February Flowers & Sanibel/Captiva Happenings


It’s another Friday and another month almost over, as Sanibel/Captiva weather continues to be summer-like. It has been another week with temperatures in the high 70’s/low 80’s, with more of the same expected over the next few days.

February Bougainvillea

The bougainvillea & roses in my yard always get happy in February!

Now that it’s really “season”, getting from one end of Periwinkle to the other has been challenging, sometimes in both directions, but particularly on Presidents’ Day and most days as workers head off-island (from about 3 to 6 p.m.)

SSRA with flagHere in the office, SanibelSusan listings had some action this week, with a sale, a price reduction, a new listing, and a home inspection.

The complete action posted in the Sanibel/Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service over the past seven days, follow a few news items below.

February Membership Meeting – Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors®

Sanibel realtors logoYesterday morning was the island Realtors® monthly membership meeting. It brought a standing-room only crowd which is typical for February which usually is when business here is best. Surprisingly during the Caravan portion of the meeting, when new sales are announced, there was only one – a condo unit at Loggerhead Cay

During the educational portion of the meeting, speakers from the Sanibel School updated members with info we can use in presenting the school to prospective buyers. Assistant Principal Jamie Reed provided a school history, explaining how the school expanded a few years ago from K through 5, to K through 8. She also said that today school enrollment is down. The school has capacity for 354 students, with enrollment today at 270.sanibel school

With school funding based on the number of students, that also is down, but strong community financial support contributes to the school’s success. The Sanibel School Fund, for example, which is a group of education-minded citizens and parents raised the money needed to hire the school’s Spanish teacher, providing that foreign language training to all grades. The school’s PTA and close relationships with local organizations like the Wildlife Refuge, BIG ARTS, and the Conservation Foundation, also provide School support.

Classroom sizes at The Sanibel School include two classes in each of the lower grades with no more than 18 students per class. Grades 6 through 8 each have one class with up to 22 students in each. This family-like network of students and teachers provide a nurturing environment contributing to the school’s academic success rate, with grades continually ranking in the top 5-6% of the state.

Donna Marks, Sanibel School Registrar and Information Specialist, is available to provide school tours and explain what is needed for school enrollment. It no longer is a requirement that their students live on Sanibel/Captiva or have parents who work on the islands. More info at https://sbl.leeschools.net/our_families/registration__enroll_my_student

2019 Lee County Market Report – January

FL gulf coast mls logoThis morning, the following report was released by the Florida Gulf Coast MLS:

For the fourth straight month Single Family Homes shows a decrease

“Lee County’s Single Family housing market saw a decrease for the fourth straight month in January, according to the latest statistics just released by Florida Realtors®. Year-over-year, sales were down for both by double digits, but Townhouses and Condos are holding steady over the last four months.

“January showed a -18.7% decrease in the number of Closed Sales for Single Family Homes, and a -10.4% decrease for Townhouses and Condos, compared to the same time last year. Sale prices were up slightly for Single Family, while townhouse and Condos remain steady. Inventory is on the rise for Single Family showing 6.5% Months Supply of Inventory and 7.5 for Townhouses and Condos. The number of Active Listings jumped up again for a fifth straight month at 18.9% for Single Family Homes and 12.5% for Townhouses and Condos compared to 2018….

“Broken down by cities, Single Family sales in Bonita Springs, Pine Island and North Fort Myers saw an increase in number of Closed Sales, year over year. All remaining cities saw a decrease over last year. With Sanibel having a -60% and Fort Myers Beach having a -58.2% showing the largest decrease over 2018….”

Note: The numbers reported represent sales by all members of Florida Realtors®/SWFLA Matrix for Lee County, FL. Statistics released each month may be revised in the future as new data is released.

What Do Home Inspectors Usually Find?

Florida Realtors logoWith Florida being a full-disclosure state, Sellers and their representatives are required by Florida law to disclose defects that may materially affect the value of the real estate being sold. With many island properties owned by snowbirds, part-time visitors, and investors, in recent years it has been common to see Sanibel and Captiva property sold using the Florida Realtors® “As Is” contract.

Under the terms of the “As Is” contract, the Buyer accepts the property in its physical condition and the Seller is not responsible for any repairs. That contract also includes an “Inspection/Cancellation” period when the Buyer may perform due diligence, usually having the property professionally inspected.

The SanibelSusan Team always suggests a home inspection. A good one considers all the physical elements of a property and provides the age, service life, and condition of all mechanical items. Regardless of a property’s end use, it makes sense that a Buyer handle any repairs needed to ensure that they are done to their standards and satisfaction.

The below article posted on-line Wednesday by Florida Realtors® contains the same suggestion. Repair credits are not typical with the “as is” contract. That applies to the older Florida purchase agreement where a Buyer also may have a property inspected during a certain time period, but with that agreement, the Seller is advised of defects found and required to fix them by closing. With the “as is” contract, no Seller repairs or credits are required.

“LAS VEGAS – Feb. 20, 2019 – A study of 50,000 home inspections by Repair Pricer, a company that estimates repair costs for items cited in home inspection reports – found that some repair costs tend to appear more often.

“Nearly 55% of home inspections nationally cited doors that needed adjusting, for example; and 54% lacked exterior caulking and sealant, which could leave the home susceptible to extensive water damage. And about 48% of homes lacked GFCI protection to minimize the risk of electrocution in areas like the kitchen or bathroom. The most expensive home defects ranged in repair prices from slightly more than $1,000 to less than $10,000:

“Top 10 common home defects – percentage of homes – price to repair

  • Doors need adjusting/servicing: 54.9% of reports – $254 to repair
  • Faucets and heads need servicing: 54.8% of reports – $273 to repair
  • Exterior caulking/sealant missing: 54.5% of reports – $310 to repair
  • Outlets or switches with deficiencies: 53.7% of reports – $248 to repair
  • No GFCI protection: 48.0% of reports – $433 to repair
  • Absence of or defective smoke alarms: 45.06% of reports – $378 to repair
  • Cosmetic sheetrock cracks or nail pops: 45.02% of reports – $545 to repair
  • Fixtures and/or bulb deficiencies: 40.5% of reports – $209 to repair
  • Caulking, grout and sealer are missing interior: 33.9% of reports – $353 to repair
  • Service panel deficiencies: 33.7% of reports – $298 to repair

“While expensive repairs are less common, one in 10 inspections cite a roof nearing the end of its useful life as the most expensive common repair generally noted. However, one in five reports find a problem with window seals, which can cost over $1,000 to repair.

“5 most expensive repairs found – percentage of homes – price to repair

  • Roof nearing end of its serviceable life: 9.6% of reports – $9,948 to repair
  • Coil and condenser at end of serviceable life: 10.7% of reports – $5,818 to repair
  • Heating unit exceeded serviceable life: 10% of reports – $3,798 to repair
  • Water heater may need replaced: 10% of reports – $1,259 to repair
  • Window seals failed or fogged: 20.8% of reports – $1,026 to repair

“What should buyers do with inspection report information? Repair Pricer says buyers’ first instinct is often to ask sellers to make repairs, but “this tactic can frequently backfire. Even if the seller agrees … they’re under no obligation to implement quality repairs and frequently execute the cheapest option or fix, potentially leaving the buyer with substandard work, no transferable warranty and no recourse.” Seller repairs can also give buyers a “false sense of security, believing their agents have negotiated and built a home warranty into their contracts.”

The best tactic, according to Home Repair, is to ask the seller for a repair credit if appropriate under the contract and hire a contractor after closing to complete the repairs to the buyer’s standards – not the seller’s.”

Update on Water Issues by SCCF and Everglades Foundation

SCCF logoAn important update sponsored by the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation is scheduled next week. Here’s their announcement:

“Historically, nearly all the water from Lake O flowed south. Now, over 70% flows to the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie. Don’t miss the chance to get the latest updates on the status of water management projects impacting the Caloosahatchee and the Everglades. After the devastating impacts of the 2018 Red Tide and the recent promising actions by Governor DeSantis, real improvements are now possible.

“Join us for “New Opportunities to Advance Water Quality Improvement and Everglades Restoration!” on Thursday, February 28 at 7 p.m. at the Sanibel Community House, 2173 Periwinkle Way. The event is free and registration is not required. Doors open at 6:30 and light refreshments will be served.

SCCF Water flows

“Some key indicators of current conditions:

  • Current Lake O levels are lower than they have been in recent years. A weak El Niño may bring higher than normal rainfall in the next few months.
  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is beginning work on a new water management schedule for Lake O releases.
  • And Governor DeSantis has asked the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) to expedite work on the EAA Reservoir, the keystone project that will reduce harmful flows to the estuary by 40-60%.

“ALL of us will need to stay engaged to make sure that this emerging leadership vision is successful. Learn the latest from SCCF and the Everglades Foundation on recent progress, ongoing challenges and what you can do to help. For more info, call 472-2329.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity Feb 15-22, 2019

Sanibelsancap GO MLS logo

CONDOS

8 new listings: Sundial #G405 1/1 $439,555; Cottage Colony West #112 1/1 $605.9K; Villa Sanibel #2G 2/2 $685K, Island Beach Club #240F 2/2 $769K; Sundial #J204 2/2 $769K; Seawind II #2 2/2.5 $889K; Sanibel Moorings #111 2/2 $999.99K; High Tide #A301 2/2 $2.149M.

7 price changes: Mariner Pointe #842 2/2 now $595K, Island Beach Club #310A 2/2 now $699K, Pointe Santo #D3 2/2 now $725K, Shell Island Beach Club #7C 2/2 now $824K, Sundial #K103 2/2 now $920K, Loggerhead Cay #133 2/2 now $944K, Pointe Santo #E35 2/2 now $1.35M.

3 new sales: Captains Walk #B2 1/1 listed at $239K (our listing & sale), Seashells #3 2/2 listed at $449K, Sundial #B407 1/1 listed at $529K.

2 closed sales: Tennisplace #C23 2/1.5 $305K, Sundial #F206 1/1 $420K.

HOMES

10 new listings: 970 Greenwood Ct 3/2.5 half-duplex $440K, 5306 Ladyfinger Lake Rd 3/2 $595K, 731 Durion Ct 3/2 $799K, 823 Birdie View Pt 4/3 $949K, 510 Sea Oats Dr 3/2.5 $999K, 3850 Coquina Dr 3/3 $1.089M, 911 Almas Ct 3/2.5 $1.499M, 6170 Dinkins Lake Rd 3/3 $2.374M, 842 Limpet Dr 3/3.5 $2.495M (our listing), 3615 West Gulf Dr 3/2 $3.25M.

DCIM100MEDIADJI_0791.JPG

Our new listing at 842 Limpet Dr

21 price changes: 325 East Gulf Dr 1/1 now $528K; 401 Raintree Pl 3/1.5 now $529K; 746 Cardium St 4/2 duplex now $669K; 1973 Wild Lime Dr 4/3 now $674K; 678 Durion Ct 3/2 now $769.9K; 697 Birdie View Ct 3/2 now $774K; 3284 Twin Lakes Ln 4/4 now $799K; 257 Daniel Dr 3/2 now $799.9K; 3050 West Gulf Dr 3/2.5 now $824.9K; 3941 Coquina Dr 3/2 now $849K; 686 East Gulf Dr 3/2 now $849K; 1056 S Yachtsman Dr 3/2 now $879K; 9454 Calla Ct 3/2 now $899K; 501 Lagoon Dr 3/2 now $949K; 4345 Gulf Pines Dr 4/4 now $950K; 6123 Starling Way 3/2.5 now $989K; 3832 Coquina Dr 3/4 now $995K; 1672 Hibiscus Dr 3/2 now $999,995; 5842 Pine Tree Dr 3/2 now $1.095M; 532 Sea Oats Dr 4/4 now $1.395M; 1351 Middle Gulf Dr #2C 3/3 now $1.549M (our listing).

Image 8 c.jpg

Home just reduced at 1351 Middle Gulf Dr, Moonshadows #2C

5 new sales: 1442 Sandpiper Cir 2/2 half-duplex listed at $415K, 1160 Junonia St 3/2 listed at $739K, 480 Sawgrass Pl 3/2.5 listed at $999K, 928 Beach Rd 4/3 listed at $1.295M, 4992 Joewood Dr 3/3.5 listed at $1.365M.

3 closed sales: 2479 Blind Pass Ct 3/2 $725K, 789 Pyrula Ave 4/2.5 $900K, 4771 Tradewinds Dr 3/3 $1.55M.

LOTS

1 new listing: 6141 Starling Way $997K.

1 price change: 2297 Wulfert Rd now $194K.

1 new sale: 2933 Wulfert Rd listed at $379K.

1 closed sale: 4565 Bowen Bayou Rd $185K.

Captiva

CONDOS

3 new listings: Tennis Villas #3124 1/1 $370K, Beach Cottages #1404 2/2 $1.279M, Lands End Village #1635 2/2 $1.429M.

2 price changes: Captiva Hide-A-Way #1B 2/2 now $889K, Lands End Village #1602 3/3 now $2.15M.

1 new sale: Beach Villas #2614 2/2 listed at $614K.

No closed sales.

HOMES

No new listings.

4 price changes: 15161 Wiles Dr 5/5.5 now $2.4M, 11522 Andy Rosse Ln 5/5.5 now $2.799M, 15879 Captiva Dr 3/3 now $2.995M, 952 S Seas Plantation Rd 6/5.5 now $4.15M.

No new or closed sales.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.

Until next Friday, wishing you warm sunny beach-like weather too!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Nice beach shot

Woohoo! It’s Finally “Season” on Sunny Sanibel & Captiva Islands


Kiters

Hooray! It has been a week with more real estate action for The SanibelSusan Team. “Season” really is here with showings and Open Houses more productive. (Not much time for our teammate to enjoy his favorite sport – shown above).

The details of the action posted this week in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service are after some other news below.

Sanibel realtors logoAt our Association of Realtors® morning Caravan Meeting yesterday, only a couple of sales were announced. Many price reductions had attendees commiserating about how it has turned into a “buyers’ market” with plenty of well-priced properties available

It sure will be great to announce our two new sales at our Realtors® Monthly Membership Meeting next week – especially nice for us since we brought the buyers too!

Presidents’ Day Weekend on The Islands

Sanibel Bike Hikepresidents day clip artWith wonderful weather expected right through the 3-day weekend (sunny with day-time temperatures in the mid-to-high 70°s F), the island should be packed.

Below are a few fun happenings. Sanibel City Hall and all City Municipal Services will be open on the Monday holiday. (SanibelSusan Realty will be open too.)

These organizations have received City Special Events Permits for this weekend.

rotary logoTomorrow, Feb 16: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. – Annual Sanibel-Captiva Rotary Arts & Crafts Fair, at the Community House, across the street from our office. www.sanibelartfair.com

Sunday, Feb 17: Annual Sanibel-Captiva Rotary Arts & Crafts Fair (above) continues from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Sanibel Farmers MktAlso, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. – Sanibel Island Farmers Market on the grounds of City Hall at 800 Dunlop Rd. There has been some confusion this winter about Farmers Market parking. With construction complete at the Sanibel Library, parking under the Library is now available, while the outside Library parking lot is designated Handicap Parking. Other lots available for general parking are at City Hall, BIG ARTS, and Herb Strauss Theater.

President’s Day Weekend Holiday Sidewalk Sales at:

  • Eileen Fisher
  • Gene’s Books
  • Huxters
  • Islander Center
  • Joey’s Custard, Bailey’s Center
  • Periwinkle Place
  • Sanibel Sea School

Campaign to Buy & Preserve More Land

ding darlingOne of the announcements at our Realtor® Caravan Meeting yesterday was by fellow Realtor Sarah Ashton, who is serving this year as Vice President of the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society – Friends of the Refuge (DDWS).

She told us about DDWS’s annual fundraiser event “Go Wild” the night before. It was then that DDWS went public with their project to raise $3 million in private donations to complete the acquisition of the last large parcel of undeveloped land on Sanibel Island, called Wulfert Bayous. Would you believe that DDWS raised half a million dollars in just the last ½-hour of their event? Islanders are so generous!

Wulfert Bayous is 68 acres along San-Cap Road, adjacent to the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge. It was slated for development with permitting for 29 large homes.

Ding FundraiserAs posted on DDWS’s website: “DDWS has been working for several years behind the scenes to partner with funding sources and private donors toward the acquisition. As a result, on November 6, 2018, the Lee County Board of Commissioners voted in favor of exploring the acquisition and has asked county staff to pursue the possibility. DDWS also is looking into state funding and grants from the BP Horizon Spill as other alternative funding sources toward the remaining $6.5 million needed.

“From private donors, DDWS has to date raised $2 million toward the minimum $3 million it will need to raise in order to receive support from other funding sources. “There’s a possibility that the $3 million goal may change, depending upon the amount of funding received from the other sources we are investigating,” said Birgie Miller, DDWS Executive Director.

“The acreage along Wulfert and Sanibel-Captiva Roads is home to a number of species, including eagles, bobcats, gopher tortoises, and rare plants. It is also a stopover for migrating neo-tropical birds. Resident and seasonal birds alike would be seriously threatened by development, say refuge officials.

“The conservation and planned restoration of the Wulfert Bayous property will protect a 4-acre lake, 16 acres of existing mangroves, hardwood uplands, and 22 active gopher tortoise burrows. Wulfert Bayous contains 15 acres of wetlands that can be restored and enhanced to create a wading bird colony of roseate spoonbills, wood storks, white ibis, and other egrets and herons. Improvements would also include limited, passive public access for wildlife viewing.

““The 68-acre parcel will complete a wildlife corridor connecting surrounding conservation lands while stemming development and water quality degradation via natural filtration,” said John McCabe, DDWS Land Acquisition Committee Chair. “As the largest parcel of unprotected undeveloped land on Sanibel, it’s the vital piece of the puzzle that will ensure Sanibel’s future as the protected, pristine natural treasure we all love.”

““We are turning to private support to meet our required $3 million campaign goal,” said Birgie. “Time is of the essence for raising the money. If we do not meet the deadline, conservation could lose the parcel to residential development. We are looking for donations and pledges large and small within the next three months.”

“To pledge funds to save the Wulfert Bayous’ 68 acres from development, donors should contact Birgie at 239-472-1100 ext. 4 or director@dingdarlingsociety.org.”

Sanibel Prescribed Burns for 2019

Sanibelcityseal logoIt also was announced this week that the first of the island’s annual prescribed burns could begin soon. Representatives from the National Park Service, Florida Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, and Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation, as well as Sanibel’s Natural Resource Department, police, and fire, work cooperatively in these efforts.

The targeted lands for 2019 include Legion Curve, the Sanibel-Captiva Road parcel, Sanibel Gardens Preserve, Frannie’s/Johnston Tract and North Center Tract, now called the Erick Lindblad Preserve.

The Legion Curve site which hasn’t been burned for several years was slated to be as early as this week depending on the weather. Prescribed burns here don’t occur every year. They are used to reduce hazardous fuels, to minimize the threat of catastrophe to wildlife, and maintain public safety. They also help restore natural habitat for wildlife. The timing of these burns can be wind related with neighboring property owners advised usually 48 hours before a burn occurs. More info is available through Sanibel’s Natural Resource Conservation Officer or the Refuge’s Supervisory Ranger.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity Feb 8-15, 2019sancap GO MLS logo

Sanibel

CONDOS

6 new listings: Sundial #D310 1/1 $395K, Loggerhead Cay #461 2/2 $539K, Sanibel Arms West #K1 2/2 $569K, Compass Point #221 2/2 $725K, Sanibel Surfside #224 2/2 $799K, Beachcomber #D101 2/2 $1.099M.

5 price changes: Sundial #I103 1/1 now $469K, Cottage Colony West #101 1/1 now $610K, Lighthouse Point #211 2/2 now $619K, Pointe Santo #D21 2/2 now $675K, Pointe Santo #A1 2/2 now $925K.

9 new sales: Tennisplace #D33 1/1 listed at $237.5K, Sundial #D304 1/1 listed at $399.9K, Sundial #D204 1/1 listed at $419.9K, Seashells #3 2/2 listed at $449K, Cottage Colony West #108 1/1 listed at $624.9K, Cottage Colony West #116 1/1 listed at $625K, Loggerhead Cay #233 2/2 listed at$ 699K, Lighthouse Point #128 3/2 listed at $699K (our listing & sale), Sanibel Arms #F8 2/2 listed at $969K.

Beach

Bayside beach at Lighthouse Point

1 closed sale: Coquina Beach #3C 2/2 $435K.

HOMES

10 new listings: 718 Durion Ct 3/2 $669K, 1555 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 $725K, Moonshadows #1F 3/3 half-duplex $835K, 5835 Pine Tree Dr 3/2 $895K, 1410 Albatross Rd 3/3 $899K, 5186 Sea Bell Rd 3/3 $924K, 480 Sawgrass Pl 3/2.5 $999K, 844 Lindgren Blvd 3/3 $1.395M, 5723 Baltusrol Ct 4/4.5 $1.849M, 1898 Woodring Rd 2/2 $2.8M.

25 price changes: 974 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 half-duplex now $509K, 6447 Pine Ave 3/2.5 now $615K, 1674 Bunting Ln 3/2 now $639K, 922 Pepper Tree Pl 2/2 now $639K, 5256 Punta Caloosa Ct 3/2 now $650K, 1478 Albatross Rd 3/2 now $669K, 1225 Seagrape Ln 3/3 now $729K, 4245 Gulf Pines Dr 3/2 now $739K, 256 Daniel Dr 3/2 now $779K, 1223 Par View Dr 3/2 now $819K, 218 Daniel Dr 3/2.5 now $849K, 9454 Calla Ct 3/2 now $925K, 478 Sea Oats Dr 3/3 now $989K, 534 N Yachtsman Dr 3/2 now $989K, 920 Snowberry Ln 3/3.5 now $1.05M, 734 Pyrula Ave 3/2.5 now $1.195M, 297 Ferry Landing Dr 3/3 now $1.249M, 466 Sea Oats Dr 4/3.5 now $1.249M, 1283 Isabel Dr 3/2 now $1.25M, 1525 San Carlos Bay Dr 4/2 now $1.549M, 982 Whelk Dr 3/2.5 now $1.275M, 5606 Baltusrol Ct 4/6 now $1.795M, 2564 Wulfert Rd 4/5.5 now $1.9995M, 6071 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 5/4.5 now $2.395M, 5615 Baltusrol Ct 4/6/3 now $3.195M.

5 new sales: 848 Rabbit Rd 3/2 listed at $549K, 5260 Caloosa End Ct 3/2 listed at $597K, 585 Lake Murex Cir 3/2 listed at $659K, 1284 Par View Dr 2/2 listed at $679K, 2332 Troon Ct 4/5 listed at $1.595M.

1 closed sale: 531 Piedmont Rd 3/2 $415K.

LOTS

1 new listing: 6053 Sanibel-Captiva Rd $1.195M.

2 price changes: 2486 Wulfert Rd now $149K, 6127 Starling Way now $1.36M.

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

2 new listings: Bayside Villas #4116 1 /2.5 $380K, Captiva Hide-A-Way #2D 2/2 $989K

4 price changes: Lands End Village #1629 2/2 now $1.419M, Beach Homes #2 3/2 now $1.995M, Beach Homes #11 4/3 now $2.895M, Captiva Cove #C 5/4 now $3.695M.

1 new sale: Beach Villas #2428 2/2 listed at $629K.

3 closed sales: Beach Villas #2625 2/2 $595K, Beach Villas #2538 3/3 $900K, Lands End Village #1655 2/2 $989K.

HOMES

1 new listing: 11525 Wightman Ln 3/2 $1.295M.

4 price changes: 16333 Captiva Dr 4/2/2 now $1.895M, 16163 Captiva Dr 3/2 now $2.495M, 17101 Captiva Dr 7/6/1 now $2.779M, 11559 Laika Ln 2/2/2 now $4.9M.

No new or closed sales.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.

Vice Presidents LogoHere’s hoping you enjoy your Presidents’ Day weekend! It’s a great time to buy on the island favored by our current Vice President! Please contact SanibelSusan if The SanibelSusan Team may help you!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

 

Sunny 79 Degrees F = Happy Sanibel on Feb 1st


w gulf dr sanibel beach with more peopleIt sure is great to be back on the islands, especially with the deep winter freeze reported in so many areas of the country. With temperatures here this week about 10 degrees lower than normal at this time of the year, a few islanders have grumbled about needing to kick their heat on and dig out their warmer sweaters and jackets. Mostly however, we have worried about friends and family up north and wish their frigid weather soon ends.

w gulf dr sanibel beach pathThe islands’ good weather news today is that day-time temperatures here finally are back into the high 70’s, with even some low-80’s predicted for the weekend. The SanibelSusan Teams hopes that being the warmest state in the nation will bring more visitors and buyers to the sunshine state, especially the islands.

As traffic here increases, business likewise seems to be growing. Our various Open Houses this week had more visitors, while our listings had a little more activity too. Teammate Dave and I also were both out working with buyers and showing property.

Sanibel realtors logoAt the islands’ Association of Realtors® Caravan meeting yesterday, there were more new sales announced – also, many new listings and price reductions. The action posted in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service this week follows a few news items below.

First, a summary of today’s inventory (2/1/2019) compared to sales action this year, and 2018.

  Condos Homes Lots
Sanibel # Avg $ Price DOM # Avg $ Price DOM # Avg $ Price DOM
For sale 117 776,218 137 236 1,377,691 160 65 677,785 417
Under contract 10 804,150 78 23 1,300,213 148 1 189,900 23
Sold to-date in 2019 6 626,875 123 9 1,057,222 149 0 N/A N/A
Sold in 2018 155 720,617 172 218 1,112,748 162 21 602,095 240
 
Captiva # Avg $ Price DOM # Avg $ Price DOM # Avg $ Price DOM
For sale 41 1,153,068 223 43 3,065,012 244 3 4,296,333 418
Under contract 5 1,759,380 453 0 N/A N/A 0 N/A N/A
Sold to-date in 2019 1 389,000 43 1 2,800,000 181 0 N/A N/A
Sold in 2018 27 797,532 153 25 2,127,352 290 0 N/A N/A

First Florida Water Policy Summit

Organized around the idea that “clean water is a basic human right”, the first Florida Water Policy Summit was held on January 21 featuring six speakers from local conservation groups speaking about actionable water policy that can improve Florida’s impaired waters. According to experts, Florida has a lot of impaired waters – currently 12 million acres under Best Management Action Plans which are 15-year restoration plans required by the federal government when a waterbody is not meeting quality standards.

clean water actThe Federal Clean Water Act requires each state to compile a list of such waterbodies. Then the Department of Environmental Protection conducts water shed assessments. Any waterbody that does not meet pollution standards is scheduled for a Total Maximum Daily Load, which is a limit for the amount of a particular pollutant that a waterbody can handle. The next step after establishing that “Load” is writing up the Action Plan to restore those waters. Current reports show that Florida has 416 waterbodies with “Loads”, with 80 others on a waitlist to receive one.

ConservancyofSWFLSpecialists with the Conservancy of Southwest Florida offered some insight into how Florida got the point where almost a third of the state is under water quality restoration plans. Those answers are complicated (quotes below from January 30, 2019 “Sanibel-Captiva Islander”:

“A combination of harmful agricultural run-off, insufficient urban stormwater treatment, and fertilizer use have mixed us a cocktail of toxic water.

“Under Florida water law, farmers can sign a notice of intent to implement best management practices – essentially promising to comply with water quality standards.

“This grants a “presumption of compliance,” regardless of whether they are actually meeting standards or not.

“…Doing away with that presumption of compliance, updating stormwater run-off standards to remove more nutrients, and strengthening local fertilizer ordinances can all help improve water quality.

“And then there is Lake Okeechobee.

“The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers created the Lake Okeechobee Regulation Schedule in 2008, and it was intended as an interim measure until repairs to the Herbert Hoover Dam were completed.

“Those repairs still are not done.

“The Corps expects them to be finished by 2022, but they have said they will not change the Schedule until the dam is completed.

“According to Florida’s director of the Center for Biological Diversity, the Schedule did not consider cyanobacteria and red tide, claiming it was unlikely that discharges from the lake caused harmful algal blooms, and did not analyze them any further.

“But discharges from the lake do cause problems.

“Rae Ann Wessel, natural resource policy director at the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation, refers to the issue of balancing the lake’s flow levels as “The Goldilocks Condition.”

“Propelled by gravity, Lake Okeechobee’s discharges travel across 75 miles of freshwater river and estuary and three lock and dam systems to reach the Gulf of Mexico.

“Too much flow from the lake washes valuable fish and oyster nurseries out into the Gulf, decimating the ecosystem.

“Too little flow chokes these habitats with salt.

“”When we don’t get enough flow into the system through the western lock, the water that is fed by tidal action from the Gulf up the river brings much more salinity than some of these habitats can tolerate,” Wessel said.

“Habitats like tapegrass, which provide a home for crab, fish, and oysters that filter feed and clean water naturally, are destroyed.

“”Not only do we lose the tapegrass, we also lose 100% of the oyster reef that is downstream, and those are filtering water for free. 50 gallons a day for a single oyster is a huge contribution to our water quality,” she said.

“In 2001, the South Florida Water Management District set a minimum flow level of 300 cubic feet per second.

“Scientists realized this forgot to account for inflows to the estuary coming downstream from Telegraph Creek and Orange River, so they adjusted the number to 450, Wessel said.

“”That’s important because it shows up in the Schedule, and every habitat analysis for every state and federal Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan project as a habitat metric. So if you’re meeting 450 cubic feet per second for the Caloosahatchee, it says you’re golden… and we know that’s just not true,” she said.

“A more ideal number is closer to 800, all the way up to 1,000 cubic feet per second, according to Wessel.

“The South Florida Water Management District recently set the flow level to 400 cubic feet per second, and the City of Sanibel gathered three other neighboring municipalities, including Cape Coral, to challenge that rule in administrative court, asking for more flows.

“That case is still awaiting a ruling.

“We’re doing oyster restoration and tapegrass restoration, but it’s not accounted for in the district’s analysis. They say the tapegrass is doing fine, but that’s because we keep going in and planting it,” Wessel said.

“With all of this in mind,… it is important for citizens to ask the Corps to address the regulations schedule as soon as possible, and to finish repairs to the dam by June 2020.

“”It can be done by then, and we need to demand it….”

“Wessel reminded everyone that it is not just Lake Okeechobee to blame for all our problems, because the watershed the discharges flow through to reach the Gulf is almost two Lake Okeechobees in size.

“”There are many times when we are getting no discharges from the lake, and we’re having harmful flows just from the estuary and river watershed. So keep in mind that when we talk about where the problems start, and where the solutions lie, it’s important to recognize that it’s all of us, we all contribute to it,” she said.

Important Addition to South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD)

sfwmd LOGO.jpgLocal water quality advocates were encouraged two weeks ago when Florida’s new Governor, Ron DeSantis took office and almost immediately issued a water policy order and requested that all board members of the South Florida Water Management District board resign.

This week, Gov DeSantis appointed outgoing Sanibel City Councilman Chauncey Goss to serve on the district’s 9-member panel. Chauncey has not only a keen connection to the island (yes, his Dad was Sanibel’s first Mayor), he has an impressive resume, having served in senior roles in politics both in the U.S. House and the White House. He is on the Board of Directors at the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation, Captains for Clean Water, Lee County Coastal Advisory Council, Lee County Parks & Recreation Advisory Board, Southwest Florida Community Foundation, and Charlotte Harbor National Estuary Program, among others. Last week, he announced that he would not seek re-election to the City council post he has served on since March 2015.

Following Goss’ appointment, the SFWMD released the following statement:

“The South Florida Water Management District appreciates Gov. Ron DeSantis’ leadership in making the restoration of Florida’s Everglades and the protection of its water resources such a high priority. His recommendation to allocate $625 million for state water resources projects like the Everglades Agricultural Area Storage Reservoir, as well as the actions laid out in his recent executive order, show that Gov DeSantis is leading the charge to restore, and protect Florida families, businesses, and the environment.”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity Jan 25 – Feb 1, 2019sancap GO MLS logo

Sanibel

CONDOS

4 new listings: Sandalfoot #1C1 2/2 $959K, Pointe Santo #E3 2/2 $889K, Sundial #P203 2/2 $929.9K, White Sands #25 2/2 $999K.

6 price changes: Spanish Cay #F7 1/1 now $259K, Sundial #I103 1/1 now $479K, Oceans Reach #4B1 1/1 now $699K, Island Beach Club #210B 2/2 now $769K, Gulfside Place #305 2/2 now $1.49M, Plantation Village #312 3/2.5 now $1.595M.

2 new sales: Sand Pointe #228 2/2 listed at $749K, Kings Crown #311 3/2 listed at $999K.

2 closed sales: Sundial #G206 1/1 $457.5K, Clam Shell #E 3/2.5 $940K.

HOMES

12 new listings: 747 Martha’s Ln 3/2 $559K, 4619 Rue Bayou 3/2 $699K, 2010 Wild Lime Dr 4/4 $749K, 405 Tiree Cir 3/2 $824.9K, 543 Hideaway Ct 3/2 $929K, 5659 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 2/2 $949K, 1010 Kings Crown Dr 3/3 $1.245M, 928 Beach Rd 4/3 $1.295M, 228 Violet Dr 4/2/2 $1.949M, 572 Kinzie Island Ct 5/5 $2.15M, 2391 Shop Rd 3/2.5 $2.174M, 1237 Isabel Dr 5/6.5 $2.895M.

9 price changes: 1805 Ibis Ln 2/2 now $535K, 984 Black Skimmer Way 3/2 now $549.5K, 1973 Wild Lime Dr 4/3 now $689K, 955 S Yachtsman Dr 3/2 now $799K, 1307 Par View Dr 3/3 now $999K, 641 Lake Murex Cir 4/3 now $1.0355M, 829 Birdie View Pt 4/3.5 now $1.19M, 6425 Pine Ave 4/3 now $1.595M, 1743 Venus Dr 4/3.5 now $1.699M.

7 new sales: 531 Piedmont Rd 3/2 listed at $439.5K; 529 Lake Murex Cir 3/2 listed at $749,947; 1236 Par View Dr 3/2.5 listed at $889K; Moonshadows #2E 2/2 listed at $895K (our buyer); 3351 Saint Kilda Rd 3/3 listed at $1.25M; 2640 Coconut Dr 2/2 listed at $1.375M; 5407 Osprey Ct 4/3 listed at $1.595M.

Image 4.jpg

Moonshadows looking from Sanibel River to Gulf of Mexico

2 closed sales: 4290 Gulf Pines Dr 3/2 $510K, 568 Sea Oats Dr 3/2.5 $730K.

LOTS

No new listings.

4 price changes: 1817 Long Point Ln now $309K, 5251 Indian Ct now $689K, 6505 Pine Ave now $779K, 6519 Pine Ave now $799K.

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

2 new listings: Beach Villas #5114 1/2 $412K, Beach Villas #2227 1/1 $539K.

2 price changes: Beach Homes #17 4/3 now $3.25M, Beach Homes #25 3/2 now $1.895M.

No new sales.

No closed sales.

HOMES

2 new listings: 14981 Binder Dr 3/3 $1.049M, 11501 Laika Ln 3/3 $1.595M.

2 price changes: 16596 Captiva Dr 5/5/2 now $6.979M, 17030 Captiva Dr 6/7.5 now $7.98M.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 1102 Tallow Tree Ct 5/4 half-duplex $2.8M.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.

Until next Friday, Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusanRoseatesAnhinga

Real Estate Scoop from Florida Realtors & Sanibel


i-wear-flip-flops-in-winterFlorida Realtors logoIt is a long-distance joint effort this week as SanibelSusan finishes up today at the Florida Realtors Mid-Winter Business Meetings in Orlando while teammates Dave, Elise, and Lisa keep things running smoothly on the island.

It is always rewarding to be part of the state leadership team. Though we only meet twice a year, much is accomplished in just a few meeting-packed days, while the networking and friendships made create invaluable resources and future referrals for years.

header_midwinter_2This business has changed so much since I got my real estate license almost 30 years ago, that just keeping up with the times can be challenging. To think that there are now over 400,000 real estate licensees in Florida, just the numbers are staggering. Last year, Florida real estate sales totaled $126.5 Billion. Also last year, Florida Realtors offered 1,158 courses with 35,235 students attending. Those are all record numbers.

Those numbers make it sound like peanuts that on Wednesday our state Audition Panel evaluated more prospective instructors to teach state-approved classes than we have ever done in a single day – a total of 48 live auditions and 12 written. Yesterday, our Curriculum Subcommittee also voted to approve, renew, update, and translate many classes.

Through the year, I occasionally am called upon to evaluate a written application to teach a class, or to perform a telephone interview with a prospective teacher. It’s satisfying, through the years, to watch some of these rookies turn into cracker-jack instructors, successful brokers, and even authors. One of them will Chair the state Professional Development Committee next year. Today, that Committee approved all of the instructors and class changes that the subcommittees recommended.

Another interesting aside from these Florida Realtors meetings are our common problems. As part of the Legislative Think Tank, the Resort and 2nd Home breakout group meeting yesterday shared the same difficulties being experienced in many areas. Those ranged from short-term and vacation rentals affected by such third party purveyors as AirB&B and VRBO, to similar changes in city/town/community regulations, to occupancy changes from water quality issues and the like.

Florida Realtors PAC continues to provide strong representation and lobbying in Tallahassee to protect your property rights and property values. (Wednesday night, the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors received two state awards for their 2018 member PAC participation. Our local district pals in Bonita Springs -Estero won an award too.)government_affairs_rpac_logo_home

In the technology and legal world, changes in rules on advertising, teams, and copyrights, plus phishing, spams, wire fraud, and new contract requirements, make attendance at these meetings so important in staying ahead of the curve and out of trouble. Thanks to my team for making it possible for me to be part of these meetings. I’ll be back on Sanibel tomorrow in time to show homes on Sunday.

The action posted in the islands’ Multiple Service this week follows a news item below. On the island, and echoed in Orlando, is that last quarter 2018 and 2019 business to-date is off, but expected to improve. Here, it usually happens when the islands are busiest February and March. That’s soon. The SanibelSusan Team is ready.

What Will Increase the Value of My Property?

Money tightRealtors® often are asked what improvements will increase the value of a property when it is time to sell.

In most cases, buyers want a property that is move-in-ready. Usually, a few interior updates will help. In considering those improvements, do not over-improve beyond your community’s reasonable resale value.

Probably the most desired are remodeled kitchens and baths. They also bring the biggest return on investment. If full renovations are not possible, instead freshen with light neutral paint, new appliances, updated light fixtures, and kitchen/bath hardware.

Having consistent quality flooring throughout also is a plus with today’s buyers. Classic timeless styles rather than trendy options usually produce the best results.

Keeping the roof, windows, HVAC system, pool including cage and equipment, and hot-water heater well maintained also are important.

sancap GO MLS logoSanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity January 18-25, 2019

Sanibel

CONDOS

5 new listings: Sundial #C410 1/1 $475.9K, Sundial #I401 1/1 $489.9K, Loggerhead Cay #471 2/2 $569K, Sanibel Arms West #K5 2/2 $579K, Sundial #J204 2/2 $793K.

6 price changes: Tennisplace #C32 2/1.5 now $305K, Sanctuary Golf Villages I #3-1 2/2.5 now $640K, Loggerhead Cay #233 2/2 now $729K, Sundial #A201 2/2 now $899K, Sanibel Surfside #231 3/3.5 now $1.395M, Cyprina Beach #1 3/3 now $1.745M.

2 new sales: Sundial #F206 1/1 listed at $429K, Nutmeg Village #103 2/2 listed at $795K.

1 closed sale: Sundial #J401 1/1 $561,750.

HOMES

9 new listings: 9228 Belding Dr 2/1.5 $529K, 9393 Peaceful Dr 3/2.5 $839K, 1559 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 $850K, 9454 Calla Ct 3/2 $950K, 1030 Kings Crown Dr 2/2 $998K, 1039 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 $999K, 1450 Royal Poinciana Dr 3/2.5 $1.248M, 2303 Troon Ct 3/3.5 $1.298M, 1653 Hibiscus Dr 3/2 $1.495M.

9 price changes: 693 Rabbit Rd 3/2 now $547K, 4619 Brainard Bayou Rd 3/2 now $627K, 1442 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 now $689K, 9052 Mockingbird Dr 3/2 now $699K, 749 Cardium St 3/2 now $699K, 3050 West Gulf Dr 3/2.5 now $849.9K, 335 Cowry Ct 4/3.5 now $999K, 6047 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 3/2.5 now $1.195M, 772 Birdie View Pt 3/3.5 now $1.295M.

2 new sales: 1740 Middle Gulf Dr 4/3 listed at $850K, 925 Whelk Dr 3/3.5 listed at $2.375M.

4 closed sales: 824 Birdie View Pt 3/3 $850K, 1433 Sanderling Cir 3/3 $1.025M, 1426 Causey Ct 3/2.5 $1.09M, 2622 Coconut Dr 5/3.5 $2.55M.

LOTS

1 new listing: 6217 Starling Way $1.4M.

1 price change: 3354 Barra Cir now $399K.

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

1 new listing: Bayside Villas #4112 1/2 $384,999.

No price changes.

3 new sales: Beach Villas #2538 3/3 listed at $909.9K, Lands End Village #1655 2/2 listed at $1.055M, Sunset Captiva #302 4/3 listed at $ 2.248M.

No closed sales.

HOMES

1 new listing: 16333 Captiva Dr 4/2/2 $2M.

1 price change: 56 Sandpiper Ct 2/2.5 now $874.5K.

No new or closed sales.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service.  Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.

Until next Friday! Signing off from chilly Orlando where it’s been into the 40’s & 50’s all day (that’s degrees F). Good thing I brought my winter flip flops. It hasn’t been much warmer on Sanibel.

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Another Sunny Sanibel Friday With Temps in Mid-70’s


210.JPGIt seems that SanibelSusan’s Friday island updates often begin with weather and traffic reports. Why should this week be any different? So, I’ve had my heat on at home at night for almost a week now and we often have kicked it on at the office first thing in the morning to take the chill off. Temperatures in the 50’s and 60’s are hardly a chill, particularly when looking at the national weather forecast and the snow expected to hit New England and the Midwest this weekend. We hope that those affected stay warm and safe.

scotch bonnet shell 01-15-19Usually those winter snowstorms affect Florida weather in some way, sometimes resulting in good shelling. Those doing the Sanibel Stoop continued to find special shells this week. Here’s a jumbo Scotch Bonnet collected on January 15th.

Here, the forecast for next week shows day-time temperatures in the mid-60’s to mid-70’s. With a low in the 40’s expected Sunday night (that could be our lowest of the year so far).

Island roadway traffic and business are still off compared to previous January’s. Today, traffic past the office is a little heavier with an Arts & Crafts Fair going on at The Community House. It’s going on there tomorrow too. Real estate business usually picks up in February, with the islands are at their busiest.

At the local Association of Realtors® meeting yesterday only a couple of sales were announced, but there were plenty of new listings and price reductions. A full caravan followed including our new listing at Lighthouse Point which got good feedback by both Realtors® and neighbors/island visitors. It’s great value, priced to sell quickly if you are interested in a beach-front 3-bedroom on the bay. (photos below)

The details on all of the islands’ Multiple Listing Service action since last Friday follow a few news items below.

Tonight is the Association’s annual Installation & Awards Banquet at The Sanctuary.

Florida Realtors® Mid-Year Business Meetings

header_midwinter_2.jpgNext week are the Florida Realtors Mid-Winter Business Meetings in Orlando where state leaders kick off the year. With that trip in mind, I’ve been watching Orlando forecasts too. Their forecast shows their daytime temperatures expected to be higher than here (80 degrees Saturday and 78 degrees Wed). But their nights are regularly into the 40’s.

Teammates Dave, Elise, and Lisa will be covering on-island while I’m away. The meeting schedule is consolidated this year, so I’ll be back on island Saturday. Wednesday, I again am sitting on the Audition Panel for Florida Realtors® instructors. We have a record number of 48 auditions scheduled during our all-day session. Thursday morning the Legislative Think Tank meets, as well as the Resort & 2nd Home Forum (where water quality and short-term rentals are on the agenda). Thursday afternoon, I have a Curriculum Subcommittee meeting in preparation for Friday’s Professional Development Committee meeting. With multiple meetings and events happening simultaneously, it’s always a productive invigorating time including great networking. Hard to believe this will be my 21st year serving. Today’s technology sure makes participating and doing business from afar easier now.

Florida Brokers Use New Tax Law as a Marketing Tool

bloomberg logoFrom Monday’s Florida Realtors® on-line:

“MIAMI – Jan. 14, 2019 – Florida real estate professionals are pitching the state’s tax benefits in places like New York, New Jersey and Connecticut – states where homeowners were hit the hardest by a sweeping tax law that capped deductions on state and local taxes since they have some of the highest income and property taxes. “What we’ve done is kind of double down on the Northeast because of the tax incentives,” says Daniel de la Vega, president of ONE Sotheby’s International Realty in Miami.

“Under the tax law, deductions for state and local taxes, including property taxes, are limited to $10,000. According to Jay Phillip Parker, CEO of Douglas Elliman Real Estate’s Florida operations, “If you’re looking at an ultra-high net worth individual or a very high-income employee, if they can make the move, there are real benefits.”

“The efforts appear to be gaining traction, with Redfin reporting an average 5% gain in sales prices for Florida luxury homes on a year-over-year basis in the third quarter. Moreover, Florida luxury home prices have outperformed the national average for four consecutive quarters. Over the same year-over-year period, luxury home sales in Florida edged up 6%, but declined 0.7% nationally.

“Cristobal Young, a Cornell University sociologist and author of “The Myth of Millionaire Tax Flight: How Place Still Matters to the Rich,” says that if you strip Florida out of the national data, evidence of rich people moving from high- to low-tax states essentially disappears.”

Source: Bloomberg (01/11/19) Levin, Jonathan

© Copyright 2019 INFORMATION INC., Bethesda, MD (301) 215-4688

2018 Was 3rd Year For Above-Average Catastrophes

Florida Realtors logoFlorida Realtors posted the below article on-line yesterday:

“CoreLogic’s annual Natural Hazard Report, which addresses the recent wildfires in California and severe rainfall- and hurricane-induced flooding throughout the nation, as the leading catastrophes in 2018.core logic logo

“Much like 2017, last year was an above-average year for hurricanes, flooding, wildfires and severe winds, the report concludes. It’s the 3rd year in a row for increased damage from disasters, which property insurance companies consider when requesting rate increases.

“The annual report analyzes hazard activity in the U.S. including events for Atlantic and Pacific hurricanes, flooding, wind, wildfire, earthquake and volcano, hail and tornado, as well as several international events including typhoons and cyclones in Japan, Oman, Hong Kong and the Philippines.

“”In 2018, the U.S. continued to experience damaging weather and natural catastrophes in high exposure areas, and in some instances, in regions that had been impacted in less than a year prior,” says Howard Botts, chief scientist, CoreLogic. “Hazards will always pose a real threat to homes and businesses and knowing exactly what that risk entails is critical to helping ensure sufficient protection from the financial catastrophes that so often follow natural disasters.”

“Report highlights

Flooding

In 2018, there were over 1,600 significant flood events that occurred in the U.S., 59% of which were flash flood-related.

“Residential and commercial flood damage in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia from Hurricane Florence is estimated at $19 billion to $28.5 billion, of which roughly 85% of residential flood losses were uninsured.

“Multiple states, including Texas, North and South Carolina, Maryland and Wisconsin, experienced 1,000-year floods; several 2018 floods occurred less than two years after an earlier problem, even though they’re considered 1,000-year flood events.

“Six percent of properties nationwide are within Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHA), and approximately one-third of those have flood insurance policies.

Atlantic hurricanes

“The 2018 Atlantic Hurricane season saw 15 named storms, eight of which were hurricanes. Two of these, Hurricanes Florence (Category 1) and Michael (Category 4), made landfall along the U.S., making 2018 the third back-to-back season of above-average hurricane activity in the Atlantic.

“Approximately 700,000 residential and commercial properties experienced catastrophic flooding and wind damage from Hurricane Florence, which is estimated to have caused between $20 to $30 billion in insured and uninsured loss.

“Michael is the strongest hurricane to make landfall in the Florida Panhandle since 1900 and the strongest hurricane to make landfall in the U.S. since Hurricane Andrew in 1992. It’s estimated to have caused $2.5 to $4 billion in residential and commercial insured loss from wind and storm surge.

Wildfire

“The number of acres burned in 2018 is the eighth highest in U.S. history as reported through Nov. 30, 2018.

A total of 11 western states had at least one wildfire that exceeded 50,000 burned acres; the leading states were California and Oregon, each with seven fires that burned more than 50,000 acres.

“The November 2018 Camp Fire in Northern California destroyed nearly the entire city of Paradise and brought damage or destruction to 18,804 structures.

“The Woolsey wildfire in the coastal community of Malibu destroyed more than 1,600 structures.

CoreLogic estimates that the combined total insured and uninsured loss for these two wildfires is between $15 billion and $19 billion.”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity Jan 11-18, 2019sancap GO MLS logo

Sanibel

CONDOS

5 new listings: Donax Village #10 1/1.5 $379K, Loggerhead Cay #582 2/2 $689K, Sandpiper Beach #303 2/2 $785K, Tarpon Beach #112 2/2 $1.149M, Atrium #207 2/2 $1.55M.

5 price changes: Tennisplace #D22 1/1 now $235K, Tennisplace #B22 2/1.5 now $309K, Sundial #H108 1/1 now $459K, Pointe Santo #B2 2/2 now $699K, Villas of Sanibel #A102 3/3 now $1.49M.

1 new sale: Bayview Village #2A 3/3 listed at $749K.

1 closed sale: Compass Point #232 2/2 $585K (our buyer).

compass point from beach

Compass Point from the beach

HOMES

5 new listings: 4755 Ruelle 3/3 $785K; 2441 Los Colony Rd 4/2.5 $898,997; 3351 Saint Kilda Rd 3/3 $1.25M; 5407 Osprey Ct 4/3 $1.595M; 4143 West Gulf Dr 4/3.5 $6.795M.

14 price changes: 1027 Sand Castle Rd 2/2 now $499K, 9248 Dimmick Dr 3/3 now $630K, 1441 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 now $699K, 721 Cardium St 3/2 now $745K, 1978 Roseate Ln 3/2 now $748.9K, 1225 Seagrape Ln 3/3 now $799K, 4760 Rue Helene 3/2 now $829K, 1656 Middle Gulf Dr 3/4 now $895K, 4787 Rue Helene 4/3 now $959K, 5422 Shearwater Dr 3/2.5 half-duplex now $989K, 1345 Eagle Run Dr 3/2.5 now $1.195M, 532 Sea Oats Dr 4/4 now $1.495M, 500 Kinzie Island Ct 3/3 now $1.499M, 784 Limpet Dr 4/3 now $1.789M.

7 new sales: 9431 Moonlight Dr 3/2 listed at $597K, 221 Robinwood Cir 3/2 listed at $679K, 678 Durion Ct 3/2 listed at $799K, 2479 Blind Pass Ct 3/2 listed at $874.9K, 1127 Buttonwood Ln 3/2.5 listed at $925K, 789 Pyrula Ave 4/2.5 listed at $999K, 1230 Ferry Rd 3/4 listed at $1.095M.

No closed sales.

LOTS

No new listings.

3 price changes: 5847 Pine Ave now $349,555; 0 Island Inn Rd now $849,555; 4767 Tradewinds Dr now $1.595M.

1 new sale: 4565 Bowen Bayou Rd listed at $189.9K.

No closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

1 new listing: Gulf Beach Villas #2112 1/1 $517.9K.

1 price change: Seabreeze #1253 3/3 now $1,799,999.

1 new sale: Beach Villas #2625 2/2 listed at $635K.

1 closed sale: Bayside Villas #5234 1/2 $389K.

HOMES

3 new listings: 11544 Wightman Ln 4/4.5 $2.395M, 15831 Captiva Dr 2/2.5 $4.15M, 16548 Captiva Dr 4/4 $4.5M.

3 price changes: 11535 Wightman Ln 4/4 now $1.849M, 11547 Laika Ln 4/4 now $2.395M, 16531 Captiva Dr 8/8 now $3.6M.

No new or closed sales.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.

dsc01361

Enjoy your weekend!

Until next Friday, Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Another Sunny Friday on Sanibel Island


Susan here with another Sanibel/Captiva update following our 1st full week in the office in 2019. With holiday families and visitors gone, it has been pretty quiet. Though there have been a couple of chilly windy mornings (yesterday and today), the weather has been mostly sunny to the delight of those here enjoying nature, beaches, waterways, and bike paths. On my way back to the office this afternoon, I snapped the below cellphone photos at the Fulgur Street beach access. It was a bright 71 degrees F, so clear I could see all the way to Naples along the eastern skyline. (By the way, I am wearing a jacket with sweater (& flip flops) but viewed some bikini-clad shellers on the beach.)

img_7362img_7363img_7364img_7365img_7367

The word on the street is that vacation rental bookings are off with some usually-faithful annual visitors choosing other winter destinations this year as a result of the broad summer/fall news about our water woes.

With today’s technology and recent worries about water conditions, business, and travel, I click on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife’s red tide status updates as often as I click on the Sanibel travel cams to see the easiest route home. Yesterday when some Realtor® pals in Sarasota indicated a rise in the red-tide organism there, I quickly checked again. Though a new report will be issued later today, below is their mid-week (January 9, 2019) report:

“Current Conditions – The red tide organism, Karenia brevis, persists in Southwest Florida. This past week, K. brevis was present in samples from and/or offshore of Hillsborough, Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte, Lee, and Monroe counties, with bloom concentrations observed only in and offshore of Sarasota County. Additional details are provided below.

“Over the past week in Southwest Florida, K. brevis was observed at background concentrations offshore of Hillsborough County, very low to low concentrations in Manatee County, background to high concentrations in or offshore of Sarasota County, background to low concentrations in or offshore of Lee County, and low concentrations offshore of Monroe County.

“Fish Kills – No fish kills suspected to be related to red tide were reported this week (please see https://myfwc.com/research/saltwater/health/fish-kills-hotline).

“Respiratory Irritation – Respiratory irritation was reported over the past week in Manatee and Sarasota counties.

“Forecast – Forecasts by the USF-FWC Collaboration for Prediction of Red Tides for Pinellas to northern Monroe counties predict southwestern transport of surface waters and southeastern movement of subsurface waters over the next four days.”

Sanibel/Captiva Islands Real Estate

Sanibel realtors logoThe Realtor® Caravan Meeting yesterday at the local Association of Realtors® had the heaviest attendance in recent memory with the room full of Realtors® and Affiliates ready for a busy “season”. Plenty of new listings and price reductions were announced, but not many sales.

Knowing we are all worried about how the water issues will impact business this year, below is a summary of the closed sales posted in the local Multiple Listing Service last year and the year before compared to this year for the 3-month period Oct 11 through Jan 11. Current inventory numbers were added to illustrate number of units on the market.

Sanibel Captiva
Condos Homes Lots Total Condos Homes Lots Total
For Sale 109 228 63 400 42 39 3 126
2018/2019 18 31 2 51 2 7 0 9
2017/2018 36 34 6 76 6 3 0 9
2016/2017 29 35 10 74 7 5 0 12

The action posted since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service follows some good news articles below. Yes, there is good news.

Governor Ron DeSantis Announces Major Water Policy Reform

desantis logoThe good news is that though it has only been days since his inauguration, Florida’s new governor already is acting on water quality. The below news release and Executive Order were posted on-line yesterday by Governor DeSantis’s office:

“Today, Governor Ron DeSantis signed Executive Order 19-12 (Achieving More Now for Florida’s Environment), implementing major reforms to ensure the protection of Florida’s environment and water quality. “Our water and natural resources are the foundation of our economy and our way of life in Florida,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “The protection of water resources is one of the most pressing issues facing our state. That’s why today I’m taking immediate action to combat the threats which have devastated our local economies and threatened the health of our communities.”

“The order calls for:

  • $2.5 Billion over the next four years for Everglades restoration and protection of water resources (a $1 Billion increase in spending over the previous four years and the highest level of funding for restoration in Florida’s history).
  • The Establishment of a Blue-Green Algae Task Force charged with focusing on expediting progress toward reducing the adverse impacts of blue-green algae blooms now and over the next five years.
  • Instruction to the South Florida Water Management District to immediately start the next phase of the Everglades Agricultural Area Storage Reservoir Project design and ensure the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers approves the project according to schedule.
  • The Creation of the Office of Environmental Accountability and Transparency charged with organizing and directing integrated scientific research and analysis to ensure that all agency actions are aligned with key environmental priorities.
  • The Appointment of a Chief Science Officer to coordinate and prioritize scientific data, research, monitoring and analysis needs to ensure alignment with current and emerging environmental concerns most pressing to Floridians.”

Florida Governor Asks SWFL Water Management District Board Members to Resign

miami herald logoPosted on-line late-day yesterday by the “Miami Herald”.

“Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, two days into office, discusses executive orders he signed to address the red tide issues impacting the state.

“After a whirlwind day visiting both coasts to announce sweeping measures to address the state’s environmental woes, Florida’s new governor demanded water managers overseeing efforts to fix the Everglades step down on Thursday.

“At an afternoon meeting in Stuart, Gov. Ron DeSantis said he wanted the nine-member board at the South Florida Water Management District to resign because he believed they failed to understand the toll endured by communities by repeated algae blooms triggered by dirty lake water released into coastal rivers. “I just want good people who are willing to do the right thing,” he said.

“Board members infuriated the new governor in November when they voted to extend a lease to sugar farmers two days after the election. News of the pending vote was posted the night before a district field meeting in Miami, with less than 12-hours notice. U.S. Rep. Brian Mast, R-Palm City, who headed up DeSantis’ environmental transition team, raced down to the meeting and urged board members to put off the vote to give the new governor time to review the matter. But they refused.

“ “Brian calls me at 8:30 at night and said there’s this meeting in the morning about this lease that might impact the reservoir,” DeSantis recalled Thursday. “I don’t know why it was handled that way. I think it really upset a lot of people.”

“At the time, chairman Federico Fernandez, a Miami attorney, said the board was obliged to extend the lease by the state law authorizing the reservoir. The law, passed under former Gov. Rick Scott, which also dramatically reduced the reservoir from 60,000 acres to 17,000 acres, said sugar farmer should be allowed to continue farming until it interfered with construction. The lease, which could be canceled after 20 months when the district expected design plans to be completed, allowed district crews on the site to begin prep work.

“On Jan. 7, the district began relocating about 800,000 cubic yards of rock to be used to construct the reservoir.

The district is also awaiting news from its partner on the project, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, about design plans. In June, the Corps issued an 86-page review raising questions and saying it needed more information before agreeing to split the $1.8 billion cost.

“Fernandez had said he did not believe the governor could remove board members before their terms expired. He declined to comment Thursday. He was scheduled to be part of a panel on restoration efforts at the annual Everglades Coalition conference this weekend in the Keys but will be replaced by a district staff member.

Board member Melanie Peterson along with district general counsel and chief of staff Brian Accardo sent letters to Scott earlier this month saying they were resigning. The nine-member board has staggered appointments. Terms for three, including Miami-Dade tomato farmer Sam Accursio, end in March.

“On Thursday, DeSantis sent letters asking for the board members’ resignations after Mast recommended it.

“We want to make sure we have everybody in the boat rowing the same way,” he said.

“In his letter, DeSantis thanked board members but said “voters spoke clearly in support of our bold vision for action.”

“DeSantis said he also plans on holding back many last-minute appointments to state positions made by Scott, a move viewed as an insult to the incoming governor.

““For all the midnight appointments that require Senate confirmation, I’m going to be pulling them back,” he said. “Some of the people in that batch are people I know and respect and you may see me reappoint them … but we’re going to be pulling them all back.”

“Scott said Thursday in Washington that he did not take the move personally. “Every governor has the opportunity to make their own decisions. I’m proud of what we got accomplished. I’m glad that Gov. DeSantis cares about water issues. He’s walking into a totally different situation than I was” when Florida was in the midst of recession. “Governors have the right to make appointments. That’s what they ought to do,” he said. “They ought to find who they believe are the best people.””

(Tampa Bay Times staff writer Steve Contorno contributed to this report.)

You Can Sell an Inherited Property in Probate – But Do It Right

Sun sentinelIn real estate sales, we often run into situations where a family heir wants to sell a property. Good info about this was posted on-line Monday on Florida Realtors®. The author is Gary M. Singer, the article came from the “Sun Sentinel” (Fort Lauderdale, FL). Mr. Singer is a Florida attorney and board-certified as an expert in real estate law by the Florida Bar. He practices real estate, business litigation and contract law from his office in Sunrise, Fla. He is the chairman of the Real Estate Section of the Broward County Bar Association and is a co-host of the weekly radio show Legal News and Review. He frequently consults on general real estate matters and trends in Florida with various companies across the nation. Here’s the question posed and his answer.

“Question: I inherited two lots in Florida from my mother who recently died. Her estate was probated in South Carolina, and she left everything to me. The Florida tax bills still show the property is in her estate. How do I transfer the lots to my name? – Barbara

“Answer: To answer your question I need to review the concept of jurisdiction. A court’s jurisdiction refers to its power to make and enforce legal decisions and judgments. For a court’s decision to be binding, it must have jurisdiction over either the person who is being affected, known as “in personam,” or over the property being ruled on, known as “in rem.”

“The South Carolina probate court had jurisdiction over your mother’s estate because she had her primary residence there. It could probate her assets, such as bank accounts, jewelry, and even her South Carolina home to you because it had the jurisdiction to do so.

“However, only the court in the state where real estate is located has power over that property. This means that the South Carolina court could not do anything with the Florida lots because it lacked “in rem” jurisdiction.

You will need to open a secondary probate, called “ancillary probate,” in the county where the lots are located.

“This probate will deal only with the Florida lots and will be much easier and less expensive than the full probate administration you already had to do.

To ensure that you do not create the same issue for your heirs, you should look into estate planning methods such as titling the property in a life estate or by forming a living trust to avoid the need to probate any out-of-state properties.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service sancap GO MLS logoActivity Jan 4-11, 2019

Sanibel

CONDOS

8 new listings: Tennisplace #D33 1/1 $237.5K, Island Beach Club #P1A 2/2 $649K, Lighthouse Point #111 2/2 $649K, Lighthouse Point #128 3/2 $699K (our listing) (photo below from master bedroom), Sand Pointe #132 2/2 $724.9K, Bayview Village #2A 3/3 $749K, Heron at The Sanctuary II #2B 3/3.5 $797K, Sundial #E205 2/2 $1.395M.

Master View.jpg

6 price changes: Tennisplace #C23 2/1.5 now $319K, Sundial #H209 1/1 now $535K, Snug Harbor #312 3/2 now $668K, Pointe Santo D32 2/2 now $739K, Island Beach Club #310A 2/2 now $749K, Island Beach Club #210B 2/2 now $775K.

2 new sales: Loggerhead Cay #143 2/2 listed at $799K, Shorewood #3C 3/2 listed at $1.449M.

1 closed sale: Sand Pointe #117 2/2 $787K.

HOMES

8 new listings: 993 Fish Crow Rd 3/3 $699.9K, 1212 Sand Caste Rd 3/2 $749K, 566 Boulder Dr 3/2/2 $799K, 760 Cardium St 3/2 $895K, 955 S.Yachtsman Dr 3/2 $895K, 1230 Par View Dr 4/2.5 $1.095M, 1243 Sand Castle Rd 4/4 $1.15M, 466 Sea Oats Dr 4/4 $1.395M.

11 price changes: 984 Black Skimmer Way 3/2 now $565K, 5260 Caloosa End Ln 3/2 now $597K, 1973 Wild Lime Dr 4/3 now $699K, 3017 Turtle Gait Ln 3/2 now $699K, 1677 Sabal Sands Rd 3/2 now $795K, 697 Birdie View Pt 3/2 now $799K, 6123 Starling Way 3/2.5 now $999K, 1307 Par View Dr 3/3 now $1.05M, 1126 Harbour Cottage Ct 3/2 now $1.169M, 1248 Par View Dr 4/4.5 now $1.299M, 1133 Golden Olive Ct 3/3.5 now $2.432M.

4 new sales: 998 Fish Crow Rd 3/2 listed at $550K, 5280 Ladyfinger Lake Rd 3/2 listed at $789K, 3136 Twin Lakes Ln 3/2 listed at $899K, 243 Daniel Dr 4/3.5 listed at $1.394M.

3 closed sales: 498 Surf Sound Ct 3/3 $840K, 542 N.Yachtsman Dr 2/2 $920K, 6412 Pine Ave 3/2.5 $1M.

LOTS

No new listings.

4 price changes: 4565 Bowen Bayou Rd now $189.9K, 6411 Pine Ave now $358K, 5251 Punta Caloosa Ct now $550K, 1226 Isabel Dr now $1.495M.

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

1 new listing: Bayside Villas #5303 3/3 $649K.

No price changes, new, or closed sales.

HOMES

1 new listing: 14980 Binder Dr 4/4 $2.795M.

4 price changes: 55 Sandpiper Ct 3/2 now $949K, 15133 Captiva Dr 3/3 now $3.125M, 16531 Captiva Dr 8/8 now $3.8M, 16814 Captiva Dr 2/2.5 now $4.9M.

No new or closed sales.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.

Until next Friday, enjoy your weekend.

Wishing you wonderful sunny weather, too!

From sunrises to sunsets!

Susan Andrews aka SanibelSusan

sanibel-island-sunset

 

It’s a Seashell Kinda Christmas! Merry! Merry!


Before embarking on today’s weather report, here is a little shell art. The gingerbread man was in front of Coquina Beach condos earlier this week. Probably washed away by now. The others from past years, but fitting for the holiday season.

sanibel shell art 2 12-18-18.jpg

As The SanibelSusan Team counts down to the Christmas holiday and hopefully more real estate action, it has been interesting to have a winter storm pass through Florida. I liken it to a northern snowstorm, but without the white stuff and the cold. With westerly winds blowing on shore off the gulf beginning about noon yesterday, early flooding was reported at The Castaways cottages (the Santiva area) as I read email warnings from my local landscaper and the City, about the expected high wind, waves, erosion, and possible tornadoes in the forecast – all of this while the air conditioning still on at the office.

Santa looking for junoniaToday temperatures haven’t gotten out of the 70’s. The rain has become sporadic, but the heavy wind continues with palms down and debris reported in some beachside locations. Social media has shown videos of gulf waters crashing through some beach access paths along West Gulf Dr. I hope it is rolling in junonias.

Teammate Elise just saw it posted that electricity is out in Naples and the Sunshine Skyway Bridge over Tampa Bay is closed (following reported 78 mph winds). Yikes!

SanibelSusan Realty

With the team off on extended holiday both Monday and Tuesday, Elise today is busy printing extra fliers and checking listing occupancies so we are ready for arriving visitors looking to make a last minute Christmas real estate purchase.

santa kiting 2015Teammate Dave, on the other hand, has already scooted out and is busy networking with his kiteboarding buddies on the causeway, I expect we’ll see them on the evening news later, as wind like today hasn’t happened here in a very long time.

Teammate Lisa will be in the office tomorrow, while I am covering Sunday and Monday. As I make showing appointments for next Wednesday morning, it seems that many island offices will be closed for the long weekend. Here’s wishing them all and you a very Merry Christmas!

Below are a couple of news items before the action posted in the Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service since last Friday.

Real Estate in a Digital Age

Having been involved in the islands’ transition of real estate listing info from the old 3”x5” index cards, to listing books, and then to the internet, it was fun to participate in the task force that just picked a new MLS provider for our Association of Realtors®. Technology changes always take time and training, so won’t be occurring until after “season”, later in 2019. Since the details about our new provider haven’t been issued to our members yet, suffice it to say that the new features and capabilities of what is coming will blow the socks off anything you have seen or used before. Users both consumers and Realtors® will be “wowed”. With that in mind, an email today from the National Association of Realtors® with the below article, seemed timely:

“The world we live in today is a digital one and searching for a home is no different. Buyers now have apps that let them search by location and neighborhoods. Online searching maximizes the ability to compare and contrast homes on the market by selected features. Most of this is done before a potential home buyer connects with a real estate agent.

“In the Real Estate in a Digital Age report, we examine the process home buyers go through in the initial online search and how REALTORS® are connecting with customers in the digital space.

“In 2018, buyers worked with an agent 87% of the time to find their home, so trust in a REALTOR® is still king. While the initial process may start online, home buyers turn to the advice from a trusted real estate agent.

In addition to the home buying process, REALTORS® also utilize technology in their everyday business practices. Staying up to date with new technology is important, but also cited as one of the biggest challenges for firms in the next two years.

“Over 90% of real estate firms have websites, and the most common feature on their websites were property listings.

“Along with web use, REALTORS® are also using their mobile devices for a multitude of different activities, with the primary being to communicate with their clients.”

Condo Boards Don’t Always Understand Florida Law

This below article posted on-line Dec 17 by Florida Realtors® has a few disclosures, but also contains some interesting information. Here is the article in total:

“By Richard D. DeBoest

“Dec. 17, 2018 – Question: I am an owner in a condominium. I have made a request to see the individual unit owner assessment ledgers for owners who are delinquent in the payment of assessments. The board has denied my request and they claim I am not allowed to see this information. Is this true? – J.B., Hutchinson Island

Answer: No, it is not true. You are legally entitled to this information. The individual assessment ledgers of all owners are official records of the association. Both Statutes 718 (Condominium Associations) and 720 (Homeowner Associations) provide that most official records of the association must be made available for inspection and copying within 10 working days of a written request.

There are certain official records that are not allowed to be given to owners. These records include medical records, credit card numbers, bank account numbers and social security numbers, but there is no exception for individual owner assessment ledgers. If an association intentionally fails to provide access to the records within the time provided, the owner is entitled to $50 a day up to $500 a penalty.

“Question: I wanted to organize a “meet the candidates” night in our condominium clubhouse for local political candidates in the area. When I talked to the board about this, I was told this is illegal because the association common elements cannot be used for political purposes. Is this true? – S.F., Vero Beach

“Answer: No, it is not true. Section 718.123, Florida Statutes expressly provides that “no entity or entities shall unreasonably restrict any unit owner’s right to peaceably assemble or right to invite public officers or candidates for public office to appear and speak in the common elements, common areas and recreational facilities.” If the board violates this law, you could sue the association to enforce your rights.

“Question: If the association sends information out to owners via e-mail, am I entitled to copies of the other owners’ e-mail addresses? Also, can I refuse to receive information via e-mail and, if I do, does the association have to send the information to me in the traditional way? – K.J., Palm City

“Answer: An association’s use of e-mail to communicate with homeowners is common, but very often the use of electronic transmission is not done in accordance with the law.

“First, and foremost, it is important to understand that while both the Florida Condominium Act (Chapter 718 Florida Statutes) and the Homeowners Association Act (Chapter 720 Florida Statutes) allow associations to send official communication to the owners via electronic transmission, it may only do so if the owner chooses to receive official communications electronically.

“Second, if some owners elect electronic transmission and some do not, the association must send official communication in two different forms. Thus, it becomes cumbersome to keep track of each owner’s preference.

Most associations use e-mail for “casual” communication about the goings on of the association but still use regular mail for things with legal implications such as notice of meetings, election ballots, notice of covenant violations, warning letters and the like. This, however, presents another problem when dealing with an official records request made by an owner.

“All e-mail addresses kept by the association are official records BUT only the e-mail addresses kept for those owners who have chosen e-mail as their official form of communication are available to other owners who make an official records request. All other e-mail addresses are not to be made available to owners who make official records requests. As such, if the association keeps e-mail addresses in the official records, it must segregate the e-mail addresses between those persons who have chosen e-mail as the official form of communication and those that have not.

“Finally, if the association does use e-mail for “un-official” casual communication with the owners, I believe an owner who does not have or use e-mail could complain that he or she is being treated differently and unfairly. Although I know of no condominium arbitration cases or other rulings on this issue, I suspect that a court or an arbitrator would rule in favor of the unit owner on this issue.

“The bottom line is that for all official communication and communication that has legal significance, the association should use the traditional U.S. mail. For lesser items, e-mail and posting on the association’s website is, for now, acceptable.

“Richard D. DeBoest II, Esq., is co-founder and shareholder of the Law firm Goede, Adamczyk, DeBoest & Cross, PLLC. The information provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice.

“The publication of this article does not create an attorney-client relationship between the reader and Goede, Adamczyk, DeBoest & Cross, PLLC or any of our attorneys. Readers should not act or refrain from acting based upon the information contained in this article without first contacting an attorney, if you have questions about any of the issues raised herein. The hiring of an attorney is a decision that should not be based solely on advertisements or this column.

“Editor’s note: Attorneys at Goede, Adamczyk, DeBoest & Cross, PLLC., respond to questions about Florida community association law. The firm represents community associations throughout Florida and focuses on condominium and homeowner association law, real estate law, litigation, estate planning and business law.

© 2018 Journal Media Group, Richard D. DeBoest”

Christmas Dining on The Islands

It’s getting pretty last minute, but visitors continue to ask what island restaurants are open on Christmas. Here’s a short list, but please call to be sure there is room for you if you don’t already have a reservation:

  • Bubble Room
  • Captiva House (in Wakefield Room) (buffet 11:30 a.m. to 8: p.m.)
  • Crow’s Nest at Tween Waters
  • Doc Ford’s Captiva (11 a.m. to 9 p.m.)
  • Island Cow (7 a.m. to 8 p.m.)
  • Island Pizza ( 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.)
  • Keylime Bistro (8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Normandie at West Wind Inn (8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. & 4:30 to 7 p.m.)
  • R C Otters (10 a.m. to 8 p.m.)
  • Sand Dollar at Sanibel Island Beach Resort (7 to 11 a.m. breakfast buffet, 5 to 9 p.m. dinner)
  • Sanibel Café (7 a.m. to 2 p.m.)
  • Sanibel Grill (4 to 11 p.m.)
  • Sea Breeze Café at Sundial (7 to 11 a.m., buffet dinner seatings at 1 p.m., 3 p.m., 5 p.m., & 7 p.m.
  • Thistle Lodge (holiday buffet 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
  • Timbers (4 to 8 p.m.)
  • Traditions

For quick eats, the following also will be open on Christmas:

  • Dairy Queen
  • Gepetto’s (2 to 9 p.m.)
  • Huxter’s Market & Deli
  • Joey’s Custart (5 to 9 p.m.)
  • Pinocchio’s (8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Sanibel Sprout (11 a.m. to 7 p.m.)

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity Dec 14-21, 2018sancap GO MLS logo

Sanibel

CONDOS

10 new listings: Sundial #F206 1/1 $429K, Blind Pass #D205 2/2 $490K, Sundial #B407 1/1 $529K, Lighthouse Point #229 3/2 $719K, Loggerhead Cay #192 2/2 $799K, Shell Island Beach Club #7C 2/2 $825K, Surfside 12 #A3 3/2 $829K, Sundial #K103 2/2 $935K, Clam Shell #E 3/2.5 $949K, Wedgewood #305 3/3.5 $1.695M.

2 price changes: Island Beach Club #320F 2/2 now $825K, Pointe Santo #C43 3/2 now $1.035M (our listing, view below).

Roof Deck View a

1 new sale: Sundial #H309 1/1 listed at $455K.

2 closed sales: Blind Pass #C102 2/2 $455K, Shell Island Beach Club #5D 2/2 $760K.

HOMES

11 new listings: 6447 Pine Ave 3/2.5 $625K, 945 S.Yachtsman Dr 2/2 $649K, 5256 Punta Caloosa Ct 3/2 $695K, 1217 Par View Dr 3/3 $779K, 702 Durion Ct 3/2 $849.9K, 9094 Mockingbird Ln 4/3.5 $945K, 569 Lighthouse Way 3/2 $1.295M, 4166 Dingman Dr 4/4 $2.495M, 5145 Joewood Dr 5/4.5 $2.997M, 1238 Isabel Dr 4/4.5 $3.495M (our listing, views below), 4355 West Gulf Dr 4/4.5 $6.395M.

SA 12-6-18 toward Pine IslandSA 12-6-18 toward causeway

 

11 price changes: 1304 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 now $552K, 659 Donax St 2/2 now $585K, 5260 Caloosa End Ln 3/2 now $647K, 721 Cardium St 3/2 now $795K, 3941 Coquina Dr 3/2 now $879K, 205 Hurricane Ln 3/2 now $1.089M, 5842 Pine Tree Dr 3/2 now $1.149M, 2984 Wulfert Rd 3/4 now $1.25M, 243 Daniel Dr 4/3.5 now $1.394M, 532 Sea Oats Dr 4/4 now $1.575M, 1206 Bay Dr 4/4.5 now $3.499M.

5 new sales: 568 Sea Oats Dr 3/2.5 listed at $749K, 1433 Sanderling Cir 3/3 listed at $1.089M, 1426 Causey Ct 3/2.5 listed at $1.099M, 6412 Pine Ave listed at $1.175M, 4689 Rue Belle Mer 5/6.5 listed at $6.995M.

4 closed sales: 1190 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 $558K, 1304 Eagle Run Dr 3/3 $1.025M, 1150 Seagrape Ln 3/2 $1.22M, 3790 West Gulf Dr 3/2.5 $1.5M.

LOTS

3 new listings: 2319 Wulfert Rd $199K, 3013 Poinciana Cir $249K, 1219 Par View Dr $374.9K.

2 price changes: 2307 Wulfert Rd now $199K, 5170 Sea Bell Rd now $324.9K.

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

No new listings.

1 price change: Captiva Shores #8B 3/2.5 now $1.398M.

No new or closed sales.

HOMES

2 new listings: 11555 Wightman Ln 3/2 $3.849M, 16405 Captiva Dr 8/7/2 $6.2M.

3 price changes: 41 Oster Ct 2/2.5 now $1.028, 16825 Captiva Dr 3/2.5 now $2.695M, 1124 Longifolia Ct 4/5 now $3.9M.

No new or closed sales.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.

Merry Christmas from Sanibel Islands!

Until next Friday, Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

P.S. I sold a house once on Christmas Day & would love it do it again, just please make it after brunch. I’ve got the family coming for that! Enjoy your holiday!

Christmas Lighthouse cropped

Sanibel lighthouse 2018

Counting Down to Christmas Island-Style


It’s SanibelSusan reporting that it has been another fun week on sunny, though at times chilly, Sanibel and Captiva Islands. This is the time of the year when it’s always fun to see what folks are wearing. When the temperatures dip down into the 50’s and 60’s at night, locals are happy the next morning to dig out their rarely-used jackets, sweaters, shawls, scarves, and boots, while vacationing visitors in tank tops, shorts, and flip flops also are smiling broadly. It’s easy to pick out the tourists! This afternoon, it’s a breezy 77 degrees!

Luminary 2018 bannerThe many palm trees festooned with twinkling lights add to the holiday happiness too. This year, the City expanded their tunnel of lights along the bike path across the street from SanibelSusan Realty. Adding a bench seat and 2018 Luminary sign has made it a popular photo op spot. It’s really festive and quite striking to stroll through after dark.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors®

Yesterday, was the local Association of Realtors® monthly membership breakfast – a little earlier than usual thanks to the holidays. Our Association’s Administrative Assistant, Megan Rose, posted some outstanding sunset pix this week. She said I could borrow some to post here. (I hope you enjoy them too. Thanks, Megan.)

Causeway sunset dec 2018 2causeway sunset dec 2018

What’s Happening At CROW

crow-logoThe speaker was Dr. Heather W. Barron, DVM, Medical & Research Director at CROW (The Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife). CROW is a teaching hospital and visitor education center dedicated to saving wildlife through veterinary care, research, education and conservation medicine. Each year, CROW cares for thousands of wildlife patients including hundreds of species of sick, injured and orphaned wildlife in its veterinary hospital, which is one of the nation’s leading rehabilitation facilities for native and migratory wildlife. They also offer educational fellowships and externship programs for undergraduate students, and internship programs for veterinarian graduates.

As you can probably imagine, this has been an unusually busy year for CROW. We are so lucky to have them here, educating us and visitors, as well as taking care of wildlife and supporting conservation and research. Here is one thing that Dr. Heather mentioned that really stuck in my mind. We all need to do our part, because “there is no Planet “B”.”

Bear in mind that CROW has been around since the late 60’s and Dr. Heather is a no-nonsense mother of three who has worked practicing and teaching wildlife medicine for over 20 years. She is a board-certified avian specialist and a licensed wildlife and sea turtle rehabilitator, and she tells it like it is. Some other tidbits:

Animal population around the world, the U.S. and Florida is changing. “Pythons have been documented as close as Estero.” Research also shows that there probably are somewhere between “35 and 60 coyotes on the island.” They don’t always stay here, but probably swim back and forth from the mainland and Pine Island.

Iguana population also is up here, as is that of the marsh bunnies. Most of us like the cute little bunnies, but Dr. Heather said that probably means that next year the population of hawks and other animals that prey on rabbits will be up.

She also said, “Personally, I wouldn’t eat any local seafood.” Though Sanibel is one of the most pro-environment conservation-conscious communities in the country – being downstream of areas that are not, really hurts us. The long-lasting effects of red tide and blue-green algae are just now being evaluated. We cannot depend on local, state, or federal governments or health departments to advise us of what they don’t know. We all need to be part of the solutions!

Caravan

Following the speaker, in typical December fashion, the Caravan property announcements included plenty of new listings and some price reductions. The details on those (or the action posted in the Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service this week) follow a couple of news items below. I probably don’t need to share that we all groaned when not a single new sale was announced. We know it’s the holidays, but it’s always positive news when we hear of colleagues’ successes.

Our new listing at 1050 White Ibis Dr (photos below) was one of the 15 properties that was open for viewing after the Caravan meeting. My teammates took inventory while there then. We want to be ready when the right buyer comes along.

SanibelSusan Realty Associates

Thank goodness, we are a flexible team. With seven BIG ARTS Chorus singing gigs since last Friday, it has been a whirlwind week for me. Part of the fun of this business is not knowing what will happen next, regardless of whether it’s from a phone call or a walk-in.

Short Term Rentals

henderson-franklinWith so much in the news lately about Airbnb rentals, it was interesting to learn that at a recent Sanibel City Council meeting three issues were added to the Department of Community Services’ planning goals. Those issues are: transportation, political signage, and short-term vacations rentals.

Then I saw the below article posted online this week by Kaylee Tuck of Henderson Franklin Attorneys. Betcha the same applies to Sanibel’s 28-day rental minimum for residential communities.

“Limited Vacancy: Florida Appeals Court Rules in Favor of the City of Miami’s Airbnb Rental Ban

“Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal handed down a win for local governments on Wednesday when the Court reversed a previous Circuit Court injunction that barred the City of Miami from enforcing a ban on short-term rentals in residential areas of the City.

“Background – In 2017, the City of Miami adopted a resolution that affirmed the City’s zoning regulations “as they pertain to short-term/vacation rentals,” and stated that neighborhoods zoned as T3 were limited to permanent residential use, which precluded rental accommodations per night, week, or anything less than one month.

“Notably, the T3 zone encompassed most of the City’s single-family houses and duplexes. When residents who had been using Airbnb to rent their properties spoke against the resolution, residents were directed to state their name and address for the record, and the City Manager made the comment that the City was “now on notice” of those who spoke against the City’s code and that he would direct his staff to enforce the City code.

“Airbnb took the issue to the Circuit Court, claiming that the 2017 resolution was preempted by a 2011 state law that prevents cities and counties from passing ordinances prohibiting or unduly regulating vacation rentals.

“Airbnb and individual residents also filed for an injunction to stop the City from enforcing the resolution against the residents who spoke out against it at the City Commission meeting.

“After hearing arguments, the Circuit Court issued a temporary injunction against the City which stopped the City from enforcing its vacation rental ban, as well as prevented the City from requiring residents to give their name and address if they wished to speak during the public comment portion of a City Commission meetings, stating that the requirement had a chilling effect on freedom of speech.

Holding – Fast forward to December 5, 2018, and the Third District Court of Appeal reversed the Circuit Court’s orders.

“In reversing the Circuit Court, the 3rd DCA stated that the injunction halting the City’s vacation rental ban was overbroad and not preempted by state law because, although Miami’s land use code was updated in 2016 and the resolution passed in 2017, the material provisions of the code were adopted in 2009 and, therefore, were not preempted by the 2011 state statute. Simply stated, this decision means the City of Miami may now enforce its zoning regulations on short term vacation rentals.

“The 3rd DCA also reversed the injunction that stopped the City from requiring speakers at public hearings to give their names and addresses. The 3rd DCA stated that preventing the City from requiring speakers to give their name and address at any public hearing was overbroad, and that the City has a legitimate interest in knowing the speaker’s name and address for various purposes, such as whether the speaker is actually a resident of the City.

Take-Away – Airbnb and short-term vacation rentals have been long contested by hotels, neighbors, city officials, and many others. This ruling may be the first in a long line of litigation stemming from municipal and county enforcement against such short-term rentals. Therefore, residents and homeowners are encouraged to know the laws of their jurisdiction before renting out their home through Airbnb in order to avoid fines, citations, or any other remedy a city or county has authority to pursue under local law. If you have any questions regarding short term vacation rentals, please feel free to contact me at kaylee.tuck@henlaw.com or by phone at 239-344-1164.”                 

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity Dec 7-14, 2018sancap GO MLS logo

Sanibel

CONDOS

5 new listings: Loggerhead Cay #351 2/2 $649K, Loggerhead Cay #282 2/2 $695K, Loggerhead Cay #223 2/2 $699K, Heron at The Sanctuary III #1B 3/2.5 $775K, Shorewood #3C 3/2 $1.449M.

2 price changes: Tennisplace #C32 2/1.5 now $310K, Tennisplace #C23 2/1.5 now $329K.

2 new sales: Sundial #J401 1/1 listed at $589,985, Shell Island Beach Club #5D 2/2 listed at $799K.

No closed sales.

HOMES

11 new listings: 651 Donax St 4/2 duplex $539K; 9431 Moonlight Dr 3/2 $597K; 9444 Cotten Ct 3/2.5 $725K; 3350 Barra Cir 3/2 $729,927; 9307 Dimmick Dr 3/2 $749K; 743 Windlass Way 3/2 $765K; 1223 Par View Dr 3/2 $839K; 1050 White Ibis Dr 4/3.5 $899K (our listing); 446 Surf Sound Ct 3/2 $1.059M; 1230 Ferry Rd 3/4 $1.095M; 927 Strangler Fig Ln 3/3.5 $1.215M.

4 price changes: 325 East Gulf Dr 1/1 now $548K, 1325 Par View Dr 3/3 now $665K, 2479 Blind Pass Ct 3/2 now $874.9K, 478 Sea Oats Dr 3/3 now $1.05M.

2 new sales: 4436 Waters Edge Ln 3/3 listed at $729K, 1838 Buckthorn Ln 3/2 listed at $1.295M.

4 closed sales: 746 Nerita St 3/2 $717K, 718 Oliva St 3/2 $725K, 544 Sea Oats Dr 4/4 $1.15M, 794 Conch Ct 3/2.5 $1.255M.

LOTS

1 new listing: 9056 Mockingbird Ln $399K.

1 price change: 1817 Long Point Ln now $323K.

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

1 new listing: Beach Homes #11 4/3 $2.995M.

No price changes or new sales.

1 closed sale: Beach Cottages #1408 2/2 $1.16M.

HOMES

1 new listing: 1114 Schefflera 4/3.5 $2.65M.

1 price change: 16447 Captiva Dr 7/6/2 now $3.395M.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 11525 Chapin Ln 4/4 $1.4M.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.

Until next Friday, enjoy your holiday festivities wherever you are.

How about this shell tree?

shell tree 2018

Or my favorite mailboxes which are always decorated for the holidays, across the street from each other – the dolphin & the manatee!

dolphin 2018Manatee 2018

Gotta love Sanibel at Christmas! Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Thanksgiving & Real Estate on Sanibel & Captiva Islands


It’s Susan with another Friday report about Sanibel & Captiva Islands. It sure seems like these weeks are flying by quickly. The island is busier, with traffic increasing with more probably to come with the pre-holiday weekend here.

As predicted last week, a mini-cool front arrived late yesterday. Though nothing like the inches of snow we heard about from callers in the Northeast and Midwest, local temperatures got down into the high 50’s last night. Today, it is expected to reach just 70 degrees F. Convertible tops are down and windows are open again! But do not worry, island Thanksgiving visitors, predictions are that it will be back into the 80’s by Sunday, continuing right through next week.

Teammate Dave held an Open House this afternoon at our gulf-front listing at 1351 Middle Gulf Drive where the beachfront area just had its annual trim.  With the sliders open, below are a couple of his cell phone photos of the fantastic water views. With nearly 3000 sq. ft. of living space, it has a huge great room, 3 bedrooms, 3 full baths, a large updated white bright kitchen, separate utility room, plus a family room with beachside patio.

Tweek 5Tweek 4Tweek 6

Sanibel & Captiva Real Estate Happenings

Sanibel realtors logoThere was light turnout yesterday morning at our local Association of Realtors© weekly meeting. Announcements included a few properties that will be coming-on-the-market-soon and a couple of price reductions. One sale was announced too – an improvement over last week. Eight Sanibel east-end properties were open during the following 9 a.m. to noon Open House Caravan, including our new listing at Signal Inn.

More info about the postings since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service follow a couple of news items below.

Thanksgiving Celebration at The Community House

Thanksgiving 4 some

First organized in 1991, the first Sanibel Thanksgiving Celebration took place on Thanksgiving eve. To make attendance easier, it was moved to the Sunday before the holiday. That tradition continues with this year’s event coming up this weekend, Nov 18, at The Community House beginning at 6:45 p.m. Donations from attendees, including non-perishables, will go to the local F.I.S.H. Food Pantry.

Free and open to the public, the celebration brings the community together with music, fun, and fellowship. The program lasts about an hour and includes a proclamation from Sanibel Mayor Kevin Ruane, prayer by City Manager Judie Zimomra, and Thanksgiving presentation by representatives from local houses of worship. Guest speaker, F.I.S.H. Board Chair Nicole McHale also will provide a report on how “water” affected their work this summer. There usually are a few pilgrims and Indians in attendance too.

Other event highlights include music and audience sing-a-long. You can be sure that I’ll be there again with the BIG ARTS Community Chorus. The Seahorse Chorale from the Sanibel School too will take the stage. The program concludes with a combined piece we will perform together called “Give Thanks”, followed by cider (provided by Bailey’s General Store), cookies (from Jerry’s Foods), and ice cream samples (from Pinocchio’s).

The Launch

the launch 2018It is going to be a busy weekend, with this event tomorrow evening, also at The Community House. “The Launch” is raising funds for island conservation initiatives. In March, Coastal Keepers (formerly the Sanibel-Captiva chapter of START or Solutions to Avoid Red Tide) held its first “The Launch” (once called Cracker Fest). This weekend’s event includes a sustainable dinner, both live and silent auctions, and a reveal of the group’s new conservation initiatives in the works.

Coastal Keepers’ goal is to increase awareness of the impacts we have on beaches, water quality, and marine habitats, and to help citizens become more effective stewards of the ocean. Through business and community partnerships, Coastal Keepers recently encouraged Sanibel City Council to pass an ordinance on the sale and distribution of disposable plastic straws. With that initiative wrapping up, they now are overseeing a “Bring Your Own Bag” campaign where free reusable canvas bags are distributed to the public. Thousands of bags have already been given out in efforts to build a more environmentally-friendly island.

More info at www.sancapcoastalkeepers.org.

Did Florida’s Environment Win or Lose in the 2018 Midterms?

News Press logoA lengthy article in today’s Fort Myers “News-Press” on line has some interesting observations and an update by Rae Ann Wessel, Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation (SCCF) Director of Natural Resources. Read the complete article at https://www.news-press.com/. Here are some excerpts:

“Did Florida’s Environment Win or Lose in the 2018 Midterms?

“With uncertainty still clouding the elections’ outcome, that remains an open question.

“The fragility and importance of the state’s natural systems headlined the lead-up to the recent midterm vote, as red tide and toxic blue-green algae (cyanobacteria) fouled both Gulf and freshwater throughout the region, slaughtering sea creatures, sickening residents and snuffing hospitality jobs.

“Candidates quickly organized town-hall meetings. Nonprofits marched. State agencies stayed on the sidelines to the dismay of activists.

“Yet once it was time to vote, “the algae and the red tide issues sort of dissipated,” said FGCU political science professor Peter Bergerson. “I think the appearance of the president at the very end dominated the turnout.”

It’s not that the environment didn’t matter to voters, Bergerson said; it just mattered less than other issues. “If you look at the exit polls, it wasn’t top-of-mind,” he said. “Jobs, the economy and immigration were. I think that (conservative voters’) attachment to traditional party loyalties overcame their commitment to the environment.”

“For many water champions, gloom was the order of the day after….

“Others urged advocates not to lose sight of what progress has been made.

SCCF logo“We have to remember we are living now in a time when there are whole series of Everglades ecosystem restoration projects coming to fruition and ready to be finishing up,” said Rae Ann Wessel, natural resources policy director for the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation. “It seems like molasses for those of us who have been living it, but you have to celebrate that those things are coming together.”

“Another positive to come from the water crisis is “all these concerned people coming out of the woodwork, groups forming like Captains for Clean Water,” Wessel said. “I’ve said, ‘Don’t let a good disaster go to waste.’ We need to be pulling together a set of expectations for the new administration, whoever they may be.”

“And ultimately, Wessel said, as long as residents stay engaged, there will be progress.

“We can’t just hand off our democracy. You can’t just trust that once somebody is elected, they’re going to do the right thing because they got elected,” she said. “It’s up to you and me, it’s up to all of us. We will get the government that we allow … So now, we keep the pressure up, we become partners, we become educators, we praise them when they do something that serves the public interest and we call them out when they do something that is against the public interest.”….”

Fed May Raise Interest Rates at Slower Pace Than Predicted

Florida Realtors logoPosted yesterday on FloridaRealtors© online and credited to 2018 Information, Inc. (Forbes (11/13/18) and Bloomberg (11/14/18):

“The Federal Reserve is forecasting U.S. interest rate increases well into 2020, but the financial markets believe policymakers could rethink their tightening policy as soon as early next year.

“Observers point to a slowdown in economic growth from this year’s stimulus-boosted pace. TS Lombard’s Steven Blitz believes that a December rate hike will most likely occur, but he sees 2019 as more questionable.

“If employment growth starts to slow towards a neutral pace early next year and the unemployment rate creeps up as a result, does the Fed keep going just because wages are accelerating? We doubt it,” he says. “The noted slowdown in business spending will only be further negatively impacted by the strong dollar and higher real rates.”

TS Lombard’s prediction: The Fed will suspend its rate-hike campaign in March 2019.

“The Fed sees interest-rate increases as a tool to fight inflation, but the latest report for October found little evidence of inflation despite strength in the economy and wages.

“The consumer-price index (CPI) increased 0.3% in October from the prior month, the Labor Department said Wednesday; year-to-year, overall consumer prices climbed 2.5% in October, compared with 2.3% in the 12 months that ended in September.

“Excluding the volatile categories of food and energy, the core CPI rose 0.2% last month, largely in line with recent trends, and 2.1% from a year earlier.

“”These are pretty steady inflation prints,” with “nothing in here that argues inflation is going to overshoot,” says Omair Sharif, senior U.S. economist at Societe Generale. Also, there’s little to concern policy makers, so they’ll “continue to stay gradual” with interest-rate hikes, he said.””

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity Nov 9-16, 2018

sancap GO MLS logoSanibel

CONDOS

4 new listings: Sundial West #C310 1/1 $469,750; Signal Inn #4 1/1 $499.9K (our listing, shown below), Sanibel Surfside #126 2/2 $895K, Oceans Reach #3D2 2/2 $989K.

1 price change: Sanibel Surfside #116 2/2 now $969K.

2 new sales: Sundial East #T301 2/2 listed at $845K, Tamarind #B202 2/2.5 listed at $1.749M.

2 closed sales: Seashells #43 2/2 $318K, Sunset South #6D 2/2 $611K (our listing).

HOMES

9 new listings: 328 Palm Lake Dr 3/2 $687K; 1586 Century Ct 3/2.5 $689K; 9448 Cotten Ct 3/2 $875K; 686 East Rocks Dr 3/2 $889K; 1056 S Yachtsman Dr 3/2 $899K; 1309 Eagle Run Dr 3/2.5 $1.175M; 1838 Buckthorn Ln 3/2 $1.295M; 5250 Caloosa End Ln 3/2.5 $1,594,500; 1520 Angel Dr 5/5.5 $1.799M.

8 price changes: 1325 Par View Dr 3/3 now $670K, 9446 Beverly Ln 3/3.5 now $739K, 1677 Sabal Sands Rd 3/2 now $810K, 1740 Middle Gulf Dr 3/3 now $899K, 1656 Middle Gulf Dr 3/4 now $909.9K, 534 N Yachtsman Dr 3/2 now $999K, 772 Birdie View Pt 3/3.5 now $1.339M, 4809 Tradewinds Dr 3/3.5 now $1.999M.

4 new sales: 498 Surf Sound Ct 3/3 listed at $885K, 1304 Eagle Run Dr 3/3 listed at $1.1M, 794 Conch Ct 3/2.5 listed at $1.295M, 3790 West Gulf Dr 3/2.5 listed at $1.699M.

3 closed sales: 6093 Henderson Rd 3/2 $450K, 1350 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 $650K, 1286 Par View Dr 3/3 $935K.

LOTS

3 new listings: 1318 Par View Dr $425K, 3308 Saint Kilda Rd $529,555; 1729 Jewel Box Dr $999.9K.

1 price change: 0 Dinkins Lake Rd now $268.5K.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 9232 Dimmick Dr $170K.

Captiva

CONDOS

3 new listings: Bayside Villas #5234 1/2 $399K, Beach Villas #2538 3/3 $909.9K, Beach Cottages #1409 3/2 $1.25M.

No price changes, new sales, or closed sales.

HOMES

No new listings.

1 price change: 11505 Gore Ln 5/5 now $1.795M.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 38 Sea Hibiscus Ct 3/2 $950K.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.

turkey-pilgirm-in-autumn-leavesEnjoy your Thanksgiving!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Thanksgiving words

Sanibel & Captiva Halloween Fun Begins Today


It’s another happy Sanibel Friday with islanders looking forward to a cool front arriving tonight, with morning temperatures expected to dip into the high 60’s. That should make it more comfortable for runners in tomorrow’s FISH 10K Race and the Halloween festivities beginning this weekend.fish 10K 2018

Island Events

  • 14th Annual Island Paws Howl-o-Ween Bash – today Fri Oct 26 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Over Easy Café Patio includes pet costume contest & fundraiser to benefit Captains for Clean Water.
  • 10th Annual 10K Race 4 FISH – Sat Oct 27, begins at 7:30 a.m. & ends at The Community House. I’m the Sanibel Square roadway volunteer, near the finish line. Give a wave if you are running!
  • Hallo-‘Tween Party & Costume Contest – Sat Oct 27 hosted by ‘Tween Waters Island Resort & Spa: Crow’s Nest open 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. with dinner 5-10 p.m., Gatlin 9:30 p.m. to 1 a.m.; Canoe & Kayak open for dinner 5 to 9:30 p.m.; Wakefield Room DJ/Dance Party 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. Wristbands $10 (21 and up after 10 p.m.)
  • Trunk or Treat at Sanibel Community Church – Wed Oct 31 from 4 to 6 p.m.
  • Center 4 Life Annual Trash & Treasures Sale – Sat Nov 3 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Island Seniors, 2401 Library Way.
  • Flip Flop Family Scavenger Hunt – Sat Nov 3 to benefit Sanibel Sea School scholarship program. Starts at 10:30 a.m. at Sanibel Congregational Church
  • Sanibel Blues & Jazz FestivalSun Nov 4 in Bailey’s Backyard from 12 to 7 p.m. Tickets at Bailey’s General Store & https://www.eventbrite.com/e/sanibel-blues-jazz-festival-tickets-50608163379
  • 37th Annual Taste of The Islands to benefit CROW, Sun Nov 11 at Sanibel Community Park from 12:30 to 5 p.m. www.crowclinic.org/articles/37th-taste-of-the-islands
  • The Launch Sat Nov 17 Coastal Keepers fundraiser at The Community House from 6 to 10 p.m. More info & tickets at www.sancapcoastalkeepers.org/the-launch

 

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors®

Sanibel realtors logoThe islands’ Association of Realtors® annual meeting last night included a report by President Dustyn Corace summarizing another good year for our healthy organization. Progress in the continued fight for better water quality and several fund-raising events for community charities were recognized, with contributors thanked for their help and participation. Congratulations to Realtors® George Kohlbrenner and Connie Walters, both elected to the incoming Board of Directors.

 

Our last benefit of the year called “Fall Into Christmas” for “Friends Who Care” followed the meeting with many unwrapped toys, gift cards, and cash donations collected for this wonderful organization. It’s founder, islander Tom Louwers provided a brief history. Beginning in the early 80’s when Sanibel law enforcement knew of a family in need of a hand-up, today, this charitable non-profit quietly helps island residents and employees cope with a range of small emergency needs. Through the year, it assists anonymously with such items as school supplies and gas cards, while over the holidays, particularly at Christmas it provides with holiday meals and presents from Santa delivering them directly to those in need. Funded by the generosity of islanders and organizations like the Association of Realtors®, every dollar collected goes directly to the people it serves.

2018-10-26 Fall Into Christmas

Some of the “Fall Into Christmas” elves and guests are shown above with Leslie Adams (center) who catered the yummy appetizers, while desserts shown were from Totally Baked on Sanibel). Service, libations, & decor were by the elves (chaired by Realtor Kelly Huguenin & Amanda Curran Corace) & Association staff. Tom Louwers with “Friends Who Care” is on the far right next to Association CEO, Bill Robinson.

SanibelSusan Realty Associates

SanibelSusan Realty from Periwinkle WayIt was quiet at our office this week and our open houses didn’t yield many lookers. Like our colleagues, we look forward to reverting to the weekly Thursday morning caravan schedule next week.

These Open Houses of new listings (Thursday mornings from 9 a.m. until noon) will continue through “season” and are an island tradition.

The action posted in the Sanibel and Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service since last Friday follows a couple of news items below.

“Ding” Darling Wins America’s Best Restroom

This week, the refuge’s “Learning Lavatories” were voted American’s Best Restroom in Cintas Corporation’s nationwide contest. With nine other finalists, online votes were counted to select the country’s top-rated restroom. This contest is in its 17th year and certainly is a unique way to feature a facility. To become a finalist, judging criteria includes cleanliness, visual appeal, innovation, functionality, and unique design elements. The refuge restrooms certainly led in several of those categories.

The Refuge restroom project was completed about a year ago and outside includes a mother and baby manatee sculpture (made of recycled bike tires) and floor-to-ceiling paintings depicting images of refuge wildlife. Inside, built to green standards, they feature an underwater motif with mangrove photo-tile murals and wildlife sculptures. Stall doors are wrapped in close-up professional photos of refuge birds, while educational teaser messages encourage visitors to learn more.

Ding bathroom

Positive Sea Turtle News

loggerhead_sea_turtle_baby_blogThough Southwest Florida water conditions late this summer generated plenty of negative news, it was a good season for sea turtles nesting on Sanibel/Captiva and their hatchlings. According to SCCF’s (Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation) Sea Turtle Program Coordinator and as reported today in the “Island Sun”: “This year’s nesting season was actually pretty good. We’ve had four record-breaking seasons in a row, and while we didn’t set any records this year, it was an above average season.”

Nesting season runs from mid-April until the end of October. According to 2018 statistics compiled by SCCF, a total of 721 sea turtle nests were laid in 2018, compared to a total of 871 laid during 2017. An estimated 38,579 hatchlings emerged from the nests and entered waters surrounding Sanibel and Captiva. “…hatchlings swim like crazy the first seven to 10 days of their lives before they start eating; they feed from the yolk sac, which gives them the energy to get far out into the gulf. In fact, FWC (Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission) says that hatchlings may be the lone glimmer of hope in an otherwise horrible red tide season.” The agency requests that if the public witnesses sick, distressed or dead wildlife, they should call FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-3922 (press 7 for the operator).

Thanks to the many island sea turtle program volunteers and SCCF staff members who in addition to their daily beach patrols, which begin at dawn, collect trash and debris left on island beaches. For more information or to adopt a sea turtle next to to www.sccf.org/our-work/sea-turtles.

Average Mortgage Rates Edge Up – 30-year at 4.86%

Florida Realtors logoFlorida Realtors® on-line posted the below article yesterday (Oct 25) by The Associated Press:associated-press-logo

“Long-term U.S. mortgage rates edged slightly higher this week amid continued anxiety in financial markets as interest rates rise.

“Home borrowing rates remain at their highest levels in more than seven years, with the key 30-year rate approaching 5%. Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday the rate on 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages ticked up to an average 4.86% this week from 4.85% last week. A year ago, it stood at 3.94%.

“The average rate on 15-year, fixed-rate loans rose to 4.29% this week from 4.26% last week.

“Anxiety over rising interest rates, which stem from strength in the economy, has buffeted financial markets in recent weeks and spilled over into the housing market.

“Stocks have swooned over the last three weeks as investors worried about interest rates, as well as trade tensions between the U.S. and China, and slowing economies outside the U.S. As of Wednesday, the S&P 500 index had plunged 9.4% in just three weeks, with two separate six-day losing streaks. It hasn’t had a streak of losses that long since November 2016.

“The combination of higher borrowing costs and increasing home prices has made homeownership less affordable.

“Sales of new U.S. homes plunged 5.5% in September, the fourth straight monthly drop as the housing market cools, the government reported Wednesday. The annual rate of home sales has dropped 15.3% since May, eliminating much of the strength in sales from the first five months of 2018.

“Builders had assumed that a stronger economy would boost sales, yet a greater share of new construction is going un-purchased.

“Interest rates on Treasury bonds, which have climbed to seven-year highs in recent weeks, were steady this week. The yield on the key 10-year Treasury note, which can influence mortgage rates, was at 3.14% Wednesday, down from 3.15% last week.

To calculate average mortgage rates, Freddie Mac surveys lenders across the country between Monday and Wednesday each week.

“The average doesn’t include extra fees, known as points, which most borrowers must pay to get the lowest rates. The average fee on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages was unchanged from last week at 0.5 point. The fee on 15-year mortgages also held steady, at 0.4 point.

“The average rate for five-year adjustable-rate mortgages rose to 4.14% from 4.10% last week. The fee remained at 0.3 point.”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity Oct 19-26, 2018

sancap GO MLS logoSanibel

CONDOS

7 new listings: Tennisplace #C23 2/1.5 $339K, Blind Pass #G201 2/2 $479K, Mariner Pointe #842 2/2 $650K, Sand Pointe #228 2/2 $749K, Sand Pointe #117 2/2 $799K, Sunset South #5D 2/2 $1.189M, Cyprina Beach #1 3/2.5 $1.795M.

3 price changes: Sundial West #D304 1/1 now $399K, Island Beach Club #320F 2/2 now $747.5K, Compass Point #183 now 2/2 now $1.25M.

2 new sales: Seashells #43 2/2 listed at $329K, Cottage Colony West #132 1/1 listed at $634.9K.

2 closed sales: Pointe Santo #C34 1/1 $450K, Snug Harbor #121 3/2 $1.099M.

HOMES

4 new listings: 401 Raintree Pl 3/1.5 $549K, 223 Southwinds Dr 3/2 $699K, 498 Surf Sound Ct 3/3 $885K, 2385 Wulfert Rd 4/5 $1.399M.

7 price changes: 531 Piedmont Rd 3/2 now $449.5K, 1325 Par View Dr 3/3 now $675K, 707 Cardium St 3/2 now $849K, 1747 Jewel Box Dr 3/2 now $1.049M, 1433 Sanderling Cir 4/3 now $1.089M, 1426 Causey Ct 3/2.5 now $1.099M, 599 Lake Murex Cir 3/3.5 now $1.675M.

4 new sales: 1717 Atlanta Plaza Dr 2/2 listed at $420K, 1236 Sand Castle Rd 2/2 listed at $565K, 256 Daniel Dr 3/2 listed at $799K, 1035 S Yachtsman Dr 5/4.5 listed at $999K.

5 closed sales: 4542 Bowen Bayou Rd 3/2 $410K, 976 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 half-duplex listed at $715K, 1521 Wilton Ln 3/2 listed at $690K, 1043 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 $715K, 1528 San Carlos Bay Dr 3/3 $1.6M.

LOTS

No new listings or price changes.

1 new sale: 978 Main St listed at $179.9K.

No closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

No new listings, price changes, or new sales.

1 closed sale: Beach Cottages #1407 2/2 $1.12M.

HOMES

No new listings or price changes.

1 new sale: with contingencies: 11525 Chapin Ln 4/4 listed at $1.499M.

1 closed sale: 14860 Mango Ct 5/4 $1,698,500.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.

Dearie Trick or Treaters-colorUntil next Friday, remember at SanibelSusan Realty, it’s all about treats – no tricks here! Happy Halloween!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan