Here is a common question I get from customers who are out-of-state and buying a home here on the islands:
“What will be some of my monthly and annual costs for living on the island?”
Obviously, the answer will differ depending on the type of property you are buying, especially when considering single family homes versus condos. But, I like to provide customers with some “ball-park estimates” so they have a better idea what to expect.
Sanibel Home Owner Costs
So, what types of costs can you expect when purchasing a home on Sanibel? Well, lets look at Jim and my personal homeowner costs for our single family home in The Dunes neighborhood.
Insurance Costs on Sanibel
Insurance costs for Sanibel homes will vary greatly from one house to another, but for our home of about 3,200 sqft., it costs around $6,ooo a year to insure. Factors that impact your insurance costs include:
- Whether the house is elevated or ground level
- What flood zone the house is located
- Whether you are full time or part time residents
- Whether you are renting out the home or not
- The year and condition of the roof, windows, etc.
- And a number of other factors…
Cost of Sanibel Home Taxes
Your tax amount will vary depending on your specific home. As a general rule of thumb, you should factor in approximately 1.5% of your purchase price to determine the cost your property taxes.
Cost of Electricity on Sanibel
Our electricity bills have a wide range throughout the year, some are as low as $175 a month, while others near the $500 a month range! Keep in mind I have a family of six at home and we are constantly running the laundry. 🙂 Our highest bills occur during the Summer months when the kids are home from school and we are running the AC, and our lowest bills come in the Fall and Winter when we open up the windows and enjoy the cool Sanibel breeze. You can contact the Lee Country Electric Cooperative to get a better idea of your home’s electricity costs.
Students enjoying the LCEC booth at the Sanibel School
Lawn Care Costs on Sanibel
Your lawn care costs will vary based on how big your lawn is and how elaborate you prefer your landscaping! Our house has an small area of grass with many trees and shrubs that require upkeep, nothing too fancy. We spend about $175 a month for our lawn service, which occurs once a week. There are a number of different landscaping companies that service the island, so we suggest you interview each company and get quotes from at least two or three of them.
Pool Service Costs on Sanibel
While we don’t have a large, full-size pool, we do have a smaller one that requires basic upkeep. For this, we pay about $100 a month to have a service company clean and maintain the proper water to chlorine balance. Again, there are a handful of pool service companies on the island whom you should interview to assess the costs for your home’s pool.
Sanibel Homeowner Water Bills
As for water, the City of Sanibel uses a reverse osmosis system that draws water from deep wells to produce pure drinking water for both Sanibel and Captiva Islands. Check out the Island Water Association for more information on the process – you can even schedule a tour of the complex, which I hear is very interesting and informative!
On average, our water bill is about $60 a month. Again, a little on the high-side since we have large family.
Costs of Sanibel Sewage
Sewage and water are not combined here as they are in other places. The City of Sanibel Wastewater Treatment Plant handles our island’s sewage needs. The cost is approximately $175 a quarter, and it’s a flat rate for residential properties on Sanibel.
Trash Service on Sanibel
Solid waste services are handled by the City of Sanibel and are usually included in your annual taxes. Yay for having one less utility bill! Visit the City of Sanibel website for a complete breakdown of the garbage, vegetation and recycling services.
I hope this helps give you an idea of the average homeowner costs here on the island. Keep in mind that my estimates are based on our 3,200 sqft. single family home that houses two adults, three teenagers, a toddler, two dogs and a number of visitors on any given day of the week!
I’d be happy to discuss what your costs might look like in comparison to mine. We have a number of resources here on the island as well as a list of vendors we recommend, so don’t hesitate to shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call at 239-472-1950.