Just Another January Friday on Sunny Sanibel Island

Following up on grumblings last week about heavy traffic, there was a huge reprieve on Monday after holiday visitors left and Lee County Schools reopened. As teammates reminded, there usually is a 2+week window after New Year’s until traffic picks up with more snowbird returns. Then it should be busy again through February and March, or until Easter.

Weather-wise, as islanders watched much of the country experience snow and freezing cold, a cool front passed through Florida Sunday night. That resulted in us enjoying lower humidity and breezy sweater weather both Monday and Tuesday. The forecaster now says the muggy meter is amping up again with warm weather expected until the next cool front which is scheduled to arrive next week when it again may dip into the low 70’s during the day. That’s the best winter weather!

I took a quick spin down to the lighthouse this afternoon on my way back to the office. Christmas décor is gone and bay/gulf waters are looking good. Here are a few pix from 1:30 p.m. when my car said the temperature was 78 degrees F.

Real Estate Scoop

At SanibelSusan Realty, teammate Dave had a busy week accompanying home inspections both Monday and Tuesday, followed by a contractor visit to one of the properties today. With many year-end closings and our island inventory list updated, we all have been working on the database for our big annual mailout which we hope to send out later this month.

Meanwhile, we are working on closing activities for our five sales and beating the bushes looking for new listings. As of this afternoon, according to the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service, there are just 12 condos, 20 homes, and 19 lots for sale on Sanibel – even fewer on Captiva, just four condos and eight homes for sale.

At the state level, Florida Realtors® 2022 Mid-Winter Business Meetings in Orlando are coming up. Many of the meetings again this year are being offered via Zoom as well as in person. I will be attending the Resort and Second Home Think Tank later today, and next week will be at the Forms Content Committee Meeting and the Legal and Professional Standards Update.

On Sanibel, our annual Association of Realtors® lnstallation and Awards Breakfast is next Thursday at The Community House.

The action posted since last Friday in the islands MLS follows a couple of news items below.

Buyers Who Waited for Lower Prices May Regret It

Here’s an article posted at FloridaRealtors® on-line on Dec 20, 2021 and sourced to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel:

“Some buyers postponed searches, assuming prices would drop as they did in the last recession. But now homes they once considered are financially out of reach.

“FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – As South Florida home prices spiked during the pandemic, some people decided to put their home shopping on pause in the hopes that prices might drop, a decision they are coming to regret.

“Now, a year-and-a-half into record price growth and dwindling inventory, non-buyers are stuck in a precarious situation: they want to buy but are facing higher prices than they did when they first started searching, and they’re finding themselves at risk of being priced out of the South Florida real estate market…. Homes prices jumped, no slowdown in sight.

“Homes prices skyrocketed in South Florida during the pandemic, as intense demand from out of state buyers dovetailed with historically low inventory to create an intense seller’s market where buyers were often faced with paying over asking price and losing out in bidding wars.

“In a market where it’s common for buyers to lose out and face multiple bidding wars, it can cause home shoppers to get discouraged and more hesitant to buy, explained Brian Pearl, principal agent with the Pearl Antonacci Group in Boca Raton. “I’ve had buyers regret waiting more recently, given that the market hasn’t slowed down like they thought it would by now,” he added.

“He’s not the only Realtor to have clients face this issue. Jeff Creegan with Re/MAX Services in Boca Raton said about 30-40% of his clients in the last year end up trying to wait out the housing market. Many were wary of buying in the spring or even last summer as they watched prices skyrocket, only to see them rise even more as the year comes to a close. The overall sentiment, he said, is that they made a mistake in trying to wait out the market.

“Now, as they begin to look again, buyers say they are greeted with homes that are $100,000 more expensive. As a result, Creegan said, “They are looking in different markets, like in Southwest Florida or more affordable markets.”

“In February of 2021, the median sale price of a home in Miami Dade County was $450,000, a 21% increase from the year before, according to numbers from the Broward, Palm Beach and St. Lucie Realtors. For Broward County, the median sale price of a home was $433,000, a 12% increase from the year before. For Palm Beach County, the median sale price of a home was $450,000, a 24% increase from the year prior.

“Flash forward to October of 2021, when median sale prices rose 19% from the year before in Palm Beach County to $500,000 in October. For Broward County, the median sale price of a home was $489,000 in October, a 17.8% annual increase. In Miami Dade County, the numbers shot up 12.6% to $490,000 for October….

“The housing crash of 2007 is likely still fresh in a lot of potential buyers’ mind, noted Eli Beracha, director of the Hollo School of Real Estate at Florida International University, and is potentially one of the reasons that they are trying to wait out the housing market. Beracha also noted, however, that the forces fueling this housing market are different. “We had an excess of supply last time [in 2007]; we don’t have that this time. If you don’t have excess supply, it’s hard for the market to correct in a significant way.” In other words, he does not see a dramatic bust in our future.

“Out-of-state home shopper Dr. Ketang Modi, his wife and two daughters are making the move from New Jersey to Broward County and are looking for a home that is around 4,500 square feet with a minimum of four bedrooms. When they searched previously, they looked at homes in a community in Davie that were priced around $1.2 million, and now, four months later, prices are hitting $1.6 million, prompting him and his family to consider renting to wait out the market. “Everything is overpriced,” he lamented. “I’m not sure when there will be a correction or when prices will stabilize.””

Expected Market Drivers in 2022

Several real estate forecasters have published their 2-cents worth on what 2022 will bring to the business. Here are some favorites that likely apply to real estate on Sanibel & Captiva.

International Buyers – For years, Florida has been a favored destination for international buyers, mostly those from Canada and Europe. That trend came to an abrupt stop with COVID travel restrictions in early 2020. Now that borders are reopening, a surge of international buying is expected with more action expected than in the past two years. Florida is the top state for wealthy individuals and families who want to acquire residences outside their home country.

Listings from Baby Boomers – Demand for homes is expected to continue to outpace supply. Nationally, boomers (those 55 to 75) own 42% of homes. With many facing health issues, including mobility, which can impact their ability to live independently. This generation controls the single-family home inventory with a huge portion of these homes coming on the market in the next few years.

Affordability – Gen Z and millennials are posed to enter Florida’s housing market – provided they can afford it. In the past two years, real estate prices have risen dramatically with no sign of a downturn in 2022. Many prospective buyers – all ages – already are finding they are priced out of the island market.

Inflation – Inflation returned to the U.S. economy in 2021. From construction materials to home appliances and automobiles, supply chain shortages are pushing prices up for consumers. A global energy shortage is also increasing prices of gasoline, oil, and natural gas. While some economists expect these pressures to subside in 2022, changes in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) and the Federal Reserve actions that affect interest and mortgage rates also may affect real estate sales.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity December 31 – January 7, 2021



1 new listing: Pointe Santo #C26 2/2 $1.279M.

No price changes.

3 new sales: Breakers West #C2 2/2 listed at $749K, Sand Pointe #222 2/2 listed at $1.125M, Tarpon Beach #110 2/2 listed at $1.35M.

5 closed sales: Sundial #H410 1/1 $422.5K, Seashells #43 2/2 $588K, BlindPass #A202 2/2 $610K, Breakers West #C4 2/2 $692K, Sanibel Surfside #213 2/2 $875K.


9 new listings: 1948 Roseate Ln 2/2 $769K, 458 Lake Murex Cir 3/2 $925K, 1133 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 $945K, 1398 Jamaica Dr 2/2 $995K, 1251 Sand Castle Rd 4/3 $1.05M, 2695 Wulfert Rd 4/4/2 $1.895M, 500 Kinzie Island Ct 3/3 $2.295M, 5415 Osprey Ct 3/3 $2.495M, 4322 West Gulf Dr 4/3.5 $3.45M.

No price changes.

4 new sales: 1948 Roseate Ln 2/2 listed at $769K, 1305 Par View Dr 3/4 listed at $1.749M, 2695 Wulfert Rd 4/4/2 listed at $1.895M, 1146 Golden Olive Ct 5/4 listed at $2,999,999.

5 closed sales: 534 Piedmont Rd 3/2.5 $725K, 3840 West Gulf Dr 3/2.5 $1.596M, 1220 Morningside Pl 6/4 $1.8M, 1356 Eagle Run Dr 5/5.5 $2.145M, 927 Kings Crown Dr 3/3.5 $2.295M.


Nothing to report.



No new listings or price changes.

1 new sale: Beach Villas #2236 2/2 listed at $1.3M.

2 closed sales: Beach Villas #2626 1/1 $684K, Bayside Villas #4306 3/3 $935K.


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”.

Until next Friday, Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

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