Sanibel’s Popcorn Clouds Are Back!


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

06-2017 Clouds06-2017 Clouds2

June 29th Association of Realtors® Caravan Meeting

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

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

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

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

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

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

Update on Community Projects

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

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

Community Associations: New Estoppel Rules

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Sanibel Independence Day Special Events – July 4th

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

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

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

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

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

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

SanibelSusan Realty Associates

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

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

SanibelSusan July 4 2015

Waiting for the parade to begin July 4, 2015

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

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

Sanibel

CONDOS

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

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

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

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

HOMES

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

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

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

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

LOTS

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

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

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

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

No price changes, new or closed sales.

HOMES

No new listings or price changes.

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

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

LOTS

Nothing to report.

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

july 4th flip flops

Winding up a Holiday Week on Sanibel Island


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It was a great July 4th on Sanibel Island from the parade right through to the fireworks. Unfortunately, since then we have had rain almost every day, though today we have lucked out so far and the space shuttle was able to take off.

Sanibel School Earns “A” for 13th Straight Year

It was announced last week that for the 3rd straight year, the Lee County School District achieved an “A” grade for its district-wide achievement by earning 537 points. An “A” grade is awarded for 525 points. Also for the 13th consecutive year, The Sanibel School earned an “A” grade, garnering 692 points. The Sanibel kindergarten through 8th-grade facility reported 97% of its students met the high standard in reading, 95% in math, 93% in writing and 86% in science. According to Sanibel School Principal Barbara Von Harten, The Sanibel School also has received notification that they have been ranked the top K-8 educational facility in the entire state of Florida. Pine Island Elementary is the only other school in the local district to earn an “A” grade since the school grade reports began in the 1988-89 academic year. To see a complete listing of the school grades visit www.leeschools.net.

Shelling & Fishing

Locals and visitors alike have commented that the fishing and shelling over the past holiday weekend were both excellent. It is always fun to see the newspaper reports with photos of the “finds”. The good ones this week included: several rather large prized junonia shells, a couple of foot-sized whelks, snook up to 42″, and even a 150‑lb tarpon.

32nd Annual July 4th Road Rally

If you are thinking of making your plans now for the 4th of July holiday next year, consider the Road Rally after the parade. This was my first year and though the prizewinners haven’t been announced yet, it was a lot of fun. Sponsored as a fundraiser by our local Optimists Club, it begins at The Timbers Restaurant parking lot at noon, with staggered start times. It is not a race, but rather a game of timing, mileage, and wit. Once provided with detailed driving directions around the island, and instructions that include “no backing up”, entrants are given question and answer sheets with more than 100 questions to answer. It is much like a scavenger hunt but without picking up items (well maybe a few). Most of the questions can be answered by carefully following the driving directions and being “very” observant. One would think that a carload of island Realtors® would have a good advantage, but we found at The Timbers Afterglow Party that several of the visiting vacationers beat us on some of the questions. How the Optimists could come up with so many difficult questions after 31 years is a surprise too. Some of the entries have been participating since the beginning. Maybe we will do better next year.

Captiva Beach Re-Nourishment Project

I heard from one of my Captiva pals that plans are underway for another beach re-nourishment project on Captiva in 2013/2014. That is always a pricey undertaking, but also great news for Sanibel as we always manage to get the sand eventually. Sometimes, it is just best to be an east-west oriented island.

Not Enough Done on Housing

Florida REALTORS® reposted an article yesterday from the “Washington Post” where “President Obama made a rare admission of a policy misstep, acknowledging that his administration failed to provide enough support to struggling homeowners and recognize the scope of the nation’s housing crisis. Despite predictions by Obama’s advisers that the housing market would rebound by now, real estate prices are falling once again. And the administration’s efforts to push banks to modify the mortgages of families who missed their monthly payments have been widely criticized as lacking. Obama first raised the issue Wednesday when a questioner during a town hall event asked what mistakes the president had made in handling the economy. “The continuing decline in the housing market is something that hasn’t bottomed out as quickly as we expected,” Obama responded. Later, he added, that his administration’s efforts to help struggling homeowners were “not enough. And so we’re going back to the drawing board,” he said.

“The housing issue threatens to loom over Obama’s re-election campaign, with foreclosures piling up and real estate markets in turmoil in pivotal swing states such as Florida and Nevada, which voted for him in 2008. Obama has not often discussed the housing crisis with much of his time in Washington and on the campaign trail focused on job creation and deficit reduction. But the issue repeatedly came up Wednesday as Obama conducted his first ever town hall meeting via Twitter. One person asked in a tweet: “How will admin work to help underwater homeowners who aren’t behind in payments but are trapped in homes they can’t sell?” Later, another questioner – whose Twitter handle was @Shnaps – asked a follow-up question about whether the market could heal itself. Obama responded that “given the size of the housing market, no federal program is going to be able to solve the housing problem.” He later added: “Some folks just bought more home than they could afford and probably they’re going to be better off renting.”

“Much of the criticism of the administration’s housing policy has focused on the Treasury Department’s foreclosure prevention initiative called the Home Affordable Modification Program, or HAMP. The program was funded by the financial bailout and carved out tens of billions of dollars to pay banks to modify the mortgages of distressed homeowners, or at least lower their monthly payments. The administration has said that HAMP helped more than a million families in this way. But critics say that the aid was not long lasting, and that the initiative’s design was too complicated for the industry to implement effectively.

“During Wednesday’s town hall, Obama said his administration would press banks to modify loans more quickly and, where possible, reduce the principal owed by homeowners. The questions submitted to the president were wide ranging, though Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, who moderated the event, noted that 6 percent of the tweets focused on housing. Other hot topics included jobs, the economy and education.

“The president spent much of the time responding to questions verbally, leaving it to his staff and officials from Twitter to parse his words down to 140-character tweets, the maximum allowed on the micro-blogging Web site. Obama sent a live tweet only once, patting himself on the back for being the first president in history to do so.

“While the event was billed as a “discussion,” the format provided a platform for Obama to repeat his positions on the economy with little follow-up from the moderator and Twitter users. Obama got a laugh, though, when he took a question from House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio), who is known as @speakerboehner on Twitter. Boehner asked, “Where are the jobs?” Obama joked: “This is a slightly skewed question.” He then acknowledged that job growth has been slow. But he also accused Republicans of standing in the way of infrastructure and public works programs that would have created work for Americans. “Eventually, I’m sure the speaker will see the light,” Obama quipped.”

Island Real Estate Scoop This Week

Attendance was down yesterday at our biweekly Realtor® Caravan Meeting and just a handful of new listings were on tour. Even with the holiday vacationers and rain hampering outside activities, not many properties were shown and little real estate action was reported. Here are the MLS changes since last Friday.

Sanibel & Captiva MLS Activity July 2-8

Sanibel
CONDOS
1 new listing:  Signal Inn #18 2/2 $949K.
1 price change:  Sanctuary Golf Villages I #3 3/3 now $719K.
1 new sale:  Sundial #R203 2/2 listed for $499K.
5 closed sales:  Sanibel Moorings #241 1/1 $260K, Sanibel Siesta #403 2/2 $340K, Sanibel Arms West #M4 2/2 $375K, Compass Point #243 2/2 $460K, Atrium #306 3/2 $1.1M.
 
HOMES
4 new listings:  491 Rabbit Rd 2/2 $339K; 1439 Albatross Rd 3/2 $439,555; 1470 Middle Gulf Dr 4/5.5 $2.395M; 4431 Waters Edge Ln 4/4 $2.85M.
2 price changes:  3145 Twin Lakes Ln 3/3 now $499,994; 2479 Blind Pass Ct 3/2 now $1.1M.
2 new sale:  1035 South Yachtsman Dr 5/4.5 listed for $799K, 1360 Eagle Run Dr 5/3.5 listed for $1.039M (short sale).
1 closed sale:  9292 Belding Dr 3/2.5 $350K.
 
LOTS
1 new listing:  761 Donax St $189K.
1 price change:  2562 Coconut Dr now $399K.
No new sales.
1 closed sale:  5618 Baltusrol Ct $180K.
 
Captiva
CONDOS
1 new listing:  Tennis Villas #3219 1/1 $245K.
4 price changes:  Tennis Villas #3229 1/1 now $240K, Bayside Villas #3406 3/3 now $638K, Beach Villas #2618 2/2 now $685K, Beach Villas #2628 2/2 now $699K.
No new or closed sales.
 
HOMES
No new listings.
1 price changes:  15631 Captiva Dr 5/4.5 now $2.95M.
No new or closed sales.
 
LOTS
Nothing to report.

This representation is based in whole or in part on data supplied by the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors or its Multiple Listing Service.  Neither the association nor its MLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy.  Data maintained by the association or its MLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market.  The information provided represents the general real estate activity in the community and does not imply that SanibelSusan Realty Associates is participating or participated in these transactions.  If your property currently is listed with another broker, this is not intended as a solicitation of that listing.