Sarasota Scoop: The Inside Track about Sarasota & Her islands

Filing a claim after a loss from theft or a natural disaster inevitably requires showing what you lost and how much your lost possessions are worth. The more accurate your records, the less likely the problems.

Here’s how to finesse the home inventory:
•    Make a video of your belongings and, as you focus on an item, record a verbal description of the item.
•    Take digital photos, too. Include close-ups of individual items as well as images of each room and everything inside closets, cabinets and drawers.
•    Compile a list including details such as brand names, serial numbers, purchase dates and prices. Keep receipts.
•    Store your inventory records away from your residence.

For more homeowner tips, click on the module below:

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The Local Market Insightall-cash deal has held sway in Sarasota for as long as I can remember, especially in the luxury market, and I have lived in the Sarasota area for more than 20 years. In my experience focused on selling residences listed at $500,000 and up, my clients are individual buyers, not institutional investors.

Certainly, people became more aware of this reality as credit tightened. The buyers who need mortgage support do struggle to find sellers willing to accept their offer.

In July 2013, there were 562 all-cash out of 991 sales for 57 percent; 389 involved a loan (39 percent); and 40 were classed as other (4 percent). For Manatee County, 47 percent of the July sales were all cash (330 out of 701). My Florida Regional Multiple Listing Service

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A day after renowned architect Edward J. “Tim” Seibert spoke at The Ringling’s Historic Asolo Theater, the Sarasota County Commission reviewed plans for renovating his 1959 Siesta Beach Pavilion.

Author and architect John Howey included Seibert’s pavilion in his essential reference book titled The Sarasota School of Architecture: 1941-1966 and includes a 1962 photo of the structure.

The August 1963 issue of Architectural Record published an article about the design pointing out the way Seibert employed low-maintenance materials such as reinforced concrete and concrete block. The article also examined the construction techniques and the way that the architect protected the structure against storms.

In 1980, the restroom entrances on the beach side

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In Sarasota and the USA in general, we see that houses are selling faster. This lively pace feels especially welcome locally. After all, we expect the summer slowdown and, by August, businesses await the return of our Snowbirds.

Contrariwise, this summer the housing market is roaring back in Sarasota & Her Islands well before High Season.

New data from the Campbell/Inside Mortgage Finance HousingPulse Tracking Survey released on August 23, 2013 showed strong results for non-distressed properties in July. This property category registers as the biggest and fastest growing segment of the 2013 housing market.

Let’s look at three key barometers that show a healthy housing market:

  • Time on Market fell to a three-and-a-half year low of 8.6
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Ten years ago, Gil Waters drove a vintage car over the brand-new John Ringling Causeway Bridge. The longtime advocate for the fixed-span bridge joined a parade for the August 31, 2003 grand opening that replaced the 1958 drawbridge and transformed the old bridge into a fishing pier.

Sarasota erupted into controversy at the thought of replacing the drawbridge. I remember locals complaining that they wouldn’t be able to see Sarasota Bay from the new span. It took a decade to wade through the discussions and legal challenges to the idea of a 65-foot-high bridge.

No doubt similar arguments arose about replacing the 1926 bridge which also connected the mainland with St Armand Key. After all, the Circus magnate John Ringling invested $1 million

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During October 2013, Sarasota Opera and Selby Public Library partner to take audiences "From Page to Stage" in a series of FREE weekly talks honoring the 200th birthdays of Giuseppe Verdi & Richard Wagner and the 100th birthday of Benjamin Britten.

Here's the schedule:

  • Wednesday, October 9 at 10:30am: Maestro Victor DeRenzi presents "Sarasota Opera’s Verdi Cycle"
  • Wednesday, October 16 at 10:30am: Maestro Victor DeRenzi moderates a film screening and discussion of Tosca’s Kiss
  • Wednesday, October 23 at 10:30am: Richard Russell presents "The Operatic World of Richard Wagner"
  • Wednesday, October 30 at 10:30am: Jesse Martins & Sam Lowry present "The Operatic World of Benjamin Britten"

All four talks take place at Selby Public

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The Ringling offers an opportunity to hear and see Tim Seibert recount his memories of life in the creative world of the Sarasota School of Architects. Maureen Zaremba, curator of educational programs, will interview Seibert on stage at the Historic Asolo Theater at 10:30am Tuesday, August 27, 2013. Museum Members and Sarasota Architectural Foundation (SAF) members admitted Free, General Public/Free with Museum admission, all others $5. Since The Ringling event is ticketed, I recommend calling 941.360.7399 for reservations. Afterward attend a book-signing reception. There are a few places available for the SAF-sponsored luncheon with Seibert at Treviso Restaurant (Advance online payment only: $25 per person).

Born in Seattle, Edward J. “Tim” Seibert

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Three companies — two in Sarasota, and one in Bradenton —made the 2013 Inc. 500 list. This prestigious annual ranking by Inc. Magazine publicizes the fastest-growing U.S. companies based on revenue growth for the past three years, from 2009 to 2012.

At No. 19, Integrity Funding, a Sarasota company, topped the list showing 10,462% growth and $11.1 million in 2012 revenues.

Celebrity Auto Group, Sarasota, came in at No. 66 with 4,745% growth and $16.2 million in 2012 revenues and It Works! Global, Bradenton, ranked No. 436 with 1,047% growth to $200 million in 2012 revenues.

Five additional Sarasota-based companies achieved the Inc. 5000 list: Roofing by Curry; Grand Incentives; Mister Sparky; Koala Tee; and PPI Technologies Global.

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In addition to its daily nonstop flight to and from Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport (SRQ) and Chicago's O'Hare International Airport (ORD), United Airlines recently announced a second daily flight during the holiday season (December 19, 2013 through January 6, 2014).

United's current one-nonstop daily flight amounts to more than $62 million in annual economic impact, according to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.

Here are the airlines offering year round daily nonstop service from SRQ:

  • Delta to Atlanta (ATL) and New York (LGA)
  • JetBlue to Boston (BOS), New York (JFK & LGA)
  • US Airways to Charlotte (CLT) and Washington, DC (DCA)

During Winter/Spring, Air Canada offers nonstop daily service to Toronto (YYZ) and Delta offers

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The Sarasota Association of Realtors® announced another installment in the selling streak that promises to make 2013 a record year in local real estate history. So far this year, Sarasota & Her Islands are seeing a strong recovery after languishing in the doldrums of the Great Recession. Members of the Association closed 911 sales during July 2013, which amounted a 30.3 percent increase as compared to July 2012. The July results were 3.2 percent better than for June 2013. Also, the median price for single family homes rose 7.2 percent from June 2013 to July 2013. Single family home prices have risen 16 percent over the past 12 months.

Inventory continues at very low levels with only 3.1 months of single family homes (SFH) and 4.6 months of condos

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