Sanibel Real Estate blog: Interesting Article

September 29th, 2017
 I thought this article was quite good:

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Sept. 28, 2017 – Question: While we survived Hurricane Irma, we missed a lot of work and had to spend our savings to get things back to normal. Now we can’t afford to make our mortgage payment. Are we going to lose our home? – Agnes

Answer: When disaster strikes, we all need to do what we have to do in order to get through it. As a small business owner, I understand the difficulties that such a disruption can cause to our finances. When your funds are limited, it’s better to buy water and gasoline and worry about paying your mortgage when things return to normal.

Fortunately, most lenders and the government understand this and have offered relief to people affected by the hurricanes. As soon as you can, call your lender and see what programs are available to you.

If you have a federally backed mortgage, which most homeowners do, you will most likely be offered the chance to skip your next three payments and have those payments added to the end of your loan. Other lenders are offering similar programs, but they will spread the skipped payments out over a year instead.

Your lender may be busy and you may need to jump through some hoops, but by all accounts, lenders have been trying hard to make it easy for Mother Nature’s latest victims.

There’s also relief in the form of student loan payment forbearance and Internal Revenue Service extensions, although you still will need to pay any taxes due now. Reach out to the appropriate agencies, or to a financial professional, and you most likely will find the help you need.

About the writer: Gary M. Singer is a Florida attorney and board-certified as an expert in real estate law by the Florida Bar. He practices real estate, business litigation and contract law from his office in Sunrise, Fla. He is the chairman of the Real Estate Section of the Broward County Bar Association and is a co-host of the weekly radio show Legal News and Review. He frequently consults on general real estate matters and trends in Florida with various companies across the nation.

Copyright © 2017 Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), Gary M. Singer. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Needing any info on Sanibel Real Estate, check out our website at



Sanibel Real Estate Blog: AFTER Irma: Give help, get help

September 20th, 2017

Sanibel was spared with the recent hurricane. Some trees down, some pool cages, older roofs may be leaking, and it was days until the residents had power but overall, Sanibel did ok.

If you are in area that is needing help or if you have resources or time to help, check out the following list put together by our local Sanibel real estate board.

  • Florida Realtors Disaster Relief Fund – This is Realtors helping Realtors and others in the Realtor family – including real estate brokerage employees, associations and staff – who need assistance. The Fund accepts donations from anyone who wants to help.
  • Florida Realtors Disaster Relief Fund – to donate
  • Florida Realtors Disaster Relief Fund – to apply for help
  • Florida Disaster Fund supports local service organizations that help individuals in their communities with disaster response and recovery efforts – Click to donate or text DISASTER to 20222 to make a one-time donation of $10. NOTE: Individuals seeking financial assistance should register with FEMA at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362)
  • National Association of Realtors® (NAR) Realtors® Relief Foundation – to donate
  • Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offers federal disaster assistance: To call, (800) 621-FEMA (3362); TTY (800) 462-7585; more info,
  • Federal Disaster Recovery Center (DRC): To find a center near you to go to for guidance, use the DRC Locator or text DRC and your zip code to 4FEMA (43362).
  • Small Business Administration (SB) offers low-interest disaster assistance loans and business help
  • American Red Cross: (800) HELP-NOW
  • Salvation Army: (800) SAL-ARMY
  • Florida’s free Insurance Consumer Helpline for insurance questions about policies: (877) 693-5236
  • Florida Chief Financial Officer’s webpage to assist consumers with filing claims
  • Florida Department of Economic Opportunity’s Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) Program offers assistance to businesses and residents whose employment or self-employment was lost or interrupted due to Irma. More info or to file for DUA or call 1-800-385-3920
  • Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program provides support to businesses that suffered economic or physical damage from Hurricane Irma. The application period expires Oct. 31, 2017.
  • Florida Virtual Business Emergency Operations Center offers a business damage assessment surveying tool for businesses to report damages from Hurricane Irma.
  • National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Call Center: (800) 621-3362 (option 2); email, complete a “Request for Support” form and send to
  • A legal aid hotline is now available for Hurricane Irma survivors in Florida who cannot pay for an attorney: 1 (866) 550-2929

Sanibel Real Estate Blog: Flood insurance after Harvey

August 31st, 2017

In a statement, William H. Stander, executive director of the Florida Property & Casualty Association, said the organization can’t speculate on how Texas losses could impact Florida rates: “More importantly, all Floridians should recognize the importance of buying flood insurance, which is not covered under your homeowner’s insurance policy,” he said.

We all know it… flood insurance should be well in place before the storms. And if you are buying property, the insurers won’t write flood insurance with a storm lurking.So get it well in advance of a purchase.

Sanibel real estate does require flood insurance but we have private companies that can help with policies. Don’t be afraid to check out Sanibel real estate at or give us a call to discuss the market anytime.

Sanibel Real Estate Blog: TOP 10!!

August 8th, 2017

Travel and Leisure magazine just came out with it’s annual World’s Best list and good ole’ Sanibel  Island came in at #10!! Pretty amazing. Check out the August issue for yourself!

Sanibel real estate sales are moving along nicely this summer. If you have any questions about Sanibel real estate or your Sanibel neighborhood, check out our website at or give us a call at 239-849-3396 for more info.

Sanibel Real Estate Blog: Some Stats for June

August 1st, 2017

June was a busy month in Southwest Florida for real estate. There were more closed sales, more active listings, and higher median sales prices than June in 2016.

1276 single family homes sold in Lee County and that was up 8.45%, condos were up 11.9% as 575 sold. How about that median sales price– still going up? Single family homes were up 7.6% ($247,950)and condos were up 2.5% (186,000).

Thinking of jumping in on this with some Sanibel Real Estate? Check out our website at or give us a call to discuss Sanibel real estate anytime.

Sanibel Real Estate Blog: Ding Darling Photo Contest

July 20th, 2017

The 30th annual “Ding” Darling Days Amateur Nature Photography contest is accepting entries through Sept. 15. Complete contest rules, and entry form and other contest info can be found at Winners will be announced on Oct .21 at the Conservation Art Day.

So, polish off the camera and get out to Sanibel where  nature awaits. If thoughts of Sanibel real estate enter your head while visiting, check out our website at or give us a call to talk about Sanibel real estate anytime.

Sanibel Real Estate Blog: The Closing Disclosure

July 12th, 2017

It’s acceptable for real estate professionals to receive a copy of the closing disclosure from lenders, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) ruled late last week. About a year ago, the CFPB released this clarification, and last week’s action makes it official, says the National Association of Realtors® (NAR).

This is great news- we (agents) felt a bit shut out of the process with lenders at the closing juncture of the whole process. Turns out that agents actually do find errors and it was a good thing when we were involved.

So, the next time you close on a home with a lender, lenders will be able to share the closing disclosure. Hopefully, this will help reduce the closing table errors!

And if you are looking for some Sanibel real estate, then check out our website at or give us a call to discuss Sanibel real estate anytime.

Sanibel Real Estate Blog: Estoppel Fees Capped

June 29th, 2017

One of the new laws in real estate world is the cap on estoppel fees. Previously unregulated, management companies could charge whatever they wanted at closing to seller to give their blessing to the closing.

Here is how the Florida Board of Realtors explains the new law: Cap on estoppel certificate fees – Sellers of properties who live in an HOA, condo association or co-op will have a limit on the amount they’ll pay for an estoppel certificate, a document that informs a buyer if the seller is current with their dues and assessments. SB 398 (Sen. Passidomo, R-Naples) caps estoppel certificate fees at $250 for unit owners who are current in their assessments. Associations may charge an additional $100 for expedited estoppel certificates (delivered within three business days) and another $150 to owners who are delinquent in their assessments. The bill sets the price of estoppel certificates for multiple units owned by the same person and establishes a uniform, statewide format that ensures buyers and closing agents receive the appropriate information needed to close the real estate transaction. This bill also requires certificates to be valid for 30 days if delivered electronically or 35 days if delivered by mail.

Good news for Sanibel real estate sellers! If you are thinking of selling your Sanibel Real estate, check out our website at or give us call to discuss your property.

Sanibel Real Estate Blog: May 2017 Looked Good!

June 22nd, 2017

The home sales numbers have been tallied for May and the median price is up to #239,000 statewide. That is a 7.7 % increase from last year at this time. The condo statewide median price is now $178,000- that’s an 8.1 % increase over last year.

Sales of single family homes statewide totaled 27,850, up 7.6% compared to May 2016. Condo sales totaled 11,538 in May 2017, giving us an 8% increase over last year at this time.

May is traditionally a big month for closed sales in Florida- as a culmination of the contracts gone pending in Feb and March with the second home market.

Look for our Sanibel real estate stats next week! Buying or selling Sanibel real estate, have a look at where you can find all area listings. Give us a call to discuss the market anytime.


Sanibel Real Estate Blog: Mortgage Rates Still Falling

June 9th, 2017

According to mortgage buyer Freddie Mac:long-term U.S. mortgage rates fell this week, as the benchmark 30-year rate declined for the fourth straight week to its lowest level in nearly seven months.

They went on to say  the average rate on 30-year fixed-rate home loans dropped to 3.89 percent from 3.94 percent last week. The rate stood at 3.60 percent a year ago and averaged 3.65 percent in 2016, the lowest level in records dating to 1971.

Maybe time to look into some Sanibel real estate! Check out the Sanibel real estate listings on our website at or give us a call to discuss the market anytime. We can also recommend some excellent lenders with really good rates.