Pre-Easter Things Hoppin’ on Sanibel

Bunny hopping clip artIt’s been another fun week with real estate on Sanibel Island. Between showings, offers, and inspections, The SanibelSusan Team is enjoying the end-of-season rush!

In typical late-March fashion, many island soon-departing snowbirds, visitors, and owners are scurrying to take care of local real estate needs before heading home.

The action posted since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service follows a few news items below. Many new sales are reported, with fingers crossed for even more to report next week.

Congress’ Budget Extends Flood Insurance to July

NationalFloodInsuranceProgrAs posted today on FloridaRealtors® and sourced to The Advocate, Baton Rouge, La., Bryn Stole. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

“WASHINGTON – March 23, 2018 – The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) got a four-month reprieve as part of a massive $1.3 trillion federal spending deal unveiled late Wednesday evening and signed by President Trump on Friday – the fourth temporary extension of the program since September.

“But lawmakers on Capitol Hill now face a July deadline to either overhaul the NFIP, extend it again – or let it lapse in the midst of hurricane season. That could put added pressure on Congress to hammer out a deal on how to shore up the debt-laden federally run insurance program. A compromise on the program has so far been elusive.

“Negotiations between budget hardliners and coastal lawmakers have yielded little in the way of progress over the past few months and legislation to overhaul the program has languished in the U.S. Senate.

“Budget hawks have pushed changes to the NFIP that would dramatically raise rates on many high-risk homeowners who currently pay below-market premiums and shrink the program by booting some properties that have repeatedly flooded.

“Lawmakers from flood-prone areas – including Louisiana’s congressional delegation – have fought furiously against most of those proposals, concerned about how those kinds of abrupt reforms could wipe out homeowner equity and put flood coverage out of reach of many constituents.

“The proposed July extension for the National Flood Insurance Program left at least some Louisiana members of Congress worried that it would give critics of the program – led by retiring House Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas – a chance to push through changes to the program that would hurt south Louisiana policyholders.

“But others were more hopeful that the looming deadline and Senate resistance to some of Hensarling’s proposals could result in a more favorable long-term deal on the program.

“The NFIP was initially set to expire at the end of September. But Congress has repeatedly punted on the issue with a series of short-term extensions tied to so-called “continuing resolutions” – or short-term deals to keep the federal government running.

“Tying the NFIP’s fate to government funding has given congressional leaders leverage to force through extensions of the program because derailing the broader package would result in a broader federal government shutdown.

“But the July proposed extension would split the NFIP from must-pass budget bills, leaving less power for leadership to push rank-and-file lawmakers to back an extension or potential changes.”

Upcoming Events

  • Southern comfort on Sanibell 2018Southern Comfort on Sanibel – tonight, March 23, Friday, doors open a 6 p.m. at the Sanibel Community House – to benefit CROW – register online at www.CROWClinic.org
  • Youth Fishing Derby – March 31, Saturday, on Island A of Sanibel Causeway (1st island next to high span), registration at 8:30 a.m., fishing begins at 9 a.m. Hosted by The Sanibel Island Fishing Club in cooperation with Lee County Parks & Recreation Department, the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society and several other local organizations. Age groups are 9 and under, and ages 10 to 15. More info at 847-456-4650.
  • Golisano Lee Health_cSanCap Cares 18th Annual lsland Celebration – April 8, Sunday at 6 p.m. at The Sanctuary Golf Club – to benefit Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida – details at SanibelCaptivaCares@gmail.com, 239-984-0381, http://www.SanCapCares.org

Florida Governor Scott Signs Real Estate-Related Bills Into Law

Florida Realtors logoPosted today on-line on FloridaRealtors®:

“TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – March 23, 2018 – Gov. Scott signed a number of bills into law within the past week including a few that could impact Fla. Homeowners:

CS/HB 935: Mortgage regulation

“The new law revises Ch. 494, Florida Statutes, governing non-depository loan originators, mortgage brokers and mortgage lender businesses subject to regulation by the Office of Financial Regulation to provide greater consumer protections. In some cases, the changes could impact the way home flippers finance repairs using a short-term loan before re-selling a property.

“The new law defines the term “business purpose loan” and says that it’s unlawful for anyone to misrepresent a residential mortgage loan as a business purpose loan. It also defines the term “hold himself or herself out to the public as being in the mortgage lending business.” It’s currently acceptable for an individual investor to make or acquire a mortgage loan with their funds, or to sell a mortgage loan, without being licensed as a mortgage lender, providing they don’t “hold himself or herself out to the public as being in the mortgage lending business.”

“The law is the Florida Legislature’s response to alleged unlicensed mortgage lending activity in South Florida. According to reports, some lending entities provided residential loans with usurious interest rates and high fees made under the guise of business purpose loans in order to avoid licensure and disclosure requirements under Ch. 494, F.S., as a mortgage lender. In some cases, they allegedly forced the borrower to form a limited liability company if they wanted the money. Effective date: July 1, 2019.

CS/CS/HB 1011: Homeowner’s insurance policy disclosures

“This law requires homeowner insurance policies to disclose in bold, 18-point font that the policy does not cover flood damage. It expands the current required notice regarding flood insurance to include notice that the purchase of homeowner’s insurance does not cover floods, even if hurricane winds and rain caused the flood to occur. The notice will appear upon initial issuance and in each policy renewal. Effective date: Jan 1, 2019.

HB 617: Covenants and restrictions

“This 28-page bill expands and modifies laws related to association covenants and restrictions. Effective date: Oct. 1, 2018”

HB 193: Mortgage brokering

“This law reduces certain mortgage business regulations on securities dealers, investment advisors, and associated persons under certain conditions. Effective date: July 1, 2018”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity March 16-23, 2018

sancap GO MLS logoSanibel

CONDOS

6 new listings: Loggerhead Cay #422 2/2 $535K, Sunset South #6D 2/2 $695K, Lighthouse Point #212 2/2 $769K, Seawind II #5 2/2.5 $825K, Compass Point #183 2/2 $1.295M, Poinciana #2B 3/2 $1.45M.

6 price changes: Blind Pass #B211 2/2 now $449K, Cottage Colony West #116 1/1 now $625K, Cottage Colony West #108 1/1 now $644.9K, By-The-Sea #C102 2/2 now $1.299M, Island Beach Club #230D 2/2 now $1.395M, White Pelican #133 now $1.989M.

6 new sales: Mariner Pointe #521 2/2 listed at $475K, Kimball Lodge #303 1/2 listed at $595K, Lighthouse Point #321 3/2 listed at $679K, High Tide #C101 2/2 listed at $899K, Gulfside Place #222 2/2 listed at $1.15M (our sale), High Tide #B102 2/2 listed at $1.795M.

2 closed sales: Sand Pointe #215 2/2 $690K, By-The-Sea #B202 2/2 $1.15M.

HOMES

9 new listings: 956 Dixie Beach Blvd 2/1 $449K, 9477 Peaceful Dr now $519K, 1643 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 $549K, 1338 Tahiti Dr 2/2 $565K, 1805 Ibis Ln 2/2 $569K, 721 Cardium St 2/2 $849K, 1244 Par View Dr 4/3 $1.149M, 2622 Coconut Dr 5/3.5 $2.799M, 1069 Bird Ln 4/3.5 $5.495M.

12 price changes: 9477 Peaceful Dr 3/2 now $519K, 958 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 now $595K, 1190 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 now $625K, 225 Daniel Dr 3/2.5 now $699K, 1183 Kittiwake Cir 3/2 now 768.9K, 1807 Serenity Ln 3/2 now $789K, 9446 Beverly Ln 3/3.5 now $799K, 239 Daniel Dr 3/2 now $998K (our listing – photos below), 1304 Eagle Run Dr 3/3 now $1.1M, 1672 Hibiscus Dr 3/2 now $1.159M, 519 Kinzie Island Ct 3/2.5 now $1.195M, 2479 Blind Pass Ct 3/2 now $1.25M.

11 new sales: 1040 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $549K, 958 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $595K, 601 Sea Oats Dr 3/2 listed at $659.9K, 474 Lake Murex Cir 3/2 listed at $674.9K, 5280 Umbrella Pool Rd 3/3 listed at $675K, 9448 Begonia Ct 3/2.5 listed at $699K (our listing), 5410 Osprey Ct 3/2.5 listed at $799K, 1120 Shell Basket Ln 4/2 listed at $895K, 536 Lighthouse Way 4/4.5 listed at $2.995M, 4171 West Gulf Dr 3/2 listed at $3.248M, 1008 Bayview Dr 4/4.5 listed at $3.595M.

5 closed sales: 1029 Dixie Beach Blvd 2/2 $410K, 2005 Mitzi Ln 2/2 $525K, 5301 Ladyfinger Lake Rd 3/2 $625K, 3323 Twin Lakes Ln 3/3 $730K, 3010 West Gulf Dr 3/2 $745K.

LOTS

1 new listing: 1305 Seaspray Ln $795K.

2 price changes: 5821 Pine Tree Dr now $499K, 976 Whelk Dr now $689K.

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

1 new listing: Sunset Captiva #103 2/2/2 $999K.

No price changes, new sales, or closed sales.

HOMES

1 new listing: 11534 Laika Ln 4/3.5 $1.799M.

No price changes.

1 new sale: 9 Sunset Captiva 3/2 listed at $1.299M.

1 closed sale: 13550 Palmflower Ln 4/3.5 listed at $3.75M

LOTS

Nothing to report.

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

Until next Friday,

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

2017-08-08 Lighthouse beach log

 

Pre-Easter Things Hoppin’ on Sanibel

Bunny hopping clip artIt’s been another fun week with real estate on Sanibel Island. Between showings, offers, and inspections, The SanibelSusan Team is enjoying the end-of-season rush!

In typical late-March fashion, many island soon-departing snowbirds, visitors, and owners are scurrying to take care of local real estate needs before heading home.

The action posted since last Friday in the Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service follows a few news items below. Many new sales are reported, with fingers crossed for even more to report next week.

Congress’ Budget Extends Flood Insurance to July

NationalFloodInsuranceProgrAs posted today on FloridaRealtors® and sourced to The Advocate, Baton Rouge, La., Bryn Stole. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

“WASHINGTON – March 23, 2018 – The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) got a four-month reprieve as part of a massive $1.3 trillion federal spending deal unveiled late Wednesday evening and signed by President Trump on Friday – the fourth temporary extension of the program since September.

“But lawmakers on Capitol Hill now face a July deadline to either overhaul the NFIP, extend it again – or let it lapse in the midst of hurricane season. That could put added pressure on Congress to hammer out a deal on how to shore up the debt-laden federally run insurance program. A compromise on the program has so far been elusive.

“Negotiations between budget hardliners and coastal lawmakers have yielded little in the way of progress over the past few months and legislation to overhaul the program has languished in the U.S. Senate.

“Budget hawks have pushed changes to the NFIP that would dramatically raise rates on many high-risk homeowners who currently pay below-market premiums and shrink the program by booting some properties that have repeatedly flooded.

“Lawmakers from flood-prone areas – including Louisiana’s congressional delegation – have fought furiously against most of those proposals, concerned about how those kinds of abrupt reforms could wipe out homeowner equity and put flood coverage out of reach of many constituents.

“The proposed July extension for the National Flood Insurance Program left at least some Louisiana members of Congress worried that it would give critics of the program – led by retiring House Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas – a chance to push through changes to the program that would hurt south Louisiana policyholders.

“But others were more hopeful that the looming deadline and Senate resistance to some of Hensarling’s proposals could result in a more favorable long-term deal on the program.

“The NFIP was initially set to expire at the end of September. But Congress has repeatedly punted on the issue with a series of short-term extensions tied to so-called “continuing resolutions” – or short-term deals to keep the federal government running.

“Tying the NFIP’s fate to government funding has given congressional leaders leverage to force through extensions of the program because derailing the broader package would result in a broader federal government shutdown.

“But the July proposed extension would split the NFIP from must-pass budget bills, leaving less power for leadership to push rank-and-file lawmakers to back an extension or potential changes.”

Upcoming Events

  • Southern comfort on Sanibell 2018Southern Comfort on Sanibel – tonight, March 23, Friday, doors open a 6 p.m. at the Sanibel Community House – to benefit CROW – register online at www.CROWClinic.org
  • Youth Fishing Derby – March 31, Saturday, on Island A of Sanibel Causeway (1st island next to high span), registration at 8:30 a.m., fishing begins at 9 a.m. Hosted by The Sanibel Island Fishing Club in cooperation with Lee County Parks & Recreation Department, the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society and several other local organizations. Age groups are 9 and under, and ages 10 to 15. More info at 847-456-4650.
  • Golisano Lee Health_cSanCap Cares 18th Annual lsland Celebration – April 8, Sunday at 6 p.m. at The Sanctuary Golf Club – to benefit Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida – details at SanibelCaptivaCares@gmail.com, 239-984-0381, http://www.SanCapCares.org

Florida Governor Scott Signs Real Estate-Related Bills Into Law

Florida Realtors logoPosted today on-line on FloridaRealtors®:

“TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – March 23, 2018 – Gov. Scott signed a number of bills into law within the past week including a few that could impact Fla. Homeowners:

CS/HB 935: Mortgage regulation

“The new law revises Ch. 494, Florida Statutes, governing non-depository loan originators, mortgage brokers and mortgage lender businesses subject to regulation by the Office of Financial Regulation to provide greater consumer protections. In some cases, the changes could impact the way home flippers finance repairs using a short-term loan before re-selling a property.

“The new law defines the term “business purpose loan” and says that it’s unlawful for anyone to misrepresent a residential mortgage loan as a business purpose loan. It also defines the term “hold himself or herself out to the public as being in the mortgage lending business.” It’s currently acceptable for an individual investor to make or acquire a mortgage loan with their funds, or to sell a mortgage loan, without being licensed as a mortgage lender, providing they don’t “hold himself or herself out to the public as being in the mortgage lending business.”

“The law is the Florida Legislature’s response to alleged unlicensed mortgage lending activity in South Florida. According to reports, some lending entities provided residential loans with usurious interest rates and high fees made under the guise of business purpose loans in order to avoid licensure and disclosure requirements under Ch. 494, F.S., as a mortgage lender. In some cases, they allegedly forced the borrower to form a limited liability company if they wanted the money. Effective date: July 1, 2019.

CS/CS/HB 1011: Homeowner’s insurance policy disclosures

“This law requires homeowner insurance policies to disclose in bold, 18-point font that the policy does not cover flood damage. It expands the current required notice regarding flood insurance to include notice that the purchase of homeowner’s insurance does not cover floods, even if hurricane winds and rain caused the flood to occur. The notice will appear upon initial issuance and in each policy renewal. Effective date: Jan 1, 2019.

HB 617: Covenants and restrictions

“This 28-page bill expands and modifies laws related to association covenants and restrictions. Effective date: Oct. 1, 2018”

HB 193: Mortgage brokering

“This law reduces certain mortgage business regulations on securities dealers, investment advisors, and associated persons under certain conditions. Effective date: July 1, 2018”

Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service Activity March 16-23, 2018

sancap GO MLS logoSanibel

CONDOS

6 new listings: Loggerhead Cay #422 2/2 $535K, Sunset South #6D 2/2 $695K, Lighthouse Point #212 2/2 $769K, Seawind II #5 2/2.5 $825K, Compass Point #183 2/2 $1.295M, Poinciana #2B 3/2 $1.45M.

6 price changes: Blind Pass #B211 2/2 now $449K, Cottage Colony West #116 1/1 now $625K, Cottage Colony West #108 1/1 now $644.9K, By-The-Sea #C102 2/2 now $1.299M, Island Beach Club #230D 2/2 now $1.395M, White Pelican #133 now $1.989M.

6 new sales: Mariner Pointe #521 2/2 listed at $475K, Kimball Lodge #303 1/2 listed at $595K, Lighthouse Point #321 3/2 listed at $679K, High Tide #C101 2/2 listed at $899K, Gulfside Place #222 2/2 listed at $1.15M (our sale), High Tide #B102 2/2 listed at $1.795M.

2 closed sales: Sand Pointe #215 2/2 $690K, By-The-Sea #B202 2/2 $1.15M.

HOMES

9 new listings: 956 Dixie Beach Blvd 2/1 $449K, 9477 Peaceful Dr now $519K, 1643 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 $549K, 1338 Tahiti Dr 2/2 $565K, 1805 Ibis Ln 2/2 $569K, 721 Cardium St 2/2 $849K, 1244 Par View Dr 4/3 $1.149M, 2622 Coconut Dr 5/3.5 $2.799M, 1069 Bird Ln 4/3.5 $5.495M.

12 price changes: 9477 Peaceful Dr 3/2 now $519K, 958 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 now $595K, 1190 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 now $625K, 225 Daniel Dr 3/2.5 now $699K, 1183 Kittiwake Cir 3/2 now 768.9K, 1807 Serenity Ln 3/2 now $789K, 9446 Beverly Ln 3/3.5 now $799K, 239 Daniel Dr 3/2 now $998K (our listing – photos below), 1304 Eagle Run Dr 3/3 now $1.1M, 1672 Hibiscus Dr 3/2 now $1.159M, 519 Kinzie Island Ct 3/2.5 now $1.195M, 2479 Blind Pass Ct 3/2 now $1.25M.

11 new sales: 1040 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $549K, 958 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 listed at $595K, 601 Sea Oats Dr 3/2 listed at $659.9K, 474 Lake Murex Cir 3/2 listed at $674.9K, 5280 Umbrella Pool Rd 3/3 listed at $675K, 9448 Begonia Ct 3/2.5 listed at $699K (our listing), 5410 Osprey Ct 3/2.5 listed at $799K, 1120 Shell Basket Ln 4/2 listed at $895K, 536 Lighthouse Way 4/4.5 listed at $2.995M, 4171 West Gulf Dr 3/2 listed at $3.248M, 1008 Bayview Dr 4/4.5 listed at $3.595M.

5 closed sales: 1029 Dixie Beach Blvd 2/2 $410K, 2005 Mitzi Ln 2/2 $525K, 5301 Ladyfinger Lake Rd 3/2 $625K, 3323 Twin Lakes Ln 3/3 $730K, 3010 West Gulf Dr 3/2 $745K.

LOTS

1 new listing: 1305 Seaspray Ln $795K.

2 price changes: 5821 Pine Tree Dr now $499K, 976 Whelk Dr now $689K.

No new or closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

1 new listing: Sunset Captiva #103 2/2/2 $999K.

No price changes, new sales, or closed sales.

HOMES

1 new listing: 11534 Laika Ln 4/3.5 $1.799M.

No price changes.

1 new sale: 9 Sunset Captiva 3/2 listed at $1.299M.

1 closed sale: 13550 Palmflower Ln 4/3.5 listed at $3.75M

LOTS

Nothing to report.

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

Until next Friday,

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

2017-08-08 Lighthouse beach log

 

Almost Valentines Day on Sunny Sanibel

 

 

heart3.pngIt’s SanibelSusan reporting another sunny Friday on the islands. A little chilly this morning at 59 degrees, but warming up to the mid-70’s and expected to remain that way for at least the next five to six days.

sanibel-boundTraffic has picked up noticeably, so the new Sanibel web cam app can help you plan which route to take when traveling the island. Called “Sanibel Bound” and free on iTunes or Google Play, to install the app, simply go to http://www.mysanibel.com/live-street-cams from your mobile device. For the Android App, click on the button “Get it On Google Play”. To Install the Apple App, click on the button “Download on the App Store”.

Sanibel & Captiva Island Association of Realtors®

Sanibel realtors logoYesterday, there was a big turn-out at our weekly Caravan Meeting at the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Association of Realtors®. Almost as many affiliate business members were in attendance as Realtors®. Sometimes, “it takes a village” to get a property closed – inspectors, insurance providers, mortgage brokers, title companies, etc. We sure have good ones partnering with us on the islands. A big thank you to Amanda Curran of Superior Title who recently got a tough one closed for our buyer.

Only four properties were on Caravan (it was a West-end tour) – shows how few new listings come on the market this time of the year. Many price changes were announced. I announced the price reduction of the lot 9441 Peaceful Drive. (Some aerials below of this large wide parcel backing to conservation land in Gumbo Limbo. Great private spot for a small or large home, with or without pool. Backyard faces west & sunsets! Price now $274,000)

Next week is East-end Caravan and the monthly membership meeting, so it likely will bring an even bigger turn-out. I will announce the price reduction at Lighthouse Point #129 then. (That’s the ground-level spacious bay-view three bedroom condo shown below. Now priced at $574,000.)

More info on the action posted this week in the Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service follows a few news items below.

Lots of Happenings

calendarIn typical high-season fashion, there are lots of happenings now for locals and visitors to enjoy. Here are a few reminders, others are posted on under the “Upcoming Island Events” tab above.

  • Art on the Veranda – tomorrow Feb 11 – 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. – at Bailey’s Center, presented by San-Cap Art League.
  • CHR’s Mardi Gras – tomorrow night Feb 11 – Community Housing & Resource (CHR’s) only fundraiser of the year at The Dunes. Tickets at www.sanibelchr.org/mardigras or call 472-1189.
  • BIG ARTS “100 Years of Broadway” – tomorrow night – 2017 benefit – www.bigarts.org or call 395-0900.
  • 15th Annual Clothesline Art Show – Sunday Feb 12 – at The Community House, presented by San-Cap Art League.
  • Valentine’s Dinner Dance – Feb 14 – hosted by the Stroke Recovery Foundation at The Community House. Reservations needed by Monday. Call 395-2661 or email GBaker9367@aol.com.
  • Annual Arts & Crafts Fair – Feb 18 & 19 – presented by Rotary Club of Sanibel-Captiva – at The Community House, Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. www.SanibelArtFair.com
  • Kiwanis Annual Spaghetti Dinner – Feb 25 – at The Community House from 4 to 8 p.m. Tickets in advance from Kiwanians for $8 or at the door for $9.
  • 80th Sanibel Shell Festival – Mar 2, 3, & 4 – at The Community House.
  • 10th Annual Sanibel Uncorked – Wine & Food Fest – Mar 5 – 1 to 5 p.m. – fundraiser by the Sanibel-Captiva Optimist Club at Lily & Company.
  • A Peek at the Unique – Mar 11 – Zonta’s 16th home tour & fundraiser. Limited tickets available at ZontaPeekTickets2017@gmail.com

Sighting at “Ding” Darling

great-white-pelican-namibia

Wikipedia photo of a pair of Great White Pelicans in breeding condition in Walvis Bay, Namibia

Last week hundreds of visitors came to J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge on the lookout for a Great While Pelican that was spotted there last February and reported to have again returned this year. Within just 24 hours of the February 1 sighting, birders came from near and far, but not many spotted her. With a wing span up to 11.8’ and weighing as much as 33 pounds, these rare birds are native to Africa, Europe, and Asia. Birding experts say that this one is far off its usual migratory route, I say it’s just another smart winter vacationer.

 

SCCF logoSCCF Hosts Water Forum

From an email received this morning from Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation:

“Weighing in on the Water, a February 9 town hall event, was hosted by SCCF at the Bailey Homestead Pavilion and moderated by SCCF’s Natural Resource Policy Director Rae Ann Wessel. In introducing U.S. Congressman Francis Rooney and Sanibel Mayor Kevin Ruane, she framed both the economic and ecological impacts from poor water management as key issues that must be addressed at the local, state, and federal levels to improve water quality in the Everglades and Southwest Florida.

“There is insufficient capacity to store, treat, and move water,” said Wessel. “We need new ways of doing restoration, and science needs to be the basis of all the solutions we pursue.”

“Congressman Rooney briefed approximately 200 constituents on his efforts to address Southwest Florida’s water quality issues at the federal level.

““We don’t need new legislative authorization, we need funds to be appropriated for multiple Everglades Restoration projects authorized since 2007,” said Rooney.

“The Congressman went on to say his first acts since taking office on January 20 were all focused on water quality for his district and Florida. He cited his one-on-one visits with members of the House Appropriations Committee, arguing for Everglades restoration funding. He also shared the letter he crafted and sent to President Trump, on which he secured the signatures of every member of Florida’s House delegation on Capitol Hill. (See a pdf of the letter here). The letter asks that the Trump administration’s fiscal 2018 budget “strongly support Everglades restoration projects, especially those within the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Program (CERP).”

““This was an extraordinary achievement for a recently arrived freshman member of Congress,” said Wessel.

““The letter was bipartisan and included every House member representing Florida in Washington.  Advocates fighting for Everglades restoration and water quality have never had that demonstration of unanimous congressional support before Congressman Rooney brought this focus on water to Washington.”

City of Sanibel Mayor Kevin Ruane expressed his appreciation for Congressman Rooney’s efforts at the federal level, particularly in the way they complement the efforts Ruane is working to spearhead.

““We have worked with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and have gained their commitment to accelerate – to 2018 rather than 2021 – the design and planning process for a flow way for storage and cleaning south of Lake Okeechobee,” said Ruane.

“The Mayor went on to speak in detail about his initiative to engage the 19 counties and 163 cities affected by poor water quality. These counties and cities represent 55% of Florida’s real estate values. Combined with their tourism income, the economic impact of poor water quality is $2 trillion. “If you’re in Tallahassee, that number is hard to ignore,” said Ruane.

“The mayor has taken a leading role in bringing together the cities to work together in seeking state-level support, such as advancing the passage of Senate Bill 10 (SB10) to purchase 60,000 acres south of Lake O. He told the audience to watch for planned efforts to highlight these issues during the Florida legislative session beginning March 7.

“SCCF encourages you to forward this email to friends and neighbors, asking them to sign up for SCCF action alerts and become engaged in pressing our elected officials to take positive actions for moving restoration forward to protect our economy and water resources. Click here to sign up for our Action Alerts.

NAR RPAC Hall of Fame

government_affairs_rpac_logo_homeI received a surprise congratulatory letter this week. It seems I was nominated by the state for induction into the NAR RPAC Hall of Fame. The nomination was accepted, so I will be an official member of the Class of 2016 National Association of REALTORS®’ RPAC Hall of Fame. The induction is in May after which a plaque with my name will be on the rooftop of the NAR building in Washington, D.C.

I didn’t think that we have had anyone from the islands ever make the “Hall of Fame” so it prompted me to look on-line to see how many fellow Floridians are Hall of Fame members. In Florida, today there are 47 Realtors in the Hall of Fame. From my home state of Maine, there are only two, and from my former state of Virginia, there are just 15.

Since 2004, the REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) has raised more than $100 million dollars to support pro-REALTOR® Party candidates running for Congress. The amount of money RPAC spends to support candidates makes it one of the top trade association PACs in the nation.

Though REALTORS® are a key part of the American Dream – property ownership, they increasingly face forces that threaten their work – the economy, property tax burdens, increasing insurance premiums, rent controls, impact fees, etc.

RPAC helps REALTORS® make sure their concerns about these and other issues are heard and understood by public officials. On the islands, where 99% of our members contribute to RPAC, we don’t just give dollars, we see those dollars put to good use in the ongoing fight for better water quality, lower insurance costs, and more.

Investing in my profession helps me and other homeowners too.

Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity February 3-10, 2017

Sanibel

CONDOS

1 new listing: Royale Tern #103 3/3.5 $2.295M.

7 price changes: Seashells #38 2/2 now $368K, Mariner Pointe #712 2/2.5 now $480K, Sundial West #D305 1/1 now $539K, Lighthouse Point #217 3/2/2 now $539K, Lighthouse Point #129 3/2 now $574K (our listing), Kings Crown #208 2/2 now $749K, Tanglewood #1A 3/2 now $1.0749M.

4 new sales: Loggerhead Cay #253 2/2 listed at $549K, Sundial East #L402 2/2 listed at $749K, Bayview Village #1A 3/3 listed at $789K, Sundial East #Q404 2/2 listed at $899K.

1 closed sale: Somerset #302 3/2.5 $1.55M.

HOMES

8 new listings: 1895 Farm Trl 3/2 $615K, 215 Palm Lake Dr 3/2 $798.9K, 1311 Sand Castle Rd 2/2 $799K, 2628 Coconut Dr 3/2.5 $1.43M, 1995 My Tern Ct 4/2 $1.495M, 3615 West Gulf Dr 3/2 $2.995M, 1320 Seaspray Ln 4/4.5 $3.55M, 3009 Turtle Gait Ln 4/4.5 $3.999M.

16 price changes: 998 Greenwood Ct 3/2.5 half-duplex now $437K; 3043 Poinciana Cir 4/2 now $579K; 376 Lake Murex Blvd 3/2 now $589K; 9247 Dimmick Dr 3/2 now $599K; 5305 Umbrella Pool Rd 3/2 now $599,995; 5292 Umbrella Pool Rd 3/2 now $629K; 1295 Par View Dr 3/2 now $725K; 1334 Junonia St 3/2 now $729K; 3152 Twin Lakes Ln 3/3 now $735K; 698 Spartina Ct 3/2 now $895K, 243 Southwinds Dr 3/2.5 now $875K; 1396 Tahiti Dr 4/3 now $939K; 518 N Yachtsman Dr 3/3 now $1.399M; 696 Kinzie Island Ct 4/5 now $2.15M; 6494 SanibelCaptiva Rd 3/2 now $2.2495M; 1206 Bay Dr 4/4.5 now $3.899M.

11 new sales: 980 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 half-duplex listed at $489K, 976 Sand Castle Rd 3/3 half-duplex listed at $495K, 1631 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 half-duplex listed at $499K, 1714 Bunting Ln 3/2 listed at $499.9K, 1851 Farm Trl 3/2 listed at $525K, 2134 Egret Cir 3/2 half-duplex listed at $559K, 660 Durion Ct 3/2 listed at $910K, 1089 Skif Pl 3/2 listed at $1.089M, 785 Birdie View Pt 3/2.5 listed at $1.149M, 5639 Baltusrol Ct 4/4.5 listed at $1.695M, 2118 Starfish Ln 4/5 listed at $1.849M.

2 closed sales: 2401 Shop Rd 2/1 $205K, 2142 Egret Cir 3/2 $485K.

LOTS

1 new listings: 5251 Indian Ct $789K.

3 price changes: 9441 Peaceful Dr now $274K (our listing), 6411 Pine Ave now $363.5K, 602 Boulder Dr now $439K.

1 new sale: 2502/2504 Wulfert Rd listed at $239.9K.

No closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

1 new listing: Beach Home s#2 3/2 $2.199M.

No price changes or new sales.

1 closed sale: Beach Villas #2322 1/1 $480K.

HOMES

1 new listing: 11530 Laika Ln 4/3 $2.2M.

No price changes.

2 new sales: 11539 Wightman Ln 2/2 listed at $1.575M, 16237 Captiva Dr 5/5.5 listed at $3.95M.

No closed sales.

LOTS

Nothing to report.

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

valentineHappy Valentines’ Day!

Still time to buy your sweetie a piece of paradise before Tuesday. I’m working…

Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

What’s Happening After “High Season”

SanibelSusan Realty from Periwinkle WayWinding up the second 2016 post-season week, The SanibelSusan Team already is itching for more action. We appreciate being able to drive down Periwinkle at the end of the workday without delays, but several days this week, even the phones have been too quiet.

More of our condo listings were vacant this week, for the first time in months, so my team has held a few open houses, but very few prospects visited. Even the island Realtor® Caravan meeting yesterday was lightly attended. Details on the week’s action in the Sanibel and Captiva Multiple Listing Service follow some news items below.

The below article posted in the “Santiva Chronicle” last Saturday resonates a similar tone about the market. It was written by Realtor® colleague Sarah Ashton who brought the buyer for our listing at Compass Point, scheduled to close soon. We kibitzed then about island sales.

Does The Market Seem Slow?

santiva chronicle“This is a recurring question about Island Real Estate that has been circulating for the last month or so.

“Both 2014 and 2015 saw a return to an active market and an absorption of a good deal of our outstanding inventory. At the end of 2015, we were at lows in inventory that rivaled historic for the Islands. With this reduced inventory and the economy moving into recovery, we faced the real possibility that 2016 was not only going to be another active year, but also one with some measurable price increases. We were expecting “A Pop.”

“With the first quarter of 2016 over, and these questions about the pace of the market expressed, let’s take a look at where we are, by the numbers.

“In 2015 there were 68 houses and 48 Condos that closed in the first quarter. In 2016 we have seen 44 house and 40 Condos closed. Thus far in 2016, we have experience a roughly 30% reduction in the number of closed sales as compared to the same timeframe in 2015 and prices have remained primarily flat over last year.

“Will this trend continue for the rest of 2016? Great question and a crystal ball might help. What we do know is that a confluence of El Nino warm weather produced the wettest January on record which affected the water quality. Combine that with the warmest winter in the Midwest and Northeast in many years. Combine both of these with an Early Easter and perhaps a bit of pre-presidential election jitters and we may just have created the perfect storm for a mini-pullback in our Real Estate market.

“These conditions will all pass. However it may be that until we get to the 4th quarter of 2016 we won’t experience the “Pop”.”

Here’s An Interesting Statistic

realtor logoAccording to National Association of Realtors® President Tom Salomone’s message in the March/April issue of “Realtor” magazine, “one in every 220 adults in the U.S. is a Realtor®.”

For years, some colleagues jokingly have said that when a person retires here – right after getting their Florida driver’s license, they also take the real estate exam. With this national statistic, it must be happening elsewhere too.

The Upside to a Changing Market

Florida Realtors logoAs described in the April 2016 issue of “Florida Realtor®”, there has been a change in the international buyers and sellers doing business in Florida. As the article says “the international market is changing, but there are still opportunities….”

“International buyers and sellers accounted for 11% of the state’s residential transactions in 2015. The largest countries for global buyers were Canada, the U.K., Germany, France, China, Argentina, Brazil, Columbia, and Venezuela….Because global buyers tend to buy higher-priced homes and condominiums, they had a 24% share of total residential sales volume.

“International buyers love Florida’s real estate market. It’s an attractive vacation destination with convenient air access from Canada, Europe, and Latin America…But Florida’s appeal to those buyers is affected by many factors, particularly changes in foreign exchange rates that can make Florida properties more expensive or reduce their cost. The recent strengthening of the U.S. dollar has slowed the pace of foreign purchases by Canadians, Europeans and residents of some Latin American countries.

“Immigration and visa restrictions can be problematic for potential buyers, who also pay close attention to U.S. attitudes toward immigrant groups….Here is a closer look at Florida’s most important global markets.

canada-flagCANADA –In 2015, Canadians were only 11% of international buyers, a steep drop from 32% the prior year, primarily because of a less favorable exchange rate. Canadian buyers in all income segments like buying homes in the Sunshine State. Traditionally, French-speaking Canadians from Quebec have bought along the I-95 corridor, while English speakers from Ontario and the western provinces have gravitated to Central Florida and the Gulf Coast….

UK FlagUNITED KINGDOM – U.K. buyers were 5% of the state’s international market in 2015, down from 7% in 2014 and 15% in 2010. A stronger U.S. dollar has led to a decline in sales to buyers from the U.K. and other northern European countries…That trend had had a greater impact on U.K. buyers investing in rental properties…But lifestyle buyers who want to spend six months in Florida are still purchasing here…U.K. buyers traditionally favor Central Florida and often buy relatively inexpensive vacation homes near Orlando’s theme parks….

Germany flagGERMANY – German buyers were 2% of the state’s international market in 2015, down from 5% in the prior year…In Germany, Belgium, Austria, and Switzerland, a real estate transaction is not valid until a notary signs the document in the presence of both parties….” So some education is involved here.

french-flag-largeFRANCE – French buyers were 3% of the state’s international market in 2015, unchanged from 2014. In the past decade, French buyers and investors have significantly increased their presence in the Florida market…When property values dropped during 2008-09, many European investors saw an opportunity here…Now, South Florida has a significant number of French, Italian, Spanish, Belgian and Swiss owners…. French buyers tend to purchase in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties….French buyers like Europeans are looking for residences with special features such as landscaping or interior design…They do not want cookie-cutter houses or condos…The quality of construction and the details of the architecture are very important.

china flagCHINA – Chinese buyers have increased their presence in recent years and now constitute 4% of international buyers, up from 1% in 2011. In the past few years, South Florida has attracted a growing number of buyers from China, as well as Korea, Vietnam, India, the Philippines and other Asian countries….In some cases,… parents will buy a home close to a campus, planning to hold it for four years or longer….Access to quality education and clean air are top priorities for Chinese buyers….

Brazil flagBRAZIL – Brazilian buyers were 9% of the state’s international market in 2015, up from 6% in 2014. For the past five years, Brazil has been one of Florida’s strongest international markets. Many affluent buyers purchased new condominiums and resales in the Miami market in all-cash transactions for personal use or investment. But the inflow of buyers from South America’s largest economy has been slowing over the past year, due to an economic recession, a political corruption scandal and the devaluation of the Brazilian real, which has fallen to record lows compared with the U.S. dollar.

Argentina flagARGENTINA – Argentine buyers were 7% of the state’s international market in 2015, up from 3% in 2014….

Flag_of_ColombiaCOLUMBIA – Columbian buyers were 7% of the state’s international market in 2015, up from 4% in 2014….

venezuela flagVENEZUELA – Venezuelan buyers were 18% of the state’s international market in 2015, up from 3% in 2014…. As Venezuela is one of the world’s major oil producers, its economy has been hit hard by the 2015 downturn in oil prices…and their recession is expected to deepen this year…”

What Does This Mean for the Sanibel/Captiva Market? And SanibelSusan Realty Associates?

Narrowing Florida’s recent international business to just the area of Sanibel and Captiva, European countries continue to dominate the islands’ buyer market. Most recent transactions with Canadians have been with them selling, usually because of the exchange rate. There is little business here with residents of Asia and South/Central America, but that could and, likely will, change.

Proxio logoProxioPro.com – SanibelSusan has a long-standing profile on www.ProxioPro.com which is a site known as the international MLS and global real estate network for referrals and sales. Comprised of mostly real estate professionals with internationally-recognized designations, through ProxioPro, I have personal connections with offers to pay referral fees to over 450 world-wide real estate professionals who have reached out to me indicating that they have buyers interested in Sanibel and Captiva.

My most recent ProxioPro out-of-country referral requests came from France and Canada, followed by Brazil, Greece, the Netherlands, Costa Rica, and the Dominican Republic. In-country requests have come mostly from agents on the other coast of Florida, particularly Miami. California and Texas are the two states that also have brought many recent requests.

world properties logo.jpgWorld Properties.com – Also powered by Proxio, www.WorldProperties.com is the official website of the International Consortium of Real Estate Associations – similar to a global version of www.Realtor.com. The consortium is comprised of real estate associations in 117 member countries which have set standards to facilitate real estate transactions and agreed to abide by specific codes of conduct. Here too, our listings are posted and translated into the various languages of the member countries.

juwai logoJuwai.com – This summer, my plan is to get a company profile and our listings posted on Juwai which is an international property portal for Chinese-speaking buyers looking to purchase property outside their country. On a national level, last year Chinese buyers surpassed Canadians in U.S. purchases, though most of these buys were on the west coast or in New York. Like most everywhere today, the Chinese economy is settling into a new normal. Considering that China has never been as large or powerful as it is now, my guess is that investment property here will appeal to them – if only they knew about it. Many in China are seeking not only safe monetary harbors, but also better educational opportunities for their children, so you can be sure that I will be touting the success of nearby Florida Gulf Coast University as well as other schooling opportunities here.

Why More Americans Are Heading South

From a recent posting on “Daily Real Estate News”:

RealtyTracLogo_166x32“A rising number of Americans are heading to southern states, lured by a combination of warmer weather, affordable housing, lower taxes, and less congested cities, according to a new report published by RealtyTrac called “The Next Great Migration of ‘Housing Refugees’ On the Move.”

“New census data confirm the findings. Since 2014 alone, more than 1.4 million people have moved to the Sun Belt, mostly from the Northeast and Midwest, according to Census Bureau data.

“That marks a stark difference to previous mobility trends. For more than a century, Americans predominantly headed west to cities such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, and Seattle. But lately, that migration trend is taking a turn south.

““This 20th century movement west, which has dominated American demographic patterns for decades, may now be reversing itself in the 21st century as rising housing costs, stagnant job creation, restrictive land-use laws and no-tax states, pull Californians, Midwesterners and Northeasterners eastward and southward to less costly regions and more business-friendly states in the Sun Belt,” RealtyTrac’s report notes.

“Americans are fleeing pricey coastal states like California and New York and heading to states considered more affordable, such as Texas, Florida, and the Carolinas, according to a recent United Van Lines report.

During the Great Recession, populations in the Sun Belt saw a decline, but now analysts are saying there’s a renewed “Snow Belt–to–Sun Belt migration pattern,” notes William H. Frey, a demographer and senior fellow at The Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C.

“Florida is especially feeling a heat wave of new residents. For the first time in nearly a decade, Florida added more people than California between July 2014 and July 2015, according to Census Bureau data. That helped Florida emerge as the third most populous U.S. state, jumping ahead of New York (and following California and Texas).”

Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity April 8-15, 2016

Sanibel

CONDOS

4 new listings: Captains Walk #A8 2/2 $365K; White Caps South #5 1/1 $520K; Loggerhead Cay #373 2/2 $595,555; Sealoft Village #106 2/2 $599K.

3 price changes: Mariner Pointe #712 2/2.5 now $549K, Sanctuary Golf Villages I #1-1 2/2.5 now $595K, Heron at The Sanctuary II #1B 2/2.5 now $610K.

1 new sale: Island Beach Club #330C 2/2 listed at $795K.

3 closed sales: Seawind #A101 2/2.5 $495K, Sundial West #G404 2/2 $559K, Sanibel Seaview #C3 4/4 $1.615M.

HOMES

5 new listings: 340 East Gulf Dr 2/2 $625K, 1710 Sand Pebble Way 3/2 $715K, 5749 Pine Tree Dr 3/3 $749K, 6188 Henderson Rd 3/2 $779K, 841 Lindgren Blvd 2/2 $899K.

7 price changes: 5131 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 2/2 now $465K, 1322 Sand Castle Rd 3/2 now $529.9K, 1772 Serenity Ln 3/2 now $679K, 5757 Pine Tree Dr 3/2.5 now $875K, 232 Robinwood Cir 4/3 now $1.285M, 6491 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 2/2 now $1.795M, 513 Lighthouse Way 3/3 now $2.4M.

7 new sales: 848 Rabbit Rd 3/2 listed at $379.9K, 441 Lake Murex Cir 3/3 now $569K, 5303 Ladyfinger Lake Rd 3/2 listed at $649K, 3711 Agate Ct 3/2.5 listed at $899K, 2459 Harbour Ln 3/3.5 listed at $949K, 460 East Gulf Dr 2/2.5 listed at $1.289M, 882 Beach Rd 4/3 listed at $1.395M.

4 closed sales: 1521 Wilton Ln 3/2 $538.5K, 557 N Yachtsman Dr 4/3 $700K, 280 Ferry Landing Dr 3/2 $875K, 169 Southwinds Dr 3/2 $1.234M.

LOTS

1 new listings: 1304 Eagle Run Dr $339K (same lot that closed earlier in the week).

2 price changes: 2486 Wulfert Rd now $189,555; 6217 Starling Way now $1.295M.

No new sales.

1 closed sale: 1304 Eagle Run Dr $205K.

Captiva

CONDOS

3 new listings: Tennis Villas #3231 2/2 $405K, Sunset Beach Villas #2316 1/1 $510K, Bayside Villas #5302 3/3 $629.9K.

No price changes.

1 new sale: Bayside Villas #4302 3/3 listed at $605K.

No closed sales.

HOMES

No new listings or price changes.

1 new sale: 6790 Captiva Dr 5/5  multi-family listed at $5.25M.

1 closed sale: 16251 Captiva Dr 7/4.5 $2.15M.

LOTS

Nothing to report

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

Until next Friday, here’s a photo like the one so many folks post on social media, saying “It’s the road to paradise”.

It is… TGIF, Susan Andrews, aka SanibelSusan

Causeway bridge

It’s Another Fabulous Friday on Sanibel & Captiva Islands

Although it was a fairly quiet holiday on Monday, this week flew by. While on our rounds today, Dave and I stopped in at Tarpon Bay Explorers. Below are a few photos snapped from their observation deck.

Happenings at SanibelSusan Realty Associates

SANSLogoWe are happy campers at SanibelSusan Realty. Some of the team had the holiday off (actually Dave and Lisa were in the office with me over the weekend). Then, Dave put an off-island property under contract on Monday. Then, we had a big closing on Wednesday, plus received a nice new condo listing that day too.

Though island real estate activity has slowed down, some buyers are here and others coming.

The action posted over the last seven days in the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Multiple Listing Service follows a couple of news items below.

Summertime Means Summer Storms

Lcec logoLast Saturday, we had our first good summer thunder buster which caused a short power outage. As part of the normal routine here in the summer, it’s a good time to be reminded that LCEC (Lee County Electric Coop) is known for its reliability. Not to mention that they have reduced their rates for the past two years and not had a rate increase in seven years. Their May newsletter mentioned that their rates are the lowest among Florida cooperatives.

EcoBrokerOriginalCertifiedLogo150pThat newsletter included the following reminder which also gets the approval of this certified Eco-Broker:

energy starYou can be an energy star! Energy is a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) program designed to help you save money. An Energy Star label means the product or appliance will deliver great service and use less energy. This will not only reduce your electric bill, but it will also help the environment.

  • Energy Star air conditioners are 15% more efficient.
  • Energy Star televisions are 25% more energy efficient.
  • Energy Star refrigerators can save as much as $300 on energy costs over their lifetime.
  • Energy Star clothes dryers use 20% less energy.”

NOAA Predicts Below-Normal Atlantic Hurricane Season

wall street journalWe love it when clients send us ideas for our weekly updates. Thanks to Scott, here’s a repeat of an article that was posted online Wednesday by “The Wall Street Journal”:

Weather agency predicts 3-6 hurricanes from June 1 through Nov. 30

Noaa“A below-normal Atlantic hurricane season is likely this year, according to the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration. For the hurricane season spanning June 1 through Nov. 30, NOAA predicts in its latest report a 70% likelihood of six to 11 named storms—of which three to six could become hurricanes and up to two may become major hurricanes.

“Named storms have winds of at least 39 miles an hour and become hurricanes when winds reach 74 mph. At 111 mph, a hurricane is designated category three or higher.

““A below-normal season doesn’t mean we’re off the hook. As we’ve seen before, below-normal seasons can still produce catastrophic impacts to communities,” said NOAA Administrator Kathryn Sullivan.

“El Niño is the main factor expected to suppress hurricane season this year, according to Ms. Sullivan. NOAA also said it expects sea surface temperatures in the tropical Atlantic to be near normal. Warmer waters support storm development.

“NOAA said it would issue an updated outlook for the Atlantic hurricane season in early August, ahead of the historical peak of the season.

“For the Eastern Pacific hurricane basin, NOAA predicts a 70% chance of an above-average hurricane season with seven to 12 hurricanes including five to eight major hurricanes. The Central Pacific hurricane basin is expected to see an above-normal five to eight tropical cyclones this year, the agency said.”

REALTORS® Upbeat on Housing Outlook

A Realtor®Mag article posted on-line yesterday offered the following from “DAILY REAL ESTATE NEWS”:

Map 12 month increases expected

realtor logo “REALTORS® remain mostly confident in the next six months of the real estate market, thanks to 30-year fixed rates still below 4%, continued job growth, and recent measures that have made credit more accessible and cheaper, according to the April 2015 REALTORS® Confidence Index Survey, which is based on responses from more than 1,000 REALTORS® about their latest transactions.

“Across all property types (single family, townhomes, and condos), the number of respondents indicating the market as “strong” outnumbered those who viewed the market as “weak.”

“With stronger buyer demand and tight supplies, homes continue to sell relatively quickly, typically within 39 days in April, according to the survey. Also, REALTORS® increased their price expectations last month. Those surveyed expect prices to increase at a faster pace in the next 12 months with the median expected price growth to be 3.9% (up from 3.5% expectation in March’s survey). REALTORS® in Colorado were the most upbeat about price increases in the U.S., with median expected price growth at 6 percent, followed by the District of Columbia at 5%.

“REALTORS® also cited recent measures to open the credit box as having a profound impact on the housing market, such as with the Federal Housing Administration to lower its mortgage insurance premiums and the re-introduction from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to back 3% down payment loans.

“REALTORS® are the most upbeat about the overall housing market in states like North Dakota, Texas, Oklahoma, California, Oregon, Washington, Florida, New York, and Massachusetts, according to the survey.

“Also, REALTORS® outlook over the townhome and condo markets remained highest in Colorado.

“For-sale inventories remain tight in many states but seller traffic was reported as improving in many areas, particularly Utah, Wyoming, South Dakota, Texas, Missouri, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, South Carolina, and New Hampshire.

“While real estate professionals remain generally optimistic about housing’s outlook for the next six months, real estate professionals’ continued to have the following concerns about the market:

  • Tight inventory in most states especially for move-in ready and “affordable” units;
  • Financing issues, such as qualifying for a mortgage still remains tough and the underwriting process is slow, leading to delayed closings;
  • Appraisal valuation concerns and delays due to “questionable” comps, particularly for FHA/VA loans, use of “out-of-town appraisers”, and second appraisal requirements;
  • Impact of the new mortgage procedures (RESPA-TILA) on closings;
  • Negative impact of low oil prices in states with oil/gas production;
  • Slowing demand from international buyers (e.g., Canadians) due to strong US dollar;
  • Uncertainties associated with flood insurance rates;
  • Impact of upcoming interest rate increase on demand.”

Window Costs Likely to Spike After June

This article in The “Island Reporter” this week caught my eye. Did you know about the new Florida Energy code?

island reporter

“The Fifth Edition Florida Energy Code is a title not known by many, but it is something which will affect anyone with a house or business come June 30.

“It’s the new energy cost savings for Florida, which resulted after the state updated its commercial and residential building energy codes in accordance with federal law, and it’s significant.

“”We are pulling permits now for our jobs in September and October,” said Kevin Munden, owner of Sanibel Glass and Mirror, Inc. “There is zero information out there about the Fifth Edition Florida Energy Code and if we don’t have our permits secured by July 1, the price of glass is going up.

“So how much will windows be going up after June 30?

“Try a 56% increase, due to the addition of insulated windows, which will be triple-silver-glazed, along with the already required high-impact glass.

“All this goes back eight years, when they passed a law which was going to reduce the consumption of energy in Florida,” said Dennis Chappell, who is Munden’s window contractor with Chappell Sales, LLC. “All homes need to get a certain number in a rating system, which involved air conditioning, insulation, etc. Each one is assigned a number. It is driven by the federal government to help reduce carbon emissions.”

““The ultimate goal is getting down to zero energy used in the home.”

“The new insulated glass which will be required after June 30, is the highest-priced which can go into windows. The new windows, will have a mirror-like look to it, which results from the triple-silver-glazed glass.

“That will be placed on the outside to reflect the sun and heat from entering the house, and goes along with the single high impact glass, which is already required of homes and commercial businesses.

“It’s been a code which has been in the making since 2010, but there have been postponements over the years delaying its enactment.”

“After June 30, all new construction will need to implement the high-energy efficient windows, which will force a rise in costs. But new construction is not where the problems will start popping up in the Fifth Edition Energy Code.

“Even if a window needs to be replaced in a current home or business, it needs to go through the property permitting process. That means, after June 30, to obtain a permit, the new energy efficient insulated windows will have to be used.

“It makes 100% perfect sense for new construction,” Munden said. “But the code also pertains to retro-fitting, meaning changing windows already installed in the house or business. It’s not going to be a cheap thing to change and could mean up to a 25% increase in a project.”

“For example, if a homeowner is deciding to replace their dozen windows in their home, they will need to replace them with the much more energy efficient insulated ones, which leads to another potential lurking problem – illegal installation.

“What this is going to create are illegal installations,” Munden said. “Unlicensed installers don’t have the property testing, the property installation and they don’t pull permits.”

“If a home or business owner cuts the corner and doesn’t properly obtain the permits to install windows, they will not be covered by insurance companies, which require the documentation before a claim can be settled.

“Now, if we get a hurricane, and those windows are not properly permitted, they will be denied their claim,” Munden added. “Claims will be denied without property permits.”

“The only way to gain the proper permits again, is to install the new insulated windows required by the Fifth Edition Florida Energy Code.

“”We are having to give double proposals now, the first being the current price before June 30, and the other estimate post-June 30,” Munden said. “As long as you get your permit before June 30, you are fine.”

“There are some leeways the state is giving and that is the code is subject to authority having jurisdiction by the local building department.

“Sanibel Building Department’s Harold Law, couldn’t comment about the Fifth Edition Florida Energy Code, because officials are still learning about it, but he did say June 30 is the current deadline for the enactment of it.

“Which, of course with government, that isn’t a certain even.

“The Legislature of Florida went home already and the Builder’s Association submitted a bill to postpone implementation of the code for a year,” said Chappell, who has attended every association meeting about the new code this past year. “It wasn’t voted on and it looked dead. But now, the Governor has called a special session, and there is a possibility this bill could pass. It’s not likely, but a possibility.”

““They could extend it one year, if that bill passes. The reality is, though, until the session is over with, we don’t know when the code will be enacted.”

“Another big problem which could occur if the code is enacted June 30, deals with condominiums. With condo associations almost always requiring a uniform exterior, when the different windows start being put in, that will upset those rules.

“”Sanibel has a couple thousand units and they are stringent on outside appearance of building,” Munden said. “Ninety-percent of them have tinted glass, which is gray in appearance. With the new windows, the glass will look entirely different. The state is telling them they can use only one kind of glass. Now, you’ll see all of these windows which are going to be gray, and this new glass will be mirrored. It’s going to create a lot of problems with association, because the glass won’t be matching now.”

“With Chappel being Sanibel Glass and Mirror’s window salesman and informing his clients of the change, Munden said he has been preparing for it, when it comes. The permits he has been pulling now for his September and October jobs, can be extended for another six months, so his company should be prepared.

“”I just want people to be aware of this,” Munden said. “There isn’t a lot of information out there about it.”

“To learn more about the Fifth Edition Florida Energy Code go to https://www.energycodes.gov/adoption/states/florida.” or here’s the code: shop.iccsafe.org/media/wysiwyg/material/5681L14-TOC.pdf

Sanibel & Captiva Multiple Listing Service Activity May 15-22 

Sanibel

CONDOS

View of Sanibel River from Sunset South #9C

View of Sanibel River from Sunset South #9C

4 new listings: Sunset South #9C 2/2 $449K (our listing), Sundial #F103 2/2 $465K, White Caps South #5 1/1 $549K, Wedgewood #104 3/3.5 $2.395M.

2 price changes: Nutmeg Village #307 2/2 now $675K, Nutmeg Village #209 2/2 now $720K.

3 new sales: Sundial #C207 1/1 listed for $429K, Breakers West #C2 2/2 listed for $535K, Island Beach Club #F230 2/2 listed for $649K.

3 closed sales: Spanish Cay #B2 2/2 $378K, Sanctuary Golf Villages I #4-4 2/2.5 $650K, Seascape #104 3/3 $1.9M (our sale).

Seascape Boardwalk

Seascape boardwalk

 

HOMES

1 new listing: 1599 Sand Castle Rd 3/2.5 half-duplex $489K.

5 price changes: 5131 Sanibel-Captiva Rd 2/2 now $499K, 9032 Mockingbird Dr 3/2 now $598.65K, 5749 Pine Tree Dr 3/3 now $695K (short sale), 9445 Beverly Ln 3/2 now $699K, 2010 Sunrise Cir 5/3 now $1.149M.

8 new sales: 982 Main St 3/2.5 listed for $439K, 220 Palm Lake Dr 3/3 listed for $565K, 750 Martha’s Ln 3/2 listed for $579K, 2984 Island Inn Rd 3/2 listed for $619K, 9470 Balsa Ct 3/2 listed for $825K, 0 Sea Pines 3/2 listed for $849K, 489 Lake Murex Cir 4/2 listed for $899K, 1204 Isabel Dr 3/3.5 listed for $3.795M.

8 closed sales: 766 Donax St 2/2 duplex $385K, 1677 Sabal Sands Rd 3/2 $400K, 3724 Agate Ct 2/2 $520K, 238 Southwinds Dr 3/3 $570K, 3968 Coquina Dr 3/2 $675K, 2514 Blind Pass Ct 4/3/2 $1.23M, 2720 Coconut Dr 3/3.5 $1.5M, 4809 Tradewinds Dr 3/3.5 $1.575M.

LOTS

No new listings or price changes.

1 new sales: without contingencies: 915 Main St listed for $199K.

No closed sales.

Captiva

CONDOS

1 new listing: Lands End Village #1611 2/2 $1.275M.

1 price change: Tennis Villas #3115 1/1 now $284.5K.

2 new sales: Bayside Villas #4114 1/2 listed for $265K, Beach Homes #3 3/2 listed for $1.879M.

No closed sales.

HOMES

No new listings.

1 price change: 1121 Schefflera Ct 4/4.5 now $3.99M.

3 new sales: 11537 Andy Rosse Ln 4/4 listed for $2.345M, 15009 Binder Dr 4/5.5 listed for $3.595M, 1131 Longifolia Ct 4/4 listed for $3.69M.

No closed sales.

LOTS

No new listings.

1 price change: 11545 Wightman Ln now $1.245M.

No new or closed sales.

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.

In addition to wishing you all a great weekend, remember SanibelSusan will be in the office if you want to buy or sell any island real estate.

In the meantime, please enjoy this adorable photo of a baby blue heron – looks like a baby dinosaur.

(Pix borrowed from a Facebook posting by Eric Weiss, who is Executive Producer at “Better Living”.)

Baby blue heron - Eric Weiss -