Susan here, reporting another week of nice sunny island weather with lower humidity and little rain. On my street, the first snowbirds have returned, a predictor of what usually occurs in October as weather starts to turn up north too.
Teammate Dave who wears many hats including handling our off-island listings and sales, had a nice Estero listing close on Monday. We also received a new Sanibel listing Thursday. It’s a unique one – the last vacant near-beach canal-front lot in Shell Harbor. With long water view down the widest east-end canal toward sunrises, our professional photographer just filmed it, including aerial pictures.(View picture below.)
Last night, I attended the City Council meeting where the candidate who will be offered the City Manager position was selected to replace long-time Manager Judie Zimomra who retired this week. It always is inspiring to personally hear the results of the hard work done by these caring elected volunteers. They are a fine example of how islanders live in harmony, with smart citizens making thoughtful unanimous decisions to benefit all. Islanders are very lucky in so many ways.
Sanibel Farmers Market Begins Again
Going into its 14th season, Sanibel Farmers Market reopens this Sunday, October 3 and runs every Sunday through May 29 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., offering goodies from fresh fruit and vegetables, honey and cut flowers, to meats, seafood, prepared meals, cupcakes, bagels, fresh guacamole, native plants, and more.
New Sanibel vendors this year include Mangia Meatballs, Pickles & Olive Garden, Sage & Indigo Juices, Key Lime Pies, Simply Savory Dips, Ackermann Syrups, Courageous Seeds with kava chai, herbal teas, honey elixirs and cedar burning bundles, and Karina’s Kitchen with German food, plus Divine Tea for the month of October.
Local Roots, founded in 2008 by islanders Jean Baer and Betsy Ventura, started on Sanibel and is the owner of the ten most well-known farmers markets in Southwest Florida. It began here at Tahitian Gardens when it was open for just five weeks and with just 15 vendors. Now on the grounds of City Hall, it has about 50 vendors with parking nearby, at the Library, and at BIG ARTS. More info at http://BuyLocalLee.com
Now that October has rolled around, restaurants that took short breaks in September have reopened and ready for “season”. Exceptions are Traders 2 (T2) and Traders. They respectively re-open October 5 and 6.
The Fig East End – mid-October watch for the grand opening of The Fig East End in the former location of the East End Deli, across the street from Lighthouse Café. Owned by The Paper Fig (in Tahitian Gardens) and 400 Rabbits (on Rabbit Rd) folks, The Fig East End will offer “beach eats, market, and take along.” East-enders look forward to their opening.
Permitted Schedule for Irrigation
With the rainy season wrapping up, Island Water in their recent fall newsletter “IWA Pipeline” posted a reminder of the irrigation days/times allowed on the islands. On the allowed days, irrigation is permitted from 12 a.m. – 9 a.m. and/or 5 p.m. – 12 a.m. No watering is allowed any day between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. The days permitted are:
- Sanibel: Addresses ending in even number: Tuesdays & Fridays.
- Sanibel: Addresses ending in odd number: Mondays & Thursdays.
- Captiva: Addresses ending in even number: Thursdays & Sundays.
- Captiva: Addresses ending in odd number: Wednesdays & Saturdays.
Please check your sprinkling system and help conserve water.
Vacation Homes Will Defy Any Market Slowdown
Posted Monday Sep 28 on FloridaRealtors® on-line: “While overall home sales show signs of cooling as prices rise and buyers step back, NAR Economist Yun doesn’t see that reflected in sales of vacation homes.
“CHICAGO – The vacation-home market has boomed over the past year and is not likely to slow any time soon, even as the rest of the housing market starts to cool, says Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors® (NAR), in an interview for The Escape Home, a newsletter for second-home owners.
“Even as companies bring employees back to the office, vacation homes will remain in demand, Yun said, though part of vacation homes’ rise in popularity has been attributed to the growth in remote work.
“Overall, home sales show some signs of cooling, with many first-time homebuyers getting priced out of the market, Yun says. The median existing-home price for all housing types was $359,900 in July, nearly an 18% increase from a year ago. Mortgage rates are also likely to increase, which could make buying even more expensive. NAR predicts that mortgage rates will rise to 3.5% by mid-2022, as the Federal Reserve likely begins to reduce its bond purchases before the end of 2021.
“But vacation homes will remain a hot commodity. Rental prices for vacation homes will likely continue to rise too, Yun says. “One near-certain aspect of the post-pandemic economy, when it comes, is the flexible work schedule,” Yun told The Escape Home. “It is very hard to envision five days a week in the office. Therefore, vacation-home sales will continue to move higher this year, next year and for the foreseeable future.””
Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® September Membership Meeting
NFIP Risk Rating 2.0 Affecting Flood Insurance – Yesterday, at the Association’s September membership meeting, affiliate business members David Arter with Private Client Insurance Services and Chris Heidrick with Heidrick & Company spoke about the NFIP (National Flood Insurance Program) changes that become effective today with the introduction of their new Risk Rating 2.0 system. Government reauthorization yesterday, means that NFIP is funded until December 3.
The new Risk Rating 2.0 methodology was created so FEMA could deliver flood insurance rates that are actuarially sound, more equitable, easier to understand, and better reflect a property flood risk. As the speakers described this new rating process, under it, each structure is rated individually, rather than having those side-by-side structures in a particular flood zone having the same rating/cost.
With Risk Rating 2.0, flood maps are not a major factor used for rating. Elevation certificates are no longer required because base flood elevation also is no longer a factor. Grandfathering goes away. Policies are easier to assume. The bad news is that premiums for Sanibel/Captiva properties will be significantly higher. Limits on premium increases, however, require that most rates not increase more than 18% per year.
New policies beginning today (October 1, 2021) will be subject to the new rating methodology. Also beginning today, existing policy holders eligible for renewal will be able to take advantage of immediate decreases in their premiums. All remaining policies renewing on or after April 1, 2022 will be subject to the new rating methodology.
As background, since the flood insurance program began, rates have largely been based on a property elevation within a flood map. Those flood maps have changed through the years. Under the new rating system consideration is taken into what it costs to rebuild a particular structure, more equitably premium costs now will be based on a home value and its unique flood risk.
In general terms, on Sanibel, pre-FIRM (Flood Insurance Rate Map) properties are those constructed before 1980. On Captiva, it is those built before 1985. The speakers recommended that with new listings, Realtors® get the Flood Declaration Page if that seller has flood insurance. With pre-FIRM properties, occupancy no longer matters, but premiums likely will be in the $4K-$5K range. They recommended continuing to ask for Elevation Certificates too, though the info those provide will only be helpful in rating piling homes.
Caravan Listing Announcements – Interestingly during the Caravan portion of the meeting, no new listings were open for viewing. I was happy to announce our two new listings and gladly thanked the agents who recently put two of our listings under contract.
All the action posted since last Friday in the island MLS is below.
Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity September 24 – October 1, 2021
1 new listing: Sandpiper Beach #404 2/2 $929K.
1 price change: Sundial #D304 1/1 now $579K.
1 new sale: Junonia #101 listed at $1.579M.
5 closed sales: Sanibel Inn #3532 2/2 $750K, Pointe Santo #B33 2/2 $841K, Oceans Reach #3A1 2/2 $870K, Tantara #102 2/2 $1.039M, Island Beach Club #330E 2/2 $1.225M.
5 new listings: 4221 Old Banyan Way 3/2 $1.279M, 941 Kings Crown Dr 4/3 $1.35M, 1437 Causey Ct 3/2.5 $1.395M, 1585 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 $1.5M, 2379 Wulfert Rd 4/4.5 2.495M.
3 price changes: 1294 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 now $975K, 930 Kings Crown Dr 3/2 now $1.795M, 1349 Bay Dr 4/4 now $6.395M.
4 new sales: 328 Palm Lake Dr 3/2 listed at $899K, 1434 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $899K, 1294 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $949K, 4601 Rue Belle Mer 3/2 listed at $3.65M.
6 closed sales: 5802 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 3/3.5 $981K, 3010 West Gulf Dr 3/2 $1.25M, 9464 Calla Ct 3/2.5 $1.45M, 5747 Pine Tree Dr 3/3 $1.475M, 509 Lagoon Dr 3/2 $1.65M, 518 N. Yachtsman Dr 3/3 $2.795M.
1 new listing: 860 Lindgren Blvd $1.2M (our listing).
1 price change: 0 Rue Bayou now $699K.
No new or closed sales.
1 new listing: Beach Villas #2626 1/1 $684K.
No price changes, new or closed sales.
No new listings or price changes.
2 new sales: 14865 Captiva Dr 4/4 listed at $1.699M, 11559 Laika Ln 4/3.5 listed at $6.9M.
1 closed sale: 10 Sunset Captiva Ln 2/2.5 $1.395M.
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.
Until next Friday, be well, safe, & enjoy your fall!
Susan Andrews aka SanibelSusan