Tropical Storm Fay arrived in Collier County around 5:00 AM this morning. The National Weather Service reported that she came in around Cape Romano just south of Marco. This is the same area Wilma arrived in 2005. The Naples Daily News has reported that 28,000 people in Collier are without power.
The area that I live in Pelican Bay has never lost power during the storm. As I type, we are still getting pretty strong wind gusts. There are some palm fronds down and some downed branches. When Fay landed she was just short 15 miles per hour to be Hurricane One status. The National Weather Service was still posting warnings as of 1:30 PM today.
Here is a short video of the winds around my subdivision earlier this afternoon make sure you have your sound on so you can hear the wind. If you have problems with this video you can try clicking on Fay Video.
Yesterday morning I was out showing properties. By the time I finished showing, my husband Don had put up most of our hurricane shutters and was waiting to see how the storm progressed before he put up the rest of our shutters. After showing, I hauled out my personal hurricane checklist and headed out to supplement our canned goods. I finished doing any laundry around the house; just in case we didn’t have water. Dinner last night was defrosted Costco beef tenderloin steaks that we grilled because...... just in case....we lost power I was NOT going to lose the joy of eating those steaks. I made sure to turn on the dishwasher so that……just in case…….we had no water my dishes would be clean. Was I stressed? You bet I was! I even cleaned our bathrooms to use up some of my unwanted stress. I can only watch the Weather Channel for so long.
You would think that after experiencing Charlie in 2004 and Wilma in 2005 that a new storm would be old hat to me.........NOT! Until you have experienced getting ready for a hurricane, you can only imagine the stress one experiences. After each storm, I am so thankful it is over.
While a possible hurricane is a fact of life in Florida, I can still remember possible tornados being a fact of life in Illinois. No matter where one lives, Mother Nature can interfere. At least living in Naples my husband and I do not have to contend with blizzards any more.
In my last blog I mentioned that I had seen an increase in showing activity on my listings. My manager at Downing Frye sent all agents an email yesterday saying for the first 15 days of August 2007, Downing Frye had 46 pending contracts. This year Downing Frye has 72 pending sales. Many of these contracts he wrote were under $500,000.
Place should be open for business tomorrow in Naples that had closed for the pending storm. Life will be getting back to normal in paradise!
The latest State wide housing statistics from the Florida Association of Realtors® show that number of existing single family homes increased slightly comparing July of 2007 to July of 2008. The median sales price is down 19% in the same time period.
Existing condominiums saw a price decrease of 13% comparing July 2007 to July 2008. The number of sales fell 7% in the same time period.
Please note that while these reports include statistics from the Naples Board of Realtors, there is no line item for Naples. You'll just have to sharpen that pencil to do the math to figure out the numbers. :)
This past week was a busy one for me. I had buyers that came in after the storm. I also had a contract come in on one of my listings that was accepted. One set of the buyers wrote an offer on a listing but their offer was rejected by the seller because it was too low and another offer came in the picture as we were negotiating. NOTE: Even in a S-L-O-W market if a property is priced well, the market may bring in multiple offers.
I showed out in the Terrace section of Heritage Bay today. I have to tell you that because of the rains, the mosquito population has flourished. My God! The mosquitoes almost carried my clients and I into the model! In the 12 years I have lived in Naples, I have never seen the mosquitoes so bad.
The Gulf water temperature was 90 degrees today. Swimming after work was lovely but good ole Gustav could be coming into a warm Gulf. Everyone, I am sure hopes that Gustav disappears!
My husband and I went to dinner at the Sandpiper in Pelican Bay last night with our upstairs neighbors from Long Island, who had just returned to Paradise. The veal piccante at the Sandpiper was delicious. The sunset that accompanied dinner was gorgeous. Real estate prices may be down, mosquitoes may be multiplying and Gustav may be coming into the Gulf but nights like last night shared with good friends are perfect!
Don't forget to check out my new page for News Updates.
The other day I was speaking to a fellow Realtor® about a listing that recently came under contract. The Realtor® said to me, "That seller joined the ranks of the desperate sellers that don't want to wait for season to sell their home and just gave it away." I in turn said to that Realtor®. "The market is what the market is."
That Realtor's® statement unsettled me. I wanted to start arguing with this Realtor® but I held my tongue. What I REALLY wanted to say was that no seller GIVES AWAY their home. There may be sellers that are desperate to sell but the market sets the price for their home. A seller may decide to accept less than market for his home. In the thirty years I have been selling real estate, I have seen this happen very few times.
Some people may think sellers are "giving away" their homes. It is my opinion that these people are living in yesterday's market when real estate prices were inflated. Compared to sales prices in 2005 it may appear that homes are being sold for a "song." As I said to the other Realtor®, "The market is what the market is."
When I started selling real estate in 1978,
interest rates had just started soaring upwards. I was 25 years old and had NO CLUE that the market was bad. The market was............the market.
I studied VA loans because at that time there were a number of guys who had served in Vietnam, had started a family and wanted to buy a home. FHA loans, holding seconds and contract sales were also ways to buy a house that I studied. I analyzed ways to buy a house so that I could help my buyers. I also learned how to explain the ways buyers could purchase a home to my sellers. Back in the days of old, sellers just wanted to see a contract with a contingency for a "normal" bank loan. That kind of loan was just NOT going to happen. I can remember being elated years later when the first adjustable rate mortgages came on the scene.
Did people "give away" their homes back in 1978? No because the market was the market! Don't we all wish we would have bought more real estate back in 1978 and resold it when the interest rates came down and the prices increased?
1991 found the United States "waiting" to go to war.
I had listed a home in Naperville, IL that I just loved. The floor plan was a wonderful great room concept. In the middle of the great room was a beautiful fireplace. God, that house was gorgeous.
If you were a Realtor® in 1991 or a Seller, you will remember that the MARKET came to a stand still while the U.S. waited to see if we were going to war. We kept reducing the price on this home until we finally came to a price that the market would bare and the house sold. It was difficult pricing any home at that time because of all the uncertainty. Home just were not selling unless they were priced right at market.
While some Seller's may think that by holding onto their asking price until season will get them their price, I say "Get your place off the market and put it back on when the market can bring you your asking price." Come on guys, real estate is cyclical and I have lived through a few cycles to know a house will not sell if it is overpriced for the market. This market is probably not going to change by season 2009. If you can afford to wait, why don't you save your home for another upturn in the real estate cycle?
It is being reported that Tropical Storm Fay may pass by Southwest Florida Tuesday morning. If you would like to stay updated about the storm's progress, please click on Hurricane Information. This page has links to sites with hurricane information. The NBC2 Hurricane Resource site is a great link filled with lots of information. Wether you are long time residents or have just moved to Naples, it is a good idea to read about how to prepare for a Hurricane.
If you own in Naples and are currently out of state, now is the time to make sure all your patio furniture and outdoor flower pots have been taken inside.
I have also recently added a page to this website with news stories that may be of interest to Naples Buyers and Sellers. This link Lynn's News Picks will take you to articles and online links that I have been reading and think will be of interest to you.
Since the beginning of August I have noticed an increase in showing activity on my listings and offers being presented. Many of these offers are abysmally low. The Naples Board of Realtors reported Naples market statistics show that pending sale for the 12 month period ending July of 2008 are up in all categories from the 12 month period ending July 2007. Our overall median sales prices have decrease 15.54% during the same time period.
The number of active listings in Naples has fallen to 10,640. Giving the number of monthly sales we have had, there is currently a 30 month inventory of listings on the market.
Here is hoping that tropical storm Fay fizzles out before it comes near Florida!
An article in the American Association of Retired People's (AARP) magazine has rated Naples, FL as one of the top ten healthiest towns to live in the United States. Naples came in as AARP's 10th choice for the top ten healthiest towns to live in the U.S. This article also stated that Naples has 264 sunny days a year. I can tell you that after living in Chicago for 43 years, I LOVE Naples' sunny days and warm Gulf waters. Even after 12 years in Naples, I can still remember those gray Chicago skies.
Our Gulf water temperature as reported by the Naples Daily News 91 degrees today. It is a joy for myself and my husband to be able to enjoy a swim in the Gulf after work almost every day.
To those of you who were wondering about what happened to the person who stole 42 cents from a fountain at the Coastland Center, the Naples Daily News reported that the State's Attorney declined to file charges against this person.
The sellers of my listings at 500 Lambiance CIR #201 and 2300 Lambiance CIR #102 instructed me to reduced the prices on their homes.
That's it for now! Those warm Gulf waters are waiting for me!
ContactUs Think Lynn Wilber when buying or selling in SW Florida !!! Downing-Frye Realty, Inc. is a Florida licensed real estate brokerage