14 February 2014

The Current Housing Market in Southeast Florida

Time for an update for all you statistics-fans who are riveted by real estate minutiae (yes, all two of you).

I am not quite sure when, but I believe in July or August I got the first hunch that the market for single family homes was loosing steam.

Back then, a prospective seller had waited forever to list her house with me, to a point where she and I did not agree on a list price anymore. Another seller, a couple, was very realistic when a price pre-determined in May had to be corrected downward – with the result that their house sold within four days of becoming available and appraised properly. Which confirms again what I learned in a seminar a few years ago: once a house enters the proper selling price corridor, it should sell within approx. 45 days.

More on that in another post. Today's subject is market data.

As available inventory started to creep up in fall – the low point for the Tri-County area was April with 12,513 single family homes for sale – asking prices did not react until two months later, when the first noticeable drop came (median $408,150 to $401,650).

But the interesting part: selling prices increased until Christmas.

They rose from $255,333 in April to $265,000 in December, and only dropped again in January, to $250,917.

Psychologically perhaps to be explained by a lower "Disconnect" ratio – what sellers want and what buyers are willing to pay – heading from 166% in April down to 141% in December, back up to 151% in January.

So the Seller-Buyer-Disconnect, which I have been calculating since five years, again mirrors the overall market and proves to be a good trend indicator.

Judging from the current trend, it seems like at least for the first quarter, there is no upswing in prices – niche products and super-trendy areas like the Miami Bay perhaps excluded.

Consequences for sellers and buyers? I will talk about that next time. In the meantime, please do contact me with any questions you may have.

SE Florida single family homes market last three years: Inventory, Median asking prices and Median selling prices, Dec 2010 - Jan 2014. Break indicates end 2012. Source: Kaiser Assoc.

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