Clear Water, Smiling Dolphins, & Florida Real Estate News

It’s another sunny Florida Friday. The summer showers this week have been mostly late day and inland. More similar “chance of rain” days are forecast through next week – a good reminder for beach and boating lovers to make their outdoor plans for mornings.

Teammate Dave (and his first mate teammate Lisa) had his boat out this week, reporting smooth sailing and clear waters up into Charlotte Harbor. The below picture was taken by one of his pals in Redfish Pass where the dolphins are actively soliciting hand-outs. Though this smiling guy is cute, please don’t feed the wildlife.

Photo by Britt Maxwell, 8-23-22, Redfish Pass

At SanibelSusan Realty

The action since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service is posted after a couple of news items below. Our ad from today’s “Island Sun” also is included.

Association of Realtors®

There was no Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors© caravan meeting this week at it was the 2022 Florida Realtors® Convention in Orlando. The schedule for that annual event has changed since the pandemic with many of the leadership meetings by Zoom last week. This week (Wednesday through tomorrow) is the actual convention with trade show, educational sessions, and meetings, followed to the Board of Directors meeting Sunday morning. I zoomed several sessions and events, but sure missed networking in person with committee pals.

This morning, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis spoke at the Realtor Party Town Hall with a political update and look ahead to the midterm election this fall. Of course, I also tuned In to that.

In addition to describing the state of the state, emphasizing the Hometown Heroes Program and other state benefits to first responders, teachers, nurses, etc., he mentioned the unprecedented resident migration into Florida. Most newcomers are from New York, California, and Illinois, while he also said the migration here is four times the number that recently moved to Texas. Two years in a row now, the wealth moving into Florida is setting records. In fact, money-wise, the Governor said that Florida just reported its largest ever budget surplus.

Of particular interest to those along the Gulf Coast where water quality is so important, are the Florida monies allocated and improvements made toward Everglades restoration ($3.3 billion, which is more than two times what was spent in the four years before Desantis).

It also was interesting to hear Desantis say that no Florida state university has raised tuition during his four years, with the University of Florida now also being rated the #5 college in the nation.

Florida CFO Jimmy Patronis spoke after the Governor saying that Florida is rated #1 for its fiscal condition, but he also mentioned insurance problems. He said that while 7% of insurance claims come from Florida, so does 70% of litigation. Insurance reform remains a top priority.

Lee County 2022 TRIM Notices

The TRIM Notice for my Sanibel home arrived in Saturday’s mail. It was a bit of a surprise to see the assessed value was up 53%. I am gladly homesteaded which also means I receive the “Save Our Homes” benefit which limits property value increases for tax purposes to 3% annually and offers portability. So, thankfully, even worst case, my 2022 property taxes will only go up a few dollars.

These TRIM (or Truth in Millage) notices inform property owners of what the millage rates are proposed to be from the various entities that tax them, what the assessed value of the property is, its taxable value, and what they will owe in ad valorem and other taxes for the year will be, should the tax rates be approved at upcoming public hearings.

Assessed values are based on sales the previous year, or before January 1 this year. Property owners have 25 days after their notice is received to file an appeal.

To file for a homestead exemption, owners must reside in the property January 1 that year, and file for the exemption before March 1. (They are renewed automatically each year.)

Without this exemption, value increases are limited to 10% annually. More info and filing on-line available at

Special Rental & Tour Discounts for Residents

Tarpon Bay Explorers is offering a September discount for locals. For the month, they are extending a 25% discount on all rentals and guided tours for residents of Lee, Charlotte, and Collier counties. This is a great opportunity for residents to enjoy “Ding Darling” during the “quiet” season. Kayak, canoe, paddleboard, and bike rentals are available first-come between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Fishing kayaks and pontoon rentals need a reservation, as do cruise, paddling, and tram tours. Call 239-472-8900 or visit for more info, reservations, pricing.

South Seas Plantation Scoop

The rumor mill has been having a heyday about upcoming changes at Captiva’s South Seas Plantation. Luckily our colleagues who work there are happy to share info. Here are a few improvements in the works there.

  • The old employee housing buildings are essentially demolished with cleanup and grading finishing up.
  • The golf course will close September 6 to begin its renovation. Completion not expected until mid-summer 2023.
  • Front-office arrival desk will be moving to the conference center just outside the resort near Doc Ford’s.
  • Current front-desk arrival area being converted to a water feature to include lazy river, adult pool, kiddie splash zones, and food-beverage option. Design expected to be done later this year with start date of 3rd quarter 2023.
  • Replacement of T-dock schedule delayed with target now early 2023.
  • Starbucks will be doubling in size with renovations to begin later this year, or early 2023.

Appliances to Upgrade Before Selling

From “Florida Realtor®” magazine September 2022:

“50% of homeowners surveyed said they would upgrade their current appliances before selling to increase their home’s value. Homeowners believe that replacing their appliances would increase the value of their homes by nearly $14K. The top 6 are:

  • Air conditioner
  • Dishwasher
  • Water heater
  • Oven
  • Washing machine
  • Refrigerator.”

Bailey Tract Trail Closed Next Week

More summer projects and pre-season maintenance announced this week, when it was posted that the Bailey Tract will be closed Monday through Friday (August 29 through September 2) for maintenance work and mowing.

Lower 2022 Home Sales Projection

Posted Wednesday, August 25, on FloridaRealtors© and sourced to Inman (8/22/22): “Fannie Mae expects a 16.2% drop in home sales year-to-year in 2022; one month earlier it predicted 15.6%, but “housing remains clearly on the downtrend.”

“WASHINGTON – According to the latest projections from Fannie Mae’s Economic and Strategic Research Group, home sales are expected to total 5.78 million this year, down 16.2% from a year ago. In July, one month earlier, Fannie Mae forecast a 15.6% decline.

““Housing remains clearly on the downtrend – and has been for several months now – due to the combined effects of outsized home price increases and the significant and rapid run-up in mortgage rates,” says Fannie Mae chief economist Doug Duncan. “Despite a pullback in mortgage rates over the past month, recent incoming data point to a faster near-term slowdown in sales than we had expected, especially for new homes.”

“New-home sales are now projected to fall 18% to 632,000 this year, and existing-home sales are expected to drop 16% to 5.143 million. Fannie Mae forecasters said existing-home sales in June “were somewhat stronger than we had anticipated,” but “recent leading indicators of July home sales, such as pending sales and mortgage applications, point to a continued slow down.”

“Meanwhile, pending sales, which lead closings by approximately 30 to 45 days on average, fell 8.6% from May to June, though by a much smaller 1% in July. However, Fannie Mae economists also believe mortgage rates have peaked and will trend downward into next year.”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity August 19-26, 2022



1 new listing: Beach Rd Villas #101 2/2 $685K.

No price changes.

4 new sales: Captains Walk #F3 2/2 listed at $620K, Spanish Cay #E4 2/2 listed at $649K, Sanibel Arms West #K8 2/2 listed at $889K, Sanibel Moorings #1112 2/2 listed at $1.325M.

2 closed sales: Sanibel Arms West #B8 2/2 $820K, Somerset #D101 3/2.5 $2.1M.


5 new listings: 921 Strangler Fig Ln 3/2.5 $999K, 1345 Junonia St 2/2 $1.2M, 1224 Kittiwake Cir 3/2 $1.55M, 9319 Kincaid Ct 3/2 $1.795M, 950 Victoria Way 4/4 $2.695M.

No price changes or new sales.

6 closed sales: 1289 Par View Dr 3/2 $900K, 1313 Seaspray Ln 3/3 $1.65M, 839 Birdie View Pt 3/3 $1.925M, 437 Lake Murex Cir 5/3 $1.95M, 4640 Rue Belle Mer 3/3 $2.55M, 885 Limpet Dr 4/3 $3.25M.


Nothing to report.



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, Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

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