Wakelin Realty Team March 2018 Newsletter

Hello from Naples!

Rae and Fred attended the YMCA Gala at the Naples Sailing and Yacht Club in February. The Gala included a dinner, auction and a great presentation of what the “Y” means to Naples residents. The proceeds support the “Y” and all of its initiatives, which include after school programs, day camps for kids, an early learning center, swimming and other fitness activities.

The “Y” is going thru some challenging times right now…storm damage repairs from Hurricane Irma, needed repairs at the Norris Pool facility and a search for a new CEO. Many of us got our start in sports and team activities at our local YMCA when we were young. It’s a great time to step up and help this wonderful organization in a time of need.


Here’s an interesting article from the Naples Daily News: Luxury Home Sales Surge…Lower Priced Lag

The New Year came with some big purchases for Naples homebuyers. Closed sales of luxury properties — homes above $1 million — increased 123 percent over closed luxury sales in January 2017, according to the January 2018 market report released by the Naples Area Board of Realtors.

The monthly NABOR report tracks all sales made through the Southwest Florida MLS, excluding Marco Island. NABOR reported overall closed sales for January to be up 11 percent in Collier County compared to January 2017. There were 671 single-family and condominium sales in January, up 11 percent from last January, according to NABOR data. There was a 23 percent decrease in the number of single-family homes sold in the under $300,000 range, and pending sales, or new contracts written, declined 24 percent year-over-year. The number of sales in the $300,000-$500,00 price range declined to 156 in January, a 4 percent decrease over the same month last year.

Naples Beach area stood out to buyers in the single-family home market with pending sales up 51 percent over last January. Median closed prices throughout Naples were also up in January compared to last January. For the entire market, the overall median closed price increased 19 percent to $375,000 in January. January’s median closed prices decreased 19 percent in the $2 million and above price category. The median price is the price at which half of the homes sell for more and half for less.

“For a long time we saw double-digit increases in median closed prices for single-family homes in the $0 to $300,000 market,” said Cindy Carroll, SRA of Carroll & Carroll Appraisers and Consultants LLC. “But for January, the report showed only a 4 percent increase year over year.”

The January report showed the median closed price for homes under $300,000 was $255,000. However, the median closed price of homes over $300,000 was $505,000. While prices continued to increase, Collier County inventory showed a decrease of 5 percent. That translated to 258 fewer homes on the market compared to last January’s inventory.

“There’s an ongoing shortage of housing inventory in many markets across Florida,” said Florida Realtors President Christine Hansen, broker-owner with Century 21 Hansen Realty in Fort Lauderdale. “January’s statewide home sales reflected the tight supply, and — when combined with rising median sales prices — it puts pressure on potential homebuyers.”

January was a hot month for condominium sales in Naples. Closed sales of condominiums increased 23 percent in January compared to January 2017, while closed sales of single-family homes decreased 1 percent, according to NABOR reports.

“Lately, condo and townhouse sales growth has been outpacing that of single-family homes, and the reason is that the picture for condos and townhouses has been much more balanced. The single-family home market, by contrast, continues to be held back by inadequate levels of new construction,” said Florida Realtors Chief Economist Dr. Brad O’Connor.

Reports reflected 150 closed sales of condominiums in North Naples in January, a 150 percent increase over January 2017. The median closed prices in North Naples increased 428 percent. According to a NABOR release, 79 closings from a newly built luxury high-rise condominium in North Naples impacted closed sales, median closed price and days on market figures for the month. Those 79 condominiums sold between $1.8 million and $2.5 million, NABOR reported.


Official February 2018 Climate Data at Naples Airport:

Feb. 17
YTD 17
Feb. 18
YTD 18
Normal YTD
Rainfall in inches
Record High February Rainfall
7.99 (1983)
Record Low February Rainfall
High February Temperature
Low February Temperature
Record High February Temperature
89 (2018)
Record Low February Temperature
28 (1981)

Temperatures in February were above normal for the month. It seemed more like April than February. The average max temperature in February is 76.9…we recorded 84.6. We tied the record for the month at 89 degrees on three different days! We were the warmest place in the country for much of the month. It was a great month to be vacationing or living in Naples! Reported rainfall at Naples was only .10 inches. This means we now have a shortfall of over three inches.


Book Review: “The Great Alone” by Kristin Hannah

I loved Hannah’s book “The Nightingale” which was named Goodreads Best Historical fiction novel for 2015 and won the coveted People’s Choice award for best fiction in the same year. Additionally, it was named a Best Book of the Year by Amazon, iTunes, Buzzfeed, the Wall Street Journal, Paste, and The Week. So I was excited to read her latest, “The Great Alone”!

This is a spectacular book. Set in the 1970’s in Alaska, it tells the story of a family, Lenora (Leni), her parents, Cora and Ernt, who had been a prisoner of war in Vietnam whose experiences had “snapped something in him.” He is full of pain and suffering and flashbacks before we knew what PTSD could do to a person, and the effects it had on the people they loved. It is much more than a story of his pain, however. His daughter, Leni, becomes an unforgettable character and is really the heroine of the book. She and her mother, Cora, face many ordeals and challenges.

A love for Alaska shines through the twisting, turning story of this small family who both loves and hurts each other. When the characters move to Alaska the story comes vividly alive…the scenery, the characters and action.

Here is a passage that exemplifies the book:

“Two kinds of folks come up to Alaska, Cora. People running to something and people running away from something. The second kind-you want to keep your eye out for them. And it isn’t just the people you need to watch out for, either. Alaska herself can be Sleeping Beauty one minute and a bitch with a sawed-off shotgun the next. There’s a saying: Up here you can make one mistake. The second one will kill you.”

I highly recommend you read this book.


Restaurant Recommendation: La Cuisine 3861 Tamiami Trail E., Naples

We dined at this restaurant with friends last week. When they told us the name, we thought it must be a French restaurant. Not so… it’s Peruvian! It’s a small place, but we loved the food. Our waiter was knowledgeable and steered us to some great dishes. They even came up with a terrific vegan dish. We were also surprised how fast we got there from our place in Kensington; we made it there in less than 20 minutes in February!

Here are a few recent reviews on Trip Advisor:

“Fantastic authentic flavor from Peru, I had the fish tacos which were outstanding, excellent portion size reasonable pricing. The service was exceptional I will definitely come back!”

“This place is special! Made fresh and all wonderful Appetizer are all unique— cheese wontons, cold potato shrimp and egg, fried rice with shrimp, steak with rice and fries, shrimp with stir fried veggies Waitress the best— always smiling. Worth the stop!”

“The food here was so great we went three times for dinner in two weeks….and are planning a weekly visit for the remainder of our “snowbirding” winter in Naples…just to try every entree. The dinner salad was excellent (the scallops appetizer was tasty but very small…just a few bites to wet the appetite). The corvina entree with seafood was outstanding, as was the lamb chop entree. Both fillet mignon dishes were also excellent…those are the entrees we have tried so far…can’t wait to try the others!!”


Naples Real Estate:

Here are the February 2018 Naples/Bonita market statistics.

For the month of February, there were 1,822 closed sales of existing homes in all of Naples and Bonita. This compares with 1,793 closed sales for last year. This represents about a 2% year to year increase for existing home sales.

Here’s an interesting chart comparing January thru February of 2018 to last year:

Closed Sales
Under $300,000
$300,000 to $700,000
$700,001 to $1,000,000
$1,000,001 to $3,000,000
Over $3,000,000
Jan.-Feb. 2017
Jan.-Feb. 2018
% Change
+ 2%

It’s a little early in the year for meaningful comparisons year-to-year. It’s interesting to see what happened in each category though. Clearly, the high-end market is doing better than the lower end.


The inventory of available property remains down from last year, but is increasing. As the following table shows, the level of inventory varies dramatically by price point:

Naples Home Inventory As of March 3, 2018
Under $300,000
$300,000 to $700,000
$700,001 to $1,000,000
$1,000,001 to $3,000,000
Over $3,000,000
Number Sold Last 12 months
Average Number Sold per Month
Total Available for Sale
Months of Supply as of March 3, 2018

The inventory levels increased about 14% from last month to 8,167 properties. This was the 5th monthly increase in a row and the largest number in quite some time. Typically this is a busy time of year for listings. Also, keep in mind that the figure is still a low number for existing homes. For comparison, the high point of available existing home inventory was June of 2007 when there were 11,601 listed in the MLS system for Naples and Bonita! Also keep in mind, however, that a significant number of new homes are not included in this number. That’s because they are brand new homes being sold by developers and are not included in the MLS totals.

It is still a buyer’s market for existing homes priced above $300,000. In the over $3 million market, for example, there are 381 properties available. During the last 12 months, 225 properties in this price range have sold…which means an average of about 19 per month. At that rate, the 381 homes available represent about 20 months of supply.

Sellers in the upper price categories are in a highly competitive environment. The median sales price has increased slightly in Naples. There are many good buys available in all price categories in the secondary market.

Another market factor, which has been in play for several years, is the supply of brand new homes. There are many new home developments either being built or in the planning stages right now. If you are looking to buy, we can help guide you through the maze of new home availability. If you are planning to sell, you need to know details of the new competition you are facing.


Kensington Real Estate: 

Kensington is the community where Rae and Fred live. As of March 3rd, 2018 there were 38 active listings in Kensington. This is two more than last month.

Type of Property
Lowest Price
Highest Price
Average Price Per Sq. Ft.
Avg. Days on Mkt.
Estate Homes
Coach Homes

There have been 27 closed sales in the past 12-month period. At this average selling rate of 2.25 properties per month, the 38 homes listed represent about 17 months of inventory on average. The number of homes available is two more than last month, and it is definitely a buyers’ market for those available.


Riverstone Real Estate:

Riverstone is the community where Jeff and Nicola live. These statistics are taken from the MLS system we use in Naples. Riverstone has now been fully built out and turned over to the residents by the developer, GL Homes. Here’s a look at the MLS market in Riverstone as of March 3rd, 2018:

Number for Sale
Lowest Price
Highest Price
Avg. Asking Price Per Sq. Ft.
Avg. Days on Market


Here’s a breakdown of what’s currently on the market thru MLS:

$400,000 to $499,999
$500,000 to $599,999
$600,000 to $699,999
$700,000 to $799,999
$800,000 and Over
Number for Sale
Average Price per Sq. Ft.
Average Number of Days on Market

Available inventory is 2 less than last month. As of March 3rd there were 46 active listings, 2 pending sales and 5 pending sales with contingencies. The MLS system lists 41 spec and resale homes sold in the last 12 months, which means there is currently a 13-month supply of inventory in Riverstone.


Give us a call if we can help with any real estate questions you have at 239-398-0028 (Rae) or 239-451-9351 (Nicola).

Rae & Nicola