buyers too. Tomorrow, after tenant checkout and unit cleaning, I will be at our new listing at Kings Crown where seven showings are scheduled during a short window. Hopefully, my nearby presence will make it easier for agents to get in and out quickly – while still adhering to COVID protocols.
Yes, the real estate market here is nuts! Good nuts! Now providing an opportunity for us to replenish the acorns that were depleted during the pandemic shut-down when business was off.
The action posted since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service follows a couple of news items below.
Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors®
Again, there was no weekly Zoom Caravan meeting this week, but the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® did win four state awards at the Florida Realtors® RPAC (Realtors® Political Action Committee) Awards Zoom event Tuesday Night.
Thank you to our RPAC Committee, its Chairman Dave Arter, and our members, both REALTORS® and Affiliate Business Partners for helping the Association meet and exceed its 2020 RPAC goals. The Association earned four State RPAC Awards in the Small Board Category:
- Highest Total Cash
- Highest Participation Rate
- Highest Percentage of Goal
- Highest Number of Major Investors
Since 1969, RPAC has promoted the election of pro-REALTOR® candidates across the U.S. The purpose of RPAC is clear: voluntary contributions made by REALTORS® are used to help elect candidates who understand and support their interests. These are not members’ dues; this is money given freely by REALTORS® in recognition of the importance of the political process. The REALTORS® Political Action Committee and other political fundraising are the keys to protecting and promoting the real estate industry.
This week, I also attended more of Florida Realtors® Mid-Winter Business Meetings and events via Zoom.
Tuesday, the 3-hour Realtor®-Attorney Joint Committee covered upcoming revisions proposed to the Florida Realtors®/Florida BAR contract, and the “As Is” version of the contract and its associated comprehensive riders.
In the 29 years that I have been using this contract in Florida, it has evolved may times, with the times. The “As Is” version is the most widely used. Many of the proposed changes are technology related, some regarding personal property that conveys with the real estate. Others tighten up timeframes and requirements in mortgage contingencies. Another good change clears confusion related to properties being sold that are short-term rentals. All are good improvements. Though not yet official, these committee recommendations will be submitted to the Florida BAR for their June meeting and if approved will move on to Florida Realtors® for consideration at their annual meeting in August. All indications are that these revised contracts will be released late summer.
Thursday night was the Florida Realtors® 2021 Inaugural with after party. Pretty hard to party via Zoom, but the entire event was a lot of fun and it was so great to see colleagues from around the state, even though it was through a computer screen.
This year, Florida surpassed other states in their total Realtor® membership. It is now the largest in the U.S., 204,000 members. It is amazing but not surprising to hear that membership increased during the pandemic. The word is out that the sunshine state offers more than just nice weather! (I remember when there were just 100,00 members and that was a staggering number.) Congratulations to our new President Cheryl Lambert and her terrific team.
Condo Question & Answer: What Happens If Reserve Funds Aren’t Enough?
Posted Wednesday on FloridaRealtors® on-line. This article covers an often-asked question about condo reserve monies. Author is “Steven J. Adamczyk Esq., a shareholder of the law firm Goede, Adamczyk, DeBoest & Cross, PLLC. The information provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The publication of this article does not create an attorney-client relationship between the reader and Goede, Adamczyk, DeBoest & Cross, or any of our attorneys. Readers should not act or refrain from acting based upon the information contained in this article without first contacting an attorney, if you have questions about any of the issues raised herein. The hiring of an attorney is a decision that should not be based solely on advertisements or this column. © 2021 Journal Media Group
“A condo complex reserves funds every year to repaint buildings every seven – but it’s time to paint and the money falls short. Can they use other money for painting?
“STUART – Question: Our condominium has been reserving every year to repaint the buildings every seven years. We are now approaching seven years, and it turns out the paint reserve fund was never on track to be fully funded, and we are going to be short. Can we use money set aside for other projects or do we have other options? – W.C.S., Port St. Lucie
“Answer: This is a common situation. In Florida, the general rule applicable to condominiums is that reserves must be fully funded unless the membership votes to underfund or waive reserve funding altogether. This means that your board should have received a quote or reserve opinion seven years ago to repaint the buildings, subtract any leftover balance in the paint fund, and then divide the difference by seven so that you are equally putting money away each year. The board can also take interest, inflation and annual changes in materials and labor into consideration when setting reserve amounts.
“In Florida, the default rule is also that you have straight line reserves, meaning you separately account for each reserve component, and you can only use money in the paint fund, for example, on painting, and the membership must approve any other use.
“One option available to you is to review your corporate history to see whether the association ever voted to approve a switch to pooled reserve funding. A pooled reserve is funded differently because it is based on cash flow, but the benefit in your situation is that you can use any dollar in the reserve account for any component in the pooled reserve. For example, a pooled reserve could have repainting, resurfacing, roof replacement, pool equipment, pool furniture, clubhouse windows and pool deck paver components. With a pooled reserve system, you could use any balance set aside for the pool equipment to fund the paint shortfall.
“You obviously need to make up the difference over time so that you can replace the pool equipment when necessary, but there is a lot of flexibility. If you have not done this in the past, the threshold to switch to pooled reserve requires only a majority of the votes cast in person or by proxy at a meeting of the members, and thus, you could also schedule a meeting to approve this switch and this could provide the flexibility you are seeking.
“If you have straight line reserves and you want to keep straight line reserves, another option is to seek the membership’s approval to use reserve dollars currently allocated to another component. The threshold is the same as the switch to pooled reserves, meaning you could, for example, schedule a special members’ meeting to seek approval to use dollars currently in the roof reserve account for the current paint shortfall.
“Another option would be to fund the shortfall through your annual operating budget. If you know the shortfall is $250,000, for example, then you could add a line item to your annual budget for this year only for the $250,000 and fund the shortfall through normal assessment obligations. To accomplish this, I would first seek an opinion from your legal counsel to determine whether your specific condominium documents place any restrictions on whether your operating budget can accommodate this expense. Obviously, this may increase your assessments, but at least owners would be able to pay the shortfall quarterly or monthly depending on your assessment schedule.
“The board could also levy a special assessment. This is the typical response to a shortfall in reserves because the reserve expenditure is typically a one-time expenditure and special assessments typically provide a lump sum influx of capital to meet the needs. Again, you would want to consult your legal counsel to determine whether your specific condominium documents have any self-imposed restrictions or procedural requirements that would impact the board’s ability or timing to levy a special assessment for this purpose.
“Finally, the board could borrow. Credit is generally available for condominium associations, and your board could consider drawing on a line of credit or obtain a term loan for this purpose. One of the benefits of borrowing is that it provides the association with instant liquidity to meet contractor payment schedules while allowing owners to repay over a longer period and possibly for the duration of the loan repayment.
“Once again, you would want to consult your legal counsel to determine whether your specific condominium documents have any self-imposed restrictions on borrowing or voting requirements to open a line of credit or draw on a line of credit. Depending on the amount of the loan and the lenders’ underwriting requirements, you may also need to levy a special assessment dedicated to repay the loan, so you also need to consider whether you have any special requirements to levy a special assessment as described above.”
Sanibel – COVID-19
From Florida Department of Health, Sanibel’s total accumulative number of COVID-19 cases since March 26 through January 27 is 201 cases. This is 13 cases in the last seven days. This is the number of cases for zip code residents. It does not include Captiva and the many workers and visitors that come and go. PLEASE stay vigilant, continue social distancing, hand washing, mask wearing, and avoid group gatherings.
With the process of getting vaccine appointments by phone often unsuccessful and frustrating, this week Florida’s site to preregister on line was announced. If you are a health care worker or Florida resident over the age of 65, go to www.MyVaccine.FL.gov to sign up. It takes just seconds and says you will be contacted (either by phone, text, or email) when your appointment is scheduled. All 67 Florida counties will have the system available to them soon. Luckily, Lee County was one of the first in the roll-out.
Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity Jan 22-29, 2021
6 new listings: Sanctuary Golf Villages I #5-2 3/3 $899K; Sanibel Arms West #C4 2/2 $920K; Sundial #Q401 2/2 $978,808; White Sands #13 2/2 $979K; Loggerhead Cay #101 2/2 $998,899; Tarpon Beach #206 2/2 $998,899.
2 price changes: Sanibel Arms #C5 2/2 now $465K, Mariner Pointe #732 2/2 now $559K.
6 new sales: Sanibel Arms #2E 1/1 listed at $385.4K, Sanibel Arms #C7 1/1 listed at $349K, Sanibel Arms West #A3 2/2 listed at $529K, Loggerhead Cay #192 2/2 listed at $719K, Pointe Santo #E22 2/2 listed at $899K, Sundial #A301 2/2 listed at $1,099,999.
6 closed sales: Spanish Cay #A4 2/2 $430K, Sundial #I102 1/1 $442.5K, Sundial #D305 1/1 $495K, Lighthouse Point #117 3/2 $540K (our listing), Mariner Pointe #421 2/2.5 $550K, Junonia #103 3/2 $1.265M.
8 new listings: 888 Rabbit Rd 3/2 $749.9K, 1052 Fish Crow Rd 3/2 $799K, 709 Pyrula Ave 3/3 $1.125M, 757 Windlass Way 3/2.5 $1.249M, 994 Whelk Dr 3/2 $1.395M, 742 Sand Dollar Dr 3/3 $1.675M, 2479 Harbour Ln 4/3 $1.795M, 4323 West Gulf Dr 6/6 $7.995M.
No price changes.
11 new sales: 4115 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 3/1 listed at $585K, 1985 Sanibel Bayou Rd 3/2 listed at $780K, 2620 West Gulf Dr 3/2 listed at $789K, 640 Periwinkle Way 3/2 listed at $825K, 1155 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $919K, 567 N. Yachtsman Dr 3/3 listed at $979K, 1391 Jamaica Dr 4/3 listed at $1.299M, 1366 Tahiti Dr 3/2.5 listed at $1.4M, 418 Bella Vista Way 4/4 listed at $1.75M, 784 Birdie View Pt 4/4 listed at $1.795M, 1238 Isabel Dr 4/4.5 listed at $3.495M (our listing).
5 closed sales: 721 Durion Ct 3/3 $620K, 1015 Fish Crow Rd 3/2 $640K (our listing), 3251 Twin Lakes Ln 3/2 $815K, 3020 Turtle Gait Ln 3/2 $839K, 4381 West Gulf Dr 5/5.5 $11M.
1 new listing: 1313 Par View Dr $324.9K.
3 price changes: 575 Sea Oats Dr now $385K, 6505 Pine Ave now $759K, 6519 Pine Ave now $799K.
1 new sale: 3941 West Gulf Dr listed at $3.695M.
1 closed sale: 3945 West Gulf Dr $2.85M.
2 new listings: Captiva Cove #2A 3/2 $1.295M, Beach Homes #25 3/2 $1.995M.
No price changes.
3 new sales: Gulf Beach Villas #2112 1/1 listed at $492.5K, Lands End Village #1651 2/2 listed at $1.265M, Lands End Village #1615 2/2 listed at $1.45M.
1 closed sale: Beach Villas #2028 3/3 $1.04M.
No new listings or price changes.
3 new sales: 16500 Captiva Dr 6/6/2 listed at $6.289M, 15361 Captiva Dr 5/4.5 listed at $2.795M, 16394 Captiva Dr 5/4 listed at $6.599M.
No 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.
Below is our ad from today’s “Island Sun”.
Enjoy your weekend! Susan Andrews aka SanibelSusan