About SanibelSusan

Real Estate Broker, Realtor/Owner at SanibelSusan Realty Associates Designations: Eco-Broker Certified, e-PRO, TRC (Transnational Referral Certified), SCIS (Sanibel & Captiva Islands Specialist), RSPS (Resort & 2nd-Home Property Specialist)

Happy Friday at The SanibelSusan Team


Another Friday report from SanibelSusan and team. Funny weather here this week – still summerlike, warm and humid, but two mostly-overcast days in a row now, rather than bright sunny days with occasional afternoon or evening showers.

meals of hope logoNext Friday at the Sanibel Community House is the Meals-of-Hope food-packaging event that the Sanibel and Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® is sponsoring and my committee is ringleading. I am happy to report that we have met both of our goals: 1) to raise more than $5,000 to pay for the food/supplies, and 2) to line up at least 50 volunteers to help in the packing. If any of you are here and want to help, just let us know in advance so that we have a task lined up for you. It will be from 3 to 5 p.m. on July 28. Our goal then is to pack 20,000 meals during the two hours.

Below are a couple of news items, followed by the action posted since last Friday in the islands’ Multiple Listing Service. Not much action this week, but The SanibelSusan Team has good representation! Woohoo!

Other Dates to Remember

Noahs-Ark-2August 4, Friday – Noah’s Ark Annual Bag Day from 9 to 11 a.m. Fit as much as you can in an bag purchased in the parking lot for $4. Any items that don’t fit in the bag are 80% off. After August 4, the Ark is closed for cleaning and repairs. It reopens October 3 on Tuesdays and Fridays from 9 a.m. to noon. In November, full schedule resumes (weekdays and the 1st Saturday of each month from 9 a.m. to noon. Donations are accepted beginning September 1. More info at www.saintmichaels-sanibel.org.

ding darling goose logoUntil August 28 – Seniors age 62 and older can purchase a lifetime pass “America the Beautiful – The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Senior” for $10 at the “Ding” Darling Nature Store when the price increases to $80. The pass allows free lifetime admission to most national wildlife refuges, including “Ding’ Darling, plus national parks and monuments, and more than 2,000 sites manages by federal agencies. This is the 1st senior pass price increase since 1994.

Homeowners Association Restrictions Have an Expiration Date

henderson-franklinA good article was posted on-line June 28, 2017 by Amanda Barritt, with Henderson Franklin Attorneys at Law.

“With the turnover of volunteer homeowner’s association (“HOA”) board members over time, it is not surprising that certain important long-term issues may be overlooked. There is one very important law, however, which board members may not be aware of that can eliminate an HOA’s ability to enforce its restrictions.

“I am often contacted by an HOA board at the last minute before their restrictions “expire” under this law and even sometimes after they expire. Below is a breakdown of the two different processes an HOA must follow to preserve the restrictions before they expire or, if the deadline has been missed, to revitalize the restrictions.

What is the law and why? The Marketable Records Title Act (“MRTA”) is a Florida law designed to eliminate “stale” recorded claims that affect the title to real property, such as old recorded leases for which the beneficiaries have long departed or dissolved. Without MRTA, these documents still have to be shown on title commitments and policies even though may have long since become irrelevant and unused. Unfortunately, there isn’t an exemption to save old (and still active) association covenants unless the affirmative steps are taken to preserve them.

What does it mean to HOA’s? The simplified explanation is that the recorded covenants governing a community must be preserved before the end of a 30-year period beginning on the date they were recorded. The Florida statute lays out the process that an association must go through to preserve the effectiveness of the recorded covenants if the 30 years has not yet expired. The preservation process will mean that the covenants are effective under MRTA for another 30 years. HOA’s must still look at the Declaration to determine if the covenants expire under their own terms at another date without an automatic renewal.

“Merely amending or restating the covenants does not restart the 30-year clock. The statutory process must be followed. For preservation, the Statement of Marketable Title Action provided in Section 712.06, Florida Statutes must be sent to all homeowners seven (7) days in advance of the board meeting to consider preserving the covenants. The Board must approve the preservation by at least 2/3 vote of the Board, and then a Notice of Marketable Title Action is recorded in the public records.

What if an HOA misses the 30-year deadline? “Revitalization” is required to reinstate the recorded covenants for another 30 years. The revitalization process that applies to HOA’s is found in the Homeowners’ Association Act (ch. 720, Florida Statutes).

Revitalization Process: In order to revitalize, a majority of the owners of the affected property must approve of the revitalization. The process also includes:

  • Forming an “Organizing Committee” to prepare the proposed revitalized documents.
  • Providing notice to all homeowners that includes the HOA documents (as well as the current articles of incorporation and bylaws), a graphic depiction of the property (often a copy of the plat, if applicable), and the form of written consent for them to sign to approve the revitalization (unless the HOA is holding a vote at a meeting).
  • Submitting the approved documents, the consents, and other documentation verifying that the proper process was followed to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (“FDEO”) for approval.
  • Upon approval by the FDEO, the revitalized Declaration, the current Articles, Bylaws, and affected property owners and property list are recorded.

Bottom Line: It is important to note that the expiration date under MRTA applies regardless of whether an HOA’s Declaration of Restrictions contains its own expiration date. Both the MRTA deadline and the Declaration’s own expiration provisions must be addressed by all HOA’s. The process may be daunting for some Boards, but a successful revitalization or preservation is possible with some diligence. If you have any questions or concerns regarding how MRTA applies to your HOA, please feel free to contact me at amanda.barritt@henlaw.com or by phone at 239-344-1108.”

Green Sea Turtles On Sanibel

GREEN-SEA-TURTLE-900The first green sea turtle was tagged on June 5, on the west end, just east of Bowman’s Beach. Since then four more have been tagged here making the Green Sea Turtle in Southwest Florida program a huge success for the first year.

Conservancy of SW FL logo.pngThe Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation (SCCF) partnered with the Conservancy of Southwest Florida this year to tag green sea turtles. As of last week, two green sea turtles were tagged with satellite trackers on Keewaydin Island and five on Sanibel.

SCCF logoSCCF has a nighttime tagging crew monitoring the beaches seven days week to tag loggerhead turtles with flipper and pit tags, and taking measurements. So far this year, the crew has encountered 202 loggerheads, while 20 green sea turtles have been reported on the island. Green sea turtles nest biannually.

In addition to looking different, these two turtles have different nesting characteristics. Green sea turtles use symmetric movements while crawling on the beach, while loggerheads crawl like babies. Green sea turtles also have a tail drag because their tails are a bit longer. The green sea turtle also spends a long time covering their nest to camouflage it from predators. Two of the five green sea turtles were found nesting at 5 a.m. Green sea turtles lay a clutch of about 136 eggs, while loggerheads lay an average of 110 eggs. Follow the green sea turtles that have been tagged on www.movebank.org.

To help protect sea turtles, please:

  • Hunker down when spotting a sea turtle on the beach, especially when seeing a green sea turtle. If it sees a human near them, it is enough to scare them back into the water.
  • Turn lights completely off near and on the beach, or place an approved red filter over the light. Sea turtles are not attracted to the long wave length of red lights.
  • Make sure beaches are clean and flat. Flatten sand castles, fill in holes, and remove beach furniture from the beach at night.
  • If you see a sea turtle nesting, do not approach it, but rather watch from a distance and hunker down.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity July 14-21, 2017

sancap GO MLS logoSanibel

CONDOS

2 new listings: Pointe Santo #B2 2/2 $825K, Tamarind #B202 2/2.5 $1.749M.

1 price change: Snug Harbor #312 3/2 now $669K.

1 new sale: Blind Pass #B105 2/2 listed at $464.9K.

1 closed sale: Spanish Cay #D1 2/2 $360K (our listing & sale).

HOMES

1 new listing: 1035 S. Yachtsman Dr 5/4.5 $1.149M.

6 price changes: 1717 Sand Pebble Way 3/2 now $649K; 1710 Sand Pebble Way 3/2 now $669K; 673 East Rocks Dr 3/2 now $733,888; 225 Daniel Dr 3/2.5 now $749K, 765 Conch Ct 5075 5/4 now $899K, 5075 Joewood Dr 4/4.5 now $3.45M.

1 new sale: 625 Lake Murex Cir 3/2.5 listed at $699K (our listing).

No closed sales.

LOTS

No new listings.

1 price change: 0 Island Inn Rd now $995,555.

1 new sale: 2501 Wulfert Rd listed at $183.9K.

No closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

Nothing to report.

HOMES

No new listings.

1 price change: 16447 Captiva Dr 6/5/2 now $3.699M.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 4 Sunset Captiva Ln 3/2.5 $2.345M.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

(This representation is based, in whole, or in part, on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® or its 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 general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.)

Here’s hoping your summer is happy too! Next Friday’s update will be posted earlier in the day! Happy weekend!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Causeway 07-15-17

 

Check Out These Sanibel Beach Pictures


It’s Susan reporting another week of nice Sanibel summer weather. The island has been a little quieter following the departure of holiday visitors, but there are still plenty of vacationers enjoying the islands.

Sunday night, I had dinner with friends at the new Doc Ford’s and was surprised to find a wait from as early as 6 p.m. right through closing time. It’s a popular place and worth the wait. These friends also shared some of their vacation photos – fine examples of the great weather, sparkling gulf, and how empty the beach was this week at Chateau Sur Mer. Thanks, Pia.

Chateau 1 07-17Chateau 2 07-17Chateau 3 07-17Chateau 4 07-17Chateau 5 07-17Chateau 6-07-17Chateau 7 07-17chateau 8 07-17

Yesterday was the July Membership Breakfast Meeting at the islands Association of Realtors®. Very little real estate activity was announced, but the speakers were excellent. Affiliate members, David Arter (Private Client Insurance Services), Chris Heidrick (Heidrick & Co. Insurance), and Mike Gadaleta (BB&T Oswald Trippe & Co.) updated members on insurance issues. Below is some info from David Arter’s handout on Wind Insurance.

Following some other news items is a summary of the action posted in the Sanibel/Captiva Multiple Listing Service since last Friday.

Wind Insurance & More

There are three types of providers for wind insurance here:

  1. Admitted Markets – these are the insurance providers licensed & approved by the State of Florida. Several carriers write wind insurance on Sanibel & Captiva.
  2. Citizens – this is the admitted carrier that is operated by the State of Florida.
  3. Surplus Lines (or Non-Admitted Carriers) – these must be access through a broker, no standardized forms are required (meaning they do not need to comply with state requirements), and there is no minimum earned premium.

What is Citizens? – Citizens Property Insurance can insure residential dwellings to a maximum value of $699,999 (per Florida Senate bill 1770). Policies could be subject to a “surcharge” (of up to 45%) if Citizens sustains a deficit as a result of a hurricane or other reason. They have strict underwriting and administrative guidelines, limited endorsement availability, and a depopulation program. Originally designed as the “Carrier of Last Resort’, Citizens was the largest property insurance carrier in Florida. Recently, it has gone from 1.1 million policies to under 450,000 personal residential policies.

Wind Mitigation Inspections – The Wind Mitigation Inspection form used today was revised in 2012. It contains such information as the age of the roof, the roof deck attachment, wall attachment, geometry or shape, secondary water resistance, and opening protection (shutters, hurricane glass, etc.). A wind mitigation inspection is recommended even on an older property, if was permitted before 2001, but the roof meets 2001 Florida Building Code (meaning a new roof was permitted after 3/2/2002) – or if a roof permitted before 2001 Code has hurricane wraps or clips (3 nails required), has Level B or C Roof Deck Attachment, and/or Level A Opening Protection.

Helpful Tips When Looking for Insurance Coverage

  • To get insurance credits or a better price, get a Wind Mitigation Inspection done, even on homes built before 2002.
  • For homes 30 or more years old also get a 4-Point Inspection. This inspection covers the roof, plumbing, electrical, and air conditioning systems. From this inspection, insurance agents can determine if the property is eligible for coverage by different providers. Many require that a roof have a remaining useful life of at least five years. Polybutylene plumbing also is a problem for virtually all carriers. Electrical Fuse panels and Federal Pacific Panels are generally unacceptable by most carriers. (Some also restrict Zinsco and Challenger panels.)
  • For flood insurance, a copy of the current policy helps as does an Elevation Certificate (prepared by surveyor).
  • When buying a property, providing the insurance agent with a copy of the MLS information helps too. They use that and county public records to provide estimates.
  • Establish the closing date and bind polices early. Insurance agents are often balancing between available markets, zip code openings/closings, and storms. During Hurricane Season, carriers can stop writing policies at a moment’s notice. A storm threat usually means companies will stop writing policies until the storm passes. A signed application and payment are needed to bind a policy.

Sanibel Planning Commission Reaffirms Position on Retail Stores

Good summary about this week’s Planning Commission meeting at the “Santiva-Chronicle” on-line.

“The Sanibel Planning Commission reaffirmed its stance on formula retail, or chain, stories in a unanimous 6-0 vote at City Hall Tuesday, July 11, and also was in agreement that the city needs to keep a close eye on the changing face of retail business. With no public hearings on its agenda, the Planning Commission spent just over 90 minutes discussing formula retail, after which it voted to stick with the recommendations it unanimously passed at its June 13 session. The commission will vote on approving a resolution at its Aug. 4 meeting that will forward four recommendations to the City Council for its consideration as either amendments to the Land Development Code or action items. They are:

“1. Adjust the current review trigger that requires additional review and approval by City Council from 50,000 square feet to 60,000 whenever a new formula retail stores is permitted in excess of this total amount of commercial floor area representing all formula retail stores within the City Commercial District;

“2. Amend the current definition of Formula Retail Stores so that it does not apply to retail businesses with fewer than three existing stores;

“3. Develop and post on the city’s website mysanibel.com an instructional guide with the necessary steps for starting any permitted business on Sanibel;

“4. Request that the city examine the future economic development of its Commercial District to ensure that it maintains an appropriate mix and variety of uses.

“The commission discussed all the points Tuesday with several commissioners stressing that the nature of the retail business is going through changes. ““The idea that a mom-and-pop business is going to succeed is changing,” Commissioner Chuck Ketteman said, referring to consolidation into large chains and the effect of the Internet. “Our focus might become what kind of formula retail business it will be rather than just on how much of it we have,” he said.

“Chairman Dr. Phillip Marks agreed, noting the effect of an Internet service like Amazon Prime that delivers quickly with free shipping. “We may have to change our focus when it comes to new businesses,” Marks said.

“The commission also looked at ways to help new businesses, whether formula retail or not, to follow the proper procedure for opening. That, the commission agreed, should include brief questions on the business tax receipt that would identify potential formula retail conflicts both for new businesses and existing ones who may have become formula retail after opening here.

“Presently City Council and Planning Commission must approve a formula retail application because the 50,000-square feet trigger plateau has been surpassed. Both boards approved applications for a pair of Periwinkle Place businesses, Fanta Sea and Everything But Water, in the past 15 months. It was those two applications that prompted City Council to ask for a potential overhaul of its formula retail procedures.

“Commissioner Karen Storjohann noted that Fanta Sea was open for two years before it came before the Planning Commission. She and Vice Chairman Holly Smith have been vocal about updating forms to both help businesses comply and to track violators like Fanta Sea was.“We need to assure that people are getting the right information on the front end,” Smith said. Ric Base, president of the Sanibel and Captiva Islands Chamber of Commerce, said the chamber is often a first contact point for prospective new businesses. “We would like to have something to hand to people. It shows that we are all on the same page,” Base said. He agreed with Ketteman and Marks that the landscape is changing for the retail industry. “We will see huge changes in the how retail operates in the next five years,” Base said.

“The Land Development Code Subcommittee, which consists of the entire Planning Commission, will meet in September. Ketteman said two points that might be addressed at that time are the guidelines for swimming pools and decks and the guidelines for vegetation buffers. The commission has approved several decks and pools in recent years upon reasonable requests from property owners. If the code were rewritten, approval could come from the Planning Department without commission involvement.

“The design of the vegetation buffer was the main sticking point at the recent hearing at which Mud Bugs Cajun Restaurant was approved on a narrow 4-3 vote. More flexibility in the Land Development Code regarding vegetation buffers deserves consideration, Ketteman said.”

Sanibel Surveys News

Bean, Whitaker, Lutz & Kareh, Inc., a local Surveying and Civil Engineering firm based in Fort Myers since 1987, has announced that they have acquired Sanibel Surveys. Andy Johnson, owner of Sanibel Surveys since 2005, will be appointed senior project manager and will continue providing professional surveying services on Sanibel Island as well as Captiva, Fort Myers Beach, Bonita Beach and throughout Lee County. Mr. Johnson is a survey graduate of New Mexico State University and has been involved in the survey profession for over 20 years. 

Air in Green Homes May Be A Health Risk

This article caught my eye on REALTOR®Mag on-line on June 27, 2017:

“Energy-efficient homes built too tightly have building experts warning about the potential health impact on owners. A home sealed efficiently can be great for reducing heating and cooling costs and managing its environmental impact. But the home itself still needs to breathe, some experts warn.

““Many homeowners are now having trouble with their more tightly built houses because the homes lack the ventilation necessary to get the stale inside air to the outside of the house and bring fresh air inside,” Remodeling writes.

“Bryan Henson, president of Allen Construction in Santa Barbara, Calif., says a house that’s sealed up completely would become a toxic environment to humans.The World Health Organization estimates that 4.3 million people worldwide die each year from indoor air pollution. Cases of asthma are on the rise, and asthma can be triggered by indoor contaminants such as mold, dust, and dander.

“More homeowners are questioning their indoor air quality and its impact on their health, sparking a growing interest in the “healthy home” concept. Healthy home systems tend to focus greatly on indoor air quality by providing filtered fresh air into the home.

“For healthier air, homeowners need to consider their home’s air flow. In some homes, the air may be pushed down through the attic into the home or come out from a crawlspace through the living area and out the attic. The problem with crawlspaces, building experts note, is that they often contain moisture, soil gases, and even rodents and their droppings. Indoor air space needs to be properly sealed off from the crawlspace and attic, and older homes may need more sealing off because of their older toxicity, such as lead paint, says Henson.

“To help gauge how healthy a home is and find areas worth improvement, homeowners can take a quiz made by Hayward Healthy HomeThe Pharos Project lists different products and includes their chemical ingredients and potential hazards to homeowners’ health. More resources for improving a home’s health and indoor quality include The Healthy Building Network, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Indoor Air Quality Association.”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity July 7-14, 2017

Sanibel

CONDOS

1 new listing: Moonshadows #2C 3/3 $1.775M.

1 price change: Blind Pass #D105 2/2 now $419K.

4 new sales: Loggerhead Cay #371 2/2 listed at $529K, Sanibel Surfside #223 2/2 listed at $778K, Shorewood #2D 3/2 listed at $999K, High Tide #A102 3/2.5 listed at $1.495M.

1 closed sale: Loggerhead Cay #592 2/2 $602K.

HOMES

3 new listings: 1846 Ardsley Way 2/2 $629K, 474 Lake Murex Cir 3/2 $689K, 2489 Harbour Ln 3/2 $699.9K.

4 price changes: 9113 Mockingbird Dr 3/3.5 now $639,999; 732 Windlass Way 4/3.5 now $1.195M; 1206 Bay Dr 4/4.5 now $3.699M; 1304 Seaspray Ln 3/2.5 now $4.395M.

6 new sales: 2150 Egret Cir 3/2 listed at $524.9K, 9455 Beverly Ln 2/2 listed at $546K, 376 Lake Murex Blvd 3/2 listed at $569K, 981 Main St 4/2.5 listed at $689K, 655 Anchor Dr 3/3 listed at $789K, 390 Old Trail Rd 4/4.5 listed at $2.195M.

5 closed sales: 4452 Gulf Pines Dr 3/2 $515K, 1426 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 $590K, 1234 Middle Gulf Dr 3/3 $1.075M, 408 Bella Vista Way 4/4 $1.35M, 3577 West Gulf Dr 4/4/2 $7.2M.

LOTS

No new listings.

2 price changes: 9441 Peaceful Dr now $249K (our listing), 1311 Par View Dr now $274K.

Image 3 c.jpg

Aerial of 9441 Peaceful Drive in Gumbo Limbo, backing to conservation land.

 

1 new sale: 6159 Starling Way listed at $639K.

1 closed sale: 2529 Wulfert Rd $230K.

Captiva

CONDOS

No new listings.

1 price change: Beach Villas #2617 1/1 now $495K.

1 new sale: Bayside Villas #4118 1/2 listed at $375K.

2 closed sales: Bayside Villas #4102 1/2 $320K, Sunset Beach Villas #2318 2/2 $590K.

HOMES & LOTS

Nothing to report.

(This representation is based, in whole, or in part, on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® or its 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 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, here’s one more fun picture from Pia. Pelicans love special perches.

Chateau pelicans 07-17

Happy weekend! Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Winding Up Independence Day Week 2017


It’s another quiet week on Sanibel and Captiva Islands. At least pretty quiet in the real estate business.

2017 lighthouse decorated

Plenty of families were here over the holiday enjoying the festivities. The Independence Day Parade again was well attended. This year, there were several special music entries including the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation who headlined the parade, celebrating their 50th anniversary. Their upbeat band was terrific as was the more traditional patriotic-song playing BIG ARTS Community Band.

2017 parade start

The color guard with bagpipes kick off the parade.

 

2017 Parade kids

The colorful entry from Sanibel’s Summit Christian Pre-School.

2017 Rotary

 

The Bissell family whose Dad/Granddad Realtor® Don Bissell, founded the parade 27 years ago, had a fun entry too. With plenty of Bissell boys dressed as Olympic athletes & pushing mock bobsleds, they “struck a pose” whenever a spectator wanted a photo.

2017 Bissell Family

The Bissell Family’s “Happy Birthday, America” entry.

 

After the parade, the Sanibel-Captiva Optimists Club Road Rally was tougher than I remember from earlier years (winners not announced yet). Hopefully plenty was raised for local scholarships. The Sanibel Grill at The Timbers Restaurant certainly did their part after the rally in providing food and drink to the 20-some rally teams. I’m sure that Team #12, “Beamer Stars” didn’t win any awards, but we sure had fun. The fireworks went off without a hitch too.

With nice summer weather, followed by late day or evening rains, the beaches, waterways, and bike paths have been busy the rest of the week too. There will be lots of check-outs tomorrow.

The activity posted since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service follows a few new items below.

Blind Pass Beach Parking Lot Closed for Maintenance

Sanibelcityseal logoA City of Sanibel notice was posted today advising that the City will begin maintenance of the parking lot at Blind Pass Beach Park on Monday, July 10. Weather permitting repairs, it will be closed until Friday, July 14. Residents and visitors are encouraged to use other public City beach parks during this time.

State’s Economy To Top $1 Trillion Next Year

heraldtribune_logoAs posted today in Orlando on FloridaRealtosr® on-line and sourced to “Sarasota Herald-Tribune” (07/07/17):

“University of Central Florida (UCF) Economist Sean Snaith predicts that Florida’s gross state product will break the $1 trillion mark next year – and then climb to $1.074 trillion in 2019.

“That gross state product level would make the Florida economy the 16th largest in the world, as ranked by the World Bank.

“Snaith expects the gross state product to expand at an average annual rate of 2.9% through 2019 and outpace the projected average for the United States’ gross domestic product for the same period. Driving the economy will be job growth and home construction, Snaith said in his 2nd quarter Florida & Metro Forecast.

“”The fundamental underpinnings of the housing market in Florida continue to strengthen. Job growth in Florida is forecasted to continue outperforming the U.S. labor market and more baby boomers continue to reach the end of their working lives,” says Snaith, the director for the Institute for Economic Competitiveness at the UCF College of Business Administration. “This bodes well for continued population growth via the in-migration of workers and retirees.”

“Snaith notes that Florida faces a growing single-family-housing shortage because of the shrinking inventory of existing homes and a pace of housing starts that trails growth, which is rapidly pushing prices up in the single-family market.

“”While this looks like another housing bubble, it’s really just an old-fashioned shortage in the single-family market,” Snaith says. “It is expected to correct itself as new housing starts ramp up over the next few years.””

It’s Not Easy to Regulate Rentals

Florida Realtors logoToday, I read an interesting article from the “Miami Herald” that was reposted today on FloridaRealtors®.

Of course, the islands are a far cry from Miami, but the subject hit close to home when it described how the unincorporated Miami-Dade County commissioners spent hours of deliberation over a proposed ordinance that would create a laundry list of new regulations for short-term rental owners. The ordinance which had been fine-tuned over four months of meetings, would require rental platforms like Airbnb to sign up for a certificate of use, register for a business tax receipt, screen for sexual offenders, and enforce a number of “vacation rental standards” on their guests. The ordinance also imposes requirements on the platform hosting the listing, whether it be Airbnb, HomeAway, Craigslist or another site.

The commissioner who proposed the ordinance said, “The industry is here; I just want to see it sufficiently regulated for our client Miami-Dade County.” That industry is here in Southwest Florida too. Time and time again in the real estate business, we run into island owners and similar platforms violating the rental restrictions of a community or complex or not collecting taxes on short-term rentals, and guests who unknowingly are renting where they shouldn’t be.

In the case of this proposed ordinance on the other coast, the commissioners were unable to agree on several of the provisions and were worried that Airbnb and others may sue the city, so they deferred their vote until Sept. 7. At question were some of the specific requirements imposed on hosts, such as home inspection rules, the potential effect vacation rentals could have on affordable housing and the legality of creating requirements for the platforms themselves.

State law prohibits local governments from enacting new rules after 2011 that impact the frequency and duration of short-term rentals.

With the onset of the internet, the rental business changed significantly and it has been a continual work in progress then. Stay tuned for more on this subject. Sanibel and Captiva Islands are and will continue to be mostly a second home and investment market. Rental business affects that tremendously.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity June 30-July 7, 2017

sancap GO MLS logoSanibel

CONDOS

No new listings.

1 price change: Sand Pointe #113 2/2 now $719K.

1 new sale: Spanish Cay #A6 2/2 listed at $389K.

1 closed sale: Seashells #6 2/2 $385K.

HOMES

No new listings.

3 price changes: 673 East Rocks Dr 3/2 now $739.9K, 932 Whelk Dr 3/3 now $1.299M, 984 Oyster Ct 3/3.5 now $1.65M.

3 new sales: 9409 Moonlight Dr 3/2.5 listed at $599K, 2489 Harbour Ln 3/2 listed at $699.9K, 6494 San-Cap Rd 3/2 listed at $1.795M.

2 closed sales: 1315 Par View Dr 3/2 $676K, 2507 Blind Pass Ct 3/3 $1.34M.

LOTS

No new listings or price changes.

2 new sales: 540 East Lake Rd listed at $169K, 1340 Eagle Run Dr listed at $270K.

1 closed sale: 434 Lake Murex Cir $250K.

Captiva

CONDOS

No new listings or closed sales.

1 price change: Sunset Captiva #201 2/2 now $895K.

1 new sale: Bayside Villas #4102 1/2 listed at $348.5K.

HOMES

No new listings, new sales, or closed sales.

1 price change: 16525 Captiva Dr 8/8 now $3.995M.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

(This representation is based, in whole, or in part, on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® or its 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 general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.)

Enjoy your weekend!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Sanibel’s Popcorn Clouds Are Back!


It is SanibelSusan reporting the end of another quiet week on sunny Sanibel. Today, traffic picked up a little on Periwinkle Way with some early weekend holiday arrivals. The weather has settled into a more typical summer routine – warm sunny days with late afternoon or evening showers. Here are a few recent photos. I love those big white popcorn clouds.

06-2017 Clouds06-2017 Clouds2

June 29th Association of Realtors® Caravan Meeting

Sanibel realtors logoAt yesterday’s Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® biweekly Caravan Meeting, only three properties were open (including one off-island).

SCCF logoUpdate on Water Quality – Rae Ann Wessel, SCCF’s Natural Resource Policy Director gave attendees a quick update on water quality. She is one of the local scientists involved in preparing weekly reports on conditions in the Caloosahatchee River and how these conditions affect the health, productivity and function of the system. Their report this week described that flows to the estuary between June 20 and 26 came entirely from the watershed, with no flow from Lake Okeechobee. (Interesting, I’ve heard several locals mention that they think the bayside waters have changed color, that happens after normal rainfall not just from Lake O water releases, particularly after a long dry spell as the one experience here this winter and spring.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) discontinued flows to the Caloosahatchee in early June due to the significant rainfall throughout the region then. On June 23, the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) issued an emergency order to allow temporary operational changes to minimize flooding south of Lake Okeechobee. The next day, South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) initiated back pumping to Lake O from that agricultural area.

The scientists’ recent memo to USACE, DEP, and SFWMD recommends not making any releases to the Caloosahatchee from Lake Okeechobee while the Lake is relatively low and the Caloosahatchee is receiving adequate freshwater flow from the watershed. They also encourage the use of as much watershed storage as possible within distributed storage projects and other lands owned or under contract by the State.

Rae Ann stressed that everyone needs to hold the state’s feet to the fire to ensure that the storage areas already voted on and committed are really built. This is a long tedious process and she illustrated how budgeted funds in the political arena can move, regardless of commitment.

She also thanked Realtors® for their continued efforts in the fight for clean water, particularly their participation during the spring legislative meetings in Tallahassee where voices were heard and action resulted.

Update on Community Projects

Today is the last day of our Association of Realtors® summer food drive for the F.I.S.H. Food Pantry. I’m so proud of my Communications and Public Relations Committee members for spearheading efforts this year to further the Association’s 2017 campaign “Together, We Make A Difference”.

Thanks to an anonymous donor who agreed to match any donations collected this week, our goals are halfway met for our upcoming food packing event under the direction of Meals of Hope. With another four weeks to go, we still to need to raise funds to pay for the food/supplies needed to pack 20,000 meals and find another 25+volunteers committed to help with the packing on July 28 from 3 to 5 p.m. at The Community House. You can be sure The SanibelSusan Team will have the Friday update done early that day. We will be packing!

Community Associations: New Estoppel Rules

HendersonFranklin logo read another good article on-line this week in “Legal Scoop on Southwest Florida Real Estate”. This one posted June 26, 2017 by Michael Lehnert of Henderson Franklin, Attorneys at Law. It says:

Beginning July 1, 2017, Florida community associations will have to comply with more burdensome estoppel requirements.

“The 2017 Florida legislature just recently passed a new law that will require associations to comply with a request for an estoppel certificate within 10 business days. If they fail to do so, they will forfeit their right to charge a fee for the preparation and delivery of the document.

“Furthermore, the fee that an association may charge is now strictly regulated. The fee is capped at $250 if there are no delinquent amounts owed to the association for the applicable unit or parcel, or $400 if a delinquent amount is owed. However, associations may charge an additional $100 if an expedited request is made, and the association delivers the estoppel within three (3) business days after the request.

“In addition to the changes to the timeframe and fees related estoppel certificate issuance, the new law will require associations to provide more information than previously required. Associations will have to provide, among other things, information about parking or garage spaces, any open violations noticed to the owner or mortgagee, and contact information for all insurance maintained by the association.

“While the law appears strict on its face, the intent behind the law is to provide more uniformity to the estoppel process in order to help buyers and sellers expedite their closings.

“If you or your association have any questions about this new law, please give me a call at 239- 344-1231 or email me at michael.lehnert@henlaw.com.”

Sanibel Independence Day Special Events – July 4th

Free Pancake Breakfast – 7 to 9 a.m. at Sanibel Community Church.

27th Island Independence Day Parade – at 9:30 a.m. “Preserving the Red, White, and Blue”, parade begins at Tarpon Bay Rd in front of Bailey’s Center & heads down Periwinkle to Casa Ybel Rd. (A few favorite photos from the 2015 parade shown above.)

Celebration at Jerry’s – after parade until 2:30 p.m. with waterslide, food & refreshments.

38th Annual Sanibel-Captiva Road Rally – at noon from Timbers Restaurant parking lot. Sponsored by Sanibel-Captiva Optimist Club with proceeds to benefit local scholarships.

Fireworks – at 9 p.m. rain or shine, launched from bay end of Bailey’s Rd, best viewing from causeway or bay side.

NOTE: Possession & discharge of fireworks on Sanibel are illegal & strictly enforced.

SanibelSusan Realty Associates

Below is the action posted since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service.

The team is off on Tuesday for the holiday, but I will have the office open early for those wanting a cool spot for parade watching. Will be zipping up before noon though, to participate in the Road Rally.

SanibelSusan July 4 2015

Waiting for the parade to begin July 4, 2015

waving flagBest wishes from all of us for a safe and happy July 4th holiday.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity June 23-30, 2017

Sanibel

CONDOS

3 new listings: Blind Pass #B105 2/2 $464.9K, Sundial West #B108 1/1 $469K, Sundial West #H406 2/2 $789K.

8 price changes: Seashells #11 2/2 now $350K, Ibis at The Sanctuary #B302 2/2 now $479K, Breakers West #A5 2/2 now $509K, Sanibel Arms West #G7 2/2 now $529K, Cottage Colony West #138 1/1 now $575K, Sunset South #1C 2/2 now $685K, Pointe Santo #D6 2/2 now $699K, Pine Cove #102 3/2 now $1.299M.

1 new sale: Mariner Pointe #1412 1/1 listed at $334K.

3 closed sales: Tennisplace #C21 2/1.5 $329K, Seashells #38 2/2 $345K, Pointe Santo #B23 2/2 $735K.

HOMES

1 new listing: 1043 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 $899K.

2 price changes: 1390 Middle Gulf Dr 3/3 half-duplex now $509K, 514 Kinzie Island Ct 4/5 now $1.995M.

4 new sales: 1212 Par View Dr 2/2 listed at $548K, 5056 Joewood Dr 3/2 listed at $759K, 1294 Par View Dr 3/2.5 listed at $929K, 1237 Isabel Dr 5/6.5 listed at $2.18M.

2 closed sales: 769 Pyrula Ave 3/3.5 $ 1.25M, 696 Kinzie Island Ct 4/5 $1.8M.

LOTS

1 new listing: 6027 Dinkins Lake Rd $249.8K.

1 price change: 1311 Par View Dr now $276K.

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

2 new listings: Beach Villas #2623 1/1 $530K, Beach Villas #2514 2/2 $609K.

No price changes, new or closed sales.

HOMES

No new listings or price changes.

2 new sales: 4 Sunset Captiva Ln 3/2.5 listed at $2.345M, 16979 Captiva Dr 7/6.5 listed at $3.998M.

1 closed sale: 16464 Captiva Dr 8/8.5 $5.25M.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

(This representation is based, in whole, or in part, on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® or its 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 general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.)

july 4th flip flops

Sea Turtles, Shells, Sunshine = Sanibel Summer


59.

Hooray for a week of nice weather in sunny Southwest Florida – an occasional few raindrops here and there, but not enough to disturb those enjoying the outdoors. Shelling continues to be excellent with local papers still posting multiple photos of happy junonia finders.junonia shell

About the only negative we’ve heard lately is about mosquitoes and noseeums. A good reason to lather up if you plan to be on the beaches and waterways at sunup or sundown.

No Caravan Meeting this week at the islands Association of Realtors® and not much real estate action was posted in the local Multiple Listing Service. That MLS activity follows a couple of news items below.

Florida Voters to Consider Permanent Cap on Annual Non-Homestead Property Tax Assessments

henderson-franklinGood article on-line today (June 23, 2017) in “Legal Scoop on Southwest Florida Real Estate” by Austin Turner of Henderson Franklin, Attorneys at Law:

“With Florida’s 2017 Regular Session officially adjourned on May 8, 2017, only 203 bills (of the total 1,606 general bills filed) survived both chambers of the Legislature.

“From the handful of legislation that ultimately passed this year, Joint Resolution CS/HJR 21 was enacted. This resolution proposes an amendment to the State’s Constitution that would limit a local government’s authority to assess non-homestead real property for purposes of ad valorem taxation.\

Background – Under Florida’s Constitution, ad valorem taxation is expressly reserved to local governments. The state is prohibited from levying ad valorem taxes on real and tangible personal property.

When preparing an annual assessment, the State Constitution also generally requires that all property be assessed at just value (i.e., market value) on January 1st of each year. Thereafter, such assessments are used to calculate property taxes to fund counties, municipalities, district school boards and certain special districts.

Florida’s Existing Limitations on Assessments for Non-Homestead Property –For real property that has not qualified for a homestead exemption under the applicable provisions of ch.196, Florida Statutes, Florida’s voters approved a 2008 constitutional amendment which now limits the authority of local governments to increase non-homestead property tax assessments in excess of 10% each year (not applicable to school board assessments, years following a qualified improvement, or any year property undergoes a change in ownership or control).

“Under the provisions previously approved by the 2008 amendment, Florida’s annual limitation on increases for non-homestead assessments is scheduled to expire on January 1, 2019.

CS/HJR 21 – Following the Legislature’s recent passage of Joint Resolution CS/HJR 21, a new constitutional amendment will now be proposed to Florida’s voters during the 2018 general election which, if approved by a supermajority (60%) of voters, will permanently extend our state’s current 10% annual cap on non-homestead ad valorem tax assessments.

So What’s the Legal Scoop? As this legislation will not be subject to a gubernatorial veto, Florida’s new constitutional amendment will become effective on January 1, 2019, if it is approved by the 2018 electorate.

Given the number of flourishing local businesses, vacation rentals, and secondary homes throughout Southwest Florida, which have recently benefitted from the 10% annual cap on non-homestead ad valorem assessments, a strong voter turnout in support of this measure is expected in 2018.

“If you have any general questions regarding ad valorem property taxes in Florida or the recent approval of CS/HJR 21, please feel free to contact Austin at 239-344-1178 or via email at austin.turner@henlaw.com.”

Sea Turtle Nesting Season Is On a Roll

Loggerhead turtleFrom an email last Friday, Jun 16, from SCCF (Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation):

“We now have a total of 8 green sea turtle nests, including one on the East End! We also have 363 loggerhead nests (262 on Sanibel and 101 on Captiva).

“We’ve been extremely busy in the best way possible. Last week our night team, who have been tagging loggerheads after nesting, have seen 31 individuals, including 8 recaptures. On Thursday of last week, they encountered 11 sea turtles in one night – a record for SCCF!

sea-turtle-eggs“And early today we put a satellite transmitter on our third green sea turtle! She nested very late in the night and our team was able to release her this morning. SCCF is grateful that Dave Addison from the Conservancy of Southwest Florida invited us to participate in this project. Doing so will allow us to learn more about the greens nesting in Southwest Florida.

“Please remember to share the beach with these amazing creatures by turning off all lights on the beach (including cell phone lights), bringing in beach furniture, and filling in any holes. “Here are the nest counts as of today (6/17/2017:

Loggerhead Nests – Sanibel East 67, Sanibel West 195, Captiva 101, Total 363

Green Nests – Sanibel East 1, Sanibel West 7, Captiva 0, Total 8

Loggerhead False Crawls – Sanibel East 144, Sanibel West 285, Captiva 88, Total 517

Green False Crawls – Sanibel East 0, Sanibel West 5, Captiva 0, Total 5.”

Owners, Appraisers Disagree on Home Values

Quicken Loans logoiAs posted in “Daily Real Estate News” last Thurs, June 15, 2017:

“Homeowners feel like their homes are worth more than what appraisers say they are, and the gap between the two estimated values has grown for the 6th consecutive month, according to Quicken Loans’ National Home Price Perception Index.

“Appraised values were, on average, 1.93% lower than what homeowners expected, according to the index. Appraisals are drifting farther from owner estimates, even though their assessments continue to rise higher each month, the index shows.”

On island, with business so seasonal and appraisers needing to use recent comparables, it can be challenging getting good appraisals in late summer/fall. It’s always important for owners to recognize that location often plays the major role in an appraisal. The “where it is”, can influence the value, more than the “what it is”. In most cases, values are based on what a consumer has paid, rather than replacement cost.

Sanibel Boat Ramp Rehab

Sanibelcityseal logoCity construction of the Sanibel boat ramp rehabilitation project at 888 Sextant Dr (next to the causeway bridge) begins Wed, July 5. The boat ramp will be closed from then until Fri, Sep 8, provided the weather cooperates. The picnic areas and rest rooms will stay open. Residents/visitors are encouraged to use the Punta Rassa boat ramp (next to the toll booth) during this time. Lee County Parks and Recreation has an agreement with the City of Sanibel to honor Sanibel’s “C” parking permits during this time.

Upcoming Island Holiday Fun

Indoor Mini-Golf – July 1, 2, 3 at The Community House. 9 holes for $3 with tee times from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Holiday Hog Roast – July 1 at The Community House from 5 to 8 p.m. Proceeds to benefit the newly renovated facility. $10 for adults. $5 for children under 12 for hot dog meal.

27th Island Independence Day Parade – July 4 at 9:30 a.m. Begins at Bailey’s Center & heads down Periwinkle to Casa Ybel Rd. Commemorative tee shirts and tank tops available now at Bank of the Islands. This year’s theme “Preserving the Red, White, & Blue”. A few photos below of the Bailey’s Store entries from last year’s parade.

38th Annual Sanibel-Captiva Road Rally – July 4 at noon from Timbers Restaurant parking lot – register early at http://www.SanCapOptimist.org.

Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity June 16 – 23, 2017

sancap GO MLS logoSanibel

CONDOS

5 new listings: Seashells #40 2/2 $369.9K; Sanctuary Golf Villages #6-2 2/2.5 $649K; Snug Harbor #211 2/2 $799,999; Pointe Santo #E23 2/2 $1.05M; Gulfside Place #124 2/2 $1.25M.

2 price changes: Seashells #11 2/2 now $359K, Nutmeg Village #211 2/2 now $675K.

4 new sales: Tennisplace #A31 2/1.5 listed at $299K, Tennisplace #C21 2/1.5 listed at $339,555, Blind Pass #F210 2/2 listed at $459K, Sanibel Arms West #I3 2/2 listed at $519K.

2 closed sales: Sanibel Arms West #H4 2/2 $515K, Sundial East #T202 2/2 $799K.

HOMES

No new listings.

2 price changes: 673 East Rocks Dr 3/2 now $749,888; 4995 Joewood Dr 4/3 now $2.695M.

2 new sales: 976 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 half-duplex listed at $489K, 1918 Ibis Ln 3/3 listed at $629K..

9 closed sales: 4239 Gulf Pines Dr 3/2 $500K, 2154 Egret Cir 3/2 $525K, 5105 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 4/3 $600K, 1862 Farm Trl 3/2 $635K, 1114 Sabal St 2/2 $670K, 5739 Pine Tree Dr 3/2 $750K, 687 Anchor Dr 4/3 $1.235M, 513 Lighthouse Way 3/3 $1.45M, 4190 Dingman Dr 4/3.5 $1.825M.

LOTS

1 new listing: 9226 Kincaid Ct $190K.

1 price change: 1311 Par View Dr now $277K.

1 new sale: 2441 & 2453 Los Colony Rd listed at $179K.

No closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

No new listings or price changes.

2 new sales: Tennis Villas #3127 1/1 listed at $260K, Beach Homes #9 4/3.5 listed at $2.95M.

No closed sales.

HOMES

No new listings.

1 price change: 43 Oster Ct 2/2.5 now $819K.

No new or closed sales.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

(This representation is based, in whole, or in part, on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® or its 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 general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.)

17.Until next Friday, hope you enjoy your summer!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

 

Yippee! It’s sunny again on Sanibel Island!


beach 2017-05-23There are a lot of smiling faces on Sanibel today. After more rainy days earlier in the week, it could be that island weather is back to typical “rainy season” – just occasional showers.

Bayou 06-05-17

We saw lots of sunshine both yesterday and today, so even the weekly visitors leaving tomorrow are happy.

At The Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors®

Sanibel realtors logoYesterday was the June Membership Breakfast Meeting at the islands’ Association of Realtors®. Attendance was light, but the speaker was terrific – my friend, Fort Myers Beach Realtor® Cynthia Shafer.

bed clip artShe told the group about the Bedz for Kidz Program, a non-profit that she founded in 2001 on behalf of the local court’s Guardian ad Litem Program. As a GAL volunteer advocate, Cynthia discovered that sometimes children being relocated to a new living situation do not have their own bed. Caring people sometimes willing to take in a vulnerable child may lack the resources to provide them with their own bed. So since 2001, Cynthia and her husband have provided nearly 3,000 beds to those needy children in our five-county area. They have spent essentially every Saturday during those years, personally handling the delivery and assembly. As Cynthia says, “my husband has power tools”. Currently, particularly in need of colorful patterned twin sheets (like Batman, princesses, minions, etc.) and solid color crib sheets, those are the items that the Association will be collecting during the month of July to donate to Bedz for Kidz.

There were not a lot of new real estate announcements – new listings or new sales, but we are thankful to have one of each. The following Caravan tour of new properties only had one property open. The next Caravan meeting is June 29.

The action as posted since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service follows a few news items below.

Island Estimated Property Valuations Increase

LeePALogoHeading from a front-page article in June 7, “Islander” which says:

“The City of Sanibel property values have once again risen, an estimated 5.87%, over last year. The numbers will not be finalized until July 1 when the preliminary values, which are sent to the state, are set.

“The total taxable value in Sanibel is estimated at $5.031 billion up from the $4.752 billion final figure in 2016. Overall, Lee County’s estimated overall taxable value went up to 6.56%….

“”This is the start of the season where we are required to notify all the taxing authorities what they can look forward to in property values,” said Kenneth Wilkinson, Lee County Property Appraiser. “It tells them what they can set for the millage.” Wilkinson’s office has analyzed the market activity for all of 2016 and the numbers are based on what they were as of January 1, 2017.

“Once the preliminary numbers are set, Wilkinson will also give taxing authorities a rollback millage rate, what cities can lower the millage to so it can get the same money. ”It tells taxpayers who is raising taxes and by how much,” Wilkinson said.

“Fort Myers estimated valuation increased 8.09%, Cape Coral increased by 7.87%, Fort Myers Beach was up 4.84%, Bonita Springs increased 5.93%, and Estero went up to 4.64%.

“Obviously we have not risen at the same level as our neighboring communities, but we didn’t fall as much as our neighboring communities. It’s nice to get a little boost,” City Council member Mick Denham said. He said they are not quite sure what the data means to them quite yet due to the budget process getting underway. “This is not going to make a large difference to the way we think. We don’t have the growth in redevelopment here, or new properties like the rest of Lee County enjoys. We expect our revenue to be relatively flat over the next few years. We don’t have the space. We are built out,” Denham said.

“Wilkinson said all the numbers will likely change between now and July 1, which in recent years have trended upward. Those figures will be sent to Tallahassee for state approval. Winkinson said he has never had an assessment declined by the state.

“TRIM notices are mailed to property owners in August. Property owners will then have 25 days to resolve any disagreement in value with the property appraiser.”

The county tax appraiser’s web site, www.leepa.org is user-friendly and has more info.

Island Inn Breaks Ground on New Matthews Lodge

Island Inn Sanibel OfficeArticle from today’s Santiva Chronicle on-line regarding Island Inn:

Built in 1895, …the historic Island Inn has launched the next phase of its refurbishment program with the replacement of the Matthews Lodge.

The multi-million-dollar investment will transform the 55-year-old, 12-unit concrete block building into a dozen Gulf-view luxury suites.…The revitalized Matthews Lodge suites, set to open in January 2018, will be designed with a large private screened balcony, living and dining room, full kitchen, custom tile floors, updated bath, personal wet bar, spacious bedroom, queen pull-out sofa and necessary electronics – all in 600 square-feet….”

sancap GO MLS logoSanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity June 9-16, 2017

Sanibel

CONDOS

2 new listings: Sanibel Arms West #I3 2/2 $519K, Gulf Beach #102 2/2 $799K (our listing).

IMG_8430

Gulf Beach condos beach path

 

2 price changes: Loggerhead Cay #342 2/2 now $594K, Nutmeg Village #313 2/2 now $999K.

2 new sales: Tennisplace #C21 2/1.5 listed at $339,555, By-The-Sea #C302 2/2 listed at $1.495M.

5 closed sales: Sandalfoot #4C3 2/2 $635K, Sunset South #2A 2/2 $672.5K, Kings Crown #208 2/2 $670K, Pointe Santo #B25 2/2 $715K, Kings Crown #106 2/2 $820K.

HOMES

1 new listing: 981 Main St 4/2.5 $689K.

7 price changes: 3021 Singing Wind Dr 3/2 now $495K; 1943 Sanibel Bayou Rd 3/3 now $699.5K; 563 Hideaway Ct 3/2 now $749K; 673 East Rocks Dr 3/2 now $749,888; 655 Anchor Dr 3/3 now $789K; 5657 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 3/2 now $975K; 1672 Hibiscus Dr 3/2 now $1.299M.

4 new sales: 215 Palm Lake Dr 3/2 listed at $699.9K (our buyer), 765 Conch Ct 5/4 listed at $939K, 518 N Yachtsman Dr 3/3 listed at $1.345M, 3402 West Gulf Dr 3/2 listed at $1.65M.

5 closed sales: 1585 Serenity Ln 3/3 $505K, 755 Pen Shell Dr 3/2 $785K, 941 Pecten Ct 3/2 $882K, 4428 Waters Edge Ln 3/2.5 $1.06M, 615 Lighthouse Way 3/3.5 $2,176,250.

LOTS

No new listings.

1 price change: 1311 Par View Dr now $278K.

3 new sales: 2529 Wulfert Rd listed at $300K, 9023 Mockingbird Dr listed at $389K, 2479 Harbour Ln listed at $535K.

No closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

No new listings.

1 price change: Beach Homes #8 4/3 now $2.625M.

1 new sale: Beach Villas #2525 2/2 listed at $639K.

3 closed sales: Tennis Villas #3125 1/1 $233K, Beach Homes #29 4/4 $1.9M, Beach Homes #9 4/3.5 $2.95M.

HOMES & LOTS

Nothing to report

(This representation is based, in whole, or in part, on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® or its 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 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, wishing you sunshine too & a Happy Fathers’ Day weekend!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

lighthouse 06-05-17.jpg

Rain, Rain Went Away, But Probably Not For Long


It’s Susan with another Friday report from now-sunny Sanibel. This time of the year, it’s hard to know when a shower may surprise us. As they say in Florida during the summer, “if you don’t like the weather, just wait a minute.” Here’s more info.

The Rainy Season Is Here

sun & rainNo doubt about it this week, the rainy season has begun and we have the mosquitoes to prove it. With serious showers over much of the state this week, the rain has put the Caloosahatchee and the estuary in a good place and given water managers a bit of relief. Local papers are reporting that Sanibel’s Director of Natural Resources, James Evans said, “The near-term perspective is very good.”

During the last 18 months, the Caloosahatchee estuary, San Carlos Bay, and the islands’ gulf beaches have seen both ends of the spectrum. From the heavy rains in January 2016, estuaries on both coasts were negatively affected when the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers released high flows of water from Lake Okeechobee.

Then it stopped raining, Lake O’s water level dropped, and water releases from the lake were less than enough to keep proper salinity in the local estuary. The low flows also have had the effect of excellent water clarity in the bay and beaches evidenced all over social media the last couple of weeks, with photos posted of glistening clear water – better some say than they ever remember seeing it.

Early June West wind beach

As Director Evans recently reported to City Council, “Water clarity is good at this time as a result of the reduced flows,” he said. “With the rain, we will see flows increase and we probably will get more water than we want. Low flows are not great for salinity levels, but they are great for water clarity.”

“When the lake falls to a low level, it becomes a water supply issue,” Evans told City Council. Water releases down the Caloosahatchee River, on this coast, and St. Lucie River, on the Atlantic side, are at the bottom of the release food chain. The water district controls lake releases for agricultural, commercial and residential interests. After those are met, it is decided how much water the Corps of Engineers will allow down the two rivers.

With the lake still low and rainy season just beginning, both the water district and the Corps of Engineers may soon have enough flexibility to take care of all interests, including the estuaries. But this opportunity is rare, which is why it is important to continue to push to establish water storage areas on all sides of Lake Okeechobee. Storage areas would allow water to be held in rainy times and released in dry times.

mosquito-clip-art-mosquito-clipart-6In the meantime, locals are looking forward to tonight when evening flyovers by Lee County Mosquito Control are scheduled.

As posted yesterday on the City’s web site: “If you are experiencing a high number of mosquitoes at your residence, please make a service request by clicking on this link http://www.angwatechnology.com/lee_devel/PublicServiceRequest/ or contact the LCMCD directly at (239) 694-2174.  If the LCMCD receives complaints from a specific area or neighborhood, the District dispatches personnel to conduct a mosquito count and if warranted, will fog or spray the area.

“For additional information regarding mosquito control on Sanibel, please visit the Lee County Mosquito Control District’s website at http://www.lcmcd.com

At SanibelSusan Realty Associates

SanibelSusan Realty from Periwinkle WayAt the office, in addition to all of us playing post-season catch-up, Dave and I both have been working toward some new sales and checking off the boxes on some contracts that are in the pipeline. The activity posted in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service since last Friday follows a few other news items below.

At the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors

SanCapAssnLogoThough we had no local Association of Realtors® Caravan meeting yesterday, this week my Communications and Public Relations Committee got the arrangements worked out and Board approval for an Association-sponsored meal-packaging event – as part of our 2017 “Working Together To Make A Difference Campaign.”.

Over the next few weeks, our goals are to raise the $5,000 and get the manpower needed to package 20,000 nourishing healthy meals for donation to those in need.

meals of hope logoTo be held at Sanibel’s Community House on July 28 from 3 to 5 p.m., island Realtors®, business partners, and their families will man the assembly lines where the direction, supplies, and equipment will be provided by Meals of Hope, who then will distribute the meals to local food pantries.

Teammate Elise and I have participated in these meal packaging events before. Not only are they fast-paced and fun, they are a great way to give back. Food needs are especially high in the summer when schools are out, so please let me know if you would like to contribute or participate – or check out other events at www.Meals-of-Hope.org. (All donations are tax deductible.)

How to Keep Hackers Out

emailAn article posted on “Daily Real Estate News” on line on Wed, offered some advice good for not just Realtors®, but the public too.

“The FBI reports that email phishing accounts for 95% of cybersecurity threats. That’s why client communications are a key component of “cyber hygiene,” legal and law enforcement experts said during the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation’s Cybersecurity Conference in Chicago, which focused on threats to the real estate industry.”

The typical advice to employ complicated passwords and change them often isn’t enough to thwart hackers, according to the FBI special agent, who leads a team of cybercrime watchdogs at the agency’s Chicago field office. He also said that email hacking has become so pervasive that cybercrime now ranks as the FBI’s third-highest priority after terrorism and counterintelligence.

A common practice involves cybercriminals hacking into practitioners’ email accounts and sending fraudulent wire-transfer instructions to their clients. That’s why having a strong email password is so important. Longer passwords are suggested—at least 26 characters—and more secure than making them overly complicated with capital letters and symbols.

Frequently changing passwords also isn’t the best prevention against cybersecurity threats. If you use a pattern that’s easy to guess to update your passwords more frequently, it may give hackers an in to breach your email.

Recommended is using a password management system to store passwords; then you can ensure each one meets security standards without worrying about forgetting them.

Shells – Shells – & More Shells

sundial-logoI had lunch Wednesday at Sundial Resort where the huge waves were crashing on the beach – a sight not often seen in the gulf. It certainly wasn’t good beach weather for sunbathers here on vacation, but a prelude to the continued reports of superb shelling this week. Some long-time island shell-aholics dropped in at the office yesterday and described Sanibel shelling over the last couple of days as “superb”.

It’s not just mosquitoes and “green” grass that have resulted from the recent rain storms, the number of Junonia-finders has increased too.

Sanibel-shells-from-storm-windsThere are five different photos this week in the “Island Sun” alone. Some of us have been looking decades for one of those shells. From Lighthouse Beach to Blind Pass to Clam Bayou, reports are there are more perfect empty shells of many varieties rolling in every day.

Good shelling often is the best part about the rainy season.

Upcoming Events – Planning Ahead

Sat, June 17 – Free Admission Day at Sanibel Historical Village & Museum from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. with full guided tour at 10:30 a.m.

4th-of-july-clip-artTues, July 4 – 27th Annual Sanibel Independence Day Parade at 9:30 a.m. Now is the time for entries to sign up. 2017 Parade T-Shirts are available at Bank of the Islands.

Tues July 4 – 38th Annual Road Rally at noon starting/ending at Timbers Restaurant parking lot. More info at http://www.SanCapOptimist.org

Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity June 2-9, 2017

Sanibel

CONDOS

1 new listing: Sundial West #F306 1/1 $465K.

2 price changes: Loggerhead Cay #332 2/2 now $479.5K, Coquina Beach #1D 2/2 now $559.9K.

1 new sale: Loggerhead Cay #592 2/2 listed at $629K.

3 closed sales: Sundial East #L401 2/2 $714K, Sanibel Surfside #225 2/2 $750K, Sundial West #K403 2/2 $875K.

HOMES

2 new listings: 9113 Mockingbird Dr 3/3.5 $649,999; 765 Conch Ct 5/4 $939K.

9 price changes: 9446 Yucca Ct 3/2 now $559K, 376 Lake Murex Blvd 3/2 now $569K, 752/754 Cardium St 4/2 duplex now $599K, 1807 Buckthorn Ln 3/2.5 now $695K, 485 Lake Murex Cir 3/2 now $1.075M, 1426 Causey Ct 3/2.5 now $1.295M, 750 Periwinkle Way 5/4 now $1.75M, 3728 West Gulf Dr 5/5 now $2.395M, 1206 Bay Dr 4/4.5 now $3.727M.

3 new sales: 769 Pyrula 3/2 listed at $599K, 1426 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $599K, 1032 Lindgren Blvd 3/2.5 listed at $895K.

8 closed sales: 1596 Bunting Ln 2/2 $490K, 1954 Roseate Ln 3/2 $534K, 5308 Umbrella Pool Rd 3/2 $542.5K, 3152 Twin Lakes Ln 3/3 $635K, 1252 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 $659K, 276 Ferry Landing Dr 4/3 $880K, 9019 Mockingbird Dr 4/4 $1.125M, 1757 Venus Dr 4/2.5 $1.74M.

LOTS

No new listings.

2 price changes: 540 East Lake Rd now $169K, 1820 Ardsley Way now $185K.

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

No new listings or price changes.

1 new sale: Bayside Villas #5136 1/2 listed at $315K.

2 closed sales: Beach Villas #2422 1/1 $512K, Gulf Beach Villas #2004 2/2 $590K.

HOMES

No new listings & price changes.

2 new sales: 14980 Binder Dr 4/3 listed at $1.198M, 16464 Captiva Dr 8/8.5 listed at $6.245M.

No closed sales.

LOTS

No new listings, price changes, or new sales.

1 closed sale: 16950 Captiva Dr $2.7M.

(This representation is based, in whole, or in part, on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® or its 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 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

It’s Another Happy Friday at SanibelSusan Realty


SanibelSusan here, with the first report in a long time of a cloudy Friday. Following a picture-perfect holiday weekend when the causeway and beaches were busy with families and vacationers, it has been a nice, though quiet week.

At SanibelSusan Realty Associates

Not as busy as we’d like it though at SanibelSusan Realty. Good weather often keeps phones from ringing, but our listings did get a few showings. teammate Dave accompanied a couple of home inspections, and I showed homes most of Wednesday, while yesterday following our Association of Realtors® meeting, Dave and Elise covered our Caravan Open House, I chaired a meeting at the Association office, we had a good closing, and then Dave was out showing condos too, including our new listing. This afternoon, Dave’s back to holding another Open House, while Elise’s weekly report of the action posted in the Sanibel and Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service since last Friday follows a few news items below. You’ll probably notice, there was no real estate action on Captiva. That’s unusual.

We had a surprise visit this morning from a family here on vacation. They bought their home through us five years ago and it is always such a treat when we get an update from them. Dad Scott is a terrific photographer and follows my blog. It was great to get his reminder that I may always share the pictures he posts on-line. Their bay-front home has probably one of the most active osprey nests on the island and he said that the last of the three fledglings in the nest this year was hesitant to make its first flight. As a result, he got some terrific close-up shots before it finally used its wings. Thanks for sharing, Scott!

At the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors

SanCapAssnLogoThough attendance was light at our Association of Realtors® meeting yesterday, our new CEO was given a rousing applause. Bill Robinson who joined our Association in 2012 and been promoted to MLS Director and Chief Operating Officer, was announced as our new Chief Executive Officer, replacing Peggy Hummel who will retire at the end of August.

A handful of new sales were announced. I got a thank you for bringing the buyer for Anchor Pointe #C and I gave a thank you to the Realtor® bringing the buyer to Lighthouse Point #129. Just seven properties were on the Caravan that followed, including our new listing at The Sanctuary, Ibis #B102. (Photos of Ibis #B102 below.)

CEO’s Bill and Peggy both later participated in our Communications & Public Relations Committee meeting. Big props to Bill for getting my press release in the “Santiva-Chronicle” within hours of submission. Check out our June 1 progress report on this year’s “Association of Realtors® Working Together to Make A Difference” campaign at http://santivachronicle.com/Content/Business-News/Business/Article/Realtors-Members-Made-a-Difference-in-May/13/32/6604

Here Comes The Rainy Season

Sanibelcityseal logoThe rainy season finally is here, with occasional showers expected for a least the next seven days. Though we need the water, it’s always a bit of downer when clear bay and gulf waters get stirred up by storms. We also are always hoping that we don’t get too much rain or water quality can be affected.

To illustrate, Jim Szabo with SanCap Aerial Photography has been taking aerials of the island for many months. On Memorial Day, his Facebook posting next to a stunning post-card like photo, said “Our water around Sanibel is amazingly beautiful. I take weekly 360° interactive panoramic images exclusively for the City of Sanibel.” Then he described that the one posted was taken around 12:30 p.m. at 350 feet above the lighthouse using his airborne camera system.

His message further says, “The City of Sanibel does this to show the current conditions, good or bad, for almost the last year. Toward the end of June, we will be able to compare current conditions to a year ago. Big thanks to the City of Sanibel for doing this.”

His images can be seen at http://www.mysanibel.com/Departments/Natural-Resources/Protecting-Our-Water-Quality/Sanibel-H2O-Matters. Scroll down when you get to that page and you will see links to weekly panoramic aerials taken at Lighthouse Beach Park going back to June 28, 2016. (Check out the difference between early and late June last year, it’s amazing.) There also are some taken from Gulfside City Park, Blind Pass, Clam Bayou, and the Causeway.

20 Questions To Ask When Buying a Condo

Buying or selling, it’s good to be aware of these questions and how they apply to a property.This provided courtesy of FloridaRealtors®.

20 QUESTIONS WHEN BUYING A CONDO.jpg

Sanibel School Tops District on State Test

sanibel schoolMany of us wish we’d found Sanibel when our families were young. The Sanibel School is one of the reasons why.

As reported in this week’s “Islander”, “The Sanibel School was one of two schools in the district that had 97% of its third-grade students score a three or higher on the Florida Standards Assessment (FSA) English Language Arts test.” This is an increase from last year’s 94%. The state percentage was 58%, compared to 54% last year. This is the third year that students in the county have taken the FSA. Although the Sanibel School tied with Pine Island Elementary School, their overall score was highest at 325, compared to their 318.

Congratulations to The Sanibel School for focusing on lots of reading. The school has offered a reading roundup for kids who were struggling, by offering more reading time during the school day. F.I.S.H. also sponsored after school tutoring to any student needing extra help.

The local district ranked third out of 10 mega districts in the State of Florida based on this last English Language Arts test.

Shell Mueum to Hold Bunche Beach Clean-Up

bailey-mathews shell museum signThe Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum will celebrate World Oceans Day on Wed, June 8 from 7 to 9 a.m. when museum staff and their Shell Ambassadors will hold a clean-up at Bunche Beach (at 18201 John Morris Rd). The public is invited to participate.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. uses 380 billion plastic bags per year and only 3% of that is recycled. This is the first time that the Museum has participated in World Oceans Day, but not the first time they have held a clean-up at Bunche Beach. It was selected instead of Sanibel because it seems to be more of a hotspot for trash and debris. If you can help with the clean-up, please register with Stefanie at SWolf@shellmuseum.org. Their tips for cutting down on plastic:

  • Use a reusable bag.
  • Use a reusable water bottle.
  • Say no to straws.
  • Bring your own containers for take-out/leftover food.
  • Stop chewing gum (it contains a molecule that is used in making plastic).
  • Shop local farmer’s markets.

Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity May 26-June 2, 2017

Sanibel

CONDOS

2 new listings: Sanddollar #B301 2/2 $1.149M, Sanddollar #A303 3/2 $1.349M.

4 price changes: Loggerhead Cay #371 2/2 now $529K, Lighthouse Point #211 2/2 now $629K, Pine Cove #102 3/2 now $1.315M, High Tide #A102 3/2.5 now $1.495M.

No new sales.

5 closed sales: Sundial West #D403 1/1 $420K, Sunset South #10C 2/2 $725K, Beachcomber #A102 2/2 $1.25M (our listing), Tamarind #A102 2/2 $1.495M, Somerset #E202 3/2.5 $1.54M.

HOMES

3 new listings: 9409 Moonlight Dr 3/2.5 $599K, 9459 Begonia Ct 3/4 $649K, 5280 Umbrella Pool Rd 3/3 $729K.

5 price changes: 3008 Singing Wind Dr 2/2 now $449K; 1817 Atlanta Plaza Dr 3/2 now $449.9K; 1710 Sand Pebble Way 3/2 now $679K; 673 East Rocks Dr 3/2 now $768,885; 601 Sea Oats Dr 3/2 now $685K.

4 new sales: 986 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 half-duplex listed at $529K, 746 Cardium St 4/2 duplex listed at $729K, 1809 Bowmans Beach Rd 3/2 listed at $799.9K, 1475 Angel Dr 3/4.5 listed at $1.649M.

5 closed sales: 770 Donax St 2/2 $422.5K; 1747 Serenity Ln 3/2 $490,723; 1210 Par View Dr 4/2 $680K; 1028 Demere Ln 3/2 $892.5K; 2451 Blind Pass Ct 4/4.5 $1.81M.

LOTS

No new listings.

1 price change: 2998 Singing Wind Dr now $189K.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 5121 Sanibel-Captiva Rd $180K.

Captiva

No activity to report.

(This representation is based, in whole, or in part, on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® or its 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 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,happy friday

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Coming up on Memorial Day 2017 on Sanibel


It is SanibelSusan with another Friday update about the island real estate market, weather, and more. Though the long weekend essentially is here, the island remains quiet. Maybe tomorrow will bring more visitors with rental check-ins.

Beach

On Periwinkle Way, there has been little traffic, even during Sanibel rush hour, except on Wednesday when right at quitting time a quick, but huge, downpour hit. Southwest Florida had been under a severe weather watch from midday (until 11 p.m. that night), but a couple of much-needed showers were all that was received. Forecasters say that was because of a cool front that passed through. That means lower humidity and temperatures only into the mid- to high-80’s expected for the holiday weekend. Growing up in Maine, it still cracks me up when I hear about a Florida cool front in the 80’s.

junonia 05-25-17After the high winds and unusually big waves with that Wednesday storm, shelling reports are that “it’s outstanding”. Plenty of live ones reported on the beach, with most conscientious shellers returning them to the water. A huge perfect junonia shell was found yesterday at Lighthouse Point beach. Experienced shellers say those live junonia shells are about 10 miles off shore, so it’s unusual for an empty one to make it to shore unscathed. After 30 years shelling, I’m still looking.

SanibelSusan Realty Happenings

Sanibelsusan LogoJust because Realtor® Caravan has reverted to every other week, doesn’t mean there is no real estate action.

This week our listings had just a couple of showings with more scheduled this weekend. The activity posted in the Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service since last Friday follows a couple of news items below. We had another nice condo sale this week and a new listing today at The Sanctuary. More on that in the days to come, including hosting an Open House during Caravan next Thursday.

ASSOC LogoThe team gets a day off for the Monday holiday, but I’ll be manning the fort then – hoping to hear from buyers and Realtors® interested in our listings – also updating the two classes I will be instructing for the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Specialist Designation in early June. This year, I’m teaching both the Resort & 2nd Home Property segment and the Condo Market segment.

Sanibel farmers market bikeLast Sanibel Farmers’ Market

Sanibel’s last Farmers’ Market of the season is Sunday on the grounds of City Hall from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m. It’s always a long summer before the market reopens in October.

Workshop Options for Center-4-Life

Front page news in both the “Island Sun” and the “Islander” this week, was the meeting last Wednesday of a workshop hosted by Sanibel City Council to discuss the future of the City’s Center-4-Life facility.

Sanibelcityseal logoThe Center’s current building at the corner of Library Way and Palm Ridge Road was assessed for refurbishment five years ago during the initial planning phases of the Civic & Cultural Core project. Now that that project is tabled, the purpose of Wednesday’s meeting was for council to learn about the Center-4-Life’s needs today. They received an architectural presentation and one by City Recreation Dept Director which included information on the facility’s participation levels, trends, space needs, expansion alternatives, and an analysis of the current site.

Originally the Sanibel Library, the current Center-4-Life building was enlarged at least twice when it was the library – 1st in 1977 and again in 1983. Today the Center-4-Life provides such island seniors with such activities as land aerobics, yoga, card games, cooking socials, educational classes, and special presentations.

Membership has grown annually and last year exceeded 8,000 members. To accommodate the increased demand for additional programming presenters estimated the building needs to be expanded to 7,500 sq. ft. Five options were provided:

  1. Retain the status quo
  2. Renovate in place with CHR remaining (this is office space for Community Housing Resources, which the City is obligated to fund),
  3. Renovate in place with CHR relocating
  4. Rebuild on current site
  5. Build a new facility on a different site.

Councilors weighed in on all options, with options 4 and 5 receiving their support. Estimates were requested for new buildings, with another workshop expected after staff review, maybe in August, with the final decision ultimately up taxpayers. Stay tuned.

Library Renovation Begins

sanibel-library-logoSanibel Public Library has started the first phase of their Your Library Reimagined project. From Monday through Friday next week (May 29-June 2), the building will be closed to the public while the interior is prepared for the project. It will reopen Saturday June 3 from 9 to 1 p.m. During the down-time the facility is being reconfigured to provide library services during remodeling. During the summer, some of the building will be closed to the public while the infrastructure is updated. The library will provide service during most of the renovation time, but occasionally may close when utility or plumbing work is being done.

sanibel libraryThe goal is to provide more space, appeal, and usefulness for users. The Sanibel Public Library began with a group of volunteers in the 60’s and currently is in its 3rd home, at 770 Dunlop Road which opened in 1994. In 2004, the building was expanded to its current size. Upgrades now are to replace much of the infrastructure, HVAC, fire suppression, plumbing, lighting, technology, and flooring. The project has been in the planning stages since 2015 with public input. The library board has set a budget of $5.9 million with the cost covered by library reserves, grants, and gifts.

Blind Pass Project Complete

Blind%20Pass%20Aerial%202016.jpgThe Blind Pas maintenance dredging project neared completion this week with the final work expected to be done today. Demobilization of the equipment will take place between tomorrow and June 1. The sand dredged from the pass and deposited on Sanibel to re-nourish some of the beach will be tilled on June 1. More info at www.leegov.com/naturalresources/blind-pass-2017-construction

sancap GO MLS logoSanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity May 19-26, 2017

Sanibel

CONDOS

2 new listings: Ibis at The Sanctuary #B102 2/2 $470K (our listing) (building & pool shown below), Sand Pointe #228 2/2 $799K.

ExteriorPool

3 price changes: Mariner Pointe #811 2/2 now $449K, Tarpon Beach #103 2/2 now $775K, Royale Tern #103 3/3.5 now $1.675M.

5 new sales: Captains Walk #A1 2/1 listed at $338K, Seashells #38 2/2 listed at $349K, Lighthouse Point #129 3/2 listed at $574K (our listing) (Lighthouse Point condo complex shown below), Sanibel Seaview #B2 3/3 listed at $1.489M, High Tide #A302 3/2 listed at $1.675M.

Lighthouse Point c

3 closed sales: Seashells #3 2/2 $377.5K, Pointe Santo #C36 2/2 $775K, Sundial West #A308 2/2 $775K.

HOMES

1 new listing: 746 Cardium St 4/2 duplex $729K.

12 price changes: 1447 Albatross Rd 3/2 now $529K; 376 Lake Murex Blvd 3/2 now $576.9K; 3784 Coquina Dr 3/3 now $636.9K; 673 East Rocks Dr 3/2 now $779,888; 5306 Umbrella Pool Rd 4/3 now $845K; 655 Anchor Dr 3/3 now $849K; 1294 Par View Dr 3/2.5 now $929K; 1743 Venus Dr 4/3.5 now $1.68M; 1137 Golden Olive Ct 5/3.5 now $1.794.5M; 984 Oyster Ct 3/3.5 now $1.799M; 5606 Baltusrol Ct 4/6 now $2.895M; 3869 West Gulf Dr 6/7/2 now $8.495M.

7 new sales: 5308 Umbrella Pool Rd 3/2 listed at $578K, 5105 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 4/3 listed at $624.9K, 1036 S Yachtsman Dr 3/3 listed at $624.9K, 5056 Joewood Dr 3/2 listed at $759K, 1234 Middle Gulf Dr 3/3 listed at $1.149M, 513 Lighthouse Way 3/3 listed at $1.595M, 696 Kinzie Island Ct 4/5 listed at $2.15M.

5 closed sales: 1602 Serenity Ln 4/2 $438K, 1895 Farm Trl 3/2 $580K, 1429 Jamaica Dr 3/3 $664.9K, 2629 Coconut Dr 2/3 $767K, 863 Lindgren Blvd 3/2 $950K.

LOTS

2 new listings: 486 Ponce De Leon Rd $199K, 1340 Eagle Run Dr $299K.

2 price changes: 5126 Sea Bell Rd now $174.5K, 5116 Sea Bell Rd now $174.5K.

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

1 new listing: Beach Villas #2617 1/1 $499K.

No price changes.

1 new sale: Sunset Beach Villas #2318 2/2 listed at $595K.

No closed sales.

HOMES

1 new listing: 11509 Chapin Ln $2.299M.

1 price change: 11521 Andy Rosse Ln now $2.799M.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 11520 Wightman Ln 3/2 $2.3M.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

(This representation is based, in whole, or in part, on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® or its 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 general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.)

Memorial DayHappy Memorial Day all & a big thank you to those who have & who continue to serve & protect us!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Blue Skies & Island Real Estate Happenings


It’s SanibelSusan reporting at the end of another quiet week on Sanibel & Captiva Islands. The rainy season has begun with a few puffy pop-corn-like clouds rolling in some afternoons followed by short, sometimes heavy, evening showers. Here are a couple of photos taken yesterday at the new garden area at The West Wind Inn. Those white clouds sure pop against the bright blue sky!

West Wind 1 05-18-17West Wind 2 05-18-17

It sure has been a funny week with weather – not here, but certainly elsewhere. Yesterday, I heard from a friend in Colorado where it was snowing, then another in Maine where it was a stifling 90-some degrees with no ocean breeze. Then last night on the news, there were severe weather alerts issued for the Midwest.

Amazing that spring weather can make it a good time to vacation in Florida. Even before moving to the island 25 years ago, May was one of my favorite months here – with summer-like weather, the rainy season just beginning, traffic light, and occupancy and hotel rates down.

SanibelSusan Realty Associates & Real Estate Happenings

Attendance was light yesterday at the early Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Caravan Meeting. Some of our leadership team is in Washington DC for the 2017 REALTORS Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo which wraps up tomorrow. Thanks to Association President Joel Goodman, President-Elect Dustyn Corace, & Association COO Bill Robinson who made the trip.

Though I did not go, I was one of the 18 Realtors® from Florida inducted into the RPAC Hall of Fame on Wednesday night.

nar-dc-with-capitol

SanibelSusanSo, if you get to DC and go to the top of the National Association of Realtors® headquarters building at 500 New Jersey Ave (just 3 blocks from the U.S. Capitol), the roof-top terrace holds the recognition plaques for the now 773 members of the Realtors® Hall of Fame.

Mine, shown at right, says “SanibelSusan Andrews”.

The Realtors® recognized come from 50 states and now include a total of 64 members from Florida. Nationwide, 106 Realtors® were inducted this year for their contributions through 2016. That is the largest annual group yet. Congratulations all!

The action posted in the Sanibel/Captiva Multiple Listing Service (MLS) since last Friday follows a couple of news items below. We had another nice closing! We got a couple of calls this week about listing properties too, so don’t be surprised to soon see some nice new offerings.

What’s Happening With the Island Real Estate Market

sancap GO MLS logoThere is no denying that selling business here is seasonal. Of course, property can be sold at any time of the year, it is just that there always are more sales during the months when the island has the most occupants. The snapshot of statistics below compares sales this year to last. It also shows the comparison of sales in the summer compared to the winter months. (Data from the Sanibel/Captiva MLS.)

SANIBEL CONDOS

#                      Average Price            Days-on-Market

Currently available            97                    $723,879                      205

Under contract                    22                    $805,286                      184

Sold/closed in winter:

1/1-5/18/2017                     62                    $767,193                      193

1/1-5/18/2016                    76                    $770,610                      194

Sold/closed in summer:

5/18-9/1/2016                     29                    $635,540                      287

5/18-9/1/2015                     46                    $619,095                      193

SANIBEL HOMES

#                      Average Price            Days-on-Market

Currently available           168                   $1,552,326                    181

Under contract                   40                    $1,110,892                    155

Sold/closed in winter:

1/1-5/18/2017                     89                    $1,016,615                    149

1/1-5/18/2016                     85                    $1,065,610                    164

Sold/closed in summer:

5/18-9/1/2016                    68                    $870,219                      168

5/18-9/1/2015                    81                    $927,123                      199

SANIBEL LOTS

#                      Average Price            Days-on-Market

Currently available           65                    $536,158                      384

Under contract                   2                      $236,278                      524

Sold/closed in winter:

1/1-5/18/2017                     19                    $373,385                      471

1/1-5/18/2016                     13                    $569,615                      604

Sold/closed in summer:

5/18-9/1/2016                     4                      $631,062                      617

5/18-9/1/2015                    11                    $529,818                      341

The Best Vacation Spot in Every U.S. State

active times logoLooking forward to summer … once again, “Sanibel” has made a list. This one for the best vacation travel spot in each U.S. State. This article is posted on-line at “TheActiveTimes.com”:

“The number of international travel for vacation purposes has dropped and half of trips abroad are to Canada and Mexico. Part of the reason is that the U.S. is a big country with plenty to see. Exotic journeys, peculiar quick escapes, and seaside paradises will inspire a year filled with irreplaceable experiences. Visit unique attractions and see majestic landscapes, visit vibrant cities, view iconic landmarks, and explore national parks.

“From possible solo trips to a beach, exciting couple’s getaways and week-long escapades with the entire family to a secluded island, the vacation spots on the following list were picked due to their recreational and adventurous potential. No two locations are the same.

“There is a state on this list that has everything you wish to experience during a holiday, whether it’s old-school charm, history, serenity, adrenaline-pumping activities, or extreme sports.

“Alabama – The Gulf Shores

Alaska – Anchorage

Arizona – Grand Canyon

Arkansas – Hot Springs National Park

California – Santa Barbara

Colorado – Aspen

Connecticut – Mystic

Delaware – Dewey Beach

Active Sanibel PixFlorida – Sanibel Island

Georgia – Jekyll Island

Hawaii – Kauai

Idaho – Idaho Falls

Illinois – Chicago

Indiana – Indiana Dunes State Park

Iowa – Dubuque

Kansas – Wichita

Kentucky – Cities Along the Bourbon Trail

Louisiana – New Orleans

Maine – Bar Harbor

Maryland – Ocean City

Massachusetts – Cape Cod

Michigan – Grand Haven

Minnesota – Voyagers National Park

Mississippi – Biloxi

Missouri – Branson

Montana – Glacier National Park

Nebraska – Lincoln

Nevada – Las Vegas

New Hampshire – Bretton Woods

New Jersey – Ocean City

New Mexico – Albuquerque

New York – Adirondacks

North Carolina – Asheville

North Dakota – Fargo

Ohio – Cleveland

Oklahoma – Tulsa

Oregon – Astoria

Pennsylvania – Skytop

Rhode Island – Providence

South Carolina – Myrtle Beach

South Dakota – Sioux Falls

Tennessee – Spencer

Texas – Austin

Utah – Salt Lake City

Vermont – Swanton

Virginia – Virginia Beach

Washington – Seattle

West Virginia – Berkeley Springs

Wisconsin – Madison

Wyoming – Jackson Hole”

Be Prepared

Sanibelcityseal logoNext Friday May 26, the City of Sanibel is sponsoring their 2017 Hurricane Seminar at BIG ARTS, 900 Dunlop Rd from 1 to 3 p.m. It is free, no reservation needed.

New info will be provided including predictions for 2017, family hurricane planning, use of social media in emergencies, and Sanibel Building Codes. Featured speakers will be: City weather consultant Dave Roberts, Lee County Emergency Management Program Manager Jim Bjostad, F.I.S.H. Director of Operations Maggie Goldsmith, City of Sanibel building official Harold Law, Sanibel Emergency Management Director Lt. Buikema, and Sanibel Policy Chief William Dalton.

Residents, property owners, business owners, and island workers are encouraged to attend. If you cannot be there, the seminar video will be posted after the event on MySanibel.com.

Summer Happenings

big arts logoBIG ARTS Summer Arts Camp – offers a program of visual and performing arts for 1st through 5th graders. Each week begins a new session with a new theme. There also is an apprentice program for 6th through 12 graders where middle and high schoolers spend half their day taking a more advanced art class and half their day days earning community service hours by assisting campers in their classes. Registration for both programs is now open. Registration forms are on-line at www.BIGARTS.org . The schedule includes:

Week 1 – June 5 – 9 – The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Week 2 – June 12 – 16 – Life’s a Circus at Camp! Week 3 – June 19 – 23 – Under The Sea Week 4 – June 26 – 30 – Where the Wild Things Are Week 5 – July 3 – 7 (No camp on July 4) – Red, White, Blue and YOU!

Week 6 – July 10 – 14 – I’ve Got a Golden Ticket!

Week 7 – July 17 – 21 – When You Wish Upon a Star

Week 8 – July 24 – 28 – Say Yes to the Mess!

Captiva yacht clubCaptiva Island Yacht Club’s Junior Sailing Camp – For children ages 8 to 15, it teaches the ins and outs of operating their own sailboat in Roosevelt Channel behind the yacht club. The camp gets support from the City of Sanibel, F.I.S.H., and Sanibel CHR (Community Housing & Resources). Divided into two sessions: the 1st June 12-16 and June 19-23; the 2nd July 10-14 and July 17-21, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Cost is $500 per session and includes sailing and kayak instruction. At the end of each session, students earn a Beginner Level I U.S. Sailing certificate. The Captiva Yacht Club has a fleet of 12 Optimist prams, six Sunfish, and three Laser sailboats.

Counselor in Training Program – This City-sponsored program at the Rec Center provides junior-level personal development and leadership opportunity for teens entering 9th and 10th grade that are interested in working with children in a recreational day camp setting. The program is designed to prepare teens to become a camp counselors. For more info, call the Sanibel Recreation Center at (239) 472-0345

Sanibel Sea schoolOcean Tribe Paddlers Club – A new club to bring the paddling community together is being offered by the Sanibel Sea School. The first club meeting is a free welcome group paddle on Tuesday, May 30, at 2 p.m. at Causeway Island A, north side. Those who do not have a kayak, paddleboard, or canoe should contact spencer@sanibelseaschool.org or call 239-472-8585, who will provide them.

Sea School Opening Retail Store – Called Ocean Tribe Outfitters, the ribbon-cutting for this new store at 455 Periwinkle Way is May 31 at 5 p.m. The store will specialize in paddling gear, including kayaks, stand up paddleboards, and related accessories, plus equipment and closing for ocean recreation. All profits from the store will fund the nonprofit Sanibel Sea School’s programs, including scholarships and ocean outreach programs for students in need. More info at www.sanibelseaschool.org

Sanibel Rec CenterSWAT (Sanibel Water Attack Team) – For children ages 5 to 18, SWAT is the island’s competitive swim team. SWAT practices at the Rec Center Monday through Friday with the Blue Team (K through 8th grade) from 2:30 – 3:30 p.m. and the Gold Team (high schoolers) from 2:30 to 4 p.m. To join SWAT, students must be able to swim the length of the pool and commit to attending four meetings a year – two at Florida Gulf Coast University and two in Sarasota. The next swim meet is June 17 and 18 at Florida Gulf Coast University with competition from teams throughout the state.

Lcec logoGood Tips from LCEC (Lee County Electric Co-op)

“Summer Saving Tips

  1. Install a programmable thermostat. When you aren’t home, turn it up. Work around your schedule and earn savings by adjusting the temperature.
  2. Lower your water-heating costs. Turn the water-heater temperature to the warm setting of 120 degrees F. It’s hot enough for showers and to clean dishes. Do laundry in cold water.
  3. Replace your air filter. It allows your system to work more efficiently. This is also the ideal time to have your annual AC system checkup.
  4. Seal cracks and gaps. Keep cooled air from leaking out and prevent warm air from getting in. Inspect door/window cracks and apply calking around cable lines and dryer vent openings.
  5. Save in the laundry room. Inspect the vent and clean the dryer lint trap after every use….

“Checklist for Vacating Your Home for The Summer

Use the following checklist to keep your home and all its electrical treasures in great shape!

  • Avoid mildew damage by installing a timer on the air conditioner to cycle the air for two hours per day, or install a humidistat that will cycle when indoor humidity exceeds 65%.
  • Fill jugs of tap water to put inside the refrigerator/freezer since a full unit will use less power than an empty one….
  • Leave all interior doors open to promote airflow. Resist the temptation to leave your ceiling fans on low to circulate air. Fans should only be used when you are in the room since they only cool the body.
  • Consider having a … house sitter keep an eye on your home while you are gone.
  • Enroll in LCEC kiloWATCH at www.lcec.net so you can be alerted of unusual electricity usage.”

Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity May 12-19, 2017

Sanibel

CONDOS

2 new listings: Loggerhead Cay #371 2/2 $549K, Blind Pass #F108 3/2 $594.9K.

3 price changes: Ibis at The Sanctuary #B302 2/2 now $489.5K, Loggerhead Cay #592 2/2 now $629K, Nutmeg Village #100 2/2 now $1.07M.

2 new sales: Seashells #6 2/2 listed at $395K, Pointe Santo #B23 2/2 listed at $799K.

6 closed sales: Lake Palms #8 2/2.5 $331,750, Sundial West #H209 1/1 $404K, Mariner Pointe #712 2/2.5 $450K, Coquina Beach #3G 2/2 $450K (our Seller), Loggerhead Cay #443 2/2 $538K, Loggerhead Cay #103 2/2 $962.5K.

HOMES

3 new listings: 986 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 half-duplex $529K, 1672 Hibiscus Dr 3/2 $1.35M, 2167 Starfish Ln 4/4.5 $2.395M.

11 price changes: 976 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 half-duplex now $489K; 1918 Ibis Ln 3/3 now $629K; 673 East Rocks Dr 3/2 now $789,555; 4775 Rue Helene 4/3 now $799K; 1470 Angel Dr 3/2 now $1.099M; 1234 Middle Gulf Dr 3/3 now $1.149M; 519 Kinzie Island Ct 3/2.5 now $1.295M; 6494 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 3/2 now $1.795M; 4649 Rue Belle Mer 3/2.5 now $2,995,555; 3009 Turtle Gait Ln 4/4.5 now $3.5M; 3547 West Gulf Dr 4/4 now $4.25M.

3 new sales: 1596 Bunting Ln 2/2 listed at $499K, 1954 Roseate Ln 3/2 listed at $534K, 6081 Henderson Rd 3/2 listed at $799.9K.

4 closed sales: 9436 Yucca Ct 3/2 $580K, 5126 Joewood Dr 3/2 $710K, 1030 Kings Crown Dr 2/2 $879.75K, 4117 West Gulf Dr 5/6 $5.35M.

LOTS

No new listings.

4 price changes: 2501 Wulfert Rd now $183.9K, 6159 Starling Way now $639K, 5251 Indian Ct now $759K, 0 Island Inn Rd now $1.099M.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 0 Island Inn Rd $182K.

Captiva

CONDOS

No new listings or price changes.

1 new sale: Tennis Villas #3125 1/1 listed at $254K.

1 closed sale: Sunset Beach Villas #2324 2/2 $595K.

HOMES

No new listings.

3 price changes: 16167 Captiva Dr 4/3 now $1.595M, 16171 Captiva Dr 4/4.5 now $2.195M, 13550 Palmflower Ln 4/3.5 now $3.999M.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 11515 Andy Rosse Ln 6/5.5 $2.725M.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

(This representation is based, in whole, or in part, on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® or its 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 general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.)

Here’s hoping your weekend is rosy! I’ll be in the office… looking for business!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Paul collins roseate 04-13-14