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 Sarah's Blog 
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
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
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, 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
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, 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
Thursday, July 16 2009
Sanibel Island is known for sun, shells, lots of conservation property, bobcats and alligators.  A group of interested citizens are now working to make it known for something else - being leaders in the uses of renewable resources. 

I am chairing Sanibel Alliance for Renewable Resources (S.A.R.R.) and hoping that as many Sanibel residents and interested parties will join us as possible.  This make sense not only for the environment but also for the value of our property and the island.  It is totally in keeping with what makes the island special. 

The first initiative of the group is to educate and encourage the use of Solar Hot Water heating systems.  We feel that with all the sun energy available for free - this makes sense for the island.  Providers of these systems, including Advance Solar - are working with us to make this as affordable as possible, likely under $2,000 per system!  There are State grants and Federal Tax Credits available at this time to help the equation.  If you would like more information about the Alliance or would like to join us, please visit www.sanibelenergy.com.   To see our press release see Page 5 of the Island Sun
Posted by: Sarah Ashton AT 12:55 pm   |  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
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


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

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

 

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