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 Sarah's Blog 
Friday, October 11 2013

Something for Everyone!

Our island condos have quite a bit to offer and I believe we have something for everyone! We are having a good year with condo sales, and we also have a great inventory for our upcoming season.

On Sanibel you have 107 condo complexes to choose from, and as a long-time island resident I can help you find just the right fit for you and your family. Some condos are geared more for owner use, and some are geared for rentals, and some are geared for both. I can help explain to you all the different choices. Shopping for condos can be fun!

Currently Sanibel Island has 130 condos listed for sale. Asking prices start at $169,000 for a 1/1 at Colonnades Condo to $2,999,900 for a 3/3.5 at Sedgemoor of Sanibel on the Gulf.

Listings show that 103 are gulf view or gulf front, 10 are on the bay, and 3 are on a canal.

The Sanibel condo market this year has been fairly busy with a total of 150 condos being under contract or closed since the first of the year.

Captiva Island has approximately 18 condo complexes, with a total of 56 condos currently listed for sale. Asking prices start from $225,000 for a 1/1 at Tennis Villas to $2,000,000 for a 3/3 located in South Seas Beach homes.

Captiva has had 33 condos either close or currently pending so far this year.

So! Is this your year to buy an island property? I think it should be! Prices are reasonable and have just started to climb. The housing problems seem to be behind us and it's again time for buyers to enter our market. Sanibel's beaches and sights are still here and are waiting for you. Give me a call today so I can start your search for the perfect island property.

I would also like to show you this video (left) made by one of our talented local videographers. This video shows our area in all its beauty. Take a few minutes to watch this video - and then give me a call so I can make you a part of this special area of the world!

Beaches, shelling, boating, restaurants, shopping, nature and privacy - you need look no further!

As you can tell, I love this area. I've lived here for years and love showing Sanibel and Captiva off to our visitors. Whether it's a gulf front on Captiva, a bay front with a dock, or an interior property near our National Wildlife Refuge, we have a bit of everything and I'm sure we have just the right place for you!

Call me Today!

Thanks!
Sarah Ashton, Broker Associate
Royal Shell Real Estate
239-691-4915

Posted by: AT 10:42 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, September 23 2013

The Latest Info On Near Beach Sanibel Sales

It's nice, in fact great, to see our Sanibel real estate market getting fully on its feet again! This year, and last year, have been a continuation of the national economic recovery. It helps that bank rates are continuing to be at historic lows and home prices are extemely reasonable.

Sanibel and Captiva real estate have always been in demand, and it was the economic downturn that dragged us down. Lots of people were just waiting for the recovery to start before they jumped back into the market. Sanibel and Captiva are incredible places to live! As a long-time Sanibel resident, I can definitely relate!

In this blog I want to take a look at our Sanibel near-beach home sales.

Currently we have 52 near-beach Sanibel homes listed. Asking prices start at $424,900 for a two bed, two bath, 1401 sq. ft. ground level home on Tahiti Drive, to a four bed, three bath, 6045 sq. ft. home on Dingman Drive for $2,495,000. There are currently 5 near-beach homes under contract and pending sale.

So far this year we've had 71 near-beach Sanibel homes sold (that's right! 71). The listing to sales price, so far this year, has been 91%.

We are on track toward a great year. Last year during the same period we had 70 near-beach Sanibel home sales, which shows that for two years our market has been healthy. This is a great time to start your search for island property - rising market, low rates, good inventory and reasonable sales prices.

For a snapshot of our current market listings:

Sanibel
Total home listings on Sanibel - 146
From a 3/1 on Court Place for $289,000, to a 3/5 for $23,000,000 on San-Cap Drive.
Total condo listings on Sanibel - 134
From a 1/1 at Spanish Cay for $$264,000, to Sedgemore Condo for $2,999,900.

Captiva
Total home listings on Captiva - 34
From a 3/2 on Dickey Lane for $879,000 to a 7 bedroom on Captiva Drive for $10,900,000
Total condo listings on Captiva - 30
From a 1/1 in Tennis Villas for $225,000 to a 3/3 Beach Home condo for $2,050,000.

Give me a call today to start your search for the perfect island property! I can do all the research for the property that fits your criteria and arrange for you to see it. If you're not on-island, no problem. I can send you photos and all the information you need to advance your search. I can find you just what you're looking for! In a few years there will be many who say, "If only I bought back in 2013 before prices and interest rates..."

Contact Me Today!

 

Thanks!
Sarah Ashton, Broker Associate
Royal Shell Real Estate
239-691-4915
www.SarahAshton.com
Contact Me
 

 

Posted by: AT 12:51 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, September 04 2013

Another Tip To Help Sell Your Home

This tip is not just if you are selling your home unfurnished, staging your home can be done with your existing furniture. When potential buyers are looking at homes, yours is competing with all the other homes in the area in that price range, and you want to maximize your home's appeal.

You want your home to look cozy and warm. Some think that your home will look more roomy if you push your furniture against the wall - Not true! You should position your sofas and chairs into conversational groups, and in such a way as to show an obvious traffic pattern. This will open up the room and make it seem larger to potential buyers.

You can also shake things up a bit. Just because you have your favorite armchair in your den doesn't mean it won't look better in the sitting area in your bedroom. Try to look at your furniture with a new eye. If you have that "one room" that seems to be the place that gathers your junk, take notice and clean it!

Try moving your lamps and home accessories to places that will open your home and make it appear more airy and comfortable to buyers.

You can also repurpose a room into something that will add value. Something as easy as putting a table and a lamp in a stairwell nook will transform the area.

Lighting is another issue that you can easily change. To create a warm look you can increase the wattage in your lamps. The rule-of-thumb is to try and get a total of 100 watts for every 50 sq. ft., and you shouldn't depend on just one lighting fixture per room. You should have three types of lighting: general overhead, under cabinet, and table/wall lighting. You will be surprised how much difference lighting will make.

If you decide to paint a few rooms, keep the living room/den in neutral colors. A potential buyer might not like your experiment with bright colors. Just remember that everything you do to your home is to appeal to buyers, not you or your family.

For your bedroom, add some luxurious linens with colors that make potential buyers feel comfortable and, hopefully, at home. Also, cleaning out your larger closets will show off your roomy storage areas, which helps sell houses!

My last posts talked about removing clutter, and curb appeal, and along with staging your home for a sale, all of it fits together to help your home stand far above your competition.

The real estate market is definitely picking up and your competition is doing all they can to get their home sold! I can help you with all your home selling needs and I am looking forward to helping you get your home sold fast, and for a good price.

If you are thinking of selling this year - It's Time To Call Me!

Contact Me

Thanks!
Sarah Ashton, Broker Associate
Royal Shell Real Estate
239-691-4915

Posted by: AT 02:39 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, August 14 2013

Everything You Need In A Homesite!

My new listing is a homesite located at 2512 Wulfert Road in the Sanctuary at Wulfert. The Sanctuary is located off Sanibel-Captiva Road near the northern end of the Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge. This area is close to one of my favorite beaches, Blind Pass. It seems like every time I walk this beach I see people finding the best shells, fishing, and just relaxing under an umbrella.

This homesite measures 112 by 155 by 112 by 154 feet. This very large duplex lot has approximately 7,000 sq. ft. of impermeable coverage. The asking price is $259,500.

The property has terrific views overlooking the water to the 17th fairway and adjoining Sanctuary property.

Privacy and serene comfort would not be understating what this site has to offer. More information and a location map can be found here.

Equity and social membership to the Sanctuary Golf Club are available for purchase, but not required. You can check out my website Sanctuary condo page as well as watch a video of the Sanctuary area for some photos of what the Sanctuary has to offer.

If you are looking for a great location to build your home, this might be just the location for you! I also have another lot listed near this location with waterfront access to Pine Island Sound and the Gulf of Mexico. Check it out here.

As a long time resident of Sanibel Island who has also had a home built on the island, I can help you with all the necessities of getting your home ideas off the ground! Building your own home can he a fun challenge and a rewarding experience... so call me today to get started!

Contact Me!

 

Our summer is ending and we are gearing up for the return of our "snowbirds" as they come back for another fun winter season. Property values have been heading up and we are definitely on the rebound from the property value lows of a couple years ago.

I have access to ALL the island listings and I'm positive I can find just the right property for you! Give me a call at 239-691-4915, or use my Property Search feature on my website to start yoru own property search. You can search by map, price, location, size or just about any other criteria you want!

I'm looking forward to hearing from you, so... Call Me Today!

Contact Me!

Thanks!
Sarah Ashton, Broker Associate
Royal Shell Real Estate
239-691-4915
Contact Form

 

Posted by: AT 01:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, July 02 2013

Our Wildlife Get A Makeover

Okay, so maybe our wildlife doesn't get a makeover, but Wildlife Drive does! Wildlife Drive, the main road through the Refuge, is being re-paved and is expected to reopen October 1, 2013.

The good news is that the rest of the Refuge will remain open. You can still visit the Education Center (free), and also enjoy everything on the summer program schedule - click here for the full list!

This is from the press release about the closure, "This construction project will replace the existing open-grade pavement on Wildlife Drive with an asphalt concrete pavement. Existing and newly planted vegetation will help filter runoff. Portions of the shoulder currently used for parking will be reinforced and/or topped with crushed stone/gravel to prevent erosion and additional runoff.

Check our my Refuge Video above!

The Press Release continues, "The new surface will be an asphalt concrete that will extend the life of Wildlife Drive for 20 years, and will enhance visitor access, especially for bicyclists and pedestrians. Indigo Trail will only be accessible through guided tours conducted by Tarpon Bay Explorers. All other refuge access locations, including Tarpon Bay Recreation Area and the Bailey Tract will remain open."

This means you should still come and check it out! A guided tour along the Indigo Trail would really make your day. All the wildlife along Wildlife Drive can also be found along the Indigo Trail, and the Visitor Center is a great place to learn about our area as well as cool off before heading to the Bailey Tract area (also  open!).

J.N. Darling Website

 

We love our local wildlife and it makes sense to take care of our protected areas. In case you didn't know, Sanibel is over 60% preserve property. We take our natural surrounding seriously... and it's worth it. As a long-time Sanibel resident, I can assure you our Sanibel lifestyle is something you should try! Contact me for information about making the move to Sanibel Island!

If you want to check out the live web-cam of the improvements being made to the Refuge, Click Here. Maybe you will see one of our alligators checking out his new road! I was just checking out the webcam and I think this might be a great way to watch one of our sunsets over the lagoon. Take a look and email me about anything interesting you see!

This is the week of our July 4th events and if you're in the area come check us out! Our parade (always a good time) starts at 9:30 a.m. The Parade Route will begin at Tarpon Bay Road on Periwinkle Way and end at Casa Ybel Road.

And yes, we will have fireworks! They start around 8:45 p.m. (dusk) and will be launched from the north end of Bailey Road. You can check out all the fourth events Here at the City of Sanibel website.

As always, I'm here and ready to help you become my island neighbor! Our summer is a great time to start your search for the perfect property. Whether it's a home, homesite or condo, I've got access to ALL the listings! Give me a call at 239-691-4915 or use my Contact Form.

I'm looking forward to hearing from you... Call Now!

Thanks!
Sarah Ashton, Broker Associate
239-691-4915
www.SarahAshton.com

Posted by: AT 11:28 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, June 03 2013

Take a Tour!

 

Did you know you can take a quick tour of some of our favorite neighborhoods? I've been putting together web pages and videos of Sanibel and Captiva for you to enjoy as you start your search of island properties. Our summer weather is almost here and it's a great time to enjoy all the sights and fun things to do on the islands. Besides searching for your island home, summer is great for birding, fishing, shelling and just enjoying miles and miles of our word famous beach!

Captiva Island

 

Play VisualTour
"Downtown" Captiva

 

Play VisualTour
Sunset Captiva

 

Play VisualTour
Gulf Ridge

 

Play VisualTour
Sea Oats

 

Play VisualTour
Seaspray

 

Play VisualTour
Sanibel Bayous

 

By watching these videos you can get an idea of what each neighborhood has to offer. I also have a web page for each area in my website's "Near Beach" section. It's a great place to start to explore our islands! I also have pages dedicated to the Lighthouse, Wildlife Refuge and a video tour of Sanibel's eastern end. As well as the information in my website, I'd love for you to use my contact form, or call me at 239-691-4915, so I can put together information for you for your perfect island property!

 

Play VisualTour
Bayous North

 

Play VisualTour
Herons Landing II

 

Play VisualTour
Herons Landing

 

Play VisualTour
The Dunes

 

Play VisualTour
The Sanctuary

 

Play VisualTour
Lake Murex

 

Play VisualTour
West Rocks

 

Play VisualTour
East Rocks

 

Play VisualTour
Beachview
When you're looking for something to do this summer I can help you explore and learn about my favorite place, Sanibel Island. I'm a long-time resident of Sanibel Island, and I love to show off what these islands have to offer. Royal Shell Real Estate has offices on Captiva Island as well as Sanibel Island and I have access to every listed property! Call Me! 239-691-4915

 

Play VisualTour
Seagull Estates

 

Play VisualTour
Sea Oats

 

Play VisualTour
Chateaux Sur Mer

It's June already and I'm getting ready for another busy summer. I am never too busy to help you and your family and friends with their island real estate! I'm looking forward do hearing from you and I hope you enjoy my video tours!

Thanks!
Sarah Ashton, Broker Associate
Royal Shell Real Estate
www.SarahAshton.com
239-691-4915

Posted by: AT 10:11 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, April 02 2013

The Atrium on Sanibel Island

For more of the Best Sanibel Island real estate, we have The Atrium condo located at 2929 West Gulf Drive. The Atrium is a small Gulf Front condo with only 24 units. The units are either 2/2 with 1856 sq. ft or the larger 3/3 with 2250 sq. ft.

These large condos are just steps from the pool, tennis court or beach. The landscaping is perfection, and the Sanibel Island lifestyle is a perfect fit at the Atrium

Check out my Atrium Webpage
and virtual tour of this condo!

Currently there is one listing at Atrium, a one bedroom, one bath for $1,147,555. This is a gulf front unit with incredible views.

The Atrium is always in demand so give me a call, or use my contact form, for more information on this property!

We are having a great season this year and we have lots of options for anyone looking for Sanibel or Captiva Island real estate. Typically our season starts to wind down after Easter, but local rental companies are reporting strong reservations well into the summer.

I can't blame people for wanting to come here to visit or invest in real estate. We are known for our wildlife, beaches, shelling, boating, fishing, sailing, shops and the list goes on!

Property prices are starting to rise again but there are lots of terrific deals to be had! Financing is a bit trickier to get, but rates are still at historic lows and I can help guide you to lenders as well as everything involved in buying island property.

I've been a Sanibel resident for many years and I love to help people find a way to make the move to our islands. Whether it's Sanibel, Captiva or Fort Myers, I can help you from beginning to end!

If you can't make the trip to our islands yet, but still want information about this area, give me a call at 239-691-4915 and I can answer all your questions. If you want to check out some of my island videos, you can click on the links below.

Sanibel Island East End Video
Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge
Captiva Island Video
Island Condo Videos
Island Neighborhood Videos

Thanks for checking out my blog and my website! I hope you find lots of fun and interesting things in it. Be sure to check out my multiple listing service search page! We make it easy for you! You can search by location, price, using an island map, or just about any other criteria you want. You can even save or email the listings that you like.

I'm here to help, so it's time to start your search for your place in paradise!

Thanks
Sarah, Broker Associate
239-691-4915

Posted by: AT 02:50 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, March 26 2013

SarahAshton.com - The Best Place To Start!

This week I would like to point out some of the fun and useful things that you can do with my website! From interesting facts about Sanibel and Captiva Islands to informative videos of our neighborhoods and condos, this is a one-stop site for all your island questions.

The Captiva video on the  right is a great way to check out Captiva Island and what it has to offer. I also have a Captiva webpage, a "Downtown" Captiva webpage along with links to our restaurants and marinas! I also have a video of my Gulf front Captiva listing for you to enjoy.

Captiva is world famous for its beaches, sights and quaint style and I'd love to be able to show you around!

If you want to search for properties, my site has the most modern and useful search engine you will find. You can search with whatever criteria you wish, or by map (left), or subdivision or condo. It's easy to use and you can save your searches and email your results to friends and relatives.

I even have a page of important numbers you might need when you decide to move to the islands.

As you drive around the island checking out which areas or condos look good to you, you can use my mobile site as you travel around the island. You can search properties with your smart phone or tablet as well as learn about the area and what it has to offer.

If you want to check out Sanibel before you get to the island, I have a couple of videos I made of the east end of the island. It's a great place to start! Click Here! I'm also proud of a video I have of one of Sanibel Island's most popular sites - The J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge.

As for our local neighborhoods and condos, my condo page and neighborhood page have links to each area along with video tours of each area. This is a wonderful way to check out all the different areas of the island without leaving your home!

Each area has local information, an area map and virtual tour of the neighborhood or condo!

Other fun things you can do on my website -
How about a visit to our lighthouse?
Check out where our miles and miles of walking/bike trails lead!
How about how to go "Green" or to download my Green Guide!
Check out my listings along with videos!
Tips for the Buyer and the Seller!
And, of course, Contact Me for answers to ALL your questions!
Or you can just connect with me on Facebook or Pinterest!

My site has lots more to offer and please feel free to check out all my pages and links!

When it's time for you to buy or sell I'll be there for you! I am a long-time island resident and I love to show off my islands! This is your year to follow your heart to Sanibel And Captiva Islands!

Call Me!
239-691-4915
or use my Contact Form

Thanks!
Sarah Ashton, Broker Associate
Royal Shell Real Estate, Captiva & Sanibel

 

Posted by: AT 11:14 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, March 15 2013
Gulf Front Gulfside Place, Sanibel Island

 

This week I want to talk about Sanibel real estate and another fantastic gulf front condo - Gulfside Place. Located at 1605 Middle Gulf Drive, this condo has just about everything you need. It's perfect for either personal use or to put in the rental program - or both!

Gulfside has 2/2 units as well as 3/2 units. You can check out my Gulfside Place webpage and  Virtual Tour Here!
 
Gulfside Place has easy access to Sanibel's miles and miles of beautiful sand and shell beach. You can also jump on the over 20 miles of walking/biking paths that pass right in front of Gulfside.

Sanibel has so much to offer and Gulfside Place is the perfect location to take advantage of all Sanibel has to offer.
 
  Gulfside has two large swimming pools (both with beautiful gulf views) and six tennis courts for your enjoyment. An exercise room is available for you, as well as BBQ areas.

The Sanibel Island lifestyle is waiting and I'm sure I can find just the right place for you! Condo, home or vacant homesite - I can show you all the listings available.
  Currently there is one condo listed at Gulfside Place, a two bedroom, two bath listed for $955,000. This unit has been completely remodeled and overlooks the gardens, pool and Gulf of Mexico.

Gulfside is a popular location and always in demand. Give me a call at 239-691-4915 or use my contact form for all the latest listings at Gulfside Place!
I have information on ALL the listings for Sanibel Island, Captiva Island and Fort Myers, so contact me with any questions you might have for our islands. I am a long-time resident of Sanibel and I'd love to speak with you and talk about my home island as well as all our surrounding areas!

Our "season" is here and we have a great inventory of available properties. Interest rates are still at historic lows and prices are reasonable - This is the year for you to consider our islands!
 
  If you aren't quite ready to buy, I can insert your search criteria into my automated system and you will be emailed every new listing that fits your needs! No hassle and no pressure!

We can search using just about any criteria you want - price, size, location, pool, condo, home or homesite!

Give me a call at 239-691-4915 or through my  Website.

Thanks!
Sarah

 

Posted by: AT 12:33 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, February 27 2013
Our own river on Sanibel Island!

The Sanibel River - We wouldn’t be Sanibel without it!

One of the things that makes Sanibel Island a truly unique place is that abundance of wildlife.  Birds, reptiles, and mammals of all types have made Sanibel home. The reason they can do this and flourish - The Sanibel River. 
 
  I recently read a really interesting article by Ed Brotak in Times of the Islands that brought forth some very interesting facts about the Sanibel River.

• It is actually a Slough, not a river.
• A Slough is an area of freshwater lowlands
• Because there is very little elevation change on Sanibel, the water in the River does not consistently flow in one direction
• The water levels in the Sanibel River are directly related to rainfall
• There are two Weirs that control the water levels in the river.
• SCCF – the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation was created in 1967 and has as a top priority the preservation of Sanibel’s freshwater wetlands.

If you would like to learn more about this unique feature on Sanibel Island, stop by the SCCF Nature Center.  From there you can view the river from their Observation Tower and learn more about the ecology of the island.  
And if you think it's time to become a part of our Sanibel Island lifestyle, I am ready to help you search for the perfect Sanibel Island Real Estate! Just give me a call at 239-691-4915 or use my Contact Form!

Our season is in full swing and our weather is as perfect as it can be! No snow, no ice, no winter storm warnings. Come on down and relax on our beaches and enjoy our wildlife!
Give me a call today!
Thanks!
Sarah
Posted by: AT 08:04 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, February 12 2013
The Vacant Land Conundrum


Owning a Vacant Lot is a great strategy for getting your toe in the water in a community you think you may want to live in the future, as well as a way to diversify an investment portfolio with Real Estate.  It is relatively inexpensive to own (Real Estate Taxes) and relatively easy to maintain, perhaps clearing or mowing it periodically. 
The challenge comes when you have decided that you aren’t going to build on it yourself and you wish to divest yourself of the investment in return for cash.  The market for Vacant Land is a bit fickle.  If the overall real estate market is experiencing reduced prices as we have been for the past several years, selling that lot can be tough. 
When the prices of existing houses, on perhaps preferred lots is low, it makes the “buy the land and build on it” model a tough one from a financial perspective.  Basically we are looking at the price of the land plus the cost to build and needing to be less than or roughly equal to the purchase price of an existing home plus any updates or remodeling.  The formulaic side of me can’t help but state it as:

VL + CB  < or = EH + RM

VL - Vacant Land; CB - Cost to Build;
EH - Existing House; RM - Remodel

This of course doesn’t take in the entire story either. Clearly the ability to design your living space and to take advantage of current technology and building practices has a benefit.  While, at the same time, not all folks are interested in the occasional hassles of the building process, particularly from hundreds of miles away. 
 
Therein lies the conundrum. What is the actual value of a piece of Vacant Land? The variables are great and the comparisons of one piece of land to another is sometimes a difficult one.  The value ultimately is in the eyes of the beholder.

If finding your dream property and building a home sounds like something you are interested in, check out my homesite listings!
Located in Beachview
Located in Sea Oats
Located in the Sanctuary
For information on ALL the Sanibel and Captiva Island real estate, give me a call at 239-691-4915 or through my Contact Form!
Thanks
Sarah
Posted by: AT 09:05 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, January 31 2013

Is remodeling your home part of your Spring plans?  It may be a good idea to check on the Return on Investment for home improvement projects, particularly if the projects are in advance of trying to sell your house.
Remodeling Magazine just came out with their top returning home improvement projects and they found that replacing the Entry Door (never diminish the importance of Curb Appeal) returned roughly 85% of the cost.  Other more costly projects such as Re-siding the house or a total kitchen upgrade returned 79% and 71% respectively but may also provide more enjoyment if you are staying for a while.

To see what other types of improvements they cited as having a good return, Click Here!



Happy Re-modeling

Lots of new listings and things to know about our islands! Give me a call!
Thanks!
Sarah
239-691-4915
Posted by: AT 10:16 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, December 20 2012
Gulf Ridge

Last time I wrote about Sea Spray, which is just down the road from today's topic - Gulf Ridge Community. Slightly larger than Sea Spray, Gulf Ridge has about 60 homes/homesites, with some being direct gulf front properties!
Gulf Ridge also has two pools and two tennis court for your enjoyment! This community is located near the J.N. Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge and also just a short drive to Blind Pass and Captiva Island.

Over 20 miles of biking/walking trails are located at the entrance to this community!
Currently there are four homes listed in Gulf Ridge. The asking prices start with a three bed, three bath for $760,000, up to a four/four for $3,990,000. There is currently one vacant property available - over an acre for $469,000.

Contact me
for all the latest information on our island listings! You can also watch a video tour of Gulf Ridge on My Webpage.
Sanibel is starting to get busy with our winter season almost upon us! Our islands are colorfully decorated for the holidays and we have lots of events coming up. This is a great time to think about looking at island properties! We have a great inventory, and I'm sure I can find just the right location for you.
For Sanibel homes available, we have 209 currently listed in our multiple listing service. The asking prices start with a 3/2 for $250,000.

For Sanibel condos, we currently have 193 listed, starting with a 1/1 for $129,000!


You can see that we have something for everyone! You can search our MLS Here.
I also want to tell you about my latest listing. It's a homesite located in Sea Oats Subdivision (off West Gulf Drive). This is one of the few remaining vacant lots in Sea Oats, one of our most sought after communities. The property offers views of conservation property, and includes a deeded beach access just a short walk or bike ride away. The asking price is only $315,000! Contact Me or call 239-691-4915 for more information.
You can check out Sea Oats with  a video tour on my webpage.

Thanks!
Sarah
Posted by: AT 10:58 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, November 26 2012
A total "Don't Miss It" while on Sanibel Island is the Sanibel Island Farmers Market
It is gem in the truest sense.  Aside from having local produce at good prices, the Farmers Market also has vendors that can provide you with ingredients for meals for the week.  Whether that is bread, cheese, pasta, sauces, fish or pastries, you can find a variety of yummy locally grown or produced products.
My husband and I got there late yesterday - it runs from 8am to 1pm on Sundays, November thru April, and we got the additional bonus of getting discounted prices on the produce.  The vendors did not want to go home with it so better to sell it at a discount.
Likely the best part of the Market is the community building.  Not that Sanibel lacks for a sense of community but this simple weekly event pulls everyone out.  There hasn't been a Sunday when we haven't run into several friends here.  The relaxed time allows for catching up and the ability to bring along 4 legged friends on leashes ads to the community flavor (I do believe we are the dog capital of SW Florida as well as being #1 on Frommers list). 
Do stop by and check it out for yourself.  It is held behind City Hall on Dunlop Road.  I hope to see you there soon!
Thanks! And as always contact me for the latest Sanibel Island real estate information!
Sarah
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 03:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, November 18 2012

Our Favorite Sanctuary - Ding Darling

The J.N. "Ding" Darling Wildlife Refuge is known worldwide for its mangrove ecosystem and its incredible migratory bird population. It's also an easy way for visitors to enjoy nature and learn about our wildlife through our educational Visitor's Center. Driving and walking trails through the Refuge allow people to get close to our island wildlife.

Wildlife drive is a five-mile loop road that takes you through the 6,400 acre preserve. Over 220 species of birds call the sanctuary home and low tide is the best time to watch them feed and play in the shallow salt water and fresh water flats.

At the entrance to the Refuge there is the Visitor's Center where you can explore the in-depth workings of our mangrove ecosystem. There is also a hands-on area for kids!

To tour the preserve you can sign up for a narrated tram tour, or you can walk, bike or take your own car. Besides Wildlife Drive, there is the four-mile Indigo Trail, the quarter-mile Wulfert Keys Trail and the quarter-mile Shell Mound Trail. You can also tour by canoe or kayak! Just be sure to remember your camera.

Fishing is allowed and you can relax while fishing for snook, redfish, sheepshead or sea trout. The Visitor's Center can fill you in on what's in season and where to fish. Boating is also allowed in designated areas of the Refuge.
In 1967 the sanctuary was renamed for the political cartoonist Jay Norwood "Ding" Darling. Ding was an avid conservationist and in 1945 he was instrumental in having President Harry Truman sign an Executive order creating the Sanibel National Wildlife Refuge. Currently approximately 2,800 acres are designated by Congress as a Wilderness Area.

The Refuge offers much more than I can mention in this blog, and you can find more information at this Website. You can also visit my new webpage and check out my video of the Refuge. You can see roseate spoonbills along with egrets and herons feeding on the flats. You can check out the video Here!

I hope you remember to make time for a visit to the Refuge on your next island visit, but until then, please give me a call at 239-691-4915, or use my contact form for all the latest information about my special islands! Miles and miles of beach, our historic lighthouse, condos, homes and vacant land - this is the year for you to explore Sanibel and Captiva real estate!

Thanks!
Sarah
Posted by: AT 04:16 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, November 09 2012
Heron's Landing and Heron's Landing II

This week I want to talk about two great neighborhoods on the Island. Centrally located off of Sanibel-Captiva Road, Heron's Landing and Heron's Landing II are gated communities near the beach, Captiva Island and the Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge.

You  can watch a virtual tour of either neighborhood by visiting my Heron's Landing webpages:
Heron's Landing or Heron's Landing II
Both neighborhoods are located off the Sanibel Bayous subdivision and each has properties overlooking the Bayou and some with second floor Gulf views.

If you are looking for a home, or a place to construct your dream home, I can help you with the ins and outs of home buying or construction on our island! Sanibel Island real estate presents you with lots of great opportunities!

Currently there are a couple of terrific listings in Heron's Landing. There are two homes currently listed. One is a furnished three bedroom, two bath for $879,000. The other is a three bedroom, three bath with Bayou and Gulf views listed for $1,695,000.

There are two vacant properties for sale, one for $379,00 and another for $595,555.
All these properties have pros and cons and if you would contact me I can explain each area and property to you. Sanibel Island is an incredible place to live, and as a long time island resident, I have the knowledge to help you with your real estate decisions!
Our real estate market is definitely on the rise with market prices coming off its lows and sales activity is on the rise. If you have been thinking of buying on Sanibel, Captiva Island or Fort Myers, this is the time to get in high gear and let me go to work for you! We have some terrific properties ready for you.
Whether it's a condo, home or vacant lot, our pre-season inventory has just about every type property you can imagine. On Sanibel, home prices start at $250,000 and go up to $5,496,00. Condo prices from $129,000 to $2,999,900. I can definitely find just the right place for you!
The Sanibel & Captiva Island lifestyle awaits! Use my contact form or give me a call at 239-691-4915. It's starting to get cold up north and we are expecting a very busy real estate season so pick up that phone and give me a call!!
Next week I'll talk about the J.N. Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge! I have a great video that you can watch HERE, so until then...
Thanks!
Sarah
Posted by: AT 09:54 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, October 20 2012

We can always tell when it's starting to get cold up north. Our traffic gets heavier and our resorts start to fill up. This is a great time of the year and it's also a good time to look at what's going on with our real estate market.

Currently we have 185 homes listed on Sanibel, starting with a three bedroom, two bath listed at $250,000 on San-Cap Road, up to a four bedroom, five and a half bath gulf front home listed at $5,495,000. On Captiva Island we have 36 homes listed, from a two bedroom, two and a half bath for $669,00, to an incredible seven bedroom, ten bath listed at $12,500,000. Between our two islands, and many listings, we certainly have just right property for you!

If a condo is more to your liking, we currently have 172 condos for sale on Sanibel. Condos start at a Colonnades one/one unit listed for $129,000, to a 3/4 at Sedgemoor listed for $2,999,900. There are also 54 condos listed on Captiva Island, starting with a 1/1 at Tennis Villas for $225,000 to a 3/3 Beach Homes listing for $2,280,000.
With all these great listings, and interest rates at historic lows, this is the time to get your piece of the Sanibel-Captiva lifestyle and put your footprints on the beach! All signs point to rising prices and an active season so this just might be the last chance to buy at the bottom of the market. We are starting to see homes and condos that are currently listed showing an increase in the listed asking price.
Since the first of the year we've had 152 home closings on Sanibel (avg. selling price of $781,368) and 134 Sanibel condo closings (avg. selling price of $566,057). For Captiva we've had 23 home closings (avg. selling price $1,423,906) and 31 condo closings (avg. selling price $842,242). This shows our islands to be very active in showings and sales! It also shows that this is a great time to put some thought into making Sanibel or Captiva your new home or get-a-way!
Even forgetting all the above statistics, our island lifestyle is always in demand, and of course, I would love to show you around! If you don't think it's quite time to start looking in person, or you are still up north, I can put you on my automatic notification system. If you let me know your criteria for what you might be interested in (price, size, home/condo, location, etc.) you will be emailed the listing details and photos whenever a new listing fitting your criteria becomes available! Easy as that!
Please contact me with any questions you might have about my island! Sanibel and Captiva offers lots to do and more to see and as an island resident, I can point you in the right direction!
Thanks for reading my Blog!

Sarah

Posted by: AT 10:44 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, September 13 2012
Blind Pass
Instead of continuing to explore the various condos and neighborhoods on Sanibel, I thought I would just share some photos of a gorgeous day at Blind Pass! For those of you not familiar with the area, Blind Pass is located at the northern end of Sanibel and crosses over to Captiva Island.The pass has been dredged and opened recently and it is fantastic! It's a great place to shell, fish or just relax.
  
  
Blind Pass has always been a favorite spot for shelling. Or maybe just bringing your umbrella and a book for some first class relaxation! When lunchtime rolls around you just have a short drive to some of Captiva Island's famous dining locations - The gulf front Mucky Duck is always a favorite.
  
  
There are a few properties located near Blind Pass so if this looks like just the area for you, give me a call 239-691-4915 or use my contact form here. Autumn is a great time to check out properties and to have miles of beach to yourself.
  
  

I hope you enjoyed the photos of Blind Pass! You can see more of Captiva Island on my webpage, as well as watch a video! Captiva is always a fun time so when you get to the area I can help you with all the latest information on my islands! 

Thanks
Sarah

 

Posted by: AT 02:17 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, August 29 2012
Luxury Sanibel Living

Located at 3131 West Gulf Drive, Wedgewood of Sanibel is a true luxury condo. Wedgewood has only 18 units so you feel like you have the whole complex to yourself.

This condo is gulf front and no units are more than a few steps away from miles and miles of Sanibel's best beaches!

Wedgewood is close to the island's best restaurants and shopping. It is also located just steps from The Bailey Tract conservation property. This 100-acre tract has lots of trails and bird watching to enjoy! You can check out the walking trails here.

Sanibel is over 60% conservation property (The largest being the Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge) and you have over 20 miles of biking/walking trails to help you explore.

Currently there is only one condo available at Wedgewood, a three bedroom, three bath penthouse unit listed at $1,349,000. This fully furnished corner unit has 3,222 total sq. ft. and has a private roof top sundeck. If this condo sounds perfect for you, or you want me to put you on my "alert" list for future listings, please contact me here, or give me a call at 239-691-4915

Our summer is in full swing and this is a great time to start thinking about Sanibel real estate or Captiva real estate! Mortgage rates are still at historic lows and real estate prices are just starting to inch upward.

No matter what criteria you have (price, size, location, etc.) I can put your email address into my system and you will be automatically sent information on any new listings that fits your dream property! Let me help you!

I have lived on Sanibel for many years and I can explain all the benefits of living with nature on Sanibel Island. We have so much to do on our islands and we are just a short drive across the causeway to Fort Myers. Even Disney World and all the theme parks are just a few hours drive.

Florida is all you think it is! We love it here.

For more information, and a virtual tour, about Wedgewood of Sanibel you can visit my Wedgewood webpage.

I also have lots of other condos listed here, as well as information about Captiva Island and even a "Welcome to Captiva" video!

Thank you and I look forward to hearing from you!

Sarah
Posted by: AT 08:33 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, August 03 2012
Ocean's Reach

Located at 2230 Camino Del Mar Drive on Sanibel Island, The Ocean's Reach condominium is another island favorite! This condo has 64 units that are ALL direct gulf front! The views are spectacular and unforgettable.

The travel website TripAdvisor has voted Ocean's Reach as the number one place to stay on Sanibel.

The units are either one bedroom, one bath or two bedroom, two bath - perfect for personal use or to put in the rental program as income property.

The first Sanibel property to be named a "Florida Green Lodge," Ocean's Reach offers a heated pool with a view of the gulf, picnic areas, gas grills, bike rentals, beach chairs and umbrellas, tennis, basketball, shuffleboard, an osprey nest (with webcam) and even a butterfly garden.

Currently there is one condo listed at Ocean's Reach, a two bedroom, two bath listed at $829,990. This is a popular resort/condo and if you want to be notified when a new listing becomes available, just contact me and I can be sure you are kept well informed! I can put you into an automatic system that notifies you for whatever real estate criteria you are looking for.

To see more about this terrific condo you can go to my Ocean's Reach webpage. You can also check out my Ocean's Reach visual tour to locate the resort on a map.

Our summer is in full swing and I'm happy to say we are still busy and beach goers and shell seekers are out and enjoying our islands!

Summer is a favorite time for locals and visitors alike. The fishing, shelling, wildlife preserves and all we have to offer is at its best!

If you are lonely for Sanibel and Captiva, please give me a call (239-691-4915) or use my contact form and I can keep you updated on what I believe are the best real estate deals for you to consider!

Come on down and relax and enjoy!

Thanks!
Sarah
Posted by: AT 01:30 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, July 19 2012
 The Dunes!

This week I want to introduce you to The Dunes Golf and Tennis Club near the causeway on Sanibel Island.

The Dunes Website describes the Dunes as, "a lush Sanibel Island golf course and club destination nestled amid an abundant natural landscape," and I have to agree! The Dunes is definitely an all time favorite!

The 18-hole championship golf course is open to the public. The golf course was designed by 10-time PGA Tour winner Mark McCumber.

The Dunes subdivision consists of approximately 215 properties surrounding the golf course and Sanibel's natural environment. There are single family homes as well as duplex homes.

If tennis is your game, The Dunes has 13 Har-Tru tennis courts and offers daily services such as clinics, lessons, assistance with scheduling match play and junior tournament training.

You can also fill in your day by visiting The Dunes Restaurant located at the clubhouse. Known for their delicious Angus Beef, the restaurant also offers one of the best views as you enjoy your meal.

Located close to shopping, the bay, and some of our best beaches near the Sanibel Lighthouse, The Dunes is always a popular place for locals.

There are currently 13 listings available. Asking prices range from a three bed, two and a half bath for $324,900 (2160 sq. ft.) to a three bed, three bath for $1,200,000 (8490 sq. ft.).

The Dunes is always worth a look if you are in the market for Sanibel property!

Along with everything The Dunes has to offer, Sanibel Island has lots to keep you busy. We have miles and miles of famous beach as well as over 60% of the island being preserve property. Our most popular conservation property being the Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge.

When you finish with play, shopping on Sanibel is always a fun time! We have some of the best boutique shops for you to discover.

As always, please contact me for any local information you need! I live here and I'm always excited to talk about everything Sanibel and Captiva Islands have to offer!

For more information about The Dunes and to watch a visual tour, just check out this webpage!

It's summer and a great time to start thinking about some of the great properties we have available. Interest rates are at historic lows and prices are reasonable - now's the time!

Thanks!
Sarah

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 02:14 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, July 02 2012

Sundial Resort on Sanibel Island

If you want a chance to own a piece of Sundial Beach Resort on Sanibel, this is your chance!

Sundial was purchased by CoreStates Affiliate and they are offering 110 shares at $50,000 per share.
      Sundial was previously purchased by Blackstone in a package deal which included The Dunes Golf Resort and South Seas Plantation on Captiva Island. Locals have always said that Blackstone only wanted South Seas Plantation and the inclusion of Sundial was just part of the deal. CoreStates says, "We believe that resort has been mismanaged and its potential has languished due to its current absentee ownership," which seems to prove that locals were right about Blackstone never really wanting to own Sundial.

CoreStates goes on to say, "The Sundial Beach & Golf Resort is a 38,000+ square foot multi-use resort facility on Florida's world-famous Gulf Coast. Located on Sanibel Island, the property has 8.59 acres and boasts 2,000 linear feet of unrivaled beachfront access."

We know Sundial is a gem and we hope investors take a look at this resort and see it as a great deal!    

 

I currently have a listing at the resort and you can check it out HERE. Sundial is close to the best restaurants and you can enjoy miles and miles of Sanibel's beaches right at your front door!

Have a great summer and I look forward to helping you find that perfect island property! Contact Me!

Sarah

Posted by: AT 10:32 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, June 21 2012
The following notice was posted by the City of Sanibel earlier this afternoon.

I'm really glad the Bear is getting a new - more comfortable home!



Sanibel Black Bear

Relocated Off-Island

 

 

Today, at approximately 1p.m., the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) successfully tranquilized the Florida black bear that was first detected on Sanibel Island last June. Over the past 10 days, the black bear began to demonstrate nuisance behavior. The City of Sanibel Natural Resources Department, Sanibel Police Department, Public Works Department and the J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge, worked in conjunction with FWC to safely relocate the bear off-island. FWC officials estimate the male bear to be 3.5 years old and between 200 and 250 pounds.

 

Last evening, at approximately 10:12 p.m., the City of Sanibel received a 9-1-1 call when the bear was nearly hit by a vehicle on East Periwinkle Way. The first confirmed sighting of the black bear on Sanibel was June 27, 2011, when a remote wildlife camera at J.N 'Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge captured an image of a sub adult Florida black bear, approximately 1.5 years old, weighing 40-60 pounds. The bear was photographed by a motion activated, infrared camera at the Bailey Tract. Since 2011, there have been numerous confirmed sightings of the black bear on Sanibel.

 

In making this announcement, Sanibel City Manager Judith Zimomra stated, "Through our Vision Statement, the City of Sanibel places the highest priority on protecting wildlife and wildlife habitat. In the case of this black bear, over the past two weeks, it became very clear his opportunity to live a long happy life would be best off-island where he can find a mate and live the remainder of his years happily and safely in a more natural, non-residential bear habitat." Zimomra further stated, "Over the last several days as the bear began to frequent neighborhoods, including porches, our community was extremely helpful in detecting the bear's patterns with their prompt phone calls to the Sanibel Police Department, reporting the whereabouts of the bear. Additionally, through their knowledge of our island and habitat, our City employees were particularly useful partners to the FWC during this endeavor."

 

Black bears are native to Florida and are protected under state and federal laws. Dwindling populations in Florida has caused this sub species to be listed as "threatened" under the Endangered Species Act. It is illegal to approach or harass this animal.

  -END-

 

 

 

 
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 02:52 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, June 20 2012

The  Blind Pass Dredging Project is Underway

The Blind Pass maintenance dredging project began June 18th. Approximately 120,000 cubic yards of sand are slated to be dredged from the pass and used to re-nourish the eroding shoreline at the western end of Bowman's Beach. Fishing from the bridge is prohibited during the maintenance dredge, which should take about 65 days. 

I'll keep you posted as the project proceeds!



 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 07:31 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, June 15 2012
 Breakers West
One of our favorite, and popular locations, for owners and returning guests is the Breakers West Condo located at 3041 West Gulf Drive, Sanibel Island.
Built in 1972, and just steps to the beach, Breakers West is available for weekly rentals. There is an onsite rental office for the convenience of owners and returning guests.
The condo is on the small side with only 18 two bedroom, two bath units. The unit sizes are 1250 square feet and overlook the pool and manicured grounds.

Currently there are no units for sale, but if you are interested I can keep an eye out for units being listed and contact you right away! As with any Sanibel or Captiva property, just Contact Me and I can help you with your island dream!

To see a tour of this property you can Click Here for a visual tour, or Here to check out my Breakers West webpage.

Pictured to the right is the beach in front of Breakers West! Our beaches are famous for shelling, fishing or just relaxing in the sun!

If you want a bit of exercise before taking a dip in the cool waters, Sanibel has over 20 miles of biking/walking trails for you to enjoy!

This is a great time for you to investigate all the properties available on Sanibel and Captiva Islands! Prices are very reasonable and mortgage rates are at historic lows. I am an island resident and I would love to show you my islands as well as answer your questions concerning Sanibel real estate and Captiva Island real estate!Contact me!!

Also, I just had a HUGE reduction in price for one of my listings! A 1/2 duplex located at 1390 Middle Gulf Drive in Sea Pines subdivision. This home is just steps to the beach! The unit was $579,000 and now the current asking price is $485,000, making this an incredible deal! CLICK HERE to check it out and watch a visual tour of the property!

Thanks for visiting my blog! 
Sarah

Posted by: AT 10:46 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, May 28 2012
The Sanctuary Condos
The Heron, The Ibis, The Golf Village

One of the nicest areas of Sanibel Island is the Sanctuary at Wulfert Point. The Sanctuary offers an Arthur Hills Championship 18 hole golf course for members and their guests.

Membership also includes a Clubhouse, Fitness Center, Pool and Tennis Courts.

 

There are vacant properties available from $199,900 to $949,000. Homes are currently available from $995,000 to $2,999,000. The Sanctuary is located on the northwestern end of Sanibel just a couple miles from Captiva Island. The beaches are close by as well as access to the over 20 miles of biking and walking trails.

There are three condos located at the Sanctuary: The Ibis, The Heron and The Golf Village.

Pictured to the right is the Ibis Condo. Currently the Ibis has five listed condos ranging from $377,500 to $475,000. All the listed units are two bedroom, two bath.

For more information on The Ibis and a video tour - Click Here

Pictured to the right, is the Heron Condo. Currently the Heron Condos are listed from $499,900 to $619,000. The Heron is beautiful and comes with its own pool.

For more information on The Heron and a video tour - Click Here

And there is also the Golf Village (pictured right). Currently the Golf Village has three listed units from $450,000 to $699,500. All the Sanctuary condos are worth the look! Contact me for all the latest Sanctuary info! 

For more information on The Sanctuary Golf Village and a video tour - Click Here

This is a great time for you to investigate all the properties available on Sanibel and Captiva Islands! Prices are very reasonable and mortgage rates are at historic lows. I am an island resident and I would love to show you my islands as well as answer your questions concerning Sanibel real estate and Captiva Island real estate! Contact me!!

Thanks for visiting my blog!
Sarah

 

Posted by: AT 01:47 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, May 15 2012

Shell Island Beach Club

Located at 255 Periwinkle Way on Sanibel Island, Shell Island Beach Club is always a favorite! This condo is direct gulf front on the eastern end of Sanibel, just a short walk to the Sanibel Lighthouse.

Whether you want to walk for miles on our famous beaches, relax in the sun, or check out our historic lighthouse... Shell Island Beach Club might be just right for you!

The east (lighthouse) end of Sanibel is a popular area with some of the best beach areas, not to mention some of the best shelling in the world!

If you get tired of the beach, Shell Island Beach Club has a large pool and spa, tennis and shuffleboard to keep you busy. On the shoreward side of the resort you have over 20 miles of walking and bike trails to enjoy.

Shell Island Beach Club currently has three listings ranging from from $710,000 to $900,000. There are only 12 condos at Shell Island, along with some timeshare units. This is a great place to enjoy your condo as well as rent it when you're not here. There is an on-site rental office as well as being a popular place for return guests.

If you want to see more of Shell Island Beach Club you can check out my website page, along with a fun virtual tour of the property and beach! I even have a full video tour of Sanibel's east end for you to check out!

We are entering our relaxing summer season and this is a good time to check out what's available in Sanibel Island Real Estate and Captiva Island Real Estate.

Prices are still low and mortgage rates are so low it's hard to believe! Give me a call at 239-691-4915 or contact me using my website contact form.

You can also put my mobile website in your mobile favorites so you can keep up with all the latest listings! Or you can email me your criteria for the property you are looking for and I can put you in our automatic email system. This alert system will automatically email you any new listings that fit your criteria! Condos, homes, land, Sanibel, Captiva or Fort Myers - I can help you!

 

Have a great day!
Sarah

 

Posted by: AT 12:12 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, April 24 2012
Sanibel Island Real Estate
 
Normally we judge the end of our tourist season by Easter, but that seems like it's not really the story these days. Sanibel and Captiva remain busy for quite a while longer, and then we switch to a "summer" tourist crowd who come here for the fantastic fishing along with all our fun summer events.

Since it's always interesting to see how our real estate market is doing, lets take a look at how we're doing compared to the same time period as last year.

This year from 1/1/2012 to 4/24/2012 we have had 65 home closings on Sanibel compared to 61 homes sold in the same time period last year. The average selling price this year is $806,262 and last year it was about the same at $805,225. Our listing price to selling price ratio for this year is 90% where last year it was 89%. It looks like we are neck and neck with our Sanibel home sales for the two years.

For Sanibel condo sales for the same period:
This year from 1/1/2012 to 4/24/2012 we have had 50 condo closings on Sanibel compared to 52 condos sold in the same time period last year. The average selling price this year is $621,734 and last year it was $695,197. Our listing price to selling price ratio for both years is exactly the same at 90%. These statistics show that condo sales are not quite as active as last year.

 

For a few more statistics, this year we currently have 233 homes listed on Sanibel along with 227 condos for sale. For the homes, prices range from $275,000 to $6,500,000. Condos range from $140,000 to $3,000,000.

Captiva Island currently has 51 homes listed and 57 condos. For the homes, prices range from $669,000 to $10,900,000. Condos range from $215,000 to $2,475,000.

This has been a fun and active season and I'd love to help you find just the right place! I have access to ALL the listings and since I'm an island resident, I can fill you in on everything you need to know abour our island paradise! You can call me at 239-691-4915 or use this Contact Form.

 
 

Thanks!
Sarah

 

Posted by: AT 12:30 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, April 13 2012
 Pointe Santo de Sanibel
One of Sanibel's BEST condo developments!

Pointe Santo de Sanibel is a gulf front condo located at the end of Tarpon Bay Road. Offering weekly rentals, this complex is a favorite for families. The pool-side clubhouse always has activities to keep the kids entertained while the adults relax by the pool!

 

 

Build in the mid 70s, Pointe Santo de Sanibel has 141 units. The units face a large lake in the center of the resort or the Gulf of Mexico. The resort/condo has some of the best repeat rental business for weekly rentals.

 

Sanibel Island offers so much for visitors and locals and this condo adds to the list. Along with the clubhouse, there is a large pool, two tennis courts, miles and miles of Sanibel beach, and weekly rentals.

Currently there are 10 units available. One condo is a one bedroom, one bath for $497,900. Eight are two bedroom, two bath units from $599,900 to $885,000. There is one three bedroom, two bath, listed for $949,00.

All the listed units are fully furnished and ready to go! Pointe Santo de Sanibel is a fantastic place to spend your vacation, as well as have your unit for rent when you're not able to be there. The location is near Bailey's General Store, our movie theatre, and all the great shopping on Periwinkle Way.

 

If you want to explore our islands you can hop on over 20 miles of biking/walking trails right in front of the resort. If golf is your sport, Sanibel and Captiva have three semi-private championship golf courses to choose from.

If you just want to enjoy nature, over 60% of Sanibel Island is conservation preserve, the largest protected area being the Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge. The bird watching on Sanibel is as famous as the shelling on our beaches!

 

 

I have a great slideshow tour of Pointe Santo de Sanibel on my condo page (HERE) as well as a map of the property. Check it out and let me know what you think!

As always, I can answer all your Sanibel Real Estate questions, as well as any general questions you might have about life on these great islands! Just give me a call at 239-691-4915, or use this Contact Form, and I'll help in any way I can! Mortgage rates are incredibly low and prices are reasonable! This is the time to buy!

 

Thanks,
Sarah

Posted by: AT 11:14 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, March 14 2012
As if Sanibel Island didn't have enough going for it - a nationally recognized Blue Ribbon public school - the Sanibel School and Arthur Frommer's top destination designation - now the Sanibel Public Library has been recognized as being top of class.  The Library Journal named the Sanibel Public Library a 5-Star Library in its annual America's Star Libraries of 2011 survey!

This recognition is based upon stellar service and the importance to the community.  The Technological innovation is also a factor that plays into the equation.  The Sanibel Public Library has worked very diligently to upgrade the wireless internet access, enhanced access to library resources on-line and allowing the downloading of e-Books and audio books.  It is really quite impressive!

If you haven't made a stop at the library before - you owe yourself a visit.  For more information on the Sanibel Public Library visit The Sanibel Library site HERE.  Happy reading!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 09:45 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, March 08 2012

Chateaux Sur Mer

Located near the west end of Sanibel, Chateaux Sur Mer is a terrific near-beach subdivision where all the properties are just a short walk to the beach.
The deeded beach access allows all residents a fast and easy way to enjoy miles and miles of Sanibel's best beaches! This area is also perfect for sunset walks, or to get on your bike and enjoy over 20 miles of Sanibel bike trails!

 

 

Chateaux Sur Mer is made up of five streets: Rue Belle Mer, Rue Helene, Rue Bayou, Ruelle and Rue Royale. The subdivision is close to the Sanibel School, the Ding Darling Wildlife Sanctuary and Captiva Island.

 

 

Currently there are just a few properties available in this picturesque subdivision, and I can fill you in on all the details! There are two vacant properties listed at $496,000 and $579,000. There are three homes for sale ranging from $1,285,000 to $2,650,000.

Contact me for more information about these properties!

You can also check out my video of Chateaux Sur Mer and my near-beach vacant lot listing. The property measures 135' by 145' and will allow 30% - 35% coverage to build your beach get-away.

I can help you with the unique possibilities available to you concerning Sanibel construction.

I am also a "Green" designated Realtor. If you are interested in building an energy efficient home I can help! You can also check out my "Green" webpages for more information.

 

Be sure to check out my website search engine to find ALL the listings available. If you would like me to set up an automatic search for a property you would be interested in, just contact me with the criteria of your needs and you will be automatically sent any new listings that fit what you're looking for!

Sarah

 

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 09:52 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, February 26 2012

Sea Oats!

This week we should talk about Sea Oats subdivision on Sanibel. Sea Oats is just off of West Gulf Drive. I lived in Sea Oats for quite a few years and still own a Sea Oats vacant lot. The subdivision is just a short walk to the deeded beach access and has lots of appeal. Sea Oats is nature at its finest! Bordering conservation property, this is fabulous place to see our local wildlife and native vegetation. Ask me about the bobcat couple in my yard!

 

 

There are four roads in the Sea Oats Subdivision: Sea Oats Drive, Hideaway Court, Spartina Court, and Sea Walk Court. There are just over 50 homes in the subdivision along with a few undeveloped lots, so whether you want to build or buy an existing home, Sea Oats might be worth a look.

Currently there is only one home listed in Sea Oats (A testament to how much in demand the area is) for $399,900. The home is a two bedroom, two bath and overlooks the preserve property.

Click Here to see my Sea Oats web page and video tour!

 

If you would like to build your own dream home, lots are currently listed from $250,000 to $300,000! I can help you with choices of local builders and the special concerns of building a Sanibel home.

Neighborhood Map

 

 

So if you think Sea Oats could be for you, just give me a call or Contact Me and I can send you all the latest information about Sea Oats and its neighboring subdivisions!

Sarah

 

Posted by: AT 02:49 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, February 15 2012
Sanibel Arms West

 

This week I want to tell you about a fantastic gulf front condo. Sanibel Arms West is located at 822 East Gulf Drive on Sanibel Island. There are 104 total units in this condo.

Check out my video tour and listing page for Sanibel Arms West Here!

Sanibel Arms West has a pool, tennis courts, docks and miles and miles of Sanibel's best beach. Located on the east end of Sanibel Island, it's just a short walk to the Sanibel lighthouse.

 

 

There are currently eight units available ranging from $395,900 to $400,000. All the units are two bedroom, two bath with some facing the Gulf and some just steps from the beach. Map this Property Here!

Sanibel is over 60% conservation property and is considered a sanctuary island. There are also over 20 miles of biking/walking trails for your enjoyment! And Sanibel Arms West fits right in with our natural environment.

Give me a call or Contact Me for all the latest information and listing at Sanibel Arms.

Sarah

 

Posted by: AT 05:52 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, February 01 2012
This week I added a terrific condo to my website condo pages. Tarpon Beach Condos are located on 2475 West Gulf Drive (Just east of where Tarpon Bay Road meets West Gulf Drive.
This popular condo is direct Gulf front with easy access to miles and miles of Sanibel's best beaches! Tarpon Beach has 30 units and is a popular rental for visitors. A large pool, tennis courts and tropical landscaping adds to the relaxing atmosphere. Shopping and our best restaurants are only a short drive away! 
Check out my Tarpon Beach page and you can watch my short video of the property. As usual, I have the latest information on ALL properties available at this condo! Contact me!

On a separate note, we now get to brag about what Frommer's travel guidebook says about our island - We were named as the TOP travel destination in the world! This is nothing we didn't know, but it sure backs up what we've been saying all along. Sanibel has it all: miles of bike trails, miles of beaches, golfing communities, tennis courts everywhere you look, and some of the most famous conservation properties (Like the Ding Darling National Wildlife Preserve)! Check out the video below from our local news station.



Have a great day and I look forward to helping you find the best in Sanibel Island Real Estate and Captiva Island real estate! 
 
Sarah
 
Posted by: AT 10:13 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, January 24 2012

Last year our local real estate market had some terrific gains! I don't think anyone will say our economy is fully recovered, but the stats for Sanibel home sales for last year (2011) show an increase of 30.7% over 2010!

In 2010 there were 124 Sanibel home sales, and in 2011 we had 179! Sanibel condos also showed some good news - in 2010 we had 120 condo sales and in 2011 there were 142.

This is great news for Buyers and Sellers. With sales increasing it just might mean we hit the lows and are now moving up again.

Another interesting fact is Sanibel's high end Gulf Front home sales. In 2009 there were just two Gulf front sales, in 2010 we had five sales, and in 2011 we had 14 Sanibel Gulf front sales! Check below for all the stats!

Sanibel Home Sales (monthly) for 2011

Sanibel Condo Sales (monthly) for 2011
 

Sold 2010 2011 Av. Selling Price Days On Market List to Sell %
Sanibel Homes 124 179 $826,130   347

89% 

Sanibel Condos 120 142  $591,861  304

90% 

Sanibel Lots 21 19 $336,905 473

86%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Captiva Homes

 10

 22

$1,782,059  

 349

 88%

Captiva Condos 

 8

 24

$737,754 

 480

 90%

 

I think it's easy to see that things are looking up! Our weather is beautiful (as usual), our beaches are fantastic (again, as usual) and we are ready to climb out of the bad economy of the last few years. So on that note, check out my four bedroom, four bath Captiva Gulf Front listing! This home is perfect for a getaway or a full time home. Renting is also an option as this house has a great rental history! CLICK HERE to check it out!
 
Sarah
 
 
Posted by: AT 03:24 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, January 09 2012
Wow - have we been busy on the islands.  The holidays were hopping with many visitors from the north and the Real Estate on Sanibel Island and Captiva Island was active.  It appears that the economy has turned around just enough for folks to be thinking about their warm weather home.

I have the perfect property if you are thinking of a home away from home on Sanibel Island!  I listed a 3 bedroom, 3 bath town home on Middle Gulf Drive.  All the space of a house with all the convenience of a condo - it is a 1/2 duplex in a 3 building, 5 unit home owners association development called Sea Pines.  This unit has been updated with impact glass windows - great picture windows overlooking the Sanibel River.  The community has a pool and is right across the street from the beach.  Let me know if you might be interested in this or other Sensational Island Properties!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 11:13 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, December 01 2011
If you are looking for something to do this weekend - don't fret - there is more than a mere mortal can take in!

Friday kicks off a long standing tradition on the islands - Luminary.  On Friday, Sanibel Island businesses will be keeping their doors open and the food and beverages flowing as Periwinkle Way is lit up with hundreds of white luminary candle bags.  It is a sight to behold.  The San-Cap Chamber of Commerce does an outstanding job working with the businesses and running a trolley service to get folks from one plaza to another. 

Friday will also host a fund-raiser on Captiva Island to support the month-long Captiva Holiday Village celebration and events.  Many great silent auction items will be there for the bidding.  Check out www.captivaholidayvillage.com for more info.

Satuday is Captiva Island's luminary night.  at 3:30 the festivities are kicking off with a Golf Cart Parade.  Don DeLuca of the Royal Shell Companies is the Grand Marshall of the parade.  It will be a good time and again - the streets will be lined with white luminary candle bags.  It is a pretty sight.

Have a great weekend!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 07:17 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, October 29 2011

2011 has been good for business in East and West Rocks - a near beach neighborhood on Sanibel Island off the dead-end section of West Gulf Drive, west of Rabbit Road.

To date in 2011 there have been 7 houses that have sold and an additional one under contract.  The sales prices have ranged from $520,000 for an older model, 3 bedroom, 2 bath pool home to $899,900 for a 4 bedroom, 3 bath pool home build in 1991. 

The low price of $520,000 is an increase over the low price in 2010 of a comparable home by 5%.  This increase reflects the active market we have seen in 2011 for properties on Sanibel Island.  With the increase in activity comes a decrease in the inventory - hence a bit of price pressure.

The Days on the Market ranged from 91 days (meaning it went under contract very quickly after coming on the market) to 762 days.  In the Real Estate market these days - 2 years to sell has not been uncommon.  We are seeing that properties that are priced well - taking into account the age, condition and past sales of comparable properties tremendously reduces the time on the market. 

Currently there are 4 Active listings in "The Rocks" ranging from $449,000 for a 2 bedroom, 2 bath property to $799,000 for a 3 bedroom, 3 bath home.  Perhaps one of these should be yours!

To check out a couple of great videos of East Rocks and West Rocks... CLICK HERE!

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 10:39 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, October 03 2011

2011 is shaping up to be a much better year than 2010 with respect to Sanibel Island and Captiva Island real estate.

On Sanibel Island there have been a total of 271 houses, condos and lots sold thus far in 2011 versus 219 for the same time in 2010.  That is a 23% increase in total volume.  The prices of the sold units are up as well.  Houses, condos and lots on Sanibel Island have a low prices that are 0 - 15% higher than last year with many more properties over $1 million having been sold.

On Captiva Island there have been a total of 39 properties sold in 2011 versus 26 in 2010.  This is a 50% increase in volume.  Prices on the top end have increased while some of the smaller properties have sold at a great value.

What is clear is that there will continue to be pressure on Sanibel and Captiva prices to hold or go up in the coming months based upon a greatly reduced inventory from last year.  I have had several experiences this summer where my clients had properties sold prior to their being able to get an offer in.  Additionally, the number of properties available to view and choose from was greatly reduced.

We will see what Q4 will bring! 

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 02:30 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, August 05 2011

Greetings from Sunny (albeit humid) Sanibel Island, Florida

The Sanibel Real Estate market has continued to be strong through July and year-to-date we have had an 18% increase in closed sales 2011 over 2010. That is quite remarkable!  Condos have lead the way with a 23% increase in the number of closed deals and an strong showing in the $1MM+ end of the market.  Very encouraging.

Land sales continue to lag - we actually had more closed land sales year-to-date in 2010 than we have had this year.  The values of existing homes is so much greater than the expense of purchasing a vacant lot and building new that the existing homes continue to be a better way to go. 
 
 

Two clients I have worked with in July have experienced something we haven't had in a long time - loosing a property they were interested in to another interested party getting an offer in on the property first!  I have also had clients have to deal with competing offers - another situation we haven't seen in a long time!  With all this activity - we are seeing the inventory decline.  This is due both to the number of sales as well as the time of year.  We typically get more folks listing in October in expectation of the seasonal influx of visitors. 

I hope you are having a great Summer and I look forward to hearing from you soon about your plans to come down to Sanibel!  Till next time....Sarah

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 11:29 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, June 11 2011

Hi all,

I haven't posted any Sanibel Island Real Estate Updates in a while because I have been soooo busy!  That is a very good thing and a great sign of the health of Sanibel Island real estate.

After a very busy "season"  - we had a good increase in the number of visitors to the island during the winter months, we are having a very busy real estate season.  The number of closed transactions thus far in 2011 is up 16.6% over the same  period last year.
 
 

In raw numbers we have had 176 closed sales thru June 10 of this year on Sanibel as compared to 151 last year.  The only down segment of the market is in Vacant Land - we are still seeing little interest in purchasing a lot to build on when the prices of the existing properties is so attractive.

About prices - we have also started to see more interest in the middle and upper market properties.  The lower priced properties are being bought up and buyers are being compelled to look at and purchase the higher priced properties.  The $1.5+ properties are starting to move.

About inventory - this time last year there were over 300 Sanibel Island homes for sale and over 300 Sanibel Island condos for sale.  At this time there are under 250 houses and under 240 Condos.  With reduced inventory there will be some pressure on slight price increases and more resistance on the part of sellers to negotiate.  It is still a buyers market but the tide may be turning a bit. 

Sarah

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 10:42 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, April 11 2011

                                  Word Is Getting Out!

Sanibel Island and Captiva Island have some of the top beaches in the U.S. according to Trip Advisor's Traveler's Choice Beaches Awards!

Ranked #5 and #8 respectively, anyone who has ever been to Sanibel beaches and Captiva beaches know that the long expanses of relatively uncrowded beach on both islands is a jewel. 
  
 

Sanibel Island beaches are known for their shelling as well as their expansive nature.  Folks from all across the globe come here to collect shells and to just relax.  The lack of development close to the beach really is special.

Captiva Island beaches remind visitors of trips to exotic and far away places -yet it is right here in our own country. You really get the local flavor of our islands with a stay on Captiva.  It just doesn't get much better!

For the entire story -
CLICK HERE......  And come see us soon!

      

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 06:23 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, April 02 2011

Wow!  Here we are one quarter of the way through 2011.  Time really does fly when you are having fun!

We are having fun - certainly more fun than our friends up north this winter - My girlfriend in Massachusetts texted me yesterday to let me know she had 6 inches of snow and no power - ouch.  We have had the most outstanding weather this year in the 10 years I have lived here.  Absolutely without question - warm, sunny days and cool, windows open, sleeping nights - perfect...  But I digress....

On to Real Estate...March continued in a strong fashion.  2010 to 2011 we are just about the same in closings in the March vs. March comparison.

                                        2010                 2011
Sanibel Houses                   16                    21
Sanibel Condos                  16                    12
Sanibel Vacant Land            2                      2 
                                                                                                                               

           
Comparing the total Q1 2010 closings to Q1 2011 closings we are 70 to 90 or 28% ahead of last year.    That sounds pretty impressive to me.  We also have 46 Houses and Condos under contract right now. 

Prices?  Well it is still a bit all over the map.  We are seeing more transactions in the $1 million plus range than we did all of 2010.  And we are seeing the $500 thousand to $1 million with more strength than last year.  The bargain hunters are still out there and are still finding some deals though not as easily.  The folks who need to sell are negotiating and those who do not, aren't.

What is "hot" in Sanibel Real Estate?:  Sundial 2 bedroom condos.  5 have closed this quarter and the prices have come down to a great value for these larger, gulf front, gulf view units with rental potential.  Pointe Santo de Sanibel came in 2nd with 3 closings in Q1 - 2011.  Again - good values with rental potential.

Sanibel Real Estate and Captiva Real Estate is looking better than ever! Check out my listings!  or Check out ALL the listing!

Contact me to find out more or to schedule a time to take a look for yourself!

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 02:03 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, February 28 2011

We are 2 months through 2011 and it's time to check in on how Sanibel Island real estate is shaping up.  I can confirm - things are getting better - inventory is moving and people are buying!

Last February there were 18 Sanibel Island real estate sales.  In February 2011 there have been 25.  That's almost a 40% increase.  The breakdown goes as follows:

                                          2010                     2011
Sanibel Houses                   9                           13
Sanibel Condos                   7                           11
Sanibel Vacant Land           2                             1

This brings our total houses sold in 2011 to 24 and our total number of Condos to 22.  Things are definitely improving.  Particularly when you see that there are 49 Pending sales on Sanibel as well.

Are there any "Hot" neighborhoods?  The answer is a resounding yes!  Of the 24 houses sold on Sanibel thus far in 2011, 9 of them were located in the Dunes!   For more about The Dunes, Click the photo or Click Here!

Contact me if you would like more detail on these numbers or would like to check out Sanibel Real Estate!

  

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 04:39 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, February 07 2011
Hi all you Sanibel Island lovers!

It is the first week of February and the islands are hopping!  Likely due to the rough weather up north (I had to arrange to have 4 feet of snow removed from my folks home in Connecticut so I get it!) there are a lot of visitors here and many Sanibel Real Estate and Captiva Real Estate inquiries - yeah!

This activity prompted me to take a look at the number of Sanibel real estate closings last January and the number of closings this January.  Lo and behold, there were 18 in 2010 and 22 in 2011.  Given January typically isn't our month with the greatest number of closed sales, can we make the jump to believe that this year may have more closings than last?  I think we can.  If we get an additional 4 closings per month for the year, or 48 additional closings - we are on track to resume our more typical absorption rate of available Sanibel Island real estate inventory.  This is good news for sellers and is even more motivation for buyers to get on it!    If Sanibel Island has always been your dream - let me help you realize it while the prices are still low and the interest rates in your favor. 
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 01:05 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, January 22 2011

Sanibel Island and Captiva Island Real Estate

A Year in Review

Here is brief look back at the Real Estate on Sanibel and Captiva Islands through 2010

A total of 303 properties were sold on Sanibel and Captiva Islands in 2010.  This is a 7.8% increase in the total sold in 2009.  Sanibel saw the most activity in 2010 with 265 properties sold making a 10.4% increase in total sold from 2009.  There were 124 Houses, 120 Condos and 21 Lots sold.  The real story is the increase in Condo sales.  In 2009 there were only 86 units sold on Sanibel and in 2010 there were 120.  Condos are back!

Captiva continued its slide with only 38 houses, condos and lots sold with Condo sales increasing from 22 in 2009 to 26 in 2010.  More evidence that Condos are back.

Prices pulled back in all segments on both islands during the first part of 2009.  They seemed to stabilize toward the end of the year.  The values are very good!

Property Sold on Sanibel Island in 2010

Homes:  124 with prices from $190,000 to $3,275,000

Condos:  120 with prices from $160,000 to $2087,500

Lots:  21 with prices from $115,000 to $1,295,000

Property Sold on Captiva Island in 2010

Homes:  10 with prices from $995,000 to $7,000,000

Condos:  26 with prices from $235,000 to $1,300,000

Lots:  2 with prices of $2,800,000 and $2,900,000

For more detail or any questions – contact me!

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 09:45 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, November 18 2010
Wow!  Thanksgiving is a week away and Christmas is just around the corner.  The activities on Sanibel Island and Captiva Island really pick up this time of year. On the Friday after Thanksgiving (11/26) the season is official when the 'Tween Waters Inn tree is lit.  An annual tradition for old and young alike it is magical to see the reflection of all the lights on the waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

The first weekend in December is the Annual Luminary festival. Friday the big night for Sanibel Island with candles lining Periwinkle way and all the merchants decked out.  Saturday the big night on Captiva Island.  This year the Captiva Island celebration will have the first annual "Golf Cart Parade."  I think this will prove to be a very popular event and vying for "Best Golf Cart" will also mean bragging rights!  For more information about the Captiva Events all through December, check out www.captivaholidayvillage.com

I hope to see you all here during the holidays!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 01:51 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, October 14 2010
How is the Sanibel Island real estate market?

My clients all want to know.  So - here is what I discovered when mining the MLS system to see what went on January through September 2009 versus January through September 2010.

In all Sanibel real estate categories - Houses, Condos and Land - time on the market is longer and prices are down from 2009.   The good news is that the number of transactions is up -- 181 in 2009 and 219 in 2010.  This is a 20% increase over 2009 volume.

Below are the 2009 figures followed by the 2010 figures. 

Is it a good time to buy - yes!  With lower prices and low interest rates, it is a very good time to buy.

  January thru September      
      2009  
Sanibel       Ave Days on Mkt/
        Sales Price
Houses Sold        
  Conventional   101  
  Short Sale   7  
  Foreclosure   3  
  Total   111 266 / $774,220
         
Condos Sold        
  Conventional   61  
  Short Sale   2  
  Foreclosure   0  
  Total   63 316 / $678,140
         
Vacant Land Sold        
  Conventional   7  
  Short Sale   0  
  Foreclosure   0  
  Total   7 362 / $356,430
         
Total Transactions thru Q3   2009  
181  

____________________________________________________________________

    January thru September  
    2010  
Sanibel     Ave Days on Mkt/
      Sales Price
Houses Sold      
  Conventional 94  
  Short Sale 6  
  Foreclosure 2  
  Total 102 292 / $754,900
       
Condos Sold      
  Conventional 93  
  Short Sale 5  
  Foreclosure 0  
  Total 98 391 / $574,250
       
Vacant Land Sold      
  Conventional 19  
  Short Sale 0  
  Foreclosure 0  
  Total 19 436 / $347,370
       
Total Transactions thru Q3   219  
             
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
             

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 02:35 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, May 07 2010
Greetings:

Below is the link for the State of Florida site devoted to the response to the spill in the Gulf of Mexico.  The site has projected trajectories for the spill area and provides updates on the containment and clean-up efforts.  Also - for Sanibel Island related updates please view www.mysanibel.com

As of today, Sanibel Island and Captiva Island are not in harms way.  The City of Sanibel is keeping a close eye on the situation and has developed response efforts in the event they are necessary. 

http://www.dep.state.fl.us/deepwaterhorizon/default.htm
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 01:42 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, May 05 2010
This information was published by the Captiva Erosion Control District as to the State of Florida's response to the Oil Spill on-going in the Gulf of Mexico.  We can all agree that this is a tragedy in the making and the response of our Federal, State, County and City officials is key as is the volunteer response. Sanibel and Captiva are not in the state of emergency areas yet (Lee County). I will keep you posted on any updates to our local information. 

 

 

CEPD Logo

Issues affecting our treasured coastlines

 

 

 Beach Briefs - May 4, 2010

"MAGNITUDE OF SPILL IS DAUNTING"

 

 

 

That's how Florida's top environmental official, Mike Sole, characterized the task both to stop the oil gushing from the Deepwater Horizon and to clean up its disastrous results.  As of May 3, 2010, Governor Charlie Crist has declared state of emergencies in the flowing counties:  Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa, Walton, Bay, Gulf, Franklin, Wakulla, Jefferson, Taylor, Dixie, Levy, Citrus, Hernando, Pasco, Pinellas, Hillsborough, Manatee and Sarasota

 

What is the State of Florida Doing?

The State Emergency Response Team, in support of the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) as the lead response agency for the state of Florida, is actively monitoring the Deepwater Horizon response.

·         DEP has conducted water and sediment sampling to use as a baseline for ongoing monitoring.

·         DEP is continuously monitoring air quality data. The current air quality is considered to be good statewide. The public is encouraged to monitor this data at http://www.airnow.gov/ or http://www.epa.gov/bpspill/.

·         DEP, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), county governments, water management districts and several federal agencies continue to conduct pre-impact assessments, including sampling of water, fish, shellfish and habitats along the Florida coastline and into the Gulf of Mexico. 

·         Statewide monitoring is ongoing in coordination with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Panhandle-specific data is expected to be completed early this week. To view Florida's air quality data, visit http://www.airnow.gov/ or http://www.epa.gov/bpspill/.

·         The State Emergency Response Team has representatives at the Unified Command at the U.S. Coast Guard's Sector Mobile, helping to coordinate the efforts to protect Florida's shoreline.

·         Emergency Support Function 15, Volunteers and Donations, successfully spearheaded pre-impact beach cleanups over the weekend of May 1-2.  More than 1,200 volunteers participated in cleanups in Escambia, Santa Rosa, and Wakulla counties to minimize the effect of the Deepwater Horizon incident. Volunteer Florida offers guidance for conducting safe pre-impact beach cleanups at www.volunteerflorida.org.

 

Volunteer Opportunities

 The Governor's Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service is encouraging residents along the Florida Panhandle to participate in local beach cleanup events this weekend. For information on scheduled beach cleanups and other volunteer opportunities in your area, please visit www.VolunteerFlorida.org.  Or, to request volunteer information call (866) 448-5816.

 

BP has established a volunteer program and set up a toll-free number for those interested in volunteering.  When calling, interested parties should communicate what activities they are volunteering and locations in which they are available to work.  In addition, potential volunteers may call this line to learn about the training that is required to work in oil spill clean-up operations. For information on assisting with the response efforts, contact BP's community information line at (866) 448-5816.

 

Important Phone Numbers

·         Today, the Florida Emergency Information Line was activated in response to Deepwater Horizon accident. The hotline, which provides Floridians information regarding the Deepwater Horizon response, will operate from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. until further notice. The number for residents to call is: (800) 342-3557

·         Environment/community hotline: to report oil on the beach or shoreline or other environment or community impacts and access the Rapid Response Team - (866) 448-5816.

·         Wildlife: to report and access care for impacted, i.e., oiled, wildlife (866) 557-1401.

·         Volunteers: to request volunteer information (866) 448-5816.

·          Services: to register as consultant, contractor, vendor, or submit information on alternative response technology, services, products or suggestions (281) 366-5511

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Captiva Erosion Prevention District is comprised of 5 elected, upaid Commissioners dedicated to preserving and maintaining Captiva's beaches and shorelines. For more information on CEPD, visit our website or join our emailing list at: mycepd@gmail.com

(239) 472-2472.

 
 
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 01:24 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, April 01 2010
My clients who are interested in Sanibel Island Houses for sale (vs. Sanibel Island Condos for sale) have asked me about the trend in prices and number of sales over the past 10 years.  The findings are quite interesting.

As you can see from the statistics below - the average price rose right through 2006, however the number of homes sold actually started to decline in that year.  Prices have continued to pull back and we are heading back to 2003-2004 levels. 

In 2010 so far we are seeing a pace that matches or exceeds (we have 20+ houses under contract) last year's volume however the prices are lower.  The upper end of the market is very weak and what is currently selling is our $500K - $800K properties.  We expect that this will continue through 2010 and that recovery in the upper price range won't be seen until 2011 - but we'll see.  If you would like more information about Sanibel Island real estate and Captiva Island real estate sales trends - drop me an email or call me.


Sanibel House Sales 2000 - 2010
     
Year # Sold Average Price
2000 264 $650,869.00
2001 191 $640,868.00
2002 249 $695,048.00
2003 238 $698,622.00
2004 269 $851,418.00
2005 266 $1,017,864.00
2006 156 $1,143,682.00
2007 135 $1,056,178.00
2008 146 $957,663.00
2009 138 $770,315.00
2010* 28 $726,541.00
     
*  Represents sales through 3/25/10
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 01:10 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, March 19 2010

Last week I attended Lee County Days in Tallahassee as part of the Sanibel – Captiva Chamber of Commerce delegation.  These are days set aside so that community leaders and interested citizens from Lee County can meet with elected officials and heads of different state government departments.   

 

A couple of things I learned were:  1.  Lee County leads the state in Waste to Energy.  Almost all of our trash is converted, cleanly, to electricity.  Covanta Energy – a nationwide company – has a plant in Lee County and generates enough electricity to power 29,000 homes. Pretty neat!

www.covantaenergy.com

 

 2.  Lee County has a major initiative to create an Innovation Hub – not far from the airport.  The intention here is to attract green businesses into a campus setting – think Research Triangle in North Carolina.  This initiative is in conjunction with FGCU and the R&D will focus on renewable energy research.  Again – pretty neat.

www.fgcuinnovationhub.com

 

Both these initiatives have the potential to really diversify the economy of Lee County as well as to bring more middle and upper income individuals to the area.  This can only be good for home values! 

 

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 07:54 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, March 05 2010
Yes, there are short sale properties available on Sanibel Island.

There are currently 10 houses and 4 Condos that are Short Sales being actively marketed on Sanibel Island at this time.  There may be more however these are the active one.  There is one multi-family house and 9 single family houses ranging from $350,000 to $3,295,000. 

There are 4 - short sale condos that are being actively marketed, all two bedroom, two bath units ranging from $219,000 to $744,900. 

If you have been waiting for "a deal" on Sanibel Island, now may be your time to buy!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 01:25 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, March 02 2010
Want a Sanibel Island Cottage for only $209,000?

I have just listed a classic, two bedroom, one bath cottage, down a dirt lane on the quiet west end of Sanibel Island - near Dinkins Bayou.  This gem features an open floor plan, a screened porch, newer roof and appliances.  It is only a short stroll to the neighborhood boat launch!  A great get-away or condo alternative. Sanibel Island Real Estate at a great deal!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 01:38 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, January 29 2010
Many visitors to Sanibel Island visit the Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge to see the amazing birds, the abundant alligators and our infamous Croc.  For those who know what I am talking about it is likely you saw her for yourself - 14 feet long and a gazillion teeth - she was one of the most amazing and scary creatures I have ever witnessed. 

It was reported in the News Press today that she has died.  She was found dead about a mile and a half from the refuge along the banks of the Sanibel River.  It appears that she died from natural causes and the recent cold spell likely didn't help this amphibian. 

We will all be a little sadder going through Ding and anticipating that perhaps around the next bend we would see her sunning herself, her mouth agape displaying all her hundreds of teeth.  For the years that I have lived on Sanibel, the croc was distinctly Sanibel and a creature of awe in an awe-inspiring place.  She will be missed.

For more information...

http://www.news-press.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=20101290375
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 03:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, January 22 2010

Sanibel and Captiva Islands Remodeling:  Cost vs Value

 

Are you thinking of making some improvements to your Sanibel Island or Captiva Island home in 2010?  You might be interested to know that replacing your Front Door leads the way when it comes to return on investment.  Replacing your entry door with a high efficiency door will cost roughly $1100 to purchase and have installed.  The National Association of Realtor’s 2009 – 2010 report on Cost vs Value reports that the recouped value of that project will be about $1,470 or 129.9% of the cost! (Realtor Magazine, January 2010, pg. 22) 

 

Not only does it speak volumes about the value of Curb Appeal, it also can save you $$ with a more energy efficient door.

 

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 10:34 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, January 15 2010

Sanibel and Captiva Islands Real Estate in 2010

 

2009  saw the available inventory drop which bodes well for the prices holding steady.  At the end of 2008 we had over 300 homes and 300 Condos for sale on Sanibel Island alone.  This year the inventory is as follows:

 

Current Inventory on Sanibel Island January 1, 2010:

 

Homes – 263 priced $239,000 to $13,500,000

Condos – 262 priced $194,000 to $3,365,000

Lots – 115 priced $195,000 to $5,250,000

 

Current Inventory on Captiva Island January 1, 2010:

 

Homes – 78 priced $879.000 to $18,000,000

Condos – 73 priced $280,000 to $3,875,000

Lots – 12 priced $775,000 to $8,500,000


From 1/1/2010 thru 1/15/2010 there have been 8 properties that have closed on Sanibel and there are 34 properties under contract on both islands.  If you would like more information about the current state of Island real estate, email me.

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 02:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, January 08 2010
Wow!  Has it really been a month since I last posted a blog entry???!!

Well, let's start with a brief look back on the Sanibel Island and Captiva Island Real Estate activity in 2009.

A total of 281 properties sold on Sanibel and Captiva Islands in 2009.  Sanibel saw the most activity with 143 Homes, 86 Condos and 11 Lots sold.  Captiva continued it’s sluggish pace from 2008 with 16 Homes, 22 Condos and 3 Lots changing hands.

 

Prices continued to pull back in all segments on both islands in keeping with the economy in general.  The good news is that the prices of homes and condos appear to have found a floor. 

 

Property Sold On Sanibel Island in 2009:

Homes: Prices ranged from a low of $285,000 to a high of $3,900,000

Condos: Prices ranged from a low of $175,000 to a high of $3,200,000

Lots: Prices ranged from a low of $175,000 to a high of $750,000

 

Property Sold On Captiva Island in 2009:

Homes: Prices ranged from a low of $800,000 to a high of $7,250,000

Condos: Prices ranged from a low of $246,000 to a high of $2,175,000

Lots: Prices ranged from a low of $1,325,000 to a high of $2,900,000

If you would like more detail on these statistics, let me know.  In my next post, I will take a look at 2010!

'til then,  Sarah
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 09:13 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, December 04 2009
This is one of my favorite weekends on Sanibel Island and Captiva Island.

With the holidays just down the road, Sanibel Island and Captiva Island kick it off right with a two night Luminary festival.  Tonight is Sanibel's turn with the entire length of Periwinkle Way lined with luminaria.  It is breath-taking!  All the shops on Sanibel will be open with refreshments and deals - many are offering Luminary night specials.  It is fun for me because it really gets you into the holiday spirit - the decorations are great.

Tomorrow night is Captiva Island's night.  While smaller, it is more intimate and just as lovely.  The shops will be open as well and the refreshments flowing. The tree at Tween Waters is on and greeting all who come!  If you have the chance, maybe not this year, the first weekend in December is our luminary festival and it really shouldn't be missed!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 07:08 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, November 20 2009
I have just posted a great video on my website featuring the Chateaux Sur Mer neighborhood of Sanibel Island!  Click Here to find out more about the property and to watch the video of the Chateaux Sur Mer area and the available lot.

As I mentioned in my last blog - I just listed a wonderful lot in this neighborhood.  The lot is just steps from the deeded beach access.  Miles and miles of Sanibel beach awaits!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 02:14 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, November 14 2009
Hi - I just listed a great Sanibel Island lot for sale.  It is in the Chateaux Sur Mer subdivision and is really close to the Gulf of Mexico.  Best of all - it is just steps away from the deeded beach access to an absolutely gorgeous beach.  Check it out by clicking Here!

This cleared, level lot is roughly 1/2 acre and can support a good size house and pool.  If you have a dream about building your dream home on Sanibel Island, this is definitely worth checking out. And if you are thinking about building - don't forget to check out the"Build Green" section of my website. Sanibel real estate has never looked better!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 02:47 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, November 11 2009
Hi,

Captiva Island is another very special place on the Southwest coast of Florida.  Located just north of Sanibel Island, which is just west of Ft. Myers, Florida - the only ways to get to Captiva Island is via a causeway to Sanibel Island or by boat. 

In my efforts to assist my clients and visitors to the wonders of Sanibel and Captiva Islands, I have started a video series.  I introduced the East end of Sanibel Island in my last one and this one is dedicated to the "Downtown" section of Captiva Island.  This is where most of the Restaurants and shops are located.  Take a look and let me know what you think. 

You can check it out in my "Captiva" section Here, or view the video in YouTube Here.

You have to love Sanibel and Captiva Islands!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 07:35 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, October 23 2009
Sanibel Island's Baileyfest has become an Island tradition.  Each year, Sam and Francis Bailey - owners of Bailey's General Store, host a traditional Fall Festival complete with hayrides, games and live music - oh, and of course - food.  In recent years it has really come into it's own with all the merchants of the Bailey's Center, where it takes place, joining in the fun. 

As an added bonus this year, there is a raffle with prizes worth over $1700!  It is quite something when the local businesses donate so much for a community party.  Sanibel Island is and continues to be a unique place and Baileyfest demonstrates that it isn't just about the Sanibel Beaches and shells. 

More than 40 different door prizes - valued at more than $1,700 - will be awarded at the 24th annual Baileyfest.  This is a Sanibel Island event not to be missed.

Baileyfest 2009 will be held on Sunday, Oct. 25 from 1 to 4 p.m. at Bailey's Center, located on the corner of Periwinkle Way and Tarpon Bay Road. 

All 14 merchants in the Bailey's Center Merchants' Association (BCMA) have donated prizes:

Bailey's General Store $100 gift card

Bailey's True Value Hardware $100 gift card

Biddles Bucket Four $25 gift certificates

The Grog Shop $100 case of wine

Nick's Frozen Yogurt $100 gift basket

Hillgate Communications $100 spa gift basket

Island Cleaners $100 gift package

Island Cinema 10 $10 gift certificates for concessions

Lily & Co. $495 jewelry set

Sanibel Barber Shop Four $25 gift certificates

Sanibel Beauty Salon $100 beauty gift basket

Sanibel Shell Automotive Four $25 gift certificates for parts or labor

Select Vacation Properties $100 BBQ gift basket

The Video Scene 12 double movie rental packages

Maybe it's time for you to check out Sanibel Island Real Estate and make it easier for you to enjoy Baileyfest year after year!

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 06:18 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, October 18 2009
Hi -

Ever wonder what Sanibel Island was like after hearing so much about it?

Well, I have talked to so many folks who have never been here and wondered "What is it like there?"  that I decided to try to answer their questions in video as well as words. 

On my website - www.sanibelislandsensations.com you can now click on the link on the homepage to the first of my Island videos.  I started on the East end of Sanibel Island. The two videos bring you across the Causeway and show you the Sanibel Marina, the Sanibel Island Fishing Pier, the Sanibel Island Lighthouse and, of course, some of the great Real Estate on that end of the island.  I take you around and show you Sanibel Island Canal Homes and Gulf Front Condo complexes as well as "the island within the island" - Kinzie Island on Sanibel Island.  Take a look at these two fun videos and let me know what you think.  Over the next couple of months I will be adding to the video collection so you will get a sense of Sanibel Island and then it's on to Captiva Island.
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 12:50 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, October 04 2009
Hi,

I have just listed a great one bedroom - one bath in the Sundial Resort on Sanibel Island.  The unit has been meticulously maintained with updated furnishings and appliances. This unit participates in the Sundial Resort Rental program and grossed over $40,000 in 2008.  Enjoy the beach, the pools, the tennis and the golf at this tropical escape.  Listed for $389,000 it is one of the true resort units that can be run as a business.
Sanibel Island Real Estate at its best!
Click Here for more information and photo of this great condo!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 08:52 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, October 03 2009
Wow - it has been a while since my last Blog entry - I have been really busy settling into Royal Shell Preferred Properties.  Moving is a good deal of work when you want to ensure that your clients don't miss a beat when it comes to Sanibel Island real estate and Captiva Island real estate! Click Here to read more about my exciting new company.

On Thursday I was taking a little break and went on this fantastic bike ride through Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge.  It was the first day of October and a cool front had passed through the day before so it was dry and glorious here on Sanibel Island. 

The birds seemed to think life was pretty good on Sanibel as well.  There were a dozen Roseate Spoonbills, about 40 Great White Herons, and too-many-to-count Snowy Egrets.  The best part was that they were in the trees, wading in the water and flying all around - it looked like they were having a party! 

Sanibel Island is a truly special place.  To really enjoy it, you need to take the time to see it and experience it.  I feel so fortunate that I live in such a wonderful place.
Sanibel Island Real Estate
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 10:04 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, September 18 2009
Greetings from Sanibel and Captiva Islands

The big news of my week is that I have moved over to Royal Shell Preferred Properties.  I am really excited about the move (well not the physical and logistical move actually it's kind of a pain, short term pain however).  What is exciting is the new opportunity to work with some terrific people in an organization that will support me fully in my efforts to service you,  my clients. 

My office is on Captiva Island and I have use and access to the Sanibel office as well.  This gives me a great opportunity to service all clients in convenient locations.  Royal Shell Sales is also very closely tied to Royal Shell Rentals - the largest rental company on Sanibel and Captiva Islands.  This is very convenient for you who purchase investment properties to start getting that property to work for you.

I would love to answer any questions that you have about the move or the services of Royal Shell.  Email me or call, I always love to hear from you.  Let me know when you will be here so I can show you the new digs! 
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 05:05 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, September 09 2009

Think of Sanibel Island and you think FISHING - at least many do.  For those Sanibel Island lovers, please be advised that the City of Sanibel will be doing some repairs to the pier from 9/21 - 10/5.  It is important to keep this treasure in good form.  The official notice from the City of Sanibel is below.

"On Monday, September 21, 2009 the City of Sanibel will begin repair work to the City Fishing Pier and construction will continue through October 5, 2009.  The City Fishing Pier will not be available for use during this construction project.  We apologize for any inconvenience you may experience while this important public improvement project is completed."

The project involves the removal and replacement of wood decking, hand rails, and other miscellaneous items.  The City of Sanibel has contracted with Bridge Masters Construction, LLC to perform this work.  The Lee County Tourist Development Council (TDC) is providing funding for this project.

Anyone with questions regarding the City Fishing Pier Repair Project is invited to contact the City of Sanibel Public Works Department at (239) 472-6397. You can also check the Sanibel Government Website for more information.


Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 07:52 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, August 24 2009
Check out my new page on the www.sanibelislandsensations.com website that features the Loggerhead Cay Condo community.  http://www.sanibelislandsensations.com/loggerhead_cay1    Over time we will post additional information and add pages featuring additional condos.  Let me know what other information you would like to see. 

Sanibel Island real estate is still active and condos on Sanibel Island are at some very attractive prices.  Is it time for you to get your piece of paradise?
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 08:04 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, August 13 2009
The first quarter of 2009 was slow for Sanibel Island Real Estate Sales.  A total of 34 homes and condos sold during this time on Sanibel Island.  Otherwise known as not that many!

The second quarter of 2009 saw dramatic rise in sales as a total of 75 homes and condos were sold on Sanibel Island.  Home sales continue to show strength in the first 1/2 of the 3rd quarter.  If they stay on track, will match Q2's volume.  Interest in condos appears to be declining for now.  Some of this is likely due to the continued difficulty in financing condos.  Many lenders are reluctant to finance investment condos or they require a larger deposit.


 
Sanibel Island House and Condo Sales 2009
  Homes Condos
Q1
21 13
Q2
45 30
July - 8/12 24 14
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 02:58 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, August 01 2009
While people plan, God laughs!

Blind Pass was not scheduled to be opened for another week.  However, Mother Nature took matters into her own hand on Friday and opened it herself.  While the dredging and debris removal is not complete, there is water flowing from the Gulf to the Bay for the first time in years.  May the pass remain open for a very long time! This YouTube video was shot by the first boat through.  Note:  They don't want boat traffic yet as they aren't done removing old bridge pilings, however this powered canoe owner (video below)  just couldn't help themselves!


Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 03:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, July 23 2009
The Sanibel Bayous Preserve issued this update concerning the opening of Blind Pass. 

  • The Construction may conclude as early as Wednesday, July 29th pending weather. Current forecasts are favorable through Thursday but do not look good for Friday and Saturday.
  • The opening of Blind Pass, or removal of the last sheetpile wall, could occur as early as August 1. The opening will not occur prior to completion of the dredging in the Gulf or prior to marking the Pole & Troll zone in Wulfert Flats.
  • Lee County is considering authorizing additional dredging in the Gulf after the pass is ‘opened’ to extend the dredging as long as October. The additional work stems from infilling expected to occur immediately after the sheetpile wall is removed.
  • The Contractor is expected to continue working 24 hours per day until the initial work is completed in the Gulf.
  • Lee County will be removing up to 20 of the old bridge timber pilings that were found in the channel prior to removal of the sheetpile wall. The total number of pilings still in place from the old bridge is not known.
This is very exciting news for all the bayous home owners.  The water quality, which is very good right now, will get even better!.  Sanibel Island real Estate on the north end should see a boost in values as the water is even better and there will now be a shorter trip to access the Gulf of Mexico. Check out the photo below of Blind Pass from an offshore prospective. You can see the large cranes at work.

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 04:24 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, July 23 2009
Lee County Department of Transportation has decided to drop their plans to change the county toll structure, including the Sanibel Island Causeway toll.  After two public meetings, one on Sanibel and one in Cape Coral, and meeting with the Sanibel City Council this past Tuesday, they have decided not pursue their proposed changes.

The changes would have increased the toll expense for Sanibel Island residents and business owners considerably.  We are grateful that the Toll increase is off the table - at least for now.
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 04:17 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, July 07 2009
Sanibel Island's Lighthouse Beach has been selected as the top Family beach on the Gulf Coast by Men's Journal.  In their recent edition, Men's Journal ranked the 20 best beaches in America by location and best amenities.  They also categorized the beaches and Sanibel Island got the number one ranking in the Family Beach category. 

Anyone who has ever wanted a beach vacation knows that what makes a great beach is the sand, the water and the density.  Well, Sanibel Island is top of class in all of these.  This is also what makes Sanibel Island Real Estate a solid performer over the long haul.  There isn't anymore beach being made so the fact that Sanibel Island has such long stretches of uninterrupted beach makes it special. 
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 05:02 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, July 05 2009

Sanibel Island and Captiva Island are marking the days until Blind Pass is officially opened.  The current schedule is for the pass to be open July 25!.  On September 25th there will be a ribbon cutting to mark this historic event.  Be sure to mark your calendar!

 

 

                        Opening of Blind Pass Draws Near
        Blind Pass Restoration project engineers and contractors are hoping for calm weather and seas as they complete interior dredging of the pass and move dredge "Nate" into the Gulf of Mexico. Only one of the original four sheet pile walls remains in place parallel to the gulf coast. Dredging near the gulf is normally more difficult than interior dredging due to the coarser sand. But gulf waves make it impossible to use the small dredge. To take advantage of days when weather cooperates, work may continue throughout the evenings.
 
        Completion of the project is expected in July. (Fingers crossed.)  Please join Lee County, the City of Sanibel and the CEPD for a commemorative ribbon cutting on Friday, September 25 at 10:00am.  Preparations for a special Captiva celebration are underway.  As we reunite for the season we will hold a grand family event including a small boat flotilla, food and fun.  Get your boats ready!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 06:21 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, June 25 2009
Hi,

On Tuesday night I moderated a meeting of interested Sanibel citizens about installing Solar Hot water heating systems on Sanibel homes, condos and commercial buildings.  At this time there are a number of State and Federal incentives to assist with the payment of these systems.  The State of Florida is offering a $500 rebate and the Federal Government is offering a 30% tax credit (not deduction) toward the expense of installing such a system. 

Aaron Fields of Advance Solar in Ft. Myers presented a proposal that would install these systems for under $2000 after all the rebates and tax credits.  The payback period for the investment is 2 to 4 years depending on your water use.  After that, the hot water is free of energy expense!  The intention of this initiative is to get as many buildings on Sanibel Island using the energy of the sun to heat their hot water.

Sanibel Island is the perfect place!  From a personal perspective, I have a solar hot water system on my pool and it is great.  Aaron will be visiting my home very soon to see if Solar Hot Water is in my future!  If you call Aaron, reference the Sanibel Solar Initiative for all the details.
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 02:24 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, June 20 2009
It is definately Summer on Sanibel Island!  The temperatures are climbing and the buzz is all about July 4th.  As many know - Sanibel Island hosts a real July 4th Parade filled with great floats and the streets lined with kids picking up candy thrown from the floats.  It is a real treat and something quite unique.  The entire community comes out.  This year's theme of the parade is "Going Green"  It will be very interesting to see what the parade entrants come up with. 

What is new is that after the parade, in Bailey's Plaza, they are hosting "Bailey's Backyard Bar-B-Q" from 10 - 2 on Saturday the 4th.  This I am sure will prove to be a real hoot!.  There will be lots of fun for everyone and the food and beverage will be outstanding.  So - if you are in the area and looking for something to do - come see the parade and stop by Baileys. 
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 08:50 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, June 11 2009
Hi,

There is a move afoot by the Lee County Commissioners and Lee County Department of Transportation to raise the tolls on the Sanibel Island Causeway.  To the casual visitor or day tripper, the proposal is for the toll to remain the same $6.00.  The increase comes to those residents and employees on the island who use the transponder discount program.  The proposal is to raise these rates to $3.00 per trip.  This is going to place a huge burden on all our island businesses, not to mention all the residents who have kids in school off island, residents with doctors off island or any other errands that occur off island.  Check out The News-Press article from today's paper for more detail on this issue.    http://www.news-press.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2009906110321
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 12:40 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, June 05 2009
Hi - I would like to introduce you to a new section of my website  - SanibelGreen.  Having just received my National Association of Realtors (NAR) Green Designation, I wanted to share some of the extremely useful resources that were shared with me.  What the site pages attempt to do is to be a source for the resources. 

Most of Sanibel and Captiva Island homes and condos were built before any discussion of Green.  That does not, by any means mean that they don't possess elements that conserve electricity and water - key elements of being Green.  It also doesn't mean that there couldn't be cost effective modifications to the property that would make it less expensive to operate and be beneficial to the enviromnent.

I am by no means an expert on Green Building, I am however more aware of what makes a property more friendly to the environment and usually, less expensive to operate.  I will be using this blog space and my other ways of reaching out to my colleagues and clients to bring greater awareness of things we can all do to conserve our resources. 

If you while visiting the site have suggestions for additional resources, let me know.  Over time, I will be adding sections and new links to bring even more helpful information on making your house or condo more Green!  In the mean time - click on the Sanibel Green button on my home page or go directly to www.SanibelGreen.com!
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 03:20 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, May 27 2009
The news through May of 2009 about real estate sales on Sanibel is mixed.

We are looking somewhat similar to last year in number of sales.  This year so far, 48 homes have closed which averages roughly 10 per month or 120 for the year.  In 2008, 146 house were sold so we are down in the house category.  In the Condo category, thus far 48 condos have closed which averages roughly 10 or 120 for the year.  In 2008, 95 condos sold so we are up in the Condo sales category.  We have 30 homes and 24 condos that are under contract to close so things are definitely moving.   We also have many people here looking so my belief is that things will continue to be busy for the next 6 weeks or so. 

What is also true however, and good news for buyers, is that the average sales price of both homes and condos is off by about 15 - 20 percent.  There continue to be some great values out there so what are you waiting for? 

If you would like more detail on the current market and how this affects your Island real estate decisions to buy or sell, contact me.  It's a sensational day in paradise.
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 04:37 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, May 23 2009
After 10 days with rain dominating all or part of the day - it is great to see the sun shining again on Sanibel Island.  And the outlook for the weekend is sunny!  This is true both actually and metaphorically.

It is true that it has been raining for most of the past 10 days - we desperately needed the rain so we are grateful.  An unusually early 'tropical wave' and stalled low pressure system were the cause. 

What is also true is that the sun is shining on Sanibel Island Real Estate at this time.  There have been many people visiting here and bringing their check books.  Contracts are being written and properties are selling again.  It seems as though the cloud has lifted slightly and the folks that have always wanted to own on Sanibel Island are coming back. May 2009 (through the 22nd) are outpacing the previous 4 months.  We have had 16 homes and condos close already and the number of properties under contract is growing. With the prices as relatively low as they are and the interest rates being at such low rates, it is truly a great time to buy. 
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 09:33 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, May 13 2009

A very exciting announcement came out about Sanibel Island's first GREEN residential development.  As most know, there is very little property remaining on Sanibel Island that is able to be developed.  Over 65% of Sanibel is under conservation restrictions so any building of multiple units is big news. 

This project is a collaborative arrangement between Benchmark Construction, the Florida Community Design Center and the University of Florida School of Architecture that will bring forth a cluster of 12 single family homes on a 12 acre parcel along Periwinkle Way.  The project will be located on the previous site of the Old Schoolhouse Theater.  The mission of the project is "to create and optimize a sustainable, environmentally sensitive design that could become a model for future development of coastal communities in our region."

The objective of any GREEN development is to create a more sustainable situation for the environment.  This is done, for example,  through the use of cluster housing -  less impact on the environment, building materials that are energy efficient, renewable and kind to the environment, building systems that conserve water and power.  

This is totally in keeping with Sanibel Island and I am really looking forward to seeing where it goes.  I'll keep you posted.  For more info


Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 02:12 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, May 01 2009

Continuing with my recent discussion about where Sanibel Island Real Estate is at this time - Condos are our topic today. This isn’t pretty so hold on. In 2006, the median sales price of a condo on Sanibel was $768,000 and was on the market for an average of 119 days. In 2008 - the median condo price had dropped to $612,500 or down 20.23% and the days on market had climbed to 223 days. WOW - a world of difference. In 2009 we are continuing to see prices fall some - not as in a Ft. Myers fall but still a fall. Sanibel Island Real Estate continues to hold better than many markets but it is still not pretty. Until next time

Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 03:52 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, April 28 2009
Sanibel Island Real Estate is moving.  There is no doubt about it, the showings are up and the contracts being written are up.  As in most years, the more serious buyers come back after Easter to do their looking.  This is for a couple of reasons.  1.  It is easier to get into properties after season, the occupancy is lower and 2.  They aren't trying to combine a vacation with a property search.  It usually works better.  Anyway, the folks are here and they are looking to pick up a well priced piece of Sanibel real estate. I think we may be seeing our low. 
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 12:10 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, April 10 2009
Ok - I admit it - I am a Sanibel Island Realtor and I am always optomistic!  There, I said it - I am optomistic.  This time it is about some of the signs we are seeing, nationally and locally about the state of Sanibel Island Real Estate. 

On the national scene, the stock market has been posting fairly consistant gains and yesterday we saw all the indices rise with some good news about retailing and even - banking!  It is commonly believed that the stock market begins to rise about 6 months before an economic turnaround so, given that we have about 5 more months to go.  The interest rates continue to be low and the credit, that has been strangling the most credit worthy of folks, is finally loosening just a bit!  The employment data is really the big wild card.  With so many jobs being shed it will dampen any uptick in the retail improvements - but time will tell.  Having been a victim of the 1991 recession, being laid off, I can only tell you that things do improve and businesses respond in healthy ways

Locally - our tourist season on Sanibel has been healthy.  Most businesses are reporting the same if not a bit improved figures over last year.  And in Real Estate - we are seeing deals coming together.  After one of the slowest starts in a very long time, we are now finally seeing properties go under contract.  Since the beginning of the year, the low end is where the activity has been and now it is moving to the middle and high end.  It is quite exciting to see.  Personally I have a number of clients looking at coming down in May and June to look in earnest.  There is a ground swell of opinion that the bottom, of the Sanibel Real Estate market, may at last be in sight.  So maybe I'm not the only one who is optomistic! 
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 08:12 am   |  Permalink   |  Email


Servicing the Real Estate Needs of Buyers and Sellers on Sanibel and Captiva Islands.
 

 
ReMax of the Islands
Sarah Ashton Sarah S. Ashton, Broker Associate, Realtor®
ReMax of the Islands
2400 Palm Ridge Road
Sanibel, FL 33957

 

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