It’s a Happy Friday 13th at SanibelSusan Realty

Another Friday is here following a week on Sanibel & Captiva Islands with little rain, but plenty of sunshine, breezes, and low humidity. Many locals and visitors have commented about how, compared to last year, May occupancy is down. Those traveling our roadways/shared-use-paths and visiting restaurants/shops appreciate the reprieve. Betcha things pick up again once schools are out and summer vacations begin.

Real Estate Scoop

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® – Yesterday was the first 2022 bi-weekly Caravan Meeting at the local Association of Realtors®. Attendance was light. No new listings were announced, no price reductions, and just one property was open for Caravan viewing (Blind Pass #D201 for $709K). See the details of the action since last Friday in the island MLS after a couple of news items below.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Specialist Designation – Tuesday, there was an Association Professional Development Committee meeting. As we finalize the 2022 education events and speakers, it was great to hear that several members already have signed up for this year’s SCIS (Sanibel & Captiva Islands Specialist) classes. Offered each summer (this year, from June 8 to 24), this designation provides training specific to Realtors® working the island market. Well over half of the association membership has completed the classwork (12 modules), earning the designation. Recertification, which requires reattending several new classes, is required every three years. For the 10th year, SanibelSusan will be teaching the Resort & 2nd Home Market module. I am updating the curriculum now and today received my photo props.

2022 NAR Hall of Fame – Last week at the National Association of Realtors Legislative Meetings just outside DC, RPAC major investors were recognized. Those Realtors® have contributed more than $25K to the Realtors® Political Action Committee which since 1969 has helped elect candidates protecting property rights and promoting the industry. New Hall of Fame inductees for their contributions through 2021 were recognized at this event and their names added by plaque on the rooftop of the National Association of Realtors Washington DC building. The 2022 poster below shows Florida’s current Hall of Fame members. When I was initially inducted in 2017 for contributions through 2016, there were only 42 Florida Hall of Famers. Today there are 142. (If you look at the poster, designees are shown by year and alphabetically. My photo (4th row, 4th from left) is so old, I was still a brunette.) To remain on the Hall of Fame, major investors must continue to contribute at least $1K/year to RPAC. I’ve touted before how much RPAC funds, through the years, have helped real estate issues here, from build-back to beach re-nourishment to insurance issues, and more. I’m proud to continue as a Hall of Famer.

At SanibelSusan Realty – We are happy to report that our phones started ringing again and we had a couple of walk-ins this week. Several of the inquiries were from owners thinking of selling, asking for advice on what we think will happen with the market in the weeks/months to come. As often as we share economist projections and try to be smart with recommendations, we honestly don’t know. Today even though the islands have thinned out and snowbirds are heading north, supply still is much lower than demand. Whether buying or selling, if the question is: should we wait? From a business perspective, the answer is no. With world events, the economy, and pandemic changes, who knows what will happen tomorrow, certainly not this Realtor®. Sometimes, it just makes sense to eliminate the emotion and look at real estate for what it really is, often the highest valued item in your portfolio. We look forward to helping more buyers and sellers. We also had a closing today which was both our listing and our sale. Those are special. Thanks to Superior Title for their weeks/months of extra follow-up, needed to get it done.

Hirdie Girdie Gallery Closing for Summer

Tomorrow, Saturday, May 14, is the last day that the Hirdie Girdie Gallery at 2490 Library Way is open for “season” (from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.). It then closes for the summer and will reopen on October 4. To contact any artists during this down-time, send them a message through the “Contact” tab at

2022 Florida Sales Tax Exemptions & Holidays

May 14 – Aug 14, 2022– Children’s Books – Tax exemption on children’s books including board books (ages 0-2), picture books (ages 2-7), beginning reader books (4-8), chapter books (ages 5-10), middle-grade books (ages 8-12).

May 28 – Jun 10, 2022 – Disaster Preparedness – The following items are exempt from the state sales tax & county discretionary sales surtaxes: portable self-powered light source ($40 or less); portable self-powered radio, two-way radio, or weather-band radio ($50 or less); a tarpaulin or other flexible waterproof sheeting ($100 or less) and supplies necessary for evacuation of household pets including portable kennels or pet carriers ($100 or less); bags of dry pet food weighing 15 or fewer pounds ($30 or less) or pouches of wet pet food ($2 or less per container).

Jul 1 – 7, 2022 – Freedom Week – Event admissions, boat and water activity supplies, camping, fishing, and general outdoor supplies, residential pool supplies, as well as sports equipment if purchased during this week are exempt from the state sales tax and county discretionary sales surtaxes.

Jul 25 – Aug 7, 2022 – Back-to-School – Sales tax exemption on all qualified school supplies, shoes, and uniforms.

Sep 3 – 9, 2022– Tool Time – The following items are exempt from the state sales tax and county discretionary sales surtaxes: hand tools ($50 or less); power tools ($300 or less); power tool batteries ($150 or less); work gloves ($25 or less); safety glasses ($50 or less); protective coveralls ($50 or less); work boots ($175 or less); tool belts ($100 or less); duffle/tote bags ($50 or less); tool boxes ($75 or less); tool boxes for vehicles ($300 or less) industry text books and code books ($125 or less); electrical voltage and testing equipment ($100 or less); LED flashlights ($50 or les); shop lights ($100 or less).

Jul 1, 2022 – Jun 30, 2023 – Energy Star – A one-year sales tax exemption on all certified Energy Star appliances and products.

Jul 1, 2022 – Jun 30, 2023 – Baby & Toddler Clothing; Diapers – A one-year sales tax exemption for the retail sale of children’s diapers, as well as baby & toddler clothing & shoes, primarily intended for children ages 5 or younger. Does not include watches, watchbands, jewelry, umbrellas, or handkerchiefs.

Jul 1, 2022 – Jun 30, 2024 – Impact-Resistant Doors & Windows – A two-year state sales tax exemption on the retail sales of impact-resistant windows, doors, & garage doors.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity

May 6-13, 2022



5 new listings: Blind Pass #D201 2/2 $709.7K, Pointe Santo #E21 2/2/2 $1.325M, Pelicans Roost #302 2/2 $1.389M, Sanddollar #B301 2/2 $1.699M, Gulfside Place #101 3/3 $2.695M.

2 price changes: Pointe Santo #C26 2/2 now $1.095M, Pointe Santo #D41 2/2 now $1.399M.

1 new sale: Sanctuary Golf Villages I #3 2/2.5 listed at $1.198M.

1 closed sale: Sanibel Moorings #1042 2/2 $821K.


3 new listings: 2010 Wild Lime 4/4 $1.1M, 1985 Wild Lime Dr 3/2 $1.299M, 4640 Rue Belle Mer 3/3 $2.495M.

1 price change: 9076 Mockingbird Ln 3/2 now $949K.

3 new sales: 6471 Pine Ave 2/2 listed at $949K, 9405 Beverly Ln 3/2 listed at $1.395M, 5075 Joewood Dr 4/4.5 listed at $4.49M.

6 closed sales: 5307 Ladyfinger Lake Rd 3/3 $968.5K, 1105 Skiff Pl 3/2 $1.095M, 661 Anchor Dr 3/2 $1.355M, 247 Daniel Dr 3/2.5 $1.447M, 1243 Sand Castle Rd 4/4 $1.6945M, 836 Angel Wing Dr 3/2 $1.875M.


No new listings, price changes, or new sales.

4 closed sales: 2438 Wulfert Rd $339K, 845 Pyrula Ave $550K, 490 Sea Oats Dr $660K, 860 Lindgren Blvd $925K (our listing & sale).

860 Lindgren Blvd



1 new listing: Tennis Villas #3117 1/1 $585K.

No price changes, new or closed sales.


No new listings.

1 price change: 1106 Tallow Tree Ct 3/3 now $3.9M.

No new or closed sales.


Nothing to report.

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

Until next Friday, Susan Andrews aka SanibelSusan

Springtime on Sanibel & Captiva

It is Susan with another Friday update. Teammates often think I report too much about weather and traffic. In my defense, that is easy to do in the winter when the island is packed with visitors because the weather is so much better here than in some chilly areas. This week, I am changing things up. There will be no confirmation that since it still is high “season”, island weather is wonderful and traffic heavy.

Below are a couple of news items, followed by the first quarter sales statistics for both islands, then the action since last Friday posted in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service. Supply and demand, like always, continue to control the market.

First a couple of photos from the spring flower explosion at my house. The gardenia bushes are popping and smell wonderful, while the bougainvillea and beach roses always make me smile. I hope you enjoy them too! Sorry I can’t include the aroma.

Island Ecology for New Residents

The Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation is offering their last “welcome walkabout” for this season on Wednesday, April 13 at 10 a.m. If you are a new property owner on the islands – or would simply like to learn about what makes the islands special, join this walking tour to learn about the unique plants and animals, the islands’ steeped conservation history, and current challenges in keeping the islands a sanctuary. Register here; a $5 donation is suggested.

Prices Tripled in 13 U.S. Cities Since 2000 – Two in Florida

Posted Wednesday, April 6, online at FloridaRealtors®, the below article is sourced to Alix Martichoux, WCBD, Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc.

“In two Fla. cities, Miami and Tampa, prices rose more than 200% in a little over 20 years – No. 8 and No. 9 in the U.S. for price increase percentages.

“SAN FRANCISCO – The cost of housing – much like everything else – has gone way up over the past year. Low inventory and low interest rates have thrust the median price of a home in the U.S. up by nearly 20% in a single year.

“But the latest jump is just an acceleration of what’s been happening for 20 years. Most major cities have seen home prices increase substantially since 2000, with many seeing home values double or even triple.

“In some cities, the typical home value has more than tripled. San Francisco, for example, had a typical home value of $356,800 in 2000, according to data analyzed by real estate brokerage Clever; in 2022, the typical home value is nearly $1.4 million – a 290% increase, or nearly quadruple the value 22 years ago.

“San Francisco is often held up as the most extreme example of a housing market gone wild, but it’s not the only city where home values rose astronomically, even with falling home prices during the Great Recession around 2010.

“Clever analyzed the median sale price of homes in the 50 largest metro areas around the country and found 13 cities saw home values more than triple since 2000. The 13 cities where home values have gone up by more than 200% – i.e. tripled – since 2000 are:

  1. San Francisco (290% increase)
  2. Los Angeles (280% increase)
  3. Riverside, Calif. (278% increase)
  4. San Diego (275% increase)
  5. San Jose, Calif. (261% increase)
  6. Sacramento, Calif. (237% increase)
  7. Seattle (235% increase)
  8. Tampa, Fla. (223% increase)
  9. Miami(220% increase)
  10. Austin, Texas (209% increase)
  11. Portland, Ore. (207% increase)
  12. Phoenix (206% increase)
  13. Denver (204% increase)

“Several cities saw slower growth in home values, according to Clever:

  1. Cleveland (60% increase)
  2. Detroit (62% increase)
  3. Memphis, Tenn. (72% increase)
  4. Chicago (73% increase)
  5. Hartford, Conn. (87% increase)
  6. Cincinnati (88% increase)
  7. Birmingham, Ala. (90% increase)
  8. Louis (98% increase)

“Over the same time period, the national average increased 156% – or roughly 2.5 times – from $127,215 to $325,677, according to Clever’s full report.”

Sanibel & Captiva Home Price Increases

If you are wondering what home values have done on Sanibel and Captiva Islands during the same period, in 2000, the average Sanibel home sale price was $650,868. Today the average home sale price is $1,715,784, an increase of 164%. On Captiva, in 2000, the average home sale price was $2,134,459. Today, it is $3,678,750, an increase of 72%.

For condos, Sanibel average sale price in 2000 was $555,689. Today, it is $1,000,078, an increase of 80%. On Captiva, average condo sale price in 2000 was $644,113. Today, it is $1,413,323, an increase of 119%.

See more details below (info from Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service on 4/8/2022).





Condos Homes Lots
# Avg $ DOM # Avg $ DOM # Avg $ DOM
For sale 13 1,245,923 68 14 2,425,821 38 10 1,635,700 263
Under contract 24 1,309,074 22 34 1,913,085 44 9 504,617 206
Sold to-date 2022 53 1,000,078 45 72 1,715,784 67 11 656,909 206
Sold 2021 287 875,127 113 355 1,341,881 89 69 698,862 442
Sold 2020 193 733,136 174 189 950,426 161 23 606,233 393





Condos Homes Lots
# Avg $ DOM # Avg $ DOM # Avg $ DOM
For sale   6 1,460,666 29   6 7,183,333 67  1 15,500,000 13
Under contract   4 2,337,250 27   3 9,798,333 236  0 N/A N/A
Sold to-date 2022  14 1,413,323 46   10 3,678,750 148  0 N/A N/A
Sold 2021  64 1,150,373 145   44 2,988,520 261  2 2,950,000 731
Sold 2020  47 821,713 134   27 2,923,148 315  4 2,537,500 448

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtor Thursday Caravan Meeting

There was light turnout again yesterday at the Association of Realtors® weekly caravan meeting. Two new listings were signed up for caravan viewing, but one was canceled because it already went under contract.

Just one new sale was announced, no new listings, no price reductions, but plenty of Realtors® with buyers looking to purchase.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity April 1-8, 2022



4 new listings: Loggerhead Cay #271 2/2 $925K, Gulf Beach #107 2/2 $1.049M, Pointe Santo #D44 2/2 $1.399M, White Pelican #124 2/2 $1.849M.

1 price change: Pointe Santo #D41 2/2 now $1.429M.

3 new sales: Sanibel Moorings #1042 2/2 listed at $869K, Sandalfoot #5A2 2/2 listed at $1.175M, Pine Cove #201 3/2 listed at $1.899M.

4 closed sales: Mariner Pointe #323 2/2.5 $649K, Breakers West #C1 2/2 $850K, Compass Point #162 2/2 $1.85M, Cyprina Beach #7 3/3 $1.927M.


1 new listing: 1012/1014 East Gulf Dr 4/2 duplex $1.179M.

3 price changes: 1560 Royal Poinciana Dr 3/2 now $1.499M, 746 Windlass Way 4/3 now $2.275M, 2885 Wulfert Rd 6/5.5 now $2.295M.

4 new sales: 3822 Coquina Dr 4/3.5 listed at $1.595M, 733 Durion Ct 3/2 listed $1.695M, 788 Birdie View Pt 3/3 listed at $1.995M, 2915 Wulfert Rd 5/5.5 listed at $3.495M.

5 closed sales: 1398 Jamaica Dr 2/2 $850K, 1053 Seahawk Ln 3/2 $1.325M, 1405 Causey Ct 3/2 $1.5M, 500 Kinzie Island Ct 3/3 $2.295M, 2444 Harbour Ln 4/3.5 $2.711M.


No new listings.

2 price changes: 5642 Baltusrol Ct now $379K, 5648 Baltusrol Ct now $379K.

1 new sale: 2348 Wulfert Rd listed at $329K.

No closed sales.



No new listings or price changes.

1 new sale: Lands End #1610 3/3 listed at $3.7M.

1 closed sale: Beach Villas #2633 2/2 $1.399M.


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.

Enjoy your weekend. I’ll be back next Friday,

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

It’s Not a Joke – It’s an Overcast Friday in Paradise

Rumor has it that some snowbirds already have headed north, but you couldn’t prove it this week by the heavy traffic in SW Florida. More wonderful breezy sunny weather has made for perfect days for outdoor lovers. Beaches, waterways, and bike paths have been busy.

With limited rain since Florida’s storm season ended last fall, forecasters have reported fire danger for much of central and south Florida. Rainy season usually doesn’t begin until May, but with unusual weather events in many places in recent years, who knows what 2022 will bring.

Weathermen say a front is arriving today that may stall over the weekend bringing a few occasional showers. That should help, so far it’s just turned from sunshine to overcast.

Real Estate Scoop

There were a couple of Association of Realtors® sponsored events this week with a Flood Insurance Seminar at the Community House Tuesday evening. With presentations from two Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association affiliate members, Dave Arter with Private Client Insurances Service and Chris Heidrick with Hedrick & Co. Insurance, the focus was the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) new FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) 2.0 Rating System for flood insurance. It recently went into effect to more fairly charge flood rates. Unfortunately, on barrier islands like Sanibel and Captiva, that usually means higher premiums. Presenter examples often included a former $800 annual premium jumping to $8,000. Luckily, the new system limits increase to 18% per year.

Their final take-away slide had the following advice:

  • Don’t let your flood policy lapse! Risk rating 2.0 rates will apply.
  • If your premium is escrowed, you still are the responsible party.
  • Be prepared for 18% premium increases for the foreseeable future
  • At renewal, you may receive a request for additional information (type of construction, number of floors, square footage, etc.). Speak to your insurance agent to avoid “Provisional Rates”.
  • Speak with an insurance agent for advice, specific to any property you are buying.
  • Always get the elevation certificate AND the seller’s flood declaration page, when buying a home

Tuesday afternoon was a Zoom class for members of Realtor® Association Professional Standards Committees. At least ten associations throughout the state attended including two members from Sanibel and Captiva. The presenter, Shannon Allen, is an attorney and Florida Realtors® Director of Local Association Services. With Realtors® governing themselves on ethics and arbitration through their local groups (which include Ombudsmen, Grievance and Professional Standards Committees), it was insightful to hear how a hot market and the electronic age have caused nuances. Luckily in a small Association like the islands, complaints are rare.

At the Association Thursday morning Realtor® Caravan meeting, attendance was light, but at least there were two new listings open for viewing. After a couple of news items is the activity posted since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service.

Final Car Show of the Season

San-Cap Motor Club is hosting its final “Cars & Coffee Cruise-In” of the season tomorrow, April 2 from 9 to 11 a.m. at Periwinkle Place shopping center. Exhibitors are suggested to arrive by 8:30 a.m. to secure a good spot. They include antique cars, hot rods, muscle cars, all makes and models, including motorcycles. There is visitor parking behind the shopping center.

Community Chorus Spring Concert

Another annual event is the Spring Concert of the BIG ARTS Community Chorus. SanibelSusan has missed singing with them this year but has followed their progress and upcoming program – which is terrific. Tickets are on sale now and night of the concert, which is Wednesday, April 6 at 7 p.m. in the BIG ARTS Performance Hall. Link for tickets:

SCCF’s “Beer in the Bushes”

Yet another annual unofficial end of season celebration is right around the corner. The popular fundraiser for the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation will be Saturday, April 16 from 6 to 10 p.m. Tickets are available online at

Real Estate Trends to Watch This Spring

Posted online Tuesday, March 28, 2022 on FloridaRealtors® and sourced to, 2022 INFORMATION, INC. Bethesda, MD.

“ Home sellers may continue to hold the upper hand, but buyers may be more sensitive to price increases; and more inventory could enter the market.

“SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Home sellers will likely continue to hold the upper hand this spring, says a® housing report that also uncovered upcoming trends.

“Buyers are likely to become more sensitive to price increases. Mortgage rates are on the rise and are expected to continue to increase this year. As home shoppers face higher borrowing costs, they may need to tighten their budgets or even step back from the market as home prices increase as well. That could help to moderate price trends, says. The trend occurred last year, even when mortgage rates were at historical lows but home prices were climbing by double-digit annual gains. In early May 2021, the number of sellers who made price adjustments rose by 17.8% compared to the start of the year.

“More inventory will likely hit the market. Buyers may see the benefit of a greater housing supply. Still, the number of homes for sale is expected to remain historically low this year, though more options are likely to become available. Builders are adding more homes to the inventory. Also, more homes typically come on the market during the spring season. notes that based on historical trends, by mid-August the number of sellers with actively listed homes usually rises 17.4% over the beginning of the year. If that trend holds true, it could mean more options for buyers and more competition for home sellers.

“Sellers may face trade-offs. Homeowners who have to sell and buy could face a dilemma: If they hold out for peak asking prices on their home, they also could end up paying a premium for the home they buy, says. Listing prices usually reach their highest levels in the summer. But home seller-buyers who delay will face more competition from other sellers and the possibility of missing out on buying opportunities.

““We all know that homes are selling lightning-fast right now,” says Rachel Stults, managing editor at “But that doesn’t necessarily mean your house will sell itself. Before you list your home this spring – or any other time this year – make sure you’ve taken steps to get it ready, including cleaning and decluttering, getting cost estimates on repairs you might need to make, and talking to agents to see who would be a good fit for your needs. No matter when you decide to list, whipping your home into shape beforehand will help you sell faster and for more money.”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity March 25 ‑ April 1, 2022



2 new listings: Coquina Beach #5A 2/2 $779K, Sanibel Moorings #1042 2/2 $869K.

1 price change: Pointe Santo #C26 2/2 now $1.195M.

4 new sales: Loggerhead Cay #201 2/2 listed at $995K, Sand Pointe #131 2/2 listed at $1.295M, Island Beach Club #P4E 2/2 listed at $1.799M, Junonia #301 4/2 listed at $2.4M.

4 closed sales: Captains Walk #C5 2/1 $591K; Donax Village #9 2/2 $746K; Sanibel Surfside #225 2/2 $1,022,222; Pointe Santo #A2 2/2 $1.371M.


6 new listings: 9476 Balsa Ct 3/2 $1.195M, 3822 Coquina Dr 4/3.5 $1.595M, 479 Las Tiendas Ln 4/3 $1.68M, 733 Durion Ct 3/2 $1.695M, 746 Windlass Way 4/3 $2.495M, 1558/1545 San Carlos Bay Dr 3/3.5 $4.7M.

No price changes.

3 new sales: 1600 Sabal Sands Rd 3/2 listed at $1.2M, 1190 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $1.35M, 4577 Brainard Bayou Rd 3/3 listed at $1.725M.

11 closed sales: 799 Casa Ybel Rd 5/3 duplex $840K, 4560 Brainard Bayou Rd 3/2 $889K, 1666 Middle Gulf Dr 3/2 $1.05M, 4563 Brainard Bayou Rd 3/2 $1.3M, 1437 Causey Ct 3/2.5 $1.365M, 1174 Harbor Cottage Ct 3/3 $1.507M, 2711 Wulfert Rd 4/4/2 $1.65M, 2695 Wulfert Rd 4/4/2 $1.8475M, 5817 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 4/3 $2.1M, 444 Lighthouse Way 5/4.5 $3.75M, 1077 Bird Ln 4/4/2 $5.5M.


1 new listing: 3005 Turtle Gait Ln $1.15M.

No price changes or new sales.

1 closed sale: 2310 Wulfert Rd $290K.



2 new listings: Lands End #1610 3/3 $3.7M, Beach Homes #6 3/3 $3.749M.

No price changes or new sales.

3 closed sales: Bayside Villas #4210 1/2 $594.5K, Lands End #1659 2/2 $1.3M, Beach Cottages #1404 2/2 $1.609M.


No new listings.

1 price change: 15261 Captiva Dr 4/4.5 now $11.25M.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 11549 Wightman Ln 3/4 $3.395M.


1 new listing: 15819 Captiva Dr $15.5M.

No price changes, new, or closed sales.

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

Until next Friday,

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Best Bay & Gulf Waters… Before a Quick Weekend Storm

It’s another happy Friday on Sanibel as Florida braces for a cool front that is expected to swoop through the state over the weekend. Though this afternoon is bright sunshiny and 80+degrees F, with gulf and bay waters the brilliant teal color so loved.  Winds are expected to pick up over night with a fast storm bringing heavy rain forecast to come through tomorrow morning. Hopefully the weathermen are correct in saying it will pass through Lee County quickly.

Gusty winds are expected to continue through Sunday, sometimes reaching 40 mph. Temperatures Saturday night could go down into the 40’s here, even colder inland. By Monday, it will probably be back into the 80’s.

That is the funny thing about Florida, it can be summer, fall, winter, and spring – all in the same day. We also look forward to moving the clocks ahead this weekend. It will be great to again have evening sunshine.

SanibelSusan Realty 

It was a week with another nice closing for us, with another scheduled early next week. We have a couple of new listings soon coming on the market, so preliminary work is underway with those.

At the local Association of Realtors® Thursday morning Caravan Meeting yesterday, there were no new listings open for viewing, no new listings announced, no price reductions, and no sales reported. There was, however, some activity posted this week in the island Multiple Listing Service. It is after a couple of news items below.

Community Seminar Series – Flood Insurance

The public is welcome to attend a Flood Insurance seminar at the Sanibel Community House, Tues March 29 from 5 to 7 p.m.

Guest speakers are David Arter, Private Client Insurance Services, and Chris Heidrick, Heidrick & Co. Insurance. They will provide info on recent flood insurance changes, NFIP (National Flood Insurance Program) update, and flood insurance facts, questions/answers.

The event also includes a vendor affiliate trade show with representatives from accounting, banking, design, mortgage, title companies, and more.

F.I.S.H. Bunny Basket Drive

This week, teammate Elise and I brought our goodies for the F.I.S.H. Bunny Basket Drive to the local Association of Realtors®.

The Realtors® Communications & Public Relations Committee is gathering donations to help make Easter baskets for families in need.

Donations are accepted at the Association Office until March 31.

Measuring America

Census data tells an interesting story about our increasingly multicultural country. Below are excepts from the “Measuring America” article in the Winter 2022 issue of “Realtor” magazine.

“Between 2010 and 2020, the nation added roughly 23 million people, a 7% gain, reaching above 331 million. The population grew by nearly 10% in the preceding decade.

“Over the last decade, the United States grew at its slowest rate since the 1930’s, and minorities made up almost all of that population growth. These shifts aren’t surprising. The 2020 census bears out what demographers have been predicting for years. Between 2010 and 2020, Asian Americans experienced the highest population gain (36%) followed by Hispanics (23%) and Black (6%) Americans. In contrast, the White population dropped by 9% from 2010, increasing the overall racial and ethic diversity of the country…

“What the Census Data Says About Homeownership – In addition to the decennial census, the U.S. Census Bureau each year conducts the American Community Survey, one of the most comprehensive sources of U.S. population and housing information.

“COVID-19 complicated the recent operations of the survey, leading the bureau to release a smaller set of products for 2020. The bureau does not recommend comparing the experimental estimates with standard ACS estimates from previous years. But here are some highlights from the November 2021 release:

  • 65% – percentage of U.S. homes that were owner occupied in 2020.
  • 75% – homeownership rate in Maine. It’s the highest rated in the country, followed by West Virginia (74%), Wyoming (74%), Minnesota (74%), and New Hampshire (73%).
  • 12% – percentage of U.S. homes that were vacant in 2020.
  • 88% – percentage of households with broadband internet connection. A reliable internet connection has become a truly important utility for most people. It’s now one of the main factors that people consider before moving to an area.
  • 42% – number of homes with more or more people 60 years or over.
  • 12% – percentage of the population that moved in 2020.”

Hometown Hero Housing Program

Below info from an email received last night from Florida Realtors 2022 President, Christina Pappas:

“As the annual legislative session inches closer to its end, I wanted to bring you some incredible news regarding a new homeownership program that was a core focus of our advocacy efforts this year.

“Although it won‘t be 100% official until the Senate and House pass the budget and the governor signs it, the Hometown Hero Housing Program (HHHP) is set to receive $100 million to provide new avenues of down payment and closing cost assistance for some of our most essential workers.

“The HHHP is a revolving loan program targeted at the people who form the foundation of our communities. Firefighters, nurses, teachers, law enforcement officers, EMT’s and other hometown heroes will soon be able to apply for zero-interest loans through this program to help with down payment and closing costs. Even better, when they well, rent or refinance their home, they pay back the loan and that money is now available to help the next hero buy their new home.

“This program was born through a collaborative effort between your leadership team and legislative leaders in both the Florida House and Florida Senate. By working in partnership with lawmakers, we were able to accelerate our efforts to provide relief to Floridians struggling to keep up with rapidly escalating home prices….”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity March 4-11, 2022



4 new listings: Sundial #I307 1/1 $595K, Breakers West #C1 2/2 $799K, Sundial #B206 2/2 $1.3M, Island Beach Club #P4E 2/2 $1.799M.

2 price changes: Sandalfoot #5A2 2/2 now $1.175M, Junonia #301 4/2 now $2.6M.

6 new sales: Mariner Pointe #323 2/2.5 listed at $649K, Sanibel Surfside #225 2/2 listed at $998K, Sundial #Q302 3/2 listed at $1.365M, Cyprina Beach #8 2/2.5 $1.595M, Kings Crown #117 2/2 listed at $1.65M, Compass Point #192 3/2 listed at $1.75M.

1 closed sale: Mariner Pointe #421 2/2.5 $700K.


2 new listings: 244 Palm Lake Dr 3/2.5 $1.268M, 1543 San Carlos Bay Dr 4/4 $2.995M.

No price changes.

7 new sales: 4560 Brainard Bayou Rd 3/2 listed at $829K, 917 Pepper Tree Pl 4/3 listed at $1.399M, 247 Daniel Dr 3/2.5 listed at $1.425M, 1194 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 listed at $1.425M, 1174 Harbor Cottage Ct 3/3 half-duplex listed at $1.45M, 1560 Royal Poinciana Dr 3/2 listed at $1.525M, 5817 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 4/3 listed at $1.993M.

9 closed sales: 9472 Balsa Ct 2/2 $765K, 1948 Roseate Ln 2/2.5 $775K, 1251 Sand Castle Rd 4/3 $1.05M, 2620 West Gulf Dr 3/2 $1.3M, 1245 Par View Dr 3/2.5 $1.575M, 2030 Sunrise Cir 3/3 $1.6M, 3716 Coquina Dr 3/2 $1.601M (our buyer), 930 Kings Crown Dr 3/2 $1.85M, 3767 West Gulf Dr 4/4.5 $6.75M.


No new listings or price changes.

3 new sales: 1836 Ardsley Way listed at $325,555; 2829 Wulfert Rd listed at $349K; 490 Sea Oats Dr listed at $699K.

1 closed sale: 6000 White Heron Ln $850K.



1 new listing: Bayside Villas #4214 1/2 $605K.

No price changes.

1 new sale: Beach Villas #2633 2/2 listed at $1.399M.

2 closed sales: Bayside Villas #5210 1/2 $525K, Bayside Villas #5128 1/2 $590K.


No new listings.

1 price change: 15261 Captiva Dr 4/4.5 now $10.989M.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 11529 Andy Rosse Ln 4/4 $3.495M.


Nothing to report.

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

Until next Friday!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

HOT MARKET – Only 51 Properties Available on Sanibel & Captiva Islands

It has been another busy real estate week for The SanibelSusan Team. We are thankful for two more closings, a couple of meetings with owners thinking of selling, and that the chilly island weather (coldest here in four years) is behind us. Forecasters reported yesterday that SW FL was the warmest area in the nation with 85 degrees F – exactly why Florida is so popular in the winter!

(Photo below of view from our listing at Sanibel Moorings #122. It is one of only 13 condos currently for sale on Sanibel.)

The activity since last Friday posted in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service follows a couple of new items below. First a summary of island inventory today with that info also from islands MLS. Just 51 properties are for sale in total on both islands – including condos, homes, and lots. The market remains hot hot hot!




Condos Homes Lots Condos Homes Lots
# Avg $ # Avg $ # Avg $ # Avg $ # Avg $ # Avg $
For sale 13 1,181,846 12 2,541,500 16 541,437 4 2,122,250 6 7,881,666 0 N/A
Under contract 26 1,082,203 37 2,081,483 9 778,333 4 1,540,750 6 4,346,500 0 N/A
Sold to-date 2022 16 956,000 23 1,423,782 2 690,500 2 1,012,500 1 4,794,500 0 N/A
Sold 2021 287 875,127 355 1,341,881 69 698,862 64 1,150,373 44 2,988,520 2 2,950,000

The Sky is Falling

From Perfection Lawn & Pest Control’s January/February newsletter with some iguana info:

“Green scaly, invaders are stomping all over Florida cities and causing problems. It’s not Godzilla terrorizing the Sunshine State, it’s iguanas and they’re overtaking the environment. When temperatures drop, so do green iguanas – from the trees. But evolution, it seems, could be changing their tolerance to the cold.

“Research shows some species of lizards have grown more tolerant of cold temperatures. It also could mean fewer images on social media of iguanas lying on their backs under trees, legs in the air, stunned until warm sunshine gets their bodies moving again.

“As recently as four years ago, most of South Florida’s common lizard species could tolerate temperatures between 46 and 52 degrees. Now, they hold up to temperatures as low as 44 degrees, according to a study done by a researcher at Washington University in St. Louis.

“Iguanas are invasive, propagate profusely and wreak havoc on homes, gardens, sidewalks, pool decks, seawalls, boats and anywhere else they eat and, well, poop.

“Don’t think they are dead and discard or bury them when you see them lying on the ground under trees; they revive when the weather warms up.”

Mortgage Rates Remain Stable This Week at 3.55%

Posted yesterday on-line at FloridaRealtors® and sourced to the Associated Press, by Matt Ott, the following article is noteworthy, because economic news affects real estate sales, regardless of whether buyers get financing. In a “hot market”, the strongest offers remain those with no contingencies.

“After a notable increase for a few weeks, the average rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage stopped rising, remaining relatively flat for three weeks.

“WASHINGTON (AP) – Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates were flat for a third straight week after rising about a half percent early in the year.

“The average rate on the 30-year loan held at 3.55% from last week, mortgage buyer Freddie Mac reported Thursday. It stood at 2.73% a year ago.

“The average rate on 15-year, fixed-rate mortgages, popular among those refinancing their homes, fell to 2.77% from 2.80% last week. One year ago, the rate was 2.21%.

“Though they remain historically low, home loan rates have been rising to levels not seen since early 2020, when the coronavirus pandemic was breaking in the U.S.

“Last week, the Fed signaled that it would begin a series of interest rate hikes in March, reversing pandemic-era policies that have fueled hiring and growth, but also adding to inflation levels not seen in some 40 years. Earlier this month, the government reported that inflation spiked to 7% in December from a year earlier, the sharpest increase in four decades. In addition, the Labor Department reported that prices at the wholesale level surged by a record 9.7% last month from December 2020.

“The Fed’s upcoming rate hike – or hikes – will likely make it more expensive to borrow for a home, car or business. Also Thursday, the government reported that applications for unemployment benefits fell for the second week in a row after three straight weeks of increases that economists blamed on the surging omicron variant of COVID-19.

“The Commerce Department reported last week that the nation’s gross domestic product – its total output of goods and services – expanded 5.7% in 2021, the strongest calendar-year growth since a 7.2% surge in 1984. In the fourth quarter, the economy grew at an unexpectedly brisk 6.9% annual pace.

“Available housing has been hard to come by since long before the pandemic started, and rising prices are making it even harder for homebuyers to secure a new home. Economists expect rising interest rates to add to house hunters’ dismay.”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity January 28‑February 4, 2022



2 new listings: Sanibel Moorings #1411 1/1 $525K, Cyprina Beach #8 2/2.5 $1.595M.

No price changes.

6 new sales: Cottage Colony West #119 1/1 listed at $589.9K; Loggerhead Cay #242 2/2 listed at $765K; Loggerhead Cay #351 2/2 listed at $824K; Sanibel Moorings #1332 2/2 listed at $874,999; Shell Island Beach Club #A5 2/2 listed at $1.2M; Sedgemoor #101 3/3.5 listed at $3.995M.

6 closed sales: Dugger’s Tropical Cottages #1 1/1 $452K, Donax Village #7 2/2 $650K (our listing), Donax Village #17 2/2 $695K, Breakers West #C2 2/2 $700K, Pointe Santo #A26 2/2 $1.35M, Tarpon Beach #110 2/2 $1.35M.


2 new listings: 799 Casa Ybel Rd 5/3 duplex $850K, 4636 Bowen Bayou Rd 3/2 $1.725M.

No price changes.

8 new sales: 567 Rabbit Rd 2/2 listed at $789K, 1105 Skiff Pl 3/2 listed at $1.095M, 645 Oliva St 3/3 listed at $1.1M, 606 Boulder Dr listed 3/2 $1.1999M, 593 Lake Murex Cir 3/3 listed at $1.395M, 930 Kings Crown Dr 3/2 listed at $1.795M, 474 Lagoon Dr 3/3.5 listed at $2.495M, 1077 Bird Ln 4/4/2 listed at $5.699M.

8 closed sales: 9217 Dimmick Dr 3/2 $699K, 3702 Coquina Dr 2/2 $850K, 644 Lake Murex Cir 3/2 $869K, 4285 Gulf Pines Dr 3/2 $900K (our buyer), 1195 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 $1.25M, 543 Boulder Dr 3/2 $1.265M, 979 Whelk Dr 3/2.5 $1.6M, 2391 Wulfert Rd 4/5 $2.35M.


3 new listings: 535 Leather Fern Pl $275K, 2486 Wulfert Rd $229K, 490 Sea Oats Dr $699K.

No price changes.

2 new sales: 2310 Wulfert Rd listed at $299K, 544 Lake Murex Cir listed at $699K.

1 closed sale: 0 Rue Bayou $699K.



2 new listings: Marina Villas #709 2/2 $1.195M, Captiva Hide-a-Way #1A 2/2 $1.35M.

No price changes.

2 new sales: Bayside Villas #5210 1/2 listed at $499K, Beach Homes #2 3/3 listed at $3.395M.

No closed sales.


No new listings or price changes.

2 new sales: 11529 Andy Rosse Ln 4/4 listed at $3.495M, 15855 Captiva Dr 4/3.5 listed at $8.795M.

1 closed sale: 16897 Captiva Dr 5/5.5 $4.7945M.


Nothing to report.

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

Below is our ad from today’s “Island Sun”.

Until next Friday, Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

It’s Gonna Be a Rare Chilly Florida Weekend

This week the downward effects of cold fronts up north brought some chilly weather to the islands. Most locals turned their heat on for the first time in many months. With daytime highs in the 60’s to low 70’s, an even chillier weekend is forecast. While northern states are slated for lots of snow, temperatures here both Saturday and Sunday are expected to go only into the mid-50’s, with freeze warnings in some of SW Florida. Certainly not bikini weather, though most vacationers make the best of it, while we locals continue to enjoy wearing our once-a-year clothes. On a positive note, there were a couple of evenings with nice sunsets again this week. All now after 6 p.m. Hooray!

At SanibelSusan Realty

After posting our blog last week, The SanibelSusan Team had a busy real estate weekend. Teammate Dave and I both fielded inquiries and offers. Wed, we received a new condo listing which already is generating interest with showings scheduled before guest check-in tomorrow. Thank goodness, our photographer, Jim Anderson, fit us into his busy schedule with him filming it this morning. Fingers crossed that he will Photoshop the sky which today looks like I remember it in New England when it was about to snow.

Tues, we had a nice closing this (the results of a multi-year group effort Lisa, Dave, Susan). Two more closings are in the works for next week. Phones are ringing with prospective buyers, many worried, as we are, about the limited inventory. We also are meeting with prospective Sellers next week hopefully to boost that inventory.

The details on activity since last Friday, in the island MLS, are after a couple of news items below.

Florida Realtors® Update – What’s Changing for Florida Real Estate?

Posted Jan 21 on Florida Realtors® by Marla Martin:

“2022 RE Trends panel: Big and small biz relocations, plus the here-to-stay wave of untethered remote workers, will impact Fla.’s markets for years to come.

“ORLANDO, Fla. – After almost two pandemic years, changes created to deal with COVID-19 have created major shifts that affect Florida’s real estate markets, according to a panel of site developers, Realtors® and economic development experts who spoke to more than 300 Realtors during the 2022 Florida Real Estate Trends summit Thursday.

““Prior to COVID, we saw a lot of Wall Street firms testing the waters with CEOs looking at homes,” said Kelly Smallridge, president and CEO of the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County. “Now, these CEOs are signing seven- to 10-year commercial leases, they’re legally domiciling and, most importantly, they’re buying homes and putting their kids in private schools. We now have zero slots open for any private school in Palm Beach County.”

“The Real Estate Trends event was part of this year’s Florida Realtors®’ Mid-Winter Business Meetings at the Renaissance SeaWorld Orlando. In addition to Smallridge, other panelists included: Deanna Armel, broker-owner, Armel Real Estate; John Boyd, principal, The Boyd Company; and Melanie Schmees, director of business and economic research, Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce. Florida Realtors Chief Economist Dr. Brad O’Connor and Dr. Jessica Lautz, vice president of demographic and behavioral insights at the National Association of Realtors (NAR) also shared their insights on the 2022 outlook.

Kelly Smallridge, president and CEO, Business Development Board of Palm Beach County – Unfortunately, the misconception that Florida schools lag and the state’s educated workforce is lacking still lingers among many executives inquiring about relocating their businesses, Smallridge said, and that is “absolutely not the case.” Once they’re in Florida, check out the schools and have their children tested for placement, their perception quickly changes, she said. “The average salary in Palm Beach County is $61,000, while the average salary of the people coming in now is $1 million,” she added – another boon to local businesses and area development.

Many of the business executives interested in moving to Florida want to look at homes first, she said, and may not mention a possible relocation. “When you’re taking a buyer around to see homes, see if they also have any interest in bringing a business here,” Smallridge advised brokers and real estate agents. “You can offer them information to connect with local chambers of commerce or economic development officials. We help them understand all the logistics of what it takes to get them up and running. So, we’re really part of your team. Together, we can land not only the home but the company as well.”

“Melanie Schmees, director of business and economic research, Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce – Like real estate, economic development often involves referrals and regional cooperation, said Schmees. “Naples is a unique market,” she explained. “Right now, we have a 1% industrial vacancy rate; sometimes, we need to direct those interested to other areas near us like Fort Myers. The whole region benefits.” One factor important for ongoing business relocations and continued economic development in Florida will be the consideration of employees’ needs and how they can manage new lives here. “We need to create an environment that works for the workers, not only the business executives,” Schmees said. “Often, their workers are concerned that they can’t make the move. They’re worried they can’t find housing or figure out their cost of living.”

“Deanna Armel, broker-owner Armel Real Estate – “Florida in general is a draw for business and for out-of-state buyers,” she said. “There’s no state income tax, our weather, beaches, and in Orlando, our theme parks. Since COVID (the start of the pandemic), home preferences have changed. People want an office, a pool, flex space and a yard.” According to Armel, the influx of major business relocations and wealthy buyers who can pay cash – like many California residents moving to Florida after selling their homes – has made an impact on the housing market, particularly in the luxury-home sector. “I call it monopoly money,” she said. “Cash is great, but it’s really hurting our buyers who need financing, our veterans, our workers and first-time homebuyers. The competition is unbelievable, especially in new construction. New construction, turn-key, luxury homes: That’s what California buyers want.”

“John Boyd, principal, The Boyd Company – Before the pandemic, about 10% of employees worked remotely, said Boyd. “Today, over half of the workforce works remotely, at least on a hybrid basis, and this change is here to stay. It saves businesses too much in terms of office space, operations and so on. It’s also a great recruiting tool – people like the flexibility.” He noted that economic development is now a “people first operation.” And that, he said, “has established a new class of economic development workers – the residential real estate agent.”

Brightline, the private high-speed rail system running from Miami to West Palm Beach with an expansion in the works to Orlando, is a positive for marketing Florida for economic development, the panelists said. “I think we’ll see a lot of exciting development projects along those Brightline lines, with the ability to connect between Central Florida and South Florida,” Boyd said. Another plus for Florida? “Our state is a magnet for global talent, experience and skill sets,” he added. “Having no state income also attracts industry and development. Business and money tend to go where it feels welcome.””

Loans for Condos? New Rules Start to Have an Effect

Posted on-line Jan 24 at Florida Realtors®, the below article is sourced to the “Daily Breeze” and mortgage broker Jeff Lazerson:

“Fannie’s tighter loan requirements post-Surfside collapse started Jan. 1; Freddie’s start Feb. 28. In the meantime, the list of no-loan condo projects will likely keep growing.

“HERMOSA BEACH, Calif. – A nightmare scenario looms for condo buyers applying for certain types of federally backed mortgages. If you are selling or are looking to buy an attached condominium in a community with five or more attached units, conventional financing from mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac may soon become elusive.

“Beginning Jan. 1 for Fannie and starting Feb. 28 for Freddie, the mortgage giants are putting the screws to a required HOA questionnaire. New questions ask applicants about the structural integrity of the community and whether any code violations are anticipated.

“No doubt, Fannie and Freddie’s updated lender mandates are in response to the Florida condo tower that killed 98 people last June 24. Years of deferred maintenance at the Champlain Towers in Surfside caused the 12-story building to collapse.

“Answering the agencies thoroughly and completely could force lenders to decline a mortgage application. (Remember: Mortgage lenders fund a loan, and then may sell it to Fannie or Freddie).

““Yes, lenders are declining projects even for a simple special assessment for repairs now. Things are just trickling in right now because the guidance started Jan. 1,” said one condo project approval expert, who asked to remain unnamed because he’s not the media spokesman for his company. “Soon enough we’ll see the effects hit all the condo market. I’ve only seen it affect projects with major issues at this point; meaning (the project) has code violations and millions of dollars of repairs underway.”

“Answering these questions honestly or possibly with a guess could bring liability in the form of future lawsuits against HOA stakeholders, such as the property management company, board members, inspectors, engineers and the association.

“If the questionnaire isn’t completely answered because the answers are unknown or undetermined, it might mean the purchase or refinance gets torpedoed.

“Here is a sprinkling of questions included in Fannie Mae’s Form 1076 condominium project questionnaire (posted December 2021 and updated to eight from five pages):

Question: Is the HOA aware of any deficiencies related to the safety, soundness, structural integrity or habitability of the project’s building(s)?

My take: If management didn’t know about any deficiencies, for example, and answered as such, should they have reasonably known these calamities could come up later?

Question: Is it anticipated the project will, in the future, have such violations (zoning ordinances, codes, etc., which are related to safety, soundness, structural integrity or habitability)?

My take: For the love of peace, how could one possibly determine if yet-to-be-written, jurisdictional codes trigger new violations in the condo complex?

“These dubious questions could be akin to a winning lottery ticket for any attorney who lives in the world of HOA litigation.

“Why is this so problematic? The nation has a huge community of really old condos and many of them are backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgages. The U.S. has as many as 156,000 condo associations and cooperatives housing between 27 million and 32 million Americans, according to the Community Associations Institute (CAI).

““Seventy percent of all condo loans in the U.S. are Fannie or Freddie (backed),” said Dawn Bauman, senior vice president of government affairs at CAI. “Sixty to 70% of all condo complexes are more than 30 years old.”

Fannie Mae has a published list of 82 “unavailable” California condo-projects, including the Marina City Club in Marina Del Rey, which has $80 million to $140 million in needed repairs according to a report last year. That a 10-acre complex is one of nearly 1,000 “unavailable” condo projects nationwide. To Fannie Mae, unavailable means a property is ineligible for purchase by the agency.

“One mortgage executive told me Fannie is making the rounds, emphasizing these new condo questions during lender visits. So don’t be surprised if that unavailable list explodes as Fannie collects more intel.

“To be fair, Fannie and Freddie need to dig more deeply to assess and consider condo structural risk before purchasing those mortgages from lenders. The mortgage giants also may disqualify a condo community for other reasons, such as a lack of budget reserves.

“If your loan is denied over the Fan or Fred HOA certification answers, you may be able to get funded on what the industry calls a non-warrantable loan. You should expect to pay perhaps one-half to one point higher in rate than conventional financing. You also might have to provide a larger down payment or have more remaining equity compared with Fannie-type requirements.

“But buyer beware: Non-qualified mortgage lenders that offer the exotic non-warrantable condo mortgages are not a loan approval shoo-in, either.

“For example, California-based LendSure has a condo guidance checklist to help determine investor risks. The common three items it looks at are investor concentration (how many rentals are in the complex), single investor (does one person or entity own a bunch of the units), and litigation against the condo complex, according to Joe Lydon, co-founder, and managing director of LendSure.

“Why so much deferred maintenance? Unit owners are often resistant to increased HOA fees or special assessments for repairs and updates.

“Condo complex building inspections can run $15,000 to $50,000 depending on the number of units, according to Bauman.

““Community Associations Institute is lobbying for laws mandating reserve studies and building inspections,” said Bauman. CAI is also asking Fan and Fred to give HOAs more time to be able to address so many of the new HOA questions. “Five years to ramp-up the requisite building inspections.””

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity January 21-28, 2021



7 new listings: Loggerhead Cay #351 2/2 $824K; Lighthouse Point #112 3/2 $864K; Sanibel Moorings #1332 2/2 $874,999; Sanibel Moorings #122 2/2 $1.2M (our listing); Shell Island Beach Club #A5 2/2 $1.2M; Pointe Santo A2 2/2 $1.35M; Sedgemoor #101 3/3.5 $3.995M.

Boardwalk to beach at Sanibel Moorings

1 price change: Gulfside Place #210 2/2 now $1.549M.

6 new sales: Sundial #I402 1/1 listed at $659K, Mariner Pointe #421 2/2.5 listed at $739.9K, Sunset South #11C 2/2 listed at $1.095M, Sand Pointe #218 2/2 listed at $1.099M, Sundial #M303 2/2 listed at $1.249M (our listing), Pointe Santo #A2 2/2 listed at $1.35M.

To beach from Sundial East


2 closed sales: Nutmeg Village #308 2/2 $1.225M, Gulfside Place 124 2/2 $1.45M.


4 new listings: 645 Oliva St 3/3 $1.1M, 593 Lake Murex Cir 3/3 $1.395M, 5802 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 3/3.5 $1.495M, 4717 Rue Belle Mer 3/3 $4.95M.

No price changes.

5 new sales: 2030 Sunrise Cir 3/3 listed at $1.625M, 489 Sawgrass Pl 5/5 listed at $2.15M, 1266 Par View Dr 4/4 listed at $2.295M, 435 Bella Vista Way E 3/3 listed at $5.2M, 3767 West Gulf Dr 4/4.5 listed at $7.5M.

3 closed sales: 6429 Pine Ave 3/2 $869K, 1943 Sanibel Bayous Rd 3/3 $1.125M, 2379 Wulfert Rd 4/4.5 $2.495M (our buyer).


Nothing to report.



No new listings, price changes, or new sales.

1 closed sale: Marina Villas #706 2/2 $950K.


No new listings or price changes.

1 new sale: 14865 Mango Ct 2/2 listed at $1.295M.

No closed sales.


Nothing to report.

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

Below is our ad from today’s “Island Sun”.

Until next Friday. Stay warm! Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Read On to Find Out Why the Magic Number Today is 12

It is that time of the year when Floridians are especially grateful to be here. Though a cool front sometimes comes through in the winter, the weather here sure tops what is happening elsewhere.

One of those fronts just came through the islands. Though sunny and bright, it is breezy with temperatures only up into the high 60’s. Do visitors still fill the bike paths and beaches in their shorts and tee-shirts, “yes”. Meanwhile, locals are enjoying more fresh air and relish a chance to wear their long sleeves and an occasional sweater or jacket.

At the office, we continue to finalize action items for our upcoming closings and get ready for our big annual inventory mailing. If you are not already on our mailing list and want a copy of this report, please send your request to We update the islands residential inventory list (Sanibel & Captiva condos, homes, & lots) every weekend, so have it available anytime and email it often, but the bulk hardcopy mailing only goes out once a year (saving trees & $). It will go out in early February. (The data is from the local Multiple Listing Services as well as the county tax records.)

Yesterday afternoon, teammate Dave listed his in-laws off-island investment property. He probably set a record for a quick sale. Following several immediate inquiries/offers, he had it successfully under contract by 8 p.m.

So, as we continue to market for new listings, today the magic inventory number is 12. According to the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing service, now there are just 12 condos and 12 homes for sale on Sanibel, while on Captiva, there are 12 in total (4 condos plus 8 homes).

With most colleagues having buyers waiting in the wings, it is tough convincing those prospects that it is going to take a very long time for supply to meet demand. Meanwhile, the strong sellers’ market continues. I am meeting with condo owners tomorrow. Hopefully a new listing follows.

Florida Realtors® Mid-Winter Business Meetings

Last Friday, I attended the Florida Realtors® Resort and Second Home Think Tank meeting via Zoom. During that meeting, Kate Chunka, Vice Present of Industry Engagement at “Visit Florida” provided an update on that agency’s efforts including some interesting statistics. She said that every dollar spent results in $3.27 in tax revenue. Nearly 40% of that in 2020 was the impact of the pandemic on tourism with the third quarter last year exceeding any previous year. In 2021, from first through third quarter, 91.5 million visitors came to Florida. Numbers now are starting to exceed 2019 which was the highest recorded ever. For FY 2022-2023, a $50 million budget has been recommended.

Next, Florida Realtors® Vice President of Law/Policy and General Counsel, Juana Watkins provided an update on the legal options to address local short-term rental ordinance. That has become a huge problem in some areas. Luckily Sanibel and Captiva are proactive in that regard.

A legislative update then was provided by Andy Gonzalez, Florida Realtors® Public Policy Representative. He said, this week legislators are back in session in Tallahassee. On the Senate agenda is a discussion regarding short-term rentals.

He asked Realtor® Broker Marilue Maris from Walton County in the Panhandle to tell us how access to the gulf there is regulated. She described how beach access and use by the public is limited to only the areas of “wet” sand, with security guards sometimes patrolling to ensure that non-property owners don’t settle their chairs or blankets in dry areas. Wow!

Next week, I will be attending a “Florida Real Estate Trends” update by Florida Realtors® Chief Economist Dr. Brad O’Connor. He is scheduled to update policymakers, residents, and Realtors® on what is ahead in 2022. Real estate drives Florida’s economy and as the COVID-19 pandemic continues into its second year, it sure would be nice to know what lies ahead.

Also on the agenda next week are the Forms Content Committee meeting, and Legal and Professional Standards Update – also good stuff to stay up on.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors®

Tuesday was the first 2022 meeting of the local Association’s Professional Development Committee. Many educational classes for members already are scheduled with the focus of this meeting speakers for the upcoming monthly membership meetings. The first of those is February 24.

Our annual Realtors® lnstallation and Awards Breakfast was early yesterday at The Community House. Attendance was lighter than in normal times, but it was great to see many familiar faces in-person for the first time in more than two years.

Congratulations to the incoming Board of Directors and Officers (shown in the Association photo above) and the many “of the year” awards including 2021 Honor Society recipients (my 29th year).

Though 2021 was a record one for island sales, we all hope that 2022 will be safer, less stressful – and that there will be more product to sell. The details on the activity posted since last Friday in the islands MLS are below.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity January 7‑14, 2021



1 new listing: Sundial #G104 2/2 $875K.

2 price changes: Mariner Pointe #421 2/2.5 now $759K, Sunset South #11C 2/2 now $1.095M.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: Pointe Santo #C3 3/2 $1.095M.


No new listings.

1 price change: 3324 Saint Kilda Rd 4/4 now $2.995M.

9 new sales: 804 Rabbit Rd 2/1 listed at $499K, 458 Lake Murex Cir 3/2 listed at $925K, 1133 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $945K, 1251 Sand Castle Rd 4/3 listed at $1.05M, 4737 Rue Belle Mer 3/2 listed at $1.6M, 719 Periwinkle Way 4/3 listed at $1.895M, 500 Kinzie Island Ct 3/3 listed at $2.295M, 5415 Osprey Ct 3/3 listed at $2.495M, 1360 Eagle Run Dr 5/3.5 listed at $2.695M.

1 closed sale: 1278 Sand Castle Rd 4/3 $1.526M.


1 new listing: 845 Pyrula Ave 525K.

No price changes or new sales.

1 closed sale: 3308 Saint Kilda Rd $640K.



No new listings.

1 price change: Land End Village #1659 2/2 now $1.345M.

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

1 closed sale: Gulf Beach Villas #2122 2/2 $1.075M.


No new listings or price changes.

1 new sale: 57 Sandpiper Ct 2/2 listed at $1.399M.

No closed sales.


Nothing to report.

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

Below is our ad from today’s “Island Sun”.

Enjoy your weekend! Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Just Another January Friday on Sunny Sanibel Island

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

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

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

Real Estate Scoop

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

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

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

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

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

Buyers Who Waited for Lower Prices May Regret It

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Expected Market Drivers in 2022

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

No price changes.

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

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


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

No price changes.

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

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


Nothing to report.



No new listings or price changes.

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

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


Nothing to report.

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

Below is our ad from today’s “Island Sun”.

Until next Friday, Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

It’s Almost 2022 on Sunny Sanibel

As the sun gets ready to set on another year, why is it always a surprise when the islands are snarled with traffic during Christmas/New Year week? With mostly delightful weather (sunny with daytime temperatures high-70’s to mid-80’s), the causeway has been a slow crawl in the mornings from before the toll booth coming onto the island through the 4-way stop and down Periwinkle Way.

About 3 p.m., the same crawl begins in reverse making it a fun ride home in the evening. It sure appears that more folks have been enjoying things on-island this year.

Today, with holiday closings, there is less traffic and it started out foggy – an unusual occurrence here. It burned off about noon, but more fog is expected tomorrow morning with a cool front forecast to pass through Florida Monday. (That probably means daytime temperatures then will only go into the low 70’s that day.) Otherwise, the next ten days are expected to be sunny and warm.

A summary of the week’s real estate activity is after a couple of news items below. There have been a few more year-end closings so first an updated island inventory table. (Data from Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service as of 12/31/21.)

Hard to believe that there are only 19 Sanibel condos/homes for sale and that nearly 700 have gone under contract/sold this year.




Condos Homes Lots Condos Homes Lots
# Avg $ # Avg $ # Avg $ # Avg $ # Avg $ # Avg $
For sale 14 1,160,628 15 2,922,733 19 630,210 4 2,684,750 8 6,248,000 0 N/A
Under contract 27 900,883 31 1,662,258 7 676,840 5 905,600 3 5,361,333 0 N/A
Sold 2021 284 877,655 355 1,341,881 68 703,830 62 1,161,369 44 2,988,520 2 2,950,000

New Year Weekend Happenings

  • San-Cap Motor Club Cars and Coffee Cruise-in – Sat, Jan 1 at Periwinkle Place – 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.
  • Sanibel-Captiva Audubon Society Bird Walk – Sat, Jan 1 on Wildlife Dr at J.N. “Ding” Darling Wildlife Refuge at 9 a.m. Meet in overflow parking lot on left as you enter the Refuge. On a side note, the Society’s annual Christmas Bird Count conducted Sun, Dec 18, with 108 participants counted a total of 10,869 birds comprised of 96 different species. The results of the San-Cap count are reported to the National Audubon Society and will become part of the 122nd Audubon Christmas Bird Count. The overall count was below average. Warm temperatures up north may have delayed migrations could have played a part.
  • Sanibel-Captiva Polar Bear Plunge 2022 – Sat, Jan 1 at northside of Sanibel Causeway Island B. (Island closest to Sanibel). Registration begins at 11:30 a.m. At “crack of noon”, swimmers will plunge into the “frigid” (70 degree) water to kick off the new year!
  • Community House Arts & Crafts Show – Sun, Jan 2 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

New Lending Rules Threaten Some Condo Sales

By Kerry Smith, the below article was posted Dec 22 on FloridaRealtors®:

“Fannie and Freddie tighten condo-lending rules. Details vary, but they generally won’t back single-unit condo loans if a building has deferred maintenance issues.

“ORLANDO, Fla. – In response to the Surfside tragedy, Freddie Mac announced last week that it would immediately start taking a closer look at a condo development’s maintenance issues before approving individual loans. The change follows a similar announcement made earlier by Fannie Mae. The two mortgage giants back over half of all U.S. loans.

“The new requirements can be complex – Freddie Mac posted its announcement online – but they will generally deny condo and co-op unit loans if the building has deferred maintenance issues, special assessments to fix deferred issues or other problems.

“All changes announced in Freddie Mac’s bulletin “will be effective for Mortgages with Settlement Dates on or after Feb. 28, 2022.” Fannie Mae’s earlier bulletin says its rules will be “effective for whole loans purchased on or after Jan. 1, 2022, and for loans delivered into MBS pools with issue dates on or after Jan. 1, 2022.”

“Both policies “remain in effect until further notice.”

“As part of the process, Fannie Mae lenders will send condo managers a five-page form that must be completely filled out. Under the section that covers insurance types and amounts, it even includes instructions, such as “Do NOT enter ‘contact agent.’” The regulations apply to all condominiums with five or more units, even if that complex is otherwise exempt from review.

“While individual condo buyers may immediately face hurdles getting a loan approved, the tighter policies could have a longer-term impact on entire condominium complexes. Even condo associations without concerning maintenance issues could find that unit owners – without the backing of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac – will have a harder time selling their property if the new paperwork isn’t filled out correctly and returned promptly.

““Loans secured by units in condo and co-op projects with significant deferred maintenance or in projects that have received a directive from a regulatory authority or inspection agency to make repairs due to unsafe conditions are not eligible for purchase,” Fannie Mae states in its Oct. 13 announcement. And those projects “will remain ineligible until the required repairs have been made and documented.”

Fannie Mae considers acceptable documentation to be “a satisfactory engineering or inspection report, certificate of occupancy, or other substantially similar documentation that shows the repairs have been completed in a manner that resolves the building’s safety, soundness, structural integrity, or habitability concerns.”

“While Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s changes apply nationwide, Florida may feel a greater impact due to the number of condo buildings across the state. In addition, condo complexes that have deferred maintenance issues or one of the other problems noted won’t be approved for Fannie Mae- or Freddie Mac-backed loans until those issues have been fixed.”

Updated Captiva Land Development Code & Regulations

Realtors® were noticed this week (see letter below) following amendment approvals to Captiva’s land development code by the Lee County Board of County Commissioners. The new code revisions are shown below in red while some rule reminders are included too:


P.O. Box 72, Captiva, FL 33924-0072

“Dear Captiva Property Owners and Companies Doing Business on Captiva:

“The Lee County Board of County Commissioners has just approved amendments to the Captiva land development code. These changes were recommended by the Captiva Community Panel and they will keep our Village beaches pristine at the end of each day, protect our dark skies and reduce unnecessary light trespass onto neighboring properties, protect our bicyclists and pedestrians from dangerous conditions caused by overgrown vegetation on Captiva Drive, and reduce the number of contractor, design professional and real estate signs on our islands.

“It is important that all of us who live and work on Captiva review these new updates to the code as well as existing provisions which protect and preserve our fragile barrier island. The Panel believes in the power of community and in voluntary compliance with our codes and ordinances. Enforcement on Captiva should be necessary only as a last resort.

“To assist us, the Panel has summarized the new code provisions (in red) and reminds everyone of some of the existing regulations that apply to Captiva (in black). Please remember that Captiva is an unincorporated part of the Lee County and that many Lee County regulations (in addition to the Captiva-specific rules) apply to Captiva. We ask everyone to comply with them all.

Beach Furniture and Equipment

All beach furniture and equipment when not in use and unoccupied must be removed from the beach between 9:00 p.m. and 8 a.m. at all times of the year between Alison Hagerup Park and the south end of Wiles Drive. Beach furniture and equipment not removed shall be considered abandoned property and subject to removal.

Remember: A similar rule applies to the rest of Captiva’s beaches during turtle season – from May 1 to October 31.

Outdoor Lighting

            All new outdoor lighting, including landscape spotlights, must be hooded or shielded so that the light source is masked, and does not shine beyond or above the structure, property or highest foliage to be illuminated or spill onto adjacent property. Fixtures attached to poles, trees or buildings must also be hooded or shielded, shall be no more than 15 feet above grade, and directed downward. No new or existing lights may be aimed, directed, focused onto adjacent property, or allowed to cause direct light or glare to be projected onto adjacent property. Seasonal decorations are permitted for up to 60 days per year.

“Captiva Drive Landscaping

No vegetation shall be allowed to grow on Captiva Drive or its paved shoulder. A setback of at least 2 feet from the edge of the pavement must be maintained at all times for all vegetation below the height of 8 feet.

“Signs on Captiva

            All residential identification signs shall not exceed 6 square feet. Remember: The height of these signs may not exceed 4 feet above grade. If illuminated, the lights must shine downward and wattage may not exceed 36 watts per sign. Uplighting is prohibited and approval for electric hookup to illuminate a new sign must be obtained from Lee County.

All contractor, subcontractor, or design professional signs shall not exceed 6 square feet. There may be no more than 2 signs per property and they must be removed within 10 days of the issuance of the certificate of occupancy or certificate of compliance. Remember: Any design professional, landscaper or contractor signs not located at a work site under construction are prohibited and must be removed.

All real estate signs advertising a property for sale or rent in a residential neighborhood may not exceed 2 square feet in size with the bottom edge of the sign no more than 12 inches above the ground. A property is limited to one real estate sign at any given time.

Remember: Sandwich signs, banner signs, pennants, flying signs and neon signs are prohibited on Captiva. (There are some exceptions for short-term special events.)


            Rentals: Residential dwelling units cannot be rented for less than a week on Captiva. The one-week minimum does not apply to rooms in hotels and motels.

Golf Carts: Golf carts can operate between South Seas and ‘Tween Waters, and at night with the required lights and equipment. But no one can operate a golf cart on Captiva without a valid driver’s license.

Parking: Parking on all Captiva streets is prohibited.

Littering: It is unlawful for any person to place litter on a street, beach, or waterway on Captiva. Litter includes cans, bottles, boxes, straws, paper, and cigarette butts.

Open Containers: It is illegal to carry an open alcoholic beverage or drink any alcoholic beverage on a street, sidewalk, beach, or parking lot on Captiva. It is also illegal to have an open container of an alcoholic beverage while a passenger in a car or on a golf cart.

Dunes: No person may harm or destroy a dune or dune vegetation on Captiva, or harass, molest or disturb wildlife. And no one may light or maintain any open fire on the beach.

Building Height Restrictions: Captiva has very strict building height restrictions and requirements from which no variances or deviations can be permitted. Anyone planning construction should review these regulations carefully.

“Please remember: This letter only summarizes the new regulations – and only lists some of the existing ones. If any of them apply to you, it is important to review the full text of the regulation. Amendments to our Noise, Fertilizer, Parking, Golf Cart and Septic regulations have been presented to the County for future adoption.


Members: Ann Brady – Jay Brown – Ken Gill – John Jensen – Mike Kelly – Linda Laird

Mike Lanigan – Tony Lapi – R. Bruce McDonald – David Mintz – Bob Walter”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity December 24-31, 2021



1 new listing: Pointe Santo #D41 2/2 $1.45M.

1 price change: Gulfside Place #117 2/2 now $1.789M.

3 new sales: Blind Pass #D102 2/2 listed at $625K, Sanibel Moorings #1132 2/2 listed at $799K, Pointe Santo #D37 2/2 listed at $1.395M.

3 closed sales: Captains Walk #B4 2/2 $510K, Loggerhead Cay #422 2/2 $769.9K, Sedgemoor #205 3/4 $4.27M.


1 new listing: 2114 Egret Cir 3/2 $769K.

No price changes.

4 new sales: 9217 Dimmick Dr 3/2 listed at $699K, 5307 Ladyfinger Lake Rd 3/3 listed at $865K, 1347 Jamaica Dr 2/2 listed at $1.498M, 2711 Wulfert Rd 4/4/2 listed at $1.595M.

9 closed sales:  1667 Atlanta Plaza Dr 2/1.5 $650K, 1841 Ibis Ln 2/2 $680K, 4226 Gulf Pines Dr 3/2 $852K, 2539 Coconut Dr 2/2 $1.1M, 1585 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 $1.2M, 1410 Sanderling Cir 3/2 $1.2M, 737 Periwinkle Way 3/3 $1.9M, 807 Limpet Dr 3/2 $2.15M, 1146 Golden Olive Ct 5/4 $2.9M.


Nothing to report.



No new listings, price changes, or new sales.

1 closed sale: Bayside Villas #5320 3/3 $1M.


No new listings or price changes.

2 new sales: 16897 Captiva Dr 5/5.5 listed at $4.989M, 11548 Wightman Ln 4/4.5 listed at $7.5M.

1 closed sale: 15300 Captiva Dr 9/7 $6.19M.


Nothing to report.

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

Below is our ad from today’s “Island Sun”.

Happy New Year! Wishing your good health & safety, happiness & colorful sunsets in 2022!

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

White Christmas Here = Beach Sand & Seashells

Susan here, reporting that Florida warm weather continued this week with daytime temperatures in the high 70’s to mid-80 degrees F. Island roadways have been getting busier by the day with early arrivals of holiday visitors.
Even after living almost 30 years on Sanibel, it still is a surprise when Christmas sneaks in with temperatures like this. It’s great!

At SanibelSusan Realty

Our phones were noticeably quieter this week, probably with many shopping and concentrating on upcoming celebrations.
The activity posted since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service follows a couple of other news items below.
Next Friday (Christmas Eve day), the SanibelSusan Team has the day off. Like on New Year’s Eve the following Friday, you still can expect to see an update posted on the week’s happenings. I won’t ever forget the year that I sold a house on Christmas Day, so even when we are not in the office, we are just a phone call or electronic message away, and always respond quickly. Technology is our friend.
This morning, I had a pre-closing walk-through and seller document signing at Superior Title, before the actual buyer walk-through on Sunday, and closing on Monday. Title companies are super busy in December with many sales to finalize before the end of the year. We always appreciate when some of the closing activities can be done before the actual closing day, especially with holidays fast approaching. That will be our last closing of 2021 and a nice one to report next week.

Singing Your Way Into Christmas

Always fun this time of the year to remember some familiar tunes that have been modified to fit our island paradise. Here are a couple of songs that the BIG ARTS Community performed in past years and still apropos now. Bet if you read the words, you start humming.
Sung to the tune of “Winter Wonderland”, words by Doug MacGregor:
Seagulls sing, are you list’nin’?
At the beach, surf is glist’nin’
A beautiful sight, a sunset tonight
Walking’ in a winter wonderland.
Stored away are the snow skis
Here we stay in our short sleeves
You sing a new song, “This is where I belong!
Livin’ in a winter wonderland.
In the yard, we can trim a palm tree,
Then pretend to shovel lots of snow
You’ll say “Do you miss it?”, I’ll say, “no ma’am”
“I feel younger by the minute don’t you know.
Later on, we’ll conspire
And grill some shrimp on the fire
The plans we have made include sun and some shade
Walkin’ in a winter wonderland.
This one with words modified by Mike Bugler is to the tune of ”Here Comes Santa Claus”:
We’re on Sanibel, we’re on Sanibel
We just got here by plane
Escaped the snow & bitter cold
Snowbird is my name
Seashell bringin’, ocean swimmin’
The sun is always real bright
So, let’s give a thought to our friends up north
Whilst we’re having fun tonight
We love Sanibel, we love Sanibel
Warmer down here than Maine
Deck chairs set out on the beach
More sunshine here than rain
Sip that cocktail, spray that suntan
All here just seems just so right
We’re not going north for another few months
So, let’s all have fun tonight

Realtors® Get Update on Water

Yesterday was the December membership breakfast meeting at the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors®. Chauncey Goss, former Sanibel City Councilor and son of Sanibel’s first mayor was the guest speaker. With a long career in public service, Chauncey currently is Chairman of the governing board of the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD). Here are few highlights from his presentation:
SFWMD began in 1949 and expanded as a result of the Water Responsibilities Act of 1972. Today several projects are underway that are part of the solution to improving Florida’s water quality. The C-44 reservoir project which mostly affects the St. Lucie River and Florida’s east coast was just completed in November. The filling of that reservoir has just begun. This is the first major project to be completed in 21 years. (I can attest to that with our local and state Realtors® working hard during that time to keep water issues in the hearts and minds of FL property owners and their legislators. The fight must continue as water is a major ingredient in real estate here.)
Chauncey offered some distance references to put the expansive work of SFWMD in perspective. Would you believe the distance of the waterways they manage is like from going from here to Quebec. Over a million acres are under their management including some big marshes which are wonderful not only for the protection they provide, but for birdwatching!
C-43 is the west coast basin which more greatly affects what happens with water here. That project is expected to complete in May 2022. About 67% complete now, you can see it on the right on Rte 80 on way to LaBelle. The storage reservoir for that project is expected to be completed in Dec 2023 and will be ~3 miles by 6 miles (that’s like half the size of Sanibel).
The third project he highlighted is the FAA Reservoir Project which is in the Everglades Agricultural Area. This one also will have a storm water treatment area. Construction is expected to complete in Sep 2023.
Managing Florida’s water quality requires efforts from multi-agencies and multi-solutions. Chauncey urged attendees to remind their customers to stay attuned to water quality issues.

Islands To Receive $ for Beach Shoreline Projects

At their Dec 7 Lee County Board of County Commissioners meeting, funds were approved for local beach and shoreline projects including approximately $2.43 million for Sanibel/Captiva. The commissioners voted to approve interlocal agreements to fund 17 projects across Lee County using more than $4.5 million tourist development tax dollars. Among the agreements, Sanibel will receive $2,070,100 and the Captiva Erosion Control District (CEPD) will get $358,500.
On Sanibel, the City requested and received in full: $1,605,100 for facility beach maintenance, $225,000 for the Bowman’s Beach bridge replacement, $200,000 for changing room rehabilitation at Bowman’s Park, and $40,000 for beach erosion monitoring.
On Captiva, the CEPD requested and received $127,500 for beach park maintenance. It also requested $680,000 for Alison Hagerup parking lot upgrades but was approved for $231,000.
The county reported that beach and shoreline project funding accounts for 26.4% of the proceeds from the tourist development tax assessed on short-term lodging, such as hotels, resorts, and motels. For more info, visit

New Restaurant Alert

I saw yesterday on Facebook that Bamboo Pan Asian Kitchen just opened. Located on Tarpon Bay Rd behind Tower Gallery, their message said “Come on in, today, Friday, Saturday 4pm to 8 p.m. We will update our hours after the opening 3 days!”.

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity December 10‑17, 2021

1 new listing: Duggers Tropical Cottages #1 1/1 $475K.
No price changes.
2 new sales: Pointe Santo #A26 2/2 listed at $1.35M, Atrium #106 2/2 listed at $1.71M.
5 closed sales: Spanish Cay #F8 2/2 $479K, Blind Pass #C207 2/2.5 $625K, Coquina Beach #3E 2/2 $875K, Sanibel Arms West #E3 2/2 $915K, Junonia #101 3/2 $1.579M.
3 new listings: 3702 Coquina Dr 2/2 $899K, 1196 Sand Castle Rd 2/2 $899K, 2711 Wulfert Rd 4/4/2 $1.595M.
No price changes.
1 new sale: 1195 Sand Castle 3/2.5 listed at $1.225M.
7 closed sales: 5308 Ladyfinger Lake Rd 3/3 $779K, 328 Palm Lake Dr 3/2 $925K, 1187 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 $1.2M, 993 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 $1.4M, 924 Pecten Ct 4/4 $1.865M, 1511 Angel Dr 3/3 $1.996M, 4014 West Gulf Dr 4/4 $3.8M.
No new listings, price changes, or new sales.
1 closed sale: 5850 Sanibel-Captiva Rd $450K.
No new listings or price changes.
2 new sales: Bayside Villas #4306 3/3 listed at $850K, Bayside Villas #5341 3/3 listed at $969K.
3 closed sales: Tennis Villas #3217 1/1 $405K, Tennis Villas #3120 1/1 $470K, Bayside Villas #4220 1/2 $535K.
1 new listing: 11548 Wightman Ln 4/4.5 $7.5M.
No price changes.
1 new sale: 5 Sunset Captiva Ln 2/2.5 listed at $3.595M.
No closed sales.
Nothing to report.
This representation is based in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.
Below is our ad from today’s “Island Sun”.
Until Christmas Eve day! Best wishes, Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan